This Day in History August 31, 1888

On this day in 1888, prostitute Mary Ann Nichols is found murdered and mutilated. Mary Ann is the first known victim of London’s notorious serial killer known as JACK THE RIPPER. Over the next few months, four more victims would be identified as being killed by the same man, but no suspect was found.  It is believed that “Whitechapel Jack” was behind the murders of Mary Ann Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes, and Mary Jane Kelly; however, some believe that Jack The Ripper could have been responsible for up to eleven separate murders in London between 1888 and 1891. There has been endless speculation, and there have been numerous claims to have “solved” the Whitechapel murders, but historians and other “experts” cannot agree.  History buffs, true crime fans, and mystery lovers can all agree it is a case that intrigues us still to this day.

Jack the Ripper has inspired numerous accounts of his heinous crimes on film and in print, including both fiction and non-fiction. Will this case ever be solved?

The Cases That Haunt Us: From Jack the Ripper to Jon Benet Ramsey, The FBI's Legendary Mindhunter Sheds New Light on the Mysteries That Won't Go Away Ripper: The Secret Life of Walter Sickert by Patricia Cornwell Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper--Case Closed by Patricia Cornwell

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tessa Dare: Girl Meets Duke

Who is Tessa Dare?

Well, she’s a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than twenty historical romances. She is “a librarian by training and a book lover at heart”. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two children, and many kitties.

What does she write?

Tessa Dare writes amazing historical romances that are just to die for. She mixes emotion, love, sensuality, romance, and drama together and creates amazing stories and characters that will stay on your mind for years to come! Her stories are generally set in the regency time period (1811-1820), so no outrageously poofy dresses or white wigs.

Why is she different than other historical romance authors?

She creates unique heroines who engages in ‘unladylike’ pursuits from paleontology to beer-making. She also dreams up strong-willed heroic men who find their hearts captured by these heroines.

What’s Girl Meets Duke?

Girl Meets Duke is a new series Tessa Dare is writing that can also be read as stand-alone. Each book features a new couple and a new story line. Each male character is a Duke while the ladies each venture into a new world of sin….romance…and love. So far there are three published works with another title in the works!

Can I check them out?

Luckily for you, the Aurora Public Library has purchased them in both hardback and eBook! The Duchess Deal and The Governess Game can be found in our adult fiction in the D’s. The Wallflower Wager can be found on our New Releases shelf.

 

Set on the Subcontinent

The Indian subcontinent has an appealing allure with sites of incredible natural beauty, a myriad of cultures, and a complex history. Even if you can’t manage an actual trip to India, reading books set in India can give you a small taste of the complexity of Indian society. In no particular order, here’s a sample of books to get you started on your adventure.

The Toss of a Lemon by Padma Viswanathan

 

Padma Viswanathan brings to life the story of one member of a Brahmin household from 1896 through 1960 in The Toss of a Lemon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Widows of Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey The Satapur Moonstone by Sujata Massey Sujata Massey has a new mystery series set in 1920s Bombay and based loosely on that city’s first female lawyer. The series begins with The Widows of Malabar Hill and continues with The Satapur Moonstone.

 

 

 

 

Also set in the 1920s, but in Calcutta rather than Bombay, Abir Mukherjee’s Sam Wyndham series features a Scottish detective with an Indian partner. These books provide an interesting contrast between the members of the British ruling class and the Indians who fill many of the government positions.

A Rising Man by Abir Mukherjee  A Necessary Evil by Abir Mukherjee  Smoke and Ashes by Abir Mukherjee

Arundhati Roy’s books have been critically acclaimed, including a Booker Prize for The God of Small Things.

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy    The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy

Any of these works of literature will transport you to a new world full of family drama, cultural nuances, and unfamiliar landscapes.

The World We Found by Thrity Umrigar The Weight of Heaven by Thrity Umrigar The Way Things Were by Aatish Taseer

A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth The Romantics by Pankaj Mishra Last Man in Tower by Aravind Adiga

A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry All the Lives We Never Lived by Anuradha Roy Nectar in a Sieve by Kamala Markandaya

You’ll be intrigued by the locations you’ll visit in these books, so you may want to check out our travel guide to India to learn more. You can also get more information through Global Road Warrior, an online resource available through the library webpage. Just sign in with your library card number!

 

Eloisa James: The Wildes of Lindow Castle

Who is Eloisa James?

Eloisa James is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a mother and a wife. When Eloisa isn’t writing novels, she is a Shakespeare professor.

What does Eloisa James write?

Eloisa James writes historical romances. Occasionally, you can find some Shakespearean themes within her stories.

Why is she different than other historical romance authors?

