August’s staff picks

Catherine Coles
Coles Notes

The staff of the County of L&A Libraries are avid readers and always eager to share their favourite books. Here we bring you a list of some of the reads we’ve recently enjoyed. This month you’ll find a variety of fiction genres (literary, horror, historical, romantic mystery) plus a charming book of essays.

Marg suggests Ellie and the Harpmaker by Hazel Prior

“Ellie and the Harpmaker is the debut novel by author Hazel Prior. I was absolutely charmed by this heartwarming, humorous, character-driven story! While strolling through the Exmoor countryside one day, Ellie, a bored and lonely housewife with a controlling, passive-aggressive husband, stumbles upon a barn where quirky Dan hones his harp making skills. Ellie is in awe of Dan’s wonderful creations and dumbfounded when he insists that she accepts one of his harps as a gift from him. Thus begins a wonderful friendship that has Ellie re-evaluating her life. As the story develops Ellie discovers a secret that will rock Dan’s sheltered little world. If you enjoyed The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion or Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman, you are sure to love this book! I will be anxiously awaiting more offerings from this promising new author in the future.”

Shelby suggests The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay

“Wen is playing in the front yard when a strange man walks up the driveway and approaches her. His name is Leonard, and he seems nice enough until he tells her, “None of what’s going to happen is your fault” and, “Your dads won’t want to let us in, Wen. But they have to.” Soon Wen and her dads are desperately trying to keep the strange intruders out of their cabin, along with their crazy stories of the apocalypse and the sacrifices required to stop it. The intruders explain that the end of the world is coming. To stop the apocalypse Wen’s dads, Eric and Andrew, must choose one of themselves to sacrifice so the rest of the world can live. Of course it’s all just some delusion the insane strangers have created… Or is it? Tension, paranoia and lies run rampant in this gripping novel from Paul Tremblay. Fans of the movies The Strangers and 10 Cloverfield Lane won’t want to miss this un-put-down-able terrifying read!”

Kristin suggests Things My Son Needs to Know about the World by Fredrik Backman

“Do you know how airports explain everything about religion and war? Have you learned the reason that starting a band is crucial to cultivating and keeping friendships? Do you need tips on how to navigate the inherent dangers of shopping at IKEA? Well look no further because Things My Son Needs to Know about the World will give you the answers to the above questions and dozens more! This book contains a hilarious collection of poignant essays filled with fatherhood insight and advice, which the author intends to pass on to his newborn son one day as a tool for him to use in order to succeed in this world. This is a must read for anyone who has ever enjoyed Backman’s previous works but also to anyone looking for a humorous read on what it takes to be a new parent!”

Patricia suggests Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews

“There is something about a book with a beach on the cover that makes me want to read it and Mary Kay Andrews’ latest book Sunset Beach fits the bill. Drue Campbell is estranged from her father but, after her mother passes away, a visit from her dad offering up a house and a job has Drue begrudgingly reunited with her father and former best friend turned stepmom. At work at her father’s law firm, Drue finds herself investigating a suspicious death at a nearby beach resort that has her wondering if there is corruption in her father’s firm. Add in a little office romance and life on Sunset Beach is anything but boring. Readers of Nora Roberts, Sally Hepworth and Nancy Thayer may enjoy this and other works by Mary Kay Andrews.”

Jennifer suggests Woman 99 by Greer Macallister

“Charlotte Smith, a resourceful 1800s heiress, goes undercover to rescue her wrongly committed sister Phoebe from an insane asylum. While there, she uncovers the harsh treatment behind bars as well as the injustice behind the women’s institutionalization. Abound in realistic period details and courageous characters, I read this book in a single sitting. The power of sisterhood seen in small acts of kindness among patients motivates them to overturn a rigged system so that women may experience freedom in exposing the truth.”

All of these books can be borrowed from your branch of the County of Lennox & Addington Libraries. Reserve your copy online at

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