Library Loot: Bravery, Love and Loneliness

Library Loot: Bravery, Love and Loneliness



I’ve missed posting for a few weeks, but I have still been borrowing and reading lots of books from my library.

Here’s what I picked up this week:

Whispers in the Graveyard by Theresa Breslin

They want me to join them. All I have to do is to reach out to them . . . 

Solomon struggles in school. He is bullied by his teachers and let down by his parents. His only refuge is in the local cemetery, among ancient graves that lie in the shadow of the rowan tree. But when workmen uproot the tree, a dark and terrifying power is unleashed. Will Solomon be able to save himself and the people he cares about from the terrible curse within? Whispers in the Graveyard won the Carnegie Medal and has been adapted as a play.

This is probably Theresa Breslin’s most famous book but I have yet to read it so I was excited to pick this up at the library. I really enjoyed The Rasputin Dagger by the same author which I read recently.

Pulp by Robin Talley

In 1955, eighteen-year-old Janet Jones keeps the love she shares with her best friend Marie a secret. It’s not easy being gay in Washington, DC, in the age of McCarthyism, but when she discovers a series of books about women falling in love with other women, it awakens something in Janet. As she juggles a romance she must keep hidden and a newfound ambition to write and publish her own story, she risks exposing herself—and Marie—to a danger all too real.

Sixty-two years later, Abby Zimet can’t stop thinking about her senior project and its subject—classic 1950s lesbian pulp fiction. Between the pages of her favorite book, the stresses of Abby’s own life are lost to the fictional hopes, desires and tragedies of the characters she’s reading about. She feels especially connected to one author, a woman who wrote under the pseudonym “Marian Love,” and becomes determined to track her down and discover her true identity.

In this novel told in dual narratives, New York Times bestselling author Robin Talley weaves together the lives of two young women connected across generations through the power of words. A stunning story of bravery, love, how far we’ve come and how much farther we have to go.

I loved Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley and have heard my friend Louise wax lyrical about this book, so it is another one that I am very much looking forward to reading!

Boy 87 by Ele Fountain

Shif is just an ordinary schoolboy who loves chess and playing with his best friend. But, one day, he is forced to leave home to avoid conscription into the army. He embarks on an epic journey, in which he encounters dangers and cruelties – and great acts of human kindness – as he bravely makes his way to a future he can only imagine.

Told in the powerful first person, this startling debut novel will encourage understanding and empathy in young readers, and allow the news headlines of the day to resonate with the humanity involved in creating them.

I came across this as a suggested read when I was putting together my list of Books About Refugees for teachers to use in their classes, and was lucky enough o be able to reserve a copy at the library. I want to read this, but I a also nervous to read it as it sounds like Shif has a tough journey ahead of him…

White Chrysanthemum by Mary Lynn Bracht

‘Look for your sister after each dive. Never forget. If you see her, you are safe.’

Hana and her little sister Emi are part of an island community of haenyo, women who make their living from diving deep into the sea off the southernmost tip of Korea.

One day Hana sees a Japanese soldier heading for where Emi is guarding the day’s catch on the beach. Her mother has told her again and again never to be caught alone with one. Terrified for her sister, Hana swims as hard as she can for the shore.

So begins the story of two sisters suddenly and violently separated by war. Moving between Hana in 1943 and Emi as an old woman today, White Chrysanthemum takes us into a dark and devastating corner of history — and two women whose love for one another is strong enough to triumph over the evils of war.

I heard of this book years ago, but had never gotten around to reading it – then I spotted it on the ‘Recent Arrivals’ shelf in my local library so I had to snaffle it before someone else did. I love stories with strong sibling connections and have always been fascinated by the hanyeo, women who make their living through diving. The period of history in which this is set is also fraught with difficulty in times of war. Like Boy 87 I am looking forward to reading this but also anticipating it not being a comfortable read.


What did you think of my choices this week?

Did you spot any you might read?


Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

See my previous library loots here:

Mysteries, Paris and Hope

Feminism, Folklore and Body Positivity

Gymnastics, Mermaids and Achieving Your Dreams

Birds, Cages and Secrets

Dragons, Magic and Fairytales

Sequels and Secrets

Outer Space, Winter and Magic

Witches and War

Fantasy, Intrigue and Misunderstandings

Magic, Romance, More Magic

UK YA Bests

Aliens, Fences and Fairies

War, Hope and Storms

Clockwork, Curses and Fossils

Family, Dreams and Secret Agents

Magic, Memory and Climate Change

Independence, Love and Being Different

Society, Magic and Warriors

Dragons, Villains and Lost Property

Quests, Ghosts and Swimming

Invisible Women, Peer Pressure and Folklore

Mysterious Boys, Rain and Wellington Boots

What do you think of the books I have chosen?

Would you like to read any of them?

Are there any you would recommend me moving straight to the top of the TBR list?

Do you have a library near you?

How often do you borrow books?

Do you ever buy books after having already read them? (I do, all the time!)

Find me on Twitter , Goodreads or Instagram

Thanks for reading!

3 Comments Add yours

  1. (Kitty) Cat Strawberry - Meow! says:

    Whispers in the Graveyard sounds interesting, I like anything with an eerie/creepy edge😁

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I’m looking forward to that one, although I guess that it would be better to wait until Hallowe’en time to read it!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve never heard of Whispers in the Graveyard! I’ve only read a couple of Theresa Breslin’s books, and my favourite was probably Divided City. I’m not from Glasgow but I am VERY close, and as sectarianism is quite a big thing here, it’s read in a lot of schools and is probably considered her most famous by most people in the area! I think the other one I’ve read was called ghost soldier?
    Amy x


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