The Hippo


Jul 16, 2019








 Suggested reading: Indie faves 

Katharine Nevins, co-owner at MainStreet BookEnds of Warner, recommends two ongoing book lists compiled by independent booksellers: The New England Independent Booksellers Association Bestseller List ( is updated weekly with books that are popular at independent bookstores in New England. For a look at what books are trending at independent bookstores nationally, check out IndieBound’s Indie Bestsellers list ( and IndieBound’s Indie Next List (, which features book recommendations from indie booksellers.
Suggested reading: Celebrity picks
Scott Campbell, Assistant Director at Plaistow Public Library, recommends Barack Obama’s summer reading list, which the former U.S. president posted on his Facebook page (, posted June 16). Books on the list include Futureface: A Family Mystery, an Epic Quest, and the Secret to Belonging by Alex Wagner, The New Geography of Jobs by Enrico Moretti, Why Liberalism Failed by Patrick Deneen and others. 
Sarah St. Martin, Head of Technical Services at Manchester City Library, recommends Bill Gates’ Goodreads summer reading list (, posted May 21). “I find it fascinating to see the types of books such an influential person reads, and what he appreciated about them,” St. Martin said. Books on the list include Leonardo da Vinci by Walter Isaacson, Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders, Factfulness by Hans Rosling and others. 
Suggested reading: Pick a winner 
Patricia Adams, Director at Allenstown Public Library, recommends looking at lists of literary award nominees and winners to find good reads. Here are some of her suggestions for New Hampshire-based awards honoring authors in the children’s and young adult genres. (For the full list of New Hampshire literary awards, visit 
The Flume: NH Teen Readers’ Choice ( This award sponsored by the New Hampshire Library Association invites New Hampshire students in grades 9 through 12 to nominate and vote for their favorite young adult titles published in the last three years. 
2018 winner: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becki Albertini. 
Great Stone Face Book Award ( The winner of this award is chosen by New Hampshire fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders. The students vote on their favorite titles from a list of 20 recently published books, chosen by the Great Stone Face Committee. 
2018 winner: Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier.
Isinglass Teen Read Award ( This award, created by the Barrington Public Library and the Barrington Middle School, invites New Hampshire students in grades 7 and 8 to honor their favorite authors. 
2017-2018 winner: Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier.
Ladybug Picture Book Award ( This award was created to honor the best in children’s picture books. A committee of children’s librarians from around the state selects 10 picture books each spring. Then, in November, New Hampshire children in preschool through third grade choose the winning book. 
2017 winner: Woodpecker Wants a Waffle by Steve Breen
For adults, Adams suggested looking at the nominees and winners lists for these prestigious national literary awards. 
The Edgar Awards ( Named in honor of Edgar Allan Poe, these awards are presented by the Mystery Writers of America to recognize the best in mystery fiction, nonfiction, television, film and theater published or produced in the previous year. 
2018 book winners: Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke (Best Novel), She Rides Shotgun by Jordan Harper (Best First Novel), The Unseeing by Anna Mazzola (Best Paperback Original), Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann (Best Fact Crime), Chester B. Himes: A Biography by Lawrence P. Jackson (Best Critical/Biographical), Vanished! by James Ponti (Best Juvenile), and Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds (Best Young Adult). 
National Book Awards ( Presented by the National Book Foundation, the National Book Awards are given for books published in the previous year, nominated by publishers. There are four categories: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry and Young People’s Literature. 
2018 winners: Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward (Fiction), The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia by Masha Gessen (Nonfiction), Half-light: Collected Poems 1965-2016 by Frank Bidart (Poetry) and Far from the Tree by Robin Benway (Young People’s Literature). 
Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction ( This award, presented by the American Library Association, recognizes the best fiction and nonfiction books for adult readers published in the previous year. The winners are chosen from a long-list of 50 titles compiled by library professionals. 
