In honor of American Craft Beer Week (May 11-18), raise a pint at one our area’s local breweries, enjoy a draft in your favorite pub or tavern, or just pick up a six-pack to take home. Beer and pizza, beer and good times with friends, beer and backyard barbeques—there are virtually no wrong ways to enjoy a brew. Just don’t overdo it! Be sure to imbibe responsibly.
BOSS: Hey, can you create a booklist to highlight downtown Fredericksburg, maybe for Restaurant Week?
ME: <out loud> Sure, that would be FUN! <to myself> Are you kidding? What kind of booklist could I do for that? What’s my hook? There is no hook. Nooooooo. I’m doomed! Doomed! I’m gonna need a snack to figure this out. There are no snacks here. What snacks do I have at home? Wait. Wait. I’m getting an idea….
They say that with age comes wisdom. I’m not so sure—most middle-aged ladies I know (myself included!) seem to not be able to remember anything! Maybe the phrase means the wisdom to say “now, honey, you’re gonna hafta remind me of this conversation, because I surely will forget everything momentarily!”
Now that I have become, ahem, une femme d’un certain âge, I find that I am drawn to mysteries with little old lady sleuths.
I don’t have a passport. I should have a passport. I need a passport. I want to be the type of person who can jet off to Paris on a moment’s notice. The type of person who is asked to jet off to Paris on a moment’s notice. I’ve printed out many passport applications.
I was not a very adventurous child. I wasn’t boisterous and loud and physically fearless like some of my friends. I did, however, harbor a secret wish to run away and join the circus. I was mesmerized by the bright lights and spangles. And maybe even a teensy bit aware that there just might be some...tawdry…aspects to the circus life.
From the safety my reading perch (depending on the season—the back of the sofa, or on top of the furnace vent, or in the shade of the side yard) running away to join the circus seemed possible. I could be transformed from an awkward kid with glasses into a glittering aerialist!
Have some PEEEEANUTS or POPCORRRRN or COTTON CAAANDY and enjoy these circus tales.
Witch and Yale historian Diana Bishop discovers an enchanted manuscript, attracting the attention of 1,500-year-old vampire Matthew Clairmont. The orphaned daughter of two powerful witches, Bishop prefers intellect, but relies on magic when her discovery of a palimpsest documenting the origin of supernatural species releases an assortment of undead who threaten, stalk, and harass her. (catalog summary)
When a time-travel lab suddenly cancels assignments for no apparent reason and switches around everyone's schedules, time-traveling historians Michael, Merope, and Polly find themselves in World War II, facing air raids, blackouts, unexploded bombs, dive-bombing Stukas, rationing, shrapnel, V-1s, and two of the most incorrigible children in all of history--to say nothing of a growing feeling that not only their assignments but the war and history itself are spiraling out of control. (catalog summary)
The Dead Travel Fast by Deanna Raybourn
Excitement, danger, and romance await independent, headstrong author Theodora Lestrange when she flees 1858 Scotland and miserable spinsterhood for the wilds of Transylvania, joining a childhood friend who will soon be wed. Ensconced in a crumbling castle steeped in sinister legend, Theodora finds herself drawn equally to its gloomy atmosphere and its rakish master, Count Andrei Dragulescu. (catalog summary)
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.
I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith: "A story as light and sweet as a Victoria Sponge cake. Although they are castle dwellers, 17 year old Cassandra's family is quite impoverished, and the castle is decrepit, drafty and moldering. Her diary entries chronicle six months in the castle - a time of great changes, and a first taste of love. "
If you enjoyed this novel, you may enjoy some of the following titles:
Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson
A deeply moving family story of happiness and heartbreak, Behind the Scenes at the Museum is bestselling author Kate Atkinson's award-winning literary debut. National Bestseller Winner of the Whitbread Book of the Year Ruby Lennox begins narrating her life at the moment of conception, and from there takes us on a whirlwind tour of the twentieth century as seen through the eyes of an English girl determined to learn about her family and its secrets.
A Brief History of Montmaray by Michelle Cooper
On her sixteenth birthday in 1936, Sophia begins a diary of life in her island country off the coast of Spain, where she is among the last descendants of an impoverished royal family trying to hold their nation together on the eve of the second World War.
This readalike is in response to a patron'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.
Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas by James Patterson: "Katie Wilkinson has found the perfect man at last but one day, he disappears from her life, leaving behind only a diary for her to read. The diary is written by a woman named Suzanne and is addressed to her new baby boy, Nicholas. In it she pours out her heart about the joy he has brought her. As Katie reads this moving story, she realizes that the man she's fallen in love with is Suzanne's husband, Nicholas' father. She reads on, filled with terror and hope as she struggles to understand what happened and whether her new love can survive." (Book summary)
If you like relationship stories with strong, complex emotional impact, you may like these titles:
The amateur marriage: a novel by Anne Tyler
Tyler's ambitious sixteenth novel explores a weighty topic, the erosion of a marriage, over an unusually long period of time, 1941 to the present. Once again, you'll enjoy Tyler's trademark light yet insightful touch. The ill-fated couple at the story's center, Michael and Pauline, are as familiar as relatives-just "two good people who are bad for each other," as Tyler puts it. The point of view in the book's 10 chapters shifts from one family member to another, allowing sympathy for all.
The annunciation by Ellen Gilchrist
Follows the desires of Amanda McCarney: an unwed mother on a Mississippi Delta plantation at age fourteen, a wealthy New Orleans matron into her early forties, and now a divorced poetry student living in a university community in the Ozarks. When Amanda finds herself infatuated with an intense young musician, what at first appears to be a sexual intrigue becomes a grand and impossible passion that unfolds with striking parallels to the life of the eighteenth-century French poetess whose work she is translating. (Book description, amazon.com)