Jul 2, 2015

Midnight riot - Ben Aaronovitch

Midnight riot - Aaronovitch, Ben

Summary: When his ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, who investigates paranormal crimes, Probationary Constable Peter Grant is drawn into a world where an ancient evil is making a comeback on a rising tide of murder and dark magic. Original. - (Baker & Taylor)

Publishers Weekly Reviews
In this fast-paced paranormal police procedural, Aaronovitch introduces Peter Grant, a rookie cop who can see ghosts. This unusual talent saves him from a potential life of office work when Chief Insp. Thomas Nightingale sends him for wizard training. Britain's police force has long known of the supernatural, and Grant is to assist Nightingale in solving many of London's magical problems—most notably, the mysterious string of violent attacks that tend to end with the perpetrator's face falling off. As the brutal epidemic spreads, Grant must race to finish his magic lessons and solve an ages-long dispute between the rivers of Britain. Though the novel sometimes feels just a little too jam-packed with plot points and adventures, it's witty, fun, and full of vivid characters, and the plot twists will keep even seasoned mystery fans guessing. (Feb.)

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Everything I never told you - Celeste Ng

Everything I never told you - Ng, Celeste

Summary: "Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet. So begins the story of this exquisite debut novel, about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother's bright blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue-in Marilyn's case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James's case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the center of every party. When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together tumbles into chaos, forcing them to confront the long-kept secrets that have been slowly pulling them apart. James, consumed by guilt, sets out on a reckless path that may destroy his marriage. Marilyn, devastated and vengeful, is determined to find a responsible party, no matter what the cost. Lydia's older brother, Nathan, is certain that the neighborhood bad boy Jack is somehow involved. But it's the youngest of the family-Hannah-who observes far more than anyone realizes and who may be the only one who knows the truth about what happened. A profoundly moving story of family, history, and the meaning of home, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, exploring the divisions between cultures and the rifts within a family, and uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another"-- Provided by publisher.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* A teenage girl goes missing and is later found to have drowned in a nearby lake, and suddenly a once tight-knit family unravels in unexpected ways. As the daughter of a college professor and his stay-at-home wife in a small Ohio town in the 1970s, Lydia Lee is already unwittingly part of the greater societal changes going on all around her. But Lydia suffers from pressure that has nothing to do with tuning out and turning on. Her father is an American born of first-generation Chinese immigrants, and his ethnicity, and hers, make them conspicuous in any setting. Her mother is white, and their interracial marriage raises eyebrows and some intrusive charges of miscegenation. More troubling, however, is her mother's frustration at having given up medical school for motherhood, and how she blindly and selfishly insists that Lydia follow her road not taken. The cracks in Lydia's perfect-daughter foundation grow slowly but erupt suddenly and tragically, and her death threatens to destroy her parents and deeply scar her siblings. Tantalizingly thrilling, Ng's emotionally complex debut novel captures the tension between cultures and generations with the deft touch of a seasoned writer. Ng will be one to watch. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Ruby Sparks (DVD)

Ruby Sparks (DVD)

Summary: Struggling with writer's block and a lackluster love life, once-famous novelist Calvin creates a beautiful fictitious character named Ruby who inspires him. But not only does this bring his work to life, it also brings Ruby to life, literally. Face-to-face with an actual relationship with his once virtual girlfriend, Calvin must now decide whether to pen this love story or let it write itself.

Video Librarian Reviews
In classical mythology, the sculptor Pygmalion fell in love with a beautiful statue he created that later came to life by the grace of the gods—a theme that inspired George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion, as well as the classic film My Fair Lady. Actress/writer Zoe Kazan (granddaughter of director Elia Kazan) indulges in that same vein of magical realism with this quirky, witty, romantic fable—delightfully directed by husband-and-wife team Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris—about a contemporary Los Angeles novelist, played by Kazan's real-life boyfriend Paul Dano. Having achieved early acclaim, neurotic literary prodigy Calvin Weir-Fields (Dano) is recovering from the rupture of a long-term relationship and suffering from acute writer's block. After he envisions saucy, red-headed Ruby Sparks (Kazan) while walking in the park with his dog Scotty (named after F. Scott Fitzgerald), Calvin follows a suggestion from his psychiatrist (Elliott Gould) and develops a full-fledged story about this idealized young woman. In the midst of Calvin's creative frenzy, however, his concerned older brother Harry (Chris Messina) discovers female lingerie scattered about Calvin's stark, minimalist Hollywood Hills bachelor pad. A bewildered Calvin claims ignorance—but one morning he finds effervescent yet ethereal Ruby cooking breakfast in his kitchen. Confused and convinced that he's hallucinating, Calvin is stunned when the pair go out and others can see Ruby too. After a visit with his free-spirited, widowed mother (Annette Bening) and her lover (Antonio Banderas) in Big Sur—where Ruby begins to assert her independence—Calvin realizes that he can change and control Ruby by simply rewriting her. But does he want to? Recommended. (S. Granger)Copyright Video Librarian Reviews 2011.