2017 winners: The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead (Fiction) and Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond (Nonfiction). 
The Pulitzer Prizes ( The Pulitzer Prizes include awards for literary excellence in six categories: Fiction, Drama, History, Biography or Autobiography, Poetry and General Nonfiction. 
2018 winners: Less by Andrew Sean Greer (Fiction), Cost of Living by Martyna Majok (Drama), The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea by Jack E. Davis (History), Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser (Biography), Half-light: Collected Poems 1965-2016 by Frank Bidart (Poetry) and Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr. (General Nonfiction). 
Nobel Prize in Literature ( This award is given to one author from any country who has achieved literary excellence in his or her overall body of work. There have been 114 winners since 1901. 
2017 winner: Kazuo Ishiguro. His most recent work is The Buried Giant (2015). 
Suggested reading: Book lists for summer
Scott Campbell, Assistant Director at Plaistow Public Library, recommends the list of books discussed in New Hampshire Public Radio’s The Exchange 2018 Summer Book Show that aired on June 13 ( It includes fiction and nonfiction recommendations from local bookstores as well as recommendations from listeners. 
For kids, Karyn Isleb, Head of Children’s Services at Manchester City Library, recommends the Association for Library Service to Children 2018 Summer Reading Lists ( There are four lists — birth through preschool, grades K through 2, grades 3 through 5, and grades 6 through 8 — each with 25 titles chosen by librarians to keep children engaged in reading throughout the summer.
Suggested reading: More book lists 
Steve Viggiano, Head of Information & Technology at Manchester City Library, recommends the book list from the The Big Read ( sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and Arts Midwest. “The Big Read’s goal is for more people to read for pleasure,” Viggiano said. “They choose books that encourage reflection and build community through conversation. This list shows what different communities across America are reading and discussing.”
Yvette Couser, Library Director at Merrimack Public Library, said the library is currently promoting the list from PBS’ The Great American Read ( The eight-part television series features documentary segments about 100 of America’s best-loved novels. The list was compiled according to the results from a demographically and statistically representative survey conducted through a public opinion polling service asking Americans to name their most-loved novel. Approximately 7,200 people participated in the survey. 
Sarah St. Martin, Head of Technical Services at Manchester City Library, recommends two unique book lists. The Top Ten Most Challenged Books ( is published by the American Library Association. The Office for Intellectual Freedom compiles the list each year based on surveys and documented requests to remove materials from schools and libraries. The 2017 list includes titles such as Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee and others. “I’m interested in the reason why they were challenged, and then I like to read the book and see what I think of it,” St. Martin said. “It helps me realize that everyone can interpret the same content very differently.”
St. Martin’s other recommended list is The Biggest Book-to-Movie Adaptations Coming in 2018 posted by BookBub ( “I enjoy comparing books to movies, preferably reading the book first,” she said. “I’m curious to see how the story is adapted and which parts are stronger in the book or the movie.” Titles on the list include 12 Strong by Doug Stanton, The Death Cure by James Dashner, The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter and others.

One for the Books
Book recommendations for your summer, plus cool reading lists to explore


 By Angie Sykeny
If you’re stumped about what books to read next, have no fear. In this summer reading guide, we asked local library staff and indie booksellers to recommend some of their favorite titles published since June 2017, and they came up with nearly 50, from a Greek mythology-inspired novel to a world travel guide for beer lovers and everything in between. If nothing here catches your interest, or you’re looking for even more book recommendations, check out some of the suggested reading lists also in this guide, where you’ll find America’s most controversial books, Barack Obama’s summer picks and more. 
Children’s: picture book 
Fruit Bowl 
by Mark Hoffmann
Published: June 2018
Plot: A tomato wants to join a bowl of fruits. The question is, does he belong?  
Recommended by: Katharine Nevins, co-owner at MainStreet BookEnds of Warner. “A silly and fun picture book, full of bright and wonderful illustrations, with a bit of science and wisdom mixed in.”
