Have you read the Goodreads Choice Award Winners?

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Last week, Goodreads announced the Goodreads Choice Award winners for 2014. These awards–covering everything from Humor to Memoir to Picture Books–reflect the popular vote of the website's 30 million members across 20 different categories. Four hundred books were nominated and 20 were chosen. Have you read them all?

  • Fiction: Landline, Rainbow Rowell
  • Mystery & Thriller: Mr. Mercedes, Stephen King
  • Historical Fiction: All The Light We Cannot See, Anthony Doerr
  • Fantasy: The Book of Life, Deborah Harkness
  • Romance: Written In My Own Heart's Blood, Diana Gabaldon
  • Science Fiction: The Martian, Andy Weir

Check out the other winners on Goodreads!

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles

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If you're looking for something to brighten your dreary winter day, pick up Pancol's first English-translated novel. The plot revolves around two sisters - Iris, a glamorous, rich attorney's wife and her plain Jane, bookish sister Jo. The story begins when Jo's husband empties their joint savings account and leaves her for his manicurist, who he runs off to farm crocodiles with in Kenya. Jo is left to pick up the pieces of her life and raise her two daughters, Zoe and Hortense, on the meager salary she makes as a 12th century scholar. Iris and Jo hatch the perfect scheme - Jo will write a medieval historical novel that Iris will take the credit for, thus giving Jo the money she needs and Iris the fame she craves. As in life, things don't go quite as planned and hilarity ensues. It's chick lit done up en Francais; humorous, quite charming and perfect to curl up on the couch with and escape to bright, sunny Paris, if only for a few hundred pages.  

Unsung Heroes: The Men and Women of the US Coast Guard

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On this day in 1915, Congress merged the Revenue Cutter Service and the U.S. Lifesaving Service to form the United States Coast Guard. On an average day, the Coast Guard conducts over 500 missions, including 109 Search and Rescue cases to assist 192 people in distress. They also seize over $9 million worth of illegal drugs and protect over $2.7 million in property. Read more about these brave men and women in these novels and true-life accounts.

This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathon Tropper

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No one is more surprised than Judd Foxman when his father passes away.  Not so much by the death, but by the nonreligious patriarch’s last wish to have the family sit Shiva, a Jewish tradition that requires his mother and siblings to spend an entire week together under one roof.  This wouldn’t be so bad if Judd’s family wasn’t so dysfunctional.  As this group of unique characters are forced to spend time together old wounds are brought to surface and they are made to deal with issues they would have rather continued to ignore.  The only family member not present is Judd’s wife who has been openly having an affair.  As Judd unwillingly reconnects with his family and struggles to deal with the reality of his deteriorating marriage what results is a novel full of biting, albeit slightly dark humor with realizations about family life and love.  

The Hugo Awards 2015

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The Hugo Awards, presented annually since 1955, are science fiction writers' most prestigious awards.  The Hugo Awards are trademarked by the World Science Fiction Society, WSFS, a literary society that sponsors the annual World Science Fiction Convention, Worldcon, and the Hugo Awards.  The awards ceremony is planned for Saturday, August 22, and the best novel nominees are:

High-Rise by JG Ballard

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In a gleaming new high-rise building on the outskirts of London, the inhabitants have everything they need to live comfortable, pampered lives: two indoor pools, an elegant restaurant, a grocery store, a beauty parlor, a bank, even a rooftop park and a school. But violence lurks beneath the polished surface: when minor construction problems send a floor into darkness, riots erupt—leaving a dead dog floating in the swimming pool. In the weeks that follow, chaos rules, as the lower floors send raiding parties to assault the penthouse, and warring groups seize control of the elevators. A dark (and darkly funny) exploration of the animal passions that lie beneath the most civilized facades, this 1975 novel is being adapted into a 2015 movie directed by Ben Wheatley and starring Tom Hiddleston, Jeremy Irons, and Luke Evans.

Thrills and Chills

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Halloween is upon is! When it comes to scary reads, you might think of such spooky authors as Stephen KingDean Koontz, or Joe Hill. Did you know there are many women authors that can scare you just as much, if not more, than the guys? 

