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July Staff Picks

Staff-recommended reading from the Alexandria Library Catalog. Check back every month for a new list.

Can't buy me love: the Beatles, Britain and AmericaCan't buy me love: The Beatles, Britain and America

By Jonathan Gould

This is an engrossing group biography, cultural history and musical education. The author explores the 1960s England & America through the lives of The Beatles.

Recommended by Ruth H.





Mr G : a novel about the CreationMr G : a novel about the Creation [eAudiobook on OverDrive]

By Alan Lightman

Neil Gaiman gave us "American Gods" stuck in a country where their believers "forgot and abandonded them." Lightman gives us a bored "god" and his decision to create the universe after a nap -- NEAT! Things do go a bit "off the rails" as others like his testy aunt and uncle, and other "mysterious" characters, interfere with g's creational intent. Amusing, provocative, clever, and extremely intellectual, the fictional piece asks the question "who is affected the most?" Also available in print.

Recommended by L. Rudd



By George K. Combs, Leslie Anderson, and Julia M. Downie

Founded as a colonial tobacco port by English and Scottish merchants in 1749, the city prospered. The city includes descendants of free and enslaved African Americans and the progeny of 18th- and 19th -century European immigrants who have joined with 'new' Americans to create vibrant 21st century communities. The authors are librarians from the Special Collections Branch -- with more than 30+ years of combined research experience in local history, culture, and society. They used vintage photographs and original documents to show how a small colonial town grew into a modern city.

Recommended by Leslie A.



Behind the scenes at the museum Behind the scenes at the museum

By Kate Atkinson

The first novel from the bestselling author of "Life After Life." Ruby Lennox, a young girl growing up in post- war York, England, narrates her life from birth. Interspersed with her story are flashbacks from the maternal line of her family. There is heartache but ultimately triumph for Ruby as she discovers a secret that has affected her mother's feelings towards her. Winner of the 1995 Whitbread Award.

Recommended by A. Williams




The outlanderThe outlander

By Gil Adamson

A wonderful novel about a young woman fleeing across the West after killing her husband. The stories of those she meets along the way are as compelling as her struggle to survive the winter.

Recommended by Jessica S.




George Washington's Mount Vernon : at home in Revolutionary America George Washington's Mount Vernon : at home in Revolutionary America

By Robert F. Dalzell and Lee Baldwin Dalzell

Too often Mount Vernon is an object of reverence, a shrine to George Washington, the action figure. Architectural history combines with social history in this book to give us insight into George Washington's life out of the limelight.

Recommended by Julie D.




Gil Marsh Gil Marsh

By A.C.E. Bauer

Meet Gil Marsh, the charming High School track star everyone loves. His perfect world gets upended when he meets his potential nemesis, the new kid Enko. From rivalry to fierce brotherly friendship, Gil and Enko form a bond that ends in tragedy. Suddenly, Gil is left alone to find his own place in the world. This touching young adult novel is a great, contemporary re-imagining of The Epic of Gilgamesh. A must-read for guys of all ages.

Recommended by Mark M.


The suspicions of Mr. Whicher : a shocking murder and the undoing of a great Victorian detective The suspicions of Mr. Whicher : a shocking murder and the undoing of a great Victorian detective 

By Kate Summerscale

If the tale of Inspector Jonathan Whicher reads like classic detective fiction, that's because his work sparked the imagination of many Victorian novelists. in 1860 Whicher is sent by Scotland Yard to solve the murder of a three year old child, and it nearly ruins his career. Definitely makes a fascinating read! Also available as an audiobook on CD.

Recommended by Elizabeth S.  

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