Did You Know…Holiday Books, Movies, Music, DVDs & CDs Available At The Library!

Did You Know…

The Library has holiday books, CDs and DVDs too?

We do!

And did you further know, you can listen to a great selection of holiday albums and playlists, on demand, through the Freegal Music catalog?

You can, indeed, do that too!

And since our list of suggested titles would be rather long if we included both books and media items in one list; this positing will feature the books and tomorrow I’ll put up a posting with recommended media items, including music titles from Freegal and on CD, movies on DVD and a streaming title or two.

And as a beginning note, for our list of suggested holiday books, we’re treating the word “holiday” loosely. The books may be set during the holiday season or have elements of the holiday season, i.e. Christmas, Kwanzaa or Hanukkah, that thread into the plot.

And without further ado – here are our recommend holiday reads:

Christmas Cake Murder (2018) by Joanne Fluke:

It’s Christmas many years ago, and topping young Hannah Swensen’s wish list is becoming the go-to baker in Lake Eden, Minnesota. But as Hannah finds out, revisiting holiday memories can be
murder . . .

With her dream of opening The Cookie Jar taking shape, Hannah’s life matches the hectic December hustle and bustle in Lake Eden—especially when she agrees to help recreate a spectacular Christmas Ball from the past in honor of Essie Granger, an elderly local in hospice care. But instead of poring over decadent dessert recipes for the merry festivities, she instantly becomes enthralled by Essie’s old notebooks and the tale of a woman escaping danger on the streets of New York. Hannah’s surprised by Essie’s secret talent for penning crime fiction. She’s even more surprised when the story turns real. As Hannah prepares to run a bakery and move out of her mother’s house, it’ll be a true miracle if she can prevent another Yuletide disaster by solving a mystery as dense as a Christmas fruitcake . . .

A Christmas Revelation (2018) by Anne Perry:

In this intriguing, uplifting holiday mystery from bestselling author Anne Perry, an orphan boy investigates a woman’s kidnapping—and discovers there’s more at stake than a disappearance.

It wouldn’t quite be Christmas without a holiday mystery decorated with all the Victorian trimmings, as only New York Times bestselling author Anne Perry can render it. Now the tradition continues as mayhem is once again found under the mistletoe, and intrigue stalks the cobblestone streets and gaslit parlors of old London Town.

Formerly a river urchin living on the banks of the Thames, nine-year-old Worm has never experienced a family Christmas. But thanks to a job at Hester Monk’s clinic in Portpool Lane, he’s found a makeshift family in kindly volunteer Miss Claudine Burroughs and curmudgeonly old bookkeeper Squeaky Robinson.

When Worm witnesses the abduction of a beautiful woman by a pair of ruffians just days before Christmas, he frantically turns to Squeaky for help. A one-time brothel owner, Squeaky knows the perils of interfering in nasty business, but he can’t bear to disappoint Worm—or leave the boy to attempt a rescue on his own. What neither of the would-be saviors expects, however, is that the damsel in distress already has her dilemma well in hand . . . and is taking steps to bring her captors to justice for crimes far worse than kidnapping. But the rogues, as cunning as they are deadly, are not to be underestimated. The aid of cynical old Squeaky and hopeful young Worm just might make the difference between a merry triumph over evil and a terrible yuletide tragedy.

The Christmas Room (2017) by Catherine Anderson:

The beloved author of the Mystic Creek series gifts readers with a novel of homespun holiday cheer, as two families discover the joy of hope and redemption….

Widow Maddie McLendon has uprooted her life to move to Rustlers Gulch with her son and grandson. But as a brutal Montana winter looms on the horizon, contractors have yet to break ground on their new house, leaving them to live in a makeshift camp of trailers, tents, and sheds….

Since his wife died six years ago, millionaire rancher Sam Conacher has been content to wallow in his grief alone while keeping a tight rein on his twenty-six-year-old daughter. But now the girl has gone and fallen in love with his foolish new neighbor’s no-good son….

Maddie and Sam will never see eye to eye on anything, until a near-tragedy gives them a true glimpse into each other’s souls. And as the first snowflakes begin to fall, they’ll discover that an open heart is the biggest gift of all….

The Christmas Sisters (2018) by Sarah Morgan:

From award-winning USA TODAY bestselling author Sarah Morgan comes this heartwarming, emotionally rich new novel, brimming with her trademark Christmas sparkle!

The McBride sisters all have different reasons for finding the holiday season challenging, but their adoptive mother is determined this year will be different. As the countdown to Christmas Day begins, arguments, connections and secrets start bubbling. The McBride family was made, not born—but will they be able to make this the magical family Christmas their mother has always dreamed of?

