Tuesday, August 30, 2022

August 30, 2022 - BCPL Children's Author of the Month

Hello, fellow readers!

This month we're excited to share another installment of our Children's Author of the Month posts. August we are featuring the life of work of Richard Peck. This beloved children's author has several titles available from our libraries. His work has been enjoyed by generations of young readers. With memorable stories and characters, his novels and short fiction are fast becoming classics.

Richard Wayne Peck was born on April 5, 1934, in Illinois to Virginia Grey Peck and Wayne Peck. His mother was a Wesleyan University graduate, and his father owned a service station. A sister, Cheryl, would later become an administrator at a college. He attended elementary and high schools in Decatur, Illinois.

Peck earned a bachelor's degree in English at DePauw University in 1956. He spent his junior year abroad at the University of Exeter.

After college, he was drafted into the US Army as a chaplain's assistant and spent two years serving in Stuttgart, Germany. In a 2003 interview he commented, "I think your view of the world goes on—for the rest of your life—as the world you saw as you emerged into it as an adult."

After his military service ended, he completed a master's degree at Southern Illinois University in 1959.

Peck worked as a high school teacher, but much to his dismay, was transferred to a junior high school to teach English. After a while, he decided to cut his career short and write. However, these observations about junior high school students proved excellent material for his books. He said, "Ironically, it was my students who taught me to be a writer, though I was hired to teach them."

He left teaching in 1971 to write his first novel, Don't Look and It Won't Hurt, published by Holt, Rinehart and Winston in 1972, in which "A teenage girl struggles to understand her place within her family and in the world." He wrote a book each year since then — 41 books in 41 years.

Peck was an adjunct professor with Louisiana State University's School of Library and Information Sciences.

"Ironically, it was my students who taught me to be a writer, though I had been hired to teach them," Peck said in a speech published in Arkansas Libraries. "They taught me that a novel must entertain first before it can be anything else. I learned that there is no such thing as a 'grade reading level'; a young person's 'reading level' and attention span will rise and fall according to his degree of interest. I learned that if you do not have a happy ending for the young, you had better do some fast talking."

He lived in New York and divided his time between writing and traveling. Peck died in New York City in May 2018 at age 84.

"You never write about yourself; you just always wind up having written about yourself." — October 10, 2013, to a library full of 4th graders in Pleasanton, California

We hope you'll check in again next month to our author and series spotlights for young readers! Let us know if you've enjoyed any of Peck's work or some of your favorite similar authors.

We have many of Peck's titles available on WV Reads! Click below to check out a few. 


As always, images and info are courtesy of author webpages, wikipedia, WV Reads, and Google.

Monday, August 29, 2022

August 29, 2022 - New Arrivals

Adult Fiction

Summer Love by Nancy Thayer.

When four strangers rent bargain-basement rooms in an old hotel near the beach, they embark on the summer of their lives. First there's Ariel Spencer, who has big dreams of becoming a writer and is looking for inspiration in Nantucket's high society. Her new friend Sheila Murphy is a good Catholic girl from Ohio whose desire for adventure is often shadowed by her apprehension. Then there's small-town Missourian Wyatt Smith, who's immediately taken with Ariel. The last of the four, Nick Volkov, is looking to make a name for himself and have a blast along the way. Despite their differences, the four bond over trips to the beach, Wednesday-night dinners, and everything that Nantucket has to offer. But venturing out on their own for the first time, with all its adventure and risks, could change the course of their lives. Twenty-six years after that amazing summer, Ariel, Sheila, Wyatt, and Nick reunite at the hotel where they first met. Now it's called The Lighthouse and Nick owns the entire operation with his wife and daughter. Ariel and Wyatt, married for decades, arrive with their son, and Sheila's back too, with her daughter by her side. Life hasn't exactly worked out the way they had all hoped. Ariel's dreams have since faded and been pushed aside, but she's determined to rediscover the passion she once had. Nick has the money and reputation of a successful businessman, but is it everything he had hoped for? And Sheila has never been able to shake the secret she's kept since that summer. Being back together again will mean confronting the past and finding themselves. Meanwhile, the next generation discovers Nantucket- Their children explore the island together, experiencing love and heartbreak and forging lifelong bonds, just as their parents did all those years ago. It's sure to be one unforgettable reunion.


A Vineyard Crossing by Jean Stone.

"Martha's Vineyard may be picturesque and peaceful, but even there, happily-ever-after has its dark side... Annie Sutton is not only a bestselling mystery author, she's the proprietor of the newly opened Vineyard Inn. Recently engaged to local police sergeant John Lyons, instead of making wedding plans, Annie's fighting with him about his older daughter, a troubled teen who has moved home--bringing chaos in her wake. With Annie's beloved brother away on a troublesome journey of his own, Annie needs a friend. She begins to confide in one of the Inn's guests, a mysterious stranger named Mary Beth Mullen. Her mix of kindness and vulnerability makes Annie trust her--until Mary Beth shares a secret that leaves Annie torn between family loyalty and a promise she made. When a handsome, internationally acclaimed journalist checks into the Inn, he too unpacks a boatload of trouble for Annie, triggered by a provocative photo, covertly snapped--and posted on the internet. Intrigued, as tensions mount between her and John, Annie decides to eschew the police and get involved herself--enlisting Mary Beth's help. But Annie is soon questioning whether anyone on the Vineyard this season is who they seem--and realizing that any chance of happiness rests in finding out just who her real friends are."-- Provided by publisher.


