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Brothers in Arms: The Epic Story of the 761st Tank Battalion, WWII's Forgotten Heroes
Abdul-Jabbar, Kareem
Abdul-Jabbar focuses on the heroic actions of three men who were members of the all African American 761st Tank battalion. At a time when most non-whites serving in the military weren't allowed to fight, the men of the 761st served bravely and valiantly, earning the army's highest honors. A well-written and well-researched book about a little known piece of our country's history.
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Jennifer L., Ridgedale Library
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Safekeeping: some true stories from a life
Abigail, Thomas
Thomas is perhaps best known for her marvelous memoir Three Dog Life (Stephen King states it's the best memoir he's ever read). I liked it very much but Thomas' older memoir Safekeeping is the best memoir I've read. The chapters (each completely contained)are two sentences to three pages. Thomas remembers small, exquisitely crafted moments in her marriages, her youth, with her mother, her sister, her daughter ... written with startling clarity. I love this book.
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Kim B., Ridgedale Library
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End of Story
Abrahams, Peter
Ivy Seidel, an aspiring "'Great American Novelist," takes over a creative writing class in a brutal, NY prison. One of her students, convicted in a robbery/murder case, stands out from the other aggressive prisoners, for his writing talent and apparent gentleness. Even as an unpublished author, law enforcement officials and others involved in the case give her unlimited access to files and records. She's convinced of his innocence but her efforts on his behalf are not appreciated by lawyers, surviving spouses and strip club owners' goons. A typical "woman in danger" read but a captivating one!
[Adult Fiction Book ABRAHAMS]
Mary S., Golden Valley Library
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Fifty-nine in 84
Achorn, Edward
Achorn focuses on Charles "old Hoss" Radbourn one of the greatest pitchers in baseball history that most of today's fans, including this one, know nothing about.Achorn takes us back to a time when starting pitchers were expected to play the entire game and to pitch often, sometimes on consecutive days and sometimes even both ends of a doubleheader, as Radbourn pitching for the Providence, R.I. Grays did on Memorial Day (1884)winning both. Radbourn pitched 73 complete games and won 59 of them in 1884. An enjoyable and extremely eductional story about a time in baseball many fans know little or nothing about.
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Jennifer L., Ridgedale Library
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The Girl Who Chased the Moon
Allen, Sarah Addison
Emily Benedict, a young girl, goes to Mullaby NC to live with a grandfather she never knew she had until after the death of her mother. Her mother Dulcie had never spoken of her hometown nor her father and Emily begins to find out why. What is the secret behind Dulcie’s leaving and why do people dislike her? Emily meets her neighbor, Julia Wintertown, who had problems with Dulcie too. Julia is in town temporarily but she too has a secret and bakes cakes hoping the smell will bring someone to her. Warm characters, quirky setting, magical happenings and family secrets make this a fun read.
[Adult Fiction Book ALLEN]
Judith B., Edina Library
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Garden Spells
Allen, Sarah Addison
If you liked "Chocolat" by Joanne Harris, you're in for another tasty treat in this tale of two sisters. The Waverly women have always had strong, and sometimes strange, gifts, which tended to set them apart from the rest of their small North Carolina townsfolk. Younger sister Sydney left town and family entanglements after high school, but returns years later with her young daughter, fleeing from the girl's abusive father. Older sister Claire takes them in, and as the two work their way toward reconciliation, a magical tale of life and love unfolds.
[Adult Fiction Book ALLEN]
Claudia K., Rockford Road Library
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Zorro
Allende, Isabel
A beautifully written novel about the legendary swordsman, much less bombastic than the character's portrayal in film and television. In late eighteenth century Spanish California, Diego de la Vega, the son of an aristocratic officer and a beautiful Native American woman, grows up with Bernardo, his Native American "milk brother." At sixteen, Diego and Bernardo are sent to Spain where Diego studies under a great fencing master and joins a secret society which protects the powerless. Zorro defends his land, fights oppression and has many adventures. Allende's writing is descriptive and at times mischievous - a truly wonderful read!
[Adult Fiction Book ALLENDE]
Trudi C., Southdale Library
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This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women
Allison, Jay
A collection of some of the best essays submitted to the powerful NPR program This I Believe. The essays are personal credos from famous personalities and ordinary Americans that are insightful and inspiring. A perfect book to pick up and read whenever you have a free moment, this book is for anyone who wants or needs a quick bit of inspiration.
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Joyce L., Ridgedale Library
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Rock and roll will save your life
Almond , Steve
Snarky fun, fun, fun! Author is like a combination of Nick Hornby and David Sedaris. A great memoir about the importance of music in life. Best part? Author loves to deconstruct bad pop songs – watch out Air Supply!
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Marni B., Eden Prairie Library
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The Blood of Flowers
Amirrezvani, Anita
Following her father's untimely death, the unnamed narrator and her mother travel to the fabled city of Isfahan to stay with the family of a distant relative who is a master carpetmaker to Shah Abbas. The girl is fascinated by the colors and patterns of the carpets, but when she is forced into a shameful temporary marriage, her dreams of creating her own carpets seem as distant as the moon. Set in 17th-century Iran, this beautifully written novel weaves a tale of the unnamed Persian carpetmakers through one girl's struggle to survive and thrive both as a woman and as a carpetmaker in her own right.
