Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe

Could it be that fans of spooky fiction are tiring of vampires and zombies? Probably not, but I have been struck by the number of recent young adult novels based on the works of Edgar Allan Poe. One  example of this is Bethany Griffith’s 2014 novel, The Fall, which reimagines Poe’s ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’ through the eyes of Roderick Usher’s sickly twin sister Madeline. This isn’t Griffin’s first expansion of Poe’s work. Prior to The Fall, Griffin turned to Poe’s short story ‘The Masque of the Red Death’ to create two dystopian novels, Masque of the Red Death and Dance of the Red Death. Other authors have also jumped on the Poe train. ‘Annabel Lee’, Poe’s spooky poem describing the death of a beautiful woman in “a kingdom by the sea”, is the basis for two recent novels, Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey and Of Monsters and Madness by Jessica Verday.House of Usher

Of course, filmmakers have been turning to Poe for inspiration long before this mini-trend in young adult novels and there have been quite a few film adaptations of his short stories and narrative poetry. To describe most of these movies as “loosely based” on his work is an understatement. (Certainly, the version of ‘Murders in Rue Morgue’ I watched in my high school English class didn’t have much to do with the short story.) Of the many Poe-inspired movies, Roger Corman’s film adaptations with Vincent Price are the ones a lot of people remember and they are a lot of fun to watch. If you would like a taste of the Corman/Price movies, the library has a DVD double feature of Fall of the House of Usher and The Pit and the Pendulum  that is available for checkout .

Oddly enbart as ravenough, one of the most faithful film adaptations of Poe’s work is the version of ‘The Raven’ from the first Treehouse of Horror episode of the Simpsons. In this episode, the poem is read by James Earl Jones with Homer as the narrator and Bart as the Raven. While quite funny, the text of the poem is not changed and Homer’s descent into madness closely follows the narrative of the poem (or, at least, close enough that the episode is used by some high school teachers to introduce the poem to their students.) The second season of the Simpsons (which contains the inaugural Treehouse of Horror episode) is available at the library, but, if you can’t wait, the Raven segment can be easily found online.

Corben2

Corben draws Poe

‘The Raven’ has also been adapted in comics form by cartoonist Richard Corben, who is known for creating unsettling images using a combination of pen & ink and airbrush. Since the 1970s, Corben has drawn quite a few adaptations of Poe’s works. Many of these have been collected in two volumes owned by the library (in both print and electronic formats) – Edgar Allan Poe’s Spirits of the Dead and Creepy Presents Richard Corben (although I wouldn’t recommend them to those with a low tolerance for gore and nudity.)

On a less gruesome note,  musicians have likewise turned to Poe for inspiration. Sarah Jarosz’s  adaptation of the aforementioned ‘Anabel Lee’ (from the 2011 album Follow Me Down) is a great example of this. Playing clawhammer banjo (and changing the spelling of the title character’s name), she recasts the poem to resemble an Appalachian murder ballad in the spirit of ‘Knoxville Girl’ or ‘The Banks of the Ohio.’

In the end, of course, the best way to experience Edgar Allan Poe is to read his original work. Collections of Poe’s stories and poetry are available at all Denton Public Library locations. In addition, Denton Public Library cardholders can download electronic versions of Poe’s work using the library’s Overdrive and Hoopla services.

Stacy
South Branch Library

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Romance, Take Me Away

Need a break from your busy life?   I know sometimes my life can be stressful with so many things on my plate like getting my child to all of his extracurricular activities (thank goodness marching band season is over). Or making time to visit family and friends for the holidays or just trying to balance home and work life in general.  When things get too crazy in my life, I like to read something light and entertaining.  For me, romance novels fill the bill. Even though I know exactly how they are going to end (the classic “happily ever after”), a good romance author will make the journey enjoyable and fulfilling.  Try some of these new romance novels from some of my favorite authors.

