Tuesday, October 27, 2020

October 27, 2020 - Staff Reviews

Raintree: Haunted

By Linda Winstead Jones
Release Date: June 1, 2007
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

4 stars! - I enjoyed this exciting supernatural mystery more than I expected. At the heart of the story is a good murder tale. The blurb sort of ruined some of the suspense and surprises itself, but Jones uses a compelling hero who is surprisingly human to keep a reader engrossed to the end. 

Paranormal romance is not my favorite genre but when Halloween and Fall start to come around I usually pick up a couple supernatural stories. Gideon, our hero here, has gifts that make him powerful yet humbled. And he feels compelled to use what he can to keep killers off the street. Hope, however, doesn't come off as the lesser half of the couple. She's smart, motivated, and can defend herself. I loved how she proved to be open-minded and yet stubborn enough to stick with being Gideon's partner. She doesn't quite take it all on faith but it doesn't take her long to come around and support him.

I can't give away a lot of the actual romance and the way they fell in love because the more that's given away, the less fun all the surprises are. But the adorable "ghost" Emma was a favorite. I thought the set up with Hope's gypsy-like family in comparison to Gideon's gifted one was such a cute idea. Hope's discomfort at being the practical cop surrounded by her free thinking Mom and sister. I actually think it would set up a great series itself. But the last third or so of the book has so many twists and surprises that I can't say the ending wasn't satisfying. It does feel a bit rushed but given the page count constraints, I can give it a pass. And even if the very last pages were an obvious set up to the final book in the series. I started with Linda Howard's (a frequent partner of Linda Jones) first entry in this series. But Haunted could be read on its own. Not much is given away in the story and the world building and family rivalry details are here as a recap. 


Monday, October 26, 2020

October 26, 2020 - New Arrivals

 October 26, 2020

Adult Fiction

Chaos by Iris Johansen.

When CIA agent Alisa Flynn flaunts the rules by breaking into a mansion in the middle of the night, she skillfully circumvents alarms and outwits guards only to find herself standing in billionaire Gabe Korgan's study . . . busted by Korgan himself. This could cost her her job unless, in a split second, she can turn the tables and try to convince him to join her on the most important mission of her life. In a ripped-from-the-headlines plot, schoolgirls in Africa have been kidnapped, and Alisa knows that Korgan has the courage, financial means, and high-tech weaponry to help rescue them. With so many innocent lives hanging in the balance, what she doesn't reveal is that one of those schoolgirls is like a little sister to her. But when the truth gets out, the stakes grow even higher. Calling in additional assistance from renowned horse whisperer Margaret Douglas, Alisa and Gabe lay their plans, only to see them descend into chaos as the line between right and wrong wavers before them like a mirage. Every path is strewn with pitfalls, each likely to get them -- or the hostages -- killed. But with the help of a brave team and a horse with the heart of a warrior, they might just get out of this alive.


Dark Song by Christine Feehan.

"Stolen from her home at a young age and tormented for centuries, Elisabeta Trigovise is scared to show herself to anyone. Even though she has been rescued and is now safe within the Carpathian compound, she has lived in fear for so long she has no idea how to survive without it. She wants to answer the siren call of her lifemate but the very thought terrifies her. Before he found Elisabeta, Ferro Arany was an ancient warrior without emotion. Now that his senses have come alive, he knows it will take more than kind words and soft touches to convince the fractured woman that they are partners, not master and prisoner. For now, he will give her his strength until she finds hers, allowing the steady rhythm of his heart to soothe Elisabeta's fragile soul. But even as she learns to stand on her own, the vampire who kept her captive is desperate to claim her again, threatening the song Elisabeta and Ferro are writing together." -- Amazon.com.


Tranquility Falls by Davis Bunn.

