Tag Archives: Recommended by Sharon

Sharon’s Picks 2014

As the year comes to an end, the contributors to the Browser’s Corner would like to share some of the best books they read in 2014.  These titles were not necessarily published in 2104– only read this year.

Next up, Sharon from Readers Advisory

Title: Her Royal Spyness

Author: Rhys Bowen

Call #: M BOW

Lady Georgiana, great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria and 34th in line to the English throne is left penniless when her brother Binky cuts off her allowance. She moves from the family estate in Scotland to London in search of a job and to avoid a marriage to the Prince of Romania, who she calls Fish-Face. When arriving in London, she is summoned by the Queen to spy on her playboy son and a Frenchman, who claims to have proof that Georgie and Binky’s father gambled the family home away, is found dead in her bathtub. This charming historical mystery is the first in the Royal Spyness mysteries series.

The Monogram Murder by Sophie Hannah

This mystery marks the return of Hercule Poirot, Agatha Christie’s legendary Belgian detective. Poirot is taking a break from detective work living in a London boardinghouse, where he befriends young Inspector Edward Catchpool, the narrator of the book. Catchpool is assigned a triple murder case in an upscale hotel, where the victims were each poisoned with cyanide and found with a monogramed cufflink in their mouth. Poirot steps in to help and using his “little grey cells” unravels the many clues and solves the case. Poirot is very true to character, flamboyant and arrogant, and the mystery is good with a lot of twists, almost as good as Agatha.

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The Cater Street Hangman by Anne Perry

Title: The Cater Street Hangman

Author:   Anne Perry

Call #:  M – PER

Charlotte, Emily, and Sarah Ellison are leading the typical lives of proper Victorian ladies until five young women, including the family housemaid, are brutally murdered on Cater Street near the Ellison home. Their father, Edward, and Sarah’s husband, Dominic, try to shelter them from any details of the crimes, but Inspector Thomas Pitt draws Charlotte into the investigation, along with all its gruesome details. A romance begins developing between Charlotte and the socially unsuitable Pitt, as the list of suspects begins to include Ellison family and friends. This is the first in the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt mysteries.

Recommended by: Sharon

Second Honeymoon by James Patterson

Second Honeymoon by James PattersonTitle:  Second Honeymoon

Author:  James Patterson

Call #:  PATTERSON

FBI Agent John O’Hara is trying to find and stop a serial killer whose victims are all newlyweds on their honeymoon. He is still trying to cope with the death of his own wife a couple of years ago, at the hands of a drunken driver who is about to be paroled. Special Agent Sarah Brubaker is working on a case which involves another serial killer whose victims all have the same name, John O’Hara. Their paths cross and they join forces to try and solve both cases before either killer claims more victims, including Agent O’Hara. This page-turning thriller is the long awaited sequel to Honeymoon.

Recommended by:  Sharon

Step on a Crack by James Patterson

Step on a Crack by James PattersonTitle:  Step on a Crack

Author:  James Patterson

Call #:  PAT

During the funeral of the former First Lady, a group of men dressed as monks take over St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan and carry out a mass kidnapping of those attending. Eventually all are released, except for a small group of wealthy celebrities. Detective Michael Bennett, who has ten adopted children and a wife who is dying of cancer, receives an emergency call to act as the negotiator for the release of the celebrity hostages. This page-turning thriller is the first in the Michael Bennett series.

Recommended by:  Sharon

Sharon’s Best of 2013

Aviator's Wife by Melanie BenjaminTitle:  The Aviator’s Wife

Author:  Melanie Benjamin

Call #:  BENJAMIN

This historical fiction novel is told through the voice of Anne Morrow Lindbergh, wife of the famous aviator.  Anne, a shy ambassador’s daughter, is overjoyed when Lindbergh proposes marriage after a short courtship.  In the early days of her marriage, she becomes a pioneering aviatrix, but suffers horrible grief after the kidnapping and murder of her son.  She endures the controversy over Charles’s anti-Semitic views before World War II but after years of living in her husband’s shadow, Anne goes on to write the feminist classic Gift from the Sea.

Second Honeymoon by James PattersonTitle:  Second Honeymoon

Author:  James Patterson

Call #:  PATTERSON

FBI Agent John O’Hara is trying to find and stop a serial killer whose victims are all newlyweds on their honeymoon.  He is still trying to cope with the death of his own wife a couple of years ago, at the hands of a drunken driver who is about to be paroled.  Special Agent Sarah Brubaker is working on a case which involves another serial killer whose victims all have the same name, John O’Hara.  Their paths cross and they join forces to try and solve both cases before either killer claims more victims, including Agent O’Hara.  This page-turning thriller is the long awaited sequel to Honeymoon.

