Middletown Thrall Library Moves You... BEYOND THE BESTSELLERS: Your seasonal guide to discovering fresh authors and interesting stories often not found on 'bestseller' lists - Winter 2009 Edition

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Past Issues

Missed a past issue of Beyond the Bestsellers? Click below for previous BTBs and more reading recommendations:

Consider any of the titles below the next time you're looking for something interesting to read. To learn more about a book and check on its availablity within the library system, click a title link below.

You can also click on an author's name to see if any additional titles by that author are available in the library system.

Some book records in the library catalog have additional links you can click to learn more about the book and the author. Some titles even have chapter excerpts that you can read online!

Scroll down and browse by genre to begin!


  • The Little Giant of Aberdeen County - Tiffany Baker - The narrator of this family drama is the lovable Truly Place, who has been exceptionally large since birth. Set in upstate New York, this debut has eccentric characters, colorful prose, and a little magic.
  • Lark and Termite - Jayne Anne Phillips - West Virginia in the fifties is the setting of this coming of age tale featuring teenage Lark and her severely disabled younger brother Termite. Lark schemes to find happiness for both of them. The meaning of family and the power of love are explored in parallel six day periods in July 1950 and July 1959.

Other general fiction titles to consider:


  • Museum of Human Beings - Colin Sargent - This debut chronicles the life of Jean Baptiste Charbonneau, Sacagawea's son who was adopted by William Clark after her death. Library Journal called this lyrical and stylish novel "memorable" and its ending "spellbinding."
  • Land of Marvels - Barry Unsworth - When British archaeologist John Somerville unearths what he believes is an ancient Assyrian palace in Mesopotamia in 1914, he must protect it from a railway company creating European access to Persian Gulf oil for the prospect of war.

Another historical fiction title to consider:


  • Blood Wedding - P. J. Brooke - Inspector Max Romero has been assigned to improve relations between the police and the Muslim community in the city of Grenada, Spain. When a young Muslim woman is murdered in his home village, Max is drawn into the investigation which includes both post 9/11 politics and vestiges of historical corruption. Rich characterizations and a complex plot make this series opener a compelling read.
  • Grave Goods - Ariana Franklin - In this highly entertaining medieval mystery, Adelia Aguilar is commissioned by Henry II to determine if skeletons at Glastonbury are Arthur and Guinevere.

Other mysteries to consider:


  • The Hickory Staff - Robert Scott, Jay Gordon - When bank assistant manager Steven Taylor finds the long missing key to a safe deposit box, he would not have believed it could lead to the portal of another world. This action adventure fantasy should please both classic and cross over fantasy fans.
Other titles to consider:


  • Beat the Reaper - Josh Bazellz - A former hit man now in the Witness Protection program, medical intern Peter Brown is recognized by a patient. Darkly comic, this debut by a medical resident is propulsive. Fans of Carl Hiaasen should enjoy this.
  • King of Swords - Nick Stone - Haitian Voodoo, two hundred escaped monkeys, and police corruption are all part of this chilling thriller set in Miami during the Reagan era.

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