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Morris & McCoy On Books

Updated: April 8, 2019

From February 2007 through September 2012, two LAPL librarians, Sheryn Morris and Mary McCoy, presented a series of book reviews as part of the Thursdays@Central lunch program.

The billionaire who wasn't : how Chuck Feeney secretly made and gave away a fortune
O'Clery, Conor.
Call Number: 361.92 F295OC
Chuck Feeney is a multi-rich, clever and private man who has made and given away millions of dollars. In this rags-to-riches biography much is revealed about his drive, motivation and business acumen plus his decision to give away four billion dollars over the next ten years.

Changing my mind : occasional essays
Smith, Zadie.
Call Number: 824 S664
The nimble-minded Smith turns her powers of observation towards a variety of subjects, including Katharine Hepburn, Barack Obama, E.M. Forster, terrible movies, Fawlty Towers, and the craft of writing.

Clash of civilizations over an elevator in Piazza Vittorio
Lakhous, Amara, 1970-

The time is the present, the city is Rome, the location is a lower-class apartment building with an elevator that is the object of great dispute. The truth is told by ten residents plus an eleventh who interprets what the others have said, and there is a murder to be solved.

Dreaming in French : a novel
McAndrew, Megan.
This coming of age story about a family of American expatriates living in Paris in the 1970s is intoxicating, sophisticated, and impossible to put down.

Furious improvisation : how the WPA and a cast of thousands made high art out of desperate times
Quinn, Susan.
Call Number: 809.25 Q75
This is not only the story of the WPA's Federal Theatre Project, it is also a biography of Hallie Flanagan, the driving innovative force behind it; the once-unknown actors, plays and writers who would take American theatre into a new era; and the political mayhem which would end the project and the hope for a National Theatre.

The Gardner heist : a true story of the world's largest unsolved art theft
Boser, Ulrich.
Call Number: 709 B743
Isabella Stewart Gardner collected and created a unique private art museum in Boston where thieves carried off a unique heist that has yet to be solved.

Gone girl : a novel
Flynn, Gillian, 1971-
Call Number: M
Flynn's psychological thriller about a husband who may or may not be responsible for his wife's disappearance has been drawing rave reviews, but be sure not to miss her other books. Sharp Objects in particular will raise goosebumps on even the hottest summer days.

Hellhound on his trail : the stalking of Martin Luther King, Jr., and the international hunt for his assassin
Sides, Hampton.
Call Number: 323.4092 K53Si
A dual history of Martin Luther King Jr.'s last days and of the twisted machinations carried out by a strange loner and career criminal named James Earl Ray.

Into the Beautiful North: A Novel
Urrea, Luis Alberto

All the men have left Tres Camarones for the United States, leaving its residents vulnerable to abuse from local bandidos. But after 19-year-old Nayeli watches The Magnificent Seven, she and her friends hatch a plan to take back their village.

Lit : a memoir
Karr, Mary.
Call Number: 811 K18K-2
In her follow-up to The Liar's Club and Cherry, Karr lays down blistering prose about her battle with alcoholism, her failed marriage, and her conversion to Catholicism.

Little Bee
Cleave, Chris.
A Nigerian teenager and an English woman are brought together by a tragedy that spans their respective continents in this marvelous, surprising, and tremendously sad novel.

The missing
Gautreaux, Tim.
A World War I veteran takes a job aboard a steamboat to help find a kidnapped child in this appealingly old-fashioned story about vengeance and redemption.

Nine lives : in search of the sacred in modern India
Dalrymple, William.
Call Number: 294 D151
For many years India has been the passionate object of Dalrymple's research and travels. Through the lives of nine people, he explores the effect India's burgeoning economy has had on its traditional and varied religions and cultures.

Pictures at a revolution : five movies and the birth of the new Hollywood
Harris, Mark, 1963-
Call Number: 791 H315
Three of the five Best Picture nominees of 1967 - Bonnie and Clyde, The Graduate, and In The Heat of The Night - were emblematic of the overthrow of the old studio system in Hollywood by a younger generation of filmmakers and producers.

Sawtelle, West Los Angeles's Japantown
Fujimoto, Jack.
Call Number: 979.41 L881Fu
A photographic history, with some short essays, about the other Japanese neighborhood in Los Angeles. This documents and provides insight into the history of the Japanese American community surrounding the Sawtelle area of West Los Angeles.

Shadow of the Silk Road
Thubron, Colin, 1939-
Call Number: 958 T532
Peripatetic scholar, Colin Thubron, retraces parts of the ancient Silk Road. This is true adventure, not as a dare, based on remarkable knowledge and experience, and fueled by incredible curiosity.

Trouble : a novel
Christensen, Kate, 1962-
Josie is a Manhattan psychiatrist in the midst of a divorce. Her best friend, Raquel, is a musician embroiled in an ugly tabloid scandal involving a much younger man. When the two decide to escape to Mexico City together, the result is a refreshing, subversive look at female friendships, aging, and desire.

Twenty fragments of a ravenous youth
Guo, Xiaolu, 1973-
Fenfang Wang is the country-girl hick who leaves her family's sweet-potato farm seeking adventure, some money, and a better way of life in modern Beijing.

Wicked city
Atkins, Ace.
After the murder of an idealistic politician, the citizens of Phenix City, Alabama band together to take back their city from the madams, thugs, and dirty cops in power. The novel is based on a true story -- Phenix City was once called "the wickedest city in America" by Look magazine.

Wonderful tonight : George Harrison, Eric Clapton, and me
Boyd, Pattie, 1944-
Call Number: 789.24 H319Bo

Pattie Boyd, one-time model, wife of George Harrison then wife of Eric Clapton, reveals what life was really like during the swinging music scene of the 1960s and beyond. As a muse to both Harrison and Clapton, Pattie Boyd was the inspiration for "Something" and for "Layla" which became all-time classics.