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New Non-Fiction Roundup – September 2018 August 31, 2018

Posted by andrewfieldlibrarian in Uncategorized.
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Do any of these new non-fiction books strike your fancy?  If so, click on the title to reserve your copy!  We’ve got a lot covered here, from story-telling to university culture, immigration to opioid addiction, an actress’s memoir to a book on religion in art.

Daemon Voices: Essays on Storytelling by Philip Pullman – In over 30 essays, written over 20 years, one of the world’s great story-tellers (author of His Dark Materials trilogy) meditates on story-telling. Warm, funny, generous, entertaining and, above all, deeply considered, they offer thoughts on a wide variety of topics, including the origin and composition of Pullman’s own stories, the craft of writing and the story-tellers who have meant the most to him. The art of story-telling is everywhere present in the essays themselves, in the instantly engaging tone, the vivid imagery and striking phrases, the resonant anecdotes, the humor and learnedness. Together, they are greater than the sum of their parts: a single, sustained engagement with story and story-telling.

The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas are Setting Up a Generation for Failure by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt – The author of the best-selling The Righteous Mind and his co-author controversially link rising rates of depression and anxiety to today’s culture of safety, social media and political divides, arguing in favor of traditional wisdom that promotes grit and antifragility.

Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen by Jose Antonio Vargas – The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, filmmaker and immigration-rights activist presents a debut memoir about how he unknowingly entered the United States with false documents as a child.

Eliza Hamilton: the Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton by Tilar J. Mazzeo – From the New York Times best-selling author of Irena’s Children comes a comprehensive and riveting biography of the extraordinary life and times of Eliza Hamilton, the wife of founding father Alexander Hamilton, and a powerful, unsung hero in America’s early days.

If You Love Me: a Mother’s Journey Through Her Daughter’s Opiod Addiction by Maureen Cavanagh – The founder of the Magnolia New Beginnings nonprofit peer-support group shares the gripping story of her confrontation with the opioid epidemic in the wake of her daughter’s sudden and brutal battle with substance abuse.

In Pieces by Sally Field – The Academy Award-winning actress shares insights into her difficult childhood, the artistic pursuits that helped her find her voice and the powerful emotional legacy that shaped her journey as a daughter and mother.

21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari – The New York Times best-selling author of Sapiens and Homo Deus shares probing insights into such present-day issues as the role of technology in transforming humanity, the epidemic of false news and the modern relevance of nations and religion.

How Do We Look: The Body, the Divine, and the Question of Civilization by Mary Beard – A companion to PBS’ Civilizations chronicles the intertwined histories of art and religion to explain the irreconcilable problems that all faiths have navigated while trying to represent the divine.

Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness by Ingrid Fetell Lee – The founder of the popular Aesthetics of Joy blog counsels readers on how to cultivate a happier, healthier life by making small environmental changes, revealing the unexpected impact of everyday spaces and objects on mood.

 

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What we read this month…. August 29, 2018

Posted by SaraC in Beach Reads, Book Discussion, Book List, Book Review, Genre Book Discussion, Uncategorized.
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Here are a few of the things your Adult Services crew read in August:

Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf

Cover image for This story begins with two main characters who are widowed and have been acquaintances for many years.  Addie Moore decides to make a bold move and pay an unexpected visit to her neighbor in Holt, Colorado, Louis Waters.  Addie is having trouble sleeping and suggests to Louis that it would be a great help if he consented to sleep with her.  What Addie desires is companionship, conversation, and quite simply, someone to share her day with.  Louis decides to give it a try.  What begins as awkward & unsure soon blossoms into a wonderful relationship.  As Addie and Louis slowly begin to build a bond, the residents of Holt, and certain family members are taken aback by such an unconventional relationship for two elderly people.  This is a truly beautiful short novel about late in life love and true companionship.  The story is simple, yet leaves you thinking long after you’ve closed the book. Mary

Us Against You by Fredrik Backman

Cover image for This story picks up where his book Beartown left off.  The story is set in a small town nestled in the forest of Sweden which is trying to move past a scandal surrounding its beloved hockey team.  The story weaves the rebuilding of the people in the town as they try to reclaim their roles and identity.  This is a visceral mending of fences and coming-of-age plot which leave the reader to imagine the cold reality of life.  You’ll walk away from the story feeling raw yet satisfied.  Beth

