The Nix by Nathan Hill

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Samuel, a college professor and failed novelist, has not seen his mother in over twenty years since she left him and his father. When she is arrested for a political protest, he decides to see her again and learn more about her past, particularly her time as a young woman in 1960s Chicago. An engrossing, funny book with many characters and time periods.

“A fantastic novel about love, betrayal, politics and pop culture—as good as the best Michael Chabon or Jonathan Franzen.” —People 

“It broke my heart, this book. Time after time. It made me laugh just as often. I loved it on the first page as powerfully as I did on the last.” —Jason Sheehan, NPR.org

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Sweet Salt Air by Barbara Delinsky

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Two childhood friends reunite at a summer retreat, each harboring a horrible secret that would test the bounds of their longtime relationship if revealed.

“Set on the fictional Maine island of Quinnipeague, Delinksy’s novel centers on two childhood friends, Charlotte and Nicole, who reunite to coauthor a cookbook about the local cuisine. (Warning: there are tantalizing food descriptions in this book. Don’t listen to it while hungry.)”  – Publishers Weekly

“With grace and dignity Sweet Salt Air reveals the fragility of human nature while intimating at the healing powers of forgiveness.” ―New York Journal of Books

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Never Caught : the Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar

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“Oney Judge’s forgotten story is a powerful reminder that the tentacles of slavery could reach from the South all the way north to the State of New Hampshire.  The surprising part of the true history is not that she achieved her freedom, but the lengths to which George and Martha Washington would go to try to recapture a young woman who insulted them by rejecting bondage.” – Gretchen Holbrook Gerzina

“A startling, well-researched .  . . narrative that seriously questions the intentions of our first president.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“Erica Armstrong Dunbar combines the known facts of Ona’s life in service to the Washingtons with vivid descriptions of the physical and emotional conditions early American slaves faced.” (New York Post)

“Totally engrossing and absolutely necessary for understanding the birth of the American Republic, Never Caught is richly human history from the vantage point of the enslaved fifth of the early American population. Here is Ona Judge’s (successful) quest for freedom, on one side, and, on the other, George and Martha Washington’s (vain) use of federal power to try to keep her enslaved.” (Nell Irvin Painter, author of Sojourner Truth, A Life, A Symbol)

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The Gods of Gotham by Lyndsay Faye

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One of Publishers Weekly’s Top Ten Mystery/Thrillers of the Year
One of Kirkus Reviews’ Ten Best Crime Novels of the Year
Edgar(R) Award Nominee for Best Novel
ALA Reading List Award for Best Mystery
Enjoyed by the Weston Tuesday Mystery Book Group!

1845: New York City forms its first police force. The great potato famine hits Ireland.    These two events will change New York City forever…

“The launch of a brilliant new mystery series, set in 1845 New York City: Irish Potato Famine, the birth of the police force, brothels and bedlam.”– Gillian Flynn

“It’s been almost twenty years since Caleb Carr’s bestselling Olde New York crime novel, The Alienist, was published, and I cant count the number of times since then that someone has asked me if I can recommend a suspense story anything ‘like it.’ Well, New York has inspired lots of terrific thrillers, but I’ve just stumbled on one of the worthiest successors yet. Lyndsay Faye’s novel, The Gods of Gotham.“—Maureen Corrigan, NPR’s Fresh Air

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The Atomic Weight of Love by Elizabeth Church

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I really enjoyed this story about a woman who gave up her dream of becoming an ornithologist in the 1940’s to marry the man she fell in love with and all that she sacrificed and discovered as a result of this decision.

“Church’s debut novel explores the relationship between sacrifice and love . . . Each sentence drives the plot further, exploring love’s limits and its spoils. But it’s Church’s exploration of Meridian’s role in her relationships that is the most gracefully executed feat of the novel. Meridian’s voice is poignant, a mixture of poetry and observation . . . An elegant glimpse into the evolution of love and womanhood.” Kirkus Reviews

“Church hits the mark in this emotionally driven debut that spans the chapters of a long life . . . What does love require of us? How does one strike a balance between compromise and self‑fulfillment? In her debut novel, Church writes to these issues in a style that is thoughtful and elegant.” Library Journal

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Ruthless River: Love and Survival by Raft on the Amazon’s Relentless Madre de Dios by Holly FitzGerald

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True life story.  Holly FitzGerald and her husband set off on the adventure of their dreams a year into their marriage in the late ’70’s.  The harrowing story of what went wrong in the Amazon and how they survived, kept me racing through chapters as if my survival was bound up with theirs.  Short crisp chapters, excellent editing, and riveting determination make this a winner read.