 New in 2016

First Star I See Tonight (Chicago Stars #8) by Suzanne Elizabeth Phillips

Wild Embrace: A Psy-Changeling Collection by Nalini Singh

A Scot in the Dark (Scandal & Scoundrel 2) by Sarah MacLean

The Obsession by Nora Roberts

Because of Miss Bridgerton (Rokesby #1) by Julia Quinn

Devil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas

Duke of Pleasure (Maiden Lane Series) by Elizabeth Hoyt

Someone to Love by Mary Balogh

first-star-i-see-tonight  wild-embrace  scot-in-the-dark  the-obsession  because-of-miss-bridgerton  devil-in-spring  duke-of-pleasure  someone-to-love

Stacey Irish-Keffer
Emily Fowler Central Library

Weird Science

I have very little background in science.  I am, however, curious about the world.  Most of my questions arise as I’m doing simple, everyday tasks.  I wonder how air neutralizers work as I spray air freshener in a musty room.  I question why hair turns gray as we age when I look in the mirror.  I’m curious how batteries were invented—and why are the batteries at my house always dead?

Several years ago, I stumbled across the book Packing for Mars: the Curious Science of Life in the Void by Mary Roach.  Mary Roach is a science writer who is very upfront about the fact that she is not a scientist.  I loved how she addresses questions about how things work, why things are developed, and  how they are studied.  Her explanations are clear easy to understand.  She is willing to ask those “dumb” questions that we all have, like “What happens if an astronaut is sick while wearing a spacesuit?”  I find her books insightful and hilarious.

One of my favorite aspects of her research is that she is hands-on.  She backs everything up with plenty of research from science journals and scholarly articles. Ms. Roach actually goes to visit labs, training grounds, and other areas that are off-limits to most people.  Her interviews with scientists, researchers, businesses, and politicians are candid and she is willing to ask the uncomfortable questions.  She asked Jim Lovell, the Apollo 13 astronaut, if the dandruff and dead skin cells that shed, but have nowhere to go during space flight made it feel like a “snow globe” inside the space capsule.

She observes and often participates in testing and experiments.  In her latest book, Grunt: the Curious Science of Humans at War, she describes smelling the World War II nonlethal malodorant “Who me?” in great detail, giving detailed accounts of not only the physical outcome, but also her thoughts and emotions as she smelled the stink bomb.

If you have a curious mind, like to laugh, and don’t mind a few squeamish descriptions here and there, give Mary Roach’s books a try.

Jennifer Bekker
North Branch Library
gruntbonk gulp my-planet packing-for-marsspookstiff

Texas Library Association Lariat Reading List

Lariat

Exciting news for adult readers who are looking for titles that are a pleasure to read.  The Texas Library Association has a committee dedicated to putting together a list of outstanding fiction.  Each year the committee puts together a list of titles that merit special attention for adult readers.  These are book that have been published within the past 2 years.  The current brochure features titles from 2015-2016.  Readers are able to view previous lists dating back to 2009.

The Lariat Adult Fiction Reading List was started in 2008 when Corinne Hill approached TLA to start a list for adults that would be a “pleasure to read.”  Former TLA President, Melody Kelly, bestowed the name, “Lariat.”  The Lariat Task Force was started on April 3, 2009.  Since then, the selection of 25 outstanding fiction titles of the year have been carried out in various ways.

Current Titles Include

Armada~Cline, Ernest
Zack cannot wait to finish high school and work at the local video gaming store, but unfortunately his plans are ruined when he has to go fight the aliens who plan to blow up the world. His family and his favorite game, Armada, might be the key to the Earth’s defense.

Black-Eyed Susans~Heaberlin, Julia
This thriller is alternately told by present day Tessa and her 16 year old self, Tessie, the only survivor of the “Black-Eyed Susan” killer in Fort Worth, Texas. Her original testimony sent a man to death row, but the real culprit might still be out there. Tessa teams up with experts who work to free wrongfully convicted death row inmates. The suspense builds as Tessa discovers devastating secrets from her past.

