BPL Blog

Posted by JGranatino on Mon, Jun 27
Lily has been the love of Ted’s life for over 12 years, claiming him as her own as he picked over a litter of dachshund puppies. They have been inseparable, discussing movie stars and playing monopoly on weekends with Lily’s dialogue punctuated with exclamations after every word and ALL! CAPS! as dogs will do. Everything changes when Ted suddenly realizes Lily has an octopus on her head and ‘it’s hungry. And it is going to have her". Obviously, the octopus is a metaphor for cancer which is...
Posted by JGranatino on Mon, Jun 13
In this innovative thriller Dark Matter, Crouch blends mystery with the subjects of quantum paradoxes, pharmacological agents, and multiverses. The scientific elements are cutting edge and dazzling, but they won’t require background research. That being said, there is more to garner from this novel if you have some background in the hard sciences, or if you frequently read sci-fi novels. Our protagonist Jason is a family man and casual...
Posted by JDavanza on Mon, Jun 13
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, Jun 07
Joe Talbert is trying to escape his past and make a new life for himself, away from his abusive, alcoholic mother who constantly pulls him back to care for his autistic younger brother when she goes on a bender. A college assignment has Joe writing a biography of a stranger, but a visit to a local nursing home pairs him with Carl Iverson, a former Vietnam vet who is dying of cancer and a convicted murderer. Through their conversations, Joe learns Carl may be innocent of this crime and sets out...
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, Jun 07
Kathleen Grissom is the author of The Kitchen House, set in the late 1700s-early 1800s on a tobacco plantation in Virginia. A child, Lavinia, has arrived in America from Ireland, orphaned on the ocean journey and separated from her older brother, Cardigan. Captain Pyke brings her to his household at Tall Oaks as an indentured servant and she quickly bonds with the black slaves, considering them her “adopted” family. Later she is brought to “The Big House” and struggles with how she is...
Posted by JGranatino on Sat, May 28
An exceptional debut from a promising author, The Rope Swing was a beautiful collection of stories focused on both gay and straight characters and situated primarily in an unnamed community of West Virginia, with a few set outside, but with apparent connections to said community. Corcoran’s prose was lustrous and powerful and melancholy. You jumped in and felt the characters’ yearning, heartaches, and dreams. Each story ended at the right moment; the perfect capsule of time captured....
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, May 24
Exposure by Helen Dunmore It’s London in 1960 and the Cold War is at its height with spy fever filling the newspapers and the country. After a file goes missing, a man is accused and arrested by the government for treason. The lives of his family and another agent are intimately involved in this top notch psychological thriller-drama. Dunmore’s impressive storytelling and gentle, emotional prose kept the story moving and alive. I immersed in her 1960’s English world of post-WWII and...
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, May 24
Spill Simmer Falter Wither by Sara Baume Reading, reading, reading…Spill Simmer Falter Wither, a debut novel by Sara Baume, is a beautifully written tale of two damaged souls, one a one-eyed dog, who come together in loneliness and mutual comfort over the course of a year. Her prose is poetic with haunting descriptions of the Irish coast and countryside. Written in narrative style of both man and dog, Baume portrays the cruelty both characters have endured in the past which now bonds...
Posted by JGranatino on Mon, May 09
Miller’s Valley by Anna Quindlen Mimi Miller lives on the farm her family has owned for generations, a hardscrabble existence at best. A government agent is visiting the families in Miller’s Valley, trying to get them to sign off on their farms to make way for a new reservoir. Quindlen tells the family’s story from Mimi’s perspective, a coming-of-age in the sixties tale with family secrets, false friends and a brother who returns from Vietnam a changed and damaged man. As Mimi...
Posted by JGranatino on Mon, May 09
When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi At the age of 36, Dr. Paul Kalanithi had everyone he had strived for: a thriving practice as a neurosurgeon, recognition among his peers, a loving wife and unlimited prospects for the future. A lingering cough and back spasms became cause for concern during a trip with friends; a xray and subsequent scans confirmed the preliminary diagnosis of inoperable lung cancer. Kalanithi shares his journey with the reader, philosophically addressing how...

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