February is Love Your Library month and Socorro Public Library celebrates by hosting the annual Love Your Library Campaign. In February, the library is offering library heart grams; simply make a donation and put up your gram in the library. All proceeds benefit library events and programs! While you are at the library, you must check out some new books. If you are in the mood for some newly released fiction overflowing with mystery, complicated relationships, and set among some gorgeously described locations, these picks are for you!
The Searcher by Tana French
Cal, 48-year-old former Chicago cop, has relocated to a small village in Ireland. After ending his career in law enforcement, and divorced from his wife, he moves to a picturesque farm to simplify his life. He spends his days repairing the farm’s neglected cottage, fishing, and taking long walks in the beautiful countryside. The local townspeople are skeptical if he will make this his home, but Cal does find pleasant support from his closest neighbor. He is finding peace in this new life until 13-year-old Trey seeks out the “new cop” and all but forces Cal’s help to solve the mystery of his missing brother. The disappearance of Trey’s 19-year-old brother Brendan takes Cal right back to the life he was trying to escape. When Cal starts to uncover a dark secret among the townspeople, he fears this discovery could jeopardize Cal’s newly found peace.
The Searcher is an intriguing first-person narrative with a shockingly great mystery. The true Irish ambiance makes for a perfect read on a cold stormy night and makes you feel like you’re right in Cal’s back yard. It is a dark and subtle mystery with unexpected friendships along the way. There are many surprises throughout this novel that are expertly revealed in a satisfying conclusion. A wonderful plot and escape to Ireland!
Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty
An Aussie family drama surrounding the Delaney family starts with an abandoned bike with apples next to it. The story immediately jumps to the present day and the Delaney family saga. The four Delaney siblings are discussing the disappearance of their mother Joy. Joy and husband Stan are pillars of their community because of their famous tennis school. The parents recently decided to retire and sell the school. Joy and Stan are settling into a retired life and Joy is not at all satisfied. One night at the parents’ home, a stranger named Savannah shows up on their doorstep bleeding after a fight with her boyfriend. Joy is in the midst of empty nest syndrome and is more than happy to provide Savannah with the help she desperately needs. However, when Joy goes missing, her children cannot help but notice Savannah is also nowhere to be found. The only person left to question is their father, Stan. He assures his children of his innocence, but he seems to have a lot to hide. Two of the siblings believe that the father had nothing to do with their missing mother, but the other two siblings are not sure what to believe.
A complicated murder mystery with unexpected twists and turns. If you are a Netflix drama binge watcher, this is a read for you. The main mystery is about the mother’s abrupt disappearance, but there are many secrets from the past that haunt the family’s future. The multiple points of view this story provides and the shift from past to present and back again will keep the reader guessing until the very end.
Olga Dies Dreaming by Xochitl Gonzalez
This book is set in 2017, around the months surrounding the most destructive hurricane in Puerto Rico’s history. It is another prominent story location with complex familial strife. Olga and her brother Pedro “Prieto” Acevedo are well known names from their hometown as both siblings are successful New Yorkers “who made it”. Olga is a lavish wedding planner for Manhattanites, and Prieto is the well-liked congressman representing the gentrifying Latin neighborhood in Brooklyn. Although both siblings are living alluring public lives, they are both also superficially happy. Olga struggles to find a meaningful relationship, and with her recent connection with Matteo she is challenged to overcome her family secrets.
Olga Dies Dreaming is a story of political corruption, family conflict, and what it means to find happiness in the American dream. A debut novel by a Puerto Rican author who gives historical framework to fiction. I truly enjoyed Olga and was taken with her character throughout. I highly recommend this SPL Book Club choice.
The next Book Club meeting is Thursday Feb. 24, at 3 p.m. Join us!
Library hours Monday – Thursday 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday 9 a.m-5 p.m. Saturday 9 a.m.-2 p.m.