A Man Called Ove
by Fredrik Backman
Ove is a curmudgeon - the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. But behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. One morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove's mailbox leading to a comical and heartwarming tale.
I'd Tell You I love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You
by Ally Carter
As a sophomore at a secret spy school and the daughter of a former CIA operative, Cammie is sheltered from "normal teenage life" until she meets a local boy while on a class surveillance mission.
"At the Gallagher Academy for Exceptional Young Women, students receive extra credit for breaking CIA codes. This is a wonderful coming of age James Bond style adventure!" - Heidi
The Circle Trilogy Black Red White
by Ted Dekker
Three novels. Two worlds. One Story. Enter an adrenaline-laced epic where dreams and reality collide.
"Beautiful looping trilogy full of surreal symbolism and powerful relationships." - Kaitlin
Church of the Small Things: The Million Little Pieces That Make Up a Life
by Melanie Shankle
The author celebrates, with her trademark stories and humor, the wonder of the many small moments in life that add up to make a big difference and ultimately shape the person we become.
"A celebration of life's little moments." - Kate
River With No Bridge
by Karen Wills
When Nora Flanagan leaves Boston in 1882 to marry a miner in Butte, Montana, she anticipates achieving the respectability and security denied her as a tinker's daughter in Ireland. Instead, she experiences tragedy, disgrace, and redemption. In the course of her life, as Nora survives her daughter's death, relinquishes her son, homesteads in the wilderness, and raises a Blackfeet girl, she learns to cherish the beauty and healing power of nature surrounding the North Fork of the Flathead River.
"Immigrant story from Ireland. Very good historical fiction." - Linda
A Paris Apartment
by Michelle Gable
Discovering a horde of treasure in a Paris apartment that had been shuttered for decades, Sotheby's furniture specialist April Vogt finds a cache of letters and journals by a renowned Belle Époque courtesan whose sophisticated life compels April to reevaluate her own.
"An auctioneer discovers old journals in an apartment that's been sealed for years." - Crystal
The Demon-Haunted World
by Carl Sagan
Pulitzer Prize-winning author and distinguished astronomer Carl Sagan argues that scientific thinking is critical not only to the pursuit of truth but to the very well-being of our democratic institutions. Sagan examines and authoritatively debunks such celebrated fallacies of the past as witchcraft, faith healing, demons, and UFOs.
"One of Sagan's last books; the message of healthy skepticism is as pertinent today as ever." - Evan
I Will Find You:solving killer cases from my life of fighting crime
by Detective Lt. Joe Kenda
Detective Lt. Joe Kenda, star of Homicide Hunter, shares his deepest, darkest, and never-before-revealed case files from his two decades as a homicide detective and reminds us that crimes like these are very real and can happen even in our own backyards. Gruesome, macabre, and complex cases. Kenda investigated 387 murder cases during his 23 years with the Colorado Springs Police Department and solved almost all of them. And he is ready to detail the cases that are too gruesome to air on television, cases that still haunt him, and the few cases where the killer got away.
"If you are a fan of The Homicide Hunter series on the Investigation Discovery channel, these are the cases too graphic for the television show. Warning: NOT for the faint of heart! - Jessie
Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows
by Richard Cahan, Michael Williams
Photographs and interviews attempt to put Vivian Maier's work in context and create a portrait of her as an artist. She created more than 10,000 negatives during her lifetime, but only a few of them were ever seen by others. Shortly after her death in 2009, the first group of her unseen Chicago photographs were shown online. Word of her work spread quickly, catapulting Maier from previous obscurity to being labeled as one of the masters of street photography.
"Hauntingly beautiful collection of photographs, deserving of recognition Myer never sought." - Kate
Those Across the River
by Christopher Buehlman
Failed academic Frank Nichols and his "wife," Eudora, arrive in the sleepy Georgia town of Whitbrow, where Frank hopes to write a history of his family's old estate, the Savoyard Plantation, and the horrors that occurred there. In a letter delivered after her death, his aunt warns Frank not to live in the house—a warning Frank ignores. As tensions mount, readers will find themselves on the edge of their seats anticipating the spine-tingling conclusion to this stunning novel.
