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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Take 10: Hot Reads For Cold Nights

I am heading back from a vacation in New England today.  Where I was it turned bitter cold yesterday. Seriously, the high was 5!  But back in Chicago I hear it is going to be close to 50 by the end of the week.

But my brief encounter with true winter temperatures has reminded me of my student Christi's list for her final paper.  She presented a book talk entitled "Hot Reads for Cold Nights." What I liked about this talk is how she considered different "heat sources."

Enjoy the list and look for more from Christi in the coming months as she will be joining the BPL RA Dream Team for the spring semester as part of her course work for her Masters degree.

Heat Source: Location

The Beach by Alex Garland
When a young man travelling through Thailand receives a map to a remote island paradise he believes he has found Eden, but the commune living on the island is not completely what it seems. Despite the warm, tropical location, this novel has a dark and gritty edge.

Duma Key
by Stephen King
When a construction accident causes Edgar Freemantle to lose his arm, his anger, and ultimately his wife, he moves to Duma Key off the coast of Florida to recuperate. There, he discovers a love of painting that may not come entirely from himself. This intricately plotted novel takes place in a warm setting and has a creepy and compelling tone.

Nature Girl by Carl Hiassen
Honey Santana has an issue with telemarketers interrupting her dinner time. It’s worse when they subsequently insult her. When Boyd Shreave commits this most grievous of sins, Santana decides to teach him a lesson. What results is an offbeat and funny adventure through the Florida wilderness.

Heat Source: Heartwarming

Rainwater by Sandra Brown
Living in Texas during the Depression, single mother Ella Barron runs a boarding house to support herself and her son Solly who has autism. A new boarder, David Rainwater, turns life upside down for mother, child, and the entire town. This heartwarming and romantic story takes place in a warm location and contains historical details.

I Still Dream About You by Fannie Flagg
Former Miss Alabama, Maggie Fortenberry, has a plan to kill herself. With the housing market crash affecting her job as a real estate agent, she feels like a failure. However, her suicidal plans keep getting put on hold as her life just keeps getting in the way. This heartwarming novel has a relaxed pace and a funny and upbeat tone.

Heat Source: Steamy

Just for Kicks by Susan Anderson
Opposites attract in this steamy romance novel. Carly is a Vegas showgirl who loves the single life. Wolfgang works as a security guard at the casino where Carly dances and wants a wife and stable home life. When Wolfgang’s nephew comes to visit and strikes up a friendship with Carly, he decides to try and play matchmaker between his uncle and his new friend. This racy tale is fast-paced, funny and takes place in the desert to boot!

A Kiss of Shadows
by Laurell K. Hamilton
Meredith Gentry works as a private investigator working on supernatural cases in LA. She also happens to be half-faerie and hiding from her aunt who is the Queen of Air and Darkness. When her cover is blown, she finds herself playing a part in her aunt’s power games which include seducing a lot of men. This extremely steamy fantasy novel is both dramatic and compelling.

Heat Source: Heartpumping

The Husband
by Dean Koontz
While working, gardener Mitch receives a call that his wife has been kidnapped and is being held for a two million dollar ransom. With no where near the amount of money the kidnappers are asking for, Mitch must follow instructions in order to get his wife back safely. This intricately plotted novel has a suspenseful feel.

Pirate Latitudes by Michael Crichton
Working out of Port Royal, Jamaica in 1665, Captain Charles Hunter has just been hired to find a crew and commandeer a Spanish Galleon filled with gold. He and his motley crew of pirates, all with their own specialties, go on an adventure through the Caribbean. This fast-paced, dramatic and suspenseful novel contains historical details about pirate life.

Reamde by Neal Stephenson
A virus has been inserted into a popular massively multiplayer online role-playing game which holds the player’s electronic files for ransom. Richard, the creator of the game, and his niece go on a fast-paced adventure to apprehend the hackers and run into many more villains. This technothriller is complex and reads like a video game.

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