Collision of Lies by Tom Threadgill.

"Three years ago, a collision between a fast-moving freight train and a school bus full of kids led to devastation and grief on an unimaginable scale. But a fresh clue leads San Antonio police detective Amara Alvarez to the unlikely conclusion that one of the children may still be alive. If she's correct, everything law enforcement believes about the accident is a lie. With time running out, Amara must convince others--and herself--that despite all evidence to the contrary, the boy lives. And she will do everything in her power to bring him home."--Provided by publisher.


Adult Non-Fiction

Catching Hell by Allen Ricca & Joe Muto.

This book exposes the fact that the American diner is being lied to on a regular basis. The culprit varies - sometimes it's a chef or restaurant owner trying to cut corners to save money; other times it's an unscrupulous supplier looking to pass off poor product to an unwitting receiver. And the cost of that scam eventually gets passed on to the consumer, whether it be in the form of higher prices at restaurants and markets, lower quality (or even counterfeit) product getting delivered onto your plate, or - God forbid - food poisoning. Furthermore, Ricca argues, the pandemic has only increased corruption in this industry. This book serves as both an exposé and a call to arms, empowering consumers with the knowledge to make more informed choices when dining out.


Fly Girl by Ann Hood.

In 1978, in the tailwind of the golden age of air travel, flight attendants were the epitome of glamor and sophistication. Fresh out of college and hungry to experience the world and maybe, one day, write about it Ann Hood joined their ranks. After a grueling job search, Hood survived TWA's rigorous Breech Training Academy and learned to evacuate seven kinds of aircraft, deliver a baby, mix proper cocktails, administer oxygen, and stay calm no matter what the situation. In the air, Hood found both the adventure she'd dreamt of and the unexpected realities of life on the job. She carved chateaubriand in the first-class cabin and dined in front of the pyramids in Cairo, fended off passengers' advances and found romance on layovers in London and Lisbon, and walked more than a million miles in high heels. She flew through the start of deregulation, an oil crisis, massive furloughs, and a labor strike. As the airline industry changed around her, Hood began to write even drafting snatches of her first novel from the jump-seat. She reveals how the job empowered her, despite its roots in sexist standards.


Easy/Juvenile/Young Adult/Graphic Novel

Princess Princess Ever After by K. O’Neill.  J GN

When the heroic princess Amira rescues the kind-hearted princess Sadie from her tower prison, neither expects to find a true friend in the bargain. Yet as they adventure across the kingdom, they discover that they bring out the very best in the other person. They'll need to join forces and use all the know-how, kindness, and bravery they have in order to defeat their greatest foe yet: a jealous sorceress, who wants to get rid of Sadie once and for all. Join Sadie and Amira, two very different princesses with very different strengths, on their journey to figure out what "happily ever after" really means--and how they can find it with each other.


Diana and the Journey to the Unknown by Aisha Saeed.  J

Diana is tired of adults underestimating her because she's only a girl! So when the opportunity strikes for Diana to save a group of children kidnapped by an evil entity intent on stealing their special powers for his own nefarious use, she takes the chance, knowing that she'll have to undergo the journey alone. But she doesn't expect that her adventure would take her straight to the world of humans! Diana must save the stolen children and bring down the mysterious force who's been trying to capture her all along--all the while running from a god squad, villainous henchmen, and... kids with cameras who record Diana using her powers to post on TikTok?! The fate of the worlds is on Diana's shoulders in her most thrilling adventure yet!

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

Friday, August 26, 2022

August 26, 2022 - Staff Reviews

Chain of Command
By Tom Clancy/Marc Cameron
Release Date: November 16, 2021
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

3 Stars - A fine book, but not a good Jack Ryan book. Cameron handles the thriller portion of it and brings his own sharp style as usual. President Jack Ryan faces one of the hardest days of his life when the First Lady is kidnapped, and it takes the help of old friends to unravel who was behind it. It took a long time for the action to really get rolling but it was entertaining anyway.

Cameron is suitable choice for the long-running series. His law enforcement background makes him adept to take over the action scenes, and he has a similar sense of humor to Clancy that we see briefly. However, this is a real disappointment again to most of us traditional fans. Jack Sr. and Jack Jr. do nothing in this book except step aside. And then it's almost as if Cameron got 3/4 finished and went "yeah, they can't do anything. Just end it." The Campus of course steals the show doing all the legwork and just stumbling into the case as usual.  This has credible action sequences, fairly good dialouge, and a lot of honest and straightforward political fair. But it's hard not to be slightly disappointed. 