The Elements of Spellcrafting  by Jason Miller

Cover image for This past month I finished my second book by Jason Miller regarding practical magic and enchantment. The Elements of Spellcrafting is a fun, informative read that has you look at your own spiritual practice and why you may not be getting the results you are looking for. Each chapter is presented with a humorous comic poking fun at the challenges one can face working with a magical practice. The biggest lesson Miller presents is to not let yourself or your ego get in your own way. Great for a seasoned individual or someone new to the practice.  Greg

Glass Empires (Star Trek: Mirror Universe #1)

ICover image for ‘m reading a Star Trek book called Glass Empires. Multiple authors provide three stories in one novel set in the Star Trek Mirror Universe. Even though the Mirror version of Star Trek is about conquering through might rather than exploring the unknown and forming peaceful alliances, these stories still manage to have a humanistic message with certain characters finding the strength to make positive changes to their world. Also I’m nearing the end of the book on CD of Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter. This has been an intriguing story and it is narrated very well by Edoardo Ballerini. It jumps back and forth between Italy in the early 60’s and modern day Hollywood. But it is even more nonlinear than that with a play, the first chapter of an unfinished novel, and the unpublished introduction to another character’s memoir thrown in to give the narrative variety. The cast of characters is fairly complex with more being introduced as the story unravels and many characters not turning out to be exactly who you thought they’d be at first glance. It is about Hollywood as Babylon, the sort of place that is dishonest and ruins lives, and the core group of characters who find themselves strangely thrown together in mostly temporary relationships just trying to make the best of their imperfect lives. Byron

What Should Be Wild by Julia Fine

Cover image for Maisie Cothay was born with a strange curse–her touch brings dead things to life and makes living things die.  She has been raised in seclusion with her father, commanded never to touch anything organic with her bare hands.  When Maisie’s father disappears, she sets off to search for him in the woods that border her home.  She  has always been forbidden to enter this forest because of rumors and wild tales told by villagers of men gone missing or returning with addled minds and memories. Maisie discovers she is one of a long line of cursed women who have a special connection to the wood which claims them in their time of need; however, they are then doomed to live there forever with no hope of change, escape or death. Her ancestors in the wood know that she is the one that can save them, but will Maisie be able to rescue her father or will she be trapped forever in the wood that imprisons her forebears? A very creative tale, although it drags a bit in parts and ends somewhat abruptly. Sara

The Assistant by Bernard Malamud

ICover image for recently reread one of my favorite novels of all time, The Assistant by Bernard Malamud.  Malamud was a master short-story writer, but he was also just a wonderful novelist.  In the 1950’s and 1960’s, he helped to spark a renaissance in Jewish-American literature, along with novelists Saul Bellow and Philip Roth.  The Assistant is about a Jewish grocer in Brooklyn, New York named Morris Bober, an older man with a lot of woes, who hires for unique reasons (no spoilers) a man named Frank Alpine to work for him.  The novel follows what happens after Frank is hired.  Morris’s wife, Ida, and daughter, Helen, are also main characters, and there are a lot of other lesser characters who are very memorable, vivid and alive.  The novel is evocative of the early 1950’s in Brooklyn, and there is much autobiographical material, as Malamud’s own father was a grocer.  The novel is also a profound and lyrical meditation on what it means to be a good person.  Andrew

The Shepherd’s Hut  by Tim Winton

Cover image for Clackton seemingly has very little going for him.  His mother’s recent death left him alone with an abusive father and little prospects for peace or happiness.  When a brutal accident severs the last tie he has to home, Jaxie is compelled to flee into the cruel wilds of Western Australia.  In his rush to escape Jaxie leaves severely underprovisioned for what his trek through this desolate landscape will require.  Though his past has taught him not to trust men, when he encounters Fintan MacGillis, another exile disconnected from the world, he is forced into a situation where his future depends on him.  Together they forge a tenuous friendship as Fintan searches for absolution and Jaxie peace.  Trent

New Fiction Roundup – September 2018 August 28, 2018

Posted by andrewfieldlibrarian in Uncategorized.
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Hi Readers!  I wanted to introduce this new feature – the new fiction and new non-fiction roundup – which we’ll be posting a week before the new month begins.  This is a chance to learn more about some great new books that will be coming out in the upcoming month.  There is so much to read and so little time.  Hopefully our roundups help make those decisions a little easier.  If the covers or synopses interest you, feel free to click on the title, which will take you to our catalog to reserve the book!