The Book of Speculation~Swyler, Erika
Simon Watson receives a package from a distant bookseller that seems to hold his family’s history, especially that of his mother. It turns out that there’s a spell on the women in his family that threatens to take away Enola, his sister and only family left. Can he save his sister and stop history from recurring?

The Bookseller~Swanson, Cynthia
Kitty Miller lives her carefree life as a single woman running a bookshop with her best friend Frieda until the dreams begin. In her dreams, she is Katharyn Andersson, a loving wife and mother. The lines between what is real and what is imagined begin to haunt her.

The Buried Giant~Ishiguro, Kazuo
Battling a magical forgetfulness, aging Britons Axl and Beatrice are determined to travel to see their son. Though filled with all the trappings of fantasy, this exquisite tale of distantly remembered battles, past wrongs and relentless change offers intricate layers of story, metaphor, reality and dream.

City on Fire~Hallberg, Garth Risk
Meet the Hamilton-Sweeney heirs, Regan and William, and many other characters of this 1970’s epic in the small town that is New York City. Their stories, including a shooting in Central Park and the 1977 blackout, intertwine the characters as they long for love and connection.

Fates and Furies~Groff, Lauren
Told from the point of view of the husband and of the wife, this novel examines not only both sides of their marriage, but also how each person’s perception affects their lives.

The Fishermen~Obioma, Chigozie
A small town Nigerian family struggle with the outcomes of a prophecy made by a madman that threatens to tear them apart.  A fascinating coming-of-age story of four brothers in the 1990’s, the story spirals into tragic consequences and the near unraveling of a family.

The Girl on the Train~Hawkins, Paula
Alcoholic, unemployed Rachel rides the daily commuter train past her old home where her ex-husband still lives with his new wife. She makes up an imagined life about another couple a few doors down, but then sees something unexpected. The next day the woman vanishes. As Rachel gets involved in the investigation, the suspense builds. Things are not what they seem, with many twists and turns in this page turner of a thriller.

Girl Underwater~Kells, Claire
A major plane crash leaves Avery and four others stranded in the harsh wilderness of the Rocky Mountains in late November. After their rescue, she is emotionally torn between coping with what happened in the mountains and fitting back into normal life. Already in a relationship, she must also face her feelings for another man: fellow survivor and teammate, Colin Shea.

The Gods of Tango~De Robertis, Carolina
An Italian woman is married by proxy when her fiancé sends for her to join him in Argentina. At the port, her husband’s friend informs her that she is a widow. Deciding not to go back home, she masters the violin and tries on her husband’s clothes, finding that they and a man’s lifestyle suit her.

The Good Neighbor~ Banner, A.J.
Shadow Cove, Washington, is the kind of town everyone dreams about—quaint streets, lush forests, and good neighbors. That’s what Sarah thinks as she settles into life with her new husband, Dr. Johnny McDonald. All too soon she discovers an undercurrent of deception. One October evening when Johnny is away, sudden tragedy destroys Sarah’s happiness.

The Marauders~Cooper, Tom
What do drug dealers, shrimpers, a BP oil representative and petty criminals on community service have in common? Told from each of their perspectives, their lives converge in the swampland of Jeannette, Louisiana, five years after Hurricane Katrina and the BP Oil spill.

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry~Backman, Fredrik
Seven year old Elsa, precocious, different, and bullied, is buoyed by her relationship with Granny, her superhero, and by Granny’s stories of a fairytale kingdom where being different is good. When Granny dies, Elsa carries out “quests” for Granny – delivering letters of apology to people Granny wronged. In the process, Elsa learns much about life, her family and friends, and Granny’s “stories.”

My Sunshine Away~Walsh, M.O.
The adult narrator recalls being a suspect in the rape of his neighborhood friend and crush Lindy Simpson when they were teens in 1989 Baton Rouge. In beautiful prose and with a strong sense of place and time, the story unfolds by alternating between past and current timeframes. Did the narrator commit this terrible act?