The Complete Kwanzaa: Celebrating Our Cultural Harvest by D. Winbush Riley:

Kwanzaa is the joyous and meaningful holiday when African-Americans reunite with family and friends and pay tribute to their rich cultural heritage. Celebrated from December 26 through January 1, it is an important part of the lives of 18 million people, and it keeps growing in popularity each year. Until now, however, there have been very few resources available to help African-Americans celebrate. The Complete Kwanzaa is a welcome guide to the cultural foundations of this holiday. It provides comprehensive information on all of its ceremonies, foods, clothing and gift-giving traditions and includes instructions on how to hold a Karamu feast. Folktales, proverbs and stories about successful African-Americans who embody the spirit of the holiday are also included to inspire and instruct the reader. With more facts and wisdom than any other book on the subject, The Complete Kwanzaa is the perfect resource for those who already celebrate Kwanzaa, and those who would like to learn how.

Deck the Hounds (2018) by David Rosenfelt:

This Christmas mystery, featuring criminal defense lawyer Andy Carpenter and his faithful golden retriever, Tara, showcases Rosenfelt’s trademark humor and larger-than-life characters.

Reluctant lawyer Andy Carpenter doesn’t usually stop to help others, but seeing a dog next to a homeless man inspires him to give the pair some money to help. It’s just Andy’s luck that things don’t end there. Soon after Andy’s encounter with them, man and dog are attacked in the middle of the night on the street. The dog defends its new owner, and the erstwhile attacker is bitten but escapes. But the dog is quarantined and the man, Don Carrigan, is heartbroken.

Andy’s wife Laurie can’t resist helping the duo after learning Andy has met them before… it’s the Christmas season after all. In a matter of days Don and his dog Zoey are living above Andy’s garage and become two new additions to the family. It’s not until Andy accidentally gives away his guest’s name during an interview that things go awry; turns out Don is wanted for a murder that happened two years ago. Don not only claims he’s innocent, but that he had no idea that he was wanted for a crime he has no knowledge of in the first place. It’s up to Andy to exonerate his new friend, if he doesn’t get pulled into the quagmire first.

David Rosenfelt’s signature wit, charm, and cleverness are back again in this most exciting installment yet.

Disgruntled: A Novel (2015) by Asali Solomon:

An elegant, vibrant, startling coming-of-age novel, for anyone who’s ever felt the shame of being alive

Kenya Curtis is only eight years old, but she knows that she’s different, even if she can’t put her finger on how or why. It’s not because she’s black—most of the other students in the fourth-grade class at her West Philadelphia elementary school are too. Maybe it’s because she celebrates Kwanzaa, or because she’s forbidden from reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Maybe it’s because she calls her father—a housepainter-slash-philosopher—”Baba” instead of “Daddy,” or because her parents’ friends gather to pour out libations “from the Creator, for the Martyrs” and discuss “the community.”

Kenya does know that it’s connected to what her Baba calls “the shame of being alive”—a shame that only grows deeper and more complex over the course of Asali Solomon’s long-awaited debut novel. Disgruntled, effortlessly funny and achingly poignant, follows Kenya from West Philadelphia to the suburbs, from public school to private, from childhood through adolescence, as she grows increasingly disgruntled by her inability to find any place or thing or person that feels like home.

A coming-of-age tale, a portrait of Philadelphia in the late eighties and early nineties, an examination of the impossible double-binds of race, Disgruntled is a novel about the desire to rise above the limitations of the narratives we’re given and the painful struggle to craft fresh ones we can call our own.

The Ghost Of Christmas Past (2017) by Rhys Bowen:

From Rhys Bowen, the author of In Farleigh Field, comes the next Molly Murphy mystery: The Ghost of Christmas Past.

Semi-retired private detective Molly Murphy Sullivan is suffering from depression after a miscarriage following her adventure in San Francisco during the earthquake of 1906. She and her husband, Daniel, are invited for Christmas at a mansion on the Hudson, and they gratefully accept, expecting a peaceful and relaxing holiday season. Not long after they arrive, however, they start to feel the tension in the house’s atmosphere. Then they learn that the host couple’s young daughter wandered out into the snow ten years ago and was never seen again. Molly can identify with the mother’s pain at never knowing what happened to her child and wants to help, but there is so little to go on. No ransom note. No body ever found. But Molly slowly begins to suspect that the occupants of the house know more than they are letting on. Then, on Christmas Eve, there is a knock at the door and a young girl stands there. “I’m Charlotte,” she says. “I’ve come home.”

The Gift (2017): The Amish of Hart County by Shelley Shepard Gray:

The Schwartz family is happy to be spending Christmas on their new farm in Hart County. But when Susanna Schwartz hears gunshots that causes her buggy to overturn, and then her little sister falls through a wooden bridge into the icy creek, it becomes clear from these dangerous “accidents” that someone wants them gone.

Neil Vance has been heartbroken ever since his parents lost their family farm. He knows it’s not the Schwartz family’s fault, but he can’t help but be resentful. Until he meets Susanna. She is kind-hearted and bold, and Neil can’t stop thinking about her pretty green eyes.

