Thursday, July 8, 2021
Our Bradford Challenge category this month is Memoir! Here you can find some memoir books that are fairly new on our shelves to tick off that challenge if you are playing along. Even if not, it looks like some mighty interesting reading!
*descriptions come from Amazon
**click on the cover or title to reserve your copy
The Anthropocene is the current geologic age, in which humans have profoundly reshaped the planet and its biodiversity. In this remarkable symphony of essays adapted and expanded from his groundbreaking podcast, bestselling author John Green reviews different facets of the human-centered planet on a five-star scale—from the QWERTY keyboard and sunsets to Canada geese and Penguins of Madagascar.
Funny, complex, and rich with detail, the reviews chart the contradictions of contemporary humanity. As a species, we are both far too powerful and not nearly powerful enough, a paradox that came into sharp focus as we faced a global pandemic that both separated us and bound us together.
John Green’s gift for storytelling shines throughout this masterful collection. The Anthropocene Reviewed is a open-hearted exploration of the paths we forge and an unironic celebration of falling in love with the world.
Yvonne Orji has never shied away from being unapologetically herself, and that includes being outspoken about her faith. Known for interpreting Biblical stories and metaphors to fit current times, her humorous and accessible approach to faith leaves even non-believers inspired and wanting more.
The way Yvonne sees it, God is a Sovereign Prankster, punking folks long before Ashton Kutcher made it cool. When she meditates on her own life—complete with unforeseen blessings and unanticipated roadblocks—she realizes it’s one big testimony to how God tricked her into living out her wildest dreams. And she wants us to join in on getting bamboozled. This is not a Self-Help book—it’s a Get Yours book!
Anthropologist Lucas Bessire journeyed back to western Kansas, where five generations of his family lived as irrigation farmers and ranchers, to try to make sense of this vital resource and its loss. His search for water across the drying High Plains brings the reader face to face with the stark realities of industrial agriculture, eroding democratic norms, and surreal interpretations of a looming disaster. Yet the destination is far from predictable, as the book seeks to move beyond the words and genres through which destruction is often known. Instead, this journey into the morass of eradication offers a series of unexpected discoveries about what it means to inherit the troubled legacies of the past and how we can take responsibility for a more inclusive, sustainable future.
An urgent and unsettling meditation on environmental change, Running Out is a revelatory account of family, complicity, loss, and what it means to find your way back home.
One millennial, six bus trips, one big generation gap.
When Ben Aitken learnt that his gran had enjoyed a four-night holiday including four three-course dinners, four cooked breakfasts, four games of bingo, a pair of excursions, sixteen pints of lager and luxury return coach travel, all for a hundred pounds, he thought, that’s the life, and signed himself up. Six times over.
Good value aside, what Ben was really after was the company of his elders – those with more chapters under their belt, with the wisdom granted by experience, the candour gifted by time, and the hard-earned ability to live each day like it’s nearly their last.
A series of bus holidays ensued – from Scarborough to St Ives, Killarney to Lake Como – during which Ben attempts to shake off his thirty-something blues by getting old as soon as possible.
A lovely, searching meditation on second children―on whether to have one and what it means to be one―that seamlessly weaves pieces of art and culture on the topic with scientific research and personal anecdotes
The decision to have more than one child is at least as consuming as the decision to have a child at all―and yet for all the good books that deliberate on the choice of becoming a parent, there is far less writing on the choice of becoming a parent of two, and all the questions that arise during the process. Is there any truth in the idea of character informed by birth order, or the loneliness of only children? What is the reality of sibling rivalry? What might a parent to one, or two, come to regret?
Comics and cultural superstar Alison Bechdel delivers a deeply layered story of her fascination, from childhood to adulthood, with every fitness craze to come down the pike: from Jack LaLanne in the 60s (“Outlandish jumpsuit! Cantaloupe-sized guns!”) to the existential oddness of present-day spin class. Readers will see their athletic or semi-active pasts flash before their eyes through an ever-evolving panoply of running shoes, bicycles, skis, and sundry other gear. But the more Bechdel tries to improve herself, the more her self appears to be the thing in her way. She turns for enlightenment to Eastern philosophers and literary figures, including Beat writer Jack Kerouac, whose search for self-transcendence in the great outdoors appears in moving conversation with the author’s own. This gifted artist and not-getting-any-younger exerciser comes to a soulful conclusion. The secret to superhuman strength lies not in six-pack abs, but in something much less clearly defined: facing her own non-transcendent but all-important interdependence with others.
In this exquisite story of family, food, grief, and endurance, Michelle Zauner proves herself far more than a dazzling singer, songwriter, and guitarist. With humor and heart, she tells of growing up one of the few Asian American kids at her school in Eugene, Oregon; of struggling with her mother’s particular, high expectations of her; of a painful adolescence; of treasured months spent in her grandmother’s tiny apartment in Seoul, where she and her mother would bond, late at night, over heaping plates of food.
As she grew up, moving to the East Coast for college, finding work in the restaurant industry, and performing gigs with her fledgling band–and meeting the man who would become her husband–her Koreanness began to feel ever more distant, even as she found the life she wanted to live. It was her mother’s diagnosis of terminal cancer, when Michelle was twenty-five, that forced a reckoning with her identity and brought her to reclaim the gifts of taste, language, and history her mother had given her.
Anthony Bourdain saw more of the world than nearly anyone. His travels took him from the hidden pockets of his hometown of New York to a tribal longhouse in Borneo, from cosmopolitan Buenos Aires, Paris, and Shanghai to Tanzania’s utter beauty and the stunning desert solitude of Oman’s Empty Quarter—and many places beyond.
In World Travel, a life of experience is collected into an entertaining, practical, fun and frank travel guide that gives readers an introduction to some of his favorite places—in his own words. Featuring essential advice on how to get there, what to eat, where to stay and, in some cases, what to avoid, World Travel provides essential context that will help readers further appreciate the reasons why Bourdain found a place enchanting and memorable.
Recently, I worked up the courage to sit down with those diaries. I found stories I experienced, lessons I learned and forgot, poems, prayers, prescriptions, beliefs about what matters, some great photographs, and a whole bunch of bumper stickers. I found a reliable theme, an approach to living that gave me more satisfaction, at the time, and still: If you know how, and when, to deal with life’s challenges—how to get relative with the inevitable—you can enjoy a state of success I call “catching greenlights.”
So I took a one-way ticket to the desert and wrote this book: an album, a record, a story of my life so far. This is fifty years of my sights and seens, felts and figured-outs, cools and shamefuls. Graces, truths, and beauties of brutality. Getting away withs, getting caughts, and getting wets while trying to dance between the raindrops.
Hopefully, it’s medicine that tastes good, a couple of aspirin instead of the infirmary, a spaceship to Mars without needing your pilot’s license, going to church without having to be born again, and laughing through the tears.
It’s a love letter. To life.
It’s also a guide to catching more greenlights—and to realizing that the yellows and reds eventually turn green too.
Tuesday, June 8, 2021
It’s June – time for Summer Reading and a great time to read some suspense or thrillers! Here are some books new to the library and guaranteed to thrill you. A lot of these are the newest in a series, so if you haven’t read the earlier books, you can always start with the first one in the series. Follow the links to place your holds…
In the autumn of 1948, Iris Digby vanishes from her London home with her American diplomat husband and their two children. The world is shocked by the family’s sensational disappearance. Were they eliminated by the Soviet intelligence service? Or have the Digbys defected to Moscow with a trove of the West’s most vital secrets?
Four years later, Ruth Macallister receives a postcard from the twin sister she hasn’t seen since their catastrophic parting in Rome in the summer of 1940, as war engulfed the continent and Iris fell desperately in love with an enigmatic United States Embassy official named Sasha Digby. Within days, Ruth is on her way to Moscow, posing as the wife of counterintelligence agent Sumner Fox in a precarious plot to extract the Digbys from behind the Iron Curtain.
But the complex truth behind Iris’s marriage defies Ruth’s understanding, and as the sisters race toward safety, a dogged Soviet KGB officer forces them to make a heartbreaking choice between two irreconcilable loyalties.
A rocket ride of a thriller—the new blockbuster by President Bill Clinton and James Patterson, “the dream team” (Lee Child).
Every detail is accurate—
because one of the authors is President Bill Clinton. The drama and action never stop—
because the other author is James Patterson.
Matthew Keating, a one-time Navy SEAL—and a past president—has always defended his family as staunchly as he has his country. Now those defenses are under attack.
A madman abducts Keating’s teenage daughter, Melanie—turning every parent’s deepest fear into a matter of national security. As the world watches in real time, Keating embarks on a one-man special-ops mission that tests his strengths: as a leader, a warrior, and a father.
Adrian Rizzo was seven when she met her father for the first time. That was the day he nearly killed her—before her mother, Lina, stepped in.
