Tuesday, June 13, 2017

And the Winners Are...

The 2017 Audie Award Winners have been announced! I've been anxiously awaiting the results of this years Audiofiles awards and they're finally here! If you love listening to audiobooks these are books that should be on your radar. These books blend terrific stories with amazing narrators which creates a fantastic listening experience. For your reading pleasure a few of the 2017 Audie Award winners. If you'd like a complete listing of the Audie Award winners they can be found here.

Audiobook of the Year 
Hamilton: The Revolution by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter. Narrated by Mariska Hargitay, with the authors, published by Hachette Audio
The audiobook does more than tell the surprising story of how a Broadway musical became a national phenomenon: It demonstrates that America has always been renewed by the brash upstarts and brilliant outsiders, the men and women who don't throw away their shots.

Best Male Narrator
Jesrusalem by Alan Moore Narrated by Simon Vance
Jerusalem's dizzyingly rich cast of characters includes the living, the dead, the celestial, and the infernal in an intricately woven tapestry that presents a vision of an absolute and timeless human reality in all of its exquisite, comical, and heartbreaking splendor.

Best Female Narrator
Be Frank With Me by Julia Clairborne Johnson
Reclusive literary legend M. M. "Mimi" Banning has been holed up in her Bel Air mansion for years. But after falling prey to a Bernie Madoff-style Ponzi scheme, she's flat broke. Now Mimi must write a new book for the first time in decades, and to ensure the timely delivery of her manuscript, her New York publisher sends an assistant to monitor her progress. The prickly Mimi reluctantly complies - with a few stipulations: no Ivy Leaguers or English majors. Must drive, cook, tidy. Computer whiz. Good with kids. Quiet, discreet, sane.

Fantasy
The Hike by Drew Magary Narrated by 
On a quest of epic, life-or-death proportions, Ben finds help comes in some of the most unexpected forms, including a profane crustacean and a variety of magical objects, tools, and potions. Desperate to return to his family, Ben is determined to track down the "Producer," the creator of the world in which he is being held hostage and the only one who can free him from the path.

Humor
I'm Judging You written and narrated by Luvvie Ajayi 
Luvvie Ajayi's debut book of humorous essays dissects our cultural obsessions and calls out bad behavior in our increasingly digital, connected lives - from the importance of the newest Shonda Rhimes television drama to serious discussions of race and media representation to what to do about your fool cousin sharing casket pictures from Grandma's wake on Facebook.

Inspirational/Faith Based Fiction
Risen: The Novelization of the Major Motion Picture by Angela Hunt Narrated by P.J. Ochlan and Alana Kerr Collins.
Roman Tribune Clavius is assigned by Pilate to keep the radical followers of the recently executed Yeshua from stealing the body and inciting revolution. When the body goes missing despite his precautions, Clavius must hunt it down. His investigation leads him from the halls of Herod Antipas to the Garden of Gethsemane and brings him in touch with believer and doubter alike. But as the body still remains missing, Clavius commits to a quest for the truth - and answers that will not only shake his life but echo throughout all of history.

Literary Fiction and Classics
Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi Narrated by Dominic Hoffman
Two half sisters, Effia and Esi, unknown to each other, are born into different villages in 18th-century Ghana. Effia is married off to an Englishman and will live in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle, raising children who will be sent abroad to be educated before returning to the Gold Coast to serve as administrators of the empire. Esi, imprisoned beneath Effia in the castle's women's dungeon and then shipped off on a boat bound for America, will be sold into slavery.

Multi-Voiced Performance
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult Narrated by Audra McDonald, Cassandra Campbell and Ari Fliakos
Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than 20 years' experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she's been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don't want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders, or does she intervene?

Mystery
The Crossing by Michael Connelly Narrated by Titus Welliver
Detective Harry Bosch has retired from the LAPD, but his half brother, defense attorney Mickey Haller, needs his help. The murder rap against his client seems ironclad, but Mickey is sure it's a setup. Though it goes against all his instincts, Bosch takes the case. With the secret help of his former LAPD partner, Lucia Soto, he turns the investigation inside the police department. But as Bosch gets closer to discovering the truth, he makes himself a target.

Nonfiction
Hillbilly Elegy Written and narrated by J.D. Vance
The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.'s grandparents were "dirt poor and in love" and moved north from Kentucky's Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually their grandchild (the author) would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of their success in achieving generational upward mobility.

