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The History of the Southern Christmas The first documented Roman Catholic Christmas service in what would become the Southern United States took place in Spanish St. Augustine in 1565. The first Anglican service was held in Jamestown, Virginia in 1607. Roman Catholics, Dutch Reformed, and Lutherans all brought their traditions, but Christmas in the South was mostly influenced in the second half of the 17th century and 18th century by Anglican planters, settling Virginia, Maryland, and the Carolinas. Religious services were deemphasized by the English, who indulged in the worldly pastimes of feasting, drinking, dancing, sporting, and gaming. The festivities often lasted until ‘Twelfth Night’ (Twelfth Night is a Christian holiday celebrated 12 days after Christmas, on January 6. It marks the end of the Christmas season.) and had grown by the 18th century to include balls, hunts, and open houses. Tables and sideboards groaned not only under the weight of Christmas delicacies well-known to us, such as roast turkey, eggnog, cakes, and pies, but by every edible that could be raised, caught, or gathered from the bounty of the Eastern seaboard. Gift-giving was not as central to the colonial Christmas as today, although the wealthy commonly gave small gifts to the poor, servants, and slaves, and perhaps a few gifts to the children. All classes saluted Christmas morning raucously by shooting off fireworks, firearms, and the clanging of pots and pans. Other imported Old English customs included Christmas carols, Yule logs, kissing under the mistletoe, and decking homes with greenery. Schoolboys earned themselves some holiday liberty through the custom of “barring out the schoolmaster”, in which they would stock up on provisions and barricade themselves inside the schoolroom. The Southern taste for Christmas gaiety continued into the 19th century. The din and explosions from the gunfire and fireworks explosions on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were said to rival Independence Day. Southern urban-dwellers, especially residents of Baltimore, Savannah, Mobile, and St. Augustine, hosted Christmas Eve masquerades, known as “fantasticals”, which resembled the New Orleans Mardi Gras celebration. In former French territories, nativity scenes, Midnight Mass, reveillon (Christmas Eve feast following Midnight Mass), New Year’s Eve and Twelfth Night parties remained popular through the 1800s. The French gave gifts to the children on New Year’s Day. Over the 19th century, most Protestant denominations, such as the Baptists and Congregationalists, lost their hostility to Christmas as a “Catholic” feast day and brought observances into their churches and homes. Antebellum African Americans imported and developed their own traditions. In North Carolina, a masquerade tradition, known as Jonkonnu, which still survives in the Caribbean, was celebrated. In Alabama, some slaves observed an all-night vigil on Christmas Eve, during which they sang, danced, and prayed. Alabama, in 1836, became the first state to recognize Christmas Eve as a legal holiday and, in 1870, Christmas was recognized as a national holiday. During the latter 19th century and 20th century, Christmas traditions became less regionally and ethnically bound as mass immigration and increasing commercialization popularized Santa Claus, Christmas trees, and gift-giving across America.

By Pamela Sage, formerly Head of Reference and Information Services Sources: Encyclopedia of Christmas by Tanya Gulevich and The Christmas Encyclopedia by William D. Crump

From the Desk of the Library Director Season’s Greetings: December 2013 Dear Montgomery: Welcome to the 2013 edition of Read Into the Holidays. As everyone knows, libraries provide an opportunity for people to tour the world through the written word. I am honored to have the opportunity to write these words to you, the reader, and welcome you to a world of exploration through the written word. Often patrons ask our staff for recommendations on what to read next. The staff cannot provide that guidance without having a true love for the written word. Montgomery is truly blessed to have a Public Library staff that is well read, recognizes authors and can make such recommendations when requested. The library is, as well, blessed to have users, City and County officials and a Mayor who value not only reading, but the process of life-long learning through reading and access to information. This year, we have a very special section, where members of the Library Board and the Foundation Board have submitted reviews along with members of the community. Every member of the Library Staff has submitted a review for this year’s book. These reviews represent their personal commitment to the process of learning and growing as members of our staff, but more importantly as members of the Montgomery community. Through the use of material that they have either listened to or read, the staff, Friends of the Library, members of the many book discussion clubs meeting in our Public Library, and other citizens who wanted to be a part of this year’s compilation of reviews, we graciously submit to you our gift. As you read during the 2014 year, feel free to submit your review of a book to be included in the 2014 edition of Read Into the Holidays. This edition is a gift from our staff to you to cherish and share with other members of our community. Our wish for you, our users, is that you have a safe and happy holiday season and the New Year proves to be prosperous beyond worldly possessions. Enjoy!

Jaunita McClain Owes Library Director

Guest Contributors Paradise Valley by Dale Cramer, Narrated by Robin Miles CD F CRAMER Location: Pintlala If you are a follower of Amish novels, you will be enthralled with this unique Amish story that was inspired by actual events in the 1920’s. Due to Ohio’s new laws that invaded the beliefs and customs of the Amish, Caleb Bender moved his family from Ohio to the raw country of Mexico to a location called Paradise Cove to escape the interference of the government into their way of life. After arriving, the family worked tirelessly building adobe homes, finding water, and tilling the land in spite of the negatives they encountered in this fertile valley such as poisonous snakes and spiders, and the most dangerous was a constant threat from the bandits that live in the surrounding mountains. Finally, after a year of meeting and overcoming many obstacles, the family farm begins to flourish and slowly their neighbors from Ohio begin to migrate to this valley. According to the author’s notes, his great-grandfather was an elder statesman of the colony Paradise Valley, Mexico. He used the facts gathered from this period to create his novel about one Amish family that was joined by many Amish to found the colony of Paradise Valley. Paradise Valley by Dale Cramer, narrated by Robin Miles is also available in LPF at Coliseum, Governor’s Square and Morgan Libraries. Janice Anderson, Pintlala Branch Library Patron Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power by Jon Meacham B JEFFERS Locations: Morgan, Hampstead Having already read Jon Meacham’s American Lion about President Andrew Jackson, I eagerly dove into Meacham’s book on Jefferson. I have lived in Charlottesville, Virginia, home of The University of Virginia and Monticello, both of which were designed by Jefferson, and have been along-time and ardent admirer of our third President. He clearly was one of those rare geniuses who could do it all. At age 33, he wrote the Declaration of Independence – a fact that is mind-boggling in itself. And that he went on to excel in the national and inter-national political arenas, open the western US with the Louisiana Purchase and the Lewis and Clark expedition, leaves one in awe of an individual who was also an expert in music, literature, agriculture and architecture! Other reviewers state: “Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power gives us Jefferson the politician and president, a great and complex human being forever engaged in the wars of his era. Philosophers think; politicians maneuver. Jefferson’s genius was that he was both and could do both, often simultaneously. Such is the art of power. Thomas Jefferson hated confrontation, and yet his understanding of power and of human nature enabled him to move men and to marshal ideas, to learn from his mistakes, and to prevail. Jefferson loved America most, and he strove over and over again, despite fierce opposition, to realize his vision: the creation, survival, and success of popular government in America. Jon Meacham lets us see Jefferson’s world as Jefferson himself saw it, and to appreciate how Jefferson found the means to endure and win in the face of rife partisan division, economic uncertainty, and external threat. The Jefferson story resonates today not least because he led his nation through ferocious partisanship and cultural warfare amid economic change and external threats, and also because he embodies an eternal drama, the struggle of the leadership of a nation to achieve greatness in a difficult and confounding world.” Lynn Beshear, Library Foundation Board


Commanders: History’s Greatest Military Leaders by R. G. Grant 355.0092 GRANT Locations: Pike Road, Coliseum, Lowder, Governor’s Square, Morgan, Lewis A reviewer is obligated to read every word of a book, so I have enjoyed this weighty tome less than I would have if I had done as I suggest to you -- peruse the contents section and select what interests you or piques your curiosity. It runs over 350 pages, but for military history buffs, it is a treasure.   There are over 24 biographical profiles and pictures of commanders, from the ancients to the modern.   The author selected 21 of the greatest generals in history to examine, including accounts by those who knew them, and their finest successes on the battlefield, which are not always those you expect. As a bonus, the defining battles of the greatest commanders are detailed, with illustrated battle plans, which I found especially helpful, tactics and critical points. There are plentiful photographs and illustrations, and the writing style is crisp and informative without an abundance of military jargon.   I had fancied myself fairly well informed about Patton and MacArthur, but I learned much about both men.  Sometimes knowing why a commander took a particular action offers quite revealing insights into his personality or character.  I knew a bit about French, German and British commanders, but little about Asian, Mongol or Muslim ones.  Some of the pieces are brief, others much longer, but I believe you will find a great deal to interest you. Save this volume for a week of nasty winter weather! Mary H. McLemore, Board of Trustees & President, Friends of the Library


EASY Your Pal Mo Willems Presents Leonardo the Terrible Monster by Mo Willems E WILLEMS Locations: All 11 Libraries Leonardo is a favorite among both children and adults. This picture book portrays a terrible monster, but not the kind of terrible one would think. Leonardo is simply terrible at being a monster. On his quest to “scare the tuna salad out of someone” Leonardo meets a little boy named Sam. Then, something wonderful happens. This book is a great read aloud and fun for preschoolers and elementary kids alike. You might even convince a middle schooler to admit to his or her love for Leonardo. The writing is humorous and the illustrations are simple and perfectly suited to the story. Families will enjoy this humorous and endearing story about perseverance and friendship. Your Pal Mo Willems Presents Leonardo the Terrible Monster by Mo Willems, New York: Hyperion, ©2005, Not paginated; illustrated, for ages 3 and above. Taylor Barth, Librarian I, Hampstead Branch Library Splat the Cat by Rob Scotton E SCOTTON Locations: All 11 Libraries Splat the Cat is a children’s book found in the juvenile easy fiction section in all of our libraries. This book is a wonderful read as well as a great book for story time. The author has created a full page of colorful illustrations of Splat that goes perfect with the story. Splat is a big cat that is going off to cat school for the very first time. He is so terrified about going to school that he tries to use every excuse he can think of not to go. Splat’s mother does not believe any of his excuses and she tells him “you are going anyway!” He is worried he will not make any friends. So Splat puts his pet mouse in his lunch box and off to school he goes. Splat gets to school and his teacher Mrs. Wimpy Dimple introduces him to the class. She teaches Splat and the rest of the cats about the duties of a cat. Splat is still having a bad time until his pet mouse saves the day, then his whole attitude changes towards school. When Splat goes home at the end of the day he can’t wait to come back to school. There is a lesson for the children to learn in this easy book. Splat the Cat by Rob Scotton, New Year: HarperCollins, ©2008 [29] p. Sandra Berry, Librarian I, Pintlala Branch Library Lola Loves Stories by Anna McQuinn E MCQUINN Locations: All 11 Libraries Lola Loves Stories is a favorite and the first book my Dads and Daughters Saturday book group read. This book is about a little girl name Lola who enjoys going to the library on Saturdays with her daddy. The library is very exciting for Lola and she finds some good books to take home to read for everyday of the week. Lola’s daddy and mommy read books to her and Lola acts the stories out the next day. The stories Lola reads take her on adventures that leads right back to the library on Saturday to get more books for the next week. Lola Loves Stories is recommend for story time and a great read for any dad with his young daughter. Fredriatta Brown-Greene, Children’s Librarian, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library 3

Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin E LITWIN Locations: All 11 Libraries Pete the Cat is back with yet another groovy tune. He’s back with four big colorful groovy buttons on his favorite shirt as he starts off his day. Pete’s buttons pop off one by one and they all roll away. Nothing can stop Pete; he keeps on moving and singing his song about his groovy buttons. Everyone knows Pete doesn’t cry over anything because buttons come and buttons go. After all the buttons have popped off and rolled away he’s left shirtless with one button. Can you guess which one? Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons is a good book for any pre K through 2nd grader starting to count, and you can’t forget the groovy tune that he sings about his buttons. Pete the Cat was a favorite again this year with my entire story time and summer groups. Fredriatta Brown-Greene, Children’s Librarian, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Edwardo: The Horriblest Boy in the Whole Wide World by John Burningham E BURNINGHAM Locations: All Libraries locations except Hampstead John Burningham is the author and illustrator of several children books. In Edwardo, Burningham makes an effort to depict a young school aged boy as a juvenile delinquent. Burningham efforts are to send a message about childrearing and how certain parenting techniques can actually be counterproductive to the ultimate goal of raising a well disciplined and self-controlled child. This book is excellent for group story time or individual reading; also this book is geared towards children ages 4 to 8, but the author implies there is something to be gained from reading this by people of all ages. Carlene Dickerson, Library Page, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Fancy Nancy and the Boy from Paris by Jane O’Connor E O’CONNOR Locations: Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Pike Road, Hampstead Nancy is a very fancy 1st grader. Not only is Nancy fancy, but she is also very smart, which she demonstrates by using words a little too fancy for a six year old. If she is late, she would say she was tardy, or if she was scared, she would say she was terrified. So what interests this little debutante the most? The bright lights of Paris, France, of course! So when a little boy from Paris joins her class, Nancy quickly befriends the new kid to learn more about her beloved city. Yet, there is something off about this little Parisian. Will Nancy ever figure out her new friend’s secret? My daughter and I enjoy reading Fancy Nancy books together. The series will introduce new words for your child to learn. The Fancy Nancy series also include simple French words that are easily integrated within the book. Jane O’Connor has created a delightful series for children of all ages. She has written other delightful children books located here in our library. Here are a few of the books listed: There’s No Day Like a Snow Day, Tea for Two, Fancy Nancy: Fancy Day in Room 1-A, Fancy Nancy and the Mean Girl, and Fancy Nancy: Hair Dos and Don’ts. Mary Lee, Librarian Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library


