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Friday, July 17, 2015

MLC Reads: July 17, 2015

We really enjoy sharing the books that we, the staff at the Mississippi Library Commission have been reading with you, our faithful followers.

Delta Dogs
Photography by Maude Schuyler Clay
Introduction by Brad Watson
Essay by Beth Ann Fennelly
Afterword by Maude Schuyler Clay
five stars

Maude Schuyler Clay delivers a solid punch with Delta Dogs, a book of photographs of, what else... dogs in the Mississippi Delta. Calling them the "indigenous canine presence", she captures the souls of these dogs in fields and parking lots, under and beside houses, and every other imaginable place. Brad Watson provides a lovely introduction wherein he discusses his love of dogs and points out a Clay dog with a strong resemblance to Junot Diaz. Beth Ann Fennelly has also contributed a short essay that brings home the point that, though dogs are featured, it is the Delta in its glory that is reflected in this gorgeous volume.

The Cheese Belongs to You
written by Alexis Deacon
illustrated by Viviane Schwarz
four stars

To whom does the cheese really belong? Alexis Deacon takes picture book readers on fun-filled journey of all the rats who could own a single block of cheese. The artwork is deliciously creepy; the illustrations depict big, quick, strong, scary, hairy, dirt rats just as they should be. The tension builds as each successive rat comes forward to fight for his or her chance at the cheese and the book ends on a highly satisfactory note. Don't miss this Magnolia Award nominee for 2016!

The Red Tent
written by Anita Diamant
five stars

This book gives Dinah, the barely mentioned daughter of Joseph and Leah from the book of Genesis, her very own voice. It also shows how very rich, joyful, difficult, and tragic the lives of women in the third millennium B.C.E. could be. By using factual cultural details from the ancient Near East, Diamante has allowed readers to gain a true impression of how women lived 5,000 years ago.

The Divine
written by Boaz Lavie
illustrated by Asaf Hanuka and Tomer Hanuka
four stars

The Divine portrays a world of ancient magic in a modern warfare setting. It is based on the photo taken by Apichart Weerawong of two twelve-year-old twins, Johnny and Luther Htoo. The plot explores the legend surrounding the twins' having magical powers. We thought this was a great graphic novel with amazing illustrations. Recommended to anyone with an interest in historical fantasy.

Darkness Brutal
written by Rachel A. Marks
four stars

Darkness Brutal is an imaginative urban fantasy that follows the story of a teenage boy, Aiden, who is trying to save his sister, Ava. Throughout the novel, Aiden tries to protect Ava from his mother's past mistakes. As Ava's twelfth birthday approaches, Aiden must rely on help from his new friends to find his inner powers. Fans of the TV show Supernatural will love this YA book.

We'll have reviews next week of these books that we're reading now:
  • Armada written by Ernest Cline
  • How to Train a Train written by Jason Carter Eaton and illustrated by John Rocco
  • ODY-C #1 written by Matt Fraction and illustrated by Christian Ward
  • Life by Committee written by Corey Ann Haydu
  • A Chosen Exile: A History of Racial Passing in American Life written by Allyson Hobbs
Until then, happy reading!

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