Soon after, Adrian was dropped off at her grandparents’ house in Maryland, where she spent a long summer drinking lemonade, playing with dogs, making a new best friend—and developing the stirrings of a crush on her friend’s ten-year-old brother. Lina, meanwhile, traveled the country promoting her fitness brand and turning it into a billion-dollar business. There was no point in dwelling on the past.
A decade later, Adrian has created her own line of yoga and workout videos, following in Lina’s footsteps but intent on maintaining creative control. And she’s just as cool-headed and ambitious as her mother. They aren’t close, but they’re cordial—as long as neither crosses the other.
But while Lina dismisses the death threats that Adrian starts getting as a routine part of her daughter’s growing celebrity, Adrian can’t help but find the vicious rhymes unsettling. Year after year, they keep arriving—the postmarks changing, but the menacing tone the same. They continue after she returns to Maryland and becomes reacquainted with Raylan, her childhood crush, all grown up and as gorgeously green-eyed as ever. Sometimes it even seems like the terrifying messages are indeed routine, like nothing will come of them. Until the murders start, and the escalation begins…
At first glance, few would guess that Luna and Cullan Bodman are siblings. Cullan is efficient and serious while his younger sister Luna is a free spirit. When the two launch their furniture restoration shop/café—an offshoot of the family’s longtime antique business–in an up-and-coming arts center, little do they know their unique talents may be their only defense in a matter of life and death.
When Luna gets a strange sense about a piece Cullan just acquired, the two find themselves uniting to solve a mystery that has far-reaching consequences—never knowing there are some who’ll stop at nothing to claim what they believe is theirs. Despite their differences, Luna and Cullan know they can rely on each other—and this time, their lives may depend on it . . .
After a CIA covert mission goes badly awry, U.S. Air Force intelligence officer Nicholas Flynn is exiled to guard a remote radar post along Alaska’s Arctic frontier. This dead-end assignment is designed to put his career permanently on ice, but Flynn’s not the type to fade quietly into obscurity…
As winter storms pound Alaska and northern Canada, Russian aircraft begin penetrating deep into friendly airspace. Are these rehearsals for a possible first strike, using Russia’s new long-range stealth cruise missiles? Or is some other motive driving the Kremlin to take ever-increasing risks along the hostile Arctic frontier separating two of the world’s great powers?
As Russia and the U.S. square off on the brink of all-out-war, it’s up to Nick to find the missing bomber…and prevent a potential nuclear holocaust.
After thwarting the violent, international, fascist syndicate known as Nemesis, Evan Ryder returns to Washington, D.C., to find her secret division of the DOD shut down and her deceased sister’s children missing. Now the target of a cabal of American billionaires who were among Nemesis’s supporters, Evan and her former boss, Ben Butler, must learn to work together as partners – and navigate their intricate past.
Their search will take them from Istanbul to Odessa to an ancient church deep within the Carpathian Mountains of Romania. And all along the way, an unimaginable enemy stalks in the shadows, an adversary whose secretive past will upend Evan’s entire world and everything she holds dear.
When Peter Barrington and Ben Bachetti come under threat while working at a film festival abroad, Teddy Fay is lured to the glittering city of Macau to resolve the problem. He’ll soon come to find that world of posh casinos, luxurious developments, and boundless wealth has a dark underbelly of crime and political intrigue . . . and that the biggest players behind the scenes may be far closer to home than anticipated. With international deals and private vendettas at stake, the villains behind the plot aren’t about to let Teddy stand in their way. What they don’t know is that this seemingly harmless film producer has more than a few tricks up his sleeve.
Detective Isaac Bell’s wife has said that he is always in the wrong place at the right time. This is certainly the case when Bell thwarts the assassination of a U.S. Senator shortly after meeting the man. This heroic rescue is just the start of the mystery for Bell, who suspects that the would-be assassins have a much larger and more dangerous agenda–one involving the nearly-constructed Panama Canal. While the senator supports the building of the canal, there are many, including a local Panamanian insurgency known as the Red Vipers, who never want to see its completion.
With millions of dollars and the fates of two nations at stake, Bell heads to Panama to find answers. After a deadly bombing at the canal’s construction site, he is determined to stop the insurgents–or whoever is funding them–before they can attack again.
In this heart-pounding and sharply written thriller from J.A. Jance, the “grand master of the genre” (The Providence Journal), Ali Reynolds’s personal life is thrown into turmoil just as two men show up on the scene—a former employee of her husband’s who has just been released from prison and a serial killer who sets his sights a little too close to home.
When Queen Marie calls, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes are as dubious as they are reluctant. But a young girl is involved, and a beautiful queen. Surely it won’t take long to shine light on this unlikely case of what would seem to be strigoi?
Or, as they are known in the West . . . vampires.
Diane Connors is a dedicated doctor with the world’s biggest secret, a discovery that could have shocking global ramifications. But while conducting private research trials, word has gotten out. The wrong people have heard the news and now want to hide Diane’s achievement for their own ends.
With nowhere else to turn, Diane finds herself on the doorstep of the last man she wants to ask for help: her ex-husband, Joe Quinn. Joe has remarried, and he and his wife, Eve Duncan, seem blissfully happy in their quiet, rural life until they are faced with the challenge of risking it all—even their marriage itself—for the greater good …
An uncertain future A tragic past.
Twelve years after the grisly murder of her parents, Kaitlyn Delaney has finally found peace. She has friends, a good job, a place to call home and a new life to live. But then a shadow creeps in from Katie’s past, reminding her that she will never completely escape its terrifying grip.
When private investigator Dan Oliver is called to the scene of a gruesome crime in New Orleans, he can’t help but hear echoes of the Delaney case, the unsolved murder that made him leave law enforcement. As he digs deeper, he unearths more chilling similarities—including mysterious letters connecting the killer to a string of murders that terrorized the Big Easy in 1919.
Happy Suspenseful Reading!
Thursday, May 13, 2021
It’s May and we are still going through our genre categories this year. May is set aside for highlighting Westerns. There are a surprising number of books that are either set in the correct time period (Civil War – early 20th century) in the American West, or are “contemporary westerns” and have a western feel to them, but take place in more modern times. I was able to find plenty of new-ish books that are some form of western novel or non-fiction to recommend. So here they are:
(descriptions from Amazon)
The Cold Millions by Jess Walter – From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Beautiful Ruins comes another “literary miracle” (NPR)—a propulsive, richly entertaining novel about two brothers swept up in the turbulent class warfare of the early twentieth century.
An intimate story of brotherhood, love, sacrifice, and betrayal set against the panoramic backdrop of an early twentieth-century America that eerily echoes our own time, The Cold Millions offers a kaleidoscopic portrait of a nation grappling with the chasm between rich and poor, between harsh realities and simple dreams.
The Dolans live by their wits, jumping freight trains and lining up for day work at crooked job agencies. While sixteen-year-old Rye yearns for a steady job and a home, his older brother, Gig, dreams of a better world, fighting alongside other union men for fair pay and decent treatment. Enter Ursula the Great, a vaudeville singer who performs with a live cougar and introduces the brothers to a far more dangerous creature: a mining magnate determined to keep his wealth and his hold on Ursula.
Dubious of Gig’s idealism, Rye finds himself drawn to a fearless nineteen-year-old activist and feminist named Elizabeth Gurley Flynn. But a storm is coming, threatening to overwhelm them all, and Rye will be forced to decide where he stands. Is it enough to win the occasional battle, even if you cannot win the war?
Featuring an unforgettable cast of cops and tramps, suffragists and socialists, madams and murderers, The Cold Millions is a tour de force from a “writer who has planted himself firmly in the first rank of American authors” (Boston Globe).
The Paradise Affair (A Carpenter and Quincannon Mystery #9) by Bill Pronzini – Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Bill Pronzini’s next historical mystery The Paradise Affair, perfect for fans of Peaky Blinders and The Alienist.
The latest Carpenter & Quincannon mystery: “Attractive characters, a finely tuned plot, and fascinating snippets of California history. Who could ask for more?”―Publishers Weekly on The Stolen Gold Affair
Quincannon’s pursuit of two con men who have absconded to Hawaii with a considerable sum of his employer’s assets dovetails nicely with Sabina’s vision of a second honeymoon.
But neither is wont to stay out of trouble, and Sabina inadvertently becomes involved in a locked room/dying message murder in Honolulu.
Forever By Your Side (Williamette Brides #3) by Tracie Peterson – After years of schooling on the East Coast, Constance Browning returns to Oregon and the reservation where she grew up with her missionary parents. She is accompanied by Thomas Lowell, her best friend and colleague, and together they embark on a project to catalogue the native peoples of Oregon for the Bureau of American Ethnology. But Connie and Tom have another purpose–to prove her parents are not involved in a secret conspiracy to goad the oppressed tribes into a doomed war.
Connie finds life on the reservation much bleaker than she remembered, and she is glad to have Tom by her side. But she also becomes reacquainted with Clint Singleton, the government agent on whom she had a crush as a girl. Now that she’s back, Clint finally seems interested in her, but Connie is no longer sure of her feelings. As tensions on the reservation rise and war looms ever closer, Connie and Tom search for whoever is truly behind the uprising. With danger unfolding amid shocking revelations, Connie will also have a revelation of the heart.
