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November Staff Picks including Carry This Book and True Letters from a Fictional Life

We have a veritable cornucopia of staff picks this month. Feast on these books and music that library staff have been enjoying recently.


Mycroft Holmes

Mycroft Holmes

By Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Anna Waterhouse

When his fiancée abruptly departs for Trinidad after hearing disturbing news, Mycroft Holmes and his best friend Cyrus Douglas follow and find themselves drawn in to a treacherous investigation.

Recommended by Greg, Community Information. "Among his other interests, basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a huge Holmesian. He’s put together a rollicking but consequential adventure and a convincing backstory for Sherlock’s brilliant older brother."


True Letters from a Fictional Life

True Letters from a Fictional Life

By Kenneth Logan

A popular high school athlete hides his sexual orientation from his small Vermont town and writes unsent secret letters about his inner struggles to the people in his life, confessions that when discovered are broadcast to his entire school.

Recommended by Elizabeth. "I liked that the main character, James, was a jock. I like that gay stereotypes were addressed. This book was filled with humor, cringeworthy moments, and realistic struggles. Readers can't help but feel for James as he struggles to accept who he really is. This book is a great LGBTQ+ read and I recommend it to anyone who doesn't understand what it means to be gay."


Somewhere Only We Know

Somewhere Only We Know

By Bri Marino

Twelve-year-old Frankie used to go out to the clearing in the forest behind her house and sit by the beautiful linden tree in the middle of it. But that was before her mother killed herself, and before her father started doing things to Frankie that’s nothing like what’s in romance novels. Frankie struggles to make sense of the violence in her life and struggles to get her friends to open up about their abuse so that they can try to once again find that place of peace in their lives.

Recommended by Elizabeth. "Somewhere Only We Know follows 12-year-old Frances "Frankie" Worthington and her 17-year-old sister Susan. Following the suicide of their mother, both Frankie and Susan are trying to survive in a damaged home with their alcoholic, abusive father. Frankie and Susan choose to share their pain with schoolmates, Miranda and Lindsey, because they too have a damaged household. Together, they find solace in a linden tree near both of their homes. This book is deep and meaningful with its symbolism, tragic and sad with the subject matter, and yet it still stays hopeful. Please read this book!"


Carry This Book

Carry This Book

By Abbi Jacobson

How many self-tanning lotions are in Donald Trump’s weekender? What’s inside Martha Stewart’s hand-knit fanny pack? What kind of protein bars does Michelle Obama hide in her tiny clutch at the White House Correspondent’s dinner? Carry This Book provides a humorous and insightful look into how the things we carry around every day can make up who we are.

Recommended by Jessica, Fairborn Community Library.


Notorious RBG

Notorious RBG

By Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik

In a lively illustrated biography of the feminist icon and legal pioneer, readers can get to know the Supreme Court Justice and fierce Jewish grandmother, who has changed the world despite our struggle with the unfinished business of gender equality and civil rights, standing as a testament to what a little chutzpah can do.

Recommended by Jessica, Fairborn Community Library.


Her Last Breath

Her Last Breath

By Linda Castillo

When her best friend’s husband and two children are killed in a suspicious car accident, Amish community member Kate maintains a vigil by a grievously injured survivor who may hold answers before investigating a brutal killer who makes her question everything about her Amish culture.

Recommended by Lindy, Xenia Community Library.


Maniac Magee

Maniac Magee

By Jerry Spinelli

Jeffrey Lionel “Maniac” Magee might have lived a normal life if a freak accident hadn’t made him an orphan. After living with his unhappy and uptight aunt and uncle for eight years, he decides to run—and not just run away, but run. This is where the myth of Maniac Magee begins, as he changes the lives of a racially divided small town with his amazing and legendary feats.

Recommended by Kim, Beavercreek Community Library. "Spoiler alert—It will make you cry, laugh, and cheer multiple times."


The Bookshop on the Corner

The Bookshop on the Corner

By Jenny Colgan

A “literary matchmaker” who takes joy in pairing readers with perfect books moves from the city to a sleepy village where she becomes a bookmobile driver and rediscovers her sense of adventure while searching for a happy ending of her own.

Recommended by JoEllen, Winters-Bellbrook Community Library. "Book lovers will love this."


Get Hurt

Get Hurt

By The Gaslight Anthem

Two years after the release of Handwritten, which debuted in the top five on the Billboard chart, the Gaslight Anthem is back with their latest. This time the band shakes things up a bit and incorporates some changes into their sound.

Recommended by Caty, Beavercreek Community Library.


My Favourite Faded Fantasy

My Favourite Faded Fantasy

By Damien Rice

Damien Rice is back with first new collection of new material in eight years. Co-produced by Rick Rubin, it addresses the idea of accepting one’s faults and appreciating the ability to grow up.

Recommended by Caty, Beavercreek Community Library.


The Cottingley Secret

The Cottingley Secret

By Hazel Gaynor

Reimagines the early twentieth-century story of cousins Frances Griffiths and Elsie Wright, who became a national sensation when they claimed they photographed fairies in their garden, winning the support of novelist Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Recommended by Sue, Cedarville Community Library. "One hundred years ago, two little girls told a harmless white lie that got a little out of hand. Gaynor blends two stories, past and present, seamlessly as we learn about a hoax that was scandalous in its day."


A Boy in Winter

A Boy in Winter

By Rachel Seiffert

In a small Ukrainian town that is overrun by the SS in 1941, the lives of its residents—including Ephraim, a Jew under the threat of deportation who awaits word of his missing sons; Yasia, who has come in search of her lover only to confront new and harsh truths about those closest to her; and a young boy determined to survive—become intertwined.

Recommended by Sue, Cedarville Community Library. "Another WWII historical fiction, but this time set in Ukraine in a tiny village caught between the retreating Russians and the advancing Germans.  How would you treat your neighbors if you were witness to history?"



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