Hi everyone, here are our recommended titles for the week, five digital titles, eBooks & downloadable audiobooks, available through OverDrive and five print titles available through StarCat.
DIGITAL CATALOG RECOMMENDATIONS:
Blindness by José Saramago (Format: eBook)
A stunningly powerful novel of man’s will to survive against all odds, by the winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize for Literature.
“This is a shattering work by a literary master.”—The Boston Globe
A New York Times Notable Book of the Year
A Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year
A city is hit by an epidemic of “white blindness” which spares no one. Authorities confine the blind to an empty mental hospital, but there the criminal element holds everyone captive, stealing food rations and raping women. There is one eyewitness to this nightmare who guides seven strangers—among them a boy with no mother, a girl with dark glasses, a dog of tears—through the barren streets, and the procession becomes as uncanny as the surroundings are harrowing. A magnificent parable of loss and disorientation and a vivid evocation of the horrors of the twentieth century, Blindness has swept the reading public with its powerful portrayal of man’s worst appetites and weaknesses—and man’s ultimately exhilarating spirit.
Gap Creek by Robert Morgan (Format: eBook)
A New York Times Bestseller & Oprah’s Book Club Pick
Young Julie Harmon works “hard as a man,” they say, so hard that at times she’s not sure she can stop. People depend on her to slaughter the hogs and nurse the dying. People are weak, and there is so much to do. At just seventeen she marries and moves down into the valley of Gap Creek, where perhaps life will be better.
But Julie and Hank’s new life in the valley, in the last years of the nineteenth century, is more complicated than the couple ever imagined. Sometimes it’s hard to tell what to fear most—the fires and floods or the flesh-and-blood grifters, drunks, and busybodies who insinuate themselves into their new life. To survive, they must find out whether love can keep chaos and madness at bay. Their struggles with nature, with work, with the changing century, and with the disappointments and triumphs of their union make Gap Creek a timeless story of a marriage.
I Beat the Odds, From Homelessness, to The Blind Side, and Beyond by Michael Oher (Format: eBook)
The football star made famous in the hit film (and book) The Blind Side reflects on how far he has come from the circumstances of his youth. Michael Oher shares his personal account of his story, in this inspirational New York Times bestseller.
Looking back on how he went from being a homeless child in Memphis to playing in the NFL, Michael talks about the goals he had to break out of the cycle of poverty, addiction, and hopelessness that trapped his family. Eventually he grasped onto football as his ticket out and worked hard to make his dream into a reality. With his adoptive family, the Touhys, and other influential people in mind, he describes the absolute necessity of seeking out positive role models and good friends who share the same values to achieve one’s dreams. Sharing untold stories of heartache, determination, courage, and love, I Beat the Odds is an incredibly rousing tale of one young man’s quest to achieve the American dream.
I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb (Format: eBook)
With his stunning debut novel, She’s Come Undone, Wally Lamb won the adulation of critics and readers with his mesmerizing tale of one woman’s painful yet triumphant journey of self-discovery. Now, this brilliantly talented writer returns with I Know This Much Is True, a heartbreaking and poignant multigenerational saga of the reproductive bonds of destruction and the powerful force of forgiveness. A masterpiece that breathtakingly tells a story of alienation and connection, power and abuse, devastation and renewal–this novel is a contemporary retelling of an ancient Hindu myth. A proud king must confront his demons to achieve salvation. Change yourself, the myth instructs, and you will inhabit a renovated world.
Nothing to Hide by Allison Brennan (Format: eBook)
With a background in psychology, FBI Agent Lucy Kincaid is good at getting into the heads of killers and victims both. Still, her latest case is leaving her stumped. A third body has turned up in San Antonio—and it bears the same unique and troubling M.O. as the first two. The killer is clearly trying to send a message. But what is it—and to whom? All roads keep leading Lucy down a dead end. . .
The victims are all married men who led honest lives alongside their adoring wives, but have nothing else in common. When Lucy catches each widow in a lie, she realizes that things are not at all as they seem. What begins as a seemingly straightforward investigation turns into something far darker and more sinister than Lucy could have ever imagined. Can she solve this case before more lives are lost. . . including her own husband?
American Sherlock: Murder, Forensics, and the Birth of American CSI by Kate Winkler Dawson
From the acclaimed author of Death in the Air (“Not since Devil in the White City has a book told such a harrowing tale”—Douglas Preston) comes the riveting story of the birth of criminal investigation in the twentieth century.
