Curl up for a good read with familiar authors

Rowling, Follet, Albom all have new novels on the shelves

I am writing this as a drizzle of rain coats my little summer car. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted, wasn’t it?

This is not a complaint, though, as who doesn’t love September. I see parents with glowing smiles, people walking in air that is just a little bit clearer and I am seeing a whole bunch of new book titles from familiar authors that have huge autumn-reading potential.

Reading the unfamiliar is great, but there is not one among us that doesn’t have an author that just doesn’t write fast enough for us. The trick is to have a few of those authors. That is the best library advice I can give. Here is a list of up-and-coming books by our favorites. Some have just come out, some you still have to wait a little for!

To open this list, how about a book for grownups by J. K. Rowling. Finally it’s our turn, so let’s see if she delivers in the adult world, ‘The Casual Vacancy’. When Barry Fairweather dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford has a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but there is big trouble in this hamlet.

Phillipa Gregory, a most excellent historical fiction writer, has released ‘The Kingmaker’s Daughter’. This is the story of the man known as the “Kingmaker,” Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick. He has daughters, no sons and he uses them as pawns in his political games.

Their fascinating lives are full of deceit, passion the intrigue of royalty in historical England and Europe. ‘Winter of the World’, book two of the Century Trilogy by Ken Follett, is about to be released any minute, just in time for a big fat curl up on the couch autumn read.

On the flip side of Follet’s sizeable novel is the new release by John Grisham, ’The Racketeer’. Always a good read, spiced with a clear view of the foibles of the law, we need to read our Grishams! You will have to wait for October for this one. For those of you who like their gritty reading with a Scottish accent, you will cheer the return of Inspector Rebus. Yes, Ian Rankin has brought back this character — seems just like the cat, he just couldn’t stay away.

‘Standing in Another Man’s Grave’ has John Rebus as rebellious as ever. There is the usual friction with all of his relationships, business and personal, but all John wants is the truth. That seems fair and makes for great reading. If you liked ‘Tuesdays With Morrie’ by Mitch Albom, you will be glad to know that just out is his newest, ‘The Time Keeper’. The inventor of the world’s first clock is banished to a cave and forced to listen to the voices of all who come to him asking for more time. It is a magical hourglass that gives the time keeper the chance to teach two earthly people the true meaning of time. There is nothing like a modern fable to warm a fall evening. ‘The Secret Keeper’ by Kate Morton, author of the bestselling book, The Forgotten Garden, will be out in October, too. She does a great job of creating a story that has full characters who need their own questions and secrets dealt with.

I hope these suggestions have you scribbling notes in your own book lists. Keep the pencil in handy so you can note some upcoming events at your library as well. For the complete guide to what’s going on, pick up the ‘At Your Library’ program guide in your library or check it out online. For those of you love tech, you can also look for our QR code on window decals around town, and scan it to get the guide on your smartphone or tablet. Yes, your library is all that!

We are coming into the final days of celebrating International Literacy here at the library. We are fortunate that our ability to read in Canada is at a high level. What these days are about however, is taking a bit of time to understanding the plight of those in other countries where reading seems a rare privilege. As water is a necessity for health and growth in children, so is reading. We have a great big water jug in the library that we are trying to fill with pennies.

Even thought the Canadian Mint is says the penny is useless, we know it will be priceless in this last wonderful purpose for them. Your pennies counted together, will go towards buying a ‘School in a Box’ for children in an area that has faced civil unrest or natural disaster. Our Friends of the Library feels this is worth while too, and will add their ‘two cents’ worth to the final tally.

We hope you bring your pennies and fill the jug – let’s buy a little bit of schooling.

We have something new that the library is involved in this season. It is a great community discussion project, modeled after the Philosophers Café idea. In an open public setting, we are joining with other community groups to offer a chance for open discussion on a topic. This is an evening that is guaranteed to be more informative than Googling, much more interesting than WikiLeaks. Our first general topic is “Here’s Looking At You”, with the chance to explore how we feel about personal privacy in a public world, closed-circuit TV monitoring and anything you would like to add to this topic.

There is no fee, and few rules other than respectful speaking and listening for our first venture into the Philosophers Café Community Talks. Friday, September 21 at 7 p.m. at Agassiz Library, you are all invited. Coffee is on us.

For my last and favourite announcement, I want to make sure all the little friends of the library know that  preschool story time is starting up again. Finally! We have missed lots of our youngsters and want so see how everyone has grown. The first story time is Friday, Sept. 21 at 10:15 a.m. All free, all fun, everyone welcome. Come for the stories, stay for the fun. Bring a friend to meet Crackle and Miss Terrill.

Hope to hear about your summer days, and what we can find for you to read this fall. See you in the stacks!