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The Bullet That Missed: A Thursday Murder Club Mystery

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
A new mystery is afoot in the third book in the Thursday Murder Club series from million-copy bestselling author Richard Osman.
“The quartet of aging amateur sleuths…remain wonderful company,” –the New York Times Book Review
“The Bullet That Missed hits on every front.” –the Wall Street Journal

It is an ordinary Thursday, and things should finally be returning to normal. Except trouble is never far away where the Thursday Murder Club are concerned. A decade-old cold case–their favorite kind–leads them to a local news legend and a murder with no body and no answers.
Then a new foe pays Elizabeth a visit. Her mission? Kill or be killed. Suddenly the cold case has become red hot.
While Elizabeth wrestles with her conscience (and a gun), Joyce, Ron, and Ibrahim chase down the clues with help from old friends and new. But can the gang solve the mystery and save Elizabeth before the murderer strikes again?
From an upmarket spa to a prison cell complete with espresso machine to a luxury penthouse high in the sky, this third adventure of the Thursday Murder Club is full of the cleverness, intrigue, and irresistible charm that readers have come to expect from Richard Osman’s bestselling series.

Review Citations:
Publishers Weekly 07/11/2022 (EAN 9780593299395, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 08/01/2022 (EAN 9780593299395, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Booklist 09/01/2022 pg. 37 (EAN 9780593299395, Hardcover)
Library Journal 09/01/2022 pg. 119 (EAN 9780593299395, Hardcover)
Shelf Awareness 09/23/2022 (EAN 9780593299395, Hardcover)

Lessons in Chemistry

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER – GOOD MORNING AMERICA BOOK CLUB PICK – A must-read debut! Meet Elizabeth Zott: a “formidable, unapologetic and inspiring” (PARADE) scientist in 1960s California whose career takes a detour when she becomes the unlikely star of a beloved TV cooking show in this novel that is “irresistible, satisfying and full of fuel. It reminds you that change takes time and always requires heat” (The New York Times Book Review).
A unique heroine … you’ll find yourself wishing she wasn’t fictional. –Seattle Times
Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing as an average woman. But it’s the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute takes a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans; the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with–of all things–her mind. True chemistry results.
But like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America’s most beloved cooking show Supper at Six. Elizabeth’s unusual approach to cooking (“combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride”) proves revolutionary. But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn’t just teaching women to cook. She’s daring them to change the status quo.
Laugh-out-loud funny, shrewdly observant, and studded with a dazzling cast of supporting characters, Lessons in Chemistry is as original and vibrant as its protagonist.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 11/01/2021 pg. 15 (EAN 9780385547345, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 02/01/2022 (EAN 9780385547345, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Publishers Weekly 02/28/2022 (EAN 9780385547345, Hardcover)
Booklist 03/01/2022 pg. 24 (EAN 9780385547345, Hardcover)

West with Giraffes

“Few true friends have I known and two were giraffes…”
Woodrow Wilson Nickel, age 105, feels his life ebbing away. But when he learns giraffes are going extinct, he finds himself recalling the unforgettable experience he cannot take to his grave.
It’s 1938. The Great Depression lingers. Hitler is threatening Europe, and world-weary Americans long for wonder. They find it in two giraffes who miraculously survive a hurricane while crossing the Atlantic. What follows is a twelve-day road trip in a custom truck to deliver Southern California’s first giraffes to the San Diego Zoo. Behind the wheel is the young Dust Bowl rowdy Woodrow. Inspired by true events, the tale weaves real-life figures with fictional ones, including the world’s first female zoo director, a crusty old man with a past, a young female photographer with a secret, and assorted reprobates as spotty as the giraffes.
Part adventure, part historical saga, and part coming-of-age love story, West with Giraffes explores what it means to be changed by the grace of animals, the kindness of strangers, the passing of time, and a story told before it’s too late.

Review Citations:
Booklist 12/01/2020 pg. 31 (EAN 9781542021746, Hardcover)

Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022

Updated for 2021, Trivium Test Prep’s unofficial, NEW Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022: Preparation Book with Practice Test Questions for the Civil Service Exams (Police Officer, Firefighter, Clerical, and More) isn’t your typical exam prep! Because we know your time is limited, we’ve created a product that goes beyond what most study guides offer. With Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022, you’ll benefit from a quick but total review of everything tested on the exam with current, real examples, graphics, and information. These easy to use materials give you that extra edge you need to pass the first time.

Trivium Test Prep is not affiliated with or endorsed by any testing organization and does not own or claim ownership of any trademarks. All test names (and their acronyms) are trademarks of their respective owners. This study guide is for general information and does not claim endorsement by any third party.

Trivium Test Prep’s Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022 offers:

A full review of what you need to know for the civil service exam
Practice questions for you to practice and improve
Test tips to help you score higher

Trivium Test Prep’s Civil Service Exam Study Guide 2021-2022 covers:

Reading
Writing
Verbal and Reasoning Skills
Mathematics
Clerical Skills

…and includes a FULL practice test!

Life Time: Your Body Clock and Its Essential Roles in Good Health and Sleep (backordered)

A guide to using the science of the body clock to promote better sleep, better health, and better thinking
“Full of surprising and useful facts. . . . Unlike many science books with similar subtitles, it really might ‘revolutionise’ your life.”–James McConnachie, The Times (London)
“A comprehensive manifesto for living in harmony with our body clocks, penned by someone who has devoted his career to studying them.”–Financial Times

Biological clocks are embedded in every aspect of human biology, guiding us toward the prime times of day to sleep, eat, think, and work. Award-winning scientist Russell Foster brings decades of study to this journey through the circadian rhythms that dominate our days and nights. He shows how the realities of 24/7 life–including night-shift work, overbooked calendars, and caring for newborns–disrupt the body clock, taking a toll on sleep and on mental and physical health.
By dismantling long-standing myths and citing cutting-edge science, Foster empowers readers to get back into rhythm and live healthier, sharper lives: scheduling meals to prevent obesity and diabetes; timing medications to increase their effectiveness; getting better sleep through exposure to natural light; and much more. “If you want to embrace life,” Foster writes, “then embracing biological time will help you do this.”

If the law cannot protect a person from a lynching, then isn’t lynching the law?
In By Hands Now Known, Margaret A. Burnham, director of Northeastern University’s Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project, challenges our understanding of the Jim Crow era by exploring the relationship between formal law and background legal norms in a series of harrowing cases from 1920 to 1960. From rendition, the legal process by which states make claims to other states for the return of their citizens, to battles over state and federal jurisdiction and the outsize role of local sheriffs in enforcing racial hierarchy, Burnham maps the criminal legal system in the mid-twentieth-century South, and traces the unremitting line from slavery to the legal structures of this period and through to today.
Drawing on an extensive database, collected over more than a decade and exceeding 1,000 cases of racial violence, she reveals the true legal system of Jim Crow, and captures the memories of those whose stories have not yet been heard.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 12 (EAN 9780393867855, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 06/06/2022 (EAN 9780393867855, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Library Journal 07/08/2022 pg. 1 (EAN 9780393867855, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Kirkus Reviews 09/01/2022 (EAN 9780393867855, Hardcover) – *Starred Review

Half American: The Epic Story of African Americans Fighting World War II at Home and Abroad

The definitive history of World War II from the African American perspective, written by civil rights expert and Dartmouth history professor Matthew Delmont
“Matthew F. Delmont’s book is filled with compelling narratives that outline with nuance, rigor, and complexity how Black Americans fought for this country abroad while simultaneously fighting for their rights here in the​ United States. Half American belongs firmly within the canon of indispensable World War II books.”
–Clint Smith, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America
Over one million Black men and women served in World War II. Black troops were at Normandy, Iwo Jima, and the Battle of the Bulge, serving in segregated units and performing unheralded but vital support jobs, only to be denied housing and educational opportunities on their return home. Without their crucial contributions to the war effort, the United States could not have won the war. And yet the stories of these Black veterans have long been ignored, cast aside in favor of the myth of the “Good War” fought by the “Greatest Generation.”
Half American is American history as you’ve likely never read it before. In these pages are stories of Black heroes such as Thurgood Marshall, the chief lawyer for the NAACP, who investigated and publicized violence against Black troops and veterans; Benjamin O. Davis, Jr., leader of the Tuskegee Airmen, who was at the forefront of the years-long fight to open the Air Force to Black pilots; Ella Baker, the civil rights leader who advocated on the home front for Black soldiers, veterans, and their families; James Thompson, the 26-year-old whose letter to a newspaper laying bare the hypocrisy of fighting against fascism abroad when racism still reigned at home set in motion the Double Victory campaign; and poet Langston Hughes, who worked as a war correspondent for the Black press. Their bravery and patriotism in the face of unfathomable racism is both inspiring and galvanizing. In a time when the questions World War II raised regarding race and democracy in America remain troublingly relevant and still unanswered, this meticulously researched retelling makes for urgently necessary reading.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 14 (EAN 9781984880390, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/25/2022 (EAN 9781984880390, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Kirkus Reviews 08/15/2022 (EAN 9781984880390, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Library Journal 09/01/2022 pg. 150 (EAN 9781984880390, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Booklist 10/01/2022 pg. 13 (EAN 9781984880390, Hardcover)
Booklist 10/01/2022 pg. 13 (EAN 9781984880406, Other)

Myth America: Historians Take on the Biggest Legends and Lies about Our Past

America’s top historians set the record straight on the most pernicious myths about our nation’s past
The United States is in the grip of a crisis of bad history. Distortions of the past promoted in the conservative media have led large numbers of Americans to believe in fictions over facts, making constructive dialogue impossible and imperiling our democracy.
In Myth America, Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer have assembled an all-star team of fellow historians to push back against this misinformation. The contributors debunk narratives that portray the New Deal and Great Society as failures, immigrants as hostile invaders, and feminists as anti-family warriors–among numerous other partisan lies. Based on a firm foundation of historical scholarship, their findings revitalize our understanding of American history.
Replacing myths with research and reality, Myth America is essential reading amid today’s heated debates about our nation’s past.
With Essays By
Akhil Reed Amar – Kathleen Belew – Carol Anderson – Kevin Kruse – Erika Lee – Daniel Immerwahr – Elizabeth Hinton – Naomi Oreskes – Erik M. Conway – Ari Kelman – Geraldo Cadava – David A. Bell – Joshua Zeitz – Sarah Churchwell – Michael Kazin – Karen L. Cox – Eric Rauchway – Glenda Gilmore – Natalia Mehlman Petrzela – Lawrence B. Glickman – Julian E. Zelizer