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Smoke get in your eyes - Caitlin Doughty

Smoke get in your eyes - Doughty, Caitlin

Summary: The blogger behind the popular Web series Ask a Mortician describes her experiences working at a crematory, including how she sometimes got ashes on her clothes and how she cared for bodies of all shapes and sizes.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* In life, death is the only guarantee, yet many of us live in fear of the great equalizer. Doughty, a licensed L.A. mortician, is here to reinstate death to what she feels is its rightful place—at the heart of life. Smoke Gets in Your Eyes recounts Doughty's fascination (nay obsession) with death, which began, as a child, when she witnessed a toddler's fatal two-story fall, and has continued through her work monitoring a cremation retort and her studies at mortuary school. Doughty pairs her personal narrative with an engrossing examination of various cultures' relationships with death (1800s Parisian morgues displaying corpses for public view, complete with food and toy vendors; Brazilian Wari' roasting and consuming their dead tribesmen; North America's current billion-dollar funeral industry). Not shying away from candid descriptions of corpses, cremation, and putrefaction, Doughty—professional both in the field and on the page—details postmortem proceedings not to repulse but to reveal our modern society's "death denial" (as Carl Jung put it, "It won't help to hear what I think about death"). Doughty begs to differ. Her sincere, hilarious, and perhaps life-altering memoir is a must-read for anyone who plans on dying. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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The god of small things - Roy Arundhati

The god of small things - Arundhati, Roy

Summary: In 1969 in Kerala, India, Rahel and her twin brother, Estha, struggle to forge a childhood for themselves amid the destrucion of their family life, as they discover that the entire world can be transformed in a single moment - (Baker & Taylor)

Booklist Reviews
/*Starred Review*/ It's easier to talk about small things because the big things in life are far too complex and painful. But even small things can loom large, and everything can change, radically, in a day, a moment. These are the sort of big things first-time novelist Roy ponders in this highly original and exquisitely crafted tale set in the tiny river town of Ayemenem in Kerala, India. The story revolves around a pair of twins, brother and sister, whose mother has left her violent husband to live with her blind mother and kind, if ineffectual, brother, Chacko. Chacko's ex-wife, an Englishwoman, has returned to Ayemenem after a long absence, bringing along her and Chacko's lovely young daughter. Their arrival not only unsettles the already tenuous balance of the divisive household, it also coincides with political unrest. The twins and their cousin--each brimming with vernal intelligence, innocent love and longing, curiosity and fear--barely have time to get acquainted before tragedy strikes, first in the form of an accident (caused by carelessness in love), then murder (the result of ancient prejudice). Roy's intricate, enchanting, and often wry tale is positively mythical in its cosmic inevitability, evocative circularity, and paradoxical wisdom. ((Reviewed May 1, 1997)) Copyright 2000 Booklist Reviews

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Infamy - Richard Reeves

Infamy: the shocking story of Japanese American internment in World War II - Reeves, Richard

Summary: Former Frontline journalist Reeves (Portrait of Camelot ) examines the key causes and dire consequences of the Japanese-American internment in relocation camps during WWII, concentrating on a shortsighted military strategy and anti-Japanese sentiment following the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* During WWII, newspapers, films, and the U.S. government regularly reminded citizens that they were fighting totalitarian governments whose populations were in constant fear of a "knock on the door," followed by rapid transport to a concentration camp. It is a sad and cruel irony that Japanese Americans, citizens and noncitizens, lived under a similar fear. The forced relocation and internment of people was a racially based insult to our purported ideals. Reeves, an award-winning journalist, recounts the unfolding of this outrage with a justifiable sense of moral indignation. He reminds us that this was a national failure as he indicts political leaders, the courts, and ordinary citizens, many of whom were resentful of the success and prosperity of their Japanese neighbors. Although there was virtually no violent resistance, the Japanese did fight against their internment in the halls of Congress and the court system, which helped ameliorate conditions within the camps. Reeves lays out the broad outlines of the "roundup" and the structure of the camps, but he is at his best when he chronicles the experiences of particular families whose lives were ripped apart by what they went through, even as some of their young men chose to honorably serve in the military of the country that continued to detain their relatives. This is a painful but necessary and timely reminder of how overblown fears about national security can have shameful consequences.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Reeves' books always prove popular in public libraries and this one will be no exception. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Where you go is not who you'll be - Frank Bruni

Where you go is not who you'll be - Bruni, Frank

Summary: "Over the last few decades, Americans have turned college admissions into a terrifying and occasionally devastating process, preceded by test prep, tutors, all sorts of stratagems, all kinds of rankings, and a conviction among too many young people that their futures will be determined and their worth established by which schools say yes and which say no. That belief is wrong. It's cruel. And in WHERE YOU GO IS NOT WHO YOU'LL BE, Frank Bruni explains why, giving students and their parents a new perspective on this brutal, deeply flawed competition and a path out of the anxiety that it provokes. Bruni, a bestselling author and a columnist for the New York Times, shows that the Ivy League has no monopoly on corner offices, governors' mansions, or the most prestigious academic and scientific grants. Through statistics, surveys, and the stories of hugely successful people who didn't attend the most exclusive schools, he demonstrates that many kinds of colleges-large public universities, tiny hideaways in the hinterlands-serve as ideal springboards. And he illuminates how to make the most of them. What matters in the end are a student's efforts in and out of the classroom, not the gleam of his or her diploma. Where you go isn't who you'll be. Americans need to hear that-and this indispensable manifesto says it with eloquence and respect for the real promise of higher education"-- Provided by publisher.

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Mary, kiss, kill - Anne Flett-Giordano

Mary, kiss, kill - Flett-Giordano, Anne

Summary: In this debut mystery set in Santa Barbara, movie stars are in town for the film festival, powerful business interests are at stake, and detective Nola MacIntire and her partner, Tony Angelotti, must solve the complicated puzzle behind three seemingly unrelated deaths in this idyllic beach town. This mystery has got it all: snappy dialogue, memorable characters, and a captivating web of intrigue to untangle. Det. Nola MacIntire and her partner, Det. Lt. Anthony Angellotti, are called to investigate a dead body in front of the courthouse in sunny Santa Barbara, CA.

