October 2017 LibraryReads

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Seven Days of Us: A Novel

by Francesca Hornak

Published:10/17/2017 by Berkley
ISBN: 9780451488756

“The Birch family will be spending the Christmas holiday in quarantine, thanks to eldest daughter Olivia’s recent relief work in a disease-infested Liberia. She has returned to England but must be in quarantine for seven days. This family has not ever spent that much time in each other’s company. Each person has secrets that are slowly revealed over the course of the seven days. It is particularly interesting to watch them become the family that they should have been all along: supportive and loving. An enjoyable read.”

Cheryl Braud, Iberia Public Library, New Iberia, LA

The Last Mrs. Parrish: A Novel

by Liv Constantine

Published: 10/17/2017 by Harper
ISBN: 9780062667571

“Daphne seems to have hit the jackpot by marrying Jackson Parrish. They live in a lovely Connecticut mansion and travel around the world, all the while raising two beautiful daughters. When Mrs. Parrish meets Amber, a kindred spirit, Daphne instantly feels a connection, perhaps someone to fill the endless void of sorrow that has plagued her since her sister’s death. We learn that nothing is what it appears to be. The author sets an atmospheric pace for this story, leading up to its dramatic conclusion.”

KC Davis, Fairfield Woods Branch Library, Fairfield, CT


The Last Ballad: A Novel

by Wiley Cash

Published: 10/3/2017 by William Morrow
ISBN: 9780062313119

“The story of little-known union hero Ella May Wiggins is central to this look at unionization during the late 1920s. Once she sings her first song at a union rally, she becomes a beacon for others. As her story becomes intertwined with the violence and fear of the clash between owners and workers, we are swept up in a powerful novel that exposes the prejudice and hatred among races, genders, and economic classes. The stories of Ella, her children, and friends woven throughout cement Cash’s place among our great living writers. This one will be a huge book discussion hit!”

Ron Block Cuyahoga County Public Library, Brooklyn, Ohio


From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death

by Caitlin Doughty

Published: 10/3/2017 by W.W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393249897

“America’s favorite mortician takes you on a tour of death cultures around the world in her latest book. Sharing what she’s learned, Doughty presents everything from composting bodies to ma’nene’, a ritual of periodically exhuming corpses to clean and redress them as a sign of respect. She encourages us to consider our options and become less distant from physically caring for the deceased and ultimately our own mortality. We’ve all got it coming. Honest, yet gentle and with the appropriate amount of humor, Doughty makes the morbid very readable.”

PJ Gardiner, Wake County Public Libraries, Raleigh, NC


The Rules of Magic: A Novel

by Alice Hoffman

Published: 10/10/2017 by Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781501137471

The Rules of Magic is the prequel to Hoffman’s Practical Magic. Here we learn the background of sisters Franny, Jet, and their brother Vincent. The story begins with all three as teens, ostracized for being witches. Their mother sets up rules designed to suppress their natural ability. When the siblings are sent to visit their aunt they learn family secrets and find out who they truly are. I was enraptured by this fabulous book, which is filled with magic and charm.”

Terri Smith, Cornelia Habersham County Library, Cornelia, GA


The Stolen Marriage: A Novel

by Diane Chamberlain

Published: 10/3/2017 by St. Martin’s Press
ISBN: 9781250087270

“Interracial marriage, money fraud, and adultery are just a few elements of this historical fiction. Set during WWII, sweet Tess has dreamed of marrying Vincent Russo since she was a teenager. Plans have been made and a date has been set, but several decisions made in the course of the engagement will cause a detour in both Vincent’s and Tess’s lives. Will they be able to find their way back to one another?”

Debbie Frizzell, Johnson County Library, Overland Park, KS


Uncommon Type: Some Stories

by Tom Hanks

Published: 10/17/2017 by Knopf
ISBN: 9781101946152

“Hanks writes about characters that he would love to play in the movies, had they been written. This collection of stories holds a myriad of emotions, settings, and time periods with two common threads: the typewriter and uncommonly normal men and women. You love the characters because you have something in common with all of them – some win, some lose, some are heroic and some timid, but they are all borne of the human existence and go largely unnoticed. Hank’s charm and wit come through.”

Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX


We’re Going to Need More Wine: Stories That Are Funny, Complicated, and True

by Gabrielle Union
Published: 10/17/2017 by Dey Street Books
ISBN: 9780062693983

“Union writes with such heart and energy that it really does feel like she’s talking to you while you share one (or several) bottles of wine. She touches on so many topics, including infidelity, women’s sexual health, and teaching young black men to protect themselves in a world that fears them. She also manages to talk about multiple famous people without sounding fawning, with the exception of Prince, which makes sense because…it’s Prince. I thoroughly enjoyed this title and can’t wait to put it in the hands of others.”

