Readers Guide


By Julie Forkner

July 10, 2017
July 3, 2017
June 26, 2017
June 19, 2017

July 10, 2017 

Anything can go wrong in the TSA security line. When Michael Tanner accidently picks up the wrong laptop on his way home from a business trip, he finds himself in position of not just the laptop of a U. S. Senator but also the top secret, government surveillance information illegally uploaded to it. Tanner finds himself at the center of an intense manhunt by both the NSA and the senator’s personal staff in The Switch (F) by Joseph Finder. 

Chipper Jones is known as one of the greatest switch hitters in baseball history. In his new memoir, Ballplayer (796.357), Jones describes with remarkable clarity his rise to the major league and the story of the Braves’ 1995 championship win. Along with the expected locker room pranks, Jones offers a remarkable amount of insight.

On the testimony of three men who subsequently disappeared into witness protection, Darius Cole was sentenced to life in prison. Cole has charged Nick Mason, his man on the outside, with infiltrating the top secret program and finding the three men, something that no one has ever accomplished. Exit Strategy (F), Steve Hamilton’s high stakes sequel to The Second Life of Nick Mason (F), takes readers on a fast paced, pulse racing journey from the Appalachian Mountains to a secret underground bunker far below New York. 

The tragedy of Jonestown is as fresh and horrifying today as it was when it happened in 1978. How could 900 people be so easily convinced to kill themselves and, for some, their children? Jeff Guinn answers that questions, as definitively as possible, in his new book The Road to Jonestown (289.900). Drawing on interviews with survivors and documents not publicly released, Guinn brings fresh insight to this horrifying event.

News headlines often end up as fodder for fiction writers, and Brian Freeman’s Marathon (F) is no exception. A bomb explodes during Duluth, Minnesota’s annual marathon and, quickly, a Muslim man is blamed for it. Sound familiar? Don’t tune out just yet. Freeman’s treatment of our current state of affairs is nowhere near cliché, and yet his thoughtfulness doesn’t compromise the action or the characters in this eighth installment of the Jonathan Stride series. 

Chef Anthony Bourdain is known for dropping into foreign countries much like an embedded journalist for his TV show Parts Unknown. But what does the world renowned chef and storyteller eat when he’s at home? The answer is in his newest cookbook, Appetites (641.500). With recipes ranging from scrambled eggs to the Do Chua to braised pork shoulder, Bourdain’s newest, written along with his assistant Laurie Woolever, is meant to be more of a kitchen manual than step by step recipes, but it works as a travel guide and portal to the world’s cuisines as well.

Also at the Library
     The Broken Road (F) by Richard Paul Evans
     The Identicals (F) by Elin Hilderbrand
     Dangerous Minds (F) by Janet Evanovich
     Victory Gardens for Bees: A DIY Guide to Saving the Bees (639.920) by Lori Weidenhammer
     Master of the Grill 641.578) by America’s Test Kitchen
     The Triatheltes’ Training Bible: The World’s Most Comprehensive Training Guide (796.425) by Joe Friel

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July 3, 2017 

First published in France in 2014, The End of Eddy (F) by Edouard Louis has already been translated into 20 different languages. In his highly autobiographical novel, Louis tells with unflinching honesty and with an astonishing lack of judgement what it was like to grow up gay in a poor, working class, and openly racist town in the north of France. Without placing blame on any one person or factor, Louis’ novel is a candid recounting of growing up, surviving, and ultimately transcending a physically and emotionally brutal childhood.

Like Edouard Louis, Sherman Alexie also transcended his brutal childhood. The award-winning author grew up on a reservation in Spokane, WA where cancer rates are phenomenally high, alcohol and drug abuse are rampant, and success is something found far, far away in the city. Alexie’s memoir of his relationship with his mother, who recently passed away from cancer, is complex, as was their relationship. Abuse, addiction, and violence were a large part of their lives and, in Alexie’s trademark way, he doesn’t let anyone off the hook. Nonetheless, he paints a full portrait of his mother and their complicated relationship with all the good and all the bad in You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me (921.000).

In the town of Beckford, England, women have a history of drowning, or being drowned. Author of the award winning Girl on the Train (F), Paula Hawkins’ new novel, Into the Water (F) is a creepy, complicated novel of murders past and present. With eleven different narrators, Into the Water builds atmosphere and suspense so thick you won’t want to read this book when you’re at home alone. 