Kansas Boy: The Memoir of A.J. Bolinger – This memoir offers the twenty-first-century reader delightful and revealing insights on life during an era of dramatic change in American history. Bolinger describes those years as “bursting with energy, wild with ambition.” The Kansas of his childhood and young adulthood was a place where life was lived at a rapid pace: investors pursued fortunes as town developers, settlers sought to establish prosperous farms and ranches, and reformers tried to create an ideal society. A. J. opens his account with a vividly detailed description of the prairie itself, including how the frontier settlements of Kansas were in the process of becoming established communities. Born and raised in Elk County, Kansas, he tells stories of ranching and cattle drives. Retelling some of the legends of early Kansas, he debunks more than a few frontier myths. As he moves toward adulthood his accounts of farming and small-town life grow increasingly aware of the agricultural crisis of the 1880s and 1890s faced by farmers and small-town businesses as they struggled with the growing power of corporations, in particular the railroads. In doing so he offers ground-level insights into the appeal of the Populist movement and the rise of the People’s Party. The challenges result in the Bolinger family’s move to the city of Topeka where A. J. attends Washburn College. As a college student he helps temperance activist Carry Nation wage her anti-saloon campaign and goes to Washburn’s new law school. His first step in pursuing what would be a lifelong career in the law is to replicate his family’s and his era’s pattern of moving to where new opportunities lay: the Oklahoma territory.
Everything You Wanted to Know About Indians But Were Afraid to Ask: Young Reader’s Edition by Anton Treuer – From the acclaimed Ojibwe author and professor Anton Treuer comes an essential book of questions and answers for Native and non-Native young readers alike. Ranging from “Why is there such a fuss about nonnative people wearing Indian costumes for Halloween?” to “Why is it called a ‘traditional Indian fry bread taco’?” to “What’s it like for natives who don’t look native?” to “Why are Indians so often imagined rather than understood?”, and beyond, Everything You Wanted to Know About Indians But Were Afraid to Ask does exactly what its title says for readers, in a style consistently thoughtful, personal, and engaging.
Texas Outlaw (A Texas Ranger Thriller #2) by James Patterson and Andrew Bourelle – To Rory Yates being a Texas Ranger is about justice, but all of that changes when he is brought to a small southern town to help uncover the mysteries behind a local woman’s death – only to discover corruption and lies.
Texas Ranger Rory Yates is not keen for hero status. But it’s unavoidable once his girlfriend, country singer Willow Dawes, writes a song about his bravery. Rory escapes his newfound fame when he’s sent to the remote West Texas town of Rio Lobo, a municipality with two stoplights. And now, according to the Chief of Police, it has one too many Texas Rangers.
Rio Lobo Detective Ariana Delgado is the one who requested Rory, and the only person who believes a local councilwoman’s seemingly accidental death is a murder. Then Rory begins to uncover a tangle of small-town secrets, favors, and lies as crooked as Texas law is straight.
To get to the truth before more people die, Rory is forced to take liberties with the investigation. The next ballad of Rory Yates may not be about a hero, but rather an outlaw song.
The Scorpion’s Tail (Nora Kelly #2) by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child – Following the acclaimed debut of Old Bones, this second “happily anticipated” new thriller in Preston & Child’s series features Nora Kelly, archaeologist at the Santa Fe Archeological Institute, and rookie FBI Agent Corrie Swanson, as they team up to solve a mystery that quickly escalates into nightmare (Booklist).
A mummified corpse, over half a century old, is found in the cellar of an abandoned building in a remote New Mexico ghost town. Corrie is assigned what seems to her a throwaway case: to ID the body and determine cause of death. She brings archaeologist Nora Kelly to excavate the body and lend her expertise to the investigation, and together they uncover something unexpected and shocking: the deceased apparently died in agony, in a fetal position, skin coming off in sheets, with a rictus of horror frozen on his face.
Hidden on the corpse lies a 16th century Spanish gold cross of immense value.
When they at last identify the body — and the bizarre cause of death — Corrie and Nora open a door into a terrifying, secret world of ancient treasure and modern obsession: a world centered on arguably the most defining, frightening, and transformative moment in American history.
You Belong Here Now by Dianna Rostad – Montana 1925: An Irish boy orphaned by Spanish flu, a tiny girl who won’t speak, and a volatile young man who lies about his age to escape Hell’s Kitchen, are paraded on train platforms across the Midwest to work-worn folks. They journey countless miles, racing the sun westward.
Before they reach the last rejection and stop, the oldest, Charles, comes up with a daring plan, and alone, they set off toward the Yellowstone River and grassy mountains where the wild horses roam.
Fate guides them toward the ranch of a family stricken by loss. Nara, the daughter of a successful cattleman, has grown into a brusque spinster who refuses the kids on sight. She’s worked hard to gain her father’s respect and hopes to run their operation, but if the kids stay, she’ll be stuck in the kitchen.
Nara works them without mercy, hoping they’ll run off, but they buck up and show spirit, and though Nara will never be motherly, she begins to take to them. So, when Charles is jailed for freeing wild horses that were rounded up for slaughter, and an abusive mother from New York shows up to take the youngest, Nara does the unthinkable, risking everything she holds dear to change their lives forever.
The Great Texas Oil Heist by Robert Cargill – It was 1946. World War II was over. The thieves went to work. They drilled deviated wells from outside the East Texas Oil Field back into the oil that remained after 16 years of production. This was the oil field that supplied the oil needed for an Allied victory in 1945. The deviators continued their nefarious activity until an angry and aggressive attorney general led his posse of lawmen, including the Texas Rangers, into East Texas to stop the theft and administer Texas justice. I tell this story on the basis of 35 years of research and my father’s well files. Yes, he drilled six of the nearly 400 deviated wells. I first learned of the so-called Slant-Hole scandal in late spring 1962. That’s when colleagues in my research group at the University of California at Berkeley accosted me with the morning’s San Francisco Chronicle. They knew my father was an East Texas oilman. One pointed to an article reporting that oilmen in East Texas had drilled “deviated” oil wells from beyond the known productive limits of the East Texas Oil Field to steal oil.
“Has your dad been stealing oil?”
“Of course, not!” I replied.
I had known nothing of the illicit activity until that morning.
Then a report in TIME further exposed the East Texas oil scandal that had erupted in my hometown of Longview.
Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley – With four starred reviews, Angeline Boulley’s debut novel, Firekeeper’s Daughter, is a groundbreaking YA thriller about a Native teen who must root out the corruption in her community, perfect for readers of Angie Thomas and Tommy Orange.
Eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. She dreams of a fresh start at college, but when family tragedy strikes, Daunis puts her future on hold to look after her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charming new recruit on her brother Levi’s hockey team.
Yet even as Daunis falls for Jamie, she senses the dashing hockey star is hiding something. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into an FBI investigation of a lethal new drug.
Reluctantly, Daunis agrees to go undercover, drawing on her knowledge of chemistry and Ojibwe traditional medicine to track down the source. But the search for truth is more complicated than Daunis imagined, exposing secrets and old scars. At the same time, she grows concerned with an investigation that seems more focused on punishing the offenders than protecting the victims.
Now, as the deceptions―and deaths―keep growing, Daunis must learn what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she’ll go for her community, even if it tears apart the only world she’s ever known.
And here are three traditional westerns. One is a collection of four classics, the other two are new westerns.
The Western: Four Classic Novels of the 1940’s and 50’s edited by Ron Hansen – In the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Ox-Bow Incident, Walter van Tilburg Clark explores the thin line between civilization and barbarism through the story of a lynch mob that targets three innocent men, exposing a dark authoritarian impulse at work the American frontier. Set in Wyoming in 1889, a time when ranchers and cattle companies waged war with each other, Jack Schaefer’s iconic Shane deploys many of the genre’s most essential elements, brilliantly filtered through a boy’s perceptions. Alan Le May’s The Searchers, the basis for John Ford’s cinematic masterpiece starring John Wayne, follows the dogged quest of two men to rescue a young girl taken prisoner by Comanche warriors. And Oakley Hall’s Warlock, a novel that anticipates the later books of Cormac McCarthy and Larry McMurtry, casts the battle for control of a southwestern outpost as a bloody saga pitting a marauding gang of cowboys and rustlers against the town’s defenders, led by the legendary gunslinger Clay Blaisedell. All four novels were memorably adapted for the screen, and their gripping stories–told with brisk narrative energy, psychological depth, and laconic humor–have contributed unforgettably to the Western’s enduring legacy in American culture.
Fast Ride to Boot Hill: The Legend of Ben Hawks by Lee Martin – Tricked into believing his fiancee had died in a stage robbery, a vengeful Texas Ranger trails the gang for years as he becomes a legend in song and dime novels before ending up on the side of a former outlaw with a sharp shooting niece, even as the truth unfolds in a violent climax.