Neil thinks the accidents are just that, but Susanna’s father is convinced the Vance family is responsible. Susanna refuses to believe Neil would do anything to harm her. She’s fallen in love with him and knows he is a good man. But her family is ready to pack up and move, and time is running out to uncover the truth before someone gets hurt…or worse.

The Gift Of Christmas Past: A Southern Romance by Cindy Woodsmall & Erin Woodsmall:

Lies Spoken.
Promises Shattered.
She went to juvenile lockup.
He returned to the safety of his wealthy parents.

Almost ten years later, Hadley and Monroe are both specialists in the field of speech therapy. They meet again…thrown together to help a four-year- old girl rendered mute after a suspected arson. Years of secrets and anger beg to be set free as Hadley and Monroe try to push aside past hurts and find common ground in order to help the traumatized child and her family.

Can the love of Christmas past drift into the present, bringing healing and hope for all?

Hanukkah in America: A History by Dianne Ashton:

In New Orleans, Hanukkah means decorating your door with a menorah made of hominy grits. Latkes in Texas are seasoned with cilantro and cayenne pepper. Children in Cincinnati sing Hanukkah songs and eat oranges and ice cream. While each tradition springs from its own unique set of cultural references, what ties them together is that they all celebrate a holiday that is different in America than it is any place else. For the past two hundred years, American Jews have been transforming the ancient holiday of Hanukkah from a simple occasion into something grand. Each year, as they retell its story and enact its customs, they bring their ever-changing perspectives and desires to its celebration. Providing an attractive alternative to the Christian dominated December, rabbis and lay people alike have addressed contemporary hopes by fashioning an authentically Jewish festival that blossomed in their American world.

The ways in which Hanukkah was reshaped by American Jews reveals the changing goals and values that emerged among different contingents each December as they confronted the reality of living as a religious minority in the United States. Bringing together clergy and laity, artists and businessmen, teachers, parents, and children, Hanukkah has been a dynamic force for both stability and change in American Jewish life. The holiday’s distinctive transformation from a minor festival to a major occasion that looms large in the American Jewish psyche is a marker of American Jewish life. Drawing on a varied archive of songs, plays, liturgy, sermons, and a range of illustrative material, as well as developing portraits of various communities, congregations, and rabbis, Hanukkah in America reveals how an almost forgotten festival became the most visible of American Jewish holidays.

High Sierra Christmas (2018) by William Johnstone:

JOHNSTONE JUSTICE. MADE IN AMERICA.

A Jensen family holiday takes a dark and dangerous turn—on the infamous Donner Pass—in this thrilling epic adventure from the bestselling Johnstones . . .

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in the High Sierras. But Smoke Jensen and his children, Louis and Denise, won’t let a little snow stop them from heading to Reno for the holidays. There are two ways for them to get there: the long way, going around the Sierra Nevada Mountains, or the short way, going right through them. Smoke decides to take a gamble. They’ll follow the trail that, decades earlier, brought the legendary Donner Party to a gruesome, tragic end . . .

And so the journey begins. The Jensens share a stagecoach with a stranger who’s planning to rob a bank. Smoke wants to stop him, as well as his notorious gang of outlaws. But he’s outgunned and outnumbered. And when a blizzard traps them in the mountains, he’s out of luck too. Like the Donner Party before them, the Jensens will be forced to do whatever it takes to survive. This time, they’re hoping history doesn’t repeat itself. But sometimes, the ghosts of the past just won’t stay buried . . .

His Promise: An Amish Christmas in Hart Country (2018) by Shelley Shepard Gray:

It’s set to be a white Christmas in Hart County, and Grace King is pet-sitting in a beautiful home with only a difficult dachshund for company. Just as she starts to miss the bustle of her large Amish family, Grace runs into a familiar face. Living right next door is John Michael Miller. He’s a fireman now, but five years ago, he had courted her older sister, then broke her heart. Seeing him again stirs Grace’s anger, but also reminds her of deeper feelings she’s done her best to deny.

The infatuation John Michael once saw in Grace’s eyes is long gone, though his complicated attraction to her remains. He had walked away all those years ago when he realized he was falling in love with the wrong sister. Now, as suspicious fires are set in their community, that’s not an option. Grace dismisses his warnings, and John Michael vows to keep an eye on her. But he can’t help wondering if he’s reconnected with Grace, only to risk losing her again.

Now all John Michael wants for Christmas is to keep Grace safe, in the hopes that they can one day have a future together.

How the Finch Stole Christmas! (2018) by Donna Andrews:

As in her previous Christmas mysteries, Six Geese a-Slaying, Duck the Halls, and The Nightingale Before Christmas, Andrews continues to write “firmly in the grand tradition of Agatha Christie’s Christmas books” (Toronto Globe and Mail).

New York Times bestselling author Donna Andrews takes us home to Caerphilly for the holidays in her new hilarious Christmas mystery How the Finch Stole Christmas!

