Fantasy, Adventure, Time Travel, Magic

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The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series
by Michael Scott

Once you start reading this adventure you won’t want to stop till you’ve read the whole series. There’s a lot of adventure intertwined with magical powers, immortals, and gods. I am really enjoying this series and didn’t think I’d make it through to the end. Now I’m on the 6th book and can’t believe the new twist that was just thrown in! Try this series for a suspension from reality. The first book is currently featured in our Adventure Books display in the fiction area.

Dr. Hirose, LFHS Library

Here are the summaries for the 1st & 2nd books from Goodreads.com, just to get you started….

Book #1: The Alchemyst

“Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on 28 September 1330. Nearly seven hundred years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life. The records show that he died in 1418. But his tomb is empty and Nicholas Flamel lives. The secret of eternal life is hidden within the book he protects – the Book of Abraham the Mage. It’s the most powerful book that has ever existed. In the wrong hands, it will destroy the world. And that’s exactly what Dr. John Dee plans to do when he steals it. Humankind won’t know what’s happening until it’s too late. And if the prophecy is right, Sophie and Josh Newman are the only ones with the power to save the world as we know it. Sometimes legends are true. And Sophie and Josh Newman are about to find themselves in the middle of the greatest legend of all time.”

Book #2: The Magician

Ashes to ashes…

California:
In the hands of Dr. John Dee and the Dark Elders, the book of Abraham the Mage could mean the destruction of the world as we know it. The most powerful book of all time, it holds the secret of eternal life—a secret more dangerous than any one man should ever possess. And Dee is two pages away from the knowledge that would bring the Dark Elders into ultimate power.

His only obstacle? Josh and Sophie Newman—who are eight thousand miles away.

Paris:
After fleeing Ojai, Nicholas, Sophie, Josh, and Scatty emerge in Paris. The City of Lights. Home to Nicholas Flamel. Only, this homecoming is anything but sweet.

Niccolò Machiavelli, immortal author and celebrated art collector, is working for Dee. He’s in hot pursuit, and time is running out for Nicholas and Perenelle. Every day they spend without the book, they age one year: their magic becomes weaker and their bodies more frail. For Flamel, the Prophecy is growing clearer and clearer. It’s time for Sophie to learn the second elemental magic.

Fire Magic.

And there’s only one man who can teach it to her: Flamel’s old student the Comte de Saint-Germain—alchemist, magician, and rock star.

Josh and Sophie Newman are the world’s only hope. If they don’t turn on each other first.”

 

Faculty Favorite: Ms. Schneider

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screenshot-2017-01-31-at-1-47-05-pmMs. Schneider has a soft spot in her heart for animal books. Her favorite read is All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot, and it’s this week’s featured Faculty Favorite.

“This a collection of stories based on the life of an English country vet. I have read this series so many times and the stories never get old,” Ms. Schneider says.

Sound intriguing? Stop by the library today if you’d like to check out a copy of this semi-autobiographical collection of stories. The book is so beloved in the United Kingdom, that the BBC created an entire television series based on the stories.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

The classic multimillion copy bestseller

Delve into the magical, unforgettable world of James Herriot, the world’s most beloved veterinarian, and his menagerie of heartwarming, funny, and tragic animal patients.

For over forty years, generations of readers have thrilled to Herriot’s marvelous tales, deep love of life, and extraordinary storytelling abilities. For decades, Herriot roamed the remote, beautiful Yorkshire Dales, treating every patient that came his way from smallest to largest, and observing animals and humans alike with his keen, loving eye.

In All Creatures Great and Small, we meet the young Herriot as he takes up his calling and discovers that the realities of veterinary practice in rural Yorkshire are very different from the sterile setting of veterinary school. Some visits are heart-wrenchingly difficult, such as one to an old man in the village whose very ill dog is his only friend and companion, some are lighthearted and fun, such as Herriot’s periodic visits to the overfed and pampered Pekinese Tricki Woo who throws parties and has his own stationery, and yet others are inspirational and enlightening, such as Herriot’s recollections of poor farmers who will scrape their meager earnings together to be able to get proper care for their working animals. From seeing to his patients in the depths of winter on the remotest homesteads to dealing with uncooperative owners and critically ill animals, Herriot discovers the wondrous variety and never-ending challenges of veterinary practice as his humor, compassion, and love of the animal world shine forth.

James Herriot’s memoirs have sold 80 million copies worldwide, and continue to delight and entertain readers of all ages.

Faculty Favorite: Ms. Frye

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Ms. Frye holding an artistic depiction of  Pride and Prejudice. Her Faculty Fave is so popular, it was checked out at press time!

Want to read a great book that’s over 200 years old and is still relevant today? Check out Ms. Frye’s Faculty Favorite: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. “It’s funny, definitely romantic and Elizabeth is one of the best female characters I’ve ever read,” says Ms. Frye.

Pride and Prejudice is one of the most-read and most loved books of all time. It’s sold over 20 million copies and has been adapted into various plays, a TV mini series, movies, and book knock-offs.

Stop by the library if you’d like to check out your copy of Pride and Prejudice today. And thanks, Ms. Frye, for your contribution!

