This Golden State – Staff Review – Haley

This Golden State By Marit Weisenberg (Request)(CloudLibrary)

Can you imagine having to change your name?  Start over in a new town every few years? For seventeen years Poppy and her family have been on the run and she doesn’t know why.  A sudden move to California gives Poppy her first clue into her parent’s past.  Finally wanting to know the truth she submits a DNA test which cracks her world wide open. This coming of age novel is suspenseful, dramatic, with a hint of romance. It had me on the edge of my chair the entire time and I didn’t want to set it down until knowing the full story. This is definitely a good choice for both YA and adults.   

4 Stars

Razorblade Tears – Staff Review – Haley

Razorblade Tears by S.A. Cosby. (Request)(CloudLibrary)

Two ex-cons with nothing in common but a criminal past and the love they have for their murdered sons, join together to seek vengance upon those who hurt their boys. Ike and Buddy Lee were not the fathers their sons deserved; mean and ashamed of their sons being gay, but during their journey to set things right, they are able to confront their own prejudices about their sons and each other. 
Razorblade Tears is a gritty, emotional, and well written story of two flawed fathers out for justice.  I loved it.  However, it is also a crime, so if violence doesn’t sit well with you, I don’t recommend this book.  S.A. Crosby is masterful in his weaving of family, race, sexualtiy, and friendship.  Like its title, this book is sharp, witty, and will also bring you to tears. 
4.5 Stars 

The Verifiers – Staff Review – Haley

The Verifiers by Jane Pek (request)

Meet Claudia Lin, amature tech sleuth with a mystery she is determined to solve using dating app data she has access to from her job at Veracity. Claudia follows in the footsteps of her favorite novel detective as she cracks the case and her own life.

Going in I thought this was going to be an excellent read, however I had mixed feelings about it. The mystery plot line was convoluted with too much tech jargon a lot of the time. The personal interactions of Claudia and her family were the highlights of the book. The constant reference to the literary detective hero also disrupted the flow of the novel. Overall it was lackluster and didn’t live up to its potential.

2.5 Stars

A History of Wild Places – Staff Review – Haley

A History of Wild Places by Shea Ernshaw (Request)

Are you a fan of M. Night Shyamalan? Then this is a book for you! A well known author disappears and so does the man hired to find her…. Travis is hired as a last resort by the parents of author Maggie St. James who vanished in a place many think is just a legend. Four years later, Theo finds Travis’s abandoned truck on the edge of the hidden community of “Pastoral”.
Ernshaw has written a beautiful, haunting tale, which will keep you guessing what is going to happen until the very end. While the pace is slower than most, it is lovely and atmospheric. Well worth reading.

4 Stars

The Awakening/The Becoming – Staff Review – Haley

The Awakening (Request) (CloudLibrary) and The Becoming (Request)(CloudLibrary) by Nora Roberts

Fairies, Ireland, and Nora Roberts? Yes Please!  The new trilogy, The Dragon Heart Legacy, is filled with magic, love, and strong female characters.  (Book 3 coming out Nov. 2022)

I love finding books that are an absolute escape from all things daily life and Nora Roberts is the queen of taking you from reality to fantasy.   Book One, The Awakening introduces us to Breen who is learning and welcoming her unknown heritage and abilities.  Book Two, The Becoming, welcomes readers back into the magical world of Talamh.

4 Stars 

Go Tell The Bees That I Am Gone – Staff Review – Haley

Go Tell The Bees That I Am Gone by Diana Gabaldon (Request)

The wait is finally over! Book 9 in the Outlander series is now available after a seven year drought. Now… was it worth the wait? Well, yes, and no.

Some may not appreciate this novel spanning over 900 pages but to me that wasn’t a drawback. I’ve missed all the characters and loved having that much time with them. However, it meanders through their lives, but there wasn’t much of a plot line. If you’re a fan of the series of course you’re going to read it, but just know going in, it’s a 70/30 love and hate.

3 Stars

This Is Me – Staff Review – Haley

This Is Me by Chrissy Metz (Request)(CloudLibrary)

Anyone else sad that This Is Us is almost over? Why not get to know the wonderful actors who keep us entertained each week.

Chrissy Metz gives an open, honest, and witty look at her life from childhood to stardom. This memoir is a wonderful example of a strong woman overcoming obstacles to reach her goals. The only drawback from me are the few “Bee Mindful” sections scattered throughout the book. I felt that it took away from the overall appeal.

3 Stars

The Paris Apartment – Staff Review – Haley

The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley (Request)(CloudLibrary)

Are you ready for more twists and turns than a rollercoaster?  Then you need this book.  Told through multiple perspectives we follow the story of Jess who arrives in Paris to stay with her brother but when she arrives he has gone missing.

Lucy Foley has done it again with The Paris Apartment.  This psychological crime thriller was one I couldn’t put down.  Even with the multiple characters telling the story it wasn’t too much to keep track of the narrative.  Lots of eerie and sinister descriptions and make you want to leave on a lamp.

4 Stars

Taste: My Life Through Food – Staff Review – Haley

Taste: My Life Through Food by Stanley Tucci (Request)(CloudLibrary)

Who doesn’t adore Stanley Tucci, or food! Put them together and it is once again a perfect combination. In this food based memoir Stanley Tucci provides a glimpse into his life story and how food has been at the center of it since he was a small boy. It’s filled with wonderful stories and family recipes.

I love him as an actor and use his cookbooks as well. This was an extra special treat getting to hear about his upbringing as well as a peek at his life today. Written during the pandemic, it really humanized this famous actor. Hearing about him caring for his family, especially the little ones while trying to work remotely, and making a family meal every night was very relatable.

4 Stars

The Last Guest – Staff Picks – Haley

The last guest By Tess Little (Request)

This slow burn keeps you guessing right till the end! Like the main character, you may even think the killer wasn’t human…. Actress Elspeth Bell attends the 50th birthday party of her ex-husband Richard Bryant, the famous movie director who launched her career, and during the festivities, one person ends up dead.

While not quite the same as a locked room mystery, the elements are similar. This has a deep dive into a small group of characters who are in attendance of the party and we learn throughout the novel their darkest secrets. If you are a fan of the slow burn, Agatha Christie style mystery, this would be a good choice.

3 Stars

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