Lisa Hoffman, Bloomfield Public Library, Bloomfield, NJ


Strange Weather: Four Short Novels

by Joe Hill

Published: 10/24/2017 by William Morrow
ISBN: 9780062663115

“Hill’s four short novels expose the individual and societal pressures that motivate our sometimes fateful decisions. The first story is a coming-of-age tale with an added bit of horror. The second story is an unflinching look at what has become a common tragedy: mass shooting. The third story is an unrequited-love-meets-the-Twilight-Zone story that touches on loneliness. The final story is poignant and introspective. All four tales often gave me pause and made me think. I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of character-driven works of horror and/or drama.”

Jennifer Wilson, Delphi Public Library, Delphi, IN


Manhattan Beach: A Novel

by Jennifer Egan

Published: 10/3/2017 by Scribner
ISBN: 9781476716732

“Anna and her father Eddie arrive at the home of Dexter Styles on Manhattan Beach searching for a job during the Depression. After Eddie goes missing five years later, Anna supports her mother and sister by working at the Brooklyn Naval Yard. One night, Anna approaches Styles for information about her father. They become involved, but he is still marked by his past relationship with Eddie. Egan’s description of New York in the 30s and 40s is so immersive that you feel like you’re waking up when you have to put the book down.”

Barbara Birenbaum, Los Angeles Public Library, Los Angeles, CA


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September 2017 LibraryReads

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Little Fires Everywhere

by Celeste Ng

Published:9/12/2017 by Penguin Press
ISBN: 9780735224292

Little Fires Everywhere delves into family relationships and what parenthood, either biological or by adoption, means. We follow the members of two families living in the idyllic, perfectly-planned suburb of Shaker Heights, Ohio: Mia and Pearl, a mother and daughter living a less traditional lifestyle, moving from town to town every few months, and the Richardsons, the perfect nuclear family in the perfect suburb…until Izzy Richardson burns her family home down. Ng’s superpower is her ability to pull you into her books from the very first sentence!”

Emma DeLooze-Klein, Kirkwood Public Library, Kirkwood, MO

Sourdough: A Novel

by Robin Sloan

Published: 9/5/2017 by MCD
ISBN: 9780374203108

“Lois works at a company trying to perfect a robot arm, and while she has been eating the ‘Slurry,’ or nutrient paste, that many use for nourishment, she discovers a nearby take-out restaurant that offers a ‘double spicy’ along with the most delicious sourdough bread she has ever tasted. The brothers who own this restaurant also briefly enchant her, and before they leave San Francisco they share with her the starter for the bread, which changes her life forever. This delightful tale of food, robotics and microorganisms is filled with charm, magical realism, and science.”

Michael Colford, Boston Public Library, Boston, MA


Dear Fahrenheit 451:
Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks

by Annie Spence

Published: 9/26/2017 by Flatiron Books
ISBN: 9781250106490

“If you could tell a book how you really feel…this is what the author has done with her collection of love letters to books. Readers (and librarians especially) will appreciate the sly stabs or ‘roasting’ that the author makes to point out fine and not-so-fine moments of key books that she is contemplating removing from her shelf. She weaves in stories from her life inside a library (which is fodder for chuckles in itself). Perfect for fans of Jenny Lawson.”

Andrienne Cruz, Azusa City Library, Azusa, CA


Jane, Unlimited

by Kristin Cashore

Published: 9/19/2017 by Kathy Dawson Books
ISBN: 9780803741492

“A chance encounter with former tutor Kiran Thrash enables Jane, an umbrella-crafter and college dropout, to fulfill a promise to her beloved late Aunt Magnolia—to accept an invitation to visit the mysterious Thrash family home, Tu Reviens. During her visit, Jane reaches a seemingly insignificant moment in time where one action will branch her off into different futures. Each choice results in a different path for Jane that takes her far beyond her previously ordinary life. An ambitious, complex offering with diverse characters from the author of the Graceling series.”

Pearl Derlaga, York County Library System, Yorktown, VA


Love and Other Consolation Prizes: A Novel

by Jamie Ford

Published: 9/12/2017 by Ballantine Books
ISBN: 9780804176750

“Ford excels at historical fiction, especially set in the Pacific Northwest. In this tale, the reader follows the life of Ernest Young, experiencing the early 1900s in Seattle. He is raffled off in the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exhibition. The story then follows adult Ernest as the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair opens. Rich with historical detail and touching on a time period not widely known (the wilds of Seattle’s early days), this moving story comes together and draws the reader in.”