"Atmospheric horror story. Manages to use modern language while keeping classic themes." - Kaitlin
The "Wish" Series
by Lori Evert
New York Times bestseller Lori Evert created the Wish books along with her family. The series includes The The Christmas Wish, The Tiny Wish, The Reindeer Wish and The Brave Puppy.
"Beautiful, creative and charming children's series." - Katie
by Andrew Sean Greer
Receiving an invitation to his ex-boyfriend's wedding, Arthur, a failed novelist on the eve of his fiftieth birthday, embarks on an international journey that finds him falling in love, risking his life, reinventing himself, and making connections with the past.
"Beautifully written, lovely story." - Crystal
Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad
by Christie Golden
After the humiliating theft of the Death Star plans and the destruction of the battle station, the Empire is on the defensive. But not for long. In retaliation, the elite Imperial soldiers of Inferno Squad have been called in for the crucial mission of infiltrating and eliminating the Partisans?the rebel faction once led by notorious Republic freedom fighter Saw Gerrera. Following the death of their leader, the Partisans have carried on his extremist legacy, determined to thwart the Empire?no matter the cost. Now Inferno Squad must prove its status as the best of the best and take down the Partisans from within. But the growing threat of being discovered in their enemy?s midst turns an already dangerous operation into a do-or-die acid test they dare not fail. To protect and preserve the Empire, to what lengths will Inferno Squad go . . . and how far beyond them?
"A continuation of Rogue One, which also introduces the characters featured in the Battlefront II video game." - Evan
The Vanishing Sculptor
by Donita K. Paul
Tipper, a young emerlindian who's responsible for the upkeep of her family's estate during her sculptor father's absence, discovers that her actions have unbalanced the whole foundation of her world, and she must act quickly to undo the calamitous threat. With the help of some unlikely companions -- including the nearly five-foot tall parrot, Beccaroon, and the miraculous Wulder -- she sets out to save her father and her world.
"If you love The Chronicles of Prydain, The Chronicles of Narnia or The Ranger's Apprentice, you'll enjoy this first novel in Paul's new series." - Heidi
by Yee-Lum Malik
Discover words to surprise, delight, and enamor. Learn terms for the sunlight that filters through the leaves of trees, for dancing awkwardly but with relish, and for the look shared by two people who each wish the other would speak first. Other-Wordly is an irresistible ebook for lovers of words and those lost for words alike.
"A feast for word lovers!" - Kate
Gwendy's Button Box
by Stephen King & Richard Chizmur
There are three ways up to Castle View from the town of Castle Rock: Route 117, Pleasant Road, and the Suicide Stairs. Every day in the summer of 1974, twelve-year-old Gwendy Peterson has taken the stairs, which are held by strong, if time-rusted, iron bolts and zig-zag up the cliffside. Then one day when Gwendy gets to the top of Castle View, after catching her breath and hearing the shouts of kids on the playground below, a stranger calls to her. There on a bench in the shade sits a man in black jeans, a black coat, and a white shirt unbuttoned at the top. On his head is a small, neat black hat. The time will come when Gwendy has nightmares about that hat.
"A parable about the effects of too much power." - Kaitlin
It's that time of year again in Alaska when animals and humans alike are prone to hibernate. Our staff picks for October all have one thing in common: they are good in bed!
The Shadow of the Wind
by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
A boy named Daniel selects a novel from a library of rare books, enjoying it so much that he searches for the rest of the author's works, only to discover that someone is destroying every book the author has ever written.
"Just the best. Something you look forward to reading." - Crystal
The Ruins of Gorlan
by John Flanagan
When fifteen-year-old Will is rejected by battleschool, he becomes the reluctant apprentice to the mysterious Ranger Halt, and winds up protecting the kingdom from danger.
