Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

“Do you intend to tell me the truth?”  This debut novel tells the story of two women: Vida Winter, a famous author, whose own life story is coming to an end, and Margaret Lea, a young, book loving girl who is a bookseller in her father's shop.  Vida has told her “story” many times but differently each time, to her biographers over the years.  Vida invites Margaret to finally record her last biography because of some of her previous biographical work.  Margaret stays with Vida in Yorkshire, where she interviews the dying writer, walks the remains of her estate at Angelfield and tries to untangle the old woman's tale of a governess, a ghost and more than one abandoned baby.  In all of this Margaret wonders if Vida is really telling the truth or if this is another one of her “stories.”  Full of intrigue and suspense, this book is one that will stay with you. 

AB--Tech services and reference

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dead Reckoning.

My daughter and I are True Blood fans, and we have been avid readers of Charlaine Harris' books featuring Sookie Stackhouse ever since reading Book #1, Dead until Dark.  And we are not alone.  I was delighted (although not surprised) to read that her newest book, Dead Reckoning, is at the top of the New York Times Best Sellers list. Harris' mixture of Southern hospitality, a surreal community fey consisting of vampires, werewolves, fairies, elves, demons, etc., evangelicals and violence is truly an addictive experience. Read a couple of pages and I caution that you may develop an insatiable appetite for things weird and wonderful.

L.S., Reference Department

Monday, June 20, 2011

Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah

The death of the head of the family, Evan who adored his two adult daughters, Meredith and Nina, and his Russian wife Anya rocks this family into understanding one another better.  Evan had his daughters promise to get their mother to tell them again the elaborate fairy tales she used to tell them as children.  Nina jumps on this and convinces her mother to tell the stories and eventually Nina understands that they are actual stories of her mother’s life in Leningrad during World War II.  Nina and Meredith decide to try and get the whole truth out of her.  To see that their mother had an entirely different life than they could have imagined, Meredith and Nina come to terms with the love that Anya has for a former lover, their father, and even themselves.  This is a little laughter and a little tear-jerker of a book that brings a family closer together.

--AB, Technical services and Reference

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The latest Jayne Ann Krentz Arcane Society titles

Jayne Ann Krentz has just published her eleventh book in the Arcane Society Series. Each of the eleven titles in this paranormal suspense series can be read as a stand-alone, but it is more enjoyable to read the series in the order that they were written. The books are also written under her pen names Amanda Quick and Jayne Castle. Ms. Krentz has a website for the series that can be found at

The Looking Glass Trilogy is the newest addition to the series.

Scargill Cove, California is the setting for In Too Deep, book one in the new trilogy.  

Fallon Jones has moved the headquarters of the Jones & Jones detective agency to Scargill Cove, a town of unusually strong physic energy. This character is seen in previous Arcane books as a  solitary man who looks for and finds logic patterns in everything with his physic talent. In In Too Deep, he hires Isabella Valdez to organize his office, not knowing that she is running away from very dangerous men out to kill her.

The attraction between these two is strong and mutual, but a woman on the run, a woman who's undocumented and who lives her life as a conspiracy theory, would seem a bad match for an ultra-logical detective who only believes what he can prove. Isabella’s physic gifts help her realize that the haunted house she is investigating for J&J is not just haunted by a ghost. Together Isabella and Fallon find an antique clock, infused with dark energies. They are forced to fight for their lives and solve a century old conspiracy in the Arcane Society.

The second book in the Looking Glass trilogy is Quicksilver, written under Krentz’s pen name Amanda Quick. This book takes place in Victorian era London, England.

Virginia Dean is in trade as a powerful glass-reader, which means she can see the historical imprints like photographs in mirrors. One day, she wakes up in a room surrounded by mirrors next to a dead body with absolutely no memory of what happened to her.  There seems to be no way in or out.  Owen Sweetwater, a “psychical” hunter and a gentleman, literally swoops in to her rescue and gets her out of that mirrored room.
Owen has inherited his family talent for finding the psychical monsters that prey on innocent women & children. With the aid of Mrs. Crofton, Virginia’s housekeeper, they follow the clues that lead them to the man who murdered two other glasslight readers with his Quicksilver Mirror weapon and clockwork toys.

Both books are good summer reads. They are a mixture of paranormal flavored suspense and romance.  Krentz  has the propensity for creating inventive plots with two perfectly matched protagonists. Her women are always strong and her men have a fatal flaw that only one woman can help them overcome.

--S.S. Reference Department

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Mozart and the Whale

I was eavesdropping in a bookstore when I learned about this jointly written memoir of a couple, both savants on the autistic spectrum.  He's a mathematical genius, she's a visual artist and musician.  I rushed back to work at the library only to learn we don't have a copy. Then I did what I always do when Peter White Public Library doesn't have something I want; I searched the other libraries that share our catalog and obtained an interlibrary loan copy a few days later. 

The couple meets at a support group Halloween party (he’s dressed as a whale, she’s dressed as Mozart’s sister). Much of the book is dedicated the their life stories.  Both grew up before Asperger Syndrome made it to the diagnostic manual and were seen as problem kids and both had pretty much given up finding a soul mate before they met.  And it took several years and separation for them to learn to manage their relationship. 

Further research told me there’s a fictionalized movie of their story with the same title.  Again, Peter White doesn't have a copy, but I put a hold on it.  I hope I get it today.

EM Reference Department