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Adult Summer Reading Book Bingo Challenge
Below are some suggested titles to help you complete the squares on the Palisades Free Library's Adult Summer Reading Book Bingo Challenge Card. Click on the book title for the location and/or to place a hold on a copy. Looking for more suggestions? Ask at the Reference Desk, check out one of the Library’s summer reading displays, or try out NoveList Plus (sign in from home with your library card number and PIN).
Book Based on a Fairy Tale
Boy, Snow, Bird by
Publication Date: 2014-03-06
A brilliant recasting of the Snow White fairy tale as a story of family secrets, race, beauty, and vanity. Dazzlingly inventive and powerfully moving, Boy, Snow, Bird is an astonishing and enchanting novel. With breathtaking feats of imagination, Helen Oyeyemi confirms her place as one of the most original and dynamic literary voices of our time.
The Snow Child by
Publication Date: 2012-02-01
In this magical debut, a couple's lives are changed forever by the arrival of a little girl, wild and secretive, on their snowy doorstep. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.
The Robber Bride by
Publication Date: 1993-10-01
Exploring the paradox of female villainy, this tale of three fascinating women is another peerless display of literary virtuosity. Roz, Charis and Tony all share a wound, and her name is Zenia. Beautiful, smart and hungry, by turns manipulative and vulnerable, needy and ruthless, Zenia is the turbulent center of her own perpetual saga. She entered their lives in the sixties, when they were in college. Over the three decades since, she has damaged each of them badly, ensnaring their sympathy, betraying their trust, and treating their men as loot. Then Zenia dies, or at any rate the three women — with much relief — attend her funeral. But as The Robber Bride begins, Roz, Charis and Tony have come together at a trendy restaraunt for their monthly lunch when in walks the seemingly resurrected Zenia... In this consistently entertaining and profound new novel, Margaret Atwood reports from the farthest reaches of the war between the sexes with her characteristic well-crafted prose, rich and devious humor, and compassion.
The Charmed Wife by
Publication Date: 2021-01-12
Cinderella married the man of her dreams--the perfect ending she deserved after diligently following all the fairy-tale rules. Yet now, thirteen and a half years later, things have gone badly wrong and her life is far from perfect. One night, fed up and exhausted, she sneaks out of the palace to get help from the Witch who, for a price, offers love potions to disgruntled housewives. But as the old hag flings the last ingredients into the cauldron, Cinderella doesn't ask for a love spell to win back her Prince Charming. Instead, she wants him dead. Endlessly surprising, wildly inventive, and decidedly modern, The Charmed Wife weaves together time and place, fantasy and reality, to conjure a world unlike any other. Nothing in it is quite what it seems--the twists and turns of its magical, dark, and swiftly shifting paths take us deep into the heart of what makes us unique, of romance and marriage, and of the very nature of storytelling.
Book Published This Year
With Teeth by
Publication Date: 2021-06-01
A surprising and moving story of two mothers, one difficult son, and the limitations of marriage, parenthood, and love If she's being honest, Sammie Lucas is scared of her son. Working from home in the close quarters of their Florida house, she lives with one wary eye peeled on Samson, a sullen, unknowable boy who resists her every attempt to bond with him. Uncertain in her own feelings about motherhood, she tries her best--driving, cleaning, cooking, prodding him to finish projects for school--while growing increasingly resentful of Monika, her confident but absent wife. As Samson grows from feral toddler to surly teenager, Sammie's life begins to deteriorate into a mess of unruly behavior, and her struggle to create a picture-perfect queer family unravels. When her son's hostility finally spills over into physical aggression, Sammie must confront her role in the mess--and the possibility that it will never be clean again. With Teeth is a thought-provoking portrait of the delicate fabric of family--and the many ways it can be torn apart.
The Other Black Girl by
Publication Date: 2021-06-01
Urgent, propulsive, and sharp as a knife, The Other Black Girl is an electric debut about the tension that unfurls when two young Black women meet against the starkly white backdrop of New York City book publishing. A whip-smart and dynamic thriller and sly social commentary that is perfect for anyone who has ever felt manipulated, threatened, or overlooked in the workplace, The Other Black Girl will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very last twist.
Publication Date: 2021-03-30
Coming of age in a free Black community in Reconstruction-era Brooklyn, Libertie Sampson is all too aware that her purposeful mother, a practicing physician, has a vision for their future together: Libertie is to go to medical school and practice alongside her. But Libertie, drawn more to music than science, feels stifled by her mother's choices and is hungry for something else--is there really only one way to have an autonomous life? As she tries to parse what freedom actually means for a Black woman, Libertie struggles with where she might find it--for herself and for generations to come. Inspired by the life of one of the first Black female doctors in the United States and rich with historical detail, Kaitlyn Greenidge's new and immersive novel will resonate with readers eager to understand our present through a deep, moving, and lyrical dive into our past.
