Adult Recommendations

Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson

Was the British luxury ocean liner Lusitania, sunk in British waters during World War I, an inevitable casualty of war? Was there anything that could have been done to save her or her civilian passengers, which included a record number of infants and children? Had wartime rules of engagement changed?

Erik Larson’s considerable research illuminates the remarkable series of coincidences and decisions that converged to consign the Lusitania and most of her passengers and crew to a watery grave. Larson skillfully brings individual passengers, captain, crew, and military leaders to life while detailing the behind-the-scenes machinations that played such a significant role in the Lusitania’s sinking.

Whether you enjoy historical nonfiction or have shied away from reading it because of concern about dry text or an avalanche of dates, names, and places, this riveting read is for you.

Tatiana by Martin Cruz Smith

Old Russia meets new Russia as the ever-cynical but ever-curious Moscow police investigator Arkady Renko moves among the two cultures in this latest Martin Cruz Smith book, “Tatiana”. Despite opposition from his superiors, Arkady insists there is a link between a reporter falling to her death and a mobster shot and killed. Throughout his investigation, Arkady fights with his own department while risking his life and reputation to solve this mystery. Within this twisting plot, Smith has added a hint of Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code as Arkady must de-code a key aspect to the case. In this eighth international thriller of the Arkady series, Smith has continued to create strong characters, great dialogue, and a plot that keeps the reader’s interest to the last page.

Kitchens of the Great Midwest: A Novel by J. Ryan Stradal

Do you have a voracious appetite for food and literature? If so, Kitchens of the Great Midwest, a novel about a girl with an exceptional palate who rises to culinary celebrity, just might be your cup of tea. Told from the varying viewpoints of those in and around her orbit, you learn about Eva Thorvold, the child prodigy of a chef and a sommelier. Born with an exceptional palate, Eva is a loner that doesn’t quite fit in anywhere but the kitchen. Each chapter is named after, and features a recipe for, a dish that features some significance to Eva’s life. From the absurd to the sublime there’s something for everyone in this quirky, heartfelt novel that simultaneously glorifies and pokes fun at our foodie culture.