New Books for the Week of June 29, 2015

The English Spy by Daniel Silva

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The English Spy is Silva’s 15th thriller featuring Gabriel Allon, art restorer, assassin and spy, who gets taken around the world in this latest book of high stakes spy-craft.

The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey by Rinker Buck

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Buck’s book, The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey, is an epic account of what it was like to travel the 2,000 mile Oregon Trail. Buck succeeds in bringing this part of history back to life by documenting his travels along the trail in a covered wagon, the way it was done in history. If you pick this up, be ready for a journey unlike any other.

The Mountain Story by Lori Lansens

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Wolf Truly intends to jump to his death on his 18th birthday but on top of the mountain he encounters a group of strangers who change his plan. They wind up stranded together, enduring five days in this freezing cold. Years later, Wolf tells this hidden part of his past to his son Daniel as he explores the bonds strangers can make.

The Star Side of Bird Hill by Naomi Jackson

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Two sisters are sent from Brooklyn to Barbados to spend the summer with their grandmother. When their father, who they barely know, comes to claim them, the sisters must choose between the two places. A coming-of-age novel, readers who enjoy novels that explore familial bonds should look for this one.

Kiss Me by Susan Mallery

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When Phoebe loses her job, she goes to help out on her best friend’s family farm but cowboy Zane isn’t thrilled with an outsider coming to help. When Phoebe and Zane share a kiss, things get complicated as Phoebe’s only shot at staying on the farm is if Zane loves her like she grows to love him.

 

 

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New Books for the Week of June 22, 2015

Wicked Charms by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton

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Wicked Charms is Evanovich’s third book in the Lizzy and Diesel series. Lizzy must help Diesel find the Stone of Avarice but they must work fast if they want to beat those who have dedicated their entire lives to finding the lost chest that contains the stone.

Truth or Die by James Patterson and Howard Roughan

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Attorney Trevor Mann receives a call telling him his girlfriend has been shot in a mugging. The police believe it was a random attack, however Trevor is convinced his girlfriend Claire unearthed a secret while on the job as a journalist and he takes to chasing her leads to discover why she was killed.

The Melody Lingers On by Mary Higgins Clark

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Lane, an assistant for an interior designer, is called upon to redecorate a townhouse owned by the wife of notorious financier Parker Bennett, who has been missing for 2 years. Lane becomes drawn to the family but doesn’t realize that the closer she gets to them, the more she puts her life and her daughter’s life at risk. This is the second of three books published this year by Clark.

The Cartel by Don Winslow

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The Cartel is a ripped-from-the-headlines novel about the Mexican-American drug wars. When the head of a powerful cartel gets out of prison, the DEA agent responsible for putting him away embarks on a 10 year odyssey to take him down again. A story of revenge, honor and sacrifice, The Cartel is a perfect thriller to read this summer.

In the Country by Mia Alvar

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In the Country is a collection of short stories about the women and men of the Filipino diaspora. Alvar’s powerful stories explore loss, displacement and the longing to connect across borders, forcing readers to think about the concept of home.

China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan

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Kwan, the author of the hit book Crazy Rich Asians, is back with a new novel about the elite circles of mainland China. Heir to one of the greatest fortunes in Asia, Rachel is ready to get married but still mourns the fact that her birth father won’t walk her down the aisle. When a shocking revealtion draws her into Shanghai splendor, her dream may come true. If you’ve ever wondered what it is like to be China-rich, put this one on your to-read list.

Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget by Sarah Hepola

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Sarah Hepola spent most nights drinking, feeling a sense of freedom in her actions but she was left trying to piece together her memories in the morning, unsure of what she had done while drunk. Blackout is the story of Sarah’s life after alcohol, when she discovered her true self. This book has garnered a lot of media attention this week.

The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George

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Monsieur Perdu runs a floating bookstore, giving out novels that correspond to hardships in his customer’s lives to help mend broken hearts and souls. While he is able to mend everyone else, he can’t seem to heal his own heart. After reading a letter sent by his former lover, he sets out to make peace with his loss, traveling with an author and a chef through the rivers of France who help him show the healing power of books.

