Fiction

The Kitchen Boy

Friday, December 12, 2008
Robert Alexander

This is one of the best historical fiction books I have read in a long time. Using the facts of the Romanovs' imprisonment and eventual execution, Robert Alexander weaves a tale of mystery and intrigue. Even though you know the fate of the Romanovs, he manages to write the book in such a suspenseful way that you can't put it down. I highly recommend this book. In addition, check out this great website for the book. Hope someone makes this one into a movie.

 
Margaret, Reference
 

Bel Canto

Friday, December 12, 2008
Ann Patchett

I really enjoyed this book. I liked the premise, the setting, the characters, and the "musical" allusions. A terrorist group takes over a private party in a vice-president's home in South-America. An American Opera singer is featured as the entertainer. What happens is extraordinary--the electric mix of guest, dignitaries, servants, terrorist all find that they are witnesses to an amazing musical talent. The music binds them and their lives together as they are held hostage in this house. People fall in love, make friendships; and it all comes to a shocking end.

Margaret, Reference

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The Next Thing On My List

Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Jill Smolinski
After a car accident, June discovers the unfinished list of the victim. "20 things to do before my 25th birthday"- and only two are completed. So June takes it upon herself to finish the list in honor of Marissa and finds her whole life is turned around as is the life of many other people. It is a very funny book and you want to hurry and read it to see if she makes her goal. I won't tell you about the surprise ending.

Sue N, Youth Services
 

Traveler (Audiobook)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Ron McLarty
Traveler (Audiobook)

McLarty is able to bring his boyhood hometown of East Providence, RI to life as the main character Jono Reilly, goes back there when he gets notice that his first childhood love, Marie D'Agostino, has died suddenly. 40 years previously she had been shot in the back while walking through a field with Jono. It was a mystery. A motive was never determined and her assailant has never been found. He reopens the investigation with the help of a retired cop. McLarty's characters and settings are vivid and engaging.

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Kathleen Z., Administration

 

Accidents of Nature (Audiobook)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Harriet McBryde Johnson
This is a funny, poignant coming of age story that gives one insight to the handicapped world. Seventeen-year-old Jean, who has cerebral palsy, goes away to a camp for the disabled for the first time. She has grown up in a small town where she is the only handicapped person she knows and she considers herself to be part of the normal world. She writes about her 10 days at camp where she gains new insight into the world of the “crips”, the “Mr.’s”, the “walkie-talkies”, the “norms and into herself. The book changed the way I will perceive handicapped people in the future.

Laura G., Youth Services
 

To the Limit

Monday, May 19, 2008
Pamela Britton
I don't usually read paperback romances... but a friend showed me this "Nascar library" series of romances and I was intrigued - a NASCAR romance!?
 
I enjoyed reading this on my vacation. Main character was a strong female who's an engineer designing racecars - she has 2 guys interested in her (both very different - one is a driver; one a billionaire who owns the raceteam) and she needs to figure who she's interested in. I gave it 4 stars out of 5 - I found it enjoyable.

Other NASCAR romances by Pamela Britton: On the Edge and Total Control.

Janice, Youth Services
 

Winter Study

Monday, May 19, 2008
Nevada Barr
Park Ranger Anna Pigeon is sent to Isle Royale National Park to assist and observe the resident wolf packs’ habits and behaviors since wolves may soon be reintroduced to Rocky Mountain National Park where Anna is stationed. The winter study of Isle Royale’s wolves has been ongoing for fifty years but may now be in jeopardy due to the interference of Homeland Security who feels the park should be opened to the public in the winter so they can use it as a base to monitor potential terrorist threats along the Canadian border. Soon after Anna’s arrival, the odd assortment of study team members, biologists, and Homeland Security folks begin to notice unusual behavior in the wolves. As Anna tries to sort things out, the very survival of everyone on the island, including Anna herself, is terrifyingly called into question.
I love Nevada Barr’s Anna Pigeon series as much for her excellent depictions of the National Parks where they are set as for the characters and stories. I was especially interested in Winter Study because of its focus on the renowned wolf project conducted by Rolf Peterson and Michigan Technological University in Houghton. The book’s forward is written by Rolf Peterson.

Sue A., Reference

 

Fire Point

Monday, May 19, 2008
John Smolens

Tensions simmer in Michigan's remote Upper Peninsula when a stranger comes to renovate an old Victorian home and becomes involved with 19 year old Hannah, the town pariah. When Sean Colby, her former boyfriend, returns to town, his jealousy and hostility involve many other townspeople. This is suspenseful up to the chilling end.

Sue N., Youth Services

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River God

Sunday, April 13, 2008
Wilbur Smith

While visiting Egypt and after I returned, I read the River God, a fascinating story of history, love, civil war, and the glory of the Pharaoh days. It is very accurate historically and reinforced much that I learned on my trip. It is a long book with much detail but the characters make it flow along with the facts.Wilbur Smith writes "A grand tale of intrigue, deception, true love and exile."I highly recommend this read.

Sue N, Youth Services

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Last Night at the Lobster

Sunday, April 13, 2008
Stewart O'Nan

Set on the last day of business of a Connecticut Red Lobster, this tells the story of Manny DeLeon, a conscientious, committed restaurant manager any national chain would want to keep. Instead, corporate has notified Manny that his—and Manny does think of the restaurant as his—location is not meeting expectations and will close December 20. On this last night, Manny is committed to a dream of perfection, but no one and nothing seems to share his vision. Small but not slight, the novel is a concise, poignant portrait of a man on the verge of losing himself. I would recommend this to anyone who has ever had a job or a relationship.

Sue A2, Reference

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