Friday, April 13, 2018

My Berlin Kitchen: A Love Story (with Recipes) by Luisa Weiss

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Title: My Berlin Kitchen: A Love Story (with Recipes)
Author: Luisa Weiss
Genre: Memoir, Recipe Book

If you enjoyed Julie & Julia by Julie Powell, you should take a look at this one. Luisa takes the reader on a personal, well-crafted journey through the ups and downs of her childhood living on different continents between her parents' homes and then on the road to finding who she is in the kitchen and where she feels most at home. If you enjoy books with recipes thrown in, this one is a must.

- Elizabeth

Check out My Berlin Kitchen: A Love Story (with Recipes) @ the library.

Friday, April 6, 2018

The Magnolia Story by Chip and Joanna Gaines


Title: The Magnolia Story
Author: Chip and Joanna Gaines
Genre: Memoir

The Magnolia Story is written by the hosts of HGTV’s hit show Fixer Upper, Chip and Joanna Gaines. Like many fans the show, a big reason why I love watching is (aside from the beautiful home redesigns) seeing the genuineness of the Gaines’ relationship and their family life and values that are clearly present. The book gets more into this as it tells the story of how Chip and Joanna met, how they got into the business, and is interspersed with anecdotes and family moments. Chip and Joanna switch back and forth in the narrative, which at first I thought would be distracting, but I actually enjoyed the style and found it read like a conversation. This inspiring memoir would appeal to fans of the show or even anyone looking to start their own business.

- Sarah P.

Check out The Magnolia Story @ the library.

Friday, March 30, 2018

A Life in Parts by Bryan Cranston


Title: A Life in Parts
Author: Bryan Cranston
Genre: Autobiography

Though occasionally repetitive in his advice, Bryan Cranston's autobiography, A Life in Parts, is an interesting read spanning his life so far - from childhood through his success with Breaking Bad. He shares the path of his journey mostly organized by the various gigs he's landed (hence the title). It is told candidly with some wry humor and a steady enough stream of drama to keep the reader interested. If you select the audiobook format, you have the added benefit of hearing the book read by the actor himself. 

- Sarah R.

Check out A Life in Parts @ the library.

Friday, March 23, 2018

The Life We Bury by Allen Eskens


Title: The Life We Bury
Author: Allen Eskens
Genre: Mystery

Joe is a college student with an assignment to interview someone and write their life story. Having a difficult family life and no one else to interview, Joe decides to go to a nursing home to find someone to write about. There he meets Carl, a Vietnam veteran and also a convicted murderer. As Joe learns more about Carl's life, he starts to doubt the conviction and takes it upon himself to reopen the case and absolve Carl before he dies. Will Joe find what he's looking for before it's too late?

This was an engaging mystery that actually kept me guessing!

- Sarah P.

Check out The Life We Bury @ the library.

Friday, March 16, 2018

The Widows of Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey


Title: The Widows of Malabar Hill
Author: Sujata Massey
Genre: Historical Mystery

The historical mystery The Widows of Malabar Hill  by award winning author Sujata Massey takes in place in British colonial India. This is a first in a series with the first female attorney, Parveen Mistry, to practice in the 1920’s Bombay. The story switches between a murder mystery involving Mistry’s clients that are Muslim who practice purdah, total seclusion, and Mistry’s backstory of becoming an attorney in her father’s practice and her first marriage.  The historical and cultural details are fascinating. It’s also a great murder mystery! This book can be recommended to fans of historical fiction and murder mysteries that enjoy  a strong and intelligent heroine. 

- Mary

Check out The Widows of Malabar Hill @ the library.

Friday, March 9, 2018

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

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Title: A Gentleman in Moscow
Author: Amor Towles
Genre: Historical Fiction

Looking for a deeply compelling read that will keep you hooked from the first page to the last? Consider A Gentleman in Moscow. You will follow the ins and outs, ups and downs, of the life of an aristocrat who is put under house arrest at his Moscow hotel at the beginning of the formation of the Soviet Union. What follows is the story of a man who thrives and lives a colorful and meaningful life in spite of his circumstances, or perhaps because of those same circumstances. Highly recommended if you enjoy historical fiction, following a longer life story, or if you enjoy Russian history.

- Elizabeth

Check out A Gentleman in Moscow @ the library.

Friday, March 2, 2018

Sting-Ray Afternoons by Steve Rushin

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Title: Sting-Ray Afternoons
Author: Steve Rushin
Genre: Memoir, 1970s

The author is well known for his work for Sports Illustrated, and his humorous recollections of growing up in the 1970s is entertaining reading. Rushin grew up in the Midwest (first Chicago and then Minneapolis), and he is able to effectively convey his reminisces so that they resonate with anyone who was raised during that period in any part of the country. Nerf footballs, Fonzie, Pete Maravich, Evel Knievel, Red Owl grocery stores, vacations at the Wisconsin Dells, and of course the Schwinn Sting-Ray bicycle with the banana seat are only a few of the many symbols of the 70's that are covered.

Along the way, Rushin also describes - in amusing fashion - his Catholic upbringing as a middle child with four siblings. His stories about his middle class family with a salesman father and stay-at-home mother ring true for many who remember the era. Rushin's generational memoir is an enjoyable read that will take many back to a more innocent and less complicated time.

- Mike

Check out Sting-Ray Afternoons @ the library.