27. November 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Fiction, Lisa, Mystery, Science Fiction

The Lambkins by Eve Bunting, read by Lisa, on 11/01/2013

Kyle Wilson was the size of a regular ninth grader until crazy Mrs. Shepherd injected him with a shrinking formula. Now he’s a prisoner in her dollhouse, the fourth Lambkin in Mrs. Shepherd’s collection! She loves them and would never harm them, she says . . . as long as they don’t make her angry.

One thing is certain. Kyle and the others must figure out how to escape, and fast.

01. November 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Lisa

The Life All Around Me By Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons, read by Lisa, on 10/31/2013

In this sequel to Gibbons’s beloved classic Ellen Foster, Ellen, now fifteen, is settled into a permanent home with a new mother. Strengthened by adversity and blessed with enough intelligence to design a salvation for herself, she still feels ill at ease. But while she holds fast to the shreds of her child­hood—humoring her best friend, Stuart, who is determined to marry her; and protecting her old neighbor, slow-witted Starletta—she begins to negotiate her way into a larger world.  With a singular mix of perspicacity, naïveté, and compas­sion, Ellen draws us into her life and makes us fall in love with her all over again.

22. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa, Teen Books

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green, read by Lisa, on 10/18/2013

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.

22. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons, read by Lisa, on 10/09/2013

“When I was little I would think of ways to kill my daddy. I would figure out this or that way and run it down through my head until it got easy.” So begins the tale of Ellen Foster, the brave and engaging heroine of Kay Gibbons’s first novel, which won the Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Institute of Arts and Letters. Wise, funny, affectionate, and true, Ellen Foster is, as Walker Percy called it, “The real thing. Which is to say, a lovely, sometimes heartwrenching novel. . . . [Ellen Foster] is as much a part of the backwoods South as a Faulkner character—and a good deal more endearing.”

22. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Lisa

Anne of Avonlea by L.M. Montgomery, read by Lisa, on 10/02/2013

At sixteen, Anne is grown up…almost. Her gray eyes shine like evening stars, but her red hair is still as peppery as her temper. In the years since she arrived at Green Gables as a freckle-faced orphan, she has earned the love of the people of Avonlea and a reputation for getting into scrapes. But when Anne begins her job as the new schoolteacher, the real test of her character begins. Along with teaching the three Rs, she is learning how complicated life can be when she meddles in someone else’s romance, finds two new orphans at Green Gables, and wonders about the strange behaviour of the very handsome Gilbert Blythe. As Anne enters womanhood, her adventures touch the heart and the funny bone.

04. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fantasy, Fiction, Lisa

The Last Present by Wendy Mass, read by Lisa, on 09/28/2013

Amanda and Leo have a history with birthdays. Now their friend’s little sister, Grace, has fallen into a strange frozen state on her birthday, and Amanda and Leo must travel in time in order to fix whatever’s wrong. As they journey back to each of Grace’s birthdays, they start seeing all sorts of patterns . . . which raise all sorts of questions.

Amanda and Leo are going to have to unravel the threads of the past and present – and travel much further than they ever imagined – if they’re going to save Grace. Luckily, a little birthday magic always helps in the charming and funny Willow Falls series by Wendy Mass, where everything is possible and there are no coincidences.

04. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt, read by Lisa, on 09/19/2013

1987. There’s only one person who has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus, and that’s her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can only be herself in Finn’s company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June’s world is turned upside down. But Finn’s death brings a surprise acquaintance into June’s life—someone who will help her to heal, and to question what she thinks she knows about Finn, her family, and even her own heart.

At Finn’s funeral, June notices a strange man lingering just beyond the crowd. A few days later, she receives a package in the mail. Inside is a beautiful teapot she recognizes from Finn’s apartment, and a note from Toby, the stranger, asking for an opportunity to meet. As the two begin to spend time together, June realizes she’s not the only one who misses Finn, and if she can bring herself to trust this unexpected friend, he just might be the one she needs the most.

04. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fantasy, Fiction, Lisa

13 Gifts by Wendy Mass, read by Lisa, on 09/05/2013

When Tara, a self-proclaimed shrinking violet, steals the school mascot, a goat, in order to make some friends with the popular crowd and gets caught, she gets herself in a heap of trouble. In addition, her parents decide that instead of taking her on their summer trip to Madagascar to study the courtship rituals of the Bamboo Lemur, she must go stay with her aunt, uncle, and bratty cousin Emily St. Claire in Willow Falls. Tara thinks it’s a good time to start over; she’ll be turning 13 after all, so she might as well make the best of it and perhaps even attempt to break out of her shell (in a non-criminal manner). What Tara doesn’t know is that this charmed town has something big in store for her on her 13th birthday. It’s not a typical birthday. But then again, nothing is Willow Falls is exactly typical!

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

The Penderwicks on Gardam Street by Jeanne Birdsall, read by Lisa, on 08/30/2013

The Penderwick sisters are home on Gardam Street and ready for an adventure But the adventure they get isnt quite what they had in mind. Mr. Penderwicks sister has decided its time for him to start dating–and the girls know that can only mean one thing: disaster. Enter the Save-Daddy Plan–a plot so brilliant, so bold, so funny, that only the Penderwick girls could have come up with it. Its high jinks, big laughs, and loads of family warmth as the Penderwicks triumphantly return.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

The Penderwicks at Point Mouette by Jeanne Birdsall, read by Lisa, on 08/25/2013

When summer comes around, its off to the beach for Rosalind . . . and off to Maine with Aunt Claire for the rest of the Penderwick girls, as well as their old friend, Jeffrey.
That leaves Skye as OAP (oldest available Penderwick)–a terrifying notion for all, but for Skye especially. Things look good as they settle into their cozy cottage, with a rocky shore, enthusiastic seagulls, a just-right corner store, and a charming next-door neighbor. But can Skye hold it together long enough to figure out Rosalinds directions about not letting Batty explode? Will Janes Love Survey come to a tragic conclusion after she meets the alluring Dominic? Is Batty–contrary to all accepted wisdom–the only Penderwick capable of carrying a tune? And will Jeffrey be able to keep peace between the girls . . . these girls who are his second, and most heartfelt, family?
Its a rollicking ride as the Penderwicks continue their unforgettable adventures in a story filled with laughs and joyful tears.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Lisa

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson, read by Lisa, on 08/21/2013

Miss Pettigrew is about a governess sent by an employment agency to the wrong address, where she encounters a glamorous night-club singer, Miss LaFosse. ‘the sheer fun, the light-heartedness’ in this wonderful 1938 book ‘feels closer to a Fred Astair

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Fiction, Lisa, Mystery

The Ghost Sitter by Peni R. Griffin, read by Lisa, on 08/12/2013

For fifty years, ten-year-old Susie has waited for her parents and sister to come back. Each new family who moves into her home seems not to notice her, except for the young children. Susie likes children. She even likes baby-sitting, but can she baby-sit forever? Why can’t she get anyone else’s attention?

Charlotte is looking forward to a great summer in her new home, despite her many baby-sitting duties. But someone else seems to be helping her watch her little brother. Someone only he can see. Gradually Charlotte realizes her all-too-normal house is haunted-by the ghost of a girl who doesn’t or won’t realize that she’s dead.

Set around the Fourth of July, this story offers two perspectives-one of the living and one of the dead-in a wholly entertaining and thought-provoking way.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Fiction, Lisa, Mystery

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made by Stephan Pastis, read by Lisa, on 08/11/2013

