Charley Davidson: A Series

Finally, I’d found a series that I could enjoy and stay entertained with! Darynda Jones‘ Charley Davidson series is the perfect series for romance lovers, mystery lovers, paranormal lovers, and even action lovers! Charley Davidson is the heroine of this beloved series (Of course! It’s named after her!), and she is amazing and kicks butt! Reyes Farrow is her love interest and is drop dead amazing and swoon-worthy! Cookie is her beloved best friend who keeps Charley on her feet! Every character within this series is so amazing and likable that you can’t help but love each and everyone of them, despite their faults!

Private investigator Charlotte Davidson was born with three things: looks; a healthy respect for the male anatomy; and the rather odd job title of grim reaper. Since the age of five, she has been helping the departed solve the mysteries of their deaths so they can cross. Charley’s dealing with a being more powerful – and definitely sexier – than any spectre she’s ever come across before. With the help of a nuisance skip tracer, a dead pubescent gang member named Angel, and a lifetime supply of sarcasm, Charley sets out to solve the highest profile case of the year and discovers that dodging bullets isn’t nearly as dangerous as falling in love. –Goodreads

Darynda Jones makes it her mission in writing to portray Charley as human, even though she’s supernatural, Charley makes mistakes and suffers with the same things that anyone would–all while the dead pass through her! She struggles with her life and everything she goes through in the series, that it’s sometimes hard to read her describe how she feels. Though, Darynda Jones will make anyone laugh! Charley is a hilarious and unique character that stays the same beloved person through the whole series!

If you enjoy Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum Series, then Charley Davidson should be your next series to read! There’s twelve books out and the thirteenth and final book comes out this January! Be on the look out!!!

Jodi Picoult: Standalone and Controversy Queen

Jodi Picoult’s first novel — Songs of a Humpback Whale — was published in 1992, after she graduated from Princeton University with a degree in creative writing in 1987. She has been steadily releasing new fiction ever since, taking on more controversial and current events topics with each new release. Her newest novel, A Spark of Light, takes on the hot button issues of gun control and women’s reproductive rights. In total, Picoult has authored 25 novels so far that have been translated into thirty-four languages in thirty-five countries, as well as five Wonder Woman comic book issues for DC Comics, short stories, and a Broadway musical. Five of her novels have even been made into movies.

I have read about half of her novels so far and am always eager to see what she will come out with next. Currently, I’m reading her newest, A Spark of Light, which drew me in from the very first scene.

The majority of Picoult’s books deal with heavy topics, like school shootings, racism, suicide, and the Holocaust. The characters in her stories are never strictly black or white, but are filled with gray areas and ambiguities that make you question what you thought you believed in as well. She also never comes down one way or the other on issues, either, and leaves many endings open-ended, allowing the reader to decide for himself or herself what he or she wants to believe. Sometimes after reading one of her novels, one doesn’t know what to believe anymore, or what side of an issue one should be on. Novels that make me think are my favorite kinds of novels.

Picoult is also known for her dramatic courtroom scenes, where lawyers will believably attempt to argue for or against characters and issues, but who come with their own baggage as well. It is also guaranteed that there will be a twist right at the end of every novel that the reader will not see coming, no matter how closely they are following along. I always hate when I can figure out the ending before the author gives it to me, so I usually read the last few pages of the book once I get into it to see if I’m right. With Picoult, I am always confused by the last few pages and never see the twist coming even though I know it’s going to happen.

But one of the best things about Picoult’s books as that they are all — with the exception of her young adult duology she co-wrote with her daughter — standalones. Her books are perfect for when you need to take a break between series, or are waiting for the next installment to come out, or even if you’re just looking for quick reads. There are some recurring characters spread across some of her standalones, but you don’t have to have read any of her other novels that these characters are featured in. But be careful; most of the time the characters’ actions and what they’re not saying speak louder than what they are saying, so sometimes you have to do some reading between the lines.

Try these out:

Handle With Care

The Pact

Nineteen Minutes

The Storyteller

Plain Truth

Leaving Time

Second Glance

My Sister’s Keeper

Salem Falls

Or any of her other novels! Then come find me and we’ll discuss at length.

