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Martin's Must-Reads

Lindsey Grojean

Martin's Must-Reads

There are one million new books published each year.  With so many books and so little time, where do you begin to find your next must-read? There’s the New York Times Bestseller list, the Goodreads app, the Cape Library’s Staff picks shelf and now Martin’s Must-Reads.

Every Wednesday at 6:42 and 8:42 a.m., and Sunday at 8:18 a.m., Betty Martin recommends a must read based on her own personal biases for historical fiction, quirky characters and overall well-turned phrases. Her list includes WWII novels, biographies of trailblazers, novels with truly unique individuals and lots more. Reading close to 100 titles a year, Betty has plenty of titles to share.

Local support for "Martin's Must Reads" comes from the Cape Girardeau Public Library and the Poplar Bluff Municipal Library.
  • “Approaching the museum, ready to hunt, Stephane Breitwieser clasps hands with his girlfriend, Anne-Catherine Kleinklaus, and together they stroll to the front desk and say hello, a cute couple. Then they purchase two tickets with cash and walk in. It’s lunchtime, stealing time, on a busy Sunday in Antwerp, Belgium, in February 1997. “
  • Anthony Peardew has been collecting lost things for forty years, ever since he lost the St. Teresa medal that his wife-to-be gave him right before she died. Every day he goes for a walk, picks up lost items, brings them back to his study, and labels them.
  • “On the first day of spring, 1911, Esther Honey, great-granddaughter of Benjamin and Patience, dozed in her rocking chair by the wood stove in her cabin on Apple Island. Snow poured from the sky. Wind scoured the island and smacked the windows like giant hands and kicked the door like a giant heel and banked the snow up the north side of the shack until it reached the roof. The island a granite pebble in the frigid Atlantic shallows, the clouds so low their bellies scraped on the tip of the Penobscot pine at the top of the bluff.”
  • “Set in Constantinople in the fifteenth century, in a small town in present-day Idaho, and on an interstellar ship decades from now Anthony Doerr’s gorgeous third novel is a triumph of imagination and compassion, a soaring story of children on the cusp of adulthood in worlds in peril, who find resilience, hope and - a book.”
  • “In a tall cabinet, on a glass shelf, lies a white porcelain rabbit. Fluorescent light is reflected in the sheen of its coat. Lifelike, plump and pretty, you can almost imagine pulling it onto your lap to stroke, but there is a tension there. The delicately sculpted ears lie flat, and its sightless milky-white eyes roll back in fear.”
  • “I hope that as you read the amazing story of Crow Mary you felt her spirit and her courage and strength as she fought to do what she knew to survive in the 1800’s. Both the author and I, Crow Mary’s great-granddaughter, felt her overwhelming spirit for the first time when we visited Fort Walsh, AKA Fort Farwell, a historical site in Saskatchewan, Canada. There I learned about the Cypress Hills Massacre and my great-grandmother’s part in it.”
  • “It began with an itch. Not a metaphorical itch to travel the world or some quarter-life crisis. But a literal, physical itch. A maddening, claw-at-your-skin, keep-you-up-at-night itch that surfaced during my senior year of college, first on the tops of my feet and then moving up my calves and thighs.”
  • “Amos Barrowfield realized something was wrong as soon as he came within sight of Badford. There were men working in the fields, but not as many as he expected. The road into the village was deserted but for an empty cart. Amos was a clothier, or “putter out.”
  • As the cover says, if you want to read “ a richly rewarding novel of women’s friendship, of true love, and of what happens when we reach beyond our grasp for the great beyond” then you must read The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes.
  • “When two young lovers abscond from a Puritan colony, little do they know that their humble cabin in the woods will become the home of an extraordinary succession of human and nonhuman characters alike.”