CRRL Staff

09/26/2016 - 12:52pm
Frankenstein’s creature has many differences from other popular monsters associated with Halloween. Rather than being based off an ancient legend, religious concept, or historical figure, his origin is solely literary in nature, being confined to one book. Despite this, public perception of the creature has changed greatly since the publication of the original novel, leading to wildly divergent styles and plotlines in its various film adaptations.
 
People’s perceptions of the creature have become so warped by time and decades of misleading film posters and article titles that most use the name “Frankenstein” to refer to the creature itself, rather than the scientist who created him!  An understanding of literary history is necessary to understand the truth of the creature’s tragic history and how decades of film adaptations changed him into the lumbering brute most know him as today.
 
08/25/2016 - 2:58pm
If you like A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

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 other book matches here.

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them-in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul--they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation. With heart-wrenching power and suspense, Hosseini shows how a woman's love for her family can move her to shocking and heroic acts of self-sacrifice, and that in the end it is love, or even the memory of love, that is often the key to survival. (catalog summary)

If you like A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, you may also like these selections (includes books pre-1900 & post-1900, per customer's request):

 


The Awakening
by Kat Chopin (pre-1900; women)
Edna Pontellier is trapped. By her marriage, by her responsibilities to two young sons, by the expectations of Creole society. When she falls in love with the charming and flirtatious Robert Lebrun during a summer on the Louisiana coast, Edna awakens to a new sense of herself, and to the possibility of true independence. Mademoiselle Reisz, a locally renowned musician, offers one example of the self-sufficient, artistic existence Edna might lead. An affair with the notorious womanizer Alcée Arobin warns of the passion and danger inherent in living outside the boundaries of convention. Torn between the life that was handed to her and the one she wants to live, Edna makes a shocking decision. (catalog summary)


 



Birds Without Wings
by Louis De Bernières
The setting is a small village in southwestern Anatolia in the waning years of the Ottoman Empire. Everyone there speaks Turkish, though they write it in Greek letters. It's a place that has room for a professional blasphemer; where a brokenhearted aga finds solace in the arms of a Circassian courtesan who isn't Circassian at all; where a beautiful Christian girl named Philothei is engaged to a Muslim boy named Ibrahim. But all of this will change when Turkey enters the modern world. (catalog summary)

 

 

08/25/2016 - 1:57pm
If you like Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

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 other book matches here.

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Divided into the four marking periods of an academic year, the novel, narrated by Melinda Sordino, begins on her first day as a high school freshman. No one will sit with Melinda on the bus. At school, students call her names and harass her; her best friends from junior high scatter to different cliques and abandon her. Yet Anderson infuses the narrative with a wit that sustains the heroine through her pain and holds readers' empathy. A girl at a school pep rally offers an explanation of the heroine's pariah status when she confronts Melinda about calling the police at a summer party, resulting in several arrests. But readers do not learn why Melinda made the call until much later: a popular senior raped her that night and, because of her trauma, she barely speaks at all. Only through her work in art class, and with the support of a compassionate teacher there, does she begin to reach out to others and eventually find her voice. (catalog summary)

Here are some suggestions for books with school drama/situations and plots that keep you guessing at the ending:


 

Belzhar by Meg Wolitzer
Jam Gallahue, fifteen, unable to cope with the loss of her boyfriend Reeve, is sent to a therapeutic boarding school in Vermont, where a journal-writing assignment for an exclusive, mysterious English class transports her to the magical realm of Belzhar, where she and Reeve can be together. (catalog summary)

 

 


 

 

By the Time You Read This, I'll Be Dead by Julie Anne Peters
High school student Daelyn Rice, who's been bullied throughout her school career and has more than once attempted suicide, again makes plans to kill herself, in spite of the persistent attempts of an unusual boy to draw her out. (catalog summary)
 

 

 

08/18/2016 - 11:03am
If you like Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier

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 other book matches here.

Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier
Sorely wounded and fatally disillusioned in the fighting at Petersburg, Inman, a Confederate soldier, decides to walk back to his home in the Blue Ridge Mountains and to Ada, the woman he loved there years before. His trek across the disintegrating South brings him into intimate and sometimes lethal converse with slaves and marauders, bounty hunters and witches, both helpful and malign. At the same time, Ada is trying to revive her father's derelict farm and learn to survive in a world where the old certainties have been swept away. As it interweaves their stories,Cold Mountainasserts itself as an authentic AmericanOdyssey--hugely powerful, majestically lovely, and keenly moving. (catalog summary)
 

If you like Cold Mountain, you might like these titles:



