Jersey Girls (and Guys)

A Man Most Worthy

By Marcus Major

Go to catalog
"At 36, self-made millionaire John Sebastian has it all--a booming business, a luxurious home, a gorgeous girlfriend, and the respect of his friends--but somehow it's not enough. Returning to the tough streets of Newark, New Jersey, he spots Josephine Flowers, the love of his life, the woman he allowed to walk away seven years ago. He is driven to reconnect with her, even though the cost to his pride is high, and even though she's now married to another. For only her blessing, her love, will prove to John that he is, at last, a man most worthy."
Reserve this title

Creepers: A Novel

By David Morrell

Go to catalog
"On a cold October night, five people gather in a run-down motel on the Jersey shore and begin preparations to break into the Paragon Hotel. Built in the glory days of Asbury Park by a reclusive millionaire, the magnificent structure - which foreshadowed the beauties of art deco architecture - is now boarded up and marked for demolition.

"The five people are “creepers,” the slang term for urban explorers: city archeologists with a passion for investigating abandoned buildings and their dying secrets. On this evening, they are joined by a reporter who wants to profile them - anonymously, as this is highly illegal activity - for a New York Times article.

"Frank Balenger, a sandy-haired, broad-shouldered reporter with a decided air of mystery about him, isn’t looking for just a story, however. And after the group enters the rat-infested tunnel leading to the hotel, it becomes clear that he will get much more than he bargained for. Danger, terror, and death await the creepers in a place ravaged by time and redolent of evil."

Reserve this title

Elysiana

By Chris Knopf.

Go to catalog

"Gwendalynn Anders, a mid-Western girl who's never seen the ocean, wonders what was in that joint she smoked a week before waking up on Elysiana, and why it feels like the trip will last the entire summer of 1969.

"Jack Halcyon, living atop an abandoned twenty-story hotel, wonders how he's able to ponder the incongruities of life after leaving a big chunk of his brain at the scene of an accident.

"Borough Council President Norman Harlan wonders what cruel God put him on an equal footing with Avery Volpe, the fearsome Captain of the Beach Patrol.

"Twelve miles long and a mile wide, Elysiana is an island off the coast of New Jersey sitting astride the convergence of powerful fault lines social, political, and existential. It s a place of beauty and insanity, shared by the angelic and profane. Where cops, criminals, prodigies, and the promiscuous find themselves at the haphazard mercy of a lunatic providence.

"Other players include a globe-trotting whiz kid, an Italo-Hispanic crime boss, a surfing aesthete and his vulgar roommate, a career car stereo thief, and a seven-year-old girl who's probably spent too much time with the dead bodies in the dunes.

"This is a story that could have only happened on the Jersey Shore during the summer of 69. A time when the social fabric was tearing apart, in a place where that fabric had never been very well knit together."

Reserve this title

Five Finger Discount: A Crooked Family History

By Helene Stapinski

Go to catalog

"As Stapinski writes, Jersey City was a tough place to grow up, except I didn't know any better. In this unforgettable memoir, Stapinski tells the heartbreaking yet often hilarious story of growing up among swindlers, bookies, and crooks. With deadpan humor and obvious affection, she comes clean with the outrageous tales that have swirled around her relatives for decades, and recounts the epic drama and comedy of living in a household in which petty crime was a way of life. The dinner Helene's mother put on the table (often prime rib, lobster tail, and fancy cakes) was usually swiped from the cold-storage company where Helene's father worked. The soap and toothpaste in the bathroom were lifted from the local Colgate factory. The books on the family's shelves were smuggled out of a book-binding company in Aunt Mary Ann's oversize girdle (or taken by Grandpa Beansie from the Free Public Library). Uncle Henry did a booming business as the neighborhood bookie, cousins did jail time, and Great-Aunt Katie, who liked to take a shot of whiskey each morning to clear her lungs, was a ward leader in the notorious Jersey City political machine.