– Andrew

 

Lake Success by Gary ShteyngartImage result for your duck is my duck

Lake Success by Gary Shteyngart – A self-made Wall Street millionaire, baffled by the implosion of his seemingly perfect life, takes a cross-country bus trip in search of his college sweetheart and the ideals of his youth. By the best-selling author of Super Sad True Love Story.

Your Duck is My Duck by Deborah Eisenberg – In her first new collection of short stories since 2006, Eisenberg presents us with characters swimming or drowning in a disintegrating environment – among them, some former Hollywood actors, an entitled young man who falls into an unlikely love affair with a human rights worker on a mysterious quest, a woman whose face illustrates her family’s history, a girl receiving treatment for an inexplicable psychological affliction, and a politically conscious puppeteer.

Heartbreaker by Claudia Dey – The love between a daughter and her mother—and the dark secrets they keep from each other—are at the heart of this wildly imaginative novel that combines elements of The Handmaid’s TaleStranger Things, and Twin Peaks.

 

Waiting for Eden by Elliot Ackerman

Ordinary People by Diana Evans – Melissa has a new baby and doesn’t want to let it change her. Damian has lost his father and intends not to let it get to him. Michael is still in love with Melissa but can’t quite get close enough to her to stay faithful. Stephanie just wants to live a normal, happy life on the commuter belt with Damian and their three children but his bereavement is getting in the way.  Set in London against the backdrop of Barack Obama’s historic election victory, Ordinary People is an intimate, immersive study of identity and parenthood, sex and grief, friendship and aging, and the fragile architecture of love.

Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini – A short, powerful, illustrated book written by beloved novelist Khaled Hosseini in response to the current refugee crisis, Sea Prayer is composed in the form of a letter, from a father to his son, on the eve of their journey. Watching over his sleeping son, the father reflects on the dangerous sea-crossing that lies before them. It is also a vivid portrait of their life in Homs, Syria, before the war, and of that city’s swift transformation from a home into a deadly war zone.

Waiting for Eden by Elliot Ackerman – Eden Malcom lies in a bed, unable to move or to speak, imprisoned in his own mind. His wife Mary spends every day on the sofa in his hospital room. He has never even met their young daughter. And he will never again see the friend and fellow soldier who didn’t make it back home–and who narrates the novel. But on Christmas, the one day Mary is not at his bedside, Eden’s re-ordered consciousness comes flickering alive. As he begins to find a way to communicate, some troubling truths about his marriage–and about his life before he went to war–come to the surface. Is Eden the same man he once was: a husband, a friend, a father-to-be? What makes a life worth living?

Legion: The Many Lives of Stephen Leeds by [Sanderson, Brandon]

Gone So Long by Andre Dubus III – Daniel Ahearn lives a quiet, solitary existence in a seaside New England town. Forty years ago, following a shocking act of impulsive violence on his part, his daughter, Susan, was ripped from his arms by police. Now in her forties, Susan still suffers from the trauma of a night she doesn’t remember, as she struggles to feel settled, to love a man and create something that lasts. Lois, her maternal grandmother who raised her, tries to find peace in her antique shop in a quaint Florida town but cannot escape her own anger, bitterness, and fear.