Eloisa James uses her own experiences as a mother in her stories. From a miscarriage to her own daughter’s problems as an infant, she connects each of her stories to herself in some unique way.

What’s The Wildes of Lindow Castle?

The Wildes of Lindow Castle is a series Eloisa James has began in 2017. The series follows the large family of the Duke of Lindow and is set in a castle. Think of Modern Family with a little of Downton Abbey mixed in. The stories are all set in the Georgian time period; yes, that means big wigs and poofy skirts! This also marks the beginning of the celebrity culture due to the printing press.

Where can I read them?

Print books by Eloisa James can be found in the Large Print collection or the Adult Fiction area under “J” for James. There are even more choices in our digital library.

 

Reading for a Book Challenge

One of the advantages of Book Clubs and Reading Challenges is that we are encouraged to read books we wouldn’t normally pick up. For the past few years, members of my family have participated in a Reading Challenge we downloaded from https://www.popsugar.com/. Each year, the website publishes a list of approximately 40 book categories, some of which are actually quite ridiculous. On January 1st, it’s game on!

My go-to genre is historical fiction, so here are some of the other books I’ve read this year to fulfill the Reading Challenge.

The Department of Sensitive Crimes by Alexander McCall Smith                        Silence by Thich Nhat Hanh

        Set in Scandinavia                                                                    An Asian author

The Wall by John Lanchester                   The Music Room by Namita Devidayal 

      A Climate-Change novel                                                            A book written by a musician

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon                      Circe by Madeline Miller

        Takes place in a single day                                                            Based on mythology

The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary by Andrew Westoll                             Sweet Caress by William Boyd

Recommended by a celebrity I admire                                         Title contains the word “sweet”

All of these turned out to be great reads even if they were different from my normal choices. I’ve also had fun comparing notes with other family members working on the same challenge!

What have you read this year that was a stretch for you? Have you discovered an interest in a new genre? Pass the word along, so we can try it, too.

Book Series Spotlight: Gone

This blog post was written by Brett Weaver, a college student who has been working at the Aurora Public Library District this summer, getting a behind-the-scenes look at Public Library service.

Are you a fan of the terror and suspense that comes from Stephen King novels? Or do you prefer the action and adventure that comes from an X-Men film? Then again, perhaps you are looking for something thought-provoking and themed around survival, like William Golding’s Lord of the Flies? While the library contains a fine selection of all three works, what if I were to tell you that there was a single book series that contained all three concepts, as well as so much more? If that sounds interesting, then look no further than Michael Grant’s Gone series.

Hunger by Michael Grant     Lies by Michael Grant

Set in a fictionalized Southern California town, Grant takes readers through the experience of what happens to the population of the town’s average teenage population, as well as the nearby teens of a private school for “troubled” youth, when all the residents older than fourteen disappear without a trace. Cut off from the outside world by a mysterious force-field, with no power, no internet, and little food, lines are quickly drawn and sides are quickly chosen as some of the teens attempt to figure out what happened to the adults, while also keeping themselves alive. Oh, and some of the kids develop superpowers. Did I mention the superpowers?

Plague by Michael Grant      Fear by Michael Grant    Light by Michael Grant

New in Non-Fiction

Maybe you’ve noticed that we’ve been adding a lot of new non-fiction books to our collection lately. The role of non-fiction books in public libraries has evolved in the past thirty years, with fewer people using print reference books, but with many people still reading popular non-fiction for pleasure or in support of a hobby. We try to purchase books from a variety of viewpoints (politics, anyone?) and buy many of the books on current best-seller lists. We are always open to suggestions, so don’t be shy about making recommendations! If there is a particular area of the collection that you think we need to update, feel free to let us know.

Here’s a sampling of the non-fiction titles currently on the New Shelf at one of our branches. We don’t always buy a copy for each branch, so once you scroll past the images, I’ll explain a way to see the new non-fiction at “the other branch”.

The Weather Machine by Andrew Blum Unfreedom of the Press by Mark R. Levin The Stressed Years of Their Lives by Hibbs and Rostain The Last Pirate of New York by Rich Cohen

The Idle Beekeeper by Bill Anderson The Family Next Door by John Glatt Spying on the South by Tony Horwitz A Tree in the House by Annabelle Hickson

Rough Magic by Lara Prior Palmer Reading Behind Bars by Jill Grunenwald One-Stitch Baby Knits by Val Pierce On the Clock by Emily Guendelsberger

Grow Your Own Herbs by Selsinger and Tucker Gather at the River by various authors Furious Hours by Casey Cep Chaos by Tom O'Neill

Down From the Mountain by Bryce Andrews  Blended Embroidery by Brian Haggard Beneath the Tamarind Sky by Isha Sesay Ballpark by Paul Goldberger

Basic Welding by William Galvery    Songs of America by Meacham and McGraw   Macrame for Home Decor by Samantha Grenier

There are actual two simple ways to search for new items that may not be at your regular branch. First, starting from the home page (https://eapld.org/), in the Search frame on the right-side of the page, select On-Line Catalog and hit “Go!” without entering a search term. This gets you into the catalog. You should see a tab labeled “New at the Library”. Click on that, and you can scroll through all the items added in the last couple of weeks.

