BookClique

Here we will post our musings on a wide variety of titles. You can comment on our posts and find the titles in our catalog.

The King’s Grave: The Discovery of Richard III’s Lost Burial Place and the Clues It Holds by Phillipa Langley

imagesRichard III, the last Plantagenet king of England, was slain in the final battle of the Wars of the Roses at Bosworth Field in 1485.  As well as being a notable character in history, Richard is the subject of many books and a Shakespeare play, as well as of controversy that has spanned centuries.  Was he the scheming, deformed villain familiar to so many through biased historical accounts and dramas such as Shakespeare’s, or was he largely a good ruler who has been unjustly maligned over the years?  What happened to Richard’s body after the battle has also remained a mystery for over 500 years.  Was it buried unceremoniously in the choir of a Leicester church?  Was it later thrown into a nearby river?  What was the true fate of this famous and infamous ruler’s corpse?  The King’s Grave is an account of a search that began in August 2012, when Philippa Langley of the Richard III society experienced a strange and strong sensation that the king’s remains were under a particular parking space in the parking lot of a social services building in Leicester, near one of the purported traditional locations for the burial.  The University of Leicester joined the search with the primary aim of determining the location of the Greyfriars monastery.  The project culminated in some astounding discoveries and a definite identification using DNA technology obtained from the king’s only confirmed living descendants.  Langley alternates chapters describing the search for and finding of the burial site, and a brief yet comprehensive account of the latter days of the Wars of the Roses. Though her continual championing of Richard gets a bit wearisome after a time, the account of this fascinating search and discovery should intrigue fans of both history and archaeology.

Alison M.


Bookmark and Share

Innocence by Dean Koontz

imagesHow would you live if the very sight of you causes a murderous rage in those who see you? How could you hide and still have a connection with the rest of world? Dean Koontz asks this very question in his moralistic thriller, Innocence. When people see Addison Goodheart, they try to kill him, almost without exception. Life is very lonely for Addison, until one day, he meets a mysterious young woman named Gwyneth, who cannot stand to be touched. Is it fate, or is it something more? As always, Koontz’s prose is a joy to read as he skillfully weaves together the tale of Addison and Gwyneth. The story is compelling, with its share of creepy elements as you’d expect from Koontz. Of all the books I’ve read recently, this book has stuck with me. I still find myself pondering various elements of this story, as I try to figure out if I agree with how Koontz let this play out. Compelling, thought-provoking, and wonderfully told; I highly recommend this title.

Annette G.


Bookmark and Share

The Heart of the Plate: Vegetarian Recipes for a New Generation by Mollie Katzen

imagesIt’s so easy to enjoy cookbooks.  We ALL like to eat after all, but one of the great joys of cookery tomes is that they are most often designed for durability and collectability.  The weight and sheen of the paper is lovely and the photographs inspiring. With all that as a ‘given’, what makes any specific cookbook stand out?  When it’s written by Mollie Katzen, author of Moosewood Cookbook, said title, The Heart of the Plate:Vegetarian Recipes for a new Generation jumps right to the top of any cook’s reading list.  So much has happened to American cookery since the 1977 publication of Moosewood.  Our best cuisine is no longer governed by ‘quick and convenient’, rather local and fresh and high quality are the new rallying cries.  Many American palates are no longer solely ‘meat and potatoes’.  Those changes are all featured in Katzen’s new book, The Heart of the Plate.  Full color photos fill every second page in this excellent production from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.  Text spacing for the ingredients and recipe steps is easy on the eyes and most recipes include ‘optional enhancements’; ingredient suggestions to ‘change up’ the course.  Best of all, for this reader, is that many of the recipes are ‘easy’ to follow for the occasional cook.  Among my favorites are: Stir-fried noodles with Asparagus, Mushrooms, Tofu, and Cashews; Roasted Cauliflower Mac and Cheese; and Golden Mango-Nectarine Gazpachio.  Highly recommended.

Amy P.


