Reader Review: Introverted Mom

Posted on Thursday, July 18, 2019 by patron reviewer

Introverted Mom book coverIntroverted Mom” was not only informational, on the topic of motherhood and introversion, but was also inspirational. Not only was it humorous and insightful, it opened my eyes to my own particular challenges and how to view them as gifts instead of burdens. Her encouragement and tips have given me fuel to embrace my introversion and taught me how to better meet my own needs so I can meet the needs of those who need me. I also enjoyed her look into the lives of some of my favorite women authors (Austen, Montgomery, Alcott) who were also purportedly introverted as well, and how they navigated their social and familial worlds with their special gifts. This is a book I will read and reread with pleasure, likely garnering new tidbits each time.

Three words that describe this book: Encouraging, humorous, insightful.

You might want to pick this book up if: You are a mom, a homeschooler, an introvert, or any combination of the the above, or know someone who is. In fact, I would suggest this would be a good read for husbands, whether introverted or extroverted, in understanding their introverted spouses better. Very easy to read and enjoyable!

-Anonymous

Reader Review: There There

Posted on Friday, July 12, 2019 by patron reviewer

There There book coverFollowing around 12 different characters through past and present, “There There” introduces dynamic and complex characters as they come from different lives, experiences and histories to arrive at the Big Oakland Pow Wow. Although difficult to follow at times with the wide range of characters, I loved this book as it is so necessary to make Native stories known and to seek out and amplify their voices and perspectives. It explores historical trauma and reveals how these characters grapple with their identity as urban Natives all while confronting erasure of that identity.

Three words that describe this book: shattering, poignant, important

You might want to pick this book up if: you would like to further understand and recognize urban Native identity and challenge your own perceptions by listening to Native voices

-Anonymous

Reader Review: The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms

Posted on Thursday, July 11, 2019 by patron reviewer

Hundred Thousand Kingdoms book coverThe Hundred Thousand Kingdoms” follows Yeine, the young leader of a small, matriarchal nation, who is unexpectedly becomes a contender to take over as head of the family that controls the Hundred Thousand kingdoms — in other words, the whole mortal world. N.K. Jemisin uses all the best parts of fantasy while also deliberately challenging the failings of the genre — namely, the sexism, the lack of nuance, and the dearth of characters of color — creating something new and vital, and extremely readable.

Three words that describe this book: Groundbreaking, unflinching, engrossing

You might want to pick this book up if: You’re a fan of mythology. Lots of great lore and incredible world-building to be found here.

-Anna

Reader Review: The Four Seasons of Marriage

Posted on Thursday, July 4, 2019 by patron reviewer

Four Seasons of Marriage book coverThe Four Seasons of Marriage” explores the idea that a marriage is always going through a season; Summer being the warmest and happiest and winter being the coldest and saddest. Gary gives real-life examples of couples he has worked with and tips for how to improve your marriage, or at least try to get it back into either Spring or Summer. I really liked it. I have loved all of his books that I have read so far. He encourages us to be honest, caring, thoughtful, and lets us know it is okay to screw up as long as you are taking the steps to repair the damage that has been done in the past.

Three words that describe this book: Love, Communication, Relationships

You might want to pick this book up if: You want to learn ways to brighten your partner’s day, week, month or season.

-Veronica

Patron Review: All the Gallant Men

Posted on Friday, March 29, 2019 by patron reviewer

Editor’s note: This review was submitted by a library patron during the 2018 Adult Summer Reading program. We will continue to periodically share some of these reviews throughout the year.

All the Gallant Men” is written by Donald Stratton, one of the few survivors of the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. He was a navy seaman on the U.S.S. Arizona when it was a attacked by Japanese airplanes. He chronicles what it was like to grow up in the Great Depression in rural Nebraska as the son of a sharecropper before joining the Navy to experience adventure. He also liked that the Navy paid him a weekly wage that he could send back to his family. Stratton goes through step-by-step what it was like in basic training, to serve on a battleship in the Pacific Ocean and ultimately survive the attack on Pearl Harbor that left him with burns across his body as well emotional scars. The way the author described everything felt like I was sitting next to him as he told this story. I learned many facts about Pearl Harbor that I did not know and I am glad I had chance to read this book. I would highly recommend that everyone reads it so we can remember the sacrifice of those who died at Pearl Harbor defending our country and our freedom.

Three words that describe this book: Informative, Shocked, and Inspired

You might want to pick this book up if: You like stories about Pearl Harbor, survivors, history (1940s), and memoirs.

-Marcia

Patron Review: The Outsider

Posted on Friday, March 1, 2019 by patron reviewer

Editor’s note: This review was submitted by a library patron during the 2018 Adult Summer Reading program. We will continue to periodically share some of these reviews throughout the year.

