While You’re Waiting…

What To Do While You Wait For These Top Requested Books?   

Try these readalike suggestions!

Where the Crawdads Sing  by Delia Owens

This highly acclaimed novel features a character who is abandoned by her mother who grows up isolated in a marsh in North Carolina. When a man is found dead, she is suspected of being the murderer. But this could not be farther from the truth.


Magic Hour by Kristen Hannah

Dr. Julia Cates, a prominent psychiatrist, is suffering a crisis of confidence due to a rogue patient and a damaged reputation.  Her sister, who is a small town police chief, needs her help with a young girl who is mute and seems to have literally been raised by wolves.   Suspense, romance, introspection and beautiful storytelling make this a novel not to be missed.

The Ash Family by Molly Dektar

In this novel, we have a young girl going off the grid to join an intentional community at the Ash Family Farm.  Is she going to a commune or is she joining a cult? Read this book and find out. This book is set in North Carolina.

King’s Oak by Anne Rivers Siddons

This beautifully written novel features a poet who lives “off the grid” in nature and who captures the heart of Diana, who has left an abusive marriage.  This novel features well drawn characters, suspense and romance. Please have your Kleenex ready.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

This novel features a group of college students who study with a very unconventional classics professor.  They try an experiment that gets way out of hand. The book has a gripping storyline, well developed characters and will keep you reading from start to finish.

Maybe You Should Talk To Someone:  A Therapist, Her Therapist And Our Lives Revealed by Lori Gottlieb

This highly readable memoir of a therapist and her patients is both personal and insightful. This book is almost impossible to put down. Gottlieb has great insight into herself in her own therapy and great compassion for the patients she treats.


Halibut On The Moon by David Vann

In this novel, David Vann imagines the final days of his father’s life and his mental illness.  David Vann is a bestselling New York Times Notable Author.

The Fifty Minute Hour by Robert Linder

This is a classic work about a therapist and the difference that he makes in his patients’ lives.  

August by Judith Rossner

A beautiful novel that explores a therapist’s life and the life of her patient.

Love’s Executioner And Other Tales Of Psychotherapy by Irvin Yalom

A compulsively readable collection of stories about the relationship between a therapist and his clients.

The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat And Other Clinical Tales by Oliver Sacks

This classic work by famed neurologist Oliver Sacks is a compassionate and fascinating tale of different patients that he worked with.  

Becoming by Michelle Obama
The former first lady writes about her marriage, her time in the White House, being a mother and more in this witty and honest memoir.


Mrs. Nixon:  A Novelist Imagines A Life by Anne Beattie

Pat Nixon did not write an autobiography and in this novel, Anne Beattie tries to imagine what it must have been like to be the wife of Richard Nixon.

First Ladies:  Presidential Historians On The Lives Of 45 Iconic Women Susan Swain, editor

A collection of interesting pieces by presidential historians about our first ladies.

My Beloved World by Sonja Sotomayor

The first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice tells about her life, from growing up in a project in the Bronx to becoming a member of the highest court in the United States.

My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsburg

A wide ranging collection of writing and speeches that include wit and thoughtfulness.  

If You Ask Me:  Essential Advice From Eleanor Roosevelt by Eleanor Roosevelt

Read some of Mrs. Roosevelt’s wit and wisdom from the advice column that she wrote for more than twenty years.

Save Me The Plums:  My Gourmet Memoir by Ruth Reichl

Ruth Reichl, an acclaimed food writer, tells about her time working For Gourmet Magazine in this fascinating memoir.


Delicious:  A Novel by Ruth Reichl

The main character of this novel by Reichl is working in public relations for a once prestigious culinary magazine and uncovers a correspondence between a young James Beard and a twelve year old.

Tender At The Bone:  Growing Up At the Table by Ruth Reichl

A collection of vignettes involving food and family.  This book won the 1998 New York Times Notable book of the year.

Kitchen Confidential:  Adventures In The Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain

This colorful book minces no words as the late Bourdain describes his experiences; the good, the bad and the bloody in a series of restaurants on the road to the great success that he achieved.  You will not be disappointed with this well written, captivating and witty food memoir.

Notes From A Young Black Chef:  A Memoir by Kwame Onwuachi

Raised in the Bronx and Nigeria, Kwame became obsessed with food at a young age and tells about his path to success in this riveting memoir.  Onwachi has been named one of Food And Wine’s best new chefs under 30.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
A famous painter who seems to have it all, shoots her fashion photographer husband five times in the face one day. Then she stops talking. Will her psychiatrist be able to solve the mystery of what happened? Read this book and find out.


