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Perspective

Short of walking a mile in another’s shoes, reading someone’s story is one of the best ways to gain understanding. Reading the work of Black authors can help the world to better understand both the difficulties and achievements of people of color in America. From classic artists to new voices and leaders, this list includes a wide range of voices and insights, as well as a variety of genres.  We hope you’ll find something of interest to add to your reading list.

 

Well-Read Black Girl

by Glory Edim

Remember that moment when you first encountered a character who seemed to be written just for you? That feeling of belonging remains with readers the rest of their lives—but not everyone regularly sees themselves in the pages of a book. In this timely anthology, Glory Edim brings together original essays by some of our best black women writers to shine a light on how important it is that we all—regardless of gender, race, religion, or ability—have the opportunity to find ourselves in literature.

“Yes, Well-Read Black Girl is as good as it sounds. . . . [Glory Edim] gathers an all-star cast of contributors—among them Lynn Nottage, Jesmyn Ward, and Gabourey Sidibe.”—O: The Oprah Magazine

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Fire Next Time

by James Baldwin

At once a powerful evocation of James Baldwin’s early life in Harlem and a disturbing examination of the consequences of racial injustice, the book is an intensely personal and provocative document from the iconic author of If Beale Street Could Talk and Go Tell It on the Mountain. It consists of two “letters,” written on the occasion of the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation, that exhort Americans, both black and white, to attack the terrible legacy of racism. Described by The New York Times Book Review as “sermon, ultimatum, confession, deposition, testament, and chronicle…all presented in searing, brilliant prose,” The Fire Next Time stands as a classic of literature.

“So eloquent in its passion and so scorching in its candor that it is bound to unsettle any reader.” –The Atlantic

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Such a Fun Age

by Kiley Reid

A striking and surprising debut novel from an exhilarating new voice, Such a Fun Age is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both.

“Kiley Reid has written the most provocative page-turner of the year….[Such a Fun Age] nestl[es] a nuanced take on racial biases and class divides into a page-turning saga of betrayals, twists, and perfectly awkward relationships….The novel feels bound for book-club glory, due to its sheer readability. The dialogue crackles with naturalistic flair. The plotting is breezy and surprising. Plus, while Reid’s feel for both the funny and the political is undeniable, she imbues her flawed heroes with real heart.” —Entertainment Weekly

 

Between the World and Me

By Ta-Nehisi Coates

In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation’s history and current crisis. Americans have built an empire on the idea of “race,” a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men—bodies exploited through slavery and segregation, and, today, threatened, locked up, and murdered out of all proportion. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden?

“Extraordinary . . . [Coates] writes an impassioned letter to his teenage son—a letter both loving and full of a parent’s dread—counseling him on the history of American violence against the black body, the young African-American’s extreme vulnerability to wrongful arrest, police violence, and disproportionate incarceration.”— The New Yorker

 

Red at the Bone

by Jacqueline Woodson

An unexpected teenage pregnancy pulls together two families from different social classes, and exposes the private hopes, disappointments, and longings that can bind or divide us from each other. Moving forward and backward in time, Jacqueline Woodson’s taut and powerful new novel uncovers the role that history and community have played in the experiences, decisions, and relationships of these families, and in the life of the new child.

 

“In less than 200 sparsely filled pages, this book manages to encompass issues of class, education, ambition, racial prejudice, sexual desire and orientation, identity, mother-daughter relationships, parenthood and loss….With Red at the Bone, Jacqueline Woodson has indeed risen — even further into the ranks of great literature.” – NPR

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America

By Ibram X. Kendi

Some Americans insist that we’re living in a post-racial society. But racist thought is not just alive and well in America–it is more sophisticated and more insidious than ever. And as award-winning historian Ibram X. Kendi argues, racist ideas have a long and lingering history, one in which nearly every great American thinker is complicit.

In this deeply researched and fast-moving narrative, Kendi chronicles the entire story of anti-black racist ideas and their staggering power over the course of American history. He uses the life stories of five major American intellectuals to drive this history: Puritan minister Cotton Mather, Thomas Jefferson, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, W.E.B. Du Bois, and legendary activist Angela Davis.

As Kendi shows, racist ideas did not arise from ignorance or hatred. They were created to justify and rationalize deeply entrenched discriminatory policies and the nation’s racial inequities.

In shedding light on this history, Stamped from the Beginning offers us the tools we need to expose racist thinking. In the process, he gives us reason to hope.

“An engrossing and relentless intellectual history of prejudice in America…. The greatest service Kendi [provides] is the ruthless prosecution of American ideas about race for their tensions, contradiction and unintended consequences.”―Washington Post

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Invisible Man

By Ralph Ellison

A first novel by an unknown writer, it remained on the bestseller list for sixteen weeks, won the National Book Award for fiction, and established Ralph Ellison as one of the key writers of the century. The nameless narrator of the novel describes growing up in a black community in the South, attending a Negro college from which he is expelled, moving to New York and becoming the chief spokesman of the Harlem branch of “the Brotherhood”, and retreating amid violence and confusion to the basement lair of the Invisible Man he imagines himself to be. The book is a passionate and witty tour de force of style, strongly influenced by T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, Joyce, and Dostoevsky.

“Invisible Man is certainly a book about race in America, and sadly enough, few of the problems it chronicles have disappeared even now. But Ellison’s first novel transcends such a narrow definition. It’s also a book about the human race stumbling down the path to identity, challenged and successful to varying degrees. None of us can ever be sure of the truth beyond ourselves, and possibly not even there. The world is a tricky place, and no one knows this better than the invisible man, who leaves us with these chilling, provocative words: “And it is this which frightens me: Who knows but that, on the lower frequencies, I speak for you?” –Melanie Rehak (New York Times best-selling author)

 

Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do

Jennifer L. Eberhardt

How do we talk about bias? How do we address racial disparities and inequities? What role do our institutions play in creating, maintaining, and magnifying those inequities? What role do we play? With a perspective that is at once scientific, investigative, and informed by personal experience, Dr. Jennifer Eberhardt offers us the language and courage we need to face one of the biggest and most troubling issues of our time. She exposes racial bias at all levels of society—in our neighborhoods, schools, workplaces, and criminal justice system. Yet she also offers us tools to address it. Eberhardt shows us how we can be vulnerable to bias but not doomed to live under its grip. Racial bias is a problem that we all have a role to play in solving.

“Combining storytelling with a deep dive into the science of implicit bias, Eberhardt explains how bias and prejudice form—and she describes their pernicious effects on all of us. But she doesn’t stop at the problem: Her book shines a spotlight on what we can do to fight bias at a personal and institutional level.”—Greater Good Magazine

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Homegoing

by Yaa Gyasi

Ghana, eighteenth century: two half-sisters are born into different villages, each unaware of the other. One will marry an Englishman and lead a life of comfort in the palatial rooms of the Cape Coast Castle. The other will be captured in a raid on her village, imprisoned in the very same castle, and sold into slavery.

Homegoing follows the parallel paths of these sisters and their descendants through eight generations: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem. Yaa Gyasi’s extraordinary novel illuminates slavery’s troubled legacy both for those who were taken and those who stayed—and shows how the memory of captivity has been inscribed on the soul of our nation.

“[Toni Morrison’s] influence is palpable in Gyasi’s historicity and lyricism; she shares Morrison’s uncanny ability to crystalize, in a single event, slavery’s moral and emotional fallout. . . . No novel has better illustrated the way in which racism became institutionalized in this country.” —Vogue

 

When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir

By Patrisse Khan-Cullors  &  Asha Bandele

Raised by a single mother in an impoverished neighborhood in Los Angeles, Patrisse Khan-Cullors experienced firsthand the prejudice and persecution Black Americans endure at the hands of law enforcement. For Patrisse, the most vulnerable people in the country are Black people. Deliberately and ruthlessly targeted by a criminal justice system serving a white privilege agenda, Black people are subjected to unjustifiable racial profiling and police brutality. In 2013, when Trayvon Martin’s killer went free, Patrisse’s outrage led her to co-found Black Lives Matter with Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi.

Condemned as terrorists and as a threat to America, these loving women founded a hashtag that birthed the movement to demand accountability from the authorities who continually turn a blind eye to the injustices inflicted upon people of Black and Brown skin.

Championing human rights in the face of violent racism, Patrisse is a survivor. She transformed her personal pain into political power, giving voice to a people suffering inequality and a movement fueled by her strength and love to tell the country―and the world―that Black Lives Matter

“This is a story of perseverance from a woman who found her voice in a world that often tried to shut her out. When They Call You a Terrorist is more than just a reflection on the American criminal justice system. It’s a call to action for readers to change a culture that allows for violence against people of color.” – TIME Magazine

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Beloved

by Toni Morrison

Sethe, its protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. And Sethe’s new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved. Filled with bitter poetry and suspense as taut as a rope, Beloved is a towering achievement.

Staring unflinchingly into the abyss of slavery, this spellbinding novel transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby. – NYT

 

So You Want to Talk About Race

By Ijeoma Oluo

Widespread reporting on aspects of white supremacy–from police brutality to the mass incarceration of Black Americans–has put a media spotlight on racism in our society. Still, it is a difficult subject to talk about. How do you tell your roommate her jokes are racist? Why did your sister-in-law take umbrage when you asked to touch her hair–and how do you make it right? How do you explain white privilege to your white, privileged friend?

