Book Reviews from Deena

Check out these book reviews from Deena, a member of the Library’s Patron Service Team. Let us know if you would like any titles added to your book list or head over to BARD to download the titles now.

Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld
Violet and Daisy are twins and both have psychic abilities. In their teen years, they are not well accepted by their peers. They rely on each other for companionship, but when they go off to college Daisy reinvents herself and becomes Kate and Violet drops out of school. Violet counts on her psychic skills to make a living and Kate marries and has a family. Violet floats through life and Kate feels the need to take care of her. Violet predicts an earthquake for the St. Louis area and is suddenly thrust into the lime light. Kate’s husband, Jeremy is attending a conference on the date of the predicted earthquake. Kate begs him to stay home. While Jeremy is gone Kate does something to jeopardize her marriage. This book is about relationships with parents, siblings, spouses and children. DB77180
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Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson
I wanted to read this because, I thought mistakenly, like the author, that soon after the sinking of the Lusitania that the United States entered World War I. My grandfather served in World War I and I was interested in the events that would have happened before my grandparents married. Several things in this book made me angry. Winston Churchill perpetuating the myth that the U-boat fired two torpedoes. The fact that Room 40 knew where that U-boat was every day, days before the sinking of the Lusitania, and yet they provided no security. The blaming of the Captain of the Lusitania for its sinking was ludicrous. Following some of the passengers and learning what happened to them was interesting. If you enjoy history, particularly maritime history, you will enjoy this book. DB80936
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A Mothers Reckoning by Sue Klebold
This book is the raw, emotional journey of Sue Klebold. She took this journey after her son, Dylan along with Eric Harris shot and killed a teacher and 12 students and injuring 20 more at Columbine High School. Sue felt like a failure as a mother and searched her memory to find signs of what Dylan had done. Her family was ostracized for many years after the tragedy. In the end, she was so consumed by trying to understand what went wrong that she and her husband, who just wanted to move on with life, divorced. She finally concluded that Dylan had mental health issues and this was an easy way to die or commit suicide. A thought provoking book. Whether you agree with Sue’s conclusions or not this was painful to all who were touched by it. DB83764
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The Orphan’s Tale by Pam Jenoff
The story takes place during World War II. Noa was cast out by her family when she became pregnant at a young age. Her baby was adopted. As she makes her way through the countryside she rescues a baby from a train car bound for a concentration camp. She raises the boy as her own. She joins a circus touring Europe and becomes an aerialist. The ringmaster is a kind man hiding several Jewish people in his employ. The circus in Germany at the time, was the only entertainment that kept the people’s mind off the despair of war. This is an interesting tale with a twist at the end. DB89826
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Three Bookish Wishes

What if you could rub a lamp and a Book Genie appeared offering you three wishes….three bookish wishes?  Wishes that had to deal with books and reading.  Maybe you want to meet a certain author?  Wish that your favorite author would write a sequel to your favorite book?  See a character come to life?  Have the time to read all the books you want?

Here are three bookish wishes from Deena, Patron Services Librarian:

1.    Nancy Drew Mystery Stories were one of my favorite genres in my youth.  My favorite story was The Ghost of Blackwood Hall by Carolyn Keene (DB94369).  I wish I could be Nancy’s friend and help solve a mystery.

2.    I loved the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder as a girl.  I would like to spend a few days with the Ingalls family to learn more about life on the prairie.

3.    I would like to spend one day at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, as portrayed in the book The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson (DB55748).  I would like to the see “new inventions” and see how it compares to the Iowa State Fair. Let’s hope that I don’t run into the serial killer!

What would you wish for if the Book Genie visited you?

Three Bookish Wishes

What if you could rub a lamp and a Book Genie appeared offering you three wishes….three bookish wishes?  Wishes that had to deal with books and reading.  Maybe you want to meet a certain author?  Wish that your favorite author would write a sequel to your favorite book?  See a character come to life?  Have the time to read all the books you want?

Here are three bookish wishes from Leslie, the Special Services Librarian:

  1. Stephen King is one of my favorite authors.  I wish I could love to travel to Maine where most of his books are set and visit his home and surroundings.
  2. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern is one of my favorite books.  I wish to be able to step into that world filled with magic, love, and spell-binding intrigue.
  3. My last wish is a little more basic.  I wish I could remember all the books I read as a child, teen and now an adult with greater clarity.  I tend to forget the details of the books I’ve read and it would be great to remember every last detail of every last book I have ever read!

I have many more bookish wishes.  But I will keep it to three for now!

What would you wish for if the Book Genie visited you?