January 30, 2014 - Daylight

It is really hard to believe that I'm already writing the last library column for the month of January, 2014. Of course, being on vacation and missing a few weeks does tend to compress time a bit for me. When I left Wisconsin on January 2nd the days were just about 9 hours long with sunrise occurring at 7:29 and sunset at 16:34 (4:34 p.m.). As of January 30th, sunrise is at 7:15 and sunset at 17:09 (5:09) which is a gain of nearly an hour (56 minutes if my math is correct). As we go forward into February sunrise is a minute early every day (occasionally two minutes earlier) and sunset is also getting a minute-a-day later. The daylight is coming back quickly. Unfortunately, that old weather adage "As the days lengthen, the cold strengthens" seems to be holding true for the Midwest. The good news is that major league baseball begins in just 51 days with the Dodger's playing the Diamondbacks in Australia so I'm not sure if that's actually 51 days or 52 days or 50 days because the International Dateline is involved in there somewhere. The other good news is that books keep arriving at the library and a good way to while away the time as you look outside at the brilliant blue skies and the wind whips the snow past your window horizontally (and it isn't even snowing) and your furnace hums is to get lost in a book. Below you will find a sampling of the new books that have arrived recently at the library. Enjoy!

  • cover art Belle Cora / by Phillip Margulies. A sweeping historical tale based on the life and times of the daughter of a New York merchant and notorious madam-turned revered San Francisco dowager finds the orphaned Belle suffering at the hands of a rival cousin before working as a prostitute and transforming herself repeatedly to win the love and life she desires.
  • cover art The invention of wings / by Sue Kidd. Traces more than three decades in the lives of a wealthy Charleston debutante who longs to break free from the strictures of her household and pursue a meaningful life; and the urban slave, Handful, who is placed in her charge as a child before finding courage and a sense of self. By the best-selling author of "The Secret Life of Bees".
  • cover art The pagan lord : a novel / by Bernard Cornwell. As the Danes in the north, led by Viking Cnut Longsword, prepare to invade England, Uhtred, who is now out of favor with the new king, leads a band of outcasts north to recapture his old family home, but is soon drawn into the bloodiest battle yet that will decide the fate of the entire English nation.
  • cover art Perfect : a novel / by Rachel Joyce. In the aftermath of a life-shattering accident on the English countryside in 1972, 12-year-old Byron Hemming struggles with events that his mother does not seem to remember and embarks on a journey to discover what really did or did not happen. By the best-selling author of "The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry".
  • cover art Radiance of tomorrow / by Ishmael Beah. A first novel by the internationally best-selling author of "A Long Way Gone" is an intimate parable about postwar life in Sierra Leone in which two long-time friends return to their ruined home village and struggle to rebuild in the face of violence, scarcity and a corrupt foreign mining company.
  • cover art The harlot's tale : a Bridget Hodgson mystery / by Samuel Thomas. In this sequel to "The Midwife's Tale", which is set in 1645, Martha Hawkins and Bridget Hodgson, while the city's overlords launch a brutal campaign to whip the sinners into godliness to appease God's wrath, search for a killer who is targeting York's sinners for execution.
  • cover art Killing Cupid / by Laura Levine. When her abusive professional-matchmaker boss ends up dead, Jaine Austen is on the long list of suspects.

  • cover art The purity of vengeance : a Department Q novel / by Jussi Adler-Olsen. After new evidence surfaces, Detective Carl Morck and his assistants look into the case of a brothel owner who went missing in the 1980s and discover that numerous other people went missing around the same time, bringing them closer and closer to a charismatic surgeon with a horrifying agenda.
  • cover art Red 1-2-3 / by John Katzenbach. Sharing nothing in common except their red hair, three women from drastically different backgrounds receive chilling letters in the mail from a killer who makes them fear for their lives until they find one another and use the clues he has left behind to work together and protect one another. By the author of "What Comes Next".