Staff Favorites 2012

Francesca Denton, Reference Manager, Beaufort Branch

Round House coverThis is, in my humble opinion, Erdrich's most "accessible" novel, with a fairly straight-line narrative of 12 year old Joe's rites of passage through traumatic family events. Reservation life is up close and personal; a front-row seat to unfolding cultural and familial bonds. Erdrich weaves a gossamer thread from past novels weaving in characters (Nanapush) and events (the unjust hanging of three Indians) that embellish the literary fabric of this finely wrought and engrossing story. Not to be missed!

 

Julie Bascom, Youth Services Manager, Hilton Head Branch

Running Dream coverThis quick read tells the story of a star high school athlete who has her leg amputated as the result of an accident. Van Draanan does a great job of relating all the emotions felt by everyone – the victim, her parents, her siblings, her friends, her coaches and teachers. Rather than becoming a tear jerker, this book becomes an inspiring story of determination and the power of friendship.

 

Jenna Marstiller, Circulation Supervisor, Hilton Head Branch

Second Chance Summer coverFor Taylor, this summer is about second chances and last chances. Her father has been diagnosed with cancer and given only months to live. The family has decided to spend their last summer together at their old lake house. Taylor hasn’t been to the lake house since five years ago, when she left behind her best friend, Lucy, and her first boyfriend, Henry. Now, Taylor must learn to stop running away when things get rough.

 

Grace Cordial, BDC Coordinator, Beaufort District Collection

She-Wolves coverA fascinating examination of the queens of England who challenged the presumption that only men could rule, the compromises they made to secure the thrones for their sons, and how the historical record has impugned their reputations for their considerable trouble.

 

Ann Cox, Reference Librarian, St. Helena Branch

Snobs coverWritten by the creator of Downton Abbey, this study of the modern British class system is written in the tradition of Wodehouse and Waugh, and features effortless prose that pulls the reader into the schemes, failures, and successes of the upwardly mobile.

 

 

Jenna Marstiller, Circulation Supervisor, Hilton Head Branch

Statistical Probability coverI think I fell in love…at first sight…with this book. Flying to London may be most girls' dream, but not Hadley's. Not when she's flying out to be a bridesmaid in her own father's wedding. Even worse - she misses her flight by four minutes - ensuring she'll most likely be late. What she doesn't expect: she's helped by a boy named Oliver and seated next to him as well. Because of this, the next 24 hours will change her very reason for existing.

 

Shay Brooks, Teen Librarian, St. Helena Branch

Superman coverIn a year where superheroes ruled the movie box office, it’s nice to turn the page and take a retro trip back to Superman’s origins and follow his road to radio broadcast stardom. Bowers details the simultaneous rise of the KKK in America, and takes us along on the journey that lead to clash of the two powerful entities.

 

Francesca Denton, Reference Manager, Beaufort Branch

Sutton coverThis novel, based on the life of bank robber Willie Sutton, tells the tale of a man who is easily a metaphor for the American Dream. The novel spans decades which become eerily familiar; the failure of the banks and the economic attack on the middle class very reminiscent of our country's on-going economic woes. Moehringer effectively brings to life a man and a nation, weaving them into the tattered fabric of a flawed society that defines crime and distributes punishment through its class structure. But the novel is more than a message, it is also a love story spanning decades, achingly seen through Willie's eyes. The reader is kept guessing as to the true persona of Willie Sutton, a.k.a. "The Actor". This novel is engrossing; readers will want to know more about this notorious player on the stage of American social history.

Jenna Marstiller, Circulation Supervisor, Hilton Head Branch

Sweetness of Forgetting coverHope McKenna-Smith has lost her mother to cancer and her husband her for a twenty-two year old. She’s running a failing family bakery on Cape Cod and raising a troubled preteen. Hope’s beloved French-born grandmother Mamie, who wowed the Cape with her fabulous pastries for more than fifty years, is drifting away into a haze of Alzheimer’s. But in a rare moment of clarity, Mamie realizes that unless she tells Hope about the past, the secrets she has held on to for so many years will soon be lost forever. Tantalizingly, she reveals mysterious snippets of a tragic history in Paris. And then, arming her with a scrawled list of names, she sends Hope to France to uncover a seventy-year-old mystery.

Ann Cox, Reference Librarian, St. Helena Branch

The Diviners coverThis novel was genuinely creepy, but also had a wonderfully energetic vibe that brought 1920s New York City to life. I can't wait for the sequel! From Goodreads: "Evie O'Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City--and she is pos-i-toot-ly thrilled. New York is the city of speakeasies, shopping, and movie palaces! Soon enough, Evie is running with glamorous Ziegfield girls and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is Evie has to live with her Uncle Will, curator of The Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult--also known as "The Museum of the Creepy Crawlies."

When a rash of occult-based murders comes to light, Evie and her uncle are right in the thick of the investigation. And through it all, Evie has a secret: a mysterious power that could help catch the killer--if he doesn't catch her first."