The Nightingale~Hannah, Kristin
Vianne and Isabelle live in German occupied France during World War II. Through them, we experience their different ways of living the war’s horrors and hardships. We witness the courage and strength of everyday people to do the impossible and what is necessary to fight for survival, ideals, country, and loved ones.

Paradise Sky~Lansdale Joe R.
A former slave named Willie flees home to the Old West, followed by his enemies and father’s killers. See him become Nat Love, aka Deadwood Dick, a masterful gunslinger who comes back to avenge himself for all that he has lost.

The Scribe~Guinn, Matthew
Thomas Canby is brought back to Atlanta to vindicate his name and help solve a gruesome murder spree that threatens to ruin the 1881 International Cotton Exposition. The “Ring” that pushed him out of town may somehow be involved. Alongside him is Cyrus Underwood, Atlanta’s first African American detective. The murders seem to be racially motivated, but there is more than meets the eye when the killings take a turn in another direction.

Seveneves~Stephenson, Neal
The moon has suddenly exploded, leaving the inhabitants of Earth to face their imminent demise. Is there a way to ensure the survival of humanity? Is genetics the key to the solution?

Sofrito~Diederich, Phillippe
Frank Delgado’s restaurant is in financial trouble. He hears of a fabulous secret chicken recipe, stolen from his uncle by the government of Cuba, his parent’s homeland.  Frank travels to Cuba with the dangerous task of trying to steal back the recipe. Amidst espionage, intrigue, love, and discoveries of family secrets, Frank falls in love with the Cuba of his parents’ youth.

The Stranger~Coben, Harlan
“Don’t talk to strangers.” A stranger approaches Adam and divulges a dark secret about his wife, Corinne. After he confronts her, she disappears. Working with Chief Johanna Griffin to unfold the stranger’s mysterious words, Adam learns that the most familiar may be more dangerous.

Sweet Damage~James, Rebecca
Tim Ellison feels lucky to find a cheap room to rent in a mansion close to his work in Sydney. The only condition is to look after the mysterious owner, twenty year old Anna. He slowly learns about her past and her crippling fears. Tim feels uneasy as odd, mysterious things begin to happen, but he is also strangely attracted to Anna. What’s really going on?

The Truth According to Us~Barrows, Annie
During the Depression, pampered Senator’s daughter, Layla Beck, is cut off from allowances and is sent to work as a writer for the WPA’s Writer’s Project in little old Macedonia, West Virginia. Soon she comes to like the small town and her work. She discovers dark secrets that some want to stay hidden, and she finds that people have different versions of the truth and of the town’s history.

Uprooted~Novik, Naomi
The Dragon, the wizard who protects the valley from the Wood’s evil encroachment, demands the most special village girl as payment every 10 years. Neither graceful nor beautiful, Agnieszka is shocked and terrified when the Dragon chooses her, but finds she has an aptitude for learning magic. Her adventures include a deadly quest, true friendship, and court intrigue.

The Water Knife~Bacigalupi, Paolo
After environmental catastrophes, Nevada and California wage a war for water rights. The American Southwest becomes a gritty world of big money, ruthless business and seedy undertakings. Angel, a “Water Knife” who gets water for his employer any way he can, and a journalist search for the elusive paperwork that is behind a slew of murders, while a teenage orphan refugee struggles to find a way out of Phoenix.

