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Thursday
Aug162018

Sacra Gaea by Michael Carroll-Smith

Title:  Sacra Gaea

Author: Michael Carroll-Smith

Review:

Today, more than ever in the history of humanity, we should consider the fate of our planet.  It is the source of our food, our clothing, our shelter, our water and air.  And it is home to so much natural beauty.

Take a few moments to read and reflect on the one and only place in the universe that is our home.

Review by:  Ben

Wednesday
Aug152018

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

Title:  Where the Crawdads Sing

Author: Delia Owens

Review:

Set in 1969 in a small town on the North Carolina coast, Where the Crawdads Sing tells the story of Kya Clark, or - as the locals call her – “Marsh Girl”.   Abandoned by her family, Kya has raised herself in the North Carolina marshes, digging mussels and catching fish to trade at Jumpin’s Fish & Bait for basic necessities.  When the local golden boy, Chase Andrews, is found dead, Kya becomes the primary suspect.  I LOVED this book!  It is impossible to not fall in love with Kya.   Historical Fiction at its best. 

 

Review by:  Jannelle

Tuesday
Aug142018

She has her mother’s laugh by Carl Zimmer

Title:  She has her mother’s laugh

Author: Carl Zimmer

Review:

Science writer Carl Zimmer’s new book on genetic inheritance brings an inquisitive, conversational tone to some of the largest scientific questions facing our generation. Zimmer’s strength in storytelling gives this book a novel-like feel, while still introducing biological concepts in simple, understandable ways. I would recommend this book if you want something casual to read, but still want to learn a little something new.

Review by:  Allison

Friday
Jul202018

Paper: Paging Through History by Mark Kurlansky

Title:  Paper: Paging Through History

Author: Mark Kurlansky

Review:

Paper is so common nowadays that we don’t think much about it.  But historically it was in short supply.  For a time it was only made from rags, and not until later was it made from wood pulp. 
But just try to imagine the world without paper.  The mind boggles.  Page through history with this book about paper, and you’ll appreciate it even more.

Review by:  Ben

Wednesday
Jul182018

Star Wars Workbooks

 

Title:  Star Wars Workbooks 

Review:

Do you have a grade school child at home this summer? Do you want to keep them entertained, but also make sure they don’t forget everything they learned at school? These workbooks are a fun, engaging method to trick your child into remembering their multiplication tables or into learning how to spell. The problems in the workbooks align with the National Core Standards that your child will probably be tested on later in the school year, so at least a little bit of what they do at home should be familiar with what they’ll be working on in school. Be the Jedi Master you always knew you could be; your Padawan is waiting.

 

Review by:  Allison

Tuesday
Jul172018

The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan

Title:  The Ruin

Author: Dervla McTiernan

Review:

Aisling Conroy’s boyfriend, Jack, is found dead in the river Corrib in Galway, Ireland.  The police rule it as a suicide and Aisling, though shocked and confused, believes the outcome of their investigation. 

Then Maude, Jack’s long lost sister, arrives and is adamant that Jack was murdered.  Detective Cormac Reilly believes that there might be a connection to the long ago death of Jack and Maude’s mother.  Told in alternating voices, the truth slowly unfolds as you piece together everyone’s story to finally reach the surprising conclusion.

Review by:  Jannelle

Wednesday
Jun272018

Providence by Caroline Kepnes

Title:  Providence

Author: Caroline Kepnes

Review: Jon and Chloe have been best friends for years.  They are an odd duo; He, quiet and shy, She, beautiful and outgoing.  When Jon suddenly disappears their 8th grade year, Chloe’s life begins to falls apart.  Four years later, as she has begun to pull her life back together, Jon suddenly reappears.  He has no memories of the last 4 years.

Meanwhile, in Providence, Rhode Island, Detective “Eggs”  DeBenedictus is investigating a string of unusual deaths that all appear to be from natural causes.  What is causing these healthy, young people to suddenly drop dead?  The answer seems to be leading him to Jon, the missing boy who has miraculously reappeared.

Review by:  Jannelle

Tuesday
Jun262018

In Praise of Wasting Time by Alan Lightman

Title:  In Praise of Wasting Time

Author: Alan Lightman

Review:

In a world where sitting quietly and not doing anything can be seen as “wasting time”, Alan Lightman shows us that those are the times that can be most productive and most beneficial.  The classic example of this is how Einstein developed some of his most groundbreaking ideas by daydreaming.

 

Review by:  Ben

Friday
Jun222018

Smitten Kitchen Every Day by Deb Perlman

Title:  Smitten Kitchen Every Day

Author: Deb Perlman

Review: “Deb Perlman is one of my all time favorite cooks! Whenever I need to impress my friends or family with a special dish, I always turn to Deb. She has been hosting a blog for ages, and I have been anticipating this cookbook for years. Let me tell you, this book delivers! She has collected is an incredibly thoughtful batch of recipes - mostly new - for lunch, dinner, and dessert. She provides a good variety of options for any mood, and her helpful voice guides you through the process the whole time- which makes cooking less stressful and more fun! If you’re looking for a good variety of casual options that are still decadent, I would recommend this book.”

Review by:  Allison

Wednesday
May232018

Ocean Meets Sky by Terry Fan

Title:  Ocean Meets Sky

Author: Terry Fan

Review:

What attracted me to this book at first was the amazing artwork.  The story follows the character Finn on an adventure to discover where the ocean meets the sky.  A perfect book to read to a small child, igniting wonder and imagination.

