Shelf Centered

A blog about books & culture from the librarians who love them

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What We're Reading - April 7

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Hello! Here's what Wilmette Public Library staff has been reading lately. This week we feature a cold case mystery novel, a book about caring for your house plants, a fascinating novel about a (fictional) global pandemic, an autobiography of a controversial star, and a deep dive into something we all do and yet take for granted: breathing. You can search for these titles and put them on hold through our online catalog or you can look for an ebook or e-audiobook on the Digital Library of Illinois

Title: Serpentine
Author: Jonathan Kellerman
Reader: Jennifer B., Creative Experiences Coordinator

Jonathan Kellerman is my favorite crime fiction/ mystery author, especially his series featuring psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware & LAPD homicide lieutenant Milo Sturgis. In this book, the detective duo investigate a cold case-- the death of a mysterious woman found with a bullet in her head in a torched Cadillac that has overturned on infamously treacherous Mulholland Drive.

  

houseplantsTitle: Houseplants for all: How to Fill Any Home with Happy Plants
Author: Danae Horst
Reader: Eva J., Adult Services Librarian

Our home was filled with houseplants before, and it seems like the number of plants has doubled in the past year! While I've been spending a lot of time at home with my plants (and my cat!), this lovely little book about caring for those houseplants has been enjoyable and easy to read and has helped me understand my plants better. Even if you haven't had luck with houseplants before, I recommend giving this little guide a try!

  

endofoctoberTitle: End of October
Author: Lawrence Wright
Reader: Jill M., Adult Services Manager

If you're like me and are comforted by diving into what scares you as opposed to turning in the other direction, then this book is for you!  It's about a global pandemic (amazingly he wrote this just before Covid) and is written with such beauty, heart and depth.  It's also a fascinating story whose backbone is situated in reality: author Wright looks at medicine, science and pandemics of the past to construct his tale, making you often wonder if the story is non-fiction.  It's extremely well-written, detailed, graphic and is just completely deftly written by someone who cares about his characters.  I loved the audiobook, which I downloaded from Libby.  I could not stop listening. (Listen-alike: I also recommend the two episodes of This Podcast Will Kill You on the Bubonic Plague.)

  

aproposTitle: Apropos of Nothing
Author: Woody Allen
Reader: Ted R., Adult Services Librarian

Although Woody Allen is controversial these days, I decided to read this 2020 autobiography to balance with the HBO documentary "Allen v. Farrow" which includes a lot of discussion with Dylan Farrow about her sexual abuse allegations against Allen.  Whether you love or hate Woody, or have taken sides on the abuse issue, much of this book has the Woody humor that you know from his comedies.  Despite the controversy, I found myself laughing at much of the typical Woody humor.  There is also a lot of carping about Mia and others regarding the abuse allegations.  This book is not for everyone, but it's a fascinating look at the movie-making process for his many movies and the people and situations he met along the way.  

  

breathTitle: Breath: The Science of a Lost Art
Author: James Nestor
Reader: Jenny K., Adult Services Manager

This book explores the evolution of human breath throughout history. Even though we breathe (inhale and exhale) approximately 25,000 times daily, most of us aren't doing it correctly and so compromise our physical and mental well-being. Follow Nestor as he himself undergoes a study of his own breath and read how he fixes it to improve his health. Our immune system, athletic performance, spine, mouth, internal organs... are all influenced by the fascinating mechanical inhale and exhale. Read this book and never breathe the same way again.

What We're Reading - March 10

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