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When the Summer was Ours

Roxanne Veletzos

It’s 1943 in Sopron, Hungary when 20-year-old Eva Cesar is at her family’s country estate. Eva has her life planned out. This is her last summer of being single; she will marry Eduard, a Red Cross doctor; and she will study to become a nurse and work beside him. Things change when there is a chance encounter with Aleandro, a Romani violinist and artist. Aleandro is supporting his young brothers by performing music in the street for monetary donations.

Aleandro and Eva fall in love. When Eva’s father hears about their relationship, he beats Eva. She runs to her nanny Dora for safety. Discovering that she is pregnant, she stays with Dora for support and help in raising her daughter, Bianca. Aleandro, considered an undesirable, ends up at a Nazi concentration camp where his artistic ability saves his life. He draws portraits of the various Nazi guards and officials. On the sly he creates drawings of life at the camp.

Eventually Eva marries her doctor; she becomes a nurse; and together they raise Bianca. Aleandro doesn’t realize he has a daughter. Wherever life takes them, neither Eva or Aleandro forget each other and the summer of 1943.

Spanning decades, this is an unforgettable love story.

~Emma

New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

We have some new releases picked out for you to dive in for the following week. There is an adventure, humor, romance and many more for you to enjoy!

My Heart Is a Chainsaw by Stephen Graham  Jones – Protected by horror movies – especially the ones where the masked killer seeks revenge on a world that wronged them, Jade Daniels, an angry, half-Indian outcast, pulls us into her dark mind when blood actually starts to spill into the waters of Indian lake.

19 Yellow Moon Road by Fern Michaels – Maggie Spritzer and the other members of the Sisterhood investigate The Haven, a commune run by the dubious sons of a disgraced, Ponzi-scheme-running Chicago businessman in the latest novel of the series following Bitter Pill.

The Last Chance Library by Freya Sampson – June Jones emerges from her shell to fight for her beloved local library, and through the efforts and support of an eclectic group of library patrons, she discovers life-changing friendships along the way.

The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang – When she suddenly loses her ability to play the violin, Anna Sun must learn to listen to her heart and falls in love with a man her parents disapprove of, forcing her to choose between meeting expectations and finding happiness in who she really is.

Whiplash by Janet Dailey – Returning to the family ranch, Val Champion, whose dreams of a Hollywood acting career have become a nightmare, finds that she is no safer at home when she comes face-to-face with her first and only true love – rodeo man Casey Bozeman.

A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins – Three women unknown to each other are each questioned in connection with the gruesome murder of a young man found on a London houseboat in the new novel by the New York Times best-selling author of The Girl on the Train.

You Can Run by Karen Cleveland – To get her son back, CIA analyst Jill Bailey must do something she thought she’d never do with the help of a hard-hitting journalist, forcing them both to confront their loyalties to family and country.

What the Cat Dragged in by Miranda James – Librarian Charlie Harris and his faithful feline companion, Diesel, have inherited Charlie’s grandfather’s house, along with a deadly legacy: a decades-old crime scene, in an all-new mystery in the New York Times best-selling Cat in the Stacks series.

The Education of Nevada Duncan Carl Weber & C. N. Phillips – Heir to the Duncan and Zuniga crime family fortunes, Nevada Duncan must attend the world’s most elite school for the children of underworld figures where he learns the importance of friendship as an enemy lurks in the shadows who wants what Nevada has.

The Last Guests J. P. Pomare – A wife finds herself racing for answers when the decision to rent out her family vacation home takes a deadly turn.

Revelator by Daryl Gregory – Returning to the backwoods of Tennessee for her grandmother’s funeral, and to check on Sunny, a mysterious 10-year-old girl her grandmother adopted, professional bootlegger Stella soon discovers that Sunny is a direct link to her buried past and her family’s destructive faith.

The Devil You Know by Kit Rocha – Maya, genetically engineered for genius and trained for revolution, vows to stop an operation trading in genetically enhanced children with the help of Gray, who, unable to escape the time bomb in his head, has found his purpose in his final days – keeping Maya safe.

~Semanur

Discover@RRPL.org

Three Words for Goodbye

by Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb

It’s 1937 when Clara and Madeleine Sommers are invited to their grandmother’s estate. Violet wants the young women to deliver three farewell letters: one to Paris, one to Venice, and one to Vienna. (Violet hasn’t seen these people since she left Europe 40+ years ago.) The two sisters do not like each other much and haven’t spoken in a year. Still they are willing to fulfill their grandmother’s dying wish. Clara has been busy planning her wedding to millionaire businessman Charles Hancock but is excited about the art she will see. Journalist Maddie is anxious to travel to Europe to witness the growing threat of Hitler and Mussolini. Violet has made first-class travel and hotel arrangements for the pair including traveling aboard the Queen Mary and the Orient Express and flying home on the Hindenburg. Everything is set for an adventure of a lifetime.

