Becci's Picks

The Curse of the Pharaoh (Agatha: Girl of Mystery #1) Cover Image
By Steve Stevenson, Stefano Turconi (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780448462172
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grosset & Dunlap - February 7th, 2013

February 2013: This is the beginning of a new juvenile fiction series. It is Nancy Drew for a new generation. In this adventure Agatha and her brother Dashiell travel to Egypt to solve a mystery. I love the subtle references to adult mystery characters and the tidbits of historical information educate the readers on the exotic locations. I can’t wait for the next book, The Pearl of Bengel.

Suspect Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399161483
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Putnam Adult - January 22nd, 2013

February 2013: LAPD cop Scott James is haunted by the ambush which seriously him and killed his partner. To help James recover he is assigned to the K9 division and given a new partner, a German Shepard healing from wounds suffered in Afghanistan. Together they must pull together and solve the mystery behind the ambush which changed James’ life. I hope this is the start of a new series by Robert Crais.

The Absent One Cover Image
By Jussi Adler-Olsen, K. E. Semmel (Translator)
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ISBN: 9780525952893
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Dutton Books - August 21st, 2012

January 2013: This is the second in his series featuring Detective Carl Morck of the Copenhagen police department. A case file mysteriously lands on Morck’s desk but a person is already serving time for the crime. As he investigates he meets Kimmie, a woman living on the street who was part of the boarding school group involved in the murder many years before. Kimmie is in hiding and as her reasons are gradually revealed we find the wrong person has been jailed. I really enjoy this series.

The Shadow Girls Cover Image
By Henning Mankell, Ebba Segerberg (Translator)
ISBN: 9781595581921
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: New Press - October 16th, 2012

January 2013: This is the story of Jesper Humlin, a moderately successful published poet. He wants to continue his career as a poet until he meets three young woman. The woman are part of the unseen immigrants to Sweden. Leyla is from Iran, Tanya is from Russia and Tea-Bag is from Nigeria and they have stories to tell. From a master, Mankell is writing the immigration stories for all to know the struggles some will endure for a better life.

Thomas Jefferson's Creme Brulee: How a Founding Father and His Slave James Hemings Introduced French Cuisine to America Cover Image
ISBN: 9781594745782
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Quirk Books - September 18th, 2012

January 2013: This Thomas Jefferson book concentrates on his culinary contributions to American table. Did you know he brought Mac and Cheese back from Paris? His years in Paris were spent collecting recipes, wine and plants which are now common in the United States. This book is for foodies as well as history buffs.

Literary Knits: 30 Patterns Inspired by Favorite Books Cover Image
ISBN: 9781118216064
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Wiley (TP) - November 1st, 2012

Who knew you could knit items related to your favorite literature but this book has it all. How about knitting a muff to go along with Anna Karenina or mittens for Little Women? This is a perfect gift for readers and knitters.

Edwardian Cooking: 80 Recipes Inspired by Downton Abbey's Elegant Meals Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781611457780
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Arcade Publishing - November 13th, 2012

The enormous popularity of Downton Abbey has spun off many companion books. I really like this cookbook for its snippets of history and interesting recipes.

Ski Town Soups: Signature Soups from World Class Ski Resorts Cover Image
ISBN: 9780985729004
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ski Town Group Ltd - June 21st, 2012

This beautiful cookbook showcases Ski Resorts with photography and food. The mouthwatering soup recipes will make you eager to hang up the skis and head indoors for a delicious meal. This will make an excellent gift for anyone visiting the area or those of us that live and play here.

Love Anthony Cover Image
ISBN: 9781439164686
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery Books - September 25th, 2012

The isolation of island life is the perfect place to heal for Olivia Donatelli. Her life was shattered by the death of her only son and the end of her marriage. “Love Anthony” is a sort of love letter to that loss and renewal.

The Black House Cover Image
ISBN: 9781454901273
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Silveroak - October 2nd, 2012

Sergeant Fin Macleod is sent back to his home on the Isle of Lewis in the Hebrides to investigate a brutal murder. To find a murderer he must face the painful reminders of a life he left behind. This literary thriller has been an international bestseller for the a very good reason. The beautiful writing and storytelling is hard to put down. I highly recommend it.

And When She Was Good Cover Image
ISBN: 9780061706875
Availability: Special Order
Published: William Morrow - August 1st, 2012

Laura Lippman is one of the Literary Sojourn authors for 2012. Her new novel is the story of Heloise, a suburban madame. Heloise could be your neighbor. By all appearances she has a successful career and is raising a well rounded young son. However her checkered past is beginning to catch up with her. This is a page-turner seeking to answer the question of how far a mother will go to protect herself and her son. Lippman gives us characters we care about and a story we can't put down.

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Gone Girl Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307588364
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Crown Publishing Group (NY) - June 5th, 2012

This book has already been a staff pick by Kim Brack but I wanted to second her excellent choice. Gillian Flynn has crafted an excellent thriller. It is a thriller about a marriage with many unexpected twists. I loved it.

Yes, Chef: A Memoir Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385342605
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Random House - June 26th, 2012

Top chef, Marcus Samuelsson shares his story from his birth in Ethiopia to his new family in Sweden and finally to to his wildly successful restaurant in Harlem, New York. If you are a foodie you will enjoy this rising superstar’s story. If you love interesting memoirs this is a book for you.