Silly Milly and the Mysterious Suitcase by Wendy Cheyette Lewison E LEWISON Locations: Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Coliseum, and Governor’s Square Miss Milly is a very silly lady. She’s going on a trip, but she packs the strangest things into her suitcase. Miss Milly packs a baseball, but not a bat. She packs a rowboat, but not a canoe. Why is she packing all of these bizarre items into her mysterious suitcase? Well, like anything else with Miss Milly, the answer is quite silly! This is a great book to help teach kids in preschool to 1st grade. The use of compound words in a crazy and enjoyable story gives children an enjoyable time while learning. Ms. Wendy Cheyette Lewison, the author of this book, has written other great titles including: Don’t Wake the Baby! The Rooster Who Lost His Crow, and Going to Sleep on the Farm. Mary Lee, Librarian Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss E SEUSS Locations: All 11 Libraries Christmas….the most wonderful time of the year. Can you imagine anybody not enjoying this season of goodness, giving and feasting with family and friends? How the Grinch Stole Christmas story is set in a little town called Who-ville. The Grinch lived just north of Who-ville. The Grinch had a real humbug personality. He frowned about any and everything about Christmas. So with his little bitty mind he began concocting ways to prevent Christmas from coming in this town. I’ve got to stop right here because I don’t want to give the story away, but this is another classic that I’ve always enjoyed during the Christmas holiday season. We know what the reason for the season is all about. Let’s show someone who’s less fortunate than you that you care. Let your heart grow bigger with love this Christmas just like the Grinch. This book was also made into a movie starring comedian Jim Carey. Tabitha V. Pack, Library Assistant I, Governor’s Square Branch Library A Very Marley Christmas by John Grogan E GROGAN Locations: All 11 Libraries This is a story about a family that owned a very lovable dog whose name was Marley. Marley always tried being a very helpful dog. However, each time Marley tried being helpful, the situation would turn into a big mess. Christmas Eve, the family decorated the tree and prepared for Santa’s arrival. Everyone was excited about Santa’s arrival and the expectation of snow, including Marley. Thinking that he was helping, Marley tangled up the lights, ripped up the paper snowflakes, and splashed paint everywhere. After getting the tree up and decorated, Marley ran into the tree, causing it fall. Finally, after getting the tree back to its proper state, the family and Marley settled down for the night and waited for Santa’s arrival and snow. Christmas Day, the family received a surprise from Marley; making this a delightful Christmas Story. Minnie H. Stringer, Librarian I, Rufus A. Lewis Regional Library


One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo E BUZZEO Locations: Lewis, Morgan, Lowder, Pike Road, Hampstead This is an odd story of friendship between a little boy whose name is Elliot, and a penguin. One day while reading the newspaper, Elliot’s father suggested that they go to “Family Fun Day at the Aquarium”. Elliot wandered around looking at all of the most interesting Sea Animals, while his father sat and read National Geographic. Elliot was fascinated with the penguins. He asked his father if he could have a penguin. His father said “yes”, and bought him a toy penguin. Elliot said “thanks”. However, not satisfied with the purchase, Elliot slipped into the penguins’ cage, placed one of the penguins inside his backpack, and carried the penguin home. He saw a picture of Ferdinand Magellan and decided to name his penguin Magellan. Throughout the story, Elliot found creative ways to keep his penguin cool without the family’s knowledge of his existence. This story has a surprised ending. Minnie H. Stringer, Librarian I, Rufus A. Lewis Regional Library


Juvenile Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver JSF OLIVER All Locations Liesl and Will are both in a bad situation. Liesl’s father has recently died, leaving her stuck in the attic under the care of her horrible stepmother. Will had the unfortunate luck to have been adopted by the Alchemist and forced into apprenticeship. When Will makes a big mistake, the Alchemist becomes even crueler in his treatment of his “worthless” apprentice. Will knows it’s escape or death. His path inadvertently crosses with the girl from the attic, Liesl, who is also making her escape from the confines of the attic. With help from Po the ghost, the unlikely pair must work together to escape. Liesl & Po combines tragedy, magic and unique and somewhat odd characters to create an unusual and interesting story. Lauren Oliver is also the author of the award winning Young Adult title, If I Fall and several other YA titles, including Delirium and Pandemonium. (307 pages; illus., Ages 8 – 12). Taylor Barth, Librarian I, Hampstead Branch Library Leaving Gees Bend by Irene Latham JF LATHAM Locations: All 11 Libraries Set in 1932, the story projects the inspired quilting heritage of the small, isolated community of Gees Bend, Alabama. It tells the story of ten-year-old Ludelphia Bennett, who is blind in one eye and loves to sew, especially when things are going wrong. It soothes her nerves. Since she was very small, she has always had a needle and bits of cloth in her pocket. Her mama is about to have a baby any minute and she is sick with a pneumonia and influenza, but the thing that can make Mama smile, no matter what, is stitching quilts. Ludelphia tells us: “Mama always says every quilt tells a story. Every piece of cloth, every stitch and every bit of cotton stuffed between the seams tells a secret about the one who made the quilt.” Ludelphia begins a quilt all about her own story, intended as a gift for her mama. But when Mama’s baby comes too soon, Mama gets deathly ill and needs medicine badly. The closest place to get the medicine is 40 miles away, in Camden, so Ludelphia decides to go fetch a “real doctor”, even though there’s no money to pay him. She has to cross the river to get there, and she has no time to wait for the ferryman. She winds up way downstream, where Ludelphia discovers a different world, one with fancy houses for white people with real glass panes, motor cars, delicious food and even genuine Coca-Cola. She also encounters danger, with a crazy white lady who threatens to come to Gees Bend and take everything they have. But Ludelphia can’t give up, no matter what. Throughout this book, quilting is a metaphor. When she pieces a quilt, Ludelphia has to figure out where to put the pieces of cloth, as well as the pieces of her life. Some stories just can’t go in a quilt, Ludelphia tells us—you have to keep them in your heart. The story is fictional, but the author incorporates some real incidents in the history of Gees Bend into her narrative. This is a heartwarming novel with a strong female character who takes charge of her own destiny, no matter what she encounters. Children in grades 4-8 would greatly enjoy this book. It could also serve as supplemental reading for a unit in Alabama History. Anita Berry, Librarian I, Governor’s Square Branch Library


Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America by Andrea Davis Pinkney J973 PINKNEY Locations: All 11 Libraries Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America by New York Times best-selling author and illustrator team, Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney is the winner of the 2013 Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award for outstanding books for children and young adults. This dynamic author – illustrator duo through their collaboration have created a wonderful mixture of ten biographical sketches, prose and a sprinkling of paintings in muted color schemes throughout the book. In this mix of story writings, prose and paintings, you will be taken on a historical journey into the lives of these ten outstanding black men from different times as far back as the colonial years with Benjamin Banneker to our present day with our first Black American President of the United States of America, Barack H. Obama II. You will gain insight into their childhood, family life and adult years through the unique manner in which each story is presented. You will discover that they were men that endured great struggles and tough barriers, but through it all, they still were successful with accomplishments that influenced the arts, civil rights, education, science, sports, and politics. The determination of these black men through the shedding of blood, sweat and tears helped to change and shape America into a better place for all. I highly recommend this book as a good read for anytime of the year. For Grade Range: 5-8. Joan Means, Branch Head, Governor’s Square Branch Library Stallion by Starlight by Mary Pope Osborne Series: Magic Tree House # 49, A Merlin Mission JF OSBORNE Locations: All 11 Libraries In this story, two children, Jack and Annie, are visited by an ancient mysterious wizard whose name is Merlin. One day, Merlin visits them in the magic tree house and assigns them to go to Camelot to find a secret of greatness. He gives Annie the ring of truth and tells them that when they discover a true secret of greatness, the ring will glow. When arriving in Camelot, Jack and Annie met Aristotle and Prince Alexander who later becomes Alexander the Great. Jack and Annie found a horse, the Starlight Stallion. They rode it through town on the main road, around swamps, and fields. When they returned to the stables, Prince Alexander was waiting for them appearing to be angry because Jack and Annie had taken the horse for a ride. He thought that someone had stolen the horse. In addition, Jack and Annie met many people living in Camelot, and they seemed to fit right in with that time period as natives of Camelot. This is a very good book. It is interesting, filled with mystery, and adventure. Readers will be thrilled as true secrets of greatness are revealed through the magic ring given to Jack and Annie by Merlin. I think that it is a must read for all ages, but would be more appealing to a younger audience. This is an excellent bedtime story. Roderick Wilkerson, Library Page, Bertha Pleasant Williams Library Rosa L. Parks Avenue Branch The Lost Hero (Book 1) by Rick Riordan JSF RIORDAN or YA SF RIORDAN or YA RIORDAN Book Series: (The Heroes of Olympus) Locations: All 11 Libraries and 2 digital copies through Rick Riordan is one of the greatest juvenile science fiction writers of our time. He spins various mythological stories together into a beautiful web of hilarious and sometimes factual, fiction! He has several series available in the 8

MCCPL system. Once you read the first book, you will be hooked. High paced, action packed stories with beautiful character development, will make you want to follow Riordan’s characters through to the very end. I first fell in love with Percy Jackson and the Olympians, then the Kane Chronicles, and now, The Heroes of Olympus! I checked out the first book of the Heroes of Olympus series, The Lost Hero, digitally. It was my first time doing a digital download on my personal laptop! It was nice to have the digital version because I could make the font bigger. I liked not having to hold onto anything; I placed my lap top on the table, and used the mouse to turn the pages! The Lost Hero blends what we learned previously about Greek gods together with new information about their Roman forms. We get to see more about what happens to Percy Jackson and Annabeth. New characters are introduced: Jason, Piper and Leo. All five of these characters are demigods; they have one mortal parent, and one parent who is a god. We journey with them as they discover who their parents are, what their powers are, and watch as they learn to accept their enemies as Greeks and Romans. Percy and Jason’s memories have been temporarily removed by one of the gods. In a way it is a modern coming of age story about accepting yourself for who you are and not being ashamed of your past. I immediately read the second book in the series, The Son of Neptune. It definitely did not disappoint! I am on hold right now for the third book, The Mark of Athena. I cannot wait to find out what happens next. Beth Woodfin, Library Assistant I, E L Lowder Regional Library


Cinder by Marissa Meyer YA F MEYER Location: Morgan

Young Adult

Cinder is a fairytale retelling with a futuristic twist; this time Cinderella loses, not just her shoe, but her entire foot, at the royal ball. Cinder is a cyborg, her artificial limbs making her an outcast and second-class citizen, and no one is more surprised than she when she attracts the attention of the handsome and charming Prince Kai. That’s only the first shock in store for Cinder, whose mysterious past could save – or destroy – the entire kingdom, maybe even the world. Cinder is a great heroine, strong and relatable. She has enough bitterness and anger about her situation to be human, but is also consistently kind and altruistic, just as Cinderella ought to be. Prince Kai is also very welldeveloped, which is a great change from the distant Prince Charmings of classic fairytales. All the characters are complex and interesting, even Cinder’s evil stepmother, and the worldbuilding is fascinating as well. Mixed in with the cyborg technology, futuristic society, and telepathic powers are plenty of nods to the original material – even the pumpkin carriage! This is a great book for anyone who likes to see a new twist on fairytales, or even just great YA science fiction. Elizabeth Belyeu, Library Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Almost Perfect by Brain Katcher YA KATCHER Locations: All 11 Libraries Almost Perfect, written by Brain Katcher, is one of the most unique love stories ever written. Logan Whiterspoon is a star track athlete in the small town of Boyer, Missouri. Logan has been in love with Brenda, his high school sweetheart of three years. Assuming that they would be together for the rest of their life, hopeless romantic Logan was devastated with the unexpected break up. While grieving his damaged relationship, Logan would find himself “conveniently” located where Brenda could easily see him so he could get closure. Worried about their friend, fellow teammate Jack and Pudgy did their level best to give Logan the best advice they could. It wasn’t until Sage, the 6 foot freckled face new girl with braces came to Boyer that Logan let his mind drift away from Brenda. Although, Sage really wasn’t Logan’s type, he still found her interesting enough to want to get to know her better. After a few attempts to ask her out and a few rejections, the stars aligned and Logan finally got a date with Sage. As he developed feelings for her, she continued to push him away, but Logan knew that Sage felt the same for him. Sage’s excuse for pulling away from him was the fact that her parents were super strict. It wasn’t until later that Sage revealed her real reason for pulling away from Logan--she was born a male. After learning the truth about Sage, Logan reacted in a rather unique manner. He battled within himself as to why she never told him that vital information. Their relationship was tense at times but they rekindled the friendship which lead to an unexpected twist. Almost Perfect is a breathtaking novel. The author’s writings were so intense that you could sense the feelings of Logan and Sage. The emotions of both characters will touch your heart. Sit back and enjoy the ride to an unlikely relationship with an unexpected ending. Zipporah Bonney, Library Assistant I, Governor Square Branch Library Out of Sight, Out of Time by Ally Carter YA F CARTER Locations: Morgan Christmas before last I reviewed the first four of the ‘Gallagher Girls’ series that we have available through 10

