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To say that it’s quiet in here is an understatement. Instead of wishing for a little peace and quiet, I would gladly love to hear the sound of children and adults laughing and talking as they go about their business in the library. It is just too quiet.
It’s also odd that we’re not beginning this column with a list of what’s going on this week in the library. Don’t get me wrong, we’re busy doing inventory and all kinds of “library things” that get overlooked when we’re open, but the doors are locked and there are no programs.
So, what are we doing for our MP folks? We’re not serving fries, but we are doing a hopping curbside business each day at noon and five p.m. If you need something to read, watch or listen to, go to the website and take a look at the catalog. If an item is “in”, we can check it out to you. Decide what you’d like and then either call us at 903-575-4180 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Bring your library card or other identification when you drive through the parking lot to pick up your goodies. If you have questions, just give us a call.
If you’re looking for a place to find good book recommendations, give Goodreads.com a try. You can browse and see what others are reading and even read their book reviews. I joined Goodreads ten years ago and, in spurts, added reviews to my “bookshelf.” Today I took a look at it and chose some books I think you’ll enjoy. None of these are new, but most of them are in the library.
Quite possibly my all time favorite book is Charms for the Easy Life by Kay Gibbons. I love Southern Fiction and this is the story of three generations of strong southern women. The grandmother in the story is a self-made doctor. This is a great book.
Circling the Sun by Paula McLain is a fictional account of Beryl Markham’s life. Markham was a contemporary of Amelia Earhart and, probably, the better pilot. She grew up wild in Africa and was a woman way, way ahead of her time. She was a close friend of Isaak Denison, the author of Out of Africa. Markham’s autobiography, West with the Night is a beautifully-written book. Hemingway read her book and said that it was so good that he was ashamed of what he was writing.
Graeme Simsion’s trilogy begins with The Rosie Project. Don Tillman is a brilliant, autistic adult trying to navigate in a world of “normal” people. His awkwardness is both touching and funny, especially when he meets Rosie, the love of his life. In my mind, Don was Sheldon from the “Big Bang Theory.”
Flavia de Luce is an eleven-year-old genius whose specialty is poison. She lives with her father and two sisters in a decaying castle in Great Britain. In her spare time she solves murder cases. Alan Bradley’s series begins with The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie.
I think that Nevada Barr is one of the best mystery writers around. She writes beautifully. All of her stories are set in national parks. She was, actually, a park ranger for many years. Anna Pigeon is the main character in these novels and I would recommend any and all of them. Her first Anna book is Track of the Cat. Read it and you’ll be hooked.
Fannie Flagg is just hilarious. She began her career on the “Candid Camera” television show many years ago. After that ended, she began to write and write really good books. I Still Dream about You begins with a woman about to commit suicide. (I know that’s not funny, but it becomes funny!) She sells all of her belongings and plans to make her exit. However, just as she is about to pull it off, somebody needs her to do something and she can’t refuse. Even though she tries, she never does kill herself and her return to life is both touching and funny.
A few years ago I was catering an event where Fannie Flagg was a speaker. She said that she and her best friend went to Open Houses in their spare time. One Sunday they were riding around looking at houses and stopped at one and knocked. A young man answered the door and asked if he could help them. Flagg said, “We’ve come to see your house.” He said that his wife wasn’t home, but he guessed they could come on in. He went back into the den and continued watching his football game. Flagg and her friend looked around the house, opening doors and inspecting each room. When they were ready to leave, Fanny Flagg’s friend asked the young man how much he wanted for the house. He said, “This house isn’t for sale.” Flagg asked why there was a house for sale sign in the yard. He answered, “Ma’am, that sign says ‘Horse for sale!’
Please stay in and stay safe. Treat yourself well and read a good book.
Helen ThompsonLibrarian, Mount Pleasant Public Library