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Synopsis:

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” So begins Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen’s witty comedy of manners—one of the most popular novels of all time—that features splendidly civilized sparring between the proud Mr. Darcy and the prejudiced Elizabeth Bennet as they play out their spirited courtship in a series of eighteenth-century drawing-room intrigues. Renowned literary critic and historian George Saintsbury in 1894 declared it the “most perfect, the most characteristic, the most eminently quintessential of its author’s works,” and Eudora Welty in the twentieth century described it as “irresistible and as nearly flawless as any fiction could be.”
–penguinrandomhouse.com

Faculty Favorite: Mr. Lakin

 

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This week’s Faculty Favorite belongs to Mr. Lakin and his book The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa. “This book is a math and baseball book, but it’s a more interesting story about a relationship between a professor that struggles with memory and a housekeeper’s son. They grow together, and end up learning about math and life along the way,” says Mr. Lakin.

Yoki Ogawa is a Japanese-born author who has written over 20 fiction and non-fiction books. One of her books, The Professor and His Beloved Equation, has been made into a movie.

Thanks, Mr. Lakin, for sharing your favorite read with us this week!

screenshot-2017-01-31-at-9-12-42-amSynopsis from Goodreads:

He is a brilliant math Professor with a peculiar problem–ever since a traumatic head injury, he has lived with only eighty minutes of short-term memory.  She is an astute young Housekeeper, with a ten-year-old son, who is hired to care for him.  And every morning, as the Professor and the Housekeeper are introduced to each other anew, a strange and beautiful relationship blossoms between them. Though he cannot hold memories for long (his brain is like a tape that begins to erase itself every eighty minutes), the Professor’s mind is still alive with elegant equations from the past. And the numbers, in all of their articulate order, reveal a sheltering and poetic world to both the Housekeeper and her young son. The Professor is capable of discovering connections between the simplest of quantities–like the Housekeeper’s shoe size–and the universe at large, drawing their lives ever closer and more profoundly together, even as his memory slips away.  The Housekeeper and the Professor is an enchanting story about what it means to live in the present, and about the curious equations that can create a family.

Faculty Favorite: Mr. Boruszak

Question: Which medieval fantasy book series was made into an HBO series that has won more awards than you can count on two hands? Ding, ding, ding… if you guessed “Game of Thrones,” you’re CORRECT!

George R. R. Martin’s series A Song of Ice and Fire, otherwise known as the “Game of Thrones” series on HBO, is a NY Times #1 best-seller. It also happens to be Mr. Boruszak’s favorite read. He’s a “Huge fan of anything fantasy!” he says.  He also recommends the “Wheel of Time” Series by Robert Jordan.

Read the synopsis from Goodreads below and let us know if you’d like to dive into this series.

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Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun.

As Warden of the north, Lord Eddard Stark counts it a curse when King Robert bestows on him the office of the Hand. His honour weighs him down at court where a true man does what he will, not what he must … and a dead enemy is a thing of beauty.

The old gods have no power in the south, Stark’s family is split and there is treachery at court. Worse, the vengeance-mad heir of the deposed Dragon King has grown to maturity in exile in the Free Cities. He claims the Iron Throne.

TOP TEN BOOKS OF JANUARY!

It might be cold outside, but based on our monthly stats, book circulations are heating up here in the library! This month’s top ten list features some perennial favorites and some new front-runners. See a book here that you’d like to read? Be sure to stop by the library and we’ll point you in the right direction so you can check it out!

screenshot-2016-10-05-at-12-57-42-pm10. Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster by John Krakauer

A bank of clouds was assembling on the not-so-distant horizon, but journalist-mountaineer Jon Krakauer, standing on the summit of Mt. Everest, saw nothing that “suggested that a murderous storm was bearing down.” He was wrong. The storm, which claimed five lives and left countless more–including Krakauer’s–in guilt-ridden disarray, would also provide the impetus for Into Thin Air, Krakauer’s epic account of the May 1996 disaster.

 

 

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-15-14-pm9. Illuminae/The Illuminae Files/Book 1 by Amie Kaufman

This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-18-14-pm8. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Full of sympathetic characters, wildly imaginative situations, and countless exciting details, the first installment in the series assembles an unforgettable magical world and sets the stage for many high-stakes adventures to come.

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-21-09-pm7. Game/I Hunt Killers Series/Book 1 by Barry Lyga

“Fear can keep you alive. The trick is not to let it overwhelm you. Not to let it rule you. If you’re afraid, that’s the universe trying to tell you something. Get away. Don’t run; don’t panic. Just pick up and walk out, calm as you please. Panic makes you stupid.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

screenshot-2016-10-05-at-1-09-23-pm6. Friday Night Lights: A Town, A Team, and a Dream by H.G. Bissinger

Return once again to the enduring account of life in the Mojo lane, to the Permian Panthers of Odessa — the winningest high school football team in Texas history. Odessa is not known to be a town big on dreams, but the Panthers help keep the hopes and dreams of this small, dusty town going. Socially and racially divided, its fragile economy follows the treacherous boom-bust path of the oil business.In bad times, the unemployment rate barrels out of control; in good times, its murder rate skyrockets. But every Friday night from September to December, when the Permian High School Panthers play football, this West Texas town becomes a place where dreams can come true. With frankness and compassion, Bissinger chronicles one of the Panthers’ dramatic seasons and shows how single-minded devotion to the team shapes the community and inspires-and sometimes shatters-the teenagers who wear the Panthers’ uniforms. Includes Reader’s Group Guide inside.Now a major motion picture starring Billy Bob Thorton.

