DECEMBER READS
Whether you’re looking for a great read to while away the cold and short days of December, or searching for the perfect title for the bookworms on your gift list, this month’s guide has it all! From mystery to history, titles for kids and teens, and everything in between, our shelves are bursting with great titles to keep you reading all month long.
FICTION
The Attempted Murder
of Teddy Roosevelt: A Novel
by Burt Solomon
(December 3)

A powerful and intricately plotted historical thriller from an award-winning political journalist and Washington insider. Theodore Roosevelt had been president for less than a year when on a tour in New England his horse-drawn carriage was broadsided by an electric trolley. TR was thrown clear but his Secret Service bodyguard was killed instantly. The trolley’s motorman pleaded guilty to manslaughter and the matter was quietly put to rest. Was it an accident or an assassination attempt? The author weaves historically accurate events and characters into the story, making it both informative as well as highly entertaining.
(Mystery)
Just Watch Me
by Jeff Lindsay
(December 3)

Riley Wolfe is a bad guy everyone will enjoy rooting for! Robin Hood-like, he steals only from the 0.1 percent, whom he sees as morally corrupt and gladly knocks off if necessary. Now he has his eye on a particularly well-guarded set of sparklers: the Iranian Crown Jewels. Behind him is a dogged cop, and behind the cop is a female forger who sometimes works with Riley. A terrific and fun series launch that will have readers wondering where Riley will strike next!
(Fiction) 

This Is Happiness
by Niall Williams
(December 3)

In the remote Irish village of Faha, it's been raining for a long time - not a big surprise for Ireland's western coast. But as the rain starts letting up - and Father Coffey celebrates the coming of electricity - 17-year-old Noel Crowe encounters Christy for the first time and knows that something crucial has changed. What follows is the story of Christy's hunt for a lost love even as Noel gets his first taste of romance and electricity transforms the town for good. This novel is a delight, full of beauty and hard-won wisdom. Fans of Kent Haruf, Ann Patchett, and Anna Quindlen will enjoy. Film rights have been secured!
(Fiction)

Thin Ice
by Paige Shelton
(December 3)

The best-selling author of the Scottish Bookshop Mysteries presents a first entry in a new series that’s sure to chill your bones. Beth Rivers is on the run, escaping a horrifying ordeal with an obsessed fan, she hides out in a sparsely populated town in Alaska. Before long she becomes embroiled in a local murder case, which dredges up her own past.  A superb suspense mystery for fans of Harlan Coben and Christina Dodd.
(Mystery) 
The German House
by Annette Hess
(December 3)

For twenty-four-year-old Eva Bruhns, World War II is a foggy childhood memory. At the war’s end, Frankfurt was a smoldering ruin, severely damaged by the Allied bombings. Now it is 1963, and the city’s streets, once cratered are smooth and paved. Shiny new stores replace scorched rubble. Eager for her wealthy suitor, Jürgen Schoormann, to propose, Eva dreams of starting a new life away from her parents and sister. Eva’s plans are turned upside down when a fiery investigator, David Miller, hires her as a translator for a war crimes trial. Becoming more involved, Eva questions her family’s silence on the war and her future. Why do her parents refuse to talk about what happened? What are they hiding? Does she really love Jürgen and will she be happy as a housewife? Propelled by her own conscience, and going against her family’s wishes, she joins a team of fiery prosecutors determined to bring the Nazis to justice. Set against the Frankfurt Trials of 1963, Hess puts forth a harrowing, yet uplifting coming-of-age story.
(Fiction)

The Glittering Hour
by Iona Grey
(December 10)

Selina Lennox is a Bright Young Thing. Her life is a whirl of parties and drinking, pursued by the press, and staying on just the right side of scandal, all while running from the life her parents would choose for her. Lawrence Weston is a penniless painter who stumbles into Selina's orbit one night and can never let her go even while knowing someone of her stature could never end up with someone of his. Except Selina falls hard for Lawrence, envisioning a life of true happiness. When tragedy strikes, Selina finds herself choosing what's safe over what's right. Spanning two decades and a seismic shift in British history as World War II approaches, The Glittering Hour  is an epic historical about true love found and lost, and the secrets we keep from one another.
(Fiction)

All That's Bright and Gone
by Eliza Nellums
(December 10)

