Readalikes for The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles

The Paris Library catalog link

This week in our readalikes corner, it’s libraries, libraries, libraries! It’s a little self-indulgent on our part, but to be fair, The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles is one of the most-requested books on our holds lists. Based on a true story, [the book] describes how a lonely, 1980s teenager befriends an elderly neighbor and uncovers her past as a librarian at the American Library in Paris who joined the Resistance when the Nazis arrived.

Sounds really interesting, right? Click the book cover up above to put a hold on it in our catalog.

But you might have to wait a while (it comes out on February 8, 2021), so we’ve curated a list of books that you might like to try in the meantime. Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available. 

Lions of Fifth Avenue catalog link

The Lions of Fifth Avenue by Fiona Davis

A New York Public LIbrary superintendent’s wife reevaluates her priorities upon joining a woman’s suffrage group in 1913, decades before her granddaughter’s efforts to save an exhibit expose tragic family secrets.

Lions of Fifth Avenue Overdrive link



The Archivist catalog link

The Archivist by Martha Cooley

A battle of wills between Matt, a careful, orderly archivist for a private university, and Roberta, a determined young poet, over a collection of T. S. Eliot’s letters, sealed by bequest until 2019, sparks an unusual friendship and reawakens painful memories of the past.

The Archivist Overdrive link

People of the Book catalog link

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

In 1996, Hanna Heath, a young Australian book conservator is called to analyze the famed Sarajevo Haggadah, a priceless six-hundred-year-old Jewish prayer book that has been salvaged from a destroyed Bosnian library. When Hanna discovers a series of artifacts in the centuries’ old binding, she unwittingly exposes an international cover up.

People of the Book Overdrive link

Book Woman of Troublesome Creek catalog link

The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson

A last-of-her-kind outcast and member of the Pack Horse Library Project braves the hardships of Kentucky’s Great Depression and hostile community discrimination to bring the near-magical perspectives of books to her neighbors.

Book Woman Overdrive link

Book Woman Hoopla link

The Library Book catalog link

The Library Book by Susan Orlean 

The author reopens the unsolved mystery of the most catastrophic library fire in American history, and delivers a dazzling love letter to a beloved institution: our libraries.

The Library Book Overdrive link




All plot summaries courtesy of Novelist.

Readalikes for The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

The Four Winds catalog link

The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah doesn’t come out until February 1, but it’s already topping the library’s holds lists. That’s the power of Kristin Hannah, author of bestselling novels The Nightingale and The Great Alone, so it’s understandable that you’ll be chomping at the bit to read Hannah’s newest novel! Rather than World War II or the 1970s, the Four Winds is set during the Great Depression:

Texas, 1934. Millions are out of work and a drought has broken the Great Plains. Farmers are fighting to keep their land and their livelihoods as the crops are failing, the water is drying up, and dust threatens to bury them all. One of the darkest periods of the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl era, has arrived with a vengeance.

In this uncertain and dangerous time, Elsa Martinelli—like so many of her neighbors—must make an agonizing choice: fight for the land she loves or go west, to California, in search of a better life. The Four Winds is an indelible portrait of America and the American Dream, as seen through the eyes of one indomitable woman whose courage and sacrifice will come to define a generation.

Your friendly librarians have selected the following books as readalikes for The Four Winds, whether that is because of setting, tone, character, or other factors. You can find the Four Winds on Overdrive here. Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available. 

I Will Send Rain catalog link

I Will Send Rain by Rae Meadows

In 1934, as the earliest storms of the Dust Bowl descend on the Bell farm in Mulehead, Oklahoma, Annie Bell and her husband and children struggle against hardship as the wheat harvest dries out and people around them pack up to leave.




Promise catalog link

Promise by Gwin Minrose

Barely surviving an F5 tornado that rips through her 1936 Mississippi hometown, an African-American laundress and great-grandmother searches for her family among the catastrophe’s survivors while bonding with the traumatized teen daughter of a despised white judge.

Promise Overdrive link



Some Luck catalog link

Some Luck Jane Smiley

Follows the triumphs and tragedies of a farm family from post-World War I America through the early 1950s.

