Adult Book Sets
The Handmaid's Tale | Margaret Atwood | 10 copies
This look at the near future presents the story of Offred, a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead, once the United States, an oppressive world where women are no longer allowed to read and are valued only as long as they are viable for reproduction.
The Christmas Train | David Baldacci | 6 copies
Tom Langdon, a weary and cash-strapped journalist, is banned from flying when a particularly thorough airport security search causes him to lose his cool. Now, he must take the train if he has any chance of arriving in Los Angeles in time for Christmas with his girlfriend. To finance the trip, he sells a story about a train ride taken during the Christmas season. Thereupon begins one of the most hilarious-and heartwarming-journeys ever told.
The Water Knife | Paolo Bacigalupi | 15 copies
The American Southwest has been decimated by drought. Nevada and Arizona skirmish over dwindling shares of the Colorado River, while California watches, deciding if it should just take the whole river all for itself. Into the fray steps Las Vegas water knife Angel Velasquez. Detective, assassin, and spy, Angel "cuts" water for the Southern Nevada Water Authority, ensuring that lush, luxurious arcology developments can bloom in the desert and that anyone who challenges her is left in the gutted-suburban dust. When water is more valuable than gold, alliances shift like sand, and the only truth in the desert is that someone will have to bleed if anyone hopes to drink.
Cataloochee | Wayne Caldwell | 10 copies
Against the breathtaking backdrop of Appalachia comes a rich, multilayered post—Civil War saga of three generations of families–their dreams, their downfalls, and their faith.
The Edge of Anything | Nora Carpenter | 15 copies
Len is a loner teen photographer haunted by a past that's stagnated her work and left her terrified she's losing her mind. Sage is a high school volleyball star desperate to find a way around her sudden medical disqualification. Both girls need college scholarships. After a chance encounter, the two develop an unlikely friendship that enables them to begin facing their inner demons. But both Len and Sage are keeping secrets that, left hidden, could cost them everything, maybe even their lives.
The Last Ballad | Wiley Cash | 10 copies
Ella May Wiggins, a young mother desperately trying to hold her family together with the paltry nine dollars a week she earns from the textile mill two miles away, makes up her mind to join the labor union--a decision that will have lasting consequences for her children, her friends, her town, and all that she loves. Intertwining myriad voice, Cash brings to life the heartbreak and bravery of the now forgotten struggle of the labor movement in early twentieth-century America--and pays tribute to the thousands of heroic women and men who risked their lives to win basic rights for all workers.
The Tall Woman | Wilma Dykeman | 14 copies
Portrait of a North Carolina woman, a tower of strength for her family during the days of civil war and reconstruction who rises above a harsh environment to affirm her ideals.
The Cellist of Sarajevo | Steve Galloway | 7 copies
While a cellist plays at the site of a mortar attack to commemorate the deaths of twenty-two friends and neighbors, a woman sniper secretly protects the life of the cellist as her army becomes increasingly threatening.
The Keepers of the House | Shirley Ann Grau | 9 copies
Seven generations of the Howland family have lived in the Alabama plantation home built by an ancestor who fought for Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812. Over the course of a century, the Howlands accumulated a fortune, fought for secession, and helped rebuild the South, establishing themselves as one of the most respected families in the state. But that history means little to Abigail Howland. The inheritor of the Howland manse, Abigail hides the long-buried secret of her grandfather’s thirty-year relationship with his African American mistress. Her fortunes reverse when her family’s mixed-race heritage comes to light and her community—locked in the prejudices of the 1960s—turns its back on her. Faced with such deep-seated racism, Abigail is pushed to defend her family at all costs.
Snow Falling on Cedars | David Guterson | 10 copies
San Piedro Island, north of Puget Sound, is a place so isolated that no one who lives there can afford to make enemies. But in 1954 a local fisherman is found suspiciously drowned, and a Japanese American named Kabuo Miyamoto is charged with his murder. In the course of the ensuing trial, it becomes clear that what is at stake is more than a man's guilt. For on San Pedro, memory grows as thickly as cedar trees and the fields of ripe strawberries--memories of a charmed love affair between a white boy and the Japanese girl who grew up to become Kabuo's wife; memories of land desired, paid for, and lost. Above all, San Piedro is haunted by the memory of what happened to its Japanese residents during World War II, when an entire community was sent into exile while its neighbors watched.
Tinkers | Paul Harding | 10 copies
On his deathbed, surrounded by his family, George Washington Crosby's thoughts drift back to his childhood and the father who abandoned him when he was twelve.
News of the World | Paulette Jiles | 9 copies
In the aftermath of the Civil War, an aging itinerant news reader agrees to transport a young captive of the Kiowa back to her people.
