Listen Up! The Shadows by Alex North Reviewed

Paul Adams hasn’t been back to his childhood village in twenty-five years. He left everything, including the horrible crime committed by his classmate Charlie Crabtree, behind. It’s his mother’s failing health that has brought him reluctantly back home. There is no joyful homecoming for Paul. His mother is distraught, something horrible is in his childhood home, someone is following him, and he has caught the attention of Detective Amanda Beck. Detective Beck is investigating a crime that is eerily similar to one that happened twenty-five years ago. Is it a strange coincidence that Paul is suddenly back in town? Is Charlie Crabtree back? What did happen to Charlie?

This new offering from the author of The Whisper Man, is a haunting psychological thriller with strong Stand By Me vibes. The story alternates between the past and Paul’s recollection of the crime and the present as Paul struggles to reconcile his memories with what is happening in this new case. The tension builds slowly as the the strange truth behind both cases is slowly and deliberately revealed. The skillful narration of Hannah Arterton (Safe, The Five on Netflix) and John Heffernan (Johnathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Collateral) bring the story to life and draw the listener in.

The Shadows is a great pick for readers and listeners who enjoyed The Chalk Man and other titles by C.J. Tudor and the Family Upstairs and other titles by Lisa Jewell.

Thanks to Netgalley and Macmillan audio for an advance reader/listener copy for review.

~Megan

Imagine Your Story – Toughen Up

Lately it’s a challenge to feel strong enough to handle what life has been throwing at us. In order to do that for myself, I’m striving to step up my physical and mental fitness games in order to be ready for anything. But, I find that it’s harder and harder to focus on the “love” part of the love/hate thing I’ve got going on with my treadmill and actually get motivated!

In the past couple of weeks, to mix it up, I’ve started adding to my consistently, inconsistent virtual boxing routine and aforementioned treadmill relationship by investigating what the library had to offer me. I was reminded, when searching the catalog, of the vast collection of exercise DVDs our library owns. Additionally, through our digital services, I can find ways to motivate myself even more. For example, using Hoopla I am able to borrow access to some really great yoga classes. My current favorite is “Gaiam: Athletic Yoga, Yoga For Flexibility with Kevin Love.” And, yes, you read that correctly. Our very own Cleveland Cleveland Cavaliers player Kevin Love is available to do yoga with you, in your home…and for that, you are welcome.

When I need strength building of the mental health variety, I usually find myself turning to Lynda Hudson’s guided meditations which I check out through the library’s Overdrive page. Lynda’s calming voice always get me to relax or to fall asleep faster. She’s even got an eBook for exercise motivation. Perfect timing, Lynda!

Are you looking for ways to change up your routine? I bet you’ll find something that will strengthen, entertain or at least surprise you when you check out our Digital Library.

Looks like it is time for me to go “move it” and spend 20 minutes with a certain Cavs player. Don’t worry, my husband is just in the next room.                     ~Carol

Imagine Your Story -Variety Pack

You know how sometimes (or fairly often) it can be hard to settle down and read? I’ve found a variety pack of options to entertain myself, and maybe some of these ideas will appeal to you as well…

Magazines! From HGTV to Gourmet to bite sized articles in How it Works that help me learn something new, I’ve been enjoying flicking those pages until something catches my eye.

I’ve also been reading from the Diverse Voices for Younger Readers collection. I 100% think books for teens and younger readers can be as good -or better!- than adult books as they tell stories that are compelling but tend to be shorter (aka don’t get bogged down in wordy, unnecessary extras). Why not give it a try?

Sometimes I just listen to music while I clean or do some crafting…

But if you want to be ambitious? You could join me in the Great Courses Myth in Human History and -so far, so good!! And then I have an eye on How to Make Stress Work for You….

I hope one of these choices sounds appealing and gives you something new to try!

