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New Items ~ December 2020

FICTION

After all I’ve done by Mina Hardy.  An expert nightmare, one of those rare thrillers whose answers are even more scarifying than its mysteries.

The cold millions by Jess Walter.  Two brothers are swept up in the turbulent class warfare of the early 20th century.

Dead man dancing by John Galligan.  Sheriff Heidi Kick is investigating an illicit cage fighting ring with ties to white nationalism when her husband suddenly goes missing.

Death comes as the end by Agatha Christie.  Egypt in 2000 B.C.  A priest’s daughter, investigating a suspicious death, uncovers an asp’s nest of jealousy, betrayal, and serial murder.

The dirty south by John Connolly.  A chilling blend of police procedural and gothic horror tale…perfect for fireside reading on cold, rainy nights.

Fortune favors the dead by Stephen Spotswood.  A sprightly period debut in the noir vein – a provocative gender-flipping of Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin.

Hidden Salem by Kay Hooper.  A town shrouded in the occult.  An evil that lurks in the dark.  The S.C.U. returns because what actually hides in the shadows and secrets of Salem is unlike anything the agents have ever encountered.

I saw him die by Andrew Wilson.  In a classic who-dun-it filled with red herrings and double-crosses, Agatha Christie investigates a mysterious death in the Scottish highlands.

Inheritors by Asako Serizawa.  A beautiful and brutal exploration of lives fragmented by the Pacific side of World War II.

Jane in love by Rachel Givney.  Jane Austen, heralded author, ends up time-traveling almost 200 years into the future.  There she finds the love she’s written about and the destiny she’s dreamed of…but is it worth her legacy?

Jingle all the way by Debbie Macomber.  Love can transform even the best-laid plans in this heartfelt Christmas novel.

The last great road bum by Hector Tobar.  A would-be writer leaves a comfortable existence in Urbana, Illinois, in order to travel the world in search of material for a great American novel.  Instead, he finds romance, danger, and the dark heart of the mid-20th century.

Memorial by Bryan Washington.  Benson and Mike, a mixed-race couple in Houston, search for the truth about themselves, each other, and their families.  It’s a subtle and moving exploration of love, family, race, and the long, frustrating search for home.

The missing sister by Elle Marr.  This follows a medical student to, around, and ultimately beneath Paris in search of the twin sister she’d been drifting away from.  Notable for its exploration of the uncanny bonds twins share and the killer’s memorable macabre motive.

Not my Romeo by Ilsa Madden-Mills.  A smart and sexy contemporary romance about a smoking-hot professional football player and the small-town girl he can’t resist.

On borrowed crime by Kate Young.  The Jane Doe book club enjoys guessing whodunit, but when murder happens in their midst, they discover solving crimes isn’t fun and games.

One more for Christmas by Sarah Morgan.  As the snowflakes fall on their first family celebration in years, the Mitchell women must learn that sometimes facing up to the past is all you need to heal your heart.

Plain bad heroines by Emily Danforth.  A horror-comedy centered around a New England boarding school for girls.

Ring shout by P. Djeli Clark.  A dark fantasy historical novel that gives a supernatural twist to the Ku Klux Klan’s reign of terror.

The secret lives of church ladies by Deesha Philyaw.  These 9 stories feature four generations of Black women grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church’s double standards and their own needs and passions.

The sentinel by Lee Child.  Jack Reacher is in Nashville and a voice in his head is telling him to walk away.  Of course, he doesn’t.

Sweet sorrow by David Nicholls.  A bittersweet yet funny coming-of-age tale about the heart-stopping thrill of first love – and how just one summer can forever change a life.

The switch by Beth O’Leary.  A grieving British woman and her grandmother switch homes and lives in an attempt to shake things up.  The result is a cozy hopeful escapade that will make readers laugh, cry, and feel inspired.

The wonder boy of Whistle Stop by Fannie Flagg.  A heartwarming novel about secrets of youth rediscovered, hometown memories, and the magical moment in ordinary lives.

 NEW DVDs

The Crown: the complete third season (2020) starring Olivia Colman

Gallipoli (1981) starring Mel Gibson and Mark Lee

The informer (1935) starring Victor McLaglen

Quantum of Solace (2009) starring Daniel Craig

NONFICTION

The Bible with and without Jesus by Amy-Jill Levine.  The author shows how and why Jews and Christians read many of the same biblical texts differently.  Exploring and explaining these diverse perspectives, she reveals more clearly Scripture’s beauty and power.

Blue Sky Kingdom by Bruce Kirkby.  As it explores an ancient – and dying – Tibetan Buddhist culture, this delightful book also tells a timely, heartwarming story of a family’s search for peace away from the din of modern culture.

The bottom line for baby by Tina Bryson.  From sleep training to screens, thumb sucking to tummy time – what science says about it all.

Catching the wind by Neil Gabler.  The epic, definitive bio of Ted Kennedy – an immersive journey through the life of a complicated man and a sweeping history of the fall of liberalism and the collapse of political morality.

Celeste Holm Syndrome by David Lazar.  Fans of Hollywood’s Golden Age will delight in this affecting look at what makes actors truly memorable, even if they’re not in the spotlight.

The dead are arising by Les Payne.  An epic biography of Malcolm X.

Inside game by Keith Law.  Bad calls, strange moves, and what baseball behavior teaches us about ourselves.

Making work human by Eric Mosley.  How human centered companies are changing the future of work and the world.  How do you keep your employees engaged, creative, innovative, and productive?  Simple:  Work human!

