Solano County Library Staff Picks



Descender. Book one: Tin stars
10 years after the Harvesters have destroyed the worlds of the United Galactic Council a young companion bot named Tim-21 wakes up to discover everyone in the mining colony dead. But who will get to the little robot first and why is he so important? Image Comics delivers another outstanding series with this new science fiction story by Jeff Lemire with beautiful watercolor artwork by Dustin Nguyen. Collecting issues #1-6, Descender vol. 1 Tin Stars is an exciting introduction to what promises to be an intriguing and imaginative universe.
Recommended by: Sandy S. Want it? 




Restless (DVD)
“Restless” is a compelling miniseries switching between WWII and the 70s. A daughter is called home because her mother wishes to reveal past secrets. But those old secrets reveal hidden perils for her family now. This film will keep you guessing on whom to trust and what to do.
Recommended by: Jasmin M. Want it? 




The Walk (DVD)
Philippe Petit is a French street performer who becomes captivated. He dreams to walk the high wire between the newly built World Trade Center towers. From learning the high wire, to his trip to NYC you will feel like you are up on the wire with him. The movie is fun, even for those scared of heights.
Recommended by: Jasmin M. Want it? 




Asian Playground (music cd)
Great compilation of diverse and distinct Asian cultural artists. From Japan to Sri Lanka children will get a taste of fun music from various Asian countries.
Recommended by: Ann N. Want it? 




The Fifth Season
2016 Nebula Award nominee. This is how the world ends. The world is the Stillness, and it ends with a death. It is the story of Essun, who is searching for her daughter. It is the story of Syenite, who knows things are not right. And it is the story of Damaya, who is learning her place in the world. "The Fifth Season" is a compelling, character-driven fantasy that takes place in a fully developed world; a world that seems familiar to us, yet is wholly unfamiliar. This is the first book of the Broken Earth Trilogy, with book two due in August.
Recommended by: Sandy S. Want it? 




Thicker than Water
This is a comfy mystery for a rainy day or even before bed. Unlike some books that have very graphic and haunting images that linger, “Thicker than Water” is fun and focused on figuring out how DCI Monika Paniatowski will prove “who-done-it!” from the beginning. Who really clobbered Mrs. Danbury over the head? Can our DCI prove it is the main suspect, the wealthy political husband, Mr. Danbury? … What about the other main characters interwoven within the plot? They definitely keep things interesting and the reader wondering. Adding to the suspense is the author’s knack for adding natural humor. Our DCI periodically tells the reader directly, and only the reader, what is really going on in our character’s head, which, of course, isn’t for the Chief constable’s ears! Most importantly, DCI Paniatowski’s career is on the line, so she better get it right. I think you will agree, she does!
Recommended by: Jennifer M. Want it? 




Tangled Vines
In late 2005, a fire broke out in a wine storage located at the Naval shipyard in Vallejo. The fire destroyed millions of dollars worth of vintage wines. It was devastating for several vintners who had their wines stored at the said place. The book has a lot to offer, including investigative side regarding the arson, fraud in the wine business and the history of wine making in California. I think it is a must read, especially if you live in the bay area.
Recommended by: Loida M. Want it? 




Have You Seen Elephant?
Have you seen Elephant? He’s not that hard to find or is he? This book is like a Where’s Waldo book …okay so not that intense. It’s definitely a hilarious book to read aloud to the seeing impaired, young at heart adults and absolutely children. The details and the beautiful watercolor illustrations are worth placing this book on hold.
Recommended by: Rosemarie C. Want it? 




Made to Kill
Ray is a robot (the last of his kind) and also a private detective. When he's hired to kill a famous Hollywood star he finds more than he bargained for. A fun quirky read in the style of film noir.
Recommended by: Juli H. Want it? 




Surf's Up
Bro and Dude go to the beach but discover they have wildly different ideas about how to enjoy their day. This totally tubular story references the tale of Moby Dick and illustrates how the love of a good tale can be infectious. It's a super cowabunga book for storytime!
Recommended by: Heather C. Want it? 




Clue (DVD)
I just had read the screenplay to this movie, reminding me of how much I love it. Tim Curry is astounding, as is the rest of the cast. If you love the movie, track down the screenplay, as there is a fourth ending not in the final film.
Recommended by: Mark F. Want it? 




A Thousand Falling Crows
Dust Bowl winds are flying through north Texas while Texas Ranger Sonny Burton pursues outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow. This pursuit quickly leaves him crippled and out of a job. Adjusting to life as a civilian, Sonny's struggles increase with himself, family, and community with a series of murders. This is a beautifully atmospheric, Depression-era mystery with undertones of Western themes. A must read for lovers of stoic lead characters displaying wisdom and courage.
Recommended by: Heather C. Want it? 