Narration by the Author or Authors
A Life in Parts Written and Narrated by Bryan Cranston
In his riveting memoir, A Life in Parts, Cranston traces his zigzag journey from his chaotic childhood to his dramatic epiphany and beyond, to megastardom and a cultlike following, by vividly revisiting the many parts he's played on camera (astronaut, dentist, detective, candy bar spokesperson, president of the United States, etc.) and off (paperboy, farmhand, security guard, dating consultant, murder suspect, dock loader, son, brother, lover, husband, father).

Paranormal
Ghost Gifts by Laura Spinella Narrated by Nicol Zanzarella
All Aubrey Ellis wants is a normal life, one that doesn't include desperate pleas from the dead. Her remarkable gift may help others rest in peace, but it also made for an unsettling childhood and destroyed her marriage. Finally content as the real estate writer for a local newspaper, Aubrey keeps her extraordinary ability hidden - until she is unexpectedly assigned the story of a decades-old murder.

Romance
Dirty by Kylie Scott Narrated by Andi Arndt
The last thing Vaughan Hewson expects to find when he returns to his childhood home is a brokenhearted bride in his shower, let alone the drama and chaos that come with her.

Science Fiction
Star Wars the Force Awakens By Alan Dean Foster Narrated by Marc Thompson
Set years after Return of the Jedi, this stunning new action-packed adventure rockets us back into the world of Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, C-3PO, R2-D2, and Luke Skywalker, while introducing a host of exciting new characters.

Thriller/Suspense
Cross Justice by James Patterson Narrated by Ruben Santiago Hudson and Jefferson Mays
When his cousin is accused of a heinous crime, Alex Cross returns to his North Carolina hometown for the first time in over three decades. As he tries to prove his cousin's innocence in a town where everyone seems to be on the take, Cross unearths a family secret that forces him to question everything he's ever known.

Young Adult
Salt to the Sea by Ruth Sepetys Narrated by Jorjeana Marie, Will Damron, Cassandra Morris and Michael Crouch.
In 1945, World War II is drawing to a close in East Prussia, and thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek toward freedom, almost all of them with something to hide. Among them are Joana, Emilia, and Florian, whose paths converge en route to the ship that promises salvation, the Wilhelm Gustloff. Forced by circumstance to unite, the three find their strength, courage, and trust in each other tested with each step closer to safety.

Monday, June 12, 2017

June Is LGBTQ Pride Month: Celebrate Diversity with a Great Read!

This is the final month for the Fine Print Blog, so this will be my last post. Thanks for reading!

June is LGBTQ pride month!  Read one of the following award winners or nominees:

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli--Sixteen-year-old, not-so-openly-gay Simon is blackmailed into playing wingman for his classmate or else his sexual identity—and that of his pen pal—will be revealed.

Fire Shut Up in My Bones by Charles M. Blow--A gorgeous, moving memoir of how one of America's most innovative and respected journalists found his voice by coming to terms with a painful past.

Second Avenue Caper by Joyce Brabner--A graphic novel of the true story of a tight-knit group of artists and activists living in New York City in the early 1980s who found themselves on the front lines in the fight against AIDS.

The Gay Revolution: the Story for the Struggle... by Lillian Faderman--The sweeping story of the modern struggle for gay, lesbian, and trans rights—from the 1950s to the present—based on amazing interviews with members of the entire LGBT community.

Modern Families: Stories of Extraordinary... by Joshua Gamson--The kinds of families we see today are different than they were even a decade ago, some fantastically so, as paths to parenthood have been rejiggered by technology, activism, and law.  

George by Alex Gino--Knowing herself to be a girl despite her outwardly male appearance, George is denied a female role in the class play before teaming up with a friend to reveal her true self.

End of Eve by Ariel Gore--The author's life is turned upside down when her mentally ill mother reveals she is dying, and she moves from Portland to New Mexico to care for her.

Moon Over Tangier by Janice Law--In colonial Morocco, a painter navigates a conspiracy of forgery, corruption, and murder.

The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan--A shore side burial coordinator who lives in self-enforced exile as penance for a long-ago mistake and a performer with a floating circus face unexpected life changes and new opportunities in the wake of an offshore storm. 

Life and Death of Sophie Stark by Anna North--An unapologetic filmmaker uses the stories of those around her to create movies that bring her both critical acclaim and ire from the people whose secrets she has exposed. 

Becoming Nicole: the Transformation of an... by Amy Ellis Nutt--Presents the story of a politically conservative New England family whose son identified as a girl, Nicole, and how they overcame their confusion and fear to champion transgender rights and allow Nicole to be herself.

Under the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta--A young Nigerian girl, displaced during their civil war, begins a love affair with another girl from a different ethnic community until the pair are discovered and must learn the cost of living a lie amidst taboos and prejudices.







