Author Archive

New Orleans Noir

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Below are three great mysteries set in New Orleans.  If you are craving New Orleans noir, these titles are sure to satisfy.


Hell or High Water by Joy Castro (2012)

Nola Céspedes, an ambitious young reporter at the Times-Picayune, finally catches a break: an assignment to write her first full-length feature. While investigating her story, she also becomes fixated on the search for a missing tourist in the French Quarter. As Nola’s work leads her into a violent criminal underworld, she’s forced to face disturbing truths from her own past.


The Cutting Season by Attica Locke (2012) cutting season

Some days, Caren Gray can hardly believe she is still rooted to Belle Vie, the Louisiana plantation where she grew up, where her mother was a cook and her great-great-great-grandfather was a slave. When a cane worker is found with her throat slit, Caren is drawn into the investigation as the police target one of her employees as the murderer.


Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead by Sara Gran (2011)

Claire DeWitt

Claire has just arrived in post-Katrina New Orleans, where she is investigating the disappearance of Vic Willing, a prosecutor known for winning convictions in a homicide- plagued city. Claire follows the clues, finding old friends and making new enemies – foremost among them Andray Fairview, a young gang member who just might hold the key to the mystery.




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Grandville Library December Staff Picks

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

Here is a list of what the staff at the Grandville Branch are reading:

A Winter Dream by Richard Paul EvansAn interesting twist on an age-old story.  Listened to on CD . . . good story.

Faith Bass Darling’s Last Garage Sale by Lynda Rutledge: Funny, poignant, a bit of a page turner!

A Hologram for a King by Dave EggersA struggling American businessman travels to a rising Saudi Arabian city with the hopes of securing a contract that will earn him a commission large enough to stave off his economic woes and hold his family together.

The Age of Miracles by Karen WalkerImagines the coming-of-age story of young Julia, whose world is thrown into upheaval when it is discovered that the Earth’s rotation has suddenly begun to slow, posing a catastrophic threat to all life.

Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo CampbellMargo Crane, a beautiful and uncanny markswoman, takes to the Stark River after being complicit in the death of her father and embarks on an odyssey in search of her vanished mother.

My Year with Eleanor: A Memoir by Noelle Hancock: Painfully timid as a child, Eleanor Roosevelt dedicated herself to facing her fears, a commitment that shaped the rest of her life. With Eleanor as her guide, Noelle spends the months leading up to her thirtieth birthday pursuing a “Year of Fear.”

Meet Me at Emotional Baggage Claim by Lisa Scottoline & Francesca SerritellaLove and tomato sauce are thick in the Scottoline/Serritella household, and Lisa and Francesca’s mother-daughter turned best-friends bond will strike a familiar note to many. But now that Lisa is a suburban empty-nester and Francesca is an independent twenty-something in the big city, they have to learn how to stay close while living apart

When She Woke by Hillary JordanHannah Payne, sentenced to being dyed a stigmatizing red for the crime of having an abortion, must learn to adjust to her new circumstances in a United States where her married lover, Aidan Dale, is Secretary of Faith.

Beautiful Ruins by Jess WalterThe story of an almost-love affair that begins on the Italian coast in 1962 . . . and is rekindled in Hollywood fifty years later.








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Banned Books Week: To Kill a Mockingbird

Thursday, October 4th, 2012

One of my favorite banned books (favorite book in general) is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.  This summer, while browsing our audiobook collection for a good book, I decided to finally try To Kill a Mockingbird.  I was mesmerized in the first few minutes.  Sissy Spacek does an excellent job narrating, capturing the innocence and essence of Scout.   It also inspired me to watch the movie starring Gregory Peck.   Banned for offensive language and racism, I’m glad I had the opportunity read and enjoy this classic novel.


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Titanic Anniversary

Saturday, April 7th, 2012

The Titanic sank 100 years ago on April 15, 1912.  However, the tragic story continues to fascinate us all.  Take a look at our Titanic booklist for books and movies on the subject.



Also, check out the trailer for the new ABC Titanic mini-series:


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Monday, October 17th, 2011

Treme is an HBO drama series from the creators of The Wire.

Treme takes its name from Treme, a neighborhood of New Orleans. The series begins three months after Hurricane Katrina where the residents of New Orleans, including musicians, chefs, Mardi Gras Indians, and other New Orleanians try to rebuild their lives, their homes and their unique culture in the aftermath of the 2005 hurricane.

I loved The Wire and I love Treme.  Gritty and realistic, full of great music.

You may also enjoy Spike Lee’s documentaries, When the Levees Broke and If God is Willing and Da Creek Don’t Rise.


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Tori Amos, “Night of Hunters”

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

Night of Hunters is old-school Tori Amos. For those who have not enjoyed her recent work, you will enjoy this album. Beautiful piano work with haunting lyrics to linger in your mind. Night of Hunters is Tori at her finest.

Read the NPR review here


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Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness by Alexandra Fuller

Monday, October 10th, 2011

A companion memoir to Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness by Alexandra Fuller recounts the story of her parents.  We follow Nicola and Tim Fuller as they hopscotch the continent, running from war and unspeakable heartbreak, from Kenya to Rhodesia to Zambia, even returning to England briefly. But just when it seems that Nicola has been broken entirely by Africa, it is the African earth itself that revives her.

Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness is a story of loss and survival. Emotional without being sentimental. Read the New York Times article  for a thorough review. Browse the photographs from the book here.


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Bjork, “Biophilia”

Thursday, October 6th, 2011

Bjork, the lovely, quirky and eccentric Icelandic artist, has a new ablum out, Biophilia.  

Listen to the NPR album preview while you are waiting for your library hold.

Or take a look at her music video to “Moon.”


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The Magician King by Lev Grossman

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

In this sequel to The Magicians, Quentin and his friends are now the kings and queens of Fillory, but the days and nights of royal luxury are starting to pall. So, Quentin and his old friend Julia set out on an errand to the wild outer reaches of their kingdom. Their pleasure cruise becomes an adventure when the two are dumped back into the last place Quentin ever wants to see: his parent’s house in Chesterton, Massachusetts. 

The Magician King is the adult, cynical and sarcastic version of Harry Potter and Narnia.  Darkly humorous and full of wit.  Highly recommend.

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Paranormal Mysteries

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Just in time for Halloween, take a peak at our Paranormal Mysteries booklist for spooky spectacular reads! 








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