Philip and Alexander by Adrian Goldsworthy.  This definitive bio of one of history’s most influential father/son duos tells the story of two rulers who gripped the world – and their rise and fall from power in ancient Greece.

Right place, right time by Bob Gruen.  An action-packed memoir that takes readers on the road with rock’s hardest-working photographer.  And the stories he tells….

Singular sensation by Michael Riedel.  The story of a transformative decade on Broadway, featuring gripping behind-the-scenes accounts of shows such as Rent, Angels in America, Chicago, The Lion King and The Producers – shows that changed the history of the American theater.

West Side Story by Richard Barrios.  While remaining always respectful to the movie and the people who made it, the author lays bare the behind-the-scenes tumult, elevating the book from a typical making-of story to something really special: a no-hold-bared chronicle of what it really takes to get a great movie made.

World wild vet by Evan Antin.  From the star of Animal Planet’s Evan Goes Wild comes a wild look at our natural world that is perfect for fans of Steve Irwin, James Herriot, and Bear Grylls.

Notes from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, and New York Times Book Review.

New Items ~ November 2020

FICTION

Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse.  A powerful priest, an outcast seafarer, and a man born to be the vessel of a god come together.  This novel is inspired by the civilizations of the Pre-Columbian Americas and woven into a tale of celestial prophecies, political intrigue, and forbidden magic.

The book of two ways by Jodi Picoult.  A novel about the choice that alter the course of our lives.  Do we make choices – or do our choices make us?  And who would you be if you hadn’t turned out to be the person you are right now?

The brilliant life of Eudora Honeysett by Annie Lyons.  A moving and joyous novel about an elderly woman who is ready to embrace death and of the little girl who reminds her what it means to live.

Chaos by Iris Johansen.  CIA agent Alisa Flynn is willing to go rogue if it means catching the most heartless band of criminals she’s ever encountered.

The devil and the dark water by Stuart Turton.  A murder on the high seas.  A remarkable detective duo.  A demon who may or may not exist.  A thriller of supernatural horror, occult suspicion, and paranormal mystery on the high seas.

The evening and the morning by Ken Follett.  In a prequel to “Pillars of the Earth”, a boat builder, a Norman noblewoman, and a monk live in England under attack by the Welsh and the Vikings.

Fifty words for rain by Asha Lemmie.  In 1940s Japan, an 8-year-old child of a married Japanese aristocrat and her African-American lover searches for her place in the world.

The invisible life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab.  France, 1714.  In a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever – and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.  But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, she meets a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

Jack by Marilynne Robinson.  This is the story of the prodigal son of a Presbyterian minister and his romance with a high school teacher who is also the son of a preacher.  Their deeply felt, tormented, star-crossed interracial romance resonates with all the paradoxes of American life then and now.

Just like you by Nick Hornby.  A divorced 41 year old woman meets a 22 year old at a butcher’s counter.  This is about what happens when the person who makes you happiest is someone you never expected.

Leave the world behind by Rumaan Alam.  A magnetic novel about two families, strangers to each other, who are forced together on a long weekend gone terribly wrong.

The lending library by Aliza Fogelson.  This pairs a passionate bibliophile with a handsome construction worker and achieves maximum charm.  A daydreamer gives her town, and herself, an amazing gift:  a lending library in her sunroom.

The lost shtetl by Max Gross.  What if there was a town that history missed?  A small Jewish village in the Polish forest is so secluded no one knows it exists…until now.

Love and other crimes by Sara Paretsky.  A collection of crime and detective stories, many featuring legendary detective V.I. Warshawski.

Magic lessons by Alice Hoffman.  In a prequel to “Practical Magic”, Maria Owens invokes a curse that will haunt her family in Salem, MA.

Only truth by Julie Cameron.  A London painter, whose husband insists on moving to the country realizes that “there’s something not right with this place”.  Talk about an understatement.

The return by Nicholas Sparks.  The story of an injured Navy doctor – and two women whose secrets will change the course of his life.

The searcher by Tana French.  After a divorce, a former Chicago police officer resettles in an Irish village where a boy goes missing.

 The silence by Don DeLillo.  Set in the near future, five people are gathered together in a Manhattan apartment in the midst of a catastrophic event.

A time for mercy by John Grisham.  Court-appointed lawyer Jake Brigance puts his career, his financial security, and the safety of his family on the line to defend a 16 year old suspect who is accused of killing a local deputy and is facing the death penalty.

To sleep in a sea of stars by Christopher Paolini.  Kira Navarez might be the only one who can save the Earth and its colonies from being destroyed.

Until summer comes around by Glenn Rolfe.  A family of vampires terrorizes the seaside town of Old Orchard Beach in this tale of adolescent romance and murder.

Vince Flynn: total power by Kyle Mills.  When America’s power grid is shut down, Mitch Rapp goes after a cyber terrorist.

NEW MUSIC CDs

Bigger love by John Legend

The genius of Ray Charles by Ray Charles

The best of Kansas

NEW DVDs

Fosse/Verdon (2020)  starring Sam Rockwell and Michelle Williams

Marriage story (2019) starring Scarlett Johansson, Adam Driver, and Laura Dern

Casino Royale (2006) starring Daniel Craig

Colewell (2019) starring Karen Allen

NONFICTION:

The boy, the mole, the fox, and the horse by Charlie MacKesy.  A journey for all ages that explores life’s universal lessons, featuring 100 color and black-and-white drawings.

Children of ash and elm by Neil Price.  With clarity and verve, this examines various aspects of Viking society.  An exemplary history that gives a nuanced view of a society long reduced to a few clichés.

