Our librarians are reading broadly this week; everything from romance to cooking. These are this week’s selections.
Revival by Stephen King; “In a small New England town over half a century ago, a boy is playing with his new toy soldiers in the dirt in front of his house when a shadow falls over him. He looks up to see a striking man, the new minister, Jamie learns later, who with his beautiful wife, will transform the church and the town. The men and boys are a bit in love with Mrs. Jacobs; the women and girls, with the Reverend Jacobs–including Jamie’s sisters and mother. Then tragedy strikes, and this charismatic preacher curses God, and is banished from the shocked town. Jamie has demons of his own. Wed to his guitar from age 13, he plays in bands across the country, running from his own family tragedies, losing one job after another when his addictions get the better of him. Decades later, sober and living a decent life, he and Reverend Charles Jacobs meet again in a pact beyond even the Devil’s devising, and the many terrifying meanings of Revival are revealed. King imbues this spectacularly rich and dark novel with everything he knows about music, addiction, and religious fanaticism, and every nightmare we ever had about death.”
Merry and Bright by Debbie Macomber; Merry Smith is pretty busy these days. She’s taking care of her family, baking cookies, decorating for the holidays, and hoping to stay out of the crosshairs of her stressed and by-the-book boss at the consulting firm where she temps. Her own social life is the last thing she has in mind, much less a man. Without her knowledge, Merry’s well-meaning mom and brother create an online dating profile for her–minus her photo–and the matches start rolling in. Initially, Merry is incredulous, but she reluctantly decides to give it a whirl. Soon Merry finds herself chatting with a charming stranger, a man with similar interests and an unmistakably kind soul. Their online exchanges become the brightest part of her day. But meeting face-to-face is altogether different, and her special friend is the last person Merry expects–or desires. Still, sometimes hearts can see what our eyes cannot. In this satisfying seasonal tale, unanticipated love is only a click away.
Mother, Mother by Koren Zailckas; Josephine Hurst has her family under control: two beautiful daughters, a brilliantly intelligent son, a tech-guru of a husband and a historical landmark home. But living in this matriarch’s determinedly cheerful, yet subtly controlling domain hasn’t been easy for her family. When her oldest daughter, Rose, runs off with a mysterious boyfriend, Josephine tightens her grip, gradually turning her flawless home into a darker sort of prison.
Salad samurai: 100 cutting-edge, ultra-hearty, easy-to-make salads you don’t have to be vegan to love by Terry Hope Romeo; Award-winning chef and Veganomicon coauthor Terry Hope Romero knows her veggies. In Salad Samurai, she’s back to teach you the way of the veggie warrior, rescuing salads from their bland, boring reputation and “side” status with more than 100 vibrant, filling entrees. This is your guide to real salad bushido: a hearty base, a zesty dressing, and loads of seriously tasty toppings. Based on whole food ingredients and seasonal produce, these versatile meatless, dairy-free dishes are organized by season for a full year of memorable meals (yes, salad can rock even the coldest days of winter).
Ross Poldark: a novel of Cornwall, 1783-1787 by Winston Graham; In the first novel in Winston Graham’s hit series, a weary Ross Poldark returns to England from war, looking forward to a joyful homecoming with his beloved Elizabeth. But instead he discovers his father has died, his home is overrun by livestock and drunken servants, and Elizabeth―believing Ross to be dead―is now engaged to his cousin. Ross has no choice but to start his life anew.
Cellar of Horror: The Story of Gary Heidnik by Ken Englade; Serial killer Gary Heidnik’s name will live on in infamy, and his home, 3520 North Marshall Street in Philadelphia, is a house tainted with the memory of unbelievable horrors. What police found there was an incredible nightmare made real. Four young women had been held captive–some for four months–half-naked and chained. They had been tortured, starved, and repeatedly raped. But more grotesque discoveries lay in the kitchen: human limbs frozen, a torso burned to cinders, an empty pot suspiciously scorched…
Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of ’70s and ’80s Horror Fiction
by Grady Hendrix; An affectionate, nostalgic, and unflinchingly funny celebration of the horror fiction boom of the 1970s and ’80s.
Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made by Jason Schreier; Developing video games—hero’s journey or fool’s errand? The creative and technical logistics that go into building today’s hottest games can be more harrowing and complex than the games themselves, often seeming like an endless maze or a bottomless abyss. In Blood, Sweat, and Pixels, Jason Schreier takes readers on a fascinating odyssey behind the scenes of video game development, where the creator may be a team of 600 overworked underdogs or a solitary geek genius. Exploring the artistic challenges, technical impossibilities, marketplace demands, and Donkey Kong-sized monkey wrenches thrown into the works by corporate, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels reveals how bringing any game to completion is more than Sisyphean—it’s nothing short of miraculous.
The Woven Figure: Conservatism and America’s Fabric by George F. Will; This collection of columns shows how, in the mid-1990s, conservatives fancied themselves poised to conduct a revolution, a radical reorientation of politics and governance. But in the late 1990s, they have discovered how resistant a complex nation is to being undone and rewoven.