Six years ago, Daniel was a Los Angeles financial analyst who was too handsome for his own good. Too smart for his anchor job on the nightly news. And too enamored with the heady addictions of the high life. That man died in a tragic accident with his fiancée. With grief and guilt battling for control, Daniel moved to the quiet California seaside town of Miramar Bay with his best friend--a rescue Labradoodle who still sees him through rough times. Daniel's a different man now. Clean, sober, and taking things one day at a time with no commitments to anyone except himself. And just as his solitude begins to chafe, two souls in need of fresh starts unexpectedly enter Daniel's life . . . Daniel's self-centered sister has dissolved several longtime relationships. Theirs included. The latest? Her restless teenage daughter, Nicole, whom she's dropped off in Miramar Bay without a backward glance. For Nicole, who's never felt at home in the world, it only confirms the disconnect she's always had with her mother. Now, left with an uncle she barely knows, Nicole is more adrift than ever. Yet to Daniel's surprise, playing surrogate father is forging a bond that he needs, too. More difficult for Daniel is the possibility of romance with lovely and fragile Jennifer Hanley. Struggling with a trauma of her own, the single mother is as cautious about love as Daniel is--no matter how healing it could be. But for Daniel, Stella, and Nicole there's still hope for a tomorrow they can call their own. All they have do is to learn to trust in each other, and in themselves.


Adult Non-Fiction

Raised Hunting by David Holder, Karin Holder, & Larry Dugger.

In bow hunting, being at full draw is the height of adventure, the moment when you're poised to take your best shot. Hunting enthusiasts and popular Outdoor Channel personalities David and Karin Holder believe you can live the same way you hunt--at full draw, excited and ready for whatever God has in store for you. Each chapter is designed to help you take aim spiritually, physically, mentally, and on the hunt. You will go behind the scenes of David and Karin's television show, Raised Hunting, join them in their thrilling outdoor journeys, and learn how to prepare and cook healthy wild game with easy-to-follow recipes. This book will help you become a better hunter. But more important, it will help you become a better parent, spouse, friend, and child of God, which is what living at full draw truly means. Discover that real fulfillment is a successful life, not a successful hunt. However, when you can find a way bring those two things together, now you've really got something to smile about.


Too Much and Never Enough by Mary L. Trump, Ph.D.

In this revelatory, authoritative portrait of Donald J. Trump and the toxic family that made him, Mary L. Trump, a trained clinical psychologist and Donald's only niece, shines a bright light on the dark history of their family in order to explain how her uncle became the man who now threatens the world's health, economic security, and social fabric. Mary Trump spent much of her childhood in her grandparents' large, imposing house in the heart of Queens, New York, where Donald and his four siblings grew up. She describes a nightmare of traumas, destructive relationships, and a tragic combination of neglect and abuse. She explains how specific events and general family patterns created the damaged man who currently occupies the Oval Office, including the strange and harmful relationship between Fred Trump and his two oldest sons, Fred Jr. and Donald. A firsthand witness to countless holiday meals and interactions, Mary brings an incisive wit and unexpected humor to sometimes grim, often confounding family events. She recounts in unsparing detail everything from her uncle Donald's place in the family spotlight and Ivana's penchant for regifting to her grandmother's frequent injuries and illnesses and the appalling way Donald, Fred Trump's favorite son, dismissed and derided him when he began to succumb to Alzheimer's. Numerous pundits, armchair psychologists, and journalists have sought to parse Donald J. Trump's lethal flaws. Mary L. Trump has the education, insight, and intimate familiarity needed to reveal what makes Donald, and the rest of her clan, tick. She alone can recount this fascinating, unnerving saga, not just because of her insider's perspective but also because she is the only Trump willing to tell the truth about one of the world's most powerful and dysfunctional families.


Easy/Juvenile/Young Adult/Graphic Novel

Superman Smashes the Klan by Gene Luen Yang. YA GN
When Dr. Lee moves his family to Metropolis, his son Tommy adjusts to the new neighborhood while daugher Roberta feels out of place, so when the evil Klan of the Fiery Cross begins a string of terrorist attacks on the city, Superman fights them, and Roberta and Superman soon learn to embrace their own unique features that set them apart.


