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Staff Reviews

Cover: 'The Boy on the Wooden Box'

"The Boy on the Wooden Box" by Leon Leyson

★★★★★ Ten-year-old Leon Leyson’s idyllic days playing on the streets and streetcars of Krakow, Poland quickly changed to a life of fear, degradation, humiliation and a day-to-day struggle to stay alive. Why? He was Jewish. His detailed memoir recounts these horrific days when the Third Reich invaded their town and began their increasingly brutal effort to...

Cover: 'The Can't Cook Book'

"The Can't Cook Book" by Jessica Seinfeld

★★★★ Oh, yes you can...cook, as the front cover says! This beginner's cookbook has a list of all the basic cooking gear needed to get started without fear. I love the "how-to" section for preparing many everyday items; it even tells you when to keep your fingers away from the knife. The cook book has recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, quickies, and my...

Cover: 'Outliers'

"Outliers" by Malcolm Gladwell

★★★★★ This book is a must read for those interested in success or as a personal roadmap to “how to get ahead” in this world. Gladwell busts the popular conception that success is based upon luck. In fact, using countless examples of real success stories (i.e. the rich and famous), Gladwell demonstrates that success isn’t primarily due to luck, but rather, hard...

Cover: 'Blink'

"Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell

★★★★★ This book is an excellent discussion of how we "think", i.e. what really goes on in our brains as we make decisions, evaluate and consider options. Gladwell arrives at the conclusion (with much evidence) that some of our most profound thinking goes on at a level he labels "behind the closed door". The reality appears that when, for example, we need to make...

Cover: 'Joyous Health'

"Joyous Health" by Joy McCarthy

★★★★ Joyous Health is chock full of recipes and tips for anyone wanting to eat healthy, because of dietary needs or a lifestyle change. Superfoods, detoxing, supplements, and healthy habits are all discussed in an easy to read and understand format. Recipes for each section are included, and all list if they are dairy-free, gluten-free, and/or vegetarian, etc. A...

Cover: 'The Oh She Glows Cookbook'

"The Oh She Glows Cookbook" by Angela Liddon

★★★★★ The "Oh She Glows Cookbook" is an amazing resource for anyone who is vegan or has other food intolerances, allergies, or clean-eating habits. Included are a plethora of fully illustrated, enticing recipes, as well as tips for healthy eating. Every recipe also notes whether it is gluten, nut, soy, sugar, and/or grain free in addition to vegan, so there is a...

Cover: 'The Silkworm'

"The Silkworm" by Robert Galbraith

★★★★ In the second installment of the Cormoran Strike series, we again meet Strike and his assistant Robin, who are called to find a missing novelist that has wandered before. Owen Quine is a generally disliked man whose latest novel is causing an uproar before it's even published, and Strike soon discovers his disappearance will not be an easy investigation. In...

Cover: 'Cook it Fast'

"Cook it Fast" by Weight Watchers

★★★★ Are you looking for healthy recipes, with nutritional information included, that fit into your busy schedule? This new cookbook brought to us by Weightwatchers includes 250 recipes that take only 15, 20, or 30 minutes to prepare and cook. Most recipes are illustrated and have cook's notes and further tips to prepare the meal even faster. If you're looking...

Cover: 'The Very Best Healing Foods'

"The Very Best Healing Foods" by Rachel Fontaine

★★★★ The Very Best Healing Foods is a fantastic resource for healthy eating. The first half of the book is dedicated to the health benefits, home remedies, cautions, culinary use, recipes, health and beauty hints, and more for every kind of fruit and vegetable. The second half features recipes to put to use all of the great information you just learned in the...

Cover: 'Taco Night!'

"Taco Night!" by Oxmoor House

★★★★ Who doesn't love tacos? If you do, grab this fully illustrated collection of recipes for new ideas. With easy to follow recipes and ideas for burritos, quesadillas, tacos, drinks, sides, and even desserts, there is a multitude of tasty recipes for anyone to try. You will get hungry just looking through this book!  

Cover: 'What's for Supper?'

"What's for Supper?" by Southern Living

★★★★ Are you looking for simple and quick meals for your hectic weeknights? This collection of recipes is fully illustrated with recipes that are easy and with ingredient lists that are not a mile long. Included with many of the recipes are budget tips and meal ideas as well. A great resource for speedy meals that won't break your schedule or your budget!

Cover: 'Year of No Sugar: A Memoir'

"Year of No Sugar: A Memoir" by Eve O. Schaub

★★★★ Based on the blog of the same name, this memoir chronicles adventures, missteps, and lesson learned the occur as Eve, her husband, and her two young daughters attempt to live without sugar from January until December. The title is a little misleading because each family member is allowed to choose one item they can have as a "cheat" throughout the year (Eva...

