Thursday, May 26, 2011

Pictures of You by Caroline Leavitt

The premise of this book is fascinating. Two women running away from their marriages collide on a foggy highway, killing one of them. The survivor, Isabelle, is left to pick up the pieces, not only of her own life, but of the lives of the devastated husband and fragile son that the other woman, April, has left behind. Together, they try to solve the mystery of where April was running to, and why. As these three lives intersect, the book asks, How well do we really know those we love - and how do we forgive the unforgivable?

Leavitt is an excellent writer. Every time I thought I had the story figured out, it took a different turn and kept me guessing. If you're in a book club, and looking for a new book, Pictures of You will give your group lots to discuss.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Catalyst: A Tale of the Barque Cats by Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Scarborough

Part sci-fi, part fantasy, Catalyst: A Tale of the Barque Catsthis first in a series is sure to appeal to fans of both genres. The story revolves around telepathic cats who basically are in charge of ridding spaceships of vermin. While humans think they run the show, it is really the cats that are in charge. When a quarantine is placed on their current planet, all of the animals are rounded up to be examined and possibly slaughtered. Of course, it is up to the cats to save the world!


Monday, May 23, 2011

The Silent Land by Graham Joyce

It's hard to describe this horror/fantasy novel, The Silent Land. Some words that come to mind - odd, creepy, and scary are just a few. A young couple is skiing in the Alps when they are hit by an avalache. Zoe is completely buried and is sure she is not going to make it, but then her husband Jake appears to dig her out. When they make their way down the mountain, they discover that no one is at the resort they are staying at. The lights are on, there is food being readied in the kitchen, there are plenty of cars around, but no people. Zoe and Jake assume that everyone has been evacuated, but they are wrong...


Friday, May 20, 2011

Still Missing by Chevy Stevens

Still Missing has to be one of the most disturbing novels I have ever read. That being said, I simply could not put this book down. The story begins with Annie, a 32-year-old realtor, recounting her experience as a kidnapping victim/survior to her psychiatrist. The entire novel is told from this point of view, and it works really well. Just when you think you cannot take the horror of it all, she changes course back to present day. In reality, this is a minute-by-minute account of what happens to Annie at the hands of  "the freak", but it is also a study on survival, courage, and hope. I highly recommend this for those readers that have a strong constitution.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Beneath a Starlet Sky by Amanda Goldberg & Ruthanna Khalighi Hopper

Hollywood glam and glitz is an easy way to sum up Beneath a Starlet Sky novel by the same authors that wrote Celebutantes. Lola Santis, daughter of a movie director father and reality star mother, is trying desperately to start a fashion line. As if that isn't enough, she is engaged to a doctor that suddenly catches the acting bug, has a cut-throat best friend that is an agent who is also in love with Lola's brother, plus handling a very demanding designer and countless prima donna models. From New York to the Cannes Film Festival, this is one name-dropping novel that is just plain fun!


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Best of Friends by Susan Mallery

The Best of Friends might make a good beach read, simple and quick. However, I couldn't find one character in this book that I actually liked! This is the story of two friends, Jayne and Rebecca. Jayne is the poor, studious nice girl. Rebecca, of course, is the spoiled, bratty rich girl. With the gorgeous older brother that Jayne has always had a crush on but has never noticed her. With the rich parents that have taken poor Jayne in to be a good influence on Rebecca. You get it, right???? So of course poor Jayne feels used by Rebecca and her family, while at the same time feeling she is not good enough for the brother that has finally noticed her and falls in love with her. If you think you know how it all turns out, you are probably right.


Friendly Persuasion by Jessamyn West

Only one more week until our Bartlett Book Community Book Discussion.  There are still some copies of the book available at the Information Desk for anyone who wants to join the discussion on Tuesday, May 17 at 2:00 and 7:00 pm.  It's not too late to pick one up, as the book is a quick read.

Each chapter is a vignette unto itself.  Some of the favorite ones include "The Pacing Goose," in which Eliza Birdwell must take the neighboring farmer to court in order to get her beloved pet goose back, and a "A Likely Exchange" in which Jess Birdwell learns that appearances in animals and people can be deceiving.  The Civil War experience is related from the Quaker experience with irony and reality in "The Battle in Finney's Ford."

We will also preview the book on Saturday, May 14, at 2:00 pm with a "Civil War Movie Matinee" featuring the 1956 movie version starring Gary Cooper and Dorothy Maguire.  Please join us for both of these events.


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Waking Up in Dixie by Haywood Smith

I am a big fan of audiobooks that are set in the South, as I cannot get enough of the drawls. They are just so much fun to listen to, and Waking Up in Dixie fit the bill. It is a bittersweet story of second chances and how you handle them. Long-suffering wife Elizabeth Wittington has been married to the very powerful and wealthy Howell for 25 years. She has had put up with his horrible mother, obnoxious daughter, as well as his total betrayal. However, all is about to change when Howell suffers a stroke and wakes up a completely different man...