Posted in Adult, Contemporary, Fiction, Historical, Mystery, Nonfiction, Romance, Thrillers

While You Wait June 2023: The Covenant of Water and Small-Town Wisconsin

It’s no surprise to find a novel that’s been chosen for Oprah’s Book Club at the top of our most-requested books, and that’s the case with The Covenant of Water. I was pretty surprised at our top nonfiction book, however – I don’t think I’ve ever seen a travel book so high up on the list before! It does make sense, however, given the time of year – this might be the perfect season to get out for some Wisconsin road trip fun.

The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese

Spanning the years 1900 to 1977, The Covenant of Water is set in Kerala, on South India’s Malabar Coast, and follows three generations of a family that suffers a peculiar affliction: in every generation, at least one person dies by drowning—and in Kerala, water is everywhere. At the turn of the century, a twelve-year-old girl from Kerala’s long-existing Christian community, grieving the death of her father, is sent by boat to her wedding, where she will meet her forty-year-old husband for the first time. From this unforgettable new beginning, the young girl—and future matriarch, known as Big Ammachi—will witness unthinkable changes over the span of her extraordinary life, full of joy and triumph as well as hardship and loss, her faith and love the only constants.

Continue reading “While You Wait June 2023: The Covenant of Water and Small-Town Wisconsin”
Posted in Adult, Fiction, Film, New & Upcoming, Nonfiction

Read Now, Watch Later

As always, Hollywood is taking from the pages for inspiration! See below for a list of books that are being adapted for the screen.

**Click the book title to be brought directly to our online catalog’s listing to place the title on hold or learn more.

American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin

This book’s adaption will be released under a shorter name: Oppenheimer. Both mediums are about Physicist J Robert Oppenheimer as he works with a team of scientists during the Manhattan Project, leading to the development of the atomic bomb. The film, directed by Christopher Nolan, has a runtime of 2 hours and 30 minutes. It will explode into theaters on July 21, 2023.

Hallowe’en Party by Agatha Christie

This year marks the release of the third Hercule Poirot movie staring Kenneth Branagh as the brainy detective. The movie will be called A Haunting in Venice. The story follows Poirot investigating a murder that happens during a Halloween seance at a haunted palazzo in Venice, Italy. Spooky! The film is set to release September 15, 2023, right before your own Halloween party.

Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus

Lessons in Chemistry is a bestseller that has been impossible to keep on our shelves. It follows female chemist Elizabeth Zott in the 1950’s and 60’s. Elizabeth loves science but, when life happens, ends up on a cooking show. On the show, Elizabeth teaches women not just how to cook but to change their lives. This novel is being adapted into a mini-series on Apple-TV staring Captain Marvel‘s Brie Larson. The series is expected to be out in 2023.

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann

Another story inspired by real life! Killers of the Flower Moon is about the murders of 24 members of oil-rich Osage tribe in 1920s Oklahoma, all for gold. The film directed by the renowned Martin Scorsese and is set to release on October 6, 2023. While you can take a break between reading chapters, note that the film has announced it has a runtime of 3 hours and 26 minutes. With its star studded cast, subject matter, and big budget, the film is rumored to be expected to win many awards.

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

My Lovely Wife is a psychological thriller that hooks readers in. The story is a mixture of Gone Girl meets American Psycho as it follows a couple who, to keep their marriage alive, find murderous ways to spice things up. Of course, things don’t always go as planned. Netflix has the rights and the director lined up, so hopefully more updates will come soon!

It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

Colleen Hoover’s hit book It Ends with Us is in production. Behind the scenes set photos featuring Blake Lively have been popping up online. Some fans are excited while others say that 23 year old main character isn’t perfectly cast. Only time will tell! While there is no release date for the film yet, readers have time to read both the novel and its sequel It Starts With Us. Fun fact: Collen Hoover has sold more books than James Patterson in 2022!