Review by:  Ben

Monday
May212018

Shanghai Girls by Lisa See

Title:  Shanghai Girls

Author: Lisa See

Review:

This is the story of sisters Pearl and May who are living a good life in Shanghai until fortunes turn and they are given by their father into arranged marriages to settle a debt. They endure terrible suffering and pain through the war and then adjusting to life in America with Chinese American husbands and their families.  Throughout, they remain close and are strong for each other.  This is both an inspiring and historically eye opening story.  I recommend it for anyone interested in history and cultural differences.

 

Review by:  Dianne

Saturday
May192018

Dad Jokes by Jimmy Niro

Title:  Dad Jokes

Author: Jimmy Niro

Review:

Dad Jokes by Jimmy Niro  is a fun and clean compilation of jokes. Many jokes that are included in this book are very puny. A key point here is that you don’t have to be a dad to tell dad jokes. I recommend you pick it up and have a good laugh.

 

Review by:  Aly

Thursday
May172018

The Lost Plot by Genevieve Cogman

Title:  The Lost Plot

Author: Genevieve Cogman

Review:

This fourth book in the series has so many twists and turns, it will always keep you guessing.  It is set in New York City during prohibition. You have the gangsters, and the flappers, and some bad dragons. Irene and her assistant, Kai are out to find a book, and a stray Liberian that has gone missing, all the while trying to escape dragons, and mobsters. A great read!!

 

Review by:  Julie

Friday
Apr272018

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Kimmerer

Title:  Braiding Sweetgrass

Author: Robin Kimmerer

Review:

This is the most engaging science book I’ve ever read. There’s science, cultural history, and poetry. What I found most captivating  was how the author would connect, what seemed like polar opposites, the world of science with the world of indigenous knowledge and stories. After reading this book, I definitely gained a new perspective as far as how I view our earth and how poetic science can be.

 

Review by:  Rubi

Thursday
Apr262018

The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson

Title:  The Way of Kings

Author: Brandon Sanderson

Review:

I found The Way of Kings because I was looking for another good fantasy read after having powered through the first two books of the Kingkiller Chronicles. I’m on the second book of this series now, but I’m honestly still processing everything from this first book. I think that fact in itself is a testament to the thoughtfulness of Sanderson’s writing and world-building. Sanderson excels at creating engrossing characters with dynamic thoughts, and slowly reveals a politically and morally complex storyline. The narration primarily switches between three characters; Kaladin, Shallan, and Dalinar, in a world of desert-storms and fallen civilizations. This book is long and the focus is on the build-up, but wow, the pay-off is worth it. A disclaimer; this book is the first book in an epic fantasy series of 3 written with another 7 books planned. However, Sanderson writes on a tight schedule, and you can get updates on his writing process in his website. He expects to finish a new book in this series every couple of years. All in all, if you like epic fantasy and haven’t read any books by Sanderson yet, I would highly recommend reading this book.

Review by:  Allison

Monday
Apr162018

Disruption by Jessica Shirvington

Title:  Disruption

Author: Jessica Shirvington

Review:

In this novel for young adults, Maggie Stevens discovers the dark side of a Utopian society.  M-Bands, created by Mercer Corporation, have revolutionized daily life.  No longer will there be consequences for bad decisions because your M-Band knows what decision is best for you.  After learning firsthand what happens when you don’t get with the program, Maggie vows to take down Mercer Corporation with the unwilling help of the heir to M-Corp empire. Book 2, Corruption, is also available in paperback!

Review by:  Jannelle

Sunday
Apr152018

We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

Title:  We Were the Lucky Ones

Author: Georgia Hunter

Review:

This book gives you a inside view of one Jewish family’s will to survive and reunite during the horrors of Poland during WWII. This book weaves a tale that will not leave you. It will make you think about the courage these people had, the will to survive, and the courage to not give up! This is a based on a true story.  I have not cried this much reading a book in a while.... this is a must read!

Review by:  Julie

Saturday
Apr142018

Notes from a Public Typewriter

Title:  Notes from a Public Typewriter

Editors: Michael Gustafson and Oliver Uberti

Review:

What do you get when you put a typewriter in a bookstore, roll in a sheet of paper and let anyone type anything?  You get this book.

From the silly to the profound, and everything in between, this one is interesting for sure.

Review by:  Ben

Friday
Apr132018

Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer

Title:  Annihilation

Author: Jeff Vandermeer

Review:

Annihilation has been dramatized into a movie that pales in comparison to the book. This story line follows four women into the unknown zone known as Area X. A Biologist, Psychologist, Anthropologist, and a Survery are sent into the zone to unravel the mystery within. A psychological thriller, expertly written by Jeff Vandermeer keeps you reading to the end of the first book and beyond. I recommend this series to fantasy and science fiction readers who also like a bit of mystery.

 

Review by:  Aly

Saturday
Mar242018

Introvert Activity Book by Maureen Wilson

Title:  Introvert Activity Book 

Author: Maureen Wilson

Review:

This is one that you can do in any order.  Open it up whenever you have a few minutes, or make an evening of it.  There is a handy progress chart in the front so you can keep track of which ones you have done.

Review by:  Ben