Category Archives: Staff Picks

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

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Salt to the Sea is unlike any World War II novel I have ever read.  Like most novels set in Europe during this time, there is heartbreak, tragedy, incredible loss and bravery.  But this disaster was completely unknown to me.  It is inspired by the greatest tragedy in maritime history, the Wilhelm Gustloff.  Told from the perspective of four young refugees, the mystery of each of their lives is gripping.  This is an incredible, well-written story that had me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end.  Publisher’s Weekly ranked Salt to the Sea one of the Best YA Books of 2016.

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Winter Storms by Elin Hilderbrand

jacket-aspxThe juicy keeps getting juicier in this trilogy.  I wrote about the first novel “Winter Street” last year around this time.  The second book,”Winter Stroll”, I had to read because the first one left off a bit too abruptly for my liking, and how could I not?  The final book in this trilogy, “Winter Storms” wraps it all up ever so nicely!  The Quinn family is back in Nantucket with all of their secrets, surprises, and scares- not without the drama of course!  If you want a fun quick read that will have you laughing and gasping… grab Hilderbrand’s Winter Street series.

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts One and Two- by Jack Thorne, J. K. Rowling, and John Tiffany.

jacket-aspxGet ready to devour this play.  A big fan of the Harry Potter series, how  could I not wonder if this additional story would be a let down?  Harry is middle-aged, married to Ginny, and a father of three.  Guess who is the Minister of Magic, and married to Ron?    We return to Hogwarts, and see how  Harry Potter’s past once again resurfaces- this time the kids play key roles with a focus on  Albus (Harry’s son),  who happens to be best buddies with Draco Malfoy’s  son, Scorpius.  Delicious  and satisfying read.

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The Restaurant Critic’s Wife by Elizabeth LaBan

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Enjoyable enough, but not what I expected… I don’t know what I was expecting to tell you the truth, maybe a little more excitement as I turned the pages ready to dive into the world of a restaurant critic’s family?  The food aspect of this book  is delicious! If you’re a foodie, you will love reading about the mouthwatering dishes described throughout.

Lila is the main character, the restaurant critic’s wife.  Her husband Sam is the paranoid restaurant critic, who insists on extreme measures to keep himself anonymous.  Lila struggles to juggle family life, getting back into the career world, and the loneliness that comes from keeping her husband’s identity a secret.  Overall, this wasn’t a terrible book, there just didn’t seem to be much of a story to tell.

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All the Time in the World by Caroline Angell

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Charlotte is a nanny for the McLeans, a family living in the Upper East Side of Manhattan.  She’s actually a talented composer, working as a nanny temporarily.  As she takes a step back from the music business by choice (and also fueled by a betrayal), she easily falls into the day-to-day on-goings of the McLean family. A tragedy forces Charlotte to make decisions that are life changing both professionally and personally.  Caroline Angell’s development of Charlotte’s character  keeps you captive from beginning to end, and makes you feel as if you are a part of her journey and self-discoveries.  Throughout the underlying sadness of the tragedy,  Angell delivers plenty of humor and sexiness to offset it.

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The Guest Room by Chris Bohjalian

Loved this book!   Russian bodyguards, bachelor party-gone-wrong, escorts, dead people, girls fleeing…. all taking place in the Westchester home of the Chapmans (YES- all this inJacket.aspx just the first few chapters!!)  The author creates a very likeable character – Richard Chapman- whose life changes in the matter of a night.  Mainly told from the perspective of Richard and Alexandra, the “dark-haired girl”,  we piece together the “what” and “why” in this crime thriller and fall  in love with each character along the way.  Underneath the fast-paced drama, the author touches upon human trafficking, as well as the meaning of  family, love, and relationships.

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Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology by Leah Remini

remini   Fascinating story.  It is not just about Scientology.  What I have always liked about Leah Remini is that she owns up to who she is (negative and positive aspects), such as being annoying and having a big mouth…two of the things that earn her the title “troublemaker”.  This well written book will take a hold of you, especially if you are a fan of the actress, or just want to know if Scientology is the cult you thought it was (my opinion at least).  She shares her experiences growing up in Hollywood, while entering Scientology as a kid.  This viewpoint holds its own appeal, because she isn’t one of the many celebrities who joined Scientology as an adult when it seemed to be “trending”. Don’t judge 🙂 and pick up this book if you are remotely interested, because you won’t be disappointed!

 

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