Kirkus Reviews
Smart cop Nola needs a Skinnygirl™ Margarita to get through a series of seemingly unrelated murders. The fact that she's the deputy chief detective for Santa Barbara's finest isn't going to stop the sass of Nola MacIntire's mouth as she deals with suspects in her superficial town. Luckily, her partner, Detective Lt. Tony Angellotti, is one of the few men able to match her fast talk, even though their efforts spent trying to take their relationship to the next level have completely fizzled. Their His Girl Friday, blink-and-you'll-miss-it banter serves as the background for their attempt to solve the murder of a music man, a sweet street busker found with two slugs in him without apparent reason. Before they can find anyone who might offer information—apart from the garden-variety meth fiend perseverating on the same meaningless version of events—Nola and Tony have another case on their hands: the death of a formerly wealthy businessman wiped out in the market crash. His distraught trophy wife has Tony wrapped around her finger even if, as Nola's intuition insists, she's set up her husband's murder as a suicide. Clearly, whoever's behind the fatalities isn't afraid to get dirty to make sure his or her reputation stays clean. But how are the two cases connected? Pulling that string tangles Nola and Tony in a ball of yarn they may not be able to untangle. The dialogue is the high point of TV writer Flett-Giordano's debut, though the fast-paced banter does make characters blend together and make you wonder if everyone in Santa Barbara is the same brand of smartass. Copyright Kirkus 2015 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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The life-changing magic of tidying up - Marie Kondo

The life-changing magic of tidying up - Kondo, Marie

Summary: This #1 New York Times best-selling guide to decluttering your home from Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes readers step-by-step through her revolutionary KonMari Method for simplifying, organizing, and storing.

Despite constant efforts to declutter your home, do papers still accumulate like snowdrifts and clothes pile up like a tangled mess of noodles?

Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you’ll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever. The KonMari Method, with its revolutionary category-by-category system, leads to lasting results. In fact, none of Kondo’s clients have lapsed (and she still has a three-month waiting list).

With detailed guidance for determining which items in your house “spark joy” (and which don’t), this international bestseller featuring Tokyo’s newest lifestyle phenomenon will help you clear your clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home—and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire. - (Random House, Inc.)

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Eat, move, sleep - Tom Rath

Eat, move, sleep - Rath, Tom

Summary: #1 "New York Times" bestselling author Tom Rath delivers a book that will improve your health for years to come in three of interconnected areas: eating, moving, and sleeping.

PW Annex Reviews
Gallup senior scientist and prolific business author Rath (Strengthfinder 2.0) explores how diets, exercise regimens, and sleep choices influence our health. Rath, diagnosed at age 16 with a life-threatening genetic disorder, draws from personal experiences as well as research, asserting that "small decisions about how you eat, move and sleep each day count more than you think." He offers practical tips to make long-lasting behavior changes and, in an encouraging, conversational tone, urges readers to "forget fad diets, forever," "make inactivity your enemy," and "sleep longer to get more done." He also emphasizes the importance of incremental changes, ranging from ideas on "product placement" in the home, getting a device to track steps, and using smaller plates to combat overeating. Snappy titles like "Family style is making us fat," energize the short, punchy chapters and add levity to what could be daunting behavioral changes. While much of Rath's advice is common-sense, his willingness to share his personal struggles makes this an easy, persuasive read for those trying to correct self-sabotaging behavior or adopt a healthy lifestyle. (Oct.)

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Kid President's guide to being awesome - Brad Montague

Kid President's guide to being awesome - Montague, Brad

Summary: Kid President offers advice on how to make life and the world more awesome, including more high fives, solving conflicts using ice cream, and remembering that things don't have to be the way they are.

Booklist Reviews
Ten-year-old Novak became a YouTube sensation with his Kid President series, coproduced by actor Rainn Wilson, which encourages positivity and cooperation with funny pep talks and celebrity interviews. He brings the same brand of irrepressible optimism to his first book. Through lists, diatribes, quotes from great thinkers, inspiring profiles, and cartoons, the Kid President team offers 100 suggestions for kids and adults alike to make the world more awesome. Kid President fans will not be disappointed, as corn dogs and dance parties are featured frequently, but even readers with no familiarity with his online persona will find his winsome personality impossible to resist. Plenty of interviews with inspiring young people who are agents of positive change serve as the backbone of the book's message. A dynamic mixed-media layout of photographs, illustrations, and fan submissions punctuate Novak's platform. Even the most ardent cynics will find themselves laughing along with the Kid President's silly but hugely insightful musings. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Greenglass House - Kate Milford

Greenglass House - Milford, Kate

Summary: At Greenglass House, a smuggler's inn, twelve-year-old Milo, the innkeepers' adopted son, plans to spend his winter holidays relaxing but soon guests are arriving with strange stories about the house sending Milo and Meddy, the cook's daughter, on an adventure.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* It's Christmas break and adopted Milo and his parents are looking forward to a vacation all to themselves at Greenglass House, the inn where they live and routinely host benevolent passing smugglers. When five unusual guests unexpectedly arrive, and their belongings—which all have something to do with the house—start disappearing, Milo finds himself at the heart of a real mystery. With the help of Meddy, the oddball girl who arrives with the cook, and a role-playing game that gives him the courage to poke around where he knows he is not supposed to, Milo uses his knowledge of the house and his skills of observation to find the missing objects, piece together the mystery of the house, and discover a secret about the legendary folk hero who used to live there. The puzzling mystery is perfectly matched by the offbeat world of Nagspeake, a fictional harbor town enhanced by folklore and history rich enough to sound convincingly real, and the dreamy Greenglass House, with its enviable attic, snug corners, and thrilling past. Milford (The Boneshaker, 2010) weaves together compelling clues, crackerjack detective work from Milo and Meddy, and well-rounded characters to reveal heartwarming truths about Greenglass House and its residents. An enchanting, empowering, and cozy read. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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The secrets of midwives - Sally Hepworth

The secrets of midwives - Hepworth, Sally

Summary: "Neva Bradley, a third-generation midwife, is determined to keep the details surrounding her own pregnancy--including the identity of the baby's father--hidden from her family and coworkers for as long as possible. Her mother Grace finds it impossible to let this secret rest. The more Grace prods, the tighter Neva holds to her story, and the more the lifelong differences between private, quiet Neva and open, gregarious Grace strain their relationship. For Floss, Neva's grandmother and a retired midwife, Neva's situation thrusts her back sixty years in time to a secret that eerily mirrors her granddaughter's--one which, if revealed, will have life-changing consequences for them all"--Dust jacket flap.

