New Fiction on the New York Times Best Sellers List (2/4/07)

The 21st Richard Jury mystery by Martha Grimes just came out. The clever titles in this series are named for English pubs and the somewhat sketchy stories feature an ongoing cast of improbable characters, including Melrose Plant, for comic effect. It is this cozy but somewhat jarring blend of murder and mayhem that made Grimes' accusations that Elizabeth George was "stealing" from her so perplexing. No one would mistake any of the characters in Grimes' books for Barbara Havers or confuse her storylines with the haunting tragedies in the Lynley series.

At #6 is You Suck by Christopher Moore: "A 19-year-old discovers that his girlfriend is a vampire — and now, so is he."

At #7 is The Suspect by John Lescroart: "A lawyer defending a man accused of killing his wife is first drawn to him, but then begins to have doubts."

At #8 is Bad Blood by Linda Fairstein: "The Manhattan assistant district attorney Alexandra Cooper discovers a link between a wealthy woman’s murder and an explosion in a city water tunnel."

At #10 is Dust by Martha Grimes: "Investigating the murder of a wealthy young man leads Richard Jury of Scotland Yard to Henry James’s home and to forgotten Nazi atrocities."

Exam Bits - Test Prep

Preparing for school exams? Is everything checked out at the library? Try Learning Express Library on our website.

If your Library card is registered through "My Account" you have access to the databases from home. Login with your username and password. Choose "Research" file at the top of the page. Choose "Learning Express Library" by name. You will find practice exercises for TOEFL, Civil Service, Citizenship, GRE, SAT, and more. You will also find standardized testing for elementary, middle, and high school ages. Study Up!

Kid Bits - Regarding the Klises

The Kate and Sarah Klise have put out the next book in their middle school series of history/mystery adventures with Regarding the Bathrooms: a privy to the past. Other titles the sisters write and illustrate are Regarding the Trees: a splintered saga rooted in secrets; Regarding the Fountain. These are great fun for creative minds and school-system intrigue.

Moomin!

Join Moomin, the beautiful Snorkmaiden, and their friends as they send bad language (with legs) to Aunt Jane, encounter exploding pancakes, and introduce pirates to gardening. Tove Jansson has created a rare treasure that speaks to all generations and all ages. Moomin sums up Jansson's philosophy best when he tells his friend Sniff:

"I only want to live in peace, plant potatoes, and dream!"

Jansson first introduced the Moomins (Scandinavian troll-creatures that resemble white hippopotami) in books that she wrote and illustrated, beginning in 1945 with the book The Moomins and the Great Flood. More Moomintroll books followed, including Comet in Moominland, Finn Family Moomintroll, and Moominpappa's memoirs. These were so popular that she was approached by the London Evening News to do a daily comic strip featuring the Moomin characters. Drawn and Quarterly has released (for the first time in North America) a collection of these strips. This first volume includes four adventures: Brigands, Family Life, Moomin on the Riviera and Moomin's Desert Island.

Kid Bits - Time Warp Trio

John Scieszka writes one more book for the Time Warp Trio series. Like to travel? Like Time Warps? Read Marco? Polo! and land in 13th century China. Kublai Khan! Xanadu! Marco Polo! Whooa!!

Favorite Picks for Black History Month by Tahira

In honor of Black History Month here is a list of my favorite books with African American main characters:

Picture Books
Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold
Jamaica’s Find by Jaunita Havill
Sweet Music in Harlem by Debbie Taylor

Fiction
Bud Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
The Watson’s Go to Burmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis
The Stories Julian Tells by Ann Cameron
Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy by Gary Schmidt
Starring Grace by Mary Hoffman

Molly Ivins has died

Molly Ivins has diedMolly Ivins has died

Molly Ivins, author (Molly Ivins Can’t Say That, Can She? and Who Let the Dogs In?: Incredible Political Animals I Have Known) and syndicated columnist for 350 newspapers, including the New York Times, succumbed to breast cancer yesterday.

Known for her acid tongue and laser-precise skewering of politicians and government, Ms. Ivins’ devoted readership craved her ‘raise more hell’ observations. Her lacerating wit, which could be devastating, was her calling card: “If his I.Q. slips any lower, we’ll have to water him twice a day.”

Memorial tributes to Ms. Ivins, who was 62 when she died, can be found at The Texas Observer, where she served as co-editor from 1970-76.

2007 Edgar nominees have been announced

2006 Edgar nominees2006 Edgar nominees

The Mystery Writers of America oganization has announced the nominees for the 198th Edgars. The nominees for the top three categories are:

Best Novel nominees

The Pale Blue Eye, by Louis Bayard; The Janissary Tree, by Jason Goodwin; Gentlemen and Players, by Joanne Harris; The Dead Hour, by Denise Mina; The Virgin of Small Plains, by Nancy Pickard; and The Liberation Movements, by Olen Steinhauer

Best First Novel by an American Author nominees

The Faithful Spy, by Alex Berenson; Sharp Objects, by Gillian Flynn; King of Lies, by John Hart; Holmes on the Range, by Steve Hockensmith; and A Field of Darkness, by Cornelia Read

Best Paperback Original nominees

The Goodbye Kiss, by Massimo Carlotto; The Open Curtain, by Brian Evenson; Snakeskin Shamisen, by Naomi Hirahara; The Deep Blue Alibi, by Paul Levine, and City of Tiny Lights, by Patrick Neate

Winners will be announced April 26, 2007.

Happiness In! Demon Out!

We will be tossing beans to keep those demons away and celebrate Setsubun, at our Japanese Family Cultural Celebration this Sunday at 2:00 pm at the Downtown Library. We will begin the festivities with a story and a demon mask craft upstairs, then parade downstairs for music with Miyabi and pocky treats. Families with children of all ages are invited to attend and while you are here, check out Japanese Children’s Favorite Stories and other folktale collections.

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