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Blog Category: Book Sketches

Posted by JGranatino on Mon, Nov 04
In a stunning debut, Alix Harrow takes you on a journey through books within books, worlds within worlds, and mysteries within mysteries. Your heroine is January Scaller, the seventeen year old ward of Mr. Locke, a member of the exclusive New England Archaeological Society, who employs January’s father to acquire objects of interest around the world. January grows up surrounded by curious artifacts and given anything she could ever need, but she never feels like she belongs. When her father...
Posted by JGranatino on Thu, Oct 31
In her latest book, Pema Chodron, an American Buddhist nun and pupil of the late Chogyam Trungpa Rimpoche, offers strategies for facing unanticipated and disconcerting events of life with equanimity, compassion, and wisdom. Chodron is best known for her simple and no-nonsense approach, offering a living spirituality for encountering the everyday challenges of life. She discusses a variety of approaches to the unwelcome, including meditation practices, aimed at “fully awakening the heart and...
Posted by JGranatino on Mon, Oct 28
In this novel, Moyes delivers a fictionalized version of a little known initiative in American history: the WPA’s Pack Horse Library Project. From 1934-1943, “book ladies” traveled on horseback and mules, promoting literacy by teaching reading and lending books, magazines, and scrapbooks to residents of the remote and almost inaccessible regions of Kentucky’s coal country. Her endearing cast of characters face the challenges of the rugged life in Depression-era Appalachia, and the packhorse...
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, Oct 15
Fans of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale and The Testaments may enjoy this dark tale of an unnamed dystopian island where familiar natural and man-made objects randomly disappear – and subsequently also disappear from the collective memory. Those who retain memories of disappeared items are in grave danger, potentially attracting the attention of frightening authoritarian enforcers called the Memory Police, and so many of them go into hiding. The book focuses on a young...
Posted by JGranatino on Fri, Oct 04
One August afternoon, on the shoreline of the remote Kamchatka peninsula at the northeastern tip of Russia, two young sisters go missing. Their disappearance sends shockwaves through the tight-knit community and leaves everyone, even the police, wondering what happened to them.  Told over the course of a year following the disappearance, one month per chapter, Phillips' powerful debut novel connects the lives of a cast of diverse female characters changed by the sisters' abduction including a...
Posted by JGranatino on Fri, Oct 04
After losing her job and her live-in boyfriend all in one day, Jules is struggling to stay afloat. So when the job of a lifetime - being an apartment sitter in one of Manhattan's most exclusive apartment buildings, the Bartholomew - drops in her lap, giving her not only an income but a upscale place to live, Jules accepts without asking any questions. But maybe she should have... The Bartholomew gig comes with some strange rules: No visitors, no nights spent away from the apartment, and no...
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, Sep 10
Laurel’s life was turned upside down when her youngest daughter and golden girl, Ellie, goes missing weeks before her sixteenth birthday. It’s been ten years and Laurel is still searching for answers. But there is a spot of light in her life when she meets the handsome and charismatic man named Floyd who she quickly becomes involved with. Floyd has a mysterious past and a precocious daughter, Poppy, who reminds Laurel of her missing daughter. The more time she spends with Floyd and Poppy the...
Posted by JGranatino on Tue, Sep 10
Why do we like particular kinds of music? Why is music so richly resonant for us? Dr. Glasser, a musicologist, pianist, and composer, explores these questions from many angles – our earliest attractions to rhythm, how music impacts our brains and our emotions. He helps us to discover our musical “genotype,” or responses to particular types of music. Analyzing samples of different musical genres and introducing some music theory, Glasser enhances our ability to understand and appreciate every...
Posted by JGranatino on Fri, Jul 05
In 1953 Iran, Roya meets the love of her life in a small stationary shop run by kindly Mr. Fakhri, amidst delicate writing paper, jeweled inks and stamps, and volumes of Persian poetry and translated novels. Bahman is also taken with her, but his mother has already promised him to another, a woman whose family is highly placed. Against his mother’s wishes, he became engaged to Roya but the volatile mother is set against the match. Amidst the changing political situation with the ouster of Prime...
Posted by BHanley on Fri, Jun 28
Imagine finding out your father is not your biological father? At 54 years old, author Dani Shapiro, after submitting her DNA for analysis on a whim, discovers just that, and in an instant her world is forever altered. In her new memoir Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love, Dani takes us on a whirlwind journey from the discovery and initial shock through to finding out who her biological father is. Along the way, Dani meditates on identity, genealogy, family, and...

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