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The Truth According to Us and The War That Saved My Life

Enjoy more of our staff members’ favorite books, music, and movies of the last year.


A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding

A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding

By Jackie Copleton

A tale set against the backdrop of the 1945 atomic bombing of Nagasaki follows the experiences of a woman who is driven apart from her daughter and grandson by a love affair and painful life circumstances that force her to harden her heart to survive.

Recommended by Sue, Cedarville Community Library: "I quite enjoyed this book. This debut novel didn't get a lot of attention, but it was a book I couldn't put down. I recommend it to everyone who comes into the library looking for something fresh."


All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See

By Anthony Doerr

A blind French girl on the run from the German occupation and a German orphan-turned-Resistance tracker struggle with respective beliefs after meeting on the Brittany coast.

Recommended by Brenda, Xenia Community Library


Indian Voices: Listening to Native Americans

Indian Voices: Listening to Native Americans

By Alison Owings

A contemporary oral history documenting what Native Americans from sixteen different tribal nations say about themselves and the world around them.

Recommended by Yvonne, Yellow Springs Community Library: "Loved it. Very educational on today's Native People."


Code Name Verity

Code Name Verity

By Elizabeth Wein

In 1943, a British fighter plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France and the survivor tells a tale of friendship, war, espionage and great courage as she relates what she must do to survive while keeping secret all that she can.

Recommended by Krista, Yellow Springs Community Library: "This is my favorite story of friendship and World War II. Wein's writing is lyrical and funny. You will cry. This was by far my favorite read in 2016."


The Book of Mysteries

The Book of Mysteries

By Jonathan Cahn

A traveler goes on a year-long journey with a man known only as “the teacher,” and absorbs a new teaching on spiritual truths for every day of the year.

Recommended by Judi, Outreach Services


Born Survivors

Born Survivors

By Wendy Holden

Relates the true account of three pregnant women who met in Auschwitz, where they concealed their pregnancies from infamous Nazi doctor Josef Mengele and fought for their survival as well as the survival of their newborns as they embarked on a treacherous journey to freedom.

Recommended by Elizabeth, Cedarville Community Library


The War That Saved My Life

The War That Saved My Life

By Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

A young disabled girl and her brother are evacuated from London to the English countryside during World War II, where they find life to be much sweeter away from their abusive mother.

Recommended by Elizabeth, Cedarville Community Library


All the Pretty Horses

All the Pretty Horses

By Cormac McCarthy

Cut off from the life of ranching he has come to love by his grandfather’s death, John Grady Cole flees to Mexico, where he and his two companions embark on a rugged and cruelly idyllic adventure.

Recommended by Rick, Fairborn Community Library


The Book Thief

The Book Thief

By Markus Zusak

Living with a foster family in Germany during World War II, a young girl struggles to survive her day-to-day trials through stealing anything she can get her hands on. But when she discovers the beauty of literature, she realizes that she has been blessed with a gift that must be shared with others, including the Jewish man hiding in the basement.

Recommended by Sarah, Cedarville Community Library: "A haunting novel, narrated by the character Death, that shows just how strong the power of reading and learning can be in times of deepest despair."


The Truth According to Us

The Truth According to Us

By Annie Barrows

Refusing to marry according to her senator father’s wishes before taking a job with the Federal Writer’s Project, Miss Layla Beck boards with an eccentric family in a backwater town before discovering long-kept secrets.

Recommended by Dona, Winters-Bellbrook Community Library


Paging Mr. Proust

Paging Mr. Proust

By The Jayhawks

With their 2016 album, The Jayhawks show that they still are one of America’s foremost rock bands. It shows a commitment to adventure and forward motion, which makes this collection of songs exciting and instantly memorable.

Recommended by Jeff, Technical Services: "After 25 years, the Jayhawks still have it! Their latest release is a pop masterpiece."


Born to Die

Born to Die

By Lana Del Rey

Recommended by Sarah, Cedarville Community Library


Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Directed by Taika Waititi

A hard-to-handle foster kid from the big city and a grouchy bushman in his sixties are forced to forge an unlikely alliance to survive in the New Zealand wilderness after their misinterpreted relationship triggers a national manhunt.

Recommended by Liz, Xenia Community Library: "Ricky is a foster child who has finally found a family willing to take him in. When tragedy hits the family, Ricky and his 'Uncle' Hector flee into the bush (a forest in New Zealand). Now, Ricky and his 'Uncle' are on the run from child protective services, trying to survive in the wilderness. I saw this movie when it played over at The Neon in Dayton and I've never laughed so hard during a movie. This movie was directed and written by the same person who wrote and directed What We Do in the Shadows. If you liked What We Do in the Shadows, I highly recommend that you watch this film. The tone is more serious, but the humor is still the same."


Bajrangi Bhaijaan

Bajrangi Bhaijaan

Directed by Kabir Kahn

A five year old girl from Pakistan gets separated from her mother at an Indian railway station. Lost and hungry she finds shelter at the home of Pavan, an ardent devotee of Hanuman, who sets out on a quest to unite the child with her parents against all odds.

Recommended by Yvonne, Yellow Springs Community Library: "A Pakistan/India movie. Excellent. Just looked at it again."



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