Wednesday, May 31, 2017

June's In The Queue



Find great summer reads in June's In the Queue!

Fiction

Our Little Racket: A Novel by Angelica Baker
When an investment banker is accused of malfeasance in the wake of the 2008 economic crash, four women, including friends and family members, begin questioning their shifting roles in their personal and community lives.

The Child by Fiona 
A twisting psychological thriller by NY Times best selling author of the The Widow As an old house is demolished, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton. Journalist Kate Waters believes it's a story that deserves attention, and what she uncovers is a mystery that someone prefers remain buried.

The Little French Bistro: A Novel by Nina George
Following a failed suicide attempt inspired by her loveless marriage, Marianne Messman travels to Brittany where the guests of a charming bistro reintroduce her to life's delights.

Magpie Murders: A Novel by Anthony Horowitz
The final chapter of mystery writer Alan Conway's latest manuscript is missing and Alan later turns up dead. His editor, Susan Ryeland, follows clues buried in the text to investigate the author's suspicious death.

Beach House For Rent by Mary Alice Monroe
Cara Rutledge rents out her beach house to Heather Fordham. When a sudden tragedy brings Cara back to the beach house, Heather refuses to move from her newfound sanctuary. 

The Breakdown by B.A. Paris
Cass is plagued with guilt for not stopping for a stranded driver who was later reported murdered. Since the incident, Cass has been forgetting. She forgets where she left the car, if she took her pills, where she put her purse or why she ordered a pram when she doesn't have a baby. But she can't forget the silent phone calls that she believes are from the killer.

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore: A Novel by Matthew Sullivan
When a bookshop patron commits suicide, his favorite store clerk must unravel the puzzle he left behind in this fiendishly clever debut novel from an award-winning short story writer.

New Books By Best Selling Authors

Down a Dark Road by Linda Castillo
The Late Show by Michazel Connelly
The Sunshine Sisters by Jane Green
Camino Island by John Grisham
Love Story: A Novel by Karen Kingsbury
The Silent Corner: A Novel by Dean R. Koontz
Every Last Lie: A Novel by Mary Kubica
The Bourne Initiative by Eric Lustbader
Tom Clancy Point of Contact by Mike Maden
Two Nights: A Novel by Kathy Reichs
The Ultimatum by Karen Robards
The Duchess: A Novel by Danielle Steel
The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

Non-Fiction

If I Understood You, Would I have This Look On My Face? By Alan Alda
Alan Alda tells us the fascinating story of his quest to learn how to communicate better and to teach others to do the same.

I Can't Make This Up: Life Lessons by Kevin Hart
An inspirational memoir on the importance of believing in oneself. The author shares stories about how his unique way of looking at the world enabled his survival and successful career.

Enjoy Your Journey by Joyce Meyer
Joyce Meyer combines biblical principles with personal experiences to explain how people can enjoy everyday on their journey through life.





Thursday, May 18, 2017

Great Crime Authors!


One of the best crime fiction writers out there right now is Jo Nesbo. Many critics have compared him to Stieg Larsson, but I think Nesbo is in a league of his own. His books are set in Oslo, Norway and follow Detective Harry Hole. When he was rising to fame, not many of his books had be translated into English so the first book I read was Redbreast (#3 in the series now). The series is up to eleven books now. I think they are all good but the one that really sucks you into the world of Harry Hole is Redbreast. 








If you are in the mood for an Irish setting, then Tana French is the author for you. She writes crime fiction that revolves around the Dublin Murder Squad and each book follows a different detective. There are six books in the series and she writes one about every two years. Start with In the Woods.







Another great but overlooked author is Tania Carver. She is the pseudonym of husband and wife team Martyn and Linda Waites. These crime novels are set in England and follow Detective Inspector Philip Brennan and psychologist Marina Esposito as they solve serial murders. This eight book series is not for the faint hearted because of graphic murder scenes, but they are fantastic at showing the points of view of both the killer and the police. You should read this series in order and start with The Surrogate. 




And finally, try crime novelist J.T. Ellison. She has two well-known series: Taylor Jackson is an Nashville detective introduced in All the Pretty Girls. The second series stars Tennessee medical examiner Samantha Owens, beginning with A Deeper Darkness. Read Jackson's story first because Owens first appears in the this series and you learn her back story.




So, consider reading one of these great crime series...you won't be disappointed.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Best Kept Secrets

Have you ever just wanted to get away? Relax and have a do nothing day or better yet a do nothing week?  Sigh....it sounds heavenly to me.

I thought I'd introduce you to a few books that have ideas of little known destinations that will lead to the relaxation you are looking for and other destinations that will be perfect if you crave adventure. Here are the destinations and a few tips you may want to consider when planning your next trip.