Primer by Jennifer Muro & Thomas Krajewski. C GN

"While living with her latest set of foster parents, Ashley Rayburn mistakenly applies some found body paints which give her a wide range of special powers, but soon the military discovers what happened to their secret weapon and this puts Ashley and her newfound family and friends in danger."-- Provided by publisher.

Brooke County Public Libraries    Wellsburg (304) 737-1551    Follansbee (304) 527-0860

Thursday, October 22, 2020

October 22, 2020 - A Book & A Recipe

Brooke County Libraries – A Book & A Recipe


October Theme – The Great Gatsby


Nearly 100 years after the Roaring Twenties, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic is still stunning readers with his memorable characters and sparkling narrative.


Fans of the novel will likely recognize these dishes, at least enough to get them in the mood to watch an adaptation on DVD tonight! Eh hem. We mean read the book. We invite the rest of you to dig up a copy of the novel one evening and find out where we got our inspiration.



Okay! Let’s have some fun…

Recipe #1 Pastry Pigs aka Pigs in a Blanket



All Courtesy of PopSugar website…



1 package crescent roll dough
4 chicken apple sausages, or another flavor of your choice
Yellow mustard, for dipping


Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Carefully unravel crescent dough and divide it into four rectangular pieces. Wrap each sausage around one piece of dough, pinching edges of dough to seal it tightly around sausage. 

Use a serrated knife to cut dough-wrapped sausages into 6 equal pieces. There should be 24 pieces altogether.

Bake for 12-14 minutes or until dough is golden brown and sausage is heated through. Serve hot with mustard for dipping.





Who knew living large l ike Jay Gatsby himself could be so simple?


Recipe #2 (Cold) Fried Chicken



Courtesy of InLiterature website



2 pieces of chicken breast

~1 cup bread crumbs

1 egg

1 cup frying oil


Wash the chicken breasts and slice into finger sized pieces.

In one bowl beat the egg. In another, place the bread crumbs.

Roll the chicken pieces in the egg to cover, then drop them into the bread crumbs and roll around until coated. Set aside.

Heat up a frying pan with the oil. When a small bit of chicken is dropped in and begins to sizzle, it is hot enough to cook with.

Place a few chicken pieces at a time into the frying pan and cook for ~3-4 minutes either side until golden to medium brown.

Remove onto a plate and continue cooking the rest of the chicken pieces.




Now, if that’s too much work for an evening, there’s always a quick stop at Kentucky Fried Chicken.


Recipe #3 Lemon Cakes



Courtesy of the Little Library Café website


Makes 12 little cakes, or 1 loaf cake

240g butter
200g caster sugar + an extra 2tbsp for sprinkling
Zest and juice of 1 juicy lemon
3 eggs
300g plain flour
2.5tsp baking powder

12-hole muffin tin
Electric hand whisk
Cooling rack

1. Preheat the oven to 170C. Grease the muffin tray.

2. Cream the butter and sugar until smooth then mix in the lemon zest. Add the eggs, one at a time, adding a tablespoon full of the flour if the mixture separates. When the eggs are well incorporated, add the lemon juice and finally fold in the flour.

3. Divide the batter between the 12 muffin cups; each should be around 2/3 full.

4. Bake for 20-25mins (or around an hour for a loaf cake) until the sugar is cracked on top and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool the cakes in the tin for 10 minutes until turning out onto the wire rack.





 If you try any of these, let us know in our comments section or on one of our social media pages!


Wednesday, October 21, 2020

October 21, 2020 - Staff Reviews

The Best Man Plan

By Jaci Burton
Release Date: June 2, 2020
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

3 Stars - This slow burning friends to lovers romance isn't as cowboy as the cover suggested. And our heroine Erin is looking for a fling after her ruined wedding but that's not quite what she finds. A promising start to a series that featured so many friends and family members, it's hard to tell where it will go next.