Alissa Williams, Morton Public Library, Morton, IL


The Child Finder: A Novel

by Rene Denfeld

Published: 9/5/2017 by Harper
ISBN: 9780062659057

“Who better to find a missing child than one who escaped abduction? Denfeld offers a nuanced treatment of a difficult subject. The narrative switches between the voice of the missing child and the Child Finder, Naomi, as she searches. While Naomi’s abduction gave her a unique ability to find missing children, it left her with issues. As she searches for the missing child we see her move toward resolution. Additionally, the glimpse into the mind of the missing child, which shows us the child’s view of the situation and the steps she takes to survive, is fascinating.”

Joan Hipp, Florham Park Public Library, Florham Park , NJ


The Salt Line

by Holly Goddard Jones

Published: 9/5/2017 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons
ISBN: 9780735214316

“This dystopian novel describes a future in which a tick infestation has driven humanity to barricade itself in a series of safe zones. A thrilling plot involves a group of wealthy individuals on an extreme adventure trip that doesn’t go as planned. Through chapters written from their viewpoints, the reader comes to sympathize with and understand the motivations of the people involved. While telling a story involving hostage taking, drug smuggling and the search for a solution to the bug problem, the novel raises the question of what we are willing to sacrifice for safety.”

Michelle Geyer, Durham County Public Library, Durham, NC


Hanna Who Fell From the Sky: A Novel

by Christopher Meades

Published: 9/26/2017 by Park Row Books
ISBN: 9780778328735

“Hanna is a young woman, like any other in the world today, except for one unique thing: she is part of a polygamist community and has just been told, at eighteen, she has to marry a man who is her father’s age and has four other wives. Hanna must make the confusing and heartbreaking decision about where her future path lies. Should she stay at home and be obedient to the only family she has ever known, or will she choose her own love and life? A gripping story that would make a great book club selection!”

Kelly Baroletti, Wantagh Public Library, Wantagh, NY


Caroline: Little House, Revisited

by Sarah Miller

Published: 9/19/2017 by William Morrow
ISBN: 9780062685346

“This novel retells the story of Little House on the Prairie from the point of view of Laura Ingalls’ mother, Caroline. In 1870, Caroline, Charles, and their two young girls leave their home and extended family to travel more than 600 miles in a covered wagon. This is a fresh, deeper look at a much-loved story. Five-year-old Mary is lively and eager to please, and charming three-year-old Laura will still delight Little House fans. The relationship and personalities of Caroline and her husband Charles are more complex and fully realized, making for a wonderful reading experience.”

Brenda O’Brien, Woodridge Public Library, Woodridge, IL


George and Lizzie: A Novel

by Nancy Pearl

Published: 9/5/2017 by Touchstone
ISBN: 9781501162893

“The daughter of two renowned narcissistic psychologists, Lizzie’s problem has always been overthinking everything. George, raised in a very adoring family, comes into Lizzie’s life with one goal – to love her completely and forever. Can she relinquish the past to move toward the happiness that could be hers in the future? Relationships, good and bad, past and present, all come together to make a truly wonderful tale of the reality of the struggles of everyday life. Very well-written.”

Debbie Wittkop, Southwest Public Libraries, Columbus, OH


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August 2017 LibraryReads List

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Young Jane Young:
A Novel

by Gabrielle Zevin

Published:8/22/2017 by Algonquin Books
ISBN: 9781616205041

“Aviva Grossman was involved in a relationship with her boss, who just happened to be a member of Congress. She becomes ostracized as her name is associated with scandal and  reinvents herself as Jane Young.  She has a daughter, Ruby, who decides to run away to look for her father. Ruby learns things are not always what they seem. I loved Zevin’s engaging style. The characters are flawed and real. You are rooting for them until the end.”

Audra Bartholomew, Bossier Parish Library, Bossier City, LA

Glass Houses: A Novel

by Louise Penny

Published: 8/29/2017 by Minotaur Books
ISBN: 9781250066190

“A new threat arises in Three Pines as a mysterious masked figure stands watch on the village green. ‘It’ refuses to communicate in any way, which is just the start of another thrilling adventure in this long-running series. Gamache is still trying to restore the Sûreté du Québec back to what it was before it was corrupted under the previous regime. Choices are made that will forever change our hero in ways we can only begin to imagine. The next book can’t get here fast enough.”

Joseph Jones, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Brooklyn, OH


How to Find Love in a Bookshop

by Veronica Henry

Published: 8/15/2017 by Pamela Dorman Books
ISBN: 9780735223493

“When Emilia’s father dies, she returns to her small English village, takes over his beloved bookshop, and begins working through both her grief and the myriad renovations and changes the store needs. The author weaves stories of multiple village residents and their romantic travails and triumphs. I admired the well-crafted nature of this story, with the interwoven storylines offering wide variety without becoming scattered or straining to remain believably interrelated. All in all, just lovely.”