All the Pretty Horses
by Cormac McCarthy
This is the tale of John Grady Cole, who at sixteen finds himself at the end of a long line of Texas ranchers, cut off from the only life he has ever imagined for himself. With two companions, he sets off for Mexico on a sometimes idyllic, sometimes comic journey to a place where dreams are paid for in blood. Winner of the National Book Award for Fiction. (catalog summary)

 

 

Blue Asylum by Kathy Hepinstall
Amid the mayhem of the American Civil War, a Virginia plantation wife is put on trial by her slaveholder husband. Iris Dunleavy is convicted of madness by a Virginia judge; it is the only reasonable explanation the court can see for her willful behavior, so she is sent to Sanibel Asylum to be restored to a good compliant wife. But Iris knows her husband is the true criminal; she is no lunatic, only guilty of disagreeing with him on Southern notions of justice, cruelty, and property. The asylum calls itself modern, but Iris is skeptical of its methods, particularly the dreaded "water treatment." In this isolated place, she finds love with Ambrose. But can she take him with her if she escapes? Will there be anything for them to make a life from, back home? This novel is the story of a spirited woman, a wounded soldier, their impossible love, and the call of freedom. (catalog summary)

 

08/18/2016 - 10:16am
If you like The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

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 other book matches here.

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
This is the tale of family, memory, love, and living told by 14-year-old Susie Salmon, who is already in heaven. Through the voice of a precocious teenage girl, Susie relates the awful events of her death and builds out of her family's grief a hopeful and joyful story. (catalog summary)

 

If you liked The Lovely Bones, then you may like these titles and authors:


The Almost Moon
by Alice Sebold
For years Helen Knightly has given her life to others: to her haunted mother, to her enigmatic father, to her husband and now grown children. When she finally crosses a terrible boundary, her life comes rushing in at her in a way she never could have imagined. Unfolding over the next twenty-four hours, this searing, fast-paced novel explores the complex ties between mothers and daughters, wives and lovers, the meaning of devotion, and the line between love and hate. It is a challenging, moving, gripping story, written with the fluidity and strength of voice that only Alice Sebold can bring to the page. (catalog summary)

 



Her Fearful Symmetry
by Audrey Niffenegger
When Elspeth Noblin dies, she leaves everything to the 20-year-old American twin daughters of her own long-estranged twin, Edie. Valentina and Julia, as enmeshed as Elspeth and Edie once were, move into Elspeth's London flat and through a series of developing relationships a crisis develops that could pull the twins apart. (catalog summary)
 


 

08/08/2016 - 1:05pm
If you like The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

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.

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova 
Late one night, exploring her father's library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters. The letters are all addressed to "My dear and unfortunate successor," and they plunge her into a world she never dreamed of-a labyrinth where the secrets of her father's past and her mother's mysterious fate connect to an inconceivable evil hidden in the depths of history.The letters provide links to one of the darkest powers that humanity has ever known-and to a centuries-long quest to find the source of that darkness and wipe it out. It is a quest for the truth about Vlad the Impaler, the medieval ruler whose barbarous reign formed the basis of the legend of Dracula. (catalog summary)

If you enjoyed this book's mixture of history, mystery, and suspense, here are some other titles you may enjoy:

 

Angels & Demons by Dan Brown
World-renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to a Swiss research facility to analyze a cryptic symbol seared into the chest of a murdered physicist. (catalog summary)


 

 

 

The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl
The members of the Dante Club fight to keep a sacred literary cause alive, but their plans fall apart when a series of murders erupts through Boston and Cambridge. Only this small group of scholars realizes that the gruesome killings are modeled on the descriptions of Hell's punishments from Dante's Inferno. With the lives of the Boston elite and Dante's literary future in America at stake, the Dante Club members must find the killer before the authorities discover their secret. (catalog summay)

 

 

07/28/2016 - 11:42am
If you like The Killing Floor by Lee Childs

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.

The Killing Floor: A Jack Reacher Novel by Lee Childs

Jack Reacher, an ex-military policeman, is passing through the town of Margarve, Georgia, when he is accused of murder, and must somehow find the real killer and prove his innocence--with virtually the whole town against him. (catalog summary)
 

If you like The Killing Floor, read the other Jack Reacher novels:

 

 

 

 

 

 


 







 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you like the Jack Reacher series, here are other books you might enjoy:



Dead Watch by John Sandford
At the request of the White House, Jake Winter investigates the disappearance of former Senator Lincoln Bowe. But the trail of clues leads Jake into the heart of a scandal that could cost him his life and topple the federal government. (catalog entry)


 

08/11/2016 - 9:21am
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

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.