Train Dreams | Denis Johnson | 10 copies
Presents the story of early twentieth-century day laborer Robert Grainer, who endures the harrowing loss of his family while struggling for survival in the American West against a backdrop of radical historical changes.
The Lacuna | Barbara Kingsolver | 12 copies
Harrison William Shepherd, a highly observant writer, is caught between two worlds--in Mexico, working for communists Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo and Leon Trotsky, and later in America, where he is caught up in the patriotism of World War II.
Orphan Train | Christina Baker Kline | 10 copies
Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to "aging out" out of the foster care system. A community-service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse....As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance. Molly discovers that she has the power to help Vivian find answers to mysteries that have haunted her for her entire life - answers that will ultimately free them both.
Station Eleven | Emily St. John Mandel | 11 copies
An audacious, darkly glittering novel about art, fame, and ambition set in the eerie days of civilization's collapse. One snowy night a famous Hollywood actor slumps over and dies onstage during a production of King Lear. Hours later, the world as we know it begins to dissolve. Moving back and forth in time, this suspenseful, elegiac, spellbinding novel charts the strange twists of fate that connect five people: the actor, the man who tried to save him, the actor's first wife, his oldest friend, and a young actress with the Traveling Symphony, caught in the crosshairs of a dangerous self-proclaimed prophet.
Reading Lolita in Tehran | Azar Nafisi | 10 copies
The author describes growing up in the Islamic Republic of Iran and the group of young women who came together at her home in secret every Thursday to read and discuss great books of Western literature.
Victims: A True Story of the Civil War | Phillip Shaw Paludan | 9 copies
In January 1863, in the isolated mountains of western North Carolina, Confederate soldiers captured and murdered thirteen victims they suspected of being Unionist guerrillas. First published in 1981, Victims traces the lives and personalities of both killer and victims, illuminating the pressures that can bring men anywhere to commit atrocities more heinous than war itself.
Sing You Home | Jodi Picoult | 14 copies
A stillborn baby ends Max and Zoe's marriage. Max leaves Zoe and turns to drinking. Zoe falls in love with a female school counselor, Vanessa. Max finds help for his drinking problem through his brother's church. Vanessa and Zoe get married. Vanessa offers to carry one of Zoe and Max's fertilized embryos. Zoe goes to Max to get permission to release the embryos to her but Max's new found religious fervor leads him to sue Zoe for custody.
My Mistress Eyes Are Raven Black | Terry Roberts | 8 copies
New York Harbor's immigration and public health authorities are slowly recovering from the war years when a young, pregnant Irish woman disappears from the Isolation Hospital on Ellis Island. Stephen Robbins, a specialist in finding missing persons, is assigned the case. Yet when he arrives at the isolation hospital, he discovers an inexplicable string of deaths and disappearances among immigrant patients...and a staff that seems to be hiding a chilling secret. Stephen finds an ally in Lucy Paul, an undercover nurse who is also investigating the mysterious incidents. Together, they begin to unearth a horrifying conspiracy masked beneath the hospital's charitable exterior. As Stephen and Lucy get closer to the truth and each other, they are swept directly into the danger haunting Ellis Island and become the next targets.
Hidden Figures | Margot Lee Shetterly | 12 copies
Before John Glenn orbited the earth or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as "human computers" used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space. Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation.
Sisterland | Curtis Sittenfeld | 10 copies
When the strongest earthquake in U.S. history occurs just north of their St. Louis home, Kate and Jeremy find the disaster further complicated by Kate's self-proclaimed-medium twin's prediction about a more powerful earthquake, a situation that places Kate under public scrutiny and reveals her own psychic abilities.
Outcasts United | Warren St. John | 12 copies
Documents the lives of a wildly diverse group of young kids who miraculously unite as a team, against the backdrop of a fading American town struggling to make a haven for its new arrivals--refugees.
The Book of Salt | Monique T.D. Truong | 8 copies
Considering whether he will accompany his employers, Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, to America, a personal cook remembers his youth in French-colonized Vietnam, his years as a galley hand at sea, and his days cooking for the doyennes of the Lost Generation.
Sunflower Dog: Dancing the Flathead Shuffle | Kevin Winchester | 5 copies
Sally Hinson could have guessed that his business partner would leave him a heap of trouble along with their real-estate holdings, but not that his partner's last shady deal would see him competing with a growing group of oddballs, and their unusual dog, for a once-useless piece of land that now holds the key to each of their unique "American Dreams".
Youth Book Sets
Where the Watermelons Grow | Cindy Baldwin | 13 copies
Twelve-year-old Della Kelly of Maryville, North Carolina, tries to come to terms with her mother's mental illness while her father struggles to save the farm from a record-breaking drought.
The Very, Very Far North | Dan Bar-El | 12 copies
As Duane, a polar bear, explores his new home he makes friends with the wide variety of creatures he encounters, despite their varied personalities.
