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Starting in April 2002, a panel of library staff members (primarily from the Anderson, Bethany, Gere and Eiseley branches) have appeared somewhat regularly on Cathy Blythe’s Problems and Solutions program on radio station KFOR 1240 AM in a segment called “Book Chat,” sharing information about books and upcoming library programs.

Here is a list of the books discussed in the most recent show: April 10, 2017

Appearing with Cathy on this episode: Scott C., Becky W.C., and Lisa V.

Transcendental
by James Gunn [Gunn]

Riley, a veteran of interstellar war, is one of many beings from many different worlds aboard a ship on a pilgrimage that spans the galaxy. However, he is not journeying to achieve transcendence, a vague mystical concept that has drawn everyone else on the ship to this journey into the unknown at the far edge of the galaxy. His mission is to find and kill the prophet who is reputed to help others transcend. While their ship speeds through space, the voyage is marred by violence and betrayal,making it clear that some of the ship’s passengers are not the spiritual seekers they claim to be.

Like the pilgrims in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales , a number of those on the starship share their unique stories. But as tensions rise, Riley realizes that the ship is less like the Canterbury Tales and more like a harrowing, deadly ship of fools. When he becomes friendly with a mysterious passenger named Asha, he thinks she’s someone he can trust. However, like so many others on the ship, Asha is more than she appears. Uncovering her secrets could be the key to Riley’s personal quest, or make him question everything he thought he knew about Transcendentalism and his mission to stop it.

James Gunn’s Transcendental is a space adventure filled with excitement and intrigue that explores the nature of what unifies all beings.

( James Gunn will be appearing as one of the literary guests at the ConStellation 8 science fiction convention in Lincoln, April 28-30, 2017. )


Celine
by Peter Heller [Heller]

From the best-selling author of The Dog Stars and The Painter , a luminous, masterful novel of suspense–the story of Celine, an elegant, aristocratic private eye who specializes in reuniting families, trying to make amends for a loss in her own past.

Working out of her jewel box of an apartment at the base of the Brooklyn Bridge, Celine has made a career of tracking down missing persons, and she has a better record at it than the FBI. But when a young woman, Gabriela, asks for her help, a world of mystery and sorrow opens up. Gabriela’s father was a photographer who went missing on the border of Montana and Wyoming. He was assumed to have died from a grizzly mauling, but his body was never found. Now, as Celine and her partner head to Yellowstone National Park, investigating a trail gone cold, it becomes clear that they are being followed–that this is a case someone desperately wants to keep closed. Inspired by the life of Heller’s own remarkable mother, a chic and iconoclastic private eye, Celine is a deeply personal novel, a wildly engrossing story of family, privilege, and childhood loss. Combining the exquisite plotting and gorgeous evocation of nature that have become his hallmarks, Peter Heller gives us his finest work to date.


Lilac Girls
by Martha Hall Kelly [Kelly]

For readers of The Nightingale and Sarah’s Key, inspired by the life of a real World War II heroine, this powerful debut novel reveals an incredible story of love, redemption, and terrible secrets that were hidden for decades.

New York socialite Caroline Ferriday has her hands full with her post at the French consulate and a new love on the horizon. But Caroline’s world is forever changed when Hitler’s army invades Poland in September 1939–and then sets its sights on France.

An ocean away from Caroline, Kasia Kuzmerick, a Polish teenager, senses her carefree youth disappearing as she is drawn deeper into her role as courier for the underground resistance movement. In a tense atmosphere of watchful eyes and suspecting neighbors, one false move can have dire consequences.

For the ambitious young German doctor, Herta Oberheuser, an ad for a government medical position seems her ticket out of a desolate life. Once hired, though, she finds herself trapped in a male-dominated realm of Nazi secrets and power.

The lives of these three women are set on a collision course when the unthinkable happens and Kasia is sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious Nazi concentration camp for women. Their stories cross continents–from New York to Paris, Germany, and Poland–as Caroline and Kasia strive to bring justice to those whom history has forgotten.

In Lilac Girls, Martha Hall Kelly has crafted a remarkable novel of unsung women and their quest for love, freedom, and second chances. It is a story that will keep readers bonded with the characters, searching for the truth, until the final pages.


Ordinary Grace
by William Kent Krueger [Krueger]

“That was it. That was all of it. A grace so ordinary there was no reason at all to remember it. Yet I have never across the forty years since it was spoken forgotten a single word.”

New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961. The Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were selling out at the soda counter of Halderson’s Drugstore, and Hot Stuff comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack. It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president. But for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum it was a grim summer in which death visited frequently and assumed many forms. Accident. Nature. Suicide. Murder.

Frank begins the season preoccupied with the concerns of any teenage boy, but when tragedy unexpectedly strikes his family–which includes his Methodist minister father; his passionate, artistic mother; Juilliard-bound older sister; and wise-beyond-his-years kid brother–he finds himself thrust into an adult world full of secrets, lies, adultery, and betrayal, suddenly called upon to demonstrate a maturity and gumption beyond his years.

