2021 Staff Reads

Check out what our staff have to say about these new titles in our collection!

The Exiled Fleet by J. S. Dewes

Review by Jesse

 
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Let me begin by saying that The Exiled Fleet is the second book of The Divide trilogy, tetralogy, etc. Be sure to read The Last Watch first. The Exiled Fleet by J.S. Dewes is a character driven, high-drama, military-lite space opera. Landing somewhere between Star Trek and The Expanse, The Exiled Fleet is a story of a band of soldier sent to guard the edge of the known universe—an edge that is collapsing into the Milky Way galaxy—from an invasion of an alien species. Of course, they are left alone and unsupported and have to figure out how to do what they need to do as well as escape the edge of known space. It’s a good book and the two main characters (whose perspective the book alternates between) are fun and complicated. There’s enough “how-come-these-two-haven’t-kissed-already” energy to keep even fans of romance novels entertained. I give it a 5/7 on my patented 7 star scale. It’s worth a look.

My book this month was The 100 Days of Lenni and Margot. This book follows an incredible, and unlikely, friendship between a 17 year old girl and an 83 year old woman. My favorite part of this book were the main characters; you will instantly fall in love with them. This book was such an easy read because I was completely sucked into the world of Lenni and Margot. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about this book since I finished it, and I already want to reread it. You will not regret bringing Lenni and Margot into your life! My only advice is to come prepared with tissues when you get closer to the end of the book.

The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot by Marianne Cronin

Review by Karrah

 
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The Russian by James Patterson and James O. Born

Review by Andrew

 
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This book was a great read. First, I will say I didn’t know that this book was part of a series, but after reading it I’m glad it is. This book tells the furthering story of Detective Michael Bennett and his 10 children and fiancé Mary Catherine. The case is thrilling to follow since the serial killer has a very distinct and grotesque way of marking his victims. I have since gone back and read the first three books and have come to appreciate and understand the relationships expressed in this book so much more. I had never gone out of my way to read books that weren’t non-fiction before but I’m glad I stumbled upon this series. I also enjoy the way Mr. Patterson writes, these books are quick and easy to read and the story will keep you reading page after page. This story definitely had plenty of twists especially at the end when you finally come to fully understand the name of the book The Russian.

Usborne Understanding Philosophy is a powerful little book giving young people a first look at what makes up the basis of philosophy. Really, I think this book could fit into our youth section and our young adult section because it takes on ideas so metaphysical and so intrapersonal that it will get a middle schooler to become more curious about these topics and will be a realm of thought that high schoolers could dig into. I actually learned a fair amount too because the language gets to the point and the illustrations give way to an easier grasp on all of these big questions posed. The examples used to personify these ideas are both well-known and classical exemplifications of philosophy as well as easy-to-understand examples that are more pointed to youth perspectives. A glossary and a list of famous philosophers are included at the end of the book so readers can review what they have learned and then move forward by now exploring more concepts of reasoning by the philosophers who conceived them. Overall, this is a really simple book that paves the way for growing adolescents to start thinking about big, big questions.

Usborne Understanding Philosophy by Jordan Akpojaro

Review by Paige

 
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If the World Were 100 People by Jackie McCann

Review by Miss Fran

 
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This is a fascinating book explaining statistics of the world in a fashion easy for children to understand. Colorful illustrations and basic graphs are used to illustrate the world’s population, race, DNA, where we live, languages we speak, sources of food and water, and the energy we use. It explores the big question of what life will be like in the year 2050, and some of the things we will need to do to ensure there is enough food and energy for everyone. This is a very thought provoking book homeschoolers and other students will enjoy. All ages are to be sure to learn a few new facts that they did not know before.

I recently jumped on the instant pot band wagon and it has been a life changer! Six Sisters’ Stuff newest cookbook, Instant Cooking, has been a game changer for week night dinners. The cookbook includes recipes in 4 different sections: the basics, main dishes, side dishes, and desserts and snacks, all of which are to be made using an Instant Pot or multicooker. The recipes range in difficulty from two ingredients— like a vegetable and water—to more elaborate recipes, like Chicken Enchilada Lasagna, Balsamic Pot Roast with Gravy, or Loaded Mac and Cheese; however, even the most elaborate of recipes are still extremely simple thanks to the Instant Pot and all of its glory! Not only are the recipes quick and simple, but I loved this cookbook because I could pronounce all of the ingredients and find them all at my local grocery store! No scouring the internet trying to figure out what an ingredient is, followed by searching through specialized grocery stores. The possibilities are endless with Instant Cooking. Need a quick meal to feed your family during the busy school and work week? Done. Having your in-laws over and want to impress them with a fancy meal without standing in front of the stove all evening? Done and done. You will not be disappointed with this cookbook, or any of the Six Sisters’ Stuff cookbooks, for that matter.

Instant Cooking: A Fast, Easy, and Delicious Way to Feed Your Family by Six Sisters’ Stuff

Review by Alyssa

 
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Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

Review by Sara

 
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I listened to Andy Weir’s newest book Project Hail Mary read by Ray Porter. We own in Print, Large Print, and audio. Just to be clear, I am not a “Science Fiction-Space Opera” reader, but this book is going down as one of my top 10 books of the year. Project Hail Mary was so much fun to listen to. Our main character Ryland Grace wakes up alone on a spaceship with two dead crewmates. He doesn’t know his name, or why he’s heading through space. As memory slowly returns he discovers that Earth is in peril and he’s been sent on a desperate mission to find the solution.  Who he meets along the way and the final solution to save earth is a journey of delight for the reader or in my case listener. This was one of my very few 5 star reads.