Tag archives: reading

Literary March Madness
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   March 5, 2024

March is a big publishing month. I could not cover all the new releases below but will have more recommendations on my social media posts. Listen for the Lie by Amy Tintera is an unexpectedly hilarious thriller. When Lucy’s best friend is murdered, Lucy becomes suspect number one. After all, she is covered in her […]

New Year. New Books.
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   January 9, 2024

Happy New Year. My hope for all of us in the coming months is that we embrace more stories, smart stories, entertaining and transportive stories. I’ve set my reading goals high to bring you even more recommendations. There is power, solace, and joy that comes from books and I think this month I have found […]

Half a Century Later: Memoir of War’s Woes and Wooing 
By Steven Libowitz   |   October 31, 2023

The veteran experience is also a jumping off point for The Hardest Year: A Love Story in Letters During the Vietnam War, a just-published memoir by author-poet Carole Wagener and her husband, William Wagener, that has been called a personal snapshot of the turbulent ‘60s as framed through the hearts of two souls divided by […]

Medora’s Book Club  Opening at Casa del Herrero
By Joanne A Calitri   |   October 31, 2023

Medora Steedman Bass is the daughter of Carrie and George Steedman, owners of Casa del Herrero. Earlier this year, various papers and journals of hers were discovered at the house, which document her love of books and reading, and spawned the creation of a book club in her honor called The Medora Book Club. Medora […]

Fall Reads
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   October 3, 2023

The Leftover Woman by Jean Kwok is the story of Jasmine, a Chinese girl who has fled her small village to escape an abusive husband and to find her daughter that was taken from her and sent to America. With no legal credentials, Jasmine must work in a sleezy bar, turning herself into an object […]

Mysterious Setember
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   September 5, 2023

Amy Chua’s The Golden Gate is a thriller packed with historical tidbits, exploring race and class in San Francisco in the 1940s. When a presidential candidate is found murdered in a lux hotel, Detective Sullivan is called in to cull between the many suspects. Is it possible one or all three beautiful heiresses are involved, […]

Women on a Role
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   July 11, 2023

It is time for the annual Memorial Day party in an elite cul-de-sac in Jamie Day’s The Block Party. The group of close friends and neighbors gather as they always do, only this year’s party will end with gunfire and someone dead. Revenge is the name of the game, a game seemingly played by all […]

Summertime, and the Readin’ Is Easy…
By Kim Crail   |   June 6, 2023

We invite all ages to join us for our Summer Reading Challenge, to get you reading up a storm and enjoying programs that bring our community together.  For our youngest patrons, we will have early literacy classes all summer. School age kids are encouraged to keep up their reading habits by getting a free book, […]

May Bouquet of Reads
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   May 9, 2023

Ivy Pochoda returns to the dark side of life in Sing Her Down with some very violent women. Two women are released early from prison. One returns to California and her mother’s home, pursued by the other woman. Florida and Dios circle each other like wary gunslingers in this cowboyesque drama. Dios wants to force […]

Springtime Reads
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   April 4, 2023

Where Yellow Flowers Bloom: A True Story of Hope through Unimaginable Loss by Kim Cantin is honest, heartbreaking, and inspiring. Cantin and her daughter survived Montecito’s 2018 debris flow, but her son and husband did not. In vivid detail she recalls that night, and the subsequent months as she recovered and desperately sought the remains […]

Book ’em: Chaucer’s Choices 
By Steven Libowitz   |   March 21, 2023

Santa Barbara-born author Caroline DeLoreto, a Functional Diagnostic nutrition-practitioner, LMFT (Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist) counselor, energy healer, and educator who worked as a health teacher at Santa Barbara Middle School for 15 years, has scheduled two local events to launch her new book. From Lyme to Light: A Spiritual Journey and Guide to Healing […]

March Madness 2023
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   March 14, 2023

Strangers in the Night by Heather Webb chronicles the heart-pounding love affair between Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner. Told from both Frank and Ava’s points of view, the book spans the whole arc of their tempestuous romance, from the slow burn, through the sizzle and the fireworks that ultimately blew the couple apart. This is […]

New Storytime on Thursdays
By Kim Crail   |   February 14, 2023

Children between the ages of three and five (and their grownups) are invited to the Montecito Library for a weekly Preschool Storytime starting in February. We will be meeting every Thursday from 10-10:30 am. Come by to meet new friends, read stories, sing songs, and make crafts.  This is a great opportunity to introduce little […]

Bracing February Reads
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   February 14, 2023

Fans of Bret Easton Ellis will be thrilled with The Shards, his first book in 13 years. Bret (fictional Bret) is 17 years old, attending a preppy academy, taking massive quantities of drugs, and obsessing over Robert, the new kid in school – handsome and a threat – and a serial killer roaming around Los […]

Let’s Travel
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   January 10, 2023

With the holidays behind us, if you’re like me, you long to travel. Well, this month’s list of books will send you from Havana to Singapore, and all from the comfort of your couch. In Armando Lucas Correa’s tremendously moving The Night Travelers, we arrive in Berlin in this story spanning three generations of women. […]

McEnroe Reading and Language Arts Clinic
By Steven Libowitz   |   October 4, 2022

There are a number of reading programs for students in Santa Barbara, including several administered by nonprofits. Tina Hansen McEnroe is absolutely clear about what makes the McEnroe Reading and Language Arts Clinic at the Gevirtz School at the University of California, Santa Barbara, stand out from all the rest.  “How are we different? It’s […]

Stories Matter: Back-to-School Reads
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   August 16, 2022

As the temperature rises… so does the current crop of sizzling reads. First up from Elaine Murphy is I Told You This Would Happen, a pithy, hilarious thriller that will have you rooting for at least one serial killer. Sisters Carrie and Becca are siblings that just barely get along, and it might have to […]

July Firecrackers
By Leslie Zemeckis   |   July 5, 2022

Set on the shores of Southampton in the summer of 1957, On Gin Lane by Brooke Lea Foster is a charming story about Lee, a young socialite, and her handsome fiancé who sweeps her off her feet to a vacation amongst Society where he presents her with a hotel he has built and named after […]

Roots on Santa Claus Lane
By Montecito Journal   |   June 21, 2022

I am the CFO and co-owner of Autumn Brands, a sustainable and ethically grown cannabis farm in the Carpinteria Valley. We focus on growing high-quality cannabis that uses zero pesticides, which means not even organic pesticides. We re-use and recycle all our irrigation water and have all organic waste turned to compost. We are a […]

Rethinking Reading: Look to Science to Solve the Literacy Crisis
By Ruth Green   |   June 14, 2022

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” – Frederick Douglass The Santa Barbara Unified School District is failing in its most fundamental responsibility – teaching all of its students to read. Currently (and pre-pandemic as well), barely half of the students in SBUSD read proficiently meeting the district’s standard. The percentage is […]