Six-year-old Aoife Scott worries about her mother, Siobhan, after she’s sent to the hospital following a disturbance outside a Detroit mall and the vagueness about when her mother will return home. She’s equally mystified by conflicting information about her dead brother, Theo. With her imaginary friend Teddy by her side and the detecting skills of her nosy next-door neighbor, Aoife sets out to uncover the truth about her family. As her search takes her from the banks of Theo's secret hideout by the river to the rooftops overlooking Detroit, Aoife will learn that some secrets can't stay hidden forever and sometimes the pain we bury is the biggest secret of them all. 
An original and moving tale!
(Mystery)

The Book of Science
and Antiquities: A Novel
by Thomas Keneally
(December 10)

An award-winning documentary filmmaker, Shelby Apple is obsessed with reimagining the full story of the Learned Man; a prehistoric man whose remains are believed to be the link between Africa and ancient Australia. From Vietnam to northern Africa and the Australian Outback, Shelby searches for understanding of this enigmatic man from the ancient past, unaware that the two men share a great deal in common. Some 40,000 years in the past, the Learned Man has made his home alongside other members of his tribe. Complex and deeply introspective, he reveres tradition, loyalty, and respect for his ancestors. Willing to sacrifice himself for the greater good, the Learned Man cannot conceive that a man millennia later could relate to him in heart and feeling. An extraordinary dual narrative that effortlessly transports you around the world and across time, offering a hymn to idealism and to human development. Stunning.
(Fiction)

NON-FICTION
Labyrinth of Ice:
The Triumphant and Tragic Greely Polar Expedition
by Buddy Levy
(December 3)

In July 1881, Lt. A.W. Greely and his crew of 24 scientists and explorers were bound for the last region unmarked on global maps. Their goal: Farthest North. What would follow was one of the most extraordinary and terrible voyages ever made.  Labyrinth of Ice  tells the true story of the heroic lives and deaths of these voyagers hell-bent on fame and fortune—at any cost—and how their journey changed the world. The result is an intense, unputdownable, historical adventure with modern-day relevance for the climate change debate.

Disney's Land:
Walt Disney and the Invention
of the Amusement Park
That Changed the World
by Richard Snow
(December 3)

By the early 1950's Walt Disney's great achievements in animation were behind him, and he was increasingly bored by the two-dimensional film medium. He wanted to work in three, to build an entirely new sort of amusement park, one that relied more on cinematic techniques than on thrill rides, one from which all tawdriness had been purged. He achieved it, but just barely. He ran out of money, had to borrow against his life insurance, fell out with his studio, frightened his family, and endured much ridicule. The rest is entertainment history; a spectacular story, a wild ride from vision to realization, and an epic of innovation and error that reflects the uniqueness of the man determined to build the happiest place on earth – with a watchmaker’s precision, artist’s conviction, and the high-hearted recklessness of a river boat gambler.

The Measure of Our Lives:
A Gathering of Wisdom
by Toni Morrison
(December 3)

A treasury of quotations from Toni Morrison's work is at once the ideal introduction to her and a lovely and moving keepsake for her devoted readers. This inspirational book juxtaposes quotations, one to a page, drawn from Toni Morrison's entire body of work, both fiction and nonfiction--from  The Bluest Eye  to  God Help the Child,  from  Playing in the Dark  to  The Source of Self-Regard --to tell a story of self-actualization. It aims to evoke the totality of Toni Morrison's literary vision.

The Courage to be Happy:
Discover the Power of Positive Psychology and Choose Happiness Every Day
by Ichiro Kishimi & Fumitake Koga
(December 24)

The authors of the internationally best-selling The Courage to Be Disliked continue the conversations between a philosopher and disillusioned young man learning to apply the powerful teachings of Alfred Adler, a 19th-century psychologist, to his everyday life. To be read on its own or as a companion to the bestselling first book,  The Courage to Be Happy reveals a bold new way of thinking and living, empowering you to let go of the shackles of past trauma and the expectations of others, and to use this freedom to create the life you truly desire.

