The Roseburg Public Library crew read so many amazing books this year that we want to share a few more. The selectors wrote the descriptions.
Circulation Supervisor Liz Hendershott’s pick of the year was “Spinning Silver” by Naomi Novik. A neat adult fairy tale, it had a slightly malevolent gothic bend to it as well as complex characters. It was kind of like that movie you accidentally got in Dutch; fairy tale noir.
Volunteer Steve B. grew up during the 1960s when counter-culture guru Timothy Leary popularized LSD as a way for rebellious youth to “turn on, tune in, and drop out” to experience altered states of consciousness.
In a fascinating personal investigation, Michael Pollan broadens the hippy-trippy stigma of government-prohibited hallucinogenic drugs to show their therapeutic healing and spiritual awakening properties in “How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence.”
Volunteer Gary D. selected “The Nickel Boys” by Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winner Colson Whitehead. From the immediate engagement brought on by the first sentence to the final ironic surprise, the book “had me.” The subject is very dark, but the prose is honest, colorful and not as bitter as it might well be.
Extending our picks another week gives me the opportunity to talk about what surely will be one of my favorite books of 2020.
“Dear Edward” was a book that took my breath away with its sadness and beauty.
Twelve-year-old Edward is the sole survivor of a plane crash, and author Ann Napolitano deftly alternates between the flight, where the reader meets some of those who perish, and Edward’s life post-crash, where he is at first a marvel and then forgotten as the world carries on.
Not surprisingly, Edward finds it impossible to move forward until he comes across something that provides comfort and meaning.
For even more staff picks, check out the shelves by the holds pick-up area at the library, go to roseburg.biblionix.com and click on Booklists and check out the library on Instagram or Facebook @roseburglibrary.