Staff Picks

Here are some recent book reviews!

  • Book Review: “Mooncakes”

    September 24, 2020
    Mooncakes, written by Suzanne Walker and beautifully illustrated by Wendy Xu, is a young adult graphic novel about witch-in-training Nova Huang, who is apprenticing at home with her grandmothers. Together they run a magical bookstore with just about every magical book you could want to read, and more tea than you could probably drink in a ...
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  • Book Review: “Devolution: A Firsthand Account of the Rainier Sasquatch Massacre”

    September 18, 2020
    I would recommend Max Brooks’ Devolution to anyone, but especially to fans of Brooks’ World War Z, Bobcat Goldthwait’s Willow Creek and the History Channel’s 2007 series, MonsterQuest. Told mostly through the firsthand journal account of Kate Holland, it’s interspersed with interviews with several people who either knew her or were involved in trying to piece ...
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  • Book Review: “Eat at Home Tonight: 101 Simple Busy-Family Recipes for Your Slow Cooker, Sheet Pan, Instant Pot, and More,” by Tiffany King

    September 10, 2020
    For the start a new school year, Eat at Home Tonight is a wonderful cookbook, full of dinner options for busy families.  I have bookmarked many of the recipes to try, and the ones I’ve tried so far have been delicious!  I’ll be making her One-Pot Sausage, Corn, and Red Pepper Chowder this week for an easy weeknight ...
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  • Book Review: “On the Horizon” by Lois Lowry

    September 3, 2020
    On the Horizon: World War II Reflections is a stirring new memoir written by Maine’s own Lois Lowry. The book looks back at the history of lives forever changed after the bombings of Pearl Harbor and Hiroshima. The slim novel/memoir is written in verse, with each poem a recollection of heroes both big and small. ...
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  • Book Review: “Hamnet” by Maggie O’Farrell

    August 28, 2020
    This book is a wonderfully executed piece of historical fiction. Maggie O’Farrell creates a family history of William Shakespeare, his wife, and children. Working with very little available factual information, O’Farrell pieces together her imagined version of the world in which Shakespeare lived and worked. In the process, the reader is invited to speculate along with the ...
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  • Book Review: Great Beach Reads by Beatriz Williams and Elin Hilderbrandt

    August 21, 2020
    Her Last Flight, by Beatriz Williams28 Summers, by Elin Hilderbrandt For anyone looking for a good beach read during these dog days of summer, two authors of the genre have new releases that might interest you.  I recently read Her Last Flight by Beatriz Williams and 28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand.  I loved the former, I ...
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  • Book Review: “A Curse So Dark and Lonely”

    July 30, 2020
    A Curse So Dark and Lonely Brigid Kemmerer In an instant, Harper’s life changed from one of deadly danger, as lookout for her brother’s nefarious doings, to a life of deadly danger, trapped in a castle with a lethal man-at-arms (Grey) and a monster/prince (Rhen). Rhen’s father, while he was alive and ruling Emberfall, made the ...
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  • Kanopy Movie Review: “Mostly Martha” (2001)

    July 17, 2020
    When my husband and I received this movie as a gift many years ago, it took us a long time to actually watch the film. Once we did, we realized what a lovely gift of a film it was; I just smiled when I saw it among the KANOPY selections. I can’t wait ...
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  • Book Review: “The Kingdom of Back” by Marie Lu

    July 10, 2020
    Nannerl is always the “other child.”  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, her little brother (often called Wolferl) is the prodigy.  He’s the one who writes sonatas in his sleep. He’s the one showing off and doing tricks to amuse his audience (while Nannerl is required to sit with her eyes downcast after a performance).  He’s the cute ...
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  • Book Review: “Kent State” by Deborah Wiles

    June 25, 2020
    Different voices. Different perspectives. Like a dissonant Greek chorus, the voices in Deborah Wiles’ work of YA historical fiction, Kent State, rage and argue in poetic free verse as they narrate the events surrounding the Kent State University shootings of May 4, 1970. Using a range of fonts to differentiate speakers, Wiles employs the voices of multiple college students ...
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