Infinite Country by
Publication Date: 2021-03-02
Talia is being held at a correctional facility for adolescent girls in the forested mountains of Colombia after committing an impulsive act of violence that may or may not have been warranted. She urgently needs to get out and get back home to Bogotá, where her father and a plane ticket to the United States are waiting for her. How this family came to occupy two different countries, two different worlds, comes into focus like twists of a kaleidoscope. Rich with Bogotá urban life, steeped in Andean myth, and tense with the daily reality of the undocumented in America, Infinite Country is the story of two countries and one mixed-status family--for whom every triumph is stitched with regret, and every dream pursued bears the weight of a dream deferred.
Send for Me by
Publication Date: 2021-02-02
An achingly beautiful work of historical fiction that moves between Germany on the eve of World War II and present-day Wisconsin, unspooling a thread of love, longing, and the powerful bonds of family. A novel of dazzling emotional richness that is based on letters from Lauren Fox's own family, Send for Me is a major departure for this acclaimed author, an epic and intimate exploration of mothers and daughters, duty and obligation, hope and forgiveness.
Empire of Pain by
Publication Date: 2021-04-13
A grand, devastating portrait of three generations of the Sackler family, famed for their philanthropy, whose fortune was built by Valium and whose reputation was destroyed by OxyContin. This is the saga of three generations of a single family and the mark they would leave on the world. Empire of Pain is a masterpiece of narrative reporting and writing, exhaustively documented and ferociously compelling. It is a portrait of the excesses of America's second Gilded Age, a study of impunity among the super elite and a relentless investigation of the naked greed and indifference to human suffering that built one of the world's great fortunes.
Last Call by
Publication Date: 2021-03-09
The gripping true story, told here for the first time, of the Last Call Killer and the gay community of New York City that he preyed upon. This gripping true-crime narrative tells the story of the Last Call Killer and the decades-long chase to find him. And at the same time, it paints a portrait of his victims and a vibrant community navigating threat and resilience.
Other Book Bingo Challenge Links
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Book About Animals
Perestroika in Paris by
Publication Date: 2020-12-01
Paras, short for "Perestroika," is a spirited racehorse at a racetrack west of Paris. One afternoon at dusk, she finds the door of her stall open and--she's a curious filly--wanders all the way to the City of Light. She's dazzled and often mystified by the sights, sounds, and smells around her, but she isn't afraid. Soon she meets an elegant dog, a German shorthaired pointer named Frida, who knows how to get by without attracting the attention of suspicious Parisians. Paras and Frida coexist for a time in the city's lush green spaces, nourished by Frida's strategic trips to the vegetable market. They keep company with two irrepressible ducks and an opinionated raven. But then Paras meets a human boy, Etienne, and discovers a new, otherworldly part of Paris: the ivy-walled house where the boy and his nearly-one-hundred-year-old great-grandmother live in seclusion. As the cold weather nears, the unlikeliest of friendships bloom. But how long can a runaway horse stay undiscovered in Paris? How long can a boy keep her hidden and all to himself? Jane Smiley's beguiling new novel is itself an adventure that celebrates curiosity, ingenuity, and the desire of all creatures for true love and freedom.
If Cats Disappeared from the World by
Publication Date: 2019-03-12
The young postman's days are numbered. Estranged from his family and living alone with only his cat, Cabbage, to keep him company, he was unprepared for the doctor's diagnosis that he has only months to live. But before he can tackle his bucket list, the devil shows up to make him an offer: In exchange for making one thing in the world disappear, the postman will be granted one extra day of life. And so begins a very strange week that brings the young postman and his beloved cat to the brink of existence. With each object that disappears, the postman reflects on the life he's lived, his joys and regrets, and the people he's loved and lost.
Smart Ass by
Publication Date: 2018-10-30
How do you resolve a midlife crisis? Margaret Winslow, an overworked college professor in New York City, answered a for-sale ad for a "Large White Saddle Donkey." Hilarity ensued, along with life-threatening injuries and spirit-enriching insight. Walk with Winslow and Caleb the donkey through training traumas, expert-baffling antics, and humiliating races, and share in Winslow's gradual understanding of Caleb's true, undeniable gifts: a willingness to be true to himself no matter the circumstances, to trust, and to forgive. As she and Caleb learn to thrive, you'll learn the importance of being true to your own pure and powerful self.
