Seldovia Public Library

A Volunteer Library serving the Seldovia, Alaska community since 1935

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5/14: New at the library this week

Posted by Laura Haskins - Library Director on May 14, 2011




Heaven is high / Kate Wilhelm
Barbara Holloway is a low-key attorney in Eugene, Oregon who left her father’s high powered firm to handle small legal problems for local residents and ponder her own next move. But while trying to sort out her own future, two people, desperate for help, show up on her doorstep: former pro football player Martin Owens and his wife Binnie. Binnie, who is mute, met her husband when she snuck aboard his boat while it was docked in Haiti and smuggled herself into the U. S. Now Immigration is seeking to deport her back to Haiti, which would be a death sentence. Born to a woman from Belize who was kidnapped and enslaved by pirates, Binnie’s only hope is to prove her and her mother’s real identity. With only days to find the truth and protect Binnie, Holloway sets off for Belize. But what she knows is only the tip of the iceberg in what turns out to be one of her most complex, compelling and dangerous cases yet. (Barbara Holloway Series , #12; read an excerpt)

Learning to swim / Sara J. Henry
“If I’d blinked, I would have missed it. But I didn’t, and I saw something fall from the rear deck of the opposite ferry: a small, wide-eyed human face, in one tiny frozen moment, as it plummeted toward the water.”
When she witnesses a small child tumbling from a ferry into Lake Champlain, Troy Chance dives in without thinking. Harrowing moments later, she bobs to the surface, pulling a terrified little boy with her. As the ferry disappears into the distance, she begins a bone-chilling swim nearly a mile to shore with a tiny passenger on her back.
Surprisingly, he speaks only French. He’ll acknowledge that his name is Paul; otherwise, he’s resolutely mute.
Troy assumes that Paul’s frantic parents will be in touch with the police or the press. But what follows is a shocking and deafening silence. And Troy, a freelance writer, finds herself as fiercely determined to protect Paul as she is to find out what happened to him. What she uncovers will take her into a world of wealth and privilege and heedless self-indulgence—a world in which the murder of a child is not unthinkable. She’ll need skill and courage to survive and protect her charge and herself.

A taste of murder : diabolically delicious recipes from contemporary mystery writers / Jo Grossman
From Red Herrings to Just Desserts . . .
It’s no accident that lovers of mystery savor diabolically delicious food. So sink your teeth into more than 130 wickedly delectable treats concocted by today’s most popular mystery authors—sumptuous recipes that promise dinner to die for.
Sample Sue Grafton’s PI special: The Kinsey Millhone Famous Peanut Butter & Pickle Sandwich—deadly, delicious, and concealed between two innocent slices of bread. Head for the desert with Tony Hillerman for a quick, painless bite of Salami à la Chama River. You know something’s fishy when Donald E. Westlake offers John Dortmunder’s favorite hot thrill, May’s Mother’s Tuna Casserole. Suspense writer Richard North Patterson whips up Sea Bass in Orange Sauce . . . .and Robert B. Parker parts with the much-in-demand Susan Silverman’s Boiled Water.
Eat and be wary. A Taste of Murder has something for everyone—from kneadless violence to sweet revenge: sinfully sumptuous cuisine whipped up by America’s masters of crime.

At home with books : how booklovers live with and care for their libraries / Estelle Ellis
At Home with Books is a visual delight, a helpful resource, and an inspiration for every bibliophile with a growing home library. Includes professional advice on editing and categorizing your library; caring for your books; preserving, restoring, and storing rare books; finding out-of-print books; and choosing furniture, lighting, and shelving. Full-color photographs.

No man’s river / Farley Mowat
In the spring of 1947, putting the death and devastation of WWII behind him, Mowat joined a scientific expedition. In the remote reaches of Manitoba, he witnessed an Eskimo population ravaged by starvation and disease brought about by the white man. In his efforts to provide the natives with some of the assistance that the government failed to provide, Mowat set out on an arduous journey that collided with one of nature’s most arresting phenomena—the migration of the Arctic’s caribou herds. Mowat was based at Windy Post with a Metis trapper and two Ihalmiut children. A young girl, known as Rita, is painted with special vividness—checking the trap lines with the men, riding atop a sled, smoking a tiny pipe. Farley returns to the North two decades later and discovers the tragic fate that befell her. Combining his exquisite portraits with awe-inspiring passages on the power of nature, No Man’s River is another riveting memoir from one of North America’s most beloved writers.

