New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

Check out this selection of new releases for your enjoyment coming this week!

Yearbook: Essays by Seth Rogen – A collection of funny personal essays from one of the writers of Superbad and Pineapple Express and one of the producers of The Disaster Artist.

The Summer of Lost and Found by Mary Alice Monroe – With her family, finances, emotions, relationships and health teetering on the brink, Linnea Rutledge finds her life further complicated by her feelings for John, an old flame who turns up from California and is quarantining next door.

That Summer by Jennifer Weiner – While trying to pinpoint the root of her dissatisfaction with her life, Daisy Shoemaker beings receiving misdirected emails meant for another woman and begins living vicariously through her until she discovers that their connection was not completely accidental.

China by Edward Rutherfurd – The internationally best-selling author of Paris and New York takes on an exhilarating new world.

Facing the Mountain: A True Story of Japanese American Heroes in World War II by Daniel James Brown – Based on extensive interviews with the families of the protagonists as well as deep archival research, the New York Times best-selling author of The Boys in the Boat chronicles the special Japanese-American Army unit that overcame brutal odds in Europe.

The Anatomy of Desire by L. R. Dorn – A clever reimaging of Theodore Dreiser’s An American Tragedy follows the disappearance of popular fitness coach, social media influencer, and possible murderer, as her secret life and what she risked to have it all are exposed.

The Devil May Dance by Jake Tapper – In a fast-paced sequel to The Hellfire Club, Charlie and Margaret Marder, political stars in 1960s Washington, D.C., arrive in Los Angeles on their latest case only to be pursued by sinister forces from Hollywood’s stages to the newly founded Church of Scientology.

The Final Twist by Jeffery Deaver – Taking on a mission his father began years ago—to find a missing courier bag that contains a catastrophic secret—Colter Shaw plays cat and mouse game with a corporate espionage firm and gets some help from an unexpected figure from his past to expose the truth.

The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz – Wildly successful author Jacob Finch Bonner, who had stolen the plot of his book from a late student, fights to hide the truth from his fans and publishers, while trying to figure out who wants to destroy him.

While Justice Sleeps by Stacey Abrams – Plunged into an explosive role she never anticipated, Avery Keene, now the legal guardian of power of attorney for the legendary Justice Howard Wynn, must unravel the clues he left behind in regards to a dangerous conspiracy that has infiltrated the highest power corridors of Washington.

A Summer to Remember by Erika Montgomery – When a mysterious package arrives, containing a photograph that changes her life forever, 32-year-old Frankie Simon, the owner of a movie memorabilia shop on Hollywood Boulevard, discovers the meaning of home and the magic of true love.

Billie Eilish by Billie Eilish – A legendary recording artist shares an inside look at her life—both on and off the stage—through hundreds of never-before-seen photos.

~Semanur

New Fiction for Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

Image contains text: Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month - most titles available on Overdrive or Hoopla, and all titles are available in the library catalog. Image also includes book covers for The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo, Black Water Sister by Zen Cho, My Year Abroad by Chang Rae Lee, She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan, Gold Diggers by Sanjena Sathian, Bestiary by K-Ming Chang, Sex and Vanity by Kevin Kwan, Luck of the Titanic by Stacey Lee, Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto, and Destination Wedding by Diksha Basu.

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, so it’s a perfect time to read some new fiction by Asian American and Pacific Islander authors! We’ve curated a small selection of new and new-ish (published in 2020) books, with everything from romance to science fiction, to literary fiction and young adult fiction.

Click the image above to be taken to our Overdrive ebook catalog, where you can search for each book by title or author. Find the Hoopla ebook catalog here. Individual links to the library’s catalog for each physical book are below.