In So You Want to Talk About Race, Ijeoma Oluo guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from intersectionality and affirmative action to “model minorities” in an attempt to make the seemingly impossible possible: honest conversations about race and racism, and how they infect almost every aspect of American life.

“Oluo gives us–both white people and people of color–that language to engage in clear, constructive, and confident dialogue with each other about how to deal with racial prejudices and biases.”

–National Book Review

 

Drinking Coffee Elsewhere

by ZZ Packer

Her impressive range and talent are abundantly evident: Packer dazzles with her command of language, surprising and delighting us with unexpected turns and indelible images, as she takes us into the lives of characters on the periphery, unsure of where they belong. We meet a Brownie troop of black girls who are confronted with a troop of white girls; a young man who goes with his father to the Million Man March and must decide where his allegiance lies; an international group of drifters in Japan, who are starving, unable to find work; a girl in a Baltimore ghetto who has dreams of the larger world she has seen only on the screens in the television store nearby, where the Lithuanian shopkeeper holds out hope for attaining his own American Dream.

“ZZ Packer writes a short story with more complexity and kindness than most people can muster in their creaking 500-page novels. It is the kind of brilliance for narrative that should make her peers envious and her readers very, very grateful.”—Zadie Smith  (New York Times best-selling author)

 

The Autobiography of Malcolm X: As Told to Alex Haley

In the searing pages of this classic autobiography, originally published in 1964, Malcolm X, the Muslim leader, firebrand, and anti-integrationist, tells the extraordinary story of his life and the growth of the Black Muslim movement. His fascinating perspective on the lies and limitations of the American Dream, and the inherent racism in a society that denies its nonwhite citizens the opportunity to dream, gives extraordinary insight into the most urgent issues of our own time. The Autobiography of Malcolm X stands as the definitive statement of a movement and a man whose work was never completed but whose message is timeless. It is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand America.

 

“Malcolm X’s autobiography seemed to offer something different. His repeated acts of self-creation spoke to me; the blunt poetry of his words, his unadorned insistence on respect, promised a new and uncompromising order, martial in its discipline, forged through sheer force of will.”—Barack Obama

 

Loving Day

By Mat Johnson

Warren Duffy has returned to America for all the worst reasons: His marriage to a beautiful Welsh woman has come apart; his comics shop in Cardiff has failed; and his Irish American father has died, bequeathing to Warren his last possession, a roofless, half-renovated mansion in the heart of black Philadelphia. On his first night in his new home, Warren spies two figures outside in the grass. When he screws up the nerve to confront them, they disappear. The next day he encounters ghosts of a different kind: In the face of a teenage girl he meets at a comics convention he sees the mingled features of his white father and his black mother, both now dead. The girl, Tal, is his daughter, and she’s been raised to think she’s white.

“[Mat Johnson’s] unrelenting examination of blackness, whiteness and everything in between is handled with ruthless candor and riotous humor.”—Los Angeles Times

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

by Michelle Alexander

Once in a great while a book comes along that changes the way we see the world and helps to fuel a nationwide social movement. The New Jim Crow is such a book. Praised by Harvard Law professor Lani Guinier as “brave and bold,” this book directly challenges the notion that the election of Barack Obama signals a new era of colorblindness. With dazzling candor, legal scholar Michelle Alexander argues that “we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it.” By targeting black men through the War on Drugs and decimating communities of color, the U.S. criminal justice system functions as a contemporary system of racial control—relegating millions to a permanent second-class status—even as it formally adheres to the principle of colorblindness.

“Rothstein’s work should make everyone, all across the political spectrum, reconsider what it is we allow those in power to do in the name of ‘social harmony’ and ‘progress’ with more skepticism… The Color of Law shows what happens when Americans lose their natural rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, or in the case of African-Americans, when there are those still waiting to receive them in full.” – American Conservative

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance

By Barack Obama

In this lyrical, unsentimental, and compelling memoir, the son of a black African father and a white American mother searches for a workable meaning to his life as a black American. It begins in New York, where Barack Obama learns that his father—a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man—has been killed in a car accident. This sudden death inspires an emotional odyssey—first to a small town in Kansas, from which he retraces the migration of his mother’s family to Hawaii, and then to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family, confronts the bitter truth of his father’s life, and at last reconciles his divided inheritance.

“Beautifully crafted . . . moving and candid . . . This book belongs on the shelf beside works like James McBride’s The Color of Water and Gregory Howard Williams’s Life on the Color Line as a tale of living astride America’s racial categories.”—Scott Turow

 

Behold the Dreamers

By Imbolo Mbue

Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem, has come to the United States to provide a better life for himself, his wife, Neni, and their six-year-old son. In the fall of 2007, Jende can hardly believe his luck when he lands a job as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, a senior executive at Lehman Brothers. Clark demands punctuality, discretion, and loyalty—and Jende is eager to please. Clark’s wife, Cindy, even offers Neni temporary work at the Edwardses’ summer home in the Hamptons. With these opportunities, Jende and Neni can at last gain a foothold in America and imagine a brighter future.

However, the world of great power and privilege conceals troubling secrets, and soon Jende and Neni notice cracks in their employers’ façades.

When the financial world is rocked by the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the Jongas are desperate to keep Jende’s job—even as their marriage threatens to fall apart. As all four lives are dramatically upended, Jende and Neni are forced to make an impossible choice.

“A witty, compassionate, swiftly paced novel that takes on race, immigration, family and the dangers of capitalist excess.”—St. Louis Post-Dispatch

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

 

 

How to Be Less Stupid About Race: On Racism, White Supremacy, and the Racial Divide

By Crystal Marie Fleming

How to Be Less Stupid About Race is your essential guide to breaking through the half-truths and ridiculous misconceptions that have thoroughly corrupted the way race is represented in the classroom, pop culture, media, and politics. Centuries after our nation was founded on genocide, settler colonialism, and slavery, many Americans are kinda-sorta-maybe waking up to the reality that our racial politics are (still) garbage. But in the midst of this reckoning, widespread denial and misunderstandings about race persist, even as white supremacy and racial injustice are more visible than ever before.

Combining no-holds-barred social critique, humorous personal anecdotes, and analysis of the latest interdisciplinary scholarship on systemic racism, sociologist Crystal M. Fleming provides a fresh, accessible, and irreverent take on everything that’s wrong with our “national conversation about race.”

“Fleming offers a crash course in what will be a radically new perspective for most and a provocative challenge that should inspire those who disagree with her to at least consider their basic preconceptions . . . . A deft, angry analysis for angry times.” —Kirkus Reviews

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Brown Girl Dreaming

By Jacqueline Woodson

Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child’s soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson’s eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become.

“Ms. Woodson writes with a sure understanding of the thoughts of young people, offering a poetic, eloquent narrative that is not simply a story . . . but a mature exploration of grown-up issues and self-discovery.”—The New York Times

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration

By Isabel Wilkerson

From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data and official records, to write this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.

With stunning historical detail, Wilkerson tells this story through the lives of three unique individuals: Ida Mae Gladney, who in 1937 left sharecropping and prejudice in Mississippi for Chicago, where she achieved quiet blue-collar success and, in old age, voted for Barack Obama when he ran for an Illinois Senate seat; sharp and quick-tempered George Starling, who in 1945 fled Florida for Harlem, where he endangered his job fighting for civil rights, saw his family fall, and finally found peace in God; and Robert Foster, who left Louisiana in 1953 to pursue a medical career, the personal physician to Ray Charles as part of a glitteringly successful medical career, which allowed him to purchase a grand home where he often threw exuberant parties.

“The Warmth of Other Suns is a brilliant and stirring epic, the first book to cover the full half-century of the Great Migration… Wilkerson combines impressive research…with great narrative and literary power. Ms. Wilkerson does for the Great Migration what John Steinbeck did for the Okies in his fiction masterpiece, The Grapes of Wrath; she humanizes history, giving it emotional and psychological depth.”— Wall Street Journal

 

Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More

By Janet Mock

With unflinching honesty and moving prose, Janet Mock relays her experiences of growing up young, multiracial, poor, and trans in America, offering readers accessible language while imparting vital insight about the unique challenges and vulnerabilities of a marginalized and misunderstood population. Though undoubtedly an account of one woman’s quest for self at all costs, Redefining Realness is a powerful vision of possibility and self-realization, pushing us all toward greater acceptance of one another—and of ourselves—showing as never before how to be unapologetic and real.

“An eye-opening and unapologetic story that is much greater than mere disclosure…. An enlightening, much-needed perspective on transgender identity.”, Kirkus Reviews

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Black Leopard, Red Wolf (The Dark Star Trilogy)

By Marlon James

Tracker is known far and wide for his skills as a hunter: “He has a nose,” people say. Engaged to track down a mysterious boy who disappeared three years earlier, Tracker breaks his own rule of always working alone when he finds himself part of a group that comes together to search for the boy. The band is a hodgepodge, full of unusual characters with secrets of their own, including a shape-shifting man-animal known as Leopard.

Drawing from African history and mythology and his own rich imagination, Marlon James has written a novel unlike anything that’s come before it: a saga of breathtaking adventure that’s also an ambitious, involving read. Defying categorization and full of unforgettable characters, Black Leopard, Red Wolf is both surprising and profound as it explores the fundamentals of truth, the limits of power, and our need to understand them both.