The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by
Publication Date: 2019-10-22
From British illustrator, artist, and author Charlie Mackesy comes a journey for all ages that explores life's universal lessons, featuring 100 color and black-and-white drawings. "What do you want to be when you grow up?" asked the mole. "Kind," said the boy. Charlie Mackesy offers inspiration and hope in uncertain times in this beautiful book, following the tale of a curious boy, a greedy mole, a wary fox and a wise horse who find themselves together in sometimes difficult terrain, sharing their greatest fears and biggest discoveries about vulnerability, kindness, hope, friendship and love. The shared adventures and important conversations between the four friends are full of life lessons that have connected with readers of all ages.
The Art of Racing in the Rain by
Publication Date: 2008-05-13
Nearing the end of his life, Enzo, a dog with a philosopher's soul, tries to bring together the family, pulled apart by a three year custody battle between daughter Zoe's maternal grandparents and her father Denny, a race car driver.
Ice Walker by
Publication Date: 2020-10-13
An enlightening and original story about a polar bear's precarious existence in the changing Arctic. Nanurjuk, "the bear-spirited one," is hunting for seals on Hudson Bay, where ice never lasts more than one season. For her and her young, everything is in flux. By focusing his lens on this bear family, Raffan closes the gap between humans and bears, showing us how, like the water of the Hudson Bay, our existence--and our future--is tied to Nanu's. He asks us to consider what might be done about this fragile world before it is gone for good. Masterful, vivid, and haunting, Ice Walker is an utterly unique piece of creative nonfiction and a deeply affecting call to action.
Book By a BIPOC Author
Revival Season by
Publication Date: 2021-05-25
Every summer, fifteen-year-old Miriam Horton and her family pack themselves tight in their old minivan and travel through small southern towns for revival season: the time when Miriam's father--one of the South's most famous preachers--holds massive healing services for people desperate to be cured of ailments and disease. This summer, the revival season doesn't go as planned, and after one service in which Reverend Horton's healing powers are tested like never before, Miriam witnesses a shocking act of violence that shakes her belief in her father--and in her faith. When the Hortons return home, Miriam's confusion only grows as she discovers she might have the power to heal--even though her father and the church have always made it clear that such power is denied to women. Over the course of the next year, Miriam must decide between her faith, her family, and her newfound power that might be able to save others, but, if discovered by her father, could destroy Miriam. Celebrating both feminism and faith, Revival Season is a story of spiritual awakening and disillusionment in a Southern, black, Evangelical community. Monica West's transporting coming-of-age novel explores complicated family and what it means to live among the community of the faithful.
Dial a for Aunties by
Publication Date: 2021-04-27
What happens when you mix 1 (accidental) murder with 2 thousand wedding guests, and then toss in a possible curse on 3 generations of an immigrant Chinese-Indonesian family? You get 4 meddling Asian aunties coming to the rescue! When Meddelin Chan ends up accidentally killing her blind date, her meddlesome mother calls for her even more meddlesome aunties to help get rid of the body. Unfortunately, a dead body proves to be a lot more challenging to dispose of than one might anticipate, especially when it is inadvertently shipped in a cake cooler to the over-the-top billionaire wedding Meddy, her Ma, and aunties are working at an island resort on the California coastline. But things go from inconvenient to downright torturous when Meddy's great college love--and biggest heartbreak--makes a surprise appearance amid the wedding chaos. Is it possible to escape murder charges, charm her ex back into her life, and pull off a stunning wedding all in one weekend?
A Woman Is No Man by
Publication Date: 2019-03-05
The New York Times bestseller and Read with Jenna TODAY SHOW Book Club pick telling the story of three generations of Palestinian-American women struggling to express their individual desires within the confines of their Arab culture in the wake of shocking intimate violence in their community.
An American Marriage by
Publication Date: 2018-02-06
Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn't commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy's time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy's conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together. This stirring love story is a profoundly insightful look into the hearts and minds of three people who are at once bound and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage is a masterpiece of storytelling, an intimate look deep into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward--with hope and pain--into the future.
Everything I Never Told You by
Publication Date: 2014-06-26
"Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet." So begins this exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, and her parents are determined that she will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue. But when Lydia's body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos. A profoundly moving story of family, secrets, and longing, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.