The Silent Wife by A.S.A. Harrison

Even the title is similar in this psychological suspense fiction by A.S.A. Harrison.  I regret to say that she is deceased so after you finish this one, see below. This book describes the slow disintegration of a marriage due to infidelity and deceit and the small cracks that can turn into a major fissure…

The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

This book is impossible to put down.  The words are the ‘crazy’ glue that keep one reading to find out what the heck is going on in this awful marriage that appears to be so perfect on the

The Other Mother by Carol Goodman

Two mothers meet in a therapy group for postpartum depression. They become fast friends but something goes terribly wrong…

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

They are married.  They have a beautiful baby.  One night, they go right next door to a party, checking on the baby regularly.  Nothing could go wrong, could it?

Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Parris

This marriage looks perfect from the outside.  What is happening behind those closed doors? Hint:  it’s not good.

We Could Be Beautiful by Swann Huntley

Catherine has everything, wealth, beauty.  And her new relationship seems great. On the other hand, her mother, who has Alzheimer’s, feels strongly that there is a problem.  What is it? I will forever be a fan of Swann Huntley after having read this novel.

Girl On A Train  by Paula Hawkins

Rachel, who enjoys her alcohol, sees a couple every day whose life she imagines to be perfect.  Then something happens and she feels compelled to get involved. What is the truth? Read this book and find out.  I personally could not put this one down.

She Was The Quiet One by Michele Campbell

Twin sisters Rose and Bel Enright enroll in the prestigious Odell School in New Hampshire.  Then the rivalry begins…and the school is not as wholesome as it appears to be. Rituals, dark traditions and more emerge in this intriguing novel.

The Guest Book by Sarah Blake

A wealthy and privileged family tries to put a tragedy behind them by purchasing an island in Maine. This novel explores three generations of this family who seemed to have it all.


The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

A tale of tragedy, wealth and scandal, New money vs. old money. This novel is a classic and I get something different out of it whenever I read it. A heartbreaker.

Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan

Sullivan explores three generations of a family in Maine.

Too Much Money:  A Novel by Dominick Dunne

A tale of the wealthy old guard of New York including one who is suspected of murder.

Colony:  A Novel by Anne Rivers Siddons

This novel follows three generations of a high society family in Maine.

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate
A tale of a wealthy family’s secrets revealed.

Bittersweet:  A Novel by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore

A wealthy family’s secrets are revealed at their cottage in Vermont and their guest has to decide what to do about them…

Staff Reads — June 2019

Book Projector Treble Clef

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Pat O:


  • Vacationland by John Hodgman: I thoroughly enjoyed Hodgman’s storytelling and his way of circling back to earlier anecdotes throughout the book. Having spent a lot of time in Massachusetts and Maine, I really enjoyed his take on both states and their people and wilderness. He clearly loves both places and it comes through even when joking about some aspect of one or the other. I listed to the digital audiobook, which is read by the author, and I recommend doing the same.
  • Who Thought This Was a Good Idea by Alyssa Mastromonaco : This was a really great read for anyone interested in what it’s like to work for a senator or president. Mastromonaco worked for Obama throughout his transition from senator to president. She is down-to-earth and a refreshing break from the ivy league white guys that surround many high-level politicians. Her stories are hilarious and borderline-TMI sometimes, so if that’s not your cup of tea maybe skip those passages. Overall, it was a light, easy read and I really enjoyed it.


