The LibraryReads top 10 list of titles published in May was announced today. There are some that came as a surprise to me - and some were not, of course. Let's see what you think about this list.
The overall favorite is We Were Liars by E. Lockhart. This title is written for teens but reviewers say that it shouldn't be overlooked by adults looking for a fantastic read. The premise is a prestigious family living on a private island off the coast of Massachusetts. A granddaughter of the patriarch has been injured in some kind of accident and has memory loss. This title has been creating a lot of stir and readers are quite passionate about it and not telling anyone any more than the above. I might have to read it when it comes in just to see what the big deal is.
All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr is next on the list. This is the story of a blind French girl and a young German male orphan - one in Paris and one in Berlin - and how they try to survive during the build up to World War II. It has been called moving, compelling and enthralling by reviews. Those who like literary fiction or historical fiction will probably enjoy.
Next comes The Bees by Laline Paull. This has been compared to Watership Down with bees and the meeting of The Handmaid's Tale and The Hunger Games. It is in fact about the activity and caste system in a bee hive. Flora 717 was born into the sanitation workers caste but she has more gifts than that. What is a bee to do? I guess we have to read it to find out. Opinions differ widely on this one, some calling it fresh and absorbing and others calling it just odd.
Ruth Reichl is giving us a novel, Delicious! that has made the list. If you like to read about food, then this is the title for you. This is Reichl's first novel and food writing is her specialty so she combined both into this work. Billie comes to NYC from California to take a job at a food magazine that quickly afterwards disbands. Billie is left to answer the customer service line for the foreseeable future. While there, she finds letters written to James Beard from a 12 year old. Reichl seems to shine when she writes about food. Characters and plots - not so much. Reviewers said it would be a good beach read.
Bittersweet by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore is next on the list. Mabel Dagmar, a plain working class student is asked to spend the summer with her college roommate, Genevra Winslow at their Vermont estate. It is the story of that summer, friendship and first love but it is also the story of what you might do for the feeling of belonging. Reviewers LOVED this book. Some compared it to The Secret History - high praise indeed.
Next we have The Forgotten Seamstress by Liz Trenow. Once again, reviewers loved this book describing it as a 'moving tale', entrancing, and excellent and evocative. Caroline Meadows discovers a quilt while clearing her mother's attic and begins a search of the origins. Much earlier, Maria - an accomplished seamstress - is employed to work for the Royal Family. She catches the eye of the Prince of Wales and she is intrigued by him. This leads to trouble when she is dismissed and sent to a mental institution. Will Caroline be able to find out what happened to Maria? We have to read it to find out.
Josh Malerman has Bird Box : Don't Open Your Eyes on the list. Said to be in the horror genre but not graphic is is highly recommended for fans of psychological suspense. There is something outside - we don't know what - once someone sees it, they go mad and suicide/murder is the result. Malorie, the main character, discovers that she is pregnant at the beginning of these events, and the story unfolds mostly through her eyes. It follows her through five years and the major occurrences during that time. She trains two children to rely on the sense of sound - no one can go outside unless they are blindfolded. Yet, at the end, she must leave the house to find others. Gives me shivers thinking about it. Said to be super-suspenseful, original and gripping.
Delancey: A Man, a Woman, a Restaurant, a Marriage by Molly Wizenberg is the lone nonfiction work on the list this month. It is the story of how she and her husband opened a successful pizza restaurant called Delancey in Seattle. She also includes recipes. Wizenberg writes a popular blog called Orangette and has a ready made following for this title.
Darynda Jones next in her Charley Davidson series, Sixth Grave on the Edge is on the list. Described as a paranormal-romance-mystery - it makes me wonder how many genres you can shove into a book. However, this series is very popular. In this one Charley wants to learn more about her fiancee Reyes Farrow and investigates his childhood abduction at the same time she is being threatened by a crime syndicate who wants her to hunt down a witness set to testifying against a mob boss. Maybe you need to read the first five in the series to understand it.
Lastly, Elise Juska gives us The Blessings. The Blessings are a large Irish American family from Philadelphia and this books follows them through two decades. Each chapter is from another characters point of view. It is said to be a 'perfect summer read', 'easy to enjoy' and ' a real treat'.
Get your name on the list for any of the above titles that appeal to you. They are all in our catalog.