Some Luck Overdrive link




A Piece of the World catalog link

A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline

To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best known American paintings of the twentieth century.

A Piece of the World Overdrive link

A Piece of the World Hoopla link

By Starlight catalog link

By Starlight by Dorothy Garlock

In early 1930s Montana, in the small town of Colton, Maddy Aldridge struggles to make ends meet during the Great Depression. With her mother long dead, her stubborn younger sister fighting her at every turn, and her father’s arthritis deteriorating so badly that she has to run the family store alone, her desperation grows by the day. Enter Jeffers Grimm with a proposition too great for her to turn down: open an illegal speakeasy in the mercantile’s basement, defy Prohibition, and make enough money to make her worries disappear. 

By Starlight Overdrive link

All readalike plot summaries courtesy of Novelist, The Four Winds summary courtesy of author’s website.

Readalikes for The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

The Midnight Library catalog link

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig is the newest book topping the holds list at many libraries, including RRPL. If you’re someone still patiently waiting for your copy to come in, check out the titles below for other novels that will tide you over while you wait. Or if you’ve already read and loved it, the books below will help scratch that itch for something in the same vein. If you’ve never heard of The Midnight Library, you’re in luck – I’ve got a summary below just for you:

Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. Nora Seed finds herself faced with this decision. Faced with the possibility of changing her life for a new one, following a different career, undoing old breakups, realizing her dreams of becoming a glaciologist; she must search within herself as she travels through the Midnight Library to decide what is truly fulfilling in life, and what makes it worth living in the first place.

Find The Midnight Library on Overdrive here.

Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available.

Oona Out of Order catalog link

Oona Out of Order by Margarita Montimore

As the countdown to the New Year begins, soon-to-be-19 Oona Lockhart faints and awakens 32 years in the future in her 51-year-old body; and, greeted by a friendly stranger in a beautiful house she’s told is her own, Oona learns that with each passing year she will leap to another age at random.

Oona Out of Order Overdrive link


The Five People You Meet in Heaven catalog link

The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

Killed in a tragic accident at a seaside amusement park while trying to save a little girl, Eddie, an elderly man who believes that he had lived an uninspired life, awakens in the afterlife, where he discovers that heaven consists of having five people, acquaintances and strangers, explain the meaning of one’s life.

The Five People You Meet in Heaven Overdrive link



The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells catalog link

The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells by Andrew Sean Greer

After the death of her beloved twin brother, Felix, and the breakup with her longtime lover, Nathan, Greta Wells embarks on a radical psychiatric treatment to alleviate her suffocating depression. But the treatment has unexpected effects, and Greta finds herself transported to the lives she might have had if she’d been born in different eras.

The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells Overdrive link


The Dinner List catalog link

The Dinner List by Rebecca Serle

In a novel imbued with magical realism, when Sabrina Nielsen arrives at her 30th birthday dinner in New York City, she finds at the table not just her best friend, but also her favorite professor from college; her father; her ex-fiance Tobias; and Audrey Hepburn.

The Dinner List Overdrive link


Life After Life catalog link

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

Follows the experiences of a woman, who after being born on a snowy night in 1910, repeatedly dies and reincarnates into the same life to correct missteps and ultimately save the world.

Life After Life Overdrive link



All plot summaries courtesy of Novelist.

Books on Democracy and Government

It sure seems like 2020 is back from the dead to plague us in the new year, doesn’t it? If you, like me, would like a refresher on democracy and how our government works, I’ve chosen some books that will educate and inform.

Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available. 

The Federalist Papers by Alexander Hamilton

Plato’s Republic

Democracy in One Book Or Less:
How It Works, Why It Doesn’t, and Why Fixing It Is Easier Than You Think 
by David Litt

You Call This Democracy? How to Fix Our Government
and Deliver Power to the People
by Elizabeth Rusch

Twilight of Democracy: the Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism
by Anne Applebaum

A User’s Guide to Democracy: How America Works
by Hannah McCarthy and Nick Capodice

A User's Guide to Democracy catalog link

Surviving Autocracy by Masha Gessen

Readalikes for Tana French’s The Searcher

The Searcher by Tana French catalog link

Another bestseller from the queen of psychological suspense, Tana French, which means another long wait on the holds list for her newest book The Searcher. And this one sounds like another knockout! Looking to start a new life in a small Irish village, former Chicago police officer Cal Hooper comes out of retirement to help find a missing kid and uncovers layers of darkness beneath his picturesque retreat. Find The Searcher on Overdrive here.