Our hero Jason is the kind of man everyone wants to have around. He's supportive, fun, and of course, great with animals. He's gentle when needed but can get rough when the situation calls for it. Erin, on the other hand, I think is not portrayed in the best light. She could have used more positive attributes outside of her awesome family members and a type A personality. Burton has a great way of even with using third person point of view, I still get a strong guy voice verses girl voice, if you will. 

So, I related to Erin's need for organization and planning. And I get the title is The Best Man Plan. But the way she set her sights on Jason in the beginning rubbed me the wrong way. Using her self-proclaimed best friend since childhood solely for sex couldn't possibly have seemed like THAT good of an idea. And for Jason's part I was wanting to smack him and say "just be honest!" or "tell her how you feel!". I'm not the biggest fan of miscommunication stalling a romance out so I just wanted these two come together and talk. There was a like to like here though, particularly for fans of Lori Foster or Kristen Proby. This really was the light romance type complete with wine and puppies, just maybe a little steamier than usual. I'd say the weaknesses for me were Erin's rough edges and a slight lack of originality. I'm not sure this one sold me on grabbing the next one as soon as it hits bookshelves.


Monday, October 19, 2020

October 19, 2020 - New Arrivals

 October 19, 2020

Adult Fiction

Broken Glass by V.C. Andrews.

Haylee and Kaylee Fitzgerald are twin sisters who have been forced to be identical in every way by their domineering mother. She insists they wear the same clothes, eat the same food, get the same grades, and have all the same friends. But both are growing weary of her obsession with their similarities, so when they finally attend high school, they find little ways to highlight their independence. The transition isn't as easy as expected, however, and soon both sisters are thrust into a world that their mother never prepared them for—a world with far more dangerous consequences than just upsetting Mother.


A Question of Betrayal by Anne Perry.

Britain's secret intelligence service, MI6, has lost contact with its informant in northern Italy, just as important information about the future plans of Austria and Nazi Germany is coming to light. And young Elena Standish, to her surprise, is the only person who can recognize MI6's man--because he is her former lover. Aiden Strother betrayed her six years before, throwing shame on her entire family. Now, with so much to prove, Elena heads to Trieste to track down Aiden and find out what happened to his handler, who has mysteriously cut off contact with Britain. As Elena gets word of a secret group working to put Austria in the hands of Germany, her older sister, Margot, is in Berlin to watch a childhood friend get married--to a member of the Gestapo. Margot and Elena's grandfather, the former head of MI6, is none too happy about the sisters' travels at this tumultuous time, especially when a violent event at home reminds him that even Britain is growing dangerous. As his own investigation collides with his granddaughter's, what's at stake on the continent becomes increasingly frightening--and personal.


Shadows in Death by J.D. Robb.

While Eve examines a fresh body in Washington Square Park, her husband, Roarke, spots a man among the onlookers he's known since his younger days on the streets of Dublin. A man who claims to be his half-brother. A man who kills for a living--and who burns with hatred for him. Eve is quick to suspect that the victim's spouse--resentful over his wife's affair and poised to inherit her fortune--would have happily paid an assassin to do his dirty work. Roarke is just as quick to warn her that if Lorcan Cobbe is the hitman, she needs to be careful. Law enforcement agencies worldwide have pursued this cold-hearted killer for years, to no avail. And his lazy smirk when he looked Roarke's way indicates that he will target anyone who matters to Roarke...and is confident he'll get away with it. Eve is desperate to protect Roarke. Roarke is desperate to protect Eve. And together, they're determined to find Cobbe before he finds them--even if it takes them across the Atlantic, far outside Eve's usual jurisdiction...


Adult Non-Fiction

The Walking Dead: The Official Cookbook and Survival Guide by Lauren Wilson.

