Reading Room Blog

11/17/2016 - 3:29pm
Bibliophiles, Real and Imagined

For those of us who love books and reading, there are few things more pleasurable than meeting other readers and bibliophiles. Swapping books, book suggestions, and perhaps even going on a reading retreat are all a thrill to those of us who are avid readers.  

There are times, though, when a fellow book lover isn’t available, or you are tired and just want to be alone, but yet you’d still love to discuss books. Did you know that there is an entire genre written for those times? I like to call them books about books, and there are many that have been written, both fiction and nonfiction, just for people like us.

11/17/2016 - 11:56am
If you like World War II and Audiobooks

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.

If you like history and listening to it, here are a few highly recommended audiobooks set in World War II:

All Clear by Connie Willis
After three Oxford historians travel back in time to the year 1940, historical records indicate that at least one of them affected the past and changed the outcome of World War II. (catalog summary)
 



All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris and is blind by age six. Her father builds her a model of their neighborhood, so she can memorize it and navigate the real streets. When the Germans occupy Paris, they flee to Saint-Malo on the coast. In Germany, Werner grows up enchanted by a crude radio he finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, which wins him a place with the Hitler Youth. Werner travels throughout Europe, and finally to Saint-Malo, where his meets Marie Laure. Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Literature. (catalog summary)
 

 


Atonement by Ian McEwan
In the summer of 1935, 13-year-old Briony Tallis wildly misinterprets the relationship between her sister Cecilia and Robbie Turner, childhood friends home from Cambridge. So when her young cousin is assaulted, Briony gives in to her hyperactive imagination and blames the atrocity on Robbie. It is a terrible decision that alters lives and fills Briony with an everlasting sense of guilt. (catalog summary)
 

11/14/2016 - 8:21am
Cover to Revenge by Stephen Fry

"Revenge is a dish best served cold." I always thought this meant that if you waited until you cooled off the need for exacting revenge would lessen or maybe go away altogether. I guess I'm just way too naïve and forgiving because, when I actually looked up the meaning of the phrase, it seems to mean to wait until the person who wronged you has forgotten all about it, and thus your revenge will be in cold blood—and all the sweeter. Who knew?  

11/09/2016 - 9:20am
Cover to Washington's Monument

The Washington Monument’s starkly simple design and imposing presence on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., both belies the complex machinations that led to its construction and embodies the singularity of George Washington, in whose honor it was erected.

11/08/2016 - 2:21am
The Obsidian Chamber by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Agent A.X.L. Pendergast is dead.

Or, presumed to be. In the last Pendergast mystery installment, Crimson Shore (2015), a seemingly easy and straightforward case turns out to be more complicated and Pendergast has disappeared.

11/01/2016 - 12:51am

I knew the perfect column to appear in today’s paper would be one that focused on scary books. Just one problem: I don’t read very many scary books. I have some guilt over this because, as a librarian, I feel like I should read all types of books. And I try. I really do. But the truth is, I don’t enjoy scary books, and, while I advocate reading widely to stretch your mind and to be exposed to all the wonderful literature out there, I also think there are so many good books available that you shouldn’t spend time reading a book you really aren’t enjoying. So, I don’t read scary books unless I have to, like when I need to prepare for a book discussion group.

10/31/2016 - 1:11pm
If you like fast-paced Mysteries

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

Are you looking for that mystery that's just right? How about something you've never read before? Here are a few suggested titles that are currently on order (as of 10.31.16) in our catalog. 

The Art Whisper: An Alix London Mystery by Charlotte Elkins (FBI Thriller)
When art conservator Alix London spots a forgery, she knows trouble will follow. So she's understandably apprehensive when her connoisseur's eye spots something off about a multimillion-dollar Jackson Pollock painting at Palm Springs's Brethwaite Museum—her current employer. Alix is already under fire, the object of a vicious online smear campaign. Now the Brethwaite's despicable senior curator, obsessed with the "maximization of monetized eyeballs," angrily refuses to decommission the celebrated Pollockpiece. But it's only when a hooded intruder attacks Alix in her hotel room that the real trouble begins. And when FBI Special Agent Ted Ellesworth—with whom Alix had inadvertently, but thoroughly, botched a budding relationship just a year prior—turnsup to investigate the Pollock, Alix knows she's about to have her hands full. In her third mystery, Alix London must see through mirages in the desert to uncover the knotted history of the painting—and save herself in the process. (catalog summary)