“Black Leopard, Red Wolf is bawdy (OK, filthy), lyrical, poignant, violent (sometimes hyperviolent), riotous, funny (filthily hilarious), complex, mysterious, and always under tight and exquisite control…A world that is both fresh and beautifully realized….Absolutely brilliant.” —LA Times

 

Fire Shut Up in My Bones

By Charles M. Blow

Charles M. Blow’s mother was a fiercely driven woman with five sons, brass knuckles in her glove box, and a job plucking poultry at a factory near their segregated Louisiana town, where slavery’s legacy felt close. When her philandering husband finally pushed her over the edge, she fired a pistol at his fleeing back, missing every shot, thanks to “love that blurred her vision and bent the barrel.” Charles was the baby of the family, fiercely attached to his “do-right” mother. Until one day that divided his life into Before and After—the day an older cousin took advantage of the young boy. The story of how Charles escaped that world to become one of America’s most innovative and respected public figures is a stirring, redemptive journey that works its way into the deepest chambers of the heart.

 “Some truths cannot be taught, only learned through stories – profoundly personal and startlingly honest accounts that open not only our eyes but also our hearts to painful and complicated social realities. Charles Blow’s memoir tells these kinds of truths. No one who reads this book will be able to forget it. It lays bare in so many ways what is beautiful, cruel, hopeful and despairing about race, gender, class and sexuality in the American South and our nation as a whole. This book is more than a personal triumph; it is a true gift to us all.” – Michelle Alexander (author of The New Jim Crow)

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Nickel Boys

By Colson Whitehead

When Elwood Curtis, a black boy growing up in 1960s Tallahassee, is unfairly sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, he finds himself trapped in a grotesque chamber of horrors. Elwood’s only salvation is his friendship with fellow “delinquent” Turner, which deepens despite Turner’s conviction that Elwood is hopelessly naive, that the world is crooked, and that the only way to survive is to scheme and avoid trouble. As life at the Academy becomes ever more perilous, the tension between Elwood’s ideals and Turner’s skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades.

Based on the real story of a reform school that operated for 111 years and warped the lives of thousands of children, The Nickel Boys is a devastating, driven narrative that showcases a great American novelist writing at the height of his powers.

“Whitehead’s magnetic characters exemplify stoicism and courage, and each supremely crafted scene smolders and flares with injustice and resistance, building to a staggering revelation. Inspired by an actual school, Whitehead’s potently concentrated drama pinpoints the brutality and insidiousness of Jim Crow racism with compassion and protest. . . . A scorching work.” —Booklist, starred review

 

How Not to Get Shot: And Other Advice from White People

By D.L. Hughley, Doug Moe

In America, a black man is three times more likely to be killed in encounters with police than a white guy. If only he had complied with the cop, he might be alive today, pundits say in the aftermath of the latest shooting of an unarmed black man. Or, Maybe he shouldn’t have worn that hoodie … or, moved more slowly … not been out so late … Wait, why are black people allowed to drive, anyway? With so much heartfelt guidance flying around, it seems there’s been a failure to communicate.

This isn’t a new phenomenon. White people have been giving “advice” to black folks for as long as anyone can remember, telling them how to pick cotton, where to sit on a bus, what neighborhood to live in, when they can vote, and how to wear our pants. Despite centuries of whites’ advice, it seems black people still aren’t listening, and the results are tragic.

Now, at last, activist, comedian, and New York Times bestselling author D. L. Hughley offers How Not to Get Shot, an illustrated how-to guide for black people, full of insight from white people, translated by one of the funniest black dudes on the planet. In these pages you will learn how to act, dress, speak, walk, and drive in the safest manner possible. You also will finally understand the white mind. It is a book that can save lives. Or at least laugh through the pain.

“In his hilarious yet soul-shaking truth-telling book, Hughley touches on politics, race, and life as a black American as only he can.” – Black Enterprise

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Black Enough: Stories of Being Young & Black in America

by Ibi Zoboi

Black Enough is a star-studded anthology edited by National Book Award finalist Ibi Zoboi that will delve into the closeted thoughts, hidden experiences, and daily struggles of black teens across the country. From a spectrum of backgrounds—urban and rural, wealthy and poor, mixed race, immigrants, and more—Black Enough showcases diversity within diversity.

Whether it’s New York Times bestselling author Jason Reynolds writing about #blackboyjoy or Newbery Honor-winning author Renee Watson talking about black girls at camp in Portland, or emerging author Jay Coles’s story about two cowboys kissing in the south—Black Enough is an essential collection full of captivating coming-of-age stories about what it’s like to be young and black in America. (less)

“A compilation of short stories that offers unique perspectives on what it means to be young and black in America today. Each entry is deftly woven and full of such complex humanity that teens will identify with and see some of their own struggles in these characters. The entries offer a rich tableau of the black teen diaspora in an accessible way.” –  School Library Journal

 This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Americanah

By Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Ifemelu and Obinze are young and in love when they depart military-ruled Nigeria for the West. Beautiful, self-assured Ifemelu heads for America, where despite her academic success, she is forced to grapple with what it means to be black for the first time. Quiet, thoughtful Obinze had hoped to join her, but with post-9/11 America closed to him, he instead plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Fifteen years later, they reunite in a newly democratic Nigeria, and reignite their passion—for each other and for their homeland.

“Masterful. . . . An expansive, epic love story. . . . Pulls no punches with regard to race, class and the high-risk, heart-tearing struggle for belonging in a fractured world.” —O, The Oprah Magazine

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Hate U Give

By Angie Thomas

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

“Beautifully written in Starr’s authentic first-person voice, this is a marvel of verisimilitude as it insightfully examines two worlds in collision. An inarguably important book that demands the widest possible readership.” – Booklist

 

Five-Carat Soul

By James McBride

The stories in Five-Carat Soul—none of them ever published before—spring from the place where identity, humanity, and history converge. They’re funny and poignant, insightful and unpredictable, imaginative and authentic—all told with McBride’s unrivaled storytelling skill and meticulous eye for character and detail. McBride explores the ways we learn from the world and the people around us. An antiques dealer discovers that a legendary toy commissioned by Civil War General Robert E. Lee now sits in the home of a black minister in Queens. Five strangers find themselves thrown together and face unexpected judgment. An American president draws inspiration from a conversation he overhears in a stable. And members of The Five-Carat Soul Bottom Bone Band recount stories from their own messy and hilarious lives.

“McBride delivers pure gold… Five-Carat Soul shakes with laughter, grips with passion and oozes wisdom.” —Shelf Awareness

 

Don’t Call Us Dead

By Danez Smith

Award-winning poet Danez Smith is a groundbreaking force, celebrated for deft lyrics, urgent subjects, and performative power. Don’t Call Us Dead opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police, a place where suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten and replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved here on earth. Smith turns then to desire, mortality―the dangers experienced in skin and body and blood―and a diagnosis of HIV positive. “Some of us are killed / in pieces,” Smith writes, “some of us all at once.” Don’t Call Us Dead is an astonishing and ambitious collection, one that confronts, praises, and rebukes America―“Dear White America”―where every day is too often a funeral and not often enough a miracle.

“These poems can’t make history vanish, but they can contend against it with the force of a restorative imagination. Smith’s work is about that imagination―its role in repairing and sustaining communities, and in making the world more bearable. . . . Their poems are enriched to the point of volatility, but they pay out, often, in sudden joy. . . . But they also know the magic trick of making writing on the page operate like the most ecstatic speech.”―The New Yorker

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After

By Clemantine Wamariya

Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when her mother and father began to speak in whispers, when neighbors began to disappear, and when she heard the loud, ugly sounds her brother said were thunder. In 1994, she and her fifteen-year-old sister, Claire, fled the Rwandan massacre and spent the next six years migrating through seven African countries, searching for safety—perpetually hungry, imprisoned and abused, enduring and escaping refugee camps, finding unexpected kindness, witnessing inhuman cruelty. They did not know whether their parents were dead or alive.

When Clemantine was twelve, she and her sister were granted refugee status in the United States; there, in Chicago, their lives diverged. Though their bond remained unbreakable, Claire, who had for so long protected and provided for Clemantine, was a single mother struggling to make ends meet, while Clemantine was taken in by a family who raised her as their own. She seemed to live the American dream: attending private school, taking up cheerleading, and, ultimately, graduating from Yale. Yet the years of being treated as less than human, of going hungry and seeing death, could not be erased. She felt at the same time six years old and one hundred years old

“Heartbreaking and honest, this important memoir explores the lasting effects that trauma and destruction have on an individual and emphasizes the human ability to overcome it all and build a new future—even when that new life comes with horrors of its own.” -Real Simple

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Underground Railroad

By Colson Whitehead

Cora is a young slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. An outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is on the cusp of womanhood—where greater pain awaits. And so when Caesar, a slave who has recently arrived from Virginia, urges her to join him on the Underground Railroad, she seizes the opportunity and escapes with him. In Colson Whitehead’s ingenious conception, the Underground Railroad is no mere metaphor: engineers and conductors operate a secret network of actual tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil. Cora embarks on a harrowing flight from one state to the next, encountering, like Gulliver, strange yet familiar iterations of her own world at each stop. As Whitehead brilliantly re-creates the terrors of the antebellum era, he weaves in the saga of our nation, from the brutal abduction of Africans to the unfulfilled promises of the present day. The Underground Railroad is both the gripping tale of one woman’s will to escape the horrors of bondage—and a powerful meditation on the history we all share.