Take Timmy Failure — the clueless, comically self-confident CEO of the best detective agency in town, perhaps even the nation. Add his impressively lazy business partner, a very large polar bear named Total. Throw in the Failuremobile — Timmy’s moms Segway — and what you have is Total Failure, Inc., a global enterprise destined to make Timmy so rich his mother wont have to stress out about the bills anymore. Of course, Timmy’s plan does not include the four-foot-tall female whose name shall not be uttered. And it doesn’t include Rollo Tookus, who is so obsessed with getting into “Stanfurd” that he cant carry out a no-brainer spy mission. From the offbeat creator of” Pearls Before Swine” comes an endearingly bumbling hero in a caper whose peerless hilarity is accompanied by a whodunit twist. With perfectly paced visual humor, Stephan Pastis gets you snorting with laughter, then slyly carries the joke a beat further — or sweetens it with an unexpected poignant moment — making this a comics-inspired story (the first in a new series) that truly stands apart from the pack.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Fantasy, Fiction, Lisa

The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman, read by Lisa, on 08/10/2013

A major new work from “a writer to make readers rejoice” (Minneapolis Star Tribune)—a moving story of memory, magic, and survival

Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn’t thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she’d claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy.

Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what.

A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. It is a stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly’s wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Fantasy, Fiction, Lisa

A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff, read by Lisa, on 08/08/2013

Told in multiple viewpoints, A Tangle of Knots is a magnificent puzzle. In a slightly magical world where everyone has a Talent, eleven-year-old Cady is an orphan with a phenomenal Talent for cake baking. But little does she know that fate has set her on a journey from the moment she was born. And her destiny leads her to a mysterious address that houses a lost luggage emporium, an old recipe, a family of children searching for their own Talents, and a Talent Thief who will alter her life forever.  However, these encounters hold the key to Cady’s past and how she became an orphan.  If she’s lucky, fate may reunite her with her long-lost parent.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa · Tags:

Sparrow Road by Sheila O'Connor, read by Lisa, on 08/05/2013

In this affecting and beautifully written story of family and forgiveness, 12-year-old Raine spends the summer at a mysterious artists colony and discovers a secret about her past.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown, read by Lisa, on 08/03/2013

Born a bastard, Molly Bolt is adopted by a dirt-poor Southern couple who want something better for their daughter. Molly plays doctor with the boys, beats up Leroy the tub and loses her virginity to her girlfriend in sixth grade.

As she grows to realize she’s different, Molly decides not to apologize for that. In no time she mesmerizes the head cheerleader of Ft. Lauderdale High and captivates a gorgeous bourbon-guzzling heiress.

But the world is not tolerant. Booted out of college for moral turpitude, an unrepentant, penniless Molly takes New York by storm, sending not a few female hearts aflutter with her startling beauty, crackling wit and fierce determination to become the greatest filmmaker that ever lived.

Critically acclaimed when first published, Rubyfruit Jungle has only grown in reputation as it has reached new generations of readers who respond to its feisty and inspiring heroine.

06. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

Finally by Wendy Mass, read by Lisa, on 08/01/2013

After her twelfth birthday, Rory checks off a list of things she is finally allowed to do, but unexpected consequences interfere with her involvement in the movie being shot at her school, while a weird prediction starts to make sense.

30. July 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Informational Book, Lisa, NonFiction

Wolves and Other Wild Dogs by Mary E. Reid, read by Lisa, on 07/29/2013

Questions and answers explore the world of wild dogs, with an emphasis on wolves.

30. July 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Lisa

The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall, read by Lisa, on 07/27/2013

A National Book Award winner, this modern classic is perfect for fans of Noel Streatfeild and Edward Eager.
This summer the Penderwick sisters have a wonderful surprise: a holiday on the grounds of a beautiful estate called Arundel. Soon they are busy discovering the summertime magic of Arundels sprawling gardens, treasure-filled attic, tame rabbits, and the cook who makes the best gingerbread in Massachusetts. But the best discovery of all is Jeffrey Tifton, son of Arundels owner, who quickly proves to be the perfect companion for their adventures.
The icy-hearted Mrs. Tifton is not as pleased with the Penderwicks as Jeffrey is, though, and warns the new friends to stay out of trouble. Which, of course, they will–wont they? One things for sure: it will be a summer the Penderwicks will never forget.
Deliciously nostalgic and quaintly witty, this is a story as breezy and carefree as a summer day.