The appearances of Dom, Adara, Clark, Ding, etc. are all perfunctory. Clark daughter/Ding's wife's name is Patsy not Patty, a detail no one cared to catch on edit. Along with a couple typos. Background previous book details are wrong. (Mary Pat did not help Jack take on the IRA.) The action is mainly at Adara's helm. But Cameron is not great with female leads. Adara is running black ops missions unaware or ignoring the fact she's pregnant? I don't think so. She's the medic. Jack Sr. steps aside to let his new and very smart VP do the heavy work. And Jack Jr. is sidelined as well. The father and son duo hug it out in an awkward scene where Cameron calls the President through Jr.'s eyes "The Old Man" three times on a half page instead of "Dad", "his father", or "Senior". Someone should have turned this into a great standalone First Lady kidnapping thriller. None of the characters lived up to their potential good or evil, though they were fairly likable or at least memorable. This book was good, but it could have been great. 


Thursday, August 25, 2022

August 25, 2022 - A Book & A Recipe

This month's dinner and a recipe idea is a delicious dessert! 

For August 2022, at Brooke County Libraries we are sharing Lucy Burdette's Decadent Key Lime Parfait. The recipe can be found in The Key Lime Crime. 

Straight from the novel... here we go!

This dessert can be made in one glass bowl or if you prefer individual servings, use martini glasses or small mason jars. Either way, the layers will show through the glass and your guests will swoon!

5 whole graham crackers, crushed, to make about 1 cup.
2 tbsp butter, melted
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 cups whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup key lime juice (about 1 pound key limes)
14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
(Optional) Key Lime Zest

1. Preheat Oven to 350.
2. Crush graham crackers and mix with butter and brown sugar.
3. Spread this on baking sheet covered with foil or parchment paper.
4. Bake 10 minutes or until golden.
5. Let cool and break into crumbs again.

6. Meanwhile, whip the cream with powdered sugar and vanilla.
7. Set half of this aside for topping.
8. Juice the limes and strain out any seeds.
9. Mix the condensed milk with lime juice. The citrus will cause the milk to thicken.
10. Gently stir in half the whipped cream mix.
11. Layer some of the baked crumbs into eight parfait or martini glasses.
12. Add some of the key lime mix.
13. Repeat, setting aside some crumbs for topping.
14. When all ingredients are distributed, top with dollops of remaining whipped cream and crumbs.
15. Zest with lime on top if you want additional flavor.

What a sweet summer treat!

Be sure to let us know in the comment section below or on one of our social media pages if you enjoyed it! Or you know... stop by with a sample if you feel like sharing.

Images courtesy of WV Reads, Google, etc.

Want to read The Key Lime Crime? We've got the Ebook on our online catalogue WV Reads!


Monday, August 22, 2022

August 22, 2022 - New Arrivals

Adult Fiction

A Season in Hell by Easy Jackson.

"The frontier town of Ring Bit, Texas, has a way of attracting trouble. But it's never seen anything like the mysterious gunman Hawkshaw. As the town marshal, it's Tennessee Smith's job to keep an eye on him. When Tennessee's stagecoach is ambushed--and she's taken hostage--she could use help even if it comes from Hawkshaw."-- Provided by publisher.


Grounds for Murder by Tara Lush.

When Lana Lewis' best -- and most difficult -- employee abruptly quits and goes to work for the competition just days before the Sunshine State Barista Championship, her café's chances of winning the contest are creamed. In front of a gossipy crowd in the small Florida town of Devil's Beach, Lana's normally calm demeanor heats to a boil when she runs into the arrogant java slinger. Of course, Fabrizio "Fab" Bellucci has a slick explanation for jumping ship. But when he's found dead the next morning under a palm tree in the alley behind Lana's café, she becomes the prime suspect. Even the island's handsome police chief isn't quite certain of her innocence. But Lana isn't the only one in town who was angry with Fabrizio. Jilted lovers, a shrimp boat captain, and a surfer with ties to the mob are all suspects as trouble brews on the beach. With her stoned, hippie dad, a Shih Tzu named Stanley, and a new, curious barista sporting a punk rock aesthetic at her side, Lana's prepared to turn up the heat to catch the real killer. After all, she is a former award-winning reporter. As scandal hangs over her beachside café, can Lana clear her name and win the championship -- or will she come to a bitter end?


The Familiar Stranger by Christina Tarabochia.

A fresh start or a double-cross? Why is he so cold and distant? Denise wonders as Craig demeans her yet again. Is it his job? The family? Or is it me? Though she's poured her heart into her marriage, years of enduring his long hours, frequent trips, and short temper have left her with a deep sadness. Later that morning--in the middle of church--her cell phone rings. Embarrassed, she heads to the lobby, takes the call ... and is shocked by the news she hears. Craig's been in an accident. So begins their fresh start. While keeping vigil by his bedside she wills herself to make their marriage work, whatever the cost. And when Craig finally regains consciousness, he appears to want the same thing--except for one detail. He doesn't know who she is. Nor does he remember anything about their life, their children, or why he was parked on the side of the freeway when the accident occurred. As he struggles to recall the past, he also shows a new love for Denise characterized by tender strength and consideration. So what is she to do when ugly betrayals emerge? Is it possible to forgive a man who thoroughly violated her trust? How many more lies and secrets are yet to be discovered?