Beyond the Goodnight Trail by Roy V Gaston – “This action-packed Western is a gift that keeps on giving…It’s been years since I read a traditional Western, and this one surpasses all expectations.” Rating: 5 Stars Joelene Pynnonen The Independent Book Review
When former Texas Ranger scout Pete Horse agrees to join his old friend Charlie Goodnight’s first trail drive across Texas to the New Mexico Bosque Redondo Navajo reservation, he knows the way will be fraught with danger. He expects to encounter bandits, hostile Comanche, bad weather and stampedes, and he’s not disappointed. He hadn’t been expecting the treacherous Comancheros, renegade Apache, and night riding gangs of unreconstructed Rebels seething with resentment, and all of them fighting over a thousand stolen Army rifles. When he’s forced to kill two men who are stealing his prized horse Pete incurs the wrath of an ex-communicated religious zealot and his sect of trigger-happy disciples. The entire Texas Panhandle is about to erupt in a shooting war that could spread across the West. Riding up with old friends Bigfoot Wallace, Bass Reeves, Britt Johnson and more legendary men of the west, Pete still faces the longest odds of a long, turbulent life on the violent frontier.
(Beyond the Goodnight Trail is also notable because the cover art was done by a local artist based in El Dorado, Jim Clements!)
Happy Western reading!
Thursday, April 1, 2021
Today we have some new science fiction books to offer. Whether you are doing the Bradford Genre Challenge 2021 on Beanstack, or you just enjoy some sci-fi, here are some exciting new titles to choose from! Click on the title or the cover to place your holds. (descriptions come from Amazon)
The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey – “a trippy domestic thriller which takes the extramarital affair trope in some intriguingly weird new directions.”–Entertainment Weekly
I’m embarrassed, still, by how long it took me to notice. Everything was right there in the open, right there in front of me, but it still took me so long to see the person I had married.
It took me so long to hate him.
Martine is a genetically cloned replica made from Evelyn Caldwell’s award-winning research. She’s patient and gentle and obedient. She’s everything Evelyn swore she’d never be. And she’s having an affair with Evelyn’s husband. Now, the cheating bastard is dead, and both Caldwell wives have a mess to clean up.
Good thing Evelyn Caldwell is used to getting her hands dirty.
Remote Control by Nnedi Okorafor – An alien artifact turns a young girl into Death’s adopted daughter in Remote Control, a thrilling sci-fi tale of community and female empowerment from Nebula and Hugo Award-winner Nnedi Okorafor
“She’s the adopted daughter of the Angel of Death. Beware of her. Mind her. Death guards her like one of its own.”
The day Fatima forgot her name, Death paid a visit. From hereon in she would be known as Sankofa―a name that meant nothing to anyone but her, the only tie to her family and her past.
Her touch is death, and with a glance a town can fall. And she walks―alone, except for her fox companion―searching for the object that came from the sky and gave itself to her when the meteors fell and when she was yet unchanged; searching for answers.
But is there a greater purpose for Sankofa, now that Death is her constant companion?
In the Quick by Kate Hope Day – GOOD MORNING AMERICA BUZZ PICK • A young, ambitious female astronaut’s life is upended by a love affair that threatens the rescue of a lost crew in this brilliantly imagined novel “with echoes of Station Eleven, The Martian, and, yes, Jane Eyre” (Observer).
“The female astronaut novel we never knew we needed.”—Entertainment Weekly (Must-read books coming out in March)
June is a brilliant but difficult girl with a gift for mechanical invention who leaves home to begin grueling astronaut training at the National Space Program. Younger by two years than her classmates at Peter Reed, the school on campus named for her uncle, she flourishes in her classes but struggles to make friends and find true intellectual peers. Six years later, she has gained a coveted post as an engineer on a space station—and a hard-won sense of belonging—but is haunted by the mystery of Inquiry, a revolutionary spacecraft powered by her beloved late uncle’s fuel cells. The spacecraft went missing when June was twelve years old, and while the rest of the world seems to have forgotten the crew, June alone has evidence that makes her believe they are still alive.
Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro – NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
A GOOD MORNING AMERICA Book Club Pick!
Klara and the Sun is a magnificent new novel from the Nobel laureate Kazuo Ishiguro—author of Never Let Me Go and the Booker Prize-winning The Remains of the Day.
Klara and the Sun, the first novel by Kazuo Ishiguro since he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, tells the story of Klara, an Artificial Friend with outstanding observational qualities, who, from her place in the store, watches carefully the behavior of those who come in to browse, and of those who pass on the street outside. She remains hopeful that a customer will soon choose her.
Klara and the Sun is a thrilling book that offers a look at our changing world through the eyes of an unforgettable narrator, and one that explores the fundamental question: what does it mean to love?
The Swimmers by Marian Womack – A claustrophobic, literary dystopia set in the hot, luscious landscape of Andalusia from the author of The Golden Key.
“A richly imagined eco-gothic tale.” – The Guardian
“Exquisitely realised.” – The Times
After the ravages of the Green Winter, Earth is a place of deep jungles and monstrous animals. The last of the human race is divided into surface dwellers and the people who live in the Upper Settlement, a ring perched at the edge of the Earth’s atmosphere.
Bearing witness to this divided planet is Pearl, a young techie with a thread of shuvani blood, who lives in the isolated forests of Gobari, navigating her mad mother and the strange blue light in the sky. But Pearl’s stepfather promises her to a starborn called Arlo, and the world Pearl thought she knew will never be the same again.
Set in the luscious landscape of Andalusia, this claustrophobic, dystopian reimagining of Wide Sargasso Sea is a literary fever dream, a blazing vision of self-destruction and transformation.
Game Changer by Neal Shusterman – “The conceit behind Shusterman’s latest is truly unique. While it exhibits the author’s usual storytelling aplomb, it also manages to delve into more serious and timely subject matter, such as racism, sexism, and homophobia. Despite these heavy topics, the story still moves at a lively pace and, thanks to a zany sci-fi twist, manages to pack in a few laughs as well.” —Booklist
All it takes is one hit on the football field, and suddenly Ash’s life doesn’t look quite the way he remembers it.
Impossible though it seems, he’s been hit into another dimension—and keeps on bouncing through worlds that are almost-but-not-really his own.
The changes start small, but they quickly spiral out of control as Ash slides into universes where he has everything he’s ever wanted, universes where society is stuck in the past…universes where he finds himself looking at life through entirely different eyes.
And if he isn’t careful, the world he’s learning to see more clearly could blink out of existence…
The Truth App by Jack Heath – “A swift, intense page-turner.” —BCCB
In this pulse-pounding tech-thriller, Jack Heath creates a world where everyone knows when you lie—and telling the truth doesn’t always set you free.
Jarli likes to think he’s an honest guy. He’s a big believer in telling the truth, no matter what. So he develops The Truth App, a mobile application that listens in on your conversations and can tell when someone’s lying. Then his app goes viral and, suddenly, Jarli is an internet sensation.
But, soon enough, Jarli realizes that being famous can be dangerous—especially when you’ve just exposed everyone’s deepest, darkest secrets. Now his entire town is out to get him: kids at school, teachers, the police, even his own family.
Also, an underground network of criminals has just added Jarli to their hit list. Sometimes, exposing the truth comes with a price…
Hummingbird Salamander by Jeff VanderMeer – From the author of Annihilation, a brilliant speculative thriller of dark conspiracy, endangered species, and the possible end of all things.
Security consultant “Jane Smith” receives an envelope with a key to a storage unit that holds a taxidermied hummingbird and clues leading her to a taxidermied salamander. Silvina, the dead woman who left the note, is a reputed ecoterrorist and the daughter of an Argentine industrialist. By taking the hummingbird from the storage unit, Jane sets in motion a series of events that quickly spin beyond her control.
Soon, Jane and her family are in danger, with few allies to help her make sense of the true scope of the peril. Is the only way to safety to follow in Silvina’s footsteps? Is it too late to stop? As she desperately seeks answers about why Silvina contacted her, time is running out―for her and possibly for the world.
Wednesday, March 3, 2021
It’s March, and in honor of our Genre Reading Challenge here at the library, the books featured today are True Crime books that have come out within the last year.
Descriptions from Amazon. Click on the titles or covers to reserve your copy!
With the Beatles, John Lennon surpasses his youthful dreams, achieving a level of superstardom that defies classification. “We were the best bloody band there was,” he says. “There was nobody to touch us.” Nobody except the original nowhere man, Mark David Chapman. Chapman once worshipped his idols from afar—but now harbors grudges against those, like Lennon, whom he feels betrayed him. He’s convinced Lennon has misled fans with his message of hope and peace. And Chapman’s not staying away any longer.
By the summer of 1980, Lennon is recording new music for the first time in years, energized and ready for it to be “(Just Like) Starting Over.” He can’t wait to show the world what he will do.
Neither can Chapman, who quits his security job and boards a flight to New York, a handgun and bullets stowed in his luggage.
