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Among Others by Jo Walton is this week’s staff pick, and is just fantastic. Read the summary, try the book – we think you’ll agree.

“Startling, unusual, and yet irresistibly readable, Among Others is at once the compelling story of a young woman struggling to escape a troubled childhood, a brilliant diary of first encounters with the great novels of modern fantasy and SF, and a spellbinding tale of escape from ancient enchantment.

Raised by a half-mad mother who dabbled in magic, Morwenna Phelps found refuge in two worlds. As a child growing up in Wales, she played among the spirits who made their homes in industrial ruins. But her mind found freedom and promise in the science fiction novels that were her closest companions. Then her mother tried to bend the spirits to dark ends, and Mori was forced to confront her in a magical battle that left her crippled–and her twin sister dead.

Fleeing to her father whom she barely knew, Mori was sent to boarding school in England–a place all but devoid of true magic. There, outcast and alone, she tempted fate by doing magic herself, in an attempt to find a circle of like-minded friends. But her magic also drew the attention of her mother, bringing about a reckoning that could no longer be put off…

Combining elements of autobiography with flights of imagination in the manner of novels like Jonathan Lethem’s The Fortress of Solitude, this is potentially a breakout book for an author whose genius has already been hailed by peers like Kelly Link, Sarah Weinman, and Ursula K. Le Guin.”–Taken from Goodreads.com


Among Others

Jo Walton

Published: Jan 18, 2011 by Tor Books
Find in the Library


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In honor of National Cookie Day this week (Dec. 4), this week’s Staff Pick of the Week is Martha Stewart’s Cookies.  The timing is also perfect for the many upcoming holiday parties and gatherings.

Great pictures, easy to follow delicious recipes, and excellent results and consistently yielded from this chock-ful cookbook.  Nancy Baggett’s Simply Sensational Cookies is another can’t fail cookie cookbook that you should definitely check out.  You can also try one of our many other cookie and dessert cookbooks.  Check out 641.8654 in the stacks.


Martha Stewart's Cookies: The Very Best Treats to Bake and to Share

Martha Stewart Living Magazine

Published: Mar 11, 2008 by Clarkson Potter
Find in the Library



Simply Sensational Cookies

Nancy Baggett

Published: Sep 26, 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Find in the Library


 

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This month’s 2nd Saturday Bookclub Title is “The Lowland” by Jhumpa Lahiri. Come join us on December 13 from 11 am to 12:30 pm in the Community Room to discuss this fantastic title.

“Two brothers bound by tragedy; a fiercely brilliant woman haunted by her past; a country torn by revolution. A powerful new novel–set in both India and America–that explores the price of idealism and a love that can last long past death.

Growing up in Calcutta, born just fifteen months apart, Subhash and Udayan Mitra are inseparable brothers, one often mistaken for the other. But they are also opposites, with gravely different futures ahead of them. It is the 1960s, and Udayan–charismatic and impulsive–finds himself drawn to the Naxalite movement, a rebellion waged to eradicate inequity and poverty: he will give everything, risk all, for what he believes. Subhash, the dutiful son, does not share his brother’s political passion; he leaves home to pursue a life of scientific research in a quiet, coastal corner of America.

But when Subhash learns what happened to his brother in the lowland outside their family’s home, he comes back to India, hoping to pick up the pieces of a shattered family, and to heal the wounds Udayan left behind–including those seared in the heart of his brother’s wife.

Suspenseful, sweeping, piercingly intimate, The Lowland expands the range of one of our most dazzling storytellers, seamlessly interweaving the historical and the personal across generations and geographies. This masterly novel of fate and will, exile and return, is a tour de force and an instant classic.”– Taken from Goodreads.com

Limited copies available at the Reference Desk.  For more information about bookclubs and bookclub kits at FTPL please visit: bookclubs.

Bookclub is just one of our many great programs, don’t forget to check out our calendars for everything happening at your library!

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Franklin Township Public Library supports the Books to Keep initiative run by the Libraries of Middlesex County.  We have a book donation bin and addressed envelopes you can take home and mail a donation.  These items are located at the Circulation Desk, next to the Staff Pick bookmarks.  If you wish to donate a book, please donate only new children’s books.

Since 1990, Books to Keep has been connecting children with books in a unique way. As an outreach project of the Libraries of Middlesex, Books to Keep raises funds to purchase thousands of new books to distribute to children throughout the county at holiday time. Working in partnership with day care centers, shelters, Head Start, soup kitchens, and over 40 other social programs and service clubs, over 10,000 books were distributed this past year alone.

Books to Keep is preparing for another successful year. The joy of having books of our own is so much a part of our lives and the lives of our children. We all have our favorite titles which may have become dog-eared and practically memorized. Not having any books in the home at all is the reality of many children in Middlesex County. Books to Keep is committed to changing that reality.

Our participating Middlesex County librarians personally encourage reading and library use with story programs in English and Spanish at over 25 county wide distribution locations. After the story program the children receive a new book to begin their home libraries and encourage their love of reading.

 

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This week’s staff pick is The Alienist by Caleb Carr.  Mystery, murder, mayhem, grit… If you like shows like Gotham, give this a go.  It has a sequel as well, The Angel of Darkness.

“The year is 1896, the place, New York City. On a cold March night New York Times reporter John Schuyler Moore is summoned to the East River by his friend and former Harvard classmate Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a psychologist, or “alienist.” On the unfinished Williamsburg Bridge, they view the horribly mutilated body of an adolescent boy, a prostitute from one of Manhattan’s infamous brothels.

The newly appointed police commissioner, Theodore Roosevelt, in a highly unorthodox move, enlists the two men in the murder investigation, counting on the reserved Kreizler’s intellect and Moore’s knowledge of New York’s vast criminal underworld. They are joined by Sara Howard, a brave and determined woman who works as a secretary in the police department. Laboring in secret (for alienists, and the emerging discipline of psychology, are viewed by the public with skepticism at best), the unlikely team embarks on what is a revolutionary effort in criminology– amassing a psychological profile of the man they’re looking for based on the details of his crimes. Their dangerous quest takes them into the tortured past and twisted mind of a murderer who has killed before, and will kill again before the hunt is over.

Fast-paced and gripping, infused with a historian’s exactitude, The Alienist conjures up the Gilded Age and its untarnished underside: verminous tenements and opulent mansions, corrupt cops and flamboyant gangsters, shining opera houses and seamy gin mills. Here is a New York during an age when questioning society’s belief that all killers are born, not made, could have unexpected and mortal consequences.”–Taken from Goodreads.com

Check it out from the library (and here is the sequel).

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