Nonfiction Roundup: July 2024

Posted on Monday, July 1, 2024 by Liz

Below I’m highlighting some nonfiction books coming out in July. All of the mentioned titles are available to put on hold in our catalog and will also be made available via the library’s Overdrive website on the day of publication in eBook and downloadable audiobook format (as available). For a more extensive list of new nonfiction books coming out this month, check our online catalog.

Top Picks

Secret History of Sharks book coverThe Secret History of Sharks: The Rise of the Ocean’s Most Fearsome Predators” by John Long (Jul 2)
Sharks have been fighting for their lives for 500 million years and today are under dire threat. They are the longest-surviving vertebrate on Earth, outlasting multiple mass extinction events that decimated life on the planet. But how did they thrive for so long? By developing superpower-like abilities that allowed them to ascend to the top of the oceanic food chain. John Long, who for decades has been on the cutting edge of shark research, weaves a thrilling story of sharks’ unparalleled reign. “The Secret History of Sharks” showcases the global search to discover sharks’ largely unknown evolution, led by Long and dozens of other extraordinary scientists. They embark on digs to all seven continents, investigating layers of rock and using cutting-edge technology to reveal never-before-found fossils and the clues to sharks’ singular story. As the tale unfolds, Long introduces an enormous range of astonishing organisms: a thirty-foot-long shark with a deadly saw blade of jagged teeth protruding from its lower jaws, a monster giant clams crusher, and bizarre sharks fossilized while in their mating ritual. The book also includes startling new facts about the mighty megalodon, with its 66-foot-long body, massive jaws, and six-inch serrated teeth. Continue reading “Nonfiction Roundup: July 2024”

Staff Review: The Price of Salt, or Carol by Patricia Highsmith

Posted on Friday, June 28, 2024 by Karena

Patricia Highsmith’s second novel, biographer Joan Schenkar writes, “was so marked by her secret obsessions that writing it felt like a birthing. ‘Oh god,’ [Highsmith] enthused, ‘how this story emerges from my own bones!'”

72 years following its publication, “The Price of Salt” has long been regarded as a groundbreaking novel in lesbian literary history. Every review I read noted Price of Salt book coverits departure from the tropes of the times — how neither woman is ultimately forced into heterosexuality, nor suffers a tragic death (both true, though I hesitate to call the ending a happy one). All that to say, I was excited to read this book, and I’m glad I did. I’ll start with the good… Continue reading “Staff Review: The Price of Salt, or Carol by Patricia Highsmith”

Reader Review: All Systems Red

Posted on Wednesday, June 26, 2024 by patron reviewer

All Systems Red book coverAll Systems Red” follows a security android (Murderbot) with newfound autonomy after hacking its governor module the android indulges in watching soap operas while trying to avoid human interaction. Author Martha Wells does an excellent job blending levity and a more serious theme of human consciousness/freedom and what that could mean for artificial intelligence. Wells’s witty writing and Murderbot’s sardonic inner monologue provide insightful commentary on sentience. The book is a quick, engaging read and is a great first installment in the series.

Three words that describe this book: Engaging, Humorous, Thought-Provoking

You might want to pick this book up if: Fast paced action set in a futuristic world, focusing on what it means for AI to autonomous.

-Anonymous

This reader review was submitted as part of Adult Summer Reading. Submit your own book review here for a chance to have it featured on the Adults Blog. 

Reader Review: Boundaries With Teens

Posted on Monday, June 24, 2024 by patron reviewer

Boundaries With Teens” is about how to help teenagers become responsible and respectful adults. It discusses about 25 common issues that teens face in today’s culture and how to help them steer their lives toward safer shores. Any parent of a teen would be able to profit from the wisdom of Dr. Townsend, co-writer of “Boundaries,” a bestseller. This is the second time I’ve read this book. I am learning how to become a more consistent, authentic, parent every day. This book helps!

Three words that describe this book: Engaging. Thoughtful. Challenging.

You might want to pick this book up if: you are a parent of a teen.

-Anonymous

This reader review was submitted as part of Adult Summer Reading. Submit your own book review here for a chance to have it featured on the Adults Blog. 

Reader Review: How to Solve Your Own Murder

Posted on Friday, June 21, 2024 by patron reviewer

How to Solve Your Own Murder book coverHow to Solve Your Own Murder” is told through two main characters, Frances and her great niece Annie. Frances received a fortune when she was just 17 from a fortune teller at a county fair. Ever since then, she has been obsessed with the idea that someone was going to murder her. After a will change, and a visit from Annie to the quaint village of Castle Knoll, Frances dies. The following days are full of twists and turns as Annie works to figure out what has happened to her Aunt Frances, while uncovering the hidden secrets of Castle Knoll.

I loved this book because it was an interesting mystery, set in a great English village. The characters and the plot were so interesting, I became totally absorbed into the dual narrative.

Three words that describe this book: mystery, sleuth, cozy

You might want to pick this book up if: You love a good cozy mystery with a nice twist. If you are a fan of “Knives Out” (or other similar mysteries) I would say this one is for you!

-Anonymous

This reader review was submitted as part of Adult Summer Reading. Submit your own book review here for a chance to have it featured on the Adults Blog. 