The greatest true-crime story in music history, as only James Patterson can tell it. Enriched by exclusive interviews with Lennon’s friends and associates, including Paul McCartney, The Last Days of John Lennon is the thrilling true story of two men who changed history: One whose indelible songs enliven our world to this day—and the other who ended the beautiful music with five pulls of a trigger.
*An NPR Best Book of the Year*
A PopSugar Best True Crime Book of 2020
“I can’t imagine a more important book.”—Jeff Guinn, New York Times bestselling author
In 1979, a fiery preacher named Jane Whaley attracted a small group of followers with a promise that she could turn their lives around.
In the years since, Whaley’s following has expanded to include thousands of congregants across three continents. In their eyes she’s a prophet. And to disobey her means eternal damnation.
The control Whaley exerts is absolute: she decides what her followers study, where they work, whom they can marry—even when they can have sex.
Based on hundreds of interviews, secretly recorded conversations, and thousands of pages of documents, Pulitzer Prize winner Mitch Weiss and Holbrook Mohr’s Broken Faith is a terrifying portrait of life inside the Word of Faith Fellowship, and the harrowing account of one family who escaped after two decades.
While other Dillinger and Barker Karpis molls have attracted more media attention, Beth Green has remained a shadow figure for decades, even though she played a key role in advancing the law’s grip on these two gangs. As you read this thoughtful book, she will come to life as a flesh and blood woman, with motivations that went far beyond her desire for a better deal upon her arrest. This is the deftly researched and crafted portrait of Beth by the family members who knew her. Her tale is alternately touching and heart-breaking, as Beth’s life is forever altered by her involvement with what the authors accurately call “bank robbers, sociopathic killers and kidnappers – .”
A New Look at a Legendary Hoax:
When the truth is far stranger than fiction.
Award-winning author masterfully unmasks the myth of Frank “Catch Me If You Can” Abagnale with meticulous research and the voices of those who know the truth…and what a trip.
In 1969, Delta flight attendant Paula Parks discovers a strange man is following her. She is soon horrified to learn that he has moved into her parents’ home in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and is sleeping in her bed. Posing as a pilot, his ruse is quickly discovered, but not before he is caught stealing from her family and other locals. Startled by more revelations in letters written by the 21-year-old criminal from jail, Paula’s parents lock them away…never imagining where those letters would one day lead.
For decades, Frank W. Abagnale’s story has captured the imagination of audiences around the world as a modern-day folk hero-but the truth could not be more different from the fictitious autobiography he sold to Hollywood. Self-proclaimed as “the world’s greatest con man,” the true dimensions of Abagnale’s hoax are revealed for the first time in this dramatic true story.
A Cold Case:
“A real-life crime drama with vivid individuals and neighborhoods. A murder unsolved until now after forty years. It portrays the unvarnished Chicago of yesterday…absolutely a must read.” —Dick Simpson, author of The Good Fight
The grandson and great-grandson of Chicago police officers, Chicago Police Detective James Sherlock was CPD through-and-through. His career had seen its share of twists and turns, from his time working undercover to thwart robberies on Chicago’s L trains to his years as a homicide detective. He thought he had seen it all.
But on this day, he was at the records center to see the case file for the murder of John Hughes, who was seventeen years old when he was gunned down on Chicago’s Southwest Side in 1976. The case’s threads led everywhere: Police corruption. Hints of the Chicago Outfit. A crooked judge. Even the belief that the cover-up extended to “hizzoner” himself—legendary Chicago mayor Richard J. Daley.
A murder that had roiled the city and had been investigated for years had been reduced to a few reports and photographs. What should have been a massive file with notes and transcripts from dozens of interviews was nowhere to be found. Sherlock could have left the records center without the folder and cruised into retirement, and no one would have noticed.
Instead, he tucked the envelope under his arm and carried it outside.
A Serial Killer:
The legendary FBI criminal profiler and international bestselling author of Mindhunter and The Killer Across the Table returns with this timely, relevant book that goes to the heart of extremism and domestic terrorism, examining in-depth his chilling pursuit of, and eventual prison confrontation with Joseph Paul Franklin, a White Nationalist serial killer and one of the most disturbing psychopaths he has ever encountered.
It’s true crime AND a business book!
The American Mafia, which burgeoned during Prohibition in the 1920s, still operates in the twenty-first century. The Sinaloa Cartel remains the largest smuggler of drugs into the US, despite jailing its leader, El Chapo Guzmán, in a US supermax prison. How do these criminal syndicates survive, and even thrive? They apply fundamental economic principles to devise management practices that channel their heinous members’ self-interest to achieve the syndicates’ objectives.
The expert tries to explain “why”:
The most common triggers for homicide are fear, rage, revenge, money, lust, and, more rarely, sheer madness. This isn’t an exact science, of course. Any given murder can have multiple triggers. Sex and revenge seem to be common partners in crime. Rage, money, and revenge make for a dangerous trifecta of triggers, as well.
This book offers my memories of homicide cases that I investigated or oversaw. In each case, I examine the trigger that led to death. I chose this theme for the book because even though the why of a murder case may not be critical in an investigation, it can sometimes lead us to the killer.
And even if we solve a case without knowing the trigger, the why still intrigues us, disrupting our dreams and lingering in our minds, perhaps because each of us fears the demons that lie within our own psyche — the triggers waiting to be pulled.
Enjoy your reading!
Thursday, January 28, 2021
Welcome to February. Let’s look at some new books!
Each month this year, we are going to promote a different genre in all its glory and at the end of the year, you will be able to say that you have read 12 different genres. We are calling it the Bradford Genre Challenge 2021 and we encourage you to participate! Of course, you are welcome to join the challenges and do them at your own pace as well.
In February, we are talking about Romance, so here are some new books at the library that fit the bill!
(To join our challenges and track your reading, download the Beanstack app or go to https://bradfordlibraryks.beanstack.org/reader365 to participate there. It’s easy and fun to get started.) You are also encouraged to join our Facebook Group: Bradford Genre Challenge 2021.
As usual, these descriptions were mostly copied from Amazon, and you can click on the titles and covers to place your holds.
**Book 1 in the Rogues and Remarkable Women series; Regency/Historical Fiction; Multicultural; Emotional Read**
Could this one have a more stereotypical “romance novel”- type name? Ignore that, because it’s getting great reviews and lots of buzz! For fans of Bridgerton and Sanditon – you know who you are!
When headstrong West Indian heiress Patience Jordan questioned her English husband’s mysterious suicide, she lost everything: her newborn son, Lionel, her fortune—and her freedom. Falsely imprisoned, she risks her life to be near her child—until The Widow’s Grace gets her hired as her own son’s nanny. But working for his unsuspecting new guardian, Busick Strathmore, Duke of Repington, has perils of its own. Especially when Patience discovers his military strictness belies an ex-rake of unswerving honor—and unexpected passion . . .
A wounded military hero, Busick is determined to resolve his dead cousin’s dangerous financial dealings for Lionel’s sake. But his investigation is a minor skirmish compared to dealing with the forthright, courageous, and alluring Patience. Somehow, she’s breaking his rules, and sweeping past his defenses. Soon, between formidable enemies and obstacles, they form a fragile trust—but will it be enough to save the future they long to dare together?
**Book 1 in the Berlin Bookmobile series; Amish romance; Gentle (Closed Door); Matchmaking**
So many people love Amish books and Shelley Shepard Gray in particular; this is worth a try. If you want a gentle but fun romance, check it out, first in a series. But if the hold list is long, there are literally hundreds more to choose from, some historical, some contemporary!
Aaron Coblentz has a secret: he’s been studying to take the GED to get promoted at work. But he can’t let his Amish family know, not when his older brother already left the faith just a year after getting baptized, practically crippling the family. When Aaron asks bookmobile librarian Sarah Anne Miller for some additional study guides, she does one better. She arranges for Kayla Kaufman to be his tutor.
Kayla has a secret, too. Her life has been turned upside down in a matter of months—her mother’s death propelled her father into a constant state of depression, and unable to deal with his erratic behavior, her longtime boyfriend has broken things off. But despite losing those she holds most dear, she hasn’t completely given up on love. Only now she seeks to find it in the sweet romance novels she secretly checks out from Sarah Anne’s bookmobile.
As Aaron and Kayla’s study sessions start to feel less like work and more like pleasure, they soon realize that happily ever afters don’t only happen in fiction; sometimes they happen when you least expect it.
**Young Adult; Love Story; Plus-Size; Intersectionality**
This one is a YA book and it’s described as being as much about the main character learning to love herself as it is about the romantic relationship. Perfect for those looking for a not-romance with some young love and some character development.
When Nala Robertson reluctantly agrees to attend an open mic night for her cousin-sister-friend Imani’s birthday, she finds herself falling in instant love with Tye Brown, the MC. He’s perfect, except . . . Tye is an activist and is spending the summer putting on events for the community when Nala would rather watch movies and try out the new seasonal flavors at the local creamery. In order to impress Tye, Nala tells a few tiny lies to have enough in common with him. As they spend more time together, sharing more of themselves, some of those lies get harder to keep up. As Nala falls deeper into keeping up her lies and into love, she’ll learn all the ways love is hard, and how self-love is revolutionary.