Meg’s husband has decided to escalate his one-man show of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol into a full-scale production with a large cast including their sons Jamie and Josh as Tiny Tim and young Scrooge and Meg helping as stage manager.

The show must go on, even if the famous—though slightly over-the-hill—actor who’s come to town to play the starring role of Scrooge has brought a sleigh-load of baggage and enemies with him. And why is Caerphilly suddenly overrun with a surplus of beautiful caged finches?

How the Finch Stole Christmas! is guaranteed to put the “ho ho hos” into the holidays of cozy lovers everywhere with its gut-bustingly funny mystery.

An Irish Country Cottage (2018) by Patrick Taylor:

The New Year brings challenges and changes to the colorful Irish village of Ballybucklebo. The Christmas holidays have barely passed before a fire engulfs the humble thatched cottage housing of Donal Donnally and his family. Although the family escapes the blaze more or less unsinged, Donal, his wife, their three small children, and their beloved dog find themselves with nothing left but the clothes on their back.

Good thing Doctors O’Reilly and Laverty are on hand to rally the good people of Ballybucklebo to come to their aid. Rebuilding the cottage won’t be quick or easy, but good neighbors from all walks of life will see to it that the Donallys get back on their feet again, no matter what it takes.

Meanwhile, matters of procreation occupy the doctors and their patients. Young Barry Laverty and his wife Sue, frustrated in their efforts to start a family, turn to modern medicine for answers. O’Reilly must tread carefully as he advises a married patient on how to avoid another dangerous pregnancy.

As a new and tumultuous decade approaches, sectarian division threaten to bring unrest to Ulster, but in Ballybucklebo at least, peace still reigns and neighbors look after neighbors.

Kissing Under the Mistletoe (2013): A Sullivan Christmas by Bella Andre:

The Sullivan siblings have captivated the hearts of millions of readers worldwide, and now New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Bella Andre shares the love story that started it all…

For Mary Sullivan Christmas is, and always has been, about family. And this year is no different. As she awaits the arrival of her eight children and their partners at the cottage in Lake Tahoe, she hangs the ornaments that they made for her over the years. Each decoration brings with it a tide of memories, all of which she holds dear to her heart. But when she comes across the oldest ornament, the one her beloved husband, Jack, gave her on their very first Christmas together, Mary is immediately swept back to the first days of their whirlwind romance, to the love that would be the foundation on which they built the family she is so proud to call her own. Join the Sullivans this Christmas for a story that explores the wonder of the holidays, the meaning of family and a love that transcends time.

KISSING UNDER THE MISTLETOE is part of Bella Andre’s #1 bestselling series about The Sullivans. While it can easily be read as a stand-alone story, you’ll likely enjoy reading the other books, too.

Mr. Dickens and His Carol by Samantha Silva:

Laced with humor, rich historical detail from Charles Dickens’ life, and clever winks to his work, Samantha Silva’s Mr. Dickens and His Carol is an irresistible new take on a cherished classic.

Charles Dickens is not feeling the Christmas spirit. His newest book is an utter flop, the critics have turned against him, relatives near and far hound him for money. While his wife plans a lavish holiday party for their ever-expanding family and circle of friends, Dickens has visions of the poor house. But when his publishers try to blackmail him into writing a Christmas book to save them all from financial ruin, he refuses. And a serious bout of writer’s block sets in.

Frazzled and filled with self-doubt, Dickens seeks solace in his great palace of thinking, the city of London itself. On one of his long night walks, in a once-beloved square, he meets the mysterious Eleanor Lovejoy, who might be just the muse he needs. As Dickens’ deadlines close in, Eleanor propels him on a Scrooge-like journey that tests everything he believes about generosity, friendship, ambition, and love. The story he writes will change Christmas forever.

Last Christmas in Paris (2017): A Novel of World War I by Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb:

New York Times bestselling author Hazel Gaynor has joined with Heather Webb to create this unforgettably romantic novel of the Great War.

August 1914. England is at war. As Evie Elliott watches her brother, Will, and his best friend, Thomas Harding, depart for the front, she believes—as everyone does—that it will be over by Christmas, when the trio plan to celebrate the holiday among the romantic cafes of Paris.

But as history tells us, it all happened so differently…

Evie and Thomas experience a very different war. Frustrated by life as a privileged young lady, Evie longs to play a greater part in the conflict—but how?—and as Thomas struggles with the unimaginable realities of war he also faces personal battles back home where War Office regulations on press reporting cause trouble at his father’s newspaper business. Through their letters, Evie and Thomas share their greatest hopes and fears—and grow ever fonder from afar. Can love flourish amid the horror of the First World War, or will fate intervene?

Christmas 1968. With failing health, Thomas returns to Paris—a cherished packet of letters in hand—determined to lay to rest the ghosts of his past. But one final letter is waiting for him…

Murder In her Stocking (2018): A Granny Reid Mystery by G. A. McKevett:

As the Moonlight Magnolia Agency revisits old memories on Christmas Eve, Granny Reid takes the reins back thirty years to the 1980s—back when she went by Stella, everyone’s hair was bigger, and sweaters were colorful disasters. But murder never went out of style . . .