Overdrive as eBooks—I’d Tell You That I Love You, but Then I’d Have to Kill You; Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy; Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover; and Only the Good Spy Young. I have been asking (okay begging) for the fifth book. I was so excited when we finally got it in regular book form. I have to say I was disappointed in the book’s events, although Cam does finally find out what really happened to her dad. It was not as good, to me, as the previous four. It left me empty and hanging—like I had missed something or that this was just a quickly written book to suffice until the next book was written. There were so many questions left unanswered. I thought this one was to be the last but I know now that there is to be one more (September 2013 release United We Spy). I will read it in hopes that it ties everything up in a neat little package, even with a bow on top, but Out of Sight, Out of Time is not (out of sight, that is). Also available format Book on CD: CD YA F CARTER, at E L Lowder Regional Library Julia-Ann Jenkins, Branch Head Librarian, E L Lowder Regional Library Catherine, Called Birdy by Karen Cushman YA F CUSHMAN Locations: Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Ramer, Pintlala, Pike Road Take a trip back in time to thirteenth century England and follow the everyday life of Catherine Rollo, daughter of an English nobleman. At age 14, her father wants only to marry her off to the highest bidder, and Catherine sees it as her job to thwart all suitors any way she can. Written in diary format, Catherine writes her feelings and daily adventures down for her audience. Will she really be forced to marry someone she doesn’t love? Or will she enjoy the life she is given? Winner of the Newbery Honor Award in 1995, this story will leave you interested and guessing to the very end. I found the story amusing and eye-opening, and learned a lot about the thirteenth century, even though this is a work of fiction. I highly recommend the use of this story with a teen or young adult book club. There are many questions that could be used in a discussion. Prepare to be entertained! Lauren Kiefer, Librarian I, Bertha Pleasant Williams Library Rosa Parks Avenue Branch My Book of Life by Angel by Martine Leavitt YA F LEAVITT Locations: Morgan, Lewis, Coliseum, Lowder, Governor’s Square, Hampstead, Pike Road This novel in verse tells the story of 16 year old Angel, who works as a prostitute, attempting to fill the hole in her heart caused by the death of her mother. She was taken in by Call, who came to her rescue after she shoplifted a pair of shoes from the mall. Call bought Angel food, clothes and “candy” (drugs) making her dependent on him. He tells Angel that he is in the renewable resource business, and due to a cash flow problem he needs her to become part of his business. Call bullies and terrorizes Angel, and withholds the “candy” that she has become addicted to. Soon she is entangled in the mindless cycle of prostitution and addiction. When her best friend on the street, Serena, disappears, Angel tries to abandon Call and his “candy”, but her attempt at withdrawal is painful and severe. Call brings home 11 year old Melli for Angel to train to follow in her footsteps. Angel is shocked and ashamed, and makes a promise to herself to save Melli from this life, while possibly even saving herself. The author uses lyrical verse to give voices to several young girls who went missing in Vancouver from 1983 to 2002. This style of writing makes this story both haunting and unforgettable. Desiree Maurer, Technical Services


Non-Fiction America the Beautiful: Rediscovering What Made This Nation Great by Dr. Ben Carson, M.D. 973 CARSON Locations: Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Coliseum, Governor’s Square In America the Beautiful, Dr. Ben Carson, who rose from a life of poverty and racism to an internationally known neurosurgeon and best-selling author, discusses the founding of America and what made it a great nation, its shortcomings and failures, and the changes that must be made in order to return America back to the great nation it once was. Specific issues addressed by Dr. Carson are America’s Judeo-Christian background, its educational system, capitalism versus socialism, morality, and its healthcare system. One thing that Dr. Carson emphasizes is that it is imperative that everyone utilize their own God-given talents and abilities to become a self-sufficient and self-reliant citizen instead of depending totally on the government for their well-being. Hence, be a contributor to society rather than a drain on society. In America, anyone who wishes to can attain their dream with much hard work and perseverance, as personally demonstrated by Dr. Carson. Although there are still problems and issues that must be addressed, America is and will continue to be the greatest nation in the world. Tommy Anderson, Collection Development Librarian, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial The Garments of Court and Palace: Machaivelli and the World that He Made by Philip Bobbitt 320 BOBBITT Location: Morgan In Philip Bobbit’s new book, The Garments of Court and Palace, he explores one of the most controversial and polarizing philosophers of political theory, Niccolò Machiavelli. Over the centuries Machiavelli’s works, The Prince and Discourses on Livy, have become foundations for the principle of realism in statecraft and went as far as stating one of his most famous truisms, “the ends justified the means.” Or did he? Bobbitt explains how Machiavelli’s Italian treatises were often mistranslated and tries to expound on these axioms. For instance, did Machiavelli actually believe a prince should follow any methods necessary in order to achieve good outcomes, and did he think that it is best for a prince to be feared rather than loved? Bobbit delves deeper into these sayings to show the true meaning behind them. Additionally, Bobbit explores the concepts of both fortuna (fortune) and virtù (national interest), but is particularly interested in the notion of ordini (constitutional order). Bobbit belongs to the school of thought that believes Machiavelli was one of the first to see the fundamental change of feudal Europe into constitutional nation-states. Reading through this book, it would seem that Bobbit has found an ancestral mind for his philosophies. The Garments of Court and Palace is a good read for anyone who is interested in philosophy and political structure. Most political scientists have studied Machiavelli regardless of how they feel about him, and Bobbit gives a nice point of view about the infamous theorist. Bobbit’s writing style is very crisp and succinct with none of the flowery language often found in similar works. He uses events in Machiavelli’s own lifetime to demonstrate how his conclusions were shaped. Ironically, this work is short at just under 200 pages compared to his last two books, which were massive (The Shield of Achilles was over 900 pages and Terror and Consent was a little under 700 pages). Overall this is a good read if you are looking for a different perspective on Niccolò Machiavelli and his philosophies. Devon Beaty, Library Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library


The Critter Control Handbook: Pro Secrets Guaranteed to Stop Squirrels & Other Crafty Critters in Their Tracks by Dan Hershey 632.6 HERSHEY Locations: Morgan, Coliseum, Lowder, Governor’s Square, Pike Road, Pintlala, Ramer, Lewis Bertha Williams This book is not for everyone, but for those that may have critter problems it is a great reference. It is well written and illustrated. I found several things quite humorous, although the author probably did not intend for them to be. Publication Date: 2002, 2001 Thomas Davidson, Library Page, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Making Good Habits, Breaking Bad Habits by Joyce Meyer LP 248.4 MEYER Location: Morgan In Mrs. Meyer’s new book, Making Good Habits, Breaking Bad Habits, she talks about 14 new behaviors that will renew your life. As children of God need to step out in faith, beginning by believing that when we ask God for something He will give us what we need. God always gives His best to us. We should give God the first part of our day, start by spending time with Jesus, talking to him in prayer and reading our Bible and meditating on the word. By doing this you are setting the stage for making new habits. Any habit can be broken, good or bad, all it takes is repetition. The more you do this, the easier it becomes to break the old habit and establish the new habit. Ms. Meyer talks about how to break bad habits by examining the destructive negative behavior patterns. A few of the 14 behaviors Mrs. Meyer discusses in her book are faith, generosity, discipline, and confidence. We live in a time of instant gratification; we need to learn to be patient. Brenda Davis, Librarian II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library, Reference Department This Book is Overdue! : How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All by Marylin Johnson 020 JOHNSON Locations: Morgan, Coliseum In The Dead Beat (2007), author Marilyn Johnson examined obituaries in the English speaking world. In her second book, This Book is Overdue! Johnson appropriately chose to discuss the role of Librarianship in modern society, a profession many have been quick to write off as a dead or dying profession. With the development of the internet and the saturation of technology in Western Society, where is the need for this millennial old profession? Doesn’t Google do that? Through dozens of stories from around the library world, Johnson shows that the need is more urgent than ever. Librarians of all varieties working tirelessly to not only adapt the traditional professional values of open access, privacy, and education to modern society, but in many instances to be on the forefront of social and technological developments. From developing virtual reality libraries in Second Life to providing reference services to demonstrating masses out on the streets, the library profession in the 21st century is anything but dead. Although obviously an admirer of the Library profession, Marilyn Johnson does not depict libraries or librarians through rose colored lenses. Her stories show the very human side of the library world, the personal and professional struggles of individuals tirelessly working to serve an ever changing world. From the sometimes rocky relationship between Library and IT staff to discussing the arduous archival task of deciding what is worth saving, there are few areas of the Library world Johnson does not touch on. She does all this through a humoristic style that makes this book a joy to read. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to understand more about libraries and the library profession


as well as more broadly how traditional occupations are adapting to an increasingly technologically saturated society. Stephen Deloney, Library Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library LL Cool J’s Platinum 360 Diet and Lifestyle by LL Cool J 613 LL Locations: All 11 Libraries This is a great book. It is perfect for anyone, regardless of age or gender. The book reveals easy to follow workout techniques, and great diet plans for those seeking a fit and healthy body. Read this book. You will love it. Yusuf El Shabazz, Library Assistant I, Rufus A. Lewis Library Kisses from Katie: a Story of Relentless Love and Redemption by Katie Davis B DAVIS Location: Morgan At eighteen years old, I couldn’t have imagined leaving everything behind and moving to a country where I didn’t know anyone and could not even speak the language, yet that is exactly what Katie Davis did. In Kisses from Katie, this young woman from Nashville, Tennessee takes the reader on an extraordinary and very personal journey to Uganda. She leaves behind her family, friends, boyfriend, and her parents’ desire for her to go to college. However, Katie finds a new home and a new family in Uganda. She first encountered the country on a mission trip when she was a senior in high school. Katie knew this was where she was meant to be and followed God’s calling. She immediately developed an intense love for Uganda and its people. This book captures the story of how Katie starts a ministry called Amazima, which reaches out to impoverished children and gives them access to food, shelter, and education all while teaching them about the love of Jesus. She faces struggles and tears but also laughter and joy as she adjusts to her new life. One of the biggest changes Katie faced in Uganda was becoming a mother. By the age 22, she had adopted 13 beautiful girls who called her “Mommy.” Through God, this young woman has done amazing things. Her inspiring story of love and faith makes this a book you will never forget and will change the way you view life. Katie Gray, Library Page, E L Lowder Regional Library The Beatles by Bob Spitz 782.421 Locations: Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Bertha Williams, Pike Road, Pine Level, Pintlala Whether you call them “The Beatles”, “The Fab Four” or “John, Paul, George and Ringo”, there is no denying they had an impact on music that is still felt today. Few groups have had the prestige or influence that John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr had when they started in the 1960’s and author Bob Spitz sets out to chronicle that in his book. Starting with their childhoods and going through the group’s beginnings in Liverpool and Hamburg, Spitz covers the band from their mind-boggling leap to superstardom to their studio years to the breakup of the band in 1970. Spitz does not leave anything out, either. He discusses their personal lives including their wives and girlfriends, their drug use and their business dealings and, of course, their groundbreaking music. This is not a short, quick read, but it is well worth it for people who love this band and their music and want to know more about them. James Greer, Branch Head, Ramer Library 14

Pedophiles and Priests by Philip Jenkins 362.76 Location: Morgan Library The author takes an in-depth look at how the Roman Catholic Church has covered up sex abuse accusations of children from past and present. He also critiques the backlash and responses made through the media and legal environment addressing the problem of clergy abuse and reform. I found this book to be thought provoking from the cynicism of accusation the author made from his hypothetical reasons clergymen abused children and other misdeeds. I think the author should have placed the blame on the Vatican and Legislation for allowing the exploitation of children to continue the way it has. Maneia James, Library Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Untouchable: the Strange Life and Tragic Death of Michael Jackson by Randall Sullivan B JACKSON Location: Morgan Michael Jackson, known as the greatest entertainer ever, sadly passed away June 25, 2009. Although we look at his life as strange, weird, sometimes even foreign you have to admit that his life was filled with success. This book takes you through the ups and down of Michael’s more than successful career, and gives you another view of his life as an entertainer. What I took from this book was that Michael Jackson was not only an entertainer, but he was also a human with flaws just like you and me. I believe sometimes we forget that even our idols are flawed individuals with great gifts and talents. Keep that in mind when reading this. LeBaron Judkins, Page, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Steve Jobs by Walter Issacson B JOBS Locations: All 11 Libraries This book is about the insides and outsides on the life and times of one of the greatest 21st century true visionary/inventors. Steve Jobs CEO of Apple Inc., asked the author in 2009 to write his exclusive biography before passing away.  He was given unlimited and unrestricted access into any event, location, and to key people in his life, be it friend or foe.  Steve Jobs is a man that in some shape or form has touched everyone’s life on this planet.  I truly enjoyed the close and accurate details and personal insights that the author talks about and shows in his writing.  Upon its release the book was #1 on the New York Best Sellers List and eventually became a world-wide sensation.  Recommended reading for all people of all ages, not just tech geeks. Rodney Lefebvre, Information Technology (IT) Drop Dead Healthy by A. J. Jacobs 613.2092 JACOBS - Available at Lowder LP 613.2092 JACOBS - Morgan and Extension In the quest for perfect health and fitness, there are many questions, and even more answers. So how does one sort through the plenitude of good (and bad) advice regarding how to achieve “bodily perfection”? This is the task A. J. Jacobs undertakes in his book, Drop Dead Healthy. Throughout the book, Jacobs takes on the role of human guinea pig/science experiment as he personally tests 15

many different thoughts and theories on what it takes to reach peak physical fitness, such as vegan diets (no animal products of any sort) and Caveman Workouts (working out using only things found in the wild, such as tree stumps and boulders). He even tests methods of achieving maximum immune, sexual, neurological, and gastrointestinal health, often with humorous results. Jacobs, with his resume of going to drastic measures to explore an idea (he also wrote The Year of Living Biblically), is the perfect candidate to push the limits of human health, and does so with the wit, optimism, and degree of skepticism required for such a task. Someone once said, “Perfect health is just the slowest rate of dying”, and through this book, Jacobs provides a hint about which is better; dying slowest, or living a fast, joyful life. As Jacobs himself says, “only by exploring the limits can you find the perfect middle ground.” Greg Loggins, Library Assistant I, E L Lowder Regional Library A Heart Like Jesus by Max Lucado 248.4 LUCADO Locations: Morgan, Coliseum What would happen to you if Jesus lived your life for a day? Would he like what he sees? How many things would be done differently from what you do now? How would your family, friends, coworkers or even strangers view you? What would change? For the answer to this and others, you will find them in this little book. God has a plan for our lives that includes giving us a new heart! This book, A Heart Like Jesus, is filled with scriptures to support the author’s theories. God loves us the way we are, however, He does not want us to stay the way we are. He wants us to be better, do better, and live better. The book not only tells us about the heart of Jesus, but it explains how we too can have a heart like Christ. It talks about being able to love the people we are “stuck with”, by focusing not on those persons who have hurt us or done us unjustly, but by “fixing our eyes on Jesus” and seeing them as Jesus sees them. We should learn to listen to God by finding a quiet place every day to commune with Him, and let Him answer through His word. The Bible says that “we shall reap what we sow”. If we would think of our heart as if it were a “greenhouse”, and our thoughts as seeds, are we planting good seeds or weeds? A heart like Jesus is a pure and loving, forgiving and listening, worshiping, rejoicing and enduring heart. As you read through the chapters, you will read about what it takes to have a heart like Jesus and what happens when “heaven celebrates”. Max Lucado is a minister and best-selling author. He was educated at Abilene Christian University and has been pastor of the Oak Hills Church of Christ in San Antonio, Texas since 1988. He hosts UpWords, a fifteen minute radio show that can be heard in thirty states. He has authored over twenty books, three of which were listed as top ten books on the Christian Booksellers Association list. He is married and has three daughters. Rebie Morris, Administrative Assistant

Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats by Michael Cunningham and Craig Marberry Foreword by Maya Angelou 391.4 CUNNING Locations: Morgan, Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Lewis, Lowder I saw this book in the Technical Services Department before it was cataloged. I put it on my mental list of books that I wanted to read. Once I was able to check the book out, I found that it was a quick read and found it to be an inspiring book that helped me to understand what I believed to be my sudden interest in hats. If you attend church on a regular basis, you can’t help but get caught up in wearing a hat. It is a natural 16

progression that most women will at some point in their lives come to accept as part of the dress for church. First Corinthians chapter 11, verse 5 helps us to understand what some parents have held fast to all of our lives, if you read the Bible and follow its words you will find that it is the guide by which we are to live. Every answer we need for life is in the good book. For a nation of people who have prided themselves on customs, style setting and dressing up, Cunningham and Marberry have captured one of the real pleasures of some women and that being “hattitude”. Pictures are accompanied with wonderful stories of how to wear a hat, when to wear it and the story behind the acquisition of the hat. Cunningham beautifully captures the self-expression of women of all ages – from young glamorous women to extraordinary women of serene elegance, who wear hats on Sundays that express who they are and how they are feeling about serving their Lord. For a woman who might be searching for a good read that is also inspirational, I do recommend this book if not for the literary information contained, then for the pictures of some magnificent hats. Jaunita Owes, Library Director, Montgomery City-County Public Library System The Great Sea by David Abulafia 909 ABULAFI Location: Morgan As Professor of Mediterranean History at Cambridge University, David Abulafia is the foremost scholar of Mediterranean history in the world. His title The Great Sea takes on the herculean effort of surveying the history of the Mediterranean from prehistory to the present. It is surely destined to become the seminal work on the subject for decades to come. The center of Western Civilization until the rise of the United States to superpower, the Mediterranean has had a turbulent history of continual wars of territorial expansion, competition, and piracy with the exception of few centuries of relative calm when the Roman Empire controlled the European, Near Eastern, and North African coasts and, imposing the Pax Romana, simply referred to the Mediterranean as “Mare Nostrum” or “Our Sea”. Though some of the territorial struggles of the area were initially religiously motivated during the Rise of Islam and the centuries of the Crusades, as were important population movements such as the expulsion of the Jews and Moors from Spain, all became inextricably interrelated with Abulafia’s dominant theme of the role of trade in history. Even piracy was either sponsored by competitors seeking to weaken the economic power of a rival power or smaller independent states seeking to cut into the economic domination of the powerful. (One interesting fact from the book: The glamorous country of Monaco started out as a pirate enclave. Through gambling, the Grimaldis later found a way to separate foreigners from their wealth voluntarily.) A changing cast of Minoans, Phoenicians, Greeks, Etruscans, Anatolian Luvians (including the Trojans), Romans, Byzantines, Ottomans, Italians, Spaniards, French, Portuguese, and more strut across the pages as powers waxed and waned. Beginning with the Crusades, entities from outside the region, such as the Normans, would make territorial claims and become economic, naval, military, and political players in the region. Empire building, war, and the need to protect commerce from piracy would draw other powers, such as the British, who would preside over the building of the Suez Canal, into the waters in modern times. Strategic or commercially important islands such as Sicily would be conquered and reconquered or split between rival powers continually. The writing style and vocabulary is aimed at a college-educated audience and some familiarity with European, Near Eastern, and African history is assumed. However, this is the most complete survey that has been written of the role of the Mediterranean in world history and an engrossing read. Pamela Sage, formerly Head of Reference and Information Services, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library


The Fear: Robert Mugabe and the Martyrdom of Zimbabwe by Peter Godwin 968.9105 GODWIN Location: Morgan In The Fear I learned about Robert Mugabe, a tyrannical leader who refused to step down from power after losing the election. I learned from his original leadership position, even though his own people chose to end his leadership position, and how he brought great devastation and immense fear to the people of Zimbabwe. I also was reading about the close connection Godwin has to Zimbabwe, his native country. It is easy to visualize and come to know how a hated political leader has forever left a scar on a beautiful land, one so full of problems because of the wrath poured out by Mugabe. Peter Godwin personally witnessed and wrote about how the brutal actions caused terror to come to the people of Zimbabwe in 2008. Mugabe was a tyrannical leader who refused to stop ruling the country which voted to end his long reign which inspired the title for Peter Godwin’s work. Margeret Smith, Library Page, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Paul and Me: Fifty-three Years of Adventures and Misadventures with My Pal Paul Newman by A. E. Hotchner B NEWMAN Locations: Morgan, Lowder I daresay that many of us, of a certain age, grew up idolizing at least one actor on the silver screen – someone who epitomized talent, success, good looks, and charisma. For me, that movie idol was and always will be Paul Newman.   As I grew up, I read more about the man behind the actor; and my idolizing turned to admiration for his love of and loyalty to family and friends, his honesty, his humor, and his humanitarianism. In Paul and Me, his close friend and author A. E. Hotchner gave me an endearing first-hand look of both the private and the public Paul Newman.  As the subtitle indicates, Hotchner’s insightful, sometimes funny, sometimes touching recollections span over five decades of friendship from 1955 to Newman’s death from cancer in 2008 at the age of 83.  Hotchner related details of their various collaborations in movies, writing, travel, business ventures, even fishing.  One of their most famous business collaborations began with a bottled salad dressing concocted in the Newman barn as Christmas presents for neighbors.  That “little” venture grew into a major business enterprise, Newman’s Own, that to date has contributed all its profits (over $300 million) to charity.  Another notable partnership described here was their tireless efforts to establish and expand the Hole in the Wall Camps, special camps that have given thousands of children with life-threatening diseases a break from the endless parade of doctors, hospitals and treatments – free of charge.  These and many other such efforts were Newman’s attempts to “give back” some of the good fortune he had received in his life.  The author noted that Newman attributed his successes and failures in life to luck and the art of recognizing luck, good and bad, when it marched by.  His 50-year marriage to actress Joanne Woodward ranked atop Newman’s list of good luck choices.  Sprinkled throughout the text were humorous episodes of Newman and Hotchner’s lifelong quest to master the sport of fishing while trying to keep a procession of unseaworthy boats afloat.  And then there were the accounts of the shared celebrations through the years, mostly intimate gatherings of family and close friends that marked the many milestones of true value in their lives, including simple lunches at their favorite delis.  However, Hotchner recounted that all was not the proverbial bed of roses in Newman’s life, e.g. the accidental death of Newman’s only son Scott affected him profoundly.  As the author/biographer, but even more so as a participant in the story, Hotchner kept the reminiscences flowing, while obviously keeping his emotions in check.  After all, he had shared many adventures with his pal, and his deep admiration is evident.  In the foreword to Paul and Me, Hotchner pointed out Paul Newman’s attributes and then said, “He was the same man in 2008 that he was in 1955, unchanged despite all the honors and the fame, not a whisper of a change. That was something – the constancy of the man.”  Without hesitation, I recommend this memoir to biography lovers, people-watchers, and fellow “stargazers”.     Vivian B. White, Assistant Library Director 18

CD, DVD, eBOOKS Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb Produced and Directed by Stanley Kubrick DVD DR. SPOILER ALERT: Everyone, I mean everyone, dies. Category: It’s a Comedy! ©1964 Columbia Pictures (95 mins. B&W) Locations: Morgan, Lowder The Atomic Café Produced and Directed by Kevin Rafferty, Jayne Loader, and Pierce Rafferty DVD ATOMIC ©1982 The Archives Project (86 mins.) SPOILER ALERT: How to survive a nuclear attack: just remember to Duck and Cover! Category: Documentary Location: Lowder Combined with world events such as the Cuban Missile Crisis and the building of the Berlin Wall, and a growing “Ban the Bomb” movement, it seemed time to an up-and-coming film maker Stanley Kubrick (Paths of Glory, Spartacus, Lolita) to produce a motion picture dealing with nuclear war. At first, it seemed obvious that any story about a nuclear superpower confrontation had to be handled with grim seriousness. To this end, he set to work adapting a 1958 novel, Red Alert by Peter George, for the big screen. It detailed a scenario of a renegade Air Force general ordering his force of H-bomb armed B-52 bombers to attack the Soviet Union. As only he knew the “recall code”, the general hoped to persuade the President and the Joint Chiefs to launch an all-out attack and thus rid the world of the communist menace once and for all. The tension builds as the President tries to recall the bombers or, failing that, alerting the Soviets of the rapidly approaching danger and aiding them in destroying the bombers. What’s worse, the existence of a Soviet Doomsday Machine, the ultimate in deterrence technology (you blow us up, then everything blows up!) has just been discovered! Combining this plot and what he learned about nuclear strategy from non-fiction works, it took shear genius to see the potential for a satirical approach in such a story. Kubrick was a genius, and the result was Dr. Strangelove. Carnal allusions abound. The very first scene is stock footage showing an aerial refueling operation and it was put to use in a way that I don’t think the U.S. Air Force PR department intended. We see a rather large and stiff boom protruding from the rear of a tanker aircraft and a B-52 nuzzling up to accept it (the accompanying music is an instrumental rendition of a 1932 melody called “Try a Little Tenderness”). The cast is terrific. Sterling Hayden plays the renegade general, Jack D. Ripper (get it?). He informs his hapless executive officer, Group Captain Mandrake (Peter Sellers) that “I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids!” It seems that Ripper first became aware of this latest conspiracy (using fluoridation - this really was bandied about quite seriously during the 1950s and early 60s by the rabid John Birch Society) “during the physical act of love…a profound sense of fatigue” followed. Luckily, he goes on, “I was able to interpret these feelings correctly. Loss of essence” Impotence leading to macho overkill is not a new theme in literature or psychology texts, but rarely has it been put to such savage effectiveness. Sellers had two other roles, that of U.S. President Merkin Muffley (he deals with Soviet Premier Kissoff – get it? – on the hotline) and that of the title character, wheel-chair bound Dr. Strangelove, the top U.S. (formerly Hitler’s ) expert on “weapons research and development.” George C. Scott, before he went on to an Academy Award winning performance as General George S. Patton, plays General “Buck” Turgidson. Here he is trying to persuade the President of the wisdom of joining Ripper’s bomber force with an all-out attack before the Soviets can effectively retaliate, leaving 150 million Americans killed: “Mr. President, I’m not saying we wouldn’t get our hair mussed. But I do say, no more than ten to twenty million killed, tops! Depending on the breaks!” Also, there is Keenan Wynn as Colonel ‘Bat’ Guano and if you don’t get the joke, look up “guano” (Hint: you’ve heard the phrase “bat s--- crazy” 19

