- Megan Bingham
Here are five popular adult titles that have hit the shelves for the month of February. To find more new titles, check out the booklist New February 2018 Books You'll Want to Read and our recent arrivals page.
The Great Alone, by Kristin Hannah, is an intense portrait of human frailty and resilience.
Alaska, 1974. Unpredictable. Unforgiving. Untamed. For a family in crisis, the ultimate test of survival. Ernt Allbright, a former POW, comes home from the Vietnam War a changed and volatile man. When he loses yet another job, he makes an impulsive decision: he will move his family north, to Alaska, where they will live off the grid in America's last true frontier. But as winter approaches and darkness descends on Alaska, Ernt's fragile mental state deteriorates, and the family begins to fracture. Soon, the perils outside pale in comparison to threats from within. In their small cabin, covered in snow, blanketed in 18 hours of the night, Leni and her mother learn the terrible truth: they are on their own. In the wild, there is no one to save them but themselves. (catalog summary)
One woman becomes trapped in the tangled bonds of friendship in The French Girl, by Lexie Elliott.
Memories of her trip to France still haunt Kate Channing almost a decade after the fateful vacation. The image of her French neighbor, Severine, is as clear as if she had seen her yesterday—despite the fact that Severine went missing just as the vacation ended. And when the case is reopened, bringing with it resurfaced secrets, rekindled affections, and dangerous enemies, Kate wonders if she will ever be able to rid herself of the ghost of the haunting and silent young woman. As the investigation speeds forward and alliances can no longer be trusted, she begins to understand that the stakes of this game are her own survival. (catalog summary)
Summer Hours at the Robbers Library: A Novel, by Sue Halpern is a tale of family: the kind you come from and the kind you create.
People are drawn to libraries for all kinds of reasons. Most come for the books themselves, of course; some come to borrow companionship. For head librarian Kit, the public library in Riverton, New Hampshire, offers what she craves most: peace. Here, no one expects Kit to talk about the calamitous events that catapulted her out of what she thought was a settled, suburban life. She can simply submerge herself in her beloved books and try to forget her problems. But that changes when 15-year-old, home-schooled Sunny gets arrested for shoplifting a dictionary. The judge throws the book at Sunny—literally—assigning her to do community service at the library for the summer. Bright, curious, and eager to connect with someone other than her off-the-grid hippie parents, Sunny coaxes Kit out of her self-imposed isolation. They're joined by Rusty, a Wall Street high-flyer suddenly crashed to Earth. In the little library that has become the heart of this small town, Kit, Sunny, and Rusty are drawn to each other and to a cast of other offbeat regulars. As they come to terms with how their lives have unraveled, they also discover how they might knit them together again and finally reclaim their stories. (catalog summary)
Educated: A Memoir, by Tara Westover, is an unforgettable story about one girl's yearning for education.
Tara Westover was 17 the first time she set foot in a classroom. Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, she prepared for the end of the world by stockpiling home-canned peaches and sleeping with her "head-for-the-hills bag." In the summer, she stewed herbs for her mother, a midwife, and healer, and, in the winter she salvaged from her father's junkyard. The family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education and no one to intervene when one of Tara's older brothers became violent. As a way out, Tara began to educate herself, learning enough mathematics and grammar to be admitted to Brigham Young University. Her quest for knowledge would transform her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge. Only then would she wonder if she'd traveled too far—and if there was still a way home. (catalog summary)
A love story across the ages about a man lost in time the woman who could save him in How to Stop Time, by Matt Haig.
Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret. He may look like an ordinary 41 year old, but, owing to a rare condition, he's been alive for centuries. Tom has lived history—performing with Shakespeare, exploring the high seas with Captain Cook, and sharing cocktails with Fitzgerald. Now, he just wants an ordinary life. So Tom moves back to London, his old home, to become a high school history teacher—the perfect job for someone who has witnessed the city's history firsthand. Better yet, a captivating French teacher at his school seems fascinated by him. But the Albatross Society, the secretive group which protects people like Tom, has one rule: Never fall in love. As painful memories of his past and the erratic behavior of the Society's watchful leader threaten to derail his new life and romance, the one thing he can't have just happens to be the one thing that might save him. Tom will have to decide once and for all whether to remain stuck in the past or finally begin living in the present. (catalog summary)