The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler

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Simon lives in his longtime family home by himself, his parents long dead and his sister traveling the country. When he receives a book in the mail from a bookseller, he must unlock the secrets it holds and decode his family history before fate takes a deadly turn.

The Truth and Other Lies by Sascha Arango

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When the mistress of a bestselling author becomes pregnant, he takes action to find a solution but ends up making a terrible mistake. With the police after him, he weaves the truth and lies together into a story that might help him survive. Fans of The Silent Wife should grab this new one.

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Job Opening at the Library

Job Title: Library Assistant I – Children’s Shelver
Closing Date/Time: Friday 07/03/2015 5:00PM
Start Date: Monday 07/20/2015
Job Type: Part-Time, 10-15 hours per week, including evening and occasional Saturday hours

The Willmar Public Library has an opening for a part-time Library Assistant I position in the Children’s Department. The main responsibilities for this position include to maintain the physical appearance and order of the children’s collection by shelving and shelf reading and to perform circulation duties.

Duties include:
– Shelve books and materials in their proper location
– Shelf read books to ensure materials are neat and in proper order
– Maintain the cleanliness of the children’s area
– Assist with the preparation of children’s programs
– Perform all Circulation Desk duties using our computerized system
– Prepare library for opening and closing
– Perform basic children’s reference
– Perform related work as assigned

This job requires some high school and an understanding of library organization and services, or a combination of education, training and experience necessary to perform the requirements of the job. Physical requirements are: walking, stooping, kneeling, crouching, reaching, lifting up to 25 pounds, feeling, grasping, talking, hearing and seeing.

Applicants are required to submit a completed application form, resume and cover letter. Application forms can be picked up at the library or found online at http://www.pioneerland.lib.mn.us/index.htm. Forms must be submitted in person or via email (annice.sevett@pioneerland.lib.mn.us) by 5:00PM on Friday, July 3, 2015. Applications without a resume and cover letter will not be considered.

Contact Annice Sevett at (320) 235-3162 or annice.sevett@pioneerland.lib.mn.us with questions.

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New Books for the Week of June 15, 2015

Country by Danielle Steel

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A woman’s life catapults from the old to the new in the latest book from bestselling author Danielle Steel. Stephanie is a stay-at-home mother who is in her marriage for the sake of her kids. When her husband dies suddenly, she struggles to move on. A chance meeting with a music superstar however changes her life forever. Steel fans will not be disappointed with this latest novel that strives to share the idea of seizing every day.

Grey: Fifty Shades of Grey as Told by Christian by E.L. James

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There are two sides to every love story and the Fifty Shades series by E.L. James is no exception. Now, fans can get inside the head of Christian as he tells his side of the story. The book will be released on Thursday, June 18 – a date fans will know as Christian Grey’s birthday.

The Rumor by Erin Hilderbrand

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Writer Madeline King’s latest deadline is looming but she has gotten the dreaded writer’s block. Meanwhile, her best friend Grace is on the verge of a decision that will change her life. This decision could also be Madeline’s salvation as the two try to set the record straight – but will the truth do more harm than good? Read The Rumor and find out.

The President’s Shadow by Brad Meltzer

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The President’s Shadow is the next installment in Meltzer’s Culper Ring series, following The Inner Circle and The Fifth Assassin. Culper Ring member Beecher White must investigate the discovery of a buried arm at the White House, one that will point him towards a hidden truth about family history that no one saw coming.

Pirate Hunters: Treasure, Obsession, and the Search for a Legendary Pirate Ship by Robert Kurson

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Two men have their sights set on finding the Golden Fleece, a pirate ship, but to look for it they must risk everything. Now, in this new book, the story of their real life discovery is told for all to read. Fans of Erik Larson and those who enjoy non-fiction books that read like fiction will enjoy this highly anticipated book.