“Both travel memoir and shocking adventure story, like a real-life Survivor or Naked and Afraid . . . A powerful story about survival, love, and faith in the face of impossible odds . . .  Unputdownable . . . absolutely fascinating.”—Katie Lawrence, Library Journal

“One of the great survival tales. An almost unbearable story told with a physical and emotional intensity that draws the reader in, not just as witness, but as virtual participant. It’s an exhausting, painful, inspiring read.”—Michael Palin, author of Traveling to Work

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Blood from a Stone: A Commissario Guido Brunetti Mystery by Donna Leon

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Another Tuesday Mystery Book Club choice.  When an illegal alien from Africa, who’s selling fake designer handbags, is killed execution-style in a crowded Venice market, the case creates personal crises for Leon’s endearing police Commissario Guido Brunetti as well as international ramifications.

Check out Donna Leon’s Commissario Guido Brunetti mysteries series on dvd.

“One of the best of the international crime writers is Donna Leon, and her Commissario Guido Brunetti tales set in Venice are at the apex of continental thrillers.”

In this stunning novel, the 14th to feature the dogged, intuitive Venetian police detective Guido Brunetti (after 2004’s Doctored Evidence), Leon combines an engrossing, complex plot with an indictment of the corruption endemic to Italian society. The murder of an anonymous African street vendor, an inoffensive, possibly illegal Senegalese immigrant, explodes into a many-layered conundrum. – starred review, Publisher’s Weekly

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Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann

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This engaging work of nonfiction is a twisting, haunting true-life murder mystery about one of the most monstrous crimes in American history that took place in 1920s Oklahoma, targeting the wealthy Osage community.   His previous book is The Lost City of Z: a Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon.

“A master of the detective form…Killers is something rather deep and not easily forgotten.”—Wall St. Journal

 “A marvel of detective-like research and narrative verve.”—Financial Times 

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A Separation by Katie Kitamura

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This is a mesmerizing examination of a marriage gone wrong.  They had agreed to separate but he makes her promise to tell no one quite yet.  Then he disappears and his mother convinces her to find him…somewhere in Greece…..I couldn’t relax until I knew the outcome!

“Accomplished… a coolly unsettling work.” —New York Times Book Review

“A spare and stunning portrait of a marital estrangement… [B]uilds into a hypnotic meditation on infidelity and the unknowability of one’s spouse. In precise and muted prose, the entire story unspools in the coolly observant mind of a young woman… A minutely observed novel of infidelity unsettles its characters and readers.” —Kirkus [starred review]

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The Other Einstein by Marie Benedict

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The Big Library Read (BLR) @ OverDrive announces the winning title!  The Other Einstein will be available for unlimited access on the OverDrive-powered website between June 12-26, 2017. And, of course, you can pick up a copy at your library:

“Mileva “Mitza” Marić has always been a little different from other girls. Rather than thinking about marriage, she’s studying physics with only male students trying to outdo her clever calculations. And then fellow student Albert Einstein takes an interest in her, and the world turns sideways. Theirs becomes a partnership of the mind and of the heart, but there might not be room for more than one genius in a marriage.”

“In her compelling novel… Benedict makes a strong case that the brilliant woman behind [Albert Einstein] was integral to his success, and creates a rich historical portrait in the process.” – Publishers Weekly

“Benedict’s debut novel carefully traces Mileva’s life-from studious schoolgirl to bereaved mother-with attention paid to the conflicts between personal goals and social conventions. An intriguing… re-imagining of one of the strongest intellectual partnerships of the 19th century.” – Kirkus

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