Children’s: middle-grade 
Hamster Princess:
by Ursula Vernon
January 2018
Plot: When a fairy godmouse forces Whiskerella to wear glass slippers and attend balls night after night in search of a happily ever after, it’s up to Princess Harriet Hamsterbone to break the spell and save the day.
Recommended by: Steve Viggiano, Head of Information & Technology at Manchester City Library. “An irreverent take on a traditional fairy tale that parents will love reading as much as kids will enjoy hearing. Vernon is clearly enjoying herself as she relates the adventures of Harriet Hamsterbone, a princess who does not need rescuing.”
Saving Marty by Paul Griffin
Published: September 2017
Plot: A boy adopts a pig that thinks it’s a dog.
Recommended by: Patricia Adams, Director at Allenstown Public Library. “This beautiful middle-grade book about friendship, family and secrets is a must-read this summer.”
The Tea 
Dragon Society 
by Katie O’Neill
October 2017
Plot: A graphic novel that follows a young blacksmith apprentice as her interests expand, she makes friends and she discovers the fascinating world of tea dragons. 
Recommended by: Ali Murray of Bookery Manchester. “I love this book because the illustrations are lovely and creative, and the characters and relationships are incredibly beautiful and diverse.”
Young adult
Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner
Published: March 2018
Plot: When a comic book shop employee dismisses Cameron as a fake nerd girl, she comes back dressed as a boy and is immediately respected and drafted into a Dungeons and Dragons campaign.
Recommended by: Alex Graves, Teen Librarian at Manchester City Library. “Reads like a Shakespearean comedy, but packs more of a punch in the face of toxic masculinity. The characters are fun and flawed and driven.”
The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
Published: January 2018
Plot: Alice’s grandmother was the author of a dark fairy tale series set in a supernatural world called the Hinterland. Shortly after she dies, Alice’s mother is taken by a figure who claims to come from the Hinterland, and it’s up to Alice to rescue her. 
Recommended by: Erin Robinson, Teen Librarian at Derry Public Library. “Highly recommended for those who like their fairy tales grimmer than Grimm’s.”
Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert
Published: August 2017
Plot: A girl and her brother, who is diagnosed with bipolar disorder, fall in love with the same girl. 
Recommended by: Alex Graves, Teen Librarian at Manchester City Library. “The story is a collection of little moments between characters and big issues that affect them all. The complex, authentic characters will warm your heart.”
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
Published: March 2018
Plot: A Harlem teen finds her voice through her school’s slam poetry club. 
Recommended by: Erin Robinson, Teen Librarian at Derry Public Library. “You’ll fly through this captivating novel in verse by renowned slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo.” 
There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins
Published: September 2017
Plot: Small-town Nebraskan teens attempt to figure out the pattern of a killer who has taken the lives of several of their fellow students.
Recommended by: Alex Graves, Teen Librarian at Manchester City Library. “You learn who the killer is halfway through the book, but the real story is in finding out who the next victim is, and why. Despite the number of bodies, this is on the lighter end of horror, and it includes a showdown in a corn maze.”
Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson
Published: January 2018 
Plot: After being accepted to a private school in Vermont, Stevie Bell sets out to solve the 1936 kidnapping and murder of the founder’s wife and daughter. During her investigation, the killer strikes again. 
Recommended by: Tammie McCracken of Toadstool Bookshop in Milford. “The ‘truly devious’ part is the cliffhanger ending and having to wait for book two.” 
Warcross by Marie Lu
Published: September 2017
Plot: A teenage hacker is recruited by the elusive creator of a popular game to uncover a security problem during the game’s tournament. 
Recommended by: Tammy Gross, Library Assistant at Goffstown Public Library. “This book had everything that I find entertaining — virtual reality, gaming, mystery and action. Looking forward to more in this series.” 