Armada

Black-Eyed Susans

The Book of Speculation

The Bookseller

The Buried Giant

City on Fire

Fates and Furies

The Fishermen

The Girl on the Train

Girl Underwater

The Gods of Tango

The Good Neighbor

The Marauders

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry

My Sunshine Away

The Nightingale

Paradise Sky

The Scribe

Seveneves

Sofrito

The Stranger

Sweet Damage

The Truth According to Us

Uprooted

The Water Knife

Reka Reynolds
Emily Fowler Central Library

25 Books to Read This Summer

Summer is upon us! Here is what our library staff is reading for Summer Reading Club:

The Lost Tudor Princess : The Life of Lady Margaret Douglas by Alison Weir
Kimberly Wells, Branch Manager

Margaret Douglas, Countess of Lennox. Royal Tudor blood ran in her veins. Her mother was a Queen, her father an Earl, and she herself was the granddaughter, niece, cousin and grandmother of monarchs.

Beautiful and tempestuous, she created scandal not just once but twice by falling in love with unsuitable men. Fortunately the marriage arranged for her turned into a love match.

 

 

 

 


Cinder
by Marissa Meyer

Sarah Ward, Teen Librarian

As plague ravages the overcrowded Earth, observed by a ruthless lunar people, Cinder, a gifted mechanic and cyborg, becomes involved with handsome Prince Kai and must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect the world in this futuristic take on the Cinderella story.

 

 

 

 

 


In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume
Sarah Ward, Teen Librarian

When a series of passenger airplanes crashed in Elizabeth, N.J., within a three-month period in 1951-1952, Judy Blume was a teenager. “These events have lingered in my mind ever since,” says Blume. Against this background, Blume uses her imagination to bring us the lives of three generations of families, friends, and strangers who will be profoundly affected by these events, either directly or indirectly.

 

 

 

 


The Moon in the Palace
by Weina Dai Randel
Reka Reynolds, Senior Librarian

A concubine at the palace learns quickly that there are many ways to capture the Emperor’s attention. Many paint their faces white and style their hair attractively, hoping to lure in the One Above All with their beauty. Some present him with fantastic gifts, such as jade pendants and scrolls of calligraphy, while others rely on their knowledge of seduction to draw his interest. But young Mei knows nothing of these womanly arts, yet she will give the Emperor a gift he can never forget.

Mei’s intelligence and curiosity, the same traits that make her an outcast among the other concubines, impress the Emperor. But just as she is in a position to seduce the most powerful man in China, divided loyalties split the palace in two, culminating in a perilous battle that Mei can only hope to survive.

 

Clementine: The Life of Mrs. Winston Churchill by Sonia Purnell
Kerry Montz, Business Outreach Librarian

A portrait of Winston Churchill’s extraordinary wife and her lesser-known role in World War II discusses her relationship with political mentor Eleanor Roosevelt, her role in safeguarding Churchill’s health throughout key historical events and her controversial family priorities.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Paper Girls #1
 by Brian K. Vaughan

Leslie Couture, Library Assistant

In the early hours after Halloween on 1988, four
12-year-old newspaper delivery girls uncover the
most important story of all time. Suburban drama
and supernatural mysteries collide in this series
about nostalgia, first jobs, and the last days of childhood.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Pecan Man by Cassie Dandridge Selleck
Leslie Couture, Library Assistant

In the summer of 1976, recently widowed and childless, Ora Lee Beckworth hires a homeless old black man to mow her lawn. The neighborhood children call him the Pee-can Man; their mothers call them inside whenever he appears. When he is arrested for murder, only Ora knows what really happened in the woods where Eddie lived. But truth is a fickle thing, and a lie is self-perpetuating. Ora and her maid Blanche soon find themselves in a web of lies that send an innocent man to prison for the rest of his life. Twenty-five years later, Ora sets out to tell the truth about the Pecan Man.

 

 

 

John B. Denton by Nita Thurman
Laura Douglas, Senior Librarian – Special Collections

John B. Denton was a frontiersman in Arkansas and Texas, a Methodist minister, lawyer, Ranger captain, husband, and father. After his death in 1841, contradictory stories grew up around him. This book is an attempt to separate fact from legend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ms. Marvel Series by G. Willow Wilson
Sara Davis, Library Assistant

Kamala Khan is an ordinary girl from Jersey City- until she’s suddenly empowered with extraordinary gifts. But who truly is the new Ms. Marvel? Teenager? Muslim? Inhuman? Find out as she takes the Marvel Universe by storm! When Kamala discovers the dangers of her newfound powers, she unlocks a secret behind them, as well. Is Kamala ready to wield these immense new gifts? Or will the weight of the legacy before her be too much to bear? Kamala has no idea, either. But she’s comin’ for you, New York!