Eleanor by David Michaelis.  A break-through portrait of Eleanor Roosevelt, America’s longest-serving First Lady, an avatar of democracy whose ever-expanding agency as diplomat, activist, and humanitarian made her one of the world’s most widely admired and influential women.

The home edit life by Clea Shearer.  This is both for those who love to organize in their free time and those who want to get organized but feel they just can’t make the time.

How to astronaut by Terry Virts.  A former astronaut offers a mixture of science and adventure in this guide to space travel.  Divided into sections on training, launch, orbit, space-walking, deep space, and re-entry.

I will run wild by Thomas Cleaver.  This is a vivid narrative history of the early stages of the Pacific War, as U.S. and Allied forces desperately tried to slow the Japanese onslaught that began with the sudden attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941.

A knock at midnight by Brittany Barnett.  An urgent call to free those buried alive by America’s legal system, and an inspiring true story about unwavering belief in humanity from a young lawyer and important new voice in the movement to transform the system.

Librarian tales by William Ottens.  An insider’s look at one of the most prevalent, yet commonly misunderstood institutions.  Here is the good, the bad, and the ugly of librarian Ottens’ experience working behind the service desks and in the stacks of public libraries.

Loving sports when they don’t love you back by Jessica Luther.  Revealing some of the ugliest truths about professional sports.  An incisive, damning indictment of the world’s most popular past-times.

Modern comfort foods by Ina Garten.  The cook updates some of the comfort foods we grew up with.

The secret lives of planets by Paul Murdin.  A smooth survey of the planets and satellites.  Satisfying popular science, just right for the budding astronomer in the household.

That cheese plate will change your life by Marissa Mullen.  Creative gatherings and self-care with the cheese by numbers method.

Weird Earth by Donald Prothero.  Debunking strange ideas about our planet such as a moon landing hoax, flat earth, hollow earth, Atlantis, dowsing, and more.

New Children’s Books 

PICTURE BOOKS

Bedtime bonnet by Nancy Redd

Bo the brave by Bethan Woollvin

Cozy by Jan Brett

Federico and the wolf by Rebecca Gomez

Hurry up! by Kate Dopirak

A last goodbye by Elin Kelsey

Letters from Bear by Gauthier David

Lift by Minh Le

Madeline Finn and the therapy dog by Lisa Papp

My big family by Yanitzia Canetti

Nasla’s dream by Cecile Roumiguiere

Peter and the tree children by Peter Wohlleben

A quiet girl by Peter Carnavas

Rain Boy by Dylan Glynn

The run by Barroux

Short & sweet by Josh Funk

Sid Hoff’s Danny and the dinosaur ride a bike by Bruce Hale

Southwest sunrise by Nikki Grimes

Ty’s travels : All aboard! by Kelly Lyons

Where happiness begins by Eva Eland

While you’re away by Thodoris Papaioannou

 CHAPTER BOOKS

Percy Jackson’s Greek gods by Rick Riordan

Percy Jackson’s Greek heroes by Rick Riordan

Raising Lumie by Joan Bauer

Revenge of the enginerds by Jarrett Lerner

A wish in the dark by Christina Soontornvat

NON-FICTION

It’s a numbers game! Basketball by James Buckley, Jr.

Lost cities by Giles Laroche

The ocean in your bathtub by Seth Fishman

On your mark, get set, gold! by Scott Allen

Play in the wild by Lita Judge

A rainbow of rocks by Kate DePalma

A thousand glass flowers: Marietta Barovier and the invention of the Rosetta bead by Evan Turk

GRAPHIC NOVELS

The battle of the labyrinth by Rick Riordan

The last Olympian by Rick Riordan

The lightning thief by Rick Riordan

The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

The Titan’s curse by Rick Riordan

JUVENILE DVDs

Daniel Tiger’s neighborhood: Explore the outdoors (2020) The Fred Rogers Company.

Red shoes and the seven dwarfs (2020) starring Chloe Grace Moretz and Sam Claflin.

The secret garden (2020) starring Colin Firth and Julie Walters.

Trolls world tour (2020) voices of Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake.

Notes from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, and New York Times Book Review.

CLASSIC HORROR MOVIES FOR THE SPOOKY SEASON

It always starts with the big three: Dracula, Frankenstein, and The Wolfman and all made in the 1930s.  No gore, no jump shots, no slashers.  Just a feeling of dread that overwhelms you as the movie weaves its spell.

Some of my favorite quotes from them:

Dracula – “ I don’t drink…..wine.”

Frankenstein – “It’s alive ! “

The Wolfman – “Whoever is bitten by a werewolf and lives, becomes a werewolf himself.”

Of course these classics begat more of the same, from the serious such as The Bride of Frankenstein to the comedic Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein.

Horror movies continued in the same vein until the 1950s when the world began to worry about nuclear fallout, pollution, and problems with the environment.   Suddenly we had disturbed The Creature from the Black Lagoon, insects were becoming enormous and deadly – Them! and Tarantula, and despite what was happening to the planet, aliens wanted to take over our bodies (Invasion of the Body Snatchers).

Personally, I am a fan of the sub-genre classic haunted house movies.  Check out the original versions of The Uninvited, House on Haunted Hill, and The Haunting.

Some of my favorites from the 1960s are Carnival of Souls, Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, Psycho, and Rosemary’s Baby.  The 1970s began to be more graphic in the depiction of horror but without being too graphic, my pants were still scared off by the last episode in Trilogy of Terror with the Zuni fetish doll, the original John Carpenter’s version of The Fog, and Alien (“In space, no one can hear your scream.”)