Fiction: domestic/family life 
An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
February  2018
Plot: A man is convicted of a crime he didn’t commit and sentenced to 12 years in prison. When his conviction is overturned after five years, he returns home to find his wife in a new relationship.  
Recommended by: Amy Hanmer, I/T Librarian at Manchester City Library. “This is a page-turner. You don’t know how it ends until the surprising end.” 
A House Among the
Trees by Julia Glass
Published: June 2017
Plot: The life and messy death of a children’s book author, as told by his caretaker, an actor playing him in a biopic and a curator of his works. 
Recommended by: Carol Luers Eyman, Outreach Coordinator at Nashua Public Library. “As in all her books, Julia Glass draws complex, original portraits of her characters, including an unusual relationship between the author character, who is gay, and his long-time female caretaker. It’s fun to look for parallels to the real-life story of author Maurice Sendak.”
Sing, Unburied, Sing 
by Jesmyn Ward
September 2017
Plot: An interracial family living in the contemporary Deep South hits the road to reunite with the children’s father, who was recently released from prison. 
Recommended by: Nicole Schulze, Adult Services & Outreach Coordinator at Concord Public Library. “To say that the lyrical and dark prose of Jesmyn Ward is beautifully written is an understatement.” 
Waiting for Tomorrow: A Novel 
by Nathacha Appanah
Published: April 2018 
Plot: Two outsiders fall in love and marry, and life seems perfect, until the birth of their daughter brings changes, along with the addition of Adele, a household servant.
Recommended by: Lois Ava-Mathew of Toadstool Bookshop in Milford. “This short, beautiful, tragic novel is written in the most seductive prose that pulls you into the story.”
Fiction: fantasy 
by Madeline Miller
Published: April 2018
Plot: After Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, the nymph Circe hones her occult craft and crosses paths with well-known figures from mythology. 
Recommended by: Mary Ellen Carter-Gilson, Reference Librarian at Nashua Public Library, and Dianne Hathaway, Library Director at Goffstown Public Library. “It’s beautifully written and paints a deeper portrait of a fascinating character who is often overlooked,” Carter-Gilson said.
“If you love myths, this is the perfect book for you. I was totally mesmerized by the seamless weaving of other gods, goddesses and Greek personalities into the story until the very last page,” Hathaway said. 
The City of Brass 
by S.A. Chakraborty
November 2017
Plot: An orphaned healer and con artist who grew up in the streets of 18th-century Cairo discovers she is a descendent of the Djinn and is whisked off to the magical city of Daevabad, where she is thrown into a world of political maneuvering and palace intrigue. 
Recommended by: Patricia Kline-Millard, Reference Librarian at Bedford Public Library. “I loved the characters in this novel and their realistic reactions to complex and difficult situations. It was also refreshing to read a fantasy novel set in an unfamiliar culture.”
Fiction: historical 
As Bright as Heaven 
by Susan Meissner 
February 2018
Plot: During the 1918 Influenza epidemic in Philadelphia, a young family copes with the effects and trials of the flu as well as the Great War. 
Recommended by: Heidi Deacon, Director at Smyth Public Library (Candia). “It beautifully illustrates the loves and losses as seen through each member’s lives and voices from the parents and their precious children.” 
Death Below Stairs 
by Jennifer Ashley 
January 2018
Plot: A talented young cook takes a job in the wealthy Mayfair household of Lord Rankin in 1881 and tries to find a murderer and stop a plot against the Queen. 
Recommended by: Robbin Bailey, Reference Librarian at Concord Public Library. “This is a charming historical mystery that Downton Abbey fans will eat up.” 
The Good Pilot, 
Peter Woodhouse 
by Alexander 
McCall Smith 
November 2017 
Plot: Peter Woodhouse, a rescued border collie, goes on flight missions during World War II and becomes Dog First Class. 
Recommended by: Raven Gregg, Cataloger at Plaistow Public Library. “A nice, light, heartwarming tale. An excellent palate-cleanser from heavier reading.” 
