Melanie's Picks

Noir by Christopher Moore

Christopher Moore fans will not be disappointed! Set in San Francisco, after the war, Moore introduces the reader to some very colorful, quirky, and likable characters; gimpy bartenders, hardworking waitresses, loyal friends and men in black! I thoroughly enjoyed this story, I laughed out loud and rooted for the protagonists.

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Sanders

I have never, ever read anything like this! It's about Abe Lincoln and the death of his son Willie at the dawn of the Civil War. Set over the course of one night and populated by ghosts - this is an exploration of grief, hope and love. What a strange and charming study of death and the human spirit. Well worth the read!!

Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry

Wonderfully Gothic, dimensional characters peppered with historical politics, an illicit romance, and a mystical serpent. What more could you ask for?

Jesuit Guide by James Martin

Humorously written spiritual guide to everyday life.

Nevermoor-The Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend

A delightful new series that is perfect for fans of Harry Potter and Neil Gaiman. Colorful characters, charming details, blooming friendships and the battle between good and evil! This book will keep your middle grade reader enthralled through the night!

A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline

Wow! Stunning, melancholy, historical realism. The book pairs with it's "namesake" painting perfectly. The author is masterful in her story-telling. She has captured the essence of her protagonist's life, in muted colors and starkness. 

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

A beautifully written, unforgettable Russian tale that has earned a spot high upon my "favorites" list. It is filled with grace, charm, elegance, dignity and beauty. The characters are my friends and I feel fortunate to know them!

Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero

We can thank Mr. Cantero for a dark, but funny, campy trip down memory lane. Be warned, these characters are not the same ones we remember - they have grown up damaged, made mistakes and have become more dimensional - with all the baggage that implies. Great fun! Loved the book!

At the Edge of the Orchard by Tracy Chevalier

It was a hard life in the Black Swamp. I will never forget these characters, so richly described and I have a new appreciation for apples and trees. The author expertly wound a story around a place, events, and people in history. 

Rise and Shine, Benedict Stone by Phaedra Patrick

A brilliant story about family, fresh starts and love - told with gentleness and grace. 

The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle by Janet Fox

Very scary, better for older middle school students. Set in England/Scotland during the 2nd World War, when parents sent their children away for safety, but these children were sent into danger. With wits and intelligence and a little magic, they defeat the evil lady of the castle.

The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick

A lovely story of overcoming loss and learning to leave your comfort zone and evolving, even at 70 years old!

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

An engaging, non-stop, sci-fi with twists and turns that kept me on the edge of my seat and awake long after midnight! Quick read-"unputdownable"

The Trap by Melanie Raabe

Super suspenseful story about an agoraphobic author trying to solve her sister's murder. Nice character development and lots of twists and turns.

The Girls by Emma Cline

In her eagerly awaited debut novel, Emma Cline uses the Manson family as a vehicle for her story which is really about being a young girl in California in the late 1960s, reeling from a parental divorce and the emotional journey of maturing. (Loved her style and the story).

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