Christmas has arrived in sleepy McGill, Georgia, but holiday cheer can’t keep temperamental Stella Reid from swinging a rolling pin at anyone who crosses her bad side—and this season, there are plenty. First an anonymous grinch vandalizes a celebrated nativity display. Far worse, the scandalous Prissy Carr is found dead in an alley behind a tavern. With police puzzled over the murder, Stella decides to stir the local gossip pot for clues on the culprit’s identity . . .

Turns out Prissy held a prominent spot on the naughty list, and suspects pile up like presents on Christmas morning. Unfortunately, the more progress Stella makes, the more fears she must confront. With a neighbor in peril and the futures of her beloved grandchildren at risk, Stella must somehow set everything straight and bring a cunning criminal to justice before December 25th . . .

The Noel Diary (2017) by Richard Paul Evans:

Bestselling romance author Jacob Churcher hasn’t been home for almost twenty years—not since his mentally ill mother kicked him out of the house when he was just sixteen. When a lawyer calls, days before Christmas, to inform him that his estranged mother has passed away and left her house to him, Jacob returns not just to settle the estate but to try and reconcile with the past and the pain and abuse he experienced as a child. Also, maybe cleaning out her house will be slightly less depressing than spending the holidays alone, watching re-runs of Christmas classics.

But as it turns out, the house holds more than just difficult memories, Jacob’s mother had become a hoarder and he must excavate through two decades worth of clutter. As Jacob digs through the detritus, like an archaeologist, he uncovers many puzzling items including a diary left by someone named Noel, a young woman he has no recollection of, who stayed with Jacob’s family during her pregnancy. That’s not the only echo from the past. Jacob has an unexpected visitor, Rachel, a woman looking for the mother who put her up for adoption thirty years before. United by their quest to make sense of the past and rewrite their futures, Jacob and Rachel begin a search for Noel. Along the way they find more than they possibly imagined, including grace, forgiveness and a chance at love.

The Noel Stranger (2018) by Richard Paul Evans:

Maggie Walther feels like her world is imploding. Publicly humiliated after her husband, a local councilman, is arrested for bigamy, and her subsequent divorce, she has isolated herself from the world. When her only friend insists that Maggie climb out of her hole, and embrace the season to get her out of her funk, Maggie decides to put up a Christmas tree and heads off to buy one—albeit reluctantly. She is immediately taken by Andrew, the kind, handsome man who owns the Christmas tree lot and delivers her tree. She soon learns that Andrew is single and new to her city and, like her, is also starting his life anew.

As their friendship develops, Maggie slowly begins to trust again—something she never thought possible. Then, just when she thinks she has finally found happiness, she discovers a dark secret from Andrew’s past. Is there more to this stranger’s truth than meets the eye? This powerful new holiday novel from Richard Paul Evans, the “King of Christmas fiction” (The New York Times), explores the true power of the season, redemption, and the freedom that comes from forgiveness.

The Second Chance Café (2013) by Amanda Prowse (Format: eBook!)

This title sounded like a nice, light holiday read — and I’m sure it is! It is also the line eBook on this list! You can read library eBooks for free through the Libby or OverDrive apps, or, you can download eBooks to your PC and read them. If you have questions about how to check out eBooks call the library at: 607-936-3713 and one of our tech coaches will be happy to help you.

And here’s a summary of the book:

Can you ever find love twice?

Bea doesn’t believe in second chances. As a widow, she feels like she will be alone forever. She buries her grief in hard work, and soon the deli she runs in Sydney, Australia, has a reputation for the best carrot cake in town.

But then an email from a cafe-owner in Edinburgh leads her to take a trip to Scotland in the depths of winter. There, transported by the twinkling lights and falling snow of a traditional Christmas, Bea is drawn back to a secret past – and a secret love – that she has long ago tried to forget…

A Very Cowboy Christmas: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Y’all by Kim Redford:

There’s nothing like a firefighting cowboy to keep you toasty warm this Christmas…

Christmas is coming up, and single mom Sydney Steele is determined to make this a holiday to remember for Wildcat Bluff County. She still has to get those pesky, reluctant—and deliciously attractive—firefighting cowboys to pose for her charity calendar. They claim they’re too busy pursuing an unknown arsonist to take a break.

Dune Barrett has been flirting with Sydney for months, so he jumps at the chance to give her a hand. And when he agrees to pose as Mr. December, she couldn’t be happier. But to really win her over, Dune will have to convince eleven other guys from his crew to exploit their good looks for charity…a task much easier said than done.

