Rachel Recommends

Ghost­land: an Amer­i­can his­to­ry in haunt­ed ­places by Colin Dickeyjacket-jpg

“An intellectual feast for fans of offbeat history, Ghostland takes readers on a road trip through some of the country’s most infamously haunted places–and deep into the dark side of our history. Colin Dickey is on the trail of America’s ghosts. Crammed into old houses and hotels, abandoned prisons and empty hospitals, the spirits that linger continue to capture our collective imagination, but why? His own fascination piqued by a house hunt in Los Angeles that revealed derelict foreclosures and “zombie homes,” Dickey embarks on a journey across the continental United States to decode and unpack the American history repressed in our most famous haunted places. Some have established reputations as “the most haunted mansion in America,” or “the most haunted prison”; others, like the haunted Indian burial grounds in West Virginia, evoke memories from the past our collective nation tries to forget. With boundless curiosity, Dickey conjures the dead by focusing on questions of the living–how do we, the living, deal with stories about ghosts, and how do we inhabit and move through spaces that have been deemed, for whatever reason, haunted? Paying attention not only to the true facts behind a ghost story, but also to the ways in which changes to those facts are made–and why those changes are made–Dickey paints a version of American history left out of the textbooks, one of things left undone, crimes left unsolved. Spellbinding, scary, and wickedly insightful, Ghostland discovers the past we’re most afraid to speak of aloud in the bright light of day is the same past that tends to linger in the ghost stories we whisper in the dark.”

jacket-jpgThe first sign­s: un­lock­ing the mys­ter­ies of the ­world’s old­est sym­bols by Genevieve von Petzinger

“One of the most significant works on our evolutionary ancestry since Richard Leakey’s paradigm-shattering Origins, The First Signs is the first-ever exploration of the little-known geometric images that accompany most cave art around the world—the first indications of symbolic meaning, intelligence, and language. Imagine yourself as a caveman or woman. The place: Europe. The time: 25,000 years ago, the last Ice Age. In reality, you live in an open-air tent or a bone hut. But you also belong to a rich culture that creates art. In and around your cave paintings are hand prints and dots, x’s and triangles, parallel lines and spirals. Your people know what they mean. You also use them on tools and jewelry. And then you vanish—and with you, their meanings. Join renowned archaeologist Genevieve von Petzinger on an Indiana Jones-worthy adventure from the open-air rock art sites of northern Portugal to the dark depths of a remote cave in Spain that can only be reached by sliding face-first through the mud. Von Petzinger looks past the beautiful horses, powerful bison, graceful ibex, and faceless humans in the ancient paintings. Instead, she’s obsessed with the abstract geometric images that accompany them, the terse symbols that appear more often than any other kinds of figures—signs that have never really been studied or explained until now. Part travel journal, part popular science, part personal narrative, von Petzinger’s groundbreaking book starts to crack the code on the first form of graphic communication. It’s in her blood, as this talented scientist’s grandmother served as a code-breaker at Bletchley. Discernible patterns emerge that point to abstract thought and expression, and for the first time, we can begin to understand the changes that might have been happening inside the minds of our Ice Age ancestors—offering a glimpse of when they became us.”

By ­gaslight: a nov­el by Steven Pricejacket-jpg

“A literary tour de force of a detective’s ceaseless hunt for an elusive criminal By Gaslight is a deeply atmospheric, haunting novel about the unending quest that has shaped a man’s life. William Pinkerton is already famous, the son of the most notorious detective of all time, when he descends into the underworld of Victorian London in pursuit of a new lead on the fabled con Edward Shade. William’s father died without ever finding Shade, but William is determined to drag the thief out of the shadows. Adam Foole is a gentleman without a past, haunted by a love affair ten years gone. When he receives a letter from his lost beloved, he returns to London to find her. What he learns of her fate, and its connection to the man known as Shade, will force him to confront a grief he thought long-buried. A fog-enshrouded hunt through sewers, opium dens, drawing rooms, and seance halls ensues, creating the most unlikely of bonds: between Pinkerton, the great detective, and Foole, the one man who may hold the key to finding Edward Shade. Steven Price’s dazzling, riveting By Gaslight moves from the diamond mines of South Africa to the battlefields of the Civil War, on a journey into a cityscape of grief, trust, and its breaking, where what we share can bind us even against our darker selves. ”

jacket-jpgTo­day will be d­if­fer­en­t: a nov­el by Maria Semple

“Eleanor knows she’s a mess. But today, she will tackle the little things. She will shower and get dressed. She will have her poetry and yoga lessons after dropping off her son, Timby. She won’t swear. She will initiate sex with her husband, Joe. But before she can put her modest plan into action–life happens. Today, it turns out, is the day Timby has decided to fake sick to weasel his way into his mother’s company. It’s also the day Joe has chosen to tell his office–but not Eleanor–that he’s on vacation. Just when it seems like things can’t go more awry, an encounter with a former colleague produces a graphic memoir whose dramatic tale threatens to reveal a buried family secret. A hilarious, heart-filled story about reinvention, sisterhood, and how sometimes it takes facing up to our former selves to truly begin living.”

