A Modern P&P Tops
Librarians’ April Favorites

9781400068326_8f573Eligible: A Modern Retelling of Pride and Prejudice, Curtis Sittenfeld (Random House; BOT; April 19) is the #1 pick on the April LibraryReads list.

Part of The Austen Project, Sittenfeld recasts Elizabeth as a magazine editor and Darcy as a neurosurgeon. The novel has made many “most anticipated lists” including those by Entertainment Weekly, The Millions, and The Washington Post. It was also a favorite of Galleychatters.

Leslie DeLooze, of Richmond Memorial Library, Batavia, NY offers this annotation:

“Love, sex, and relationships in contemporary Cincinnati provide an incisive social commentary set in the framework of Pride and Prejudice. Sittenfeld’s inclusion of a Bachelor-like reality show is a brilliant parallel to the scrutiny placed on characters in the neighborhood balls of Jane Austen’s novel, and readers will have no question about the crass nature of the younger Bennets, or the pride—and prejudice—of the heroine.”

9781476777405_b96a6The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts, Joshua Hammer (Simon & Schuster; April 19) made the list with its account of a literary “Ocean’s Eleven” – the heist of centuries-old Arabic manuscripts under threat from Al Qaeda.

Marika Zemke, of Commerce Township Public Library, Commerce Township, MI shares this summary:

“For centuries, Arabic manuscripts were collected by private households in Mali, particularly Timbuktu: gilded manuscripts painted with real gold, showing vibrantly colored illustrations of nature. These highly valued manuscripts were handed down within families who acted as caretakers. As radicalized Muslim leaders came into power, the manuscripts were seen as corruptions of true Islam, requiring intervention. History and adventure at its best.”

9780765385505_c1470Every Heart a Doorway, Seanan McGuire (Macmillan/Tor.com; Macmillan Audio; April 5) explores the other side of portal fantasy stories. Jennifer Kelley, of Kershaw County Library, Camden, SC invites readers to wonder:

“What happens to children who find a doorway into a fantasy land, and then come back into the mundane world? It’s certainly not a happily ever after scenario for these children, but those that find their way to Eleanor West’s school are learning to cope. Shortly after Nancy comes to the school, a series of horrific events occur. It’s up to her and others at the school to figure out who is committing these atrocities. This book is so wonderfully written.”

9781501121043_4333eThree debuts make the list, including Tuesday Nights in 1980, Molly Prentiss (Gallery/Scout Press; April 5) which explores the NYC art world of the 80s.

Diane Scholl, of Batavia Public Library, Batavia, IL says:

“Following the lives of three individuals in New York on the cusp of 1980, this book was structured in such a unique and original way. Lucy is in her early twenties, experiencing life in a big city; James who after college finds himself the reigning critic of the art world and Raul, escaping the post Peron Dirty War in Argentina will find himself the art world’s new favorite; these three will find their lives entwined in many ways. A tragic accident will change all these characters and others close to them. This is a wonderful book that I wasn’t ready to finish.”

Librarians also selected the next books by several big names, including Nora Roberts, Amanda Quick, and Laurie R. King.

The full list is available now.


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