Review Citations:
Publishers Weekly 06/13/2022 (EAN 9781541601390, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Kirkus Reviews 08/01/2022 (EAN 9781541601390, Hardcover)
Library Journal 08/01/2022 pg. 110 (EAN 9781541601390, Hardcover) – *Starred Review

The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human

From the author of The Emperor of All Maladies, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, and The Gene, a #1 New York Times bestseller, comes his most spectacular book yet, an exploration of medicine and our radical new ability to manipulate cells. Rich with Mukherjee’s revelatory and exhilarating stories of scientists, doctors, and the patients whose lives may be saved by their work, The Song of the Cell is the third book in this extraordinary writer’s exploration of what it means to be human.
Mukherjee begins this magnificent story in the late 1600s, when a distinguished English polymath, Robert Hooke, and an eccentric Dutch cloth-merchant, Antonie van Leeuwenhoek looked down their handmade microscopes. What they saw introduced a radical concept that swept through biology and medicine, touching virtually every aspect of the two sciences, and altering both forever. It was the fact that complex living organisms are assemblages of tiny, self-contained, self-regulating units. Our organs, our physiology, our selves–hearts, blood, brains–are built from these compartments. Hooke christened them ” cells”.
The discovery of cells–and the reframing of the human body as a cellular ecosystem–announced the birth of a new kind of medicine based on the therapeutic manipulations of cells. A hip fracture, a cardiac arrest, Alzheimer’s dementia, AIDS, pneumonia, lung cancer, kidney failure, arthritis, COVID pneumonia–all could be reconceived as the results of cells, or systems of cells, functioning abnormally. And all could be perceived as loci of cellular therapies.
In The Song of the Cell, Mukherjee tells the story of how scientists discovered cells, began to understand them, and are now using that knowledge to create new humans. He seduces you with writing so vivid, lucid, and suspenseful that complex science becomes thrilling. Told in six parts, laced with Mukherjee’s own experience as a researcher, a doctor, and a prolific reader, The Song of the Cell is both panoramic and intimate–a masterpiece.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 17 (EAN 9781982117351, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 08/01/2022 (EAN 9781982117351, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 10 (EAN 9781982117351, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 08/29/2022 (EAN 9781982117351, Hardcover) – *Starred Review

Back to the Garden

A fifty-year-old cold case involving California royalty comes back to life–with potentially fatal consequences–in this gripping standalone novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series.
A magnificent house, vast formal gardens, a golden family that shaped California, and a colorful past filled with now-famous artists: the Gardener Estate was a twentieth-century Eden.
And now, just as the Estate is preparing to move into a new future, restoration work on some of its art digs up a grim relic of the home’s past: a human skull, hidden away for decades.
Inspector Raquel Laing has her work cut out for her. Fifty years ago, the Estate’s young heir, Rob Gardener, turned his palatial home into a counterculture commune of peace, love, and equality. But that was also a time when serial killers preyed on innocents–monsters like The Highwayman, whose case has just surged back into the public eye.
Could the skull belong to one of his victims?
To Raquel–a woman who knows all about colorful pasts–the bones clearly seem linked to The Highwayman. But as she dives into the Estate’s archives to look for signs of his presence, what she unearths begins to take on a dark reality all of its own.
Everything she finds keeps bringing her back to Rob Gardener himself. While he might be a gray-haired recluse now, back then he was a troubled young Vietnam vet whose girlfriend vanished after a midsummer festival at the Estate.
But a lot of people seem to have disappeared from the Gardener Estate that summer when the commune mysteriously fell apart: a young woman, her child, and Rob’s brother, Fort.
The pressure is on, and Raquel needs to solve this case–before The Highwayman slips away, or another Gardener vanishes.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 2 (EAN 9780593496565, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/04/2022 (EAN 9780593496565, Hardcover)

Captive (Eve Duncan)

Eve Duncan’s daughter Jane MacGuire seems to have found a perfect life with Seth Caleb–until a ruthless madman threatens to destroy it all, in this gripping suspense novel from #1 bestselling author Iris Johansen.
Jane MacGuire is enjoying a period of domestic bliss as she focuses on her art and her partner Seth Caleb uses his unique abilities as an agent for the MI6 intelligence service. But when Seth crosses crime lord Hugh Bohdan, he incurs the wrath of one of the world’s most powerful criminal empires…one whose tentacles reach across the globe and even to the idyllic Scottish retreat where Jane is working.
Soon Jane is on the run, struggling to stay one step ahead of Bohdan’s army and his devastating high-tech weaponry. Even with the assistance of Earl John MacDuff, she finds danger at every turn. But with that peril comes an astonishing discovery: a 200-year-old secret on the brink of becoming lost to history.
Jane and Seth must join forces to unlock the fascinating puzzle, even as they hurtle toward a lethal final confrontation in the Highlands. But before their adventure is over, Jane and Seth will encounter their biggest shock of all…and realize nothing can be the same for them ever again.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9781538726297, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/25/2022 (EAN 9781538726297, Hardcover)
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 26 (EAN 9781538726297, Hardcover)

Dreamland

1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER – From the author of The Wish comes a poignant love story about risking everything for a dream–and whether it’s possible to leave the past behind.Colby Mills once felt destined for a musical career, until tragedy grounded his aspirations. Now the head of a small family farm in North Carolina, he spontaneously takes a gig playing at a bar in St. Pete Beach, Florida, seeking a rare break from his duties at home.
But when he meets Morgan Lee, his world is turned upside-down, making him wonder if the responsibilities he has shouldered need dictate his life forever. The daughter of affluent Chicago doctors, Morgan has graduated from a prestigious college music program with the ambition to move to Nashville and become a star. Romantically and musically, she and Colby complete each other in a way that neither has ever known.
While they are falling headlong in love, Beverly is on a heart-pounding journey of another kind. Fleeing an abusive husband with her six-year-old son, she is trying to piece together a life for them in a small town far off the beaten track. With money running out and danger seemingly around every corner, she makes a desperate decision that will rewrite everything she knows to be true.
In the course of a single unforgettable week, two young people will navigate the exhilarating heights and heartbreak of first love. Hundreds of miles away, Beverly will put her love for her young son to the test. And fate will draw all three people together in a web of life-altering connections . . . forcing each to wonder whether the dream of a better life can ever survive the weight of the past.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 9 (EAN 9780593449554, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/18/2022 (EAN 9780593449554, Hardcover)
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 34 (EAN 9780593449554, Hardcover)
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 34 (EAN 9780593449561, Other)

Fairy Tale

Legendary storyteller Stephen King goes into the deepest well of his imagination in this spellbinding novel about a seventeen-year-old boy who inherits the keys to a parallel world where good and evil are at war, and the stakes could not be higher–for that world or ours.
Charlie Reade looks like a regular high school kid, great at baseball and football, a decent student. But he carries a heavy load. His mom was killed in a hit-and-run accident when he was seven, and grief drove his dad to drink. Charlie learned how to take care of himself–and his dad. When Charlie is seventeen, he meets a dog named Radar and her aging master, Howard Bowditch, a recluse in a big house at the top of a big hill, with a locked shed in the backyard. Sometimes strange sounds emerge from it.
Charlie starts doing jobs for Mr. Bowditch and loses his heart to Radar. Then, when Bowditch dies, he leaves Charlie a cassette tape telling a story no one would believe. What Bowditch knows, and has kept secret all his long life, is that inside the shed is a portal to another world.
King’s storytelling in Fairy Tale soars. This is a magnificent and terrifying tale in which good is pitted against overwhelming evil, and a heroic boy–and his dog–must lead the battle.
Early in the Pandemic, King asked himself: “What could you write that would make you happy?”
“As if my imagination had been waiting for the question to be asked, I saw a vast deserted city–deserted but alive. I saw the empty streets, the haunted buildings, a gargoyle head lying overturned in the street. I saw smashed statues (of what I didn’t know, but I eventually found out). I saw a huge, sprawling palace with glass towers so high their tips pierced the clouds. Those images released the story I wanted to tell.”

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 10 (EAN 9781668002179, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 07/15/2022 (EAN 9781668002179, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Booklist 07/01/2022 pg. 29 (EAN 9781668002179, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/25/2022 (EAN 9781668002179, Hardcover)

Robert B. Parker’s Fallout (Jesse Stone Novel)

When two seemingly unconnected mysterious deaths occur on his watch, police chief Jesse Stone must pull out all the stops to unravel the truth and stop a killer from striking again.
The small town of Paradise is devastated when a star high-school baseball player is found dead at the bottom of a bluff just a day after winning the team’s biggest game. For Jesse, the loss is doubly difficult–the teen was the nephew of his colleague, Suitcase Simpson, and Jesse had been coaching the young shortstop. As he searches for answers about how the boy died and why, he is stonewalled at every turn, and it seems that someone is determined to keep him from digging further.
Jesse suddenly must divide his attention between two cases after the shocking murder of former Paradise police chief, Charlie Farrell. Before his death, Farrell had been looking into a series of scam calls that preyed upon the elderly. But how do these “ghost calls” connect to his murder? When threats–and gunshots–appear on Jesse’s own doorstep, the race to find answers is on. Both old and new enemies come into play, and in the end, Jesse and his team must discover the common factor between the two deaths in order to prevent a third.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9780593540275, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 09/15/2022 (EAN 9780593540275, Hardcover)

A Song of Comfortable Chairs: No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency (23) (No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency)

