Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Girl Who Fell From The Sky by Heidi Durrow

A small, tightly written book that I can't stop thinking about. Rachel is the daughter of a black G.I. and a Danish mother. Her blue eyes and light skin make it hard for her to fit into either the black or white world. After her mother dies, under circumstances that reveal slowly through the book, she goes to live with her black grandmother in Oregon, where other characters come in to her life, making a fascinating story. This will be great for book clubs! Think The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison with more compassion, and less violence.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Heroic Measures, by Jill Ciment


Heroic Measures, by Jill Ciment, is a gem of a novella, whose action takes place over a single weekend. It only has three main characters: Ruth, a retired teacher, Alex, a painter, and Dorothy, their elderly dachshund. The book highlights the plight of an elderly couple as they try to sell their walk-up New York apartment and purchase another one. The mundane becomes tension-packed as the city is held hostage by a would-be suicide bomber, Dorothy and Alex deal with their sick dog's life held in the balance, and life's little indignities present themselves as a normal part of aging.

Jill Ciment's gift is in her masterly writing as she paints a miniature painting that is captivating, realistic, and funny.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Have You Broke Bad? the cable show Breaking Bad, Walter White is a high school chemistry teacher who is diagnosed with lung cancer and decides to supplement his income by producing and selling crystal meth.  Playing like a darker version of Weeds, Breaking Bad follows Walt's relationship with his family and his dealer (and former student) Jesse.  Breaking Bad, which stars Bryan Cranston (from Malcolm in the Middle and Seinfeld) will start its third season on AMC in March and has won 4 Emmy awards (while also being nominated for many more).  We've got the first season on DVD, and if you'd like to take a dark (and often humorous) look at getting by in America, you may want to give it a shot.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Listen to a good teen book!

Check out some of our audiobooks for teens in the YA department. Here are just a few recommendations (from the 2009 Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults list put out by YALSA):

The Adoration of Jenna Fox
Mary E. Pearson; read by Jenna Lamia

The Adoration of Jenna Fox

The Graveyard Book
Neil Gaiman; read by the author

The Graveyard Book - Audio CD

Lock and Key
Sarah Dessen; read by Rebecca Soler

Cover Image

Terry Pratchett; read by Stephen Briggs


Monday, January 11, 2010

Staff Picks

There is a new display in the Johnson Room, featuring staff picks. The Glencoe Public Library librarians were asked to list some of their favorite books, movies, Cd's and audio books. There are selected items on display, but the entire list is below. Check them out! We hope you enjoy them as much as we do.
Staff Picks
The following list of books, cd’s and DVD’s is a collection of the favorite items of the Glencoe Public Library librarians.

Anderson, Laurie Halse. Speak. (YA)
Atkinson, Kate. Behind the Scenes at the Museum.
Austen, Jane. Pride and Prejudice
-Sense and Sensibility.
Byatt, A.S. Possession.
BolaƱo, Robert. The Savage Detectives.
Boyle, T.C. Talk Talk.
Brooks, Geraldine. People of the Book.
Buck, Pearl S. The Good Earth.
Bukowski, Charles. Hollywood.
Byatt, A.S. Possession.
Camus, Albert. The Plague.
Ciment, Jill. Heroic Measures.
Clarke, Breena. Stand the Storm
Dickens, Charles. Tale of two Cities
Dubres, Andre. House of Sand and Fog.
DuMaurier, Daphne. Rebecca.
Duras, Marguerite. The Lover.
Eco, Umberto. In the Name of the Rose.
Forester. E.M. Howard’s End.
Franklin, Ariana. Mistress of the Art of Death.
Gavalda, Anna. Hunting and Gathering.
Gordon, Noah. The Physician.
George, Elizabeth. A Traitor to Memory.
Heinlein, Robert. Stranger in a Strange Land.
Heinrich, Boll. The Clown.
Jordan, Hillary. Mudbound.
Kaye, M.M. The Far Pavilions.
Kingsolver, Barbara. The Poisonwood Bible.
Kostova, Elizabeth. The Historian.
Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird.
Liss, David. Any book he has written.
Mailer, Norman. Executioner’s Song.
McCullers, Carson. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter.
McMurtry, Larry. Lonesome Dove.
Michener, James. The Source.
Mistry, Rohinton. A Fine Balance.
Mitchell, Margaret. Gone With the Wind.
Munro, Alice. Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage.
Murakami, Haruki. A Wild Sheep Chase.
Nabokov, Vladimir. Pale Fire.
Oates, Joyce Carol. Black Water.
Olsson, Linda. Astrid and Veronika.
Percy, Walker. The Moviegoer.
Petterson, Per. Out Stealing Horses.
Pynchon, Thomas. Vineland.
Rowling, J.K. Harry Potter Series
Russell, Mary Doria. The Sparrow.
Somerville, Patrick. The Cradle.
Stegner, Wallace. Angle of Repose.
Steinbeck, John. Cannery Row.
Talarigo, Jeff. The Ginseng Hunter.
Thompson, Hunter. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.
Toole, John Kennedy. A Confederacy of Dunces.
Trollope, Anthony. The Small House at Allington.
Tyler, Anne. Saint Maybe.
Unsworth, Barry. Sacred Hunger.
Wharton, Edith. House of Mirth.