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Set to premiere on Amazon Prime in August 2023, Red, White &Royal Blue is a enemies to lovers rom com. The story centers on the romance between Alex Claremont-Diaz, a first son of the United States, and Prince Henry, a British prince.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

The Color Purple is slated to get its second movie adaption. Currently, the film is expected to premiere on December 25, 2023 in theaters. The film is produced by Oprah Winfrey and stars Fantasia Barrino, Halle Bailey, Danielle Brooks, and Taraji P. Henson. Rumors have already begun that this classic book’s adaptation will be up for numerous Oscars.

Do you think the books will be better than the adaptions? Only one way to find out!

Posted in Adult, Contemporary, Fiction, History, Nonfiction, Romance

While You Wait May 2023: The Five-Star Weekend and The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder

Elin Hilderbrand has a new novel out, and that’s topping our fiction holds right now – not too surprising as she’s a very popular author! And on the non-fiction side, we have the dramatic story of an 18th-century shipwreck and the chaos that ensued after one group of survivors washed ashore… only to be followed six months later by a second group accusing them of murder!

The Five-Star Weekend by Elin Hilderbrand

Hollis Shaw’s life seems picture-perfect. She’s the creator of the popular food blog Hungry with Hollis and is married to Matthew, a dreamy heart surgeon. But after she and Matthew get into a heated argument one snowy morning, he leaves for the airport and is killed in a car accident. The cracks in Hollis’s perfect life—her strained marriage and her complicated relationship with her daughter, Caroline—grow deeper.

So when Hollis hears about something called a “Five-Star Weekend”—one woman organizes a trip for her best friend from each phase of her life: her teenage years, her twenties, her thirties, and midlife—she decides to host her own Five-Star Weekend on Nantucket. But the weekend doesn’t turn out to be a joyful Hallmark movie.

The husband of Hollis’s childhood friend Tatum arranges for Hollis’s first love, Jack Finigan, to spend time with them, stirring up old feelings. Meanwhile, Tatum is forced to play nice with abrasive and elitist Dru-Ann, Hollis’s best friend from UNC Chapel Hill. Dru-Ann’s career as a prominent Chicago sports agent is on the line after her comments about a client’s mental health issues are misconstrued online. Brooke, Hollis’s friend from their thirties, has just discovered that her husband is having an inappropriate relationship with a woman at work. Again! And then there’s Gigi, a stranger to everyone (including Hollis) who reached out to Hollis through her blog. Gigi embodies an unusual grace and, as it happens, has many secrets.

Continue reading “While You Wait May 2023: The Five-Star Weekend and The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder”
Posted in Adult, Contemporary, Fiction, Nonfiction

While You Wait April 2023: Pineapple Street and Poverty, By America

I was not familiar with the author of this month’s top fiction book, Jenny Jackson, and taking a look, it looks like this is her debut novel! It’s pretty impressive to end up at the top of the most-requested list with your first book. And in non-fiction, we have a followup book to the popular Evicted by Matthew Desmond.

Pineapple Street by Jenny Jackson

Darley, the eldest daughter in the well-connected old money Stockton family, followed her heart, trading her job and her inheritance for motherhood but giving up far too much in the process; Sasha, a middle-class New England girl, has married into the Brooklyn Heights family, and finds herself cast as the arriviste outsider; and Georgiana, the baby of the family, has fallen in love with someone she can’t have, and must decide what kind of person she wants to be.

Rife with the indulgent pleasures of life among New York’s one-percenters, Pineapple Street is a smart, escapist novel that sparkles with wit. Full of recognizable, loveable—if fallible—characters, it’s about the peculiar unknowability of someone else’s family, the miles between the haves and have-nots, and the insanity of first love—all wrapped in a story that is a sheer delight.

Continue reading “While You Wait April 2023: Pineapple Street and Poverty, By America”
Posted in Adult, History, Nonfiction

Winter Is Still Here, So Why Not Make The Best Of It?

I have lived in Wisconsin my entire life yet by the end of March I always find myself in a sour mood that winter is still here. But, I tell myself, at least it’s staying lighter out longer now and, more importantly, the frequency of sunny days is increasing!

However, if you’re tired of winter but still want to experience it, read on to learn about a book that will fulfill your wishes! From the comfort of your warm and cozy chair you can travel to the hostile Weddell Sea where the Endurance22 Expedition team experienced temperatures as low as -40°C. In danger several times of becoming icebound themselves they managed to accomplish what no one else has, that is finding Ernest Shackleton’s ship, the Endurance, under the ice in 10,000 feet of water.