Booklist Reviews
Hepworth's promising debut is a chorus in three voices not so much about the consequences of keeping secrets as it is about the cathartic effect of finally airing them. British ex-pat and retired midwife Floss has literally been carrying a dark secret in the front pocket of her purse for 60 years. Granddaughter Neva has been keeping one that's likely to burst upon the scene any time, but she is still playing her cards close to her vest as far as other critical information is concerned. Finally there is Grace, Neva's mother and Floss' daughter, who has her own secret. Tensions build as the future of both the family and Neva's baby depend upon surviving a horrific New England storm. Ah, families, their conflicts made all the more poignant here by the shared profession of the three midwives. One might expect values that include natural childbirth, motherhood, and mother/child bonding would mean something to these women. But Hepworth credibly paints them no less complexly human and contradictory than anybody else in a not altogether estrogen-drenched tale of redemption via truth. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Roller girl - Victoria Jamieson

Roller girl - Jamieson, Victoria

Summary: "A graphic novel adventure about a girl who discovers roller derby right as she and her best friend are growing apart"-- Provided by publisher.

Booklist Reviews
Almost-middle-schooler Astrid ("Ass-Turd" to the mean girls) just isn't interested in the kinds of things everyone else is. Her BFF Nicole likes boys and ballet and the color pink, but Astrid's new obsession is tough, fast-paced Roller Derby. She thinks she and Nicole can spend their summer together at junior Roller Derby camp, but Nicole opts instead for ballet camp with Astrid's archnemesis. And when it turns out that Astrid isn't quite the Roller Derby prodigy she had hoped to be (she can barely master falling!), it seems both her summer and the impending start of junior high will be disasters. The bright, detailed, and colorful illustrations convey Astrid's scrappy personality while also focusing on the high-contact aspect of Roller Derby: the girls hip check and elbow one another right out of the panels. While learning the game, Astrid learns how to be a friend and, maybe, that not all friendships are forever. A touching look at the ups and downs of following one's dreams, in addition to introducing readers to a relatively unknown sport. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Jun 1, 2015

Uprooted - Naomi Novik

Uprooted - Novik, Naomi

Summary: Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life. Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood. The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows--everyone knows--that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn't, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her. But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

Library Journal Reviews
Agnieszka has no plans to leave her village on the edge of the forest until she is unexpectedly chosen to serve the local wizard, a mysterious man known as the Dragon. Agnieszka's exploration of her new life coincides with an attack from the deadly sentient forest, a kissing queen, and a prince on a quest. Novik's newest is a departure from her previous military influenced Napoleonic dragon fantasies (most recently seen in Blood of Tyrants), so much so that readers can't be blamed for thinking it's a completely different writer. Drawing on her Polish heritage and fairy-tale tropes, the author has penned an original and fully realized fantastical place guaranteed to enthrall her longtime fans and attract new readers. VERDICT This exceptional fantasy for adult and teen readers should appeal to those who love fairy tale-influenced stories such as Robin McKinley's Spindle's End. [Five-city tour; library marketing.]—Jessica Moyer, Sch. of Information Studies, Univ. of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

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The Shakespeare book

The Shakespeare book

Summary: "Whether you are new to the poetry and proses of Shakespeare, and in need of a guide through the complex plots and unfamiliar language, or looking for a fresh perspective on his much-loved plays and sonnets, this book will shed light on the work of one of world literature's greatest figures"--Page [4] of cover.

Booklist Reviews
The latest addition to DK's Big Ideas Simply Explained series is a colorful and appealing guide to the Bard's plays, narrative poems, and sonnets. To whet our appetites for the subject, an introductory chapter surveys Shakespeare's life and work. The main course is presented in three servings: "The Freelance Writer" (1589–1594); "The Lord Chamberlain's Man" (1594–1603); and "The King's Man" (1603–1613). This arrangement follows the chronology and uses the text of the Complete Oxford Shakespeare (2005). Generous helpings of illustrations, time lines, plot diagrams, and character guides ensure that even readers in their "salad days" will enjoy every dish at the Shakespearean feast. The menu includes production photographs and sidebars that set individual plays in context (themes, setting, sources, and legacy) and profile individual Shakespearean players. Seasoned theatergoers and budding thespians alike will delight in this fresh approach to the greatest writer in the English language. The attractive presentation (not to mention price point) makes this suitable for all libraries. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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The water museum - Luis Alberto Urrea

The water museum - Urrea, Luis Alberto

Summary: A collection of stories that explores the borders between people and nations includes "Amapola" and "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses."

