July 2013 Archives

The Other Typist

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Click for availability and more information The Other Typist, by Suzanne Rindell
 
The Other Typist by debut author Suzanne Rindell is the best book I've read so far this summer. It's a psychological suspense novel set in the roaring 1920s. Most of the descriptions of this book mention an unreliable narrator, which I found intriguing.

Kirkus Reviews gave it a starred review, and I think this says it best, "Take a dollop of Alfred Hitchcock, a dollop of Patricia Highsmith, throw in some Great Gatsby flourishes, and the result is Rindell's debut, a pitch-black comedy about a police stenographer accused of murder in 1920s Manhattan. . . . A deliciously addictive, cinematically influenced page-turner, both comic and provocative." If you enjoyed Gone Girl, make this your next book. Happy reading!
-Kate

The Well

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Click for availability and more information The Well, by Brad Shepik
 
We put this in our jazz section, although it could have just as easily be classified as World Music, given the prevailing Balkan/Middle Eastern tenor of its contents. But, no matter, as this is a fine recording by a terrific band which can groove in a variety of time signatures and seems completely at ease in this idiom. Compelling solos abound, particularly the work of guitarist/saz/tambura player Brad Shepik, bassist, Skuli Sverrisson and saxophonist Peter Epstein.
-David

Dinner with Churchill

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Click for availability and more information Dinner with Churchill, by Cita Stelzer
 
Volumes of books have certainly been written about the great British leader Winston Churchill over the years. However, Dinner with Churchill by Cita Stelzer is wonderfully unique in that it explores Churchill's fantastic ability to use the dining table as the setting to frequently entertain and charm a very distinguished array of world leaders by hosting meals he designed. The goal of these gatherings was often to achieve political gains for Churchill and the British during World War II. For example, Churchill's dinners with Franklin Roosevelt were a perfect setting for him to cajole Roosevelt into adopting his viewpoints on how the war should be fought. Listening to this book on cd is not only a great history lesson, but a delightful insight into Churchill's mastery of dining diplomacy.

The bonus is the reader Davina Porter. Her mastery of dialects and accents adds wonderful descriptions to all the culinary dishes served at these meals. This is a relatively short book on cd at 5½ hours and makes for very interesting and extremely enjoyable listening.
-Roy

The Last Telegram

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Click for availability and more information The Last Telegram, by Liz Trenow
 
This debut novel should especially interest fans of historical fiction. Setting her story in England's silk production industry during the years before, during and after World War II, Liz Trenow's The Last Telegram is an interesting and very readable book. Lily Verner, the main character, becomes an apprentice in her family's silk weaving business in the prewar years and goes on to remain its driving figure for the balance of the twentieth century. Silk becomes the very-much needed material to make the parachutes for the soldiers who will fight against Nazi Germany. This is probably a little-known aspect of the war years for most readers and is a great background for Trenow's story. Immediately prior to the war, Lily's family gives shelter to young German Jewish males who are port of the Kindertransport, which tried to safely get German youth away from the evils of Nazism. Lily and her family endure much hardship in the war as well as personal traumas. Trenow has created very believable characters and a good story. Readers should look forward to her future books. The Last Telegram would make a great selection for book clubs!
-Roy

World War Z

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Click for availability and more information World War Z, by Max Brooks
 
World War Z is the telling of a fictional zombie war that occurs inexplicably. The Downloadable audio book is the best adaptation of this novel. The characters come to life in each chapter. Max Brooks' story-telling is different and refreshing. He uses an interview form of narrating the character's individual accounts of what happened in the apocalyptic zombie war. The characters are vibrant and intriguing. They are from different walks of life and their personalities really hit home when you hear their experiences and survival methods. As the reader and audience we are being educated a decade after the war. This novel is essential for apocalyptic/zombie aficionados. Currently the film adaption is out in theatres; however, the film and the novel are completely diverse. The film is appreciated as it provides closure and a sense of 'the day is saved' by the hero who is the main character, something the novel lacks but does not intend to accomplish within the scheme of the collective oral history of the characters involved.
-Marilynn

The Candymakers

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Click for availability and more information The Candymakers, by Wendy Mass
 
When four twelve-year-olds, including Logan, who has grown up never leaving his parents' Life Is Sweet candy factory, compete in the Confectionery Association's annual contest, they unexpectedly become friends and uncover secrets about themselves during the process.
-Deirdre

The Iceman

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Click for availability and more information The Iceman, by Anthony Bruno
 
I don't normally like to judge a book by its cover, but in this case, I made an exception! As I was browsing the downloadable books on Overdrive, I spotted The Iceman which has a dark, ominous cover. I read the review online and decided I might give it a try. I'm glad I did! I had a hard time putting it down and finished it in no time. It's the story of a fringe gangster who executed at least 100 people by various means, and the undercover cop who brought him down. Yet, this criminal cared very much for his family and did a reasonable job providing for them - despite a few incidents of domestic violence. You probably want to read it just to find out how he got his nickname. This is a great book to download and take on your vacation!
-Carl

How to Eat Fried Worms

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Click for availability and more information How to Eat Fried Worms, by Thomas Rockwell
 
Friends who are always doing crazy stunts challenge one boy to try and eat fifteen worms in fifteen days.
-Deirdre

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from July 2013 listed from newest to oldest.

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