In this latest installment in the beloved No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, Grace Makutsi encounters a pair of quandaries that will require all of her and Mma Ramotswe’s cleverness and generosity to resolve
“An escape from life’s woes as well as a suggestion for how to make the whole deal more palatable–fragility, fruit cake, and all.” –The Boston Globe
Grace Makutsi’s husband, Phuti Radiphuti, is in a bind. An international firm is attempting to undercut his prices in the office furniture market. Phuti has always been concerned with quality and comfort, but this firm seems interested only in profits. To make matters worse, they have a slick new advertising campaign that seems hard to beat.
Meanwhile, Grace is approached by an old friend who has a troubled son. She and Phuti agree to take Patience and Modise in and lend a hand, but things don’t work out quite as intended, and the situation proves difficult for them to handle. It will require not only all of their persistence and dedication but also help from an unexpected quarter to find a solution that will make everyone happy.
Faced with more than her fair share of delicate dilemmas, Mma Makutsi deals with it all with her usual graciousness. This–along with the kindness, generosity, and good sense for which the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency is known–assures us that, in the end, each of these matters will be set right.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 2 (EAN 9780593316979, Hardcover)
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 31 (EAN 9780593316979, Hardcover) – *Starred Review

Sweetwater and the Witch (Harmony Novel)

Welcome to the world of Harmony, where–despite its name, things are anything but–danger lurks just beneath the surface in this new novel by New York Times bestselling author, Jayne Castle.
If there’s something Ravenna Chastain knows, it’s when to end things. And after she almost winds up the victim of a cult that believes she’s a witch, it’s easy to walk away from her dead-end career, ready for a new start. But where to find a job that would allow her to use her very specialized skill set? The answer is clear: she becomes a matchmaker.
But even a successful matchmaker can’t find someone for everyone, and Ravenna considers Ethan Sweetwater her first professional failure. After nine failed dates, Ravenna knows it’s time to cut Ethan loose. But Ethan refuses to be fired as a client–he needs one final date to a business function. Since Ravenna needs a date herself to a family event, they agree to a deal: she will be his (business) date if he will be her (fake) date to her grandparents’ anniversary celebration.
What Ethan fails to mention is that attending the business function is a cover for some industrial espionage that he’s doing as a favor to the new Illusion Town Guild boss. Ravenna is happy to help, but their relationship gets even more complicated when things heat up–the chemistry between them is explosive, as explosive as the danger that’s stalking Ravenna. Lucky for her, Ethan isn’t just an engineer–he’s also a Sweetwater, and Sweetwaters are known for hunting down monsters…

Review Citations:
Booklist 09/01/2022 pg. 42 (EAN 9780593440254, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Booklist 09/01/2022 pg. 42 (EAN 9780593440261, Other)

Two families. One courtroom showdown. – John Grisham’s most gripping thriller yet. – “A legal literary legend.” –USA Today
The #1 New York Times bestselling author returns to Mississippi with the riveting story of two sons of immigrant families who grow up as friends, but ultimately find themselves on opposite sides of the law. Grisham’s trademark twists and turns will keep you tearing through the pages until the stunning conclusion.
For most of the last hundred years, Biloxi was known for its beaches, resorts, and seafood industry. But it had a darker side. It was also notorious for corruption and vice, everything from gambling, prostitution, bootleg liquor, and drugs to contract killings. The vice was controlled by small cabal of mobsters, many of them rumored to be members of the Dixie Mafia.
Keith Rudy and Hugh Malco grew up in Biloxi in the sixties and were childhood friends, as well as Little League all-stars. But as teenagers, their lives took them in different directions. Keith’s father became a legendary prosecutor, determined to “clean up the Coast.” Hugh’s father became the “Boss” of Biloxi’s criminal underground. Keith went to law school and followed in his father’s footsteps. Hugh preferred the nightlife and worked in his father’s clubs. The two families were headed for a showdown, one that would happen in a courtroom.
Life itself hangs in the balance in The Boys from Biloxi, a sweeping saga rich with history and with a large cast of unforgettable characters.

Review Citations:
Kirkus Reviews 10/01/2022 (EAN 9780385548922, Hardcover)

The Christmas Spirit

Two lifelong friends decide to trade places the week before Christmas and end up finding love along the way in this delightful novel from the queen of holiday stories, #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber.
Peter Armstrong and Hank Colfax are best friends, but their lives couldn’t be more different. Peter, the local pastor who is dedicated to his community, spending time visiting the flock, attending meetings, and, with the holiday season approaching, preparing for the Christmas service and live nativity. As a bartender, Hank serves a much different customer base at his family-owned tavern, including a handful of lonely regulars and the local biker gang.
When Peter scoffs that Hank has it easy compared to him, the two decide to switch jobs until Christmas Eve. To their surprise, the responsibilities of a bartender and a pastor are similar, but taking on the other’s work is more difficult than either Peter or Hank expected. As the two begin to see each other in a new light–and each discovers a new love to cherish–their lives are forever changed.
In The Christmas Spirit, Debbie Macomber celebrates the true meaning of the holidays and the inclusive community spirit that binds us all.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 8 (EAN 9780593500101, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 08/15/2022 (EAN 9780593500101, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 08/29/2022 (EAN 9780593500101, Hardcover)
Booklist 09/01/2022 pg. 30 (EAN 9780593500101, Hardcover)
Booklist 09/01/2022 pg. 30 (EAN 9780593500118, Other)

Daughter of Darkness (Viridian Deep)

The thrilling second novel of an all-new fantasy series from the legendary author behind the Shannara saga, about a human girl adapting to her place in a magical world she’s only recently discovered
It’s been two years since Auris escaped from the sinister Goblin prison and learned of her heritage as one of the Fae. She is now happily partnered with her Fae lover, Harrow, and deeply bonded with her new family. All seems to be going perfectly–until, surprisingly, the Goblin attacks begin again. Someone, it seems, has not forgotten that Auris exists and seems determined to retrieve her . . . but who? And why?
As Auris begins to dig deeper into the mystery, old friends and new enemies appear, and she starts to realize that her still-shrouded past must contain the answers she needs. But even Auris does not suspect how far down the rabbit hole she is about to go, until Harrow is taken and an impossible ransom demand is issued. With two new companions at her side, Auris must attempt to unlock the remaining secrets of her past. For if she cannot, she will never see Harrow alive again.

Review Citations:
Publishers Weekly 07/25/2022 (EAN 9780593357415, Hardcover)

Distant Thunder (Stone Barrington Novel)

Stone Barrington finds himself in hot water in this exhilarating adventure from the #1 New York Times bestselling author.
During an intense storm in Dark Harbor, Maine, a perplexing murder lands a dead man on Stone Barrington’s doorstep. As secrets swirl around this mystery man’s identity, Stone quickly sets out to unravel a web of cunning misdirections and lies.
Soon enough, he is embroiled in an elaborate game of cat and mouse between the CIA and nefarious foreign forces, including a bewitching new companion who comes under his protection. But when Stone’s actions draw the attention of an old enemy, one who will stop at nothing to prevent the truth from getting out, Stone realizes he may have finally met his match.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9780593540039, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 08/29/2022 (EAN 9780593540039, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 09/01/2022 (EAN 9780593540039, Hardcover)
Booklist 10/01/2022 pg. 27 (EAN 9780593540039, Hardcover)
Booklist 10/01/2022 pg. 27 (EAN 9780593540046, Other)

The High Notes

In this heartfelt novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Danielle Steel, a young woman with an unforgettable voice fights for the freedom to pursue her dreams.
Iris Cooper has been singing ever since she can remember, hitting the high notes like no one else. When she is twelve, her father convinces the owner of a bar in Lake City, Texas, to let her perform, and she stuns the audience. In the ensuing years, never staying anywhere for long, father and daughter move from one dusty town to the next, her passion for music growing every time she takes the mike in another roadhouse.
But it is not an easy life for Iris with her father in charge and using her income to pay for gambling, women, and booze. When she starts to tour at age eighteen, she takes on a real manager. Yet he exploits her too, and the singers and musicians she tours with are really the only family she has. It is they who give Iris the courage to finally fly free, leave the tour, and follow her dreams.
After years of enduring the hardships of the road, exploitation, and abuse to do what she loves, Iris’s big chance comes as her talent soars. But at the top at last, Iris still has to fight every step of the way. In The High Notes, Danielle Steel delivers an inspiring story about finding the strength to stand up for yourself and your dreams, no matter what it takes.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 8 (EAN 9781984821744, Hardcover)

Long Shadows (Memory Man)

From the author of The 6:20 Man, “Memory Man” Amos Decker–an FBI consultant with perfect recall–delves into a bewildering double homicide in this new thriller in David Baldacci’s #1 New York Times bestselling series.
When Amos Decker is called to South Florida to investigate a double homicide, the case appears straightforward: A federal judge and her bodyguard have been found dead, the judge’s face sporting a blindfold with two eye holes crudely cut out, a clear sign that she’d made one too many enemies over her years on the bench.
What at first seems cut and dry is anything but: Not only did the judge have more enemies than Decker can count–from violent gang members, drug dealers, and smugglers to a resentful ex-husband–but the bodyguard presents additional conundrums that muddy the waters even further. Who was the real target in this vicious attack?
Meanwhile, Decker must contend with a series of unsettling changes, including a new partner–Special Agent Frederica “Freddie” White–and a devastating event that brings Decker’s own tragic past back to the present . . . and forces him to reckon with his future. As potential witnesses start disappearing, Decker and White are inexorably pulled down a twisted tunnel of secrets, crimes, and scandal–at the end of which lies Decker’s deadliest threat yet.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 4 (EAN 9781538719824, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 10/01/2022 (EAN 9781538719824, Hardcover)
Booklist 10/01/2022 pg. 28 (EAN 9781538719824, Hardcover)

No Plan B: A Jack Reacher Novel (Jack Reacher)

The gripping new Jack Reacher thriller from the #1 New York Times bestselling authors Lee Child and Andrew Child
“No Plan B is not to be missed. A perfectly plotted, fast-paced thriller, with bigger twists than ever before. It’s no wonder Jack Reacher is everyone’s favorite rebel hero.”–Karin Slaughter
In Gerrardsville, Colorado, a woman dies under the wheels of a moving bus. The death is ruled a suicide. But Jack Reacher saw what really happened: A man in a gray hoodie and jeans, moving stealthily, pushed the victim to her demise–before swiftly grabbing the dead woman’s purse and strolling away.
When another homicide is ruled an accident, Reacher knows this is no coincidence. With a killer on the loose, Reacher has no time to waste to track down those responsible.
But Reacher is unaware that these crimes are part of something much larger and more far-reaching: an arsonist out for revenge, a foster kid on the run, a cabal of powerful people involved in a secret conspiracy with many moving parts. There is no room for error, but they make a grave one. They don’t consider Reacher a threat. “There’s too much at stake to start running from shadows.” But Reacher isn’t a shadow. He is flesh and blood. And relentless when it comes to making things right.
For when the threat is Reacher, there is No Plan B.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 4 (EAN 9781984818546, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 08/29/2022 (EAN 9781984818546, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 09/15/2022 (EAN 9781984818546, Hardcover)
Library Journal 09/09/2022 pg. 1 (EAN 9781984818546, Hardcover)
Booklist 09/15/2022 pg. 22 (EAN 9781984818546, Hardcover)

The Oracle of Maracoor (Another Day #2)

Multimillion-copy bestselling author Gregory Maguire brings us the enchanting second novel in the series Another Day, returning to the world he first created in Wicked.