Booklist Reviews
The author of numerous fiction and nonfiction titles, including the poetry collection The Tijuana Book of the Dead (2015), Urrea is an established storyteller who blends sympathetic characters with riveting, unexpected plots. An early story in this collection catalogs the hilarious misadventures of Junior and Shadow, two Chicano homeboys who imitate "Louie and Clark" in a stolen kayak, until Shadow's family gets a visit from ICE. In the next story, Junior and his brother Chango steal abandoned dishwashers and TV sets from foreclosed homes in Arizona. In "Taped to the Sky," Don Her Many Horses lends a rifle to Hubbard, a crazed white guy lost near the Oglala reservation, who destroys his ex-wife's Volvo with gunfire. Her Many Horses reappears in another story after the unexpected death of his sister. While a few of these stories appeared in a previous collection (Six Kinds of Sky, 2002), and the story of a mysterious, graffiti-covered Mexican town worked best as a graphic novel (Mr. Mendoza's Paintbrush, 2010), Urrea succeeds in writing unforgettable characters who face desperate, life-changing scenarios. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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A god in ruins - Kate Atkinson

A god in ruins - Atkinson, Kate

Summary: "Kate Atkinson's dazzling Life After Life explored the possibility of infinite chances and the power of choices, following Ursula Todd as she lived through the turbulent events of the last century over and over again. A GOD IN RUINS tells the dramatic story of the 20th Century through Ursula's beloved younger brother Teddy--would-be poet, heroic pilot, husband, father, and grandfather-as he navigates the perils and progress of a rapidly changing world. After all that Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge is living in a future he never expected to have" -- provided by publisher.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* Atkinson calls her latest novel a companion piece to her previous book, Life after Life (2013), which vividly depicted the multiple lives led by Ursula Todd during WWII. This one follows her much-loved younger brother, Teddy. He only leads one life as a husband, father, grandfather, RAF pilot, teacher, and writer, but the ever-inventive Atkinson encompasses many phases of Ted's life within one chapter. At one moment, we are up in the air with him during one of his harrowing bombing raids ("The dead are legion"), and the next, we are at Teddy's nursing home, where he resides while in his nineties, witnessing his tenderhearted granddaughter reading to him from his favorite Trollope novel, though he can barely hear. Atkinson often revisits the same scene from a different perspective, adding key details, and always, there is her wry humor. She also continues to write, as she did in Life after Life, about the savagery of war in clarion prose that is graphic in detail and possessed of a singular melancholy. And whether it is the stoic Teddy, his practical wife, his unbelievably selfish daughter, or his neglected grandchildren, every one of Atkinson's characters will, at one moment or another, break readers' hearts. Atkinson mixes character, theme, and plot into a rich mix, one that will hold readers in thrall. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Atkinson's legion of fans, both of her Jackson Brodie mysteries and Life after Life, will be eagerly anticipating her latest, which has a 150,000 first printing and will be backed by numerous promotional efforts, including book-club outreach. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Texts from Jane Eyre - Marllory Ortberg

Texts from Jane Eyre: and other conversations with your favorite literary characters - Ortberg, Mallory

"Hilariously imagined text conversations--the passive aggressive, the clever, and the strange--from classic and modern literary figures, from Scarlett O'Hara to Jessica Wakefield. Mallory Ortberg, the co-creator of the cult-favorite website The Toast, presents this whimsical collection of hysterical text conversations from your favorite literary characters. Everyone knows that if Scarlett O'Hara had an unlimited text-and-data plan, she'd constantly try to tempt Ashley away from Melanie with suggestive messages. If Mr. Rochester could text Jane Eyre, his ardent missives would obviously be in all-caps. And Daisy Buchanan would not only text while driving, she'd text you to pick her up after she totaled her car. Based on the popular web-feature, Texts from Jane Eyre is a witty, irreverent mashup that brings the characters from your favorite books into the twenty-first century"-- - (Baker & Taylor)

Library Journal Reviews
This is the best kind of English-major humor. Ortberg, cocreator of the website The Toast, has a wicked sense of humor and an enviable grip on roughly the entire Western literary canon. The book consists of text conversations between notable fictional characters and authors, who are characters in their own right, such as Lord Byron, Henry David Thoreau, and Emily Dickinson. It's loosely arranged by literary era. A final section includes more modern authors (Cormac McCarthy), works (Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca), and literary phenomena (the "American Girl" series, The Hunger Games, Harry Potter books, etc.). Conversations involving Great Expectations and Little Women are particularly entertaining. There's not a weak point in the book; it's terrific, snicker-inducing fun throughout. For the uninitiated, this title may serve as a gateway drug for The Toast. VERDICT Bibliophiles who enjoy their humor laced with snark will be thrilled to find this book, which is probably the only published work containing texts from Medea, Scarlett O'Hara, and Jessica Wakefield. [See Prepub Alert, 6/2/14.]—Audrey Snowden, Orrington P.L., ME

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Lumberjanes - Noelle Stevenson

Lumberjanes - Stevenson, Noelle

Summary: "Friendship to the max! At Miss Quinzella Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet's camp for hardcore lady-types, things are not what they seem. Three-eyed foxes. Secret caves. Anagrams. Luckily, Jo, April, Mal, Molly and Ripley are five rad, butt-kicking best pals determined to have an awesome summer together-- and they're not gonna let a magical quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way!"-- summary from page 4 of cover of Volume 1.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* The Lumberjanes—Jo, Molly, Mal, April, and Ripley—all attend a summer camp for "hard-core lady-types" headed up by a Rosie-the-Riveter lookalike who's surprisingly lenient when it comes to late-night sojourns into the woods to follow ghostly bearwomen. In a series of adventures, all of which exasperate the girls' beleaguered cabin leader, the girls use both their ample brains and pure brawn to defeat three-eyed foxes, a river monster, some talking statues, and a pack of finicky yetis. It's not totally clear where the quests are leading them, but that hardly matters, since each adventure is packed with manic cartoon antics, particularly when Ripley, in spite of her tiny size, literally hurls herself at obstacles. There are plenty of comic-book series with this brand of madcap enthusiasm, but Lumberjanes is the only one so dedicated to feminism in such a lighthearted way. Check out these exclamations: "What in the Joan Jett are you doing?!"; "Holy bell hooks!"; and "Where the Phillis Wheatley were you?" The girls-only cast and casual mention of postmodern social activists should in no way dissuade a wide audience, however; this is pure mystery-solving, bad-guy-bludgeoning, summer-camp fun, and with buoyant, off-the-wall art and well-rounded characters, it's already set up to be a hit. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Where'd you go Bernadette - Maria Semple