“The Underground Railroad enters the pantheon of . . . the Great American Novels. . . . A wonderful reminder of what great literature is supposed to do: open our eyes, challenge us, and leave us changed by the end.” —Esquire

 

Devil in a Blue Dress

By Walter Mosley

Set in the late 1940s, in the African-American community of Watts, Los Angeles, Devil in a Blue Dress follows Easy Rawlins, a black war veteran just fired from his job at a defense plant. Easy is drinking in a friend’s bar, wondering how he’ll meet his mortgage, when a white man in a linen suit walks in, offering good money if Easy will simply locate Miss Daphne Monet, a blonde beauty known to frequent black jazz clubs.

Devil in a Blue Dress, a defining novel in Walter Mosley’s bestselling Easy Rawlins mystery series, was adapted into a TriStar Pictures film starring Denzel Washington as Easy Rawlins and Don Cheadle as Mouse.

“The social commentary is sly, the dialogue is fabulous, the noir atmosphere so real you could touch it. A first novel? That what they say. Amazing. Smashing.” – Cosmopolitan

 

The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls

By Anissa Gray

The Butler family has had their share of trials—as sisters Althea, Viola, and Lillian can attest—but nothing prepared them for the literal trial that will upend their lives.

Althea, the eldest sister and substitute matriarch, is a force to be reckoned with and her younger sisters have alternately appreciated and chafed at her strong will. They are as stunned as the rest of the small community when she and her husband, Proctor, are arrested, and in a heartbeat the family goes from one of the most respected in town to utter disgrace. The worst part is, not even her sisters are sure exactly what happened.

As Althea awaits her fate, Lillian and Viola must come together in the house they grew up in to care for their sister’s teenage daughters. What unfolds is a stunning portrait of the heart and core of an American family in a story that is as page-turning as it is important.

“The inequities of the justice system, the fortitude of women of color, and the bittersweet struggle to connect are rendered ravishly in this bighearted novel.” —Oprah Magazine

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

The Confessions of Frannie Langton

By Sara Collins

All of London is abuzz with the scandalous case of Frannie Langton, who is accused of the brutal double murder of her employers, renowned scientist George Benham and his eccentric French wife, Marguerite. Crowds pack the courtroom, eagerly following every twist, while the newspapers print lurid theories about the killings and the mysterious woman being held in the Old Bailey.

The testimonies against Frannie are damning. She is a seductress, a witch, a master manipulator, a whore. Frannie claims she cannot recall what happened that fateful evening, or how she came to be covered in the victims’ blood, even if remembering could save her life.

But she does have a tale to tell: a story of her childhood on a Jamaican plantation, her apprenticeship under a debauched scientist who stretched all bounds of ethics, and the events that brought her into the Benhams’ London home—and into a passionate and forbidden relationship.

Though her testimony may seal her conviction, the truth will unmask the perpetrators of crimes far beyond murder and indict the whole of English society itself

 “A well-crafted, searing depiction of race, class and oppression.” – New York Times

 

Secrets We Kept

By Krystal Sital

There, in a lush landscape of fire-petaled immortelle trees and vast plantations of coffee and cocoa, where the three hills along the southern coast act as guardians against hurricanes, Krystal A. Sital grew up idolizing her grandfather, a wealthy Hindu landowner. Years later, to escape crime and economic stagnation on the island, the family resettled in New Jersey, where Krystal’s mother works as a nanny, and the warmth of Trinidad seems a pretty yet distant memory. But when her grandfather lapses into a coma after a fall at home, the women he has terrorized for decades begin to speak, and a brutal past comes to light.

Violence, a rigid ethnic and racial caste system, and a tolerance of domestic abuse―the harsh legacies of plantation slavery―permeate the history of Trinidad. On the island’s plantations, in its growing cities, and in the family’s new home in America, Secrets We Kept tells a story of ambition and cruelty, endurance and love, and most of all, the bonds among women and between generations that help them find peace with the past.

 “One reads Sital’s story appalled and moved by the suffering of these indomitable women…A reader can only applaud the author who has so skillfully preserved them in such loving, precise detail.”

– New York Times

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

How to Be an Antiracist

By Ibram X. Kendi

Antiracism is a transformative concept that reorients and reenergizes the conversation about racism—and, even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. At its core, racism is a powerful system that creates false hierarchies of human value; its warped logic extends beyond race, from the way we regard people of different ethnicities or skin colors to the way we treat people of different sexes, gender identities, and body types. Racism intersects with class and culture and geography and even changes the way we see and value ourselves. In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi takes readers through a widening circle of antiracist ideas—from the most basic concepts to visionary possibilities—that will help readers see all forms of racism clearly, understand their poisonous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems and in ourselves.

Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science with his own personal story of awakening to antiracism. This is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond the awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a just and equitable society

“What do you do after you have written Stamped From the Beginning, an award-winning history of racist ideas? . . . If you’re Ibram X. Kendi, you craft another stunner of a book. . . . What emerges from these insights is the most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the Western mind, a confessional of self-examination that may, in fact, be our best chance to free ourselves from our national nightmare.”—The New York Times

This title has been ordered, but is not currently available at Gardiner Public Library.

 

Have an author/book we didn’t include? Please let us know in the comments!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Are We Reading?

Marlene

Being an aficionado of all things Victorian and also of murder mysteries, I am currently devouring Anne Perry’s book Callander Square which fits the bill perfectly! Having just recently discovered her, I decided to start at the beginning of her writings and go from there. Having read The Cater Street Hangman, I am now onto her next novel which is my current read. Her style of writing is engaging and her characters follow from book to book, so one gets to really become a part of their story.

Audrey

Just read Shoutin’ Into The Fog by Thomas Hanna

Now reading The Ship of Brides by Jojo Moyes

Dawn

I have a few going, naturally.  I am re-listening to Lethal White by Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling) in the Cormoran Strike series.  Also listening, for the first time to Theft by Finding : Diaries 1977-2002 by David Sedaris. 

Recently finished The Civil Wars of Julia Ward Howe by Elaine Showalter and In Cold Blood by Truman Capote.

Up next is The Dutch House by Ann Patchett and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. 

Waiting in the wings are The Witch Elm by Tana French, Manderley Forever : A Biography of Daphne du Maurier by Tatiana de Rosnay, and A Better Man by Louise Penny.

Scott

I just finished Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury.  I picked it up decades ago but just couldn’t get into it at the time.  Throughout the years it has been referred to many times in things I have come across, so I finally picked it up again.  After all, it IS a classic so it must have something going for it.  It got me this time.  Its blend of nostalgia for more innocent times, childhood memories, and just a touch of darkness worked it’s magic on me at last.  Funny how you can reject a story at some point in your life and then totally embrace it at another time in your life.

And in reference to a section of that book, who doesn’t remember how fast you can run or how high you can jump with a new pair of sneakers?  Wonderful. 

Ginni

I read Where The Light Enters : Building A Family, Discovering Myself by Jill Biden. I wanted to learn more about this family and see how they handle life with its joys and struggles. This was electrifying biography of Jill Biden that did not disappoint me.  I could definitely reread the book to get more out of it and I would highly recommend it. 

Jess

1.) The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern (2019) – I am only a few chapters into this one at the moment, but so far I am thoroughly enjoying it! – It’s about a place where are the stories of the world are kept, the sundry of ways the stories are stored (written on paper, etched into stone, threaded with spider webs, traced into the veins of leaves), and the people who protect them.

Blurb: “Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont when he discovers a mysterious book hidden in the stacks. As he turns the pages, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, key collectors, and nameless acolytes, he reads something strange: a story from his own childhood.

Bewildered by this inexplicable book and desperate to make sense of how his own life came to be recorded, Zachary uncovers a series of clues – a bee, a key, and a sword – that lead him to a masquerade party in New York, to a secret club, and through a doorway to an ancient library hidden far below the surface of the earth.

What Zachary finds in this curious place is more than just a buried home for books and their guardians – it is a place of lost cities and seas, lovers who pass notes under doors and across time, and of stories whispered by the dead. Zachary learns of those who have sacrificed much to protect this realm, relinquishing their sight and their tongues to preserve this archive, and also of those who are intent on its destruction.”

2.) The Outlaws of Sherwood by Robin McKinley (1988) – Recommended to be by the lovely Miss Ann! I am about halfway through this book, and it’s been an extremely fun/interesting read so far. As the title might suggest, it is a retelling of the story of Robin Hood, Marian, and the gang of Merrie Men; for me, it truly is a completely different look at these characters of legend. The biggest plus for me, is that McKinley doesn’t start off the story with Robin and his men already being folk-hero legends, she allows the reader to join in on their journey to their more familiar roles of protectors of the poor.

Blurb: “There have been many tales and ballads about the man we know as Robin Hood, and the lady Marian, Little John, Will Scarlet and the rest. But Newbery medalist Robin McKinley brings her unique gifts of storytelling to the familiar legends, and creates an original and compelling novel. – In the days of King Richard the Lionheart, a young forester named Robin set out one morning for the Nottingham Fair. But he never arrived. By the end of the day a man lay dead in the King’s Forest, and Robin was an outlaw with a price on his head.”

