August 25, 2014 by Reader's Connection
One of our own librarians reviewed a September title, but it would be unprofessional for me to get excited, so I’m not going to name the librarian or her branch.
Here’s my usual LibraryReads map, highlighting states that contributed this month’s reviews. Oh, wait . . . wait . . . what is happening here? . . .
I shouldn’t have tried to repress my excitement. An image has burst forth from my Deep Wayne-Unconscious and taken over the map.
Cathy Scheib at the Wayne Library wrote one of the reviews. Congrats to Cathy. (Click on the map for views of the dear departed Wayne fence mural, which still stands in my psyche.)
Here are this month’s reviews.
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by Caitlin Doughty
Part memoir, part exposé of the death industry, and part instruction manual for aspiring morticians. First-time author Doughty has written an attention-grabbing book that is sure to start some provocative discussions. Fans of Mary Roach’s Stiff and anyone who enjoys an honest, well-written autobiography will appreciate this quirky story. — Patty Falconer, Hampstead Public Library, Hampstead, NH
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
An actor playing King Lear dies onstage just before a cataclysmic event changes the future of everyone on Earth. What will be valued and what will be discarded? Will art have a place in a world that has lost so much? What will make life worth living? These are just some of the issues explored in this beautifully written dystopian novel. Recommended for fans of David Mitchell, John Scalzi and Kate Atkinson. — Janet Lockhart, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC
The Secret Place by Tana French
French has broken my heart yet again with her fifth novel, which examines the ways in which teenagers and adults can be wily, calculating, and backstabbing, even with their friends. The tension-filled flashback narratives, relating to a murder investigation in suburban Dublin, will keep you turning pages late into the night. — Alison McCarty, Nassau County Public Library System, Callahan, FL
The Distance by Helen Giltrow
Imagine a modern-day Robin Hood who deals not in money, but identity. Karla, the protagonist of The Distance, is a tech guru with a conscience, and the security of several nations dependent on her. This nuanced book kept me on the edge of my seat. I cannot wait until the next one comes out. — Cathy Scheib, Indianapolis Public Library, Indianapolis, IN
Rooms by Lauren Oliver
A family comes to terms with their estranged father’s death in Oliver’s first novel for adults. Told from the perspective of two ghosts living in the old house, this unique story weaves characters and explores their various past connections. Great book! — Rachel Fewell, Denver Public Library, Denver, CO
The Children Act by Ian McEwan
Judge Fiona Maye is at a difficult point in her marriage. Taking refuge in addressing other people’s problems in family court, Fiona extends herself more than usual, meeting a boy whose future is in her hands. McEwan is a masterful observer of human distress. With a simple story and flawed, genuine characters, this novel is poignant and insightful. — Jennifer Alexander, St. Louis County Library, St. Louis, MO
The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters
You can almost bet that a situation with long-term guests–paying or not–is not going to turn out well. This novel by Waters, who many know from her earlier books Tipping the Velvet and The Little Stranger, will keep you turning the page to see just how tense things can get, and how far fear and passion can push someone. — Elizabeth Angelastro, Manlius Library, Manlius, NY
The Witch with No Name by Kim Harrison
In this book, Harrison ends her long-running Hollows series, featuring witch Rachel Morgan, vampire Ivy, and pixy Jenks. Rachel’s come a long way; now, she and her friends attempt the impossible and face their toughest battle yet. Harrison skillfully wraps up many plot points, leaving readers sad that the series is over but satisfied by its ending. Fans will surely cheer Rachel on and shed a tear or two. — Ilene Lefkowitz, Denville Public Library, Denville, NJ
Season of Storms by Susanna Kearsley
Once again, Kearsley introduces you to a cast of characters who will quickly hold a special place in your heart. Celia and Alex mirror lovers from decades past, sharing similar secrets and passions. Flashbacks are woven seamlessly into the storyline, and the strong family component is handled beautifully, with surprising twists and turns. — Marianne Colton, Lockport Public Library, Lockport, NY
Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix
You know how some horror movies would work better as novels? Horrorstör is that book, perfectly capturing everything that is terrific about the horror genre. In its catalog-style pages, you’ll find a hefty dose of satire, as a Scandinavian furniture store is transformed overnight into a prison. With characters that you’re rooting for and terror that creeps up on you, Horrorstör will keep you up all night in the best possible way. — Donna Matturri, Pickerington Public Library, Pickerington, OH
Librarians anywhere who want to contribute to LibraryReads can click here to learn more.