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Staff Reviews 2009

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Ever wonder what the West Milford Township Library staff reads for enjoyment? Here’s your answer! Check out a few of these titles and see if you agree with our staff’s ratings.  ♦♦♦♦ Marvelous  ♦♦♦ Well worth reading ♦♦ Just ok ♦ Skip this one

Fiction

F ALL
Allen, Sarah Addison.
Garden Spells.
Garden Spells is a tale of two adult sisters, Sydney and Claire, who have followed different paths, but are reunited when Sydney returns to her North Carolina childhood home where Claire has been living. A magical debut novel that made me care about all the characters from page one. Liz’s rating - ♦♦♦

F COL
Collins, James.
Beginner’s Greek.
Peter and Holly are made for each other. Unfortunately, life throws Peter a curve ball when he loses Holly’s phone number. As life puts many obstacles between them, one wonders if they will ever get together. The story will appeal to “Chick Lit” fans, though at times the tale is a bit like a soap opera. Elaine’s rating - ♦♦♦

F COO
Cooper, James Fenimore.
The Last of the Mohicans.
After starting up slowly, The Last of the Mohicans picks up after fifty pages. The novel is significantly different from the movie, but just as exciting. The action all takes place in the Lake George region, and is based around the actual events of the massacre at Fort William Henry. Bruce’s rating - ♦♦♦

F EVA
Evanovich, Janet.
Fearless Fourteen.
This classic Stephanie Plum story is full of good times and fattening food. No new developments in the lives of the characters, but Evanovich is always good for an easy laugh out loud read. Aimee’s rating - ♦♦♦

F EVA
Evanovich, Janet.
One for the Money.
Here we meet Stephanie Plum—typical Jersey girl—street smart, tough and can laugh at herself. She’s broke, needs a job and becomes, of all things, a bounty hunter. One for the Money keeps you interested from start to finish. The character, Grandma Mazu is the best. I laughed out loud while reading about her. A great mystery with lots of humor. Kitty’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

F FOL
Follett, Ken.
Pillars of the Earth.
I really enjoyed this book. Set in England during the 1100s, it involves architecture, religion and survival. The sequel–World Without End–pleased me as well; being set in the same town in the 1300s. I didn’t want the story to end and I’m happy that I didn’t live in that era. Details about early “doctors” and nurses during the plague were fascinating. Beth’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

F HIL
Hill, Susan.
The Man in the Picture.
Susan Hill quickly takes you back in time into a dream-like atmosphere. A painting, which has people looking directly back at you pleading for help, haunts its owners. Find out how the painting changes and why it haunts in this quick, easy, scary read. Elaine’s rating - ♦♦♦

F MAC
Macomber, Debbie.
Thursdays at Eight.
While taking a journal-writing class, a group of women hit it off so well, they continue to meet after the class is over. These four different women find a connection, help each other though life’s ups and downs, and ultimately learn from one another. Janine’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

F MCC
McCall Smith, Alexander.
The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency.
Mma Ramotswe opens her own detective agency in Africa. Being sensitive to her clients’ problems, she handles their dilemmas with grace. Alexander McCall Smith’s description of Africa makes me want to go there. Gina’s rating - ♦♦♦

F PAR
Parker, Robert.
Rough Weather.
This is another good Spenser mystery—a great story—with twists and turns. As always, the crisp writing and witty repartee between Spenser, Hawk and Susan, and other characters, makes one laugh out loud, chuckle softly and even moan a few times. Sue’s rating - ♦♦♦

F PAT
Patterson, James.
Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas.
Matt disappears leaving his girlfriend Katie a diary written by his first wife Suzanne for their son. In this touching and well written story, Patterson conveys both tender and honest emotions. Jane’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

F SHR
Shreve, Anita.
Testimony.
A scandal at a New England boarding school begins Anita Shreve’s story. All Shreve’s characters are affected by the scandal and all have a voice in the book. Testimony reveals how the outcome of one school party affects so many lives. Deb M.’s rating - ♦♦♦

F WIN
Winston, Lolly.
Good Grief.
Sophie is in her thirties and has recently lost her husband to cancer. She deals with cleaning out his closet, grief support groups and deciding when to take off her wedding ring. Even though life has taken a turn she never anticipated, she finds happiness and friends where she least expects it and ultimately finds herself. Good Grief is sweet and surprisingly funny — a “must read.” Dale’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

Biography

B GILBERT
Gilbert, Elizabeth.
Eat, Pray, Love.
Eat, Pray, Love is a record of the author’s personal journey of self-discovery after a failed marriage and painful divorce. Gilbert’s search for happiness of the soul is a truly uplifting story that reaches out to readers and makes them want to re-examine their own life and spirituality. Julie’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

Nonfiction

364.152 SWA
Swanson, James L.
Manhunt: the Twelve Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer.
This incredible 391 page book takes its reader along with it in chasing down John Wilkes Booth. It follows the search through letters, pictures, newspaper articles and even Booth’s own diary entries. History lover or not, this book is absolutely worth reading. Maria’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

636.8 MYR
Myron, Vicki.
Dewey: a Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World.
Dewey tells the true story of a kitten placed in the drop-box at a library in Iowa in the middle of the winter. The director found and adopted him, naming him Dewey Readmore Books. He became the resident library cat, beloved by all. Well written and illustrated, I would highly recommend this book, especially if you like cats! Deb P.’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

920 FIS
Fisher, Robin Gaby.
After the Fire: a True Story of Friendship and Survival.
Heartbreaking and graphic, this ultimately hopeful story of two freshman roommates burned in the Seton Hall University fire in 2000 is an inspiring reminder of the courage and strength of the human spirit. Joanne’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

Juvenile

J SPI
Spinelli, Jerry.
Maniac Magee.
Maniac Magee is a heartwarming story of love, acceptance and commitment to friends. The main characters Jeffrey, Amanda, John McNab and Mars Bar’s perseverance and depth of understanding can be measured beyond their years. I recommend this book to everyone! Theresa’s rating - ♦♦♦♦

CD J MAT
Matthews, Laura S.
Fish.
Young Tiger and his parents are forced to flee in secret from the war-torn country where they provide relief services. As their water supply dwindles, Tiger keeps a rescued fish alive in smaller and smaller containers—a cooking pot, a canteen, a tiny plastic bottle. The fish’s tenacity inspires hope for the travelers’ treacherous journey. Elyse’s rating - ♦♦♦♦