Shelf Life Blog

09/13/2016 - 12:18am
Cover to Irena’s Children: A True Story of Courage by Tilar J. Mazzeo

History is complicated, and people’s lives are even more so. In the short biography and video clip that Facebook has to share, Irena Sendler is presented as a Catholic woman who saved approximately 2,500 Jewish children. That is true, as far as it goes. Irene was certainly a courageous woman, and she came from Catholic roots and was devoted to the Church during her later years. But there is more to her story. Real heroes often lead complicated lives, as readers of Tilar J. Mazzeo’s Irena’s Children will discover.

09/12/2016 - 9:20am
A Knot in the Grain and Other Stories by Robin McKinley

From the moment she was born, the black-haired girl with the sad eyes never made a sound. When she was a child, her parents discovered that her true talent lay with quickening the mending of bones and quieting fevers. The local healer Jolin noticed as well, and, as she had no daughter to teach, she took Lily as her apprentice.

That was going well enough until Lily met a mage-marked stranger who brought the hope of a cure—and perhaps of happiness for them both. But what would be the cost?

09/09/2016 - 12:16am
If you like The Fireman by Joe Hill

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 Fireman: A Novel by Joe Hill
The doctors call it Draco Incendia Trychophyton: a highly contagious spore that marks its hosts with beautiful black and gold marks across their bodies before causing them to burst into flames. There is no antidote. Harper Grayson was a nurse who treated hundreds of infected patients; now the telltale gold-flecked marks are on her skin. But Harper wants to live at least until the fetus she is carrying comes to term. Her husband Jakob becomes unhinged and abandons her. And a man in a dirty yellow fire fighter's jacket straddles the abyss between insanity and death. Known as The Fireman, he has learned to control the fire within himself, using it as a shield to protect the hunted-- and as a weapon to avenge the wronged. (catalog summary)

If you like The Fireman, read Joe Hill's other terrifying novels:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Locke & Key: Welcome to Lovecraft is the first volume of a 6-vol. graphic novel series (Illustrations by Gabriel Rodriguez)

 

09/08/2016 - 12:15am
Cover to How to (Almost) Ruin Your Summer

“How was your summer?!” That’s what friends and teachers ask when they see you again for the first time in September. Maybe it was great. Maybe it was just boring—though we, at the library, could have totally fixed that with books.

But it probably wasn’t a total ruin, was it? Chloe’s is shaping up to be very much less than stellar. It’s her first time at a sleep-away camp, and she is far from sold on its wonders. True, the boy she has a crush on is there with his goofy friend, but then there’s this:

09/07/2016 - 11:43am
Virginia Women: Their Lives and Times

From the Queen of the Pamunkey tribe to Civil War officer and nurse Sally Louisa Tompkins, the Virginia Women presented in Kierner’s and Treadway’s essay collection are well worth knowing about.

09/06/2016 - 8:33am
Deadly Fate by Heather Graham

Clara Avery barely escaped death on the Destiny—a historical cruise ship carrying a serial killerjust a few months ago in New Orleans (Haunted Destiny 2016). Now, she’s completely changed her scenery by joining an entertainment group on an Alaskan cruise ship, the Fate. Clare and three of her friends have even been asked to be interviewed for a popular travel show on the desolate but beautiful Black Bear Island.

09/05/2016 - 12:13am
Escape from Asylum by Madeleine Roux

Ricky Desmond is in trouble. Big trouble.

The seventeen-year-old is now in his third “treatment” facility, and Brookline Hospital is much different from the rest. In fact, it’s a mental asylum.

09/02/2016 - 9:39am
If you like Nancy Drew

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 Secret of the Old Clock by Carolyn Keene
Nancy Drew solves her first mystery when the accidental rescue of a little girl who lives with her two great-aunts leads on an adventurous search for a missing will. (catalog summary)

 

 

If you like the Nancy Drew mysteries, these titles might peak your interest too:



The Case of the Missing Marquess: An Enola Holmes Mystery by Nancy Springer
Enola Holmes, much younger sister of detective Sherlock Holmes, must travel to London in disguise to unravel the disappearance of her missing mother. (catalog summary)

 

 

 

Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett
When a book of unexplainable occurences brings Petra and Calder together, strange things start to happen: Seemingly unrelated events connect; an eccentric old woman seeks their company; an invaluable Vermeer painting disappears. Before they know it, the two find themselves at the center of an international art scandal, where no one is spared from suspicion. As Petra and Calder are drawn clue by clue into a mysterious labyrinth, they must draw on their powers of intuition, their problem solving skills, and their knowledge of Vermeer. Can they decipher a crime that has stumped even the FBI? (catalog summary)

 


 

Down the Rabbit Hole by Peter Abrahams
Like her idol Sherlock Holmes, eighth grader Ingrid Levin-Hill uses her intellect to solve a murder case in her home town of Echo Falls. (catalog summary)


 

09/01/2016 - 12:10am
Cover to Quiet in the Garden

In Aliki’s Quiet in the Garden, a young boy settles down in what he thinks is a quiet garden—and yet, when he is quiet, too, and listens, he hears the animals all around him. He sees what they are doing, from the robin to the fish to the worm to the rabbit.

In their company, he experiences the simple joys of the natural world. With pleasant repetition cumulating in a feast for all, the garden may not be exactly quiet, but it is a most amazing, nurturing place.

08/31/2016 - 12:09am
Cover to Modern Lovers by Emma Straub

Both the parents and children are having a summer of love and discovery in Modern Lovers. It is a recipe for drama and comedy when parents are going through midlife crises while adolescents are pushing boundaries with teenaged angst. With Brooklyn as the setting, Emma Straub captures time’s passing for her characters as they move from adolescence to adulthood and question what it really means to grow up.

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