Book Sketches

Depression & Other Magic Tricks by Sabrina Benaim

Wed, 12/13/2017 - 5:50pm -- BHanley

Depression is a difficult subject to discuss in any form: in public, with friends or family, or privately with a therapist. Finding words to describe the feelings and emotions one is experiencing can be like threading a needle. Sabrina Benaim’s debut collection of poetry titled Depression & Other Magic Tricks explores themes of mental health, love, and family with surprising verve and honesty. Benaim writes with an approachable wit and unguarded empathy.

The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

Mon, 12/11/2017 - 1:40pm -- JGranatino

“No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic. And never, ever fall in love.” Susanna Owens knows her family legacy well and is determined her children – Frances, Bridget and Vincent – will never fall victim to the family curse. During a summer visit to their Aunt Isabelle, the siblings uncover the family secret and begin to try to find a way to escape the curse.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

Thu, 12/07/2017 - 12:09pm -- JGranatino

While Shadow awaits his release from prison, he is told his wife has been killed in a car accident along with his best friend. With no home to speak of or job to return to, he takes an offer from the mysterious Mr. Wednesday to be an errand boy, chauffer and bodyguard. Every culture has its gods, brought to America as immigrants arrived in droves.

Creating Mandalas with Sacred Geometry: color and draw mandalas using ancient principles by Susanne F. Fincher

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 4:06pm -- JGranatino

Geometric mandala designs, microcosmic symbols representing the order of the universe, have been used as ritual and religious symbols in Hindu and Buddhist art; they can also be seen in Christian art works such as the rose window of Chartres Cathedral, and in the complex geometric motifs found in Islamic art.  Carl Jung noticed these circular designs appearing in the dream state, reflective of a particular condition of inn

The Lost Art of Good Conversation: a mindful way to connect with others and enrich everyday life by Sakyong Mipham

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 2:36pm -- JGranatino

This little guidebook by Sakyong Mipham, son of Tibetan Buddhist Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, points out that although we are living in an age of technological sophistication and relentless connectivity, paradoxically, many of us seem more challenged in being able to sustain a simple conversation.

Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 12:40pm -- JGranatino

Congressional intern Aviva Grossman, naïve and starry-eyed, entered into an affair with the married congressman she worked for. Publicly disgraced, pregnant and without prospects, she moves to a remote town in Maine, changes her name and reinvents herself as an event planner. Years later, she is encouraged to run for public office and inevitably, her past catches up with her.

Dear Fahrenheit 451: love and heartbreak in the stacks by Annie Spence

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 11:22am -- JGranatino

As most librarians know, weeding is an essential part of keeping the library collection relevant and fresh. Annie Spence, a librarian in the Midwest, has written both love letters and breakup notes to many of the titles she has come across in her career as she moved through the stacks, deciding which to spare and which to delete.

Vexed With Devils: manhood and witchcraft in Old and New England by Erika Gasser

Sat, 10/28/2017 - 4:13pm -- JGranatino

Unlike many studies that have focused exclusively upon witchcraft-possession cases in Salem and Essex County, MA, Gasser’s well-documented and researched book examines these occurrences as a “transatlantic” phenomenon, happening in England as well as in colonial New England. Gasser is particularly interested in “patriarchal imperatives” used to control both men and women of that time.

Basic Witches: how to summon success, banish drama, and raise hell with your coven by Jaya Saxena and Jess Zimmerman

Sat, 10/28/2017 - 12:14pm -- JGranatino

This little book explores the impact of witches: in movies, television, and books, in fashion, and in popular culture. It examines the symbolic significance of objects and practices associated with witches, from riding broomsticks to reading tarot cards and tea leaves.

The Dinner by Herman Koch

Sat, 10/28/2017 - 11:00am -- JGranatino

On a lovely summer eve in Amsterdam, two couples meet for dinner at a fashionable restaurant. As the evening progresses, the reader discovers the reason why – as Serge, the older brother, says – they need to talk about their children. A horrific act, more than just a teenage prank, has been committed and both couples are at odds how to rectify the situation.

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