Look below to find some similar books that will scratch that suspense itch for you while you wait. Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available. 

Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris catalog link

Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

The friends of a seemingly perfect socialite couple begin to see cracks in the facade when they realize that the husband and wife are never apart and that there are bars on one of their upstairs windows.

Behind Closed Doors Overdrive link


The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena catalog link

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

When a terrible crime committed on the night of a dinner party casts suspicion on a young couple who seemed to have it all, Detective Rasbach discovers that the panicked duo had been hiding dangerous secrets from each other for years.

The Couple Next Door Overdrive link


 You Are Not Alone by Greer Hendricks catalog link

You Are Not Alone by Greer Hendricks

A lonely misfit with a dead-end job quietly envies a circle of popular sisters who hide dangerous vengeful truths beneath a veneer of friendship, glamour and accomplishments.

You Are Not Alone Overdrive link



Case Histories by Kate Atkinson catalog link

Case Histories by Kate Atkinson

Private detective Jackson Brodie finds his own need for resolution sparked by three investigations including those of two sisters who discover a shocking clue to the disappearance of their third sister thirty years earlier, a lawyer whose life is turned upside-down when his daughter joins the firm, and a woman whose past mistakes and demanding family life culminate in a violent escape.

Case Histories Overdrive link

The Suspect by Fiona Barton catalog link

The Suspect by Fiona Barton

Pursuing the story of two British teens who disappeared during a Bangkok hostel fire, journalist Kate Waters struggles to remain objective when her estranged son is declared a main suspect.

The Suspect Overdrive link



All plot summaries courtesy of Novelist.

Have you tried any of these authors? Do you have someone else you’d suggest as a readalike for Tana French? Let us know!

Virtual Book Club – All About Thanksgiving

While we may not be able to have the Thanksgiving we planned on this year, we can still celebrate the holiday by reading. We’ve curated a list of books about or set during Thanksgiving, and even a cookbook to give you that turkey and stuffing feeling.

However, we do want to mention that while Thanksgiving for most people is a holiday of family and togetherness, we are also including books on the troubled history of the holiday and what it means for the indigenous peoples of the United States. The holiday cannot be separated from its less-than-stellar history, and we want to acknowledge that.

Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available. 

We Gather Together by Denise Kiernan catalog link

We Gather Together: A Nation Divided, a President in Turmoil, and a Historic Campaign to Embrace Gratitude and Grace by Denise Kiernan

Well-reviewed and timely, this new book tells the true story of one woman’s campaign to have an annual holiday of thanks added to the national calendar. Kiernan also chronicles the struggles of indigenous peoples, women’s rights activists, and abolitionists intertwined with the holiday.

We Gather Together Overdrive link

This Land is Their Land catalog link

This Land is Their Land : the Wampanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving by David J. Silverman

Another book of history, this book tells the true story of Thanksgiving – not the sanitized tale that we were taught in elementary school. This is a book that forces the reader to reflect on the history of colonialism that was used to found this country, and to understand that impact today.


The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler catalog link

The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler

Nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, this bestselling book was adapted into an Oscar-winning movie. Meet Macon, a grief-stricken travel writer who hates travelling, and Muriel, a dog trainer who tries to teach him to be human again in this beautiful and heartbreaking love story.

The Accidental Tourist Overdrive link

Turkey Trot Murder by Leslie Meier catalog link

Turkey Trot Murder by Leslie Meier

For the cozy mystery lover in all of us, try this Thanksgiving-themed murder mystery. Lucy Stone is the intrepid amateur investigator of all the murders that happen in the small town of Tinker’s Cove, and when she finds a woman dead in a local pond, she must find the killer before the turkey gets cold.