The Fall of Gondolin by J.R.R. Tolkien – Two of the greatest powers in the world—Morgoth, of the utmost evil, and Ulmo, the Lord of Waters, battle over the city of Gondolin—a beautiful but undiscovered realm peopled by Noldorian Elves.  By the beloved author of the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Legion: the Many Lives of Stephen Leeds by Brandon Sanderson – A savant with a genius compartmentalized brain is hired to recover a stolen camera capable of photographing the past and discovers information with the potential to upend the world’s three major religions.  By Hugo award-winning Brandon Sanderson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New to the Reading Room August 27, 2018

Posted by SaraC in Book Discussion, Book List, Book Review, Fiction, Genre Book Discussion, Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, Mystery, New Books, Reviews, Science Fiction, Uncategorized.
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Stay up to date on new additions to our Reading Room at  http://readingroom.rrpl.org/latest.asp. Click on the book cover to be taken directly to our catalog to reserve your copy now!

us againsthow to stop timeoutsidermy ex-life

robbers librarypresident missingwedding dateword is murder

 

For All the Secret Film Critics Out There August 7, 2018

Posted by andrewfieldlibrarian in Uncategorized.
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Image result for criterion collection

As my title suggests, this blog post is going to be a brief defense of being critical about movies.  This is a defense of film criticism, because I myself am admittedly a big secret film critic, which means that I am pretty selective about the films I choose to see, and I am somewhat obsessed with Rotten Tomatoes, a website that gives you the reviews for most films.  (Metacritic is good, too.)  Why am I selective?  For the same reason that I am selective about the books I read.  We only have so much time on this earth.  I don’t want to have to sit for two hours in a dark room and watch moving images of a movie that I don’t like, whether the character development is weak, the plotting is implausible or not in keeping with the logic of the characters, the acting is poor, etc.  Of if the plot is implausible, I want the movie to have earned it.  If I sit through a bad movie, I feel it is wasted time, and it kind of upsets me.  I also don’t feel challenged by bad movies.  I feel that if not a lot of thought has gone into them, then I don’t want to invest my own energies in sitting through them.  Hence the secret film critic.

I also don’t think, I should say, that opinions about films are only subjective.  I really think there are better and worse films.  Critics definitely sometimes disagree – and sometimes films that are intensely disagreed about are definitely worth watching – but there is also often a consensus among critics about what film is worth seeing and what film isn’t.  You can see this pattern on Rotten Tomatoes.  So I think it’s possible to be somewhat objective about films.

Why am I saying all this?  Because recently I have found that there is this amazing company, with quite a few films in Rocky River’s collection, that is kind of made for all the secret film critics out there.  It’s called “The Criterion Collection,” (the logo is at the top of this post), and it is a film distribution company that, as its website says, is “dedicated to publishing important classic and contemporary films from around the world.”  In other words, it is a company with an enormous library of critically acclaimed movies.  Recently I have watched a few Criterion films from Rocky River’s collection, including “Safe,” directed by Todd Haynes, “Breaking the Waves,” directed by Lars Von Trier, and “Fish Tank,” directed by Andrea Arnold, and I was completely blown away by how good these movies were.  Everything about them, from the filming to the acting, showed such a deep and real care for telling a story well.  I left each film somewhat shaken, but with a strong sense of an emotionally satisfying story well-told.  So I left with a sense that my own experience had been deepened and enriched.

Of course, Criterion Collection does not have a monopoly on well-told stories in film.  But they are a great place to look.  So if you are at Rocky River Public Library, and you are a secret film critic, look for the “C” on the spine of the film (see picture below).  Then, if you look at the cover and read the synopsis on the back, and you’re still intrigued, I encourage you to borrow the film and watch it.  For all you know, you too will be amazed by a story told with deep care.

Image result for criterion collection

 

What exactly is the New York Times Bestseller List? July 27, 2018

Posted by SaraC in Book Awards, Book Discussion, Book List, Book Review, Fiction, New Books, Non-Fiction, Summer Reading, Top Ten, Uncategorized.
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The first New York Times Bestseller List was published on October 12, 1931.  It only contained five fiction and four non-fiction books for New York City only.  Over time it was expanded and lists for multiple cities were included. A national list was finally compiled in 1942 and published in the New York Times Book Review supplement as it is today. This list is compiled from “reports from leading booksellers in 22 cities,” although the exact data compilation process is a trade secret.

There is much controversy among authors, publishers, and others as to whether the list really represents best-seller status.  Some believe the list can be manipulated by authors, sellers, retailers and wholesalers.  The New York Times has been sued for excluding books from the list, accused of allowing authors to buy their way onto the list, and been criticized for favoring liberal authors over conservative ones (a claim the New York Times denies.) Whether it is fair or not, this list remains prestigious and well known, and according to a  Stanford Business School analysis, the “majority of book buyers seem to use the Times list as a signal of what’s worth reading”.  Here are a few books from NYT Bestseller List for the week of July 29th.  Click, call or stop in today to put a hold on one!

