Category Archives: Summer Reading

Library Summer Reading has Ended

Cover Mix Everybody wins!

But Jane Kostenko wins the Amazon gift card, Mary Hall the LAMC Hoodie and Shane Hall picks up the August raffle prize.

Thanks to all the readers who participated in Library Summer Reading. We had a really great mix of reviews and dedicated readers. Nine people qualified for the bag of library swag.

Our top reviewer was Jane Kostenko with 15 reviews and 18.5 points. Lynette Starke was a close second with 11 reviews and 13.5 points. Andy Ashenfelter was the only person to complete seven different challenges. The only challenges he left unread were the LAMC Class of 2017 and the 2017 TOB. This year we also had our first reviews of audio books, because yes, the reader matters.

Our readers went head to head on a number of books including Camino Island, Dragon Teeth, The 16th Seduction, The City of Light, City of Poison, Homegoing and Golden Prey.

So what were you reading this summer? Lots of,

  • beach reads (35)
  • thrillers (30)
  • mysteries (27)
  • literary fiction (22)
  • history: non-fiction (18) and historical novels (17)
  • fantasy (15) and
  • books to film (15)

The VegetarianLord of ShadowsHimselfLincoln in the Bardo The Last Chance Olive Ranch

Camino Island by John Grisham

Camino Ilsand
This was far from my favorite Grisham – perhaps I’ve simply come to expect lawyers to play a major role in his books and there’s nary one to be had among the major players here. But, really, it was the plot that failed. I enjoyed reading about the theft of the manuscripts but the book just lost steam after that. I tried to inject some interest imagining Fernandina Beach, FL (where a friend of mine used to run a small bookstore) as Camino Island, and smiling at Bruce’s sartorial preferences as I recalled the guys I went to law school with in Georgia who lived for seeksucker and bow ties. And I enjoyed the antics of some of the secondary characters. But those just weren’t enough to generate my continued interest in the storyline. I enjoyed John Dunning’s Cliff Janeway series, also involving rare book collecting, much more.

Availability:  COSMOS
Review Submitted by:  Mary Hall
Rating: Not Recommended
Challenge: Published in 2017

Find Her by Lisa Gardner

FInd Her

This is one of Lisa Gardner’s DD Warren books. The story line was back and forth from DD’s story to the main character, Flora Dane. Flora survived a kidnapping and was missing for 472 days. Her return to life has not been an easy transition. As you read the book, more about Flora is revealed. It was hard to think about all the things Flora endured, even though it wasn’t based on anyone’s real life story. But in the end, Flora feels redeemed. I enjoyed the book, it was hard to put down at times.

Availability: COSMOS
Review Submitted by: Lynette Starke
Rating: Highly Recommended

Camino Island by John Grisham

Camino IlsandI think I must have read at least one Grisham novel in the 90s, but I remembered little of it (them?) and thought Camino Island sounded like a good summer read. It’s about the elaborate heist of five rare manuscripts (the novels of F. Scott Fitzgerald) and the efforts of a young writer to infiltrate the inner circle of the popular book dealer who is suspected to have the stolen manuscripts in his possession. The premise was promising, but the prose was so clunkily functional that it felt more to me like a long description of a book I might be interested in than the book itself.

Since the plot involves a loose yet gossipy community of writers in a touristy beach town, Grisham is afforded an opportunity to comment at least indirectly on the compromises between art and commerce that the writing life entails. He launches a few barbs at the self-consciously literary Leigh, whose “tortured prose” saps the life out of even the most promising stories, as if to draw a contrast with his own uncluttered if unsatisfying style. That said, I did keep turning the pages!

Availability:  COSMOS
Review Submitted by: Eric Blomquist
Rating: Recommended with Reservations
Challenge: Published in 2017

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead



This book is a start to the Bloodlines series. This series is a follow up to Richelle Meads original series Vampire Academy. This book promises a very strong sequel series with a very great set of characters. It really made me want to continue the series.

Availability: COSMOS
Review Submitted by: Taylor Horkan
Rating: Highly Recommended
Challenge:  A book with a one-word title

July’s Prize Winner is…

Congratulations!  Taylor Horkan has won the monthly prize drawing for July.

Taylor’s reviews currently include,  Shadowhunter Academy, The Dark Prophecy, Ugly Love, Catching Jordan and Stealing Parker.

Submit a review in August by 11:59pm on the 18th to be eligible for the our last monthly and the grand prize drawing. Don’t forget prizes are available for all participants who submit a review between June 1 and August 18. Grand Prize drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card and LAMC hoodie is open to participants who earn at least 5 points.


Six: Blood Brothers by Charles Sasser

Six: Blood Brothers

Charles Sasser has written many books, but this is his debut book for the History Channel Series SIX. Mr. Sasser has written military history books and is a former Green Beret. I have not watched the television series, to compare the two, but the book was well written. It was fast paced, some military terms were used, but minimally. Many other military action novels rely so heavily on military terms that they have a glossary that you must keep referring to, interrupting the story. It wasn’t necessary for this book. It is a work of fiction but is a good representation of how Special Forces units work and interact with each other. It does contain violence but probably average for the genre. One warning, if you like endings don’t get this one. The book leaves you hanging so you will have to read the second book in the series.

Availability: COSMOS
Review Submitted by: Shelley Clark
Rating: Recommended with Reservations
Challenge: A book with a number in the title