The Oracle of Maracoor, the second in the trilogy called Another Day, continues the story of Elphaba’s green-skinned granddaughter, Rain. That strange land, Maracoor–across the ocean from Oz–is beset by an invading army. In the mayhem, Rain and Cossy, a child felon, break out of prison. Helped by a few flying monkeys, they struggle to escape the city before it falls under siege. Their arresting officer, Lucikles, also retreats with his family to a highland redoubt. But safety eludes them all. Chaos thunders upon them in the form of warriors, refugees, and brigands. The very fabric of reality loosens, liberating creatures of myth and legend–huge blue wolves, harpies, and giants made of the very landscape.
Cued in by secrets known only to the most highly placed members of the royal court, Rain and her companions hunt the fabled Oracle of Maracoor for guidance and soothsaying. Rain has to recover her forgotten past if she is to consider returning home. Cossy, the ten-year-old convicted of murder, must become invisible to avoid being taken into custody again. Meanwhile, the Fist of Mara, an arcane artifact that renders all around it barren, hammers against human lives. If the reclusive Oracle should spin a prophecy, might the desperate wicked years promise another day, one less perilous?

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 7 (EAN 9780063094017, Hardcover)

Righteous Prey (Prey Novel)

Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers are up against a powerful vigilante group with an eye on vengeance in this stunning new novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author.
“We’re going to murder people who need to be murdered.”
So begins a press release from a mysterious group known only as “The Five,” shortly after a vicious predator is murdered in San Francisco. The Five is made up of vigilante killers who are very bored…and very rich. They target the worst of society–rapists, murderers, and thieves–and then use their unlimited resources to offset the damage done by those who they’ve killed, donating untraceable Bitcoin to charities and victims via the dark net. The Five soon become popular figures in the media …though their motives may not be entirely pure.
After The Five strike again in the Twin Cities, Virgil Flowers and Lucas Davenport are sent in to investigate. And they soon have their hands full–the killings are smart and carefully choreographed, and with no apparent direct connection to the victims, the killers are virtually untraceable. But if anyone can destroy this group, it will be the dynamic team of Davenport and Flowers.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9780593422472, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 08/01/2022 (EAN 9780593422472, Hardcover)
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 29 (EAN 9780593422472, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 09/01/2022 (EAN 9780593422472, Hardcover)
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 29 (EAN 9780593422489, Other)

Suspect

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Presumed Innocent and The Last Trial returns with a riveting legal thriller in which a reckless private detective is embroiled in a fraught police scandal.
For as long as Lucia Gomez has been the police chief in the city of Highland Isle, near Kindle County, she has known that any woman in law enforcement must walk a precarious line between authority and camaraderie to gain respect. She has maintained a spotless reputation–until now. Three male police officers have accused her of soliciting sex in exchange for promotions to higher ranks. With few people left who she can trust, Chief Gomez turns to an old friend, Rik Dudek, to act as her attorney in the federal grand jury investigation, insisting to Rik that the accusations against her are part of an ugly smear campaign designed to destroy her career and empower her enemies–both outside the police force and within..
Clarice “Pinky” Granum spent most of her youth experimenting with an impressive array of drugs and failing out of various professions, including the police academy. Pinky knows that in the eyes of most people, she’s nothing but a screwup–but she doesn’t trust most people’s opinions anyway. Moreover, she finally has a respectable-enough job as a licensed P.I. working for Rik on his roster of mostly minor cases, like workman’s comp, DUIs and bar fights. Rik’s shabby office and even shabbier cases are a far cry from the kinds of high-profile criminal matters Pinky became familiar with in the law office of her grandfather, Sandy Stern. But Rik and Pinky feel that Chief Gomez’s case, which has attracted national attention, is their chance to break into the legal big leagues.
Guided by her gut instinct and razor-sharp investigative skills, Pinky dives headfirst into a twisted scandal that will draw her into the deepest recesses of the city’s criminal networks, as well as the human mind. But she will need every scrap of tenacity and courage to unravel the dark secrets those closest to her are determined to keep hidden.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9781538706329, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/04/2022 (EAN 9781538706329, Hardcover)
Booklist 07/01/2022 pg. 24 (EAN 9781538706329, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 08/15/2022 (EAN 9781538706329, Hardcover)
Shelf Awareness 09/23/2022 (EAN 9781538706329, Hardcover)

Titans of War (Egyptian)

Global bestselling author of River God and The New Kingdom, Wilbur Smith, returns with the next epic book in his brand-new Ancient Egyptian series.
A RUTHLESS ENEMY. A CIVILISATION IN RUINS. A QUEST FOR SALVATION.
For over fifty years Egypt has known nothing but war and devastation at the hands of the Hyksos, a bloodthirsty barbarian people from the distant east who continue to advance, crushing armies in their wake. Times are desperate, but throughout the conflict, a brave resistance fights on under the great Taita, a slave who has risen far beyond his ranks.
Piay, entrusted into Taita’s care by his parents at the age of just five, has been trained to become a great spy, unmatched by any other. Determined to prove his worth, he embarks on a dangerous mission to the north – to Mycenae and through the heart of Hyksos land and across the great sea – to find allies to help defend Egypt. As the situation becomes increasingly precarious, and the fate of the kingdom is hanging in the balance, can Piay succeed in his quest or will this mean the end of the glory that is Egypt once and for all?
“Best historical novelist – I say Wilbur Smith” Stephen King

Treasure State: A Cassie Dewell Novel (Cassie Dewell Novels #6)

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

1 New York Times bestselling author C. J. Box’s Treasure State finds Cassie Dewell in Montana on the trail of a con man.

Private Investigator Cassie Dewell’s business is thriving, and her latest case puts her on the hunt for a slippery con man who’s disappeared somewhere in the “treasure state”. A wealthy Florida widow has accused him of absconding with her fortune, and wants Cassie to find him and get it back. The trail takes Cassie to Anaconda, Montana, a quirky former copper mining town that’s the perfect place to reinvent yourself. As the case develops, Cassie begins to wonder if her client is telling her everything.
On top of that, Cassie is also working what’s easily one of her strangest assignments ever. A poem that promises buried treasure to one lucky adventurer has led to a cutthroat competition and five deaths among treasure-hunters. But Cassie’s client doesn’t want the treasure. Instead, he claims to be the one who hid the gold and wrote the poem. And he’s hired Cassie to try to find him. Between the two cases, Cassie has her hands full.
In Montana, a killer view can mean more than just the scenery, and Cassie knows much darker things hide behind the picturesque landscape of Big Sky Country. Treasure State, C. J. Box’s highly anticipated follow-up to The Bitterroots, is full of more twists and turns than the switchbacks through the Anaconda Range.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 1 (EAN 9781250766960, Hardcover)
Library Journal 07/01/2022 pg. 44 (EAN 9781250766960, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 07/15/2022 (EAN 9781250766960, Hardcover)
Publishers Weekly 07/25/2022 (EAN 9781250766960, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Booklist 08/01/2022 pg. 31 (EAN 9781250766960, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Shelf Awareness 09/30/2022 (EAN 9781250766960, Hardcover)

Triple Cross: The Greatest Alex Cross Thriller Since Kiss the Girls (An Alex Cross Thriller #28)

James Patterson is the world’s bestselling author. The creator of Alex Cross, he has produced more enduring fictional heroes than any other novelist alive. He lives in Florida with his family.

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 05/01/2022 pg. 5 (EAN 9780316499187, Hardcover)
Kirkus Reviews 09/01/2022 (EAN 9780316499187, Hardcover)

Voice of Fear (Original) (Krewe of Hunters #38)

A killer is looking to silence them, once and for all.
FBI agent Jordan Wallace is close to cracking the human trafficking case she’s been working, when she does the one thing she should never do: let her guard down. The botched undercover mission is semisalvaged by the last-minute appearance of criminal psychologist Patrick Law, but Jordan can’t imagine making a worse first impression. Especially when she’s partnered with Patrick moving forward.
Patrick’s innate ability to get inside a criminal’s head is an asset for the Krewe of Hunters. But Jordan wishes she could protect her own thoughts from her new partner. Patrick assures her that both she and her thoughts are safe with him, but Jordan’s less sure about her heart. Letting someone have her back has never been her strong suit, but with a dangerous killer still at large, trusting in Patrick might be the only thing keeping them alive.
“A harrowing journey… Intelligent, fast-paced and frightening at all times.”
— Suspense Magazine on The Final Deception

Review Citations:
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9780778387183, Hardcover)
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/01/2022 pg. 6 (EAN 9780778386544, Mass Market Paperbound)

One by One, the Stars: Essays (Crux: The Georgia Literary Nonfiction)

A tireless and discerning advocate for contemporary practitioners of creative nonfiction, Ned Stuckey-French was at the center of every national discussion about the genre. He greatly contributed to our scholarly understanding of the history of the essay and was working on his first essay collection when he died of cancer in 2019.