FICTION

1 THE PRESIDENT IS MISSING, by Bill Clinton and James Patterson. (Little, Brown and Knopf.) President Jonathan Duncan takes on adversaries at home and abroad.

2 THE GOOD FIGHT, by Danielle Steel. (Delacorte.) Meredith McKenzie embraces and eschews the values of her family of lawyers during the tumultuous 1960s.

3 CLOCK DANCE, by Anne Tyler. (Knopf.) A window into Willa Drake’s life over 50 years and how she adjusts to some of life’s surprises.

4 THE OUTSIDER, by Stephen King. (Scribner.) A detective investigates aseemingly wholesome member of the community when an 11-year-old boy’s body is found.

5 ALL WE EVER WANTED, by Emily Giffin. (Ballantine.) A scandal sends members of two Nashville families into chaos.

NON-FICTION

1 CALYPSO, by David Sedaris. (Little, Brown.) A collection of comedic stories on mortality, middle age and a beach house dubbed the Sea Section.

2 EDUCATED, by Tara Westover. (Random House.) The daughter of survivalists leaves home for university.

3 THE SOUL OF AMERICA, by Jon Meacham. (Random House.) The present political climate is contextualized through the lens of difficult moments in American history.

4 HOW TO CHANGE YOUR MIND, by Michael Pollan. (Penguin Press.) A personal account of how psychedelics might help the mentally ill and people dealing with everyday challenges.

5 INDIANAPOLIS, by Lynn Vincent and Sara Vladic. (Simon & Schuster.) A newly researched look into the sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis, the story of the survivors and the fight to exonerate the court-martialed skipper.

 

 

Mythic Lecture July 19, 2018

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It’s rare for an hour-long academic lecture to capture my attention and hold me mesmerized till the very end.  But such is the case repeatedly when watching Joseph Campbell’s Mythos lecture series, filmed between 1982 and 1985.  The series originally aired on PBS in the mid-90s under the title “Transformations of Myth Through Time” which was also published in book form.  Many Americans are familiar with the PBS series Campbell did with Bill Moyers in the late 1980s called The Power of Myth, but the Mythos series is longer and contains significantly more detail concerning world mythology.

In Mythos, Campbell delivers a primer for approaching all of the world’s major mythologies.  There are a total of 15 lectures, broken into 3 parts.  In part 1, Campbell begins with a definition of myth and its relationship to human psychology – especially dream – and society.  He delivers a very detailed interpretation of a Navajo story through its mythic symbolism as well as the familiar story of Isis and Osiris.  Part 1 ends with an explanation of the symbolism attached to the ancient Greek Mystery Schools.

Part II is dedicated entirely to the mythic systems of the Orient.  The lectures selected here focus primarily on Buddhist and Hindu mythic symbol including a detailed discussion of Kundalini yoga and the Tibetan Book of the Dead.  Campbell clarifies the timeline for the development of these two major traditions.  He also relates a metaphor passed on to him by Heinrich Zimmer from many years prior explaining the difference between Hinayana and Mahayana Buddhism – a distinction commonly overlooked or misunderstood.

Part III moves into Medieval and contemporary mythology in the West.  Campbell discusses the Arthurian romance of Tristan and Isolde and presents an illuminating and fascinating interpretation of Parzival and the Grail, stemming from the work of Wolfram von Eschenbach.  Campbell stresses the significance of the grail stories as the synthesis of an authentic European worldview with its emphasis on individuality with the deeply legalistic and authoritarian Roman Christian overlay.  What was produced as a result of this mixture was the symbol of the Grail as the highest individual achievement – achieved by choosing to listen to the inner authentic voice rather than conforming to social propriety.  Part III ends with lectures on the bridging of eastern and western symbolism through the writings of men like Schopenhauer as well as discussions on the modern mythographers Thomas Mann and James Joyce.