How Beautiful We Were by
Publication Date: 2021-03-09
Set in the fictional African village of Kosawa, it tells of a people living in fear amid environmental degradation wrought by an American oil company. Pipeline spills have rendered farmlands infertile. Children are dying from drinking toxic water. Promises of cleanup and financial reparations to the villagers are made--and ignored. The country's government, led by a brazen dictator, exists to serve its own interests. Left with few choices, the people of Kosawa decide to fight back. Their struggle will last for decades and come at a steep price. Told from the perspective of a generation of children and the family of a girl named Thula who grows up to become a revolutionary, How Beautiful We Were is a masterful exploration of what happens when the reckless drive for profit, coupled with the ghost of colonialism, comes up against one community's determination to hold on to its ancestral land and a young woman's willingness to sacrifice everything for the sake of her people's freedom.
The Nickel Boys by
Publication Date: 2019-07-16
PULITZER PRIZE WINNER
Colson Whitehead brilliantly dramatizes another strand of American history through the story of two boys unjustly sentenced to a hellish reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida. When Elwood Curtis, a black boy growing up in 1960s Tallahassee, is unfairly sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, he finds himself trapped in a grotesque chamber of horrors. Elwood's only salvation is his friendship with fellow "delinquent" Turner. As life at the Academy becomes ever more perilous, the tension between Elwood's ideals and Turner's skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades. Based on the real story of a reform school that operated for 111 years.
Interior Chinatown by
Publication Date: 2020-01-28
NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER
Willis Wu doesn't perceive himself as the protagonist in his own life: he's merely Generic Asian Man. Sometimes he gets to be Background Oriental Making a Weird Face or even Disgraced Son, but always he is relegated to a prop. He dreams of being Kung Fu Guy--the most respected role that anyone who looks like him can attain. Or is it? After stumbling into the spotlight, Willis finds himself launched into a wider world than he's ever known, discovering not only the secret history of Chinatown, but the buried legacy of his own family. Infinitely inventive and deeply personal, exploring the themes of pop culture, assimilation, and immigration.
Shuggie Bain by
Publication Date: 2020-02-11
MAN BOOKER PRIZE
Shuggie Bain is the unforgettable story of young Hugh "Shuggie" Bain, a sweet and lonely boy who spends his 1980s childhood in run-down public housing in Glasgow, Scotland. A heartbreaking story of addiction, sexuality, and love,Shuggie Bain is an epic portrayal of a working-class family that is rarely seen in fiction.
Publication Date: 2020-07-21
WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION
In 1580's England, during the Black Plague a young Latin tutor falls in love with an extraordinary, eccentric young woman. Agnes is a wild creature who walks her family's land with a falcon on her glove and is known throughout the countryside for her unusual gifts as a healer. Once she settles with her husband in Stratford-upon-Avon she becomes a fiercely protective mother and a steadfast, centrifugal force in the life of her young husband, whose career on the London stage is taking off when his beloved young son succumbs to sudden fever. A luminous portrait of a marriage, a shattering evocation of a family ravaged by grief and loss, and a tender and unforgettable re-imagining of a boy whose life has been all but forgotten, and whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays of all time, Hamnet is mesmerizing, seductive, impossible to put down.
The Stranger Diaries by
Publication Date: 2019-03-05
Death lies between the lines when the events of a dark story start coming true in this haunting modern gothic mystery. Clare Cassidy is no stranger to murder. A high school English teacher specializing in the Gothic writer R. M. Holland, she teaches a course on it every year. But when one of Clare's colleagues and closest friends is found dead, with a line from R. M. Holland's most famous story, "The Stranger," left by her body, Clare is horrified to see her life collide with the storylines of her favorite literature. Unsure whom to trust, she turns to her closest confidant, her diary. Then one day she notices writing that isn't hers, left on the page of an old diary: Hallo Clare. You don't know me. Clare becomes more certain than ever: "The Stranger" has come to terrifying life. But can the ending be rewritten in time?
Miracle Creek by
Publication Date: 2019-04-16
EDGAR AWARD FOR BEST FIRST NOVEL How far will you go to protect your family? Will you keep their secrets? Ignore their lies? In a small town in Virginia, a group of people know each other because they're part of a special treatment center, a hyperbaric chamber that may cure a range of conditions from infertility to autism. But then the chamber explodes, two people die, and it's clear the explosion wasn't an accident. A powerful showdown unfolds as the story moves across characters who are all maybe keeping secrets, hiding betrayals. Chapter by chapter, we shift alliances and gather evidence: Was it the careless mother of a patient? Was it the owners, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? Could it have been a protester, trying to prove the treatment isn't safe? Miracle Creek uncovers the worst prejudice and best intentions, tense rivalries and the challenges of parenting a child with special needs.
LGBTQIA+ Author or Main Character
Detransition, Baby by
Publication Date: 2021-01-12
A trans woman, her detransitioned ex, and his cisgender lover build an unconventional family together in the wake of heartbreak and an unplanned pregnancy.