[Adult Fiction Book AMIRREZ]
Stephanie W., Champlin Library
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I'm Not Scared
Ammaniti, Niccolo
Wow! If you start this translated Italian bestseller in the evening, prepare to stay up late. You won't put it down. When 9-year-old Michele makes a horrifying discovery during a bike ride with friends, his world unravels as his entire tiny village seems implicated in the event. This slender volume is the best suspense I've read in years! It's also a pretty good movie.
[Adult Fiction Book AMMANITI]
David L., Southdale Library
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Murder, with peacocks
Andrews, Donna
Meg apparently isn't worried about the old saw 'three times a bridesmaid, never a bride' as she is maid of honor for three weddings in her small home town. All three brides are counting on her for all the wedding arrangements, but when the sister of one of the grooms dies in suspicious circumstances, Meg finds time to help her insatiably curious father investigate. The humor of Meg's situation will keep you laughing out loud!
[Adult Mystery Book ANDREWS]
Kay D., Maple Grove Library
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Let Me Finish
Angell, Roger
Seventeen essays that cohere beautifully to form an overview of Angell's remarkable life, from his years at Harvard, to his service during WW2, to holidays spent with his mother, Katherine Angell, a longtime New Yorker editor, and his stepfather, beloved author E. B. White. Angell's essays possess all the charm and allure of the bygone days they describe. Nostalgic without being sentimental, they're stylish, classy pieces written with the kind of clear-sighted integrity that characterized the work of his stepfather. They just don't make 'em like this anymore.
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Eddie A., St. Anthony Library
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Aunt Dimity and the Duke
Atherton, Nancy
Bostonian Emma Porter's English gardens tour lands her a job - and romance - when she is directed to Penford Hall. Vivid characters, amusing situations, and a tangled plot make for a delightful mystery.
[Adult Mystery Book ATHERTON]
Kay D., Maple Grove Library
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The Brooklyn Follies
Auster, Paul
"I was looking for a quiet place to die, someone recommended Brooklyn". So begins Auster's sublime soap opera about the ways in which people abandon and save one another. He captures a historic American moment (post 9/11) and he offers a message of hope. Love will save us. We will save each other. Auster employs tough-guy talk and funny, believable stories of folly in his search for wisdom and goodness. This is one of his best novels.
[Adult Fiction Book AUSTER]
Eddie A., St. Anthony Library
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Remains Silent
Baden, Michael
"Manny" Manfreda is a crusading attorney who takes cases no one else will take. After losing a case because of the testimony of Dr. Jake Rosen, the deputy chief medical examiner of New York, she is surprised when he sends a client her way. Four bodies have been unearthed from a construction site near a former mental hospital. Jake's friend and mentor, Dr. Pete Harrigan, calls Jake for help but Dr. Pete dies before they can talk. Manny and Jake are thrown together as they work on finding out who these people were. The bodies disappear, Manny is attacked, Jake's car is bombed - obviously someone wants them to stop investigating. The zippy dialogue and love affair between Manny and Jake make this a quick read.
[Adult Fiction Book BADEN]
Judith B., Edina Library
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Adored
Bagshawe, Tilly
The beautiful and rich granddaughter of a famous movie star, Siena McMahon grows up adoring her grandfather and wanting to emulate his fame and talent. Her father, however, cannot stand the grandfather (his father) and when Siena refuses go to medical school as he wishes, he disowns her. This is a fat juicy beach read. I listened to it on CD and reader Barbara Rosenblat does an amazing job with the British and American accents. Bagshawe writes in the style of Sidney Sheldon; a real page-turner.
[Adult Fiction Book BAGSHAWE]
Kim B., Ridgedale Library
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The Little Giant of Aberdeen County
Baker, Tiffany
Truly Plaice is the definition of a larger-than-life character from her sheer size to her perseverance in the face of hardship. The polar opposite of her beauty queen winning sister Serena Jane, her life is shaped by generational family histories in her small southern town. An heirloom quilt becomes her salvation when its true nature is discovered.
[Adult Fiction Book BAKER]
Crystal H., Long Lake Library
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Please Don't Come Back from the Moon
Bakopoulos, Dean
In 1991, when the unemployed men in Maple Rock, a suburb of Detroit, all leave town, their sons try to take their places. The teenagers get jobs to help their mothers pay the bills, they drink in bars, fight, and get involved with older women. This gritty coming-of-age story pulled me right into the passionate and angry world of these fatherless boys.
[Adult Fiction Book BAKOPOU]
Ann P., Maple Grove Library
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The Shadow Factory : the Ultra-Secret NSA from 9/11 to the Eavesdropping On America
Bamford, James
If you often feel that someone is watching (or listening to) you, James Bamford’s offering will do nothing to assuage your fears. Bamford’s subject here, the National Security Agency, is much larger and yet much less well-known than the CIA. In this highly informative work, the author details the recent history of the NSA, from its difficulties in using available information to possibly thwart the attacks of 9/11 to its expansion of surveillance into the realm of the U.S. citizenry. Particularly polemic is the author’s discussion of the agency’s increasing use of private contractors to carry out much of its intelligence gathering. The Shadow Factory is a great choice for those who endeavor to understand the realities of contemporary U.S. society.
[Adult Nonfiction Book ]
Stanley S., Plymouth Library
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