In Love Is a Revolution, plus size girls are beautiful and get the attention of the hot guys, the popular girl clique is not shallow but has strong convictions and substance, and the ultimate love story is not only about romance but about how to show radical love to the people in your life, including to yourself.
**Historical Fiction; Short Stories**
A well-loved author gives us some historical short stories about love. Another option for someone not wanting a full-out romance.
The fourteen captivating tales in this collection are all inspired by photos from the Times of London archive. A young woman finds unexpected love while perusing Egyptian antiquities. A family is forever fractured when war comes to Penang, in colonial Malaysia. Iron Jelloid tablets help to reveal a young man’s inner strength. And twin sisters discover that it’s never too late to forge a new path—even when standing at the altar.
There are big stories behind these simple images. Though at first glance they may appear to represent small moments, these photographs in fact speak volumes, uncovering possibilities of love, friendship, and happiness. With his indomitable charm, Alexander McCall Smith takes us behind the lens to explore the hidden lives of those photographed; in so doing, he reveals the humanity in us all.
From here on out, the rest of these books are all Romantic Comedies. This genre is really having a moment right now, and is right up my alley. As you can see, rom-coms come in many forms, so give one a chance today! (Fair warning: just because the cover is cute does not necessarily mean it isn’t steamy! Proceed with caution, by which I mean just google the book or author and read some reviews if you are concerned that it’s too sexy or not sexy enough.)
**Book 3 in the Moose Springs, Alaska series; Small Town Setting; Contemporary Romance; Romantic Comedy**
Former Hollywood darling River Lane’s acting career is tanking fast. Determined to start fresh behind the camera, she agrees to film a documentary about the picturesque small town of Moose Springs, Alaska. The assignment should have been easy, but the quirky locals want nothing to do with River. Well, too bad: River’s going to make this film and prove herself, no matter what it takes.
Or what (literal) mountain she has to climb.
Easton Lockett may be a gentle giant, but he knows a thing or two about survival. If he can keep everyone in line, he should be able to get River and her crew up and down Mount Veil in one piece. Turns out that’s a big if. The wildlife’s wilder than usual, the camera crew’s determined to wander off a cliff, and the gorgeous actress is fearless. Falling for River only makes Easton’s job tougher, but there’s only so long he can hold out against her brilliant smile. When bad weather strikes, putting everyone at risk, it’ll take all of Easton’s skill to get them back home safely…and convince River she should stay in his arms for good.
**Romantic Comedy; Light Mystery; Amnesia**
Mia might look like a Millennial but she was born yesterday. Emerging from a coma with short-term amnesia after an accident, Mia can’t remember her own name until the Siri assistant on her iPhone provides it. Based on her cool hairstyle (undercut with glamorous waves), dress (Prada), and signature lipstick (Chanel), she senses she’s wealthy, but the only way to know for sure is to retrace her steps once she leaves the hospital. Using Instagram and Uber, she arrives at the pink duplex she calls home in her posts but finds Max, a cute, off-duty postdoc supplementing his income with a house-sitting gig. He tells her the house belongs to JP, a billionaire with a chocolate empire. A few texts later, JP confirms her wildest dreams: they’re in love, Mia is living the good life, and he’ll be back that weekend.
But as Mia and Max work backward through her Instagram and across Los Angeles to learn more about her, they discover an ugly truth behind her perfect Instagram feed, and evidence that her head wound was no accident. Did Mia have it coming? And if so, is it too late for her to rewrite her story?
**Young Adult; Romantic Comedy; Love Triangle; Immigration**
Sixteen-year-old Ana is a poet and a lover of language. Except that since she moved to New Jersey from Argentina, she can barely find the words to express how she feels.
At first Ana just wants to return home. Then she meets Harrison, the very cute, very American boy in her math class, and discovers the universal language of racing hearts. But when she begins spending time with Neo, the Greek Cypriot boy from ESL, Ana wonders how figuring out what her heart wants can be even more confusing than the grammar they’re both trying to master. After all, the rules of English may be confounding, but there are no rules when it comes to love.
With playful and poetic breakouts exploring the idiosyncrasies of the English language, Love in English is witty and effervescent, while telling a beautifully observed story about what it means to become “American.”
**Young Adult; Romantic Comedy; Family Drama; Adoption Fiction**
When Abby signs up for a DNA service, it’s mainly to give her friend and secret love interest, Leo, a nudge. After all, she knows who she is already: Avid photographer. Injury-prone tree climber. Best friend to Leo and Connie…although ever since the B.E.I. (Big Embarrassing Incident) with Leo, things have been awkward on that front.
But she didn’t know she’s a younger sister.
When the DNA service reveals Abby has a secret sister, shimmery-haired Instagram star Savannah Tully, it’s hard to believe they’re from the same planet, never mind the same parents ― especially considering Savannah, queen of green smoothies, is only a year and a half older than Abby herself.
The logical course of action? Meet up at summer camp (obviously) and figure out why Abby’s parents gave Savvy up for adoption. But there are complications: Savvy is a rigid rule-follower and total narc. Leo is the camp’s co-chef, putting Abby’s growing feelings for him on blast. And her parents have a secret that threatens to unravel everything.
**Book 1 in the Runaway Royals series; Arranged Marriage; Royal; Romantic Comedy**
When Shanti Mohapi weds the king of Njaza, her dream of becoming a queen finally comes true. But it’s nothing like she imagined. Shanti and her husband may share an immediate and powerful attraction, but her subjects see her as an outsider, and everything she was taught about being the perfect wife goes disastrously wrong.
A king must rule with an iron fist, and newly crowned King Sanyu was born perfectly fitted for the gauntlet, even if he wishes he weren’t. He agrees to take a wife as is required of him, though he doesn’t expect to actually fall in love. Even more vexing? His beguiling new queen seems to have the answers to his country’s problems—except no one will listen to her.
By day, they lead separate lives. By night, she wears the crown, and he bows to her demands in matters of politics and passion. When turmoil erupts in their kingdom and their marriage, Shanti goes on the run, and Sanyu must learn whether he has what it takes both to lead his people and to catch his queen.
**Book 3 in the Bromance Book Club series; Romantic Comedy; Friends-to-Lovers**
Alexis Carlisle and her cat café, ToeBeans, have shot to fame after she came forward as a victim of a celebrity chef’s sexual harassment. When a new customer approaches to confide in her, the last thing Alexis expects is for the woman to claim they’re sisters. Unsure what to do, Alexis turns to the only man she trusts—her best friend, Noah Logan.
Computer genius Noah left his rebellious teenage hacker past behind to become a computer security expert. Now he only uses his old skills for the right cause. But Noah’s got a secret: He’s madly in love with Alexis. When she asks for his help, he wonders if the timing will ever be right to confess his crush.
Noah’s pals in The Bromance Book Club are more than willing to share their beloved “manuals” to help him go from bud to boyfriend. But he must decide if telling the truth is worth risking the best friendship he’s ever had.
Happy February and Happy Reading!
Wednesday, January 6, 2021
We are starting the year out with our new Bradford Genre Challenge for 2021. Each month, we are going to promote a different genre in all its glory, and at the end of the year, you can say that you have read 12 different genres! Of course, you are welcome to join the challenges and do them at your own pace as well. But in January, we are talking Fantasy!
(To join our challenges and track your reading, download the Beanstack app or go to https://bradfordlibraryks.beanstack.org/reader365 to participate there. It’s easy and fun to get started.)
Here is a round-up of some newer titles that have had some good buzz in the Fantasy genre. Fantasy can be as simple as a little magic appearing in someone’s life; an alternate history; a mythology or fairytale retelling; some sexy paranormal characters; or even a fully imagined fantastical world. There’s something for every reader!
(descriptions from Amazon)
**Epic Fantasy; Coming of Age; Academies of Magic**
A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik – NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of Uprooted and Spinning Silver comes the story of an unwilling dark sorceress who is destined to rewrite the rules of magic.
“The dark school of magic I’ve been waiting for.” Katherine Arden, author of Winternight Trilogy
I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life.
Everyone loves Orion Lake. Everyone else, that is. Far as I’m concerned, he can keep his flashy combat magic to himself. I’m not joining his pack of adoring fans.
“A must-read . . . Novik puts a refreshingly dark, adult spin on the magical boarding school. . . . Readers will delight in the push-and-pull of El and Orion’s relationship, the fantastically detailed world, the clever magic system, and the matter-of-fact diversity of the student body.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
**Ghost Thriller; Historical Fiction; Psychological Fiction**
The Deep by Alma Katsu – Someone, or something, is haunting the ship. Between mysterious disappearances and sudden deaths, the guests of the Titanic have found themselves suspended in an eerie, unsettling twilight zone from the moment they set sail. Several of them, including maid Annie Hebley, guest Mark Fletcher, and millionaires Madeleine Astor and Benjamin Guggenheim, are convinced there’s something sinister–almost otherwordly–afoot. But before they can locate the source of the danger, as the world knows, disaster strikes.