That collection, One by One, the Stars, presents new, highly personal essays tracing Stuckey-French’s childhood in Indiana and a burgeoning interest, during adolescence, in politics and social justice to his life as a father, teacher, and writer. Thematic threads connect these elements, and foremost is his growing commitment to activism on behalf of the disadvantaged, overlooked, or threatened. The volume also features some of Stuckey-French’s “greatest hits” as a public scholar and writer, including “Don’t Be Cruel: An Argument for Elvis,” “Our Queer Little Hybrid Thing: Toward a Definition of the Essay,” and his popular essay on his Facebook addiction–for which he was widely known.
Along the way, his stories and reflections offer fascinating and timely insights into family dynamics, history, politics, ecology, social justice, and literature. All of it is infused with Ned Stuckey-French’s guiding spirit, full of curiosity, compassion, and conviction.

Bazaar: Vibrant Vegetarian Recipes

One of the Washington Post’s most inspiring cookbooks of 2019
bazaar
noun: a market in the Middle East
Bazaar is a colorful, flavourful and satisfying celebration of vegetable dishes, designed tosuit every occasion and every palate. The magic of this cookbook is that you won’t feel like anything is missing, with dishes full of easy-to-achieve flavors and depth that would win over even the most die-hard carnivore.
Each recipe utilizes the abundance of varied flavour profiles of the East, from spices, herbs and perfumed aromatics to hearty staples such as grains and pulses, combined with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. You will find salads for all seasons, spectacular sides, bowl comfort, moreish mains and sweet treats.
Recipes include:
Grilled halloumi flatbreads with preserved lemon salsa
Charred tomato & roasted chili soup with herb-fried croutons
Root vegetable bastilla
Grilled tofu salad with peanuts, sweet tamarind & spiced miso dressing
Potato, ricotta & herb dumplings with walnuts & chili butter
Feta, pul biber & oregano macaroni cheese
Courgette, orange & almond cake with sweet orange yogurt frosting

Review Citations:
Publishers Weekly 03/04/2019 (EAN 9781784725754, Hardcover) – *Starred Review
Library Journal 06/01/2019 pg. 140 (EAN 9781784725754, Hardcover) – *Starred Review

Grief

Our own experience of grief is as unique as a fingerprint. Most of us have lost or will lose a loved one, and we struggle to understand how to get through it, or how to support someone who is grieving. To those of you who are going through grief right now, I hope you will find some comfort in the resources below. Many thanks to Kathy Love, our Board President, and longtime Hospice volunteer, who shared her recommendations.

-Annie

Your Grief, Your Way: A Year of Practical Guidance and Comfort After Loss

Everyone experiences grief differently after the loss of a loved one. Some people find solace in comforting quotes and warm words, while others feel a need to take action–to do something to memorialize their loss. And some benefit from both approaches. Here’s a path forward for you, no matter how you process your grief.

Whether you’re looking for inspiration, a practical way to honor your loved one, or both, Your Grief, Your Way helps you navigate life after loss.

It’s OK That You’re Not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn’t Understand

When a painful loss or life-shattering event upends your world, here is the first thing to know: there is nothing wrong with grief. Grief is simply love in its most wild and painful form, says Megan Devine. It is a natural and sane response to loss.
So, why does our culture treat grief like a disease to be cured as quickly as possible?

Megan Devine offers a profound new approach to both the experience of grief and the way we try to help others who have endured tragedy. Having experienced grief from both sides–as both a therapist and as a woman who witnessed the accidental drowning of her beloved partner–Megan writes with deep insight about the unspoken truths of loss, love, and healing. She debunks the culturally prescribed goal of returning to a normal, happy life, replacing it with a far healthier middle path, one that invites us to build a life alongside grief rather than seeking to overcome it.

Grief Day By Day: Simple Practices and Daily Guidance for Living with Loss

Supportive readings and exercises to help you move through life after loss, one day at a time
Grief is complex; it may present itself differently on any given day. This grief recovery handbook offers daily reflections and practices that address the day-to-day emotions and experiences that accompany the grieving process so you can create a life in which peace–and even gratitude–can coexist with your grief.

Explore the stages of grief with a collection of quotes, musings, meditations, and more that are tied together by a weekly theme, allowing you to reflect on each concept in depth. Work through topics like loneliness, grief attacks, exhaustion, hope, love, and creating meaning. You’ll find opportunities to write, draw, meditate, do breathing exercises, and more as you learn to live fully with your grief.

The Guilt of Grief: How to Understand, Embrace, and Restoratively Express Guilt and Regret After a Loss

We don’t only experience grief after a loss—we often experience it before. If someone we love is seriously ill, or if we’re concerned about upcoming hardships of any kind, we naturally begin to grieve right now. This process of anticipatory grief is normal, but it can also be confusing and painful. Life is change, and change is hard. This book will help see you through.

The Modern Loss Handbook: An Interactive Guide to Moving Through Grief and Building Your Resilience

Modern Loss is all about eradicating the stigma and awkwardness around grief while also focusing on our capacity for resilience and finding meaning. In this interactive guide, Modern Loss cofounder Rebecca Soffer offers candid, practical, and witty advice for confronting a future without your person, honoring their memory, dealing with trigger days, managing your professional life, and navigating new and existing relationships. You’ll find no worn-out platitudes or empty assurances here. With prompts, creative projects, innovative rituals, therapeutic-based exercises, and more, this is the place to explore the messy, long arc of loss on your own timeline—and without judgment.

Resilient Grieving: How to Find Your Way Through a Devastating Loss

Resilient Grieving offers an empowering alternative to the five stages of grief–and makes clear our capacity for growth following the trauma of a loss that changes everything
The death of someone we hold dear may be inevitable; being paralyzed by our grief is not. Recent research has revealed our capacity for resilient grieving, our innate ability to respond to traumatic loss by finding ways to grow–by becoming more engaged with our lives, and discovering new, profound meaning.
Author and resilience/well-being expert Lucy Hone, a pioneer in positive psychology and bereavement research, was faced with her own inescapable sorrow when, in 2014, her 12-year-old daughter was killed in a car accident. By following the strategies of resilient grieving, she found a proactive way to move through her grief, and, over time, embrace life again.

Spiritual Abuse

Continuing our series on crisis resources, here is a collection of materials on spiritual abuse. The descriptions are from the publishers, edited for length. Most of the books below are available at the Potsdam Public Library.

What is Spiritual Abuse?

Spiritual abuse generally involves leaders controlling others through “misuse of scripture, claims to divine authority, pressure to conform, and enforced accountability.” Victims are often isolated, and manipulated into silence. Spiritual abuse can include domestic violence, violence inflicted on children, emotional and psychological abuse, and sexual abuse. Perpetrators use claims of spiritual authority to manipulate victims, i.e., that “God wants” parents to beat their children.

It is horrifying to hear the stories of victims about church leadership providing instruction to families on the proper techniques for assaulting their own children, and how to shame and manipulate them into secrecy. Psychological abuse is even more rampant and harder to detect with victims left unsure if what’s happening is really abuse.

To any of our readers who have that feeling that “something’s not right,” I hope that you will find some answers in the books and resources below, and that you’ll find yourself on a path to healing.

–Annie

Podcasts and Videos

The Allender Center Podcast: Spiritual Abuse Series

FOCL YouTube Playlist: Diane Langberg

The Spiritual Abuse Podcast

Theology Gals: Spiritual Abuse

Books

ChurchToo: How Purity Culture Upholds Abuse and How to Find Healing

When Emily Joy Allison outed her abuser on Twitter, she launched #ChurchToo, a movement to expose the culture of sexual abuse and assault utterly rampant in Christian churches in America. Not a single denomination is unaffected. And the reasons are somewhat different than those you might find in the #MeToo stories coming out of Hollywood or Washington. While patriarchy and misogyny are problems everywhere, they take on a particularly pernicious form in Christian churches where those with power have been insisting, since many decades before #MeToo, that this sexually dysfunctional environment is, in fact, exactly how God wants it to be.

The #MeToo movement has revealed sexual abuse and assault in every sphere of society, including the church. But victims are routinely ignored by fellow Christians who deny their accounts and fail to bring accountability to the perpetrators. All too often, churches have been complicit in protecting abusers, reinforcing patriarchal power dynamics, and creating cultures of secrecy, shame, and silence. Pastor and survivor Ruth Everhart shines a light on the prevalence of sexual abuse and misconduct within faith communities.

She candidly discloses stories of how she and others have experienced assault in church settings, highlighting the damage done to individuals, families, and communities. Everhart offers hope to survivors as she declares that God is present with the violated and stands in solidarity with victims. Scriptural narratives like those of Tamar and Bathsheba carry powerful resonance in today’s context, as do the accounts of Jesus’ interactions with women. God is at work in the midst of this #MeToo moment to call the church to repentance and deliver us from violence against the vulnerable.

Trauma is a fact of life. Veterans and their families deal with the painful aftermath of combat; one in five Americans has been molested; one in four grew up with alcoholics; one in three couples have engaged in physical violence. Such experiences inevitably leave traces on minds, emotions, and even on biology. Sadly, trauma sufferers frequently pass on their stress to their partners and children.

Renowned trauma expert Bessel van der Kolk has spent over three decades working with survivors. In The Body Keeps the Score, he transforms our understanding of traumatic stress, revealing how it literally rearranges the brain’s wiring–specifically areas dedicated to pleasure, engagement, control, and trust. He shows how these areas can be reactivated through innovative treatments including neurofeedback, mindfulness techniques, play, yoga, and other therapies. Based on Dr. van der Kolk’s own research and that of other leading specialists, The Body Keeps the Score offers proven alternatives to drugs and talk therapy–and a way to reclaim lives.

Breaking the Silence contains important, action-oriented information about domestic violence and its pervasiveness in society. Sections include “myths” about domestic violence; a checklist to determine if a relationship is potentially violent; clergy resources for counseling, worship, and congregational outreach; rape; information for youth; and pages that can be customized with local and national contact numbers, e-mail addresses, and websites. Also includes questions for discussion and suggestions for using the book for training or as a youth and adult education tool.

What is the way forward for the church?
Tragically, in recent years, Christians have gotten used to revelations of abuses of many kinds in our most respected churches–from Willow Creek to Harvest, from Southern Baptist pastors to Sovereign Grace churches. Respected author and theologian Scot McKnight and former Willow Creek member Laura Barringer wrote this book to paint a pathway forward for the church.