Re­mem­ber yes­ter­day: For­get To­mor­row series — 2 by Pintup Dunnjacket-jpg

“Sixteen-year-old Jessa Stone is the most valuable citizen in Eden City. Her psychic abilities could lead to significant scientific discoveries–if only she’d let TechRA study her. But after they kidnapped and experimented on her as a child, cooperating with the scientists is the last thing Jessa would do. But when she discovers the past isn’t what she assumed, Jessa must join forces with budding scientist Tanner Callahan to rectify a fatal mistake made ten years ago. She’ll do anything to change the past and save her sister–even if it means aligning with the enemy she swore to defeat.”

jacket-jpgRepli­ca: Repli­ca series — 1 by Lauren Oliver

“Replica is a “flip book” that contains two narratives in one, and it is the first in a duology. Turn the book one way and read Lyra’s story; turn the book over and upside down and read Gemma’s story … Lyra’s story begins in the Haven Institute, a building tucked away on a private island off the coast of Florida that from a distance looks serene and even beautiful. But up close the locked doors, military guards, and biohazard suits tell a different story. In truth, Haven is a clandestine research facility where thousands of replicas, or human models, are born, raised, and observed. When a surprise attack is launched on Haven, two of its young experimental subjects–Lyra, or 24, and the boy known only as 72–manage to escape. Gemma has been in and out of hospitals for as long as she can remember. A lonely teen, her life is circumscribed by home, school, and her best friend, April. But after she is nearly abducted by a stranger claiming to know her, Gemma starts to investigate her family’s past and discovers her father’s mysterious connection to the secretive Haven research facility. Hungry for answers, she travels to Florida, only to stumble upon two replicas and a completely new set of questions”–From publisher’s website

CD Audiobooks: 101 S­tum­bles in the March of His­to­ry: What If the Great Mis­takes in War, Govern­men­t, In­dus­try, and E­co­nomic­s Were Not Made? by Bill Fawcettjacket-jpg

“Did I do that?! When asked to name a successor, Alexander the Great declared that his empire should go “to the strongest.” But would rival factions have descended into war if he’d been a little more specific? What if the Vienna School of Art took a chance on a hopeful young student named Adolf Hitler? If Pope Clement VII granted King Henry VIII an annulment, England would likely still be Catholic today–and so would America. Bill Fawcett, author of 100 Mistakes That Changed History, offers a compendium of 101 all-new mammoth mistakes–from the ill-fated rule of Emperor Darius III to the equally ill-fated search for WMDs in Iraq–that will, unfortunately, never be forgotten by history.”

jacket-jpgDVD: X-Men — Apoca­lypse

“After the re-emergence of the world’s first mutant, world-destroyer Apocalypse, the X-Men must unite to defeat his extinction level plan.”

MPAA rating: PG-13; for sequence of violence, action and destruction, brief strong language and some suggestive images.

 

DVD: The leg­end of Tarzanjacket-jpg

“It has been years since the man once known as Tarzan left the jungles of Africa behind for a gentrified life as John Clayton III, Lord Greystoke, with his beloved wife, Jane at his side. Now, he has been invited back to the Congo to serve as a trade emissary of Parliament, unaware that he is a pawn in a deadly convergence of greed and revenge, masterminded by the Belgian, Captain Leon Rom. But those behind the murderous plot have no idea what they are about to unleash.”

MPAA rating: PG-13; for sequences of action and violence, some sensuality and brief rude dialogue.

jacket-jpgOverDrive Audiobook: Killing the Ris­ing Sun: How Amer­i­ca Van­quished World War II Ja­pan

“The powerful and riveting new audiobook in the multimillion-selling Killing series by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard. Autumn 1944. World War II is nearly over in Europe but is escalating in the Pacific, where American soldiers face an opponent who will go to any length to avoid defeat. The Japanese army follows the samurai code of Bushido, stipulating that surrender is a form of dishonor. Killing the Rising Sun takes readers to the bloody tropical-island battlefields of Peleliu and Iwo Jima and to the embattled Philippines, where General Douglas MacArthur has made a triumphant return and is plotting a full-scale invasion of Japan. Across the globe in Los Alamos, New Mexico, Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer and his team of scientists are preparing to test the deadliest weapon known to mankind. In Washington, DC, FDR dies in office and Harry Truman ascends to the presidency, only to face the most important political decision in history: whether to use that weapon. And in Tokyo, Emperor Hirohito, who is considered a deity by his subjects, refuses to surrender, despite a massive and mounting death toll. Told in the same page-turning style of Killing Lincoln, Killing Kennedy, Killing Jesus, Killing Patton, and Killing Reagan, this epic saga details the final moments of World War II like never before.”

OverDrive Audiobook: Two by T­wojacket-jpg

“#1 New York Times bestselling author Nicholas Sparks returns with his signature combination of gripping, emotionally resonant storytelling and love overcoming all odds. At thirty-two Russell Green has it all: a stunning wife, a lovable six-year-old daughter, a successful career as an advertising executive, and an expansive home in Charlotte. He is living the dream, and his marriage to the bewitching Vivian is the center of that. But underneath the shiny surface of this perfect existence, fault lines are beginning to appear … and no one is more surprised than Russ when he finds every aspect of the life he took for granted turned upside down. In a matter of months, Russ finds himself without a job or wife, caring for his young daughter while struggling to adapt to a new and baffling reality. Throwing himself into the wilderness of single parenting, Russ embarks on a journey at once terrifying and rewarding—one that will test his abilities and his emotional resources beyond anything he ever imagined.”

 

All of the new selections can be found on the “New Book” shelves located in the different areas of the library. Be sure to let us know if you have any questions or suggestions.

See you in the stacks!


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