Last-Minute Travel Secrets: 121 Ingenious Tips to Endure Cramped Planes, Car Trouble, Awful Hotels, and Other Trips From Hell Last Minute Travel by Joey Green
This guide provides travelers with more than a hundred handy and unusual secrets to overcome obstacles and upgrade accommodations using common, easily found products. 

Make the Most of Your Time on Earth by Rough Guides
This is truly the ultimate inspirational guide for world travelers and those who dream of hitting the road. There are 1000 adventures with full color photos and brief summaries of each adventure.

Lonely Planet's Where To Go When: The Ultimate Trip Planner For Every Month of the Year by Lonely Planet
Have you ever wondered where to visit and what time of year to travel there? If you have this is the book for you. There are 12 chapters one for every month of the year and 30 detailed vacation locales for each month and all the information you need to plan your trip. Just want to dream about going away--this book will work for you as well.  

100 Places You Will Never Visit: The World's Most Secret Locations by Daniel Smith
The world is full of secret places that we either don't know about, or couldn't visit even if we wanted to. Now you can glimpse the Tora Bora Cave in Afghanistan, visit the Tower of London Jewel House, and see the Chapel of the Ark. This fascinating guide book takes a look at 100 places around the world that are either so hard to reach, closely guarded or so secret that they are virtually impossible to visit any other way. 

Hopefully if you choose to take a wonderful vacation far from home you can find tips and secrets that will help you enjoy a safe, relaxing getaway, and maybe save money as well. If you prefer a staycation these books are definitely for you. The pictures will make you feel like you were there. 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

No Man's Land by Simon Tolkien


Back in 2016, we blogged (V1) & (V2) about some of the poets, mostly British, who wrote about, served in, and made the ultimate sacrifice during World War I. This month we are featuring more poets and authors who participated in WWI, including several Americans.  This is to highlight the new novel out by Simon Tolkien called No Man’s Land.  It is based on J. R. R. Tolkien’s experiences during the war, and he just happens to be the author's grandfather.  So, check out No Man’s Land and some of the works by these other great authors as well.




Richard Aldington (1892–1962) was an English writer and poet.  He was known best for his WWI poetry and the 1929 novel, Death of a Hero.  Aldington joined the British Army and was wounded on the Western Front. 


*Edmund Charles Blunden (1896–1974) was an English poet, author and critic. He wrote of his experiences in WWI in both verse and prose. He ended his career as Professor of Poetry at Oxford. He was nominated for the Nobel in Literature six times.


*Mary Borden (1886–1968) was an Anglo-American novelist and poet.  At the outbreak of WW1, she used her own money to run a French field hospital and served as a nurse. Her war poems were published in 2016 in: Poems of Love and War.


Louis Bromfield (1896–1956) was an American author and conservationist, born in Mansfield, OH.  He joined the Ambulance Corps in WWI and was awarded the Croix de Guerre and the Legion of Honor. He won the 1927 Pulitzer Prize for Early Autumn.


E. E. Cummings (1894-1962) was an American poet. In 1917, he enlisted in the Ambulance Corps.  Later, he was held for 3½ months in military detention on suspicion of espionage. Cummings used this experience for his novel, The Enormous Room


John Roderigo Dos Passos (1896–1970) was an American novelist. He was a member of the Ambulance Corps in Paris and in Italy, and later the Army Medical Corps. He published One Man's Initiation: 1917, followed by an antiwar story, “Three Soldiers”.


Ford Madox Ford (1873–1939) was an English novelist and poet.  In 1915, he joined the Army and was severely wounded by an exploding shell. He published war poetry and later wrote Parade’s End which is considered one of the greatest works of WWI literature.


Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) was an American author.  In WWI, he was an ambulance driver in Italy.  In 1918, he sustained severe wounds and received the Italian Silver Medal of Bravery. His experiences helped form his novel A Farewell to Arms.

 
*Joyce Kilmer (1886–1918) was an American journalist and writer, mainly remembered for his poem "Trees".  His "Rouge Bouquet" commemorated the deaths of 24 members of his regiment. He was killed by a sniper at the Second Battle of the Marne.


Thomas Edward Lawrence ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ (1888-1935) was a British diplomat and writer.  In the Army, he was sent to Arabia on a mission, where he played a key role in inciting the Arabs to revolt. Two months after leaving service, he was fatally injured in an accident. His major work is Seven Pillars of Wisdom, an account of his war experiences.


Clive Staples Lewis (1898–1963) was a British writer, academic, and Christian Apologist.  Joining the Army, he was wounded in France by shrapnel. WWI was a huge influence on his writings.  He is best known for The Chronicles of Narnia.


