The Village Voice recently published an article on lesser known titles for Black History Month, other than the usual recommended classics. Here are the titles we have available at Newburgh Free Library. Take them out and give them a read.
Posted in African American Fiction, black history month, books, fiction, jim crow, nonfiction, slavery
Tagged black history month, books, fiction, jim crow, nonfiction, slavery
There is something about the winter that makes me read dark psychological suspenseful books that keeps me on the edge of my seat. I’ve just finished reading, The Girl on The Train by Paula Hawkins. I remember hearing buzz about this book last spring at Book Expo and it certainly lived up to its hype. Perhaps it is the dark grey winter days that makes it easier to be transported into these dark scenarios.
Similar to Gone Girl, Hawkins has created an unreliable main narrator, Rachel, who keeps us on our toes and guessing throughout the novel. Rachel, recently unemployed and frequently inebriated, is wallowing in the depths of despair over the recent loss of her marriage and job and has taking to keeping up the pretense of being employed as she rides the train every day as if she is going to work. As the train slows down past the backs of a row of houses, Rachel becomes a voyeur and lets her imagination run wild. She makes up names and imaginary lives for these characters she doesn’t know. She becomes particularly enamored with a young couple who seem similar to her and her ex-husband in happier times. In her mind they are named “Jason and Jess”. Imagine her surprise when one day as the train approaches the back of the row houses she sees Jess passionately kissing a man that is not her husband! This sets Rachel into a tailspin especially since the next day, the front page of the newspaper is covered with a photo of “Jess” who happens to have gone missing! This book has everything you’d want in a thriller and kept me on my toes till the very end. If you’re like me and love to curl up with a thriller when its cold and grey outside– give The Girl on The Train a read!
Today is the 202th anniversary of the classic by Jane Austen. One of the great master of English literature, Austen sold the copyright to Pride and Prejudice to Thomas Edgarton for £110 but because of favorable reviews he quickly recouped his money and made approximately £45o for just the first two editions!
While some have claimed Pride and Prejudice is simply a romantic comedy, Austen’s themes of marriage, wealth and commentary on the class structure of 18th British society have made the novel revered and studied to this day. Whether you loved the book or not, it certainly has endured for a reason. Is this your favorite Austen title?
Posted in book clubs, book group; reading group;, books, classics, family & relationships, literary fiction
Tagged book clubs, books, classics, fiction, Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice
When I was at Book Expo last year, I remember Deb Futter, Editor in Chief of Grand Central Publishing, talking about The Secret Wisdom of the Earth and how much she loved the manuscript and wanted everyone to share in her enthusiasm for the book. It quickly became a title that all her co-workers were talking about. There is nothing better than hearing about a good word of mouth book! That got me intrigued and so out of all of the hundred or so galleys I received at BEA, this was the title I read first. It didn’t have a fancy cover at the time, but the title grabbed me and with Deb’s recommendation I was quickly transported off into the world Scotton created.
First time author, Christopher Scotton, sets the tale of Secret Wisdom in the heart of Appalachia coal mining country in the 1980’s. The story revolves around 15 year old Kevin, who has been sent to visit his grandfather for the summer along with his grieving mother after tragedy has struck the family. I quickly became enamored with the characters and this tale that entwines environmental issues with the moral dilemmas that come into play in this classic coming of age of story. I lived and breathed this story as I was reading it and I hope you will too. If you love a good coming of age story mixed with redemption and honest believable characters, you should put this book at the top of your to read pile. I was so enamored with the book it will be my book discussion selection for February and we will be Skyping with the author.
Please give it a read — it is a classic that will be in at the top of my best list in 2015 !
Posted in adult book for young adults, atmospheric, book clubs, books, coming of age, fiction
Tagged adult books for young adults. 2015, book clubs, Christopher Scotton, coming of age, debut novel, fiction
A Christmas Carol turns 171 years old today
A perfect time to share Charles Dickens wonderful novella about the 3 ghosts who visit Scrooge and show him the true meaning of Christmas. We have Christmas Carol in DVD, and in several different book formats, including graphic novel.
Posted in A Christmas Carol, adaptations, Charles Dickens, classics, dvds, graphic novels, Scrooge
Tagged A Christmas Carol, adaptations, Charles Dickens, classics, dvds, graphic novels, Scrooge
If your favorite Christmas holiday classic is The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, you might want to give international bestseller, The Man Who Called Ove, a try. Written by Swedish author, Fredrick Backman, the novel starts off with the curmudgeonly Ove. spreading his unique style of grouchiness throughout his small neighborhood. Everyone in his vicinity tries to avoid Ove and his daily routines and Ove tries to avoid them as well. It seems the only person he talks to is his dead wife until a new family moves next door. Their introduction to Ove is courtesy of crashing into Ove’s mailbox and soon the needy family charms its way into Ove’s bitter heart and into his life. Although the novel starts bit slow in the beginning, stay with it and you will be smiling at the end of this delightful novel.