Ash Island: A Bell Tree Mystery
by Barry Maitland (International Thriller)
Detective Sergeant Harry Belltree is back on the job after a near-fatal confrontation with corrupt colleagues and his presence has become a departmental embarrassment. Because of what happened, he can't--and doesn't want to--return to his old position with the Sydney Police Department. Instead, he accepts a post with a police department far away and attempts to build a new, quiet life in Newcastle, Australia. (catalog summary)
 





City on Edge
 by Stefanie Pintoff (FBI Thriller)
An electrifying thriller featuring Eve Rossi, head of a covert division of the FBI made up of ex-criminals, and set against the backdrop of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. What at first looks like an assassination attempt on New York City's Police Commissioner might in fact be a smokescreen for the abduction of his teenage daughter. Or is it a larger conspiracy? As midtown Manhattan grinds to a hault in preparation for Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, Eve Rossi and her team of ex-cons race against the clock to save a child's life and thwart a massive terrorist threat in this whiplash-paced thriller. (catalog summary)


 

10/31/2016 - 9:05am

Although zombies have a long history of appearances in religion and folklore, interest in them as villains in horror films is largely confined to the second half of the 20th century. The explosion in zombie popularity is based on a characterization established by a single film and the fact that the original characterization of the zombi in African folklore and religion, as well as in earlier films, is dramatically different from that of the popular characterization from the 1960s onward. To understand zombies in both their original context and in the role they have come to take in popular culture requires an understanding of two divergent traditions.

10/28/2016 - 12:48am
If you like Zombie movies

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.


Are you a Zombie-movie fiend and you're just tired of the same ole same ole Zombie flicks? Why not try a book, filled with plenty of guts and gore? Check out these unique and undead book titles, and curl up with a zombie--I mean, a good book. This is the ultimate zombie book match! [Titles range from Teen-Adult fiction.]

Alice In Zombieland by Gena Showalter
Alice Bell must learn to fight the undead to avenge her family and learn to trust Cole Holland who has secrets of his own. (catalog summary)
Other books in the series: Through the Zombie Glass, The Queen of Zombie Hearts, A Mad Zombie Party
 


This Book is Full of Spiders (Seriously Dude, Don't Touch It)
by David Wong [sequel to Jon Dies at the End]
David and John, are embroiled in a series of horrifying yet mind-bogglingly ridiculous events caused primarily by their own gross incompetence. The guys find that books and movies about zombies may have triggered a zombie apocalypse, despite a complete lack of zombies in the world. As they race against the clock to protect humanity from its own paranoia, they must ask themselves, who are the real monsters? Actually, that would be the shape-shifting horrors secretly taking over the world behind the scenes that, in the end, make John and Dave kind of wish it had been zombies after all. Hilarious, terrifying, engaging and wrenching, This Book Is Full of Spiders, the next thrilling installment, takes us for a wild ride with two slackers from the midwest who really have better things to do with their time than prevent the apocalypse. (catalog summary)


 


 

Cemetary Dance by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child [A book from the Agent Pendergast series]
After New York Times reporter William Smithback and his wife Nora Kelly, a Museum of Natural History archaeologist, are brutally attacked in their apartment on Manhattan's Upper West Side, Pendergast--the world's most enigmatic FBI Special Agent--returns to New York City to investigate a murderous Obeah cult. (catalog summary)



 

10/26/2016 - 12:47am
Cover to Grandma Gatewood’s Walk by Ben Montgomery

Emma Rowena Caldwell was an intelligent, attractive young woman and a hard worker. Growing up in rural Ohio in the very early 1900s, there wasn’t much opportunity for someone in her circumstances. Born into a poor family with 15 brothers and sisters, she grew up to know farm work, but she also loved to read. At 19, she married 27-year-old, college-educated P.C. Gatewood. It wasn’t very long before the beatings started. And continued.

In 1940, having borne him eleven children and endured near constant torment, she left him. Few outside her community knew the part of her story she left behind her.  But everyone across America came to know “Grandma Gatewood,” the first woman to walk the entire Appalachian Trail—more than 2,000 miles—from Georgia to Maine. By herself.

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