"An epic adventure any age would enjoy dreaming about." - Heidi
At Home in Mitford Series
by Jan Karon
Rich comedy series about ordinary people and their ordinary lives set in a charming village with pure air and high, green hills.
"Calm, slow-paced stories packed with warmth and humor." -Kaitlin
by Sandra Boynton
Good-night book with an irresistible cast of characters.
"Grandkids favorite!" - Teri
We've been reading all things Alaska in honor of the upcoming Alaska Day, Wednesday, October 18, 2017, commemorating the Sesquicentennial of the Transfer of Alaska.
Alone in the Wilderness
by Dick Proenneke & Bob Swerer
The account of the day-to-day explorations and activities of Dick Proenneke as he built a cabin in the remote wilderness of the Twin Lakes Region of Alaska.
"The quintessential DVD of Alaska adventure living." - Heidi
And She Was
by Cindy Dyson
A tense interplay between past and present that explores Aleut history, taboos, mummies, conquest, survival, and the seamy side of the 1980s in a fishing boomtown at the edge of the world. It leaps across time and culture to a lost woman, who more than anything needs to understand the gray shades between heroism and evil, between freedom and bondage, between this place and the rest of her life.
"Takes place in two eras." - Crystal
DANGER the Dog Yard Cat
by Libby Riddles with Shelley Gill
Libby Riddles was the first woman to win the 1049 mile Iditarod sled dog race. She introduces us to her cat, Danger, in this whimsical tale of the far north.
The Smell of Other People's Houses
by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock
Growing up in Alaska in the 1970s isn't like growing up anywhere else. Four vivid voices tell intertwining stories of hardship, tragedy, wild luck, and salvation.
"Young adult book that beautifully illustrates the importance of perseverance---'sometimes you just have to hold onto whatever you can'." - Kate
Into the Wild
by John Krakkauer
In April 1992 Christopher Johnson McCandless hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.
"Good, true story." - Katie
by Ron Dalby
An overworked detective, a dedicated game warden, and a veteran bush pilot team up to save a kidnapped child and prevent a monumental environmental disaster in the heart of Alaska’s sweeping wilderness.
"All the elements of a good, fictional mystery."- Laura
Honey Buckets on the Kuskokwim
by Helen Youngsman Teeter
"Hilarious and often poignant story of two Alaska missionaries."
Here are a few of our reading picks from August. As Fall approaches and we resume more regular school and work routines, we were thinking about growing up and some of life's greatest lessons, such as dealing with bullying, overcoming adversity, things we wish we knew then or that we need to be reminded of now and of course life's greatest lesson of all -- handling the inevitable loss of someone we hold dear. Enjoy!
by Kevin Henkes
Chrysanthemum loves her name, until she starts going to school and the other children make fun of it.
"A perennial favorite in my house." - Heidi
Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Little Golden Book
by Diane Muldrow
An adult refresher course from the more than 70-year-old line of children's books which covered real-life situations - from managing money, to the importance of exercise, to finding contentment in the simplest things.
A humorous "guide to life" for grown-ups! - Crystal
The Harry Potter Series
by J.K. Rowling
A series that captivated readers of all ages as they witnessed a most extraordinary young boy, and perhaps the greatest fictional wizard of all time, face the ordinary challenges of growing up.
"Navigating the trials and triumphs of school, friends, evil wizards, love interests, you know, the norm." - Kaitlin
50 Rules Kids Won't Learn in School : Real World Antidotes to Feel-Good Education
by Charles J. Sykes
Identifies fifty life lessons about surviving in the real world that parents can use for a range of constructive benefits, in a primer that features such tips as "Life is not fair. Get used to it" and "Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity."
"My personal favorite is Rule 48: Tell yourself the story of your life. Have a point." - Kate
by Sheryl Sandberg & Adam Grant
A powerful, inspiring, and practical book about finding resilience and moving forward after life's inevitable setbacks.
"Optimistic and inspiring read on a tough subject - grieving the loss of a loved one - and how family and friends can really help." - Teri
Here are a few of the books Palmer Library staff members are enjoying as our all too short of a summer continues in Alaska!