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-26-59-pm5. Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin

Welcome to Elsewhere. It is warm, with a breeze, and the beaches are marvelous. It’s quiet and peaceful. You can’t get sick or any older. Curious to see new paintings by Picasso? Swing by one of Elsewhere’s museums. Need to talk to someone about your problems? Stop by Marilyn Monroe’s psychiatric practice.

Elsewhere is where fifteen-year-old Liz Hall ends up, after she has died. It is a place so like Earth, yet completely different. Here Liz will age backward from the day of her death until she becomes a baby again and returns to Earth. But Liz wants to turn sixteen, not fourteen again. She wants to get her driver’s license. She wants to graduate from high school and go to college. And now that she’s dead, Liz is being forced to live a life she doesn’t want with a grandmother she has only just met. And it is not going well. How can Liz let go of the only life she has ever known and embrace a new one? Is it possible that a life lived in reverse is no different from a life lived forward?

This moving, often funny book about grief, death, and loss will stay with the reader long after the last page is turned.

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-34-38-pm4. Alchemy of Bones: Chicago’s Luetgert Murder Case of 1897 by Robert Loerzel

On May 1, 1897, Louise Luetgert disappeared. Although no body was found, Chicago police arrested her husband, Adolph, the owner of a large sausage factory, and charged him with her murder. The eyes of the world were still on Chicago following the success of the World’s Columbian Exposition, and the Luetgert case, with its missing victim, once-prosperous suspect, and all manner of gruesome theories regarding the disposal of the corpse, turned into one of the first media-fueled celebrity trials in American history. Newspapers fought one another for scoops, people across the country claimed to have seen the missing woman alive, and each new clue led to fresh rounds of speculation about the crime. Meanwhile, sausage sales plummeted nationwide as rumors circulated that Luetgert had destroyed his wife’s body in one of his factory’s meat grinders. In this narrative history of the Luetgert case, Robert Loerzel brings 1890s Chicago vividly back to life. He examines not only the trial itself but also the police department and forensic specialists investigating the case, the reporters scrambling for details, and the wider society who followed their stories so voraciously. Weaving in strange-but-true subplots involving hypnotists, palmreaders, English con-artists, bullied witnesses, and insane-asylum body-snatchers, Alchemy of Bones is more than just a true crime narrative; it is a grand, sprawling portrait of a city–and a nation–getting an early taste of the dark, chaotic twentieth century.

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-37-56-pm3. I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak

Ed Kennedy is an underage cabdriver without much of a future. He’s pathetic at playing cards, hopelessly in love with his best friend, Audrey, and utterly devoted to his coffee-drinking dog, the Doorman. His life is one of peaceful routine and incompetence until he inadvertently stops a bank robbery.

That’s when the first ace arrives in the mail.

That’s when Ed becomes the messenger.

Chosen to care, he makes his way through town helping and hurting (when necessary) until only one question remains: Who’s behind Ed’s mission?

 

screenshot-2017-01-06-at-10-46-31-am2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Charlie is a freshman.

And while he’s not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years yet socially awkward, he is a wallflower, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it.

Charlie is attempting to navigate his way through uncharted territory: the world of first dates and mix tapes, family dramas and new friends; the world of sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when all one requires is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite. But he can’t stay on the sideline forever. Standing on the fringes of life offers a unique perspective. But there comes a time to see what it looks like from the dance floor.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a deeply affecting coming-of-age story that will spirit you back to those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.

And…the number 1 checked-out book for January is…

screenshot-2017-01-30-at-2-44-58-pm1. The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik 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, Nikola Tesla 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.

 

Faculty Favorite: Ms. Dell

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The Art of Hearing Heartbeats, by Jan-Philipp Sendker, is an “Unbelievable story of love, compassion and dedication!” says Ms. Dell. It’s also one of her favorite reads.

The book was an Indies Choice Honor book recipicient and since its publication, the author has penned a sequel, titled A Well-Tempered Heart. 

Read the synopsis below. And let us know if you’d like to check out our copy. Better hurry, because this one just might be in high demand!

screenshot-2017-01-05-at-9-53-00-amThe Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Philip Sendker

A poignant and inspirational love story set in Burma, The Art of Hearing Heartbeats spans the decades between the 1950s and the present.  When a successful New York lawyer suddenly disappears without a trace, neither his wife nor his daughter Julia has any idea where he might be…until they find a love letter he wrote many years ago, to a Burmese woman they have never heard of. Intent on solving the mystery and coming to terms with her father’s past, Julia decides to travel to the village where the woman lived. There she uncovers a tale of unimaginable hardship, resilience, and passion that will reaffirm the reader’s belief in the power of love to move mountains.

 

Synopsis from Goodreads.com