Winter’s Child (2018) by Cassandra Parkin:

Five years ago, Susannah Harper’s son Joel went missing without trace. Bereft of her son and then of her husband John, Susannah tries to accept that she may never know for certain what has happened to her lost loved ones. She has rebuilt her life around a simple selfless mission: to help others who, like her, must learn to live without hope.

But then, on the last night of Hull Fair, a fortune-teller makes an eerie prediction. Susannah is told that this Christmas Eve, Joel will finally come back to her.

As her carefully-constructed life begins to unravel, Susannah is drawn into a world of psychics and charlatans, half-truths and hauntings, friendships and betrayals, forcing her to confront the buried truths of her family’s past, where nothing and no one are quite as they seem.

Yuletide Homicide by Jennifer David Hesse:

It’s Christmas in Edindale, Illinois, and family law attorney Keli Milanni is preparing to celebrate the Wiccan holiday Yuletide, a celebration of rebirth. But this Yuletide someone else is focused on dying . . .

After years of practicing in secret, Keli has come out as a Wiccan to her boyfriend, and she feels like this Yuletide she’s the one who’s being reborn. But the Solstice is the longest night of the year, and Keli is about to stumble on a mystery so dangerous, she’ll be lucky to make it to morning.

Paired with her unbearably stuffy colleague Crenshaw Davenport III, Keli goes undercover at a real estate company owned by mayoral candidate Edgar Harrison. An old friend of Keli’s boss, Harrison, is being blackmailed, and it’s up to her to find the culprit. But the morning after the company holiday party, Harrison is found dead underneath the hotel Christmas tree. The police rule the death an accident, but Keli knows better—and she’ll risk her own rebirth to nab a missing killer.

“Enjoyable . . . A wintry, woodsy setting.” —Kirkus Reviews on Bell, Book and Candlemas

Wait For Signs (2015) by Craig Johnson:

And even though this last book features short stories, most of which aren’t even set during the holiday season, I’m going to include it because the author, Craig Johnson, has a tradition of putting out Longmire short stories on Christmas Eve and the short stories, like the books in the series, have great humor.

His still does this – and you can get a new story each year for free via email– just sign up at is website: http://www.craigallenjohnson.com/

Johnson’s short stories were so popular fans demanded they be put in a book – thus Wait For Signs.

Have a great day!

Linda, SSCL

Suggested Reading November 5, 2018

Hi everyone, here are our recommended titles for the week, five digital titles available through OverDrive and five print titles available through StarCat.

(Note: Click on the photo of the item you’d like to request or check out)

Digital Suggestions Of The Week:

Been So Long, My Life and Music written and read by Jorma Kaukonen with Grace Slick and Jack Cassidy (Format: Downloadable Audiobook):

This audiobook is perfect for classic rock fans! Guitarist Jorma Kaukonen was an original member of The Jefferson Airplane and, has subsequently played music for decades with his childhood friend bassist Jack Cassidy in the band Hot Tuna. Cassidy too was a founding member of the Jefferson Airplane.

And here is an in-depth description of this neat audiobook:

From the man who made a name for himself as a founding member and lead guitarist of Jefferson Airplane comes a memoir that offers a rare glimpse into the heart and soul of a musical genius—and a vivid journey through the psychedelic era in America.

“Music is the reward for being alive,” writes Jorma Kaukonen in this candid and emotional account of his life and work. “It stirs memory in a singular way that is unmatched.” In a career that has already spanned a half century—one that has earned him induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, among other honors—Jorma is best known for his legendary bands Jefferson Airplane and the still-touring Hot Tuna. But before he won worldwide recognition he was just a young man with a passion and a dream.

Been So Long is the story of how Jorma found his place in the world of music and beyond. The grandson of Finnish and Russian-Jewish immigrants whose formative years were spent abroad with his American-born diplomat father, Jorma channeled his life experiences—from his coming-of-age in Pakistan and the Philippines to his early gigs with Jack Casady in D.C. to his jam sessions in San Francisco with Jerry Garcia, Janis Joplin, Bob Dylan, and other contemporaries—into his art in unique and revelatory ways.

Been So Long charts not only Jorma’s association with the bands that made him famous but goes into never-before-told details about his addiction and recovery, his troubled first marriage and still-thriving second, and more. Interspersed with diary entries, personal correspondence, and song lyrics, this memoir is as unforgettable and inspiring as Jorma’s music itself.

The Devaney Brothers: Ryan and Sean: Ryan’s Place\Sean’s Reckoning (Format: eBook):

#1 New York Times bestselling author Sherryl Woods brings readers two classic tales of the Devaneys…brothers torn apart in childhood, reunited by love

Ryan’s Place
Abandoned by his parents and separated from his brothers, Ryan Devaney doesn’t believe in love. Until Maggie O’Brien storms into his Irish pub and her bright smile and tender touch have him reconsidering. The beautiful redhead warms his frozen spirit and awakens forgotten dreams—like the desire to search for his long-lost brothers. Will he dare to believe there’s a place for them in happily-ever-after?