Adult Non-Fiction

Killing the Killers by Bill O’Reilly & Martin Dugard.

As the World Trade Center buildings collapsed, the Pentagon burned, and a small group of passengers fought desperately to stop a third plane from completing its deadly flight plan, America went on war footing. Killing the Killers narrates America's intense global war against extremists who planned and executed not only the 9/11 attacks, but hundreds of others in America and around the world, and who eventually destroyed entire nations in their relentless quest for power. Killing the Killers moves from Afghanistan to Iraq, Iran to Yemen, Syria, and Libya, and elsewhere, as the United States fought Al Qaeda, ISIS, and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, as well as individually targeting the most notorious leaders of these groups.


Hill ‘n Holler Expressions by Dean Six.

Hill 'n Holler Expressions is a right fun way of explainin' how we talk here in the Mountain State. Even some folk in some of our neighborin' places use Mountain speech. Here is a way for folks who love West Virginia but can't speak it to grab a copy and stop complainin' that they can't translate Mountaineer speech.


Easy/Juvenile/Young Adult/Graphic Novel

Treasure Tracks by S. A. Rodriguez.  J

Twelve-year-old Fin joins his abuelo on a secret quest to find a long-lost treasure at sea. But when their first mission takes a near-deadly turn, leaving his grandfather weak and unable to speak, Fin's left to navigate the quest alone. Well, not exactly alone--his boring, totally unadventurous dad agrees to help out. With danger lurking at every turn, Fin dives in to track his legacy and save Abuelo's life. Between Dad's constant worrying, unwanted diving babysitters, and harrowing encounters in the deep sea, the boy finds himself in a race against time to locate the treasure. If he can't do it, he might lose Abuelo for good.


Who Is Jimmy Carter? by David Stabler.  J NF

Everyone was rather surprised when small-town farmer Jimmy Carter first announced that he'd be running for president in 1976. When Jimmy told his mother, she replied, "President of what?" But this former naval officer and governor of Georgia was ready for the role. Jimmy Carter went on to become one of America's most beloved political figures thanks to his honesty, strong faith, and compassion. Even today, Jimmy Carter is still dedicated to helping Americans through his extensive work as a philanthropist. He and his wife, Rosalynn, volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, building houses for the less fortunate and inspiring others to a life of service. Who Is Jimmy Carter? details the entire life of Jimmy Carter, beginning with his 1924 birth in Plains, Georgia. Readers will learn about his life as a peanut farmer, a Sunday school teacher, a president, a Nobel Prize winner, and more.

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

Friday, August 19, 2022

August 19, 2022 - Staff Reviews


Just One Spark
By Carly Phillips
Release Date: January 18, 2022
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

3 Stars - Rockstar Dash Kingston has found the love of his life in the latest Kingston family story. The romance between him Cassidy is already started by the first chapter, and it quickly heats up. But these two have some committment issues to face before they can live happily ever after.

Phillips' fun and bubbly atmosphere is perfectly intact here with a slew of returning characters. Her slightly sentimental style and sweet couples are back as well. This one just really suffered from some pacing issues I believe. Dash is overcoming his rocky past of course, and Cassidy has pretty much already stolen his heart. His emotions and doubt feel very genuiene in his pursuit of her. He's clever too, basically tricking her into a relationship. Cassidy wasn't especially memorable but she was kind and cautious.

This one sort of felt like putting the cart before the horse, if you will pardon a metaphor. Cassidy and Dash's most exciting night, a hook up where they both felt the big spark, after a brush with a psycho stalker, happens off page in another novel. After the intensity of Xander's story, this one is a bit mellow and ho-hum in comparison. Dash and Cassidy enter a pseudo relationship for positive press for the band, and she acts as their assistant. But they make it clear very quickly how real this is. Both of them sort of hold back on thr actual love part, which seems weird and a bit forced. This was still a fun and fast read with a medium level of steamy scenes along the way. The author definitely teased us though with the youngest and final Kingston sibling book though! So, I'll be back for more like always. As will probably most fans of the series. This can be read as a standalone but I wouldn't start here.


Wednesday, August 17, 2022

August 17, 2022 - BCPL Resume Tips

Welcome back, job hunters!

This August's resume tip may seem obvious, but it's a valid one.

Resume Tip #22 - Avoid Gaps

Gaps in your resume are almost unavoidable. Perhaps, you took time off to raise children, take care of an elderly relative, or were completing a volunteer program. You should have an explanation ready for your interview in this case. 

The only way you should include the explanation or clarification on your one-page resume is if it's in a different section from your work history. The gaps in your job history should only be explained in your summary or a volunteer or education section. 

For example, a brief summary at the top of your resume might state "Hard-working and enthusiastic teacher with five years hands-on experience seeking full time hours. I am rejoining the work force after completing my Masters program and raising three children to school age."

Otherwise, you should not create gaps in your work history to reflect certain job duties or locations. If experience at a certain job position suits the job where you are applying best, find a way to work it into your consecutive job history. Don't skip places that you worked based on relevance. It is more important to show consistent job positions.

