LIBRARY STAFF PICKS: Read the recommended books for January 2015
Every month, the staff of the Osterhout Free Library in Wilkes-Barre offers their recommendations for new or classic books available through the Luzerne County Library System.
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“A Conspiracy of Paper” by David Liss
“Benjamin Weaver, a Jew and an ex-boxer, is an outsider in 18th century London, tracking down debtors and felons for aristocratic clients. The son of a wealthy stock trader, he lives estranged from his family – until he is asked to investigate his father’s sudden death. Thus Weaver descends into the deceptive world of the English stock jobbers, gliding between coffee houses and gaming houses, drawing rooms and bordellos. The more Weaver uncovers, the darker the truth becomes, until he realizes that he is following too closely in his father’s footsteps – and they just might lead him to his own grave. An enthralling historical thriller, “A Conspiracy of Paper” will leave readers wondering just how much has changed in the stock market in the last three hundred years.”
“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky
Young Adult Fiction
“Since its publication, Stephen Chbosky’s haunting debut novel has received critical acclaim, provoked discussion and debate, grown into a cult phenomenon with over 3 million copies in print, spent over one year at No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list, and inspired a major motion picture. It is a story about what it’s like to travel that strange course through the uncharted territory of high school. The world of first dates, family dramas, and new friends. Of sex, drugs, and “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” Of those wild and poignant rollercoaster days known as growing up.”
“The Empathy Exams” by Leslie Jamison
Memoirs and Essays
“Leslie Jamison’s visceral and revealing essays ask essential questions about our basic understanding of others: How should we care about each other? How can we feel another’s pain, especially when pain can be assumed, distorted, or performed? Is empathy a tool by which to test or even grade each other? By confronting pain – real and imagined, her own and others’ – Jamison uncovers a personal and cultural urgency to feel. She draws from her own experiences of illness and bodily injury to engage in an exploration that extends far beyond her life, spanning wide-ranging territory – from poverty tourism to phantom diseases, street violence to reality television, illness to incarceration – in its search for a kind of sight shaped by humility and grace.”
Available only in eBook!