Thursday, April 21, 2016

Your New Sunbathing Companion, aka New Books Are In

After a brief but chaotic winter, spring has (mostly) arrived, bringing with it daylight savings time and summer temperatures beloved of both human and insect populations. Kill some time in the sun (after you’ve slain a few stinkbug armies, or run screaming from the room) with a new book.

If you’ve been waiting for the final installment of Ransom Riggs’ wonderfully chilling trilogy, Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children, wait no more: Library of Souls is now on the shelf. If you’re just now discovering the series and would like to see what all the fuss is about before the movie hits theaters in late September, here’s your chance. Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children is full of secrets, hauntings, and creepy vintage photographs, and will linger beneath your skin for hours after you’ve finished reading. Begin your adventure with Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City.

Looking for more books that have been recently adapted for the big screen? Check out The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey for alien invasions in a post-apocalyptic world and The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge by Michael Punke for revenge on the American frontier.

We have plenty of other fantastic tales to satisfy a taste for other worlds and epic adventure. Pop over to the Nook to find Madeleine L'Engle's Time Quintet, beginning with the winner of the 1963 Newbery Medal, A Wrinkle in Time, and continuing through A Swiftly Tilting Planet, A Wind in the Door, Many Waters, and An Acceptable Time. L’Engle’s classic tale of tesseracts and time travel has appealed to both children and adults for decades. Revisit this nostalgic favorite or dive in for the first time.

Fire Bringer by David Clement-Davies can be summed up in three words: Redwall, grown up. Fire Bringer follows the fawn, Rannoch — prophesied to become a hero among deer and oppose the tyrannical Lord of the Herd — as he travels through the dark, brutal heart of the Great Land to fulfill his destiny.

Brandon Sanderson puts a throne and a comatose emperor in the hands of the soul forger Shai in The Emperor’s Soul, telling the story of a girl forced to perform an impossible task in fewer than one hundred days. And in Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights by Salman Rushdie, a novel Ursula Le Guin called “a modern Arabian nights,” ordinary citizens in New York discover that they’re not quite so ordinary after all.

The Battle of Stalingrad was a turning point in WWII, and Jochen Hellbeck gives readers an on-the-ground look at the battle and the ordinary Soviet citizens who lived through it in Stalingrad: The City that Defeated the Third Reich, using testimonies that were taken during and after the battle but were suppressed by the Kremlin and forgotten until now.

Lillian Faderman traces the fight for gay, lesbian, and trans civil rights from the 1950s to the early 21st century in The Gay Revolution: The Story of the Struggle, using extensive research and more than 150 interviews to give readers a complete and authoritative history of the movement. And in Then Comes Marriage: United States v. Windsor and the Defeat of DOMA, litigator Roberta Kaplan recounts the battle to defeat the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), weaving her own personal story of self-acceptance with this harrowing, triumphant tale of a crucial civil rights victory.

Electronic violin virtuoso Lindsey Sterling — known for lively YouTube performances of both her original work and covers that range from popular songs to the Legend of Zelda — shares how she became a world-class entertainer in The Only Pirate At the Party.

Jennifer Jacquet explores the use of public shaming as a force of social change in Is Shame Necessary?: New Uses for an Old Tool. As a companion read, consider So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson, also available in the stacks.

Want to get meta about your reading? Award-winning book jacket designer Peter Mendelsund looks at the way readers envision fictional characters in What We See When We Read: A Phenomenology; with Illustrations, and reveals that knowing the concrete details of appearance has very little to do with how we come to know a character, no matter how vividly we picture them in our own minds.

Explore economics through the lens of pop culture and TV’s first family in Homer Economicus: The Simpsons and Economics, edited by Joshua Hall.

Rachel Swaby profiles a panoply of revolutionary women whose contributions to science range from nuclear physics to astronomy in Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science — And the World. And Andreas Wagner ponders the fascinating question of how the fittest, in Darwin’s theory of the survival of the fittest, became that way in Arrival of the Fittest: Solving Evolution's Greatest Puzzle.

You can find all these books and more in our catalog. Happy exploring, and happy reading!