Comedian Eddie Izzard lost his mother when he was six years old. That single fact is the driving force behind Izzard’s success – as an actor, a comedian, a marathon runner, and an activist. In his own, unique style, Izzard brings his comedic flair to tell his own life story in Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens (792.760). 

Jeff Shaara is well-known for his military historical fiction. In The Frozen Hours (F), Shaara turns his talents to the Korean War, specifically to the Battle of Chosin Reservoir, or Frozen Chosin. In June of 1950, North Korea invaded South Korea, intent on uniting the two countries under communist rule. Assisting the out-matched South Koreans, the United States entered the conflict, driving the North Korean army back to its border with China. The resulting battle challenged the soldiers and Marines in some of the most brutal and challenging conditions imaginable. 

In the late 1800’s when polygamy was outlawed in the United States, some families determined to stay true to their faith emigrated to Mexico, where they could practice polygamy without fear of persecution. Ruth Wariner’s grandparents were some of those people were. Ruth was the 39th of 42 children. The Sound of Gravel (289.309) is Ruth’s story of growing up in a polygamist cult in Mexico and how she eventually made the decision to leave.

Also at the Library
     The Identicals (F) by Elin Hilderbrand
     Robert Ludlum’s The Bourne Initiative (F) by Eric Lustbader
     Tom Clancy’s Point of Contact (F) by Mike Maden
     Smarter Better Faster: The Transformative Power of Real Productivity (158.000) by Charles Duhigg
     Islamic Exceptionalism: How the Struggle of Islam is Reshaping the World (320.557) by Shadi Hamid
     The Left Brain Speaks, The Right Brain Laughs: A Look at the Neuroscience of Innovation and Creativity in
       Art, Science, and Life (612.820)
by Ransom Stephens

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June 26, 2017 

When Arundhati Roy won the Booker Prize for the God of Small Things in 1997, she became an instant celebrity, receiving offers to model for Gap, boatloads of prize money, and the fame that follows beauty queens and movie stars. Instead of putting effort into being famous, Roy committed her energy, and money, to India, in advocating for the lower castes and marginalized people. The result of her past twenty years is The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (F), a classically sprawling epic that encompasses the whole of Indian subcontinent and the people who inhabit it.

The story of how Jackie Robinson integrated baseball is well known and well documented. Fox News commentator Ed Henry has added another layer to the story with his new book 42 Faith (796.357.) Using previously unknown sermons and interviews, as well as a manuscript written by Robinson himself, Henry explains how Branch Rickey, the Brooklyn Dodgers general manager, connected with Robinson through their shared faith. Filled with baseball stories, 42 Faith also explores how faith was a driving force in creating bot Robinson’s character and his legacy.

Adolescence is embodied in friendships, the kind of friendships that last a lifetime either in person or in consequence. For fifteen-year-old Cat, her best friend Marlena is the only bright spot in a rural, lonely Michigan town. Marlena introduces Cat to a world of firsts – first drink, first cigarette, first pill. Within the year, Marlena is dead and Cat is left to make sense of things on her own. Told in alternating voices from the past and present, Marlena (F) by Julie Buntin is a haunting story of adolescence and survival. 

As neurodiversity becomes a topic for conversation, questions like “was Albert Einstein autistic?” are becoming more common. Gail Saltz, a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the New York Presbyterian Hospital Weill-Cornell School of medicine, explores the connection between brain “problems” -- such as depression, ADD, anxiety and bipolar disorder – and genius. Profiling famous geniuses who were also diagnosed with a mental health problem, Saltz examines the lastest scientific research to explain how different brains are also genius brains in The Power of Different: The Link Between Disorder and Genius (305.908.)

A writer for the long-running British TV show Midsommer Murders as well as two Sherlock Holmes titles and one James Bond title, each written with permission of their respective estates, Anthony Horowitz is an expert on writing British mysteries. His new book, Magpie Murders (M), puts a new spin on an old formula. Alan Conway is a bestselling crime writer, even if he is a bit hard to handle. When his newest novel turns out to hide a second mystery within it, the reader turns into the detective in this ruthless and inventive take on a favorite genre.

Garry Kasparov is one of the world’s best chess players. In 1997, he lost a six-game match to DeepBlue, an IBM supercomputer. Although it only won by one game, DeepBlue’s win over a human marked a new era in artificial intelligence. Now the subject of great debate, artificial intelligence has advanced even more, and Kasparov sees a bright future for AI. Drawing on his experience in the 1997 chess match, Kasparov’s new book Deep Thinking (006.300) explains his belief that humans and AI can rise to new heights and that we should move forward with enthusiasm rather than fear.

Also at the Library:
     Nighthawk (F) by Clive Cussler
     Testimony (F) by Scott Turrow
     The Matchup (F) Lee Child, ed.
     Al Franken: Giant of the Senate (328.730) by Al Franken
     Bill O’Reilly’s Legends and Lies: The Civil War (973.700) by David Fisher
     The Autoimmune Fix: How to Stop the Hidden Autoimmune Damage that Keeps You Sick, Fat, and Tired Before
        it Turns into Disease (616.978) by
Tom O’bryan

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June 19, 2017 

If the only teen reads you are familiar with revolve around romantic vampires, wizards, or high school angst, take a closer look. Although books in the young people’s section are marketed to teens, their appeal is much broader. Written on a level appropriate for adults as well as teens, many YP books tackle complex themes, current social issues, and history seldom explored elsewhere. Don’t let the kids have all the fun.

When Sherman’s army marched through Georgia, Mariah, a newly freed slave, along with hundreds of others followed along behind the army, seeking safety in the war-ravaged South. Daring to dream about a future life, Mariah starts a friendship with Caleb and the two begin the long trek behind Sherman’s army. As the army approaches the treacherous Ebenezer Creek, Mariah discovers how deeply entrenched societal roles are and how much harder life could become. Crossing Ebenezer Creek (YPF) by Tonya Bolden tells the true story of the dismantling of the Ebenezer Creek bridge and the resulting deaths of hundreds of newly freed slaves. 

When Robert Capra and Gerda Taro set off to document the Spanish Civil War, they were young idealists set on opposing Facism. With cameras in hand, the couple caught raw, often violent pictures of the conflict, many of which went straight to the papers. Packed with historical photos from D-Day to Cuba, Eyes of the World: Robert Capra, Gerda Taro and the Invention of Modern Photojournalism (770.000) by Marc Aronson and Marina Budhos tells the story of how these two idealists became the world’s first photojournalists, connects historical events to current ones, and explores the life of entrenched journalists.

Sebastian Cody has been living with his worst mistake for ten years. He was only four at the time, but accidentally shooting his baby sister with his father’s gun is a mistake he will never outgrow. Sebastian thinks he knows how to make amends, and he needs a gun to do it. Barry Lyga takes an unflinching look at what it is like to live with your mistakes in Bang (YPF).

A wealth of information exist for new parents and parents of toddlers. By the time children reach school-age, the amount of information to help parents starts to dwindle. By the time children are teenagers, parents are almost completely on their own to navigate how to parent teenagers, even though half of childhood is spent in adolescence. Dr. Jennifer Salerno’s book Teen Speak: A How-To Guide for Real Talks with Teens about Sex, Drugs, and other Risky Behaviors (649.125) provides concrete, practical advice for parents of teenagers.

Max hasn’t been born yet, but his future has already been decided. His mother is part of the Lebensborn project, a Nazi program to create the perfect Aryan race by forcing German women to carry babies fathered by pre-selected Aryan men. Fans of The Handmaid’s Tale (F) by Margaret Atwood will love Max (YPF). Author Sarah Cohen-Scali details a real dystopia and how true friendship undermines the Nazi’s plans.

Adolescence is the time when many people start to experience depression and anxiety. Parenting a teenager can be difficult, and parenting an anxious teen even more so. Helping Your Anxious Teen: Positive Parenting Strategies to Help Your Teen Beat Anxiety, Stress, and Worry (616.852) by Sheila Achar Josephs gives parents practical steps and solid strategies to help their teenagers overcome chronic worrying and the tyranny of perfectionism.  

Also at the library:
     Indecent Exposure (F) by Stuart Woods
     Come Sundown (F) by Nora Roberts
     Camino Island (F) by John Grisham
     Sun Moon Earth: The History of Solar Eclipses from Omens of Doom to Einstein and Exoplanets (523.780) by
          Tyler Nordgren
     The Stress Test: How Pressure Can Make You Stronger and Sharper (155.904) by Ian Robertson
     A Rable of Dead Money: The Great Crash and the Global Depression 1929-1939 (973.916) by Charles R. Morris

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