Rennie Airth’s River of Darkness (1999)


River of Darkness

Recently, the Berryville Library purchased Rennie Airth’s John Madden mystery series. The first book in the series, River of Darkness, is set in 1920s England, when the specter of World War I still permeated the country’s psyche and Freudian psychological theories were still new and just starting to gain traction. In the novel, Scotland Yard Inspector John Madden is summoned to assist with the investigation of a shocking crime in a pastoral English village. Here, a local family has been brutally slaughtered, and the details simply do not add up for Madden. Several of his colleagues suspect the crime is the result of a robbery gone very wrong, but Madden thinks too many clues suggest that the murders were the killer’s (or killers’) focus.

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2016 Library Book Challenge: A Book with Antonyms in the Title

Happy National Opposites Day! Yes, it’s a holiday.

One of the reasons we thought the 2016 Book Challenge would be fun and, well, challenging is finding books to match the categories. As I was looking through the different requirements, one that initially stumped me was “Read a book with antonyms in the title.” I know antonyms are words that mean the opposite of each other, but the only book I could think of that worked was Tolstoy’s War and Peace.

However, I knew there had to be other books out there that also met the requirement. So, in honor of National Opposite Day, here are several other titles that feature antonyms.

As always, if one of the books interests you, just click on the cover. You’ll be linked to our online catalog. Search for the title, and you can read more about it and even request it.

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2016 Library Book Challenge: A Book Set in the Future

This month at the library, we’re celebrating the theme of “Exploring New Frontiers,” so we decided it would be fun to start the book challenge with a look at books set in the future. The following recommendations range from the recently released to old favorites, and span everything from hard science fiction to dystopian fiction to YA. Even if you’re not participating in the book challenge, give one of them a try. You might discover a new favorite!

If you’re interested in any of the books, just click on the image of the cover. Doing so will link you to our online catalog. You can search for the title from there.

Also, be sure to check out our science fiction display at the front of the library, which for the entire month of January will feature many more books set in the future.

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One of my favorite parts of working in the library has always been the conversations I’ve had with patrons and coworkers about books. Over the years, I’ve received a lot of wonderful book recommendations while I was waiting on patrons or chatting with coworkers.

We at the Berryville Public Library wanted to start our own blog to provide another forum for book discussions, one not limited by time or place. Now we don’t have to limit talking about books to book clubs or times when you’re in the library because this blog lets us bring the conversation to you.┬áTo help start this online conversation about books, we’ll be posting weekly reviews, recommendations, and thoughts about books, as well as other items in our collection, like music, movies, and television shows.

In addition, we’ll be partaking in the 2016 Library Book Challenge and chronicling it on the blog. If you haven’t already, stop by the library and pick up your copy of the Book Challenge calendar, so you can participate too.

One reason we really like this particular book challenge is it’s so flexible. Unlike many other yearly book challenges, which require you to read specific titles or have a rigid timeline you must follow, this one provides you with general categories. That way, you can explore titles, authors, and genres you may not normally read, but you can still easily adapt them to your own interests. For instance, challenges include “Read a funny book,” “Read a book set in another country,” “Read a book that became a movie,” and “Read a book by an author with your initials,” among many others. In addition, the categories are not listed in any specific order, so you can work through the different challenges at your own pace and according to whichever sequence you prefer.

Even if you don’t want to participate in the Book Challenge, because the categories are broad enough, you can still enjoy the resulting reading suggestions and book reviews.

Be sure to bookmark this site, so you don’t miss any of our upcoming posts!

Interested in the 2016 Library Book Challenge? Post a comment below, and we’ll save a calendar for you behind the circulation desk.