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March 5, 2020 - Cranes

This past week I had the opportunity to attend a library conference in Nashville, TN. As I started my journey, to pick up a fellow librarian who lives over towards Sun Prairie, a pair of Sandhill Cranes flew over Hwy 19. Now you all, know how much I love Sandhill Cranes (and other birds as well) so that was really cool – to have them return to Wisconsin at the start of the last week of February. (Why back in the day, cranes didn’t show up until St. Patrick’s Day which probably tells you something about how weather patterns have changed). We headed south through the part of Indiana where cranes gather in the fall prior to migrating further south. There were hundreds of cranes loafing around feeding up before pushing on north, or perhaps they wintered over and never left. We continued driving south and came upon a field along I – 65 that had at least a thousand cranes. Usually I have to go out to Nebraska to see cranes in those numbers. What a way to start a conference. Driving back on Saturday, while stopped at a rest area in Kentucky, there were robins hopping and perching in trees. There were migratory flocks of grackles taking a break and strutting around. There were a few meadowlarks singing away. There were small, migratory flocks of red-winged black birds everywhere. Chirping the song that announces springs’ arrival as far as I’m concerned. We drove further north and started seeing a little snow persisting in the fields and ditches. By the time we got to Wisconsin the snow cover was everywhere. I find it heartening that spring is only a few hours’ drive south from here and that the birds are getting in position and poised to come north, any day now. A whole parcel of books arrived this week. Below are just a few of the new titles. Enjoy!

The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz” by Erik Larson. The best-selling author of Dead Wake draws on personal diaries, archival documents and declassified intelligence in a portrait of Winston Churchill that explores his day-to-day experiences during the Blitz and his role in uniting England.


Race Against Time: A Reporter Reopens the Unsolved Murder Cases of the Civil Rights Era” by Jerry Mitchell. An award-winning investigative journalist recounts the 1964 "Mississippi Burning" murders of three civil rights workers by the KKK, describing his role in reopening the case and bringing its mastermind and participating Klansmen to justice.


18 Tiny Deaths: The Untold Story of Frances Glessner Lee and the Invention of Modern Forensics” by Bruce Goldfarb. An account of the life of the woman best known for creating the Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death dioramas describes her transition from a wealthy socialite to a leader in modern forensics whose methods are still used today.


American Sherlock: Murder, Forensics, and the Birth of American CSI” by Kate Winkler Dawson. Describes the life of America's greatest, and first, forensic scientist, who invented tools that are still being used today, including blood spatter analysis, ballistics, lie-detector tests and fingerprints and solved at least two thousand cases during his forty-year career.


Decoding Boys: New Science Behind the Subtle Art of Raising Sons” by Cara Netterson. Citing the less-recognized behavioral tendencies of male adolescence that complicate communications between parents and children, a guide to raising teen boys shares strategic guidelines on effective parenting, managing screen time and understanding the sources of negative behavior.


Ready or Not: Preparing Our Kids to thrive in an Uncertain and Rapidly Changing World” by Madeline Levine.The New York Times” best-selling author of “The Price of Privilege” and “Teach Your Children Well” explores how today’s parenting techniques and our myopic educational system are failing to prepare children for their certain-to-be-uncertain future—and how we can reverse course to ensure their lasting adaptability, resilience, health and happiness

Coconut Layer Cake Murder, No.25 (Hannah Swenson)” by Joanne Fluke. Racing home to wintry Minnesota when her sister's boyfriend, Detective Lonnie Murphy, is implicated in a murder case, Hannah struggles with Lonnie's foggy memory about driving the victim home. By the best-selling author of “The Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder”.


Trouble is What I Do, No. 6 (Leonid McGill)” by Walter Mosley. Detective Leonid McGill is forced to confront the ghost of his felonious past when a nonagenarian Mississippi bluesman is targeted by an infamous assassin. By the Edgar Award-winning author of “Down the River Unto the Sea.”


Last Girl Standing” by Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush. The best-selling sibling authors of the “Wicked” series present the story of a clique of popular girls whose high-school friendship is marked by a tragedy that continues to haunt them decades later.


The Other Mrs” by Mary Kubica. Unnerved by her husband's inheritance of a decrepit coastal property and the presence of a disturbed relative, community newcomer Sadie uncovers harrowing facts about her family's possible role in a neighbor's murder.


The Third to Die, No. 1 (Mobile Response Team)” by Allison Brennan. A disgraced detective teams up with an ambitious FBI special agent to prevent a cycle of murders by a killer who ended the life of a colleague's sister. By the author of the Lucy Kincaid series

The Warsaw Protocol, No. 15 (Cotton Malone)” by Steve Berry. Investigating the thefts of the seven Arma Christi relics from their international sanctuaries, former Justice Department agent Cotton Malone learns that the relics are being demanded by a blackmailer in possession of incriminating evidence against the president of Poland.


The Last Best Hope (Star Trek: Picard)” by Una McCormack. An original prequel novel based on the new Star Trek series centered on the iconic Starfleet captain Jean-Luc Picard introduces a next generation of fans to favorite and new characters.


Oona Out of Order” by Margarita Montimore. As the countdown to the New Year begins, soon-to-be-19 Oona Lockhart faints and awakens 32 years in the future in her 51-year-old body; and, greeted by a friendly stranger in a beautiful house she’s told is her own, Oona learns that with each passing year she will leap to another age at random.