haven’t you? Well…) But the most inspired casting decision, I think, goes to Slim Pickens as B-52 command pilot Major Kong. When he and his crew get the attack order, Kong swaps his flight helmet for a cowboy Stetson and says, “Well, boys, I reckon this is it - nuclear combat toe to toe with the Roosskies!” The background music: “When Johnny Comes Marching Home.” The point: nobody is going to come marching home from this kind of war; indeed, most of the soon-to-be dead-and-dying are already home. And it is Pickens who, in his final scene, provides one of the most iconic images to come out of 20th century cinema: waving his Stetson, whooping and hollering with wild cowboy gusto as he rides an H-Bomb down to its target, clamp between his legs in an all-too-obvious phallic representation of the madness of it all. A final inspired scene that is difficult to do justice to, but I’ll try: Strangelove excitedly informs his audience in the War Room that, despite the Russian Doomsday Machine about to unleash its globally lethal cloud of radioactive debris, all is not lost. Just pack a sample of humanity away for a hundred years in the country’s deep mines. Unhappily for conservative family values, this plan requires a ratio of “ten women for each man.” This is regrettable, “but it is, you know, a sacrifice required for the future of the human race. I hasten to add that since each man will be required to do prodigious... service along these lines, the women will have to be selected for their sexual characteristics which will have to be of a highly stimulating nature!” This gets General Turgidson quite enthusiastic and he urges the President that “We must not allow a mine-shaft gap!” Strangelove then becomes so aroused himself that he rises from his wheelchair. “MEIN FÜHRER! I CAN VALK!” And with that, the Doomsday Machine (accompanied by Vera Lynn’s popular rendition of “We’ll Meet Again”) brings about THE END. Strangelove was satirical fiction. The collage of films - mostly U.S. military and Civil Defense propaganda from 1945 to the late 1950s - that make up The Atomic Café, were all intended, alas, to be taken with great seriousness. Unlike most documentaries, there is no narration imposed from the outside. Instead, each film sample is allowed to speak for itself, as it were. Carefully selected and edited by the Raffertys and Jayne Loader, Café is, like Strangelove, both disturbing and hilarious. We begin with fascinating color footage of the very first atomic bomb being prepared for the “Trinity” test in New Mexico. Then the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, with President Truman thanking God that the Bomb “has come to us instead of to our enemies and we pray that He may guide us to use it in His ways and for His purposes.” Soundtrack from a radio show accompanies footage of Hiroshima and medical examinations of the burned and blinded victims, with some idiot making jokes about the devastation: “[We] flew over Hiroshima for about half-an-hour. It was a shamble Fred, a shambles! It looked like Ebbets Field after a double-header with the Giants!” There is laughter from the studio audience. PEACE! It’s Wonderful! The troops come marching home in victory and the U.S.A. tries to get back to normal. (Note: all of this vintage forties and fifties footage is mostly WASP America, with maybe a couple of Catholics.) Then worries start to set in. A voice asks: “What do YOU know about the atomic bomb?” Here is Vice Admiral W. Blandy, in charge of the first post-war atomic tests, looking into the camera and saying in all seriousness that “I’m not an atomic playboy, exploding these bombs to satisfy my personal whims!” and that the bombs will not blow a hole in the bottom of the oceans and let all of the water escape. We see an American officer explaining to the “simple” islanders of Bikini Atoll as they are being ever so politely escorted away from their homes because “the U.S. government wants to turn this great destructive force into something good for mankind” and that “it is all in God’s hands.” With a self-inflicted doomsday now made possible, God was now being appealed to quite a bit. Lyrics from several fifties’ era songs provide an interesting audio background. Ho, hi, ho the hydrogen bomb! Bless it all, let it fall! Ho, hi, ho the hydrogen bomb! God have mercy on me! Everybody’s worried ‘bout the atomic bomb But nobody’s worried ‘bout the day my Lord will come!


We see the genesis of the survivalist movement. A man uses his grade-school son to demonstrate “atomic ray “proof clothing. The kid looks like he’s wrapped-up in a large oven mitt. A Catholic priest advocates “protective devices” for your fall-out shelters, in case you’re pesky neighbors come knocking. (He means a shotgun). Another fellow looks on the bright side of emerging from one’s shelter after an H-bomb attack. After all, if half the population is dead, that means just that much more food and water for the savvy survivors, right? Of course, it’ll all be radioactive... And let’s not forget what is possibly the most ludicrous waste of celluloid ever, the 1950 Civil Defense feature of Duck and Cover! It shows live grade-school children following the sage advice of animated Bert the Turtle on what do in case of a nuclear attack. Bert the Turtle was very alert! When danger threatened him, he never got hurt; he knew just what to do! He’d “Duck and Cover!” There follows footage of kids at the playground, in the classroom, at a picnic, around town. Paul and Patty know that the flash of an atomic bomb could happen at any time the narrator tells us. A flash! Quick everybody! Duck and cover! Paroxysms of kids suddenly ducking-and-covering under desks, beds, whatever. No word on what to do about blindness, the temperature immediately soaring into the thousands of degrees, supersonic shockwaves leveling everything for miles around, that sort of thing. The Atomic Café came out in the 1980s, just as fears of increased Cold War tensions began to rise. Do any of you remember the “nuclear freeze” movement, the Strategic Defense Initiative (aka “Star Wars”), the ABC-TV production The Day After, the proliferation of books and journal articles on nuclear war (e.g., Jonathan Scheel’s The Fate of the Earth)? It provides an excellent companion piece to Strangelove and is a good “time capsule” of commie and a-bomb obsessed 1950s America. David Blackledge, Librarian IV, Extension & Outreach Library Services Divine Intervention by Lutushia Lovely CD F LOVELY Location: Morgan This book caught my attention from the very first page. Princess Brooks is supposed to marry the man of her dreams, Rev. King Brooks is trying to keep his promise to remain faithful to his wife, and Mama Max is finally ready to divorce The Reverend Doctor Pastor Bishop Overseer Mister Stanley Obadiah Meshach Brook Jr. Or are they? The Brooks family thinks they have it all planned out but soon discover that a simple turn of events can change everyone’s plans. This book is full of twists and surprises. Divine Intervention is part of the must read Hallelujah Love Series. Montgomery City-County Public Library owns all titles in“The Hallelujah Love Series” (in order): Sex in the Sanctuary, Love Like Hallelujah, A Preacher’s Passion, Heaven Right Here, Reverend Feelgood, Heaven Forbid, Divine Intervention, The Eleventh Commandment. Zella’Ques Brown-Holmes, Librarian II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Chasing Fireflies: A Novel of Discovery by Charles Martin eBook in the MCCPL Overdrive collection Let me first say – I really enjoyed this book! This is the first book I’ve read by Charles Martin and I’m definitely looking forward to reading his other novels. The story is told from the perspective of Chase Walker, a reporter who is assigned to discover the identity of a young boy found near the railroad tracks. Through this process the reader learns about Chase’s past as a foster child and gets to know Unc, his foster dad as well as Chase’s cousin, Tommye. The characters in the story are all quite interesting in their own unique way. The author is able to allow the readers to really get to know each character by intertwining their pasts with the current events taking place in their lives. This story will have you laughing one moment and crying the next. I believe readers will thoroughly enjoy this book along with the surprising twist at the end. Dina Campbell, Clerk III, Library Administration 21

The Half-Stitched Amish Quilting Club by Wanda E. Brunstetter CD F BRUNSTE Location: Morgan I picked this up and expected a simple, light read. What I got was an engrossing story that drew me into the lives of the characters. The story takes a group of people, of various backgrounds and lifestyles and puts them in the house of Emma Yoder, an Amish widow, for quilting lessons. What they receive is friendship, kinship, inspiration and life lessons – oh and a quilted wall hanging! I listened to the audio version of the book and the narrator was quite good. The flow of the story, while not action packed, is fast-paced. We also have the book in large print. Brunstetter is a prolific (nearly 60 books!) inspirational author and if this book is any indication of the quality of her work then her other titles (including the sequel to this book: The Tattered Quilt, out August 2013) are not to be missed. Also available LPF BRUNSTE at Morgan, Coliseum, and Extension Services Suzanne Horton, Librarian II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Perfect Fit by Brenda Jackson F Adobe EPUB e-Book, Kindle Book Sage Dunbar has everything she could ever want. A loving fiancé (Erol), a wonderful job with a marketing firm, and parents who she adores because of their stability and faithfulness to each other for over 35 years. Sage’s world comes spiraling down when Erol withdraws all of the money from both the joint checking and savings accounts on an investment which turns out to be a hoax. To make matters worse, Sage spots her father going into a hotel room with another woman. The words faith and trust were just that---words. She gives Erol back the ring, and tells her father that she is no longer his daughter. Sage takes a promotion and becomes the lead manager in a project to build a luxury resort in Anchorage, Alaska. There she meets Gabe Blackwell. Gabe will be doing the construction work on the resort. Gabe believes that women are good for one thing: his personal pleasure in the bedroom. Gabe becomes interested in Sage when they meet at an introductory reception in Anchorage. He finds out that Sage was engaged and seemingly happy. Four months later, Sage returns without an engagement ring. Gabe initially does not want to be involved, but he cannot help himself. Sage has a sparkling personality and is smart and good looking. What does Gabe decide to do? How does Sage react to Gabe’s advances? What life-changing event brings Sage’s family back together? These are just a few of the questions that are answered in Perfect Fit. I enjoy Brenda Jackson’s books because she has characters that are family-oriented and down-to-earth. Perfect Fit by Brenda Jackson, Kensington Publishing Company, c. 2011. LaRuth Martin, Librarian II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library, Computer Lab The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum by Temple Grandin and Richard Panek CD 616.85 GRANDI (audio version), Rufus Lewis 616.85 GRANDIN (print version), Morgan Library Though profoundly affected by autism, Dr. Temple Grandin learned to manage the cognitive, sensory, and social aspects of the disorder while developing her strengths as a visual thinker to become a foremost expert in animal science, professor, best-selling author, and advocate for those on the autism spectrum. Common across the spectrum are deficiencies in social skills such as cognitive empathy and processing of social cues such as facial expression and body language. Repetitive or “stimming” behaviors and obsessive-compulsive behaviors are not uncommon. Persons on the Asperger end of the spectrum tend to have normal or above-average intelligence and have more success in integrating themselves into society than those further along the spectrum and often struggle along undiagnosed for decades. While those with more classical forms of autism may display various levels of problems with cognitive 22

or sensory processing or integration in various areas, sensory sensitivity, and verbal communication, many have hidden talents arising from enhanced brain development in non-disrupted regions of the brain and enhanced attention to detail, though the true autistic savant is a rarity. To help us better understand the neurology of autism, Dr. Grandin discusses her personal history, including sharing MRIs of her brain to show where her brain development was disrupted and the areas where her brain development was enhanced by connections being diverted to other regions, and discusses the world as experienced by other autistics. Though every person on the autistic spectrum will present differently, Dr. Grandin divides them into three categories of enhanced abilities: visual thinkers (those who display artistic and graphic design talents, which include herself); pattern thinkers (whose recognition of patterns lends itself to development of talents in mathematics, sciences, computer, music, engineering and technology and whose ranks included Steve Jobs and probably included undiagnosed scientific titans of the past, such as Albert Einstein and Sir Isaac Newton); and word-fact thinkers (those who display a prodigious ability to store facts or mastery of verbal language – Aspie folks in this category tend to gravitate toward the liberal arts in academia, librarianship, and writing occupations). Dr. Grandin focuses on turning the mental health professions, families, educators, employers, and society at large from preoccupation with the deficits displayed by those on the spectrum to recognizing, developing, and harnessing the unique skills and abilities of each individual. Neurological deficits cannot be erased, but they can be managed, and the brain trained and rewired to an extent to improve social function and cognitive function in some areas, while the special talents of those across the autistic spectrum can be developed to render them productive and valuable citizens of human society. This book is indispensable reading to both persons who interact with those on the autism spectrum and those on the autistic spectrum themselves. Pamela Sage, formerly Head of Reference and Information Services, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library The Life of Pi, Directed by Ang Lee DVD LIFE Location: Lowder The Life of Pi is a great movie to watch with family and friends. The cinematography and visual effects are outstanding. The movie is based on the novel with the same title and written by Yann Martel. This movie is about the son of a zoo keeper named Pi, who was moving with his family and animals from Pondicherry, India to Canada. The family and animals were being transported on a Japanese cargo ship when one night Pi was awakened by a terrifying storm. He tried to warn his family about the storm but water had filled the sleeping cabin. When he returned to the top of the ship, he was forced into a life boat with several of the zoo animals. On the life boat there was a zebra, hyena, orangutan and the 450 pound Bengal tiger which Pi named Richard Parker. During the horrible storm, he saw the ship totally destroyed along with his family, ship crew and many animals from his father’s zoo perishing in the storm. On the life boat Pi found some supplies, so he shared it with Mr. Parker. He built and slept on a small raft that he made to separate himself from the dangerous tiger on the boat. Pi was determined to make the journey so he focused on ways to improve his conditions. He kept a positive attitude and didn’t give up hope. He caught rain water for drinking and caught fish to feed Mr. Parker. He figured out a system in which he could feed Mr. Parker and feel safe. Mr. Parker was smart because he realized that Pi was his only way to survive. It was almost like they had made a nonverbal pact to help each other or at least not to harm each other. After drifting for 227 days, living under extreme weather conditions, lack of food and water, Pi found land. He and Mr. Parker had endured the shipwreck. This is a fantastic movie. I am planning on viewing it again. I have already recommended it to several of our library patrons. We also showed this movie to our teens during our Summer Reading Program. This is the 2013 Movie of the Year and won the 2013 Academy Award. Gertie Scott, Branch Head, Coliseum Boulevard Branch Library