Happy Reading!

Want or Need a Book We Don’t Have?

Both the Aurora Public Library and the Dillsboro Public Library have hundreds of books combined. Though our collection is quite extensive and filled with every kind of book, there’s no possible way to have every single book in the world ever published. So thankfully we have a service called Inter-library loan.

Our ILL service gives our members access to a much wider range of materials than normally possible.

 

WHO CAN USE OUR ILL SERVICE?

Any patron in good standing who has a membership that includes borrowing privileges.

 

WHAT CAN BE BORROWED?

Books, audio-books, movies, seasons, etc.

 

WHAT’S THE COST?

If we can get the item from within our state, there isn’t a charge!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Occasionally, we won’t be able to find an item and in this case any item received from out of state will carry a postage charge that depends on the material’s size and its weight. You are able to specify whether you’d like to avoid charges at the time of your request.

 

BEFORE PLACING A REQUEST:

If the desired material is part of our Library’s current collection, we will not borrow it from another library.

However, if we have a title in Large Print and you would like it to be in regular print, we are able to borrow the title that way. As well as wishing for a title that is in regular print in large print.

If the material is less than six months old, many libraries will not lend it out. In many cases, we will add the material to our collection request.

*A collection request is a database we keep for any books that you wish for the library to purchase that is newer than six months old. We may or may not purchase the material depending on a vary of reasons.

Many ILL’s will take 7-14 business days to arrive, if you need the material sooner than that, it may be wise to consider another alternative.

 

CHECKING OUT YOUR ILL:

When your loan has arrived, you will receive a notification from your preferred method (normally a phone call).

If you do receive a material from out of state, a charge will be placed on your account with an explanation.

Just like any other item within our collection, you will be responsible to return your item.

Late fees may apply.

 

AM I ABLE TO RENEW?

Occasionally, a library will allow a renewal. If you are in need of a renewal, please contact the Aurora Library or the Dillsboro Library before the date your item is due.

We can give up to a week renewal while waiting for a reply back from the current lending library.

 

RETURNING MY ILL:

Because the materials are owned by other Libraries, it is important to return the materials in a timely manner. The due dates are generally determined by the lending library and can be as long as a month or as short as two weeks. Any fines/fees due to the material being returned late will be determined by the lending library and will be charged to you.

 

If you know exactly what item you would like, you are more than welcome to fill out our form on our website or come in or call either branch to request an ILL today!

 

If you request a DVD, the DVD will not count towards our DVD limit.  This is the same for TV shows, as well.

Example: You request Lady Bird, and we receive the DVD from another library. You can still also check out two other DVD’s from our library.

 

 

The Iron Druid Series

Fans of Kevin Hearne are excited and heartbroken (if it is possible to be both) at the announcement of the final installment in the Iron Druid series. Fans of  mythology, talking Irish wolfhounds and great storytelling will love this series. It is set in our world (the first couple of books are set in Tempe, Arizona) where supernatural creatures exist, such as witches, vampires, werewolves, as well as gods and goddesses from various mythologies. The series is told in the first-person point-of-view of Atticus O’Sullivan (aka. Siodhachan O Suileabhain), a Druid who owns and runs an occult bookshop, Third Eye Books and Herbs, as he gets embroiled in the day-to-day struggle of gods and goddesses and other supernatural creatures. I have truly enjoyed this series. I will certainly mourn the loss of Atticus and his dog Oberon. Visit Kevin’s webpage at https://kevinhearne.com/ for more entertaining antics and info written by the dog.

The following open letter is from Kevin to his fans announcing SCOURGED:

Hey there, Spiffy Humans!

It’s a bit bewildering to be writing this letter to you. When I began writing Hounded in 2008, I had no idea that I was beginning a ten-year odyssey that would see the publication of nine Iron Druid novels, five novellas, and myriad short stories. I wrote Hounded to scratch several itches: the desire to present Irish paganism in more depth than a couple of its more popular goddesses, while simultaneously presenting all faiths as equally valid; to geek out about pop culture one moment and Shakespeare the next; speculate about what a long life would do to the psyche of humans and gods; and to indulge my boundless affection for doggies and their infinite appreciation of simple things.

