Susan’s Recommendations

The Past

The PastBy Hadley, Tessa author.
Hadley’s masterful storytelling, astute insight into her characters, and attention to minute details combine to create this satisfying family drama set mainly at a summer home outside London which has fallen into disrepair and where they all used to vacation.... Read more
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The Black Presidency : Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America

The Black presidency : Barack Obama and the politics of race in AmericaBy Dyson, Michael Eric author.
Noted author, journalist and commentator Michael Eric Dyson gives us an extremely well-written, in-depth look at all the major junctions in the 8 years of Barack Obama’s presidency. Dyson presents a cogent analysis of the self-imposed, disciplined limitations and outside political pressure Obama has been working under when it comes to the representation of race.... Read more
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Rosalie Lightning

Rosalie Lightning : a graphic memoirBy Hart, Tom, 1969-
Tom Hart teaches at New York City’s School of Visual Arts and is Director of the Sequential Artists Workshop in Florida. He is the creator of the Hutch Owens comics. His graphic memoir, Rosalie Lightning, is a tribute to his daughter, who died suddenly in her crib at the age of two. Hart pours out his heart in this book, in words and pictures, to the extent that the sensitive reader will be moved to tears.... Read more
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The Lightkeepers

The lightkeepers : a novelBy Geni, Abby
Experienced nature photographer Miranda takes an assignment on the remote Farallon Islands, also known as “The Islands of the Dead”, once the site of an important lighthouse. There she joins a group of biologists, expert in the various types of wildlife native to the area: a variety of birds, whales, sea lions and sharks.... Read more
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The Other Typist

The other typistBy Rindell, Suzanne
The setting is Prohibition Era New York, where quite ordinary Rose Baker is employed as a stenographer at the local police precinct. Listening to and typing up confessions taken in the station’s interrogation room is the highlight of Rose’s dull life.... Read more
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Kahlil Gibran's The Prophet

The ProphetBy Neeson, Liam
A masterful treat for the senses and labor of love for Mexican-Lebanese producer Salma Hayek, who chose independent animators from around the world to interpret selected sections of Gibran's seminal work, The Prophet.... Read more
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The Evolution of Everything : How New Ideas Emerge

The evolution of everything : how new ideas emergeBy Ridley, Matt author.
Matt Ridley, a writer for The Times (London) and The Wall Street Journal, author of The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves, offers up his newest book, which is sure to engender vigorous debate.... Read more
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Democracy in Black : How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul

Democracy in black : how race still enslaves the American soulBy Glaude, Eddie S., Jr., 1968-
Princeton University professor Glaude’s important book debunks any notion of America being a post-racial society. The challenges and discrimination faced by black people today are as virulent and substantial as anything seen in Jim Crow south, and it will take nothing short of a “revolution of value” to change because Americans continue to hold on to the “belief that some people are better than others because they are white”.... Read more
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The Mare

The mare : a novelBy Gaitskill, Mary, 1954-
Hardscrabble Dominican pre-teen Velvet lives in Brooklyn with her perpetually angry Mami and little brother Dante. Velvet is sent to stay with a well-to-do white family as part of the Fresh Air Fund, which places inner-city youth in country settings for a few weeks. Velvet stays with childless couple Paul and Ginger, and falls in love with a rescued mare named Fugly Girl at the stables next door.... Read more
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Your Heart is a Muscle the Size of A Fist

Your heart is a muscle the size of a fist : a novelBy Yapa, Sunil author.
The setting is Seattle , November 30, 1999, at the protest to shut down the World Trade Organization (WTO) summit meeting. The narrative follows Victor, a disaffected young man who has left home after the death of his mother, and has been living off the grid for three years. His Dad is Police Chief Bishop, charged by the Mayor with keeping 50,000 protesters contained so the WTO meeting can begin.... Read more
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Rebel Souls

Rebel souls : Walt Whitman and America's first bohemiansBy Martin, Justin
Designed for general readers of historical nonfiction, this book centers on the circle of rebellious writers, performers, and experimenters that gathered in Pfaff's Saloon in New York City in the years before the Civil War.... Read more
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Stamped From the Beginning : The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America

Stamped from the beginning : the definitive history of racist ideas in AmericaBy Kendi, Ibram X, author.
In this deeply researched, provocative narrative, Kendi offers a comprehensive history of anti-Black racist ideas: their origins in fifteenth-century Portugal, their arrival in England in the mid-sixteenth century, and their blossoming in the United States, where they became the founding principles of our nation’s institutions and guarantors of its power. (PUB)
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The Fireman