"No backdrop could be more appropriate for the Stapinskis than Jersey City; a place known for its ties to the Mafia, industrial blight, and corrupt local officials, and the author ingeniously weaves the checkered history of her hometown throughout the book. Navigating a childhood of toxic waste and tough love, Stapinski tells an extraordinary tale that, unlike the swag of her childhood, is her very own."

Reserve this title

Freedomland

By Richard Price

Go to catalog
"A white woman, her hands gashed and bloody, stumbles into an inner-city emergency room and announces that she has just been carjacked by a black man. But then comes the horrifying twist: her young son was asleep in the back seat, and he has now disappeared into the night.

"So begins Richard Price's electrifying new novel, a tale set on the same turf--Dempsey, New Jersey--as Clockers. Assigned to investigate the case of Brenda Martin's missing child is detective Lorenzo Council, a local son of the very housing project targeted as the scene of the crime. Under a white-hot media glare, Lorenzo launches an all-out search for the abducted boy, even as he quietly explores a different possibility: Does Brenda Martin know a lot more about her son's disappearance than she's admitting?

"Right behind Lorenzo is Jesse Haus, an ambitious young reporter from the city's evening paper. Almost immediately, Jesse suspects Brenda of hiding something. Relentlessly, she works her way into the distraught mother's fragile world, befriending her even as she looks for the chance to break the biggest story of her career."

Reserve this title

Mazel

By Rebecca Goldstein

Go to catalog
Mazel means luck in Yiddish, and luck is the guiding force in this magical and mesmerizing novel that spans three generations. Sasha Saunders is the daughter of a Polish rabbi who abandons the shtetl and wins renown as a Yiddish actress in Warsaw and New York. Her daughter Chloe becomes a professor of classics at Columbia. Chloe's daughter Phoebe grows up to become a mathematician who is drawn to traditional Judaism and the sort of domestic life in suburban New Jersey that her mother and grandmother rejected.
Reserve this title

My Sister's Bones: A Novel

By Cathi Hanauer

Go to catalog

"Life is full of surprises. You think you know your family. You think you know your best friend. You even think you know yourself. Then, suddenly, everything changes and the connections that kept you safe can disappear in the blink of an eye.

In My Sister's Bones, Billie Weinstein sees things most people don't see. Her sister Cassie has always been her touchstone, the person she turns to for advice and guidance, the person whose opinion means the most to her. But ever since Cassie left for college, she's seemed different -- withdrawn, obsessed with studying, and she barely eats.

"Billie can't talk to her parents about it; they act as if nothing is wrong refusing to see the changes in their older daughter. Now Billie has become Cassie's confidante, the only one Cassie trusts enough to tell the truth to, and Billie is suddenly thrust into an unfamiliar -- and disturbing -- role; one that drives her to make choices that will forever change the way she looks at the world."

Reserve this title

One for the Money

By Janet Evanovich

Go to catalog

Out-of-work Stephanie Plum blackmails her bail bondsman cousin into giving her a try as an apprehension agent. Her first case involves tracking down a former vice cop on the run from a charge of murder one, a man who also happens to be her former lover.

Reserve this title

Rattled

By Debra Galant

Go to catalog
"Set in the fictional subdivision of -Galapagos Estates,+ Rattled is a very funny look at what happens when soccer moms, animal rights activists, dishonest real estate developers and, of course, rattlesnakes, get together and fight for ascendancy in the rapidly developing New Jersey suburbs.All Heather wants there is a nice house. Well, a nice house and a nice piece of land. And of course a basement gym, a master bath with radiant heat, Jacuzzi and his-and-her toilets. She could make do without a media room if she had to. After all, the pioneers hadn+t had plasma TV, and they+d survived. Heather is not your average suburban housewife-or maybe she is. But when her fortuitous meeting with an endangered species of rattlesnake sets this first novel in motion, you may find yourself feeling sorry for the snake."
Reserve this title

Seven Up

By Janet Evanovich

Go to catalog

When a senior citizen is charged with smuggling contraband cigarettes, Stephanie Plum and Lula get more than they bargained for--a corpse in the wood shed and an old man on the lam.  Stephanie is a Jersey girl through and through. This is just one book in a series.

Reserve this title