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Staff Favorites for 2017 Continued

Members of the Reference and Readers Advisory Department were asked to share the favorite book they read in 2017. Below are the results. The picks span a variety of genres. Most are new releases while others are older works. Read below to see the best books read by CCPL staff in 2017.

 
 


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Chemistry by Weike Wang
Kristin's Pick

The unnamed heroine in this touching fiction is plagued with uncertainty. She is a Chinese American woman struggling to earn a doctorate in chemistry when her white boyfriend proposes marriage. Contemplating the notion of matrimony after witnessing her own parents' bitter union, fearing failure in the lab, and growing increasingly depressed, she has a destructive breakdown. As she tries to resurface, she questions everything, and science offers the answers. This brief yet potent debut asks profound questions with an altogether unique voice. (summary provided by School Library Journal)

Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
Sara's Pick

Jojo, 13, and his 3-year-old sister, Kayla, live with their grandparents, Mam and Pop, while their mother, Leonie, struggles with drug addiction and her failures as a daughter, mother, and inheritor of a gift (or curse) that connects her to spirits. Leonie insists that Jojo and Kayla accompany her on a two-day journey to the infamous Parchman prison to retrieve their white father. Their harrowing experiences are bound up in unresolved and reverberating racial and family tensions and entanglements: long-buried memories of Pop's time in Parchman, the imminent death of Mam from cancer, and the slow dawning of the children's own spiritual gifts. (summary provided by Booklist)

The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
Laura's Pick

In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two womena female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption. (summary provided by publisher)

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
Barb's Pick

Thirty-year-old narrator Eleanor Oliphant's life in Glasgow is one of structure and safety, but it doesn't offer many opportunities for human connection. At her job of 10 years as a finance clerk, she endures snickers and sidelong glances from her coworkers because she is socially awkward and generally aloof, and her weekends are spent with copious amounts of vodka. Office IT guy Raymond Gibbons becomes a fixture in her life after they help an elderly man, Sammy Thom, when he collapses in the street. Raymond and Sammy slowly bring Eleanor out of her shell, requiring her to confront some terrible secrets from her past. Her burgeoning friendship with Raymond is realistically drawn, and, refreshingly, it doesn't lead to romance, though the lonely Eleanor yearns for love. Debut author Honeyman expertly captures a woman whose inner pain is excruciating and whose face and heart are scarred, but who still holds the capacity to love and be loved. (summary provided by Publisher's Weekly)