The Forgotten by David Baldacci Narrated by Ron McLarty and Orlagh Cassidy CD F BALDACCI Location: Lowder This story begins when John Puller, Jr.’s, father, a retired general, received an unnerving letter from his sister, Betsy, living in Paradise, Florida. The letter stated that some strange things were going on and people were not who they seem. When John arrived in Paradise, he found out that his aunt was dead. The authorities ruled her death accidental. After looking around his aunt’s home, John felt that something was not adding up, so he decided to perform his own criminal investigation, since this was what he specialized in the Army. In his investigation, Puller was assisted by General Julie Carson who helped him in securing supplies and backing him up with fire power. Puller and Julie exposed some horrible schemes by people that had no respect for others and the law. Later in the novel, Puller crossed path with Mecho from Bulgaria. Mecho had been a slave on a ship with many other people who were snatched from their families and homes to be sold into slavery. Mecho arrived in Paradise after jumping off a slave vessel and got a job as a gardener, working at the home of billionaire Peter Lampert. Mecho’s purpose for being in Paradise and working at the Lampert’s estate was to see if he could find his missing sister, Rada, who had been taken from her home land. Mecho watched Lampert’s daily activities while working on the estate and at night watched his traveling on the beach where ships were brought in with human cargo to be sold as slaves. At the Lampert’s estate, Mecho later discovered that an undercover person was also working to take Lampert down. Lieutenant Diaz and Mecho worked together to find out the time schedule for receiving and selling the slaves on the beach. Well, as you probably know, John Puller, Julie Carson, Mecho and Lieutenant Diaz became a force for the law breakers to have to deal with. You have to read the book or listen to the book-on-cd to see how things turned out. This is my first time listening to a book by David Baldacci. I enjoyed the book and plan to listen to others by him. The book was action packed and had wonderful narration. Gertie Scott, Branch Head, Coliseum Boulevard Branch Library Here I Am by Rochelle Alers CD F ALERS Location: Pintlala Are you into romance or are you the official romantic skeptic? Not everyone has the heart of a true romantic, but this book can tug on the heart strings of anyone. Here I Am by Rochelle Alers has a little something for those who want to escape into a romantic realm. Rochelle Alers is an author who always leaves you salivating for more. This book is about Brandt Wainwright, who chose professional football over the family real estate business. Brandt got into a serious accident. He crashes his SUV and was wounded. As his dream life starts to spiral out of control, a beautiful young woman named Ciara Dennison shows up in his life as his nurse. During his long recuperation, Ciara brings a new light into Brandt. Brandt finds himself falling for Ciara too. He breaks down all of her barriers that she has put up since her heart-felt break-up with her ex-boyfriend. She is beside herself for falling for Brandt and she knows better than to get involved with a patient. It is just something about him that she is drawn to. Once Brandt has recovered, will he return to the life that he once knew or will he embrace the new life that Ciara is offering him? What will he choose?  Angela Watts, Library Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library


MYSTERY Creole Belle by James Lee Burke M BURKE Locations: All 11 Libraries Recovering from gunshot wounds in the hospital and in a morphine haze, Dave Robicheaux receives a visit from Tee Jolie Melton, a local blues singer, who gifts him an iPod with some of her songs on it. The only problem is Tee Jolie has disappeared and no one else can hear or even find her songs on Dave’s new iPod. Meanwhile, Dave’s ex-partner, Clete Purcel is united with his daughter, Gretchen Horowitz, who he only recently discovered existed. Gretchen suffered serious abuse as a child and grew up to become a hit woman working out of Miami. The story is set in postKatrina Louisiana, and Burke builds scene and atmosphere like no other author writing today. He also writes fully fleshed out characters and draws readers into their lives. And, of course, there is the mystery and the action. Quite simply, James Lee Burke is the very best there is at what he does. If you are unfamiliar with Burke and the Robicheaux character, you owe it to yourself to give Creole Belle or another of Burke’s novels, a try. Highly recommended for adult readers. Tim Berry, Head Librarian, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Sidney Sheldon’s Angel of the Dark by Tilly Bagshawe M BAGSHAWE Locations: All 11 Libraries Sidney Sheldon was one of my favorite authors when I was a young adult. Mr. Sheldon died in 2007. I chose to read this book because of the title. Mrs. Bagshawe has done a good job emulating Sheldon’s style of writing and thus, this was an enjoyable read. The book contained no foul language while providing plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing. Detective Danny MacGuire was the first one to arrive on the scene. A young woman, Angela, was assaulted and savagely beaten, but still alive and tied to the beaten body of her older husband, Andrew Jakes. Danny would remember the moment forever as he untied her. She looked at him with her smoldering brown eyes and said to him, “I have no life.” While Danny works tirelessly to solve this case, Angela disappears. As time goes by, Danny gives up on finding the murderer, until it comes to light that Matt Daley, estranged son of the late Andrew Jakes tells him about other similar cases that have occurred in other countries many years apart. Together they work to find the psychopath that has committed these murders and ultimately find out the reason behind these senseless acts. Sidney Sheldon’s Angel of the Dark by Tilly Bagshawe, New York: William Morrow, ©2012 293 p. Jeanine Hughes, Library Assistant II, Pike Road Branch The Cat Who Series by Lilian Jackson Braun M BRAUN Locations: All 11 Libraries Meet Jim Qwilleran and his Siamese sleuths, Koko and Yum Yum, as they investigate suspicious murders and solve serious crimes. Qwill has left a position as a journalist and moved “400 miles north of everywhere”, to claim an inheritance that will change his life. With his feline pals in tow, he moves from apartment to cabin to converted apple barn, all the while using Koko’s smarts to pick up clues about mischief in the city of Pickax. 25

Adults and young adults alike will enjoy these easy-to-read cozy mysteries that contain a sense of humor all their own. Though most of the characters remain the same throughout the series, I recommend starting at the beginning for an easier grasp of the names. It won’t be long before you’ll feel a part of the community yourself! Lauren Kiefer, Librarian I, Bertha Pleasant Williams Library Rosa L. Parks Avenue Branch Alex Cross, Run by James Patterson M PATTERS Locations: All 11 Libraries The newest book in the “Alex Cross” series holds just as much suspense and intrigue as you’d expect. Detective Cross is thrown into the world of three possible serial killers, and this time his family could be in danger. Delving into the case head first, Alex is taken by surprise when someone stalks him, sets him up, and causes him to be temporarily removed from the cases. Add this to trouble with a foster child, and you’ve got the perfect scenario for one of James Patterson’s mysteries. This book is definitely a page-turner! The reader never knows what will happen next or who will be affected. You get a first-hand glimpse into the lives of Alex and his family, as well as three very disturbed men who enjoy the pain of others. I really enjoyed the mystery that unfolded in this story. However, because of the language and violence, I would recommend that only adults and seasoned crime-fiction readers enjoy this book. Lauren Kiefer, Librarian I, Bertha Pleasant Williams Library Rosa L. Parks Avenue Branch Getting Old Is the Best Revenge by Rita Lakin LPM LAKIN Locations: Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Morgan, Lowder, Lewis This book is the second in a series of “Gladdy Gold Mysteries”. The series basically centers on a group of elderly women ages 71-83. These women solve misdemeanor (Peeping Toms) and murder mysteries when Gladdy gets this “gut feeling”, and, of course, her feelings are always correct. These books are very light and funny readings. If you want a murder mystery without all the gruesomeness, these “Gladdy Gold Mysteries” are the books for you. One branch does not carry the entire series, but they can be found throughout the system.   Kesha McClain, Library Assistant I, Coliseum Branch Library Murphy’s Law by Rhys Bowen M BOWEN Locations: Lowder, Governor’s Square, Pike Road Rhys Bowen was born in Bath, England. She now lives in San Francisco. Her career began with writing children’s books, then young adult books written under her married name Janet Quin Harken. Next came mysteries. She is the winner of 11 major awards and 25 nominations. The genre for her adult books is historical mystery. The definition of Murphy’s Law states, “If anything can go wrong, it will” ( This is the life of Molly Murphy who fled from Ireland to New York City via London. Trouble followed her everywhere. In London, Molly was saved by Kathleen O’Connor from the hands of a brothel owner. Kathleen is stricken by consumption. She had tickets for herself and her two children, Birdie and Seamus, to go to New York. Immigrants had to pass a physical to enter America, and Kathleen was unable to go. She asked Molly to take her place. Trouble began for Molly, aka Kathleen, on the ocean liner Majestic. A trouble maker named O’Malley began 26

to harass Molly. She ended up slapping him. When the O’Connor “family” reached New York, passengers were detained because of an investigation into the death of Mr. O’Malley. After being questioned and released, Kathleen (Molly) was allowed to go into New York to meet Seamus O’Connor, Birdie and Seamus’ dad, and explain to him why Kathleen was not there. The O’Connor family stayed at his cousin Nuala’s house. Molly was not welcomed there. Nuala thought that Molly made a pass at her husband and kicked Molly out into the streets of New York in the middle of the winter. Molly was still being harassed by Captain Sullivan concerning the murder on the Majestic. Molly began her own investigation which irritated Captain Sullivan. Murphy’s Law continued to stalk Molly as she began to make progress in solving the murder. Eventually Captain Sullivan became more tolerant of Molly’s investigation. Thus began the book of Murphy’s Law. While trying to solve the murder, the reader will also learn much about the cultural history of Irish New York in the early twentieth century. This is the first title in the “Molly Murphy” series. Mary Wilhoite, Librarian II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library, Reference Department


FICTION The Family Business by Carl Weber & Eric Pete F WEBER Locations: All 11 Libraries The Duncan family may seem like a down to earth family. They are running a family owned car dealership. Mom and Pop are about ready to retire and hand the business over to the children. All of the children are now grown and have hopefully been successfully groomed by their dad and mom to run the business. As the book starts off you see how they work very well together and how they do a great job at the car dealership. Their dad has a meeting and lets everyone know he will be stepping down soon. What dad doesn’t tell them is that the business is actually in trouble. He wants to let his second oldest run it for a little while so he can see what is going on and who is sabotaging his shipments. I have never read a book with such great cover up details about the characters. Never in a million years would I have guessed that such a family who seems so wonderful on the outside was so malicious and devious on the inside. The Duncan Family is a father who has bad blood between himself and a highly recognized crime boss, a daughter who is a trained assassin and a son-n-law who is a high-powered attorney that seems to cover the dirty work up all too well. There is also a son who owns a prominent club but is an undercover drug dealer, another son who buys high end call girls, and let us not forget the oldest daughter who is going thru domestic violence in her marriage. This is just a peak into some of the lives in this family. If you would like to find out more about these and the rest of the characters in this book you need to go to the nearest library and check out: The Family Business by Carl Weber and Eric Pete. I was completely shocked when I read this book. Nothing about any of these characters is what meets the eye. What you find out is that all of them are in on a big secret. This family is in so deep there is no getting out or turning back. The bloodshed, drugs, sex, kidnapping, lies and cover ups are only a part of all the drama this book holds. The car dealership is just a cover up for the Duncan Family. Alicia Bailey, Library Assistant 1, Media Services, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Scandals by Sasha Campbell F CAMPBEL Location: Morgan Scandals revolves around Monica Houston, a recently divorced house wife in nursing school, with two daughters and no real support from her ex-husband, who could afford it but chooses not to. Now she finds herself without enough money to make ends meet to support her family. With the advice and a little push from her best friend Reyna, she sets out to try being a stripper to make extra money, since she has a nice shape. So Monica decides to try it out at a local strip club called “Scandalous”. Donning a wig, in the hopes that no one will notice her, she proves to be a hit and the money comes pouring in. She also befriends a dancer named Treasure who has her own problems going on. But we all know that what’s done in the dark will be brought to the light. That’s when all the drama starts to unfold with the ex-husband, coworker, and her boyfriend. Scandals by Sasha Campbell, New York: Dafina ©2012, 294 p., also available on CD, Prince Frederick, MD: Recorded Books, ©2012, 9 audio discs, (10 hours), and CD F CAMPBEL Pintlala Courtney Baker, Library Assistant I, Hampstead Branch Library


Island Apart by Steven Raichlen LPF RAICHLE Locations: Coliseum, Extension, Governor’s Square, Lewis, Lowder This book was pleasantly surprising because it unexpectedly met all my requirements for an exceptionally good read. I truly liked the diverse cast of characters. The author wrote in such a way that a reader cannot help but become emotionally involved with the storyline. It leads the reader to care that Claire, though dealing with cancer, a broken marriage to an obvious heel of an ex-husband, and a rebellious daughter, finds peace, strength and unexpected romance with the Hermit of Chappaquiddick. I loved how the author is very descriptive of all the characters; including Claire’s best friend Sheila saying, “Imagine Queen Latifah as a white woman with a voice like Bette Midler’s.” I really appreciated that an explanation of each character’s behavior was given. Although, the book does not have a happy ending, readers are left remembering that emotional bonds created and cemented indicate that life truly does go on. Patricia Blair, Librarian I, Rufus A. Lewis Regional Library Spend My Life with You by Donna Hill LPF HILL Locations: Morgan, Lewis, Governor’s Square, Extension The author captivates her audience by leading us on an excursion steeped in family theatrics, present day politics and “made for the big screen romance”. The setting takes place largely in New Orleans and Washington, D.C. Lee Ann Lawson is the daughter of the very influential Senator Branford Lawson. She was devastated when her college sweetheart and first love left her for someone else. At the time, her mother was gravely ill and she became her chief caregiver. When her mother died, she lost herself by assuming the role of “mother” to her four siblings. She also became her father’s personal assistant. During one of the parties thrown by a well-known Congressman, she met the young, up and coming Senator Preston Graham. The two struck up a romance that was initially based on all the wrong reasons. Preston had been left at the altar by someone he thought that he truly loved and loved him in return. The young senator had begun to view women as “toys” and submerged deeper into his political career. He and Lee Ann both set up guarded feelings so as to protect themselves from being deeply wounded again. However, after spending more and more time together, the two realized so much more. They both learned valuable life lessons from each other and struggled through the past devastations that they each suffered. Preston showed Lee Ann that she was worthy of a life of her own and she showed Preston that he could be his own man. If you are truly a romantic at heart, then this is the novel for you. Shirley Ford Bridges Library Assistant l, Bertha Pleasant Williams Library Rosa L. Parks Avenue Branch Breaking All My Rules by Trice Hickman LPF HICKMAN Locations: Morgan, Lewis, and Extension Services Although Erica Standford was born wealthy, she is a successful businesswoman who owns her own high scale boutique. On Erica’s 10th birthday her father was shot by an intruder who broke into their home. After breaking up with her ex-fiancé, Erica is still having nightmares about the shooting, and missing that someone special in her heart. During jury duty Erica meets Jerome Kimbrough. Jerome works for the sanitation department as a garbage man. Jerome and Erica are from two different worlds. While on jury duty, Erica learns that Jerome is studying for his GED. Having lunch and talking every day, Erica is falling for him. After the two-week jury duty ends Erica and Jerome start dating. Little do they know they share a secret from the past. Doris Brown, Library Assistant I, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library, Tech Services 29

Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill F HILL Locations: Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Governor’s Square, Bertha Williams, Ramer, Pintlala, Pine Level The first novel from Joe Hill, Heart Shaped Box, offers suspense, horror and a bit of dark humor. The novel’s plot centers on the story’s protagonist, Judas Coyne, an over-the-hill, emotionally damaged, retired death metal rocker with a penchant for all things macabre. Judas collects all sorts of morbid memorabilia ranging from a snuff film to drawings by serial killer John Wayne Gacy. Replying to an email for a possessed suit, Judas bids online and ultimately receives the suit in a heart shaped box. As if on cue, strange occurrences begin forcing Judas to question his affinity for all things dark. This novel blurs the line between what is fantasy and reality, leaving the reader on edge trying to decipher what is real or a dream sequence. Heart Shaped Box is a story of redemption, vengeance and, strangely, love. I am a fan of horror and suspense and would recommend this book for those who are fascinated also. Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill, William Morrow, c. 2007. Norkeshia Brown, Library Page, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library, Computer Lab Lost Daughters by Mary Monroe F MONROE Locations: All 11 Libraries Lost Daughters is the third book in the “Mama Ruby” series. This title focuses on Maureen and her daughter Loretta. The story is set after the death of Loretta’s twin. Maureen vows to be there in any capacity for her living child. This arrangement creates a very spoiled child. Loretta’s behavior reveals family secrets and deceit which clearly shows the hold Mama Ruby still has on her children even in her death. However, she has given them the tools they will need to weather the storms. Mama Ruby may be dead, but her hold on her family is not and a lot of old hidden secrets have come home to roost. How the family comes to together to deal with the past will define the notion that you can overcome, no matter what the situation and build a more productive future. Christine Flynn, Library Page, Governor’s Square Branch Library The Perfect Marriage by Kimberla Lawson Roby F ROBY Locations: All 11 Libraries The couple in this book, Derrek and Denise Shaw, thought they had it going on. They were happily married, had all the luxuries, very good jobs and a beautiful da,ughter. However, Denise’s job is very stressful and she uses prescription drugs to relax her after a long day at work. Derrek also joins her in drug use. Derrek wants to stop, but his use gets worse and pretty soon he is turning to even stronger drugs. Do Derrek and Denise get help? In order to get the answer, you must read this book. Once you start to read it, you can’t put it down until you finish it. Diane Griffin, Librarian I, Ramer Branch Library


What Mother Never Told Me by Donna Hill LPF HILL Locations: Morgan, Lewis, Governor’s Square The story begins in Rudell, Mississippi, where Parris McKay learns of her grandmother’s lie through some letters her grandmother left to be opened after her death. This secret was kept for over 30 years. Parris’ mother was alive and well in Paris, France. She abandoned Parris when she was a baby and left her with Parris’ grandparents. Parris goes to France to find her long lost mother and see why she could not be a part of her life. The shock of the visit was too much for Parris to deal with alone. Thank goodness she had the support of her friends Leslie and Celeste (both with mother issues) to maintain some resemblance of sanity in her life. She could also count on Nick, a musician in the band Parris sings with on occasions. Nick is going to be the determining factor for happiness in Parris’ career and life. Hopefully, Parris will realize it before it is too late. The book describes beautiful scenery in France, as well as gives accounts of Jazz and Blues music and musicians in Harlem. This book is a good read. Not your everyday romance. This takes it up a few notches and adds mystery, drama, and spice. Cherlyn Hall, Library Assistant I, Coliseum Branch Library A House Divided by Kimberla Lawson Roby F ROBY Locations: All Locations except Coliseum Life seems almost good for the Reverend Curtis Black and his wife Charlotte until their son Matthew meets Racquel, whom they feel is “not good enough” for their son. Charlotte learns that Racquel is pregnant and she thinks that Racquel is trying to trap her son into marriage. Racquels’ parents give her a baby shower and do not invite Charlotte, but she goes anyway. Troubles start and Racquel gets all upset, going into early labor, which upsets Matthew, who begins to push his mother out of his life. Meanwhile, Curtis Black has troubles of his own. Someone from his past is blackmailing him; and he can’t figure out who would do this to him, but he knows he has done a lot in his life to hurt a lot of people. One of his ex-wives is the one behind the blackmailing and she plans to get him back for all the others he has hurt. She hires a couple for Reverend Black to counsel so that she can have him beaten. The beating is so severe Reverend Black ends up in the hospital in a coma. The young man who beats Reverend Black goes on TV and tells how the Reverend Black had killed his mother. This young man turns out to be Curtis Black’s son. When he comes out of the coma, Reverend Black gets with the young man and tells him he’s sorry and offers him a half million dollars for all the wrong doing he has done to him and his mother. Meanwhile, Charlotte sets up Racquel and her mother with DHR, saying that Racquel is an unfit mother, and having the baby taken from them and given to her and Reverend Black. To find out what happens after the house is divided, you must read the book. Celia Hendricks, Clerk III, Library Administration Doctor Who: Touched By an Angel by Jonathan Morris SF MORRIS Location: Morgan This small hardback is a “must read” for any Doctor Who fan! It features what are, in my opinion, the scariest villains to come out of the Doctor Who Reboot: the Weeping Angels. This story, featuring the 11th Doctor and Amy and Rory Pond, is a fast paced, complex tale of timey-wimey Doctor Who goodness that takes place in the early 1990’s 31

and the present day and all times in-between (and not in chronological order). The main character, Mark Whitaker, receives a handwritten note from himself and shortly encounters both the Angels and the Doctor and his friends. The novel touches on what it means to love and to lose the ones we love. This book harkens back to the introduction of the Weeping Angels in 2007’s “Blink”, which means it is a fantastic read. The author, Jonathan Morris, who has not written a Doctor Who episode, writes an intricate, well fleshed out novel that reads much like an actual TV episode would. The characters are fully developed and believable and I found myself getting quite attached. It is a fun, fast read that fills the time nicely between episodes of the show, I highly recommend it! Suzanne Horton, Librarian II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler F  FOWLER Locations: Coliseum, Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Pike Road, Hampstead, Governor’s Square   Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler, is a fictional account of the lives of F. Scott and Zelda as told through Zelda’s point of view. Mrs. Fowler based her novel primarily on letters which were written by Zelda, F. Scott, and Ernest Hemingway along with researching other published works to form her perspective on the lives of an internationally famous couple during the Jazz Age.  Their love/hate relationship ultimately led to their early demise. This book is a must read for those who have grown up in Montgomery as it enables you to reflect on early, prominent Montgomery families, reminisce about old Montgomery streets and structures, and glimpse into the lives of area people primarily during the 1920’s.  It is also a must read for people who enjoy reading about Gertrude Stein, Ernest Hemingway, Picasso, Henry Mencken, and other artists and intellectuals of the time who socialized with F. Scott and Zelda. Mrs. Fowler’s interpretation of the lives of this famous Jazz Age couple brings to life their successes, their personal struggles, and what fame and fortune can do if you allow it to encompass your very being.  This book is most readable and one that you will not want to put down. Wes Little, Librarian I, Coliseum Branch Library Cell: A Novel by Stephen King F KING Locations: Morgan, Pike Road, Coliseum, Lowder, Lewis, Bertha Williams, Governor’s Square, Pintlala Cell: a Novel was a terrifying number one New York Times bestseller by Stephen King. It is about the mayhem unleashed when a mysterious force transforms cell phone users into homicidal maniacs. I recommend this book to those who enjoy a good horror story. Mr. King has a history of writing stories that reach the common man. According to his biography, he is “one of the world’s most successful writers, with more than 100 million copies of his works in print. Many of his books have been translated into foreign languages, and he writes new books at a rate of about one per year”. Mr. King lives with his wife, Tabitha King in Bangor, Maine. Samuel Jackson, Jr., Technology Coordinator


Private Arrangement by Brenda Jackson LPF JACKSON Locations: Lewis, Governor’s Square, Morgan, Extension This is a romantic story about the Steele Family. The Steeles, a middle class family, own a marketing company. There are three sons; all are married except one, Jonas Steele. He vowed that he would never get married. However, a woman came into his life and changed everything. Nikki, a photographer, while applying for a job at another company, was spotted by Jonas. The moment that Jonas saw her, he was attracted to her. There was something about her that stole his heart. Jonas made sure that Nikki did not get the job which she applied for. He had other plans for her. This is a must read that consists of page after page revealing the evolving of a romantic relationship between Nikki and Jonas. Readers of romance are sure to like this book. Edwina Martin, Library Assistant I, Rufus A. Lewis Regional Library Call Me Irresistible by Susan Elizabeth Phillips F PHILLIP Locations: All 11 Libraries Susan Elizabeth Phillips is a New York Times bestselling author. She lives in Chicago with her husband and has two adult children. Some of her favorite hobbies are hiking, traveling, and gardening. I stumbled upon Call Me Irresistible by Susan Elizabeth Phillips while searching the downloadable audio collection at MCCPL. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. This book was laugh out loud funny. The main characters are Lucy, Meg, and Ted. Meg comes to town to be a bridesmaid in her best friend Lucy’s wedding. Meg tells Lucy that Ted is not the right man for her. Lucy leaves before the wedding can take place. Meg is blamed by Ted and the entire town for Lucy’s decision. Meg has no money and is forced to stay in a town where she is hated. She works under great stress and becomes quite crafty with no help from her family, the town, or Ted. Call Me Irresistible by Susan Elizabeth Phillips is also available in the Downloadable Collection. Shondra Mixon, Library Assistant II, Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library The Way We Roll by Stephanie Perry Moore YA F MOORE Locations: All 11 Libraries Stephanie Perry Moore has done it again! Stephanie has penned a great easy reader for young adults that captures the reader from the first sentence and does not release you until the last page. You are left wishing for more of this story because it does so much in helping those who are not members of a sorority to understand what truly should not be a part of sorority life. I am so proud of this work because Stephanie is a product of Montgomery, Alabama. She is the daughter of Dr. Franklin & Shirley Perry formerly of Perry Automotive in Montgomery and is also a member of a sorority where she currently serves as the Chair of the Southern Regional Membership Services/Sisterhood Committee. The story begins with a young girl begrudging her mother for the time she spends working on sorority business as opposed to, in her viewpoint, focusing her precious time on her family. Malloy who is the daughter of the National President of Beta Gamma Pi is a self- absorbed girl who can’t see the forest for the trees. She cannot see the good work that her mother is doing in the global community by networking with other women in the world to make a better life for all women. Malloy enrolls in college dead set on not pledging or engaging in anything that remotely resembles what her mother would have her to do. However the plot thickens when her brother, Mickey, brings over a buddy, Kade 33

Rollins, the star linebacker for the University of Southeastern Arkansas State, of his to meet their mother. Mickey is enrolled at Southeastern Arkansas State and plays football but is nowhere near the athlete that Kade is. Malloy has a crush on her brother’s friend. She and the young man find one another irresistible and so they connect on their first meeting. The plot thickens even more when she realizes that the young man’s girlfriend is a member of Beta Gamma Pi. To make things even worse Malloy is a friendless kind of girl. She has no friends at all and of course this concerns her mother and as a result hasn’t anyone to talk to regarding the problems she experiences. Sharon, a member of Beta Gamma Pi, is the soon to be dropped girlfriend of Kade Rollins. And of course once she finds out that Kade is infatuated with Malloy it becomes a real cat fight to see who can one up the other person. While at the same time, Malloy isn’t giving Kade the time of day, simply because of the relationship he has with Sharon. Just as things begin to calm down for Malloy, she is further pushed to pledge. Pledging for her becomes a way of pleasing her mother and godmother while at the same time playing tough to Sharon. The plot is thick and reveals some issues with pledging that most fraternal organizations, both black and white, are working to weed out of their organizations and that is the presence of HAZING! The plot provides an opportunity for the reader to read and give thought to the real meaning of sisterhood. It also provides a window of opportunity for young people to give thought to what is truly important in their lives. Going along with the crowd or walking in their own footsteps in doing what is right for them. This is a well written story for young adults, but I would also recommend it to adults as well. Jaunita Owes, Library Director, Montgomery City-County Public Library System The Man of God: A Story About Forgiveness by Wendy R. Coleman F COLEMAN Locations: Morgan, Lowder, Lewis, Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Pike Road This story is about the journey of two high school sweethearts who are separated for many years. Because of bad decisions they both made, they have faced many heartaches, tribulations and disappointments for many years. However, these same heartaches, tribulations and disappointments will bring them back together. You will have to read the book to see what happens to the old sweethearts, and see why this story is about the power of prayer and forgiveness. Author Wendy Coleman is the pastor of First Congregational Church on the corners of Union and High Streets here in Montgomery. She also works in the Department of Theater Arts at Alabama State University. Terry Reed, Facilities Manager Chocolate Magic by Zelda Benjamin F BENJAMI Locations: Pintlala, Morgan, Governor’s Square, Lowder, Coliseum, Ramer Zelda Benjamin is a pediatric ER nurse. She was born in Brooklyn, New York and now lives in South Florida with her husband. Benjamin’s books create a chocolate lover’s dream with a twist of romance. This book is the second in the series “Love by Chocolate”, which also includes Chocolate Secrets and Chocolate Muse. The stories and characters in her books are inspired by the people and neighborhoods in New York. Within this book she tells of a chocolate chef named Chloe who inherits her aunt’s apartment building, all while trying to maintain a social life and run her business. With finances tight and the apartment building crumbling to pieces, she encounters Ethan, who wants to buy her building; but who would have thought that Ethan sees more in Chloe than just what he wants out of her? I


