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Friday, August 28, 2015

MLC Reads: August 28, 2015

Oh, the books! The siren call of the printed page! (Or the eReader...)

The Other Typist
Suzanne Rindell
four stars

Set in America in the 1920s when liquor was illegal and women were bobbing their hair, we meet Rose. Rose is a typist in a police precinct; her life is boring and predictable until the other typist is hired. Rose's life soon changes! Hold onto your hats for a gin-drinking, women-smoking, and speakeasy good time. But be cautious... what you're reading may very well not be entirely the complete truth. (After finishing this book, we're still scratching our heads over all the plausible plots.) Something to look forward to when you finish reading The Other Typist: the film rights have already been purchased.

Mississippi Trial, 1955
written by Chris Crowe
five stars

Mississippi Trial, 1955 is a strong introduction for middle schoolers to the civil rights era in Mississippi. Although the book's centers around a young white protagonist, the tragic story of Emmett Till is told in a way that pre-teens can grasp. Chris Crowe has a pretty way with words, too. One of our favorite quotes from the book was,
"Maybe God put different kinds of people on earth so we could all learn to get along."
Highly recommended, especially with a group discussion.

written and illustrated by Noelle Stevenson
five stars

Nimona is a terrific graphic novel! Nimona is a young shapeshifter looking to join forces with villainous Lord Ballister Blackheart. A twist of fate marks the unlikely pair as heroes. Witty dialog and vibrant illustrations entertained us from beginning to end. We can't wait to read more by Noelle Stevenson. (Lumberjanes is on our radar!)

The Lion & the Mouse
written and illustrated
by Jerry Pinkney
five stars

Jerry Pinkney, an incredible artist, takes on Aesop's fable about a lion and a mouse. This picture book only contains a few "words"-roar and squeak are prominent-but more words are actually unnecessary. Youngsters will be attracted by the large, colorful pictures and will enjoy being able to "read" this one by themselves, making it a great jumping off place for book discussions.

 Death of Innocence:
The Story of the Hate Crime that Changed America
forward by the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson
written by Mamie Till-Mobley and Christopher Benson
five stars
The way I looked at it, discrimination was somebody else's problem... That's all Bo would know. In time, he would also know whites, children in school, even adults he would do business with. We made sure he would never be self-conscious around them. He would not see the signs, or the attitudes behind the facades. For him, they would not exist. There would come a time, though, when that strength would make him vulnerable.
Mamie Till-Mobley's only child, Emmett Louis Till, was murdered by white racists in Mississippi on this day, August 28, in 1955. This is her insightful story: of being black, of being a woman, of having a sheltered childhood and a difficult birthing and impossible husbands. The legendary Emmett Till becomes so much more than a historical figure in the hands of his mother and a living, breathing boy steps from the pages. The horrors that he and his mother endured also spring to life, so beware--this can be a tough read at times. It's worth it, though, to stick with it until the end. Till-Mobley's spirit and soul are beautiful. We could all take a page from her book.

We've got these fun reads lined up for next week.
  • In the Unlikely Event
    written by Judy Blume
  • The Miseducation of Cameron Post
    written by Emily M. Danforth
  • Dear Hank Williams
    written by Kimberly Willis Holt
  • The Silence of Our Friends
    written by Mark Long and Jim Demonakos
    illustrated by Nate Powell
  • North Toward Home
    written by Willie Morris
Until then, happy reading!

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