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Latest Additions February 8, 2016

Posted by Beth in Fiction, Non-Fiction.
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Walking is great!  I’m not kidding.  I love being able to go on walks.  One of my favorites things to do when I have some time to myself is go on a walk.  Sometimes I do this on my lunch breaks, but usually my walks are on the weekends, before or after work.   One thing I love to do while walking is listening to audiobooks.  I’m getting some physical and mental activity all at once.  Score! One thing that many of us can agree on when it comes to audiobooks is that the narrator matters.  Some people only listen to male narrators, some only listen to female.  Some people prefer their narrator to have a British accent.  I can’t speak for the narrators of any of the following titles, but maybe you should give them a listen, or a read.

grandma gateway

my name is lucy

second street

Happy reading/listening!
Beth

 

 

 

 

Listen to Your (Sweet) Heart! February 8, 2016

Posted by carol in Thoughtful Ramblings, Uncategorized.
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It’s almost Valentine’s Day! If you are looking to land a date, it is probably time to make your move! Flowers are always nice, but sometimes you just have to spell it out for the one you love. Why not also make sure to include a box of good, old-fashioned Sweethearts candy?

candyhearts

Sweethearts (or conversation hearts) are bestselling tiny tasty treats, notable for their exclamations of love and affection. Made by NECCO, one of the country’s oldest candy company, Sweethearts’ ingredients haven’t changed since 1902, when the candy was first introduced. However, along with the times, since the early 1990s, the sayings on the candies have been changing on a regular basis and NECCO receives hundreds of saying suggestions a year. Don’t worry, original phrases still in the mix include “Be Mine,” “Be Good,” Kiss Me” and “Sweet Talk,” and “True Love” was resurrected in 1997 from the early 1900s to celebrate the company’s 150th anniversary! Wow! That’s a long time! Sweethearts must have the perfect recipe for a lasting commitment!      ~Carol

Reading…Beyond the Best Sellers! February 1, 2016

Posted by carol in New Books, Thoughtful Ramblings, Uncategorized.
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When looking for a good book to read, so many of us begin with The New York Times’ Best Seller list—thinking that if everyone in the Nation is reading something, then we should too. But how do books make it on that list? Do you ever wonder? Unfortunately, I don’t know; it’s a trade secret! bestseller

Despite the name, we do know that the “Best Seller” list we see weekly is not entirely based on sales of a book title. The New York Times was sued over this in 1983, but they won the case. The courts ruled that because the list is considered editorial content, and not objective factual content, the Times had the right to exclude books from the list!

Additionally, book titles tend to linger and linger on the list! And, since the list can be manipulated by retailers, wholesalers, authors and publishers, it can sometimes seem like we only ever see the Pattersons, Grishams, Evanoviches making the list. Given these issues, it can be a bit frustrating if you are looking for a new book or a new author to try.

So, how do avid readers learn of new authors? Well, there’s plenty of online resources out there, including several here at Rocky River Public Library! In fact, start here on this very blog you are reading. Read it or Weep is chock-full of book suggestions! After that, click on our Reading Room for more book reviews! Oh, you like personal interaction too? Stop in to the library and check out our staff favorite displays! And don’t forget to ask us what we are reading too! We’ll help you get Beyond those Best Seller lists!          -Carol

Lots of Wordy Books (aka Literary Fiction!) January 26, 2016

Posted by stacey in Book Awards, Book List, Genre Book Discussion, Literary Fiction.
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We’re starting off the year with the Literary fiction challenge -were you able to find something that was characterized by a distinctive writing style, focused more on character than plot, or prompted a high degree of interaction between reader and book? If so, then you were a successful participant in our first genre discussion! If not, don’t worry -we still have eleven more genre challenges to come. You’ll get ‘em next time!
Are you wondering what everyone had to say about the books they chose? Here we go…

Maureen: In Dostoyevsky’s final and epic novel, The Brothers Karamazov, he weaves an intricate story surrounding the lives of three brothers who each have a reason to want their philandering father, Fyodor, dead. One brother is not given the inheritance he feels he is due from his deceased mother, one begrudgingly leaves his beloved monastery work at the command of his father, and one is just disgusted with the total lack of morals displayed by his father. When Fyodor is murdered one fateful evening and brother Dmitry is implicated, the secrets, motivations, love affairs, scandals, and crimes of all of the brothers are slowly revealed to build the story to its conclusion. The Brothers Karamazov is considered one of the greatest works of Russian fiction. While not a quick or easy read (it took several months!!) it was an interesting look into Russian society of the time. If you find yourself looking for another great Russian work from a bit later time period, The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov is another fantastic, though far-fetched, literary Russian read that is worth a look.