Before We Were Yours
by Lisa Wingate
The Foss children's lives are changed forever when their parents leave them alone on a stormy night in Memphis, TN in 1936 when twelve-year old Rill Foss and her four younger siblings are wrenched from their home and thrown into the care of the Tennessee Children's Home Society. Many years later they search for and rediscover each other.
" A great read if you like historical fiction!" - Teresa
Wolf Rampant Trilogy
by Aimee Easterling
Easterling's Wolf Rampant series takes readers to a unique werewolf world that has been described as a "good choice for Patricia Briggs fans."
The trilogy begins with Shiftless, continues the journey with Pack Princess, and concludes with Alpha Ascendant.
" A different take on werewolves and a great read!" - Beth
By the Light of the Moon
by Dean Koontz
A novel of heart-stopping suspense that eerily and beautifully illustrates how evil can destroy us and love can redeem us.
"Really interesting fantasy science-fiction story." - Kaitlin
by Marla Cilley
With her special blend of housecleaning tips, humor, and musings about daily life, Marla Cilley, a.k.a. The FlyLady, shows you how to manage clutter and chaos and get your home—and your life—in order.
"The Fly Lady's method for a clean and tidy home." - Heidi
A Thousand Mornings
by Mary Oliver
Oliver's observations offer valuable lessons found in the smallest moments of daily life.
"The poem For I Will Consider My Dog Percy is a must read for anyone who has ever loved and lost their faithful four-legged companion." - Kate
If you're like us, you are probably busy enjoying the outdoors and trying to cram a lot of living into the short Alaska summer. Whether you are on a plane, on a train or somewhere on the water waiting for the big one to bite, here are a few fun and easy reads recommended by our staff members.
Feel free to share with us what you're reading, watching or listening to or make a recommendation of your own in the comments section.
Oil and marble : a novel of Leonardo and Michelangelo
By Stephanie Storey
Leonardo despises Michelangelo for his youth and lack of sophistication. Michelangelo both loathes and worships Leonardo’s genius. Oil and Marble is the story of their nearly forgotten rivalry. Storey brings early 16th-century Florence alive, and has entered with extraordinary empathy into the minds and souls of two Renaissance masters. The book is an art history thriller.
"A great story about da Vinci and Michelangelo." - Crystal
In search of Cleo : how I found my pussy and lost my mind
By Gina Gershon
A founding member of the New York City theater group Naked Angels traces her life-long relationship with cats while recounting the loss of and search for a beloved feline companion, a quest through the back streets of Los Angeles that led to encounters with numerous personalities.
"Funny! True story about a famous actress." - Jessie
The Road Home
by Eliza Thomas
In her forties, author Eliza Thomas suddenly realizes it's time to find a new alternative to her drafty Boston apartment. She sets off to slowly rebuild her life and home in an old Boy Scout camp in Vermont.
" Thomas discovers creating a home is as much about creating a life." - Alisha
Dad is Fat
by Jim Gaffigan
Stand-up comedian Jim Gaffigan expresses the joys and horrors of life with five young children. A sharply observed and explosively funny cry for help from a man who has realized he and his wife are outnumbered in their own home.
"An amusing, light read." - Katie
by Danielle Steel
Four young women come together by chance in the heart of New York City at turning points in their lives. A spacious walk-up loft in Hell's Kitchen becomes home as they embark on new, exhilarating adventures.
"Quick, easy summer read." - Deborah
by Janet Evanovich
In the heart of Trenton, N.J., a killer is out to make sure someone gets his just desserts. Larry Virgil skips out on a court date and flees a crime scene, leaving behind a freezer truck loaded with ice cream and a frozen body covered in chocolate and chopped pecans. For bounty hunter Stephanie Plum, a girl with "virtually no marketable skills," this is the kind of sweet assignment she does best.
"Funny and refreshing read. It's my annual trip down to the Jersey shore." - Kate