Carol Reich, Hillsboro Public Library, Hillsboro, OR


If the Creek Don’t Rise: A Novel

by Leah Weiss

Published: 8/22/2017 by Sourcebooks Landmark
ISBN: 9781492647454

“It is 1970 and pregnant seventeen-year-old Sadie Blue is trapped in a marriage with her horrific moonshiner husband Roy in an Appalachian mountain town. Their friends and neighbors live stark, gritty lives that are written with vivid and captivating detail. Hope and strength shine through in bits and pieces in this terrific debut about Sadie’s struggles. Weiss’s fresh voice captivates the reader as this tale spins from several perspectives that draw the reader into Sadie’s world. A terrific debut that will keep you riveted until the last page.”

Carol Ann Tack, Merrick Library, Merrick, NY


Reincarnation Blues: A Novel

by Michael Poore

Published: 8/22/2017 by Del Rey
ISBN: 9780399178481

“A witty and fascinating look at reincarnation. Milo has been reincarnated more than any other human. He’s been enjoying his lives and grown wise without quite achieving perfection, the ultimate goal. He is absolutely in love with Death, who’d rather just be called Suzi and ultimately would like to settle down and run a candle shop. Unfortunately, he comes to find out there’s actually a limit on how many chances you get at perfection. A moving and lovely story about love, meditation, the journey of life, and becoming the best person you can be.”

Jessica Trotter, Capital District Libraries, Lansing, MI


Morningstar: Growing Up with Books

by Ann Hood

Published: 8/1/2017 by W.W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393254815

Morningstar is Hood’s account of growing up in a family and a town that did not value books and learning to love them anyway, finding them a gateway into ‘a big, beautiful world.’ Her taste in literature runs the gamut from Dickens to Jacqueline Susann, Frost to Rod McKuen, and Hood makes a powerful case for what each contributed to her life. Give this to avid readers; it will likely send them off to reread old favorites and maybe inspire curiosity about titles they missed. Fascinating reading.”

Beth Mills, New Rochelle Public Library, New Rochelle, NY


The Address: A Novel

by Fiona Davis

Published: 8/1/2017 by Dutton
ISBN: 9781524741990

“In New York City in the 1880s, Sara Smythe emigrates from England to manage a new apartment building, the Dakota. She soon becomes the lover of the architect, Theodore Camden. After Sara murders Theodore, she is sent to an insane asylum which is infiltrated by journalist Nellie Bly. A second story line also takes place at the Dakota, but this time in 1985. Bailey is hired to renovate the apartment after she gets out of rehab and uncovers mysterious secrets and her personal connections to Camden. This suspenseful book provides a fascinating look at the history of New York during this period.”

Maggie Holmes, Richards Memorial Library, North Attleboro, MA


Emma in the Night: A Novel

by Wendy Walker
Published: 8/8/2017 by St. Martin’s Press
ISBN: 9781250141439

“One night, Emma and her sister Cass go missing. Three years later, Cass returns home without Emma and tells the story of a couple who held the girls hostage and kidnapped the child to whom Emma gave birth. FBI Special Agent Abby Strauss is brought in to interview Cass with the hope of finally finding Emma. The more answers Cass gives, the more questions Abby has, and she knows that beneath all of Cass’s stories lies the truth. This thriller, with many unreliable characters, will keep readers off-kilter and uncertain, even after one final twist.”

Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ


The Burning Girl: A Novel

by Claire Messud

Published: 8/29/2017 by W.W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393635027

“Julia and Cassie were once inseparable, but once they start middle school, things unexpectedly change. Cassie has found new friends, and it is clear Julia is not welcome. Julia doesn’t understand how Cassie could just forget how close they were and leave her to navigate a new school alone. When things start to go wrong for Cassie, Julia steps in to help but is left to wonder how close they really were. Messud really captures the anguish of the early teen years, when friendships are heartbreakingly intense and can change in an instant. Beautifully written and moving.”

Pamela Wiggins, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC


The Clockwork Dynasty: A Novel

by Daniel H. Wilson

Published: 8/1/2017 by Doubleday
ISBN: 9780385541787

“When an inventor, employed by Peter the Great, creates two human-like clockwork automaton robots using anima discovered near a stream, he has no idea about the history behind those anima, nor could he imagine his creations’ future. Weaving through the present and the past, this book creates a world where humans co-inhabit alongside a group of powerful automaton robots. Fun, intriguing and nearly impossible to put down! I loved reading this book.”

Katherine Rose, Edwardsville Public Library, Edwardsville, IL


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