Shackleton set out for Antarctica during the Heroic Age of Exploration. This was an era in exploration that began at the end of the 19th century and ended after the First World War. During this time there were 17 major Antarctic explorations of scientific and geographical significance. The “heroic” label, bestowed later on the era, spoke to the limited nature of the resources available at the time and also to the adversities which had to be overcome. Not all who set out on these expeditions survived. They set out to a land barely recorded on maps, experienced the horrors of scurvy, not knowing what it was or how to treat it, and were holed up in icebound ships while outside was three months of constant, complete darkness.

The Ship Beneath the Ice by Mensun Bound

On November 21, 1914, after sailing more than ten thousand miles from Norway to the Antarctic Ocean, the Endurance finally succumbed to the surrounding ice. Ernest Shackleton and his crew had navigated the 144-foot, three-masted wooden vessel to Antarctica to become the first to cross the barren continent, but early season pack ice trapped them in place offshore. They watched in silence as the ship’s stern rose twenty feet in the air and disappeared into the frigid sea, then spent six harrowing months marooned on the ice in its wake. Seal meat was their only sustenance as Shackleton’s expedition to push the limits of human strength took a new form: one of survival against the odds.

Continue reading “Winter Is Still Here, So Why Not Make The Best Of It?”
Posted in DIY & How To, Kids 5-12, Nonfiction, Staff Picks, Uncategorized

Take a STEAM Break

Hey kids! Are you looking for screen-free activities to do? Whether you’re looking for ideas for activities to keep busy during spring break or to occupy yourself on a rainy day, we’ve got you covered! We have many books in our children’s library packed full of fun ideas. Topics include creative art projects, science experiments, building, baking, upcycling, slime making, and more! Check out some of our book suggestions below. Take a break from the screen, and spend time learning and creating something in real life! You can click on the links provided to request any books you’re interested in directly from our library catalog. Do you have other interests not covered below? Let us know! There’s probably a book for that, and we can help you find it.

Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Creatures Activity Lab: Exciting Projects for Budding Paleontologists by DK

Whether you’re a dinosaur fan or just simply enjoy practical hands-on projects, this dynamic dinosaur book combines creativity with a prehistoric twist. Each of the super-fun make-and-do projects in this book comes with simple step-by-step photographs and instructions that will inspire imaginative minds and bring the dinosaur world to life!

Join the journey back to prehistoric times and explore: 

– 24 hands-on projects that appeal to young readers aged 9+

– All materials used are inexpensive and easy-to-find

– Crystal-clear instructions are easy-to-follow

– Clear photography shows how to make each project step-by-stepPerfect for kids who are interested in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and maths), SI Dinosaur Activity Lab features activities that cover many aspects of prehistoric life, from the evolution of dinosaurs to what might have caused them to die out. You’ll combine science and maths with art and craft by making your own dinosaur fossils, constructing a 3D diorama to learn about dinosaur habitats, designing a fearsome Tyrannosaurus mask, hatching your own mini dinosaur out of a bath bomb, and even creating a meteorite impact experiment to find out how dinosaurs may have become extinct! Throughout the book there are information boxes with incredible facts about prehistoric life and panels to explain how the skills you’ve learned are used in the real world.

Continue reading “Take a STEAM Break”
Posted in Adult, Fiction, Mystery, Nonfiction

While You Wait March 2023: I Have Some Questions For You and The Mountain Is You

Our popular non-fiction book this month is actually from 2020, proving the enduring appeal of self-help books. And in fiction, we have an author who hasn’t appeared in this series before, Rebecca Makkai – one of her previous novels, The Great Believers, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2019, however! Take a look at these books below as well as a few to tide you over during the wait in the queue.

I Have Some Questions For You by Rebecca Makkai

A successful film professor and podcaster, Bodie Kane is content to forget her past—the family tragedy that marred her adolescence, her four largely miserable years at a New Hampshire boarding school, and the murder of her former roommate, Thalia Keith, in the spring of their senior year. Though the circumstances surrounding Thalia’s death and the conviction of the school’s athletic trainer, Omar Evans, are hotly debated online, Bodie prefers—needs—to let sleeping dogs lie.