The 1960s was a transitioning decade for horror films.  Not until the late 70s and the arrival of the movies Halloween and Scream, did horror films turn into “slasher films”.  The horror was now all blood and gore, jump shots, and screaming teenagers.  Too bad.  Classic horror movies took time to build the thrills and chills.  It’s what you DON’T or CAN’T see that is far more terrifying in your head.

Since 1980 the only horror film that comes to my mind to recommend would be Tremors from 1989 because it blends humor with the scares so successfully.

What classic horror film of yours have I missed?

 

New Items ~ October 2020

FICTION

All the devils are here by Louise Penny.  Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surete du Quebec investigates a sinister plot in the City of Light.

Bear necessity by James Gould-Bourne.  A feel-good story about coping with grief that focuses on the love between a dad and his son and how it can lead to friendship.

Before she was Helen by Caroline Cooney.  Clemmie is a 70something, semi-retired Latin teacher, a spinster living in a somnolent Florida retirement community.  But there must be more to her.  Why else is she rattled when she learns that a cold case is coming back to life?

Cactus Jack by Brad Smith.  A 30something single woman, the untried colt she inherits, a horse crazy little girl, and their band of misfits and has-beens stick it to the establishment in the cut-throat world of horse racing.

Celine by Peter Heller.  She is nearly 70, has emphysema from years as a smoker, and she’s never too far from her oxygen tank.  She’s a blue blood and a sculptor.  She’s also a private eye in this smart, comic mystery.

Dear Ann by Bobbie Ann Mason.  A meditation on one woman’s life choices and the road she didn’t take.

Death at high tide by Hannah Dennison.  Two sisters inherit an old hotel in the remote Isles of Scilly off the coast of Cornwall and find it full of intrigue, danger, and romance.

The exiles by Christina Baker Kline.  Three young women are sent to the fledgling British penal colony of Australia in the 1840s.

Fast girls by Elise Hooper.  This celebrates three unheralded female athletes in a tale spanning three Olympiads.

The haunted lady by Mary Roberts Rinehart.  Someone’s trying to kill the head of the Fairbanks estate, and only her nurse can protect her.  A superior example of the plucky-heroine-in-an-old-dark-house school.

His and hers by Alice Feeney.  A brilliant cat-and-mouse game.  There are two sides to every story:  yours and mine, ours and theirs, his and hers.  Which means someone is always lying.

The killings at Kingfisher Hill by Sophie Hannah.  Lovers of classic whodunits will hope that the author will continue to offer her take on the great Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot.

The lions of Fifth Avenue by Fiona Davis.  When rarities disappear, a curator at the New York Public Library, who grapples with her grandmother’s legacy, uncovers new truths about her family heritage.

The lying life of adults by Elena Ferrante.  In this coming-of-age story, Giovanna seeks her true reflection in tow kindred cities.

The new American by Micheline Marcom.  The epic journey of a young Guatemalan American student, a “dreamer”, who gets deported and decides to make his way back home to California.

The new wilderness by Diane Cook.  This explores a moving mother-daughter relationship in a world ravaged by climate change and overpopulation.

One by one by Ruth Ware.  Ware does what she does best – gives us a familiar locked-door mystery setup and lets the tension and suspicion marinate until they reach fever pitch.

Payback by Mary Gordon.  A novel of lifelong reckoning between two women.  It contrasts the 1970s world of upper-class women’s education with the #MeToo era.

Royal by Danielle Steel.  In 1943, the 17 year old Princess Charlotte assumes a new identity in the country and falls in love.

Shadows in death by J.D. Robb.  Lt. Eve Dallas is about to walk into the shadows of her husband’s dangerous past….

Someone to romance by Mary Balogh.  Pitch-perfect – a riveting, fast-paced narrative.  Regency fans will be delighted.

Squeeze me by Carl Hiaasen.  A dead dowager, hungry pythons, and occupants of the winter White House shake up the Palm Beach charity ball season.

Thick as thieves by Sandra Brown.  Arden Maxwell returns home to uncover the truth about her father’s involvement in a heist that went wrong 20 years ago.

Troubled blood by Robert Galbraith.  Private detective Cormoran Strike is visiting his family in Cornwell when he is approached by a woman asking for help finding her mother, who went missing in mysterious circumstances in 1974.

NEW DVDs

A simple favor (2018) starring Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively

Q: the winged serpent (1982) starring Michael Moriarty and Candy Clark

Dead of night (1945) starring Michael Redgrave

Hester Street (1975) starring Carol Kane and Steven Keats

The private life of Henry VIII (1933) starring Charles Laughton

NEW MUSIC CDs

Rough and rowdy ways by Bob Dylan

Gaslighter by Dixie Chicks

100 hits: the best 70s album

Ultimate Grammy Collection: Classic Country

NONFICTION

The beauty of living by J. Alison Rosenblitt.  Focusing on a brief period in the life of poet E.E. Cummings, notably his WW I experiences as a POW and ambulance driver, this sheds new light.  The horrors of gas warfare, mass slaughter, and illness bring new life to the American poet’s work.

A better man by Michael Black.  A radical plea for rethinking masculinity and teaching young men to give and receive love.

Caste by Isabel Wilkerson.  The Pulitzer Prize winning journalist examines aspects of caste systems across civilizations and reveals a rigid hierarchy in America today.

The detective in the dooryard by Timothy Cotton.  Stories about the people, places and things of Maine.  There are sad stories, big events, and even the very mundane, all told from the perspective of a seasoned police officer and in the wry voice of a lifelong Mainer.