Chris: Snobs by Julian Fellowes is Julian’s first novel and it gives us an insider’s look at England’s upper class in the 1990s and those who aspire to become part of it. Like Edith, who marries the Earl Broughton one of the most eligible aristocrats around. From the very beginning his mother, Lady Uckfield, knows why Edith has chosen her son. Will the marriage last? Many of their friends and so-called friends play a part in the outcome. So many characters, so much drama. Much like the beloved PBS series Fellowes went on to write, Downton Abbey. With one difference for this reader: He seems to not much care for the Broughton Hall characters (perhaps he was finding his way back then) whereas he loves his Downton Abbey people. Me, too.

Megan: A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly is a fictional account of a real life murder. The year is 1906 and sixteen-year old Mattie has big dreams. Desperate to earn money and escape her small-town life, she gets a job at the Glenmore Hotel. There she meets Grace Brown, a young guest who asks Mattie to burn a packet of secret letters. When Grace’s body is found in the lake, Mattie realizes that the letters may prove that Grace’s drowning was not a tragic accident but a premeditated murder. Mattie is the product of Donnelly’s imagination, but Grace Brown and her murder are true crimes. Fans of historical fiction and true crime will enjoy this story set in the Anirondaks.

Lauren: Vendela Vida’s The Diver’s Clothes Lie Empty is set in exotic Casablanca, Morocco and lures the reader in with elements of mystery/thriller. A woman—you, as the story is told in second person—travels to Morocco on her own and almost immediately her money, passport, and identification are stolen. She is at first panicked and desperate to go to the police and seek to recover her belongings only to run up against bureaucracy and corruption on top of the challenges of navigating a foreign country. Gradually she comes to see her situation—a woman without an identity—as an chance to become someone else entirely and find true liberation.

Beth: Gold Fame Citrus by Claire Vaye Watkins takes place in a very plausible distant future semi-relinquished, dried out California landscape. The main characters, Luz and Ray are contently squatting in an abandoned mansion until they cross paths with a child who they bring into their fold. With new found responsibility, they pursue a more sustainable home and discover the ambiguous power of their most treasured relationships.

Dori: In Like Family, a spare, slender novel by Paolo Giordano, a married couple hires a childless widow to care for the wife when she has some problems in her pregnancy. After the baby is born, Mrs. A stays on as a nanny for the baby and as housekeeper for the family. After eight years, however, one day she announces that she’s not feeling well and will not be coming back. Sixteen months later, she has passed away from cancer. The husband, a physicist, narrates, telling us all this within the first few pages of the book. The remainder of the book are his memories of conversations he’s had with Mrs. A, what he learned about her and her life and most importantly, he relays the importance of her to his family. Mrs. A helped them all, smoothing over differences between husband and wife, wholly loving their child, and appreciating and encouraging all of them. Without her, they are all bereft and feeling a hole where she once had been. She had an intimate role within their family, at least from their perspective, even though she was employee; she wasn’t family, but was she? Giordano contemplates the variety of love, the definition of family and the value of relationships, however fleeting, in this melancholy but sweet book.

Emma: In Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf, Addie Moore has lost her husband. One day she invites neighbor widower Louis Waters to spend nights with her. Nights are especially lonely. Nosy neighbors quickly find out what’s going on, but Addie and Louis don’t care. Gene, Addie’s son, leaves his son Jamie with her for the summer. He does not approve of the relationship between Addie and Louis, and eventually forbids Addie to have contact with her grandson unless she breaks contact with Louis. A beautiful story even with Addie’s bullying son’s interference.

