Note to Shelf: May 2022

Created on May 4, 2022, 9:16 am

Last Updated May 4, 2022, 11:16 am

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Diane shows us a "wonderful collaboration between designers Susanna Salk and Stacey Bewkes, who readers may know as the creators of the Quintessence: At Home video series. In this beautiful book, we have the privilege of seeing photographs of fifteen well-known designer's homes. From the Hamptons to Atlanta, Los Angeles to Western Connecticut and the Hudson Valley, the authors have showcased how these individual design professionals decorate for themselves. The reader gets a very eclectic mix of styles, tastes, and insight into the fifteen individuals’ personal collections. Susanna's narrative and Stacey's visuals are a perfect composition. From the book's front cover, the door opens and the authors invite you in for a relaxing springtime afternoon read."
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Kristen O has discovered "a beautiful collection of essays exploring our connection to the natural world. Drawing on her personal experiences as both a scientist and member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Kimmerer champions adding Indigenous ways of knowing into scientific research and everyday life. She makes her case with expert and compelling storytelling, taking readers on adventures to Pacific Northwest rainforests, Kentucky grasslands, and her own backyard pond in the Northeast. Each chapter is informative and deeply moving, and while she doesn’t flinch at past tragedies and future uncertainties, the tone is ultimately one of joy, gratitude, and reciprocity. Braiding Sweetgrass is a must-read for all nature lovers."
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Jill loved this story of "Dava Shastri is a self-made billionaire with four adult children. When she learns that she has a terminal illness, she decides to take her own life through legally assisted suicide. Dava then schedules the actual date to occur after her death is announced to the media. Why, you might ask? As a world-renowned philanthropist who dedicated her life to the betterment of women, her “death” announcements reveal some secrets that she had assumed would remain buried. The effect on her family as these revelations come to light is powerfully written with great emotion. I loved this story much more than I anticipated. A thoughtful and insightful novel, this engaging story had me pondering her actions long after I had finished."
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Pat T shares "At the onset of World War II, Mila, a young mother working as a librarian while pursuing studies to be an historian, leaves her son and her studies to join the Russian army, where she develops sharpshooter talents as a sniper. Her success as a soldier catapults her to international fame. On a goodwill tour of America, she finds herself immersed in the glittering world of Washington where she meets the Roosevelts and develops an unexpected friendship with Eleanor Roosevelt. After the war, she reunites with her son and achieves her dream of becoming a historian. This novel is based on a true story. I especially enjoyed reading about Eleanor Roosevelt’s mentorship of Mila during the American goodwill tour and their subsequent friendship and admiration for one another over the years. This novel is a gem!"
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Kate shares, "After her sister dies while piloting a mecha, a typical fate for female pilots, Wu Zetian hatches a plot for vengeance and enlists in the military. Instead, Zetian soon uncovers a hidden power within herself along with a centuries-old lie. Now Zetian and her male pilot counterpart Li Shimin must face off against dangerous adversaries – both alien and human – to survive the war and change the course of history forever. Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao is an action-packed debut blending Chinese culture and science fiction to create a story perfect for fans of The Handmaid’s Tale and Ender’s Game alike."
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