The Precipice by Paul Doiron

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When two young female hikers disappear in the wilderness, game warden Mike Bowditch joins the search to find them. When the corpses are discovered, rumors spread that the women were killed by canines. Bowditch is tasked with collecting carcasses of dead coyotes due to public fear, but he is challenged by his girlfriend who believes the women were killed by humans. When his girlfriend disappears, Bowditch realizes that locating her means he will discover the truth behind the two murders.

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman

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Backman, author of The Man Called Ove, writes a charming tale about a girl whose grandmother dies and leaves behind letters apologizing to people she has wronged. Elsa, the granddaughter, begins an adventure to deliver these letters to their intended recipients, bringing her places she would never dream of.

The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins

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Carolyn used to be a normal American until adoption day, a time when she and a dozen other children found themselves being raised by a strange man known as Father. Raised according to Pelapi customs, they studied some of the secrets behind his power. When Father goes missing, there is a battle for power brewing but a victory by Carolyn may come at a price.

 

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New Books for the Week of June 8, 2015

The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

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The Invasion of the Tearling is the highly anticipated sequel to The Queen of the Tearling. In this continuation of the story, the evil kingdom of Mortmesne invades the Tearling and Kelsea, the queen, faces a test as the fate of the Tearling may rest with a woman named Lily. Fans of the first book will recognize old characters and be introduced to new ones in this tale of magic and mystery.

The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows

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Annie Barrows name may sound famililar – she co-wrote the popular book The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society. Now finding her own voice, she tells a captivating tale about a debutante whose arrival in West Virginia changes the course of history for one family. The novel is set against the backdrop of the Great Depression and is enhanced by being told through the eyes of three different characters.

Language Arts by Stephanie Kallos

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Charles Marlow teaches high school English and while he excels at his job, his personal life is struggling. He can’t seem to connect to his kids or his ex-wife who abandoned him years before. A series of events force him to look back on the decisions he has made and with the help of three individuals he may be able to rewrite his life.

Second Life by S.J. Watson

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Author of the bestselling book (and now a major motion picture) Before I Go to Sleep returns with a new psychological thriller in which a woman investigates the murder of her sister and finds out she led a double life on the internet. As she investigates, the woman gets sucked into that online world, meeting a man that could land her with the same fate of her sister.

The Jezebel Remedy by Martin Clark

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Lisa and Joe Stone, married for twenty years and partners in their law firm handle routine cases. When one of their clients dies in a fire, the Stones question how accidental it was. They soon find themselves in a corporate conspiracy that will require all their legal skills to survive. This book provides a portrait of a marriage, a tour of the legal system and a story full of surprises you won’t see coming.

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Why Series Stay Popular

book

Have you ever wondered how, after 15+ books featuring the same detectives, the writer manages to keep the attention of the readers? I know I have. Every time James Patterson, Joanne Fluke, Alexander McCall-Smith, and others have new books out in popular series, I constantly wonder how they manage to keep the series going and engage the attention of the readers. The key, according to William Kent Krueger in an articled titled “Keeping It Fresh,” is in the characters.

Last month, Booklist, a magazine that focuses on book reviews, celebrated Mystery Month. All month long, mystery reviews and related topics were put out in print and online. One of them featured Minnesota’s own William Kent Krueger, who discussed in the article how he manages to keep a long-running series interesting.

Read the article here and let us know what you think about Krueger and other authors who have long standing series. Do you like series? Do you shy away from series for some reason? Is there a particular series you love? We’d love to hear what you think!   

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New Books for the Week of June 1, 2015

In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume

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Judy Blume’s highly anticipated new novel is out this week. Mostly known for her Young Adult books, In the Unlikely Event is written for adult readers. In 1987, Miri returns to her hometown to attend a commemoration of an event that occurred when Miri was fifteen. The story focuses on three generations of families, friends and strangers whose lives are changed by unexpected events. This book has all the hallmarks of Blume that readers love.