Ann

I recently finished The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware for our book discussion group.  The book was very discuss-able for the group, with more likes than dislikes.  The main character is a Tarot reader in the story, and as someone who read cards myself, that piece interested me.  I felt that the cards could have been better used throughout the story.  Hal, (the protagonist) reads cards, and refers to herself as a “cold reader”.  This is basically a person who has memorized the cards, but is using the body language, verbal and non-verbal responses, as well as social media as a way to read her clients.  I found, in reading the interview questions in the back of the book, that the author had never had a Tarot reading, nor studied the cards.  All of her information came from books that she had used.  I have to say that piece left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth.

Another book I have going is Animal Farm : The Graphic Novel by George Orwell ; adapted and illustrated by Odyr.  It’s been many years since I originally read the book, so this is sort of a fun way to remember a title.  Recently, I have found several of the more “classic” novels in this form and have enjoyed them in a different way.

I just checked out an audio book – The Rosie Result by Graeme Simsion.  This is the third book in this series, and I am looking forward to it!

Bob

Earlier today I finished The Black Lung Captain, a steam-punk style fantasy adventure written by Chris Wooding.  This is the second title in the series Tales from the Ketty Jay, (which refers to the name of the airship on which much of the story takes place).  The plot revolves around the crew of the Ketty Jay joining the captain of another craft, (who suffers from the “Black Lung” disease), on an expedition to retrieve a mysterious artifact from a crashed airship in the savage wilds.  The downed airship turns out to be from the supernatural civilization that lives at the North Pole, cut off from the rest of the world by a band of violent electrical storms.  Plenty of air battles, gun fights, and other steam-punk style action ensues.

Chris Wooding does an excellent job keeping the story moving, while allowing every member of the eight person crew to grow and develop over the course of the book.  The story is engaging and action-packed, with stakes that are both serious and easy to understand.  Readers will discover a fine mix of drama, comedy, tragedy, and romance, without any of those themes overwhelming the entire plot.  Fans of the science fiction TV shows Firefly and Independence would probably find this an enjoyable read.  The series starts with the previous title, Retribution Falls.  I would recommend reading that title first if you want to get the most out of this book, although it is not strictly necessary.

Apple Crisp

Fall is in the air and apple crisp should be in your oven on its way to the table.  Want a simple recipe from the best Maine cook book?  Here is the Marjorie Standish recipe from Cooking Down East.

APPLE CRISP

Place in buttered baking dish:

4 cups sliced apples

Sprinkle with:

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp salt

¼ cup water

Combine ¾ cup sifted all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup butter

Use pastry blender for mixing flour, sugar and butter.

Turn mixture over apple slices.  Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.  Serve warm with cream, ice cream or sauce.

Serves 6

Banned Books Week 2019

 

Each year, ALA (American Library Association) celebrates “Banned Books Week”.  This year Banned Books Week is September 22 – 28, though, here in Gardiner, our display is up for the entire month of September.

What is Banned Books Week, you ask?

“Banned Books Week (September 22-28, 2019) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it spotlights current and historical attempts to censor books in libraries and schools. It brings together the entire book community — librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

The books featured during Banned Books Week have all been targeted for removal or restriction in libraries and schools. By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship. “

Above is taken directly from the ALA website.  For those interested in the history of when Banned Books week began, the following link will take you directly to the website. http://www.ala.org/advocacy/bbooks/banned

The ALA website has several lists of Banned & Challenged books.  Looking at the list of “Classics”, I see several, many, perhaps even the majority of titles I was required to read in school, as well as books I have read since then.

Of Mice And Men by John Steinbeck and The Catcher In The Rye by J D Salinger have each been banned or challenged over twenty times.  For what reason(s)? is a great question.

Language – vulgar, offensive, profane, racist, foul, and objectionable are the terms used most often.

Other reasons listed are “the violent ending” (Of Mice And Men), “sexual scenes, things concerning moral issues, violence, and anything dealing with the occult” (The Catcher In The Rye), and then, of course the very general “book’s contents”.

As I click my way around the ALA website, there is a page available to see the Top Ten challenges per year.  Over the past ten years, it appears that the majority of challenges are to items geared toward children and teens, though there are several adult titles as well.  The reasons for challenge are similar to those previously mentioned, with the addition of “LGBTQIA+ content”, “stereotypes”, “sexual violence”, “gender identity”, as well as the all-encompassing “unsuited for age group”.

Hmmm . . . .

As a human being, as well as a library employee, I don’t feel that it is my place to tell you or anyone else what they may read, so these lists all just make me shake my head in wonder.

I will say, however, the more someone says “NO” the more I want to do, so let’s all take a chance and read a book that has been Banned or Challenged, just to be different, or difficult!

New Items ~ September 2019

FICTION

The bitterroots by C.J. Box.  The black sheep of an influential family is accused of assault.

Blood of an exile by Brian Naslund.  A page-turning, edge-of-your-seat read that breathes new life into dragon mythology.

Chances are…. by Richard Russo.  A reunion on Martha’s Vineyard reopens old mysteries and wounds for three Vietnam-era college friends.

Contraband by Stuart Woods.  Stone Barrington is caught in the web of a national smuggling operation.

Costalegre by Courtney Maum.  A wildly imaginative and curiously touching story of a privileged teenager who has everything a girl could want except for a mother who loves her back.

Delayed rays of a star by Amanda Lee Koe.  A dazzling novel following the lives of 3 groundbreaking women – Marlene Dietrich, Anna May Wong, and Leni Riefenstahl – cinema legends who lit up the 20th century.

The escape room by Megan Goldin.  Four young Wall Street rising stars discover the price of ambition when an escape room challenge turns into a lethal game of revenge.

Evvie Drake starts over by Linda Holmes.  In a sleepy seaside town in Maine, an unlikely relationship develops between a young woman who’s lost her husband and a major league pitcher who’s lost his game.

Fleishman is in trouble by Taffy Brodesser-Akner.  Toby Fleishman is forced to confront his own perception of his actions when his ex-wife drops off their kids at his place and disappears.

The favorite daughter by Kaira Rouda.  The perfect home.  The perfect family.  The perfect lie. You never know how far someone will go to keep a family together.

The Gifted School by Bruce Holsinger.  A previously happy group of friends and parents is nearly destroyed by their own competitiveness when an exclusive school for gifted children opens in the community.

The golden hour by Beatriz Williams.  This creates a dazzling epic of WW II-era Nassau – a hotbed of spies, traitors, and the most infamous couple of the age – the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.

The great unexpected by Dan Mooney.  A curmudgeon and his eccentric new roommate join together to plan an epic escape from a nursing home in this charming, poignant tale.

In West Mills by De’Shawn Winslow.  Follows the residents of a black neighborhood in a tiny North Carolina town over the course of several decades.

Labyrinth by Catherine Coulter.  Agents Savich and Sherlock wend their way through a maze of lies to get to the bottom of a secret.

Lady in the lake by Laura Lippman.  In 1966, a housewife becomes a reporter and investigates the killing of a black woman in Baltimore.

The last astronaut by David Wellington.  Sally Jansen is Earth’s last astronaut – and last hope – in this thriller where a mission to make first contact becomes a struggle for survival in the depths of space.

Lost you by Haylen Beck.  Novel of psychological suspense about two women locked in a desperate fight over a child each believes is rightfully hers.

The marriage clock by Zara Raheem.  Starting on the night of her 26th birthday, an Indian woman has just 3 months to find her true love or else she has to allow her parents to arrange her marriage.

The Nickel boys by Colson Whitehead.  Two boys respond to horrors at a Jim Crow-era reform school in ways that impact them decades later.

One good deed by David Baldacci.  Archer is a straight-talking former WW II soldier fresh out of prison for a crime he didn’t commit.

The Oysterville Sewing Circle by Susan Wiggs.  A great mix of contemporary women’s fiction, an old-fashioned friends-to-lovers story, and a big dose of #metoo reading in one fantastic package.

Shamed by Linda Castillo.  A devastating murder exposes an Amish family’s tortured past.

Simply dead by Eleanor Kuhns.   A teenage midwife in Maine goes missing in 1790.

Tell me everything by Cambria Brockman.  A tight group of college friends at a Maine college fight to keep their relationships from splintering under the pressure of secrets.

The turn of the key by Ruth Ware.  A creepy mystery in which a nanny takes a post at a haunted country house.

The unlikely escape of Uriah Heep by H.G. Parry.  The ultimate book-lover’s fantasy, featuring a young scholar with the power to bring literary characters into the world.

Whisper network by Chandler Baker.  A thriller, a murder mystery, and an anthem for any woman who has ever hit a glass ceiling, been the brunt of sexual innuendo, or felt harassed in the workplace.

 NEW MUSIC CDs

The platinum collection: Greatest hits I, II, III    by Queen

Western stars by Bruce Springsteen

No. 6 collaborations project by Ed Sheeran

Rock of ages by Billy Strings

Oklahoma!  (2019 Broadway cast recording)

NONFICTION

Crisis in the red zone by Richard Preston.  More from the author of “The Hot Zone” – the story of the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history and of the outbreaks to come.

Don’t read poetry by Stephanie Burt.  A book about how to read poems.

Last witnesses by Svetlana Alexievich.  From the Nobel Prize-winning writer, here is an oral history of children’s experiences in WW II across Russia.

Leaving the Witness by Amber Scorah.  The author describes her strict upbringing as a third-generation Jehovah’s Witness and her efforts to find her true place in the world apart from the edicts of her family and faith.