Another method is to use the “Classic Catalog”. Again, starting from the home page (https://eapld.org/), in the Search frame, click on “Looking for the Classic Catalog.” Under the heading Classic Catalog, click on “Submit” without entering a search term. Follow the rest of these steps to locate new non-fiction:

  • Click “Search”.
  • Click on the “New” tab and select a time period in the box called “Received Since”.
  • Click “Set Limits” and scroll through the collection box to find “Non-Fiction.”
  • Select “All Branches”, “Aurora”, or “Dillsboro”, and hit “OK”
  • When it takes you back to the orange “New” screen, just click on “Search”
  • You should have a list of the newest Non-Fiction items at your chosen branch.

Happy Reading!

Gena Showalter

 

In today’s literary world, so many authors are venturing out and doing different genres and doing both young adult and adult books. Authors from Nick Hornby (About a Boy and Slam) to Meg Cabot (Princess Diaries and Overbite) to Richelle Mead (Vampire Academy and Georgina Kincaid). More and more authors are venturing out of their comfort zones and tackling a new category, whether they originally wrote young adult and are now writing adult or vice versa.

Gena Showalter first came known to the literary world with a contemporary romance duology called Imperia. She eventually went on to write a widely known and loved series called Lords of the Underworld. This popular series has 15 books, 3 novellas, one spin off series, and two upcoming publications!

She is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author with over thirty books in paranormal and contemporary romances. She also has 4 finished YA series and just released the first in a new YA series called The Forest of Good and Evil

Her first foray into the YA world was with her series, IntertwinedThis series follows sixteen year old, Aden Stone, who has four human souls within him. All four souls have a unique power such as time travel, raising the dead, possessing another human, or telling the future. Her second YA series, The White Rabbit Chronicles, a unique retelling of Alice in Wonderland, has taken her readers to a whole new world and created a loyal fan-base from the YA community. My personal favorite of her books is her YA series, Everlife, is a unique story like one you’ve never read before about what happens after your First Death!

 

School Stress

 

Making Choices and Making Friends

Growing FriendshipsSometimes, as adults, we forget how stressful school can be for children and teens. We never want to see our children struggle with social skills, educational challenges, or other school-related stresses. In addition to asking for advice from your child’s teacher, the library also has some resources to help you and your kids learn how to develop the assets they need to succeed in school.

Some of these titles are only available at the Aurora Public Library, but we’re always happy to send items to the Dillsboro Public Library, if that is more convenient for you.

How to Do Homework Without Throwing Up    Speak Up and Get Along!   Stress Can Really Get on Your Nerves

True or False? Tests Stink!   Proud to be YouCliques, Phonies, and Other Baloney

Pens, Pencils, and Crayons!

As kids and teachers prepare to get back to the classroom, I’d like to recommend a group of picture books featuring witty and wise writing implements. In addition to just being fun books to read, I can also see these as great springboards to “What If?” questions. What if a school bus could tell stories? What if the chalkboard giggled every time a teacher wrote on it? What if your writing paper refused to sit still?

Have you ever wondered how your crayons feel about the things you color? Does the blue crayon enjoy being used down to a nub coloring all that sky? Who knew it was so hard to be only used at Halloween? The “Day the Crayons” books take you into the inner world of the crayon box!

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt    The Day the Crayons Came Home by Drew Daywalt

The Little Red Pen by award-winning author Janet Stevens is a story of the dramatic rescue of a pen from a wastebasket. In a clever twist on Little Red Riding Hood, Little Red Writing  is trying to write an exciting story, but has to face the ravenous pencil sharpener, the Wolf 3000.

The Little Red Pen by Janet Stevens    Little Red Writing by Joan Holub

All of these books celebrate creativity, empathy, and cooperation. Read a few with your children or students, and then put pencil to paper to create your own story and illustrations.

Making Friends is an Art! by Julia Cook     My Crayons Talk by Patricia Hubbard

The Pencil by Allan Ahlberg    Linus the Little Yellow Pencil by Scott Magoon