Religion/Spirituality

06/14/2017 - 10:06am
If you like American Gods by Neil Gaiman

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse the book matches here.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Shadow is a man with a past. But now he wants nothing more than to live a quiet life with his wife and stay out of trouble. Until he learns that she's been killed in a terrible accident. Flying home for the funeral, as a violent storm rocks the plane, a strange man in the seat next to him introduces himself. The man calls himself Mr. Wednesday, and he knows more about Shadow than is possible. He warns Shadow that a far bigger storm is coming. And from that moment on, nothing will ever he the same . . .American Gods on Starz

American Gods is now a television series on the Starz network, based on the novel of the same name. The television series was developed by Bryan Fuller (Hannibal, Pushing Daisies) and Michael Green (Heroes, Gotham). Gaiman serves as an executive producer along with Fuller, Green, Craig Cegielski, Stefanie Berk, and Thom Beers. The series focuses on Shadow Moon, who meets a strange man named Mr. Wednesday after being released from prison. However, he soon finds himself a part of a large-scale conflict between the Old Gods and the New Gods, who grow stronger each day. The first episode premiered on the Starz network and through their streaming application on April 30, 2017. In May 2017, the series was renewed for a second season.

The central premise of the novel is that gods and mythological creatures exist because people believe in them (a type of thoughtform.) Immigrants to the United States brought with them spirits and gods. The power of these mythological beings has diminished as people's beliefs waned. New gods have arisen, reflecting the American obsessions with media, celebrity, technology, and drugs, among other things.¹

03/10/2017 - 9:24am
If you like The Shack by William Paul Young

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form, and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse the book matches here.
 

The Shack by William Paul Young
Mackenzie Allen Phillips' youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack's world forever. (catalog summary)

If you like The Shack, here are some other titles you may enjoy:
 


The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Combining magic, mysticism, wisdom and wonder, The Alchemist has become a modern classic, selling millions of copies around the world and transforming the lives of countless readers across generations. Paulo Coelho's masterpiece tells the mystical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure. His quest will lead him to riches far different—and far more satisfying—than he ever imagined. Santiago's journey teaches us about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, of recognizing opportunity and learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and, most importantly, to follow our dreams. (catalog summary)
 

12/22/2016 - 2:52am
Shmelf the Hanukkah Elf by Greg Wolfe

Shmelf is one of Santa's new elves, and his job is to check the "naughty or nice" list twice before Christmas Eve. He notices that there are quite a few children on the list who have been good but are not receiving gifts under the tree.

11/29/2016 - 3:15pm
Christy Miller Collection, Volume 2 (Books 4-6) by Robin Jones Gunn

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse other book matches here.

Christy Miller Collection, Volume 2 (Books 4-6) by Robin Jones Gunn
Bestselling author Robin Jones Gunn packs each one with enough action, romance, and drama to keep you reading and wanting more. It all starts the summer Christy vacations on a California beach and meets two friends who change her life forever. But after moving across the country with her family, Christy must begin her sophomore year of high school uncertain where she'll fit in. A red-headed new best friend, a try at cheerleading, a job at a pet store, and expectations for the prom fill Christy's high school years with a string of laughter-and-tears moments. Fireball Katie keeps everyone guessing what she'll do next, and surfer Todd keeps showing up while popular Rick has determined to get her full attention! As these memorable years unfold, Christy and her God-loving friends find out what it means to be a "peculiar treasure." Follow Christy Miller as she stays true to her identity in Christ, drawing closer to God for help in realizing her dreams and dealing with her disappointments.

Volume 2 inclues: Surprise Endings, Island Dreamer, and A Heart Full of Hope (catalog summary)

If you like books similar to Christy Miller, check out these titles:
 




Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel
by Diana López
When thirteen-year-old Erica "Chia" Montenegro finds out her mother has breast cancer, she makes a promise to God to raise money for breast cancer awareness and discovers that when family and friends work together, miracles can happen. (catalog summary)



 



Devoted: A Novel by Jennifer Mathieu
Rachel Walker is devoted to God and her large family, but as her curiosity about the world her parents turned from grows and she finds that neither Calvary Christian Church nor her homeschool education has the answer she craves, she considers leaving her sheltered life, as an older sister did. (catalog summary)




 

10/31/2016 - 12:50am
The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury

“Hold the dark holiday in your palms, bite it, swallow it and survive...Come out the far black tunnel of el Día de Muerte And be glad, ah so glad you are...alive!” - Mr. Moundshroud

10/11/2016 - 12:36am
Witches of America by Alex Mar

Witches.