The Outsider book cover

How can someone be in two places at once? Stephen King and his fictional investigators examine this question in “The Outsider” as they investigate a horrific murder. An upstanding member of the community is accused after numerous witnesses attest that he committed the crime, but he has proof that he did not. Soon, the investigators learn that something similar happened in another case. In typical King fashion, a supernatural explanation turns out to be the solution to the puzzle. King combines elements of horror, the supernatural and mystery in this captivating (and terrifying) read.

Three words that describe this book: horror, mystery, supernatural

You might want to pick this book up if: You enjoy Dean Koontz, John Saul, horror novels

-Sarah

Reader Review: The Night Circus

Posted on Monday, February 11, 2019 by patron reviewer

Editor’s note: This review was submitted by a library patron during the 2018 Adult Summer Reading program. We will continue to periodically share some of these reviews throughout the year.

Night Circus book cover

The Night Circus” is about a mysterious circus that appears at night unannounced. Unbeknownst to the guests, the circus is actually the location of a duel between two young magicians. It’s a battle of imagination and will, and neither knows all the details of the game they’re really playing. I loved the writing. The slow burning romance was fantastic. I really enjoyed the mystery and never minded that it was a little slow at times. I jumped in without reading what it was about beforehand and I’m very glad I did!

Three words that describe this book: Magical, Enchanting, Whimsical

You might want to pick this book up if: You love stories about romance, magic and the circus.

-Jessica

Reader Review: Chemistry

Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2019 by patron reviewer

Editor’s note: This review was submitted by a library patron during the 2018 Adult Summer Reading program. We will continue to periodically share some of these reviews throughout the year.


Chemistry book cover
In “Chemistry: A Novel” our protagonist is a bit troubled and carries a lot of baggage, but damn if she doesn’t also create a lively and compelling journey through a rather tumultuous period in her life. She is second-guessing her career choice and her relationship choice and yet she flits from moment to moment in a way that has us (her readers) celebrating all her thoughts. Eric, her longtime boyfriend is an almost flawless (at least in her eyes) partner, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they perfect for each other just now. She has been a science wiz kid all her life, but that doesn’t mean that chemistry is a perfect career path for her. Her parents have worked very hard and sacrificed a lot to provide her with an opportunity at the American Dream, but that doesn’t mean that she owes them everything.

None of these important decisions are easy for a young adult, and that’s on full display here. But what’s also on display is the character’s lively internal life that helps us understand that the “important decisions” don’t really define a life. Can someone be happy being a tutor instead of a PhD? Quite possibly. Does that diminished status make her mind any less active and valuable? I don’t think so.

Three words that describe this book: Introspective, Lively, Compelling

You might want to pick this book up if: You’ve ever questioned your career path and life choices. If you’ve ever had a “quarter-life crises.”

-Xander

Reader Review: The Hate U Give

Posted on Friday, October 12, 2018 by patron reviewer

Editor’s note: This review was submitted by a library patron during the 2018 Adult Summer Reading program. We will continue to periodically share some of these reviews throughout the year.

The Hate U Give” is about Starr, a sixteen year old that has to balance two lives: living in her poor black neighborhood, and going to her primarily white suburban high school. She struggles with figuring out how she can be herself at both when something happens: her childhood best friend Khalil is shot by a police officer, and Starr is with him. Being the only witness who knows what really happens, Starr has to decide if she wants to stay quiet and protect herself, or if she should announce the truth. This book opened my eyes to racial discrimination that is happening in today’s society and really challenged me to see events from a perspective I normally wouldn’t.

Three words that describe this book: Empowering, Eye-opening, and Heartbreaking

You might want to pick this book up if: You loved “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

-Anonymous

Reader Review: The Worst Hard Time

Posted on Friday, September 14, 2018 by patron reviewer

Editor’s note: This review was submitted by a library patron during the 2018 Adult Summer Reading program. We will continue to periodically share some of these reviews throughout the year.

The Worst Hard Time book cover

The Worst Hard Time” is an engrossing and compelling description of the causes of the Dust Bowl in the 1930s and the seemingly apocalyptic daily existence in the Dust Bowl. It was an incredibly difficult time for the people who lived there, although it was basically caused by farming practices. The reader lives through all of it — wet sheets on windows to keep out the dust that turns to mud; swarms of grasshoppers; mounds of dust at the front door, etc. It was a very hard life, and the book clearly conveys that. It’s an overlooked part of the 20th century.

Three words that describe this book: engrossing; descriptive; demoralizing

You might want to pick this book up if: You want to learn more about a significant but now overlooked part of the 20th century.

-Jeff