Disloyal by Michael Cohen.  An account of being on the inside of Donald Trump’s world from his former personal attorney.

The dynasty by Jeff Benedict.  The history of the New England Patriots from NFL laughingstock to making 10 trips to the Super Bowl.

Faith instinct by Nicholas Wade.  How religion evolved and why it endures.

How we live now by Bill Hayes.  A poignant and profound tribute in stories and images to a city (NYC) amidst a pandemic.  The photos serve as potent documentation of an unprecedented time.

Kent State: four dead in Ohio by Derf Backderf.  A graphic novel telling of the day America turned guns on its own children: a shocking event burned into our national memory.

A Libertarian walks into a bear by Matthew Hongoltz-Hetling.  Once upon a time, a group of libertarians got together and hatched a plan to take over an American town and completely eliminate its government in 2004.  They set their sights on Grafton, NH, a barely populated settlement with one paved road.  They overlooked one hairy detail: no one told the bears.

Looking for Miss America by Margot Mifflin.  A lively account of memorable Miss America contestants, protests, and scandals – and how the pageant, near its one hundredth anniversary, serves as an unintended indicator of feminist progress.

Mill Town by Kerri Arsenault.  The author writes of her hometown – Mexico, Maine.  This is an American story, a human predicament, and a moral wake-up call that asks:  what are we willing to tolerate and whose lives are we willing to sacrifice for our own survival?

Rage by Bob Woodward.  Interviews with firsthand sources provide details about Trump’s moves as he faced a global pandemic, economic disaster, and racial unrest.

The ultimate retirement guide for 50+ by Suze Orman.  Winning strategies to make your money last a lifetime.

What it’s like to be a bird by David Sibley.  From flying to nesting, eating to singing – what birds are doing and why.

 

Notes from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, and New York Times Book Review.

 

New Items ~ September 2020

 FICTION

The book of lost names by Kristin Harmel.  A young woman with a talent for forgery helps hundreds of Jewish children flee the Nazis in this historical novel.

The daughters of Erietown by Connie Schultz.  The evolving role of women in middle America in the second half of the 20th century is illuminated by the story of one Ohio family, its secrets and failures, its hopes and dreams.

Deadlock by Catherine Coulter.  A young wife, a psychopath, and three red boxes puzzle FBI agents Savich and Sherlock.

The end of her by Shari Lapena.  The parents of colicky twin girls have other troubles delivered in the form of suspicions surrounding the husband’s first wife’s death.

Girls of summer by Nancy Thayer.  One life-changing summer on Nantucket brings out exhilarating revelations for a single mother and her two grown children.

A good neighborhood by Therese Fowler.  A property line and a teenage romance strain relations between two North Carolina families.

Hieroglyphics by Jill McCorkle.  The story spools around two actual, horrific 1940 events:  The Coconut Grove nightclub fire in Boston and a train derailment in North Carolina.

Home before dark by Riley Sager.  A woman returns to the house made famous by her father’s bestselling horror memoir.  Is the place really haunted by evil forces, as her father claimed?  Or are there more earthbound – and dangerous – secrets hidden within its walls?

The house on Fripp Island by Rebecca Kauffman.  When two families – one rich, one not – vacation together off the coast, little do they know that someone won’t be returning home.

Indigo by Loren Estleman.  This effortlessly melds film history with a whodunit, clever and surprising.  Film noir buffs will be in heaven.

It’s not all downhill from here by Terry McMillan.  After a sudden change of plans, a remarkable woman and her loyal group of friends try to figure out what she’s going to do with the rest of her life.

The living dead by George Romero.  He invented the modern zombie with Night of the Living Dead.  This novel is set in the present day and is an entirely new tale.

Mexican gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia.  In 1950s Mexico, a debutante travels to a distant mansion where family secrets of a faded mining empire have been kept hidden.

Near dark by Brad Thor.  With a bounty on his head, Scot Harvath makes an alliance with a Norwegian intelligence operative.

The order by Daniel Silva.  An art restorer and spy cuts his family’s vacation short to investigate whether Pope Paul VII was murdered.

The pull of the stars by Emma Donoghue.  In an Ireland of 1918 doubly ravaged by war and disease, Nurse Julia works at an under-staffed hospital in the city center, where expectant mothers who have come down with the terrible new flu and are quarantined together.

The return by Rachel Harrison.  A group of friends reunite after one of them has returned from a mysterious two-year disappearance.  Going away to an isolated hotel to reconnect, it soon becomes impossible to deny that the Julie who vanished two years ago is not the same Julie who came back.  But then who – or what – is she?

Sex and vanity by Kevin Kwan.  Here’s a nod to A Room with a View in which Lucie Tang Churchill is torn between her WASPY billionaire fiancé and a privileged hunk born in Hong Kong.

Silas Crockett by Mary Ellen Chase.  This traces life on the Maine coast through 4 generations of a seafaring family.

To wake the giant by Jeff Shaara.  The run-up to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor is depicted in a thrilling you-are-there re-creation.  Fans of military fiction will find much to enjoy.

Tomb of Gods by Brian Moreland.  The Egyptian tombs in 1935.  The atmosphere of a dark, claustrophobic tomb creates a scary story in which the character’s fear invites the reader into the world to experience the fright themselves.

28 summers by Elin Hilderbrand.  A relationship that started in 1993 between two people comes to light while she is on her deathbed and his wife runs for president.

A walk along the beach by Debbie Macomber.  After dealing with loss and setbacks, two sisters take risks on dreams and love.

Wonderland by Zoje Stage.  Shirley Jackson meet The Shining in his tense novel.  One mother’s love may be all that stands between her family, an enigmatic presence…and madness.