Running out of time / Margaret Peterson Haddix
Jessie lives with her family in the frontier village of Clifton, Indiana, in 1840 — or so she believes. When diphtheria strikes the village and the children of Clifton start dying, Jessie’s mother reveals a shocking secret — it’s actually 1996, and they are living in a reconstructed village that serves as a tourist site. In the world outside, medicine exists that can cure the dread disease, and Jessie’s mother is sending her on a dangerous mission to bring back help.
But beyond the walls of Clifton, Jessie discovers a world even more alien and threatening than she could have imagined, and soon she finds her own life in jeopardy. Can she get help before the children of Clifton, and Jessie herself, run out of time? (Age Range: 8 to 12)

The wake-up call of the wild : (you can do a lot with cocoa in the Alaska bush) / Nita. Nettleton
When our heroine wakes up in a remote Alaska cabin, alone but for a young wolverine, bruised and bloodied and without memory of who she is and how she got there, what does she do?
She makes pancakes.
Before long, the woman who christens herself Jane Doe decides that life in the Alaska wilderness suits her just fine, at least in summer. She has entertainingly eccentric visitors (though she isn’t entirely sure they’re all real), plenty of water, adequate food, many pleasant chores to fill her days–in fact, she seems to lack only two things in an otherwise reasonably comfortable existence: chocolate and a memory.

The Blue Moon / Lorena McCourtney
No one had reported it missing..A stunning blue diamond necklace mysteriously turns up in Abigail Stanton’s office, and the attached note simply says, “For Claudia.” But who is Claudia? And where did the necklace come from? As Abbey begins to investigate, she discovers she holds a very valuable gem called “The Blue Moon.” Despite threatening phone calls, imposters claiming the necklace and a bungled robbery attempt, Abby is determined to find Claudia. How will Abby find the truth behind this gem?

Lines of battle : letters from American servicemen 1941-1945 / Annette Tapert

The brief wondrous life of Oscar Wao / Junot Díaz

Talking to girls about Duran Duran : one young man’s quest for true love and a cooler haircut / Rob Sheffield
Growing up in the eighties, you were surrounded by mysteries. These were the years of MTV and John Hughes movies, the era of big dreams and bigger shoulder pads. Like any teenage geek, Rob Sheffield spent the decade searching for true love and maybe a cooler haircut. Talking to Girls About Duran Duran is his tale of stumbling into adulthood with a killer soundtrack. Inept flirtations. Dumb crushes. Deplorable fashion choices. Girls, every last one of whom was madly in love with the bassist of Duran Duran.
As a confused teenager stranded in the suburbs, mowing lawns, and playing video games, Rob had a lot to learn about women, love, music, and himself. But he was sure his radio had all the answers, whether he was driving an ice cream truck through Boston to “Purple Rain,” slam dancing to The Replacements, or pondering the implications of Madonna lyrics.
From Bowie to Bobby Brown, from hair metal to hip-hop, he loved them all. Talking to Girls About Duran Duran is a journey through pop culture of an American adolescence that will remind you of your first crush, first car, and first kiss. But it’s not just a book about music. This is a book about moments in time, and the way we obsess over them through the years. Every song is a snapshot of a moment that helps form the rest of your life. Whenever you grew up, and whatever your teenage obsessions, Talking to Girls About Duran Duran brings those moments to life.

Tree of smoke / Denis Johnson
A dark, indelible epic of the American empire in decline (read a sample chapter)

The autograph man / Zadie Smith
(read an excerpt)
A remarkable novel about life, death, and the search for the ultimate signature.

The heaven of Mercury / Brad Watson
Shortlisted for the 2002 National Book Award in Fiction: a dark, riotous Southern novel of sex, death, and transformation.