Throughout the series, Campbell reiterates that the images being presented at one time and one location through the costumes of one culture’s unique art, architecture, and story are symbolic of that which all cultures at all times share.  This common reference is the mystery that can’t be fully explained by any set of symbols.  The symbols can only refer to a Reality that is beyond words and thoughts.

Here’s What We’re Reading in July… July 16, 2018

Posted by SaraC in Beach Reads, Biographies, Book Discussion, Book List, Book Review, Debut Author, Fiction, First Novel, Genre Book Discussion, Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, Uncategorized.
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Hide By Matthew Griffin

Cover image for Dealing with the failing health of a partner/spouse is an incredibly difficult and personal experience for anyone, one that can be only compounded by having to keep the true nature of your relationship secret to the world. This is the reality for Wendell and Frank who met right after WWII, fell in love, and made a private life for themselves over the next 60 odd years. This life is threatened when Wendell finds Frank collapsed in the yard. What follows is a novel that goes back and forth from the start of their relationship to the difficulties of the modern day as Frank recovers and Wendell fights to keep it all together. Taxidermy imagery is used throughout which may disturb some readers but it is used as a literary device for identity, superficiality, and the creation of the appearance of artificial life. Greg

 

Two Steps Forward by Graeme C. Simsion

Cover image for This is the story of Zoe Witt who travels to France after the apparent suicide of her husband to visit an old friend. Once there she decides to hike the Camino de Santiago, a 500 mile spiritual walk route that winds through France and Spain. Martin Eden, a recently divorced British engineer, is hiking the Camino de Santiago testing out his one-wheeled cart design. The two cross paths multiple times along the way and become more than friends. This is a heartwarming tale of grief, forgiveness, healing, and determination. Emma

 

How to Read the Bible: A Guide to Scripture Then and Now by James Kugel

Cover image for I’ve been reading a great book about the Bible.  Kugel is an academic, but the book is written for the layperson, and so far it’s been a tour de force.  His approach is to look at stories and passages from the Bible from the perspective of both its ancient interpreters and from modern Biblical scholarship.  This means as a reader sometimes experiencing an intense cognitive dissonance, because the two perspectives seem so deeply divergent (i.e. the thesis that the Bible is divinely inspired, versus the thesis that it was written by four people, the documentary hypothesis).  Kugel himself is an Orthodox Jew, so I’m curious to learn more about how he balances his knowledge of modern scholarship with his faith.  Kugel is an excellent teacher and communicator, and the book is an amazing synthesis of theology, archaeology, history, sociology, psychology, and religious studies.  Andrew

 

Queenpin – Megan Abbott

Cover image for The unnamed narrator, a young woman with limited prospects, takes a job keeping books at a small nightclub.  Soon after she begins practicing some shady accounting, she comes under the scrutiny and then wing of the infamous and ruthless Gloria Denton.  Casinos, racetracks, heists – all the big money in the city runs through Gloria before it makes it’s way to the big bosses out of town.  Gloria will be her access to all the action and the lavish lifestyle to go with it if only she can keep from falling for the wrong guy.  Megan Abbott takes the bones of the same old, time-tested gangster story and gives it new life.  By the end symbols of traditional masculinity are kicked apart and lay shattered and bloody on the floor. Trent

 

The Very Worst Missionary by Jamie Wright

Cover image for In the evangelical church, there is a myth about missionaries: those who do “God’s work” can do no harm. After living in Costa Rica as a missionary for five years, Jamie Wright pulls back the curtain on missionary life, writing about her experiences and observations. She points the finger at the careless and nonsensical ways of “helping” that sending organizations permitted to happen, veiled by the vague language of “loving on people,” “just showing up,” and “hearing from God.” Her stories about mutually exploitative practices, wasted resources, and underequipped ministers were helpful in understanding the gravity of the harm Christian missionaries can do, if not prepared to serve in careful, sensible, and sustainable ways. Even though the content of the book is serious, Jamie’s voice is fun and entertaining, but also scathing – maybe a little like watching a Trevor Noah routine. While I appreciated the foundation that the beginning chapters laid about Jamie’s early years, the final two sections were ultimately the worthwhile ones. Lyndsey

 