—Stacey

Imagine Your Story @RRPL

 

Imagine your Story – Books

Liberation by Imogen Kealey   I thoroughly enjoyed Liberation, a joint venture between screenwriter Darby Kealy and novelist Imogen Robertson. Australian-born Nancy Wake, nickednamed “The White Mouse” by the Germans, is the subject of the novel. Major Bohm, a Gestapo…

Strange Times, New Skills

It’s been a while since I wrote a pandemic post and since I am tried of writing book reviews I thought I’d muse on the strangeness of the times again. I don’t need to tell any of you that things…

New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

Here some of the new exciting releases for you to take a look at this week! A Traveler at the Gates of Wisdom by John Boyne – From the award-winning, best-selling author of The Heart’s Invisible Furies comes an epic tale…

Your Library Staff At Home… 4 Book Clubs You Can Join Now

Struggling with what to read next? This can be overwhelming, especially with the constant barrage of best seller lists readily available anywhere, yet ever changing.  Joining a celebrity or popular book club can be a great way to discover new books and possibly dive into some meaningful discussion. This can be a great option if you can not physically attend a book group.

Here are 4 celebrity or popular book groups you should consider joining now:

Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club, Hello Sunshine.  The book choices in her club focus on books written by female authors.  Reese’s current book pick is The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi

The Henna Artist - ebook

 

Jenna Hager Bush, co-host of NBC “Today Show”, Read With Jenna Book Club.  The book choices in her club are generally contemporary novels with a compelling plot.  Hager explained her book tastes in an interview as, “No matter what, you have to have a great, compulsively readable plot. Something where you cannot wait to figure out what’s going to happen.”  Jenna’s current book pick is All Adults Here by Emma Straub.

All Adults Here - ebook

 

Oprah Winfrey’s Book Club,  Oprah’s Book Club.  Oprah deserves the ultimate round of applause for popularizing book clubs across the county. Oprah unveils her pick each month, and then features an interview with the author. Oprah’s current book pick is Hidden Valley Road by Robert Kolker.

Hidden Valley Road - ebook

 

Now Read This, a book club from PBS NewsHour and The New York Times.   This is a staff created book list in which they choose a book that, in their own words, “helps us makes sense of the world we’re living in — fiction, history, memoir, and more.”  The current fiction book choice is Disappearing Earth by Julia Phillips.

Disappearing Earth - ebook

Your Library Staff At Home… Staff Highlight

Trent

Deputy Director

What is your favorite book this year and why is it your fave?

They Shoot Horses, Don't They? - ebook

They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? by Horace McCoy   Two strangers with nothing to lose in depression-era California enter a marathon dance where they battle physical and mental exhaustion.  I was fascinated by the parallels between 1930’s  marathon dancing and modern-day reality televisions.

 

What book are you looking forward to reading next?

The Wolf and the Watchman - Audiobook

The Wolf and the Watchman by Niklas Natt Och Dag

 

What are you currently watching?

I recently started Schitt’s Creek after having been told to watch it by many people for the last few years.

Schitt's Creek (TV Series 2015–2020) - IMDb

 

What are you doing to occupy your time during these uncertain times?

 I’m well into my second 3000 piece puzzle and I’ve been replaying the video game Mass Effect 3. Also, I have a sourdough starter from which I’ve made a few loaves of bread with already.

Mass Effect™ 3 for PC | Origin

Your Library Staff at Home -Sunshiny Sunday Edition!

We’re firmly into Spring now and the sun is coming out so much more often -it’s fabulous! Although Fall will always be my favorite season (warm days/crisp evening air, s’mores, the leaves as they turn beautiful colors), but also very happy to have the sunshine and open windows we can enjoy now. (Downside? Pollen. so. much. pollen. sigh…)

So this week maybe we’ll have the chance to be outside a little more -maybe listening to an audiobook like Crazy Rich Asians or podcast like Flash Forward while taking a walk, or calling a friend while we sit in the sun. Doesn’t that sound nice? (I might add a scoop of ice cream in there -cone or bowl- but that’s me ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ )

Once you’re in for the evening and  you’re looking for something to watch, I can say Victorian Slum House, the 1900s on hoopla is a series worth spending some quality time with! I’ve really enjoyed the previous series PBS has created, from Frontier House to The 1940s House, sending everyday modern people back in time to experience the daily life of that time period. As these volunteers get caught up in their new world so do viewers and soon it feels like we’re all in it together… (and reminds me how lucky I am to live in a time and place where indoor plumbing is the norm)!

Today, while I continue some serious Spring cleaning, I’m going to start listening to Wisdom From a Humble Jellyfish by Rani Shah and update you my progress next week!

Be kind to yourself and enjoy that extra Vitamin D shining down!

—Stacey