Guest Blogger Courtney: Independently Published Books, A Reader’s Perspective

[Usually blog posts are written by Shirley, Berryville’s library services associate, but today we have a special treat–a guest review written by Courtney, one of our local business owners and fellow book bloggers. She wrote an excellent piece on historical Christian fiction for us last year. This time, she’s talking about indie authors.]

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Ideas for 2019?

design-2019-2018-to-reach-new

Happy New Year, everybody!

This year, we’ll be continuing our sneak peeks at newer book releases, celebrations of notable events in literary history, and book, television show, and movie reviews.

And to that end, I was wondering what you wanted me to review.

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Guest Blogger Courtney: 12 Books or Series to Read if You Love Historical Christian Fiction

[Usually blog posts are written by Shirley, Berryville’s library services associate, but today we have a special treat–a guest review written by Courtney, one of our local business owners and fellow book bloggers. She’s guiding us through the world of historical Christian fiction.]

One of my favorite things about reading is learning through story. I believe reading encourages empathy and understanding of humanity with all its flaws and virtues. I also love history. Combine these two, and a reader can learn amazing and lesser-known things about true history and the way people lived in different eras. This is why one of my favorite genres is historical fiction — especially Christian or inspirational fiction because I believe its message of hope and faith to be relevant to life today.

I’m delighted to share a list of historical Christian fiction books that I have read and can highly recommend.

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Literary Eats

porridge

Now, here’s some food for thought. Literally!

Do you plan your cooking around your reading? Do you plan your reading around your eating? Or do they never correlate in your mind?

I must confess, it isn’t something I thought a lot about until I recently was catching up with Elise Bishop, one of my former college professors/bosses. She’s a regular blog reader, and when I told her I was always open to blog post idea suggestions, she told me I ought to write about the connection between literature and food. Thanks for the great suggestion, Mrs. B.!

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Chigozie Obioma’s The Fishermen (2015)

the-fishermen

In the mid-1990s in Akure, Nigeria, 9-year-old Benjamin lives with his 3 older brothers, 2 younger siblings, and his parents. Their lives are going smoothly enough until their father is transferred to another city for his job at the national bank. He doesn’t want to uproot the family, so they stay in their home, and the boys develop a love for fishing at the local river. One day, a local mentally-ill homeless man, who some consider a prophet, predicts that the oldest brother will be killed by one of his siblings. This prophecy destabilizes the family as the oldest brother becomes paranoid and withdrawn and his mother and younger siblings are hurt and confused by his rejection of them.

But is the prophecy true?

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Jussi Adler-Olsen’s The Keeper of Lost Causes (2007)

the-keeper-of-lost-causes

Copenhagen detective Carl Mørck has been having a bad year. After being shot at a crime scene with his two associates, he is back at work but relegated to a basement office with the dubious distinction of being head of a new cold case department that consists of him and an assistant who seems to have a tentative grasp of the Danish language. He regards the new assignment as a punishment and responds with remarkable apathy. That is, until his realization that he can’t really pretend to be busy “setting up his office” anymore makes him actually pick up his case files. He randomly decides on a missing person case–the disappearance five years earlier of a rising young politician, presumed to have accidentally fallen off a ferry–as the subject of his first investigation. At first, his interest in the case is cursory at best, but then he starts to note inconsistencies and develop questions about the circumstances surrounding the disappearance. . . .

As I’ve mentioned a couple of times on this blog (here and here), I really enjoy Scandinavian murder mysteries. For that reason, Carol Ann suggested this book to me a few months ago and highly recommended it. Most of my previous Scandinavian crime excursions have been Norwegian, but I’m glad I broadened my horizons, comparatively speaking, with this Danish mystery. Thanks for the great suggestion, Carol Ann!

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Ask The Blogger: Harvey (1950)

Harvey

A few months ago when our blog first debuted, we hosted a “meet the blogger” reception at the library to boost patron awareness and also to provide readers with a forum for suggesting topics/books/movies for me to write about. One of the people I chatted with that day–Stephanie–asked me if I’d ever watched the classic comedy Harvey. When I told her that I knew the basic story line but had never seen it, she requested that I write about it.

Harvey is one of those movies that I’ve always heard about. I knew it starred Jimmy Stewart and that he has an imaginary friend, a giant rabbit. But that was about all I knew about the film. I’m glad Stephanie recommended it to me because it’s hilarious!

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