  • To All the Boys I’ve Loved BeforeP.S. I Love Youand Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han: I really loved this teen trilogy about Lara Jean, a well rounded teenage protagonist with a lot of facets to her and a variety of interests including cooking, working with seniors, scrap booking, and planning out future travel, including to her mother’s native Korea.  Despite the fact that this was written in the first person, the side characters are well drawn, including Lara Jean’s grandmother.  The books are also quite feminist with refreshing looks at teenage sexuality and sex shaming.  I have yet to watch the Netflix movie based on the first book but I’m looking forward to it!
  • Comics Will Break Your Heart by Faith Erin Hicks: In a small Nova Scotia town, one summer, Mir and Weldon meet, become friends, and even start to fall in love.  The problem is that they are scions of the opposing sides in a dispute about the creation and rights of “The Tomorrow Men” a fictionalized version of “The X-Men”.  Considering this is a take on Romeo and Juliet, the adult characters are refreshingly understanding (for the most part) and the detail regarding the comics and fandom world is a lot of fun.  I would suggest this for those who enjoyed Ship It by Britta Lundin or A Hundred Thousand Worlds by Bob Proehl. 
  • Merci Suárez Changes Gears by Meg Medina: Sixth grader Merci is entering her second year as a scholarship student at a prestigious private school and making new friends and re-establishing some rivalries.  At home, however, she worries about her beloved grandfather, Lolo, who has become forgetful and accident prone.  This lovely book realistically captures middle school relationships, including evolving friendships, as well as the effects an ill relative can have on a strong family dynamic.
  • The X-Files: Case Files (graphic novel): I always enjoy more of Mulder and Scully, especially in any authorized stories with strong hints of their coupling (yeah, I’m a shipper and proud of it).  The two cases in this comics collection aren’t especially interesting, but it was nice to read about Scully having a positive rapport with another female side character and and Mulder and Scully’s sarcasm is at an all time high. 
  • Les Misérables by Victor Hugo, read by Frederick Davidson (unabridged audiobook): Finishing this novel has always been a goal of mine.  Lots of descriptive detail (I now know everything about sewers in Paris in 1832) and much more nuanced characterizations than the musical and other adaptations.  
  • Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty, read by Caroline Lee (audiobook): Once again, Moriarty tells a complex story featuring a cast of quirky characters.  This time is the setting is Tranquillum House, a health spa in Australia where the owner, Masha, uses some questionable methods.  I didn’t find this quite as compelling as her earlier work, but Moriarty still weaves a good tale that is quickly paced.  Lee, as usual, is perfect as the narrator for Moriarty’s world. 


  • 13 Ways Of Looking At A Fat Girl by Mona Awad: This is a great collection of vignettes that focuses on Lizzie and her struggles with weight, relationships and life in general.  Even when she loses pounds, she still feels like she is heavy.  I recommend this book to anyone who has ever struggled with body image or with relationships. 
  • Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty: I loved loved loved this book.  For anyone who has tried any form of self improvement and been suspicious of the person or persons in charge of the session, for anyone who had a guru who turned out to be rather disappointing.  The hardest part of this book for me was the fact that it had to end.  Warning:  I have some friends who do not like novels that get dark in any way who did not like this book.
  • Help Me!  One Woman’s Quest To Find Out If Self-Help Really Can Change Your Life by Marianne Power : Oh, this book is such a gem.  Marianne tries a different self-help book each month and really lives and breathes the advice from each author.  You may have to take breaks because you will be laughing at times so hard that you will need a glass of water.  I recommend this for anyone who has tried to follow any self-help book and who has a sense of humor.
  • Rabbits For Food by Binnie Kirshenbaum: This is a darkly funny novel about one woman’s struggle with depression and the feeling that she is unlovable.  I highly recommend this to anyone who is interested in this sort of novel.  If you like Ottessa Moshfegh, you will definitely like Binnie Kirshenbaum.  Both of these authors provide interesting and quirky main characters.


  • Homes: A Refugee Story, by Abu Bakr al Rabeeah: This book was the April selection for Overdrive’s Big Library Read and I found it incredibly powerful. al Rabeeah (who co-wrote this book as a teenager with one of his middle school teachers) and his family moved from Iraq to Syria to escape religious persecution, only to find their lives interrupted again by the start of the Syrian civil war. As the family waits to see if they will be granted refugee status, they try to carry on in the midst of shootings, car bombings, and neighborhood raids. It was heartbreaking to read about all the violence al Rabeeah witnessed at such a young age, but incredible to know he survived and was able to share his story.
  • Internment, by Samira Ahmed: This book was INTENSE. It imagines a not-so-distant future in which policies of the president lead to Muslim Americans being placed in internment camps, just as Japanese Americans were in the early 1940s. The story follows 17-year-old Layla, whose family is forced from their home in the middle of the night and brought to the first camp, and her attempts to agitate for the freedom of her fellow citizens. I was hooked from the first chapter and am still thinking about it, even though I finished it several days ago. 
  • The Book of Essie, by Meghan MacLean Weir: Essie is the youngest child of a megachurch pastor, whose conservative Christian family stars in a hit reality show about their lives. The story begins with the revelation that Essie is pregnant, with her mom and the production crew scrambling to figure out how to handle the situation. I thought the character development in this book was great, and the plot kept me hooked. 
  • Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han: I’d been waiting for the third and final book in the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before series for months, but sadly this book didn’t live up to my self-created hype. It felt a little mailed-in, and a little too full of random pop-culture references, and the characters didn’t feel familiar like they had in the first two books. I still finished it, because I wanted to know what happened to Lara Jean and Peter K., but it was definitely my least favorite book of the series.
  • I’ve had two CDs in heavy rotation in my car this month. Strangeland by Keane has been my go-to when I want something chill, and The ABBA Generation by A*Teens: an album of late-90s Europop ABBA covers – has been sparking some embarrassingly awesome car-dancing sessions.

