Jo Hansen

Jo Hansen

 


Jo Hansen has been a Readers’ Advisor at Cook Library for several years, after a 20-year career as a newspaper journalist. Libraries rock! She especially enjoys literary and historical fiction as well as mysteries and fantasy. When she doesn’t have her nose in a book, she enjoys playing with her chocolate Labrador Yogi Bear and watching great movies. 


 

Posted by on
I still have music running through my head after my visit to the fantastic “David Bowie Is’’ exhibition last week at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. I spent two hours taking in his influential music, creative costumes, extensive filmograph...

Posted by on
Life Magazine cover, July 28, 1953, of JFK and Jackie on Victura. If you are a Kennedy buff, you won’t want to miss next week's multi-media presentation by James W. Graham, author of Victura: The Kennedys, a Sailboat and the Sea. Graham did extensi...

Posted by on
 “There is balm in Gilead, To make the wounded whole; There's power enough in heaven, To cure a sin-sick soul.’’ --African American Spiritual   Fans of Marilynne Robinson’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel Gilead will want to read her lat...

Posted by on
Jane Smiley’s new story about an ordinary Iowa farm family makes for an extraordinary novel spanning three decades, from post-World War I into the 1950s. Smiley, who won the Pulitzer Prize in 1992 for her Iowa farm family story, A Thousand Acres, r...
Haruki Murakami examines how scars from one’s youth can still cause crippling pain as a grownup in his  profound novel, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage.  Tsukuru Tazaki has a successful career designing train stations...

Posted by on
  In Louise Penny’s 10th mystery, The Long Way Home, Armand Gamache, former Chief Inspector of Homicide of the Sûreté du Québec, has retired to the peaceful village of Three Pines, hoping to heal hidden wounds he suffered in How the Light Gets ...

Posted by on
County prosecutor Belfa Elkins faces many personal and professional challenges in Julia Keller’s third mystery, Summer of the Dead. Bell’s sister Shirley is living with her while trying to piece together a new life after spending 30 years in prison ...

Posted by on
J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, returns with a well-crafted, entertaining second mystery starring private detective Cormoran Strike. By taking on the publishing world in The Silkworm, she creates a complex, gritty story th...

Posted by on
  Quirky characters abound in Amy Bloom’s new story about an unusual family’s attempt to survive during World War II.  Twelve-year-old Eva lives with her mother and occasionally is visited by a man named Edgar, who is her father. When E...
Reading Rebecca Makkai’s inventive sophomore novel, The Hundred-Year House, is like solving a complex puzzle. When we first visit the grand estate, we meet the elderly Gracie Breen, who is descended from a famous old-money Canadian family, the Devo...

Posted by on
Ever wonder what the library staff is reading? Then you are in luck! Every month I compile a list of the adult books employees throughout the library have read, and post it on the Books/Movies/Music Page. I break it down by Fiction, Mysteries/Suspens...
When I started reading all the rave reviews in 2012 for Leigh Bardugo’s dark fantasy, Shadow and Bone, my interest was piqued. The New York Times called the debut novelist’s writing “Mesmerizing…Bardugo’s set up is shiver-inducing, of the delicious v...

Posted by on
  Meet Junior Bender, a professional cat burglar who is more than an ordinary thief. His intelligence and skills have made him the go-to guy for crooks with problems. Do you want to know who stole your stolen painting? Then Junior is the pers...
Meet Lori Rader-Day at Cook Library at 7 p.m. July 15. Register I really enjoy reading debut novels. It’s so much fun discovering new authors and anticipating their future books. One such author is Lori Rader-Day, whose psychological thriller, The ...
If you want to know about some of the best new books that librarians love, check out LibraryReads. Once a month librarians across the country vote for their favorite books, and only 10 make the list. The July list has just been announced, and we are...

Posted by on
I’m not sure why, but most major book awards are announced either in the spring or fall. The last big award of this season, the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction (formerly the Orange Prize), was announced Wednesday. Here is a roundup of all the spri...

Posted by on
  With China Dolls, Lisa See has written a highly engaging novel looking into the popular "Oriental'' nightclub scene before World War II in San Francisco.   Three young women from different backgrounds form a rocky friendship when trying...
We welcome three debut novelists this summer as well as two New York Times bestselling authors to the library. We start out the summer fun by throwing a book launch party with special guest author Jen Lancaster for Your Perfect Life, a debut novel b...
Hooray! Retired Police Detective Baruch “Buck’’ Schatz returns, more ornery than ever, in Daniel Friedman’s terrific second mystery, Don’t Ever Look Back. Friedman introduced the colorful octogenarian in Don’t Ever Get Old, imagining what life would ...
When I started reading the delightful Bellweather Rhapsody (publication date May 13), it was clear to me that Kate Racculia was a band geek growing up. Both my kids were band geeks, and attended music festivals like the one in Racculia’s second novel...