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Check It Out

Courier Articles by Sandy Schultheis
Sunday, June 4, 2000

Savor the Flavors of Summer Reading

Most parents are familiar with the library's summer reading program for kids but are surprised to find that there is also a program for adults as well as book groups for teens. Whether you are traveling or staying at home and trying to keep cool there are lots of wonderful books at your public library waiting to entertain and educate you. Today I am highlighting some of the titles which are suggested reading for Evansville-Vanderburgh Public Library's Adult Reading Program which is sponsored by the Public Library Friends. To complete the program you must read five library books in four different categories by July 29th. For all the details visit your nearest EVPL library. Our theme this year is Savor the Flavors and when you sign up you will receive a coupon for a giant cookie, then when you complete the program you will be entered in a drawing for some delicious prizes from Great Harvest Bread Company. To be eligible you must read five library books in the four categories mentioned below. If you live elsewhere in the Tri-State area, contact your local library to see what incentives they are offering summer readers.

Popular Fiction

Sullivan's Island by Dorothea Benton Frank.

Fans of Anne Rivers Siddons will enjoy this story of family love and turmoil which is set in the South Carolina Lowcountry. Susan Hayes is a feisty Southern heroine who must face her uncertain past in order to come to grips with her unfaithful husband and sullen teenage daughter and move into the future. Set in the steamy, stormy landscape of South Carolina, Sullivan's Island has been a recent New York Times Bestseller. Other titles suggested for this category are: The Mermaids Singing by Lisa Carey, The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon by Stephen King, Milk in My Coffee by Jerome Dickey and On Mystic Lake by Kristin Hannah.

Non-Fiction

Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War by Mark Bowden.

Journalist Bowden gives readers a detailed account of the military operation in Mogadishu that left 18 American soldiers dead and many more wounded in 1993. It was a foreign-policy disaster for the Clinton administration which led to the resignation Les Aspin, Secretary of Defense and a total troop withdrawal from Somalia. Elite Delta Force troops were supposed to capture two deputies of a Somali warlord, but quickly found themselves trapped without their helicopters in a hostile African city, supposed peacekeepers in a situation close to anarchy. This book has been hailed by critics as a modern military classic which reads like a novel. Some other suggested titles in this category are: Life Strategies by Phillip McGraw, The Orchid Thief by Susan Orlean, Playing for Keeps by David Halberstam, and The Climb by Anatoli Boukreev.

Mysteries and Thrillers

Blind Descent by Nevada Barr.

The sixth mystery starring park ranger Anna Pigeon, finds our heroine fighting claustrophobia to rescue a fellow ranger injured in Carlsbad Caverns. Deftly plotted with plenty of action and wonderful descriptions of caves. Barr is a great story teller and her writing style is masterly. If you haven't met Anna Pigeon yet, you will want to make her acquaintance this summer. Other suggested titles in this category include: Ice Reich by William Dietrich, Ride with the Devil by Daniel Woodrell, Blanche on the Lam by Barbara Neely and The Emperor's General by James H. Webb.

Classics and Literary Fiction

The Music Lesson by Katharine Weber.

Art expert Patricia Dolan, divorcee and grieving mother is alone with a stolen Vermeer painting in a remote Irish cottage. The story of how she got to this place is a rich tapestry of tales; about her father, a Boston policeman; the loss of her only daughter; and her Irish cousin who becomes her lover. If you like psychological thrillers that are well crafted this should fill the bill nicely. Other suggested titles in this Literary category are: Amsterdam by Ian McEwan, Cider House Rules by John Irving, Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur S. Golden and The Way I Found Her by Rose Tremain.

Sandy Schultheis is a librarian with the Evansville-Vanderburgh Public Library. The opinions expressed in this column are personal and do not reflect policies or official recommendations of EVPL.