Tis the Season

We are in the midst of the fall book awards season with several prestigious organizations naming the the best authors and books of 2010. Take a look and see if you agree with the decisions. Or perhaps find a new author you want to try.

The Nobel Prize in Literature for 2010 has recently been awarded to Mario Vargas Llosa.

Howard Jacobson has won the Man-Booker Prize for fiction in 2010 for his book The Finkler Question.

The winner will be announced on Nov. 17th, but until then the National Book Foundation has a great listing of all the nominees in the categories of Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry and Young People’s Literature.

The 2010 PEN Literatry Awards have gone to a variety of talented writers, with Don Delillo winning the PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievment in American Fiction.

The National Book Critics Circle 2010 awards won’t be announced until January, but you might want to take a look at the 2009 winners until then. 

The Anthony Awards, which selects the best mystery writing of the year in several categories, has announced their list of winners.

If British mysteries are your thing, definitely check out the 2010 Dagger Award winners which include Belinda Bauer’s first novel Blacklands.

In January, we’ll announce our Everett Public Library staff picks of 2010. You can peruse our list of 2009 and 2008 picks in the meantime.

Summer Reading

I’m about to leave for a summer vacation and I still don’t know what books to bring. To me, this is a crisis. So I asked my co-workers what they had on their summer reading lists to get a few ideas. My new problem is figuring out how to cram all these great books in my suitcase.

book coverbook coverBrad at the Evergreen Branch is spending the summer plowing through The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt by T.J. Stiles. Brad says, “It’s a big ol’ book, but so far it’s been a great read and fascinating story about the rise of a new kind of capitalism in 19th century America.”

Brad plans to balance out his heavy non-fiction reading with Villain. This Japanese crime novel will be the first book published in English by the award-winning author Shuichi Yoshida.

book coverEileen, our library director, also plans to tackle a few mysteries.  61 Hours: A Reacher Novel by Lee Child is the next book in Child’s extremely popular Jack Reacher action mystery series about an ex-military policeman who wanders around the country—and into trouble—with little more than the clothes on his back. Eileen says, “Lee Child really knows how to write a thriller, and I’m looking forward to a relaxing read with Jack Reacher doing all the work while I just turn the pages!”

book coverEileen, along with several other library co-workers, also plans to read The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, the final book in the wildly popular Swedish thriller trilogy by the late Stieg Larsson. (If you’re wondering what all the fuss is about, listen to the Lone Reader’s review of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the book that started it all.)

book coverbook coverKathy alerted me to Neighborhood Watch by Cammie McGovern. The book’s description of “a librarian falsely imprisoned for 12 years” caught Kathy’s eye.  Kathy loved McGovern’s last book, Eye Contact, so much that she plans to re-read it this summer. She’s also looking forward to The Swimming Pool by Holly LeCraw.  This story of murder, infidelity, and twisted love triangles sounds like great poolside reading.

book coverJennifer will be reading My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares. She says, “The book has reincarnation overtones and the description of the book caught my eye enough that I wrote it down immediately.”  In this book, a man spends centuries falling in love with the same girl.

book coverPriscilla, who recently visited Dubai, is eager to read The Sand Fish: a Novel from Dubai by Maha Garah. Set in the 1950s, this story of one young woman’s coming-of-age struggles offers a fascinating peek into the social life and customs in the United Arab Emirates.

book coverAndrea, our new youth services librarian, is gearing up for October’s Teen Read Week by reading all 26 books nominated by teens as their favorites of the past year. Andrea is particularly looking forward to Gayle Forman’s If I Stay, in which a young woman, full of promise and energy, is in a horrible accident. While in a coma, she needs to decide if she will fight to live.

book coverSusan recently read Boneshaker by Cherie Priest and loved it, even though she doesn’t normally go for zombies. But this steampunk novel set in Seattle felt “like watching a movie, and there were parts where I was on the edge of my seat!”  Priest has two more books with the same characters in the works. Clementine will be released this summer and Susan can’t wait.

book coverAnother “can’t wait” book is The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell. The librarian who told me about it says Mitchell is phenomenal, and this new book—historical fiction set in Japan—will be a departure from The Cloud Atlas and his other earlier works.

If you’re like me and need some help choosing that perfect beach read or building your summer reading list, just ask us!