The Walking Dead: The Official Cookbook and Survival Guide details the skills and recipes you need to survive (while avoiding being eaten) during a walker apocalypse. Inspired by the hit AMC television series, the book features recipes for meals featured on the show, plus food and drinks inspired by key characters and locations, along with expert information on foraging, hunting wild game, and outdoor cooking. Featuring familiar treats like Carl's pudding, Carol Peletier's baked goods, and Hershel's spaghetti, this is the ultimate gift for fans and walker-wary survivalists alike.


Stand All the Way Up by Sophie Hudson.

"Whenever you face the hard stuff--the pieces and parts of life that keep you up at night, relentlessly reminding you that the "simple and easy" path is somehow a turn you've missed along the way --is your first instinct to try to make it all simply go away? You might wonder if it's possible to just ignore it, or, better yet, to burn it all down. During a particularly difficult stretch in her own life, Sophie learned that the Lord, through His Word and His people, has already provided all that we need to get up, straighten up, and stand all the way up. This book is a collection of stories full of humor, sass, and spiritual insight, revealing our God who teaches you to stand up for yourself, stand up for the people you love, stand up for the people who can't, and stand up for the Kingdom."--Amazon.com


Easy/Juvenile/Young Adult/Graphic Novel

Midnight Sun by Stephanie Meyer. YA

"The story of Bella and Edward from "Twilight" told from Edward's point of view takes on a new and decidedly dark twist. Meeting Bella is both the most unnerving and intriguing event he has experienced in all his years as a vampire. As we learn more fascinating details about Edward's past and the complexity of his inner thoughts, we understand why this is the defining struggle of his life. How can he justify following his heart if it means leading Bella into danger?"-- Provided by publisher.


Voting: A Kid’s Guide by Nel Yomtov. CNF
"The votes are in! What is voting all about? Readers find out why voting is important and how it plays a part in our elections."-- Provided by publisher.

Brooke County Public Libraries    Wellsburg (304) 737-1551    Follansbee (304) 527-0860

Saturday, October 17, 2020

October 17, 2020 - Staff Reviews

Capitol Conspiracy

By William Bernhardt
Release Date: January 15, 2008
Audiobook Available from WV Reads!

4 Stars! - A surprisingly timely political thriller despite its age that asks the characters and the reader some hard questions. Despite a fair amount of violence and political intrigue, the story also has a lot of personal drama and touches of humor. Then we get some mystery and murder thrown in about 1/3 of the way and it was quite the ride.

This will be an interesting novel no matter what political leanings the reader has. I was fascinated at this fictional study of how people view government and individual right during the times of crisis. And how emotional decisions should not override logic. Senator Ben Kincaid and his wife Christina are likable characters, maybe Chrissy a little more than Ben. She gets better scenes I think. While this series started as a set of courtroom thrillers back when Ben was a struggling attorney, they transitioned into politics. I admit, I was hoping for a little more traditional lawyering and I found Ben's viewpoint a bit difficult to believe at times, given his actual chosen profession. I'm sure long time fans of the series may feel the same.

This one is not for the squeamish. There's terror attacks, torture, and scenes of violence against women. Quite a bit of sex too. Some of both gets to be a bit much. It's not a Sunday drive type of audiobook. Stephen Hoye made an excellent narrator and I would not hesitate to grab another audiobook read by him. I've not read a lot of the Ben Kincaid series which is most of Bernhardt's repertoire. But his writing style flows so well for me that I'm considering taking in more of his work as well. He uses dialouge and a fair amount of description to keep things moving at a great pace. This book was clearly created with the idea to present two sides of a greater legal argument. I think no matter which side a reader finds themselves taking, it's a compelling case on both ends.


Friday, October 16, 2020

October 16, 2020 - BCPL Resume Tips

BCPL Resume Tips


Tip #1 – Resumes should be a single full page.


Keep your resume one page but fill the whole page, no matter how detailed. For those with a long work history, it’s okay to chose only the most recent and/or most relevant jobs. Gaps in job history will often not keep employers from calling back but will simply generate questions regarding it in your interview. If you have a short work history, use formatting to help you fill more space such as spacing or bullets. Volunteer history and community projects are also nice fillers.