LibraryReads: Librarians Announce April Favorites

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry LJ‘s Spring Editors’ Picks highlighted Gabrielle Zevin’s new novel, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry. Apparently it’s a hit with librarians already too, as it tops the list of what you’re reading this month.

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

1. Zevin, Gabrielle. The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry. Algonquin. ISBN 9781616203214. $24.95. F
“A middle-aged bookseller mourning his lost wife, a feisty publisher’s rep, and a charmingly precocious abandoned child come together on a small island off the New England coast in this utterly delightful novel of love and second chances.”—Beth Mills, New Rochelle Public Library, New Rochelle, NY
See LJ’s Starred Review

Frog Music2. Donoghue, Emma. Frog Music. Little, Brown. ISBN 9780316324687. $27. F
“Donoghue returns to historical fiction in this latest offering, based on the unsolved murder of Jenny Bonnet, a cross-dressing frog catcher with a mysterious past. Set in 1870s San Francisco, this brilliant book includes impeccable historical details, from a smallpox epidemic to period songs.”—Diane Scholl, Batavia Public Library, IL
See LJ’s Starred Review

And the Dark Sacred Night3. Glass, Julia. And the Dark Sacred Night. Pantheon. ISBN 9780307377937. $26.95. F
“Four stars to Julia Glass for this, her best work since Three Junes. We become reacquainted with old characters Malachy, Fenno, and Walter and learn more about their life stories. The individuals are imperfectly human, and perfectly drawn. A wonderful, highly recommended novel.”—Kelly Currie, Delphi Public Library, Delphi, IN
See LJ’s Starred Review

Silence for the Dead4. St. James, Simone. Silence for the Dead. NAL. ISBN 9780451419484. pap. $14. F
“A young nurse working in an isolated hospital for WWI veterans finds herself in over her head. Are the patients in the mysterious estate haunted by their wartime experiences, or something more malevolent? St. James is an up-and-coming author with a flair for combining horror and romance. A great choice for readers of either genre.”—Jenna Persick, Chester County Library, Exton, PA
See LJ’s Starred Review

By Its Cover5. Leon, Donna. By Its Cover: A Commissario Guido Brunetti Mystery. Atlantic Monthly. ISBN 9780802122643. $26. M
“In the 23rd book in this delightful series, Commissario Guido Brunetti is brought in to investigate the theft of pages and maps from rare books. Brunetti is a great character with warmth, style and elegance. Leon’s book enlightens us about Venetian customs and delivers a solid mystery.”—Joanne Genovese, Smithtown Special Library District, Smithtown, NY
See LJ’s Starred Review

Intern's Handbook6. Kuhn, Shane. The Intern’s Handbook: A Thriller. S. &S.. ISBN 9781476733807. $25. F
“How did Shane Kuhn pull this off? He’s written an action-packed, twisting thriller about professional assassins, and–guess what?–it’s funny and romantic, too! In a totally quirky way, of course. You have to read it to believe it.”—Nancy Russell, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH
See Prepub Alert

Love, Nina7. Stibbe, Nina. Love, Nina: A Nanny Writes Home. Little, Brown. ISBN 9780385533508. $25. MEMOIR
“With a unique voice, Stibbe brings 1980s literary Camden back to life in this delightful epistolary memoir. The letters that Stibbe writes to her sister are a hoot, featuring unexpected cooking advice from the great Alan Bennett, and droll commentary on just about everything from Mary-Kay Wilmers.”—Jennifer Estepp, Queens Library, Jamaica, NY
See Prepub Alert

Axe Factor8. Cotterill, Colin. The Axe Factor: A Jimm Juree Mystery. Minotaur. ISBN 9781250043368. $24.99. M
“I love this sharply-written and quirky cozy mystery. Jimm Juree is a wonderful character, slyly funny and insightful, with an oddball cast of family and friends to back her up. Set in coastal Thailand, this is a laugh-out-loud funny mystery with plenty of great twists and turns that will keep readers guessing.”—Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA

Family Life9. Sharmal, Akhil. Family Life. Norton. ISBN 9780393060058. 23.95. F
“The Mishras move from India to New York City in the 1980s in order to give their two sons better educational opportunities. When tragedy strikes, the family tries to recover the optimism and hope that propelled them to America. Beautiful, clear-eyed and compelling, this book packs a powerful punch.”—Anbolyn Potter, Chandler Public Library, Chandler, AZ
See LJ’s Starred Review

On the Rocks10. Duffy, Erin. On the Rocks. Morrow. ISBN 9780062205742. $25.99. F
“After her fiance dumps her on Facebook, Abby retreats to her apartment until her best friend invites her to spend the summer in Newport. This book is for every woman who’s been determined to put things back together after finding herself on the wrong side of social media, in the aftermath of a bad breakup, or elbow deep in Ben & Jerry’s when things fall apart.”—Sara Grochowski, Alpena County George N. Fletcher Public Library, Alpena, MI
See LJ’s Starred Review