Friday, October 29, 2021

New Releases: November Edition

Did one of the book covers on our homepage catch your eye? They are all new titles being released in November 2021, and all are well-reviewed and anticipated. You can watch the video or read the description of each below, then click the linked title to request a copy or get your name on the wait list. And don't forget to watch for more featured releases next month!

Featured Fiction for November

Just Haven't Met You Yet by Sophie Cousens
Lifestyle reporter Laura’s business trip to the Channel Islands isn’t off to a great start. After an embarrassing encounter with the most attractive man she’s ever seen, she arrives at her hotel and realizes she’s grabbed the wrong suitcase from the airport. Her only consolation is its irresistible contents. The owner of the suitcase is clearly Laura’s dream man. Now, all she has to do is find him. But what are the odds that she’d find The One on the same island where her parents fell in love, especially as she sets out to write an article about their romance? Commissioning surly cab driver Ted to ferry her around seems like her best bet in both tracking down the mystery suitcase owner and retracing her parents’ footsteps. 

The Perishing by Natashia Deon
Lou, a young Black woman, wakes up in an alley in 1930s Los Angeles, nearly naked and with no memory of how she got there. Taken in by a foster family, Lou dedicates herself to her education while trying to put her mysterious origins behind her. She’ll become the first Black female journalist at the Los Angeles Times, but her life is about to become even more remarkable. When she befriends a firefighter at a boxing gym, Lou realizes that though she has no memory of meeting him, she’s been drawing his face for years. Increasingly certain that their paths previously crossed, Lou begins to believe she may be an immortal sent for a very important reason, one that only others like her will be able to explain. 

A Marvelous Light by Freya Marske
Robin is struggling to be a good brother, a responsible employer, and the baronet of a seat gutted by his late parents. When a mistake sees him named the civil service liaison to a magical society, he discovers what’s been operating beneath the reality he’s always known. Now he must contend with the beauty and danger of magic, a deadly curse, and the visions of the future that come with it―not to mention Edwin, his prickly counterpart in the magical bureaucracy. Robin’s predecessor has disappeared, and the mystery of what happened to him reveals unsettling truths about the land they live on and what binds it. 

Featured Nonfiction for November

The Sinner and the Saint: Dostoevsky and the Gentleman Murderer Who Inspired a Masterpiece by Kevin Birmingham
As a young man, Dostoevsky was a celebrated writer, but his involvement with radical politics condemned him to a Siberian exile. There, he spent years studying the criminals that were his companions. Upon his return to St. Petersburg, he fought his way through gambling addiction, debt, epilepsy, and the deaths of those closest to him. The germ of Crime and Punishment came from the story of Pierre Fran├žois Lacenaire, a murderer who charmed and outraged Paris. Dostoevsky began creating a Russian incarnation of Lacenaire, a character who could demonstrate the errors of radical ideas. His name would be Raskolnikov. Lacenaire shaped Raskolnikov in many ways, but the deeper insight, as Birmingham shows, is that Raskolnikov began to merge with Dostoevsky. 

The Least of Us: True Tales of America and Hope in the Time of Fentanyl and Meth by Sam Quinones
Quinones traveled from Mexico to main streets across the U.S. to create Dreamland, a groundbreaking portrait of the opioid epidemic that awakened the nation. He was also among the first to see the dangers that lay ahead: synthetic drugs and new kingpins whose product could be made in blenders. In fentanyl, traffickers had a painkiller a hundred times more powerful than morphine. They laced it into cocaine, meth, and counterfeit pills to cause tens of thousands of deaths. At the same time, Mexican traffickers made methamphetamine cheaper and more potent than ever. Amid a landscape of despair, Quinones found hope in those embracing the forgotten and ignored, illuminating the truth that we are only as strong as our most vulnerable.

1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows: A Memoir by Ai Weiwei
Weiwei has written a memoir that presents the remarkable history of China while also illuminating his artistic process. Once an intimate of Mao Zedong and the nation’s most celebrated poet, Ai Weiwei’s father, Ai Qing, was branded a rightist. He and his family were banished to a desolate place known as “Little Siberia,” where Qing was sentenced to hard labor. Weiwei recounts his childhood in exile, and his difficult decision to leave his family to study art in America. He details his return to China and his rise from artistic unknown to art superstar and international human rights activist—and how his work has been shaped by living under a totalitarian regime.  

