Fiction

Billy Lynn's long halftime walk book cover

Billy Lynn's long halftime walk

Ben Fountain

FICTION Fountain Ben
Fiction

Billy Lynn's Long Half-Time Walk is a razor-sharp satire set in Texas during America's war in Iraq. It explores the gaping national disconnect between the war at home and the war abroad. Ben Fountain’s remarkable debut novel follows the surviving members of the heroic Bravo Squad through one exhausting stop in their media-intensive "Victory Tour" at Texas Stadium, football mecca of the Dallas Cowboys, their fans, promoters, and cheerleaders.

Melody's picture

A coming of age story like none I've ever read. This young man comes of age as an Iraq war soldier, surviving a firefight and coming home a hero. What I loved most was how zen the character seemed as all these political forces pushed him around, when all he was was this 19yo kid with a complicated family life and raging hormones. -Melody

The bookshop on the corner : a novel book cover

The bookshop on the corner : a novel

Jenny Colgan

FICTION Colgan, Jenny
Fiction

Nina Redmond is a literary matchmaker. Pairing a reader with that perfect book is her passion... and also her job. Or at least it was. Until yesterday, she was a librarian in the hectic city. But now the job she loved is no more. Determined to make a new life for herself, Nina moves to a sleepy village many miles away. There she buys a van and transforms it into a bookmobile--a mobile bookshop that she drives from neighborhood to neighborhood, changing one life after another with the power of storytelling. From helping her grumpy landlord deliver a lamb, to sharing picnics with a charming train conductor who serenades her with poetry, Nina discovers there's plenty of adventure, magic, and soul in a place that's beginning to feel like home... a place where she just might be able to write her own happy ending.

Melody's picture

One of my favorite parts of this book was when Nina was handing out reading recommendations left and right, and people came back for more! Definitely a librarian's fantasyland. This is a great book to read during the winter, when you want to delight in staying warm indoors. Cozy up with Scottish countrysides and strapping young poets and farmers. Also available as an audiobook in Libby. -Melody

All the stars in the heavens : a novel book cover

All the stars in the heavens : a novel

Adriana Trigiani

FICTION Trigiani Adriana
Fiction, Historical Fiction

Anne M's picture

The novel focuses on what happens between Loretta Young and Clark Gable as they film The Call of the Wild on location, as well as the fallout of their relationship. Trigiani individualizes each character and relationships are not portrayed as tawdry or depraved as the rumor mill at the time would make them out to be. It is also a well-written, solid read and it left me wanting more. -Anne M

Far from the madding crowd. book cover

Far from the madding crowd.

Thomas Hardy

FICTION Hardy, Thomas
Fiction, Classics

Anne M's picture

I read Tess of the D'Urbervilles and loved it, but after reading Jude the Obscure, I put Thomas Hardy back on the shelf. This book renewed my interest in Hardy. This is more of a love story, then the tragedies Hardy is know for. That doesn't mean that love and loss do not play a pivotal role in the story. -Anne M

North and south book cover

North and south

Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

FICTION Gaskell, Elizabeth Cleghorn
Fiction, Classics

Anne M's picture

Oh, you must read Elizabeth Gaskell and you must start with this one. Margaret Hale, a daughter of a clergyman meets a stern, yet handsome mill owner, who is below her station as a tradesman. I would say it is Pride and Prejudice meets the industrial revolution--but I think this may be unfair to Gaskell, who is a fantastic writer in her own right. -Anne M

Rush oh! : a novel book cover

Rush oh! : a novel

Shirley Barrett

FICTION Barrett Shirley
Fiction, Adventure

Anne M's picture

Such a fun read—very whimsical—wonderfully funny scenes. But also sad. I couldn’t wait to pick it up and read it every day. -Anne M

The remains of the day book cover

The remains of the day

Kazuo Ishiguro

FICTION Ishiguro, Kazuo
Fiction

The novel's narrator, Stevens, is a perfect English butler who tries to give his narrow existence form and meaning through the self-effacing, almost mystical practice of his profession. In a career that spans the second World War, Stevens is oblivious of the real life that goes on around him -- oblivious, for instance, of the fact that his aristocrat employer is a Nazi sympathizer. Still, there are even larger matters at stake in this heartbreaking, pitch-perfect novel -- namely, Stevens' own ability to allow some bit of life-affirming love into his tightly repressed existence.