Bookmark and Share

Lowcountry Boil by Susan M. Boyer

imagesI don’t usually read cozy mysteries, preferring something with a harder edge and a bit more action. However, Lowcountry Boil caught my attention due to the fact that this debut title from Susan M. Boyer won the 2012 Agatha Award; a rare feat. The book introduces us to feisty southern belle Liz Talbot, a private eye who carries a Sig Sauer in a Kate Spade handbag. When her grandmother is murdered, Liz comes back to her South Carolina home to catch the murderer. Family secrets, local intrigue, ghostly visits, and the quirky nature of the town’s inhabitants keep Liz guessing right to the very end. This is fast-paced tale, full of wit and charm. Boyer’s writing style is inviting and fun, and
in the middle of all her characters’ hijinks lurks a very well-plotted mystery.

Annette G.


Bookmark and Share

Fortunately the Milk by Neil Gaiman

imagesWe’ve all heard the old sally as we head out the door….”Remember the milk….”.  Neil Gaiman and SKottie Young develop a wonderfully cumulative tale titled Fortunately the Milk outlining a father’s many fabulous adventures while on a neighborhood errand.  It’s a great book for bedtime reading and for sparking tall tales of your own.  Gaiman is an award winning author of Nebula, Hugo, Newbery and Carnegie medals.  Scottie Young is an award winning cartoonist and writer winner of many Eisners.  Recommended for family reading or for writing prompts.

Amy P.


Bookmark and Share

Just What Kind of Mother Are You? by Paula Daly

imagesIn Just What Kind of Mother Are You? by Paula Daly, Lisa Kallisto is a modern mom who has overextended herself like so many others.  She has 3 children, a house, and several pets to take care of.   All of the kids are constantly needing this or that, she feels she is neglecting her hard working and stoic husband, and she has a high pressure job as the head of and animal shelter.  She is very well meaning but kind of a “jack of all trades, master of none”.  One day her best friend’s child (who is best friends with Lisa’s daughter) goes missing and she was supposed to be spending the night at Lisa’s house.  Lisa had forgotten about giving permission for it and when her daughter had gotten up sick that morning, Lisa told her to just go ahead and stay home from school and she went on to work.  Since the other girl was supposed to come over after school for the sleepover, no-one realizes the child is missing until the next day.  The community lays the blame at Lisa’s feet.  This book is stuffed with secrets: secrets between children and parents, between husbands and wives, and between family and outsiders.  There are also a lot of interesting animal shelter situations.  Fast paced.

Stacy W.


Bookmark and Share

Girl Hunter by Georgia Pellegrini

imagesIn Girl Hunter, author Georgia Pellegrini is on a mission to try and eat more meat that she hunts and kills and less meat from grocery stores.  Already a chef by trade, she also blogs about food and wrote Food Heroes.  She reminisces about when she was a little girl, she was always out in nature gathering food but then her family sent her to private school in NYC.  Next was Wall Street and the corporate world until she realized she wasn’t living the life she wanted to lead.  She went to culinary school and after cooking in a few restaurants  decided that she would appreciate her food more if she actually put the work into hunting it (not to mention how much healthier a wild animal is for you compared to factory farm animals).  Some of her insights were interesting-when she went on hunting trips to England she observed that in that country shotguns and rifles are “symbols of class and sophistication” but in America a lot of people seem to see them as a symbol of being a redneck.  She also said that more cows are killed every day in America than bison are killed in a year!  This was fascinating to me as I’m a big beef fan but bison burgers are also delicious.  Anyway, this book is chock full of recipes for venison, quail, duck, elk, etc-if you are concerned about where your food is coming from, or are a hunter yourself, this book is a good read.

Stacy W.