Where'd you go Bernadette - Semple, Maria

Summary: When her notorious, hilarious, volatile, talented, troubled, and agoraphobic mother goes missing, teenage Bee begins a trip that takes her to the ends of the earth to find her.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* Bernadette Fox, practically a shut-in, who's hired a virtual assistant in India to remotely arrange every task, from hiring a gardener to planning the trip to Antarctica she's promised her star-student daughter, Bee seems pretty crazy. But don't be fooled. Suspicions that madcap Bernadette is as clever as her last name implies will be confirmed heartily. When she's party to some unfortunate events, her erratic behavior leads her husband, Microsoft guru Elgin Branch, to commit her to a local mental-health facility. But Bernadette intercepts his plan at the pass, escapes the staged intervention, and disappears without a trace. Though much of the story is told through documents—e-mails, letters, magazine articles—precocious young teen Bee as narrator is great company, entertaining and convincing in her comportment. TV writer Semple (Arrested Development) pokes fun at the Pacific Northwest as only a Seattlelite can and concocts a caper that, if seen from outer space, might be a mess but in the minutiae of its tangles is clear and rewarding. Under the guise of a hilarious romp, Semple explores the universal questions of why we do what we do and love what we love to some sweet and unexpected ends. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

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The disgusting creatures series - Elise Gravel

The disgusting creatures series - Gravel, Elise

School Library Journal Reviews
Gr 1–2—This series adds two more to its lineup of silly, whimsical facts. The cartoon illustrations and use of speech bubbles make for a winning mixture of entertainment and information. Bold colors and fonts draw attention to important words, which beginning readers will find useful. Humor abounds in both titles. In Spider, the sentence "Some spiders even mimic their prey" is accompanied by an image of an arachnid pretending to be a burger as it stalks its prey (with the speech bubble reading, "Hee hee, he doesn't suspect a thing!"). Lice states that these insects are about the size of a sesame seed, while a text bubble reads, "I might be small, but to your parents, I'm scarier than a lion." The illustrations depict a louse on one page and a large lion paw on the next to add context. Ample spacing throughout makes for an effective layout. VERDICT The comic charm will appeal to a wide berth of new and reluctant readers.—Melissa Smith, Royal Oak Public Library, MI

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Maangchi's real Korean cooking - Maangchi

Maangchi's real Korean cooking: authentic dishes for the home cook - Maangchi

Summary: "Her millions of fans compare her to Julia Child. An Internet sensation, Maangchi has won the admiration of home cooks and chefs alike with her trademark combination of good technique and good cheer as she demonstrates the vast and delicious cuisine of Korea. In Maangchi’s Real Korean Cooking, she shows how to cook all the country’s best dishes, from few-ingredient dishes (Spicy Napa Cabbage) to those made familiar by Korean restaurants (L.A. Galbi, Bulgogi, Korean Fried Chicken) to homey one-pots like Bibimbap. With her step-by-step photos--800 in all--Maangchi makes every dish a snap. A full glossary, complete with photos, explains ingredients."--Amazon.com.

Publishers Weekly Reviews
Born and raised in South Korea and now living in New York City, Maangchi is the founder of a popular Korean cooking website. In this delightful collection, she showcases the variety and breadth of Korean cooking. She begins by detailing typical Korean meals, with ever-present rice and kimchi served in a multitude of ways. She also provides comprehensive ingredient and equipment lists that help orient first timers. Recipes start with numerous types of rice—fluffy, toasted, multigrain—that serve as the building blocks of Korean-style curry rice, seaweed rice rolls, and bibimbap. Maangchi also offers an appetizing selection of noodles, including spicy, chewy cold noodles and noodles with black bean paste. Soups and stews, two of the cornerstones of Korean cuisine, are amply represented by dishes like spicy beef and vegetable soup, seafood stew, and kimchi stew with tuna. She dedicates one chapter to kimchi and pickles and another to snacks, with offerings such as spicy stuffed cucumber kimchi and fried kelp. Side dishes steal the show, including braised beef in soy sauce, stir-fried kale with soybean paste, blanched spinach with scallions and sesame, and stir-fried pork. In addition, she provides chapters on pancakes, special-occasion food, desserts, and more. Maangchi has written an essential cookbook for anyone who wants to learn to prepare authentic Korean cuisine.

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Ready player one - Ernest Cline

Ready player one - Cline, Ernest

Summary: Immersing himself in a mid-twenty-first-century technological virtual utopia to escape an ugly real world of famine, poverty, and disease, Wade Watts joins an increasingly violent effort to solve a series of puzzles by the virtual world's creator.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* Young Wade Watts takes refuge in the OASIS, the "globally networked virtual reality" that nearly all of humanity relies on. It's 2044, the year before the Singularity futurist Ray Kurzweil predicts will inextricably unite humans and computers. Life on earth is bleak and sinister, thanks to failure to avert global warming and the oil crisis. An orphan, Wade lives in the Stacks, a vast slum comprising trailers piled in precarious towers, but keeps to his hideout, where he attends school online, plays video games, and sends his avatar, Parzival, to visit with Aech, his only friend. Fanboys (2009) screenwriter Cline brings his geeky ardor for 1980s pop culture to his first novel, an exuberantly realized, exciting, and sweet-natured cyberquest. Wade/Parzival, Aech, a droll blogger calling herself Art3mis, and two Japanese brothers embark on a grandly esoteric and potentially life-changing virtual Easter egg hunt and end up doing battle with a soulless corporation. Mind-twisting settings, nail-biting action, amusing banter, and unabashed sentiment make for a smart and charming Arthurian tale that will score high with gamers, fantasy and sf fans, and everyone else who loves stories of bumbling romance and unexpected valor. With a movie version in the works, Cline's imaginative, rollicking, coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe. Copyright 2011 Booklist Reviews.