A Refuge Assured 
by Jocelyn Green 
February 2018
Plot: A young Parisian lady flees the French revolution and tries to survive in Colonial America.  
Recommended by: Heidi Deacon, Director at Smyth Public Library (Candia). “The story is swift and exciting, with never a dull moment of true-to-life details and courageous actions that will inspire any young woman that she has the strength to overcome and prevail [over] whatever life has in store.”
The Saboteur 
by Andrew Gross
August 2017
Plot: Based on the true story of a Norwegian resistant who led a crew to sabotage the Germans’ atomic water plant in a narrow gorge in Norway. 
Recommended by: Heidi Deacon, Director at Smyth Public Library (Candia). “After the raid, the hero stays in Norway to set up a team of spies and ends as a final one-man demo crew in a nail-biter against the Germans.”  
Fiction: mystery/thriller
The Chalk Man 
by C.J. Tudor
Published: January 2018
Plot: A group of young friends uses a secret code with chalk figures to communicate with each other, until someone uses their code to lead them to a dead body. Thirty years later, all of the friends receive mysterious chalk figure drawings in the mail, dragging them back to their hometown to solve the mystery from long ago. 
Recommended by: Tricia Imbriano, Circulation Clerk at Bedford Public Library. “A great suspense novel that’s full of twists and turns to keep you guessing until the end.”
The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian
Published: March 2018
Plot: An alcoholic flight attendant wakes up in a Dubai hotel room next to the man she spent the night with, dead, with no memory of what happened. 
Recommended by: Dianne Hathaway, Library Director at Goffstown Public Library. “Another winner by Vermont author Bohjalian, with a character you will fall for.” 
Mr. Flood’s Last Resort: A Novel by Jess Kidd
February 2018
Plot: Dedicated caregiver Maud Drennan meets cantankerous hoarder Mr. Flood. 
Recommended by: Raven Gregg, Cataloger at Plaistow Public Library. “Secret pasts are revealed with unexpected twists along the way. Excellent book.” 
The Outsider 
by Stephen King 
Published: May 2018
Plot: An 11-year-old boy is murdered, and eyewitnesses, DNA evidence and fingerprints confirm that the crime was committed by the town’s beloved little league coach, Terry Maitland. It appears the case is solved, until detectives confirm that Maitland was out of town during the murder, driving them to beg the question, how can a man be in two places at once? 
Recommended by: Sloan Nolan of Bookery Manchester. “This book is riddled with intimate detail that only King can deliver in so many pages. It has you questioning what he’s going to do next, and the answer is never what you would expect.”  
Sulphur Springs: 
A Novel 
by William Kent Krueger
Published: August 2017 
Plot: Series hero Cork O’Connor travels to Arizona to help his new wife locate her missing son down on the border. 
Recommended by: Brian Woodbury of Toadstool Bookshop in Milford. “A timely tale with betrayals and revelations galore.”
The Temptation 
of Forgiveness 
by Donna Leon
Published: March 2018
Plot: Set in Venice, the story follows Commissario Guido Brunetti after a visit from his wife’s friend who suspects her teenage son is taking drugs. When her husband is attacked, Brunetti realizes that the truth is not so easily found.  
Recommended by: Robbin Bailey, Reference Librarian at Concord Public Library. “Donna Leon’s characters are always wonderfully drawn. You would like to meet them and tag along to experience Venice through their eyes.” 
The Wife Between Us 
by Greer Hendricks 
and Sarah Pekkanen
Published: January 2018
Plot: A woman’s husband leaves her for a younger woman, but there’s more to this common tale than meets the eye. 
Recommended by: Lee Gilmore, Interlibrary Loan Library Assistant at Merrimack Public Library. “There are twists and turns right up until the end.” 