June 2024 LibraryReads

Posted on Monday, June 17, 2024 by Kat

LibraryReads logoI’m excited to share some of the new books hitting our shelves in June. We have a humorous sci-fi, some historical fiction and even a tale about someone who tries to ban books. Check out these LibraryReads favorites from library staff across the country:

Sandwich book coverSandwich” by Catherine Newman
This story focuses on Rocky, a woman filled with menopausal rage and immense love for her family. The witty banter and poignant musings will have readers laughing hysterically while mopping up tears a few pages later. This is a no-brainer for fans of Ann Patchett and those who enjoy a good family drama. Perfect for women’s book discussion groups.
~Robin Beerbower, LibraryReads Ambassador, AZ Continue reading “June 2024 LibraryReads”

Stories that Lie

Posted on Friday, June 14, 2024 by Anne

I can’t help but judge a book by its title, and when it straight up tells me that it’s lying I am almost guaranteed to find my interest piqued. Will I be able to sort out the lies from the truths? Or will the author be able to pull the wool over my eyes? Here are a few titles that aren’t afraid to admit they contain some untruths and that ended up being a whole lot of fun to read!

Listen for the Lie by Amy Tintera book cover Author Amy Tintera jumped on the “use a podcast to tell your story” bandwagon with her novel, “Listen for the Lie,” and I’m glad she did. The story follows Lucy, who left her small Texas town after her best friend Savvy’s murder, which she may have committed. She just can’t remember. After years of living with the unknown, a new podcast threatens to unearth the truth and she decides she has to find it first. The story offers a solid mystery, but the addition of the podcast is a lot of fun. I especially enjoyed the “voices” of Lucy and her granny — they both exude wit and are quite snarky, which made for some surprising laughs in this thriller. Continue reading “Stories that Lie”

Reading Harder in 2024! – Part 3

Posted on Wednesday, June 12, 2024 by Michael M

Welcome back to my Read Harder Challenge! In case you missed the beginning of this series, check out my first blog post where I explain what the Read Harder Challenge is. We’re halfway through the year and halfway through the challenge!

She Who Became the Sun book cover

Task 16 – Read a book based solely on the title

Book Read: “She Who Became the Sun” by Shelley Parker-Chan

I have to be honest, I didn’t choose this book solely based on the title. I had been considering reading it for years, and when I saw it was on one of our Read Harder lists, well it was fate! And hoo boy, there is so much discussion about fate in this book. As George Michael could have sung, “Zhu got have fate, fate, fate.” It follows the story of a young girl who denies the nothing fate given to her, and instead takes up her brother’s fate of greatness after he dies, taking on his identity and entering the monastery as a novice monk. “She Who Became the Sun” is an alternate history/historical fiction that had “Fantasy?” on the outline when it was being written, and it was never followed up on. Continue reading “Reading Harder in 2024! – Part 3”

New DVD List: June 2024

Posted on Monday, June 10, 2024 by Decimal Diver

Here is a new DVD list highlighting various titles recently added to the library’s collection.

” – Website / Reviews 
In this award-winning French legal drama, a woman becomes the prime suspect in her husband’s death, leading to a detailed examination of their marriage during the investigation and trial.

Dune: Part Two” – Website / Reviews 
The sci-fi saga continues with the mythic journey of Paul Atreides as he unites with Chani and the Fremen while on a path of revenge against the conspirators who destroyed his family.

” – Website / Reviews
Executive produced by Wes Anderson, this documentary about legendary photojournalist James Hamilton recounts the stories behind his iconic images taken over the course of a five-decade career.

” – MiniseriesWebsite / Reviews
This PBS Masterpiece dramatic series follows two estranged sisters who reunite to unearth the truth about their mother’s sudden death and her double life on the Isle of Man.

” – Website / Reviews 
A romantic comedy-drama set in contemporary Helsinki. The film explores a timeless story about two lonely souls’ path to happiness — and the numerous hurdles they encounter along the way.
Continue reading “New DVD List: June 2024”

Literary Links: One Read Finalists 2024

Posted on Sunday, June 9, 2024 by DBRL Staff

by Kat Stone Underwood and Lauren Williams, One Read co-chairs

Charlotte McConaghy’s “Migrations,” our community’s 2024 One Read selection, follows environmentalist Franny Stone as she tracks the world’s last flock of Arctic terns on what might be its final flight. This work of climate change fiction narrowly beat out the delightful coming-of-age novel “The Chinese Groove” by Kathryn Ma in a public vote. This year our reading panel considered an extremely varied list of finalist books, all nominated by community members. Some titles address timely topics like racism and immigration and others provide escape with unlikely road trips and oddball whodunits. Get ready to add to your to-be-read list!

What Strange Paradise book coverFirst up is “What Strange Paradise” by Omar El Akkad. We meet Syrian 9-year-old Amir when the migrant vessel he is on wrecks against the shore of a small island. The only survivor, Amir is luckily rescued by a local teenage girl named Vanna. Despite neither of them speaking the other’s language, Vanna is determined to help Amir. The tale alternates between the pair’s attempt to escape the authorities and the story of how Amir came to be on the ship. Continue reading “Literary Links: One Read Finalists 2024”