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Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love   Levin   "What happens when one dog is used as bait to inspire another dog to kill? Nothing anyone with a conscience wants to imagine but it happened to Oogy, the puppy torn apart and left to die before being discovered by the police. This is a story about what can happen when the worst in people meets the best in people and the best wins. In spite of its subject, this is a gentle tale of one man's love for his dog and the angels along the way who brought Oogy into his life."―-Susan Richards, New York Times-bestselling author of Chosen by a Horse and Saddled
James Herriots’ Animal Stories   Herriot  “James Herriot found a gentle, wise and often humorous way to write about animals and to evoke a beautiful but fading way of life in those Yorkshire Hills...I can't say that I have ever quite matched the writing...but he has always inspired me and given me something to aim for.” ―Jon Katz, NYT bestselling author of Second Chance Dog
Cat Daddy: What the World's Most Incorrigible Cat Taught Me About Life, Love, and Coming Clean    Galaxy  “Galaxy is not your average animal behaviorist. He speaks Cat. And cats listen. He works miracles in saving death-row cats in shelters by helping them get over their fears and increase their self-esteem, and coaching them to ‘work it’ with potential adopters.”—
The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness    Montgomery  "Can an octopus have a mind and emotions, let alone a soul? Sy Montgomery faces these questions head-on in her engaging new book as she explores the world of octopuses, making friends with several and finding heartbreak when they die. They aren't, she discovers, simply brainless invertebrates, but personable, playful, conscious beings. Montgomery's enthusiasm for animals most of us rarely see is infectious, and readers will come away with a new appreciation for what it means to be an octopus." -- Virginia Morell, author of ANIMAL WISE: How We Know Animals Think and Feel
H is for Hawk   Macdonald  "An inspired, beautiful and absorbing account of a woman battling grief—with a goshawk. . . . Writing with breathless urgency . . . Macdonald broadens her scope well beyond herself to focus on the antagonism between people and the environment. Whether you call this a personal story or nature writing, it's poignant, thoughtful and moving—and likely to become a classic in either genre." —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl   O’Brien "Stacey O'Brien tells the intriguing story of how her life was changed and rearranged when she attempted to tame and raise Wesley -- a barn owl. She shows us how she was ultimately repaid with his love and devotion, and given glimpses into the mind of an animal that has an unexpected ability to understand human language and to communicate. Fascinating!" -- Stanley Coren, psychologist and author of How Dogs Think and Why Does My Dog Act That Way?

The Last Policeman-  Winters  Book 1 of trilogy  Amazon Best Books of the Month, July 2012: It’s not often you hear a book described as a pre-apocalyptic police procedural. But in the hands of Ben Winters (Sense and Sensibility and Seamonsters), the mash-up of murder mystery and gloomy end-of-world melodrama works perfectly. Detective Hank Palace knows the world will likely be destroyed in six months by the meteor headed toward earth like a bullet. But unlike those who are giving up, quitting jobs, doing drugs, running away, or killing themselves, Palace has a job to do. He’s got a murder to solve. So he keeps plugging away, unwilling to let the looming apocalypse distract him from finding the killer. Palace is an appealingly off-kilter character, more goofball than hard-boiled. So it’s a very good thing that this is the first in a planned trilogy. --Neal Thompson
The Devil in the White City- Larson  Author Erik Larson imbues the incredible events surrounding the 1893 Chicago World's Fair with such drama that readers may find themselves checking the book's categorization to be sure that The Devil in the White City is not, in fact, a highly imaginative novel. Larson tells the stories of two men: Daniel H. Burnham, the architect responsible for the fair's construction, and H.H. Holmes, a serial killer masquerading as a charming doctor. Burnham's challenge was immense. In a short period of time, he was forced to overcome the death of his partner and numerous other obstacles to construct the famous "White City" around which the fair was built. His efforts to complete the project, and the fair's incredible success, are skillfully related along with entertaining appearances by such notables as Buffalo Bill Cody, Susan B. Anthony, and Thomas Edison. The activities of the sinister Dr. Holmes, who is believed to be responsible for scores of murders around the time of the fair, are equally remarkable. He devised and erected the World's Fair Hotel, complete with crematorium and gas chamber, near the fairgrounds and used the event as well as his own charismatic personality to lure victims. Combining the stories of an architect and a killer in one book, mostly in alternating chapters, seems like an odd choice but it works. The magical appeal and horrifying dark side of 19th-century Chicago are both revealed through Larson's skillful writing. --John Moe
Spearhead: An American Tank Gunner, His Enemy, and a Collision of Lives in World War II– Makos “The tension, death, and courage that were everyday experiences for American tankers fill the pages of Makos’s book. This moving story of bravery and comradeship is an important contribution to WWII history that will inform and fascinate both the general reader and the military historian.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)


The Dead Cat Bounce
by Sarah Graves

Author alert: Sarah Graves  Another mystery series to keep in mind to dive into, so start with The Dead Cat Bounce to get the foundation for the series. Jacobia Tiptree buys a fixer upper in Eastport Maine in an attempt to rebuild her life after leaving NYC post divorce. Fixing up her dilapidated house becomes more involved when a dead body is discovered and the small town dislike of outsiders asking questions puts Jacobia in danger.

