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Phoebe’s Morning Book Chat – Thursday, August 8 at 11:00am

Phoebe’s Morning book chat takes place on the second Thursday of every month at 11:00am in the Community Room.
Multiple copies of the selected book are available please call the library (860-434-1684) to reserve a copy.

Thursday, July 11
The Mystery Guest by Nita Prose
Image credit: Syndetics

“When an acclaimed author dies at the Regency Grand Hotel, it’s up to a fastidious maid to uncover the truth, no matter how dirty.”– Provided by publisher.; “Molly Gray is not like anyone else. With her flair for cleaning and proper etiquette, she has risen through the ranks of the glorious five-star Regency Grand Hotel to become the esteemed Head Maid. But just as her life reaches a pinnacle state of perfection, her world is turned upside down when J.D. Grimthorpe, the world-renowned mystery author, drops dead–very dead–on the hotel’s tea room floor. When Detective Stark, Molly’s old foe, investigates the author’s unexpected demise, it becomes clear that this death was murder most foul. Suspects abound, and everyone wants to who killed J.D. Grimthorpe? Was it Lily, the new Maid-in-Training? Or was it Serena, the author’s secretary? Could Mr. Preston, the hotel’s beloved doorman, be hiding something? And is Molly really as innocent as she seems? As the case threatens the hotel’s pristine reputation, Molly knows she alone holds the key to unlocking the killer’s identity. But that key is buried deep in her past–because long ago, she knew J.D. Grimthorpe. Molly begins to comb her memory for clues, revisiting her childhood and the mysterious Grimthorpe mansion where she and her dearly departed Gran once worked side by side. With the entire hotel under investigation, Molly must solve the mystery post-haste. If there’s one thing Molly knows for sure, it’s that dirty secrets don’t stay buried forever.”
(Syndetics)

Thursday, August 8
Pineapple Street by Jenny Jackson
Image credit: Syndetics

“This zeitgeisty novel follows three women in one wealthy Brooklyn clan Darley, the eldest daughter in the well-connected old money Stockton family, followed her heart, trading her job and her inheritance for motherhood but giving up far too much in the process; Sasha, a middle-class New England girl, has married into the Brooklyn Heights family, and finds herself cast as the arriviste outsider; and Georgiana, the baby of the family, has fallen in love with someone she can’t have, and must decide what kind of person she wants to be. Rife with the indulgent pleasures of life among New York’s one-percenters, Pineapple Street is a smart, escapist novel that sparkles with wit. Full of recognizable, loveable–if fallible–characters, it’s about the peculiar unknowability of someone else’s family, the miles between the haves and have-nots, and the insanity of first love–all wrapped in a story that is a sheer delight.”
(Syndetics)

Thursday, September 12
The Leavers by Lisa Ko
Image credit: Syndetics

“One morning, Deming Guo’s mother, Polly, an undocumented Chinese immigrant, goes to her job at a nail salon–and never comes home. No one can find any trace of her. With his mother gone, eleven-year-old Deming is left mystified and bereft. Eventually adopted by a pair of well-meaning white professors, Deming is moved from the Bronx to a small town upstate and renamed Daniel Wilkinson. But far from all he’s ever known, Daniel struggles to reconcile his adoptive parents’ desire that he assimilate with his memories of his mother and the community he left behind. Told from the perspective of both Daniel–as he grows into a directionless young man–and Polly, Ko’s novel gives us one of fiction’s most singular mothers. Loving and selfish, determined and frightened, Polly is forced to make one heartwrenching choice after another. Set in New York and China, The Leavers is a vivid examination of borders and belonging. It’s a moving story of how a boy comes into his own when everything he loves is taken away, and how a mother learns to live with the mistakes of the past.”
(Syndetics)

Thursday, October 10
If It Bleeds by Stephen King
Image credit: Syndetics

“In the title story, reader favorite Holly Gibney (from the Mr. Mercedes trilogy and The Outsider ) must face her fears, and possibly another outsider–this time on her own. In “Mr. Harrigan’s Phone” an intergenerational friendship has a disturbing afterlife. “The Life of Chuck” explores, beautifully, how each of us contains multitudes. And in “Rat,” a struggling writer must contend with the darker side of ambition. If these novellas show King’s range, they also prove that certain themes endure. One of King’s great concerns is evil, and in If It Bleeds , there’s plenty of it. There is also evil’s opposite, which in King’s fiction often manifests as friendship. Holly is reminded that friendship is not only life-affirming but can be life-saving. Young Craig befriends Mr. Harrigan, and the sweetness of this late-in-life connection is its own reward.”
(Syndetics)

Thursday, November 14
The Art Thief by Michael Finkel
Image credit: Syndetics

“In this spellbinding portrait of obsession and flawed genius, the best-selling author of The Stranger in the Woods brings us into Breitwieser’s strange world–unlike most thieves, he never stole for money, keeping all his treasures in a single room where he could admire them. For centuries, works of art have been stolen in countless ways from all over the world, but no one has been quite as successful at it as the master thief Stéphane Breitwieser. Carrying out more than two hundred heists over nearly eight years–in museums and cathedrals all over Europe–Breitwieser, along with his girlfriend who worked as his lookout, stole more than three hundred objects, until it all fell apart in spectacular fashion. In The Art Thief, Michael Finkel brings us into Breitwieser’s strange and fascinating world. Unlike most thieves, Breitwieser never stole for money. Instead, he displayed all his treasures in a pair of secret rooms where he could admire them to his heart’s content. Possessed of a remarkable athleticism and an innate ability to circumvent practically any security system, Breitwieser managed to pull off a breathtaking number of audacious thefts. Yet these strange talents bred a growing disregard for risk and an addict’s need to score, leading Breitwieser to ignore his girlfriend’s pleas to stop–until one final act of hubris brought everything crashing down. This is a riveting story of art, crime, love, and an insatiable hunger to possess beauty at any cost.”
(Syndetics)

Thursday, December 12
Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt
Image credit: Syndetics

“A charming, witty and compulsively readable exploration of friendship, reckoning, and hope that traces a widow’s unlikely connection with a giant Pacific octopus After Tova Sullivan’s husband died, she began working the night shift at the Sowell Bay Aquarium, mopping floors and tidying up. Keeping busy has always helped her cope, which she’s been doing since her eighteen-year-old son, Erik, mysteriously vanished on a boat in Puget Sound over thirty years ago. Tova becomes acquainted with curmudgeonly Marcellus, a giant Pacific octopus living at the aquarium. Marcellus knows more than anyone can imagine but wouldn’t dream of lifting one of his eight arms for his human captors–until he forms a remarkable friendship with Tova. Ever the detective, Marcellus deduces what happened the night Tova’s son disappeared. And now Marcellus must use every trick his old invertebrate body can muster to unearth the truth for her before it’s too late. Shelby Van Pelt’s debut novel is a gentle reminder that sometimes taking a hard look at the past can help uncover a future that once felt impossible.”
(Syndetics)

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