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Staff Selections - Bridget

Starting this month, we’ll be adding staff selections to our blogs about what staff members are reading, listening to, watching and more! We encourage you to visit the blog to read a bit more about the staff and encourage you to reach out if you’d like to access the materials that we suggest or have a suggestion for us to add to our list to try. As always, you can visit the Staff Picks display on the First Floor to browse some selections as well.

Bridget Cooley, Community Planning Librarian
What I like about our library – I always learn something new every day, especially about Lowell’s history
Favorite genres of books: Nonfiction, Historical fiction, Mysteries, Cookbooks
Current bookmark: An Amazon gift card bookmark (already used up all of the funds on it)

Just finished – Fiction: The Beantown Girls by Jane Healey

I’ve been focused on World War II recently and found this historical fiction book when processing some returns (thanks to the patron who ordered it). It is a unique take on Red Cross Clubmobile girls who hail from Boston. It’s interesting to see these women who wanted to get involved in the war, being labeled “Doughnut Dollies,” but contributing in many ways to helping soldiers deal with the reality of war. I have to give a shout out to Schlesinger Library at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard for hosting an archival collection of these women’s memoirs, photographs, newspaper clippings, letters and more. For those who enjoy history, this is an interesting interpretation of these brave women.

Rating: 4/5 stars

Currently Reading – Fiction: The Reckoning by John Grisham

I had been a huge Grisham fan during his first decade of publications and read everything, but I got sidetracked and he fell off my list. Something about this description piqued my interest in his writing again. I’m about halfway through and enjoying the return to an earlier version of Clanton as I thoroughly enjoyed A Time to Kill. I am appreciating his complex characters and the fast-paced changes throughout the book. This suspenseful novel and quick pacing is a testament to Grisham’s ability to hook a reader with his storytelling. I am looking forward to the final resolution.

About to start reading – Nonfiction: The Woman Who Smashed Codes by Jason Fagone

I picked up this book as I like to hear about the unsung heroes of our history. Fagone’s story covers the life of Elizebeth Smith, a Quaker schoolteacher and poetry scholar, who eventually gets involved with codebreaking and meets William Friedman, a Jewish scientist who becomes her partner in both codebreaking and life. I am excited to see the way in which this woman played a role in the government and the new field of codebreaking.


About to start reading – Fiction: The Disappearance of Alistair Ainsworth by Leonard Goldberg

This is the third book in Goldberg’s series about the daughter of Sherlock Holmes and Irene Adler. His daughter, Joanna, has inherited her father’s talents for deduction and solving mysteries. Adopted as a child, Joanna, meets up with Dr. John Watson, Jr. and his father and Holmes’ partner in the first book. This third book focuses on finding Alistair Ainsworth, a cryptographer who has been taken captive by the Germans in 1915. There is a fear that he’ll give up England’s strategies for the Great War. Joanna and the Watsons use deduction, observation, and medical knowledge to solve nearly all of their mysteries. I am looking forward to reading this on a cold night.

Interested in reading any of these books?

Give us a call at 978-674-4121 to reserve a copy for you to start reading, log into your account online to place a hold or email for some suggestions of what to read next. We are happy to help!