> In the seaside Irish village of Glennkill, a man lies murdered, pinned to the ground by his own garden spade. His neighbors, a suspicious lot with plenty of secrets to hide, respond to the homicide in their midst with idle talk and bitter recriminations, and the local police show little interest in the case. It falls to the victim’s truest friends to solve the mystery of his murder – provided they can stop grazing long enough to do so!
You see, in Leonie Swann’s Three Bags Full the murder victim is a shepherd – and the amateur sleuths are sheep. Led by Miss Maple, the cleverest sheep in the village (and possibly the world), this band of rag-tag, woolly detectives dedicate themselves to solving the crime that took the life of their beloved shepherd. But to track down the necessary clues, the sheep must first overcome their own secrets, fears, and potentially dangerous weaknesses. What became of lead ram Sir Ritchfield’s brother Melmoth when he left the flock? What occurred in Othello’s mysterious past to make him so brave? And will Mopple the Whale be able to conquer his voracious appetite long enough to do some investigating?
You’re sure to be charmed by these wonderful ovine characters with their unique personalities and perspectives – often wrong but always entertaining – into human behavior. (If the long-nosed man lives in the building called the House of God, then surely his name is God?) From the finding of a Thing in their meadow (“Human beings are attached to Things”) to their philosophical musings on the nature of Cloud Sheep (just clouds to us), the detectives of Three Bags Full will stay in your heart long after the last page is turned.
Richard Russo has again written a winner. His Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Empire Falls
was made into an HBO mini-series starring Paul Newman in his last live-action role. This latest story is again set in New England. That Old Cape Magic
was the song sung by Jack Higgins parents as they crossed the Sagamore Bridge onto Cape Cod every summer for their long-awaited vacation. Now that Jack is again heading to Cape Cod with his wife he reminisces about those long ago summer vacations and realizes that he is turning into the person that he least wants to be, his father.
Russo examines the close ties we have to our parent’s way of life as we age and see ourselves doing the very things that we declared never to do. The moments of introspection are countered with hilarious looks at a fiasco of a rehearsal dinner for his daughter, again on Cape Cod, and the comedy of driving around with the ashes of his father and mother in his trunk and hearing them continue to give him their opinions.
It is so fun to find a tresure beneath a beat up cover in the stacks. A patron recommended Hannah Fowler
by Janice Holt Giles and I dove right in. Hannah moves west to Kentucky with her father in the 1700′s. After her father receives a dangerous ax injury, she encounters Tice, a settler hunting in the woods. Hannah’s quiet strength maintains her through the upcoming trials.
I have long loved stories of women pioneers, but this book is especially well-written. There is adventure and romance, but the most compelling aspect of the story is her chronicle of day-to-day life as a settler.
> Addie of the Flint Hills: “They say times are going to be tough. Well, I was born in 1915 and in the past 93 years, I have seen tough times. I’ve heard about even tougher—from my grandparents, who were early pioneers settling the Flint Hills of Kansas. I had hoped my grandchildren and their children would never have to face serious adversities, but if they are called to do so, I want them to know something about their forebearers …This account of my journey is for them.”
Addie, born in the Flint Hills of Kansas, begins her story in 1915 as wheat prices are booming. She shares the day-to-day unfolding of her life and the life of her family as they deal with the turbulent US economy of the 1920s and 1930s. During this period the price of wheat drops, followed by precipitous declines in stocks, minerals and farmland. The story ends in 1935 as the family grapples with the effects of the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl. In the process, Addie of the Flint Hills weaves a complex tale of ordinary folks struggling with familiar themes: a father s work takes him far from home, a highly- educated woman and mother is alone, and a young girl never learns that she is beautiful.
“Unique and universal, the remarkable life story of Adaline Rogler Sorace looks to the past with affection, honesty, and clarity of insight. In a voice distinguished by intelligence and refinement she recounts a story of the Flint Hills as strong and as deep as the prairie grass.” -Jim Hoy, author of Flint Hills Cowboys
>Adventure, romance, and an animal story all rolled into one. Elephant trainer, Josef, was a proud father of an infant son, Bram, and a proud trainer of a baby elephant, Modoc, born the same day and hour. Bram and Modoc grew up together as playmates and were inseparable. When Josef died and the circus animals were sold, Bram had to go with Modoc to uphold his father’s last request that he take care of him. Bram and Modoc’s adventures at sea, in India and finally in America are astonishing to say the least. Both Bram and Modoc went through so many hardships, yet they survived the onslaught and were brought back together in an incredible manner. You may cry a bit, you will smile often as you journey through Ralph Helfer’s book about the life of Modoc: the true story of the greatest elephant that every lived.