Anne M's picture

This is a surprising book. A book about an English butler lamenting how his work is change and his world disappearing should be such a quiet book, but that isn't the tragedy at the heart of this story. -Anne M

The most dangerous place on earth : a novel book cover

The most dangerous place on earth : a novel

Lindsey Lee Johnson

FICTION Johnson Lindsey
Fiction

Anne M's picture

Lindsey Lee Johnson’s The Most Dangerous Place on Earth is everything you want a summer read to be. It’s fast-paced, full of drama, and you can’t put the book down. -Anne M

The devils of Cardona book cover

The devils of Cardona

Matthew Carr

FICTION Carr Matthew
Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery

"In this gripping historical thriller set in sixteenth-century Spain, a Catholic priest is murdered by a mysterious Muslim avenger as the Inquisition continues to force Moriscos to live and worship as Christians. In March 1584, the priest of Belamar de la Sierra, a small town in Aragon near the French border, is murdered in his own church. Most of the town's inhabitants are Moriscos, former Muslims who converted to Catholicism. Anxious to avert a violent backlash on the eve of a royal visit, an adviser to King Philip II appoints local magistrate Bernardo de Mendoza to investigate. A soldier and humanist, Mendoza doesn't always live up to the moral standards expected of court officials, but he has a reputation for incorruptibility. From the beginning, Mendoza finds almost universal hatred for the priest. And it isn't long before he's drawn into a complex and dangerous world in which greed, fanaticism, and state policy overlap. And as the killings continue, Mendoza's investigation is overshadowed by the real prospect of an ethnic and religious civil war. By turns an involving historical thriller and a novel with parallels to our own time, The Devils of Cardona is an unexpected and compelling read"--

Anne M's picture

If you want history with a dose of mystery than Matthew Carr’s The Devils of Cardona is your book. Judge Licenciado ­Bernardo Mendoza is sent to the Aragon region of Spain to investigate the murder of a Catholic priest. However, this is 1584, the Inquisition is in full swing, and the suspect, known only as the Redeemer, is a supposed Moor calling for the end of Catholic rule. This is a delicate situation for the King of Spain as he doesn’t want a revolt. When Mendoza arrives at the scene, he soon learns that this murder is much more personal than the historical and religious conflicts being exploited. So who is this Redeemer, is he the murderer, and what does he really want? -Anne M

Golden Hill : a novel of old New York book cover

Golden Hill : a novel of old New York

Francis Spufford

FICTION Spufford Francis
Fiction, Adventure, Historical Fiction

"New York, a small town on the tip of Manhattan island, 1746. One rainy evening in November, a handsome young stranger fresh off the boat arrives at a countinghouse door on Golden Hill Street: this is Mr. Smith, amiable, charming, yet strangely determined to keep suspicion shimmering. For in his pocket, he has what seems to be an order for a thousand pounds, a huge sum, and he won't explain why, or where he comes from, or what he is planning to do in the colonies that requires so much money. Should the New York merchants trust him? Should they risk their credit and refuse to pay? Should they befriend him, seduce him, arrest him; maybe even kill him? Rich in language and historical perception, yet compulsively readable, Golden Hill is a story "taut with twists and turns" that "keeps you gripped until its tour-de-force conclusion" (The Times, London). Spufford paints an irresistible picture of a New York provokingly different from its later metropolitan self but already entirely a place where a young man with a fast tongue can invent himself afresh, fall in love--and find a world of trouble"--

Anne M's picture

It is funny and exciting. It is well-written with a great sense of character and a great sense of place. There is adventure, romance, and mystery. And it does not shy away from the dark issues of pre-revolutionary America, including religion, slavery, and the infighting of colonial government. Golden Hill is a great story. Put it on hold today—you’ll be a happy reader. -Anne M