On the clock by Emily Guendelsberger.  A bitingly funny, eye-opening story of a college-educated young professional who finds work in the automated and time-starved world of hourly labor.

100 times: a memoir of sexism by Chavisa Woods.  100 personal stories of sexism, harassment, discrimination, and assault – parts of a constant battle ALL women face every day.

Outpost by Dan Richards.  The author visits the far-away places in our world and witnesses the landscapes asking – Why are we drawn to wilderness?  And how do wild places become a space for inspiration and creativity?

The Plaza by Julie Satow.  An unforgettable history of how one illustrious hotel has defined our understanding of money and glamour, from the Gilded Age to the Gog-Go Eighties to today’s Billionaire Row.

Reading behind bars by Jill Grunenwald.  A true story of literature, law, and life as a person librarian.

They called us enemy by George Takei.  A stunning graphic novel recounting the actor/author/activist’s childhood imprisoned within American concentration camps during WW II.  Experience forces that shaped an American icon – and America itself – in this tale of courage, country, loyalty, and love.

Three women by Lisa Taddeo.  The inequality of female desire is explored through the sex lives of a homemaker, a high school student, and a restaurant owner.

The volunteer by Jack Fairweather.  True story of a Polish agent who infiltrated Auschwitz, organized a rebellion, and then snuck back out.

We’re still here by Jennifer Silva.  Anyone interested in the lives and motivations of blue-collar workers and their participation in the electoral process should read this.

NEW CHILDREN’S BOOKS

PICTURE BOOKS

Hide and seek by Kate May Green

When Aidan became a brother by Kyle Lukoff

Bunny’s Book Club goes to school by Annie Silvestro

The new kitten by Joyce Carol Oates

My big bad monster by A. N. Kang

No more monsters under your bed! by Jordan Chouteau

Mighty Reader and the Big Freeze by Will Hillenbrand

Clothesline clues to the first day of school by Kathryn Heling

The pigeon has to go to school by Mo Willems

First day of Groot! by Brendan Deneen

The king of kindergarten by Derrick Barnes

Goodbye, friend! Hello, friend by Cori Doerrfeld

Take your pet to school day by Linda Ashman

The teacup café by Patty Farrin

My teacher is a robot by Jeffrey Brown

The school book by Todd Parr

Fancy Nancy: Shoe-la-la! by Victoria Saxon

The best seat in kindergarten by Katharine Kenah

CHAPTER BOOKS

Babymouse : Tales from the locker by Jennifer L. Holm

Curiosity House : The shrunken head by Lauren Oliver

The forgetting spell by Lauren Myracle

MOVIES

The secret life of pets 2 with Harrison Ford

Pokemon : Detective Pikachu by Rob Letterman

A dog’s journey with Marg Helgenberger

Cinderella by Walt Disney

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

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

 

New Items ~ August 2019

FICTION

Almost midnight by Paul Doiron.  A deadly attack on one of Maine’s last wild wolves leads Game Warden Mike Bowditch to an even bigger criminal conspiracy.

Ask again, yes by Mary Beth Keane.  A family saga about 2 Irish American families in a New York suburb, the love between 2 of their children, and the tragedies to tear them apart and destroy the future.

Backlash by Brad Thor.  Cut off from any support, Scot Harvath fights to get his revenge.

Big Sky by Kate Atkinson.  Detective Jackson Brodie uncovers a sinister network in a sleepy seaside town.

The chain by Adrian McKinty.  At once a commentary on social media, greed, revenge, love, and true evil, this will have readers searching for more titles by this author.

The eagle flies at night by Jan Anderson.  What does an ordinary community do when the state settles refugees in their city?  How does the arrival of refugees challenge the hearts and minds of residents?  These are the questions Rev. Giles asks himself and his congregation as they wrestle with an influx to the city of Portland, Maine.

Into the jungle by Erica Ferencik.  A young woman leaves behind everything she knows to take on the Bolivian jungle, but her excursion abroad quickly turns into a fight for her life.

The last house guest by Megan Miranda.  A suspenseful novel about an idyllic town in Maine dealing with the suspicious death of one of their own.

Lock every door by Riley Sager.  A woman whose new job apartment sitting in one of NY’s oldest and most glamorous buildings may cost more than it pays

The long flight home by Alan Hlad.  A fresh angle (which begins in Maine) on the blitz of World War II and focuses on the homing pigeons used by the British, and the people who trained and cared for them.

Lost and found by Danielle Steel.  A photographer embarks on a road trip to reconnect with three men she might have married.

More news tomorrow by Susan Shreve.  Family drama about a daughter’s quest to understand her mother’s mysterious death.

Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner.  A timely exploration of 2 sisters’ lives from the 1950s to the present as they struggle to find their places – and be true to themselves – in a rapidly evolving world.

The new girl by Daniel Silva.  Gabriel Allon, the chief of Israeli intelligence, partners with the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, whose daughter has been kidnapped.

On earth we’re briefly gorgeous by Ocean Vuong.  Little Dog writes a letter to a mother who cannot read, revealing a family history.

The paper wasp by Lauren Acampora.  A woman with big but unfocused ambitions moves to LA to become the personal assistant to her childhood best friend, a rising Hollywood starlet.

Paris, 7 a.m. by Liza Wieland.  A novel of what happened to the poet Elizabeth Bishop during 3 life-changing weeks she spent in Paris amidst the imminent threat of World War II.

The perfect child by Lucinda Berry.  A novel of suspense about a young couple desperate to have a child of their own – and the unsettling consequences of getting what they always wanted.

Queen Bee by Dorothea Benton Frank.  A beekeeper’s quiet life is unsettled by her demanding mother, outgoing sister, and neighboring widower.

Roughhouse Friday by Jaed Coffin.  A meditation on violence and abandonment, masculinity, and our inescapable longing for love.  The author lives in Brunswick, Maine.

Salvation Day by Kali Wallace.  A lethal virus is awoken on an abandoned spaceship in this incredibly fast-paced, claustrophobic thriller.

The Saturday Night Ghost Club by Craig Davidson.  A bittersweet coming of age story in the vein of Stand By Me about a group of misfit kids who spend an unforgettable summer investigating local ghost stories and urban legends.

Summer of ‘69 by Elin Hilderbrand.  Four siblings experience the drama, intrigue, and upheaval of a summer when everything changed – 1969.

Surfside sisters by Nancy Thayer.  A Nantucket woman returns home to find that reunions aren’t always simple.

Under currents by Nora Roberts.  A novel about the power of family to harm – and to heal.

We went to the woods by Caite Dolan-Leach.  They went off the grid.  Their secrets didn’t.  A novel about the allure – and dangers – of disconnecting.

Window on the bay by Debbie Macomber.  When a single mom becomes an empty nester, she spreads her wings to rediscover herself – and her passions.

NEW DVDs

Captain Marvel (2019) starring Brie Larson and Samuel L. Jackson

The public (2019) starring Alec Baldwin, Emilio Estevez, and Gabrielle Union

Mountains of the moon (1989) starring Patrick Bergin and Iain Glen

What they had (2018) starring Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon, and Blythe Danner

A room with a view (1986) starring Helena Bonham Carter, Maggie Smith, and Daniel Day-Lewis

Dancing on the edge (2013) starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Matthew Goode, Jacqueline Bisset

It follows (2014)  starring Maika Monroe and Keir Gilchrist

NONFICTION

Burn the place by Iliana Regan.  A singular expressive debut memoir that traces one chef’s struggle find her place and what happens when she does.

Dutch girl by Robert Matzen.  Near the end of 1939, 10 year old Audrey Hepburn flew from boarding school in England into the Netherlands, which would soon become a war zone.  What she experienced in 5 years of Nazi occupation has never been explored until now.

The honey bus by Meredith May.  An extraordinary story of a girl, her grandfather, and one of nature’s most mysterious and beguiling creatures: the honeybee.

I know what I saw by Linda Godfrey.  Modern-day encounters with monsters of new urban legend and ancient lore.

Invisible heroes of World War II by Jerry Borrowman.  Extraordinary wartime stories of ordinary people.

Love thy neighbor by Ayaz Virji.  A true story about a Muslim doctor’s service to small-town America and the hope of overcoming our country’s climate of hostility and fear.

Mary’s household tips and tricks by Mary Berry.  The Queen of Baking now shares her expertise in home maintenance and care.

Slime by Ruth Kassinger.  How algae created us, plague us, and just might save us.

Songs of America by Jon Meacham.  The author joins Tim McGraw to explore how American was shaped by music.

The Stonewall Reader.  A generous and eclectic assortment of writings about the historical Stonewall Riots.  It is divided into 3 sections:  Before, During, and After Stonewall.

Supernavigators by David Barrie.  A globetrotting voyage of discovery celebrating the navigational gifts of animals; from whales and lobsters to birds and beetles – and many more.

This is really war by Emilie Lucchesi.  The incredible true story of a navy nurse POW in the occupied Philippines.

Wild and crazy guys by Nick Semlyen.  How the comedy mavericks of the ‘80s changed Hollywood forever.

