Staff Picks

Published on Friday, March 8, 2013

56 UpIf you have never viewed Michael Apted's monumental Up documentaries, now is the time to do it.

A creepy new read by a new author

Published on Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls book coverTwelve-year-old Victoria is determined to keep everything perfect: her grades, her appearance, and her best friend, overly messy Lawrence.

Even though Lawrence is Victoria’s "personal project" in need of fixing, when he goes missing, Victoria soon uncovers numerous secrets lurking beneath the surface of her picture-perfect town. Once Victoria uncovers the horrible truth, she must face her own fears and learn to trust and depend on others.

By Ronald Kessler

Published on Monday, March 4, 2013

In the President's Secret ServiceKessler’s book about the behind scenes of the secret service, is a partisan, gossip-rant about U.S. presidents. Former Presidents, Reagan, Bush and Ford were mellifluously described as outstanding American presidents, while agents derided Clinton, Johnson and Carter as inconsiderate or deceptively arrogant, womanizers.

Staff Recommendations

Published on Monday, March 4, 2013

River of Smoke bookcoverIf you are not familiar with the work of Amitav Ghosh, you are in for an enriching reading experience.  If you want to know what the atmosphere was like in the area of India and China in the early part of the 19th century, the author will treat you to vivid descriptions so real that you will actually feel like you are living in that time and place.  Ghosh seems to know everything about the East in the early 19th century.  His descriptions of the people, towns, clothing, customs and food are amazing and dialogs in Gujarati, Hindustani, Pidgin and Cantonese are astounding.

'True Grit'

Published on Friday, March 1, 2013
True Grit (Novel)
True Grit (DVD)

Charles Portis’ classic novel, True Grit, tells the story of young Mattie Ross, a 14-year-old seeking justice for her father’s murder. She states in the opening line of the novel, “People do not give it credence that a 14-year-old girl could leave home and go off in the wintertime to avenge her father’s blood but it did not seem so strange then, although I will say it did not happen every day.” She is right about this sort of thing not happening every day, but then again, strong, young female characters like Mattie do not come around every day either.

Mattie hires an ornery old U.S. Marshal, Rooster Cogburn, to help her track down her father’s killer, and the pair are joined by Texas Ranger LeBoeuf, who has been hunting the killer, Tom Chaney, for an unrelated homicide in Texas.  At first the two older men try to leave Mattie behind, but her dogged pursuit eventually convinces them that she is up to the task.

Published on Thursday, February 28, 2013

bookcoverIn the fourth book of the Witch & Wizard series, Wisty and Whit Allgood have defeated the ruthless dictator that ruled their world. Along the way, they made some amazing allies and some awful enemies. Now that the fight is over, they're faced with a different problem as Wisty finds herself attracted to the new kid on the block.

As brother and sister make their way through yet another dystopian saga together, Wisty must decide whether she will choose her brother, Whit, or the hot new kid, Heath. One kiss truly could destroy the world!

Aldo Zelnick Comic Novels

Published on Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Curl up, get cozy, and read!

Published on Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Book cover for Fresh Off the Boat by Eddie HuangThere is one thing you will notice about Eddie Huang fairly early on in his new memoir: he hates you. There are only two things he loves: food and hip-hop -- both the music and the culture.

New Book about Banksy

Published on Monday, February 25, 2013

Banksy, The Man Behind the WallWhen Wall and Piece came out a few years ago, I did not know much about the graffiti artist Banksy, but I was intrigued. His work seemed both political and whimsical, witty and fun to look at.

'It's Kind of a Funny Story'

Published on Thursday, February 21, 2013
It's Kind of a Funny Story
It's Kind of a Funny Story (DVD)

Ned Vizzini’s It’s Kind of a Funny Story tells the tale of Craig Gilner, a 15-year-old high school student who suffers from anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts. While much of the subject material in the novel is quite serious, the whole story is infused with humor, and it is much more amusing than a story about mental illness has any right to be. 

The novel begins with Craig detailing the few things in life that give him pleasure, as well as the many, many things that cause him anxiety. It seems that nearly everything in his life causes stress. School, girls, his friends, and his parents—they all contribute to Craig’s neuroses that have gotten bad enough that he can barely eat, sleep, or function normally. After a lengthy introduction to Craig’s problems, and one particularly bad night that ends with him calling a suicide hotline, Craig visits the emergency room. 

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