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare (Book #1 in the Mortal Instruments series)
Suddenly able to see demons and the Darkhunters who are dedicated to returning them to their own dimension, fifteen-year-old Clary Fray is drawn into this bizzare world when her mother disappears and Clary herself is almost killed by a monster.

If you like City of Bones you'll want to read the rest of the Mortal Instruments series: City of Ashes, City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls and City of Heavenly Fire.

City of AshesCity of Glass City of AshesCity of Ashes

Here are some other books you might also enjoy:

Angelology
 

Angelology by Danielle Trussoni (Adult Fiction)
When twenty-three-year-old Sister Evangeline accidentally stumbles upon some mysterious letters exchanged between the late mother superior of her convent and the famous philanthropist Abigail Rockefeller, she is thrust into an ancient conflict between the Society of Angelologists and the monstrously beautiful descendants of angels and humans, the Nephilim.


 

Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause


Blood and Chocolate
by Annette Curtis Klause
A beautiful teenage werewolf falls for a human boy and must battle both her packmates and the fear of the townspeople to decide where she belongs and with whom.


 

Cirque du Freak by Darren Shan
 

Cirque Du Freak (Book #1 in the Cirque Du Freak series) by Darren Shan
Two boys who are best friends visit an illegal freak show, where an encounter with a vampire and a deadly spider forces them to make life-changing choices. There are many more in this series.

 

 

07/11/2016 - 4:01pm
If you like Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen

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.

Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen: "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife." So begins Pride & Prejudice, Jane Austen's perfect comedy of manners--one of the most popular novels of all time--that features splendidly civilized sparring between the proud Mr. Darcy and the prejudiced Elizabeth Bennet as they play out their spirited courtship in a series of eighteenth-century drawing-room intrigues. (catalogy summary)

 

After you've read Pride & Prejudice, the first place to start is to read all of Jane Austen’s novels. She only had seven novels published, but no writer has ever surpassed her in writing the novel of manners, revealing the human heart through the minutiae of social interaction.

Emma

 


Emma by Jane Austen
Beautiful, clever, rich--and single--Emma Woodhouse is perfectly content with her life and sees no need for either love or marriage. Nothing, however, delights her more than interfering in the romantic lives of others. But when she ignores the warnings of her good friend Mr. Knightley and attempts to arrange a suitable match for her protégé Harriet Smith, her carefully laid plans soon unravel and have consequences that she never expected. (catalog summary)



Lady Susan

Lady Susan, The Watsons, & Sandition by Jane Austen
These three short works show Austen experimenting with a variety of literary styles, from melodrama to satire, and exploring a range of social classes and settings. The early epistolary novel Lady Susan depicts an unscrupulous coquette, toying with the affections of several men. In contrast, The Watsons is a delightful fragment, whose spirited heroine--Emma--finds her marriage opportunities limited by poverty and pride. Meanwhile Sandition, set in a seaside resort, offers a glorious cast of hypochondriacs and spectators, treated by Austen with both amusement and skepticism. (catalog summary)


 

09/20/2016 - 9:59am
If you liked The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

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.

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown: While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum. Near the body, police have found a baffling cipher. While working to solve the enigmatic riddle, Langdon is stunned to discover it leads to a trail of clues hidden in the works of Da Vinci--clues visible for all to see--yet ingeniously disguised by the painter. Langdon joins forces with a gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, and learns the late curator was involved in the Priory of Sion--an actual secret society whose members included Sir Isaac Newton, Botticelli, Victor Hugo, and Da Vinci, among others. In a breathless race through Paris, London, and beyond, Langdon and Neveu match wits with a faceless powerbroker who seems to anticipate their every move. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine puzzle in time, the Priory's ancient secret--and an explosive historical truth--will be lost forever. (catalog summary)

If you liked The Da Vinci Code read the other Robert Langdon novels:

Angels & Demons The Lost Symbol Inferno

If you enjoyed the Robert Langdon series, you may also like these titles:

The Codex
 


The Codex by Douglas Preston
"Greetings from the dead," declares Maxwell Broadbent on the videotape he left behind after his mysterious disappearance. A notorious treasure hunter and tomb robber, Broadbent accumulated over a half a billion dollars' worth of priceless art, gems, and artifacts before vanishing--along with his entire collection--from his mansion in New Mexico. At first, robbery is suspected, but the truth proves far stranger: as a final challenge to his three sons, Broadbent has buried himself and his treasure somewhere in the world, hidden away like an ancient Egyptian pharaoh. If the sons wish to claim their fabulous inheritance, they must find their father's carefully concealed tomb. (from the publisher)


 

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