Sean’s Reckoning
Son of a shattered family, fireman Sean Devaney knows love never lasts, so he refuses to chance it. Then he meets single mom Deanna Blackwell, who has just lost everything in a devastating fire. Despite the warning in Sean’s head, he’s drawn to protect the stunning woman and her son. Sean may be tough enough to storm burning buildings…but is he brave enough to risk building a family of his own?

Drums Of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon (Format: eBook):

The magnificent saga continues….

It began in Scotland, at an ancient stone circle. There, a doorway, open to a select few, leads into the past–or the grave. Claire Randall survived the extraordinary passage, not once but twice. Her first trip swept her into the arms of Jamie Fraser, an eighteenth-century Scot whose love for her became legend–a tale of tragic passion that ended with her return to the present to bear his child. Her second journey, two decades later, brought them together again in frontier America. But Claire had left someone behind in the twentieth century. Their daughter, Brianna….

Now Brianna has made a disturbing discovery that sends her to the stone circle and a terrifying leap into the unknown. In search of her mother and the father she has never met, she is risking her own future to try to change history…and to save their lives. But as Brianna plunges into an uncharted wilderness, a heartbreaking encounter may strand her forever in the past…or root her in the place she should be, where her heart and soul belong….

The Finkler Question: A Novel by Howard Jacobson (Format: eBook):

He should have seen it coming. His life had been one mishap after another. So he should have been prepared for this one… Julian Treslove, a professionally unspectacular and disappointed BBC worker, and Sam Finkler, a popular Jewish philosopher, writer and television personality, are old school friends. Despite a prickly relationship and very different lives, they’ve never quite lost touch with each other – or with their former teacher, Libor Sevick, a Czechoslovakian always more concerned with the wider world than with exam results.

Now, both Libor and Finkler are recently widowed, and with Treslove, his chequered and unsuccessful record with women rendering him an honorary third widower, they dine at Libor’s grand, central London apartment. It’s a sweetly painful evening of reminiscence in which all three remove themselves to a time before they had loved and lost; a time before they had fathered children, before the devastation of separations, before they had prized anything greatly enough to fear the loss of it. Better, perhaps, to go through life without knowing happiness at all because that way you had less to mourn? Treslove finds he has tears enough for the unbearable sadness of both his friends’ losses.
And it’s that very evening, at exactly 11:30pm, as Treslove hesitates a moment outside the window of the oldest violin dealer in the country as he walks home, that he is attacked. After this, his whole sense of who and what he is will slowly and ineluctably change. The Finkler Question is a scorching story of exclusion and belonging, justice and love, ageing, wisdom and humanity. Funny, furious, unflinching, this extraordinary novel shows one of our finest writers at his brilliant best.

Homemade Holiday, Craft Your Way Through More than 40 Festive Projects by Sophie Pester & Catharina Bruns (Format: eBook):

Bring the magic of a handmade Christmas into your home with 40 projects for gifts, decorations, and homemade wrapping paper.

Save time and money with the festive craft projects in Homemade Holiday. Clear, step-by-step instructions guide readers to create fresh flower garlands, bake edible gift tags, make homemade bath salts, and paint authentic tree ornaments. With last-minute ideas and lots of inspiration, this book will help you wrap up gift-giving and decorating for the holiday season.

Print Suggestions Of The Week:

A Christmas Revelation by Anne Perry: 

In this intriguing, uplifting holiday mystery from bestselling author Anne Perry, an orphan boy investigates a woman’s kidnapping—and discovers there’s more at stake than a disappearance.

It wouldn’t quite be Christmas without a holiday mystery decorated with all the Victorian trimmings, as only New York Times bestselling author Anne Perry can render it. Now the tradition continues as mayhem is once again found under the mistletoe, and intrigue stalks the cobblestone streets and gaslit parlors of old London Town.

Formerly a river urchin living on the banks of the Thames, nine-year-old Worm has never experienced a family Christmas. But thanks to a job at Hester Monk’s clinic in Portpool Lane, he’s found a makeshift family in kindly volunteer Miss Claudine Burroughs and curmudgeonly old bookkeeper Squeaky Robinson. When Worm witnesses the abduction of a beautiful woman by a pair of ruffians just days before Christmas, he frantically turns to Squeaky for help. A one-time brothel owner, Squeaky knows the perils of interfering in nasty business, but he can’t bear to disappoint Worm—or leave the boy to attempt a rescue on his own. What neither of the would-be saviors expects, however, is that the damsel in distress already has her dilemma well in hand . . . and is taking steps to bring her captors to justice for crimes far worse than kidnapping. But the rogues, as cunning as they are deadly, are not to be underestimated. The aid of cynical old Squeaky and hopeful young Worm just might make the difference between a merry triumph over evil and a terrible yuletide tragedy.

Dark Sacred Night by Michael Connelly:

LAPD Detective Renée Ballard teams up with Harry Bosch in the new work of fiction from #1 NYT bestselling author Michael Connelly.

