May Staff Picks: Spring? Is That You?

by Christine on 2022-05-02 08:00:00

It’s May at the library, and you know what that means: we are this close to the joyful chaos of our summer reading program! Our youth programming is taking a relative break as we gear up for summer (though be sure to check out the new outdoor StoryWalk!), but we’ve still got one last family trivia night before we take a break, plus our adult spelling bee, three speakers for Free Coffee Fridays, and much more. Check out our May programs here and get ready for our summer reading kickoff on June 6!

Also, without giving too much away about what summer reading on the adult side is going to look like … just know that many of these recommendations would be great to save specifically for next month. In fact, you might even want to re-familiarize yourself with our previous staff picks.

Click the titles to place a hold or give us a call if you’re interested in reading this month’s selections!


Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson (2019)

I have discovered a new fantasy author named Margaret Rogerson and I have been eating up her material. All three of her books are fabulous. I like them because they aren't what you think of when you think “fantasy book.” There are no fairies, there is very little romance, it's just fantasy at its best. My favorite book of hers so far has been Sorcery of Thorns. The story is about Elisabeth, a young library apprentice ... but she doesn't apprentice for a typical library, she is an apprentice for a Great Library that houses sorcerer's grimoires. The idea is that sometimes these grimoires go bad and turn into monsters but Elisabeth has a way with the books that no one else does. Her story is wild and she is a heroine to adore. I knew I would like this book when the author's dedication simply said, "For all the girls who found themselves in books."


Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant (2017)

This book is sci-fi horror about a media company that makes "mockumentaries." Seven years after their first failed, horrific, and mysterious attempt to "prove" the existence of mermaids in the Mariana Trench, they try again with a new research vessel fitted with everything the world’s best marine specialists could hope for, with no expense spared. Yet tragedy ensues … again, and at a horrible cost.

I have thalassophobia (persistent and intense fear of deep bodies of water such as the ocean or sea) paired with an equal fascination for all things deep sea … and this book gave me chills all the way through!


Amari and the Night Brothers (Supernatural Investigations #1) by B.B. Alston (2021)

Amari Peters has never stopped believing her missing brother, Quinton, is alive. Not even when the police told her otherwise, or when she got in trouble for standing up to bullies who said he was gone for good. So when she finds a ticking briefcase in his closet, containing a nomination for a summer tryout at the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs, she’s certain the secretive organization holds the key to locating Quinton — if only she can wrap her head around the idea of magicians, fairies, aliens, and other supernatural creatures all being real.

Now she must compete for a spot against kids who’ve known about magic their whole lives. No matter how hard she tries, Amari can’t seem to escape their intense doubt and scrutiny — especially once her supernaturally enhanced talent is deemed “illegal.” With an evil magician threatening the supernatural world, and her own classmates thinking she’s an enemy, Amari has never felt more alone. But if she doesn’t stick it out and pass the tryouts, she may never find out what happened to Quinton.

This middle grade fiction novel is perfect for around fifth grade+. I'm reading it with my son, and he usually sneaks a few chapters in after we stop for the evening :)


Loveless by Alice Oseman (2020)

Georgia has never had a significant other. She's never kissed anyone. And if that doesn't make her feel embarrassed and inexperienced enough as she starts university, she soon realizes she might not have ever had a crush, either. While Georgia might feel alone in how she feels, she's not the only one exploring her identity — her best friends are each going on their own journeys of self-discovery. Oseman, the author of the Heartstopper graphic novel series, writes a beautiful story about an asexual, aromantic teen (someone who doesn't experience sexual or romantic attraction), one that has already made readers like Georgia feel less alone in themselves.


The Christie Affair by Nina de Gramont (2022)

Blending fact and fiction, this book is a clever take on Agatha Christie's mysterious real-life disappearance in 1926. The novel's narrator is Nan O'Dea—Agatha’s husband's mistress—and over the course of 11 days, Nan and Agatha become entwined in each other’s lives in ways neither expected. If you are fascinated by Christie’s mysterious disappearance, this is an interesting version of what "might" have happened. It has a good ending too. And, this mystery has never been solved.


Who is Maud Dixon? by Alexandra Andrews (2021)

This is a fast-paced, intricately plotted psychological suspense. Celebrity author Maud Dixon offers aspiring writer Florence Darrow a job as her personal assistant. But there is a deadly catch to this offer.


A Certain Hunger by Chelsea G. Summers (2020)

A professional food writer is also a serial killer with an appetite for men. She loves them, and then she eats them. What makes this book really stand out to me is that it’s set in modern day times as a memoir but written more in the style of 1800s British literature. It’s full of gory details and deliciously R-rated for several reasons, definitely not for the faint of heart.