Keep in mind as well that most employers do not consider work history over 10-15 years relevant. The experience is important to include if you can fit it into your one-page document, but most places will overlook older job positions anyway. The technology and procedures for the oldest job positions in your history have probably changed.

So, in summary, keep your resume concise and consistent to really impress perspective employers. And be weary of any gaps in your work history. These are okay, but you will need to have a ready explanation.

Remember your local library is a great place for job search help!

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

August 16, 2022 - Staff Reviews


The Summer Proposal
By Vi Keeland
Release Date: January 10, 2022
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

2.5 Stars - This book had so much potential that it didn't quite live up to. Keeland's characters are always are so real but they are always flawed too. I was really hooked in the beginning, but this couple's relationship really suffered from lack of progress. Enjoy for the fun, flirty banter and summer sex appeal if you dare.

Keeland's work is really hit and miss with me. I have truly enjoyed some of her solo stories like The Invitation and The Rivals. Here she misses the mark. Her trademark humor and excellent character voices are great. But the plot is pretty much a failure. Max is lovable. He's dedicated to hockey and his family, and almost immediately to Georgia. Georgia on the other hand is indecisive and snotty. She has her sweet moments but she's pretty cold and hard to understand. I think she looked better on paper: business woman, dyslexic, raised by single mom, likes old movies that don't get named.

I was really hooked at the beginning. But a random flashback at the one-third benchmark had me rethinking my devotion. Georgia at no point seems to want to give up her emotional crutch of an ex-fiancee. They do not have an open relationship. They are exes with benefits, let's just be honest. But she uses this guy and her fear to hold off from Max. Why? That's incredibly unclear. And the result of all that is largely unsatisfying. Now, there's some steamy scenes and sexy dialouge and very sweet moments. Again, if you're on the beach for the day or hiding on your couch for a rainstorm, you'll be entertained.  But Keeland can do a lot better than this. By that one-third point, these two have only had one kiss. And frankly, there's a lot of wordiness that drags down the pacing. This book should have just had them hooking up and been about one hundred less pages. If you're in it for the drama and the hot hockey player though, go for it.


Monday, August 15, 2022

August 15, 2022 - New Arrivals

Adult Fiction

The Hotel Nantucket by Elin Hilderbrand.

After a tragic fire in 1922 that killed 19-year-old chambermaid, Grace Hadley, The Hotel Nantucket descended from a gilded age gem to a mediocre budget-friendly lodge to inevitably an abandoned eyesore -- until it's purchased and renovated top to bottom by London billionaire, Xavier Darling. Xavier hires Nantucket sweetheart Lizbet Keaton as his general manager, and Lizbet, in turn, pulls together a charismatic, if inexperienced, staff who share the vision of turning the fate of the hotel around. They face challenges in getting along with one another (and with the guests), in overcoming the hotel's bad reputation, and in surviving the (mostly) harmless shenanigans of Grace Hadley herself - who won't stop haunting the hotel until her murder is acknowledged.


With a Mind to Kill by Anthony Horowitz.

It is M's funeral. One man is missing from the graveside: the traitor who pulled the trigger and who is now in custody, accused of M's murder - James Bond. Behind the Iron Curtain, a group of former Smersh agents want to use the British spy in an operation that will change the balance of world power. Bond is smuggled into the lion's den - but whose orders is he following, and will he obey them when the moment of truth arrives? In a mission where treachery is all around and one false move means death, Bond must grapple with the darkest questions about himself. But not even he knows what has happened to the man he used to be.


Every Cloak Rolled in Blood by James Lee Burke.

Novelist Aaron Holland Broussard is shattered when his daughter Fannie Mae dies suddenly. As he tries to honor her memory by saving two young men from a life of crime amid their opioid-ravaged community, he is drawn into a network of villainy that includes a violent former Klansman, a far-from-holy minister, a biker club posing as evangelicals, and a murderer who has been hiding in plain sight. Aaron's only ally is state police officer Ruby Spotted Horse, a no-nonsense woman who harbors some powerful secrets in her cellar. Despite the air of mystery surrounding her, Ruby is the only one Aaron can trust. That is, until the ghost of Fannie Mae shows up, guiding her father through a tangled web of the present and past and helping him vanquish his foes from both this world and the next.


Adult Non-Fiction

Crystals by Sadie Kadlec.

Harmonize and heal your body, spirit and mind with this lavishly illustrated crystal encyclopedia! Featuring layered profiles of 200 of the most important crystals, discover each stone's individual properties and find which one is right for you. Learn how to harness their powers to cleanse the energy in your home, bring focus to your work and enhance connection in your relationships. Create stunning crystal grids with ease and invite crystals into your wellness practices -- meditation, yoga, massage and in the bath -- to bring a deeper layer of positive energy into your self-care. This beautiful, practical crystal reference book will show you how to use crystals in the modern age and take charge of each day with intention.


Epic Hikes of the Americas by Lonely Planet.

Lace up your hiking boots for the next in Lonely Planet's highly successful Epic Hikes series, this time exploring 50 of the Americas' most rewarding treks and trails. From Canada's longest hut-to-hut hike, the Sunshine Coast Trail, to a descent through Havasu Canyon in the USA, and the Santa Cruz Trail of northern Peru, we cover a huge variety of themes and experiences across routes that range from one-day walks to multi-day treks.