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Cry, the beloved country - Alan Paton

Cry, the beloved country - Paton, Alan

Cry, the beloved country, for the unborn child that is the inheritor of our fear. Let him not love the earth too deeply. Let him not laugh too gladly when the water runs through his fingers, nor stand too silent when the setting sun makes red the veld with fire. Let him not be too moved when the birds of his land are singing, nor give too much of his heart to a mountain or valley. For fear will rob him of all if he gives too much.

The eminent literary critic Lewis Gannett wrote, “We have had many novels from statesmen and reformers, almost all bad; many novels from poets, almost all thin. In Alan Paton’s Cry, the Beloved Country the statesman, the poet and the novelist meet in a unique harmony.”

Cry, the Beloved Country is the deeply moving story of the Zulu pastor Stephen Kumalo and his son, Absalom, set against the background of a land and a people riven by racial injustice. Remarkable for its lyricism, unforgettable for character and incident, Cry, the Beloved Country is a classic work of love and hope, courage and endurance, born of the dignity of man. - (Simon and Schuster)

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Replay - Ken Grimwood

Replay - Grimwood, Ken

Summary: Through a bizarre cycle of dying and coming back to life again and again, Jeff Winston receives six chances to change his life, correct previous mistakes, and find the happiness that has long eluded him - (Baker & Taylor)

Library Journal Reviews
The possibility of traveling back in time to relive one's life has long fascinated science fiction writers. Without a single gesture toward an explanation, this mainstream novel recounts the story of a man and a woman mysteriously given the ability to live their lives over. Each dies in 1988 only to awaken as a teenager in 1963 with adult knowledge and wisdom intact and the ability to make a new set of choices. Different spouses, lovers, children, careers, await them in each go-round of the past 25 years, as well as slightly altered versions of world events. Their deep commitment to one another continues through the centuries of their many lifetimes. This delightful and completely engrossing story will appeal to a wide variety of readers. Literary Guild selection. Marcia R. Hoffman, M.L.S., American Hoechst Corp., Somerville, N.J. Copyright 1987 Cahners Business Information.

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Barracuda - Christos Tsiolkas

Barracuda - Tsiolkas, Christos

Summary: Raised by a hairdresser single mom in a tiny Melbourne flat, Danny is elevated to an elite world by his Olympics-level swimming talent and must consider returning home twenty years later when a family member reaches out for help.

Booklist Reviews
The water was like air to Danny Kelly. Thanks to his swimming ability, the working-class Australian boy earns a scholarship to an expensive school, but the life he was dreaming of is shattered when he performs poorly in his first big championship. His pain at losing is stinging and pervasive, and his struggle to find an identity out of the pool provides the grist for this physical coming-of-age tale. Tsiolkas (The Slap, 2010) perfectly captures the arrogance and agonies of youth, complete with profanity and locker-room mockery, the endless posturing of an all-boys school. So complete is the separation between Danny the swimmer and Dan the adult that Tsiolkas even uses different forms of narration for the two sides of his character as the story bounces back and forth. Stunned and adrift, Dan embarks on a search for meaning, as he slowly tries forgiving himself and his loved ones. His emotions hum mercilessly beneath the surface, and the novel, although slightly bloated, burns with razor-raw insight. His is a ferocious failure, and it translates to engrossing reading—more so, in fact, than most tales of sporting triumph. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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Rhymoceros - Janik Coat

Rhymoceros - Coat, Janik

Summary: A blue rhinoceros unabashedly subjects himself to undignified elements in order to demonstrate sixteen pairs of rhyming words, from "caring" and "daring" to "stinky" and "inky."

Publishers Weekly Reviews
Reprising the format of 2012's Hippopposites, Coat uses a denim-colored rhinoceros to demonstrate more than a dozen pairs of rhyming words and phrases. Setting the rhino against minimal backdrops keeps the focus on how Coat alters the animal's simple graphic shape: brown fuzz makes the rhino "furry," while digital manipulation turns its outline "blurry." Some pairings hint at cause-and-effect relationships (a rain "shower" appears opposite the rhino holding a pink "flower," and a lemon tree creates "shade" while its fruit makes "lemonade"). Like its predecessor, this is a wide-ranging, stylish, and witty introduction to a key concept. Ages 2–4. (Mar.)

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The harder they come - T.C. Boyle

The harder they come - Boyle, T.C.

Summary: Set in contemporary Northern California, The Harder They Come explores the volatile connections between three damaged people -- an aging ex-Marine and Vietnam veteran, his psychologically unstable son, and the son's paranoid, much older lover -- as they careen towards an explosive confrontation.

