Shelf Life

Our Shelf Life Blog features the latest recommendations chosen by library staff and volunteers.
Fri, 12/04/2015 - 1:38pm
If you like Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids.  You can browse the book matches here.

Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann: A rich vision of the pain, loveliness, mystery, and promise of New York City in the 1970s. A radical young Irish monk struggles with his own demons as he lives among the prostitutes in the middle of the burning Bronx. A group of mothers gathers in a Park Avenue apartment to mourn their sons who died in Vietnam, only to discover just how much divides them even in grief. A young artist finds herself at the scene of a hit-and-run that sends her own life careening sideways. A 38-year-old grandmother turns tricks alongside her teenage daughter, determined not only to take care of her family but to prove her own worth. Weaving together these and other seemingly disparate lives, McCann's allegory comes alive in the voices of the city's people, unexpectedly drawn together by hope, beauty, and the "artistic crime of the century"--a mysterious tightrope walker dancing between the Twin Towers.

If you enjoyed Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann for the writing, the family story and the setting, you may enjoy these titles:

American Rust by Philipp Meyer
Left alone to care for his aging father after his mother commits suicide and his sister escapes to Yale, Isaac English longs for a life beyond his hometown. But when he finally sets out to leave for good, accompanied by his temperamental best friend, former high school football star Billy Poe, they are caught up in a terrible act of violence that changes their lives forever.-catalog summary

 

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery

We are in the center of Paris, in an elegant apartment building inhabited by bourgeois families. Renée, the concierge, is witness to the lavish but vacuous lives of her numerous employers. Outwardly she conforms to every stereotype of the concierge: fat, cantankerous, addicted to television. Yet, unbeknownst to her employers, Renée is a cultured autodidact who adores art, philosophy, music, and Japanese culture. (catalog description)

 

Thu, 12/03/2015 - 2:44am
I Will Chomp You! by Jory John and Bob Shea

"I Will Chomp You!" growls a pointy-toothed beast. Either stop turning the pages of the book he lives inside of, or else there will be dire consequences. His teeth may be jagged and sharp, but he seems more chump than chomp.  

Accuracy is thankfully not one of our monster's strengths. Every CHOMP attempt ends up just missing us. Whew!

Wed, 12/02/2015 - 2:43am
A New York Christmas by Anne Perry
At twenty-three, Jemima Pitt has grown from Thomas and Charlotte Pitt's little girl into a young woman ready to take on her own adventures in Anne Perry’s A New York Christmas.

Mon, 11/30/2015 - 9:27am
Sorcery and Cecelia, or, The Enchanted Chocolate Pot by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer

“Being the Correspondence of Two Young Ladies of Quality Regarding Various Magical Scandals in London and the Country”

If you care for your Austen/Regency romances with a difference—but not necessarily zombies, Sorcery and Cecelia might be your cup of tea.

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 2:39am
Disney's Descendants

What if the world’s greatest villains had children? In the popular Disney Channel movie Descendants, that question is answered.

Meet Mal, Evie, Carlos, and Jay—four best friends living on the Isle of the Lost, where they and their evil parents have been banished since good has conquered evil in the classic children’s tales.

Wed, 11/25/2015 - 2:39am
Sweet Christmas by Sharon Bowers

Memories of special holiday cooking can be life-long treasures. You’ll find many choices in Sharon Bowers’ Sweet Christmas.  It’s a collection of tried and true Christmas classics to make for and with your family and friends.

Having grown up in the South, the author naturally includes a number of Southern specialties: Divinity (don’t try it on a humid day); Pecan Pralines; and Pamelas—orange peel that has been cooked, lightly sugared, and perhaps given a dip of good quality chocolate.

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