Divergent by Veronica RothTitle:  Divergent

Author:  Veronica Roth

Call #:  YA ROT

In post-apocalyptic Chicago, people are born into one of five factions; Abnegation, Candor, Erudite, Amity or Dauntless.  Each faction has its own beliefs by which they live their lives.  Sixteen-year-olds are tested through simulations to help them decide which faction they are best suited for and then must either stay with their family faction or a choose different one.  Beatrice (Tris) Prior decides to give up her selfless Abnegation faction and join the fearless, tattooed Dauntless faction, but she must keep secret the fact that her testing proved her to be Divergent because that could get her killed.  This is the first in a trilogy.

Silver Star by Jeanette WallsTitle:  The Silver Star

Author:  Jeannette Walls

Call #:  WALLS

After being abandoned by their mother in California, Bean Holladay and her older sister, Liz, take a cross-country bus trip to Byler, Virginia to visit their only relative, widowed Uncle Tinsley, who they’ve never met.  They settle into life in the small town, going to school and taking on odd jobs for extra money.  When their mother, Charlotte, finally shows up wanting to take the girls with her to New York City, they don’t really want to leave the security they have found living with their uncle.  This coming-of-age story is by the author of The Glass Castle.

Recommended by:  Sharon

Favorites of 2012 – Sharon

Here are Sharon’s favorite books read in 2012!

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie FordTitle:  Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Author:  Jamie Ford

Call #:  FOR

Henry Lee, a Chinese-American living in Seattle in 1984, hears that the belongings of Japanese families displaced during World War II have been discovered in the basement of the Panama Hotel.  This bittersweet historical novel then alternates between 1984 and the early 1940’s, when Henry had a forbidden friendship with Keiko, a Japanese-American girl who is sent to an internment camp with her family after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.  That friendship developed into a love that Henry could never forget through the years.

Gone Girl by Gillian FlynnTitle:  Gone Girl

Author:  Gillian Flynn

Call #:  FLYNN

After leaving New York and moving to her husband’s childhood hometown in Missouri, Amy Dunne disappears under suspicious circumstances on her fifth wedding anniversary.  It doesn’t take long for her husband Nick to become the prime suspect in her assumed murder.  The chapters alternate between Nick’s first-person recounting of events as they are occurring and entries from Amy’s diary, which contradicts Nick’s story and makes her appear to be terrified of her husband.  This page-turner with multiply twists keeps the reader guessing about the outcome to the very end.

Dark Places by Gillian FlynnTitle:  Dark Places

Author:  Gillian Flynn

Call #:  FLY

Seven-year-old Libby Day’s mother and two sisters were brutally murdered in their Kansas farmhouse, but she escaped and survived the massacre.  Her brother Ben was convicted of the crimes and sent to prison based on Libby’s testimony.  Now 24 years later, Libby agrees to meet with the Kill Club, a group of true crime buffs who believe Ben is innocent, in order to make extra money.  As she investigates the crime, she begins to have second thoughts about the events of the night of the murder.  Readers will find it hard to guess the ending of this chilling thriller.

11th Hour by James PattersonTitle:  11th Hour

Author:  James Patterson

Call #:  PATTERSON

Although Lindsay Boxer of the SFPD is pregnant, it doesn’t stop her from working on a case involving a millionaire who is killed with a gun from the SFPD evidence locker of another where two bodiless heads are discovered on display in the garden of a famous actor.  As a nasty reporter writes malicious articles about her and the SFPD, Lindsay’s friends help her with investigating her cases and, also, try to help her put her personal life back together.  This fast-paced thriller is an addition to the Women’s Murder Club series.

Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsTitle:  The Hunger Games

Author:  Suzanne Collins

Call #:  YOUNG ADULT COLLINS

A post-apocalyptic United States has become the country of Panem, which is divided into the Capital and twelve districts.  Each year two tributes, one boy and one girl, from each district are selected by lottery to participate in The Hunger Games, a televised fight to the death.  When Katniss Everdeen’s younger sister, Prim, is selected for District 12, Katniss volunteers to go in her place along with the second tribute, Peeta, the baker’s son.  Once the Games begin, the plot becomes very tense with the fighting and artificially created weather and obstacles making this a real page-turner that can’t be put down.

Recommended by:  Sharon

Wanna Get Lucky? by Deborah Coonts

Wanna Get Lucky? by Deborah CoontsTitle:  Wanna Get Lucky?

Author:  Deborah Coonts

Call #:  M COO

When casino employee Lyda Sue falls from a helicopter and lands in the pirate lagoon during the 8:30 p.m. show, Lucky O’Toole, head of customer relations at the Babylon casino in Las Vegas, is certain it was not a suicide. Although the police are involved, she starts her own investigation along with the owner of the Babylon, who is affectionately known as the “Big Boss”. A laugh-out-loud funny mystery with quirky characters and a good plot.

Recommended by:  Sharon