Bookmark and Share

I Hear the Sirens in the Street by Adrian McKinty

imagesI liked the first book in Adrian’s McKinty’s “Troubles Trilogy” (The Cold Cold Ground) enough to read the second book I Hear the Sirens in the Street and that second book was awesome.  I really like gloomy dark stories about Northern Ireland anyway and in the early 1980s Belfast the sun never seems to shine!  In this second book, Detective Sean Duffy is trying to solve the mystery of a torso stuffed in a suitcase along with constant last minute call outs to riot duty and of course trying to stay alive himself.  Normal people are emigrating to other places in droves, leaving the Belfast streets to be taken over by thugs of either the Catholic or Protestant persuasion.  As a Catholic living on a Protestant street (and a policeman to boot), Duffy must inspect under his car every time he gets in it for bombs.  Police management has ordered all their employees to stop wearing seat belts as more police are dying from ambushes, bombs under cars, etc than car wrecks.  Seconds count when you need to try and get away from your car and getting your seat belt off wastes too much time.  Despite all these obstacles, Duffy plugs away at his case and faces fresh hurdles from various fronts including the F.B.I. and car maker John DeLorean.  I loved this book and can’t wait for the next one-just wish the author would change his mind and not stop with a trilogy.

Stacy W.


Bookmark and Share

Maddaddam by Margaret Atwood

imagesWhy are people often up in arms about genetic modification, cloning, and climate control? What about bioengineering, where can that lead? How desensitized are we as people becoming because of the violence that we watch in entertainment?  Imagine what the perfect human would be like? Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam  gives us a look, that at first, may seem farfetched, although you end up asking yourself, is it really? A blend of speculative fiction, satiric futurism, this post-apocalyptic series leads us down a road that shows the decimation of the planet and eventually humanity. Throughout the series we are given the point of view of a handful of characters, their experiences, and a view into the world they each live in. Pharmaceutical companies try to control health and disease. Private security in place of government police. Bioengineering chicken meat to eat-without growing a whole live chicken. A stark contrast between rich and poor; uneducated and educated. And the perfect human that knows no jealousy, rage and eats only plants. This story starts with Orxy and Crake in which we are introduced to Snowman and the Crakers-genetically modified perfect humans. We learn of the current state of the planet-desolate and much of it unlivable and a super virus killed almost all of humanity. Without giving it all away, Year of the Flood fills in all the questions we are asking throughout Orxy and Crake- MaddAddam is the story of rebuilding a world we have broken. This book may seem fantastical, however perhaps like me, as you are reading you will see all of the truth behind what the story is telling us, and maybe you will recognize that this story is possibly a shadow of our society today, and a very real possibility of what the future could look like. After you read this book, I have two questions for you, what year does this all take place in? How far in the future does Atwood see this as a possibility?

Denise P.


Bookmark and Share

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

imagesAs I loved Stephen King’s The Shining (both the book and the movie), I couldn’t wait to read the sequel to it called Doctor Sleep.  I’m not sure I was as frightened when I read it as I was when I read its predecessor, but then I was a lot younger back then.  Doctor Sleep was a great story though and after the adult Dan Torrance fights through his alcohol issues he turns into a really good guy (if young Danny in The Shining had seen the future and known that he would end up a drunk just like his dad he wouldn’t have been able to believe it).    Dan uses his “shining” for good things-mostly in nursing homes helping dying patients but he discovers that there is a group of evil people called the True Knot roaming America in RVs killing children who have the shining.  The only way the Knot can survive is to torture these children and inhale their “steam” as they are dying.  The Knot looks and dresses just like typical retired people and certainly don’t come across as monsters who are hundreds of years old.  When Abra Stone, a girl who has one of the most powerful shinings that anyone has ever seen, is targeted, Dan knows he has to go after the group and kill them.  Over 500 pages long but a fast, easy, exciting read.  I know King hated the movie version of The Shining so I wonder if he will have this made into a movie and if so, how will he handle all the flashbacks to his childhood that Dan has in Doctor Sleep?  Would he use scenes from The Shining or make new ones?

Stacy W.


Bookmark and Share

Tippecanoe County Public Library * 627 South Street * Lafayette, IN * 47901 * 765 429-0100