Monthly Archives: August 2013

Biography, Buddhism, and Madness – not all in one book


The newest Non Fiction books to enter the English language collection vary widely.

I.   Buddhist Boot Camp by Timber Hawkeye does not propose to teach about Buddhism, rather it is one man’s distilling of the religion into a simple guide to happiness and gratefulness for what a person already has.

What is Buddhist Boot Camp all about?

Buddhism is all about training the mind, and boot camp is an ideal training method for this generation’s short attention span. The chapters in this small book can be read in any order, and are short and easy to understand. Each story, inspirational quote and teaching offers mindfulness-enhancing techniques that anyone can relate to.

There is absolutely no reason to argue over which religion came “first” or whose philosophy is “better”. The important thing is to be kind, understanding, peaceful and compassionate, which is actually fundamental in all religions and schools of thought. “ (from the Buddhist Boot Camp website).

Timber Hawkeye also gives a TedX talk.

II.   The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry by Jon Ronson is a a look at the business of psychology.  Using humour, Ronson investigates what is normal, what is madness, how are diagnosis made, personality traits, etc. Both disturbing and funny – is it the voice of reason?

III.   Tolstoy: a Russian Life by Rosamund Bartlett. “The extraordinary character of the giant is captured better by Bartlett than by any previous biographer.” (Spectator)

Categories: English | Leave a comment

For Fans of Fiction


In 2013 the Orange Prize was renamed The Women’s Prize for Fiction.  The first winner (and only winner under that new name)  was announced in June  – – –   A M Homes for her book May We Be Forgiven.

Harry has spent a lifetime watching his younger brother, George – a taller, smarter and more successful high-flying TV executive – acquire a covetable wife, two kids and a beautiful home. But Harry, a historian and Nixon scholar, also knows George has a murderous temper, and when George loses control the result is an act so shocking that both brothers are hurled into entirely new lives, in which they both must seek absolution.” (from the The Women’s Prize for Fiction website)

In 2014 the Award will be known as the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction.

Whatever the award name, May We Be Forgiven is now in the EBC English language collection.

Other new fiction books in the library:

A Night on the Orient Express by Veronica Henry

The Sea Change by Joanna Rossiter

The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton

The Universe versus Alex Woods by Gavin Extence

Categories: Awards, English | Leave a comment

Bring home a mystery


 Summer in The Netherlands has been spectacular.  Here’s hoping that it isn’t over yet.  Whether it is reading in the garden in the shade of an umbrella or curled up inside while the rain waters the plants;  there is nothing quite like a mystery to provide an escape.

If you are familiar with Louise Penny’s writing, then you will be delighted to know that her latest – The Beautiful Mystery –  is now available for borrowing.  Inspector Gamache is investigating a murder in a remote monastery.

Dennis Lehane, author of Shutter Island has a new release – Live by Night – that brings us into the world of 1920’s Boston and the gangsters that inhabit it.

The winner of the 2012 CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award for Best Thriller of the Year  is A Foreign Country by Charles Cumming.  Britain’s newly appointed MI6 chief  disappears and the agent that is brought in to locate her is taken on a chase through France and North Africa.

Jo Nesbo won the Glass Key Award for best Nordic Crime Novel in 1998 for Flaggermusmannen.  Thus began the Harry Hole series.  That original book is now available in English as The Bat and it is part of the EBC collection.

Boy Nobody by Allen Zadoff is about the perfect assassin.  In this case it’s the perennial new kid at school who is never there for long.

Fans of World War II thrillers might want to have a look at The Girl who Fell from the Sky.  Simon Mawer has based his story on the women who were parachuted into France by the Special Operations Executive.  This novel can also be considered Historical Fiction.

Trust Your Eyes takes place in NYC.  A man who is obsessed with using the Internet and making virtual tours, thinks that he sees a murder being committed.  Trying to get people to believe him is a challenge.  This is the latest thriller from Linwood Barclay.

Categories: Crime, English | Leave a comment

Create a free website or blog at