I figure we could all stand to be reminded that simple pleasures are the best, and that’s part of the reason why Oberon the Irish wolfhound has become so popular. What’s not to like about sausage and gravy? Or poodles, for that matter. Belly rubs and naps. And maybe just a dash of conspiracy theory for drama, like the absolute fact that squirrels are most definitely planning to kill us all, and somewhere on the outskirts of Seattle, a scientist in a secret lab has created the Triple Nonfat Double Bacon Five-Cheese Mocha. Living in the present for such pleasures is the key to achieving a hound’s best life, and Oberon reminds Atticus that despite the trials of his past, much remains to be loved today-right now!-and we, too, could use a friend like him to point out that even in the midst of a rather rough world, there is still plenty in this moment to savor and cherish.

I certainly hope you’ll savor the last book of the Iron Druid Chronicles, Scourged, which wraps up many of the series’ long-running conflicts and leaves us with the possibility of revisiting the world later on. I’m currently working on two other series (The Seven Kennings and the Tales of Pell with Delilah S. Dawson), but there is room for further adventures should my schedule (and the Muses) allow. But this particular story arc with Atticus has been building to a head for a long while. Seeds of the final conflict and its resolution can be seen not only in the previous books, but in short stories like “The Chapel Perilous” that I originally wrote for an anthology, novellas like Grimoire of the Lamb, and most especially “Cuddle Dungeon,” a story I wrote for the Besieged collection.

It’s been a tremendous privilege to write these books and I thank you all for reading. May harmony (and sausage) find you.

Peace & whiskey,

Kevin Hearne

For the love of reading…and eating!!

 

Image result for cinnamon rolls

Our minds need enrichment, and I feed mine every time I pick up a book. But lately, I’ve been able to build up more than my mind with my book selections. My latest craze has been choosing different book series’ dealing with food. My selections have been providing entertaining stories with the added benefit of quite an array of new recipes and dishes to try. Who knew that an enjoyable fiction title would also increase my cooking repertoire!

My most recent obsession has been the Seasons of the Heart series by Charlotte Hubbard, set in the Amish river town of Willow Ridge, Missouri. The Sweet Seasons Bakery Café, run by Miriam Lantz with her twin daughters, Rachel and Rhonda, is at the center of this light romance series. At the end of each title are recipes for the tasty treats served up at the Amish cafe. Cinnamon rolls are my favorite treat and there is a recipe for the rolls Miriam serves her customers, made with a boxed cake mix starter!

                               

If mysteries are more to your taste, why not try the “cozy” crime series by Joanne Fluke, featuring Hannah Swenson. Hannah returns to her hometown of Lake Eden, MN after her father’s death, opens a bakery/cafe, the Cookie Jar, and soon becomes an amateur detective sleuthing out murders. Of course, delectable dessert recipes are a welcome addition to each title.

                        

Another author, Diane Mott Davidson, is known for the humor, quirky characters, and small town feeling of her cozy culinary mysteries. Caterer Goldy Bear is a smart heroine, whose ability to juggle her work and personal life (as well as murder investigations) makes her very appealing to readers. Using the process of cooking as a counterpoint, Davidson sets up a clever mystery and leaves clues.

                            

If you’re more interested in looking for recipes, without reading a whole book, we even have cookbook collections from many authors. The Cozy Cookbook serves up mouth-watering appetizers, entrees, and desserts from some of the most popular names in crime solving.

The Lake Eden Cookbook collects recipes, some previously published in the author’s mystery series starring Hannah Swensen, and includes a story, interspersed throughout the recipes, of the annual holiday cookie exchange in Lake Eden.

Miriam’s Cookbook by Carrie Bender is a collection of recipes interspersed with quotes from her books in the Miriam’s Journal and Whispering Brook Series. Here you find food for the body and soul.

I hope you find a great recipe that you’d like to try from one of the many “books that cook!”

TV Shows From Books: A Discovery of Witches

 

Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery, so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks, but her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries–and she’s the only creature who can break its spell. ~ Goodreads.com

Finally, the film adaptation of Deborah Harkness’s All Souls Trilogy is under way. If you have not read the New York Times Bestselling author’s “The All Souls Trilogy” including:

 A Discovery of Witches,

 

 

 

 

 Shadow of Night,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and The Book of Life, then stop by the Aurora Public Library or Dillsboro Public Library and pick up a copy. We also have digital copies available on the Indiana Digital Download Center.

