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Book reviews by library staff and guest contributors

Something strange on the morning commute

Cover of The Haunting of Tram Car 0
A review of The Haunting of Tram Car 015 by P. Djeli Clark

Something is very wrong with tram car 015. Unlike the other trams that wiz above Cairo’s bustling streets powered by djinn magic, something in tram car 015 is angry, and it’s up to Agent Hamad Nasr and his new partner Onsi Youssef in The Haunting of Tram Car 015 to discover just what that something is. It’s not the easiest of propositions: in the Cairo of 1912, it’s been decades since the power of djinn has been harnessed and turned Cairo into a world power.

Nov 16, 2023

In the mood for some cute bears?

Cover of Milk & Mocha Comics Collec
A review of Milk & Mocha Comics Collection: Our Little Happiness by Melani Sie

I'm always in the mood for that! Milk & Mocha are sweet bears in love whether times are good or bad. They find happiness in the little moments and even though they differ, they are perfectly compatible. Milk is peppy, affectionate and never stops talking. Mocha is quiet, patient and provides comfort and rejuvenation when Milk's battery gets low, so to speak. They find joy in holding hands, snuggling under a blanket and sharing meals together.  

Nov 13, 2023

Family and friends make the difference

Cover of We Still Belong
A review of We Still Belong by Christine Day

Seventh-grader Wesley Wilder is thinking about a lot of things. For example, her Upper Skagit community and heritage, which she loves being part of as much as she can. Then, there's the school newspaper publishing her poem celebrating Indigenous Peoples’ Day. And wait, isn’t it weird that her English teacher at her new school doesn’t give her extra credit for the Indigenous Peoples’ Day poem, even though it satisfied all the requirements? And what’s going to happen with Wesley and her mom’s wonderfully unique living situation? Also, is her favorite gamer Indigenous, too?

Nov 10, 2023

Immerse yourself

Cover of Mask of Mirrors
A review of Mask of Mirrors by M. A. Carrick

This first in the Rook & Rose trilogy has been on my to-read list for a while, but I'll confess it's length was a bit daunting. Not because I don't like a longer book, but because I never felt I had the time to allow myself to settle in and become immersed. But once I did that? I was. Immersed.

Nov 7, 2023

Traveling through the pages

Cover of The Tree and the River
A review of The Tree and the River by Aaron Becker

In this wordless book, the illustrations take the reader through time. From a wild past where people shared the land with animals, to a future full of lights, tall buildings, and more people than animals, two things remain constant: a proud tree and the river that runs past it. Eventually, destruction befalls the city, but the river and the tree work together to create a new beginning.

Nov 3, 2023

Don't be so drama

Cover of Vera Wong's Unsolicited Ad
A review of Vera Wong's Unsolicited Advice for Murderers by Jesse Q. Sutanto

Little old lady Vera Wong wakes up to find a dead body in her tea shop in San Francisco's Chinatown and immediately gets to work solving the murder. The police rule the death accidental but Vera knows there's foul play. After all, she found evidence on the deceased while she was waiting for the police to arrive. She searched every pocket and looked inside the victim's wallet. She knows stuff! Too bad the young officers assigned to the case didn't drink any of Vera's special tea to sharpen the mind and senses. She prepared a tea tray especially for this purpose.

Nov 2, 2023

PW's Best Nonfiction Books of 2023

Cover of Nonfiction Suggestions
Nonfiction Suggestions

The lists for the best books of the year have started. Publishers Weekly's 2023 list contain a wide variety of books to choose from. Below are the nonfiction ones. There is a little bit of everything--histories, biographies, books about crime, sports, literature, science. There are a number of them that are on my to- read list. Are there any that you would add?

Oct 31, 2023


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