The following female-authored novels are sure to put some thrills and chills in your fall reading: 

Night Film by Marisha Pessl - When the daughter of a cult horror film director is found dead in an abandoned Manhattan warehouse, investigative journalist Scott McGrath, disbelieving the official suicide ruling, probes into the strange circumstances of the young woman's death. Those who want to immerse themselves in this novel can download the app and scan pages for an even spookier experience.

The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters -  Dr. Faraday, the son of a maid who has built a life of quiet respectability, is called to a patient at Hundreds Hall. Home to the Ayres family for more than two centuries, the Georgian house, once grand and handsome, is now in decline. But are the Ayreses haunted by something more ominous than a dying way of life? Little does Dr. Faraday know how closely, and how terrifyingly, their story is about to become entwined with his.

The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes - A time-traveling serial killer is impossible to trace– until one of his victims survives. In Depression-era Chicago, Harper Curtis finds a key to a house that opens on to other times. But it comes at a cost. He has to kill the shining girls: bright young women, burning with potential. He stalks them through their lives across different eras until, in 1989, one of his victims, Kirby Mazrachi, survives and starts hunting him back.

The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler - Simon Watson, a young librarian, lives alone in a house that is slowly crumbling toward the Long Island Sound. His parents are long dead. His mother, a circus mermaid who made her living by holding her breath, drowned in the very water his house overlooks. His younger sister, Enola, ran off to join the circus six years ago. One June day, an old book arrives on Simon's doorstep. Could there be a curse on Simon's family? What does it have to do with the book, and can he stop it in time to save Enola?

The Vanishers by Heidi Julavits - Julia Severn is a student at an elite institute for psychics. Her mentor, the legendary Madame Ackermann, afflicted by jealousy, refuses to pass the torch to her young disciple. Instead, she subjects Julia to the humiliation of reliving her mother's suicide when Julia was an infant. As the two lock horns, and Julia gains power, Madame Ackermann launches a desperate psychic attack that leaves Julia the victim of a crippling ailment.

For more reading recommendations, spooky or not, be sure to stop by the Adult Services desk and ask our friendly and knowledgeable staff!

The Sweetheart, by Angelina Mirabella

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The Sweetheart is a riotous coming-of-age novel set in the outrageous world of professional wrestling in the 1950s.

Plain, shy, lonely Leonie Putzkammer is headed for a lifetime of waiting tables and cooking dinner for her widower father when she meets a wrestling promoter in her diner. With the promise of fame dangling before her, she sets out for Otherside, Florida and Joe Pospisil’s School for Lady Grapplers, where she learns to wrestle and, more importantly, to perform. Renamed Gwen Davies and teamed with Screaming Mimi Hollander, Leonie tours the country and finds fame, friendship, and first love. But in the brutal world of professional wrestling, fame is fleeting and identity is tenuous: torn between her family, her boyfriend, her friend Mimi, and her ambition, Leonie can’t have it all—so she’ll have to decide what she really wants.

"The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Frye" by Rachel Joyce

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Harold Fyre is retired, henpecked, and indifferent to life.  Then he receives a letter from a elderly friend who is dying.  Rather than mail her correspondence Harold decides to walk 600 miles to deliver his message in person.  His trek is peppered with fascinating characters who help unlock Harold's buried spirit and renew his sense of life. 

City of Stairs, by Robert Jackson Bennett

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Shara Divani is a spy with a job: find out who killed her protégé, Professor Efram Pangyui, and why. Her suspect pool encompasses the entire city of Bulikov, once the heart of a vast empire guarded by six omnipotent gods, and now a defeated and occupied city seething with resentful citizens and endless plots. With only a week before she’s recalled, Divani must rely on her terrifying “secretary” Sigurd and a cast of colorful supporting characters in order to discover the truth about what happened to Pangyui—and whether the gods of Bulikov are quite as dead as they seem.

Vividly imagined and skillfully executed, City of Stairs will appeal to readers of Tom Rob Smith and N.K. Jemisin alike.


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