Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Martian by Andy Weir

Astrobotanist Mark Watney was left behind on Mars when a piece of equipment hit him during a sandstorm. The rest of the crew assumed he was dead, and there was no more time to go back and look for him, so Captain Lewis made the decision to save the rest of the crew.

Well it turns out Watney is alive. And is stuck on Mars. Alone. He has the Hab and other equipment, but it will be four years before a rescue crew can reach him, and he will run out of food long before then. So to stay alive, Watney uses his smarts and perseverance to beat all odds.

Like an astronaut MacGyver, Watney tricks out all the equipment he has at his disposal to ensure his survival, and not all the things he has to do are pleasant. But he has figured out how to cultivate bacteria to grow potatoes, make water, and navigate the harsh terrain. If he can get to the lander, he will even be able to communicate with NASA and his family will know he isn't dead. But how he will make it off this Godforsaken planet remains to be seen.

Weir hit it big with his science fiction debut, The Martian, that will appeal to wide ranging audience, not just those science and techie readers. There are a lot of science elements in the book, but the story is told through Watney's journal, and his honesty and humor keep readers invested in his story. There will be moments that will make you gasp as Watney escapes death more than once, and readers will be just as terrified as Watney. I don't want to ruin too much, so just read this book if you enjoy characters who make you laugh and are deserving of your sympathies for their plight. I promise you will be recommending this book to all your friends.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

New Fiction 10/6/2015

Here is a sampling of new fiction released this week. If you see something you like, simply click on the title to place a copy on hold through the Library's catalog.

The Secret Chord by Geraldine Brooks
The Survivor by Vince Flynn
A Call to Arms by David Weber
Parchment and Old Lace by Laura Childs
Killing Titan by Greg Bear
A.D. 33 by Ted Dekker
Ghost to the Rescue by Carolyn Hart
Fear the Dark by Kay Hooper
Closer to the Heart by Mercedes Lackey
An Ancient Peace by Tanya Huff
The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson
The Diamond Caper by Peter Mayle
Dashing Through the Snow by Debbie Macomber
Pretending to Dance by Diane Chamberlain

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Captive by Brighton Walsh

Madison Frost hates her life. She comes from a privileged life but her father is a workaholic and her mother is an alcoholic. She choose to go to Northwestern for college because it is close to home to take care of her mom. One day after leaving class, Madison is kidnapped.

When Madison wakes up she is tied up on a couch in a cabin. Her abductor is huge and scary and goes by the name Ghost. Madison tries to get him to tell  her what is going on but he won't. Soon Madison realizes that Ghost isn't going to hurt her and confides in him.

This isn't a normal job for Ghost. He has never kidnapped an innocent before. He tries to keep up the tough guy facade but Madison keeps getting under his skin. But when she finds out the truth it will have devastating consequences.

This is the second book I've read by Brighton Walsh and I am hooked. Great characters and great stories are what keeps me coming back. If you enjoy the New Adult genre, Brighton Walsh is one to read!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

Ove is surrounded by complete idiots.  No one fixes things anymore, or uses their common sense.  No one understands that right is right and wrong is wrong. The world is upside down, and nothing can make it better. When did everything become so complicated?

 Then Ove’s neighbors come knocking at his door, needing this and borrowing that, always requiring his help.  First, it’s the husband and very-pregnant wife who irritate Ove when he is forced to intervene before the husband wrecks his own vehicle, his wife rolling her eyes. What sort of man can’t back up a trailer?  Next, it’s the twenty-something male he sees at all hours of the day (lazy!) who barges in with a nearly frozen cat that needs rescuing. Ove is not amused. Over and over, Ove’s neighbors interrupt his life, whether he wants to see them (he doesn’t!) or not.

 This heartwarming tale, with it’s quirky and wonderful characters, slowly reveals Ove’s personal journey and explains his curmudgeonly attitude toward the world. If you enjoyed the Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce, then this book is for you.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

New Fiction 9/29/2015

Here is a sampling of new fiction released this week. If you see something you like, simply click on the title to place a copy on hold through the Library's catalog.

After You by Jojo Moyes
The Aeronaut's Windlass by Jim Butcher
Willow Brook Road by Sherryl Woods
A Song of Shadows by John Connolly
The Hidden by Heather Graham
The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Eleanor Atwood
The Company She Kept by Archer Mayor
The Second Life of Nick Mason by Steve Hamilton
The Last Midwife by Sandra Dallas
Shadow Play by Iris Johansen
The Bark Before Christmas by Laurien Berenson
Christmas in Mustang Creek by Linda Lael Miller

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Speak the Dead by Grant McKenzie

Awakened by the sound of a loud gunshot, Sally made her way to her parent’s bedroom, only to find her mother’s bloodied body. She rushed to the bed, and hugging the lifeless corpse, realized that her mother was dead.  Then Sally heard her mother’s voice clear as a bell yell, “Run, Sally! Run!”  So she did.  She ran past her dad in the bathroom as he put the gun in his mouth, and flew out the front door as she heard the second shot of that terrible night.

 Fast forward twenty-five years, and Sally is a morgue beautician who takes pride in making the dead look peaceful.  When a hit and run occurs outside the mortuary in the wee hours of the morning, she hurries outside to find a punk musician standing over the victim and checks to see if she can help.  The woman is dead, but when Sally touches her, she sees a vision of the grill of the car coming towards her, the driver and license plate of the car, and experiences the pain of being hit.  Shaken, Sally wonders what on earth is happening to her?

 As a witness to the hit and run, Sally helps with the police investigation, but has a difficult time explaining how she got the license plate number when a security camera capturing the event shows her coming out of the morgue AFTER the violent act occurred. Jersey Castle, the detective on the case, begins to think there is more to this morgue beautician than meets the eye. Then Sally goes missing.  

So begins this rollicking tale of horror and suspense.  Fast-paced, with a complex plot, and creepy characters popping out of the woodwork, this book will keep you engaged until the horrifying end.  If you like Lisa Unger, or Dean Koontz (Odd Thomas series), then you will not be able to put this book down.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Broken Promise by Linwood Barclay

Barclay brings readers back to the small town of Promise Falls New York, where reporter and widower David Harwood moves him and his son back in with his parents until he can find work and get back on his feet. His mother sends David over to drop off some food for his cousin Marla, who has not been right ever since she lost her baby during childbirth ten months earlier.

What David finds at Marla's house is quiet perplexing. She is at home with an infant baby in her arms; the only explanation she offers is that an angel dropped the baby by and told her to keep him. There is also a stroller and some red smears on the front door that resemble blood. In the stroller he finds an old piece of mail that belongs to someone else.

Telling Marla he will take her to the store, he drives to the address on the mail and runs into a husband who has also just arrived home. Inside the house, they find the deceased body of what David presumes is the baby's mother, who was brutally murdered. What's more, is the only one who would have been home with the mother, Sarita the nanny, is missing.

Marla insists on her story and when David's aunt encourages him to poke around to find the truth, he is led into some secrets about his family that are far sinister than he could ever imagine.

There is a lot going on in this plot and their are deeper mysteries buried within the main story that make Barclay's thriller another page-turner. I was a little frustrated by the end because not everything was tied up. However, it looks like this is going to be the first in  a series from Barclay, who typically writes only standalone stories. Readers will be eagerly awaiting the next book to get their questions answered.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

New Fiction 9/22/2015

Here is a sampling of new fiction released this week. If you see something you like, simply click on the title to place a copy on hold through the Library's catalog.

Come Rain Or Come Shine by Jan Karon
Those We Left Behind by Stuart Neville
After the Parade by Lori Ostlund
Under the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta