Ames Public Library's Reading Connection
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Ames Public Library's Reading Connection
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Staff Picks

Left Corner

* New as of May 2008

Go With MeGo with Me by Castle Freeman (NEW MYS FRE)*

This small, nicely-crafted book is set in Vermont. It features wonderful language and an engaging cast of characters that includes a group of old geezers who hang out in an empty mill discussing world events. The action takes place during a 24-hour time period and involves a young woman who is repeatedly harassed by the town bully. She decides to confront him with the help of one of the old geezers and a young man who is more brawn than brains.

- Jan

Person of InterestPerson of Interest by Theresa Schwegel

While a Chicago police detective works deep undercover on a drug case, his wife suspects that he is having an affair, and their teenage daughter is caught at a party with ecstasy. Feeling hurt, the wife begins a flirtation with the daughter's older boyfriend. Their stories come together for a surprise ending in this combination hard-boiled police procedural and contemporary family drama.

- Ann

Your Movie SucksYour Movie Sucks by Roger Ebert (NEW 791.43 EBE)*

If you like movies, you'll enjoy this collection of movie reviews by longtime Chicago Sun-Times movie critic, Roger Ebert. The films received, at most, one-and-half stars from this pundit who makes reviews of bad movies extremely funny.

- Scott

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (HOS)

A Thousand Splendid SunsTwo women in Afghanistan, who come from very different backgrounds, are brought together by love and sacrifice as they live through three tumultuous decades of Afghan history. Beautifully written, the book is a tale of family, friendship, and love that illuminates the universal elements in the lives of its female characters.

- Cathy & Mary H.

Wrapped in RainWrapped in Rain by Charles Martin (MAR)

Set in Alabama, this tale has suspense, mystery, and romance. Tucker Mason is a successful photographer from a wealthy, dysfunctional family with no mother and an abusive, alcoholic father. As a child, his only nurturing came from an African American widow who worked for the family. As an adult, he returns home to make peace with people from his past, including his schizophrenic half-brother and his ex-girlfriend.

- Anastasia

The Dive from Clausen's PierThe Dive from Clausen's Pier by Ann Packer (PAC)

A young woman in Madison, Wisconsin is engaged to her high school sweetheart when he is paralyzed in a diving accident. Even though she is falling out of love with him before the incident, she struggles with the choice between remaining with him and setting out on her own. This is a character-driven novel that gives an intimate view of those who inhabit its pages.
- Camille & Marianne

The Lincoln LawyerThe Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly (MYS CON)

Criminal defense attorney Mickey Haffner, who operates from the backseat of his Lincoln Town Car, feels that the law is about negotiation, deal-making, and manipulation in pursuit of the best result for his often guilty clients. Hired to defend a wealthy man accused of attacking a woman he met at a bar, Mickey begins to question his ability to recognize an innocent man after his investigator and good friend is murdered.

- Ann

The BetrayersThe Betrayers by James Patrick Hunt (MYS HUN)

Two police officers are killed during a routine traffic stop in St. Louis. One of them has been working undercover in Narcotics. Could his death be linked to one of the region's largest meth dealers? Investigating Officer Lt. George Hastings thinks it may have been an execution. Saddled with a politically-connected partner, he delves into the backgrounds of the slain officers in this fast-paced mystery.

- Vickie

American GodsAmerican Gods by Neil Gaiman (SF GAI)

Shadow is let out of jail to find his world turned upside down by his wife's death. After taking a job with a mysterious man called Wednesday, Shadow finds himself in a strange yet familiar world of gods and myths, caught in the middle of a war for America's soul.

- Jillian

F5F5: Devastation, Survival and the most Violent Tornado Outbreak of the Twentieth Century
by Mark Levine (551.533 LEV)

April 1974 saw an outbreak of devastating tornadoes including six F5 category storms. The focus of this book is on two rural Alabama towns and the experiences of those who lived through the violent weather in an area where local prejudice led to differences in the treatment of white and black victims.

- Ross

Summer at TiffanySummer at Tiffany by Marjorie Hart (920 HAR)

It is the summer of 1945 and Story City, Iowa native Marjorie Hope is off to New York City with a sorority sister from the University of Iowa. This autobiographical work describes the young women's time spent working at Tiffany & Co., one of the world's best known jewelers. According to Hart, that magical summer was the best summer of her life.

- Mary L.

FDRFDR by Jean Edward Smith (920 ROOSEVELT, F.)

Reviewers are calling this the best single volume biography of Franklin Roosevelt ever written. This is a compelling narrative history about Roosevelt's ability to restore the country's self confidence during the Depression. It is also a good personality study of a man who took action to try to improve the economy and the lives of the American people during difficult times.

- Mike