Staff Picks

Check out these staff recommended books.

The bell rang

James E. Ransome
2019
ISBN: 9781442421134

Every single morning, the overseer of the plantation rings the bell. Daddy gathers wood. Mama cooks. Ben and the other slaves go out to work. Each day is the same. Full of grueling work and sweltering heat. Every day, except one, when the bell rings and Ben is nowhere to be found. Because Ben ran. Yet, despite their fear and sadness, his family remains hopeful that maybe, just maybe, he made it North. That he is free. An ode to hope and a powerful tribute to the courage of those who ran for freedom, The Bell Rang is a stunning reminder that our past can never be forgotten.

Recommended By: Linda
2/5/2020

Black Panther

writer, Ta-Nehisi Coates ; artist, Brian Stelfreeze ; pencils/layouts, Chris Sprouse ; color artist, Laura Martin ; letterer, VC's Joe Sabino
2017
ISBN: 9781302900533

When a superhuman terrorist group named The People sparks a violent uprising in Wakanda, the kingdom famed for its incredible technology and proud traditions will be thrown into turmoil like never before! Black Panther knows that if Wakanda is to survive, it must adapt--but will he be able to make it through the transition alive? Heavy is the head that wears the cowl!

Recommended By: Kristie
2/5/2020

The secret wisdom of nature : trees, animals, and the extraordinary balance of all living things : stories from science and observation

Peter Wohlleben ; translation by Jane Billinghurst
2019
ISBN: 9781771643887

"In The Secret Wisdom of Nature, master storyteller and international sensation Peter Wohlleben takes readers on a thought-provoking exploration of the vast natural systems that make life on Earth possible. In this tour of an almost unfathomable world, Wohlleben describes the fascinating interplay between animals and plants and answers such questions as: How do they influence each other? Do lifeforms communicate across species boundaries? And what happens when this finely tuned system gets out of sync? By introducing us to the latest scientific discoveries and recounting his own insights from decades of observing nature, one of the world's most famous foresters shows us how to recapture our sense of awe so we can see the world around us with completely new eyes."-- Provided by publisher.

Recommended By: Martina
2/5/2020

The dog stars

Peter Heller
2012
ISBN: 9780307959942

Surviving a pandemic disease that has killed everyone he knows, a pilot establishes a shelter in an abandoned airport hangar before hearing a random radio transmission that compels him to risk his life to seek out other survivors.

Recommended By: Dean
2/5/2020

Children of blood and bone

Tomi Adeyemi
2018
ISBN: 9781250170972

Seventeen-year-old Zélie, her older brother Tzain, and rogue princess Amari fight to restore magic to the land and activate a new generation of magi, but they are ruthlessly pursued by the crown prince, who believes the return of magic will mean the end of the monarchy.

Recommended By: Jon
2/5/2020

When they call you a terrorist : a Black Lives Matter memoir

Patrisse Khan-Cullors and Asha Bandele ; [with a foreword by Angela Davis]
2018
ISBN: 9781250171085

A memoir by the co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement explains the movement's position of love, humanity, and justice, challenging perspectives that have negatively labeled the movement's activists while calling for essential political changes.

Recommended By: Kristie
2/5/2020

Old bones

Trudy Nan Boyce
2017
ISBN: 9780399167270

"A timely and penetrating mystery about the intersection of policing, racism, and the community--set in a city at its boiling point--from an author who's been in the trenches and seen it all. A senseless act of violence. During a vigil calling for police reform, students from Spelman College, a historically black women's institution, are assaulted by rifle fire from a passing vehicle. On her way to interview witnesses, Detective Sarah "Salt" Alt confronts the fleeing vehicle of the suspects, but they get away. A city in turmoil. While other detectives take the lead on the Spelman murders, Salt is tasked to investigate the case of a recently discovered decomposed body. When she combs through the missing-persons reports, it becomes clear the victim is a girl Salt took into custody two years before, and Salt feels a grave responsibility to learn the truth about how the girl died. But before she can pursue any leads, Salt is called onto emergency riot detail--in the wake of the assault on the Spelman students, Atlanta has reached the boiling point. In a city burdened by history and a community erupting in pain and anger, Salt must delve into the past for answers. A gripping and astute story about what it means to serve and protect, Old Bones solidifies Trudy Nan Boyce as an evocative, authoritative voice in crime fiction"-- Provided by publisher.

Recommended By: Carlos
2/5/2020

The undefeated

by Kwame Alexander ; illustrated by Kadir Nelson
2019
ISBN: 9781328780966

"The Newbery Award-winning author of The Crossover pens an ode to black American triumph and tribulation, with art from a two-time Caldecott Honoree. Originally performed for ESPN's The Undefeated, this poem is a love letter to black life in the United States. It highlights the unspeakable trauma of slavery, the faith and fire of the civil rights movement, and the grit, passion, and perseverance of some of the world's greatest heroes. The text is also peppered with references to the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, and others, offering deeper insights into the accomplishments of the past, while bringing stark attention to the endurance and spirit of those surviving and thriving in the present. Robust back matter at the end provides valuable historical context and additional detail for those wishing to learn more."-- Provided by publisher.

Recommended By: Linda
2/5/2020