It’s National Library Week, and we’re celebrating with recommendations from some of our favorite libraries and librarians. We asked our librarian followers on Twitter to tell us the books they can’t stop talking about, and they did not disappoint. From gripping psychological thrillers to powerful young adult novels to chilling horror stories, this list proves that there’s no better place to go for book recommendations than your local library.
This psychological thriller is told partially through the thoughts of Amber Reynolds, a woman in a coma. She can’t remember what happened, but she suspects that her husband was involved. Alternating between Amber’s paralyzed present, the week before the accident, and childhood diaries, the truth about Amber and her husband is exposed.
Set in Hawaii following the attacks on Pearl Harbor, Violet’s husband has disappeared, leaving her and her ten-year-old daughter, Ella, alone on the war-torn island. While suspicions surface about Violet’s husband’s loyalties, Violet attempts to protect her daughter and preserve their livelihood by opening a pie stand. In the process, she forms a deep bond with the other women working in the stand and finds herself falling for a soldier.
What if the atomic bomb had been ready to drop one year earlier, in 1944? THE BERLIN PROJECT explores this question, creating a sweeping alternate history where the atomic bomb is used on the Western Front, arriving in time to stop Hitler from killing millions more people.
Set in 1950s England, 11-year-old Flavia de Luce is an aspiring chemist who becomes involved in a grisly mystery when a body is found in her father’s cucumber patch. With her father as the prime suspect, Flavia sets out to prove his innocence by diving into an incident in his past linked to a valuable stamp. The best part? This cozy mystery is the first in a series, so that’s several reasons to make return trips to your local library.
When I was young, there was nothing more thrilling than pulling a brand-new, yellow-spined Nancy Drew mystery off my shelf. If as an adult you are awash with nostalgia for the Nancy Drew series, here are some grown-up female sleuths with continuing series to devour.
In 1922, Count Alexander Ilyich Rostov is sentenced to house arrest at the Moscow Hotel Metropol. While some of the most turbulent years in Russian history occur outside the hotel’s walls, inside of them, the Count’s reduced circumstances lead to new emotional bonds with the hotel’s staff and its many guests.
Read with a Moscow Mule
Maybe it’s the copper cup or the alliteration in the name that attracts us to this beverage again and again. And the perfect companion is A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW, set in the beautiful Metropol hotel in Moscow. Amor Towles spins the immersing story of Count Alexander Rostov, who is sentenced to house arrest after being deemed an unrepentant aristocrat.
This true story commences with an American girl being assigned a student in Zimbabwe as her pen pal. Her first letter begins a correspondence that spans six years and changes two lives, leading to a long-lasting friendship that stretches across continents.
Schlow Library’s note to us says it all: “It's a novel about the Chosin Reservoir Campaign during the Korean War, but is well-researched and authentic. At times, I had to put it down because I was so angry and other times because it made me cry.” Through the eyes of multiple commanders and soldiers, Jeff Shaara tells the story of the Allied forces, outnumbered six to one, as they fought in brutal elements to defend the Korean peninsula.
With abortion once again illegal in America, in-vitro fertilization banned, and the rights of life, liberty, and property granted to every embryo, five women from varying circumstances navigate these new barriers while grappling with teenage pregnancy, a longing for single motherhood, and a modern-day witch hunt.
Transgender advocate and lead singer for the punk rock band Against Me!, Laura Jane Grace’s memoir is a searing account of creating one of punk rock’s most influential and divisive bands, all while searching for her true self. This is one of rock’s most remarkable stories, following the band’s rise to fame and Laura Jane’s emergence as a transsexual icon.
This gripping horror story reimagines the already ghastly demise of the Donner Party with a new, monstrous twist. Based on accounts from this ill-fated Party, utilizing characters both real and imagined, Alma Katsu follows the settlers as they slowly run low on supplies, all while being stalked by an unseen evil that snatches animals and people in the night.