Fiction

Cloud cuckoo land : a novel book cover

Cloud cuckoo land : a novel

Anthony Doerr

FICTION Doerr Anthony
Fiction

Constantinople, 1453: Anna lives in a convent where women toil all day embroidering the robes of priests. She learns the story of Aethon, who longs to be turned into a bird so that he can fly to the paradise of Cloud Cuckoo Land, a better world, and reads it to her sister as the walls of Constantinople are bombarded by armies of Saracens. Lakeport, Idaho, 2020: Seymour, an activist bent on saving the earth, sits in the public library with two homemade bombs in pressure cookers. Upstairs, eighty-five-year old Zeno, a former prisoner-of-war, and an amateur translator, rehearses five children in a play adaptation of Aethon's adventures. The future: On an interstellar ark called The Argos, Konstance, alone in a vault with access to all the information in the world, knows Aethon's story through her father, who has sequestered her to protect her. All are dreamers, misfits on the cusp of adulthood in a world the grown-ups have broken.

Becky's picture

I finished reading Cloud Cuckoo Land several weeks ago, but find that my mind keeps drifting back to it, making new connections between the interwoven narratives. The novel’s movement through storylines, seemingly unconnected characters, places and times initially frustrated me, but I came to appreciate the fluidity in the text. Each thread of the narrative built quickly, setting up an image of life in 15th century Constantinople, 21st century Idaho, and a futuristic space mission of 2146. These stories linked in myriad ways: love, loss, war, escape… but I especially appreciated the focus on libraries and the influence that one particular manuscript had on the lives and times it touched. -Becky

Playing the cards you're dealt book cover

Playing the cards you're dealt

Varian Johnson

jFICTION Johnson Varian
Fiction, Read Woke

"Ten-year-old Anthony Joplin has made it to double digits! Which means he's finally old enough to play in the spades tournament every Joplin Man before him seems to have won. So while Ant's friends are stressing about fifth grade homework and girls, Ant only has one thing on his mind: how he'll measure up to his father's expectations at the card table. Then Ant's best friend gets grounded, and he's forced to find another spades partner. And Shirley, the new girl in his class, isn't exactly who he has in mind. She talks a whole lot of trash- way more than his old partner. Plus, he's not sure that his father wants him playing with a girl. But she's smart and tough and pretty, and knows every card trick in the book. So Ant decides to join forces with Shirley--and keep his plans a secret. Only it turns out secrets are another Joplin Man tradition. And his father is hiding one so big it may tear their family apart... "--Dust jacket.

Casey's picture

Playing the Cards You're Dealt is great for readers of all ages. Perfect for card players, fans of realistic fiction, and anyone who enjoys fabulously full characters, I can't wait to reread this one. -Casey

The world played chess : a novel book cover

The world played chess : a novel

Robert Dugoni

FICTION Dugoni Robert
Fiction

"In 1979, Vincent Bianco has just graduated high school. His only desire: collect a little beer money and enjoy his final summer before college. So he lands a job as a laborer on a construction crew. Working alongside two Vietnam vets, one suffering from PTSD, Vincent gets the education of a lifetime. Now forty years later, with his own son leaving for college, the lessons of that summer--Vincent's last taste of innocence and first taste of real life--dramatically unfold in a novel about breaking away, shaping a life, and seeking one's own destiny"--

Angie's picture

The World Played Chess is is a hauntingly beautiful story of growing from boy to man. Well written and a moving story line makes this a great read. -Angie

No One Goes Alone: A Novel book cover

No One Goes Alone: A Novel

Erik Larson

OverDrive Audiobook
Suspense, Fiction, Historical Fiction

A group of researchers sets sail for the Isle of Dorn in the North Atlantic in 1905 to explore the cause of several mysterious disappearances, most notably a family of four who vanished without a trace after a week-long holiday on the island. Led by Professor James, a prominent member of the Society for Psychical Research, they begin to explore the island’s sole cottage and surrounding landscape in search of a logical explanation. The idyllic setting belies an undercurrent of danger and treachery, with raging storms and unnerving discoveries adding to the sense of menace. As increasingly unexplainable events unfold, the now-stranded investigators are unsure whether they can trust their own eyes, their instincts, one another—or even themselves. Erik Larson has written a terrifying tale of suspense, underpinned with actual people and events. Created specifically to entertain audio listeners, this eerie blend of the ghostly and the real will keep listeners captivated till the blood-chilling end.

Anne M's picture

Need a good story for a dark winter's night? Here is one. Erik Larson's latest, only available in audiobook is worth the listen. The premise is familiar, a group of individuals stay at an old manor in an isolated place. Strange events occur, suspicions arise, and everyone is afraid. However, this group of individuals expected came here for exactly this purpose. They are a group of 19th century scientists, experts, and scholars there to prove--or more likely disprove--that the house is haunted. But can they? I love Erik Larson's histories. All of his skills as a writer: ability to tell a story, have you deeply care about the individual's involved, and keep you rapt as the events unfold, translated easily to fiction. -Anne M

The silent patient book cover

The silent patient

Michaelides, Alex, 1977- author.