NONFICTION

The answer is… by Alex Trebek.  Who is the Canadian-American game show host whose pronunciation of the word “genre” has been shared widely on social media?

Begin again by Eddie Glaude.  An appraisal of the life and work of James Baldwin and their meaning in relationship to the Black Lives Matter movement and the Trump presidency.

Decoding your cat by Meghan Herron.  Experts explain common cat behaviors and reveal how to prevent or change unwanted ones.

18 tiny deaths by Bruce Goldfarb.  The story of a woman whose ambition and accomplishments far exceeded the expectations of her time.  This follows the transformation of a young, wealthy socialite into the mother of modern forensics.

The gift of forgiveness by Katherine Pratt.  An inspiring book on learning how to forgive – with firsthand stories from those who have learned to let go of resentment and find peace.

Grandpa magic by Allan Kronzek.  116 easy tricks, amazing brainteasers, and simple stunts to wow the grandkids.

The life of William Faulkner by Carl Rollyson.  This follows Faulkner from his formative years through his introduction to Hollywood.  It sheds light on his unpromising youth and provides the fullest portrait yet of his family life and marriage, showing that his career as a screenwriter influenced his novels.

Like crazy by Dan Mathews.  A hilarious and heartbreaking memoir about an outlandish mother and son on an odyssey of self-discovery, and the rag-tag community that rallied to help them as the mother entered the final phase of her life.

The Lost Kitchen by Erin French.  Here’s the history, complete with recipes, of the famous small restaurant in Freedom, Maine.

Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad.  Ways to understand and possibly counteract white privilege.

Stamped from the beginning by Ibram Kendi.  The National Book Award winning history of how racist ideas were created, spread, and deeply rooted in American society.

This is Chance! by Jon Mooallem.  The thrilling cinematic story of a community shattered by disaster – the 1964 earthquake in Anchorage, Alaska – and the extraordinary woman who helped pull it back together.

To start a war by Robert Draper.  How the Bush Administration took American to war in Iraq.

Troop 6000 by Nikita Stewart.  The inspiring true story of the first Girl Scout troop founded for and by girls living in a shelter in Queens, New York, and the amazing, nationwide response that it sparked.

The unidentified by Colin Dickey. A tour of the country’s most persistent “unexplained” phenomena – mythical monsters, alien encounters, and our obsession with the unexplained.

Notes from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, and New York Times Book Review.

 

Are you looking for something to read? 

As many of you know, we are open with limited access.  We are still open with our Pick-Up Window, at the rear of the building, as well.

Many of us (staff as well as patrons) have been keeping lists of items we would like to borrow from the library, or libraries when you include the Minerva lending system.  I know that my list grew rather rapidly, and by the time the items were available for requesting, there were many other folks ahead of me in the queue.

So, that led me to . . . .

What can I find to read/watch/listen to RIGHT NOW!!

As I have worked at the Pick-Up Window over the past weeks, I know that is the same question many others have as well.

As staff brainstormed how to best answer that question for you, our users, we realized several things.

Some people just don’t care what they are reading as long as it has more content than the back of the cereal box.

And . . .

Each of us has an area of “expertise”, so to speak, of what might work for different wants and needs of our Gardiner Library Friends.

On that vein, we have begun creating what we are referring to at “Binge Bags”.  Basically, it is a bag with 3 – 6 items on the same theme.  The items might be all books, though there are movies, music, and audio books included as well.  Some of these bags are items specific to floor – by this I mean Children’s, Young Adult or Adult floor, and some bags have a mix of age ranges.

So, what type of themes am I talking about?  Let’s see, so far, I know there is a bag of items pertaining to the 1970s, a bag of Fall/Autumn items, 2 bags of School items (one Adult and one Children), gentle mysteries, as well as several others.

In the works, there are collections to include Spies ; Humor ; 1920s ; Harry Potter ; Maine ; as well as several others.

If you’re interested in one of our Binge Boxes, check at the Pick-Up Window, or give us a call – 207-582-3312 – and we’ll put together a bag of items for you.

Opening Soon!!

Beginning the week of August 10th, the library will be open for folks to enter the building.

Hours of operation at this time will be – – –

Monday thru Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. people may enter the building.

Pick-Up Window – Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday 10 a.m. to 5:25 p.m.

Wednesday – 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

You may return items during the above listed times

Our services and hours have been adjusted in the interest of best service and of safety for the public and staff.

We are following the CDC guidelines in re-opening the building.

Below are our opening guidelines ~~

* Currently, the only entrance to the building is at the rear, as you come in from the parking lat.

* We will be maintaining a contact sheet, per CDC guidelines.

* We are allowed a maximum of 10 patrons in the Adult area of the library at a time.

* Each person will be allowed a 30-minute visit at this time.

* The Children’s Room will be open, by appointment only, beginning the week of August 31st.  Each appointment will be for one family at a time, with a maximum of seven people per family.

* The Community Archives will be completely by appointment beginning August 10th – 207.582.6890

* Public computers, printing and restroom are not available at this time.

* Masks are absolutely MANDATORY,

* We will still have our Pick-up Window available, so if for any reason you feel uncomfortable entering the building, please let us know, and we will continue to have items available to those who are interested.

* Please return all books and library materials in the book drop before entering.

* All items will be quarantined for 4 days before checking in.

No overdue fines will accrue during this period.

New Items ~ July 2020

FICTION

All adults here by Emma Straub.  A funny and keenly perceptive novel about the life cycle of one family – as the kids become parents, grandchildren become teenagers, and a matriarch confronts the legacy of her mistakes.