Friday, October 22, 2021

WooReads Fall Reading Challenge for Adults: Patron Book Reviews


Enjoy this week's adult patron book reviews summitted through the WooReads Fall Reading Challenge for Adults. There are many ways to find your next read with WPL. Check out Reader's Corner which features staff picks and themed booklists. If you'd like something more interactive, check out our monthly Staff Picks with librarians Joy and Devon as they discuss what you should read next. Click here to view this month's episode featuring picks for Halloween. 

Love in English by Maria E. Andreu

If you thought love was difficult, imagine what happens when you don't speak the language. Ana and her family are immigrants. While navigating through high school, she finds herself drawn to two very different boys. Neo is also an ESL student, and their friendship blooms over their shared struggles. Harrison is a classic "American boy" and is everything Ana imagined she would find in this new country. There is so much to uncover about herself, her family, and her new place in the world. ~ Amanda C.

I honestly didn't know what to expect with this book, but found that I really enjoyed it! It was actually quite interesting to learn about human cadavers in various ways, such as the medical field, and in accidents. Some parts were a little too detailed for me - definitely not a book to read while eating - but overall a really fascinating read! ~ Bella G.

Refreshing superheroine idea! I loved the artwork and story! I would love to see this movie adapted for the big screen! ~ Sarina S.

The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green

Witty, easy read. All of John Green's personality mixed with anecdotes and real facts about topics from Canadian Geese to Diet Dr. Pepper. Definitely recommend! ~ Kaylah W.

Saturday, October 16, 2021

Staff Picks: Halloween Edition

Join Librarians Devon and Joy for their Halloween Edition of Staff Picks. Books discussed include one about a village with a bloody past, the natural history of ghosts, a novel about a girl who goes missing and returns as something different, a true ghost story from London, a novel about the final girls from slasher movies, and a biographical graphic novel about Rod Serling.

Staff Picks: Halloween Edition
Ghosts: A Natural History: 500 Years of Searching for Proof by Roger Clarke
The Return by Rachel Harrison
The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix
Twilight Man: Rod Serling and the Birth of Television by Koren Shadmi
The Haunting of Alma Fielding: A True Ghost Story by Kate Summerscale
The Burning Girls by C.J. Tudor

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

WooReads Fall Reading Challenge for Adults: Patron Book Reviews


Hello WooReaders! We're back with a new challenge for the fall. Join the WooReads: Fall Reading Challenge for Adults for a chance to win a L.L. Bean tote bag featuring the WPL logo. All you have to do is log at least 9 books from September 1- November 30 to be entered into the drawing. It's time to grab a cup of tea, your favorite pumpkin spice dessert, and snuggle up with a good book!

To find your next great read, check out our Adult Fall Reading Recommendations selected by WPL librarians.  

The Stationary Shop by Marjan Kamali  

A chance encounter brings two Iranian teenagers together. Their love blossoms and they have plans to marry, but racism and classism pull them apart. Slowly, they each move on. But, their love for each other never dies. It's a good read. I did have some difficulty getting into the book, but after awhile I couldn't put it down. The characters are loveable and I am sad that it's finished! This was read for book club, and I anticipate a lively discussion. ~ Mary T.
The White Road by Edmund De Waal 

Wonderfully interesting book about the history of porcelain, with stops in China, Cornwall England, France, Dresden, South Carolina, over hundreds of years. Very freewheeling and some philosophical byways (the nature of Whiteness) Long book but short chapters, so easy to read in pieces. ~ Paula S.

The Only Woman in the Room by Marie Benedict 

Eye-opening story about the main character who I knew nothing about, except her her stardom. She was brilliant during a time that didn't accept women as important figures. ~ Carolyn S.

At times informational and at times powerful, Poitier looks not only at his career, but the moments that shaped his life. Often he takes an unsparing look at what he feels makes life better and I found myself surprised by his choices and stunned by his admissions. This is not a salacious tale of sex and drugs like so many celebrity memoirs, but rather an honest, often raw look at life. Well worth the time. ~ Cameron L.