Booklist Reviews
*Starred Review* T. C. Boyle's love and mastery of language are matched by a vehement imagination and a profound fascination with the glory and ruthlessness of nature and the paradoxes of humankind. How can a species be at once so brainy and so destructive? Boyle's virtuoso short stories fill 10 volumes, and he now has 15 novels to his name, some linked to controversial historical figures, such as Alfred Kinsey in The Inner Circle (2004) and Frank Lloyd Wright in The Women (2009). Boyle is equally inspired by the struggles of less-well-known individuals, such as the hardy few who attempted to settle California's Northern Channel Islands, the inspiration for When the Killing's Done (2011) and San Miguel (2012). The Harder They Come, Boyle's latest high-adrenaline tale of American individualism gone psychopathic, is pegged to the jaw-dropping story of the original mountain man, John Colter. Recruited by Lewis and Clark, Colter was an exceptional hunter, trapper, and scout. Believed to be the first white man to have seen the wonders of Yellowstone, he became legendary for his escape from a group of riled Blackfeet in Montana, who stripped him naked, let him go, then gave chase, intending to hunt him down. But Colter ran for his life through severe cold for some 300 miles and survived. In today's abused and pillaged wilds of California's Mendocino County, Adam, 25, worships Colter, and even takes his name. Prone to aberrant and violent behavior, Adam is in the grip of militant survivalist mania and raging, untreated schizophrenia. Camped out in the hills, he is growing his own medication, opium poppy. His parents are on a cruise. When they join a group onshore in Costa Rica, three armed men surround them and demand their valuables. While the others cower, his father, Sten, a Vietnam vet and retired high-school principal, becomes so enraged, he kills one of the bandits with his bare hands. Back in Mendocino, we meet another outlaw, one who does more harm to herself than to others. Sara is 40 or so, devoted to her dog, and supporting herself as a substitute teacher and a farrier, tending to the hoofs of the region's horses and, in a private nature preserve for endangered African wildlife, zebras and antelopes. Sara is also a fine gardener, a darn good cook, and a rabid member of the so-called sovereign citizen movement, which considers the U.S. government illegitimate. Recklessly rebellious, Sara picks up Adam when he's hitchhiking and seduces him. There is no doubt that renegades Adam, Sara, and Sten are racing toward a conflagration. As the body count and public hysteria rise, an enormous manhunt is launched. Riffing on actual events, Boyle intensifies both suspense and provocation as he delves into the question of violence as an inherited malady not only within a family but throughout American society. He further widens the frame to take in the terror and environmental havoc wrought by illegal drug operations on state and federal land, the hate and hysteria aimed at undocumented immigrants, and the collision between mental instability and violent anti-government extremism. Boyle's illumination of minds in the grip and whirl of overwhelming fear, fury, and madness as well as stubborn and courageous love blazes in its specificity and empathy. Then there's this seizing view of nature channeled through Adam's poisoned senses: "So what he did was wait while everything alive spoke to him from the deep grass and the bushes and the hollows in the dirt. . . . They were saying Make War, Not Love. Because they were at war down there, too, war that began the minute they hatched from their eggs . . . eat or be eaten and then go ahead and sing about it." And what might they sing? Boyle's title leads us to reggae star Jimmy Cliff's indelible lyrics: Well, the oppressors are trying to keep me down Trying to drive me underground And they think that they have got the battle won I say forgive them Lord, they know not what they've done 'Cause, as sure as the sun will shine I'm gonna get my share now, what's mine And then the harder they come The harder they fall, one and all. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Boyle taps into urgent national questions in a novel primed to make literary headlines as he tours the country in sync with a substantial publicity campaign. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

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As you wish - Cary Elwes

As you wish: inconceivable tales from the making of The princess bride - Cary Elwes

Summary: From actor Cary Elwes, who played the iconic role of Westley in The Princess Bride, comes a first-person account and behind-the-scenes look at the making of the cult classic film filled with never-before-told stories, exclusive photographs, and interviews with costars Robin Wright, Wallace Shawn, Billy Crystal, Christopher Guest, and Mandy Patinkin, as well as author and screenwriter William Goldman, producer Norman Lear, and director Rob Reiner.

Library Journal Reviews
Through personal anecdotes and interviews with fellow cast and crew members, actor Elwes tracks the journey of 1987's The Princess Bride from director Rob Reiner's initial bid through its production and up to the film's 25th anniversary. Elwes's attempt at a conversational narrative feels clunky at times, often getting bogged down in figures, actor résumés, and even a plot summary of the film—the last of which is certainly unnecessary for the dedicated fan base that will be reading this memoir. However, the complete and unabashed adoration that the author and the cast have for the cult classic shines in stories about the famous sword fight between Elwes as Westley and Mandy Patinkin as Inigo Montoya, the many takes ruined by uncontrollable laughter during Billy Crystal's time on the set performing as Miracle Max, and the fond reminiscences of the late André the Giant. VERDICT While the writing is occasionally uneven and amateur, those eager to get their hands on anything Princess Bride can still find delight in this behind-the-scenes look and will be running to break out their DVDs for another movie viewing. [See "Books for the Masses," Editors' BEA Picks, LJ 7/14, p. 29.]—Kate DiGirolomo, Library Journal

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Oh joy! - Joy Cho

Oh joy! 60 ways to create and give joy - Joy Cho

Summary: The popular blogger outlines a range of stylish projects in the areas of home décor, food and fashion that include searching for unique accessories at vintage stores, making personalized wallpaper and decorating fun desserts. 100,000 first printing. - (Baker & Taylor)

A beautiful, colorful, inspired guide to help anyone bring joy and whimsy into their lives with stylish projects, from home decor to food to fashion, from the popular Oh Joy blogger and Pinterest sensation.

Thirteen million Pinterest members look to Joy Cho, a designer, blogger, mother, and founder of the Oh Joy blog, for creative inspiration. Now, she builds on that success to offer a cornucopia of new ideas in this simple yet sophisticated full-color book. Following the unique aesthetic and joyful tone of her blog,Oh Joy! shows you how to add style, detail, color, flavor, and bliss to your daily life.

For Joy, it's the small things that can make a big impact, like decorating cakes with fun toppers, or brightening your home with vibrant pops of color. Joy wants to help you make your world a happier, prettier place and her boundless enthusiasm is infectious.Oh Joy! is packed with quick, easy, and fun projects and fabulous notions for:

Fashion: tips for mixing patterns or finding unique pieces at vintage stores
Décor: make your own wallpaper and use artificial flowers in unexpected ways
Entertaining: suggestions for quirky centerpieces and photo booth backdrops
Food: Recipes for striped cakes, surprise confetti cookies, and other bite-sized foods
Gifts: Spread the joy with personalized lottery tickets and pop-up wrapping paper

Incorporate beauty into the things you do—make your everyday life feel more colorful, fresh, and fun—and get an intimate, gorgeous look into the world of Joy Cho withOh Joy!

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