New Children’s Books

PICTURE BOOKS

Another by Christian Robinson

Bear came along by Richard T. Morris

Field trip to the moon by John Hare

How do you care for a very sick bear? by Vanessa Bayer

Hum and swish by Matt Myers

Kindness makes the world go round by Craig Manning

My little chick, from egg to chick– by Geraldine Elschner

A normal pig by K-Fai Steele

Paw Patrol 5-minute stories collection  

Rainbow : a first book of pride by Michael Genhart

Rocket says look up! by Nathan Bryon

This beach is loud! by Samantha Cotterill

Vamos! Let’s go to the market by Raul Gonzalez

CHAPTER BOOKS

Owl diaries # 5 : Warm hearts day by Rebecca Elliott

Owl diaries # 6 : Baxter is missing by Rebecca Elliott

Owl diaries # 7 : The Wildwood Bakery by Rebecca Elliott

NON-FICTION

Crossing on time : steam engines, fast ships, and a journey to the new world by David Macaulay

DK findout! Birds by Ben Hoare

DK findout! Castles by Philip Steele

The girl who named Pluto : the story of Venetia Burney by Alice B McGinty

Just right : searching for the Goldilocks planet  by Curtis Manley

Military dogs on the job by Roxanne Troup

Night sky : explore nature with fun facts and activities by Carole Scott

Planetarium by Raman Prinja

Super summer : all kinds of summer facts and fun by Bruce Goldstone

They, she, he, me : free to be! by Maya and Matthew Smith-Gonzalez

GRAPHIC NOVELS

Camp by Kayla Miller

Dinosaur explorers #1 Prehistoric pioneers by Redcode & Albbie

The Giver by P. Craig Russell

Olympians #11 Hephaistos: god of fire by George O’Connor

Putuguq & Kublu and the qalupalik by Roselynn Akulukjuk

The underfoot : the mighty deep by Ben Fisher

Wolfie Monster and the big bad pizza battle by Joey Ellis

MOVIES

Open season with Martin Lawrence

Race to Witch Mountain by Walt Disney with Dwayne Johnson

Ruby’s studio. The friendship show with Dr. Robyn Silverman

The three musketeers by Walt Disney

Wonder Park with Jennifer Garner

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

 

 

 

 

New Items ~ July 2019

FICTION

America was hard to find by Kathleen Alcott.  Three indelible characters embody the truths about this country in transition during America’s most iconic moments in the later part of the last century: the race to space, the race against the Vietnam War, and the ravages of the AIDS epidemic.

The body in the wake by Katherine Hall Page.  Amateur detective and caterer Faith Fairchild is at her Penobscot Bay, Maine cottage preparing for a summer wedding, when she stumbles across….a body.

Bunny by Mona Awad.  A darkly funny, strange novel about a lonely graduate student drawn into a clique of rich girls who seem to move and speak as one.

Cape May by Chip Cheek.  This explores the social and sexual mores of 1950s America through the eyes of a newly married couple from the genteel south corrupted by sophisticated New England urbanites.

City of girls by Elizabeth Gilbert.  Someone told Vivian Morris in her youth that she would never be an interesting person.  Good thing they didn’t put money on it.

The confessions of Frannie Langton by Sara Collins.  A servant and former slave is accused of murdering her employer and his wife in this thriller that moves from a Jamaican sugar plantation to the fetid streets of Georgian London.

Dark site by Patrick Lee.  Sam Dryden comes under attack from unknown forces as an unremembered episode from his past threatens more than just his life.

Deception Cove by Owen Laukkanen.  An ex-convict, an ex-Marine, and a rescue dog are caught in the cross-hairs of a ruthless gang in remote Washington State.

Disappearing earth by Julia Phillips.  A year in the lives of women and girls on an isolated peninsula in northeastern Russia opens with a chilling crime.

The flight portfolio by Julie Orringer.  Based on the true story of Varian Fry’s extraordinary attempt to save the work, and the lives, of Jewish artists fleeing the Holocaust.

The guest book by Sarah Blake.  This sets out to be more than a juicy family saga – it aims to depict the moral evolution of a part of American society.  Its convincing characters and muscular narrative succeed on both accounts.

Have you seen Luis Velez?  by Catherine Hyde.  A novel about two strangers who find that kindness is a powerful antidote to fear.

The heads of Cerberus by Francis Stevens.  A rediscovered sci-fi classic written in 1919 set in a dystopian 22nd century society where the winner takes all, a precursor to “The Hunger Games”….and to Hitler’s Germany.

How we disappeared by Jing-Jing Lee.  A novel set in World War II Singapore about a woman who survived the Japanese occupation and a man who thought he had lost everything.

The invited by Jennifer McMahon.  A chilling ghost story with a twist – in the woods of Vermont a husband and wife don’t simply move into a haunted house, they build one.

Little darlings by Melanie Golding.   “Mother knows best” takes on a sinister new meaning in this unsettling thriller.

Mistress of the Ritz by Melanie Benjamin.  Novel based on the story of the extraordinary real-life American woman who secretly worked for the French Resistance during World War II – while playing hostess to the invading Germans at the iconic Hotel Ritz in Paris.

Necessary people by Anna Pitoniak.  Set against the fast-paced backdrop of TV news, this is a propulsive work of psychological suspense about ambition and privilege, about the thin line between friendship and rivalry, about the people we need in our lives, and the people we don’t.

On a summer tide by Suzanne Fisher.  When her father buys an island off the coast of Maine with the hope of breathing new life into it, his daughter thinks he’s lost his mind.  She soon discovers the island has its own way of living…and loving.

The oracle by Clive Cussler.  A husband and wife treasure hunting team search for an ancient scroll which carries a deadly curse.

The policewomen’s bureau by Edward Conlon.  The NYPD’s “No Girls Allowed” sign fades in this fictional account of a real woman’s struggle for respect and success in a profession that men wanted all to themselves.

Redemption by David Baldacci.  Amos Decker learns that he may have made a mistake on a case he worked as a rookie detective – one with heartbreaking consequences, and he may be the only person who can put it right.

Resistance women by Jennifer Chiaverini.  Historical saga that recreates the danger, romance, and sacrifices of an era and brings to life one courageous American and her circle of women friends who waged a clandestine battle against Hitler in Nazi Berlin.

This storm by James Ellroy.  A massive novel of World War II Los Angeles.

Vessel by Lisa Nichols.  An astronaut returns to Earth after losing her entire crew to an inexplicable disaster, but is her version of what happened in space the truth?  Or is there more to the story?

Waisted by Randy Susan Meyers.  Seven women enrolled in an extreme weight loss documentary discover self-love and sisterhood as they enact a daring revenge against the exploitative filmmakers.

A woman is no man by Etaf Rum.  A Palestinian-American teenager, much like her mother before her, faces the prospect of an arranged marriage.

NONFICTION

The art of inventing hope by Howard Reich.  This offers an unprecedented in-depth conversation between the world’s most revered Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel, and the son of survivors, Howard Reich.

The book of pride by Mason Funk.  This captures the true story of the gay rights movement from the 1960s to the present, through richly detailed, studding interviews with the leaders, activists, and ordinary people who witnessed the movement and made it happen.

The cost of these dreams by Wright Thompson.  A collection of true stories about the dream of greatness and its cost in the world of sports.

A fiery gospel by Richard Gamble.  The Battle Hymn of the Republic and the road to righteous war.  Readers with an interest in 19th century American religious and political popular culture will enjoy this bio of the hymn by Gardiner’s own Julia Ward Howe.

Furious hours by Casey Cep.  Harper Lee worked on the true-crime story about a rural preacher accused of murdering five of his family members in the 1970s.  Cep unravels the mystery surrounding Harper Lee’s first and only work of nonfiction, and the shocking true crimes at the center of it.

How to forget by Kate Mulgrew.  In this very honest and examined memoir about returning to Iowa to care for her ailing parents, Mulgrew takes us on an unexpected journey of loss, betrayal, and the transcendent nature of a daughter’s love for her parents.

Questions I am asked about the Holocaust by Hedi Fried.  Now 94, Fried has spent her life educating about the Holocaust as a survivor and answering questions about one of the darkest periods in human history.

Save me the plums by Ruth Reichl.  Gourmet magazine readers will relish the behind-the-scenes peek at the workings of the magazine.  Reichl’s revealing memoir is a deeply personal look at a food world on the brink of change.

A season on the wind by Kenn Kaufman.  A close look at one season in one key site that reveals the amazing science and magic of spring bird migration and the perils of human encroachment.

They were all her property by Stephanie Jones-Rogers.  Bridging women’s history, the history of the South, and African American history, this book makes a bold argument about the role of white women in American slavery.

Woodstock by Dale Bell.  In celebration of the 50th anniversary, this new photo book goes behind the scenes of the hit documentary film, Woodstock.