On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by
Publication Date: 2019-06-04
Poet Ocean Vuong's debut novel is a shattering portrait of a family, a first love, and the redemptive power of storytelling On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearths a family's history that began before he was born -- a history whose epicenter is rooted in Vietnam -- and serves as a doorway into parts of his life his mother has never known, all of it leading to an unforgettable revelation. At once a witness to the fraught yet undeniable love between a single mother and her son, it is also a brutally honest exploration of race, class, and masculinity.
The Prophets by
Publication Date: 2021-01-05
A singular and stunning debut novel about the forbidden union between two enslaved young men on a Deep South plantation, the refuge they find in each other, and a betrayal that threatens their existence. As tensions build and the weight of centuries--of ancestors and future generations to come--culminates in a climactic reckoning, The Prophets masterfully reveals the pain and suffering of inheritance, but is also shot through with hope, beauty, and truth, portraying the enormous, heroic power of love.
One Last Stop by
Publication Date: 2021-06-01
For cynical twenty-three-year-old August, moving to New York City is supposed to prove her right: that things like magic and cinematic love stories don't exist, and the only smart way to go through life is alone. She can't imagine how waiting tables at a 24-hour pancake diner and moving in with too many weird roommates could possibly change that. And there's certainly no chance of her subway commute being anything more than a daily trudge through boredom and electrical failures. But then, there's this gorgeous girl on the train. Jane. Dazzling, charming, mysterious, impossible Jane. Jane with her rough edges and swoopy hair and soft smile, showing up in a leather jacket to save August's day when she needed it most. August's subway crush becomes the best part of her day, but pretty soon, she discovers there's one big problem: Jane doesn't just look like an old school punk rocker. She's literally displaced in time from the 1970s, and August is going to have to use everything she tried to leave in her own past to help her. Maybe it's time to start believing in some things, after all.
Milk Fed by
Publication Date: 2021-02-02
A scathingly funny, wildly erotic, and fiercely imaginative story about food, sex, and god. Rachel is twenty-four, a lapsed Jew who has made calorie restriction her religion--until her therapist encourages her to take a ninety-day communication detox from her mother, who raised her in the tradition of calorie counting. Early in the detox, Rachel meets Miriam, a zaftig young Orthodox Jewish woman who works at her favorite frozen yogurt shop and is intent upon feeding her. Rachel is suddenly and powerfully entranced by Miriam--by her sundaes and her body, her faith and her family--and as the two grow closer, Rachel embarks on a journey marked by mirrors, mysticism, mothers, milk, and honey. Pairing superlative emotional insight with unabashed vivid fantasy, Broder tells a tale of appetites: physical hunger, sexual desire, spiritual longing, and the ways that we as humans can compartmentalize these so often interdependent instincts. Milk Fed is a tender and riotously funny meditation on love, certitude, and the question of what we are all being fed, both sacred and profane.
Publication Date: 1973-10-24
"Come, come! I'm sick to death of this particular self. I want another." As his tale begins, Orlando is a passionate sixteen-year-old nobleman whose days are spent in rowdy revelry, filled with the colorful delights of Queen Elizabeth I's court. By the close, three centuries have passed, and he will have transformed into a thirty-six-year-old woman in the year 1928. Orlando's journey is also an internal one--he is an impulsive poet who learns patience in matter of the heart, and a woman who knows what it is to be a man. Virginia Woolf's most unusual creation,Orlando is a fantastical biography as well as a funny, exuberant romp through history that examines the true nature of sexuality.
The Rules Do Not Apply by
Publication Date: 2017-03-14
All her life, Ariel Levy was told that she was too fervent, too forceful, too much. As a young woman, she decided that becoming a writer would perfectly channel her strength and desire. She would be a professional explorer--"the kind of woman who is free to do whatever she chooses." But when she experiences unthinkable heartbreak, Levy is forced to surrender her illusion of control. In telling her story, Levy has captured a portrait of our time, of the shifting forces in American culture, of what has changed and what has remained. And of how to begin again.
How to They/Them by
Publication Date: 2020-09-29
Ever wonder what "nonbinary" or "gender nonconforming" really mean? Why would someone identify that way? And how the heck do you use they/them pronouns for just one person? Isn't it supposed to be plural? This charming and disarming guide unpacks all these questions and more with a fun, visual approach. From a real-deal they/them-using nonbinary writer, this book makes it humorous and easy to learn so that everyone can get it. Sometimes funny, sometimes serious, always human, this 101 primer is about more than just bathrooms and pronouns. It's about gender expression and the freedom to choose for one's own self how to identify. While they might only be for some, that freedom is for everyone!