What We’re Reading: Easy to Get At the Library Edition

library books

My library hold list is a mile long. Once I see someone recommend a book, instead of putting it on Good Reads like I should, I instead just go right to the Milwaukee Public Library app. This means one of two things. Either I pick up 22 books at a time or I am on the waitlist for.ev.er.

Pro Tip – if you order the large print edition of a book, you’re bound to get it faster. Since even that often doesn’t work, here are six books you can probably pick up right now that you’ll want to move up your TBR list.

Small Great Things

Real talk – I really wanted to recommend Wish You Were Here because it is amazing and timely and I don’t think it will be as important even a year from now, but this is way too new to find it easily. Watch the Lucky Day shelf and instead, let’s talk Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult. Sara B., our Customer Relationship Manager, had this to say:

Small Great Things tells the story of a black labor and delivery nurse, a white supremacist couple, and how they cross paths. While fiction, the book paints a complex picture of our world today and challenges the reader to consider just how people become the way they are.

Still Me

This is book three of the Me Before You series by Jojo Moyes and dare I say it, my favorite. I listened to this one on audiobook and narrator Anna Acton has a lovely voice. In this book, Louisa moves to NYC to be a caretaker for a rich woman. The normal conflict, patience, and hilarity of the series ensue, but we also get plenty of time where Louisa can focus on herself. There is still romance, but falling in love with yourself is the priority here. Dig it.

All The Ugly & Wonderful Things

Sarah K., our Assistant Kitchen Manager, was the one to recommend this one not only to us, but also to her book club. Here’s a description:

As the daughter of a meth dealer, Wavy knows not to trust people, not even her own parents. Struggling to raise her little brother, eight-year-old Wavy is the only responsible “adult” around. She finds peace in the starry Midwestern night sky above the fields behind her house. One night everything changes when she witnesses one of her father’s thugs, Kellen, a tattooed ex-con with a heart of gold, wreck his motorcycle. What follows is a powerful and shocking love story between two unlikely people that asks tough questions, reminding us of all the ugly and wonderful things that life has to offer.

So it’s not your easy, breezy beach read we’re normally recommending around here, but sure sounds intriguing, doesn’t it?

The Rose Code

It’s been awhile since I offered up a book in my favorite genre, “WWII from the woman’s perspective”. Let me bring that back by telling you The Rose Code by Kate Quinn is a must read. This is a book about three female code breakers — Osla, Mab and Beth — at Bletchley Park during WWII. The women form a friendship (and a book club) over the years, but a betrayal and traitor among their colleagues lands one of them in locked up in an asylum in the years after the war. (Description credit.) There are so many interesting twists and turns all with epic descriptions of current fashions and excitement about the imminent Princess Elizabeth’s wedding. You’ll read this one fast.

A Gentleman in Moscow

Our Director of Operations, Ryan recommended A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. He describes it as a book about a Russian aristocrat that is sentenced to house arrest in a luxurious hotel. It includes a little of everything: politics, romance, parenthood, and espionage. I don’t know about you, but the current war in Ukraine has me curious about the history and daily life of both Ukraine and Russia. Fictional books like Ryan’s recommendation help us learn more about the region in an entertaining way. Remembering that folks we only see how in conflict once lived normal lives humanize the situation even more.

The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music

Attention all Gen X and Elder Millennials – this is your next read. Written by Dave Grohl, this is just the kind of story you would expect from the Foo Fighters frontman and drummer of Nirvana. He tells the tales of his youth, of music, of heartbreak and grief, and how he inadvertently became involved in the pivotal moment that defined transition into the 90s – the release of Nirvana’s album Nevermind. While the wait may be a smidge longer if you are looking to borrow from the library, it will be worth it to wait for the audiobook so you can hear Grohl himself narrate. Check out the Libby app to connect to your local library to borrow audiobooks and ebooks. (Bonus: Follow this one up with The Nineties by Chuck Klosterman.)


As always, I’m up for any book recommendations you have. Summer is almost upon us, so I’m here for the chick lit. The rest of the kitchen staff seem to like the dark stuff though, so we’ll take all your recs! Happy reading!

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