New Children’s Books for July 2019

PICTURE BOOKS

Bruno, the standing cat by Nadine Robert

Cece loves science and adventure by Kimberly Derting

Count on me by Miguel Tanco

Dear boy, a celebration of cool, clever, compassionate you! by Paris Rosenthal

Ghost cat by Kevan Atteberry

How to read a book by Kwame Alexander

Sea glass summer by Michelle Houts

Tilly & Tank by Jay Fleck

BEGINNER READERS

Fancy Nancy Toodle-oo Miss Moo by Victoria Saxon

First little readers book level B by Liza Charlesworth

Leaf it to Dot by Andrea Cascardi

Rocket out of the park by Andrea Cascardi

CHAPTER BOOKS

The Assassination of Brangwain Spurge by M.T. Anderson

The haunted house by R. A. Montgomery

Princess Island by Shannon Gilligan

Space pup by R. A. Montgomery

Your grandparents are spies by Anson Montomery

Your grandparents are zombies by Anson Montomery

NON-FICTION

Encyclopedia of Strangely Named Animals by Fredrik Colting

How to be a scientist by Steve Mould

The science of flight by Ian Graham

The science of spacecraft by Alex Woolf

The science of vehicles by Roger Canavan

What a waste: trash, recycling, and protecting our planet by Jess French

MOVIES

Bernie the dolphin with Lola Sultan

The cheetah children by PBS with Robyn Keene-Young

Daniel Tiger’s neighborhood: won’t you be our neighbor? Animated

How to train your dragon: the hidden world with Jay Baruchel

Telling time by Rock ‘n learn with Richard Caudie

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

 

 

 

 

 

New Items ~ June 2019

FICTION

The A list by J.A. Jance.  An imprisoned fertility doctor seeks revenge.

Anna of Kleve, the princess in the portrait by Alison Weir.  The surprising life of the least known of King Henry VIII’s wives is illuminated in this volume of the Six Tudor Queens series.

At Briarwood School for Girls by Michael Knight.  It’s 1994 and Leonore is a junior at Briarwood.  She plays basketball.  She hates her roommate.  History is her favorite subject.  She has told no one that she’s pregnant.  Everything, in other words, is under control.  Right.  Sure it is.

The better sister by Alafair Burke.  When a Manhattan lawyer is murdered, two estranged sisters – one the dead man’s widow and the other his ex – must set aside mistrust and old resentments.  But can they escape the past?

The book woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Richardson.  Basically about the power of reading and libraries, this also explores the extreme rural poverty of 1930s Appalachia and labor unrest among coal miners.

The bookshop of the broken hearted by Robert Hillman.  A tender novel about love and forgiveness in 1960s Australia, in which a lonely farmer finds his life turned upside down by the arrival of a vibrant librarian who is many years his senior.

A boy and his dog at the end of the world by C.A. Fletcher.  When a beloved family dog is stolen, her owner sets out on a life-changing journey through the ruins of our world to bring her back in this tale of survival, courage, and hope.

The bride test by Helen Hoang.  A superior romance in which a young Vietnamese woman seizes an opportunity to travel to America in hopes of finding a husband and a better life.

The Cornwalls are gone by James Patterson.  An Army intelligence officer must commit a crime or lose her kidnapped husband and daughter.

The Dark Game by Jonathan Janz.  10 writers are selected for a summer-long writing retreat with the most celebrated and reclusive author in the world.  But they are really entering the twisted imagination of a deranged genius, a lethal contest pitting them against one another.

A dream of death by Connie Berry.  On a remote Scottish island, an American antiques dealer wrestles with her own past while sleuthing a killing, staged to recreate a 200 year old unsolved murder.

The farm by Joanne Ramos.  At a luxurious secret facility in upstate New York, women who need money bear children for wealthy would-be mothers.  Excellent – both as a reproductive dystopian narrative and as a social novel about women and class.

If she wakes by Michael Koryta. Slowly emerging from the coma she’s been in since a black cargo van rammed the car she was using to transport a visiting professor who was thus killed, Maine college senior Tara is targeted by a ruthless young hit man.

Lost roses by Martha Kelly.  In 1914, the New York socialite Eliza Ferriday works to help White Russian families escape from the revolution.

Mr. Gandy’s grand tour by Alan Titchmarsh.  Free with no responsibilities, Mr. Gandy sets off for a grand tour of the type popular in the 18th century.  Paris certainly, and Italy.  After that, who knows?  It’s sure to be either an ugly midlife disaster or an opportunity for growth.

Naamah by Sarah Blake.  A retelling of Noah’s ark centered around his wife, Naamah – the woman who helped reshape the world with her hands.

Normal people by Sally Rooney.  The connection between a high school star athlete and a loner ebbs and flows when they go to Trinity College in Dublin.

Rabbits for food by Binnie Kirshenbaum.  A laugh-out-loud funny story of a writer’s slide into depression and institutionalization.

Someone knows by Lisa Scottoline.  A novel about how a single decision can undo a family, how our past can derail our present, and how not guilty doesn’t always mean innocent.

They all fall down by Rachel Hall.  Seven sinners arrive on a private island for a reckoning that will leave you breathless.

Triple jeopardy by Anne Perry.  Young lawyer Daniel Pitt must defend a British diplomat accused of a theft that may cover up a deadly crime.

Two weeks by Karen Kingsbury.  A pregnant 18 year old has limited time to change her mind about giving her baby up for adoption.

A wonderful stroke of luck by Ann Beattie.  Set in a boarding school in New Hampshire, this is about the complicated relationship between a charismatic teacher and his students, and the secrets we keep from those we love.

Wunderland by Jennifer Epstein.  This is a vividly written and stark chronicle of Nazism and its legacies.  An absorbing exploration of friendship, betrayal, and coming to terms with the past.

DVDs

Fantastic beasts: the crimes of Grindelwald (2018) starring Eddie Redmayne, Jude Law, and Johnny Depp

RBG (2018) starring Ruth Bader Ginsburg

NONFICTION

The accidental veterinarian by Philipp Schott.  For all animal lovers, tales that are always amusing, amazing, and – once in a while – sad.

The art of happy moving by Ali Wenzke.  An upbeat guide to help you survive the moving process from start to finish, filled with strategies and checklists for timing and supplies.

Auschwitz: not long ago, not far away by Robert Jan van Pelt.  This tells a story to shake the conscience of the world. It is the catalogue of the first-ever traveling exhibition about the Auschwitz concentration camp, where 1.1 million people lost their lives.

Down from the mountain by Bryce Andrews.  The story of a grizzly bear named Millie: her life, death, and cubs, and what they reveal about the changing character of the American West today.

A Florida state of mind by James Wright.  An unnatural history of our weirdest state that’s always in the news for everything from alligator attacks to zany crimes.

Life will be the death of me…and you too! by Chelsea Handler.  The comedian chronicles going into therapy and becoming an advocate for change.

Losing Earth by Nathaniel Rich.  By 1979, we knew nearly everything we understand today about climate change – including how to stop it.  Over the next decade, a handful risked their careers in a desperate campaign to convince the world to act before it was too late.  This is their story and ours.

The man they wanted me to be by Jared Sexton.  Deeply personal, this examines how we teach boys what’s expected of men in America and the long-term effects of that socialization – which include depression, shorter lives, misogyny, and suicide.

The matriarch:  Barbara Bush and the making of an American dynasty by Susan Page.  A vivid bio of the former First Lady, one of the most influential and under-appreciated women in American political history.

The Mueller report.  The special counsel’s investigation looms as a turning point in American history.

Playing back the 80s by Jim Beviglia. For those who didn’t grow up in the 80s, this endlessly funny book will show them what the fuss was all about with the music and maybe reveal a few surprises along the way.

Out East by John Glynn.  A gripping portrait of life in a Montauk summer house – a debut memoir of first love, identity and the self-discovery among a group of friends who became family.

The pioneers by David McCullough.  The settling of the Northwest Territory by dauntless pioneers who overcame incredible hardships to build a community based on ideals that would come to define our country.

A woman of no importance by Sonia Purnell.  The true story of a Baltimore socialite who joined a spy organization during World War II and became essential to the French Resistance.

New Children’s Books for June 2019

 PICTURE BOOKS

Babymoon by Hayley Barrett

Diggersaurs by Michael Whaite

Ernestine’s milky way by Kerry Madden-Lunsford

Grumpy monkey by Suzanne Lang

Hello, I’m here by Helen Frost

I love you all year through by Stephanie Stansbie

Karate Kakapo by Loredana Cunti

The night flower by Lara Hawthorne

Raj and the best day ever by Sebastien Braun

The unbudgeable curmudgeon by Matthew Burgess

Wake up, color pup by Taia Morley

Wordy birdy by Tammi Sauer

CHAPTER BOOKS

The adventures of a girl called Bicycle by Christina Uss

Arlo Finch in the valley of fire by John August

The benefits of being an octopus by Ann Braden

Class action by Steven B. Frank

Forgotten city by Michael Ford

Game changer by Tommy Greenwald

The House in Poplar Wood by K.E. Ormsbee

Journey of the pale bear by Susan Fletcher

Lifeboat 12 by Susan Hood

The night diary by Veera Hiranandani                   

Nightbooks by J.A. White

Ra the mighty: cat cetective by A.B. Greenfield

Skylark and Wallcreeper by Anne O’Brien Carelli

Wicked Nix by Lena Coakley

NON-FICTION

Beware of the crocodile by Martin Jenkins

Caterpillar and Bean by Martin Jenkins

Dog days of history: the incredible story of our best friends by Sarah Albee

Inside outside by Anne-Margot Ramstein

Like a lizard by April Pulley Sayre

Map and track rain forests by Heather C. Hudak

Pass go and collect $200: the real story of how monopoly was invented by Tanya Lee Stone

The proper way to meet a hedgehog and other how-to poems by Paul B. Janeczko

Shawn Mendes by Robin Johnson

MOVIES

Frozen by Disney

Hardy Boys Nancy Drew Mysteries Season One with Shaun Cassidy

The kid who would be king with Patrick Stewart

The LEGO movie 2 with Chris Pratt

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