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2009 Halifax Public Libraries Staff Favourites – part two

Yesterday’s blog post listed the first half of our staff’s favourite books of 2009. Here is the second half of our list:


The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker. Two sisters, one with a pituitary growth condition and the other with the stature and beauty of a china doll, are separated and lead very different childhoods.

George Sprott (1894-1975) by Seth. (0n order) Graphic novel featuring George Sprott, the host of a long running television show whose life is chronicled by friends and acquaintances who all have differing views.
The Photographer by Emmanueil Guibert and Didier Lefevre combines a photojournalist’s views of Afghanistan during the second Russian invasion with the cartoonist’s narrative arc for the photos of Doctors Without Borders’ work in war zone.

Red Bones by Ann Cleeves. Part of the Shetland Island Quartet. Woman are being murdered on Shetland Island and Jimmy Perez is called in to investigate.

Revenge of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz. A hilarious family run detective firm is the subject of the Spellman series of detective novels. Evanovich fans should take note.

South of Broad by Pat Conroy. “The one and only Pat Conroy returns with a big, sprawling novel that is at once a love letter to Charleston, South Carolina, and to lifelong friendship–a long-awaited work from a great American writer whose passion for life and language knows no bounds.” –catalogue

The Sweetness At the Bottom of the Pie by C. Alan Bradley . “Alan C. Bradley introduces eleven-year-old Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison. It is the summer of 1950 – and a series of inexplicable events has struck Buckshaw, the decaying English mansion that Flavia’s family calls home. A dead bird is found on the doorstep, a postage stamp bizarrely pinned to its beak. Hours later, Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches him as he takes his dying breath. For Flavia, who is both appalled and delighted, life begins in earnest when murder comes to Buckshaw.”–Inside front cover. More here. And here.

This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper. A riotously funny, emotionally raw novel about love, marriage, divorce, family, and the ties that bind-whether we like it or not.”–Publisher.

Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro. Munro’s latest collection of short stories including her familiar examination of women’s lives with dark twists that might surprise her long time fans. More here.

Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella. When the spirit of Lara’s great-aunt Sadie-a feisty, demanding girl with firm ideas about fashion, love, and the right way to dance-mysteriously appears, she has one last request: Lara must find a missing necklace that had been in Sadie’s possession for more than seventy-five years, and Sadie cannot rest without it. Never mind that Lara has her own problems–which Sadie could care less about. Will this sparring duo ever find what they’re after?”–catalogue

Under the Dome by Stephen King. “The small town of Chester’s Mill, Maine, is faced with a big dilemma when it is mysteriously sealed off by an invisible and completely impenetrable force field. With cars and airplanes exploding on contact, the force field has completely isolated the townspeople from the outside world. Now, Iraq war vet Dale Barbara and a group of the town’s more sensible citizens must overcome the tyrannical rule of Big Jim Rennie, a politician bent on controlling everything within the Dome”. –catalogue More here.

Vision in White by Nora Roberts. Four friends set up a wedding planning business. Photographer Mac Elliot unexpectedly finds romance despite the fact that weddings are her business and not her personal agenda. The staffer also nominates #2 in the series Bed of Roses in which Emma Grant, the florist, finds passion. Two to go.

White Queen by Phillippa Gregory. In this account of the wars of the Plantagenets, a woman of extraordinary beauty and ambition, Elizabeth Woodville, catches the eye of the newly crowned boy king, marries him in secret and ascends to royalty. While Elizabeth rises to the demands of her exalted position and fights for the success of her family, her two sons become central figures in a mystery that has confounded historians for centuries: the missing princes in the Tower of London whose fate is still unknown.”–catalogue

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel. Surprisingly Oliver Cromwell is a sympathetic character in this involved and engrossing fictional biography.

A Woman Among Warlords: the extraordinary story of an Afghan who dared to raise her voice by Malalai Joya. “In the tradition of Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s “Infidel,” and also the subject of an award-winning documentary, this impassioned, first-person account tells of a courageous young Afghani woman who risks her life by denouncing the powerful warlords in her country.”–catalogue

You Better Watch Out by Greg Malone. Newfoundland actor and comedian recalls his early years growing up in St. John’s in the 1950’s. More here.

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