The Madison County Public Library website -- -- has a new look, and one of the things I love most about the new site is the "book rivers." A book river is a graphic display of a group of books arranged around a certain theme.

These book rivers are a dynamic component of the website, changing on a regular basis, so I love to check them out to see what's new and hot.

This week's booklist highlights some of the titles from one of our current book rivers, "Best of 2019." All titles are available for checkout in a variety of formats with your MCPL card.

Olive, Again, by Elizabeth Strout

"The iconic Olive struggles to understand not only herself and her own life but also the lives of those around her in the town of Crosby, Maine. Whether with a teenager coming to terms with the loss of her father, a young woman about to give birth during a hilariously inopportune moment, a nurse who confesses a secret high school crush, or a lawyer who struggles with an inheritance she does not want to accept, the unforgettable Olive will continue to startle us, to move us, and to inspire moments of transcendent grace." From

Available in print in Richmond, Berea, and Bookmobile, Large Type in Berea, Playaway audio in Berea, and eBook and eAudio format through Overdrive/KY Libraries Unbound

The Topeka School: A Novel, by Ben Lerner

"Adam Gordon is a senior at Topeka High School, class of 1997. His mother, Jane, is a famous feminist author; his father, Jonathan, is an expert at getting 'lost boys' to open up. They both work at the Foundation, a well-known psychiatric clinic that has attracted staff and patients from around the world. Adam is a renowned debater and orator, expected to win a national championship before he heads to college. He is an aspiring poet. He is--although it requires a great deal of posturing, weight lifting, and creatine supplements--one of the cool kids, passing himself off as a 'real man,' ready to fight or (better) freestyle about fighting if it keeps his peers from thinking of him as weak. Adam is also one of the seniors who brings the loner Darren Eberheart--who is, unbeknownst to Adam, his father's patient--into the social scene, with disastrous effects." From

Available in print in Richmond and Berea

Disappearing Earth: A Novel, by Julia Phillips

"One August afternoon, on the shoreline of the north-eastern edge of Russia, two sisters are abducted. In the ensuing weeks, then months, the police investigation turns up nothing. Echoes of the disappearance reverberate across a tightly woven community, with the fear and loss felt most deeply among its women.

"Set on the remote Siberian peninsula of Kamchatka, Disappearing Earth draws us into the world of an astonishing cast of characters, all connected by an unfathomable crime. We are transported to vistas of rugged beauty - densely wooded forests, open expanses of tundra, soaring volcanoes and the glassy seas that border Japan and Alaska - and into a region as complex as it is alluring, where social and ethnic tensions have long simmered, and where outsiders are often the first to be accused." From

Available in print in Richmond and Bookmobile, and eBook and e Audio format through Overdrive/KY Libraries Unbound

Red at the Bone, by Jacqueline Woodson

"As the book opens in 2001, it is the evening of sixteen-year-old Melody's coming of age ceremony in her grandparents' Brooklyn brownstone. Watched lovingly by her relatives and friends, making her entrance to the music of Prince, she wears a special custom-made dress. But the event is not without poignancy. Sixteen years earlier, that very dress was measured and sewn for a different wearer: Melody's mother, for her own ceremony-- a celebration that ultimately never took place.

"Unfurling the history of Melody's parents and grandparents to show how they all arrived at this moment, Woodson considers not just their ambitions and successes but also the costs, the tolls they've paid for striving to overcome expectations and escape the pull of history. As it explores sexual desire and identity, ambition, gentrification, education, class and status, and the life-altering facts of parenthood, Red at the Bone most strikingly looks at the ways in which young people must so often make long-lasting decisions about their lives--even before they have begun to figure out who they are and what they want to be." From

Available in print in Richmond, and eBook and eAudio format through Overdrive/KY Libraries Unbound

Ask Again, Yes, by Mary Beth Keane

"Francis Gleeson and Brian Stanhope, two rookie cops in the NYPD, live next door to each other outside the city. What happens behind closed doors in both houses--the loneliness of Francis's wife, Lena, and the instability of Brian's wife, Anne--sets the stage for the explosive events to come.

"Ask Again, Yes is a deeply affecting exploration of the lifelong friendship and love that blossoms between Francis and Lena's daughter, Kate, and Brian and Anne's son, Peter. Luminous, heartbreaking, and redemptive, Ask Again, Yes reveals the way childhood memories change when viewed from the distance of adulthood--villains lose their menace and those who appeared innocent seem less so. Kate and Peter's love story, while tested by echoes from the past, is marked by tenderness, generosity, and grace." From

Available in print in Richmond and Berea, and eBook and eAudio format through Overdrive/KY Libraries Unbound

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