Clive Cussler

The Titanic Secret (An Isaac Bell Adventure Book 11) by [Cussler, Clive, Du Brul, Jack]  Author Clive Cussler died February 24th at age 88.  He sold over 100 million copies of his books and was known for both his fiction and non-fiction titles.  He led expeditions to find shipwrecks and was on the New York Times bestseller list “20 times, as he amassed a fortune estimated at $80 million.”   Cusslerwas often compared to Tom Clancy and Ian Fleming with James Bond-like characters. His many explorations uncovered more than 60 shipwrecks including the Carpathia, the ship that first met the Titanic survivors.  His popular Dirk Pitt character appeared in his books for over 30 years.  He published more than 85 books in his lifetime.

Twisted Twenty-Six


Stephanie Plum is back at work, but she has to keep an eye on her Grandma Mazur, a recent widow. Grandma was married very briefly to a mobster, actually for about 45 minutes, when her hubby Jimmy died of a heart attack. But his associates, the “Lazy-Boys” (named for the chairs they all hang out in) are convinced that Grandma has the keys to a fortune that they want in on. Stephanie has her usual co-horts: Lulu, Morelli, and Ranger, but can she locate the keys in time to save Grandma? Check it out…

Goodbye Perfect



Goodbye, Perfect by Sara Barnard is a great and different perspective on things we hear about in the news every day: inappropriate relationships with teachers and students.

Eden McKinley knows she can’t count on much in this world, but she can depend on Bonnie, her solid, steady, straight-A best friend. So it’s a complete shock when, five days before the start of their GCSEs, Bonnie runs away with a guy Eden knows nothing about. And it’s the last person she would ever have expected. Her teacher. When the police ask Eden for help – she in unsure where her loyalties will lie and she is forced to question what she thought she knew was right.

Often stories like this are from the first-hand perspective – but hearing from a friend who is witnessing the situation is interesting. A good read for Teens.


The Outside Boy

indexThe Irish Travellers are the subject of this early novel by Jeanine Cummins. The term refers to a distinct culture of itinerants, who maintain a set of traditions. Christy lives as a Traveller, (or Pavee in Irish) in 1959 Ireland with his dad and extended family, having just lost his Grandda. Christy’s culture is generally looked down on, as Travellers are viewed as ignorant and poor, since they don’t own property, live in a house or hold a long-term job. Instead, the men work with metal, repairing and making items to sell, as they travel around. Christy’s mom died giving birth to him eleven years ago, and he carries this constant guilt around with him He spends the majority of the story determined to track her down from an old newspaper clipping that his Grandda saved for him. It’s slow going at times, but the ending is worth the struggle.

New Kid

indexThis year’s Newbery Award winner is the graphic novel New Kid, by Jerry Craft, about a 7th grader of color whose parents sent him to an elite school where almost all of the students are Caucasian. It is the first title in this genre to win the award. The novel also won the Coretta Scott King Award, given to an outstanding African American author or illustrator whose work fosters an appreciation for that culture. In an interview with School Library Journal, Craft said when his phone rang a second time on the morning of the awards, he thought the committee was calling back to tell him they made a mistake! He was thinking that they would say, “oh, no, we meant Jerry Pinkney, not you.” Instead he won a second award – Kudos to him.