Summer reading: Reviews from readers at our Northeast Branch

Cakes and Ale by Somerset W. Maugham
An old book with language used at the time in Britain. Smooth writing with an easy beat to follow. Interesting descriptions of people and places. ~ Carol

Harlem: The Four Hundred Year History from Dutch Village to Capital of Black America by Jonathan Gill
A fascinating history of the growth and change of this region of Manhattan – the people, the cultures, the politics. You may want to a good map to accompany your reading! ~ Kathleen

Basic by Jack Jacobs
Humorous, anecdote-filled book ion bootcamp/basic military training from the 1940s to the present. It was interesting to read about the psychology behind some of the hardships as well as integration in the services over the years. ~ Joanne 

The False Inspector Dew by Peter Lovesey 
Funny and clever mystery aboard the Mauretania in 1921. Written in 1982 but spot on for period. With nearly everyone has a con or a secret, this one will keep you on your toes. ~ Josie

What are you reading this summer? Sign up online for our summer reading program for adults — or drop by a branch and fill out a quick review form. For each three books you read and review, we’ll enter you in a drawing for a Kindle. We have 20 Kindles to give away to teen and adult readers this summer!

Summer reading: Suggestions from readers at our Northeast Branch, part II

Austenland by Shannon Hale
Like most of us Austen fans, Jane adores Mr. Darcy, and has a hard time with real men not matching up. She is given a vacation in Jane Austen’s world (costumes, men, and everything!) and the chance to sort out fiction from real life.
     ~ Erin

In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson
This book really drew me in. Non-fiction but very story-like, this follows the lives of the American ambassador to Germany and his adult daughter during Hitler’s rise to power in 1933-1934. Fascinating and memorable.
     ~ Barbara

The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver
Love the imagery! This was my first Kingsolver book, and I see why she is so popular. Great fiction set in an historically important time. Going down as one of my all time favorites.
     ~ Nedra

Mink River by Brian Doyle
A wonderful cast of characters in a small town on the Oregon coast. The language swoops and dives and runs on like a river or a poem, as several lives unfold. My favorite character is Moses, the talking crow. Excellent Northwest read.
     ~ Josie

War by Sebastain Junger
Amazing book – I’ll read this one again! Junger takes us right to the war zone in Afghanistan. Detailed look into the brain of a “good soldier.” 
     ~ Jenni

Summer reading: Suggestions from readers at our Northeast Branch, Part I

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
Excellent! I look at my dog in a whole new light now. This book was funny, poignant, a great story about father and daughter (and of course, master and dog), and it brought out so many emotions: love, sorrow, grief, anger, humor, melancholy.
     ~ J.J.

The Beauty of Humanity Movement by Camilla Gibb
I was transfixed from page one by the descriptions of food and people. It is very “humane” and humbling. I’m already in line for her next book. This is beautiful fiction which feels so real you could touch the characters.
     ~ Kinza

Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson
Loved this book! An update on the sly wit and comedy of the English village comedy of manners. Brings to mind Jane Austen and Barbara Pym. I think I’ll read it again.
     ~ Sarah

Room by Emma Donoghue
Loved this book! Horrific situation, but presented in such a unique and amazing way that I could not put it down! Jack has been kept in a room all his life, but Ma has made it as educational and entertaining as can be. Loved Jack and Ma.
     ~ Jeannie

The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
I expected this book to be corny and trite, but it was quite the opposite. Couldn’t put it down for a second, and I laughed and cried throughout. Great beach read! Also makes you consider what’s most important in your life.
     ~ Becky