Eight Hundred Grapes by Laura Dave

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Georgia Ford learned some important secrets while growing up on her family’s vineyard. A week before her wedding, she discovers an explosive secret her soon-to-be husband is keeping from her that threats the wedding. Georgia returns home to cope, but it turns out he isn’t the only one keeping secrets. This book is heartbreaking yet funny and explores love, marriage and family.

Muse by Jonathan Galassi

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Muse is about the decades-long rivalry between two publishing houses and a writer who has obsessed them both. Paul is heir apparent to an independent publishing house in New York but the writer he admires most is represented by Paul’s biggest rival. When Paul gets the chance to meet her, she shares a secret that will change their lives forever.

The Unfortunates by Sophie McManus

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Cecilia Somner is heiress to a robber baron’s fortune, yet she is on the decline. With her troubled son and his wife, she must face the dark legacy of her family. As they struggle to find a solution to their troubles, secrets and lies are revealed and Cecilia’s world topples, leading to an unexpected crime. This dramatic story is sure to catch your attention and is perfect for a summer read.

The Fateful Lightning by Jeff Shaara

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The Fateful Lightning is Shaara’s final installment in his Civil War series. This final book tells the story of the final eight months of battle from multiple perspectives. It brings to life the bloody final months of fighting that readers of Shaara have come to expect.

Finders Keepers by Stephen King
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Finders Keepers continues the story from Mr. Mercedes and focuses on a reader whose obsession with a writer goes too far. The same trio of winning heroes are featured, and readers will be on the edge of their seats in suspense.

The Theft of Memory by Jonathan Kozol

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Jonathan Kozol shares for the first time the story of his father, a neurologist who suffered from Alzheimer’s. Harry Kozol’s life is explored in vivid detail and this unique biography is the portrait of an extraordinary man and our current state of caregiving. Anyone touched by Alzheimer’s will want to read this book.

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New Books for the Week of May 25, 2015

Radiant Angel by Nelson DeMille

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John Corey’s new position with the Diplomatic Surveillance Group is suppose to be quieter than his previous position. When a new threat by Russia becomes a major concern, Corey must investigate and go into the heart of a new Cold War. But with time running out, can Corey abort the threat to the United States?

Piranha by Clive Cussler

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The Oregon crew returns in the next novel in Cussler’s popular series. Cabrillo and his crew fake the sinking of The Oregon but when a threat of assassination occurs, the team struggles to fight back. They must race against time to stop an attack that could lead to one man ruling over the largest empire the world has ever known.

Hand Drawn Jokes for Smart Attractive People by Matthew Diffee

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Cartoonist Matthew Diffee has drawn for The New Yorker for almost 15 years. Now, he has published a series of illustrations for “smart attractive” people of all professions and circumstances. If you’re looking for a good laugh, look no further.

The Rocks by Peter Nichols

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The Rocks is a double love story beginning with a mystery and moving backward in time to unravel the events of the past decades. This novel is bittersweet and is a perfect summer read.

Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf

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Our Souls at Night is Haruf’s last novel, published after his death last year. Written as Haruf’s knew he was dying, this book tells the story of a man and a woman who come together to talk about their lives and hopes for the imminent future.

The Water Knife by Paolo Bacigalupi

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The Water Knife is a near future thriller that casts a new vision on how we live today and what might be in store tomorrow. In the midst of a deadly drought, rumors of a water source send Detective Angel to investigate. While there, she encounters two women. The three strangers must depend on each other in order to survive. This book will appeal to all Science Fiction fans.

Dietland by Sarai Walker

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Plum Kettle is buying time until her scheduled weight loss surgery, but when a mysterious woman begins to follow her, she ends up in an underground community of women living on their own terms. She promises to face her unresolved problems but gets tangled up in a sinister plot with deadly consequences. Dietland is another great book to take to the beach.

