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December 31, 2014     The Sun Newspaper
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December 31, 2014
 

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Wednesday, December 31,2014 Trenton Sun Page 4 - Local Bookworm columnist lists best books of 2014 Left" by Julie Lawson Tim- mer, the story of a woman who is at the end stages of a terminal disease, and a man in another state who has fallen in love with a child he's fostering, will actually make you want to do that. Bring tissues. That's all I'm saying. My list wouldn't be com- plete without my annual nod to Emma Donoghue. Her novel "Frog Music," a big sto- ry of murder and lust set in by Terri Schlichenmayer So many books, so little time. It's easy to feel that way when faced with an entire bookstore full of possibili- ties. How do you pick? How do you know what's good? Start here, with the Book- worm's Best of 2014... Let's start with FICTION. Throughout the year, ev- ery time something bad hap- pens, you're reminded to hug the ones you love. "Five Days Lost and Found Two dogs have been found in Clinton County in re- cent days, including this tri-colored beagle. The three- to four-year old male was found south of Damiansville on Airport Road. The other found dog is a black labra- dor with gray mask, a male, found on" Clinton Street in Carlyle. Available for Adoption Four-month old [;lack labrador. For more information on these and other pets, con- tact Clinton County Animal Control, 594-4483, 17822 County Farm Road, Carlyle. 1870s San Francisco is a must-read for this year. It's a gauzy tale--in fact, it seems at times like a dream, as though the main character, Blanche Beunon, has imag- ined the whole friendship she had with Jenny Bonnet and the reason for Jenny's death. Bonus: it's based loosely on a true event. I almost guarantee that you won't see "The Last Time I Died" by Joe Nelms on any other Best Of list. It's here because it was one of those books that just struck me: Christian Franco, a loser in life and love, learns that he can re-visit his childhood by being brought back from the edge of death. Early trauma left him with holes in his memory. Reviving gave him answers. But he had to die again and again and you won't be able to put this book down until you know what happens. They say we all have a dop- pelganger, and"Recognition" by O.H. Bennett is based on that idea: on a rainy night, as a young widow heads home to pick up her son, she sees a beggar who is her late husband's double. Many years ago, he went missing and was presumed drowned- -but did he? You'll wonder, too... And finally, a tie: "A Wanted Woman" by Eric Jerome Dickey and "I Am Pilgrim" by Terry Hayes are both thrillers; I couldn't de- cide which I liked better. Be aware that the Dickey book leans toward violence and profanity, while the Hayes book is more espionage-like. Both kept me on the edge of my seat for days... And then there are my NON-FICTION PICKS... "The Baby Boom" by P.J. O'Rourke will bring back memories for anyone born between 1947 and 1964. O'Rourke recalls the usual things that Boomers will re- member--playing outside til dark, getting that first Col- or TV--but the real appeal comes when he finds some- thing you've long-forgotten, and he expounds upon it. This book is like time-travel- ling to your childhood. Lovers of the Old (or new) West will love "Badluck Way" by Bryce Andrews, the story of cowboying, ranch life, and the end of both. It's also a tale of conservation: wolves were a big problem on the ranch where Andrews worked, and they cost his employer a good amount of money. But where's the hap- py medium between raising cattle and being a steward to the land and its wildlife? This book doesn't have all the answers, but it'll make you think. I'm normally not a big fan of biographies that include "recreations," but "Death of a King" by Tavis Smiley was a great exception. In this book, Smiley envisions the last year of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: his friendships, his dilemmas, the heartbreak he knew and caused, the work he did, and that which he might've wished he didn't do. I liked this bookbecause it's thoughtful, and because it makes Dr. King into an or- dinary man. Smiley makes King approachable. If you've read other Best Of lists this year, you've probably found "Being Mor- tal" by Atul Gawande there --and for good reason. It's about the end-of-life, aging, and how medicine perceives both. Gawande urges read- ers to take charge of the end of their lives. That's power- ful stuff, in a powerful book. And lastly, another tie: "The Removers" by Andrew Meredith, "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" by Caitlin Dough- ty, and "The Skeleton Crew" by