The Children's Home: A Novel
A strangely compelling short novel about a disfigured recluse whose home becomes a refuge for a ever-growing group of children who have no (apparent) connections to the rest of the world.
Recommended by: Mark F. Want it? 




Smarter Better Faster (audiobook)
A fascinating look at the science and art of productivity for anyone looking to improve their work or home life. This should be required reading for any managers on how to help their organizations run more efficiently and at a higher quality level. Drawing from psychologists, sociologists, business leaders, and organizations who have improved their results in surprising ways, Duhigg has created a relateable and compelling narrative that is worth your time.
Recommended by: Taaren S. Want it? 




Always Remember
This modest yet moving tale recounts for beginning readers the varied ways in which recently deceased Old Turtle impacted the lives of his friends. Their fond memories of Old Turtle as a teacher, heroic helper, and fun loving pal are strikingly illustrated and presented in an unsentimental style. This gentle story not only brings comfort to those dealing with loss, but carries a subtle reminder concerning our conduct of life. How do you want to be remembered?
Recommended by: CS C. Want it? 




President Squid
Giant squid wants to be President. And why not? He can wave eight flags at once and he has all the necessary qualities. He has a tie, a great big house and he loves to tell people what to do. He's perfect! But wait. Could there be other important traits a president should have? Nah! Fun for kids, squids and election-weary adults.
Recommended by: Nancy V. Want it? 




Throne of Blood
One of the best film adaptations of Shakespeare's work, Akira Kurosawa's film takes the story of Macbeth eschewing the Bard's dialogue into feudal Japan using elements of Noh theater along with an eerie atmosphere, all combining to make for a visually-stunning and refreshing twist on the classic tale. Watch as samurai Washizu (the Macbeth here) encounters an evil spirit in a forest near his home and makes the prediction that he can become the chief war lord by seizing the opportunity for assassinations that will present itself. Great acting, cinematography, and a haunting soundtrack further drives this masterpiece.
Recommended by: Joaquin A. Want it? 




A well crafted popular history of the American Revolution from a Pulitzer Prize winning author. Follows the rise and fall of Washington's army during that fateful year. Narrative not only includes important figures such as Washington and General Howe, but also accounts of the common soldier.
Recommended by: Jason A. Want it? 




A Silent Voice v. 1
This book is in graphic novel/manga format. A boy bullies a deaf student because he thinks it's funny. It gets to the point she transfers, and he becomes the bullied kid. Six years later, he stops her in the hallway of her new school. And then...?
Recommended by: Jennifer L. Want it? 




Massage & Aromatherapy: Simple Techniques to Use at Home to Relieve Stress, Promote Health, and Feel Great
Easy-to-use, photo-style walk-through of techniques for reducing stress, maintaining general health and overall conditioning.
Recommended by: Serena E. Want it? 




Tiny Homes on the Move: Wheels and Water
Think the tiny home movement is just about shoe-box homes on land? Think again. Wonderful pictorial of tiny homes either rolling on the road or floating on water. Nomadic life in the 21st century. Ingenious.
Recommended by: Yvette K. Want it? 




Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong
This book is a graphic novel. Charlie is the captain of the basketball team, but he's not a stereotypical jock. When the robotics team and the cheer squad unexpectedly have to compete for the student council's approval to get funding, Charlie is forced into running for student body president. Reluctant to deal with any kind of conflict, Charlie stays involved just enough to bring these two unlikely cliques together - and eventually confronts his parents about their divorce.
Recommended by: Jennifer L. Want it? 




Ancestral Journeys: The Peopling of Europe from the First Venturers to the Vikings
Fascinating book about the impact of DNA and genome sequencing on the history of human evolution, archaeology, and migration into Europe and Asia. Manco discusses successive migrations, new information on the Basques and Celts, and the spread of languages.
Recommended by: Serena E. Want it? 




A la Mala (DVD)
Charming romantic comedy. Maria "Ma-La" Laura, an out-of-work actress, hires herself out as bait to catch cheating boyfriends. Unfortunately, she falls in love with the one guy who's on the level. English subtitles. PG-13.
Recommended by: Yvette K. Want it? 




Without You, There is no Us: My Time with the Sons of North Korea's Elite
Suki Kim’s “Without You, There is No Us” is an account of the author’s time teaching in an elite North Korean college. Her perspective is interesting because she grew up in South Korea before immigrating to the United States as a child. Her command of the Korean language and history sharpened her understanding of the cultural and political repression in the North. She was startled to learn that computer majors knew nothing about Facebook, unrestricted internet access, tablets, smart phones, and many other computing and social media tools we take for granted. Kim came to love her students and also worry about the men they would become in a country where there is no privacy, individual thought or knowledge of the world. While it lacks the epic quality of Adam Johnson’s fictional work “The Orphan Master’s Son,” Kim’s memoir is quietly disturbing, illuminating and well worth reading.
Recommended by: Sabine S. Want it? 






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