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"Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis" by Timothy Egan

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This is the biography of Edward Curtis, a talented photographer.  His obsession was to photograph and document the American Indian before destruction of their ways. Egan writes is a riveting story of how Curtis spent ten years, sacrificed his marriage and family, finances and health to produce a twenty volume work The North American Indian. The photographs at the end of each chapter are a good accompaniment to the text.

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles

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If you're looking for something to brighten your dreary winter day, pick up Pancol's first English-translated novel. The plot revolves around two sisters - Iris, a glamorous, rich attorney's wife and her plain Jane, bookish sister Jo. The story begins when Jo's husband empties their joint savings account and leaves her for his manicurist, who he runs off to farm crocodiles with in Kenya. Jo is left to pick up the pieces of her life and raise her two daughters, Zoe and Hortense, on the meager salary she makes as a 12th century scholar. Iris and Jo hatch the perfect scheme - Jo will write a medieval historical novel that Iris will take the credit for, thus giving Jo the money she needs and Iris the fame she craves. As in life, things don't go quite as planned and hilarity ensues. It's chick lit done up en Francais; humorous, quite charming and perfect to curl up on the couch with and escape to bright, sunny Paris, if only for a few hundred pages.  

The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan

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What were the girls of Atomic City working on?  Thousands of young women seeking jobs poured into the newly built industrial complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.  They were sworn to secrecy about their new lives at Oak Ridge.  All they knew was they were working with a product called tubealloy that was part of the “Project” to build the “Gadget”. It was all classified but everyone was happy because they had work and were being well paid.

Then on August 6, 1945, the Oak Ridge workers learned what their efforts had wrought: the explosion of the “Gadget”—the first atomic bomb.  Detonated over Japan to end World War II, the “Gadget” announced to the world that the Atomic Age had arrived.  Fans of World War II will enjoy this book about the young women who helped the war effort by working to develop the first atomic bomb.

American Craftsmen, Tom Doyle

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American Craftsmen is what would happen if Harry Potter grew up and joined Seal Team Six. Magic workers have operated in America since its founding, sworn to protect and defend the United States as part of secret military units. Army Captain Dale Morton is one of these elite soldier-magicians—until a Persian sorcerer curses him to madness. Now, convinced that an evil from his family’s past has corrupted the highest echelons of military magic, he must hunt down the traitors that placed him in harm’s way—while protecting the innocent woman he loves and avoiding a fellow Craftsman with a family axe to grind. Fast-paced and engrossing, American Craftsmen will appeal to readers of military thrillers and urban fantasy alike.

Family Picture Book Selection: You Were the First

You Were the First by Patricia MacLachlan, celebrates all of the stages of the firstborn baby in a family.  There may be other children in the family later, but there is always a first one to teach the parents how to be parents.  This will make parents and children of all family sizes smile and remember all of the good first times they each experienced. A beautiful mixture of words and illustrations for all ages. 

Picture Book Selection: Catch That Cookie!

Marshall's class has been reading about runaway gingerbread cookies for days, but he does not believe that they can really escape.  The class bakes and decorates their own gingerbread people and then when they disappear, everyone follows the clues left by the escaped cookies.  What happened to those gingerbread people?  A fun romp for ages 4 and up.

Teen Fantasy Fiction: Beastkeeper

Deep in the forest, in a crumbling ruin of a castle, Sarah begins to untangle the layers of curses affecting her family, until she discovers that the curse has carried over to her, too. The day she falls in love for the first time, Sarah will transform into a beast–unless she can figure out a way to break the curse forever.

Mystery Novels for Teens: The Uninvited

Mimi Shapiro needs an escape and her father's remote cabin in Canada could be the ticket. But when she arrives, she is shocked to find someone already living there — Jay, a young musician, who is equally surprised to see Mimi. Strange things have been afoot at the cabin, and Jay immediately accuses her of wrongdoing. But Mimi has just arrived, so who is responsible? And more alarmingly, what does the intruder want?

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