Wednesday, December 31, 2008
by Simon Montefiore
A 16 year old school girl is arrested as she leaves the gates of her exclusive school for noble young ladies in St. Petersburg. The year is 1916. I was drawn into the very roots of the Russian Revolution as Sashenka marries a member of the Red Guard, and eventually becomes a victim of the very world that she has helped to create. I could not put this book down.
Monday, December 29, 2008
The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror
by Christopher Moore.
If you are NOT in the mood for a sappy Christmas tale, try the The Stupidest Angel. It isn't brand new (published 2004) but it is definitely worth a look if you enjoy black comedy. It's the story of Christmas in tiny Pine Cove,
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Man On Wire is more than a documentary about a quirky high-wire artist and his dream of walking on a wire rigged between the New York World Trade Center's twin towers. It is a suspenseful tale of how in 1974 Phillippe Petit and his friends planned and carried out this stunt.
This is a wonderful story of those brave and crazy enough to follow their dreams. Sometimes life is stranger than fiction, and the story of Phillippe Petit proves it.
Watch this captivating movie; you won't be disappointed.
- Kathy S.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Izzy & Lenore: Two Dogs, an Unexpected Journey, and Me
by Jon Katz
Join Jon Katz, former city dweller, now owner of Bedlam Farm, in up-state New York, his rescued Border Collie, Izzy, and new Labrador Retriever, Lenore, on an uplifting tale of love, compassion, and the rich and complex relationships between dogs and their humans. As trained hospice volunteers visiting homes and nursing homes, Katz & Izzy bring comfort and canine companionship to people who most need it. Along the way, the author confronts his past, embraces his current life, and rediscovers the meaning of friendship, faith, and family. Jon Katz has written many other books, of which I will now be reading! I'm hooked!
Monday, December 8, 2008
by Robyn Carr
I don’t usually read mass market paperback, but I really liked the book covers and I found out that Robyn Carr is an extremely good writer. I have read every book in the
Friday, December 5, 2008
by Billy Romp with Wanda Urbanska
This is an uplifting, real-life tale of the Romp family from
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
by Sarah Vowell
I listened to the audio version of Sarah Vowell's latest book about the Puritans who founded the Massachusetts Bay Colony 10 years after the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth. Using research from primary sources as well as anecdotes from her own life, Sarah Vowell brings these people to life. If, like me, your sense of these early settlers comes mainly from elementary school social studies, this is the book for you. The audio version is read wonderfully by the author with many guest stars taking the parts of the principal Puritans.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
by David Baldacci
Being the fourth book in Baldacci’s Camel Club series, he does not disappoint. Just as enjoyable as the first three books. If I like a writer, I will try to read all of their books. David Baldacci is a great writer. His story lines keep you guessing and his characters are very memorable. If you enjoy a fast-paced suspense, you will definitely like this and probably all of David Baldacci’s books.
Friday, November 21, 2008
An Irish Country Christmas
by Patrick Taylor
The wonderful characters of Dr. Fingal Flahertie O’ Reilly, his young protégé Dr. Barry Laverty, and their housekeeper Kinky are brought to life again in An Irish Country Christmas. Share their warmth, humor, and holiday traditions, and get to know the patients and people living in the cozy Irish village of Ballybucklebo.
Other delightful books by this author are An Irish Country Doctor and An Irish Country Village. You will enjoy reading how Dr. Laverty came to Ballybucklebo to join Dr. O’Reilly’s medical practice and how he gained the trust and respect of Kinky, the village, and Dr. O’Reilly.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
by: Sara Gruen
Five out of five coffee cups that's what the Ladies of the Book Club gave this fabulous read last Thursday at our monthly meeting (1:30, second Thursday of the month, Burton Library). It's not often we agree so completely on a selection, but this love story set in the early years of the depression and prohibition thrilled us from beginning to end. Against the back drop of a circus train Jacob Janowski rides the rails, falls in love and cares for an elephant. Reminiscing as an elderly man he weaves his tale while sharing the wisdom and insights that come from being in his nineties. It is a book that may read quickly, but will stay with you long after you finish.
The Ladies of the Book Club
Friday, November 14, 2008
The Hunger Games
by Suzanne Collins
Set in a futuristic society (the former
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
by Linwood Barclay
This is the first time I have read this author. He is very, very good. I plan to read his other books as well.
In this particular book, a very bad thing happens in a good neighborhood in small-town upstate New York. The author paints a very believable picture of a middle-class family dealing with the issues of their life, and then something turns their lives upside-down. I don't want to give anything away, but if you like fast-paced suspense, you will like this book.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Eva Cassidy has the voice of an angel. Her music was little known during her lifetime, but she gained fame after her death in 1996. Her rendition of Somewhere Over the Rainbow took my breath away. She sings everything - jazz, gospel, folk, and more, and she sings everything well. Her music will touch your heart.
