Staff Reading Picks

Home is Burning

by Dan Marshall
ISBN:9781250068828

The author recounts how he and his four siblings cared for their parents after their mother experienced a cancer relapse and his father was diagnosed with terminal ALS.

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The Muralist

by B.A. Shapiro
ISBN:978161203573

Auction-house employee Danielle Abrams investigates the unsolved disappearance of her famous-artist great-aunt when she discovers enigmatic paintings hidden behind Abstract Expressionist works created decades earlier.

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Knocking on Heaven's Door

by Katy Butler
ISBN:9781451641974

"Once upon a time we knew how to die. We knew how to sit at a deathbed.” In this sad yet valiant and exacting memoir, Butler, an award-winning science writer for the New Yorker and other venues, recounts the plight of her elderly father and the toll his many afflictions exacts on herself and her mother. He suffers a stroke followed by progressive dementia, speech difficulty, visual loss, and incontinence. An injury during WWII already cost him an arm. Before undergoing hernia surgery, a permanent cardiac pacemaker is implanted. As his mind and body further deteriorate, Butler and her mother plead with doctors to deactivate the device to no avail. When he finally dies from pneumonia, the pacemaker continues functioning inside the dead man’s chest, a chilling reminder of “our culture’s idolatrous, one-sided worship of maximum longevity.” About a year later, his physically and emotionally exhausted wife expires. Butler looks at the strain on caregivers, feelings of guilt and grief, the untapped utilization of palliative care, and the haziness between “saving a life and prolonging a dying.” --Tony Miksanek Booklist

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Loyalty

by Ingrid Thoft
ISBN:9780399162121

Protecting the interests of her managerial father and dysfunctional family business by working as a private investigator, Fina tackles the most challenging case of her career when her sister-in-law goes missing.

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