Fiction: science
Artemis by Andy Weir
November 2017
Plot: A woman struggling to make ends meet in Artemis, the first and only city on the Moon, stumbles on an opportunity to commit the perfect crime. 
Recommended by: Mat Bose, Assistant Director at Concord Public Library. “Andy Weir doesn’t disappoint with his follow-up to the best-selling novel The Martian. While this book isn’t a sequel to The Martian, it does feature many of the same elements that made his debut such a success: likable characters, lots of humor, fascinating science and a thrilling conclusion.” 
Red Clocks 
by Leni Zumas
Published: January 2018
Plot: Five women living in a dystopian world are impacted in different ways after a new ruling makes abortion illegal. 
Recommended by: Ali Murray of Bookery Manchester. “This book is so important in a time like this to prove just how important women’s rights are and how valiantly we need to defend them.” 
Fiction: short story 
Uncommon Type: 
Some Stories 
by Tom Hanks
October 2017
Plot: A collection of short stories by the well-known actor. 
Recommended by: 
Dianne Hathaway, Library Director at Goffstown Public Library. “Hanks is a collector of typewriters, and that is evident in the different fonts and appearance of typewriters in the stories. I am a lover of short stories, and this is a great collection to experience some for yourself.” 
Points North: Stories 
by Howard Frank Mosher
Published: January 2018
Plot: A collection of stories revolving around the fictional Kinneson family of the Northeast Kingdom, Vermont, made famous in many of Mosher’s books over the years.  
Recommended by: Katharine Nevins, co-owner at MainStreet BookEnds of Warner. “Completed just before his death in 2017, this might be the best yet from this much beloved author.” 
Nonfiction: guidebook 
National Geographic Atlas of Beer: 
A Globe-Trotting
Journey Through the World of Beer 
by Nancy Hoalst
Pullen and Mark W. Patterson
September 2017
Plot: A guide to interesting and unique beer-related travel destinations around the world, including festivals, breweries and restaurants. 
Recommended by: Brendan Chella, Head of Adult Services/eResources at Merrimack Public Library. “This book heavily influenced changes to the European honeymoon my fiancée and I are planning for next year, which now includes a stop at a beer spa and brewery in the Czech Republic that has taps for their beer right next to hot tubs … which I heard about for the first time in this book.” 
Nonfiction: memoir 
Educated: A Memoir 
by Tara Westover
February 2018 
Plot: A teen with no schooling sets her eyes on university and is accepted in spite of great difficulty, going on to earn a Ph.D. 
Recommended by: Win Flint, Assistant Director at Pelham Public Library. “I recommend this to educators; those who want to learn how to teach themselves and to those who like to read about complicated family dynamics.” 
This Is Me: 
Loving the Person You Are Today 
by Chrissy Metz
March 2018
Plot: Chrissy Metz shares her memoir about growing up in a broken home, her struggles with weight and self-image and how she has learned to believe in herself. 
Recommended by: Krista Bordeleau, Library Assistant at Pelham Public Library. “This book is inspiring, touching and poignant, and teaches that no matter what obstacle one is faced with, believing in yourself is the most important and positive thing one can do for themselves. A must-read for anyone who has faced adversity and is on the path to self-discovery and believing in one’s self worth.”
Things We Haven’t Said: Sexual Violence Survivors Speak Out 
by Erin Moulton
February 2018
Plot: A collection of essays, poems, letters, vignettes and interviews written by a diverse group of adults who survived sexual violence as adolescents. 
Recommended by: Ali Murray of Bookery Manchester. “I appreciate this book because it brings light and attention to issues that we need to confront as a society and also hope to those who have experienced similar trauma.” 
They Can’t Kill Us Until They Kill Us 
by Hanif Abdurraqib
November 2017
Plot: A collection of essays that weaves together the author’s impressions on political turbulence and civil unrest, his clever musical analysis, his experiences growing up as a person of color in the early ’90s in Columbus, Ohio, and more. 
Recommended by: Laura Judge, Library Technician at Concord Public Library. “Abdurraqib has an incredible way of getting to the heart of things with succinctly sharp, witty and lyrical prose that never drags on and leaves the reader with the last thought. As a book about blackness, and whiteness and otherness and belonging, it is a must-read for any millennial (or anyone, really).” 
Nonfiction: selected topics
Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers Who Helped Win World War II by Liza Mundy
October 2017
Plot: A look at the contributions of the more than 10,000 American women who served as codebreakers during World War II.  
Recommended by: Raven Gregg, Cataloger at Plaistow Public Library. “Very readable nonfiction. The work these women did is nothing short of amazing.” 
The Girl on the Velvet Swing: Sex, Murder, and Madness at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century by Simon Baatz
Published: January 2018
Plot: A look at the infamous murder of architect Stanford White during a performance in Madison Square Garden in 1906.
Recommended by: Patricia Adams, Director at Allenstown Public Library. “A fast-moving, can’t-put-down, true crime story that reads like a novel.” 
Mary’s Monster: Love, Madness, and How Mary Shelley Created Frankenstein by Lita Judge
Published: January 2018
Plot: A look at the life of Frankenstein author Mary Shelley from 1812 to 1817, when she was banished from her abusive home because of her relationship with libertine poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. 
Recommended by: Yvette Couser, Library Director at Merrimack Public Library, and Erin Robinson, Teen Librarian at Derry Public Library. “The reader is immediately drawn into Shelley’s life as she navigates her place in her time – an intelligent, creative, and articulate girl who, because of the time in which she lives, doesn’t have many options,” Couser said. 
“This captivating novel pairs free verse with gorgeous and eerily captivating illustrations that implored me to read not once, but twice,” Robinson said. 
The Not-Quite-States of America: Dispatches from the Territories and Other Far-Flung Outposts of the USA by Doug Mack
Published: February 2018 
Plot: A look at the U.S. territories — American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands — and their place in the American story. 
Recommended by: Prudence Wells of Toadstool Bookshop in Milford. “Different political status and exotic locations, plus Mack’s funny viewpoint, make this book fun and informative.”
Richard Potter: America’s First Black Celebrity by John A. Hodgson
Published: February 2018
Plot: Two hundred years ago, Richard Potter, a magician and ventriloquist, was the most popular entertainer in the country, but his celebrity was counteracted by extreme racism. 
Recommended by: Katharine Nevins, co-owner at MainStreet BookEnds of Warner. “A crucial piece of our history, long untold.” 
Where You’ll Find Me: Risk, Decisions, and the Last Climb of Kate Matrosova by Ty Gagne
Published: August 2017
Plot: A look at the true story of Kate Matrosova, a 32-year-old mountaineer who, despite her preparedness and safety precautions, was stranded and found dead in the Northern Presidential Range in the White Mountains in 2015.
Recommended by: Sarah St. Martin, Head of Technical Services at Manchester City Library. “I appreciated a new approach to a common topic, and the information can be used as a tool for anyone to help analyze their own decisions.”
Nonfiction: self-help 
Kintsugi Wellness: The Japanese Art of Nourishing Mind, Body, and Spirit by Candice Kumai
Published: April 2018
Plot: Kumai intertwines lessons she has learned from her Japanese heritage with delicious and creative recipes for wellness-inspired Japanese cuisine. 
Recommended by: Nicole Schulze, Adult Services & Outreach Coordinator at Concord Public Library. “Readers will enjoy the beautiful font, photos, and gold and pink accents that tie the text and recipes together.”  
Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done by Laura Vanderkam
Published: May 2018
Plot: Advice for how to save time and be more productive without getting overwhelmed.
Recommended by: Caitlin Loving, Head of Circulation at Bedford Public Library. “An excellent, quick read. There is a great balance of personal and realistic anecdotes from the author and stories from other people, as well as research to back up the theories.”

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