Ruby Holler | Sharon Creech | 9 copies
Thirteen-year-old fraternal twins Dallas and Florida have grown up in a terrible orphanage but their lives change forever when an eccentric but sweet older couple invites them each on an adventure, beginning in an almost magical place called Ruby Holler.
Prisoner B-3087 | Alan Gratz | 12 copies (Young Adult)
Based on the life of Jack Gruener, this book relates his story of survival from the Nazi occupation of Krakow, when he was eleven, through a succession of concentration camps, to the final liberation of Dachau.
Turtle in Paradise | Jennifer L. Holm | 55 + 14 copies (two kits)
In 1935, when her mother gets a job housekeeping for a woman who does not like children, eleven-year-old Turtle is sent to stay with relatives she has never met in far away Key West, Florida.
Not If I Can Help It | Carolyn Mackler | 12 copies
Willa lives on the upper West Side of Manhattan with her divorced father and her younger brother and attends fifth grade with her best friend Ruby, and she likes things to be a certain way, because it makes life manageable even with her Sensory Processing Disorder; she certainly does not like surprises, and her father has just thrown her a big one: he has been dating Ruby's mother, and suddenly Willa's life seems to be spiraling out of her control--and part of the trouble is that she cannot even explain why she thinks this is a horrible idea, when everyone else thinks that it is wonderful.
The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl | Stacey McAnulty | 13 copies
A lightning strike made Lucy, twelve, a math genius but, after years of homeschooling, her grandmother enrolls her in middle school and she learns that life is more than numbers.
Greetings from Nowhere | Barbara O'Conner | 54 copies
In North Carolina's Great Smoky Mountains, a troubled boy and his mother, a happy family seeking adventure, a man and his lonely daughter, and the widow who must sell the run-down motel that has been her home for decades, meet and are transformed by their shared experiences.
How to Steal a Dog | Barbara O'Conner | 9 copies
Living in the family car in their small North Carolina town after their father leaves them virtually penniless, Georgina, desperate to improve their situation and unwilling to accept her overworked mother's calls for patience, persuades her younger brother to help her in an elaborate scheme to get money by stealing a dog and then claiming the reward that the owners are bound to offer.
Wonder | R.J. Palacio | 12 copies
August Pullman was born with a facial deformity that, up until now, prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid -- but his classmates can't get past Auggie's extraordinary face. Wonder begins from Auggie's point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community's struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.
A Long Walk to Water | Linda Sue Park | 15 copies
When the Sudanese civil war reaches his village in 1985, eleven-year-old Salva becomes separated from his family and must walk with other Dinka tribe members through southern Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya in search of a safe haven. Based on the life of Salva Dut, who, after emigrating to America in 1996, began a project to dig water wells in Sudan.
A Single Shard | Linda Sue Park | 9 copies
Tree-ear, a thirteen-year-old orphan in medieval Korea, lives under a bridge in a potters' village, and longs to learn how to throw the delicate celadon ceramics himself.
Wildfire | Rodman Philbrick | 12 copies
Thirteen-year-old Sam Castine is at summer camp while his mother is in rehab, but when the camp is evacuated ahead of a fast moving wildfire, he makes the mistake of going back for his phone, and finds himself left behind, disoriented, and running for his life, together with a girl, Delphy, from a different camp--finding an old jeep keeps them going, but in the wilds of Maine, there are only logging roads and the deadly crown fire is everywhere.
The Lightning Thief | Rick Riordan | 12 copies
After learning that he is the son of a mortal woman and Poseidon, god of the sea, twelve-year-old Percy is sent to a summer camp for demigods like himself, and joins his new friends on a quest to prevent a war between the gods.
Becoming Naomi Leon | Pam Munoz Ryan | 12 copies
When Naomi's absent mother resurfaces to claim her, Naomi runs away to Mexico with her great-grandmother and younger brother in search of her father.
Dry | Neal Shusterman | 12 copies (YA novel)
A lengthy California drought escalates to catastrophic proportions, turning Alyssa's quiet suburban street into a warzone, and she is forced to make impossible choices if she and her brother are to survive.
The Hobbit | J.R.R. Tolkien | 12 copies
Bilbo Baggins, a respectable, well-to-do hobbit, lives comfortably in his hobbit-hole until the day the wandering wizard Gandalf chooses him to take part in an adventure from which he may never return. He becomes a thief for a band of dwarves and soon finds himself in the midst of a war with the evil goblins and wargs, and is forced to make a decision between the call of duty and the pull of the simple life.
The Book Thief | Marcus Zusak | 7 copies (Young Adult)
Trying to make sense of the horrors of World War II, Death relates the story of Liesel--a young German girl whose book-stealing and story-telling talents help sustain her family and the Jewish man they are hiding, as well as their neighbors.