 

 

 

Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky
Sara Davis, Library Assistant

Alone at home, twelve-year-old Grayson Sender glows, immersed in beautiful thoughts and dreams. But at school, Grayson grasps at shadows, determined to fly under the radar. Because Grayson has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: “he” is a girl on the inside, stuck in the wrong gender’s body.

The weight of this secret is crushing, but leaving it behind would mean facing ridicule, scorn, and rejection. Despite these dangers, Grayson’s true self itches to break free. Strengthened by an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher who gives her a chance to step into the spotlight, Grayson might finally have the tools to let her inner light shine.

 

 

Deborah Knott Mysteries by Margaret Maron
Stacey Irish-Keffer, Youth Librarian

This first novel in Maron’s Imperfect series, which won the Edgar Award for best mystery novel in 1993, introduces heroine Deborah Knott, an attorney and the daughter of an infamous North Carolina bootlegger. Known for her knowledge of the region’s past and popular with the locals, Deb is asked by 18-year-old Gayle Whitehead to investigate the unsolved murder of her mother Janie, who died when Gayle was an infant. While visiting the owner of the property where Janie’s body was found, Deb learns of Janie’s more-than-promiscuous past. Piecing together lost clues and buried secrets Deb is introduced to Janie’s darker side, but it’s not until another murder occurs that she uncovers the truth.

 

 

The Golden Age of Murder by Martin Edwards
Terri Gibbs, Director of Libraries

A real-life detective story, investigating how Agatha Christie and colleagues in a mysterious literary club transformed crime fiction, writing books casting new light on unsolved murders whilst hiding clues to their authors’ darkest secrets.

This is the first book about the Detection Club, the world’s most famous and most mysterious social network of crime writers. Drawing on years of in-depth research, it reveals the astonishing story of how members such as Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers reinvented detective fiction.

 

 

 

The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky
Sarah Fullwood, Library Marketing

A tale of patricide & family rivalry that embodies the moral & spiritual dissolution of an entire society (Russia in the 1870s). To Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov captured the quintessence of Russian character in all its exaltation, compassion, & profligacy. Significantly, the book was on Tolstoy’s bedside table when he died. Readers in every language have since accepted Dostoevsky’s own evaluation of this work & have gone further by proclaiming it one of the few great novels of all ages & countries.

 

 

 

Wedding Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke
Carmen Grant, Adult Librarian

Hannah is thrilled to be marrying Ross Barton, her college crush. And her excitement only grows when she learns he’ll be able to join her on her trip to New York City for the Food Channel’s dessert chef contest. She’s especially nervous about facing Alain Duquesne, a celebrity chef with a nasty reputation. But before he can tear into Hannah’s layer cake, she finds him stabbed to death on the show’s kitchen set. Out of the oven, as the saying goes, and into the bright lights of Broadway, as Hannah tries to solve a mystery with more layers than a five-tiered wedding cake…

 

 

 

The Forgotten Room by Karen White
Reka Reynolds, Senior Librarian

1945: When the critically wounded Captain Cooper Ravenal is brought to a private hospital on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, young Dr. Kate Schuyler is drawn into a complex mystery that connects three generations of women in her family to a single extraordinary room in a Gilded Age mansion. Who is the woman in Captain Ravenel’s portrait miniature who looks so much like Kate? And why is she wearing the ruby pendant handed down to Kate by her mother? In their pursuit of answers, they find themselves drawn into the turbulent stories of Gilded Age Olive Van Alen, driven from riches to rags, who hired out as a servant in the very house her father designed, and Jazz Age Lucy Young, who came from Brooklyn to Manhattan in pursuit of the father she had never known. But are Kate and Cooper ready for the secrets that will be revealed in The Forgotten Room?