Drown / Junot Díaz
With ten stories that move from the barrios of the Dominican Republic to the struggling urban communities of New Jersey, Junot Diaz makes his remarkable debut. In “Ysrael”, two brothers hunt a disfigured boy who hides behind a mask; in “No Face”, the mirror is flipped and perspective belongs to the tormented. In “Fiesta, 1980”, a spirited family gathering plays against the noiseless hum of a father’s infidelities. In “Boyfriend”, a young man eavesdrops on the woman next door and colors in the life overheard with the drama born of intense longing. And always, it seems there is the throb of waiting: in “Aguantando”, for the fulfillment of a promise; in “Negocios”, for rescue; in “Aurora”, for respite; in “Drown”, for resolution.

The Glass Palace / Amitav Ghosh
This superb story of love and war begins with the shattering of the kingdom of Burma and the igniting of a great and passionate love, and it goes on to tell the story of a people, a fortune, and a family and its fate. (read an excerpt)

The known world / Edward P. Jones
Tells the story of Henry Townsend, a black farmer and former slave who falls under the tutelage of William Robbins, the most powerful man in Manchester County, Virginia. Making certain he never circumvents the law, Townsend runs his affairs with unusual discipline. But when death takes him unexpectedly, his widow, Caldonia, can’t uphold the estate’s order, and chaos ensues. Jones has woven a footnote of history into an epic that takes an unflinching look at slavery in all its moral complexities. (read a sample chapter)

The art lover / Carole Maso
While her father and best friend are dying, a young American woman tries to find the limits of love and the power of art in the face of the inevitable.

Divisadero / Michael Ondaatje
In the 1970s in Northern California a father and his teenage daughters, Anna and Claire, work their farm with the help of Coop, an enigmatic young man who makes his home with them. Theirs is a makeshift family, until it is shattered by an incident of violence that sets fire to the rest of their lives. Divisadero takes us from San Francisco to the raucous backrooms of Nevada’s casinos and eventually to the landscape of southern France. As the narrative moves back and forth through time and place, we find each of the characters trying to find some foothold in a present shadowed by the past. (read an excerpt)

Disobedience / Jane Hamilton
A warmly humorous, poignant novel about a young man, his mother’s e-mail, and the often surprising path of infidelity. (read an excerpt)

Ghost dance / Carole Maso
Narrating a family story through the voice of a young writer whose mother has recently been killed, Maso invites readers to experience firsthand both women’s love and courage, capabilties of imagination, their persistence of memory, and generosity of spirit.

Ava / Carole Maso
Ava Klein, thirty-nine, lover of life, world traveler, professor of comparative literature, is dying.

Special topics in calamity physics / Marisha Pessl
At the center of this “cracking good read” is clever, deadpan Blue van Meer, who has a head full of literary, philosophical, scientific, and cinematic knowledge. But she could use some friends. Upon entering the elite St. Gallway school, she finds some – a clique of eccentrics known as the Bluebloods. One drowning and one hanging later, Blue finds herself puzzling out a byzantine murder mystery. Nabokov meets Donna Tartt (then invites the rest of the Western Canon to the party) in this novel – with “visual aids” drawn by the author – that has won over readers of all ages.

Love warps the mind a little / John Dufresne
A daring new novel set in a blue-collar town in Massachusetts. (read a sample chapter)

Dead reckoning / Charlaine Harris
With her knack for being in trouble’s way, Sookie witnesses the firebombing of Merlotte’s, the bar where she works. Since Sam Merlotte is now known to be two-natured, suspicion falls immediately on the anti-shifters in the area. Sookie suspects otherwise, but her attention is divided when she realizes that her lover Eric Northman and his child” Pam are plotting to kill the vampire who is now their master. Gradually, Sookie is drawn into the plot-which is much more complicated than she knows… (Sookie Stackhouse / Southern Vampire Series #11)

[Note: All synopses are provided by the publisher unless otherwise noted and do not constitute reviews by the Seldovia Public Library.]


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