Cover: 'Gemini'

"Gemini" by Carol Cassella

★★★★★ Charlotte Reese, an intensive care doctor in Seattle, Washington, is on duty when a Jane Doe, the victim of a hit and run, is admitted to the ICU. As days pass, Jane's condition worsens and her identity remains a mystery. Charlotte is in control of Jane's fate, and, with the help of her boyfriend Eric, sets out to uncover Jane's past. This book is well...

Cover: 'Land of Love and Drowning'

"Land of Love and Drowning" by Tiphanie Yanique

★★★★★ Set in the beautiful and enchanting Virgin Islands, this is a story of love, loss, family, and magic. We begin in the early 1900s when the Bradshaw children are small and tragedy leaves them orphaned. They must face poverty and hardship together in order to survive. Their lives tangle around those of lovers, family members, children, and strangers. They...

Cover: 'Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts'

"Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts" by Jeni Britton Bauer

★★★★★ Any baker or person desiring desserts need look no further. This collection of unique and tasty treats contains great descriptions, illustrations, and instructions for anyone wanting to try out a new treat. Although as a dairy intolerant person I am unable to make Jeni's recipes, her book made me (as always) wishing that I could, and it's sure to be a great...

Cover: 'How to Love'

"How to Love" by Katie Cotugno

★★★★ Reena has always been the good girl: straight A student, responsible job holder, and good friend. Despite her good girl status, Reena has also always been in love with bad boy Sawyer LeGrande. When Sawyer starts to take notice of her, Reena's life becomes an exhilarating and devastating roller coaster of events. The chapters alternate between Reena's...

Cover: 'Life After Life'

"Life After Life" by Kate Atkinson

★★★★ Ursula Todd is born in England on a cold February night in 1910, with a very unique ability, to live, die, and be born again in a continuous cycle. Ursula falls into this pattern unaware at first, then with a sort of permanent deja vu, and eventually with acceptance. It is a tale of love, loss, war, and the power to take control of one's life. This novel...

Cover: 'Year of No Sugar'

"Year of No Sugar" by Eve O. Schaub

★★★ A more accurate title is Year of Reduced Sugar! The author and her family still indulge in a sweet treat every month, and each family member is granted an exception item, which contains sugar. (The author chose red wine.) Sugar really is in almost everything we consume (even bacon and chicken broth!), and the family's quest to attend community events,...

Cover: 'The Castle Behind Thorns'

"The Castle Behind Thorns" by Merrie Haskell

★★★★★ Waking up in the fireplace ashes of an unfamiliar and very broken castle, Sand discovers that nothing lives here, except the huge, dense thorny brambles that enclose the whole exterior, making it impossible to leave. He begins mending broken objects and soon discovers Perrotte, a girl his age and heir to the castle who has awakened from the dead. They...

Cover: 'The Son'

"The Son" by Jo Nesbø

★★★★★ Jo Nesbo, an award-winning author from Norway, has written another gripping thriller. The novel takes place in the seedy underworld of Oslo, but begins in a state-of-the-art prison. Prisoner Sony Loftus has a heroin addiction which has a steady supply, as long as he takes the fall for some gruesome murders in the area, even while he still remains a prisoner...

Cover: 'You Are Not Special and Other Encouragements'

"You Are Not Special and Other Encouragements" by David McCullough Jr.

★★★★ McCullough’s book came after a similarly themed graduation speech of 2012. His thoughts are well received and regarded because he speaks from the position of an educator of nearly 30 years (Interestingly he spent nearly a decade teaching in the Hawaii high school where President Obama admitted to spending his high school years mostly getting high and “by”...

Cover: 'The Organic Family Cookbook'

"The Organic Family Cookbook" by Anni Daulter

★★★★★ What a refreshing cookbook and way to think about healthy eating! This cookbook really makes you feel as though you can eat healthy and organic fairly easily.  There are excellent ideas for meals and snacks that are easy and don't require strange sounding, organic ingredients that can sometimes break a budget. The pictures are great and the book also...

Cover: 'I am Malala'

"I am Malala" by Malala Yousafzai

★★★★★ This fascinating and thought provoking memoir takes us into the world of schoolchildren in the Swat Valley of Pakistan; a world not often experienced by outsiders since the takeover of the Taliban. Malala faces adversity, including the brutal attack in which she was shot in the face by the Taliban, with the courage that comes from being passionate about...

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