FICTION Michaelides, Alex
Fiction

Alicia Berenson's life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London's most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word. Alicia's refusal to talk or give any kind of explanation turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the spotlight of the tabloids at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London. Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His search for the truth leads him down a terrifying path and threatens to consume him.

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Tampa book cover

Tampa

Nutting, Alissa.

FICTION Nutting Alissa
Fiction

In Alissa Nutting's novel Tampa, Celeste Price, a smoldering 26-year-old middle-school teacher in Florida, unrepentantly recounts her elaborate and sociopathically determined seduction of a 14-year-old student. In slaking her sexual thirst, Celeste is remorseless and deviously free of hesitation. She deceives everyone, is close to no one, and cares little for anything but her own pleasure. T

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Intensity  book cover

Intensity

Koontz, Dean R. (Dean Ray), 1945-

FICTION Koontz, Dean R.
Fiction

Past midnight, Chyna Shepard, twenty-six, gazes out a moonlit window, unable to sleep on her first night in the Napa Valley home of her best friend's family. Instinct proves reliable. A murderous sociopath, Edgler Foreman Vess, has entered the house, intent on killing everyone inside. A self-proclaimed "homicidal adventurer," Vess lives only to satisfy all appetites as they arise, to immerse himself in sensation, to live without fear, remorse or limits, to live with "intensity." Chyna is trapped in his deadly orbit. Chyna is a survivor, toughened by a lifelong struggle for safety and self-respect. Now she will be tested as never before. At first her sole aim is to get out alive--until, by chance, she learns the identity of Vess's next intended victim, a faraway innocent only she can save. Driven by a newly discovered thirst for meaning beyond mere self-preservation, Chyna musters every inner resource she has to save an endangered girl...as moment by moment, the terrifying threat of Edgler Foreman Vess intensifies.

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Verity book cover

Verity

Hoover, Colleen, author.

FICTION Hoover, Colleen
Fiction

Lowen Ashleigh is a struggling writer on the brink of financial ruin when she accepts the job offer of a lifetime. Jeremy Crawford, husband of bestselling author Verity Crawford, has hired Lowen to complete the remaining books in a successful series his injured wife is unable to finish. Lowen arrives at the Crawford home, to sort through years of Verity's notes and outlines, hoping to find enough material to get started. Lowen uncovers an unfinished autobiography Verity never intended anyone to read, with pages of bone-chilling admissions, including Verity's recollection of the night their family was forever altered. Lowen decides to keep the manuscript hidden from Jeremy, knowing its contents would devastate him. But as Lowen's feelings for Jeremy begin to intensify, she recognizes all the ways she could benefit, if he were to read his wife's words. After all, no matter how devoted Jeremy is to his injured wife, a truth this horrifying would make it impossible for him to continue to love her.

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The Hunting Wives book cover

The Hunting Wives

Cobb, May K., 1973- author.

FICTION Cobb May
Fiction

"The Hunting Wives share more than target practice, martinis, and bad behavior in this novel of obsession, seduction, and murder. Sophie O'Neill left behind an envy-inspiring career and the stressful, competitive life of big-city Chicago to settle down with her husband and young son in a small Texas town. It seems like the perfect life with a beautiful home in an idyllic rural community. But Sophie soon realizes that life is now too quiet, and she's feeling bored and restless. Then she meets Margot Banks, an alluring socialite who is part of an elite clique secretly known as the Hunting Wives. Sophie is completely drawn to Margot and swept into her mysterious world of late-night target practice and dangerous partying. As Sophie's curiosity gives way to full-blown obsession, she slips further away from the safety of her family and deeper into this nest of vipers. When the body of a teenage girl is discovered in the woods where the Hunting Wives meet, Sophie finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation and her life spirals out of control"--

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Lolita book cover

Lolita

Nabokov, Vladimir Vladimirovich, 1899-1977.

FICTION Nabokov, Vladimir Vladimirovich
Fiction

When it was published in 1955, Lolita immediately became a cause celebre because of the freedom and sophistication with which it handled the unusual erotic predilections of its protagonist. But Vladimir Nabokov's wise, ironic, elegant masterpiece owes its stature as one of the twentieth century's novels of record not to the controversy its material aroused but to its author's use of that material to tell a love story almost shocking in its beauty and tenderness. Awe and exhilaration--along with heartbreak and mordant wit--abound in this account of the aging Humbert Humbert's obsessive, devouring, and doomed passion for the nymphet Dolores Haze. Lolita is also the story of a hypercivilized European colliding with the cheerful barbarism of postwar America, but most of all, it is a meditation on love--love as outrage and hallucination, madness and transformation.

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