Beyond Bestsellers: The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

By Jennifer K. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah was one of the big bestsellers of 2015. And why not? It’s a terrific read. The novel tells an epic story of courage and endurance in World War II France, focusing the complicated relationship between two women. One is Vianne, a farm wife and mother who just […]

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Beyond Bestsellers: Colson Whitehead

by Marina M. Colson Whitehead was publishing long before the critical acclaim and runaway success of his book The Underground Railroad (soon to be in production as a limited series for Amazon). And with the follow up of The Nickel Boys you might assume that Whitehead’s back catalog consists solely of historical fiction with African-American […]

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Beyond Bestsellers: Toni Morrison

by Lois H. (they/them or she/her) “What I’m interested in is writing without the gaze, without the white gaze. … In so many earlier books by African-American writers, particularly the men, I felt that they were not writing to me. But what interested me was the African-American experience throughout whichever time I spoke of. It […]

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Author Spotlight: Barbara Hambly

By Jennifer K. Do you like mysteries? Historical fiction? Epic fantasy? Horror? Wait, do you like Star Wars? How about vampires? Well, let me introduce you to Barbara Hambly, one of my all-time favorite authors, who writes all of those kinds of books – and does it damn well. I discovered Hambly when I was […]

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If What If: History That Never Happened

By Isaac H. For some, history can be pretty boring. Long, drawn out stories about things that already happened can seem extremely uninteresting to some folks. I’m not one of them. I’ve always been a huge fan of history and all it’s sub-genres. World history, American history, regional history, paleontology, archeology, genealogy, it’s all captivating. […]

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Nevertheless, She Persisted

By Kristi S.  A wonderful thing about working in libraries is that you rarely run out of reading material. Occasionally, though, I have weeks where none of my holds arrive and I am left to scour the stacks. Like many patrons, I find the choices overwhelming. Recently, I realized when browsing that I gravitate towards […]

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Adventure and Calamity at Sea

by Alyssa S While I don’t own a boat, and the longest water voyage I’ve ever taken was an overnight ferry from Ireland to France, I do love a perilous, eventful sea story, whether fact or fiction. I’m fascinated by the Shackleton expedition, by Polynesians and Vikings and their ability to navigate long distances without […]

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Gimme Shelter

by Marie B. It’s time to deploy my winter plan, which involves donning my fuzzy slippers, procuring a warm beverage, and hunkering down with a good read. Yes, storms may be raging outside, but I will be snug as a bug.  Still, I do love the spectacle of stormy weather. Luckily, there are numerous books […]

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Don’t I Know You?

by Marie B. Are you a people watcher like me?  While it’s true that I kouldn’t kare less about keeping up with the Kardashians (no judgement here!), I do generally enjoy reading about famous people.  Chances are good that I’ll never meet anyone famous in real life, but I can encounter them in a story.  […]

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History’s Hidden Stories

by Marina M. Over the course of this blog post I will link to several articles in our research databases. Any article link you click on will require you to log into your Sno-Isle account. I recently finished reading The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys. Almost eight years of research by Sepetys went into […]

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