The ancestor by Danielle Trussoni.  A bewitching gothic novel of suspense that plunges readers into a world of dark family secrets, the mysteries of human genetics, and the burden of family inheritance.

The astonishing life of August March by Aaron Jackson.  An irrepressibly optimistic oddball orphan is thrust into the wilds of postwar New York City after an extraordinary childhood in a theater.  (Think Candide by way of John Irving, with a hint of Charles Dickens.)

Beach read by Emily Henry.  A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever after.

Big summer by Jennifer Weiner.  A poignant and unputdownable novel about the power of friendship, the lure of frenemies, and the importance of making peace with yourself through life’s ups and downs.

Blindside by James Patterson.  The mayor of New York has a daughter who’s missing and in danger.  Detective Michael Bennett has a son who’s in prison.  The two strike a deal.

The book of V by Anna Solomon.  A kaleidoscopic novel intertwining the lives of three women across 3 centuries as their stories of sex, power, and desire finally converge in the present day.

The business of lovers by Eric Jerome Dickey.  In this road trip across L.A. there are deep conversations, adult situations, and a sweet love story at every turn.

Close up by Amanda Quick.  Welcome to Burning Cove, California where 1930s Hollywood glamour conceals a ruthless killer….

Dance away with me by Susan Phillips.  Two people determined to withdraw from society instead discover the power of human connection in this deeply felt romance.

The goodbye man by Jeffery Deaver.  Reward-seeker Colter Shaw infiltrates a sinister cult after learning that the only way to get somebody out…is to go in.

Guests of August by Gloria Goldreich.  Five families come together for a summer vacation that will change their lives forever in this tale of love, loss, and hope.

The henna artist by Alka Joshi.  In 1950s Jaipur, a young woman who escaped an abusive marriage and started a new life is confronted by her husband.

Hideaway by Nora Roberts.  A family ranch in Big Sur country and a legacy of Hollywood royalty set the stage for this suspense novel.

The house on Fripp Island by Rebecca Kauffman.  When two families – one rich, one not – vacation together off the coast of South Carolina, little do they know that someone won’t be returning home.

How much of these hills is gold by C Pam Zhang.  Set against the twilight of the American gold rush, two siblings are on the run in an unforgiving landscape – trying not to just survive but to find a home.

How to pronounce knife by Souvankham Thammavongsa.  Spare, unsentimental, and distilled to riveting essentials, these stories honor the surreal, funny, often wrenching realities of trying to build a life far from home.

The jetsetters by Amanda Ward.  When Charlotte wins a Mediterranean cruise, she sees it as the perfect opportunity to reconnect with her adult children.  Each character’s dysfunctions run deep, and each plot twist threatens to sink their sanity, resulting in a funny, moving tale of the complications of familial love.

The last trial by Scott Turow.  A brilliant courtroom chess match about a celebrated criminal defense lawyer and the prosecution of his lifelong friend – a doctor accused of murder.

The love story of Missy Carmichael by Beth Morrey.  Here is a love story of the most important kind: that of coming to love oneself through accepting and returning the love of others – be it people or dogs.

Murder at the Mena House by Erica Neubauer.  Well-heeled travelers from around the world flock to the Mena House Hotel – an exotic gem in Cairo where cocktails flow, adventure dispels the aftershocks of World War I, and deadly dangers wait in the shadows.

The murder of twelve by Jessica Fletcher.  Jessica takes on an Agatha Christie-style mystery when she finds herself stranded in a hotel during a blizzard with 12 strangers and a killer in their midst.

Rodham by Curtis Sittenfeld.  A compelling what-might-have-been:  what if Hilary Rodham HADN’T married Bill Clinton?

The second home by Christina Clancy.  Told through the eyes of 3 siblings, this title captures the ache of nostalgia for summers past and the powerful draw of the places we return to again and again.  It is about second homes, second families, and second chances.

The shooting at Château Rock by Martin Walker.  When a local’s troubling death is linked to a Russian oligarch and his multinational conglomerate, Chief Bruno faces one of his toughest cases yet, one that brings together a French notary and a rock star – and of course, Bergerac red and white.

The sight of you by Holly Miller. A romantic and page-turning novel that poses a heartbreaking question:  Would you choose love, if you knew how it would end?

A tender thing by Emily Neuberger.  Set under the dazzling lights of late 1950s Broadway where a controversial new musical pushes the boundaries of love, legacy, and art.

Three things I know are true by Betty Culley.  Life changes forever for Liv when her older brother, Jonah, accidentally shoots himself with the gun of his best friend’s father.

A week at the shore by Barbara Delinsky.  This explores how lives and relationships are forever changed when 3 sisters reunite at their family Rhode Island beach house.

NEW DVDs

The lighthouse (2019) starring Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe

Little women (2019) starring Saoirse Ronan and Emma Watson

Doctor Sleep (2019) starring Ewan McGregor and Rebecca Ferguson

Roma (2018) starring Marina de Tavira

Star Wars: the rise of Skywalker (2019) starring Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill

1917 (2019) starring George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman

NEW NONFICTION

The age of Phillis by Honoree Jeffers.  A collection of original poems speaking to the life and times of Phillis Weatley, a Colonial America-era poet brought to Boston as a slave.

Dark mirror by Barton Gellman.  A well-documented account on the far-reaching impact of US domestic surveillance and the resulting intrusions of privacy.

A delayed life by Dita Kraus.  A story of survival that is rare in its coverage of life before and after the Holocaust, addressing the difficult question of what comes after such a tragedy.

