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Picture Book Selection: A House in the Woods

When two pigs have their house destroyed on accident by their much larger friends, a moose and a bear, they decide to make a house that will fit all four of them comfortably.  They hire the best builders in the woods, the beavers, to build their new home.  This is a sweet story of friends and finding happiness in the woods.  This is for picture book lovers of all ages, but especially those in Preschool to Second grade.

The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

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Fans of the Smitten Kitchen blog can rejoice in this cookbook by home cook Perelman. She cooks in a tiny New York City kitchen – although a friend told her upon move in that “ovens are for sweater storage.” Perelman’s love of cooking is apparent, with many photographs of both the process and finished product, with some innovative and some more classic recipes to try in your own kitchen, large or small.

A Spy Among Friends: Kim Philby and the Great Betrayal, by Ben MacIntyre

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Kim Philby was a cricket fan, journalist, friend, spy—and traitor. In A Spy Among Friends, Ben MacIntyre examines the life and career of one of the most successful Soviet double agents through his friendships with Nicholas Elliott, a fellow British spy, and James Jesus Angleton, the chief of the CIA’s counterintelligence department. MacIntyre’s telling exposes the strange, almost incestuously intimate world of spying in the 1930’s, 1940’s, and 1950’s: a society of hard-drinking school friends-turned-agents made vulnerable by the peculiarly British belief that only a small circle can be trusted, but that within that circle, trust is absolute—even in the face of overwhelming evidence. Philby exploited this weakness to its fullest, “picking clean” agents from every major intelligence organization in Europe, America, and the Middle East; untold hundreds of British and British-allied agents died as a result.  

Absorbing, well-organized, and marbled with delightful oddities like Elliott’s bodyguard/nanny (who had “enormous feet” and drank gin from a bottle marked “Holy Water”), A Spy Among Friends is a must-read for espionage fans and Cold War buffs.

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