Thanks for celebrating Banned Books Week with us here at #KillinglyReads. If you want to learn more about banned books, including which books are the mostly frequently banned and why, feel free to click on this link for the American Library Association
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Reviewed by: Jennifer Chretien, Reference Librarian
Rating: 5 stars
Offred was once a woman with a family, a job, and access to knowledge in the Republic of Gilead. Now she is a handmaid a woman forced to live with a man of power and his wife and submit to him sexually every month in hopes of bearing his child. In this future, births have declined so significantly that a handmaiden’s worth is based entirely upon her fertility. Yet despite her dire circumstances, Offred still holds on to hope.
The first time I read this book was in high school. It was on a list of summer reading books before my sophomore year. It was one of my earlier forays into dystopian fiction and I can truthfully say it is the book that has had the biggest effect on me over the course of my life. I don’t know if it’s the subject matter or the way Atwood so skillfully sketches out a reality where women aren’t allowed to read in the future, but it still haunts me to this day. Each Presidential election cycle, I reflect back on this book and am unsettled by just how easily the fictional Gilead could become reality; certainly it has similarities to Middle Eastern theocracies.
The Handmaid’s Tale was banned for being anti-religion because it is critical of the government in Gilead, as well as for explicit scenes in which women (handmaidens) were brutalized. It is a significant and important work of literature that remains relevant over 30 years since its publication. I think it’s a book everyone should read because not only is it a brilliant piece of fiction but it also reminds the reader the importance of protecting your rights and to question authority instead of blind acceptance.
Want to get on board with "Banned Book Week" but not sure what to read? Click on the photo below and check out some suggestions from the contributors of the blog "For Reading Addicts and let us know what you pick!
Next week is Banned Book Week, so we here at #KillinglyReads thought it would be fun to listen to this music video for Banned Book Week 2008. Enjoy!
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle
Reviewed by Jennifer Chretien, Reference Librarian
Rating: 5 Stars
Recently Madeline L'Engle's 1963 classic A Wrinkle in Time was back on the bestseller lists because Chelsea Clinton mentioned it during the Democratic National Convention as being one of her childhood favorites. I was thrilled to see a resurgence of popularity, since it's also one of mine. It also happens to be one of the 100 most frequently banned/challenged books of 1990-2000.
A Wrinkle in Time is the first book of the Time Quintet. It features Meg Murray on a quest to rescue her father, who disappeared on another planet while working on a scientific concept known as a tesseract. Meg, her brother Charles Wallace, and her classmate Calvin O'Keefe are guided on this whirlwind mission through the help of her eccentric neighbors: Mrs Whatsit, Mrs Who, and Mrs Which, While the book is clearly dated, the story remains fresh and relevant to this day. Meg is a heroine that is seldom featured in books. She is an ordinary child in a family of extraordinary people. Her mother is a gorgeous scientists, two of her are outstanding athletes, and her youngest brother is a child prodigy. Meg is considered an immature annoyance by her teachers. She is of seemingly average intelligence beyond her mathematics ability, is awkward, and a bit surly. In short, she lacks the charm and spunk of the standard childhood heroine. Meg is able to succeed in her goals because of her heart and her perceptiveness, which makes her a wonderful role model for young girls of today;.
A Wrinkle in Time causes its reader to reflect on philosophical concepts and introduces scientific concepts in a way that isn't overwhelming or preachy. I still make literary references as an adult that are found in this book and experience a thrill when I know someone else understood the reference. I still love the book as an adult and cannot wait for my daughter to be old enough for us to read together.
Which Female Literary Icon are you? Could you be Mary Shelley? Sylvia Plath? Jane Austen?
Jennifer, one of our reference librarians, was pleased to discover she's Mary Shelley.
Click on the photo to find out and let us know your results!
Welcome to "Waiting on Wednesday" where we highlight upcoming books soon to be found on KPL shelves. This week's selection is a brand new Oprah book club selection that has had tremendous buzz.
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
Release date: August 2, 2016
Synopsis from GoodReads:
Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hellish for all slaves, but Cora is an outcast even among her fellow Africans, and she is coming into womanhood; even greater pain awaits. Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her of the Underground Railroad and they plot their escape. Like Gulliver, Cora encounters different worlds on each leg of her journey.
Whitehead brilliantly recreates the unique terrors of black life in pre-Civil War America. The Underground Railroad is at once a kinetic adventure tale of one woman's ferocious will to escape the horrors of bondage and a shattering, powerful meditation on the history we all share.
Patron "Lamborghini" reviewed 2 books for us this week.
The first book is: Trouble at the Treasury by Ron Roy.
Rating: 3 stars
"Good but not as good as the A to Z Mystery series."
The second book is also by Ron Roy, School Skeleton
Rating: 3 stars
"Pretty good book"
Thanks for your review!
Welcome to our first banned book month staff review. This week our newest member of the circulation staff reviews the often challenged Jodi Picoult book Nineteen Minutes.
Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult
Reviewed by: Brittany Carlsen, Circulation Desk
Rating: 5 Stars!
Nineteen minutes is such a short amount of time taken from our lives, until tragedy strikes and those are the last moments we get. In this Pacoult masterpiece, we see two high school boys who are cast out by their peers and unprotected by the adults in charge of keeping them safe. What happens when enough is enough and the victims of bullying decide to take revenge? It is easy to think that the world is black and white, people are either good or evil, but this book thrusts you headfirst into the grey area where you feel for both victim and killer. By the time you are done reading this book, you will be recalling every word, every action, every moment of your children's lives and hoping that somewhere along the way, you did not lose them and praying that the smiles on their faces are real.
Welcome to this week's edition of "Waiting on Wednesday" where we highlight an upcoming release. This week we are looking at The Trespasser - the latest in Tana French's Dublin Murder Squad series. If you haven't checked out her books yet, we highly recommend it!
by Tana French
Release Date: October 4, 2016
Synopsis from Amazon:
Being on the Murder squad is nothing like Detective Antoinette Conway dreamed it would be. Her partner, Stephen Moran, is the only person who seems glad she’s there. The rest of her working life is a stream of thankless cases, vicious pranks, and harassment. Antoinette is savagely tough, but she’s getting close to the breaking point.
Their new case looks like yet another by-the-numbers lovers’ quarrel gone bad. Aislinn Murray is blond, pretty, groomed to a shine, and dead in her catalogue-perfect living room, next to a table set for a romantic dinner. There’s nothing unusual about her—except that Antoinette’s seen her somewhere before.
And that her death won’t stay in its neat by-numbers box. Other detectives are trying to push Antoinette and Steve into arresting Aislinn’s boyfriend, fast. There’s a shadowy figure at the end of Antoinette's road. Aislinn's friend is hinting that she knew Aislinn was in danger. And everything they find out about Aislinn takes her further from the glossy, passive doll she seemed to be.
Antoinette knows the harassment has turned her paranoid, but she can’t tell just how far gone she is. Is this case another step in the campaign to force her off the squad, or are there darker currents flowing beneath its polished surface?
Killingly Reads aims to be your local source for book fun, reviews, and news.