We need a better way. The sad truth is that churches of all shapes and sizes are susceptible to abuses of power, sexual abuse, and spiritual abuse. Abuses occur most frequently when Christians neglect to create a culture that resists abuse and promotes healing, safety, and spiritual growth.

How do we keep these devastating events from repeating themselves? We need a map to get us from where we are today to where we ought to be as the body of Christ. That map is in a mysterious and beautiful little Hebrew word in Scripture that we translate “good,” the word tov.

In this book, McKnight and Barringer explore the concept of tov–unpacking its richness and how it can help Christians and churches rise up to fulfill their true calling as imitators of Jesus.

This powerful book deals with the issue of how Christians, especially those called to counsel, can help survivors of sexual abuse find healing and hope. From 20 years of experience, the author demonstrates how counselors can walk alongside people deeply wounded by sexual abuse as they face the truth about who they are, who their abuser was, and who God is as the Savior and Redeemer of all life. Counseling Survivors of Sexual Abuse issues a strong call to the church at large to walk with survivors through the long dark nights of their healing.

According to the American Medical Association, one quarter of American women will be abused by an intimate partner at some point in their lives. Loving support can make a tremendous difference to survivors as they struggle with the difficult process of healing and regaining trust in themselves and others. Often, however, pastoral caregivers possess the same misconceptions about domestic violence as does the uninformed public.

Al Miles addresses the issues related to inadequate pastoral response to this pervasive problem. He explores the dynamics of abusive relationships and the role that clergy members can take to heal this painful situation.

Escaping the Maze of Spiritual Abuse: Creating Healthy Christian Cultures (in process)

‘Every time he wanted me to do something, he would quote scripture… I couldn’t argue with scripture, it was like arguing with God.’

The term ‘spiritual abuse’ is widely used across the Christian community. But what is it?
Sometimes spiritual abuse involves leaders misusing their position, but ministers can also be the victims. Common factors include control through misuse of scripture, claims to divine authority, pressure to conform, and enforced accountability. Individuals may be isolated, and compelled to secrecy and silence.

Drawing on a combination of extensive research, individual testimonies, and years of hands-on experience, Lisa Oakley and Justin Humphreys describe clearly the nature of spiritual abuse, and the best ways of countering it. Recovery is possible.

Sex is such an intimate topic historically wrapped in shame and when someone shares they were sexually abused, we may not know how to respond.

With recent #MeToo and #ChurchToo movements, we are learning just how many men, women, boys, and girls have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of a trusted person, often family members or leaders in the church. Sexual abuse is rampant in modern society and now–sometimes many years later–sexual abuse survivors are sharing their stories.

Anne Marie Miller is a survivor of childhood clergy sexual abuse and has shared her journey toward healing with audiences all over the world. After speaking with thousands of survivors and their loved ones, she saw the need for a fundamental and practical guide for helping supporters of sexual abuse survivors understand the basics of abuse, trauma, healing, and hope.

Jesus and John Wayne is a sweeping, revisionist history of the last seventy-five years of white evangelicalism, revealing how evangelicals have worked to replace the Jesus of the Gospels with an idol of rugged masculinity and Christian nationalism–or in the words of one modern chaplain, with “a spiritual badass.”

As acclaimed scholar Kristin Du Mez explains, the key to understanding this transformation is to recognize the centrality of popular culture in contemporary American evangelicalism.

Challenging the commonly held assumption that the “moral majority” backed Donald Trump in 2016 and 2020 for purely pragmatic reasons, Du Mez reveals that Trump in fact represented the fulfillment, rather than the betrayal, of white evangelicals’ most deeply held values: patriarchy, authoritarian rule, aggressive foreign policy, fear of Islam, ambivalence toward #MeToo, and opposition to Black Lives Matter and the LGBTQ community. A much-needed reexamination of perhaps the most influential subculture in this country, Jesus and John Wayne shows that, far from adhering to biblical principles, modern white evangelicals have utterly remade their faith, with enduring consequences for all Americans.

Walking through Psalm 23 phrase by phrase, therapist and author K.J. Ramsey explores the landscape of our fear, trauma, and faith. When she stepped through her own wilderness of spiritual abuse and religious trauma, K.J. discovered that courage is not the absence of anxiety but the practice of trusting we will be held and loved no matter what.

How can we cultivate courage when fear overshadows our lives? How do we hear the Voice of Love when hate and harm shout loud? This book offers an honest path to finding that there is still a Good Shepherd who is always following you. Braiding contemplative storytelling, theological reflection, and practical neuroscience, Ramsey reveals a route into connection and joy that begins right where you are.

The Lord is My Courage is for the deconstructing and the dreamers, the afraid and the amazed, for those whose fear has not been fully shepherded but who can’t seem to stop listening for their Good Shepherd’s Voice.

An internationally recognized counselor offers Christian leaders a clinical and theological framework for understanding how power operates, the effects of the abuse of power, and how power can be redeemed and restored to its proper God-given place in human relationships and institutions.

Trauma therapist Teresa B. Pasquale offers healing exercises, true-life examples, and life-giving discussion for anyone suffering from the very real pain of church hurt. Pasquale, a trauma survivor herself, understands the immeasurable value of our wounds once we’ve acknowledged them and recovered in community. That’s why the wounds are “sacred,” and the hope this book offers is a powerful message to anyone suffering from this widespread problem.

This book explores the nature of emotional wounds, trauma, and spiritual hurt that come from negative religious experience. Some of the features are: -Stories from a wide range of persons hurt by negative religious experience -Healing and contemplative practices to help readers explore their own spiritual story and practical ways to move towards personal healing -A journey through the experience of trauma in religious settings and how it is both relatable to other forms of trauma and distinctive-outlining both facets -An exploration of the author’s own personal and professional understanding of hurt, trauma, PTSD, and the power of resiliency and healing.

“Am I the only one who sees this–am I just imagining things? Is something wrong with me . . . or could this be abuse?”

Maybe you don’t know for sure: all you know is something feels off when you think about a certain relationship or interaction with an institution or organization. You feel alone and confused–but calling it “abuse” feels extreme and unsettling, a label for what happens to other people but not you. Yet you can’t shake the feeling: something’s not right.

In his debut book, researcher and advocate Wade Mullen introduces us to the groundbreaking world of impression management–the strategies that individuals and organizations utilize to gain power and cover up their wrongdoings. Mullen reveals a pattern that accompanies many types of abuse, almost as if abusers are somehow reading from the same playbook. If we can learn to decode these evil methods–if we can learn the language of abuse–we can help stop the cycle and make abusers less effective at accomplishing destruction in our lives.

Something’s Not Right will help you to identify and describe tactics that were previously unidentifiable and indescribable, and give you the language you need to move toward freedom and create a safer future for yourself and others.

We Too: How the Church Can Respond Redemptively to the Sexual Abuse Crisis (in process)

In the throes of the #MeToo movement, with authority and compassion, Mary DeMuth draws on her personal experience and elevates the voices of survivors as she unpacks the history of the church’s response to sexual abuse in order to find a new way forward.

“Timely and necessary…This book is not only a warning. It is an opportunity. An opportunity to live out the gospel we so passionately proclaim. And it starts with listening.”–J.D. Greear, President of the Southern Baptist Convention

The Well-Armored Child: A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Sexual Abuse (in process)

Author Joelle Casteix has filled the need for an easy-to-read toolkit for parents when it comes to preventing childhood sexual abuse. When her own child was born, she was deluged with tomes that covered everything from breastfeeding to choosing the right college. But one book was noticeably absent. It’s the book that can help parents take action to prevent their child from becoming another statistic.

The Well-Armored Child gives parents the tools and strategies to understand how predators “groom” children, why many of our trusted institutions cover up abuse, and how to empower children without shame, fear, or inappropriate discussions of sex.

Written by Rachael Denhollander, recipient of Sports Illustrated’s Inspiration of the Year Award and one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People (2018).

“Who is going to tell these little girls that what was done to them matters? That they are seen and valued, that they are not alone and they are not unprotected?”

Rachael Denhollander’s voice was heard around the world when she spoke out to end the most shocking USA gymnastics scandal in history.

The first victim to publicly accuse Larry Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor who sexually abused hundreds of young athletes, Rachael now reveals her full story for the first time. How did Nassar get away with it for so long? How did Rachael and the other survivors finally stop him and bring him to justice? And how can we protect the vulnerable in our own families, churches, and communities?

What Is a Girl Worth? is the inspiring true story of Rachael’s journey from an idealistic young gymnast to a strong and determined woman who found the courage to raise her voice against evil, even when she thought the world might not listen. In this crucial cultural moment of #MeToo and #ChurchToo, this deeply personal and compelling narrative shines a spotlight on the physical and emotional impact of abuse, why so many survivors are reluctant to speak out, and what it means to be believed.

Why does narcissism seem to thrive in our churches?

We’ve seen the news stories. Maybe we ourselves have been hurt by a narcissistic church leader. But what is narcissism, really? And how does it infiltrate the church?

Chuck DeGroat has been counseling pastors with narcissistic personality disorder, as well as those wounded by narcissistic leaders and systems, for over twenty years.

He knows firsthand the devastation narcissism leaves in its wake and how insidious and painful it is. In When Narcissism Comes to Church, DeGroat takes a close look at narcissism, not only in ministry leaders but also in church systems. He offers compassion and hope for those affected by its destructive power and imparts wise counsel for churches looking to heal from its systemic effects.

DeGroat also offers hope for narcissists themselves–not by any shortcut, but by the long, slow road of genuine recovery through repentance and trust in the gospel of Jesus.

Abortion

To begin our series highlighting library resources addressing topics of crisis, we present a collection of books and podcasts on the topic of abortion. The descriptive text below is all from the publishers, edited for length. All of these titles are available through the North Country Library System, and most of these are on the shelf at the Potsdam Public Library.

Medical and Counseling Resources

Planned Parenthood Learning Resource Page

All-Options Hotline: All-Options has a free confidential hotline to discuss decisions about a pregnancy.

Abortions Welcome: Abortions Welcome has written and interactive resources help with decisions about pregnancy, including a compassionate clergy counseling line.

Reachout of St. Lawrence County: Reachout is a free crisis hotline that can help connect you with other community resources.