Easy/Juvenile/Young Adult/Graphic Novel

What is the AIDS Crisis? by Nico Medina.  J NF

In the early 1980s, the first cases of a devastating and fatal new disease appeared, a disease that at first struck only gay men and was later identified as HIV/AIDS. It was the beginning of what became a worldwide health crisis that the US government ignored for years and that unfairly heightened prejudice against the LGBTQ+ community. To this day, the AIDS Crisis continues to disproportionately affect both the LGBTQ+ community and people of color. Nico Medina has written an accurate and affecting history of a terrible time, spotlighting the heroic efforts of AIDS activists who fought for medical research and new medicines, for proper health care for patients, and for compassionate recognition of people with AIDS.


X-Men Legends: The Missing Links by Fabian Nicieza, Louise Simonson, & Peter David.  GN

"Fabian Nicieza kicks things off with a special saga of Cyclops and Havok, as the Shi'ar return to Earth in search of the Forsaken One! As the Summers brothers search for answers, the full truth behind Adam-X's lineage is revealed in a story nearly 30 years in the making! Then, Louise Simonson and Walter Simonson once again pit the original X-Factor against their arch-nemesis Apocalypse! As the dread villain's full plan unfolds, things go from bad to worse--and X-Factor must save Cyclops' baby, Nathan Christopher Summers, from the clutches of a deadly attacker!"-- Provided by publisher

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

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

August 10, 2022 - Staff Reviews

Wild Storm
By Richard Castle
Release Date: May 13, 2014
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

3 Stars - Another fun action-packed little thriller in the short Derek Storm series, perfect for spy junkies and tv crime show lovers. Storm is on the hunt for some techno terrorists and it's just another day in the life saving the world for him. He hits several fun places like the African desert and sea faring expensive yachts and hooks up with some old friends.

Derek Storm is of course the fictional brain child of the also fictional Richard Castle. Fans of the tv show Castle should absolutely give this series a try and even some who have never heard of it. These are just easy, clean fun with heaps of drama to keep the story a little more grounded. Storm is the very James Bond - esque hero who is nearly perfect of course. But Storm has such a vivid sense of humor and enough of a quirky though process, we lesser humans can enjoy him too. A handful of his favorite past sidekicks return as well as some new friends.

The picture of the Sphinx on the front is slightly misleading. There is an archeologist, treasure hunting angle to the plot. But it's relatively small. Mostly, Storm is tracking terrorists who crashed several planes. Naturally, in true Castle style, everything is not as it seems at first. It's always fun in the Castle stories to guess who the real bad guy is, and this novel is no different. A few scenes sort of dragged the story down, as I've never been a fan of Castle's morbid side or the paragraphs that are prone to overdramatics. And a couple feel slightly out of place. But except for a few bumps, the ride is mostly smooth and fast-paced. Storm's on and off love interest Clara Strike shows up to throw in a little romance. And junior lady badass Katie Comely (yes, very Bond girl) makes for a fun new addition to the character dynamics.  The villians and frenemies are no less intriguing. Basically, if you're reading this series or just looking for some weekend book popcorn, you'll be entertained. Just don't take it too seriously.


Tuesday, August 9, 2022

August 9, 2022 - Book Club Preview

Hello, book lovers!

We're excited to share our August book club pick for 2022 at Brooke County Public Libraries. This month are reading The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett.

Our meeting will be held on Thursday, August 25th at 5pm! Meeting will be option virtual and in-person at BCPL.

About the book -

Sam Spade is hired by the fragrant Miss Wonderley to track down her sister, who has eloped with a louse called Floyd Thursby. But Miss Wonderley is in fact the beautiful and treacherous Brigid O'Shaughnessy, and when Spade's partner Miles Archer is shot while on Thursby's trail, Spade finds himself both hunter and hunted: can he track down the jewel-encrusted bird, a treasure worth killing for, before the Fat Man finds him? 

About the author-

Hammett was born in St. Mary's County, Maryland on May 27, 18. He died on January 10, 1961 most famous for his crime and mystery thrillers, many turned into popular Hollwood movies. Also wrote as Peter Collinson, Daghull Hammett, Samuel Dashiell, Mary Jane Hammett. Born as Samuel Dashiell Hammett, he was an American author of hardboiled detective novels and short stories. Among the enduring characters he created are Sam Spade (The Maltese Falcon), Nick and Nora Charles (The Thin Man), and the Continental Op (Red Harvest and The Dain Curse). In addition to the significant influence his novels and stories had on film, Hammett "is now widely regarded as one of the finest mystery writers of all time" and was called, in his obituary in the New York Times, "the dean of the... 'hard-boiled' school of detective fiction."

Intrigued by the book? Check out our ebook copy on WV Reads!

Images and info are courtesy of WV Reads, Google, and Goodreads.

Thursday, August 4, 2022

August 4, 2022 - Staff Review


The Cowboy She Loves to Hate
By Maisey Yates
Release Date: December 1, 2021
Ebook Available from WV Reads!

