RA Ready: A Beginner’s Guide to Genre Fiction | Readers’ Advisory

There are few things more satisfying for a librarian than uniting a reader with a great book (or two or ten). But many library staffers experience anxiety when asked to recommend titles in genres they don’t read themselves and with which they are unfamiliar.

Living on the Edge with Thrillers | Readers’ Advisory

Thriller literature tends to have a bad reputation, and it’s unclear why that stigma exists. The majority of best-selling books today fall into this genre, and the writing, layout, characters, and plot can be at least as complex as in other genre fiction.

Taking the Mystery Out of Mystery | Readers’ Advisory

Mysteries appeal to the intellect. They offer a puzzle, clues to solve it, and red herrings meant to be misleading. Some readers derive satisfaction from solving the mystery before the detective does. Others prefer the surprise of a twist ending.

The Young, the Psycho, the War-torn, the Aging, & the Beachy | What We’re Reading & Watching

This week, LJand School Library Journal, staffers contemplate mortality, parse a prequel, witness war and its effects on “normal” people, and escape to Nantucket.

Waxing Poetic | The Reader’s Shelf

Author Colum McCann wrote in the Guardian that “poets have their fingers on a different pulse.” The creators of the following novels skillfully position poetry at the center of their tales, putting their own fingers on that very beat.

Secular Buddhism, the Christian Right, Prison Ministries, Faith Memoirs | Spirituality & Religion Reviews

A challenging and conversant exploration of Buddhism; an illuminating and erudite history of the cross over time; Stellman’s honest account will find resonance among fans of popular faith narratives; while it cannot stand on its own, this work can serve as a pocket companion to Day or a source of quiet meditation

From Debuters (Mukherjee, Hogsett) to Award Winners (Bouman, Peden, Kutscher) | Mystery Reviews

A number of the authors reviewed this month have been nominees or award winners. Of special note are several debuts with prize-winning potential, such as Abir Mukherjee’s historical A Rising Man, and Annie Hogsett’s Too Lucky To Live

Spring Cookbooks | Wyatt’s World

With holiday feast days, the opening of farmers markets, and longed-for seasonal favorites finally showing up in stores, spring is an excellent time to reevaluate cookbook collections.

Fiction from Beck, Freeman, Patrick, Peterson, Weir, and First-Timer Konig | Xpress Reviews

Beck keeps the pages turning with plenty of suspense; fans of Freeman’s series should enjoy this fast-paced new addition; for readers who were horse-crazy girls; novels about second chances abound, but Patrick’s second novel rises to the top; Peterson’s book has a bit of an identity crisis; a well-written novel that should appeal to fans of Tudor-era fiction

Nonfiction: Gold Rush Artist Bruff, Mountain Man Colter, Vegetable Gardening, the War of 1812 | Xpress Reviews

This book may intrigue the armchair historian with an interest in the Gold Rush; an overview of the life of John Colter (1774–1813); an essential tool for any garden library; for general readers interested in an overview of the War of 1812