Carol: In My name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout, the title character is a married New York City writer who reflects on her upbringing by chronicling a few days in the 80s, when as a grown woman, she ends up in the hospital for an extended stay. Lucy’s estranged mother comes to visit during that time, and readers learn about their strange and sad family dynamic from what the two reminisce about and the topics they avoid. This short novel about forgiveness and the bonds of family and love is eloquently written and will be remembered long after its last page has been read.

Steve: The Road by Cormac McCarthy is an excellent but bleak work. In a horrible post-apocalyptic world an unnamed man and his young son are striving to make it to the coast against awful odds. Along the way they elude gangs of violent thugs and scavenge for what little food they can find, all in hopes of finding other good guys.

Stacey: One of my favorite fiction titles to make the list of Notable Books for Adults for 2016 was This Is the Life: A Novel by Alex Shearer. Two brothers, who haven’t always had the easiest of relationships, are brought together again when Louis is diagnosed with a brain tumor and his younger brother provides whatever support he can. A small book with a big impact, there really is something in this book that is likely to make readers laugh, cry, and maybe even pick up the phone to call a loved one…

If you want to keep reading with us, you’ll want to go looking for the first novel of an author you’ve never read before! Finding the debut work of a new author can be pretty exciting, so you might want to start your search …now!

enjoy!
Stacey

Latest Additions January 25, 2016

Posted by Beth in Fiction.
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Were you snowed in this past weekend?  We didn’t see any of that awful white stuff here in Cleveland, but that didn’t stop me from treating my weekend like I was snowed in.  I turned down a few invitations to go here or there.  I stayed in my warm home with my three and a half month baby girl and cuddled.  We cuddled, played, laughed, and napped.  It was glorious.  I managed to watch more movies this past weekend than I watched in 2015 combined. I even found some time to finish a book. Did I mention it was glorious? Anyhow, here is the most recently added title to our reading room!

readers of broken

Happy reading!

Beth

 

 

 

 

 

Latest Additions January 18, 2016

Posted by Beth in Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery.
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Many people find themselves at home today in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s  birthday. If you’re one of the lucky ones who does not have to navigate the snowy streets of Cleveland, why not curl up with a book? We have thousands of titles available for you to borrow from our digital collection from the comfort of your own home. Here are some of the titles that our staff has recently added to the Reading Room:

come hell or high ball

purity

danish girl

nature of the beast

witch daughter

Happy reading!
Beth

 

 

 

Latest Additions January 11, 2016

Posted by Beth in Fiction.
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Yesterday we lost David Bowie. Admittedly, David Bowie reached his peak of fame before my time, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t dance my face off to his music while I was in college.  Not only was he a cultural icon, but also an avid reader.  Here’s an article about some of his favorite books.  And here’s a few books that we have recently added to the Reading Room.

muralist

taming of the queen

 

Happy reading!
Beth

 

 

 

Latest Additions January 5, 2016

Posted by Beth in Fiction, Non-Fiction.
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Welcome to 2016! One of the exciting things we are offering here at RRPL this year is our weekly online book chat. Join us on Wednesday evenings on our facebook page to talk about books.  We will be talking about what we are reading and look forward to hearing about what you’re reading. If you’re looking for a book to get you started, here are some titles we have recently added to our Reading Room:

away in a manger

h is for hawk

kid moses

adventuress

muralist

We look forward to talking books with you soon!

Beth

Latest Additions December 28, 2015

Posted by Beth in Fiction, Uncategorized.
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Are you over the holidays yet?  Well, the good news is the majority of the holidays that require effort are done for the year.  Now it’s time to sit back and relax, and maybe poor a glass of champagne while you crack open a good book.  Here’s what we have been reading if you’re in need of a suggestion.

love is red
Place a hold

hours count
Place a hold

paying guest
Place  a hold 

sound of gravel
Place a hold

 

Have a safe and happy new year!
Beth

Latest Additions December 21, 2015

Posted by Beth in Fiction, Uncategorized.
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We are deep into the holiday season and for many of us, that means some down time, even if it’s just between wrapping gifts and putting cookies in the oven.  If you find yourself with a bit of down time between all of the festivities, consider diving into some of these books:

 

Curious beginning
Place a hold

crush
Place a hold

flight of dreams
Place a hold

ghost to the rescue
Place a hold

 

home and away
Place a hold

Happy holidays and happy reading!

Beth

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