Book of the Month – December 2009
Sisters Pearl and May Chin are having the time of their lives in their beloved Shanghai — until the Japanese bombs fall in 1937. They set out on a journey that will take them through the Chinese countryside and across the Pacific to the city of Los Angeles and their husbands. Shanghai Girls covers 20 years of love, loss, heartbreak and joy while delivering a sobering history lesson.
Book of the Month – November 2009
Kamkwamba was born in Malawi, an African country where magic ruled and modern science was a mystery. After reading about windmills in a book he checked out of his library, William decides to build a windmill to bring electricity and water to his village. He has become an inspiration to those around the world.
Book of the Month – October 2009
This novel by Ann Patchett, author of Bel Canto, is the story about secrets, responsibility, and the lengths we will go to protect our children. Set over a period of twenty-four hours in a blinding New England snowstorm, Run tells the story of Bernard Doyle and his family and what happens when an argument inadvertently causes an accident that involves a stranger and her child. “Run shimmers with its author’s rarefied eloquence, and with the deep resonance of her insights,” New York Times.
Book of the Month – September 2009
Part memoir, part adventure story, Magnificent Desolation is Aldrin’s account of self-destruction and self-renewal. After his returning from the Apollo 11 mission, he wonders : What’s left? What’s a person do when his greatest dreams have been achieved? “An admirable account of an icon of the golden age of space flight,” Kirkus Reviews.
Book of the Month – August 2009
Fredrik Welin is a reclusive ex-surgeon living alone on a tiny island in the north of Sweden. The unexpected, unwanted arrival of Harriet Hornfeldt, the lover Welin abandoned a generation ago, alters his life completely. She demands that Fredrik fulfill an old promise which takes him on an eccentric journey. “Mankell, has an ability to create an intimate atmosphere that places the reader directly into the world of his characters, which is nothing short of brilliant,” Library Journal.
Book of the Month – July 2009
A colorful cast of characters descend on Paris in 1889, when the architectural icon first dominated the Parisian skyline. Jonnes recounts the history of the tower’s conception, building, and reception in Belle Epoque France.
Book of the Month – June 2009
When Ivy and David Rose hold a garage sale, former high school friend Melinda White attends. When she enters the Rose’s home to look around, she never comes out. The evidence suggests the couple murdered her. Publishers Weekly calls Ephron’s mystery “a deliciously creepy tale of obsession.”
Book of the Month – May 2009
Benedict recreates Susette Kelo’s battle against eminent domain and the fight to remain in her Connecticut home. The city of New London successfully pushed the definition of “public use” to new extremes by condemning a collection of small homes in a low-income neighborhood as a means of generating more tax dollars. “Benedict has taken a complicated court case…and turned it into a page-turner with a conscience,” Publishers Weekly.
Book of the Month – April 2009
Strout binds together thirteen narratives with the unforgettable character of Olive Kitteridge. As the townspeople of Crosby, Maine wrestle with their problems (infidelity, depression, aging, loss) Olive begins to understand herself – sometimes painfully, but always with ruthless honesty. “You loathe this woman at the book’s beginning; you long for her at its finish,” The New Yorker.
Book of the Month – March 2009
Krugman shows how the failure of regulation to keep pace with an increasingly out-ot-control financial system set the U.S. and the world up for the greatest financial crisis since the 1930s. He also lays out the steps that must be taken to contain the crisis. “Few will fail to be stimulated by Mr. Krugman’s clear thinking and lively style,” The Economist.
Book of the Month – February 2009
In this collection by Native American author Louise Erdrich, readers can follow the evolution of narrative styles, the shifts and metamorphoses in her fiction, over the past thirty years. In her fictional world, the mystical can emerge from the everyday, the comic turn suddenly tragic, and violence and beauty inhabit a single emotional landscape. “A wondrous short story writer [Erdrich] creates a keepsake of the American experience,” states The New York Times.