Turkey Trot Murder Overdrive link

Turkey Trot Murder Hoopla link

Thanksgiving : How to Cook It Well by Sam Sifton catalog link

Thanksgiving : How to Cook It Well by Sam Sifton 

Lastly, we’ve got a cookbook on how to cook the traditional Thanksgiving meal – turkey and all the trimmings. Don’t look for innovation here, but if you want to perfect your turkey technique, check out this quintessential Thanksgiving tome.

Thanksgiving: How to Cook It Well Overdrive link



We’ll see you on the other side of Thanksgiving – until next time!

Virtual Book Club – Beachy Reads for Winter

Despite what the weather outside may be telling us, it is in fact the winter season. The dropping temperatures plus the looming threat of another lockdown may have you dreaming of warmer climes, and you’re not the only one! Thank goodness books can take us away. Try any of the authors below to be whisked away to places where the temperature is hotter – whether that’s because of a beach setting or a hot romance.

Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available.

An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole catalog link

Alyssa Cole

Alyssa Cole writes smart, steamy historical and contemporary romances featuring an array of diverse characters. Her heroines are intelligent, independent women who have rich, full lives although are a bit reluctant to open their hearts to romance. The men who ultimately win them over are strong, thoughtful partners who respect the heroines and their choices. Her rich detail and intricate plots add depth and dimension as the characters find their way to happily ever after.

Start with An Extraordinary Union. Overdrive link. Hoopla link.

Sweet Salt Air by Barbara Delinsky catalog link

Barbara Delinsky

Barbara Delinsky began by writing contemporary Romances, but now writes fiction focused on contemporary women and their lives and relationships. Delinsky’s skillfully developed characters are central to her stories, as they struggle to resolve difficulties in their lives. Plots reflect universal themes, such as compromise and reconciliation, and there is a romantic tone throughout. Delinsky’s novels unfold at a leisurely pace, in part because they are set in small towns, as readers are pulled into these sensitive stories.

Start with: Sweet Salt Air. Overdrive link.

The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory catalog link

Jasmine Guillory

Jasmine Guillory writes modern romantic comedies featuring smart, capable heroines who excel in their careers and lead full lives surrounded by supportive friends and families. When a romantic partner enters the picture, the protagonists view the relationship as a life enhancement rather than a requirement, and the resulting relationship stars a pair who are on equal footing intellectually and emotionally. Guillory doesn’t shy away from examining the relatable issues her multicultural couples face but never sacrifices sexiness or humor.

Start with: The Wedding Date. Overdrive link.

The Rumor by Elin Hilderbrand catalog link

Elin Hilderbrand

While Elin Hilderbrand’s characters change from novel to novel, her setting remains consistent – the historic island of Nantucket. Using the island as a jumping off point, Hilderbrand’s works offer the hallmarks of an ideal summer vacation read: romance, friendship, a beautiful setting, conflict and characters facing personal challenges. While rife with tales of people living privileged lifestyle, Hilderbrand grounds her stories in topics that will feel familiar to all women – love, illness, friendship, and family relationships.

Start with: The Rumor. Overdrive link.

Moon Shell Beach by Nancy Thayer catalog link

Nancy Thayer

Nancy Thayer’s women’s fiction revolves around women’s families and friendships, and varies in tone from her more serious first novels to her sassy and humorous Hot Flash Club series. Her characters are realistic, everyday women, and she employs a sense of humor (from snappy to gentle) in her novels. There is often an element of romance as well.

Start with: Moon Shell Beach. Overdrive link.

Author information courtesy of Novelist.

Join us next week for another installment of the virtual book club!

Virtual Book Club – Books to Take You to Another World

The past week has been stressful and hard on all of us, so I thought I’d put together a list of books that will sweep you away to another world. There’s something for everyone below: fantasy, historical fiction, literary fiction, and more. Any one of these books will hold you tight from the first page and won’t let go until the last one. 

Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available.

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern  catalog link

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern 

This enchanting fantasy novel by the bestselling author of The Night Circus features a secret underground library on the edge of a vast sea. Zachary discovers a mysterious book in his college library which leads to the secret library, where he finds pirates, castles, and magic doors. Choose Morgenstern’s book to take you away to fairy land. 