 

Deborah Harkness, magical history scholar and professor, invites us into a world where vampires, witches, and daemons have coexisted with humans without raising the suspicions of humans, but only because of the covenant. The covenant is an ancient pact between vampires, witches, and daemons to never interfere in human religion or politics, as well as, never allowing the species to intermix. When Diana Bishop comes in contact with the manuscript, Ashmole 782, the entire community of creatures take notice. Most significantly Matthew Clairmont, geneticist scholar, professor, and antiquated vampire, is determined to discover the secrets Ashmole 782 has been hiding. His determination is diverted by his surprising curiosity and attraction to Diana. When Diana is then threatened by another witch over the whereabouts of Ashmole 782, Matthew’s protective instincts are activated and the epic saga of Matthew and Diana’s alliance begins.

To stay current on all things “All Souls” check out Deborah’s website. With input from Deborah, the television show is being produced by Bad Wolf studios based in Wales and although we do not know when or where it will be broadcast we do know that Bad Wolf has agreed to work with the partnership of SKY and HBO. Also, being published on May 8, 2018 is The World of All Souls: The Complete Guide to A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life , which gives insight into Deborah’s creative process, and includes fun facts, fan art, and character inspiration. Although the “All Souls Trilogy” is a completed story unto itself, Deborah has spoken about working on more novels to be added to the universe. I am beyond excited to see Teresa Palmer and Matthew Goode depict the magic of Matthew and Diana, so keep checking out Deborah’s Facebook page for insider tidbits.

A Song of Ice and Fire: A Game of Thrones

The first book in George R.R. Martin’s epic A Song of Ice and Fire fantasy series, A Game of Thrones, was first published in 1996, and in those twenty-plus years, it has become iconic, especially with the recent television series airing on HBO since 2011. If you’re wondering what all the hype is about (or you’re just ready to jump on the bandwagon since Season 7 has just begun), the Aurora Public Library District is here to help you get started!

A Game of Thrones follows three different storylines simultaneously, introducing numerous important characters and plots in which families fight for control over the Iron Throne. In the first book, we are introduced to the Stark and Lannister families, Jon Snow, Prince Joffrey, Princess Daenerys, and more; each character has his or her own agenda. Families are split apart, alliances are made, and characters are forced to make decisions that test their characters. And hanging over all the plots and subplots is the fact that winter is coming with no end in sight. The series is filled with high fantasy scenes with dragons and magic, vivid descriptions of guts and gore, and human characters who fall into a category of grayness in which even the villains are not entirely evil.

The Aurora Public Library District owns the first five books in the series both as physical copies and as digital copies on the Indiana Digital Download Center. We also have the audiobook versions of the series, but it can definitely get confusing to listen to and keep track of all the different characters.

The television series is said to be fairly faithful to the books, although the timelines of certain plot points are a little off. The Aurora Public Library District owns Seasons 1-6 housed at the Aurora Public Library that you can check out for one week. DVDs cannot be renewed, but you can bring the DVD back into a branch to check back out to yourself. If you are a Dillsboro patron, you can also request that the DVDs to be sent to the Dillsboro Public Library for you to pick up at your convenience.

Happy Reading (and Watching)!

My Journey Through Genres: Psychological Suspense

We all have a comfort zone when it comes to reading. For some people its an author like Nora Roberts or James Patterson, or genres like romances or thrillers, horrors or fiction. As a librarian, its our job to know authors and books and to be able to recommend books to our patrons. This is where I came up with ‘My Journey Through Genres’. I’ve wanted to broaden my reading horizons and I thought it would not only benefit me with finding new books but benefit me in being able to recommend books from genres to patrons.

The first stop in my journey is Psychological Suspense. I actually happened upon this book by accident as I was looking through our collection requests database to put a request in and the title of this book just drew my eye. So like any curious librarian, I went to Goodreads and typed in the title of the book and from there I was hooked. The book was ordered and a few days later I had it in my hands.