Years later, Annie, having survived that fateful night, has attempted to put her life back together. Working as a nurse on the sixth voyage of the Titanic‘s sister ship, the Britannic, newly refitted as a hospital ship, she happens across an unconscious Mark, now a soldier fighting in World War I. At first, Annie is thrilled and relieved to learn that he too survived the sinking, but soon, Mark’s presence awakens deep-buried feelings and secrets, forcing her to reckon with the demons of her past–as they both discover that the terror may not yet be over.
Brilliantly combining the supernatural with the height of historical disaster, The Deep is an exploration of love and destiny, desire and innocence, and, above all, a quest to understand how our choices can lead us inexorably toward our doom.
**Humorous Fantasy; Dark Fantasy; Literary Fiction**
Piranesi by Susanna Clarke – From the New York Times bestselling author of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, an intoxicating, hypnotic new novel set in a dreamlike alternative reality.
Piranesi’s house is no ordinary building: its rooms are infinite, its corridors endless, its walls are lined with thousands upon thousands of statues, each one different from all the others. Within the labyrinth of halls an ocean is imprisoned; waves thunder up staircases, rooms are flooded in an instant. But Piranesi is not afraid; he understands the tides as he understands the pattern of the labyrinth itself. He lives to explore the house.
There is one other person in the house―a man called The Other, who visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with research into A Great and Secret Knowledge. But as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person, and a terrible truth begins to unravel, revealing a world beyond the one Piranesi has always known.
**Dark Military Historical Fantasy; Action/Adventure**
The Trouble with Peace by Joe Abercrombie – A fragile peace gives way to conspiracy, betrayal, and rebellion in this sequel to the New York Times bestselling A Little Hatred from epic fantasy master Joe Abercrombie.
Peace is just another kind of battlefield . . .
Savine dan Glokta, once Adua’s most powerful investor, finds her judgement, fortune and reputation in tatters. But she still has all her ambitions, and no scruple will be permitted to stand in her way.
For heroes like Leo dan Brock and Stour Nightfall, only happy with swords drawn, peace is an ordeal to end as soon as possible. But grievances must be nursed, power seized, and allies gathered first, while Rikke must master the power of the Long Eye . . . before it kills her.
**Paranormal Romance; Romantic Suspense**
All the Colors of Night by Jayne Ann Krentz – Two psychics plunge into a dark world of deadly secrets in this second installment of the Fogg Lake trilogy by New York Times bestselling author Jayne Ann Krentz.
North Chastain possesses a paranormal talent that gives him the ability to track down the most dangerous psychic criminals. When his father suddenly falls into a coma-like state, North is convinced it was caused by a deadly artifact that traces back to the days of a secret government program known only as the Bluestone Project. North knows his only hope of saving his father is to find the artifact. He is good when it comes to tracking down killers, but to locate the relic he’s going to need help from a psychic who knows the shadowy world of obsessive collectors, deceptive dealers and ruthless raiders.…
With her reputation in ruins after a false accusation, antiques expert Sierra Raines is looking for a fresh start. She turns to the murky backwaters of the paranormal artifacts trade, finding and transporting valuable objects with a psychic provenance. When North Chastain approaches her for help, Sierra takes him on as a client, though not without reservations. North represents the mysterious Foundation, the secretive organization established to police the underworld populated by psychic criminals and those, like Sierra, who make a living in the shadows of that world.
**Greek Mythology; Contemporary Fantasy**
Lore by Alexandra Bracken – Every seven years, the Agon begins. As punishment for a past rebellion, nine Greek gods are forced to walk the earth as mortals, hunted by the descendants of ancient bloodlines, all eager to kill a god and seize their divine power and immortality.
Long ago, Lore Perseous fled that brutal world in the wake of her family’s sadistic murder by a rival line, turning her back on the hunt’s promises of eternal glory. For years she’s pushed away any thought of revenge against the man–now a god–responsible for their deaths.
Yet as the next hunt dawns over New York City, two participants seek out her help: Castor, a childhood friend of Lore believed long dead, and a gravely wounded Athena, among the last of the original gods.
The goddess offers an alliance against their mutual enemy and, at last, a way for Lore to leave the Agon behind forever. But Lore’s decision to bind her fate to Athena’s and rejoin the hunt will come at a deadly cost–and still may not be enough to stop the rise of a new god with the power to bring humanity to its knees.
**Environmental Epic Fantasy; Coming of Age; Dark Fantasy**
The Forever Sea by Joshua Phillip Johnson – The first book in a new environmental epic fantasy series set in a world where ships kept afloat by magical hearthfires sail an endless grass sea.
On the never-ending, miles-high expanse of prairie grasses known as the Forever Sea, Kindred Greyreach, hearthfire keeper and sailor aboard harvesting vessel The Errant, is just beginning to fit in with the crew of her new ship when she receives devastating news. Her grandmother—The Marchess, legendary captain and hearthfire keeper—has stepped from her vessel and disappeared into the sea.
But the note she leaves Kindred suggests this was not an act of suicide. Something waits in the depths, and the Marchess has set out to find it.
To follow in her grandmother’s footsteps, Kindred must embroil herself in conflicts bigger than she could imagine: a water war simmering below the surface of two cultures; the politics of a mythic pirate city floating beyond the edges of safe seas; battles against beasts of the deep, driven to the brink of madness; and the elusive promise of a world below the waves.
Kindred finds that she will sacrifice almost everything—ship, crew, and a life sailing in the sun—to discover the truth of the darkness that waits below the Forever Sea.
Here are some favorites of library staff:
**Wizards and Witches; Historical Fantasy Romance**
The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller – “They’ve never found the body of the first and only boy who broke my heart. And they never will.”
Alessandra is tired of being overlooked, but she has a plan to gain power:
1) Woo the Shadow King.
2) Marry him.
3) Kill him and take his kingdom for herself.
No one knows the extent of the freshly crowned Shadow King’s power. Some say he can command the shadows that swirl around him to do his bidding. Others say they speak to him, whispering the thoughts of his enemies. Regardless, Alessandra knows what she deserves, and she’s going to do everything within her power to get it.
But Alessandra’s not the only one trying to kill the king. As attempts on his life are made, she finds herself trying to keep him alive long enough for him to make her his queen―all while struggling not to lose her heart. After all, who better for a Shadow King than a cunning, villainous queen?
**Fairytale and Folklore; Sword and Sorcery**
The Folk of Air series by Holly Black – Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.
To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.
In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.
**Steampunk; Paranormal; Urban Fantasy; Witty**
The Custard Protocol series by Gail Carriger – When Prudence Alessandra Maccon Akeldama (Rue to her friends) is given an unexpected dirigible, she does what any sensible female would under similar circumstances – names it the Spotted Crumpet and floats to India in pursuit of the perfect cup of tea.
But India has more than just tea on offer. Rue stumbles upon a plot involving local dissidents, a kidnapped brigadier’s wife and some awfully familiar Scottish werewolves. Faced with a dire crisis and an embarrassing lack of bloomers, what else is a young lady of good breeding to do but turn metanatural and find out everyone’s secrets, even thousand-year-old fuzzy ones?
Join our Facebook group, Bradford Genre Challenge 2021 for more book recommendations!
Happy Fantasy Reading!
Wednesday, Dec 2, 2020
Let’s talk about some new books at Bradford that are perfect for your holiday reading needs. (Descriptions from Amazon.com. Click to place your holds today!)
Some that look fun:
The Chicken Sisters by KJ Dell’Antonia – The last thing Brooklyn-based organizational guru Mae Moore wants is to go home to Kansas. But when her career implodes, helping the fading Chicken Mimi’s look good on Food Wars becomes Mae’s best chance to reclaim the limelight–even if doing so pits her against her sister Amanda and rival shop Chicken Frannie’s. Yet when family secrets become public knowledge, the sisters must choose: Will they fight with each other, or for their heritage?
A Castaway in Cornwall by Julie Klassen – When a man is washed ashore after a wreck, Laura acts quickly to protect him from a local smuggler determined to destroy him. As Laura and a neighbor care for the survivor, they discover he has curious wounds and, although he speaks in careful, educated English, his accent seems odd. Other clues wash ashore, and Laura soon realizes he is not who he seems to be. Despite the evidence against him, the mysterious man might provide her only chance to discover the truth about her parents’ fate. With danger pursuing them from every side, and an unexpected attraction growing between them, will Laura ever find the answers she seeks?
Miss Benson’s Beetle by Rachel Joyce – It is 1950. London is still reeling from World War II, and Margery Benson, a schoolteacher and spinster, is trying to get through life, surviving on scraps. One day, she reaches her breaking point, abandoning her job and small existence to set out on an expedition to the other side of the world in search of her childhood obsession: an insect that may or may not exist—the golden beetle of New Caledonia. When she advertises for an assistant to accompany her, the woman she ends up with is the last person she had in mind.