The fireman : a novelBy Hill, Joe author.
A chilling novel about a worldwide pandemic of spontaneous combustion that threatens to reduce civilization to ashes and a band of improbable heroes who battle to save it, led by one powerful and enigmatic man known as the Fireman.(PUB)
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Cool Summer Reads for Adults (7 items)

The fireman : a novelBy Hill, Joe author.
"Horror buffs will take note of this latest offering by the Bram Stoker winner." Library Journal May 2016
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HaymakerBy Schuitema, Adam
A 2016 Michigan Notable Book, Haymaker is a short novel about three years in the life of a small Upper Peninsula town, which has been identified by a group of down-state libertarians as the perfect place to establish their model town called Freedom Community. Although many of the hardscrabble local Haymakes have similar views about living life the way they want, they deeply resent this invasion of folks who intend to take over their town.... Read more
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The Plant Recipe Book

The plant recipe book : 100 living arrangements for any home in any seasonBy Chapman, Baylor
Baylor Chapman’s plant expertise and Paige Green’s photography combine for a gorgeous and informative how-to book for creating table-size living plant container gardens. Chapman gives you a list of exactly what is needed for each arrangement (her “ingredients”) starting with one of the 40 featured plants (and includes variations using additional plants in the arrangement).... Read more
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The Backyard Homestead Book of Building Projects

The backyard homestead book of building projectsBy Carlsen, Spike, 1952-
Want to extend the growing season of your vegetable garden, keep that lawn/garden brown bag standing up while you fill it, make your own concrete planters, walkway or a backyard chicken coop? How about a bat house or beehive? This is the book for you: not only does the author explain all the tools, materials and safety tips, but gives you clear how-to drawings to build any of 76 projects for the backyard gardener to the small scale homesteader.... Read more
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This Census-Taker

This census-takerBy Miéville, China
Wildly inventive author Miéville’s newest book starts out with a young boy running down the hill from his isolated house to the village below, screaming that a murder has taken place. A nameless narrator is looking back at his childhood and what he remembers seems to vacillate from fantasy to reality...when the authorities take him back, his father tells them that his mother left them, but the boy knows what he saw.... Read more
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The Buried Giant

The buried giant : a novelBy Ishiguro, Kazuo, 1954-
Ishiguro is the renowned author whose books include The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go. His newest, The Buried Giant takes place in rural Arthurian England just as the Saxons have invaded and there is a fragile peace. An elderly couple, Axl and Beatrice, undertake a journey to visit their son; along the way they meet the warrior Wistan and his young charge Edwin, as well as an ancient Sir Gawain.... Read more
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Child 44

Child 44By Smith, Tom Rob
Child 44 is a grim, violent story of life in Soviet Russia in 1953, where it is understood: “there is no crime in Paradise.” We meet Leo Demidov, a top secret police agent, and his wife, Raisa, a schoolteacher. The lack of investigation into a possible murder case, dismissed as an “accident” by the police, shows how such cases are regularly “solved”: arrest an undesirable citizen and coerce a confession.... Read more
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How to Watch a Film

How to watch a movieBy Thomson, David, 1941-
David Thomson has been called “the greatest living film critic and historian”. His new book will help all those who really love the cinema to get more out of their viewing by understanding a bit about the nuts and bolts the movie makers use to put together the films we see.... Read more
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Another Woman's Daughter

Another woman's daughterBy Sussman, Fiona
This simple yet affecting story takes place in South Africa and London between the years 1959 and 1985. Celia works as a cook and housekeeper for Rita and Michael Steiner, returning nightly to the townships where she lives. The Steiners are a deeply troubled couple, childless after several miscarriages, who become frightened at the growing unrest fomenting around the issue of apartheid.... Read more
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Part of our Lives : A People's History of the American Public Library

Part of our lives : a people's history of the American public libraryBy Wiegand, Wayne A., 1946-
Celebrated library historian Wayne A. Wiegand, a former library science professor and author of many articles and books over the course of his career, gives us a very readable and interesting look at the institution that has played such an important part in most lives: the American public library. He traces their growth and progress from private lending collections to the modern community-oriented information centers we know and love.... Read more
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She's Leaving Home

She's leaving homeBy Shaw, William, 1959-
Shaw’s debut novel is a British police procedural which takes places in 1968 London, when popular culture was in a frenzy over the Beatles. Veteran Detective Sergeant Breen is assigned a murder case (a young woman strangled and dumped beside a locked garage) and the old curmudgeon is put off by being teamed with a young female novice policewoman who is super-excited about working with him.... Read more
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