With a new semester comes new books at Kemp Library. On the library’s main floor, you can find of New York Times bestsellers and other new and popular books. There’s a wide range of genres, from crime and mystery to romance and memoirs. If you’re looking for a way to unwind this semester, here are 11 books to help get you started.
“Educated” by Tara Westover
In her stunning memoir, Tara Westover tells her story of being born into a survivalist family. In the mountains of Idaho, her parents stockpiled canned goods in preparation for the end of the world.
Her father forbade most American norms such as traditional hospitals, and of course, education. So Tara started to educate herself. She first step foot in a classroom at 17, then made her way to Brigham Young University and then Harvard and Cambridge. This is not your traditional coming of age story.
“Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens
Synopsis: Rumors of the “Marsh Girl” ran rampant around Barkley Cove, a quiet town in North Carolina. When the handsome Chase Andrews is found murdered, everyone immediately suspects it’s Kya Clark, aka Marsh Girl, but Kya is more than she seems.
When two young men from town come across Kya, she lets them in. They discover that she is sensitive and intelligent and has spent years alone in the marsh which she calls home. Kya starts to open herself to a new life— until the unthinkable happens.
“Well-Read Black Girl” by various writers
This inspiring collection of essays features pieces written by black women writers, curated by the founder of the Well-Read Black Girl Book Club.
Some of the writers include Jesmyn Ward, author of “Sing Un-buried Sing,” Morgan Jerkins, author of “This Will Be My Undoing,” Zinzi Clemmons, author of “What We Lose,” among other extraordinary black women writers.
Each essay shines a light on how black creatives find themselves in literature in times of struggle and relaxation, and how stories help us understand the world and ourselves.
“The Goldfinch” by Donna Tartt
Thirteen-year-old Theo Decker miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by a wealthy family and moves into their Park Avenue home.
Unable to communicate with his new peers, and a painful longing for his mother, Theo turns to the one thing that reminds him of her: a small painting that ultimately draws Theo into the world of art.
The novel follows Theo through his adulthood, world of art, and a new dangerous circle he found himself in.
Get a chance to read the novel before the movie is released Oct. 11 starring Nicole Kidman, Ansel Elgort, and Sarah Paulson.
“The Real Lolita: The Kidnapping of Sally Horner and the Novel that Scandalized the World” by Sarah Weinman
It’s no doubt that Vladimir Nabokov’s “Lolita” is a literary classic and will go down in history as one of the most notorious novels of all time.
However, not many people know that the novel is based on a true story: the 1948 kidnapping of Sally Homer. For the time, Sarah Weinman tells Sally’s story through extensive investigations, legal documents, public records, and interviews with remaining relatives.
“The Real Lolita” reveals how much Nabokov knew about Sally and the effort he took to try to disguise what he knew.
“Dopestick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America” by Beth Macy
From small communities, desperate cities to wealthy suburbs in Central Appalachia and farm towns, opioid addiction has plagued our nation for decades.
Beth Macy takes readers into the epicenter of the opioid crisis through family interviews, first responders, political analysis and more.
Even with the nation’s struggling healthcare system, Macy finds reasons to hope for a better future for those facing addiction and their families.
“The Couple Next Door” by Shari Lapena
The Conti’s seem to have it all: a beautiful marriage, home, and new baby named Cora. But, one night when they are at their next door neighbor’s dinner party a terrible crime is committed.
All the suspicion falls in one direction, but the truth is more complicated. As what really happened that night begins to unfold, so does the couple’s secrets they’ve been hiding from each other for years.
“What If It’s Us” by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera
On his way to the post office to deliver his ex-boyfriend’s things, Ben meets Arthur, a cute, aspiring actor who is in New York for the summer. They both can’t help but wonder, what does the universe have in store for them?
Maybe nothing, because they get separated. Maybe something because they’re reunited. But, still, they can’t seem to nail their first date… or the second and third. What if they aren’t destined to be together and their meet was only supposed to be temporary? What if there was a reason for their paths to cross? What if?
“Dear Martin” by Nic Stone
Justyce McAllister is at the top of his class and is an all-star player— but none of that matters to the police officer who just put him in handcuffs.
After the event, he leaves his old neighborhood behind, but Justyce still can’t escape the scorn from his former peers and new classmates. Searching for answers, Justyce begins writing letters to Dr. Martin Luther King, hoping they will guide him.
Then comes the day when Justyce is driving with his best friend Manny, windows down and music up, and they catch the eye of a white, off duty cop beside them.
Words fly and shots are fired. After the media catches wind of the incident, Justyce is under attack all over again.
“Nine Perfect Strangers” by Liane Moriarty
Could ten days at a health resort really change you forever? Nine strangers gather at a remote health resort. Each one is there to try to reflect or change some parts of their lives, even if they do not know it yet.
Amidst all the pampering and spa treatments, the nine strangers know that the real work is coming soon. However, none of them could have prepared for how challenging the ten days are going to be.
“Waiting for Eden” by Elliot Ackerman
Eden Malcolm is unable to move, speak, imprisoned in his own mind. His wife Mary spends every day in the hospital room on the sofa next to him. However, one Christmas, Mary is not at his side, Eden’s reordered consciousness comes alive.
As he begins to find ways to communicate, troubling truths about his marriage and his life before he went to war come to the surface. “Waiting for Eden” is told through the unique perspective of a fellow soldier who didn’t make it back home.
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