Staff Picks

So You've Been Publicly ShamedAngela
So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed
Jon Ronson

Synopsis: Jon Ronson travelled the world meeting recipients of high-profile public shamings. The shamed are people like us - people who, say, made a joke on social media that came out badly, or made a mistake at work. Once their transgression is revealed, collective outrage circles with the force of a hurricane and the next thing they know they're being torn apart by an angry mob, jeered at, demonized, sometimes even fired from their job. A great renaissance of public shaming is sweeping our land. Justice has been democratized. The silent majority are getting a voice. But what are we doing with our voice? We are mercilessly finding people's faults. We are defining the boundaries of normality by ruining the lives of those outside it. We are using shame as a form of social control. Simultaneously powerful and hilarious in the way only Jon Ronson can be, So You've Been Publicly Shamed is a deeply honest book about modern life, full of eye-opening truths about the escalating war on human flaws - and the very scary part we all play in it.

Angela Says: This book may not be the best written. It may not be based on scientific study. It is a great book to give you pause to think about how you interact with others through social media. You may respond to them, you may judge them … but who is really right? Ronson provides real-world examples of where someone made a questionable decision and brings you into the story to try and understand what you would have done. Consider this for your Read More entry for Book about a current issue or Book that has been recommended to you.

Angela's Past Staff Picks
Paper GhostsDonna
Paper Ghosts
Julia Heaberlin

Synopsis: A young woman determined to discover the truth about her missing sister who is presumed dead. She convinces the man she believes is a serial killer and responsible for her sister’s disappearance to take a ten day road trip with her. The destinations are locations where young women were kidnapped and murdered. They also happen to be locations that the suspected killer, a former photographer who may or may not currently have dementia, photographed and published in a book. This book has the reader questioning what are her intentions and can either one be trusted?

Donna Says: Prepare for a Texas road trip with Texas sized suspense. Julia Heaberlin, the author of the suspense novel Black-Eyed Susans, presents two unreliable characters with hidden intentions engaged in a cat-and-mouse game. This book is recommended for suspense readers who enjoy stories with twists that gradually build momentum.

Donna's Past Staff Picks
Crazy Rich AsiansElizabeth
Crazy Rich Asians
Kevin Kwan

Synopsis: When Rachel Chu agrees to spend the summer in Singapore with her boyfriend, Nicholas Young, she envisions a humble family home, long drives to explore the island, and quality time with the man she might one day marry. What she doesn't know is that Nick's family home happens to look like a palace, that she'll ride in more private planes than cars, and that with one of Asia's most eligible bachelors on her arm, Rachel might as well have a target on her back. Initiated into a world of dynastic splendor beyond imagination, Rachel meets Astrid, the It Girl of Singapore society; Eddie, whose family practically lives in the pages of the Hong Kong socialite magazines; and Eleanor, Nick's formidable mother, a woman who has very strong feelings about who her son should marry.

Elizabeth says: If you are like me and love rich people problems, then I’ve got a book for you. This book is so entertaining and funny I loved every minute of it. Note: Can be used in the categories of “Adapted into a movie” and “First in a Series” in the Read More 2018 Challenge.

Elizabeth's Past Staff Picks
Polish your PoiseMegan
The Madame Chic Collection
Jennifer Scott

Synopsis: As an American student living abroad, Jennifer L. Scott found a Parisian mentor in her host mother, Madame Chic, who instructed her in the fine art of living. Now, Jennifer shares her lessons in her Madame Chic series: Lessons from Madame Chic, At Home with Madame Chic, and Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic. Based on what she learned from Madame Chic, Jennifer explains how to cultivate old-fashioned sophistication while living an active, modern life, teaching us to take pleasure in everyday routines, to dress presentably, perform household tasks with cheer, and how to conduct oneself both in public and in private. The Madame Chic series encourages and inspires you to live simply and passionately, no matter your age, background, or location. Like Madame Chic, everyone deserves a little Parisian je ne sais quoi.

Megan Says: Grace, integrity, femininity, sophistication, manners, poise, organization, beauty, allure, successful homemaker, relaxed and confident -- if these are attributes you desire as a woman then The Madame Chic Collection is a must read. I learned so much about how to revere and resurrect some of the “old-fashioned” social values that are considered debunked today. What I discovered is that they are very much still at the heart and soul of a secure family and a healthy home.

Megan's Past Staff Picks

The Versions of UsNina
The Versions Of Us
Laura Barnett

Synopsis: What if you had said yes? Eva and Jim are nineteen, and students at Cambridge, when their paths first cross in 1958. Jim is walking along a lane when a woman approaching him on a bicycle swerves to avoid a dog. What happens next will determine the rest of their lives. We follow three different versions of their future together, and apart as their love story takes on different incarnations and twists and turns to the conclusion in the present day.

Nina Says: Barnett offers readers the scope of a generational saga anchored by the intimate portrait of how two people are fated to be a part of each other’s lives no matter how the connection is made or severed. The multiple timelines can be challenging, but each builds brilliantly on aspects of the others. A true literary feat. If you need to fill in your Read More Challenge, this works as either Literary Fiction or a Book about Artists or Art.

Nina's Past Staff Picks
The Sisters BrothersRandall
The Sisters Brothers
Patrick DeWitt

Synopsis: Hermann Kermit Warm is going to die. The enigmatic and powerful man known only as the Commodore has ordered it, and his henchmen, Eli and Charlie Sisters, will make sure of it. Though Eli doesn't share his brother's appetite for whiskey and killing, he's never known anything else. But their prey isn't an easy mark, and on the road from Oregon City to Warm's gold-mining claim outside Sacramento, Eli begins to question what he does for a living - and whom he does it for. With The Sisters Brothers, Patrick deWitt pays homage to the classic Western, transforming it into an unforgettable comic tour de force. Filled with a remarkable cast of characters losers, cheaters, and ne'er-do-wells from all stripes of life and told by a complex and compelling narrator, it is a violent, lustful odyssey through the underworld of the 1850s frontier that beautifully captures the humor, melancholy, and grit of the Old West and two brothers bound by blood, violence, and love.

Randall Says: Follow brothers Charlie and Eli Sisters on a strange and sometimes darkly humorous odyssey through the Old West. I enjoyed the odd relationship between the sibling gunslingers, even if the prim dialogue may not be true to life. Try it for one of these Read More categories: Book About Friendship, Adapted into a Movie, or Western.

Randall's Past Staff Picks

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Wylie Municipal Complex 
300 Country Club Rd., Building 100 Wylie, TX 75098
Main #: 972-516-6000 
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800 Thomas St.
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