If you want some nonfiction:
Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics by Dolly Parton – As told by Dolly Parton in her own inimitable words, explore the songs that have defined her journey. Illustrated throughout with previously unpublished images from Dolly Parton’s personal and business archives.
Mining over 60 years of songwriting, Dolly Parton highlights 175 of her songs and brings readers behind the lyrics.
The Moth and the Mountain: A True Story of Love, War, and Everest by Ed Caesar – In the 1930s, as official government expeditions set their sights on conquering Mount Everest, a little-known World War I veteran named Maurice Wilson conceives his own crazy, beautiful plan: he will fly a plane from England to Everest, crash-land on its lower slopes, then become the first person to reach its summit—all utterly alone. Wilson doesn’t know how to climb. He barely knows how to fly. But he has the right plane, the right equipment, and a deep yearning to achieve his goal.
This Time Next Year We’ll Be Laughing by Jacqueline Winspear – After sixteen novels, Jacqueline Winspear has taken the bold step of turning to memoir, revealing the hardships and joys of her family history. Both shockingly frank and deftly restrained, her story tackles the difficult, poignant, and fascinating family accounts of her paternal grandfather’s shellshock; her mother’s evacuation from London during the Blitz; her soft-spoken animal-loving father’s torturous assignment to an explosives team during WWII; her parents’ years living with Romany Gypsies; and Winspear’s own childhood picking hops and fruit on farms in rural Kent, capturing her ties to the land and her dream of being a writer at its very inception.
In A Holidaze by Christina Lauren – It’s the most wonderful time of the year…but not for Maelyn Jones. She’s living with her parents, hates her going-nowhere job, and has just made a romantic error of epic proportions.
But perhaps worst of all, this is the last Christmas Mae will be at her favorite place in the world—the snowy Utah cabin where she and her family have spent every holiday since she was born, along with two other beloved families. Mentally melting down as she drives away from the cabin for the final time, Mae throws out what she thinks is a simple plea to the universe: Please. Show me what will make me happy.
The next thing she knows, tires screech and metal collides, everything goes black. But when Mae gasps awake…she’s on an airplane bound for Utah, where she begins the same holiday all over again. With one hilarious disaster after another sending her back to the plane, Mae must figure out how to break free of the strange time loop—and finally get her true love under the mistletoe.
All I Want for Christmas by Wendy Loggia – Bailey Briggs is counting down the days to Christmas: she lives for holiday music, baking cookies, going on snowy sleigh rides,and wearing her light-up reindeer ears to work at Winslow’s bookstore. But all she really wants this year is the one thing she doesn’t have: someone special to kiss under the mistletoe. And she’s 100 percent certain that that someone isn’t Jacob Marley–athlete, player, and of questionable taste in girlfriends–and that Charlie, the mysterious stranger with the British accent, is the romantic lead of her dreams. Is she right?
New Year’s Kiss by Lee Matthews – Tess and her opinionated older sister Lauren are spending the week after Christmas at the snowy Evergreen Lodge in Vermont and they aren’t happy about it. Their stern grandmother, who owns the holiday resort, is not known for her warmth and good humor. But when shy, straight-laced Tess meets Christopher in the lobby, things are suddenly looking up. And when she decides to get out of her comfort zone and create a bucket list of things to accomplish before the New Year-like singing in public and skiing a black-diamond slope-Christopher is happy to help, even as he keeps a secret that could turn everything upside down. When the ball drops, will Tess and Christopher share a magical kiss-or will Tess start the new year off alone?
Since there isn’t a new Harry Potter:
Blazewrath Games by Amparo Ortiz – Lana Torres has always preferred dragons to people. In a few weeks, sixteen countries will compete in the Blazewrath World Cup, a tournament where dragons and their riders fight for glory in a dangerous relay. Lana longs to represent her native Puerto Rico in their first ever World Cup appearance, and when Puerto Rico’s Runner―the only player without a dragon steed―is kicked off the team, she’s given the chance.
But when she discovers that a former Blazewrath superstar has teamed up with the Sire―a legendary dragon who’s cursed into human form―the safety of the Cup is jeopardized. The pair are burning down dragon sanctuaries around the world and refuse to stop unless the Cup gets cancelled. All Lana wanted was to represent her country. Now, to do that, she’ll have to navigate an international conspiracy that’s deadlier than her beloved sport.
This is How We Fly by Anna Meriano – 17-year-old vegan feminist Ellen Lopez-Rourke has one muggy Houston summer left before college. She plans to spend every last moment with her two best friends before they go off to the opposite ends of Texas for school. But when Ellen is grounded for the entire summer by her (sometimes) evil stepmother, all her plans are thrown out the window.
Determined to do something with her time, Ellen (with the help of BFF Melissa) convinces her parents to let her join the local muggle Quidditch team. An all-gender, full-contact game, Quidditch isn’t quite what Ellen expects. There’s no flying, no magic, just a bunch of scrappy players holding PVC pipe between their legs and throwing dodgeballs. Suddenly Ellen is thrown into the very different world of sports: her life is all practices, training, and running with a group of Harry Potter fans.
Happy reading and happy holidays!
Friday, October 16, 2020
It’s fall! Time for us to curl up with a good book and take advantage of the extra time inside. If you are looking for some promising new reads for October and beyond, look no further than the library. Here are just a few of the new titles you can try this month, or at least look forward to as it gets colder! Click on each title to place your holds.
The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton – This one has been highly anticipated by library staff, as some of us enjoyed Turton’s first novel, The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle. If it’s anything like that one, expect twists and turns and maybe some confusion.
Magic Lessons by Alice Hoffman – A prequel for Practical Magic, anyone? This is probably the best time of year to read about witches. This one is about an ancestor of the Owens family who didn’t have any wise aunts to teach her about the “Unnamed Arts.”
Humans by Brandon Stanton – Humans of New York expands throughout the world. If you aren’t on social media, this may be one of the few things you are actually missing. Striking portraits of ordinary people and a little something about their lives.
Let Love Rule by Lenny Kravitz – “In a new memoir, the rock musician breaks down the first 25 years of his life, when he found his sound, his voice and his commitment to love and nonviolence.” ―The New York Times
Lenny Kravitz has sold some fifty million records over a career spanning three decades.
David Ritz has collaborated with everyone from Ray Charles to Aretha Franklin.
Charming as a Verb by Ben Philippe – There is only one person who seems immune to Henri’s charms: his “intense” classmate and neighbor Corinne Troy. When she uncovers Henri’s less-than-honest dog-walking scheme, she blackmails him into helping her change her image at school. Henri agrees, seeing a potential upside for himself.Soon what started as a mutual hustle turns into something more surprising than either of them ever bargained for. . . .This is a sharply funny and insightful novel about the countless hustles we have to keep from doing the hardest thing: being ourselves.
Leave the World Behind by Rumaan Alam – Here is an intriguing description of one of fall’s biggest novels: “If there’s one book that will haunt you in 2020, it’s this one…. Equal parts literary fiction and suspense, Leave the World Behind is an unsettling, thought-provoking, and disturbing look at both the precarious state of world affairs as well as class and race relations. In a year when anything — including the apocalypse — feels possible, this novel offers a realistic glimpse of how the world as we know it could end, and it will leave you reeling.” (Buzzfeed)
The Racers: How an Outcast Driver, an American Heiress, and a Legendary Car Challenged Hitler’s Best by Neal Bascomb – If you can’t get enough of WWII side stories, here’s one that looks good. Bascomb is known for his engaging nonfiction for young adults.
All This Time by Mikki Daughtry and Rachael Lippincott – From the team behind #1 New York Times bestseller Five Feet Apart comes a gripping new romance that asks: Can you find true love after losing everything?
Kyle and Kimberly have been the perfect couple all through high school, but when Kimberly breaks up with him on the night of their graduation party, Kyle’s entire world upends—literally. Their car crashes and when he awakes, he has a brain injury. Kimberly is dead. And no one in his life could possibly understand.
Elsewhere by Dean Koontz – A father and daughter adventure. “Some authors have used the sci-fi genre to create other worlds and critique the current world politics or realities. Koontz’s interests lay elsewhere. He’s more concerned with the human condition that remains the same across time and space and that cannot be remedied by ideology.” —The Big Thrill
Happy fall and happy reading!
Wednesday, September 2, 2020
New books! This week we have all kinds of books, something for everyone! Here are a few suggestions for your reading pleasure. (Click titles or covers to place your holds.)
Nonfiction/Religion and True Crime:
Nonfiction/Science and Medicine:
A twisty murder mystery:
A fantasy about magicians:
A creepy homicidal clown:
A rogue CIA agent going after a band of criminals:
Historical fiction from a pandemic:
Historical fiction about Lucille Ball and infidelity:
A Christian romance set during the Great Depression: