Friday, December 21, 2018

A Busy Creatures's Day Eating by Mo Willems

ABC books are one of my favorite books to read during story times.  Whether it is Moose trying to wait patiently for his turn in Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham or the occupations of the little green peas in LMNO Peas by Keith Baker.  However my new favorite is A Busy Creature’s Day Eating by Mo Willems.  Creature starts eating normal things; apples, berries, cereal, donuts, eggs but then finds other things around the house like furniture!  As you might imagine things like furniture and jackets don’t settle well in a stomach no matter what you may be.  This simple book is funny for kids and adults. 
Take a stop at the picture books, I bet you will find a laugh-out-loud book too!

Saturday, December 15, 2018

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

Susan Orlean's The Library Book is an amazing book in so many ways. It is indeed a library book in a way that all of the other books we offer here in the library are. It is also a book about a library, or rather a library system, for the City of Los Angeles. It covers history, personality profiles, library statistics and serves as a "whodunnit" trying to solve the mystery of the destructive Los Angeles library fire of 1986. Orlean covers all of these elements in a very informative and entertaining fashion.
As Los Angeles erupted out of nothingness in the early 1900s as Hollywood exploded on the scene, so the the Los Angeles Library. Orleans talks about the growth of the building  and details the lifestyles and eccentricities of its first library directors - a quite diverse cast of characters. Along with the history, the author works in the numbers detailing the current circulation, staff size, and community programs of today's LA library. Some of these are mind-blowing numbers, especially when you consider that the LA system is not even the largest in existence.
Another aspect of the book is Orlean's look into the arson fire that destroyed a large section inside the library's main branch in 1986. A primary suspect would emerge, but would not be convicted.Orlean interviews the suspect's family members as well as people within the fire department who worked on the case. It all makes for a fascinating side story.
The Library Book contains a lot of history, and, a lot of statistics. It also contains many entertaining personality profiles. It is definitely a book worth "checking out".

Thursday, December 13, 2018

The Electric State by Simon Stålenhag

A teenager and her yellow companion robot travel the western United States in this graphic dystopian story about a consumerist culture addicted to a virtual reality device which is in decline and collapsing in on itself.  The images are by turns darkly comical and horrifying, and in any event are thinly veiled metaphors for the way that our own Internet has taken over our lives and created addictions to our online devices.  The pair do make it to their destination, but beyond that you’ll have to read the book and look at the very moving pictures and make your own determination.  To me, this book is its own genre.  It’s dystopian, yes, but it is also a unique presentation—it’s the closest thing to a picture book for adults that I’ve ever seen, combining pictures designed to create emotion with truly moving text and very adult subject matter.  Bottom line:  You can’t miss this one.  Read the book, and then turn your smartphone off.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Lyddie by Katherine Paterson

Set in the 1800's in New England, this novel offers a picture of what life was like for a young female working in a factory on the looms.  The noise, long hours and health issues are very difficult. The  menacing overseer strikes fear in the girls. Lyddie is determined to continue and make enough money to pay her family's debts and return to the farm she was forced to leave. Living in a boarding house with many other females who work at the factory she makes friends and learns of women who want to fight for their rights though she does not join with them. Though this is a young peoples book I would recommend it for adults also and experience the struggles in this young girl's life and relationships.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Lies by T. M. Logan

Joe Lynch thought he had a perfect life until his 4-year-old son spotted his wife's car on a freeway when they were driving back home.  Out of curiosity, he followed her car to a hotel and discovered her meeting with Ben, her best friend's husband.  Joe confronted Ben after Mel left.  Then Ben vanishes, and the police are after Joe.  Searching for the truth, Joe realizes Mel's deceit in their marriage.  Things are not what they appear.  This psychological mystery has a lot of unbelievable twists and turns.  It has a gripping beginning, but it gets blogged down and the ending is a surprise. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Reckoning by John Grisham

In the first part of this book, Pete Banning, a decorated WWII veteran, now a cotton farmer, goes into town and murders the Methodist preacher, Dexter Bell.  He offers no defense, saying only "I have nothing to say". 
The next part of the book focuses on Banning's earlier life and his time in the Philippines during WWII.  The third part deals with the aftermath of his actions.

Grisham fans will read this book anyway, but I'd recommend it to those who like historical fiction, for its portrayals of life in the South in the 1940s, and the Philippines during the war.  Plus, it keeps you guessing on certain plot points right up until the very end, making it a compelling read!

if the creek don't rise by Leah Weiss

A story of people living in the 1970's. Each chapter is told in first person by the character the chapter is about. Some characters get two chapters, but Sadie Blue gets three. She begins it, has a chapter in the middle, and ends it. You will receive real insight into what life is like for these people hidden away in the Appalachian Mountains. The hardness and the richness (in their poverty) of everyday life. Very interesting.