Category Archives: Fiction

Read me, I’m Irish

Great Irish authors you may have missed.  Ask a librarian for more authors and titles.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Books, Fiction, New Books

Nancy Pearl’s monthly interviews with authors

About once a month Nancy Pearl, our favorite librarian reader’s advisor, does a monthly interview with an author.  I lose track once in a while myself but here is the link for the video interviews on the Seattle Channel – generally about 30 minutes but always enjoyable to hear about how the authors create their great stories.

Epitaph by Mary Doria Russell

Epitaph by Mary Doria Russell

Her latest is with Mary Doria Sparrow talking about her latest –

“Epitaph” a new twist on the O.K. Corral legend

Here is a review.

 

 

 

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Authors, Books, Fiction

March Madness has begun!

We’re mad about books all month during March Madness at the Burlington Public Library! We’ve got 16 of your favorite books from 2014 matched up, and it’s up to you to decide who will prevail. Are you a fan of adult fiction, nonfiction, young adult, or children’s books? They’re all in the running. Competition will ramp up all month with elite eight and final four games, and a championship round at the end of the month.

The first round – Sweet 16 Match-Ups –  is open for voting until Saturday. Come by the library to cast your vote, or tell us in the comments!

Sweet Sixteen Match-ups

the-hunger-games-book-cover VS.  divergent-book-cover2

Boys in the Boat cover VS. story-wild-book-cover-4254.jpg

The-Invention-of-Wings-Sue-Monk-Kidd VS. The-All-Girl-Filling-Stations-Last-Reunion-Fannie-Flagg

tartt VS. the-luminaries

Diary of a Wimpy Kid - The Long Haul by Jeff Kinney VS. Eleanor and Park(2)

Fault in Our Stars VS. we are water

i am malala VS. unbroken

sycamorerow VS. gone girl

Which do you think will make it to the Elite 8 round?

– Jenny

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Adult programs, Books, E-books, Fiction, Library events, New Books, Non-fiction, Reading

ALA’s Notable Books: A Potential Hold List

The American Library Association recently released their picks for notable books in 2015. I’m adding pretty much all of these to my “To-be-read” pile (and putting them on hold at the library) – maybe you’ll want to, too! Here are a few that I found especially intriguing:

all the light we cannot see

 

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Several patrons and friends have told me that this is one of the best historical fiction novels that they’ve read this year – I’m excited to find out for myself.

 

 

children act

 

The Children Act by Ian McEwan

Sadly, I have yet to finish an Ian McEwan novel, despite his reputation as a masterful storyteller. I think I’ll have to give another try with this book, though.

 

 

 

crane wife

 

The Crane Wife by Patrick Ness

I love Ness’ other books (especially A Monster Calls) but I’ve never read one of his adult novels. I will probably listen to the Decemberist’s album of the same name while I’m at it.

 

 

station eleven

 

Station Eleven: A Novel by Emily St. John Mandel

I love everything apocalyptic, and this one has been described to me by other BPL colleagues as “apocalypse light.” I can’t wait to see what that means!

 

 


 

Are there any other books on ALA’s list that you’re looking forward to or have already enjoyed? Leave us a comment and share your thoughts!

– Jenny

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Books, Fiction, New Books, Non-fiction, Reading, Uncategorized

“The Martian” Fuses Science with Hilarity

The_Martian_2014“The Martian” opens with a freak dust storm, forcing manned Mars Mission Ares 3 to cut its journey short. Astronaut Mark Watney is pierced by debris while his crew scrambles to the safety of their spacecraft. When his vital signs flat-line, the crew makes the difficult decision to embark for Earth without him. But after a miraculous turn of events, Watney recovers to find himself alone on the red planet. Traveling to Mars takes years, so it’s likely that he will starve or succumb to the harsh, unforgiving conditions of his new home before a rescue mission arrives. No danger of that, though, because why would NASA rescue a dead guy?

Through a series of journal entries riddled with humorous commentary, readers learn that Watney is the mission’s fix-it man, in addition to a botanist and a snarky (yet cautious) optimist. Watney overcomes setbacks with the resourcefulness of TV’s MacGyver, using his meager assortment of supplies and raw materials to improve his chances of survival. From supplementing his food by farming potatoes to making water out of thin air, Watney shows again and again that while he was one of the first astronauts to walk on Mars, he’s not ready to be the first to die there. That is, if he doesn’t die by overexposure to the cheesy 1970s sitcoms and disco music that the crew commander left behind.

Watney’s sense of humor turns this tale of survival into something new and unique. It’s more lighthearted than one might expect, and while some may find that refreshing, the cheerful quips occasionally struck me as unrealistic given the circumstances. Author Andy Weir’s language and format make the scientific elements comprehensible to nonscience geeks (like me), although I found myself skimming through lengthy descriptions to get back to the action.

Overall, excitement and laugh-out-loud dialogue make this novel an excellent pick for general fiction readers as well as thrill-seekers. Die-hard science fiction fans will especially appreciate Weir’s technical writing. (Please note that strong language laces Watney’s journal entries and may not appeal to everyone.)

It’s something of a miracle that Weir, a computer programmer by trade, crafted a debut novel that crawled its way from self-published anonymity to the desk of director Ridley Scott. Scott’s proven success with “Alien” and “Gladiator” foretells that the forthcoming film may prove to be a 2015 blockbuster. Don’t wait for the movie release, though; get your hands on the book everyone will be talking about before it hits the big screen. In the meantime, check out these similar titles available at Skagit libraries: The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury; The Martian Race by Gregory Benford; and I Am Legend by Richard Matheson.

Note: I originally wrote this review for On Our Shelves, a weekly column in the Skagit Valley Herald. Read the Sunday edition to check out what library staff around the county are reading.

– Jenny

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Books, Fiction, Libraries, Movies, New Books, Reading

A Soldier’s Story

The Parade magazine insert in last Sunday’s Skagit Valley Herald featured this article–A Soldier’s Story: Returning Home From Iraq–about Kevin Powers and his novel The Yellow Birds. Some critics are calling The Yellow Birds “the first great novel of the Iraq War.” 

Read the Parade interview with Powers, then read the book–which is now available @ your library.

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Books, Fiction, Libraries, New Books

Get carried away

For the past week the comic strip “Freshly Squeezed” has been promoting reading, and getting carried away by books. Here’s the strip from last Friday, July 27.  You can go to gocomics.com to view the series–right up to today’s strip.

I’m currently reading Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness, the second book in the All Souls Trilogy–which began with A Discovery of Witches. In this second title in the series, witch Diana Bishop and vampire Matthew Clairmont have been transported back to Elizabethan England, and I’ve been carried away with them.

What about you? Have you read a book recently that carried you away to another time or place? Reply and let us know.

~Janice

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Books, Fiction, Libraries, New Books

Big News!!!

BPL is moving up to the big time.  No longer do you have to rely on blog posts to find out about our new books.  Instead, all you need do is visit our home page and play with our nifty new web gadget, New Book Alerts!

As shown below, you can click either right on the book, which takes you to more info about that particular item; or you can click right on the logo, which opens a page to browse all new books and subscribe to the list by e-mail.

Thanks to the Burlington Library Foundation for funding the first year of this service.   This is one thing we know our patrons want and use.  Everybody loves new books!

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under BPL services, DVD, Fiction, Internet, Large Print, New Books, Non-fiction

Elegies, phantoms, and saturnalia in Austenland

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Fiction, New Books

Gettysburg, Alexandria, foreign lands and more

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail
rss

Leave a Comment

Filed under Fiction, New Books