Primates of Park Avenue by Wednesday Martin


Reviewed by Katy Zignego (Library Staff)

I was intrigued by the jacket flap of this book. It’s a mommy memoir, of which I have read a good few, but there’s a twist. The author is a Yale-educated anthropologist who married a zillionaire and is raising two small sons in New York City. But the book is written as though she were a researcher who has arrived to study a hitherto unknown tribe: the super-rich mommies of Park Avenue.

There are parts of the book that are just flat-out funny, like the little map showing the mommies’ upscale “watering holes,” where they eat undressed salads and quaff white wine. And there are parts that are shocking, like the lengths to which some women will go to get an uber-chic Hermes Birkin bag (starting at $10,000). The last chapter is very sad and affecting, dealing with women who have lost children. But the whole thing is a very interesting peek into the way the other half lives–how their glittering lives sometimes are really just like ours, and how sometimes they are like a different species entirely.

Located in Adult Nonfiction (974.71 MAR)

Yes, My Accent is Real: and Some Other Things I Haven’t Told You by Kunal Nayyar


Reviewed by Emily Terasa (Library Staff)

This collection of stories, from the actor who plays Raj Koothrappali on The Big Bang Theory, is full of interesting tidbits and stories on the life of an Indian who travels to America to follow his dream. Actually, Kunal came to America for college and did not even have acting in his sights until he joined a play in college. From stories of his college roommate, to how he got the job on The Big Bang Theory, from how he met his beauty queen wife, to the immense planning of an Indian wedding, readers will learn the life story and lessons of a young man who came to America to follow his dreams, and succeeded.

Available through the Bridges Library System Catalog

Waiting to Be Heard by Amanda Knox


Reviewed by Emi Weiss (Library Staff)

Amanda Knox was a 20 year old study abroad student in Italy when her room mate was murdered. An over eager, malicious prosecutor charged Amanda and her boyfriend with the murder. Despite clear forensic evidence, Amanda was incarcerated in Italy for four years for a heinous crime she did not commit. She was also the subject of negative and positive press during her ordeal. In this memoir, she carefully recounts her side of the saga. I recommend this book as it lends insight into a quirky, immature girl who quickly learned to be a woman under the most tortuous of circumstances. Plus, it reinforces an ideal I hold dear: don’t answer authorities questions until you have a lawyer!

Located in Adult Nonfiction (364.152 KNO)

The Crossover by Kwame Alexander


Reviewed by Jane Oliver-Purton (Library Staff)

This well-written book on basketball and life was the 2015 Newbery Award winner, and its win is justified. It’s the story of Josh Bell, nicknamed Filthy McNasty, who, with his twin brother, Jordan (JB), is a rising basketball star on their middle school team. After all, Filthy can dunk in the sixth grade. The story is told primarily in verse, but in such on point language and cadence that it is easy to read, and even better in its audiobook format. The year holds many changes in Filthy’s life, as JB gets a girlfriend, causing a rift in their formerly seamless twinship, and the stresses of family and a possible county championship loom large. Beautiful language, a wonderful story, and a huge heart make this a story to remember.

Located in Teen Fiction (TEEN FIC ALEXANDER)

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart


Reviewed by Cassidy Hammel (Library Staff)

Unforgettable is certainly a word I would apply to Lockhart’s We Were Liars. Among the comfort of old-money, a private family island, intelligence and looks to match, the other side of perfect is exposed. This novel is about whimsical summers, family loyalty and strife and just how far the latter will push you. The mystery of something just beyond the reach of Cadence’s memory kept me reading, however I was unsatisfied with the resolution. The weight of her actions would surely follow her every minute of every waking day, the gravity of which was not sufficiently realized by Cadence. Although it is fiction, anyone who is uncomfortable with animal peril might just want to pass this up.

Located in Teen Fiction (TEEN FIC LOCKHART)

How’s Your Faith? by David Gregory


Reviewed by Jennifer Rude Klett (Library Staff)

Skilled journalist David Gregory has spent much of his life turning from God. Like many Americans, he took care of his mind and body, but not his soul. This book chronicles Gregory’s search for God, and how to bring God into his and his children’s everyday life. Gregory meets with top religious leaders including Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Joel Osteen, Erica Brown, and Timothy Keller. Gregory also offers intimate anecdotes of a few Washington D.C. politicians, including President George W. Bush. How’s Your Faith? honestly describes Gregory’s faith journey and struggle to become a better man. He doesn’t have all the answers yet, but at least he has begun the journey.

Available through Bridges Library System Catalog

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon


Reviewed by Emily Terasa (Library Staff)

Madeline Whittier is a teenager who can never leave her house. After being diagnosed with the “Bubble Boy” disease, she must live in her house, with only her mother and her nurse Carla to keep her company. That all changes when the mysterious boy, Olly, moves in next door. Suddenly she has someone new to think about and communicate with. Similar to The Fault in Our Stars, Everything, Everything will have you thinking about taking risks when it matters.

The ending is a complete surprise, but nevertheless, it was very satisfying.

Located in Teen Fiction (TEEN FIC YOON)

The Fold by Peter Clines


Reviewed by Judy B. (Library Staff)

I have always enjoyed science fiction. I also enjoy a good mystery. Combine the two and you get a fast, fun read in The Fold. While the story and action are not ground breaking to sci-fi fans, the main character, Mike, is an interesting combination of Sherlock meets Men In Black.
The ending leaves some room for a sequel. I look forward to reading more about Mike and his eidetic memory.

Available through Bridges Library System Catalog

The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey by Rinker Buck


Reviewed by Anonymous (Library Patron)

This is a historic journey through modern times. Rinker Buck and his brother set out to trace the Oregon Trail in a covered wagon. Buck peppers his tales with humor and wit along side the detailed history and the huge impact the trail had during a mad dash to go west. The reader learns what goes into preparations including mule calling. Buck describes the western movement as swap meet mentality referring to offloading belongings and picking up on others. It’s also a personal journey for Buck as he often thinks of his father and the sign passed down that says “See America Slowly”. Helping hands, historic sites, challenges that go with traveling today in a covered wagon, and the oddities of existence through time are all combined to give us a rewarding read.

Located in Adult Nonfiction (978 BUC)

True Story (2015)

true story

Reviewed by Cassidy Hammel (Library Staff)

James Franco and Jonah Hill are actors most known for their comedic performances both individually and as a duo such as in the movie This is the End. The film True Story shakes up all preconceived notions of these actors beginning with Franco assuming the identity of Hill’s character to avoid persecution of allegations that he murdered his entire family. Hill‘s character is a journalist who becomes so obsessed with Franco’s story that even the truth can’t keep him away. This sinister film would be a fitting and creepy movie for Halloween viewing.

Located in DVDs (DVD TRUE)