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Agatha Awards
Click to search this book in our catalog Murder Most Sweet
by Laura Jensen Walker

Kirkus A Wisconsin mystery author is suspected of a real-life murder.Teddie St. John is a breast cancer survivor who chose to get a double mastectomy, much to her mothers dismay. Shes also a fantastic baker, a caring friend, a super mom to her American Eskimo rescue, Gracie, and a published mystery writer. When bestselling author Tavish Bentley comes to Lake Potawatomi for a book signing, Teddie joins the crowd and finds herself immediately attracted to the charming Englishman. Although her scarf is stolen and used to strangle Bentleys recently dumped fiancee, Teddies not a serious suspect for Sheriff Brady Wells, whos known Teddie forever but still has to question her. It turns out that Tavish has a stalker problem in Annabelle Cooke, a determined woman who creates a nasty scene while Tavish and Teddie are dining at a local restaurant. Shes removed from the suspect list when she too is found strangled with one of Teddies many scarves. The town rumor mill has Teddie pegged as a serial killer, and her neighbors post their ideas all over social media, but it worries her more that her publishers are nervous about the publicity. Using their varied skills, Teddie and her two best friends start sleuthing on their own as she pursues her relationship with Tavish, who seems a perfect fit for her. Tavishs own problems, including an ex-wife, give them plenty of suspects to investigate.A wryly amusing cozy debut lent credence by the authors own experience as a cancer survivor. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Kirkus A Wisconsin mystery author is suspected of a real-life murder. Teddie St. John is a breast cancer survivor who chose to get a double mastectomy, much to her mother’s dismay. She’s also a fantastic baker, a caring friend, a super mom to her American Eskimo rescue, Gracie, and a published mystery writer. When bestselling author Tavish Bentley comes to Lake Potawatomi for a book signing, Teddie joins the crowd and finds herself immediately attracted to the charming Englishman. Although her scarf is stolen and used to strangle Bentley’s recently dumped fiancee, Teddie’s not a serious suspect for Sheriff Brady Wells, who’s known Teddie forever but still has to question her. It turns out that Tavish has a stalker problem in Annabelle Cooke, a determined woman who creates a nasty scene while Tavish and Teddie are dining at a local restaurant. She’s removed from the suspect list when she too is found strangled with one of Teddie’s many scarves. The town rumor mill has Teddie pegged as a serial killer, and her neighbors post their ideas all over social media, but it worries her more that her publishers are nervous about the publicity. Using their varied skills, Teddie and her two best friends start sleuthing on their own as she pursues her relationship with Tavish, who seems a perfect fit for her. Tavish’s own problems, including an ex-wife, give them plenty of suspects to investigate. A wryly amusing cozy debut lent credence by the author’s own experience as a cancer survivor. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Publishers Weekly Set in Lake Potawatomi, Wis., this light and sassy series launch from Walker (Reconstructing Natalie) introduces 43-year-old Theodora “Teddie” St. John, breast cancer survivor, cozy mystery author, and master cake and cookie baker. The town is all agog at the prospect of meeting Tavish Bentley, “a rich-and-famous New York Times best-selling author,” who’s doing a signing at the local bookstore, where Teddie will be providing refreshments. At the event is Tavish’s ex-fiancťe, Kristi Black, who’s seeking to win him back. During a visit to the bookstore ladies’ room, Teddie loses her scarf, which was apparently taken by one of the two women, one of whom may have been Kristi, she overheard arguing over Tavish while she was in a stall. Later that day, Teddie goes for a walk and discovers Kristi dead in a dumpster, with the missing scarf around her neck. Someone has obviously tried to frame Teddie, who sets out with aplomb to find the real killer. The plot lopes along at a decent clip, and appealing characters and snappy dialogue bode well for the sequel. This series is off to a solid start. Agent: Chip MacGregor, MacGregor Literary. (Aug.)

