Books as Gifts: Staff Recommendations

We asked EPL staff members and our Facebook followers to recommend their favorite books of 2012, and (optionally) tell us why. Their suggestions offer a variety of choices: Fiction, Nonfiction, Graphic Novels, Teen, Juvenile and Picture Books were all included in this year’s picks.

Fiction:
Calling Invisible Women by Jeanne Ray, says Debbie H., is “a very funny book.”
The Half-Stitched Amish Quilting Club by Wanda Brunstetter  and The Fiddler by Beverly Lewis, both Inspirational Fiction, were among April’s favorites this year.
Facebook follower Deborah, enjoyed Gone Girl, a mystery by Gillian Flynn.
Daredevil, Vol. 1 by Mark Waid is a Graphic Novel featuring “a character that Marvel has shifted to the back burner in recent years, and makes him a must-read,” says Paul. “Don’t even bother trying to put this one down until you’re done.”

The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker is Allison’s choice for adult fiction.

Nonfiction:
Judy F. enjoyed The Bluebird Effect: Uncommon Bonds with Common Birds by Julie Zickefoose.  Judy writes, “Zickefoose is a talented author and gifted illustrator, who shares her observations and expertise on backyard birds, the rehabilitation of injured birds, and the ethics and responsibilities of a pet bird owner.” Booklist calls The Bluebird Effect a “lovely book… one to savor slowly, admiring both writing and artistry.”

Celine describes The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg, as “Interesting and enlightening.”

Teens:
Dust and Decay by Jonathan Maberry is another of Paul’s favorites. It is the second book in a series that combines a zombie apocalypse with a coming of age tale, and “hooks you before you know you’re hooked. Start with Rot and Ruin,  then check this one out.”
Paul also recommends the Young Adult Graphic Novel Friends with Boys by Faith Erin Hicks. “Humor, high school and a haunting. What more could you want?”
Donna and her patrons highly recommend Seconds Away by Harlan Coben, the second book in the Mickey Bolitar series, after Shelter. Donna says “Adults enjoy these books as much as the teens do.” (For Coben fans, Mickey is Myron Bolitar’s nephew.)
Jasper Fforde’s The Last Dragonslayer is a favorite of Facebook responder Mary.
The Diviners by Libba Bray is Allison’s recommendation for teens.

Juvenile:
Cheryl highly recommends The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy for older elementary-age children. It is the story of the Princes Charming, in which the princes from Cinderella, Rapunzel, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty embark on a quest to save Cinderella. “This book really has a sense of humor and gives some personality to those bland fairy tale characters.”
Allison and Paul both like The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate. “Heartbreaking and uplifting in equal measure,” says Paul. “Ivan is a must-read for animal lovers.”
Another of Mary’s favorites, as posted on Facebook, is Who Could That Be at This Hour? by Lemony Snicket. (New series: All the Wrong Questions: Question 1)

Picture Books:
Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger, says Cheryl, “shows green in all its wonder.  The book is filled with colors like jungle green and lime green.  It even has a few pages that are different, like the page that is “not green” and shows red instead.”
Laurene’s favorite picture books this year are Llama Llama Time to Share by Anna Dewdney, Listen to My Trumpet by Mo Willems and Charlie and the Christmas Kitty by Ree Drummond.

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