This is a story of long-held secrets revealed and family ties strengthened despite differences.

~Emma

New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

Here are some of the new books coming to our shelves this week for you to add to your book list!

Lightning Strike by William Kent Krueger – In this prequel to the acclaimed Cork O’Connor series, 12-year-old Cork stumbles upon the body of a man hanging in a tree – the first in a series of events that cause him to question everything he took for granted about his hometown, his family and himself.

The Madness of Crowds by Louise Penny – When a visiting professor spreads lies so that fact and fiction are so confused it’s near impossible to tell them apart, leading to murder, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache must investigate this case as well as this extraordinary popular delusion – and the madness of crowds.

The Guide by Peter Heller – Trying to return to normalcy after a young life filled with loss, Jack takes a job as a guide for the elite Kingfisher Lodge where he, while guiding a well-known singer, discovers that this idyllic fishing lodge may be a cover for a far more sinister operation.

The Women of Troy by Pat Barker – Held captive by the victorious Greeks, one time Trojan queen Briseis, formerly Achilles’s slave, forges alliances when she can with Priam’s aged wife, the defiant Hecuba and the disgraced soothsayer Calchas, all the while shrewdly seeking her path to revenge.

The Failed Promise: Reconstruction, Frederick Douglass, and the Impeachment of Andrew Johnson by Robert S. Levine – Drawing on letters, articles and the most important African American newspaper of the time, the author recreates the conflicts that brought Frederick Douglass and the wider Black community to reject President Andrew Johnson and call for a guilty verdict in his impeachment trial.

Hero of Two Worlds: The Marquis De Lafayette in the Age of Revolution by Mike Duncan – The New York Times bestselling author looks at the life of the Marquis de Lafayette, who helped fight and finance the American Revolution as well as the French Revolution and the overthrow of the Bourbon Dynasty.

Feral Creatures by Kira Jane Buxton – After rescuing pets who had been trapped in their homes during the apocalypse, a Cheeto-loving crow, S.T., and his bloodhound bestie, Dennis, discover humanity’s last hope for survival in this follow-up to Hollow Kingdom.

The Secret Staircase by Sheila Connolly – After a body is discovered in a hidden staircase at Barton Mansion during renovations, Kate Hamilton hunts to identify this man who was murdered in 1880, and learns that digging up the past can be deadly when a second body is found.

Seeing Ghosts: A Memoir by Kat Chow – After her mother dies unexpectedly of cancer, a Chinese American writer and journalist weaves together the story of the fallout of grief that follows her extended family as they emigrate from China and Hong Kong to Cuba and America.

The Second Rebel by Linden A. Lewis – Astrid seeks to bring down the Sisterhood from within, while, on an outlaw colony station deep in space, Hiro val Akiro seeks to bring a dangerous ally into the rebellion, and Lito sol Lucious continues to grow into his role as lead revolutionary.

~semanur

Discover@RRPL.org

Tender is the Bite

by Spencer Quinn

Chet is the star in the 11th entry in the Chet and Bernie mystery series. Every smell, every sound, every event, and every person are described from Chet’s perspective. This is a tale of missing persons, murder and organized crime linked to a political candidate. For comic relief a ferret, named Griffie, makes an appearance that is not appreciated by Chet. Griffie adores Bernie which Chet cannot tolerate.

I have included a list of the books in the “Chet and Bernie” mystery series. This is a fun series for dog lovers. Chet has so much personality and so much respect for his owner Bernie. I recommend reading the books in order of publication.

Chet and Bernie Mystery series

  1. Dog on It – 2009
  2. Thereby Hangs a Tail – 2009
  3. To Fetch a Thief – 2010
  4. The Dog who knew too Much – 2011
  5. A Fistful of Collars – 2012
  6. The Sound and the Furry – 2013
  7. Paw and Order – 2014
  8. Scents and Sensibility – 2015
  9. Heart of Barkness – 2019
  10. Of Mutts and Men – 2020
  11. Tender is the Bite – 2021

Still to come in 2021 –

 12. It’s a Wonderful Woof

~Emma

Currently Reading- August

This month I’ll be enjoying some vacation, including some stay-cationing at home, as well as doing some out-of-state traveling for the first time in a long time. I have a relatively short flight ahead, but we have some long layovers, so I was sure to load up my Kindle with ebooks and my phone with audiobooks from OverDrive to keep me occupied. Nothing is worse than being book-less at the airport! Take a look below to see what I’m currently reading this month.