- Kathy S.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
by Dean Koontz
I truly enjoyed this story and simply did not want to stop listening to Christopher Lane's narration. This is an older book, copyright 1988, but it's still great entertainment.
This story with a twist includes tragedy, suspense, and an element that I don't want to share - I don't want to spoil it for you.
I highly recommend this book by Dean Koontz.
Monday, November 3, 2008
with Anthony Bourdain
If you haven't seen No Reservations on the Travel Channel you are in for a treat. Anthony Bourdain is a hip chef who is willing to try just about anything. As he travels around the globe, he learns about the culture as well as the food. For being a seasoned foodie, he is surprisingly down to earth.
In Collection 3 he visits Cleveland and spends time with Michael Ruhlman and Harvey Pekar. He also visits Russia, LA, and Hong Kong among other places. Make some snacks (you will want to eat while watching this) and find out why he is called the "gastronomic Indiana Jones".
Thursday, October 30, 2008
by Geraldine Brooks
Monday, October 27, 2008
by Emilie Richards
Jamie Dunkirk knows how much her sister and brother-in-law, Kendra and Isaac, long for a baby of their own, so she offers a very special gift . . . to become a surrogate. Jamie is also hoping this will mend her relationship with Kendra and she will be forgiven.
This book was very touching and held my interest from the very beginning. I am looking forward to reading other Shenandoah Album novels by Emilie Richards.
Monday, October 20, 2008
It's the holiday season and Mary Jo Wyse is single and pregnant. The baby's father, David Rhodes, has not contacted Mary Jo but she remembered he was spending Christmas with his father and stepmother is Cedar Cove. Mary Jo goes to Cedar Cove to find David, but instead finds comfort with strangers who open their hearts and homes to her. This is a delightful Christmas story that will warm your heart.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
Corrie ten Boom was a Dutch watchmaker who became a heroine of the Resistance during World War II and a survivor of one of Hitler's concentration camps. This is a very riveting story of how she and her family risked their lives to help Jewish people and underground workers escape from the Nazis. Only Corrie among her family survived to tell the story of how faith ultimately triumphs over evil. This unforgettable and inspirational story was also made into a movie, of which I look forward to watching!
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
by Geraldine Brooks
Geraldine Brooks' Year of Wonders is some of the best historical fiction I've read in a long while. It describes the events that take place in a small English village in the 17th century during an outbreak of the plague. Told through the eyes of 18-year-old Anna Frith in the language of the time as she struggles to survive, a year of tragedy becomes instead annus mirabilis, or a "year of wonders". It is a compelling and honest look at human nature. Brooks is an extremely talented writer, and I look forward to reading more of her work.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
by Haywood Smith
This story is about five southern women, all friends since high school, who support each other through life's ups and downs. Out of the blue, one daughter announces her engagement but her choice of fiance is a shocker to all. It's going to take a lot of southern charm (and these five women have it) to get through the planning of this wedding and other problems that crop up along the way.
I enjoyed the author's wit and wisdom and her ability to weave the past into the present in such a way that the reader does not lose interest. Looking forward to reading the author's other books.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Monday, September 15, 2008
by Jennifer L. Holm
Did you realize your refrigerator can tell a story? This is a story about seventh grade Ginny told through the use of 'stuff' such as notes on the refrigerator, memos, to do lists, school passes etc. From the frustrations of hair turned pink to the discovery of a new talent, the well designed book touchingly chronicles a year of middle school in a refreshing and totally different manner.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
by Madeleine Wickham
This book was so different than anything I've experienced lately. Funny and lighthearted, it is set in a Spanish villa. Two families, who don't know each other at all, end up there at the same time with no warning from the the villa's owner.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
by Fern Michaels
Fern Michaels' Collateral Damage is fifth in the series of the Sisterhood: Rules of the Game. Collateral Damage is the continuing saga of seven women vigilantes and how they bring about truth and justice. We cannot forget Charles who is head of the operation and presents the "projects" to the group. The current project is a trap to catch the vigilantes but these young women caught on quickly and just in the nick of time. Now it is time for payback!
Friday, August 29, 2008
by Steven Galloway
This novel follows the lives of 3 people living in Sarajevo while it was under siege in the early 1990's. A shell lands in a bread line killing 22 people. To mourn the senseless killing, a professional cellist plays Albinoni's Adagio everyday for 22 days at the bomb site. Each of the main characters are directly or indirectly effected by this act of mourning as they go about their daily duties in order to survive.