Goodwin, Doris Kearnes. Team of Rivals. (Biography)
Heiligman, Deborah. Charles and Emma: The Darwin’s Leap of Faith. (Biography)
McCourt, Frank. Angela’s Ashes. (Biography)
McCullough, David. John Adams (Biography)
Truman. (Biography)
Millard, Candice. The River of Doubt.
Morris, Edmund. The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt. (Biography)
Philbrick, Nathaniel. Mayflower. 973.22 PHI
Rothenberg. Jerome, ed. Poems for the Millennium (vols 1 and 2)
Rybczynski, Witold. A Clearing in the Distance: Frederick Law Olmstead and America in the Nineteenth Century. (Biography)
Suskind, Ron. A Hope in the Unseen.
Werth, Barry. Banquet at Delmonico’s. 978.3 WER
Worster, Donald. A Passion for Nature: The Life of John Muir. (Biography)

The Awful Truth
Best Years of Our Lives (Classics)
Marty (Classics)
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
My Favorite Wife (VHS only)
North By Northwest (Classics)
Notorious (Classics)
Rear Window (Classics)
Same Time , Next Year
Stalag 17 (Classics)
Three Colors: Blue, White and Red.

Dickens, Charles. A Tale of Two Cities.
Heinlein, Robert. Stranger in a Strange Land
Mitchell, David. Cloud Atlas.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Another Take on Shakespeare

Martyr by Rory Clements

William Shakespeare's older brother, John, plays sleuth in Clements's excellent debut, billed as an Elizabethan thriller. While Queen Elizabeth hesitates to sign the death warrant for Mary, Queen of Scots, her spymaster, Sir Francis Walsingham, fears the Spanish have sent an assassin to England to kill the country's greatest naval hero, Sir Francis Drake. John, Walsingham's "assistant secretary and chief intelligencer," suspects the conspiracy against Drake may be connected with a murder John's investigating the stabbing death of Lady Blanche Howard, whose mutilated corpse was found in a burning London building. Full of historical detail, this novel brings Elizabethan England to lurid life.

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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

A Gate at the Stairs

Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf

Pub date: 2009.

Pages: 321 p.

ISBN: 9780375409288

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If you are a fan of Lorrie Moore, you are in for a treat with her new novel. A Gate at the Stairs is a bildungsroman with an engaging protagonist, a plot with strange twists, and, as always, writing that is spectacular.

The setting is post-9/11. This creates a backdrop for a landscape that is forever changed. The novel depicts a world in which people, though well-intentioned, can disappoint and even damage, where wedded harmony has cracks, where love comes at the price of loss or betrayal. A Gate at the Stairs explores the concepts of family, as well as forgiveness.

As in all of her works, Moore's language sparkles. Most important, we come to feel full empathy for the young narrator, Tassie Keltjin, and are reminded of what it is like to be young, trusting, and innocent once again.