The Man Who Ate His Boots: The Tragic History of the Search for the Northwest Passage

Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Anthony Brandt
The Man Who Ate His Boots:The Tragic History of the Search for the Northwest Pas

My husband and I listened to this audio book on a long car trip this summer-it was enough history for him and enough story for me so we were able to agree and listen to it. It is the story of the British Navy's search for the Northwest Passage from 1818-1880. So little was known at the time about the Arctic and these explorers like Franklin and Parry were setting out to vast new territories under very hard conditions. It surprised me that they would have a failed mission with deaths due to extreme cold, ice, fog, lack of food and they would sign up to go again! At one point Franklin and his men were starving and literally ate the leather from their boots to survive-thus the title and Franklin's nickname. The Northwest Passage was not open until 2007 when, due to global warming, there was enough ice melt to allow ships to go through. We enjoyed listening to the book but often wished we had the maps available in the printed version to refer to while listening.  Check our catalog for the audio book or the print book.

Jan K., Youth Services



Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Robin Cook

Robin Cook has written several books where New York City medical examiners Laurie Montgomery and Jack Stapleton are the main characters.  In this story Laurie returns to work now that her son's neuroblastoma is in remission. She finds her very first case back to be a dangerous puzzle of the highest order, involving organized crime and two start-up biotech companies.  I listened to this as I drove to and from work and often wished my drive was longer since I wanted to hear more. I was on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what would develop next. I recommend this as a fun, light read or in my case a “listen to”. Check our catalog.

Betsy H., Reference

The Art of Racing in the Rain

Saturday, June 30, 2012
Garth Stein

I listened to the audio CD of The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein and loved it.   It’s a story that is told from the point of view of the main character who is a dog.  The story opens when Enzo is at the end of his life.  Enzo relates the story of his master, Denny who, after adopting Enzo, marries, has a child and begins his auto-racing career.  Enzo is with Denny through the unexpected death of his wife and a three year custody battle for his daughter.  Enzo learns about human life and how Denny’s racing knowledge applies to many life issues.  It’s an emotional story with laughter, tears, love and hope.  Check our catalog

Laura G., Youth Services

The Checklist Manifesto: How To Get Things Right

Friday, April 27, 2012
Atul Gawande
Checklist Manifesto

I'm a list maker by nature: to-do lists, books to read lists, things to knit lists, places to visit lists. Checklists haven’t been my thing.  After reading The Checklist Manifesto, that might be changing.  This short book is a fascinating look at what seems to be such a simple idea, the checklist.  Atul Gawande, a general and endocrine surgeon, leads the World Health Organization’s Safe Surgery Saves Lives program.  Gawande starts with surgery, but looks to other professions that deal with complexity and how they create and use checklists.   It’s about the 3 “C”s…complexity, checklists and conversation.  Check our catalog   Also available as an audio book.

Holly, Youth Services

For the Win

Saturday, January 14, 2012
Cory Doctorow
For the Win

I pulled this audio off the shelf for something different to listen to and found myself learning a lot about the world of online gaming and real life issues.  An international group of young people begin a fight for real world rights via online games.  Youth from all over Asia and the U.S come together to support each other.  This is not an easy read but is worth the effort.  It will make you think about the way you shop and play by giving you a picture of the people who produce so many of the items we use.  This was published in 2010 but it show how the internet can be used to rally people to a cause…as during the Arab spring.  Check our catalog

Laura G., Youth Services


Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Charles Frazier

On Thanksgiving morning I listened to the audio book of Nightwoods while stuffing the turkey and baking pumpkin pie. I was grateful to have the time to listen to this suspenseful story of a loner who ends up caretaker for her murdered sister’s traumatized twins. Narrator Will Patton expertly gives voice to Charles Frazier’s novel, with hushed quieter tones when speaking for the heroine, Luce, and bringing a hard-edged disgust and cruelty to his voice when portraying, Bud, the smooth-talking villain.  Anyone who enjoyed Frazier’s debut novel, Cold Mountain, is sure to like his third which is also set in the mountains of North Carolina.  Check our catalog for the audio book or the print copy

Cyndi L., Reference

The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York

Friday, December 2, 2011
Deborah Blum
The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age N

Blum is a Pulitzer Prize winner who makes chemistry real and fascinating in her tale of the careers of two important people in the field of forensic toxicology, Dr. Charles Norris, and Alexander Gettler.  The book follows the events in New York in the early 20th century.  Each chapter is named after a poison, and contains the unsettling real-life cases in which these two men devised methods to solve the crimes and detect the poisons.  Some parts are a little gruesome, and a little heavy on the chemistry, but a good read nonetheless.  Check our catalog for the audio book  or Check MelCat for the book

Margaret, Reference


Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Chris Fabry

Is Will obsessed with a life that can never be? After all he is an ex-con, hated in his hometown, and Karin, the woman he loves, is married to a minister and has three small children. As the story unfolds, we're given glimpses of how intertwined their lives are but are not truly prepared for all the revelations. Each of the four narrators add to the drama.  Check our catalog for the audiobook or check our catalog for the book

Doris, Reference

The Memory of Running (audiobook)

Thursday, July 28, 2011
Ron McLarty
The Memory of Running (audiobook)
Smithson Ide, now in his forties, is the lonely slob his sister warned him he might become. He drinks heavily, smokes heavily, and works a boring job. But within the span of a few days his life begins to change. His parents die from an automobile accident, and then he opens a letter that says his missing sister's remains are in Los Angeles. When he sees his old bicycle hanging in the garage, he takes it down and begins what his former neighbor calls a quest. Along the way, we learn about Smithy's baseball playing father, mentally afflicted sister, determined neighbor who has loved him despite his flaws, and other characters. Also we are with him as he encounters people who are too quick to judge. This book reminds me of Forrest Gump; but, for me, the story is more believable and touching.
Doris M., Reference

The Sherlock Files-The Hundred Year Old Secret (audiobook)

Thursday, July 21, 2011
Tracy Barrett
My Husband and I are great fans of Sherlock Holmes so while on vacation this week we listened to this audio book in the car. It was just long enough to get us up north! The book is recommended for listeners (or readers) ages to 9 to 12 but we really enjoyed it. Xena and Xander Holmes, siblings from the U.S., are moving to London with their parents. They discover they are related to the famous Sherlock Holmes and they inherit his unsolved casebook. The siblings go about trying to solve the cases that their famous ancestor couldn't. This first book deals with a missing famous painting-and yes they do solve the mystery!
Jan K., Youth Services