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Getting into the Holiday Spirits

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Next week brings Thanksgiving, which traditionally marks the start of the Holiday season.  Since you’ll probably have more than one occasion to get your party on over the next month and a half, it’s probably a good time to start brushing up on your cocktail basics.  As our blog’s resident cocktail nerd, I’m listing some fine titles to explore to find your signature seasonal cocktail and impress your guests and friends with your bartending skills. Warning, if you get too good at making cocktails, you’ll be in charge of drinks at every party you go to! 

Reformation Reads: 500 Years Later

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This October 31st marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses on the door of the church in Wittenburg to protest of the sale of indulgences.  Though earlier movements for reform within the Church had existed before Luther, such as the Hussites in Bohemia, the posting of his 95 Theses traditionally mark the start of what historians consider the Reformation, lasting from 1517 unti

Recommended Read: Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney

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It’s hard for me not to hate novelist Sally Rooney a little bit out of sheer jealously.  Not only is she super young (she’s a mere 26) AND a published author, but her first novel is excellent and well received.  However, I absolutely adored Conversations with Friends, and the flawed but sympathetic characters inside make Rooney seem like someone who’d be fun to hang out with (even if she’s annoyingly accomplished). 

Back to School Books: Campus Reads

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My favorite thing about the start of the school year was always shopping for new school supplies (and, of course, new fall outfits).  My least favorite part was actually having to go back to school; gone were the mornings of sleeping late and days of doing whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted to—why can’t it be summer all year?!  Even though it’s been nearly 10 years since I’ve been a student anywhere, it’s still fun to celebrate the start of the school year (heck, it’s even better when you’re not  a student, because you don’t have to go to school!).  Below are several titles set on school

Dark Beach Reads

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Oh sure, you could read about beach houses, dog detectives, and middle aged women getting a new lease on life while you’re enjoying the hot August sun.  But what’s the fun in that?  You already know how those books end-- the dog solves the crime, the middle age woman finds a new love at the beach house (the hunky repairman, let’s say).  Instead, take a trip to the dark side this summer and check out one of these recommended reads below.  They are still fun and fast reads, but just a touch more sinister!    

Heather's Essential Music

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My Essential Music’ is a new feature on the FRVPLD blog, continuing our prior exploration of staff favorites, 'My Essential Books.' We'll talk up our favorite music in the hope that you may give these artists a chance, or at least appreciate our passion for the music that has made us who we are.

Photo by spDuchamp, flickr user.

Only the Lonely: Loner Women in Novels

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When I was compiling my list of essential reads, I realized that I’m drawn to books with awkward, loner heroines.  Not surprising, given I spend most of my free time with my nose in a book and I am usually found hiding in the bathroom at parties.  Thankfully, there have been slew of great books featuring lonesome ladies that I’ve read lately (instead of, you know, actually having to talk to a person).  Below are three of my favorites: 

Heather's Essential Books

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‘My Essential Books’ is a new feature on the FRVPLD blog, where we talk up our favorite books in the hope that you may give them a chance, or at least appreciate our passion for the titles that have made us who we are.

Photo by Les Chatfield, flickr user.  

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