Destination Wedding by Diksha Basu

Bestiary by K-Ming Chang

Black Water Sister by Zen Cho

Sex and Vanity by Kevin Kwan

My Year Abroad by Chang-Rae Lee

Luck of the Titanic by Stacey Lee

She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan

Gold Diggers by Sanjena Sathian

Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto

The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo

Discover@RRPL

The Kew Gardens Girls

by Posy Lovell

During WWI, women were hired to replace men who were serving in the military to work at Kew, the Royal Botanical Gardens in London. Not everyone was pleased with this decision including the Gardens’ foreman Mac. The women’s lesser wages for the same work as men reflected this attitude. Ivy Adams, an illiterate teenager from Hackney, and Louisa Taylor, escaping her abusive husband in Kent, were both hired. Bernie Yorke, a former school teacher and a Quaker was also hired. It is soon discovered that Bernie refuses to enlist and he becomes a target of the “white feather campaign”. Men out of uniform were given white feathers, often by Suffragettes hoping to shame them into enlisting. Because Bernie was a conscientious objector, he lost his job at Kew. Soon Lady Winifred (Win) Ramsay begins as a volunteer worker at Kew Gardens just to keep busy while her husband is in the Navy. The three women become fast friends as they fight for equal pay for women at Kew and as they support pregnant Ivy as she waits for Jim to return home from the war.

This debut novel is a mixture of friendship, romance, sadness and fight. It’s a treat for fans of historical fiction. For those interested in Kew Gardens, please enjoy a brief tour/history at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khOfA1JhLyg.

~Emma

Review of The Kingdoms by Natasha Pulley

The Kingdoms by Natasha Pulley book cover and RRPL catalog link

An excellent speculative fiction alternate history set during the Napoleonic Wars featuring a time travelling LGBTQ+ love story. In The Kingdoms by Natasha Pulley, Joe Tournier wakes up on a train station platform with no memory of who he is. He’s in London, but everyone is speaking French. When he receives a postcard with his name on it, mailed a hundred years ago, Joe journeys to the lighthouse pictured on the card and is kidnapped through a portal into the past by a mysterious man.

Pulley’s novel is at once both a romantic love story across time and space and a well-researched alternate history that examines how the use of future technology would change events in the past, and how far nations would be willing to go for information from the future. This book is for anyone who has ever wondered what would have happened if the French won at Trafalgar, if the telegraph was invented fifty years earlier, or even what would happen if a sailing ship battled against a steam-powered battleship. The twisty, turny plot may be confusing or hard to follow at first, but the payoff in the end is well-earned. Pulley does not pull her punches, either in the story or the action, but her take on naval ship battles is visceral without being over the top with gore. For anyone who loved Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell or Naomi Novik’s Temeraire series.

Look for the Kingdoms on May 25!

Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC (advance reader copy)!

Discover@RRPL

The Sunflower Sisters

by Martha Hall Kelly

This Civil War narrative is told from three points of view. First, Georgeanna (Georgy) Woolsey is a member of the affluent abolitionist Woolsey family of New York City. She became a Union nurse who served at Gettysburg. At that time in history most nurses and doctors were men. Women weren’t welcome.

Second, Anne-Marie Wilson inherits the Peeler tobacco plantation in Maryland. She is a sadistic slave owner who becomes a confederate spy with a local merchant. Anne-Marie forces Jemma, one of her slaves who reads and writes better than she does, to write down and deliver information.

Third, Jemma is sold by Anne-Marie’s husband without her permission and becomes a photographer’s assistant. The photographer specializes in taking pictures of the dead. Jemma eventually escapes by dressing as a boy and is conscripted into the Union army as a drummer. When wounded at Gettysburg, she encounters Georgy. Soon the Woolsey family offer Jemma a home in New York City.

Anne-Marie comes to New York City to retrieve her property, namely Jemma. Before leaving the Peeler plantation, Jemma hid the book containing all of the secret information. Anne-Marie wants to destroy that book before she is arrested for treason but cannot find it without Jenna’s help.

The trilogy by Martha Hall Kelly is a treat for fans of historical fiction. I recommend reading all three novels.

The Caroline (Woolsey) Ferriday series includes:

  1. Lilac Girls (2016)
  2. Lost Roses (2019)
  3. Sunflower Sisters (2021)

~Emma

Discover@RRPL

Murder at the Mena House: A Jane Wunderly Mystery

by Erica Ruth Neubauer

Published in 2020, this debut novel takes place in 1926 at the Mena Hotel in Cairo. (The palatial hotel opened its doors in 1886 in the shadows of the Great Pyramids of Giza.) Young American widow Jane Wunderly is being treated to the trip by her matchmaking Aunt Millie. Jane’s first husband was killed in WWI. He was an abusive man making Jane fearful of any future relationships.