Janet Z.:

Debora H.:

  • We Must Be Brave by Frances Liardet: I liked this book, but didn’t love it. Yes, the language was beautiful and yes, the story of a woman’s deep love for a little girl she takes in during the chaos and bloodshed of WWII was compelling. But I found the backstory of the main character annoying – and grim. And, although the story was set in WWII, it didn’t feel like a historical fiction read, since the war felt mostly like a prop. Moreover, the narrative was incredibly slow paced, which made it hard to stay interested. There is one surprising plot twist that could’ve been highlighted better – it almost gets lost in the pages. The ending is mostly satisfying.
  • The Honorable Woman: This is an 8 part British mini-series available on DVD starring Maggie Gyllenhaal as Nessa Stein, a British woman who leads the company her father founded and who is about to award a contract for laying fiber-optic cables in the West Bank to a Palestinian business owner. When that man dies in a staged suicide, just before the contract announcement, the intrigue begins. Soon after, the son of Nessa’s close friend is kidnapped. British spy agency MI6 gets involved and secrets are revealed as the investigator uncovers them. Danger abounds for the main characters in this highly tense and suspenseful political thriller. 

Mary V.:

  • The Black Ascot by Charles Todd: The black ascot refers to the ascot horse races where everyone was dressed in black because the king had died.  This is the latest Inspector Rutledge mystery. A man who was helped by Rutledge returns the favor and gives him a tip about a missing suspect whom Rutledge pursues. This is a typical Ian Rutledge mystery, but I still enjoy reading them.
  • The Innocent Wife by Amy Lloyd: Lonely Samantha in England begins a correspondence with a man in prison in the United states for the brutal murder of a young girl. She falls in love with him and moves to Florida to be with him. While she is there, she works  with a producer on a documentary about the murder and tries to get him released.
  • If I Die Tonight by Alison Gaylin:  This takes place in the fictional town of Havenkill in the Hudson Valley.  The story is told from different people’s viewpoints about a young man who dies in an automobile accident. Was it an accident or something more sinister?
  • Hex on the Ex by Rochelle Staab: This is a very light murder mystery involving the ex-wife of a famous Dodger pitcher. It was okay, but I didn’t like the characters enough to look for other books in the series.
  • Wolf Pack by C J Box: This is the latest Joe Pickett mystery. 
  • Hitting the Books by Jenn McKinley: This series of books involves a director of a small New England public library. I was hoping for something similar to the Miss Zukas mysteries. There is no comparison. Again, I didn’t like the characters well enough to try another book in the series.
  • Triple Jeopardy by Anne Perry: This is the second Daniel Pitt mystery. It’s enjoyable, but not nearly as good as the Thomas and Charlotte Pitt series by the same author.
  • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens:  Six year old Kya Clark watches her mother walk down the lane wearing her best shoes and carrying a small suitcase. She doesn’t even wave goodbye. Shortly thereafter, her three oldest teenaged siblings also escape from their abusive alcoholic father. Her brother, Jodie,  who is closest in age to Kya also leaves a few months later because he cannot tolerate his father’s abuse. Kya and her father form a tolerable alliance for a while by avoiding each other as much as possible.  He is gone for long periods of time and by the time Kya is nine years old he leaves and doesn’t come back. Kya must fend for herself which she does by hiding from other people while being shunned and despised by others in the town. This is an amazing story of a child’s resilience and ability to adapt to her situation. The novel begins in 1969 when the body of a young man is found dead, but Kya’s story begins in 1952. The novel goes back and forth between the two time periods. This is the author’s first book which is haunting. I found myself thinking of Kya long after I finished the book.


  • Killing Eve: My co-worker recommended this show and it was love at first sight. Dark, well-written, and clever with strong female leads and a great soundtrack. 
  • Dead to Me: This pitch-black comedy is so good I wanted to finish it in one sitting. I didn’t know anything about the premise which added an element of surprise for me so if you plan on watching the series and haven’t read any reviews yet, don’t! This series is currently available on Netflix (and accessible by checking out one of our Roku devices). 
  • Luther: It’s been three long years since the last season and I am currently counting the days until season five begins on BBC America (June 2). It’s been nine years since season one aired so I recently re-watched all four seasons. Highly recommended for fans of British crime dramas, dark detective shows, and/or Idris Elba (or all of the above!). 
  • One Day in December: My reading list so far this year has been pretty heavy in terms of subject matter and I needed a break so I picked up this title and I’m so glad I did. An easy, delightful read that is perfect for the beach (beach weather is coming eventually…right?) this story, set in London, had me laughing out loud and getting teary eyed in equal measure.