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

ALA Best Books for Young Adults
Click to search this book in our catalog Eleanor and Park
by Rainbow Rowell

School Library Journal Gr 9 Up-In this novel set in the 1980s, teenagers Eleanor and Park are outsiders; Eleanor, because she's new to the neighborhood, and Park, because he's half Asian. Although initially wary of each other, they quickly bond over their love of comics and 1980s alternative music. Eleanor's home life is difficult; her stepfather physically abuses her mother and emotionally abuses Eleanor and her siblings. At school, she is the victim of bullying, which escalates into defacement of her textbooks, her clothes, and crude displays on her locker. Although Park's mother, a Korean immigrant, is initially resistant to the strange girl due to her odd fashion choices, his father invites Eleanor to seek temporary refuge with them from her unstable home life. When Eleanor's stepfather's behavior grows even more menacing, Park assists in her escape, even though it means that they might not see each other again. The friendship between the teens is movingly believable, but the love relationship seems a bit rushed and underdeveloped. The revelation about the person behind the defacement of Eleanor's textbooks is stunning. Although the narrative points of view alternate between Eleanor and Park, the transitions are smooth. Crude language is realistic. Purchase for readers who are drawn to quirky love stories or 1980s pop culture.-Jennifer Schultz, Fauquier County Public Library, Warrenton, VA (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Half-Korean sophomore Park Sheridan is getting through high school by lying low, listening to the Smiths (it's 1986), reading Alan Moore's Watchmen comics, never raising his hand in class, and avoiding the kids he grew up with. Then new girl Eleanor gets on the bus. Tall, with bright red hair and a dress code all her own, she's an instant target. Too nice not to let her sit next to him, Park is alternately resentful and guilty for not being kinder to her. When he realizes she's reading his comics over his shoulder, a silent friendship is born. And slowly, tantalizingly, something more. Adult author Rowell (Attachments), making her YA debut, has a gift for showing what Eleanor and Park, who tell the story in alternating segments, like and admire about each other. Their love is believable and thrilling, but it isn't simple: Eleanor's family is broke, and her stepfather abuses her mother. When the situation turns dangerous, Rowell keeps things surprising, and the solution-imperfect but believable-maintains the novel's delicate balance of light and dark. Ages 13-up. Agent: Christopher Schelling, Selectric Artists. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Book list *Starred Review* Right from the start of this tender debut, readers can almost hear the clock winding down on Eleanor and Park. After a less than auspicious start, the pair quietly builds a relationship while riding the bus to school every day, wordlessly sharing comics and eventually music on the commute. Their worlds couldn't be more different. Park's family is idyllic: his Vietnam vet father and Korean immigrant mother are genuinely loving. Meanwhile, Eleanor and her younger siblings live in poverty under the constant threat of Richie, their abusive and controlling stepfather, while their mother inexplicably caters to his whims. The couple's personal battles are also dark mirror images. Park struggles with the realities of falling for the school outcast; in one of the more subtle explorations of race and the other in recent YA fiction, he clashes with his father over the definition of manhood. Eleanor's fight is much more external, learning to trust her feelings about Park and navigating the sexual threat in Richie's watchful gaze. In rapidly alternating narrative voices, Eleanor and Park try to express their all-consuming love. You make me feel like a cannibal, Eleanor says. The pure, fear-laced, yet steadily maturing relationship they develop is urgent, moving, and, of course, heartbreaking, too.--Jones, Courtney Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

ALA Notable Books for Children
Click to search this book in our catalog One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller
by Kate Read

Book list Mixed media, collage, and paintings illustrate the tale of a sly and very hungry fox who's scouting out his next meal. The conceptual counting book takes readers from 1 to 10, building toward the anticipated end only to offer a surprise. Each of the numbers has a double-page spread with a brightly colored number placed over a short description: One famished fox is accompanied by an picture of a red fox curled into a circle, looking off the page seemingly thinking about what to eat. He decides on three hapless hens for his dinner, but things don't go as expected, and at the story's conclusion, he becomes one frightened fox. The large pictures are delightful the fox's coat and the hens' feathers are collages of many colors and textures and offer humor as well as great technique. Both white and black backdrops show off the vivid, clear colors, and the featured numbers appear in various quadrants on the pages. Teamwork wins the day, and youngsters will cheer on the ultimately fearless fowl.--Maryann Owen Copyright 2019 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Kirkus A hungry, sneaky fox silently approaches a henhouse and gets the surprise of its life.A farmyard serves as the setting for a counting book, with each numberone per double-page spreaddepicting how a ruddy, crimson fox with a long, flowing tail closes in on its prey. "1 / One famished fox." The fox curls on recto, pupils directed at the page turn. "2 / Two sly eyes." The fox's face dominates the verso, eyes focused on a single feather on recto. "3 / Three plump hens." The fearsome action builds and darkens as the fox's proximity increases until it is inside. "8 / Eight beady eyes" presents the shadowy outlines of three large hens with white worrying eyes looking at the fox's head, also shadowed, with white menacing eyes and sharp fangs. "9 / Nine flying feathers // 10 / Ten sharp teeth" gives the impression of a fatal conclusion. But turn the page, and amid the scurry and scuffle of feathers flying and hens running, strength in numbers prevails. "100 / One hundred angry hens" startle and chase away "1one frightened fox." In a manner reminiscent of Pat Hutchins' Rosie's Walk (1967), the intrigue and story arc are communicated visually while the counting progresses. Lovely, potent, brightly colored illustrations in a combination of textured collage and paint against white space transition to a dark, moonlit backdrop. Little ones will eagerly count in subsequent readings as they also learn new descriptive vocabulary and cheer for the brave hens.A classic scenario flips the script in this engrossing adventure. (Picture book. 3-5) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

