Lauren's Picks

Lauren-F-Spirit-staff-Sept12 Manageress, Lauren was born in Louisiana but her family was Massachusetts born and raised. So in the mid-nineties with a six-year-old (Lauren), a three-year-old, a cat and a dog the family moved back north. Marblehead was quite the culture shock for the kid with a southern accent and the big hair to match. If you harass her when she is angry or sleepy, you might still catch a “y’all” or one of a few other southern gems fall from her lips. The fall after high school, Lauren headed for Elmira College. Elmira College is “Mark Twain Country,” you’ll find it just below the Finger Lakes region of “upstate” New York. After four years, lots of coffee and deadline driven all-nighters, a short-lived radio show, a season spent reciting the facts of Samuel Clemens’ life to interested tourists, millions of hours in the campus art building, and a myriad of memories, she returned home. Lauren found out at once that there’s only so far that a Bachelor’s degree in Studio Art will get you. Lauren saves the odd dollar or two by making most of her own jewelry, and avoiding (insert art supply store here) until she really, absolutely is out of something or needs it badly. When she’s not working, Lauren reads until her eyes fall out, puts them back in and explores any type of art she can get her hands on. Well, any type that will fit into the smallish space she currently shares with numerous books, artwork, three tables from college furniture courses, boxes of jewelry and art supplies, and a cat.


In a Dark, Dark Wood Cover Image
ISBN: 9781501112317
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery/Scout Press - August 4th, 2015

COMING THIS SUMMER! Perfect for fans of the debut thriller The Girl on the Train by Puala Hawkins, and S J Watson's deliciously disturbing Before I Go to Sleep (also a debut), Ruth Ware's In a Dark, Dark Wood is bound to be another huge hit of a first novel!    

What should be a cozy and fun-filled weekend deep in the English countryside takes a sinister turn in Ruth Ware’s suspenseful, compulsive, and darkly twisted psychological thriller.

Leonora, known to some as Lee and others as Nora, is a reclusive crime writer, unwilling to leave her “nest” of an apartment unless it is absolutely necessary. When a friend she hasn’t seen or spoken to in years unexpectedly invites Nora (Lee?) to a weekend away in an eerie glass house deep in the English countryside, she reluctantly agrees to make the trip. Forty-eight hours later, she wakes up in a hospital bed injured but alive, with the knowledge that someone is dead. Wondering not “what happened?” but “what have I done?”, Nora (Lee?) tries to piece together the events of the past weekend. Working to uncover secrets, reveal motives, and find answers, Nora (Lee?) must revisit parts of herself that she would much rather leave buried where they belong: in the past.

A Head Full of Ghosts Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062363237
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow & Company - June 2nd, 2015

This book is fantastic, an absolute MUST READ!!

The lives of the Barretts, a normal suburban New England family, are torn apart when fourteen-year-old Marjorie begins to display signs of acute schizophrenia.To her parents’ despair, the doctors are unable to stop Marjorie’s bizarre outbursts and subsequent descent into madness. As their home devolves into a house of horrors, they reluctantly turn to a local Catholic priest for help. Father Wanderly suggests an exorcism; he believes the vulnerable teenager is the victim of demonic possession. He also contacts a production company that is eager to document the Barretts plight for a reality television show.

The Girl on the Train Cover Image
ISBN: 9781594633669
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - January 13th, 2015

I could not put this book down!  

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She's even started to feel like she knows them ... Their life--as she sees it--is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost. And then she sees something shocking. It's only a minute until the train moves on, but it's enough. Now everything's changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good

The Girl with All the Gifts Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316334754
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Orbit - April 28th, 2015

This is a truly outstanding read, if you have yet to read it, pick up a copy and move it to the top of your to-be-read pile, immediately! 


Melanie is a very special girl. Dr Caldwell calls her "our little genius." 
Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite, but they don't laugh. 

The Girl With All the Gifts is a groundbreaking thriller, emotionally charged and gripping from beginning to end. 

The Bell Jar Cover Image
ISBN: 9780060837020
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - August 2nd, 2005

Esther Greenwood like most girls of a certain age is struggling to find her place in the world. She doesn’t know what “category” of girl she fits into, or what she should do with her life. With all of these answerless questions Esther begins to lose hold of both reality and her sanity. Eventually she sees death as the only resolution to her life’s queries. Esther makes many failed attempts at suicide all of which she fails at. Though this intelligently penned story is not an “upper” as it were, it isn’t difficult to identify with Esther’s character on the most basic human level. This book is a must read, and a true classic despite the slight stigma it has acquired as being a depressing downer of a story.

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal Cover Image
ISBN: 9780380813810
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow & Company - May 25th, 2004

Lamb is the hysterical story of Jesus through the eyes of his childhood best friend Biff. Christopher Moore takes the reader on a journey unlike any other. The reader get’s to see in imagined version of the completely human man behind the son of God. A completely laugh out loud comedy, Lamb is sure to entertain. Read it as a lighthearted twist on a story you already know, just don’t take it too seriously.

The Red Tent Cover Image
ISBN: 9780312195519
Availability: Special Order
Published: Picador - September 1st, 1998

The Red Tent is a captivating tale of three of the Bible’s most heard of women. Rachel, and Leah’s story begins the book and is soon followed by the story of Leah’s daughter, Dinah. Dinah’s story is a messy and tragic tale of love (reciprocal but forbidden) and life at its best and worst. The Red Tent is a compelling read about women, by a woman, for women. Whether you’re familiar with the Bible or not The Red Tent is well worth the read.

The Undomestic Goddess Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385338691
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dial Press - April 25th, 2006

This book from the author of the Shopaholic series is definitely a part of the “chick lit” genre if ever anything was. The Undomestic Goddess spins the tale of a high powered lawyer on the fast track to the big leagues, until one mistake brings it all to a screaming halt. Samantha Sweeting abandons her post at a prestigious law firm and finds herself in a completely new life almost overnight. In losing everything she’s ever worked for she finds things that she had been missing, as well as things she never knew she was. A fantastic read for a weekend trip or just to escape the drudgery that can become everyday life. If you liked Confessions of a Shopaholic, you’ll love this book, and if you didn’t give this one a try!

The Great Kapok Tree: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest Cover Image
ISBN: 9780152026141
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Voyager Paperbacks - June 22nd, 2010

Lauren’s Kid Pick! In The Great Kapok Tree, Lynne Cherry weaves a captivating tale about the peril of the Amazon Rainforest, and one man’s role in being a part of the problem, or a part of the hope for a solution. Illustrated with beautiful and rich drawings, The Great Kapok Tree is a must have in any kids’ book collection.

A Farewell to Arms Cover Image
ISBN: 9780684801469
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Scribner Book Company - June 1st, 1995

A story that is surely underappreciated by high school English students everywhere, A Farewell to Arms is a gripping historical wartime romance. It has the male appeal of war, with all the feminine pull of a captivating romance between a nurse and a soldier. If you haven’t read this novel do so, and if you did in your school days, do so again with fresh eyes.