The hibernation period is on us again; in human form that often means snuggling down on a comfy couch, under a blanket and indulging in a great read while the snow and darkness fall. The library can offer some guidance on finding just the right book for you to take home this holiday season.
For non-fiction readers, 2014 seemed to be the year of the aging rock star biography. New to the library are Bowie by Wendy Leigh, Jerry Lee Lewis: His Own Story, Universal Tone by Carlos Santana, and Neil Young’s Special Deluxe (A Memoir of Life and Cars). Other bios include Christopher Anderson’s Good Son about J.F.K. Jr., Martin Short’s I Must Say and Gordie Howe’s Mr. Hockey, just one of several new titles focusing on Canada’s favourite sport.
The bestselling You Are Here by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield is a delightful visual treat to enjoy and relax to if someone needs an escape from the seasonal hecticness; it literally is out of this world. And after cleaning up the wrapping from the new gadgets, phones and tablets, you might want to read The End of Absence : Reclaiming What We’ve Lost in a World of Constant Connection by Michael Harris, about the effects of the Internet on current lifestyle and human interaction.
Amongst a wide array of international cookbooks introduced to our collection through the benefaction of a generous patron, including Frenchie (Greg Marchand), Indian Cooking Unfolded (Raghavan Iyer) and Heritage (Sean Brock), we also have How to Cook Everything Fast by Mark Bittman, sure to be popular for any of those impromptu visits, and once you’re stuffed, stretch out and laugh to Food: A Love Story by Jim Gaffigan or plan your New Year’s resolutions with The End of Dieting by Joel Furhman, a healthy approach to a healthy way of life.
For thought provoking, “deep” reads, The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher by Man Booker Prize winner Hilary Mantel is a collection of powerful short stories, while David Mitchell’s The Bone Clocks is an ambitious and eclectic fantasy novel centering around a teenage runaway. Or try Sarah Water’s latest historical novel, The Paying Guests, set in post First World War London, a time of upheaval for the British upper classes.
If you’re looking for suspense/mystery, one of the following may tickle your fancy. The Burning Room, Michael Connelly’s newest Harry Bosch novel, Top Secret by W.E.B. Griffin, about special ops and the Cold War, John Sandford’s Deadline, where a dognapping charge leads protagonist Virgil Flowers into something more sinister, will fit the bill. After a looong absence, Hercule Poirot is revived in Monogram Murders, now in the hands and from the mind of mystery author Sophie Hannah. For something a bit spookier, Siobhan Adcock’s paranormal The Barter will send a non-weather related chill down your spine.
For those immersed in a busy holiday period looking for more of a feel-good read, try Jan Karon’s latest in her Mitford series, Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good, which picks up after Father Tim and his wife Cynthia return from a trip to Ireland. Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ Heroes are My Weakness is a romantic tale that centres around quirky characters during a New England winter. Finally, for something a bit “dafter”, Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella is the seventh installment in Becky Bloom’s life, a British ex-pat now settled in Hollywood with her husband and daughter.
And, if you really want to immerse yourself in the season, there are new holiday titles. In Karen Swan’s Christmas in the Snow, a woman heads to the Alps where she discovers a long lost family member and secrets. For romantics, The Christmas Bouquet by Sherryl Woods is the most recent installment in her popular Chesapeake Shores series, and Christmas Prayer by Kimberla Lawson Roby focuses on a couple heading to the altar, but will they be derailed? And what would the holidays be without a new Debbie Macomber? Her latest offering is Mr. Miracle, also known as Harry Mills, a guardian angel on a mission.
The library will be closed Dec. 25 and 26, so be sure to pick up some favourites before then. Happy holidays!