Berkeley, California, 1933. In a lab filled with curiosities—beakers, microscopes, Bunsen burners, and hundreds upon hundreds of books—sat an investigator who would go on to crack at least two thousand cases in his forty-year career. Known as the “American Sherlock Holmes,” Edward Oscar Heinrich was one of America’s greatest—and first—forensic scientists, with an uncanny knack for finding clues, establishing evidence, and deducing answers with a skill that seemed almost supernatural.
Heinrich was one of the nation’s first expert witnesses, working in a time when the turmoil of Prohibition led to sensationalized crime reporting and only a small, systematic study of evidence. However with his brilliance, and commanding presence in both the courtroom and at crime scenes, Heinrich spearheaded the invention of a myriad of new forensic tools that police still use today, including blood spatter analysis, ballistics, lie-detector tests, and the use of fingerprints as courtroom evidence. His work, though not without its serious—some would say fatal—flaws, changed the course of American criminal investigation.
Based on years of research and thousands of never-before-published primary source materials, American Sherlock captures the life of the man who pioneered the science our legal system now relies upon—as well as the limits of those techniques and the very human experts who wield them.
Brother & Sister: A Memoir by Diane Keaton
When they were children in the suburbs of Los Angeles in the 1950s, Diane Keaton and her younger brother, Randy, were best friends and companions: they shared stories at night in their bunk beds; they swam, laughed, dressed up for Halloween. Their mother captured their American-dream childhoods in her diaries, and on camera. But as they grew up, Randy became troubled, then reclusive. By the time he reached adulthood, he was divorced, an alcoholic, a man who couldn’t hold on to full-time work–his life a world away from his sister’s, and from the rest of their family. Now Diane is delving into the nuances of their shared, and separate, pasts to confront the difficult question of why and how Randy ended up living his life on ‘the other side of normal
Golden in Death: An Eve Dallas Novel by J. D. Robb
In the latest thriller in the #1 New York Times bestselling series, homicide detective Eve Dallas investigates a murder with a mysterious motive — and a terrifying weapon. Pediatrician Kent Abner received the package on a beautiful April morning. Inside was a cheap trinket, a golden egg that could be opened into two halves. When he pried it apart, highly toxic airborne fumes entered his body — and killed him. After Eve Dallas calls the hazmat team — and undergoes testing to reassure both her and her husband that she hasn’t been exposed — it’s time to look into Dr. Abner’s past and relationships. Not every victim Eve encounters is an angel, but it seems that Abner came pretty close — though he did ruffle some feathers over the years by taking stands for the weak and defenseless. While the lab tries to identify the deadly toxin, Eve hunts for the sender. But when someone else dies in the same grisly manner, it becomes clear that she’s dealing with either a madman — or someone who has a hidden and elusive connection to both victims.
Murder at Archly Manor by Sara Rosett
London, 1923. Olive Belgrave needs a job. Despite her aristocratic upbringing, she’s penniless. Determined to support herself, she jumps at an unconventional job–looking into the background of her cousin’s fiancé, Alfred. Alfred burst into the upper crust world of London’s high society, but his answers to questions about his past are decidedly vague. Before Olive can gather more than the basics, a murder occurs at a posh party. Suddenly, every Bright Young Person in attendance is a suspect, and Olive must race to find the culprit because a sly murderer is determined to make sure Olive’s first case is her last.
Perfect Little Children by Sophie Hannah
“All Beth has to do is drive her son to his soccer game, watch him play, and then return home. Just because she knows her ex-best friend lives near the field, that doesn’t mean she has to drive past her house and try to catch a glimpse of her. Why would Beth do that and risk dredging up painful memories? She hasn’t seen Flora for twelve years. She doesn’t want to see her today–or ever again. But she can’t resist. She parks outside the open gates of Newnham House, watches from across the road as Flora arrives and calls to her children Thomas and Emily to get out of the car. Except … There’s something terribly wrong. Flora looks the same, only older. Twelve years ago, Thomas and Emily were five and three years old. Today, they look precisely as they did then. They are Thomas and Emily without a doubt, but they haven’t changed at all. They are no taller, no older. Why haven’t they grown? How is it possible that they haven’t grown up?”–Amazon.com.
Have a great week!
Linda Reimer, SSCL
Note: Book summaries are from the publisher unless otherwise specified.
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