For some reason fellow hotel guest Anna Sainton, a self-proclaimed party girl, outwardly dislikes Jane. When Anna is found shot to death, Jane becomes the chief suspect. In pops a handsome mysterious stranger who calls himself Redvers. He represents himself as a banker, but there’s more. He latches on to Jane has she begins to investigate Anna’s death.

There is a lot packed into this cozy mystery including multiple deaths, romance, long-held secrets, a beautiful historical location, etc.  I look forward to reading the second installment in the Jane Wunderly Mystery series which just came out in March 2021.

~Emma

New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

There are tons of new releases that come to our shelves every week. With all the books being unique in their own ways, it is hard to choose between the ones that are suitable for your taste. Here are some books we picked out for you!

The Last Night in London by Karen White – A journalist in 2019 London interviews a World War II-era model to learn the story of the woman’s best friendship with a Royal Air Force pilot’s wife, who was catapulted by the Blitz into a web of intrigue and secrets.

The Son of Mr. Suleman by Eric Jerome Dickey – Targeted and blackmailed by racist colleagues, a Black professor at a Memphis university is called away from a whirlwind romance by the death of his father and a family that has never acknowledged him.

Lover Unveiled by J. R. Ward – A latest entry in the best-selling Black Dagger Brotherhood series continues the story of Sahvage, a powerful MMA fighter whose buried secret threatens to irrevocably change the world of Caldwell.

A Gambling Man by David Baldacci – Aloysius Archer travels to 1950s California to apprentice with a legendary private eye and former FBI agent but immediately finds himself involved in a scandal in the second novel of the series following One Good Deed.

Legacy of War by Wilbur Smith – A sequel to Courtney’s War finds a plot against Saffron and her husband, Gerhard, triggering consequences throughout post-World War II Europe, before Leon finds himself caught between colonialism and rebellion in an independence-seeking Kenya.

Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone – Returning to her gothic childhood home in the wake of her estranged twin’s disappearance, Cat uncovers long-held secrets involving her sister’s left-behind clues and a mysterious treasure hunt.

World Travel: An Irreverent Guide by Anthony Bourdain – A guide to some of the world’s most interesting places, as seen and experienced by writer, television host and relentlessly curious traveler Anthony Bourdain.

Blood and Treasure: Daniel Boone and the Fight for America’s First Frontier by Tom Clavin & Bob Drury – A narrative account of the life of historical frontiersman Daniel Boone goes beyond pop-culture depictions to offer insight into his Revolutionary War heroism and nation-shaping achievements as witnessed by 18th-century colonists and Native Americans.

The Perfect Daughter by D. J. Palmer – When the abandoned girl she adopted years earlier is locked in a decaying psychiatric hospital amid murder allegations, Grace embarks on a desperate search for the origins of her daughter’s multiple-personality disorder. By the author of Delirious.

Crying in H Mart: A Memoir by Michelle Zauner – The Japanese Breakfast indie pop star presents a full-length account of her viral New Yorker essay to share poignant reflections on her experiences of growing up Korean-American, becoming a professional musician and caring for her terminally ill mother.

Girl, 11 by Amy Suiter Clarke – A true-crime podcaster tackles an unsolved serial-killer case from her years as a social worker only to trigger a series of events involving eerily similar murders.

Unfit Heiress, The: The Tragic Life and Scandalous Sterilization of Ann Cooper Hewitt by Audrey Clare Farley – Documents the sobering 1934 court battle between Ann Cooper Hewitt and her socialite mother, citing the eugenics law that permitted the former to be declared unfit for promiscuity and sterilized without her knowledge.

~Semanur

Discover@RRPL

The Rose Code

by Kate Quinn

The principal characters are socialite Osla Kendall (who dated Prince Phillip), London east-ender Mad Churt, and shy Beth Finch. Osla and Mad room with the Finch family while working at Bletchley Park. (Bletchley Park is the home of England’s WWII military code-breaking activities.) Beth Finch is under the total control of her mother. In her 20’s but nicknamed “mother’s little helper”, she has an extraordinary gift for solving crosswords and various puzzles. Osla and Mad recognize Beth’s gift and convince her to seek a position at Bletchley Park. Eventually Beth discovers there is a spy in their midst at Bletchley.

