March 2023 Book Discussion


Please join the Tuesday Evening Book Group at 7 pm on March 28 for our discussion of Yours Cheerfully by AJ Pearce. Set during World War II in England, this novel features young advice columnist Emmy Lake, along with the women war workers she and her friend Bunty meet. Some readers will remember Emmy from Dear Mrs. Bird, which we discussed three years ago. This novel works well as a standalone read, and I think it is even better than the first book. My earlier review is here. Copies of the book are available for checkout at the Circulation Desk. eBook and eAudiobook copies are available from Media on Demand/Libby and from eRead Illinois/Axis 360. Please register online or at the Computer Help Desk.

Hope to see you there!


Colleen Hoover Readalikes

Colleen Hoover — Readalikes

We talked about author Colleen Hoover and her All-Star stats in a previous post and maybe you have put some of her books on hold.  But what to read while you are waiting for your books to come in?

While Hoover’s books are considered “New Adult,” meaning protagonists are between the ages of 18 and 26, and her stories include Romance, Sex, Tears, and Plot Twists, her content varies.  In addition to love stories, she has written a psychological thriller, “Verity,” a paranormal love story, “Layla,” and books about domestic violence, drug abuse, and poverty.  Regardless, Hoover’s books bring in capital D Drama with gripping stories and dialogue. 

So while you are waiting for your next CoHo book, try one of these authors!       Gayle

(See Gayle’s CoHo Readalikes book display in the library this month!)               

Andre, Bella

Audrain, Ashley

Bailey, Tessa

Bennett, Brit

Callahan, Tess

Carlino, Renee

Carty-Williams, Candice

Cole, Courtney

Dawson, Maddie

Debartolo, Tiffanie 

Emezi, Akwaeke

Emezi, Akwaeke

Fisher, Tarryn

Fortune, Carley

Harte, Marie

Hatvany, Amy

Hendricks, Greer

Hoang, Helen

Jimenez, Abby

Keane, Mary Beth

Larkin, Allie

Lauren, Christina

Loren, Roni

Lovering, Carola

Lynn, Stacey

Morrow, Rebecca 

Moyes, JoJo

Novak, Brenda

Reid, Taylor Jenkins

Ronin, Isabelle

Score, Lucy

Serle, Rebecca

Silver, Josie

Sweeney, Cynthia D’Aprix

Todd, Anna

Tucker, K. A.

Williams, Tia

The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches

very secret society jacketThe Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches by Sangu Mandanna

Mika is a witch who is skilled at creating potions and spells from natural ingredients, including stardust. She lives in Brighton, within sight of the sea, but relocates often along with her dog Circe. Her only contacts with other witches are occasional teas with her former guardian Primrose and a quarterly meeting with other British witches. After posting videos online where she pretends to be a witch, Mika is contacted by four muggles and asked to tutor three witch girls who need training in order to use their magic safely. She travels to Nowhere House in Norfolk, and meets Rosetta, Terra Cotta, and Altamira, all black and brown girls like her, along with gruff Irish librarian Jamie, who doesn’t really want her help. Mika has never really known love, and longs to be part of the girls’ found family, but plans only a temporary stay, as she always moves on. Funny and heartfelt, this engaging read is a good readalike for The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune and The Witches of Moonshyne Manor by Bianca Marais.


Colleen Hoover Booklist

Colleen Who?

In 2022, Colleen Hoover sold a lot of books, She sold a lot of a lot of books.  In fact, she sold more books than James Patterson and John Grisham combined.  She had six of the top 10 spots on The New York Times’s paperback fiction best-seller list and sold over 14 million books last year.

As the New York Times wrote in an article last year about Colleen Hoover, “Most blockbuster authors break out because of a popular series, like “Twilight” or “Harry Potter,” or build a brand by writing in a recognizable genre. Hoover is eclectic. She’s written romances, a steamy psychological thriller, a ghost story, harrowing novels about domestic violence, drug abuse, homelessness and poverty. Though her books are hard to categorize, most of them have an addictive combination of sex, drama and outrageous plot twists.”

Hoover self-published her first book in 2012, so that her mother, who had just gotten an Amazon Kindle, could read it.  At the time, she was making $9 an hour as a social worker.  Since then she has written more than 20 more novels in the romance and young adult fiction genres, with her fans sharing their love of her stories on social media apps.  

Intrigued?  Join the club!                          –Gayle




                Point of Retreat

                This Girl



                Losing Hope

                Finding Cinderella

                Finding Perfect

Maybe Someday

                Maybe Someday

                Maybe Not

                Maybe Now

Never, Never

                Never, Never parts 1, 2, 3

It Ends With Us

                It Ends With Us

                It Starts With Us

Standalone Novels

     All Your Perfects 


     Heart Bones 


     November 9 

     Regretting You 

     Reminders of Him 

     Too Late 

     Ugly Love 


     Without Merit 

The Sweet Spot

The Sweet Spot by Amy Poeppel

While not all the characters are likeable, at least at first, Lauren and Leo Shaw’s extended family are the heart of this contemporary novel. No one is the lead in this ensemble cast, as the point of view changes from revenge-seeking Melinda to social influencer Felicity to ceramic artist Lauren, then Lauren and Leo’s three hilarious children, her prickly mother, his biological father, and more. In addition, there’s a gerbil and a dog, a private school and a bar, The Sweet Spot, in the basement of the Greenwich Village brownstone that Leo and Lauren are living in. Their house is owned by Phillip, and still has all the 1970s décor that desperately needs updating. The group of characters, including Melinda’s ex-husband, all come together to take care of baby Horatio, also known as Hank. I laughed aloud several times, and read parts of it out loud to my family. I thoroughly enjoyed this chaotic and joyful novel. The library’s book group is discussing Musical Chairs by Amy Poeppel on February 28, another up-lit novel.