Renée Ballard is working the night beat again, and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours only to find a stranger rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is retired detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin. Ballard kicks him out, but then checks into the case herself and it brings a deep tug of empathy and anger.

Bosch is investigating the death of fifteen-year-old Daisy Clayton, a runaway on the streets of Hollywood who was brutally murdered and her body left in a dumpster like so much trash. Now, Ballard joins forces with Bosch to find out what happened to Daisy and finally bring her killer to justice.

Heads You Win: A Novel by Jeffrey Archer:

Leningrad, Russia, 1968. Alexander Karpenko is no ordinary child, and from an early age, it is clear he is destined to lead his countrymen. But when his father is assassinated by the KGB for defying the state, he and his mother will have to escape from Russia if they hope to survive. At the docks, they are confronted with an irreversible choice: should they board a container ship bound for America, or Great Britain? Alexander leaves that choice to the toss of a coin . . .

In a single moment, a double twist decides Alexander’s future. During an epic tale of fate and fortune, spanning two continents and thirty years, we follow his triumphs and defeats as he struggles as an immigrant to conquer his new world. As this unique story unfolds, Alexander comes to realize where his destiny lies, and accepts that he must face the past he left behind in Russia.

Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty:

Could ten days at a health resort really change you forever? In Liane Moriarty’s latest page-turner, nine perfect strangers are about to find out…

Nine people gather at a remote health resort. Some are here to lose weight, some are here to get a reboot on life, some are here for reasons they can’t even admit to themselves. Amidst all of the luxury and pampering, the mindfulness and meditation, they know these ten days might involve some real work. But none of them could imagine just how challenging the next ten days are going to be.

Frances Welty, the formerly best-selling romantic novelist, arrives at Tranquillum House nursing a bad back, a broken heart, and an exquisitely painful paper cut. She’s immediately intrigued by her fellow guests. Most of them don’t look to be in need of a health resort at all. But the person that intrigues her most is the strange and charismatic owner/director of Tranquillum House. Could this person really have the answers Frances didn’t even know she was seeking? Should Frances put aside her doubts and immerse herself in everything Tranquillum House has to offer – or should she run while she still can?

It’s not long before every guest at Tranquillum House is asking exactly the same question.

Combining all of the hallmarks that have made her writing a go-to for anyone looking for wickedly smart, page-turning fiction that will make you laugh and gasp, Liane Moriarty’s Nine Perfect Strangers once again shows why she is a master of her craft.

The Rain Watcher: A Novel Tatiana de Rosnay:

The first new novel in four years from the beloved superstar author of Sarah’s Key, a heartbreaking and uplifting story of family secrets and devastating disaster, set against a Paris backdrop, fraught with revelations, and resolutions.
“Hypnotic, passionate, ominous and tender—unforgettable.” —Jenna Blum, New York Times and internationally bestselling author of Those Who Save Us

Linden Malegarde has come home to Paris from the United States. It has been years since the whole family was all together. Now the Malegarde family is gathering for Paul, Linden’s father’s 70th birthday.

Each member of the Malegarde family is on edge, holding their breath, afraid one wrong move will shatter their delicate harmony. Paul, the quiet patriarch, an internationally-renowned arborist obsessed with his trees and little else, has always had an uneasy relationship with his son. Lauren, his American wife, is determined that the weekend celebration will be a success. Tilia, Linden’s blunt older sister, projects an air of false fulfillment. And Linden himself, the youngest, uncomfortable in his own skin, never quite at home no matter where he lives—an American in France and a Frenchman in the U.S.—still fears that, despite his hard-won success as a celebrated photographer, he will always be a disappointment to his parents.

Their hidden fears and secrets slowly unravel as the City of Light undergoes a stunning natural disaster, and the Seine bursts its banks and floods the city. All members of the family will have to fight to keep their unity against tragic circumstances. In this profound and intense novel of love and redemption, de Rosnay demonstrates all of her writer’s skills both as an incredible storyteller but also as a soul seeker.

Have a great week!

Linda, SSCL

Online Catalog Links:

StarCat

The catalog of physical materials, i.e. print books, DVDs, audiobooks on CD etc.

The Digital Catalog (OverDrive)

The catalog of e-books, downloadable audiobooks and a handful of streaming videos.

Freegal Music Service

This music service is free to library card holders and offers the option to download, and keep, three free songs per week and to stream three hours of commercial free music each day:

RBDigital

Digital magazines on demand and for free! Back issues are available and you can even choose to be notified by email when the new issue of your favorite magazine is available.

About Library Apps:

You can access digital library content on PCs, Macs and mobile devices. For mobile devices simply download the OverDrive, Freegal or Zinio app from your app store to get started. If you have questions call the library at: 607-936-3713 and one of our Digital Literacy Specialists will be happy to assist you.

Tech Talk is a Southeast Steuben County Library blog.