New Books Tuesday @ RRPL

These are the books we are adding to our collection this week. Click on the maroon text to go to our catalog and place a hold today!

All in: An Autobiography by Billie Jean King – This autobiography from the tennis legend discusses not only her historic accomplishments on the court, but also her activism as a feminist and social justice fighter in the wake of her coming out as a gay at age 51.

Bloodless by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child – When completely exsanguinated bodies are found in Savannah, Georgia, FBI Agent Pendergast investigates amid growing panic and whispers of an infamous local vampire in the 20th novel in the series, following Crooked River.

Complications by Danielle Steel – After four years of renovations and the death of its beloved manager, a popular Paris boutique hotel reopens with new staff looking to make good impressions and guests seeking luxurious accommodations, but what they all find is unrelenting drama.

Another Kind of Eden by James Lee Burke – After hopping off a boxcar in early 1960s Denver, aspiring novelist Aaron Holland Broussard meets and instantly connects with Joanne McDuffy, a college student who is involved with a shady professor caught up in a drug-addled cult.

The Island by Ben Coes – When Iranian terrorists blow up the bridges and tunnels that connect Manhattan to the mainland during the President’s visit to the U.N., CIA agent Dewey Andreas, hopeless, outgunned and outmanned, must fight a seemingly impossible battle.

The Noise by James Patterson & J. D. Barker – After a mysterious explosion kills thousands in the Pacific Northwest, two survivors are left – 16-year-old Tennant and her 8-year-old sister, Sophie, in this new novel from the master of psychological suspense.

Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – In 1970s Mexico City, Maite, a secretary with a penchant for romance novels, searches for her missing neighbor, Leonora, a beautiful art student, which leads her to an eccentric gangster who longs to escape his own life, and together, they set out to discover the dangerous truth.

Viral by Rubin Cook – With his wife in a coma after contracting a rare and highly lethal mosquito-borne viral disease, Brian vows to seek justice against the hospital and insurance company that won’t cover the costs by exposing the dark side of a ruthless industry and bring down the executives preying on the sick.

A Terrible Fall of Angels by Laurell K. Hamilton – Angels walk among us, but so do other unearthly beings in this brand new series by a #1 New York Times best-selling author.

The Bookseller’s Secret by Michelle Gable – This dual-narrative set at the famed Heywood Hill Bookshop in London follows a struggling American writer’s search for a lost manuscript written by Nancy Mitford – a bookseller, spy, author and aristocrat – during World War II and the surprising link she discovers between the past and present.

Paradise: One Town’s Struggle to Survive an American Wildfire by Lizzie Johnson – A San Francisco Chronicle reporter, drawing on years of on-the-ground reporting and reams of public records, provides a first-hand account of California’s Camp Fire – the nation’s deadliest wildfire in a century, investigating root causes and how to avert future tragedies as the climate crisis unfolds.

~Semanur

Review of T. J. Klune’s Under the Whispering Door

Cover of Under the Whispering Door by T. J. Klune. Catalog link.

Ruthless lawyer Wallace wakes up at his own funeral and thinks he has to be dreaming. But when a stranger at the service turns out to be a reaper sent to collect his soul, he starts to believe. She takes him to a mysterious tea shop run by Hugo, a ferryman who helps souls in their transition to the afterlife. Afraid and angry, Wallace refuses to move on, effectively leaving him in limbo in the teashop. Gradually, with the help of Hugo, the reaper, and a couple of resident ghosts, Wallace begins to learn to be a better person and care about other people. Under the Whispering Door is T. J. Klune’s newest novel after The House on the Cerulean Sea, the sleeper hit and bestseller of last year. 

Whispering Door is all at once a queer love story, a metaphysical treatise, and an introduction to philosophy. It also runs the gamut of emotions; at times funny, serious, and sad, with a main character whose personal growth is organic, if somewhat sped up. Though the subject matter can be heavy, Klune’s outlook on death and the afterlife is altogether positive, and the book’s tone remains upbeat even while discussing difficult topics. After his breakout hit, Klune has clearly found a formula that works, and he has perfected it further here. In fact, my only complaint is that this new novel is too similar to the plot of Cerulean Sea: a grumpy loner finds a new family and becomes a better person. The book is predictable, but that is part of its charm – it is chocolate chip cookie-style comfort food packaged in a story about grim reapers and the afterlife. Fans of the previous novel will love this book, and newcomers will enjoy the quirky and uplifting story.

Look for Under the Whispering Door on September 21, 2021. 

Thanks to NetGalley for the Advance Reader Copy!