Corporate (TV Show)

Reviewed by Cassidy Hammel (Library Staff)

Ever feel the monotony of doing the exact same thing every single day? Coffee, work, dinner, sleep and repeat. Meet Jake, Matt and Grace. They feel like you do. They work for a massive conglomerate, Hampton DeVille, who can’t be bothered to remember their names, take credit for all their work and make sure the piles of manila folders on their desks never, ever run out. The trio makes it through each day with a hilariously wicked sense of humor notable in the episode titles like, “The Void, The Pain of Being Alive, The Long Meeting & Facing the Void.” Anyone who works in a cubicle will be able to relate to these three and, if you like it, there are three seasons to enjoy!

Available through the Bridges Library System

Modern Art Explorer by Alice Harman & Serge Bloch

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

Let’s be honest. Modern art can be a little…difficult to understand. Like, we know it means SOMETHING but sometimes we lack the tools to even begin to make sense of it. That’s where this book comes in.

Each spread presents one work of art that was created roughly between the 1860s and the late 1960s, although a few more contemporary pieces are sprinkled in as well. Alice Harman does a wonderful job addressing each piece–first acknowledging what you may be thinking at first glance and then giving you a bit of insight into the artist’s history, method, and inspiration, all while maintaining a supremely conversational and entertaining tone. The text is supplemented by whimsical line drawings by Serge Bloch, which draw from the style of the artist being presented and increase the appeal of each page.

Modern Art Explorer takes an overwhelming subject and opens the door, welcoming you in so that you both want to walk around inside and feel like you belong. A huge task done well.

Available through the Bridges Library System

Mercy Watson: Something Wonky This Way Comes by Kate DiCamillo

Reviewed by Stephanie Ramirez (Library Staff)

One of the joys in life is seeing your child discover the love of reading. My daughter began easy chapter books this year and has been flying through series as she tries to find her reading niche. One of her absolute favorite series she found was about Mercy Watson the pig, by award-winning author Kate DiCamillo. Mercy is the beloved porcine wonder “daughter” of Mr. and Mrs. Watson and certainly gets into shenanigans with some of her colorful neighbors: Baby and Eugenia Lincoln, Leroy Ninker and Francine Poulet. The flowing repetitive text made for easy reading for her and the beautiful illustrations by Chris Van Dusen brought to life each larger-than-life character. This last one in the series is a particular highlight and we didn’t want to see it end. Couldn’t recommend highly enough for the emerging reader in your life!

Located in Children’s Fiction (J FIC DICAMILLO)

The Other Bennet Sister by Janice Hadlow

Reviewed by Emily Terasa (Library Staff)

“I have always had a love affair with Jane Austen and her books, so any time a retelling or spin of one of her classics is released, I often find myself wanting to read it. When I saw The Other Bennet Sister by Janice Hadlow followed Mary Bennet (the bookish, marginalized middle daughter of Pride and Prejudice) I knew I had to pick it up because while I might wish to be Elizabeth Bennet, I’m really more of a Mary.

The Other Bennet Sister follows Mary as she learns to find herself in a society that doesn’t understand her. And while her story includes a man (because this is based on Jane Austen after all) Mary must decide if he is the one for her and if she is worthy of love.

I really enjoyed this novel because it took a very small character from my favorite novel and created a whole story for her. I always felt bad for Mary in Pride and Prejudice so i was so glad to see her get her own story.

Available through the Bridges Library System

The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey

Reviewed by Kate (Library Staff)

I love a good mystery, but often get tired of reading the same formula reworked for countless books. The Echo Wife was fresh, exciting, and I truly had no idea where the author was taking me most of the time.

This book is perfect for readers who want a woman-centric scifi, that’s a bit too realistic for comfort.

Located in Adult Fiction (FIC GAILEY)

Katie the Catsitter by Colleen AF Venable & Stephanie Yue

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

Katie the Catsitter is a charming middle grade graphic novel with oodles of humor and pep.

Feeling left out that her best friends are going to summer camp when she can’t afford to go, Katie seeks out odd jobs to raise enough money to attend camp for one week. After failing at many tasks, Katie lands a job catsitting the 217(!) cats belonging to her upstairs neighbor, Ms. Lang.

Despite Katie’s extreme affection for all things feline, this job proves challenging as 1) she learns that each cat has their own special skill (such as hacking, languages, helicopter repair, and fashion design) which they use to get into trouble and 2) she begins to suspect that Ms. Lang is actually the Mousetress, a super villain terrorizing her city.

I loved the overall playfulness and the uplifting exploration that good and evil may not always be as black and white as a tuxedo cat.

Located in Children’s Graphic Novels (J GRAPHIC VENABLE)

Tales from the Hinterland by Melissa Albert

Reviewed by Taylor H (Library Staff)

Tales From the Hinterland by Melissa Albert is a magical, dark, and highly imaginative collection of fairytales. These fairytales were first introduced in Albert’s duology (The Hazel Wood & The Night Country) and are here fully revealed. They are reminiscent of old fairytales—the ones that contain warnings, the ones that are both creepy and fascinating at the same time. Think of fairytales before Disney took them and always promised a happy ending.

I liked Albert’s duology and knew I had to read the full tales. I was not disappointed, enjoying every story. They were all unique and unlike other fairytales I have read. My favorite story has to be “The Sea Cellar”: “At the edge of a great wood, on the shore of an inland sea, is a house where daughters go to die” (p. 145). I was intrigued from that very first line, and, without spoiling anything, I loved the way it ended. In addition to the writing, the book itself is beautiful. The beginning of each story features a red, black, and white illustration. The following pages are decorated with a border that relates to the story. Overall, this book is fantastic. If you like twisted fairytales where even Death himself can’t make things stay dead, this is definitely a book for you!

Available through the Bridges Library System

The Office: A Day at Dunder Mifflin Elementary by Robb Pearlman

Reviewed by Cassidy Hammel (Library Staff)

Fans of the acclaimed TV show the Office will adore this children’s picture book by Robb Pearlman. The employees of Dunder Mifflin are now children attending elementary school! Illustrator Melanie Demmer captures Jim, Pam, Dwight, Michael and the whole office in immediately recognizable characters. While the story teachers your little one about the power of teamwork while problem solving, you will have fun seeking key objects from the show’s storyline in the beautiful illustrations. Look out for Kelly’s birthday mugs, Dwight’s growing beets, his bobblehead and Schrute bucks, Stanley’s crossword, a Dundie Award, Angela’s cat and a stapler floating in Jello, to name my favorites! I do not have any kids myself but had many chuckles with my boyfriend who adores the show as much as I do. I highly recommend it!

Available through the Bridges Library System