And Then We Grew Up:
On Creativity, Potential, and the Imperfect Art of Adulthood
by Rachel Friedman
(December 31)

Rachel Friedman was a serious violinist as a kid. She quit music in college but never stopped fantasizing about what her life might be like if she had never put down her bow. Years later, a freelance writer in New York, she again finds herself struggling with her fantasy of an artist’s life. In search of answers, she decides to track down her childhood friends from Interlochen, a prestigious arts camp she attended, full of aspiring actors, artists, dancers, and musicians, to find out how their early creative ambitions have translated into adult careers, relationships, and identities. Her conversations with these men and women spark nuanced revelations about creativity and being an artist: that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing, that success isn’t always linear, that sometimes it’s okay to quit. Perfect for anyone who has given up a childhood dream and wondered “what if,” and for those who have aspired to do what they love and had doubts along the way. Warm, whip-smart, and insightful, it offers inspiration for finding creative fulfillment wherever we end up in life.

Tiny Habits:
The Small Changes That Change Everything
by B.J. Fogg
(December 31)

The world’s leading expert on habit formation shows how you can have a happier, healthier life: by starting small. Based on twenty years of research and Fogg’s experience coaching more than 40,000 people, Tiny Habits cracks the code of habit formation. With breakthrough discoveries in every chapter, you’ll learn the simplest proven ways to transform your life. Fogg shows you how to feel good about your successes instead of bad about your failures. Whether you want to lose weight, de-stress, sleep better, or be more productive each day, Tiny Habits makes it easy to achieve.

TEEN/YOUNG ADULT TITLES
Dangerous Alliance:
An Austentacious Romance
by Jennieke Cohen
(December 3)

When Vicky, more properly known as Lady Victoria Aston, receives the unwelcome news that she must find a husband soon to secure her family’s ancestral home estate—and, thus, safety—she takes on the burden and participates in the London social season with determination. This delightful YA novel is the perfect blend of Georgian romance and Jane Austen with a fun mystery twist tossed in. Perfect for Downton Abbey fans and those looking for an entertaining and light read.
(Teen)
A Heart in a Body in the World
by Deb Caletti

Submitted by Emily D.
After severe love and loss, Annabelle’s body more than her mind decides it needs to run from Seattle to Washington, DC. Her Grandpa Ed follows along in his RV and her brother and friends become her publicity team as she makes her way across the country, reluctantly becoming an activist. All of the attention cannot help her surmount the guilt and shame she feels about what happened back home. This is an unsettling read that will leave your heart heavy but it carries such an important message in the wake of recent gun violence.
(Teen)

The Cheerleaders
by Kara Thomas

Submitted by Emily D.
There are no more cheerleaders in Sunnybrook after the tragic deaths of five cheerleaders five years ago. This YA mystery/thriller hooked me from the dust jacket and kept me on that hook until the very end. There are twists and turns I couldn’t have predicted and really enjoyed. It’s not light or fluffy or cliché at all – so be warmed! This isn't a warm fuzzy book but it sure is interesting.
(Young Adult)

KIDS/PARENTING COLLECTION
Art Sparks:
Draw, Paint, Make, and Get Creative with 53 Amazing Projects
by Marion Abrams
& Hilary Emerson Lay

Submitted by Katie B.
Such a fun book! It's full of DIYs and art inspiration for the kids - and not so kids. A lot of these projects reminded me of my own projects from when I was little. And some of them inspired me to look for paintings, pencils, brushes, and even sticks to have fun for a while.
(Children’s Non-Fiction)

It's Such a Good Feeling:
The Best of Mister Rogers (CD)

Submitted by Katie B.
With five previously unissued songs this CD includes the show’s original closer, “Tomorrow”. This CD is a big hit in my car! Love hearing Mister Rogers voice and all of his songs. So, hop on the trolley for the Land Of Make Believe, because it really is such a good feeling.
(Children’s CD)

Things I Wish I'd Known
Before We Became Parents
by Gary Chapman

Submitted by Katie S.
New York Times bestselling author, Gary Chapman, delves into the topic of parenting and what you and your partner should know before you have kids. Some of the practical advice includes the importance of apologizing (both children and parents to each other), of not putting your marriage on autopilot, of disciplining children in a loving manner, and the parents' involvement in their child's education. It is a quick read that gets you thinking ahead about issues of real concern in parenting.
(Parenting Collection)

The Best Gender-Neutral
Baby Names
by Melanie Mannarino

Submitted by Katie S.
Are you looking for unique baby names that don’t follow the gender norm? This book is a collection of unisex names broken down by letter and by inspiration like movies, video games, and even the periodic table! 
(Parenting Collection)