School Library Journal PreS-K—This stunning "counting book thriller" features a hungry fox and tasty hens. Each number appears on a spread. For example, the words "1 famished fox" appears opposite a brilliantly colored fox curled in on itself, eyes peering off the page toward an as yet unrevealed prize. The count continues as the fox slinks forward, obviously lurking behind "3 plump hens" heading toward their hen house. The fox, its "4 padding paws" shown in the top half of a spread, follows. With "6 silent steps" it seems to engulf the hen house, its exaggeratedly long tail curled in the foreground. It knocks, and a page turn reveals the googily eyes of the three hens and their predator, whose sharp teeth flash in the dark interior. Feathers fly, the fox opens its wide mouth, and all seems lost until page turns provide welcome relief. Not three, but 100 "angry hens" chase the fox right back to being "1." Collage and paint in the mixed media illustrations create the various red-orange-gold hues of the fox's dazzling coat. White backgrounds give way to dark ones as the suspense builds. A striking double bleed depicts multicolored hens, their pursuit continuing onto the next page, where the fox appears as a tiny horizontal blur. VERDICT Just the right amount of tension, delicious vocabulary such as "sly," "plump," "famished," and "snug," and alliterative phrases make this a first purchase for group and one-on-one sharing. Count on requests for many readings.—Marianne Saccardi, Children's Literature Consultant, Cambridge, MA

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly This clever “thriller” might sound like a familiar tale: hungry fox vs. unsuspecting hens. But Read’s playful twist on the story (akin to Pat Hutchins’s Rosie’s Walk) is also an amusing way to learn the numbers one through 10. It all begins with “one famished fox,” craftily curled with a roguish look on his face. A suspenseful tone is set as his “two sly eyes” spot “three plump hens” (comically wide-eyed and feasting on worms), and the fox hatches a devious plan, portrayed in dynamic collage illustrations that economically express layers of emotion and comedy against nighttime spreads. After the hunter’s “ten sharp teeth” make an appearance, things go sideways for the fox—and for the numerical order. This one wins for its subtle message of power in numbers. Ages 2–6. (Oct.)

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Horn Book As ‚€˜one famished fox‚€™ stalks ‚€˜three plump hens,‚€™ readers count from one to ten (plus one hundred at the end) in Read's pleasingly alliterative text. Opening spreads feature ample white space, accentuating the menace: the ‚€˜two sly eyes‚€™ spread shows the fox crouching on verso with a feather on recto. An inky black dominates as the tension builds (‚€˜five snug eggs‚€™; ‚€˜six silent steps‚€™); all ends well (unless you're the defeated fox). (c) Copyright 2021. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Bram Stoker Awards
Click to search this book in our catalog A Head Full of Ghosts
by Paul Tremblay

Caldecott Medal Winners
Click to search this book in our catalog Kittens First Full Moon
by Kevin Henkes

School Library Journal : PreS-K-An irresistible offering from the multifaceted Henkes. The spare and suspense-filled story concerns a kitten that mistakes the moon for a bowl of milk. When she opens her mouth to lick the treat, she ends up with a bug on her tongue. Next, she launches herself into the air, paws reaching out for the object of her desire, only to tumble down the stairs, "bumping her nose and banging her ear and pinching her tail. Poor Kitten." Again and again, the feline's persistent attempts to reach her goal lead to pain, frustration, and exhaustion. Repetitive phrases introduce each sequence of desire, action, and consequence, until the animal's instincts lead her home to a satisfying resolution. Done in a charcoal and cream-colored palette, the understated illustrations feature thick black outlines, pleasing curves, and swiftly changing expressions that are full of nuance. The rhythmic text and delightful artwork ensure storytime success. Kids will surely applaud this cat's irrepressible spirit. Pair this tale with Frank Asch's classic Moongame (S & S, 1987) and Nancy Elizabeth Wallace's The Sun, the Moon and the Stars (Houghton, 2003) for nocturnal celebrations.-Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library

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