LibraryReads: Librarians Announce March Favorites

Circle of WivesHere’s what librarians around the country are reading and loving this month. My pick: Alice LaPlante’s A Circle of Wives, which delves into a spouse’s worst nightmare: finding out that you are an unwitting polygamist.

Interested in getting involved? LibraryReads welcomes recommendations from all public library staff members, not just readers’ advisory experts or credentialed librarians.

1. McHugh, Laura. The Weight of Blood. Spiegel & Grau. ISBN 9780812995206. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780812995213. F
“The Dane family has been keeping secrets in the Ozark town of Henbane for years. An outsider steals the heart of one of the Dane brothers, and the secrets threaten to unravel. When sixteen-year-old Lucy’s friend is found murdered after being missing for a year, Lucy begins to ask questions–the answers to which may destroy her family. Atmospheric and visceral, McHugh’s story is vividly and effectively told.”—Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ 
See LJ’s starred review

2. Pavone, Chris. The Accident. Crown. ISBN 9780385348454. $26. F
“Kudos to Pavone for coming through with another captivating international suspense novel. How ironic that I couldn’t put down a book about Isabel, a literary agent who stays up all night to finish an unsolicited manuscript that’s so explosive, some will kill to keep it from being published. During the 24 hours that Isabel is on the run, readers will be on the edge of their seats. Be prepared to lose some sleep!”—Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI
See LJ’s review

3. Rieger, Susan. The Divorce Papers. Crown. ISBN 9780804137447. $25. F
“When Sophie, a loveable 29-year-old lawyer, gets roped into working on a divorce case, her life takes an unexpected turn. Though this gives her a new perspective on life, it also forces her to confront some unresolved childhood issues. Except for a few tearful, poignant moments, I had a smile on my face for the entire book. Engaging and humorous, this debut epistolary novel has become a favorite read.”—Jennifer Asimakopoulos, Indian Prairie Public Library, Darien, IL

4. Griffiths, Elly. The Outcast Dead. Houghton Harcourt. ISBN 9780547792774. $27. M
“After the bones of the notorious Mother Hook are possibly uncovered in Norfolk, forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway finds herself on the TV. Was Mother Hook truly guilty of child murder?  This is just one strand in a mystery that revolves around children and the people who care for them. One of the most addictive mystery series being written today.”—Janet Lockhart, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

5. Oliver, Lauren. Panic. Harper. ISBN 9780062014559. $17.99. F
“A deadly high-stakes game of Panic takes place in modern-day small town America, and Oliver does a wonderful job making all of it seem real. I loved that the book didn’t take place in a post-apocalyptic future like so many titles do nowadays. Oliver is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!”—Carol Brumfield, Timberland Regional Library, Tumwater, WA

6. LaPlante, Alice. A Circle of Wives. Atlantic Monthly. ISBN 9780802122346. $25. F
“When prominent plastic surgeon Dr. John Taylor is found dead, the police investigation uncovers his secret polygamous life. As the narration alternates between Taylor’s three wives and a young female detective, the story explores the characters’ motivations and relationships. Part psychological thriller and part literary mystery, the end result is wholly captivating reading.”—Melissa DeWild, Kent District Library, Comstock Park, MI
See LJ’s review

7. Cassella, Carol. Gemini. S. & S. ISBN 9781451627930. $25.99. F
“After an unidentified hit-and-run victim is received in ICU, Dr. Charlotte Reese struggles to keep her alive, questioning how far medical technology should go to do so. Meanwhile, in an alternate story, teens Bo and Raney explore their budding friendship and attraction. Book groups will devour this compulsively readable novel with thought-provoking themes. Perfect for readers of Jodi Picoult and Chris Bohjalian.”—Robin Beerbower, Salem Public Library, Salem, OR
See LJ’s starred review

8. McBeth, Colette. Precious Thing.  Minotaur: St. Martin’s. ISBN 9781250041197. $24.99. F
“Clara and Rachel have been friends since high school. Life has intervened and they’ve grown apart, so when Clara invites Rachel for drinks to catch up, it’s a chance to reconnect. But before that can happen, Rachel is called to cover a missing girl story, and the missing girl is Clara. Was she abducted, murdered or did she simply leave on her own?  In the vein of Gone Girl and The Husband’s Secret, this is a fast read that is sure to entertain.”—Robin Nesbitt, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH

9. Laukkanen, Owen. Kill Fee: A Stevens and Windermere Novel. Putnam. ISBN 9780399165528. $26.95. MYS
“In the third book in this series, Carla Windermere and Kirk Stevens find themselves reunited when people around the country seem to be dying from contract hits. Young war veterans, under the influence of a mysterious man, are turning into emotionless killers. Stevens and Windermere try piecing together who’s behind the crimes, but keep falling one step behind. Reminiscent of Thomas Perry’s novels, and fast-paced.”—Lora  Bruggeman, Indian Prairie Public Library, Darien, IL

10. Kleon, Austin. Show Your Work! 10 Ways To Show Your Creativity and Get Discovered. Workman. ISBN 9780761178972. pap. $11.95. ARTS
Show Your Work! is a wonderful follow-up to Austin Kleon’s first book, Steal Like an Artist. Utilizing the same fun, graphic novel-ish type of format, Kleon gives practical recommendations about using the Internet and social media to create a community. I particularly appreciate his advice to concentrate on process, not on product, and the rest will follow. A must-read for anyone involved in the creative process.”—Rebekka Hanson, Madison Library District, Rexburg, ID

Henrietta Verma About Henrietta Verma

Henrietta Verma is Senior Editorial Communications Specialist at NISO, the National Information Standards Organization, Baltimore, and was formerly the reviews editor at Library Journal.