It's Germane

The John Jermain Library's Weblog

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The Bookseller, by Cynthia Swanson

The Bookseller, by Cynthia SwansonThe Bookseller starts out with the character Kitty, who is a lively independent bookseller with a best friend as her business partner. It is set in the 1960s and Kitty, in her 30’s, is considered an “old maid.” Kitty begins to have vivid, lifelike dreams about an alternate life as Katharyn. It leaves the reader wondering if some magic is happening? Will Kitty be able to trade lives or is there something different at play.  As the novel progresses, we learn more and more about Katharyn, and Kitty begins to experience memory lapses.  Does Kitty actually have a mental illness, is she living a double life that she doesn’t know about?  The prose is lovely to read, the story flows well and keeps the reader entranced with all of these questions about Kitty/Katharyn right up until the resolution.  Don’t miss this gem of a story!

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The Rosie Project, by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project was a delightful book to read.  The star character, Don Tillman, knows that he doesn’t function the way that  The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsionsupposed normal people do, but he is a successful professor in genetics and happy with his routine.  Don has his schedule worked out to the minute for efficiency, exercise, cleaning, bedtime, and follows a strict meal plan each week.  He is structured and ordered and extremely literal.  When Don decides to find a wife, he approaches the project with logic and research based precision, he forms “The Wife Project” including a stringent questionnaire to avoid mistakes he made in the past.  Rosie blows into Don’s life with chaos, disorder and fun!  Don thinks that she has applied for the “Wife Project” and Rosie is totally unaware of it’s existence.  The relationship that forms between this unlikely pair is pure magic and fun.  I recommend this book, it’s difficult to read with a straight face, you can’t help but crack a smile at the humor in Don’s literal interpretation of the world.

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Long Island Reads: One Island, One Book

parachuteJoin us on Wednesday, April 22nd at 5:30 pm for a discussion of this year’s Long Island Reads selection “The Museum of Extraordinary Things” by Alice Hoffman.
In addition to a discussion of this mesmerizing book, excerpts from film documentaries on Coney Island and Manhattan’s Lower East Side will be shown. Refreshments will include mini hot dogs, knishes and cream soda.

Pre-registration suggested. Limit 18 Free

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A Walk Among the Tombstones, by Lawrence Block

I signed up for a project that involves reading a book made into a film.  I chose A Walk Among the Tombstones,  an oldie, but as it turned out a goodie.  I am new to reading the long time author, Lawrence Block but am familiar with his reputation as a popular mystery writer.  This book didn’t disappoint!  Matthew Scudder, detective, ex-cop and recovering alcoholic, was called in to solve the mystery of who kidnapped, killed and tortured a drug wholesaler’s wife.  The investigation involved following the trail of several other gruesome crimes that had similarities to the current crime, making this look like serial abductions and killings.  The plot was well developed, through the twists and turns of this dark mystery.  The writing was easy to follow and quickly paced.  I enjoyed following the character development that the author introduces with Matthew, his girlfriend and some of the side characters.  It was also funny to read about the technology that was current at the time that the book was written.  The book has been around since 1992, so it surely has been read by quite a few, but will be enjoyable for those who haven’t read it yet!

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Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence Shortlist Announced

carnegie A shortlist of six titles for the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction was announced today. This year’s shortlisted books are: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, Nora Webster by Colm Toibin, On Such a Full Sea by Chang-rae Lee. The Nonfiction shortlisted titles are: Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizbeth Kolbert and Thirteen Days in September: Carter, Begin, and Sadat at Camp David by Lawrence Wright. The award was established in 2012 to recognize the best fiction and nonfiction books for adult readers published in the U.S. the previous year. This year’s winners will be announced in June.

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Robin Du Plessis Art Exhibit Opens March 30, 2015

Broken Egg 1 by Robin Du PlessisThe latest exhibit in our ongoing series of shows by local artists will feature the work of painter, photographer and surface designer Robin Du Plessis. The show will run from March 30, 2015 to May 3, 2015. There will be a reception for the artist on Saturday, April 11th from 3:00 to 5:00 pm.

Ms. Du Plessis’ work deals with transcendence and the natural world,and covers a variety of genres and materials. She received a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. Since receiving her degree her career has followed a circuitous path that has included fabric development, artifact and medical illustration, costume design and boat building, all of which have informed her current work. She lives and works in Sag Harbor, NY.

The artist’s website, which features photos of some of her work can be found at


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