Non-fiction

As women’s reproductive rights are increasingly under attack, a minister and ethicist weighs in on the abortion debate, offering a stirring argument that “the best arbiter of a woman’s reproductive destiny is herself” (Cecile Richards, former President of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America). Trust Women skillfully interweaves political analysis, sociology, ancient and modern philosophy, Christian tradition, and medical history, and grounds its analysis in the material reality of women’s lives and their decisions about sexuality, abortion, and child-bearing.

Our bodies, ourselves

Hailed by The New York Times as a “feminist classic,” and “America’s bestselling book on women’s health,” the comprehensive guide to all aspects of women’s health and sexuality, including menopause, birth control, childbirth, sexual health, sexual orientation, gender identity, mental health and general well-being.

The girls who went away : the hidden history of women who surrendered children for adoption in the decades before Roe v. Wade

The astonishing untold history of the million and a half women who surrendered children for adoption due to enormous family and social pressure in the decades before Roe v. Wade.

In this deeply moving and myth-shattering work, Ann Fessler brings out into the open for the first time the hidden social history of adoption before Roe v. Wade – and its lasting legacy.

Few Supreme Court decisions have stirred up as much controversy, vitriolic debate, and even violence as Roe v. Wade in 1973. Four decades later, it remains a touchstone for the culture wars in the United States and a pivot upon which much of our politics turns.

This book details the case’s historical background; highlights Roe v. Wade’s core issues, essential personalities, and key precedents; tracks the case’s path through the courts; clarifies the jurisprudence behind the Court’s ruling in Roe; assesses the impact of the presidential elections of George W. Bush and Barack Obama along with the confirmations of Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Samuel Alito, Justice Sonia Sotomayor; and gauges the case’s impact on American society and subsequent challenges to it in Webster v. Reproductive Health Services (1989), Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992), and Gonzales v. Carhart (2007).

Despite her famous pseudonym, no one knows the truth about ‘Jane Roe,’ Norma McCorvey (1947-2017), whose unwanted pregnancy in 1970 opened a great fracture in American life. Journalist Joshua Prager spent years with Norma, discovered her personal papers, a previously unseen trove, and witnessed her final moments.

Bad feminist : essays

A collection of essays spanning politics, criticism, and feminism from one of the most-watched cultural observers of her generation

In these funny and insightful essays, Gay takes us through the journey of her evolution as a woman (Sweet Valley High) of color (The Help) while also taking readers on a ride through culture of the last few years (Girls, Django in Chains) and commenting on the state of feminism today (abortion, Chris Brown). The portrait that emerges is not only one of an incredibly insightful woman continually growing to understand herself and our society, but also one of our culture.

Cosmic constitutional theory : why Americans are losing their inalienable right to self-governance

American constitutional law has undergone a transformation. Issues once left to the people have increasingly become the province of the courts. Subjects as diverse as abortion rights and firearms regulations, health care reform and counterterrorism efforts, not to mention a millennial presidential election, are more and more the domain of judges. Wilkinson argues they will slowly erode the role of representative institutions in America and leave our children bereft of democratic liberty.

The Choices we made : 25 women and men speak out about abortion

Every day in America, abortion providers and the women who need them are in danger. First published ten years ago, this collection of 25 powerful stories from contributors both famous and ordinary, privileged and poor, provides often harrowing insights into what happens when women are denied the right to choose. Testimonials from teenagers, college students, overloaded young mothers, and even a retired male Marine put a human face on one of this country’s most controversial issues and offer passionate arguments for access to legal and safe abortions.

Life’s work : from the trenches, a moral argument for choice

In this “vivid and companionable memoir of a remarkable life” (The New Yorker), an outspoken, Christian reproductive justice advocate and abortion provider reveals his personal and professional journeys in an effort to seize the moral high ground on the question of choice and reproductive justice. In Life’s Work, Dr. Willie Parker tells a deeply personal and thought-provoking narrative that illuminates the complex societal, political, religious, and personal realities of abortion in the United States from the unique perspective of someone who performs them and defends the right to do so every day.

My life on the road

Gloria Steinem–writer, activist, organizer, and inspiring leader–now tells a story she has never told before, a candid account of her life as a traveler, a listener, and a catalyst for change.

When people ask me why I still have hope and energy after all these years, I always say: Because I travel. Taking to the road–by which I mean letting the road take you–changed who I thought I was. The road is messy in the way that real life is messy. It leads us out of denial and into reality, out of theory and into practice, out of caution and into action, out of statistics and into stories–in short, out of our heads and into our hearts.

Fiction

In this striking, enormously affecting novel, Joyce Carol Oates tells the story of two very different and yet intimately linked American families. Luther Dunphy is an ardent Evangelical who envisions himself as acting out God’s will when he assassinates an abortion provider in his small Ohio town while Augustus Voorhees, the idealistic but self-regarding doctor who is killed, leaves behind a wife and children scarred and embittered by grief.

In her moving, insightful portrait, Joyce Carol Oates fully inhabits the perspectives of two interwoven families whose destinies are defined by their warring convictions and squarely-but with great empathy-confronts an intractable, abiding rift in American society.

The handmaid’s tale

The Handmaid’s Tale is a novel of such power that the reader will be unable to forget its images and its forecast. Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States and is now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men in its population.

A spark of light : a novel

The warm fall day starts like any other at the Center–a women’s reproductive health services clinic–its staff offering care to anyone who passes through its doors. Then, in late morning, a desperate and distraught gunman bursts in and opens fire, taking all inside hostage.

After rushing to the scene, Hugh McElroy, a police hostage negotiator, sets up a perimeter and begins making a plan to communicate with the gunman. As his phone vibrates with incoming text messages he glances at it and, to his horror, finds out that his fifteen-year-old daughter, Wren, is inside the clinic.

One of the most fearless writers of our time, Jodi Picoult tackles a complicated issue in this gripping and nuanced novel. How do we balance the rights of pregnant women with the rights of the unborn they carry? What does it mean to be a good parent? A Spark of Light will inspire debate, conversation . . . and, hopefully, understanding.

The mothers : a novel

Set within a contemporary black community in Southern California, Brit Bennett’s mesmerizing first novel is an emotionally perceptive story about community, love, and ambition. It begins with a secret.

All good secrets have a taste before you tell them, and if we’d taken a moment to swish this one around our mouths, we might have noticed the sourness of an unripe secret, plucked too soon, stolen and passed around before its season.

It is the last season of high school life for Nadia Turner, a rebellious, grief-stricken, seventeen-year-old beauty. Mourning her own mother’s recent suicide, she takes up with the local pastor’s son. Luke Sheppard is twenty-one, a former football star whose injury has reduced him to waiting tables at a diner. They are young; it’s not serious. But the pregnancy that results from this teen romance–and the subsequent cover-up–will have an impact that goes far beyond their youth. As Nadia hides her secret from everyone, including Aubrey, her God-fearing best friend, the years move quickly. Soon, Nadia, Luke, and Aubrey are full-fledged adults and still living in debt to the choices they made that one seaside summer, caught in a love triangle they must carefully maneuver, and dogged by the constant, nagging question: What if they had chosen differently? The possibilities of the road not taken are a relentless haunt.

Red clocks : a novel

In this ferociously imaginative novel, abortion is once again illegal in America, in-vitro fertilization is banned, and the Personhood Amendment grants rights of life, liberty, and property to every embryo.

Five women. One question. What is a woman for?

Red Clocks is at once a riveting drama, whose mysteries unfold with magnetic energy, and a shattering novel of ideas. In the vein of Margaret Atwood and Eileen Myles, Leni Zumas fearlessly explores the contours of female experience, evoking The Handmaid’s Tale for a new millennium. This is a story of resilience, transformation, and hope in tumultuous — even frightening — times.

Poor your soul

This vivid memoir tells of an unexpected pregnancy, ultimately welcomed, then threatened by birth defects that preclude life outside the womb. Far more than her personal story of abortion, Ptacin’s brutally honest account incorporates her own mother’s tragic loss of a child. 

When she woke

Bellwether Prize winner Hillary Jordan’s provocative new novel, When She Woke, tells the story of a stigmatized woman struggling to navigate an America of a not-too-distant future, where the line between church and state has been eradicated and convicted felons are no longer imprisoned and rehabilitated but chromed–their skin color is genetically altered to match the class of their crimes–and then released back into the population to survive as best they can. Hannah is a Red; her crime is murder.

In seeking a path to safety in an alien and hostile world, Hannah unknowingly embarks on a path of self-discovery that forces her to question the values she once held true and the righteousness of a country that politicizes faith.

Help Yourself

I hope that when you think about the library, you think about having fun; maybe nostalgic childhood memories of reading with a family member, discovering a great series to keep you entertained for a whole summer, or attending an inspiring workshop that sparks a new hobby. Maybe the library has been a place to escape to, a bright spot in an otherwise dark time, somewhere to be when you don’t know what to do with yourself.

A lot of what we do centers around entertainment, and recreational growth like learning crafts or outdoor skills, but what about when you’re experiencing a serious crisis that 350+ Crochet Tips will not mend? The Grumpy Gardener cannot dig you out of this one. What if you have nobody to confide in and have to help yourself? In this series I want to highlight some of the ways that the library can support you in times of crisis.

The library is a safe space, free of judgment. We welcome everyone, and celebrate diversity of every kind. Everyone who works at the library is here because we truly enjoy helping people. We’re also good at figuring things out, whether it’s how to use your ipad, how to sign up for healthcare, or where to find the forms to DIY your divorce.

Your privacy is protected at the library. Your parents, your spouse, your neighbor, your teachers, even the police, cannot access your library records without a court order. We actually can’t even tell you your own borrowing history because we do not keep that information, except for what’s currently checked out to you.

When you check out a book, a staff member will see what the book is, but we promise we don’t judge. Remember, WE bought all those books! We added them to the collection because we thought they should be here and that they should be checked out. Do you feel a little embarrassed buying tampons at the grocery store? I promise, the cashier doesn’t even think about it. Are you a grown woman reading YA fiction and comic books? Well, so are we. And as for the serious topics, our staff members have collectively been through a wide variety of hard times and have found some of the best help in books. We want that for you, too. Despite that, if you need an extra measure of anonymity, place your books on hold and then email info@potsdamlibrary.org and we will work out a solution that suits your needs.