The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman
Dawn Terrizzi, Adult Librarian

Birds are astonishingly intelligent creatures. In fact, according to revolutionary new research, some birds rival primates and even humans in their remarkable forms of intelligence. Like humans, many birds have enormous brains relative to their size. Although small, bird brains are packed with neurons that allow them to punch well above their weight. In The Genius of Birds, acclaimed author Jennifer Ackerman explores the newly discovered brilliance of birds and how it came about.

 

 

 

 

Summer Days and Nights by Wong Herbert Yee
Dawn Terrizzi, Adult Librarian

On a hot summer day, a little girl finds ways to entertain herself and stay cool. She catches a butterfly, sips lemonade, jumps in a pool, and goes on a picnic. At night, she sees an owl in a tree and a frog in a pond, and hears leaves rustling. Before long, she’s fast asleep, dreaming about more summer days and summer nights.

The King in Yellow adapted from the short stories of
Robert W. Chambers; adapted & illustrated by I.N.J. Culbard
Dana Tucker, Teen Librarian

The King in Yellow: a play that brings madness to all who read it. Irresistible and insidious, it lures the reader with its innocence and dooms them with its corruption. In a series of interlinked stories, Robert W. Chambers’ classic work of weird fiction shows the creeping spread of the play’s macabre touch. I.N.J. Culbard’s deft and unsettling adaptation breathes new life into Chambers’ influential masterpiece, expertly revealing the malice and mayhem that await those unlucky enough to turn the wrong page.

 

 

 

 

 

After the People Lights Have Gone Off
by Stephen Graham Jones
Dana Tucker, Teen Librarian

A collection of stories that tap into the horrors and fears of the supernatural- as well as the everyday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ubik by Phillip K. Dick
Melanie Johnston, Library Assistant

Glen Runciter runs a lucrative business—deploying his teams of anti-psychics to corporate clients who want privacy and security from psychic spies. But when he and his top team are ambushed by a rival, he is gravely injured and placed in “half-life,” a dreamlike state of suspended animation. Soon, though, the surviving members of the team begin experiencing some strange phenomena, such as Runciter’s face appearing on coins and the world seeming to move backward in time. As consumables deteriorate and technology gets ever more primitive, the group needs to find out what is causing the shifts and what a mysterious product called Ubik has to do with it all.

 

 

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Melanie Johnston, Library Assistant

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone. A convict with a thirst for revenge. A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager. A runaway with a privileged past. A spy known as the Wraith. A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums. A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes. Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction- if they don’t kill each other first.

 

Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye
Jennifer Bekker, Branch Manager

A sensitive orphan, Jane Steele suffers first at the hands of her spiteful aunt and predatory cousin, then at a grim school where she fights for her very life until escaping to London, leaving the corpses of her tormentors behind her. After years of hiding from the law, Jane discovers her aunt has died and her childhood home has a new master: Mr. Charles Thornfield, who seeks a governess. Jane takes the position incognito, and falls in love with the fascinating but caustic Mr. Thornfield, an army doctor returned from the Sikh Wars. Can she possess him– body, soul, and secrets– without revealing her own murderous past?

 

 

The Rainbow Comes and Goes: A Mother and Son on Life, Love, and Loss
by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt
Rebecca Ivey, Youth Librarian

Correspondence between the CNN journalist and his celebrated mother, exchanged in the aftermath of the latter’s brief illness, shares a rare window into their relationship and the life lessons imparted by an aging mother to her adult son.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five Presidents: My Extraordinary Journey with
Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Ford by Clint Hill
Carmen Grant, Adult Librarian

Secret Service agent Clint Hill brings history intimately and vividly to life as he reflects on his seventeen years protecting the most powerful office in the nation. Hill walked alongside Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard M. Nixon, and Gerald R. Ford, seeing them through a long, tumultuous era—the Cold War; the Cuban Missile Crisis; the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Robert F. Kennedy; the Vietnam War; Watergate; and the resignations of Spiro Agnew and Richard M. Nixon.

