Gideon the ninth book cover

Gideon the ninth

Tamsyn Muir

Fantasy, Fiction

Muir's Gideon the Ninth unveils a solar system of swordplay, cutthroat politics, and lesbian necromancers. Her characters leap off the page, as skillfully animated as arcane revenants. The result is a heart-pounding epic science fantasy.

Melody's picture

I first read about this book on a list promoting titles that break down the heteronormative barrier of fantasy fiction. We love diverse books here at ICPL, and it's taken far too long for LGBTQIA+ fantasy to become mainstream. But that time has arrived! I'm not finished with this book yet, but it has the right amount of swordplay (and wordplay!), and the queer-romance angle is a slow burn. Necromancers dueling in space through their sidekicks takes everything to the next level. And what's on the line? Gideon's freedom. Definitely a book for fantasy lovers to put on their to-read list! -Melody

A season for the dead book cover

A season for the dead

David Hewson

MYSTERY Hewson, David
Fiction, Mystery

Candice's picture

This book is the first in Hewson's series featuring Nic Costa, a Roman police officer. Rome is an old, amazing city, the modern-day inhabitants live side-by-side with the remains of thousands of years of history, and Hewson makes very good use of this. I often find myself looking up things that get mentioned (the Via Appia, the Etruscan blue demon, and Beatrice Cenci are three good examples!) and I'm better for it. The mysteries themselves, while taking place in the current day, relate to some part of Roman history. Coupled with the wonderful fact that there is so much architecture from the past still remaining makes the history, the mystery, and the city come alive in an exciting and enlightening way. -Candice

Murder in the Marais book cover

Murder in the Marais

Cara Black

MYSTERY Black, Cara
Mystery, Fiction

Aimee Leduc, the heroine of this new series set in Paris, specializes in corporate security, but with business in the toilet, she's open to working for a Jewish Nazi hunter. A woman found dead with a swastika carved into her forehead sends Aimee searching for the link between French neo-Nazis, an EU trade agreement, and a killer whose victims span 50 years. The jam-packed plot is occasionally hard to follow (and if readers miss the fact the story is set in 1993, the characters' ages will seem out of whack). But the characterizations are strong, the action nonstop, and the evocation of both occupied Paris and the contemporary city is awash in vivid detail, right down to a tour of the Paris sewers. Most of all, though, it's the rough-and-tumble Aimee who gets this series off to an explosive start.Copyright 2000 Booklist Reviews

Candice's picture

Cara Black writes mysteries that take place in different parts of Paris, and she takes the time to make the location--its history, its people, its social situation--part of the story. Murder in the Marais is the first in the series that features spiky-haired Aimee Leduc, computer programmer and somewhat unwilling private investigator. Throughout the series a world has developed around the main characters, and Paris comes alive in all of its chaotic glory. -Candice

The tiger's wife book cover

The tiger's wife

Téa Obreht

FICTION Obreht, Tea

Remembering childhood stories her grandfather once told her, young physician Natalia becomes convinced that he spent his last days searching for "the deathless man," a vagabond who claimed to be immortal. As Natalia struggles to understand why her grandfather, a deeply rational man would go on such a farfetched journey, she stumbles across a clue that leads her to the extraordinary story of the tiger's wife.

Becky's picture

“The Tiger’s Wife” is a tale where the real and the fantastical are intertwined, a great example of magical realism. While the story follows Natalia, the main storyline builds upon the death of her grandfather. Natalia reexamines memories and stories shared by her grandfather to come to a better understanding surrounding the mysteriousness of his disappearance and death. Through those memories, we are introduced to the Deathless Man and the Tiger’s Wife, both are characters rooted in fantasy and superstition. It is through the Deathless Man and the Tiger’s Wife that Natalia deals with her grief and learns more about her grandfather. -Becky

Akin : a novel book cover

Akin : a novel

Emma Donoghue

FICTION Donoghue Emma

"Noah Selvaggio is a retired chemistry professor and widower living on the Upper West Side, but born in the South of France. He is days away from his first visit back to Nice since he was a child, bringing with him a handful of puzzling photos he's discovered from his mother's wartime years. But he receives a call from social services: Noah is the closest available relative of an eleven-year-old great-nephew he's never met, who urgently needs someone to look after him. Out of a feeling of obligation, Noah agrees to take Michael along on his trip. Much has changed in this famously charming seaside mecca, still haunted by memories of the Nazi occupation. The unlikely duo, suffering from jet lag and culture shock, bicker about everything from steak fries to screen time. But Noah gradually comes to appreciate the boy's truculent wit, and Michael's ease with tech and sharp eye help Noah unearth troubling details about their family's past. Both come to grasp the risks people in all eras have run for their loved ones, and find they are more akin than they knew. Written with all the tenderness and psychological intensity that made Room an international bestseller, Akin is a funny, heart-wrenching tale of an old man and a boy, born two generations apart, who unpick their painful story and start to write a new one together."--Provided by publisher.