But when the Granby School invites her back to teach a course, Bodie is inexorably drawn to the case and its increasingly apparent flaws. In their rush to convict Omar, did the school and the police overlook other suspects? Is the real killer still out there? As she falls down the very rabbit hole she was so determined to avoid, Bodie begins to wonder if she wasn’t as much of an outsider at Granby as she’d thought—if, perhaps, back in 1995, she knew something that might have held the key to solving the case.

Continue reading “While You Wait March 2023: I Have Some Questions For You and The Mountain Is You”
Posted in Adult, Biography & Memoir, Contemporary, Fiction, History, Nonfiction, Romance

While You Wait XII: Someone Else’s Shoes and The Nazi Conspiracy

It’s amazing – this month we have neither a thriller nor a memoir! Instead, our very popular new fiction book is Jojo Moyes’ new novel Someone Else’s Shoes, which seems poised to be a popular book club pick in the future as well. And for non-fiction, The Nazi Conspiracy is topping our charts, filled with spies, assassins, and political intrigue. Get on the waitlists now, and check out our read-alikes while you wait!

Someone Else’s Shoes by Jojo Moyes

Who are you when you are forced to walk in someone else’s shoes?

Nisha Cantor lives the globetrotting life of the seriously wealthy, until her husband announces a divorce and cuts her off. Nisha is determined to hang onto her glamorous life. But in the meantime, she must scramble to cope–she doesn’t even have the shoes she was, until a moment ago, standing in.

That’s because Sam Kemp – in the bleakest point of her life – has accidentally taken Nisha’s gym bag. But Sam hardly has time to worry about a lost gym bag–she’s struggling to keep herself and her family afloat. When she tries on Nisha’s six-inch high Christian Louboutin red crocodile shoes, the resulting jolt of confidence that makes her realize something must change—and that thing is herself.

Continue reading “While You Wait XII: Someone Else’s Shoes and The Nazi Conspiracy”
Posted in Award Winners, Fiction, Kids 0-5, Kids 5-12, Nonfiction, Teen & Young Adult, Uncategorized

Children’s Award Books 2023

The American Library Association announced the winners of the 2023 Youth Media Awards on Monday. Materials for children and teens were selected by committees of literature and media specialists under different categories for their excellence. Take a look at some of these exceptional award winners below and click on the links to reserve your copies through our catalog. Scroll to the bottom of the post for a link to the full list of this year’s award recipients.

John Newbery Medal

Freewater by Amina Luqman-Dawson
Continue reading “Children’s Award Books 2023”
Posted in Adult, Biography & Memoir, Fiction, Mystery, Nonfiction, Thrillers

While You Wait XI: The House in the Pines and The Light We Carry

In December, the popular upcoming fiction book was a thriller, and the non-fiction book was a celebrity memoir. And in January… it looks like people are hankering for more of the same! Get on those waitlists now, and check out our readalikes in the meantime!

The House in the Pines by Ana Reyes

Maya was a high school senior when her best friend, Aubrey, mysteriously dropped dead in front of the enigmatic man named Frank whom they’d been spending time with all summer.

Seven years later, Maya lives in Boston with a loving boyfriend and is kicking the secret addiction that has allowed her to cope with what happened years ago, the gaps in her memories, and the lost time that she can’t account for. But her past comes rushing back when she comes across a recent YouTube video in which a young woman suddenly keels over and dies in a diner while sitting across from none other than Frank. Plunged into the trauma that has defined her life, Maya heads to her Berkshires hometown to relive that fateful summer—the influence Frank once had on her and the obsessive jealousy that nearly destroyed her friendship with Aubrey.

At her mother’s house, she excavates fragments of her past and notices hidden messages in her deceased Guatemalan father’s book that didn’t stand out to her earlier. To save herself, she must understand a story written before she was born, but time keeps running out, and soon, all roads are leading back to Frank’s cabin. . . .

Continue reading “While You Wait XI: The House in the Pines and The Light We Carry”