Over the course of several posts, we’re going to highlight topics such as addiction, homelessness, poverty, discrimination, incarceration, child abuse, domestic abuse/violence, spiritual abuse, grief, depression and mental illness, suicide, medical issues, and legal issues. We’ll recommend a few books on those topics, and where applicable, we will link you to articles, podcasts, community services, etc.

In closing, here is a list of call numbers for “difficult topics” in our non-fiction section. Adult non-fiction is located upstairs.

Abortion ~ 363.46
Alzheimer’s ~ 616.831
Cancer ~ 616.994
HIV / AIDS ~ 616.9792
Infertility – 616.692 or 618.39
Miscarriage ~ 618.392
Pregnancy ~ 618.2
Puberty ~ 613.043 or 612.66
Sexual Health ~ 613 or 306.7
Bipolar Disorder ~ 616.895
Bullying ~ 303.69
Child Abuse ~ 362.76
Depression ~ 616.8527
Domestic Violence ~ 362.82
Loss of a Child ~ 155.9
Loss of a Parent ~ 306.874 or 155.9
Mental Illness ~ 616.89
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ~ 616.8521
Sexual Abuse ~ 362.7
Substance Abuse ~ 362.29 or 616.86
Suicide ~ 362.28
Adoption ~ 362.734
Bankruptcy ~ 346.7307
Child Custody ~ 343.7301
Divorce ~ 306.89 or 346.7
Estate Planning and Living Will ~ 346.7305
Foreclosure ~ 346.73
Hospice Care ~ 362.1
Personal Finance ~ 332

Saying farewell with stories

PPL Garden Entrance

PPL will be seeing another major change, in addition to the renovations, in 2021. On January 1, after being the children’s librarian since September 2017, Rebecca Donnelly has, as she said, “rejoined the world of regular library patrons.”

Rebecca has decided that this is the time to try to focus on her writing career, and we wish her all the success in her endeavor and storytelling. We also look forward to the stories she will create for us all.

But before she departed we asked her to share one more story with us, a reflection on her time at the library, and she did it in a way we think you will all enjoy.

Thank you, Rebecca, for the stories, past, present, and future!

Your Adult Program Coordinator,

William “W.T.” Eckert

Public Libraries Are Full Of Stories

by Rebecca Donnelly

Public libraries are full of stories. Obviously, you might be thinking; why else would we have libraries? But, of course, as a librarian who’s worked in public libraries of various sizes and in various communities in three states over the past 14 years, I’m talking about the stories that happen in the library. From a former employee who hid books and DVDs they disapproved of in the drop ceiling of the Air Force base library in the Florida panhandle to the day New York Times bestselling author Chris Bohjalian surprised the Norwood book club by calling in during their meeting, I’ve heard and been a part of many library stories over the years. 

As my days at Potsdam Public Library wind down, I’m thinking of some of my favorite stories from this place. For a children’s librarian, there’s no better story than one that charts the life of a young reader. Before I was hired on as a staff member, I substituted in a few Saturday storytimes around 2013. My main goal in storytime is to make a connection with the families who choose to spend their time with me listening to stories and building literacy skills. One of the young listeners on a particular Saturday was named Kailash, and as it happened, I had just come from working in a New Mexico library where we’d hosted a local author/illustrator whose book featured a young boy named Kailash. I mentioned the book to Kailash’s mother, who borrowed it from another library. A small, simple connection, the beginning of a friendship, and the beginning of me constantly blurting out book recommendations for Kailash, who is the sort of reader who devours stories. A librarian can’t claim too much credit for anyone’s love of reading, only for trying to offer them the right book at the right time and lots of encouragement. I’m happy to say that last year in third grade, Kailash presented the library with a printed copy of his own epic fantasy, Dragonite’s Rath, which I proudly added to the collection.

In 2019, we were extremely fortunate to be an off-campus site for one of LoKo Fest’s events, a storytelling program with the wonderful and prolific author and storyteller Joseph Bruchac (Abenaki) and his son Jesse. In the middle of moving shelving and furniture around for our eventual renovation project, we somehow squeezed over 100 people into the reading room to listen to music and stories. The performance itself was brilliant, but what stands out in my memory is the young boy in the Superman costume who knew exactly what superpowers he was meant to be exercising that day and stood next to Joe the entire time, doing hand movements, dancing, and being surprisingly quiet for a preschooler. A low buzz went through the crowd, a slight murmur of disapproval, but something told me not to interfere. I’ve seen storytellers before, but I’ve never seen anyone do what Joe did for the last piece of the program. He told the story of a young boy who was chastised by his community for perceived failings but who turned out to be the hero they needed in the end. When I asked him afterward if that was a spur-of-the-moment addition to the program, Joe acknowledged that it was, and that stories were very often the most powerful way to pass a message along, even to grownups.

The last story I’ll tell is the story of you, our library patrons: anytime you’ve come up to me, asking for a book recommendation or to attend a library program, anytime you’ve made a recommendation to me or told me why you or your child love a certain book, anytime you’ve needed one more book about sharks or asked me to read to your class, I’ve been as happy as I can be. “Sorry to bother you” is a phrase I’ve always responded to with, “Please bother me” or “That’s what I’m here for,” because as much as libraries are made of books, they’re built by people and sustained by people, and they’re nothing without their community. So thank you, as well, for your stories over the years.

–Rebecca

Voices From Within: Introspection from PPL Staffers

PPL Garden Entrance

Hey Gang!

I’m very excited to introduce the newest blog in our library family: Voices From Within.

Here you will be hearing from members of our library staff (Not me. You hear enough from me as it is. Ha!), and what makes them tick, what their interests are, what they bring to the library and, thus, what they bring to you.

Personally, I can’t wait to read what tales they tell! I hope you enjoy them as much as I am sure I will.

In this first installation of Voices From Within, Children’s Librarian Rebecca Donnelly talks about how she has been coping with being quarantined during the pandemic and she taps into several of us PPL staffers to find out what hobbies we’ve picked up during our new-found time at home.

What new hobbies have you picked up during these strange and uncertain times of pandemic isolation? Maybe Rebecca’s blog can give you some inspiration! Read on, dear patrons.

As per usual, I’m glad to be here!

Your Adult Program Coordinator,

William “W.T.” Eckert

What We Do To Get Through

By Rebecca Donnelly

In the early days of pandemic self-isolation, I’d burst out my back door and into the fresh air of my tiny yard any chance I got. I found enough wood under my shed, left by the previous owners, to build a couple of raised beds and plant early greens: chard, mustard, arugula. I built benches so I’d have somewhere to sit and watch the fragile shoots arrive and the thriving squirrel population launch their attacks on my beloved dirt. I attempted a bird feeder and dug out my Peterson’s Guide to Eastern Birds, pointing with glee every time a chickadee landed to grab a sunflower seed. “That,” I would say proudly to my seven-year-old, “is a kinglet. No, wait, it’s a chickadee. I think.” Like many others whose quarantine allowed them to adjust to this new reality at home, I came face to face with the yawning canyon of time and, to create the illusion of control, tried to fill it with nature lore and handicrafts. 

A table and bench built by Children’s Librarian Rebecca Donnelly during her time in pandemic isolation.

The most surprising legacy of my quarantine, though, might be the homemade yogurt. Springing from my slight obsession with reducing plastic waste, I decided to try making my own yogurt. I found a recipe at The Kitchn and, using eight cups of milk, one pot of store-bought yogurt, and a meat thermometer that gave me neither the high nor the low end of the required temperature spectrum, I tended my mini bacterial culture farm. Six hours later, I had two and a half peanut butter jars of runny, grainy goop, but my nose told me it was definitely yogurt.

Six months into this, I can still usually identify chickadees and goldfinches. I have three awkward benches and a little side table, more garden space dug out for next spring, and no bird feeder (dang squirrels). I’ve baked more bread and sourdough biscuits than I can fathom, and my little shed sports two roughly painted barn quilts. But it’s that weird yogurt I’m most proud of. It’s easy, it appeals to my quirky throwback side, and it even lets me wax a little philosophical, because why not?  I have time. Like sourdough starter, yogurt is powered by bacteria that will keep reproducing under the right conditions. It’s a small, optimistic investment in continuity. Whenever I make a batch of yogurt, I set aside half a cup to use the next time, carrying forward a little of the past with me into the next week of the unknown. 

Along with yogurt, furniture and raised flower beds, Children’s Librarian Rebecca Donnelly has also taken to making shed quilts.

Our PPL staff have been busy, too. Our director Annie has taken up the same scarf she’s been knitting for three years and is teaching her daughter to crochet and bake. Circulation supervisor Hayley is pickling and preserving summer’s bounty while adult program coordinator William has been perfecting his no-knead bread. I’m trying to convince circulation clerk Erin to open an Etsy store for ironic needlepoint designs.

Knitting has been a common hobby picked up by many, PPL Director Annie Davey included, during this new-found time at home during the pandemic.

What have you been doing to get through this time? Which quarantine pursuits have you joyfully abandoned, and which will you bring with you, like a jar of homemade yogurt, into the future? 

Closed for now, but remember our eResources!

Dear Friends,

Based on guidance from the New York Library Association, the Governor’s Office, and our school district, we have decided that the best way to serve our community is to prioritize its health and safety by temporarily closing the library.

We closed on Tuesday, March 17 and we will continue to be closed for renovations through late summer. Our re-opening date will be announced here and on Facebook.

We have lifted our check-out limits and we are, as always, fine-free.

If you currently have PPL books checked out, please know that we will renew your items. For inter-library loaned items, or items from other NCLS libraries, please email us at info@potsdamlibrary.org.

While we’re closed, please remember that you can access ebooks and audiobooks with your library card through the Libby app. You also have access to additional electronic resources with your library card including excellent educational content through TumbleBooksArtistWorksUniversal Class, and Transparent Language. Links to all of these resources are on our website.

Be well,

Annie

Shelfies

“Shelfies”  are small caches of FREE books located in 60 different businesses around St. Lawrence County.

Don’t forget to share a selfie with your shelfie! #shelfieselfie #potpublibrary

If you’d like to donate your gently used books to the Shelfie program, please email us.