Spring Reading Suggestions

We continue to have a window display—people really like it—and this month we celebrate Asian American and Pacific Island (AAPI) Heritage Month. (Our Earth Day display remains in the window display as well because every day is Earth Day.) Please see the “Spotlight On” page of our website, where we feature some old and new works by AAPI authors.

Here are some additional recommendations from our staff:

Alice Neel: People Come First by Kelly Baum

The catalog from the current show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, this is more than just a collection of the artist’s works; it captures the strength and humanity of not only the artist but her subjects as well. Here is the link for the exhibit: https://www.metmuseum.org/exhibitions/listings/2021/alice-neel

David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

It’s 1969. I’m 16 years old and someone gives me an 800-page Victorian novel—no thanks! Abbey Road, please. My loss. It’s a book of love and loss; of good and evil; of tears and laughter. In short, a little bit of life itself. And who can ignore a book peopled with names like Murdstone, Heep and Micawber? More, please. (Oh wait. That’s another Dickens novel.)

Mad at the World: A Life of John Steinbeck by William Souder

An imperfect man who wrote a close-to-perfect novel, The Grapes of Wrath. This is a well-told biography of the life that fed his writing and how the writing affected his life. A terrific introduction to the writer who always seemed to be in Hemingway’s shadow but created some of the most memorable stories and characters in American literature.

Lying Awake by Mark Salzman

This novel tells the story of the spiritual and health crisis of a middle-aged Carmelite, cloistered nun in a convent in Los Angeles named Sr. John of the Cross. She is a poet and her devotional writings are treasured by her community. Sr. John faces the choice of risking her glimpses of the divine in favor of a medical cure that may prove her insights false.

The Camomile Lawn by Mary Wesley

Mary Wesley was an English novelist whose works are entertaining because they are both edgy and humorous. She worked in intelligence during WWII. Several of her novels were made into movies including this one.

Also by Mary Wesley, Harnessing Peacocks, is an interesting, enjoyable read. Expect sex, infidelity, illegitimacy and incest and some serious, complicated and hilarious characters. Wesley has sometimes been described as Jane Austen with sex but that is inaccurate, her work is entirely her own

Summer Reads

Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of summer, is fast approaching so start thinking about what you would like to read while relaxing at the beach, in your own backyard, or on the Library’s deck. While browsing inside the library, take a look at our Summer Reading bookshelf which contains a variety of paperbacks that are compact and easy to take wherever.

Summerland, a perfect beach read by Elin Hilderbrand

We’ll Always Have Paris: A Mother/Daughter Memoir by Jennifer Coburn

A Children’s Bible by Lydia Millet a generational divide where the adults are irresponsible, and teenagers try to cope in an unravelling world by Lydia Millet

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, an engaging read about the science behind viral trends by Malcolm Gladwell.

Picture Books

Stories That Speak series continues on Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. in the park next to the Library. Join us for a reading by community members of some great, diverse books.

Some selections to read aloud:

Kamala and Maya’s Big Idea by Meena Harris

G My Name is Girl: A song of Celebration from Argentina to Zambia by Dawn Masi (local author)

Summer Song by Kevin Henkes

Sun by Sam Usher

Juvenile

Getting ready for summer camp, afternoons at the pool, beach or under the stars in the mountains? Here are some suggestions to put in your backpack:

The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani (local author)

The Stormkeeper’s Island by Catherine Doyle

The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate

Summer Camp Secrets by Katy Grant (series)

Young Adult

We Are Not Free by Traci Chee

White Bird: A Wonder Story by R.J. Palacio (Graphic Novel)

The Last True Poets of the Sea by Julia Drake

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson (print or graphic novel)

Take the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance edited by Bethany C. Morrow

If you prefer to read on a device, don’t forget that your library card gives you access to the digital collections of e-books and audiobooks through Overdrive.