Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Linda's pick for January

R.J. Palacio

August Pullman is a 10-year-old boy who likes Star Wars and Xbox, ordinary except for his jarring facial anomalies. Homeschooled all his life, August heads to public school for fifth grade and he is not the only one changed by the experience--something we learn about first-hand through the narratives of those who orbit his world. August’s internal dialogue and interactions with students and family ring true, and though remarkably courageous he comes across as a sweet, funny boy who wants the same things others want: friendship, understanding, and the freedom to be himself.

Happy Reading Friends!!!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Athena's Pick for December: A Man Called Ove

Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman | 9781476738031 | NOOK Book (eBook ...NPR Bestseller
Boston Globe Bestseller

In this “charming debut” (People) from one of Sweden’s most successful authors, a grumpy yet lovable man finds his solitary world turned on its head when a boisterous young family moves in next door.

Meet Ove. He’s a curmudgeon—the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him “the bitter neighbor from hell.” But must Ove be bitter just because he doesn’t walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time?

Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship, and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul. All of which will change one cranky old man and a local residents’ association to their very foundations.

A feel-good story in the spirit of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry and Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand, Fredrik Backman’s novel about the angry old man next door is a thoughtful exploration of the profound impact one life has on countless others. “If there was an award for ‘Most Charming Book of the Year,’ this first novel by a Swedish blogger-turned-overnight-sensation would win hands down” (Booklist, starred review).

Tuesday, October 20, 2015


Award-winning journalist Barbara Demick follows the lives of six North Korean citizens over fifteen years—a chaotic period that saw the death of Kim Il-sung, the rise to power of his son Kim Jong-il, and a devastating famine that killed one-fifth of the population. Demick brings to life what it means to be living under the most repressive totalitarian regime today—an Orwellian world that is by choice not connected to the Internet, where displays of affection are punished, informants are rewarded, and an offhand remark can send a person to the gulag for life. Demick takes us deep inside the country, beyond the reach of government censors, and through meticulous and sensitive reporting we see her subjects fall in love, raise families, nurture ambitions, and struggle for survival. One by one, we witness their profound, life-altering disillusionment with the government and their realization that, rather than providing them with lives of abundance, their country has betrayed them.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Annell's Pick for October

The Halloween Tree

The Halloween Tree
by Ray Bradbury

ON HALLOWEEN NIGHT, eight trick-or-treaters gather at the haunted house by the edge of town, ready for adventure. But when Something whisks their friend Pip away, only one man, the sinister Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud, can help the boys find him.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Lauri's Pick for September:

Baba's Daughter: Memoirs of a Persian-American Girl 

by Jessica Shahriari Nicely

Baba's Daughter: Memoirs of a Persian-American Girl 

When Jessica Shahriari Nicely stepped onstage in the Miss USA pageant, she was a young woman who projected poise and confidence to the world. This image, however, masked the pain and anguish of growing up in a turbulent home ruled by an alcoholic, abusive father. Even early on, Jessica knew that life with her Iranian father was not typical, nor was it normal for a mother to abandon her family. And yet normalcy was something this girl yearned for, something that spurred her to dream and create a detailed vision for her future—a vision that became her lifeline.
In these pages, Jessica bravely tells her story. She recounts a childhood marked by loss and punctuated by physical violence, emotional abuse, and shocking neglect. She describes letdowns from helping professionals and rays of hope from extended family members and friends. You’ll learn how she developed the fortitude and incredible spirit to not only endure incredible suffering in her home but to emerge a happy, productive adult.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Pam's book for August

Traveling with Pomegranates
Sue Monk Kidd has touched the hearts of millions of readers with her beloved novels and acclaimed nonfiction. Now, in this wise and engrossing dual memoir, she and her daughter, Ann, chronicle their travels together through Greece and France at a time when each was on a quest to redefine herself and rediscover each other.

As Sue struggles to enlarge a vision of swarming bees into a novel, and Ann ponders the classic question of what to do with her life, this modern-day Demeter and Persephone explore an array of inspiring figures and sacred sites. They also give voice to that most protean of human connections: the bond of mothers and daughters.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Take Me With You-Jen's Book for June

The book this month is "Take Me With You" by Catherine Ryan Hyde.

August Shroeder, a burned-out teacher, has been sober since his 19-year-old son died. Every year he's spent the summer on the road, but making it to Yellowstone this year means everything. The plan had been to travel there with his son, but now August is making the trip with Philip's ashes instead. An unexpected twist of fate lands August with two extra passengers for his journey, two half-orphans with nowhere else to go.

Monday, March 9, 2015

A Monster Calls - Linda's Pick for April

An unflinching, darkly funny, and deeply moving story of a boy, his seriously ill mother, and an unexpected monstrous visitor.
At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn't the monster Conor's been expecting— he's been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he's had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It's ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd— whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself— Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Anne's book choice for March

  • A "New York Times" bestseller--with more than one million copies sold--by the author of "The Girl You Left Behind" They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose. . . Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life--steady boyfriend, close family--who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex-Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life--big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel--and now he's pretty sure he cannot live the way he is. Will is acerbic, moody, bossy--but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living. "A Love Story" for this generation, "Me Before You" brings to life two people who couldn't have less in common--a heartbreakingly romantic novel that asks, "What do you do when making the person you love happy also means breaking your own heart?"

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Athena's Pick for February: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See
  • From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, a stunningly ambitious and beautiful novel about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II. Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks. When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighborhood, every house, every manhole, so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure s agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall. In another world in Germany, an orphan boy, Werner, grows up with his younger sister, Jutta, both enchanted by a crude radio Werner finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, a talent that wins him a place at an elite and brutal military academy and, ultimately, makes him a highly specialized tracker of the Resistance. Werner travels through the heart of Hitler Youth to the far-flung outskirts of Russia, and finally into Saint-Malo, where his path converges with Marie-Laure. Doerr s gorgeous combination of soaring imagination with observation is electric. Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, Doerr illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another.