Dirt by Bill Buford.  A hilariously self-deprecating, highly obsessive account of the author’s adventures in the world of French haute cuisine, for anyone who has ever found joy in cooking and eating food with their family.

Dress your best life by Dawnn Karen.  How to use fashion psychology to take your look – and your life – to the next level.

Home is a stranger by Parnaz Foroutan.  Unmoored by the death of her father and disenchanted by the American Dream, Foroutan leaves Los Angeles for Iran, 19 years after her family fled the religious police state brought in by the Islamic Theocracy.

In the name of God by Selina O’Grady.  A groundbreaking book on the history of religious tolerance and intolerance that offers an essential narrative to understanding Islam and the West today.

Kooks and degenerates on ice by Thomas Whalen.  Here to celebrate the 50th anniversary – it’s Bobby Orr, the big bad Boston Bruins, and the Stanley Cup championship that transformed hockey.

Rental style by Chelsey Brown.  This doubles as a décor piece and handy design guide and shows readers how to decorate and organize small, rented spaces on a budget.

Sigh, gone by Phuc Tran.  For anyone who has ever felt like they don’t belong, this shares an irreverent, funny, and moving tale of displacement and assimilation woven together with poignant themes from beloved works of classic literature.  The author now lives in Portland, Maine.

24 by Willie Mays.  A memoir by the Baseball Hall of Famer told in 24 chapters to correspond with his well-known uniform number.

Warhol by Blake Gopnik.  The definitive bio of a fascinating and paradoxical figure, one of the most influential artists of his – or any – age.

Notes from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, and New York Times Book Review.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’re Back!

Well, we, (the staff), have been back in the building since early May.  Color us ALL happy to be back!

We have been able to accept return items, in a limited capacity, for about 2 weeks.  We are keeping ALL items in quarantine for at least 72 hours before we check them in and off your library cards.  Please don’t worry – there are absolutely no fines being accrued to any items checked out of the Gardiner Public Library at this time.  We are here for you, and want to be the least of your worries right now.

THE BEST NEWS . . .

We have a Pick Up Window available!!!

The window has been open for two weeks now, several hours a day, and being well used and appreciated.  The current hours for pick up are Monday thru Friday from 11:00 to 5:00.  Our pick up window is at the back of the building, to the left of the door.

For now, the only items available are items owned by us, as the state-wide van delivery service is not running.  We are hoping by August that we will be able to use the entire Minerva system, and that the InterLibrary Loan service will be up and running.

You are welcome to request items in several ways.

For those of you who are familiar with making requests through the Minerva system, continue using that system.  Please be aware however that only items owned by Gardiner are available to you.  If you scope to Gardiner, I find it easier to see what we might have here in the building,

A second way to request items is to email us with your request(s).  Please include your name; library barcode; the title(s) and format – book, DVD, CD, magazine – you would like.  The best emails to use are either – arussell@gpl.lib.me.us or scott@gpl.lib.me.us

Last, but by no means least, feel free to call us with any requests.  We will do our absolute best to find the items, let you know they are available, and have them checked out and ready for you to pick up at the window in the back of the building.

If you check your library account on-line, you may notice that it seems you have already checked out your requests and that you have them at home.  Please don’t worry, we are doing our best to keep everyone safe, and have checked the items out to you, so that we may just give them to you once we know who you are.  Yes, with the masks we are all wearing, sometimes it is rather difficult to recognize each other.

Please know – WE MISS EACH AND EVERYONE OF YOU!!!!

Gardiner Library – Temporary Closure

The Gardiner Public Library is temporarily closed. This decision was made by the Gardiner City Council.  We are sorry, but, at this point, we have no concrete idea when we will reopen.  We will continue to monitor the situation and reassess as more information becomes available.

The decision to close was, and is an incredibly difficult decision.  We are following the directive of the Gardiner City Council, as they are concerned about our patrons and the staff of the City of Gardiner. Early actions to increase social distancing are the best way to contain the spread of COVID-19, according to the CDC. Closing the library, and City Hall, is the best way to protect the health of our community at this time.

While we are closed, we will carry out extra cleaning and disinfecting of the building. We will stop charging all overdue fines.

Our professional librarians will be available during normal business hours via email and telephone to help navigate our digital lending services and resources, and to provide answers to reference questions and readers’ advisory for all the eBooks you’ll be checking out!

We also encourage you to continue to use the Gardiner Public Library by:
Downloading eBooks and audiobooks
Streaming movies and TV shows
Take advantage of Digital Maine Library resources with your Gardiner card
•Browse our website for helpful links, book lists, and resources
•Stay connected with us on Facebook. We will be posting on Facebook each day with helpful information, links, and conversations to keep you engaged and informed during this time.

Additionally, we also recommend the following resources free without a library card:

Scholastic’s Learn at Home website: classroommagazines.scholastic.com
Biblioboard: library.biblioboard.com, collections of e-books, classics from world literature, items from Oxford University’s Bodleian Library, articles, images, books, etc. spanning a wide range of topics.

It is important to remember that COVID-19 is not connected to race, ethnicity or nationality. Sharing accurate information from trusted sources is critical to combat misinformation.

Find reliable and up-to-date information about the outbreak from the following vetted resources:
Maine Center for Disease Control & Prevention; key information from the State of Maine on COVID-19 updates, including preparation and response measures.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; updates on the federal response to COVID-19, including travel advisories and national infection numbers.
World Health Organization; information and guidance regarding the current outbreak of COVID-19, including daily situation reports with international infection numbers.

We look forward to seeing you online and in person again soon!