Staff Picks: Recent Picks by Warrenton Staff

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The reading tastes of staff members vary widely. Here are a few recommendations from the staff at the Warrenton central library staff from books we’ve recently read:Book Clubs

The Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen

A good read about overcoming a loss and finding the “magic” again, Sarah Addison Allen’s The Lost Lake, is about Kate, a recently widowed mother of one, who returns to her Aunt Eby’s cottage in Georgia, which she had visited one summer as a child. Kate is looking for a place where she can heal with her daughter. However her aunt is looking to sell those cottages and move on. Kate soon realizes the “magic” of the cottages is no longer there and hopes she will find that magic again. Kate finds that what she thought was lost is indeed still there, she’ll just need to put in the effort to find it again. With the help of her daughter Devin, she finds so much more.

– Jody, Reference Librarian, Warrenton central library

Tinseltown: Murder, Morphine, and Madness at the Dawn of Hollywood by William J. Mann

I am fascinated by early Hollywood and the silent movie era. Of the many scandals of that time, one of the most mysterious is the murder of director William Desmond Taylor, president of the Motion Picture Directors Association, on the night of February 1, 1922. The murder has never been solved. Many books have been written on the topic, most recently Tinseltown: Murder, Morphine, and Madness at the Dawn of Hollywood by William J. Mann.

Using a variety of sources, Mann focuses on the persons closest to Desmond, but which one (if any) was the killer — actress Mabel Normand, actress Mary Miles Minter, her mother Charlotte Shelby, actress Margaret “Gibby” Gibson or Edward Sands, Desmond’s valet?  Was there a Hollywood cover up? The solution arrived at by Mann makes sense, at least to me, and may be the final word on the subject. If you like a good, true-life, intriguing mystery, this book is for you.

– Vicky, Reference/Virginiana Room Librarian, Warrenton central library

The Silent Wife by A.S.A. Harrison

One of the best books I have read recently is The Silent Wife by A.S.A. Harrison. I am a big fan of Gillian Flynn’s novels, and I am always on the lookout for read-alikes. I had never read anything by Harrison, and I came across The Silent Wife in my search for further novels featuring psychologically tangled relationships. This was Ms. Harrison’s debut fiction novel, published in 2013. The book focuses on couple Jodi and Todd. The title of the book is of interest because Jodi and Todd are not actually married, and this ends up being an important distinguishing point in the story. The couple is not in a good place in their relationship, and the issues between them are exacerbated by Todd’s indiscretions and Jodi’s passive-aggressive tendencies. Things will boil over between them when one indiscretion becomes much more, and Jodi finds herself resorting to extreme measures. The book is told in the alternating voices of Jodi and Todd, and is a quick read featuring realistically flawed characters. I couldn’t put it down and read it in one sitting.

-Amanda, Reference Librarian, Warrenton central library

You can find other staff picks online, as well as reading recommendations from our book clubs. Or you can stop by the Reference Desk at any library locations.



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