Mari's picture

I love how Emma Donoghue's books are all so different! This one takes you on a journey to Nice, France when a retired chemistry professor from New York decides to revisit his childhood home after a series of photographs he discovers upon his sister's death presents a mystery about his mother's involvement in World War II. The trip is suddenly much different than his expectations when he is given responsibility for the care of his eleven-year old great nephew while his mother is incarcerated. This story has elements of travel, historical fiction, child welfare,and the bridging of two very different generations. -Mari

The song of Achilles book cover

The song of Achilles

Madeline Miller

FICTION Miller Madeline

"Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the kingdom of Phthia to be raised in the shadow of King Peleus and his golden son, Achilles. "The best of all the Greeks"-strong, beautiful, and the child of a goddess-Achilles is everything the shamed Patroclus is not. Yet despite their differences, the boys become steadfast companions. Their bond deepens as they grow into young men and become skilled in the arts of war and medicine-much to the displeasure and the fury of Achilles' mother, Thetis, a cruel sea goddess with a hatred of mortals. When word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped, the men of Greece, bound by blood and oath, must lay siege to Troy in her name. Seduced by the promise of a glorious destiny, Achilles joins their cause, and torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus follows. Little do they know that the Fates will test them both as never before and demand a terrible sacrifice. Built on the groundwork of the Iliad, Madeline Miller's page-turning, profoundly moving, and blisteringly paced retelling of the epic Trojan War marks the launch of a dazzling career." (Summary from Amazon)

Becky's picture

"The Song of Achilles" is such an interesting rendition of the tale of the Trojan War. It is told by the perspective of Patroclus, beginning with him as a young child being exiled to the court of King Peleus. There, he and Achilles develop a deep bond which carries them through Chiron's training and into the battlefield. Beautifully written! -Becky

Three mages and a margarita : The Guild Codex: Spellbound Series, Book 1 book cover

Three mages and a margarita : The Guild Codex: Spellbound Series, Book 1

Annette Marie

Fiction, Fantasy

Broke, almost homeless, and recently fired. Those are my official reasons for answering a wanted ad for a skeevy-looking bartender gig. It went downhill the moment they asked me to do a trial shift instead of an interview—to see if I'd mesh with their "special" clientele. I think that part went great. Their customers were complete dickheads, and I was an asshole right back. That's the definition of fitting in, right? I expected to get thrown out on my ass. Instead, they… offered me the job? It turns out this place isn't a bar. It's a guild. And the three cocky guys I drenched with a margarita during my trial? Yeah, they were mages. Either I'm exactly the kind of takes-no-shit bartender this guild needs, or there's a good reason no one else wants to work here. So what's a broke girl to do? Take the job, of course—with a pay raise.

Melody's picture

I discovered the Guild Codex: Spellbound Series only about two weeks ago, and since them I'm already on the third audiobook. This series has so much action! I imagine it'd be like a Harry Potter but for adults. Mages who can control different elemental magic, mythical creatures, and epic battles. The heroine is a human who is trying to scrape by in fit in. Expect a side of romance with this book, too. -Melody

On the come up book cover

On the come up

Angie Thomas

Fiction, Kids

When sixteen-year-old Bri, an aspiring rapper, pours her anger and frustration into her first song, she finds herself at the center of a controversy.

Anne W's picture

Teenage girl dominates at rap battles; what more do you need to know? -Anne W

My Jasper June book cover

My Jasper June

Laurel Snyder

jFICTION Snyder Laurel
Fiction, Kids

The school year is over, and it is summer in Atlanta. The sky is blue, the sun is blazing, and the days brim with possibility. But Leah feels lost. She has been this way since one terrible afternoon a year ago when everything changed. Since that day, her parents have become distant, her friends have fallen away, and Leah's been adrift and alone. Then she meets Jasper, a girl unlike anyone she has ever known. There's something mysterious about Jasper, almost magical. And Jasper, Leah discovers, is also lost. Together, the two girls carve out a place for themselves, a hideaway in the overgrown spaces of Atlanta, away from their parents and their hardships, somewhere only they can find. But as the days of this magical June start to draw to a close, and the darker realities of their lives intrude once more, Leah and Jasper have to decide how real their friendship is, and whether it can be enough to save them both.--

Anne W's picture

A touching story of friendship and loss -Anne W

Eventown book cover


Corey Ann Haydu

jFICTION Haydu Corey
Fiction, Kids, Dystopian

To Elodee, eleven, things seem a little too perfect in Eventown when she moves there with her parents and identical twin, Naomi, especially since forgetting the past is so highly valued.

Anne W's picture

Kind of creepy but with mouthwatering descriptions of creative cooking and baking projects! -Anne W