Based on true stories of the siege of Sarajevo, this is a haunting tale of the ways people coped during the siege. Steven Galloway puts a human face on the inhuman act of war.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
by Kathryn Lasky
(for ages 9-14)
It’s late November 1932 and everybody is feeling the effects of the Great Depression. Eleven-year-old Minnie Swift in
Friday, August 22, 2008
by Billie Letts
Life is dismal for 15-year-old Lutie McFee and her younger brother Fate. They live in the "godforsaken" town of Spearfish, South Dakota with their father's ex-girlfriend, Floy. Their mother is long dead and their father took off for Las Vegas to find his fortune. One day in Wal-Mart, Floy keels over with an apparent heart attack and the kids high-tail it out of town. They head to Las Vegas in search of their dad. In Las Vegas the kids find out what a cruel world it is. Just trying to survive is difficult - then help comes - from where? Could they have a guardian angel?
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
By M.C. Beaton
An entertaining 16th Agatha Raisin mystery sent in Carsely, a charming Cotswolds village. Follow Agatha, a modern-day Miss Marple, as she connects the two murders of a teenage girl and a jealous husband. The reader will be kept hanging until the final pages.
Friday, August 15, 2008
by Kate Maloy
At age seventy-five, with her husband Charles gone, Sarah is grief stricken until her home suddenly becomes a haven for lost souls. In sharing her home, Sarah learns to share her heart again, just when she thought her best years were over. A wonderful read .
Monday, August 11, 2008
by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
Juliet Ashton is a writer who finds herself at a crossroads following WWII. Searching for a topic for a book, she begins writing the members of the Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society. She gets more than a story with Elizabeth, the missing heroine of Guernsey Island during the war - she gets Elizabeth's headstrong & adorable daughter Kit and a life changing lesson in love.
I honestly did not want this book to end. I grew to love the characters and the island itself. I found myself going back to re-read my favorite passages.(P.S - the ending was just lovely.)
Friday, August 8, 2008
by Shelley Shepard Gray
Anna is abused by her boyfriend and takes refuge with the Brenneman Family, who is Amish and owns a bed and breakfast. While staying with the family, Anna helps out with the business and disguises herself by wearing Plain clothing and practices the family’s customs and religion. Anna begins to feel as if she belongs and this helps her to heal emotionally. Then it is time for Anna to go home. While staying with her parents, she must sort out her feelings and decide the direction she wants to take with her life.
Hidden is the first inspirational book I have read by Shelley Shepard Gray. I found it to be a fast and easy read and am looking forward to the author's next book, Wanted.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Old Books, Rare Friends: Two Literary Sleuths and Their Shared Passion
by Madeline B. Stern & Leona Rostenberg
Madeline and Leona met in college in New York City in the 1920s and quickly became inseparable friends and colleagues based on a passion for books. Their persistence and talent paid off and they both became successful antiquarian book dealers in the USA and Europe. A charming story that spans over 60 years!
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
by Vendela Vida
Friday, August 1, 2008
by Lynn Kiele Bonasia
Just like the cover says, “charming. . .filled with quirky characters and small-town eccentricity”. After I saw that book cover and read those words I was hooked. I had to read this book.
Rose Nowak moves to this small
This is the author’s first novel and it’s a charmer. I can’t wait for her next book.
Thursday, July 31, 2008
An ad appears in the newspaper: "Are you a gifted child looking for SPECIAL opportunities?" Many children enroll to take the test but only 4 are chosen by Mr. Benedict, a kindly but mysterious man. They call themselves The Mysterious Benedict Society and have to use all of their brains and brawn to complete a secret mission at the Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened. These 4 children, all orphans, find that they have to depend upon each other for friendship and support. I won't give away the secret mission but this is a fast-paced, exciting story for older elementary up through adult readers.
Monday, July 28, 2008
This is by far the best movie I've seen in a very long time and I'm not going to tell you one thing about it. Any description I could offer would not do justice to the film. Get the DVD and put it in your player - don't even read the blurb on the back. It'll knock your socks off!
Sunday, July 27, 2008
July and August: A Novel
by Nancy Clark
This humorous and delightful family saga takes place at Great-aunt Lily's wonderful old house in Towne, Massachusetts. This is the gathering place for aunts, uncles, cousins and friends who are all in town for July and August. With their arrival comes a summer filled with comedy and drama. The pace of this story evokes the pace of a lazy summer vacation, and is the third in the Hill family series by Nancy Clark, though it easily stands by itself.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
by Stephen King
Call me weird, but I have always liked Stephen King as a writer. Yes, his subject matter is sometimes unbelievable, but he knows how to tell a story from the beginning to the end. It is no different with this book. Edgar Freemantle has a career ending and life altering accident. To begin “his new life”, he moves from Minnesota to the secluded Duma Key in Florida. During his healing process, he meets a few new friends and also begins to dabble in an old hobby . . . painting.