The Age of Miracles Cover Image
ISBN: 9780812992977
Availability: Special Order
Published: Random House - June 26th, 2012

The earth’s rotation has mysteriously slowed and the days are getting longer. The effects of this change on the planet is told through the eyes of 12 year old Julia. We experience this superb novel through her eyes as she comes to terms with her own struggles with the end of adolescence and on a larger sense she must also deal with the ever changing struggle of the world as everything changes. Excellent reading.

Hanging Hill Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780802120069
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Atlantic Monthly Press - February 7th, 2012

The body of a young girl turns up brutally murdered along a towpath in Bath, England. Zoe Benedict, the local police detective leads the investigation which opens her own family wounds and will lead to dark unexpected places. “Hanging Hill” is the novel to follow a win for the 2012 Edgar Award for the Best Novel “Gone” by Mo Hayder. An author masterful at frighteningly real suspense. The books by Mo Hayder should not be missed.

The Lola Quartet Cover Image
ISBN: 9781609530792
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Unbridled Books - May 1st, 2012

“The Lola Quartet” is the story of five friends. A girlfriend of a member of the quartet sails a paper airplane on stage during the last concert with the words, “I’m sorry” written on it. She then leaves town and is mostly forgotten by him. Years later Gavin Sasaki’s life is unraveling and those words begin to haunt him. He returns to his hometown to finally put an end to the mystery. This tantalizing novel explores lives where seemingly innocent actions have lifetime consequences for all involved.

The Expats Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307956354
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Crown Publishing Group (NY) - March 6th, 2012

Kate Moore and her family have moved to Luxembourg for her husband’s job. Kate is settling into ne wrole of stay-at-home mother in a foreign country. It is a role far different from the secret spy job she left in Washington. Suddenly the new friends and even her husband begin to raise suspicions to Kate about the new life in Europe. Is it just Kate suspicious nature or are things not quite what she expected? The Expats is a very gripping read about marriage, family and the spy game.

Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake Cover Image
ISBN: 9781400069347
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Random House - April 24th, 2012

This is a book for all women. Anna Quindlen summarizes her life from a very young woman to a woman facing her sixties. She celebrates her life in all the many phases, the ups and the downs. Through her experiences we can begin to understand how our own lives are not so different and it is how we choose to handle them that makes us grow towards a comfortable age.

The Girl in the Green Raincoat: A Tess Monaghan Novel (Tess Monaghan Mysteries) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780061938368
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow & Company - January 18th, 2011

Laura Lippman is one of the Literary Sojourn Author’s for 2012. This short novel was serialized in the New York Times. It is part Rear Window and part The Daughter of Time. Lippman’s ongoing protagonist is confined to bed awaiting the birth of her first child. Her only entertainment is watching a lady in a green raincoat walk her dog. Then one day only the dog show up running free with his lease hanging loose. What happened to the lady becomes Tess Monahan obsession. I enjoyed the hunt.

The Professionals Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399157899
Availability: Special Order
Published: Putnam Adult - March 29th, 2012

Owen Laukkanen is a guy to watch. This debut thriller is an unexpected fast ride. You find yourself cheering for the “bad” guys and hoping the state investigator Kirk Steves and FBI agent Carla Windermere have success in stopping them. The professionals are a group of four friends, unable to find jobs, decide to kidnap wealthy midlevel executives for minor ransom amounts and then return them unharmed to their families. The plan works until they kidnap the wrong person. This is the first in a series and I will look forward to more.

Restless in the Grave Cover Image
ISBN: 9780312559137
Availability: Special Order
Published: Minotaur Books - February 14th, 2012

A worthy addition to the Kate Shugak mystery series set in Alaska. Stabenow brings her two series characters together to investigate the death of a local businessman. Aviation and mining play a big role in the commerce of Alaska and bring an element of danger to those involved. Is it murder or just an accident that killed Finn Grant? I like the way the series gives a vivid description of life in Alaska.

The Snow Child Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316175678
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Reagan Arthur Books - February 1st, 2012

This is my second book with an Alaskan setting. Snow, cold,
loneliness, isolation, love and happiness all find a place in this novel. The story of a husband and wife who build a snow child out of the first snow of the season. I really liked this book.

The Last Musketeer Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062048394
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: HarperCollins - May 22nd, 2012

I really liked this young adult book. It is the story of young Greg Rich who has time traveled back in time to the Court of King Louis XIII and the Musketeers. The Musketeers are only teenagers when Greg meets them. His parents have been imprisoned and the group must rescue them before their pending execution. The author gives us a vivid description of life in Paris at this time.

The Detour Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616950491
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Soho Press - February 14th, 2012

The Detour” is a story about art, beauty, loyalty, family and coming to terms with these is an unexpected place. Ernst Vogler is given a simple task to travel to Rome and escort The Disc Thrower statue back to Munich for The Third Reich’s Sonderprojeke. He is given two young Italian drivers to get the statue to the train station. An adventure begins when the men decide it is unsafe to place an Italian treasure on the train so they decide they must drive it to Munich. Along the way Ernst Vogler’s life changes forever. I could not put the book down.

The Innocent: A Vanessa Michael Munroe Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307717122
Availability: Special Order
Published: Crown - December 27th, 2011

It is not often that you meet a female character in crime fiction to rival Vanessa Michael Munroe. She is tough, thinks quickly and acts even quicker. She has an empathy that makes her interesting. Munroe was raised in a cult known as The Chosen which took her away from family and friends. She has made a new life and longed to keep The Chosen in her past. A close friend has ask her to help find a child held by The Chosen. She will wage a battle against her own feelings and the need to save one more innocent from the group. This is a whirlwind thriller.