2 Stars - A little novella that's got a bit of an indentity crisis. It's still a short, easy, and fun read. Nelly is your ultra cliche girl next door who has long been crushing on Tag. The surprise is that he's been adoring her from afar just as long. A quick steamy little story that's sure to entertain for an hour or two.

Maisey Yates appears to be onto quite a series here, but I confess I couldn't figure out if this was the first one or not. Tag's family has quite a bit going on that's left very vague and mysterious. That would've been okay had his family history not factored in so much to his life choices. Nelly's backstory is more believable and even likable despite being a bit predictable. Both these two were clearly enamored of each other and had tension in spades, surprising for such a short story. The sparks were flying between them immediately but they were both pretty immature in different ways.

So this felt more like an episode of TV's Yellowstone more than a western novella. At first, the dialouge felt very historical and then it was just an accent, I guess. Yates didn't really have enough pages to draw any tension here. But there was oddly a lot of build up to the few scenes these two are steaming up the pages. Nelly's inexperience with everything from life to relationships is her number one feature. But I had to give her credit for being more emotionally stable than I expected given her rather intense personality. Tag's supposedly protective of Nelly but his actions just don't seem to match up with his attitude. He was the more unstable of the two. Their reasoning to not be together was very thin, and they felt like they were 21 the whole time not later 30. Anyway, this is an intense novella perfect for anyone looking for a cute childhood friends to lover romance will probably enjoy.


Wednesday, August 3, 2022

August 3, 2022 - BCPL Salty Seas Reads

Looking for a read that will take you sailing across the seven seas? Or maybe you just enjoy nautical fiction?

Look no further than these titles available from Brooke County Libraries! All of the following fiction novels are available as ebook copies or at one of our locations.

Sea Change by Karen White
For as long as she can remember, Ava Whalen has struggled with a sense of not belonging, and now, at thirty-four, she still feels stymied by her family. Then she meets child psychologist Matthew Frazier, and thinks her days of loneliness are behind her. After a whirlwind romance, they impulsively elope, and Ava moves to Matthew’s ancestral home on St. Simons Island off the coast of Georgia. But after the initial excitement, Ava is surprised to discover that true happiness continues to elude her. There is much she doesn’t know about Matthew, including the mysterious circumstances surrounding his first wife’s death.

A Long Petal of the Sea by Isabel Allende
In the late 1930s, civil war grips Spain. When General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government, hundreds of thousands are forced to flee in a treacherous journey over the mountains to the French border. Among them is Roser, a pregnant young widow, who finds her life intertwined with that of Victor Dalmau, an army doctor and the brother of her deceased love. In order to survive, the two must unite in a marriage neither of them desires.

Captive of My Desires by Johanna Lindsey
Gabrielle Brooks sets sail from England to a Caribbean island in search of her estranged father and encounters a life-altering surprise -- her father is a pirate! After spending three wonderful years hunting treasure with him, Gabrielle is dismayed when he decides she must return to London to find a proper husband. His old friend James Malory will sponsor her in polite society. Gabrielle is escorted to balls and parties by James's wife, Georgina, and her brother, Drew Anderson, a dashing American sea captain and fun-loving rogue. When Drew embroils Gabrielle in a scandal the night before he's to sail home, the pirate's daughter vows revenge by commandeering Drew's ship and taking him prisoner. But as passion runs high on their sea voyage, it becomes difficult to tell who is truly the captor and who is the captive. 

Pirate by Clive Cussler & Robin Burcell
An 800-year-old treasure... an ancient cypher wheel... a brutal murder... and a man who will stop at nothing to claim what he considers rightfully his. Husband-and-wife treasure-hunting team Sam and Remi Fargo have gone on impossible missions before and faced many perils, but never have they faced an adversary as determined as the one before them now. The battle will take them halfway around the world, and at its end will be either one of the most glorious finds in history — or certain death.

Gift from the Sea by Anna Schmidt
A steadfast faith kept nurse Maggie Hunter going through the darkest days of the Great War. But her fiance's death overseas shattered her trust in God and her heart. Now an injured man has washed up on the shores of her Nantucket home, and to save him, Maggie must put more than her skill and dedication on the line....Wartime tragedy cost Stefan Witte everything--and converted him to the cause of peace. But to deliver vital information to American authorities, he must fight Maggie's stubborn refusal to believe or forgive. Soon he will risk his life to win her trust--and their heaven-sent future together.

Pirate Latitudes by Michael Crichton
Jamaica in 1665 is a rough outpost of the English crown, a minor colony holding out against the vast supremacy of the Spanish empire. Port Royal, Jamaica′s capital, a cut-throat town of taverns, grog shops, and bawdy houses, is devoid of London′s luxuries; life here can end swiftly with dysentery or a dagger in your back. But for Captain Charles Hunter it is a life that can also lead to riches, if he abides by the island′s code. In the name of His Majesty King Charles II of England, gold in Spanish hands is gold for the taking. And law in the New World is made by those who take it into their hands.