 

 

 

The Isle of the Lost by Melissa Cruz
Rebecca Ivey, Youth Librarian

Twenty years ago, all the evil villains were banished from the kingdom of Auradon and made to live in virtual imprisonment on the Isle of the Lost. The island is surrounded by a magical force field that keeps the villains and their descendants safely locked up and away from the mainland. Life on the island is dark and dreary. It is a dirty, decrepit place that’s been left to rot and forgotten by the world.

But hidden in the mysterious Forbidden Fortress is a dragon’s eye: the key to true darkness and the villains’ only hope of escape. Only the cleverest, evilest, nastiest little villain can find it…who will it be?

 

 

 

– Sarah Fullwood, Library Marketing

Summer Break Boredom Busters

It’s almost that time!  Summer break is right around the corner.  In fact, as any grade school student can tell you, there’s exactly six school days until the end of the year.

It’s the season of longer days, laid back bedtimes, and even with all the fun trips and summer camps, you’re still destined to hear those two little words:  “I’m boooooored!” Here at Denton Public Library, we’ve got you covered.  Of course we have our Summer Reading Club that starts June 2.  This all ages club rewards you and your children with prizes for reading over the summer.  We’ve also planned an awesome line up of fun summer activities for all ages.  Check out our programs catalog here.

In addition to all the great programs we have this summer, we also have lots of titles you can check out to get through the long days of summer at home.  Here are some of our favorites:

I'm bored!

I’m bored! by Suzy Barratt and Polly Beard is the perfect place to start to keep the kids entertained this summer.  This title has solutions for rainy days at home, car trips, and more.

 

Catch a fish

Catch a Fish, Throw a Ball, Fly a Kite:  21 Timeless Skills Every Child Should Know by Jeffrey Lee is a great book when you’re ready to get back to basics.  Skills include working a yo-yo, skipping stones, building a fire, and more.

 

siblings busy book

The Siblings’ Busy Book by Lisa Hanson & Heather Kempskie is for parents who have children of varying ages.  Activities are designed so that siblings work together and are equally stimulating for each age.

 

101 kids

 

 

 

 

 

 

101 Kids Activities That are the Bestest, Funnest Ever! by Holly Homer & Rachel Miller is also a great choice for children of all ages.  This book will really bring out the creative side of children and adults.

big book of things to make

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Big Book of Things to Make by James Mitchem is a great book for the young makers of your home.  Fun activities include building a sand castle, sinking a pirate ship, and more.

These titles can all be reserved online or in person at one of our reference desks.

Sarah, Teen Services Librarian – South Branch

 

Novels with Humor

Do you like to read humorous stories or novels?  I do.  Janet Evanovich is one of my favorite authors for humor.  Seven-Up, of the Stephanie Plum series, is still my favorite book. I still laugh hard when reading the book.  I love to see how Stephanie is going to get out of the scrapes she gets into and how her cars always seem to blow up.

Another author I read is Susan Elizabeth Phillips.  I like to think of her writing as a cross between Nora Roberts and Janet Evanovich.  Sexy and funny.  The girl walking down the side of the road in a beaver suit in Natural Born Charmer had me in stitches.

You cannot leave out Dave Berry for humor. All his books leave you laughing. His novel, Tricky Business should not be read in a doctor’s office.  You will get funny looks as you try your hardest not to laugh out loud.  I speak from experience.  These are a few of my favorite humor authors.  Who are your favorite humor authors?

Carmen, Denton Public Library North Branch

Janet Evanovich          Susan Elizabeth Phillips          Dave Barry