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Bernadette's Picks

Bernadette likes to read biographies and nonfiction of not famous people that do extraordinary or unusual things. She also loves classic fiction and 30s and 40s film noir.

Describes the life of a young Pakistani student who advocated for women's rights and education in the Taliban-controlled Swat Valley who survived an assassination attempt and became the youngest nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize.

The explosion of racial hate and violence in a small Alabama town is viewed by a little girl whose father defends a Black man accused of rape

Sidney Sheldon is one of my favorites for beach reads. In this book, Kate Blackwell is the symbol of success, the beautiful woman who parlayed her inheritance into an international conglomerate. And she's a survivor, indomitable as her father, the man who returned from the edge of death to wrench a fortune in diamonds from the bleak South African earth. Now, celebrating her ninetieth birthday, Kate surveys the family she has manipulated, dominated, and loved: the good and the evil.

Everyone seems to like this as a musical... I like this dramatic version starring Liam Neeson. Ex-convict Jean Valjean tries to rebuild his life to be a respectable citizen. However, police inspector Javert relentlessly hounds him and won't let him escape his past.

In the winter of 1981, trapped by unpassable roads, midwife Sibyl Danforth makes a life-altering decision when she performs an emergency cesarean section on a woman she fears has died of a stroke

Eating herself into obesity in the wake of her lost childhood and over-anxious mother, Dolores Price finds herself facing adulthood in a cruel world and resolves to rise to the occasion.

I'm not just pinning this because it has my name in the title... that is the reason I read it, but I really liked it! When her talented, troubled, and agoraphobic mother goes missing, teenage Bee begins a trip that takes her to the ends of the earth to find her.

The child of an alcoholic father and an eccentric artist mother discusses her family's nomadic upbringing, during which she and her siblings fended for themselves while their parents outmaneuvered bill collectors and the authorities.

Ninety-something-year-old Jacob Jankowski remembers his time in the circus as a young man during the Great Depression, and his friendship with Marlena, the star of the equestrian act, and Rosie, the elephant, who gave them hope

Fascinating description of the 1919 collapse of a steel tank containing more than two million gallons of molasses in Boston--a disaster that claimed the lives of twenty-one people, injured 150, and caused widespread destruction--the causes of the tragedy, its aftermath, and the sweeping social changes that transformed the era.

Flowers for Algernon is the classic story of a mentally disabled man whose experimental quest for intelligence mirrors that of Algernon, an extraordinary lab mouse. Charlie tells how a brain operation increases his IQ and changes his life. The experiment seems to be a scientific breakthrough of paramount importance--until Algernon begins his sudden, unexpected deterioration. Will the same happen to Charlie? An American classic that inspired the award-winning movie Charly.

A studio recording by Patrick Stewart of his dramatic reading, normally performed on stage. A tale of Scrooge and his visits by the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future.

An ex-convict blames a lawyer for his sentence and tries to wreak bloody revenge on the lawyer and his family. Starring Gregory Peck and Robert Mitchum.

An insurance salesman and an unhappy wife conspire to murder her husband and collect his insurance policy. Barbara Stanwyck and Fred McMurray star in this film noir classic!

A man reminisces about his childhood in a Welsh mining town and his close knit family. Marueen O'Hara, Walter Pidgeon and Roddy McDowell as a child.

Two women born a generation apart witness the destruction of their home and family in war-torn Kabul, losses incurred over the course of thirty years that test the limits of their strength and courage. By the author of The Kite Runner, which is also a great book!

A biography of Eleanor Roosevelt and an intimate look at those residing in the White House during the war years shows how Eleanor and Franklin together turned a country deep in depression into a militarily strong and economically healthy nation.

A saga of three genrerations of the indomitable Cleary family begins in the early 1900s when Paddy Cleary, a poor New Zealand farm laborer, moves his wife and children to the Australian sheep station owned by his wealthy sister, in an anniversary edition of the classic novel of forbidden love

An epic novel of love and war that won the Pulitzer Prize and went on to be one most popular movies of all time. In the two main characters, irresistible Scarlett and the flashy, contemptuous Rhett, Margaret Mitchell not only conveyed a timeless story of survival under the harshest of circumstances, she also created two of the most famous lovers in the English-speaking world.

The story of a young girl and her family living in Brooklyn during the 1900s

Two businessmen--William Lowell Kane, a millionaire financier, and Abel Rosnovski, a Polish immigrant who becomes the head of a vast hotel empire--act out their intense personal hatred of each other until its inevitable, and ironic, conclusion

The new mistress of Manderley's Cornwall estate must constantly compete with the memory of Maxim de Winter's first wife, Rebecca.

Chronicles the disastrous Hartford circus fire of 1944, a tragedy that claimed 167 lives and changed the history of the city.

In 1967, after a twin baby boy suffered a botched circumcision, his family agreed to a radical treatment that would alter his gender. The case would become one of the most famous in modern medicine—and a total failure. A macabre tale of medical arrogance, it is first and foremost a human drama of one man's—and one family's—amazing survival in the face of terrible odds.