LibraryReads: Librarians Announce May Favorites

At Simon & Schuster’s recent spring preview, several librarians, unbidden and with some emotion, thanked the editors present for making available All the Light We Cannot See. Others apparently agree that it’s something special, as it’s made the list of your favorite May titles.

Interested in getting involved in LibraryReads, the monthly list of what librarians are loving? No problem! LibraryReads welcomes recommendations from all public library staff members, not just readers’ advisory experts or credentialed librarians.

We Were Liars1. Lockhart, E. We Were Liars. Delacorte. ISBN 9780385741262; ebk. ISBN 9780375984402. $17.99. F
“This brilliant and heartbreaking novel tells the story of a prestigious family living on a private island off the coast of Massachusetts. Full of love, lies, secrets, no shortage of family dysfunction, and a shocking twist that you won’t see coming. Though this book is written for teens, it shouldn’t be overlooked by anyone looking for a fantastic read.”—Susan Balla, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT



All the Light We Cannot See 2. Doerr, Anthony. All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel. Scribner. ISBN 9781476746586; ebk. ISBN 9781476746609. $27.99. F
“Set during World War II Europe, this novel is sobering without being sentimental. The tension builds as the alternating, parallel stories of Werner and Marie-Laure unfold, and their paths cross. I highly recommend this beautiful and compelling story.”—Kelly Currie, Delphi Public Library, Delphi, IN
See LJ’s Starred Review



The Bees3. Paull, Laline.The Bees: A Novel. Ecco. ISBN 9780062331151; ebk. ISBN 9780062331168. $25.99. SF
“This book is set entirely in a beehive, but the novel and its characters are so beautifully rendered that it could have been set anywhere. Societal codes and social mores combine with the ancient behavior rituals of bees, bringing forth a remarkable story that is sure to be a book club favorite.”—Ilene Lefkowitz, Denville Public Library, Denville, NJ
See LJ’s Starred Review


Delicious! 4. Reichl, Ruth. Delicious!: A Novel. Random. ISBN 9781400069620; ebk. 9780679604617. $27. F
“Billie leaves college to take a job with a soon-to-be disbanded food magazine. What follows is an intriguing story involving dusty archives, long-forgotten letters written during World War II to the illustrious James Beard, and a young woman in New York City who learns to trust her culinary talents. This novel is a delectable feast.”—Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI
See LJ’s Starred Review


The Forgotten Seamstress 5. Trenow, Liz. The Forgotten Seamstress. Sourcebooks Landmark. ISBN 9781402282485; ebk. ISBN 9781402282492. pap. $14.99. F
“Two women’s stories, separated by close to 100 years, connect through a patchwork quilt. Carolyn finds a quilt in her mother’s attic and is intrigued by its origin, and quiltmaker Maria’s story is told through transcripts. Trenow carefully stitches together a novel about family secrets, using many interesting details about fabrics, needlework, and textile conservation. A strong sense of place and well-told story make this book superior women’s fiction.”—Leslie DeLooze, Richmond Memorial Library, Batavia, NY


Bird Box6. Malerman, Josh. Bird Box: A Novel. Ecco. ISBN 9780062259653; ebk. ISBN 9780062259677. $25.99. F
“Close your eyes! Don’t look! Something is out there that will drive you mad if you see it. Is it an alien invasion? An environmental toxin? Two sisters, Malorie and Shannon, embark on a journey seeking safety and other survivors. I was unable to put this book down. Horror at its best, not graphic, but truly creepy and scary. Highly recommended for fans of psychological suspense.”—Mary Vernau, Tyler Public Library, Tyler, TX
See LJ’s Review



Bittersweet7. Beverly-Whittemore, Miranda. Bittersweet: A Novel. Crown. ISBN 9780804138567; ebk. ISBN 9780804138574. $25. F
“As unlikely a pair of roommates as you’re ever likely to meet: plain, working class Mabel Dagmar and beautiful, privileged Genevra Winslow. Mabel spends the summer in the Winslows’ idyllic lakefront property in Vermont, dreaming of being one of them–only to discover that being a Winslow is not all sunshine, yachts, and ease. Being a Winslow means keeping very disturbing family secrets.”—Nancy Russell, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH  (Reviewed in LJ 4/1/14)



Delancey8. Wizenberg, Molly. Delancey: A Man, a Woman, a Restaurant, a Marriage. S. & S. ISBN 9781451655094; ebk ISBN 9781451655124. $25. COOKING
“As Wizenberg tells the story of how she and her husband opened the successful pizza restaurant Delancey, I felt like I was hanging out with a close friend. She also shares delicious sounding recipes for the everyday food they made at home during the hectic days of launching the restaurant. Wizenberg’s writing is so sincere and relatable.”—Michelle Marx, Eagle Valley Library District, Avon, CO
See LJ’s Starred Review


Sixth Grave on the Edge9. Jones, Darynda. Sixth Grave on the Edge: A Novel. St. Martin’s. ISBN 9781250045638. $25.99. FANTASY
“The continuing adventures of P.I. Charley Davidson and Grim Reaper (not as mutually exclusive as one would think) are just as delightful as in previous books, with new characters including a wonderfully snarky new demon. Jones expands on Charley’s existing relationships and supernatural powers. It’s the perfect paranormal-romance-mystery blend that you never knew you always wanted.”—Donna Matturri, Pickerington Public Library, Pickerington, OH



The Blessings10. Juska, Elise. The Blessings. Grand Central. ISBN 9781455574032; ebk. ISBN 9781455574018. $24. F
“This finely-crafted story is told through a series of Blessing family members’ points of view over a two-decade span of time. A deceptively small book with very big themes, this novel is gentle and wise. It made me look at my own close and extended family with new eyes; now I see the ways in which we are alike, not the ways in which we are different. A transformative reading experience. Highly recommended.”—Janet Schneider, Great Neck Library, Great Neck, NY
See LJ’s Starred Review