A Beautiful Blue Death
by Charles Finch

Author alert: Charles Finch (also on overdrive) Set in Victorian England you can almost feel the fog rolling in off the Thames in this mystery series. Starting with A Beautiful Blue Death, in which we meet Charles Lenox, a gentleman pursuing what is considered an ungentlemanly career in private enquiry.

Still Life
by Louise Penny

Still Life
Louise Penny  Starting off this series with the first book allows you to meet all the regular characters who you will see throughout the series. Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surêté du Québec and his team of investigators find themselves investigating a crime in the tiny town of Three Pines. A town so small it isn’t on the maps. No one wants to believe it is anything more than a tragic accident when Jane Neal is found dead in the woods. But Gamache and his team soon uncover clues that point to homicide.

Nature Noir: a Park Ranger's Patrol in the Sierra
by Jordan Fisher Smith  (ebook) 

A terrific slice of what it is like to be a Park Ranger and off on your own patrolling the wilderness. More than just a nature walk and story, this is about what happens when you are charged with enforcing the laws well off the beaten path, where backup isn’t going to be available. 

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry
by Rachel Joyce (ebook and audio)
A wonderful book about a conventional man doing a most unconventional thing for an old co-worker. When Harold receives a letter it starts a chain of events that spawns a movement as he begins a trip across England by foot to get to the bedside of someone he knew long ago.

The Crossing Places
Elly Griffiths


Start off this series right, reading the first book sets the mood and introduces you to the many characters who will carryover from book to book. Ruth Galloway is a forensic anthropologist in the remote Norfolk region of England. Her day to day schedule of teaching is upended when a body is found at an Iron Age site. The detective in charge calls Ruth in on the case because he believes it might be linked to a 10 year old case he handled. But then a second child goes missing, and shadowy characters and taunting letters seem to mix these cases up leading Ruth and Detective Nelson down a winding path that may very well lead to another death. Fans of atmospheric mysteries and believable characters will enjoy this start of the series.


The President's Hat
Antoine Laurain


The story of a hat might seem like an unlikely theme for a book, but what a delightful story ensues in this short book. One evening President Francois Mitterand eats in an elegant restaurant and leaves his hat behind. When another diner sees the hat and takes it with him, the ensuing events change his life and those who don the chapeau down the line. The ending leaves the reader with a smile at the simple, yet unexpected, twist.


Shortest Way Home
Pete Buttigieg

(Audiobook on Hoopla)

For those who enjoy a contemporary biography with a side of politics. Throughout this book you can feel the history and strong sense of place that drew Pete back to his hometown. Once home and settled he was elected the nation’s youngest mayor and set in motion a plan to bring South Bend back from years of decay and being considered just a flyover region. Tempered and well thought out, this book contains no preaching and rhetoric, instead it offers possibilities and options for a country that sorely needs a new direction.

Alissa Quart
You are not crazy, this book reassures you of that, and yet it also confirms that you are being squeezed. Whether you are paying for childcare, seeing more robots on the job or feeling as if the dollar isn't going even halfway towards monthly expenses, this book illuminates the problem. It also presents some solutions people are using to try and offset the struggle.
The Invoice
Jonas Karlsson
Delightful. There was just something about the author's style of writing that made this very enjoyable to read. What would you expect a bill for your "happiness" to total? How would you begin to assess the value to your life, much less pay the bill. In this story, that is exactly what happens, the main character receives a bill and the ensuing tale unfolds as he looks at his life.
The Red Notebook
Antoine Laurain
A short book to be savored, wonderfully written it appears nothing was lost in translation. Just a delight to read. A lost handbag containing a red notebook of personal jottings, found by a passerby who takes it as a mission to locate the owner.

A World Lost
Wendell Berry
Wendell Berry is a master at storytelling, this tale is set in 1944 and introduces some of the many characters who populate Port Royal, Kentucky. Young Andy Catlett is the narrator and shares with the reader his emotions and sense of guilt over the murder of his uncle. This is a wonderful book to start with in the Port Royal series