Beth is committed to Clockwell Sanitarium when she suffers a mental breakdown and spends 3 ½ years in the institution. When there is talk about Beth undergoing a lobotomy, she reaches out to Osla and Mad to help her escape. There is one more item to encrypt in order to uncover the spy at Bletchley. Others who had worked at Bletchley come together to help.

There is so much to this novel including the backdrop of the 1947 wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Prince Phillip. This is the book for lovers of WWII fiction with strong female characters.

It’s interesting to note that Kate Middleton’s grandmother, Valerie Glassborow, and great aunt Mary worked at Bletchley. Both were Foreign Office Civilians in the Cover Management Y section, which managed the interception of enemy signals for decryption at Bletchley Park.

~Emma

New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

In this week’s releases we have biographies, mystery, suspense, thrillers and many more genres for you to choose from!

Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty by Patrick Radden Keefe – The award-winning author of Say Nothing presents a narrative account of how a prominent wealthy family sponsored the creation and marketing of one of the most commonly prescribed and addictive painkillers of the opioid crisis.

What Comes After by Joanne Tompkins – The grieving single parents of two recently deceased teenage boys forge an unexpected bond over the appearance of a mysterious pregnant girl who offers insight into the tragedy.

The Funny Thing About Norman Foreman by Julietta Henderson – A 12-year-old aspiring comedian pushes the limits of his lesser talents to travel across the country and honor a dead best friend’s dream of performing in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Turn a Blind Eye by Jeffery Archer – Going undercover to expose corruption in the Metropolitan Police Force, Detective Inspector William Warwick is compromised by a high-profile trial and a teammate’s romantic relationship with his suspect. By the best-selling author of Kane & Abel.

This Is the Fire: What I Say to My Friends About Racism by Don Lemon – The author brings his vast audience and experience as a reporter and a black man to today’s most urgent question: How can we end racism in America in our lifetimes?

The Venice Sketchbook by Rhys Bowen – Inheriting her beloved great-aunt’s sketchbook, a recently divorced woman uncovers mysteries about her great-aunt’s star-crossed romance with a nobleman in World War II Venice. By the award-winning author of In Farleigh Field.

Death with a Double Edge by Anne Perry – Joining forces with Toby Kitteridge to investigate the murder of a senior barrister, Daniel Pitt follows leads through London’s teeming underworld, before hostile adversaries begin targeting his loved ones. By the best-selling author of the William Monk series.

Stargazer by Anne Hillerman – Officer Bernie risks her relationship with Chee to investigate the disappearance of a former college roommate, whose confession for murder does not add up. By the best-selling author of The Tale Teller.

Ocean Prey by John Sandford – Picking up a stalled FBI case involving three murdered Coast Guardsmen, Lucas Davenport teams up with detective Virgil Flowers to investigate the suspicious activities of a sophisticated boat and mysterious diver. By the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the Prey series.

The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth – Twin sisters who are polar opposites but who are harboring a deep, dark secret about their sociopathic mother must face the consequences of both her actions and their own when one tries to start a family.

The Devil’s Hand by Jack Carr – Former Navy SEAL James Reece embarks on a top-secret CIA mission of retribution, while in a dangerous world region, the supreme leader of a cadre of assassins orchestrates a plot to defeat the United States.

When the Stars Go Dark by Paula McLain – Retreating to her childhood foster home in the wake of a tragedy, a veteran missing-persons detective becomes entwined in the search for a local teen whose disappearance eerily resembles an unsolved case from the detective’s past.

Permission to Dream by Chris Gardner with Mim Eichler-Rivas – Inspired by a girlfriend’s death to make the most of his remaining time, Chris assists his granddaughter’s search for the harmonica of her dreams while revisiting an old ambition. By the best-selling author of The Pursuit of Happyness.

The Hero Code, The: Lessons Learned from Lives Well Lived by William H. McRaven – The Four-Star Admiral, retired Commander of U.S. Special Operations Forces and best-selling author of Make Your Bed shares succinct, inspirational lessons about the character qualities of everyday true heroes.

~Semanur