Readers Advisory from Your Library
by Lori Kirchoff, CCPLS Technical Services Librarian
Are you wanting to find a good book to read but don’t know where to start looking? Your library offers a great reader’s service with its on-going and continually updated collection called “Staff Picks” which features nearly 100 books recommended by our staff as “good reads.” Here is just a sampling of staff favorites which are shelved and displayed in the Staff Picks area. Don’t worry if these titles are already checked out, because there will be plenty of other great choices in this collection to pick from.
No Baggage: A Minimalist Tale of Love & Wandering by Clara Bensen (Running Press, c2016). Newly recovered from a quarter-life meltdown, Clara Bensen decided to test her comeback by signing up for an online dating account. She never expected to meet Jeff, a wildly energetic university professor with a reputation for bucking convention. They barely know each other’s last names when they agree to set out on a risky travel experiment spanning eight countries and three weeks. The catch? No hotel reservations, no plans, and best of all, no baggage. No Baggage is at once a romance, a travelogue, and a bright modern take on the age-old questions: How do you find the courage to explore beyond your comfort zone? Can you love someone without the need for labels or commitment? Is it possible to truly leave your baggage behind?
Amish Grace: How Forgiveness Transcended Tragedy by Donald B. Kraybill, Steven M. Nolt, and David L. Weaver-Zercher (Jossey-Bass, c2007). When a gunman killed five Amish children and injured five others on October 2, 2006 in a Nickel Mines, PA, schoolhouse, media attention rapidly turned from the tragic events to the extraordinary forgiveness demonstrated by the Amish community. The authors, who teach at small colleges with Anabaptist roots and have published books on the Amish, were contacted repeatedly by the media after the shootings to interpret this subculture. In response to the questions why—and how—did they forgive, Kraybill and his colleagues present a compelling study of Amish grace.
One Light Still Shines: My Life Beyond the Shadow of the Amish Schoolhouse Shooting, by Marie Monville (Zondervan, c2013). In the startling tragedy of the Amish schoolhouse shooting at Nickel Mines, PA on October 2, 2006, one story has never been told; Marie Roberts Monville, the wife of the man who created such horror, tells her story for the very first time. It is a story of sorrow and destruction, but also one of majestic deliverance, unending compassion, breathtaking forgiveness, and grace-filled redemption.
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (Harcourt, c2003). Clare and Henry have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was 36. They were married when Clare was 23 and Henry 31. Impossible but true, because Henry is one of the first people diagnosed with Chrono-Displacement Disorder: periodically his genetic clock resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity from his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous, his experiences unpredictable, alternately harrowing and amusing. Clare and Henry, deeply in love, try desperately to maintain normal lives as they struggle with his condition. Highly original and imaginative, this debut novel raises questions about life, love, and the effects of time on relationships.