When you hear that word, what comes to mind? Green hair, cracked and disgusting fingernails—maybe a flying broomstick? Mysterious, midnight covens dancing around a campfire? Today, most of society associates the word “witch” with Halloween and possibly even the Salem Witch Trials of 1692.

09/20/2016 - 12:23am
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

After graduating with honors from Emory University, Christopher Johnson McCandless left his suburban home in Annandale, Virginia, behind to pursue an odyssey to the Stampede Trail in Alaska.

McCandless gave up his $25,000 college grant to charity and began traveling across the Western United States. To the disappointment of his family back home, he ceased all communication with them and abandoned his 1982 Datsun after a flash flood somewhere in the Midwest.

08/25/2016 - 2:58pm
If you like A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse other book matches here.

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them-in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul--they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation. With heart-wrenching power and suspense, Hosseini shows how a woman's love for her family can move her to shocking and heroic acts of self-sacrifice, and that in the end it is love, or even the memory of love, that is often the key to survival. (catalog summary)

If you like A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, you may also like these selections (includes books pre-1900 & post-1900, per customer's request):

 


The Awakening
by Kat Chopin (pre-1900; women)
Edna Pontellier is trapped. By her marriage, by her responsibilities to two young sons, by the expectations of Creole society. When she falls in love with the charming and flirtatious Robert Lebrun during a summer on the Louisiana coast, Edna awakens to a new sense of herself, and to the possibility of true independence. Mademoiselle Reisz, a locally renowned musician, offers one example of the self-sufficient, artistic existence Edna might lead. An affair with the notorious womanizer Alcée Arobin warns of the passion and danger inherent in living outside the boundaries of convention. Torn between the life that was handed to her and the one she wants to live, Edna makes a shocking decision. (catalog summary)


 



Birds Without Wings
by Louis De Bernières
The setting is a small village in southwestern Anatolia in the waning years of the Ottoman Empire. Everyone there speaks Turkish, though they write it in Greek letters. It's a place that has room for a professional blasphemer; where a brokenhearted aga finds solace in the arms of a Circassian courtesan who isn't Circassian at all; where a beautiful Christian girl named Philothei is engaged to a Muslim boy named Ibrahim. But all of this will change when Turkey enters the modern world. (catalog summary)

 

 

08/18/2016 - 11:38am
If you like Ishmael by Daniel Quinn

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse other book matches here.

Ishmael by Daniel Quinn
The narrator of this extraordinary tale is a man in search for truth. He answers an ad in a local newspaper from a teacher looking for serious pupils, only to find himself alone in an abandoned office with a full-grown gorilla who is nibbling delicately on a slender branch. "You are the teacher?" he asks incredulously. "I am the teacher," the gorilla replies. Ishmael is a creature of immense wisdom and he has a story to tell, one that no other human being has ever heard. It is a story that extends backward and forward over the lifespan of the earth from the birth of time to a future there is still time save. Like all great teachers, Ishmael refuses to make the lesson easy; he demands the final illumination to come from within ourselves. Is it man's destiny to rule the world? Or is it a higher destiny possible for him-- one more wonderful than he has ever imagined? (catalog summary)
 

If you like Ishmael, try these other titles:


The Culture of Make Believe
by Derrick Jensen
Derrick Jensen takes no prisoners in "The Culture of Make Believe," his brilliant and eagerly awaited follow-up to his powerful and lyrical "A Language Older Than Words," What begins as an exploration of the lines of thought and experience that run between the massive lynchings in early twentieth-century America to today's death squads in South America soon explodes into an examination of the very heart of our civilization. "The Culture of Make Believe" is a book that is as impeccably researched as it is moving, with conclusions as far-reaching as they are shocking. (catalog summary)


 



Ecotopia: The Notebooks and Reports of William Weston
by Ernest Callenbach
A novel both timely and prophetic, Ernest Callenbach's Ecotopia is a hopeful antidote to the environmental concerns of today, set in an ecologically sound future society. Hailed by the Los Angeles Times as the "newest name after Wells, Verne, Huxley, and Orwell," Callenbach offers a visionary blueprint for the survival of our planet . . . and our future. (catalog summary)

 


 

10/07/2016 - 4:21pm

If it's December, it's time for that familiar topic for reports: Christmas Customs Around the World. Fortunately, the library has a number of resources to help you.

First, of course, you need to find out something about the country you've been assigned to research. The World Book Encyclopedia or The World Almanac are good places to start. Here's where you can find out whether Christmas is even celebrated in your assigned country! The World Almanac (part of Student Edition) and other encyclopedias are also available online at no charge to CRRL card holders.

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