The Starless Sea Overdrive link

Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell catalog link

Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell

Dive into the world of Shakespeare with this fictionalized account of Shakespeare’s wife, Agnes, and their son, Hamnet, who tragically died at 11. This lyrical and unique book will take you into the past and won’t let you go until the last page. 

Hamnet Overdrive link


A Long Petal of the Sea by Isabel Allende catalog link

A Long Petal of the Sea by Isabel Allende 

Driven into exile by the Spanish Civil War, widowed, pregnant Roser and Victor, who is the brother of her deceased husband, flee to Chile on a ship. Allende’s bestselling, epic tale chronicles their lives and struggle as they wait to return to their beloved Spain. 

A Long Petal of the Sea Overdrive link

The City We Became by N. K. Jemisin

In Jemisin’s latest novel, New York City has just been born as a sentient entity, and for each of its five burroughs, there is a person that represents it, plus one master avatar for the whole city. When cosmic horrors threaten the newly awakened city, the six avatars must come together to New York. 

The City We Became Overdrive link

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro 

Ishiguro imagines a world where certain children are kept at elite boarding schools and only allowed to see the outside world once they come of age. I don’t want to say too much about this one and spoil it – trust me when I say that you need to read it, it may make you cry, and you won’t be able to put it down. 

Never Let Me Go Overdrive link

We hope one of these books will take on a journey to a different world. Join us next week for another virtual book club!

Readalikes for The Book of Two Ways by Jodi Picoult

The Book of Two Ways by Jodi Picoult catalog link

Any time a new Jodi Picoult book comes out is an event in the literary world. From My Sister’s Keeper to Small Great Things, Picoult is a perennial bestseller. You may have heard that a new book of hers came out last month called The Book of Two Ways – and of course when you tried to put a hold on it at the library, you’re very far down the list. Below we’ve curated some other introspective women’s novels that should keep you occupied while you wait for Picoult’s newest #1 New York Times bestselling book.

Heard of The Book of Two Ways but don’t know what it’s about? Your friendly librarians have got you covered: experiencing memories of a man other than her husband while surviving a plane crash, an end-of-life doula on the brink of a fateful decision envisions two disparate paths that find her staying with her family or reconnecting with the past. Find The Book of Two Ways on Overdrive here.

Click any of the book covers below to be taken to our catalog, where you can request a copy of the book with your library card number and PIN. We’ve also included links to our e-media services Overdrive and Hoopla where available. 

Still Alice by Lisa Genova catalog link

Still Alice by Lisa Genova

Feeling at the top of her game when she is suddenly diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease, Harvard psychologist Alice Howland struggles to find meaning and purpose in her life as her concept of self gradually slips away.

Still Alice Overdrive link


What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty  catalog link

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty 

No relation to the previous Alice, but this is another book about memory, forgetting, and examining one’s life. Suffering an accident that causes her to forget the last ten years of her life, Alice is astonished to discover that she is thirty-nine years old, a mother of three children, and in the midst of an acrimonious divorce from a man she dearly loves.

What Alice Forgot Overdrive link

Hausfrau by Jill Alexander Essbaum catalog link

Hausfrau by Jill Alexander Essbaum

Enduring private misery in spite of a well-appointed life in suburban Zurich with her distant Swiss banker husband and young children, Anna Benz experiments with unfulfilling hobbies before engaging in a series of surprising sexual affairs.

Hausfrau Overdrive link


Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie catalog link

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Separated by respective ambitions after falling in love in occupied Nigeria, beautiful Ifemelu experiences triumph and defeat in America while exploring new concepts of race, while Obinze endures an undocumented status in London until the pair is reunited in their homeland 15 years later, where they face the toughest decisions of their lives.

Americanah Overdrive link

Shadow Tag by Louise Erdrich catalog link

Shadow Tag by Louise Erdrich

After she discovers that her husband has been reading her diary, Irene America turns it into a manipulative farce, while secretly keeping a second diary that includes her true thoughts, through which the reader learns of Irene’s shaky marriage, its affect on her children and her struggles with alcohol.



All plot summaries courtesy of Novelist.

Did you try one these books? What did you think? Let us know in the comments! Next week we’ll be back with another edition of the virtual book club!