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

Cover image for I loved Ruth Ware’s In a Dark Dark Wood, a gripping psychological thriller that left me hanging every step of the way.  Then I read The Woman in Cabin 10 and was mostly just confused by too many characters.  The Lying Game is the best book from Ruth Ware so far.  Four  girls spent a year together at Salten, a second-rate boarding school  in the English countryside until they are forced to leave to avoid a scandal.  Truth be told, no one is sorry to see them go, as their favorite activity was The Lying Game, a game with complicated rules and scoring systems that involved lying to faculty and boarders alike. The number one rule however was, “Never lie to each other”.  Fifteen years after the girls go their separate ways, three of them receive a text from the fourth saying only, “I need you.”  As if time hasn’t passed, the girls run back to Salten and into a situation that is dark, dangerous and brings to light the fact that someone broke Rule #1.   Fabulous descriptions of the eerie  and dark marshlands  in the waterlogged area near the English Channel perfectly set the tone for the story which is an addicting page turner.  Sara

 

There There by Tommy Orange

Cover image for Tommy Orange’s debut novel There There is a window into the lives of urban Native Americans of Oakland, California. We hear from twelve different characters, young and old, embedded in their heritage and barely aware, as they wind their way through stories steeped in tragedy and despair, hope and family, culminating on the night of an Oakland powwow. Read the prologue if you do nothing else – it’s devastating. Dori

 

Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman

Cover image for A debut psychological thriller and the perfect beach read. Erin, a documentary film maker and her investment banker husband Mark are honeymooning in Bora Bora. This tropical paradise turns into a nightmare when a scuba diving excursion uncovers something sinister in the water. Do Erin and Mark report their finding? Each decision they make after their discovery has dangerous consequences for the young couple. This taut and unsettling  novel is perfect for fans of Ruth Ware and Paula Hawkins. Megan

 

The Motorcycle Diaries by Ernesto Che Guevara

Cover image for This past month has consisted of doing extra research in order to teach film history to kids/teens in a filmmaking summer camp. As I continue to make an effort to include more diverse voices in my reading choices, I’m now reading The Motorcycle Diaries by Ernesto Che Guevara through Overdrive. It is a relatively short read, which is what I wanted. In quick chapters Che describes the adventures and misadventures that he and a friend from medical school have while travelling through South America. Next I’ll have to watch the movie adaptation with Gael Garcia Bernal. Byron

 

Us Against You (Beartown #2) by Fredrik Backman

Cover image for This is my first read by the popular author Fredrick Backman, and oddly enough, I did NOT read Beartown.  However, the review of the book caught my interest, and I much enjoyed it.  The reader does not have to read Beartown to understand this book.  The beginning does a very good job of concisely wrapping up Beartown, and swiftly picking up where it has left off.  Beartown is populated with a diverse group inhabitants. Some old , some young, some cranky, some hardworking, some who hardly work, and some dreamers.  Something bad has happened in Beartown, and now its residents are divided.  Much talk about the beloved local hockey team and its future is where this book begins. Changes ensue for the hockey team and the town.  However, this book isn’t just about hockey. This book is about life. It has sadness, tension, fierce competition, politics, kindness (sometimes in the most unlikely of places), love & compassion. You don’t have to love hockey to love this book, you just need to love life. Mary

 

Get ’em while they’re hot! July 9, 2018

Posted by SaraC in Beach Reads, Biographies, Book Discussion, Book List, Book Review, Uncategorized.
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Here are some titles that will be coming to the library in July.  Place a hold on them now so you can be one of the first people to check them out!



ghosted orchid and the wasphalf moon bay

 

double lifeclock dance

 

 

chariotwhistle in the darkdear mrs bird

 

 



 

Celebrating Pride Month with Local Resources- Plexus: the Chamber of Commerce for the LGBT community June 25, 2018

Posted by gregoryhatch in Uncategorized.
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In celebration of LGBT Pride Month we will be highlighting some local resources available here in Northeast Ohio. This time we are featuring Plexus: the Chamber of Commerce for the LGBT community. A financial organization for small business, Plexus “was founded to promote networking and business development within Northeast Ohio’s LGBT business community and its allies.”

They offer many staples of any Chamber of Commerce Including: