Each season, Secaucus Library Director Jenifer May will provide eSecaucus with a list of recommended books. Be sure to reserve your copy at the Secaucus Library or click on the book’s title to purchase it from Amazon.
Expanded from the Pulitzer-Prize winning article Fink wrote in 2010, this compelling, tragic work of nonfiction focuses on the events that occurred at Memorial Medical Center and LifeCare treatment facility in New Orleans in the days following Hurricane Katrina. Nearly 2000 people, including patients, doctors, nurses, family and neighboring residents, were stranded at the hospital with only very limited back-up power and supplies. When the crisis was over, 45 patients were dead, some likely victims of panicked euthanasia by the doctors and nurses overseeing their care.
Julia Quinn is the author of one of my all time favorite historical romance novels “How to Marry a Marquis.” Her latest novel, set at a country party in Regency-era England, is light and humorous, with lots of witty banter, well-developed, intelligent characters and smart one-liners. While this is the third book in a series, it works well as a stand-alone novel. As with most historical romances, it is written for an adult audience; I’d consider it a PG-13 by movie standards.
James Beard Award-winning author Anya von Bremzen tells of her attempts to recreate ten special Russian and Soviet dishes while cooking at home in present-day America with her mother, who brought her to the United States from the USSR in 1974. The dishes are also used to tell the history of the Soviet Union throughout the 20th Century as well as the story of Anya’s family in Turkestan, Odessa, Moscow and the United States.
As readers of Jane Austen might remember, Longbourn is the home of Lizzie Bennet, the heroine of Pride and Prejudice. In Baker’s novel, Austen’s characters– the Bennets, Mr. Collins, and especially Mr. Wickham– come and go, but the story stays firmly below stairs, focusing on the life and loves of Sarah, an orphaned housemaid taken in and trained by the Bennet’s housekeeper. Like Pride and Prejudice, Longbourn tells a story of love, family, hope and self-discovery featuring a bold and intelligent heroine who is determined to find her own happily ever after.
This is a great novel for Halloween, featuring a gothic love-triangle between famed horror writer Edgar Allan Poe, struggling children’s author Fanny Osgood and Poe’s young, dying wife Virginia. Set in New York City in 1845, Cullen uses the location to bring in other Manhattan-based writers of the era– Whitman, Louisa May Alcott, even Horace Greeley– for lighter cameos in an essentially dark tale.
If you read this book in the presence of another person, be prepared to hand the book over to them, as you will inevitably be laughing and completely incapable of explaining why this collection of self-illustrated autobiographical stories is so funny. Based on her popular blog, Brosh draws readers into her weirdly wonderful world with accounts of finding a strange but sweet letter from her 10 year old self written to the adult Allie, helping her none-too-bright dog to cheat on doggie intelligence tests, and much more. The book also has a more serious side, as Brosh alternates her more humorous material with achingly real accounts of her experiences with ADHD and depression.
Thomas King is not a historian, and as his wife points out in his prologue, this is not exactly a history. In this darkly witty, challenging nonfiction work, King tells the story of interactions between Native Americans and European settlers in the US and Canada from the fifteenth century to the present day, laced heavily with his own opinions and insights as a writer, academic and Native Rights activist.
This novel, shortlisted for the Booker prize, follows the Calcutta-born Mitra brothers as their lives travel on divergent paths through the 1960s. While Subhash pursues an advanced degree in the United States, his younger brother Udayan becomes involved in an underground revolutionary organization in India. After tragedy befalls Udayan, Subhash returns to India to help his family, and must make choices that will change the course of his life.