Told from Frank’s perspective forty years after that fateful summer, Ordinary Grace is a brilliantly moving account of a boy standing at the door of his young manhood, trying to understand a world that seems to be falling apart around him. It is an unforgettable novel about discovering the terrible price of wisdom and the enduring grace of God.


Marbled, Swirled and Layered: 150 Recipes and Variations for Artful Bars, Cookies,Pies, Cakes, and More
by Irvin Lin [641.86 Lin]

Incredible desserts with layers and swirls of flavor that are beautiful and delicious–inside and out

When you marble, layer, and swirl doughs, batters, toppings, or frostings, good looks and good taste come together in one total package. Irvin Lin, creator of the popular blog Eat the Love, shows how these techniques open the door to inventive flavor combinations that look as fantastic as they taste. Bakers of all levels will enjoy recipes ranging from easy brownies and bars to brunch-worthy muffins and morning buns to show-stopping cakes and tarts: cinnamon spiral icebox cookies, pistachio-swirl brownies, triple-chocolate pie, multicolored “Neapolitan” layer cake, and more. Lin offers variations to suit any taste (more than 150 recipes total) plus baking and decorating tips throughout on topics like making your own all-natural food coloring, rolling up jelly roll-style cakes, and discovering the magic of browned butter. Readers (and eaters) are sure to ooh and ahh over every dazzling dessert at first glance–and then again at first bite.

( If you’re interested in cookbooks, you can subscribe to the libraries’ What’s Cooking? e-mail newsletter to learn of new cookbook additions to our collection! Scroll to the bottom of this sample issue to find the subscription link! )


One Minute Till Bedtime: 60 Second Poems to Send You Off to Sleep
edited by Ken Nesbitt, with art by Christoph Niemann [j811.08 Nes]

Just one more before bedtime? Please?

It’s time for tuck-in, and your little one wants just one more moment with you–so fill it with something that will feed the imagination, fuel a love of reading, and send them off to sleep in a snap. Reach for a one-minute poem! Former Children’s Poet Laureate Kenn Nesbitt presents a blockbuster collection of all-new poetry penned by some of the most beloved and celebrated poets of our time, including Jack Prelutsky, Jon Scieszka, Mary Ann Hoberman, Nikki Grimes, Lemony Snicket, Jane Yolen, and many more. Illuminated with dreamlike wit and whimsy by New York Times illustrator and award-winning artist Christoph Niemann, here is a new bedtime classic. When the busy day is drawing to a close and the whole family is ready for rest, take a minute for poetry and send your little one off to sleep.


Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk
by Kathleen Rooney [Rooney]

She took 1930s New York by storm, working her way up writing copy for R.H. Macy’s to become the highest paid advertising woman in the country. It was a job that, she says, “in some ways saved my life, and in other ways ruined it.”

Now it’s the last night of 1984 and Lillian, 85 years old but just as sharp and savvy as ever, is on her way to a party. It’s chilly enough out for her mink coat and Manhattan is grittier now–her son keeps warning her about a subway vigilante on the prowl–but the quick-tongued poetess has never been one to scare easily. On a walk that takes her over 10 miles around the city, she meets bartenders, bodega clerks, security guards, criminals, children, parents, and parents-to-be, while reviewing a life of excitement and adversity, passion and heartbreak, illuminating all the ways New York has changed–and has not.

A love letter to city life in all its guts and grandeur, Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk by Kathleen Rooney paints a portrait of a remarkable woman across the canvas of a changing America: from the Jazz Age to the onset of the AIDS epidemic; the Great Depression to the birth of hip-hop.

Lillian figures she might as well take her time. For now, after all, the night is still young.


Nebraska Poetry: A Sesquicentennial Anthology
edited by Daniel Simon [ On Order ]

The first anthology of its scope, Nebraska Poetry: A Sesquicentennial Anthology encompasses 150 years of the state’s literary history, featuring 80-plus poets and more than 180 poems. This landmark collection includes poems by authors best known for their prose–like Willa Cather, Loren Eiseley, and Tillie Olsen–as well as some remarkable but relatively forgotten writers from the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries. Among the contemporary writers, it includes poets of Nebraska’s renowned “second renaissance” along with a rich array of younger writers who are redefining what poetry from and about the state might represent. A broadly inclusive as well as diverse anthology, Nebraska Poetry: A Sesquicentennial Anthology celebrates the state’s brilliant contribution not only to Great Plains literature but to the broader traditions of American letters.


Beatle Meets Destiny
by Gabrielle Williams [YA Williams]

When superstitious eighteen-year-old John “Beatle” Lennon, who is dating the best friend of his twin sister, meets Destiny McCartney, their instant rapport and shared quirkiness make it seem that their fate is written in the stars.


Other KFOR Book Chat pages:

Past Years: 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010
2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002

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