Deborah Halber all deal with bodies. Dead ones. The Meredith book is a father- son memoir in a coming-0f- age way; the Doughty book is a memoir about her years working in a crematory; and the Halber book is about how everyday people spend their time comparing missing per- sons lists with online lists of unclaimed bodies. I liked 'em all. I couldn't decide ... And then my Best of CHIL- DREN'S BOOKS: For the littlest kid, "Don't Push the Button" by Bill Cotter is a near-guaranteed gigglefest. There's a mon- ster inside this book, and a red button. Whatever you do, well, read the book with your favorite 3-to-6-year-old and see. Post-apocalyptic novels have been done to death, but "H20" by Virginia Bergin re- ally struck me as unusual. The premise of this book is that planetary dust has caused contaminated rain. Anybody who gets wet dies - bloody, painfully, and fast. That includes the heroine's parents, sibling, friends, neighbors, and everyone she loves. Or maybe not, because there's a wicked cliffhanger here and I loved it. I also liked "Noggin" by John Corey Whaley, a dis- turbingly plausible book about a young man who's suffering a terminal illness. His only hope is to have his head cryonically frozen, and to wait for a donor body. But can everybody in his life wait for him to return? As I read "Endangered" by Jean Love Cush, I wasn't sure whether or not it was an adult book or a teen read. I decided it was both: it's the story of a young teen who gets arrested for a murder he didn't commit, but it's also the story of his mother, who tackles the justice sys- tem, the law, and everything she never thought she'd have to deal with on behalf of her son. Timely and so- bering, this is another one of those books you just can't put down. And finally, "Skink No Sur- render" by Carl Hiaasen is a great way to introduce your teen to the humor of this adult author. In this book, a teen goes missing and it's up to her cousin and a Vietnam- veteran-former-mayor-pos- sibly-insane-conservation- minded madman to find her. What's not to like, hm? And there you are: fifteen books you just can't miss. The Best of the Year. Happy Reading! Terri Schlichenmayer writes The Bookworm, a col- umn that appears bi-weekly in The Sun. 4 v SUNDAY MONDAY TUESDAY WEDNESDAY THURSDAY FRIDAY SATURDAY 1 2 3 FULL MOON: 5 • NB Village Hall Closed • New Baden American Legion Bingo • New Baden Elecronic Recycling at LAST QUARTER: 13 • Order of Eastern Star at Masonic 7:30pm Civic Ctr. 9-11am NEW MOON: 20 Temple 7:30pm FIRST QUARTER: 27 NEW YEAR'S DAY 5 !6 7 8 9 • New Baden Village Board Mtg. at • Emergency Sirens tested loam • Senior Meals at Civic Center 11am- • New Baden American Legion Bingo Village Hall 7pro • New Baden VFW Post 3642 Mtg. lpm Call 224-9913 for reservation/ 7:30pm 7pro at American Legion. info. • Trenton. City Council Mtg. at City • TEMS Mtg. at Trenton PD upstairs Hall 7pro 7pm 10 11 • Trenton American Legion Post 778 Euchre Tourney at St. Mary Parish Ctr. 7pro 2 • New Baden Sr. Citizens Mtg. at Civic Ctr. 6pm • Trenton City Council Work Session 6:30pm • Trenton VFW & Aux Mtg. at Parish Ctr. 7:30pm EPIPHANY, 13 • WCCSS Mtg. at Masonic Lodge 5pm • Trenton Tumbleweeds Garden Club Mtg. at St. John UCC at 7pm • New Baden Jaycees Mtg. at Legion Home at 7:30 p.m. • Sugar Creek FPD Mtg. at Fire House 8pn 14 • Senior Meals at Civic Center 1 lam- lpm Call 224-9913 for reservation/info. • Trenton Park Boosters Mtg. at Trenton House 8pro 15 16 • Trenton Sportsmen Club Mtg. at , New Baden American Legion Bingo Sportsman's Lake 7:30pro 7:30pm 17 New Baden UMC Breakfast 6:30-10 AM 18 • Trenton K of C Euchre Tourney at St. Mary Parish Ctr. 7pm 25 19 oi 20 • NB Village Hall Closed  , New Baden Lion's Club Mtg. at Civic • Trenton Woman's Clul: f Ctr. 6:30pro Mtg. at St. John UCC . New Baden Committee-at-Large 7:30pm q Mtg. at Village Hall 7pm • Wesclin School Board Mtg. 7pm MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. BIRTHDAY OBSERVED 26 • Trenton City Council Work Session 6:30pm 27 • Trenton Library Bookmarks Review 7pro • St. Mary Ladies Sodality Mtg. at Parish Ctr. 7pro 21 • Senior Meals at Civic Center 1 lam- lpm Call 224-9913 for reservation/info. • St. Mary Sodality Card Party at St. Mary Parish lpm • New Baden Park Board Mtg. 7pro 28 • Senior Meals at Civic Center 1 lam- lpm Call 224-9913 for reservation/ info. • Wesclin Athletic Boosters Mtg. at High School 7pro 22 29 23 • New Baden American Legion Bingo 7:30pm 24 30 • New Baden American Legion Bingo 7:30pm 31 New Baden Chamber of Commerce Banquet at American Legion 6:30pm .=d Wed., Jan. 28th, please submit your infonnation by January 23rd. st:J3e Sun  " " February '15 C To advertise or sbmitv Light Brite Distributing 475 E. 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