May staff picks

Amy Kay
Hooked on Books

The staff of the County of L&A Libraries are avid readers and are always eager to share their favourite books. Here is a list of some of the books we’ve recently enjoyed. This month you’ll find an entertaining new mystery featuring a royal detective, an unbelievably twisty read that will have you glued to the pages late into the night and a debut short story collection populated by deeply moving and multifaceted characters.

Kristin suggests The Windsor Knot by S.J. Bennett

The story begins in 2016 while Queen Elizabeth II is at Windsor Castle, her favourite place in the world, in advance of her 90th birthday celebrations. However, bad luck strikes just as preparations for the party are underway when one of the guests, a famous Russian pianist named Brodsky, is found dead in one of the castle bedrooms. The crime scene suggests the young man committed suicide, but when the Queen calls for finest MI5 agents to investigate further, they find evidence of a clumsily-made knot on the noose that allegedly had hung him. The clues suggest Brodsky was strangled to death by someone else, but why him and who would commit such a terrible act on royal property?

This situation is increasingly alarming to the Queen and eventually she will decide to take matters into her own hands to bring the murderer to justice, while still managing to carry out her royal duties. The best part of this mystery novel is how the author captures Queen Elizabeth’s voice so skillfully. Reading through this book will make you feel like you have stepped back in time to spend a few weeks with the late Queen at her favourite royal residence.

Marg suggests The Housemaid by Freida McFadden

When Millie, a young woman with a checkered past, lands a live-in housekeeping job in a fancy house with a rich Long Island family it seems too good to be true. It’s a perfect job for her despite the accommodations she was given, a miniscule room in the attic but it is luxurious compared to her previous living arrangement.

Millie has a lot to hide and does her best to fly under the radar. However, not long after moving in with the family she realizes they are not as perfect as they appear and that she, and others in the household are in grave danger. Who is the source of the threat? Why is the gardener sending warning signals to Millie? What terrible secrets are being kept by this completely dysfunctional family?

All will be revealed as you delve into this warped, twisted story. The Housemaid has lots of twists and turns, an unreliable narrator and a nasty, nasty cast of characters. If you like fast-paced, edge of your seat psychological thrillers this book would appeal to you.

Jennifer suggests The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw

The enjoyable short stories in The Secret Lives of Church Ladies give voice to Southern

Black women’s experience of sexuality and religion amid a colourful cast of family, friends, and lovers. An insightful and entertaining read!

The nine stories in this collection feature four generations of characters grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church’s double standards and their own needs and passions. These engaging, character driven stories will appeal to readers of Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid and The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett.

All of these titles can be reserved at your local County of Lennox and Addington Library or online at

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