Friday, June 3, 2011

Bookclub Read Alikes

Whether you're looking for the next title for your book club, or just looking for a good read, we have some suggestions for you! Carnegie-Stout's own Book Club will be discussing Shadow Divers on July 12th, you can find all the details on the library's calendar.

You may also be interested in a new service the library is offering, the Book Club in a Bag. These sets come with discussion questions, author information, and read alike lists. We currently have three titles available: The Maltese Falcon, The Weight of Silence, and Land of a Hundred Wonders. If you're interested in using one of these sets for your next book club, please stop by in person, or call the library at (563) 589-4225 and ask for the Reference Desk.

The Maltese Falcon, written by Dashiell Hammet in 1930, and first adapted to the big screen in 1941, is today recognized as a classic among detective stories. Mr. Hammet used his experience working with Pinkerton's National Detective Agency in Baltimore, Maryland and Washington state to infuse a grittier reality into the detective genre. The Maltese Falcon is a page-turner of a mystery with action, humor, and engaging dialogue. Mr. Hammet's distinctive style introduced many archetypes of the mystery genre, from the femme fatale to the hardboiled detective.

As the NEA says, The Maltese Falcon is "a brilliant literary work, as well as a thriller, a love story, and a dark, dry comedy. The only criticism one could offer Hammett’s private-eye classic is that it is so much fun to read, it might be hard the first time through to realize how deeply observed and morally serious it is."

Check out these hardboiled Read Alike suggestions for The Maltese Falcon:
-Sarah, Adult Services

Heather Gudenkauf, local Dubuque author, graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in elementary education and for the past sixteen years has worked with elementary children. Currently, along with writing, Heather is an Instructional Coach, an educator who provides teachers with curricular, student, and professional development support. Heather lives in Dubuque, Iowa with her husband and children.

Here is a brief summary of Gudenkauf's debut novel The Weight of Silence:
When two seven-year-old girls go missing, all are under suspicion. Calli Clark is a dreamer. A sweet, gentle girl, Callie suffers from selective mutism, brought on by a tragedy she experienced as a toddler. Her mother Antonia tries her best to help, but is confined by marriage to a violent husband. Petra Gregory is Calli's best friend, her soul mate and her voice. But neither Petra nor Calli have been heard from since their disappearance was discovered. Now Calli and Petra's families are bound by the question of what has happened to their children. As support turns to suspicion, it seems the answers lie trapped in the silence of unspoken secrets.

If you enjoyed The Weight of Silence, may we suggest the following books:
-Amy, Adult Services

Land of a Hundred Wonders by Lesley Kagen
The summer Gibby McGraw catches her big break, the cicadas are humming, and it’s so warm even the frogs are sweating. Brain damaged after a tragic car accident that took both her parents, Gibby is now NQR (Not Quite Right), a real challenge for a fledgling newspaper reporter. Especially when she stumbles upon the dead body of the next governor of Kentucky, Buster Malloy.

Author Lesley Kagen, Cedarburg, Wisconsin, is an actress, voice-over talent, and restaurateur. She is also the author of the bestselling titles, Whistling in the Dark and Tomorrow River. Her new book, Good Graces, is coming out in September 2011.

All three of Kagen's titles are fast paced, family stories, that take place in rural, small towns, during the 50's, 60's and 70's. Her books are filled with quirky characters, many who must learn tolerance of those who are a little different. They contain elements of mystery and suspense, but are also sprinkled with humor.

The reading list found at this link represents other titles with those same attributes:
-Becky, Adult Services

Please stop by the Recommendations Desk on the first floor, check out NoveList Plus on the library's website, or visit W. 11th & Bluff next week for more reading suggestions. Or submit a Personal Recommendations request, and we'll create a reading list just for you!

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