would recommend this book to readers who enjoy a good love story, but I would be careful while reading this book because it makes you eat chocolate the entire read. Laquisha Thomas, Library Assistant II, Pintlala Library Destiny’s Divas by Victoria Christopher Murray F MURRAY Locations: All 11 Libraries Destiny Divas is a new gospel group made up of three beautiful young ladies with different kinds of testimonies. Sierra, Raine, and Liza travel around the world to give their testimonies to thousands of people with false testimonies. Sierra Dixon talks about being celibate, but she’s not. But, she finally finds the love of her life and loses him in the same breathe. Raine Omari talks about how important it is to have unconditional love within the family, but her breaking point with her mother-in-law takes a horrible turn. But, her loving husband is caught in the middle of their drama. And Liza Washington finds herself in the middle of her husband’s scandal that could bring down more than their ministry. Mann is having a problem with keeping his hands where he should. Just before their first concert in Houston, Texas, their secrets are exposed, and one of them commits an act that will change all of their lives. Shirley Toston, Librarian I, E L Lowder Regional Library Sinner and Saints by Victoria Christopher Murray & ReShonda Tate Billingsley F MURRAY All locations Jasmine is up to her old tricks, but this time she meets her match or better, Rachel. Both of their husbands are running for pastor of the American Baptist Coalition which will give one of them a very important title “First Lady”. And both want their husbands to win. Rachel Jackson is a real character herself. But it’s very interesting to see what things each woman will do just to get her husband in this position. Things go wrong when one of their stunts is taken too far, and questions start to arise by the other participant; who will drop out, who will be the winner, or is there another candidate waiting for the slip-up of the two? What lengths would Jasmine and Rachel go to? This is a must read! Shirley Toston, Librarian I, E L Lowder Regional Library Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes F HAYNES Locations: All Into the Darkest Corner is a very strong emotional story filled with page after page of suspense and mystery. The book will have its readers spellbound as it unravels truth after truth about a romantic obsession that turns violent, an unexpected disloyalty of friendship, and a revelation that it’s a thin line between love and violence. When Catherine Bailey meets Lee Brightman who is quite a charmer and handsome, she believes that he is perfect for her and that she’s the luckiest woman in the world. However, Catherine soon discovers that Lee has a dark side. He is overly jealous, controlling, manipulative, and violent. Catherine realizes that she needs to end the relationship, but finds it difficult to walk away. She seeks the help of her best friends, but discovers that they are unwilling to help or believe her. She soon realizes that it is not about ending the relationship with Lee. It is about finding a way to escape a psychopath. This book is for anyone who seeks mystery in a book’s beginning to its final chapter. Glenda Walker, Branch Head, Rufus A. Lewis Regional Library


The Perfect Marriage by Kimberla Lawson Roby F ROBY Location: All Library locations The Perfect Marriage is what Derrick & Denise Shaw and others thought they had. Married for 15 years, educated, with successful jobs, a beautiful teen-age daughter, MacKenzie, a house in one of Chicago’s prestigious neighborhoods; but they had secrets that no one would have expected from this all American couple--a “drug addiction”. The couple started out using drugs innocently. Denise was taking prescription pills, Derrick using cocaine. Their using was supposed to be temporary to take the pressure off from their day to day stressful lives; this is what Denise thought. As days and weeks got longer the pressure from their jobs, and a sudden family tragedy, the Shaws are starting to spend out of control and their only way to cope was to turn to drugs. Their daughter MacKenzie, crying for help, decides to take matters into her own hands and turns this family inside out. The big question facing the Shaws is do they have a second chance? What a good read from beginning to end with a twist. I recommend this book to anyone even if you are not married or have an addiction, it’s an eye opener. The perfect marriage is something all married couples wish they can say they have. This book exposes the choices we can all make, good or bad in our everyday lives. It also shows that, an addiction can control and even ruin any life and the life and care of a whole family. The Perfect Marriage by Kimberla Lawson Roby, New York: Grand Central Pub., ©2013, Large Print Fiction: ix, 291 p. / Regular Print: 192 p. Sabrina Wells, Library Assistant II, Extension/Outreach Services The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman SF GAIMAN Locations: Coliseum, Governor’s Square, Hampstead and Ramer The Hempstocks live at the end of the lane. It seems that they have always lived there, and, in fact, they have. Lettie, her mother, and her grandmother are much older than they appear to be and the pond on their property is not what it appears to be either. It’s an ocean, but not one made of water. Our narrator meets the Hempstocks when a lodger at his family’s house makes off with their car and commits suicide in it. This bizarre occurrence also introduces our narrator to a world of wonder beyond his own, as well as to a dark force that wants to cross over into his world. When The Ocean at the End of the Lane was published in June 2013, much of the advertising touted that Neil Gaiman was releasing his first novel for adults in over 10 years. Despite that hype, this book shares the same spirit with two of his novels for children, Coraline and Newbery Award Winner The Graveyard Book. In all three books, we follow a child who becomes caught up in a wonderful, but dangerous otherworld parallel to our own. Likewise, we come to care deeply for that child. Unlike the previous books, in which Gaiman gave his protagonists the memorable names of Coraline and Bod, the author never gives a name to the narrator in The Ocean at the End of the Lane. This decision creates an unusual sense of familiarity between reader and narrator because the story feels as if an old friend whom we’ve met up with after a long separation is telling it. The absence of a name for the narrator has led some readers to speculate that the less fanciful elements of the book are semiautobiographical. Gaiman has acknowledged in interviews that they are, including the suicide of a man in his own parents’ car when he was a boy, as well as his love of comic books and cats. So this work of fiction gives us a bit of insight into the author, as well. However, regardless of its ties to actual events, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, like all of Gaiman’s work, is appealing because it merges the thoughts and fears of the real world with a world of wonder and horror. It is appropriate for teens and adults, and perhaps even older tweens who are looking for fantastic fiction with some mature themes. The Ocean at the End of the Lane, Neil Gaiman, New York: William Morrow, ©2013. 181 pp. Matt Williams, Librarian I, Pike Road Library 36

Changing Faces by Kimberla Lawson Roby F ROBY Locations: All 11 Libraries Whitney, Taylor, and Charisse have been best friends since college but are different in so many ways. They all have their own problems and really depend on each other when needed. Whitney is a beautiful full-figured woman who acknowledges that she is an emotional eater. She has tried many yo yo diets but the results are still the same. Not having a relationship with her mother and sister doesn’t make it any easier. Whitney finally meets the man of her dreams and has to pinch herself because she can’t believe it’s real. He is everything she has ever wanted but doubt always seems to hang in the background. Could this be the real thing? Taylor is the smart savvy attorney that has been in a relationship with her boyfriend Cameron for two years. She finds herself in wanting a commitment from a man who has no intention to ever get married. Suddenly Taylor faces a health crisis that forces her to face reality that she’s not getting any younger. It also sheds light on the man she so desperately wants to marry. Will Taylor ever marry the man of her dreams? Finally we meet Charisse. Charisse has what Whitney and Taylor desire to have which is a family. Everybody thinks she is a nice Christian woman. What they don’t know is that Charisse is a very cold demeaning woman that has a lot of skeletons in her closet. She controls her husband and despises her daughter. The drama begins when Charisse’s husband finds out one of her secrets and Charisse has to find a way to keep him quiet about it. Will these three women remain friends as they deal with situations individually and collectively? Kimberla Roby will have you burning the midnight oil to find out! Stacie Williams, Librarian I, E L Lowder Regional Library


Montgomery City-County Public Library Board of Trustees Thomas McPherson, President County Appointment 321 N. Anton Drive Montgomery, AL 36105-2112 Phone H #834-9636 Phone W #264-7919 F #264-7917 Cell #202-5533 Term Expires: June 1, 2016 Catherine Wright County Appointment 3865 Colline Drive Montgomery, AL 36106-3357 Phone W #420-4252 H #277-9956 Cell #315-6854 Term Expires: June 1, 2014 Ham Wilson, Jr. County Appointment 2532 Jamestown Lane Montgomery, AL 36111-1209 Cell #263-1447 Term Expires: June 1, 2015 Gary Burton, Secretary County Appointment 13812 U.S. Hwy 31 Hope Hull, AL 36043-5104 Phone H #288-7414 Phone W #281-9439 Cell #315-2235 Fax #281-9419 Term Expires: June 1, 2014 Amy Knudsen County Appointment 2926 Jamestown Drive Montgomery, AL 36111-1211 Phone W #244-2587 Phone H #834-1808 Cell #549-5005 Term Expires: June 1, 2016 Betsy Atkins County Appointment 201 Laurel Springs Court Pike Road, AL 36064 Phone H #260-0998 Term Expires: June 1, 2013 Paulette Moncrief County Appointment 4216 Green Meadow Drive Montgomery, AL 36108-5010 Phone H #288-5584 Cell #399-2456 Term Expires: June 1, 2013 Mary McLemore President, Friends of the Library 122 Laurelwood Drive Pike Road, AL 36064-2213 Phone H #277-0039 Cell #652-8285 Term expires: September 21, 2016

Vanzetta McPherson President, Library Foundation 321 N. Anton Drive Montgomery, AL 36105-2112 Phone H #834-9636 Cell #462-6696 Jaunita Owes, Library Director City-County Public Library P.O. Box 1950 • 245 High Street Montgomery, AL 36102-1950 Phone #240-4300 Fax #240-4977 Katie Bell City Appointment 3613 Winterset Court Montgomery, AL 36111-3361 Phone H #284-1800 Cell #318-1509 Fax #284-4002 Term Expires: June 1, 2016 ShaKenya Calhoun City Appointment 4155 Lomac Street, Ste. G Montgomery, AL 36106 Phone W #272-4400 Term expires: September 21, 2017 Jim Earnhardt, Vice President City Appointment 4013 Meredith Drive Montgomery, AL 36109-2344 Cell #202-7154 (H) Term Expires: June 1, 2017 Courtney Williams City Appointment P.O. Box 2069 Montgomery, AL 36102-2069 Phone W #241-8054 Fax W #241-8254 Term Expires: September 21, 2016 Janet Waller City Appointment 2307 Allendale Place Montgomery, AL 36111-1636 Phone H #264-8923 Cell #504-250-1219 Term Expires: September 21, 2014 Julia Henig City Appointment 301 Brown Springs Road Montgomery, AL 36117 Phone W #273-4405 Cell #451-5040 Term expires: June 21, 2015 Chester Mallory City Appointment P.O. Box 6056 Montgomery, AL 36106-0056 Phone W #262-7773 Cell #303-4802 Term expires: September 21, 2014

Leslie Sanders City Appointment P.O. Box 160 Montgomery, AL 36101-0160 Phone W #832-3301 Vivian White, Asst. Director City-County Public Library P.O. Box 1950 245 High Street Montgomery, AL 36102-1950 Phone #240-4300 Fax #240-4977

Montgomery City-County Public Library Foundation Board Carl Barker, President ServisFirst Bank One Commerce Street, Ste. 200 Montgomery, AL 36104 334-223-5800 (W) 334-652-1294 334-223-5858 (Fax) Term expires April 2015 Lynn Beshear, Executive Director Envision 2020 600 South Court St., Ste. 311 Montgomery, AL 36104 334-269-0224 (W) 334-462-0220 (Cell) Term expires April 2015 Brian L. Davis, P.E. General Operation Manager ALAGASCO – Montgomery Division 435 Lee Street Montgomery, AL 36104 334-241-4202 (W) Term expires September 2015 Jim Hodgson, CPA Moody & Hodgson 900 South Perry Street, #C Montgomery, AL 36104 334-834-5205 (W) Term expires April 2013 (Bo–––ard Treasurer) Sam Martin, President and CEO Maxwell Group, LLC P.O. Box 284 Montgomery, AL 36101 334-240-9423 (W) Term expires April 2013 Christopher Vucovich, Registered Rep Vucovich & Associates 8135 Old Federal Road Montgomery, AL 36117 334-239-9110 (W) 334-467-5438 (Cell) Term expires April 2015


Derek Parrish, Investment Banker 1 Commerce Center, Ste. 600 Montgomery, AL 36104 334-239-4612 (W) 334-313-2117 (Cell) Term expires April 2014 (Board Vice President) Sheron Rose, Director Human Resources Team Relations, Gov’t Affairs Hyundai Motor Mfg Alabama, LLC 700 Hyundai Blvd. Montgomery, AL 36105 334-387-8004 (W) 334-714-4426 (Cell) Term expires April 2014 Leslie Sanders, Vice President Alabama Power P.O. Box 160 Montgomery, AL 36101-0160 334-832-3301 (W) Term expires July 2015 Frank Wilson, Esq. 504 South Perry Street Montgomery, AL 36104 334-263-2560 (W) Term expires April 2014 Vanzetta McPherson U.S. Magistrate Judge (Ret.) 321 N. Anton Drive Montgomery, AL 36105-2112 334-834-9636 (H) 334-462-6696 (Cell) Term expires July 2015 (Board President)

EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS Thomas McPherson, Jr., President MCCPL Board of Trustees P.O. Box 251121 Montgomery, AL 36102-1121 334-264-7919 (W) 334-202-5533 (Cell) 334-264-7917 (Fax) Jaunita Owes, Director Montgomery City-County Public Library 245 High Street Montgomery, AL 36104 334-240-4300 (W) 334-354-6333 (Cell) 334-240-4977 (Fax) Catherine Wright, Chairman Finance Committee, MCCPL Board of Trustees 3865 Colline Drive Montgomery, AL 36106 334-420-4252 (W) 334-315-6854 (Cell)

Read Into the Holidays 2013  
Read Into the Holidays 2013