A Sunless Sea by Anne Perry
Monk's old superior Runcorn was first on the scene for Lambourn, and now suspects government suppression. Lambourn's beautiful wife wife Dinah, lies about her whereabouts, denies accusations, but Monk must arrest her despite his belief in her innocence. While public, press, government, and biased judge push for quick hanging before Xmas, Monk, his spirited wife Hester, and their brilliant barrister friend Oliver Rathbone, search for answers. From dank waterfront alleys to London’s fabulously wealthy West End, the three trail an ice-blooded murderer toward the unbelievable, possibly unproveable truth—and ultimately engage their adversaries in an electric courtroom duel.

Sail by James Patterson & Howard Roughan
Since the death of her husband, Anne Dunne and her three children have struggled in every way. In a last ditch effort to save the family, Anne plans an elaborate sailing vacation to bring everyone together once again. But only an hour out of port, everything is going wrong. The teenage daughter, Carrie, is planning to drown herself. The teenage son, Mark, is high on drugs and ten-year-old Ernie is nearly catatonic. This is the worst vacation ever. Anne manages to pull things together bit by bit, but just as they begin feeling like a family again, something catastrophic happens. Survival may be the least of their concerns.

The Deep Blue Sea for Beginners by Luanne Rice
A legendary island steeped in the mystery and wisdom of centuries…  A runaway heiress learning to trust life, and love…  A mother and daughter, separated for years, searching for a way to face the future together…

Sailing to Capri by Elizabeth Adler
When English tycoon Sir Robert Waldo Hardwick dies mysteriously in a car accident, he leaves behind a note naming six people he suspects might have wanted him dead. Daisy Kean, and P.I. Harry Montana team up to take the suspects--and also six 'red herrings'--on a fabulous Mediterranean cruise, all expenses paid by the late Sir Robert.  As they call at Monte Carlo, St. Tropez and Sorrento, the mystery deepens.  And the unexpected twists are just the beginning. 

A Burial at Sea by Charles Finch
1873 is a perilous time in the relationship between France and England. When a string of English spies is found dead on French soil, the threat of all-out war prompts government officials to ask Charles Lenox to visit the newly-dug Suez Canal on a secret mission. Once he is on board the Lucy, however, Lenox finds himself using not his new skills of diplomacy but his old ones: the ship's second lieutenant is found dead on the voyage's first night, his body cruelly abused. The ship's captain begs the temporarily retired detective to join in the hunt for a criminal. Lenox finds the trail, but in the claustrophobic atmosphere on board, where nobody can come or go and everyone is a suspect, he has to race against the next crime—and also hope he won't be the victim.

Two if by Sea by Jacquelyn Mitchard
Just hours after his wife and her entire family perish in the Christmas Eve tsunami in Brisbane, American expat and former police officer Frank Mercy goes out to join his volunteer rescue unit and pulls a little boy from a submerged car, saving the child’s life with only seconds to spare. In that moment, Frank’s own life is transformed. Not quite knowing why, Frank sidesteps the law, when, instead of turning Ian over to the Red Cross, he takes the boy home to the Midwestern farm where he grew up. Not long into their journey, Frank begins to believe that Ian has an extraordinary, impossible telepathic gift; but his only wish is to protect the deeply frightened child. 

Aunt Dimity and the Deep Blue Sea by Nancy Atherton
Nancy Atherton's Aunt Dimity novels have enchanted thousands of readers, and this new addition to the series is likely to broaden the spell. A series of death threats sends Lori Shepard to a remote island off the Scottish coast and to a fabulous castle restored by an eccentric friend of her husband's. But she finds herself drawn into an elaborate whodunit that may involve smuggling- or worse. Why has a human skull washed up on the beach? Is a desolate island really the best place to hide from a murderer? As Lori draws once more on Aunt Dimity's supernatural aid, Atherton whips equal measures of whimsy and suspense into an irresistible confection.

Set Sail for Murder by Carolyn Hart
When retired newspaper reporter Henrietta O’Dwyer Collins, Henrie O to her friends, receives a call for help, she discovers that love once kindled never burns to ashes. Although she refused Jimmy Lennox’s marriage proposal, there is still a special place for him in her heart. She wished him well when he found happiness with Sophia Montgomery, world-famous documentary filmmaker and stepmother to the now grown heirs of a great fortune. Sophia is at odds with the heirs, and Jimmy fears for her safety. He asks Henrie O to come along with the family on a Baltic cruise. Henrie O can’t turn down her old friend, though old passions are stirred when he calls.

Pirate by Ted Bell
Aboard a ship in the south of France, an American spy faces certain torture and death for the vital, explosive intelligence he possesses. In Paris, a ruthless and powerful descendant of Napoleon has forged an unholy alliance with China for its growing nuclear arsenal, poised to send America and the world to the brink of a gut-wrenching showdown. Now, in a maelstrom of razor's-edge danger, Alex Hawke must enter the nightmare visions of madmen to defuse an axis of evil no historian could have predicted -- and no living soul would survive.

Did we leave out any of your favorite sea-worthy tales? Let us know! We'd love to hear from you in the comments sections on our pages or in person.

Images and info are courtesy of Google, WV Reads, and Goodreads.