He finds that he is pretty good, but the subject matter is another story. You can only imagine!
If you like Stephen King, this is a good read.
Friday, July 18, 2008
by Rachel Pastan
Jane Levitsky is a brilliant scholar of nineteenth-century Russian literature, but she is also a mother and a wife. Juggling it all becomes difficult as Jane becomes enmeshed in the diaries of Masha Karkov, the long suffering wife of Grigory Karkov. Then Jane makes a brilliant discovery.
This book combines the literary detective story with the problems of being a working mother. Just as Jane is on the brink of having it all, everything begins to unravel.
Rachel Pastan is refreshingly honest in her depictions of academic politics as well as domestic demands. I adored this book.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
by James Scott Bell
Lawyer Steve Conroy is haunted by his past. At 5 years old he witnesses the abduction of his 7-year-old brother. This haunts him for 25 years and it nearly destroys him.
Steve’s new client comes with a lot of money and dark secrets. Steve needs the job and the money so he starts searching for the truth. He finds ties to his long-lost brother but with deadly consequences. Can he finally find out what happened to his brother so long ago?
Monday, July 14, 2008
By Philippa Gregory
‘Tis the gardening season and these two fiction books tell the story of the Tradescant family, gardeners to royalty during the 1600s in
I enjoyed these books and wanted to share them with our patrons. They inspired me to do some research of my own. First, I wanted to find out more about the Tradescant family and found a book called The John Tradescants: Gardeners to the Rose and Lily Queen by Prudence Leith-Ross. Second was my interest in the history of the tulip and I found the following book, The Tulip.
By Anna Pavord
Tulip is the story of the development of a wild flower from the Asian steppes into a world-wide phenomenon. Fortunes were made and lost in the desire to acquire and trade this beautiful flower. The author spent six years doing research for this book.
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
DVD - HBO Miniseries
Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning biography by David McCullough, this film portrays the life of John Adams and his role in the first 50 years of the
Paul Giametti and Laura Linney are both outstanding in their performances as John and Abigail Adams. This is a beautifully done, inspiring drama. I can’t recommend it highly enough.
- Kathy S.
Monday, July 7, 2008
by Gary Shteyngart
I'm crazy about Russian immigrant novels and this is truly the most entertaining of the genre. Rap music loving Misha Vainberg, who only knows excess, is the quirky hero/anti-hero in Absurdistan. Banished from his beloved New York City, Misha pines for his South Bronx Latina sweetheart while living in Russia. His last hope is through obtaining a fake Belgian passport in the oil rich nation of Absurdistan. After civil war breaks out in Absurdistan, anything goes in this hilarious mad adventure.
The great-great-grandson of Nikolai Gogol, Shteyngart is a brilliant humorist as well as a talented novelist. After reading this, I devoured his first novel "The Russian Debutante's Handbook". I just couldn't get enough of his Jewish, Russian humor.
Monday, June 30, 2008
By Gil Adamson
The Outlander begins with the mysterious widow, Mary Boulton, running; running from her past and the two men who are relentlessly chasing her. The reader is brought along with Mary as she flees through the mountains of
The writing of Gil Adamson is superb, and her story is suspenseful and complex. This book is wonderful!
- Kathy S.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
By M. C. Beaton
Agatha Raisin is a private investigator who owns her own detective agency in the Cotswolds of England. The only joy in her life is the anticipation of her upcoming Christmas festival and hopeful reunion with her ex-husband, James Lacey.
Excitement begins when a wealthy widow hires Agatha because she is afraid a member of her own family is about to murder her. Her premonition comes true and she drops dead after high tea is served at her manor with her family in attendance.
Follow Agatha and her teenage detective trainee, Toni, as they uncover clues in and around the quaint and sleepy
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
by James Patterson & Gabrielle Charbonnet
Growing up, Jane Margaux was a very lonely little girl. Her mother was a powerful Broadway producer with very little time for Jane except for their Sunday trips to Tiffany’s to admire the jewelry. To help her during this lonely time is her handsome, comforting and funny imaginary friend, Michael. On Jane’s ninth birthday, he leaves, explaining that other children need his help and that Jane will soon forget him.
Several years later Jane is a successful playwright but is still lonely when she meets a handsome, comforting, funny man – Michael. She still remembered him. How could that be?
This is a story of the importance of giving and receiving love, and the transforming effect it has on a person’s life.