The Marsh King’s Daughter written by Karen Dionne captured my attention by the 27th page. It was everything I expected and yet it was more than I expected.

‘I was born two years into my mother’s captivity. She was three weeks shy of seventeen. If I had known then what I do now, things would have been a lot different. I wouldn’t have adored my father.’

Helena is the product of rape after her father abducted her mother as a fourteen year old. When her father, known as the Marsh King, escapes from a maximum security prison, she immediately suspects that her family is in danger.

Shortly after, Helena must tell her husband about her true past: that she was born into captivity, that she had no contact with the outside world before the age of twelve- or that her father raised her to become a killer.

As Helena hunts and tracks her father, we learn more about her childhood and her mother’s captivity.

The Marsh King’s Daughter was just incredibly well done and well written that it’s left me bereft and wanting more. I enjoyed how the author included Helena’s childhood to explain why Helena thought this way or why she though that way. It was incredibly edge-of-your-seat entertaining. Most of all, it was nice to read that even after all her father did to her and her mother growing up, Helena still loved him and idolized him.

We have a copy at both APL and DPL.

Jane Austen’s 200th Death Day

One of the pioneers of women’s authorship, Jane Austen’s 200th death day will be celebrated on July 18, 2017. One of the most renown authors of all time, Austen did not gain fame until after her death in 1817, at 41 years of age.

Born on December 16, 1775 in Steventon, Hampshire, England, Jane Austen was the seventh child and second daughter of well-respected Cassandra and George Austen. Jane was close with all of her siblings, but especially her only sister, Cassandra, and grew up in a home where creativity and learning were cherished. Jane and Cassandra were eventually sent to boarding school for a formal education, but were sent home when both of them caught typhus and Jane nearly died. The rest of her education came from her father and reading whatever she could, including books that belonged to the boys her father tutored.

Jane began writing poems and stories for herself and her family when she was around eleven years old. Twenty-nine works written from 1787 to 1793 are referred to as the Juvenelia of Jane Austen. Many of the works are written as parodies and satire of popular novels of the time. Most of the works were accompanied by watercolors done by Cassandra. Jane also attended church regularly and social functions, where she became an excellent dancer.

Jane’s first publication was Sense and Sensibility, which was published in 1811 by “A Lady” and was well-received. Pride and Prejudice was then published in 1813, followed by Mansfield Park in 1814. By now, Jane was earning enough money to support herself as a professional writer although she never revealed herself except to those in her immediate family. Emma was published in 1815 and Jane dedicated the novel to the Prince Regent, George IV, who admired her novels. Jane completed the first draft of Persuasion in July 1816. Jane was also able to repurchase her copyright to an earlier novel, Lady Susan, an epistolary novella that differs greatly from her other work, for publication.

In 1816, Jane’s health began deteriorating slowly and irregularly with which most scholars have determined to be Addison’s disease and Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She continued to write when she could through her decline, finishing the drafts of novels. Jane died on July 18, 1817 at the age of 41 and is buried at Winchester Cathedral.

After her death, Jane’s siblings and publisher arranged for the publication of Persuasion and Northanger Abbey, revealing that she was the author all along. She was known for her critique of novels from the Regency period, often parodying or mocking plots and characters. She is also known for her strong female characters in a time when girls were meant to be meek. It was not until after her death that her novels became popular and appreciated for how progressive they are.

Join the Aurora Public Library District during the week of July 18 as we celebrate Jane Austen and the great contribution she made to literature. Look for a display during the week of July 18! What is your favorite novel by Jane Austen? How has she impacted how you read or write?

Happy Reading!

Coming Up: Jane Austen’s 200th Death Day

Did you know Jane Austen’s 200th death day is coming up? Check the website for a blog about one of the most influential writers of all time, as well as the Library for a special Jane Austen book display. Here a few books by Jane Austen you can check out from the Aurora Public Library District today to celebrate her life and death:

Pride and Prejudice                       Persuasion

Sense and Sensibility                    Lady Susan

      Emma                                             Mansfield Park

Northanger Abbey

We also have several movies based on the novels of Jane Austen that you can check out as well.