 

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New Books for the Week of May 18, 2015

Disclaimer by Renee Knight

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Disclaimer is a psychological thriller about a woman haunted by secrets. Finding a mysterious novel by her bedside, Catherine is plunged into the day she became a hostage to a dark secret. As the past catches up with her, her world is falling apart and to fix it she must confront what happened on that horrible day. Fans of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train should pick up this new one.

Seveneves by Neal Stephenson

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What would happen if the world were ending? In his new novel, Stephenson explores this question. When a catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb and nations band together to try to ensure the survival of humanity. Even with a plan, only a handful of survivors remained and now, five thousand years later, their progeny embark on a journey into the unknown … to earth.

Mislaid by Nell Zink

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College freshman Peggy and her professor Lee begin an affair that results in an unplanned marriage and pregnancy. Mismatched from the start, Peggy runs off with the daughter but leaves a son behind. Peggy goes underground and her daughter and son grow up with emotional issues due to the trauma. Years later, the siblings will meet, culminating in an epic finale readers won’t see coming.

The Knockoff by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza

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The Knockoff tells the story of Imogen Tate, editor-in-chief of Glossy magazine, who finds herself being sought out by her former assistant who wants to take her job and make the magazine an app. Imogen faces a choice that will decide the fate of the magazine in this look at the world of fashion in our internet addicted age.

The Ghost Fields by Elly Griffiths

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The discovery of a downed WWII plane with a body inside leads Ruth and DCI Nelson inside a wealth of secrets in the seventh book in the Ruth Galloway series.

Little Black Lies by Sharon Bolton

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Three children go missing in the small community of Falkland Island, putting everyone on alert. Three islanders are hiding secrets and they trust no one. Readers will be kept guessing until the very end as they work to uncover the truth about these islanders and the missing children.

Jacksonland: President Andrew Jackson, Cherokee Chief John Ross, and a Great American Land Grab by Steve Inskeep

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Jacksonland tells the story of Andrew Jackson and John Ross, two men at political odds over land. When Jackson instigated the Trail of Tears, John Ross, political leader of the Cherokee, fought to oppose Jackson and took his case all the way to the supreme court. Inskeep’s book reveals how Jackson benefited greatly from this conquest of land and tells the tale of a tragedy in our history that is often forgotten.

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New Books for the Week of May 11, 2015

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

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Ani is close to living the perfect life, but she has a secret. This secret is so private and painful that if it comes to the surface, it will destroy everything she has worked so hard to achieve. Will breaking her silence destroy all she has worked for, or will it set her free? Read to find out.

A Lucky Life Interrupted: A Memoir of Hope by Tom Brokaw

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Tom Brokaw writes openly about his year battling cancer in this new memoir, featured heavily on media this week. He explores aging, the importance of family, gratitude and more through this detailed account of his experience.

The Great War of Our Time: The CIA’s Fight Against Terrorism – From Al Qa’ida to ISIS by Michael Morell with Bill Harlow

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Top CIA officer Michael Morell seemed to find himself on the cusp of history during his reign. Using his experience, he tells readers that terrorism is still a threat and if left unaddressed could lead to a mass attack. Those interested in current events and political non-fiction will love this new one.

The Book of Aron by Jim Shepard

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Aron and his family have been driven to Poland in the wake of World War II. Trying to keep his family alive, he joins a group of boys and girls risking their lives by trading contraband. With his family gone, Aron is rescued by a doctor but with Treblinka awaiting them, will Aron manage to escape?

The Green Road by Anne Enright

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Spanning thirty years, The Green Road is the story of the Madigan family and their matriarch Rosaleen. As the kids grow up, they leave Ireland and Rosaleen prepares to sell the house. As they come together for a last Christmas, memories come up and they feel their history is being sold. At the heart of this story is the idea about gaps in our hearts and how we strive to fill them.

How to Start a Fire by Lisa Lutz

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Three women come together around a campfire twenty years after meeting in college, reminiscing about adventures, jealousies and tragedies that have altered the course of their lives. How to Start a Fire pulls readers deep into the lives of these three women and demonstrates just how strong a love we can have with the family we choose.

 

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