Archibald MacLeish (1892-1982) was an American author, poet and Librarian of Congress. He was an Army ambulance driver and artillery captain during WWI. He expressed his disillusion with war in his poem” Memorial Rain”, published in 1926.


Frederic Manning (1882–1935) was an Australian poet and novelist.  In 1915 he experienced action at the Battle of the Somme. In 1929 he published The Middle Parts of Fortune which has been described as the greatest novel of war ever written.


William Somerset Maugham (18741965) was a British writer. During WWI, he served with the ambulance corps, before being recruited into the Intelligence Service.  He used his spying experiences as the basis for Ashenden: Or the British Agent.



Erich Maria Remarque (1898-1970) was a German novelist who created many works about the terror of war. His best known is All Quiet on the Western Front.  During WWI, he volunteered for the Army and was wounded five times. Later, the Nazis burned his works, called him a traitor and murdered his sister.


*Alan Seeger (1888-1916) was an American poet.  He joined the French Foreign Legion and was killed at the Battle of the Somme, cheering on his fellow soldiers after being hit several times. The uncle of Pete Seeger, he is best known for the poem, “I Have a Rendezvous with Death”, a favorite of President John F. Kennedy.


*Robert William Service (1874–1958) was a British-Canadian poet and writer.  When WWI broke out; he worked as a stretcher bearer and ambulance driver. He wrote Rhymes of a Red Cross Man and dedicated it to his brother, who was killed in France.


John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973) was an English poet and writer who fought in the trenches during WWI.  He came down with trench fever and he spent the remainder of the war deemed medically unfit for service.  His war experiences influence his works. He is best known for The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.


**Amos Niven Wilder (1895–1993) was an American poet, minister, and professor.  He volunteered in the Ambulance Corps and was awarded the Croix de Guerre. “Battle Retrospect” was a volume he wrote about WWI. His brother was Thornton Wilder.


*John Allan Wyeth (1894–1981) was an American poet.  He joined the Expeditionary Forces as a translator in 1917. His collection, “This Man’s Army”, was re-published in 2008 as part of Matthew Bruccoli's Great War Series of lost literary classics of WWI.


*= available through Search Ohio

**= available through OhioLink

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Escape from the Library - New Program & Locked-Room Mysteries

The Library is hosting a new program this month that I'm really excited to promote: Adults Breakout of the Library


The program is inspired by the Escape the Room subgenre of videogames. The premise is simple: a person or a group of people are locked in a room or building and are forced to find the means to escape by  solving clues. The first real life games, called breakout rooms, started appearing in Japan around 2006 and have increased in popularity ever since.

In the Library's program, which will have 3 scenarios to choose from, your team will have 45 minutes to decipher a series of riddles, piece together all the clues, and find the key to save the world. If you think you and a team of your friends or family have the skills needed to win, please register and give this a try!

The program is on Saturday, May 20th, 6p-8p. It is open to ages 16 and older, so you can bring the family if you have older teens. We recommend groups be anywhere from 4 to 8 people.  


Registration is required by filling out this form. We wanted to give people lots of options for registering so you can: 1) fill the form and email it back to us at cvref@wcpl.lib.oh.us, 2) drop it off at the Library next time you are in, or 3) give us a call at 937-433-8091 ext. 2 to have a staff member register you.

If this sounds intriguing and you want to read something in a similar vein, make sure to check out the subgenre of locked-room mysteries. These mysteries are essentially howdunits - in some of them, you even know who the killer or criminal is. The plot is primarily focused on  how a crime was perpetrated or how the perpetrator was able to evade detection. A few locked-room mysteries that I've enjoyed:


Salvation of a Saint by Keigo Higashino
When a man about to leave his wife is found murdered and the wife has a too-convenient alibi that convinces a smitten lead detective of her innocence, Professor Manubu Yukawa is tapped by a concerned Kaoru Utsumi to solve a seemingly impossible case.



Camera Obscura by Lavie Tidhar
A puzzling murder inside a locked and bolted room on the Rue Morgue in Paris takes Lady De Winter, an agent for the Quiet Council, to the highest and lowest parts of the city, and causes her to question reality.

Midsummer Crown by Kate Sedley
As Richard of Gloucester begins his bid for the English crown in 1483, Roger investigates the disappearance of a young boy whose tutor has been found murdered in an apparently locked room.

Envious Casca by Georgette Heyer
A colorful assortment of guests at a festive holiday house party discover there is a killer in their midst when their universally reviled host is found dead-in a room locked from the inside.