Fabulous Fiction Firsts #580

"Absorbing, intriguing, insightful" raved a reviewer of The 6:41 to Paris * by Jean-Philippe Blondel; a brilliant psychological thriller though there's nary a crime in sight.

This European bestseller is narrated by Cecile Duffaut and Philippe Leduc, lovers who parted 27 years ago as they meet by chance on the 6:41 morning train bound for Paris. Cecile has just spent a dreary weekend dutifully visiting her parents. The only empty seat in the train compartment is claimed by none other than Philippe. Though they each recognize the other at once, neither acknowledges it.

The once plain and socially-awkward Cecile is now a successful business owner, married with grown children, confident and stylishly dressed while the once handsome, charming and care-free Philippe is unrecognizable - "old, wrinkled, flabby, the kind of man that inspires pity." This gives Cecile no small satisfaction as she remembers Philippe's betrayal and her humiliation on a trip to London so painful that she cannot bear to return to the city. In the time it takes the 6:41 train to reach Paris, their thoughts compellingly trace the meandering paths between who they once were and who they are now.

"A fast, yet deep journey through the characters' experiences of anger, triumph, remorse, and forgiveness, Blondel's novel ... reminds us that even long-ago heartbreaks have the power to ignite our most powerful emotions."

"Funny, wise and conciliatory."

Read-alikes: The Forgiven by Lawrence Osborne; Trains and Lovers by Alexander McCall Smith; and The London Train by Tessa Hadley

* = starred review

Download of the Day: February 10

What Does It Do? Bulldozer - Gaetano Capici

Building-obsessed readers will enjoy reading about the different parts of this construction site favorite, as well as the many jobs it can do.

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PreK Bits - "B" is for BUNNIES

Ms. Rachel brought "Bunny" stories to Preschool Storytime @ Malletts Creek Branch.
Max and Ruby went shopping in ... BUNNY MONEY by Rosemary Wells.
Ms. Betsy accompanied with her ukulele for "Wheels On The Bus" ... since Max and Ruby took the bus downtown.
The BUNNIES ARE NOT IN THEIR BEDS ... a bedtime story. 'Nuff said! =)

For more Favorite Bunny stories try the following:
The HOUSE OF 12 BUNNIES ... another bunny bedtime story.
WOLFIE The BUNNY ... there's a new baby in the home.
TOO MANY CARROTS ... and time to share.
MUNCHA! MUNCHA! MUNCHA! and TIPPY-TIPPY-TIPPY, HIDE ... and Mr. McGreely's garden.
HERE IS BIG BUNNY ... a story of size and scale.
WONDERFUL HABITS Of RABBITS.
KNUFFLE BUNNY: a cautionary tale … the Knuffle Bunny series by Mo Willems ... stories of an essential member of the family.
The COMPLETE ADVENTURES Of PETER RABBIT and more Classic treasures by Beatrix Potter.
COUNTRY BUNNY And The LITTLE GOLDEN SHOES ... a classic by Dubose Heyward.
WIGGLE your nose, FLOP your ears, HOP your tail ... 'cuz that's what BUNNIES do too.

Pretty in Pink 30th Anniversary!

Pretty in Pink will be back on the big screen in theaters next week! The movie will be shown in select theaters nationwide, including Ann Arbor, on February 14 and 17 to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the film. How cool is that?! Yes, it’s been that long since the film’s release.

The 1986 film is a classic 80s flick directed by John Hughes. It stars Molly Ringwald in pink as Andie. Jon Cryer wonderfully portrays her male BFF Duckie, and her hunky crush Blaine is played by Andrew McCarthy. It’s a classic high school love triangle in classic 80s fashion -- just a bit more pink. Add in more quirky friends, a rich vs. poor social dynamic, a popular bully, and a stellar soundtrack… and you’re all set! The film version shown in theaters will include the alternate ending where Andie ends up with the other guy.

Download of the Day: February 9

My Antonia - Willa Cather

This classic of the American heartland and 19th century immigrant experience has been hailed as Willa Cather's first masterpiece of literature.

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The Bear…

Benjamin Chaud has written and illustrated some lovely picture books for children! I really enjoyed The Bear’s Song, and the next adventures for bear in these new ones in the series are sweet as well.

They are large format with small nearly full-page illustrations, which is perfect for little ones to play “I Spy,” like in Where's Waldo, to follow along in the pictures while the words are read aloud to them. In The Bear’s Sea Escape Papa bear is looking for a place to hibernate and follows Baby Bear to a cruise ship, and winds up on a tropical island. In The Bear’s Surprise Little Bear searches for his father along a forest path that leads him to a mysterious cave, an exciting circus, and a family surprise.

They are all fun little adventure stories that keeps young readers entertained.

Explore how machines work in a new hands-on book for kids!

Explore the mechanics of simple machines with the help of two zoo animals in the awesome new hands-on book How Machines Work: Zoo Break!. Sloth and Sengi have spent their entire lives in their zoo enclosure and even though it’s pretty comfortable, they both long to see more of the world. So, with the help of some simple machines, they decide to break out! The coolest thing about this book is the lift-the-flap and fold-out features, which allow readers to see how machines work and move. Sloth and Sengi make use of wedges, wheels and axles, levers, inclined planes, screws and pulleys to stage their escape, and it’s fun to see their successes… and their failures. This book presents machines in simple, easy-to-understand language, and the fun storyline will pull kids in. Even the cover of this book is interactive, featuring gears that readers can actually turn to see Sloth get dipped into a pond!

For other cool books about machines, check out The Lego Technic Idea Book Simple Machines, National Geographic’s 125 Cool Inventions and The Kids’ Book of Simple Machines: cool projects & activities that make science fun.

Download of the Day: February 8

New Yorker Cartoonist Bruce Eric Kaplan Discusses His New Memoir, "I Was a Child"

Cartoonist and television writer/producer Bruce Eric Kaplan discusses his memoir and recounts his slow but steady climb to success in TV and with The New Yorker.

Looking for more great things to download? Try going to our Downloads page for music, books, videos, podcasts, even patterns! And check out the Download of the Day every day for more great recommendations from AADL!

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Friday 2/12 is the last day to submit your entry for the 3rd-5th Grade “Write On!” Short Story Contest!

There's still time to check out the contest page and read the guidelines for details on how to submit your awesome story!

Email your completed story to youngwrite@aadl.org or drop it off at the Downtown Library Youth Desk (343 S. Fifth Ave) now through Friday February 12.

Need some last minute tips? Check out the following books:

Spilling Ink

Writer to Writer: from think to ink

How to Write About Your Adventure

In the words of C.S. Lewis, “You can make anything by writing!”

Download of the Day: February 7

Reconnection - Ammonite

The overall tone of this album is dreamy and euphoric, but there's an element of the strange and shadowy in this album that keeps it from being too wide-eyed.

Looking for more great things to download? Try going to our Downloads page for music, books, videos, podcasts, even patterns! And check out the Download of the Day every day for more great recommendations from AADL!

Want to find out about next week's Download of the Day TODAY? And get a whole heap of bonus DotD points in the process? Start playing the Lowdown of the Day! Follow the clues to figure out the item ahead of time. And the first find gets the most points, so move fast!

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