By December 21, 2009 0 Comments Read More →


Sometimes it just all comes together. 

The New York Times has just announced its top ten books of 2009 ( 

The Wisconsin Association of Public Librarians has just told me that if I do not pick a title for the whole convention to read and discuss I will be voted off the island. 

So in a state of procrastination-driven thrashing around, I reviewed the new list for inspiration and what did I discover: a home state product with a great track record.

I have selected A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore. 

I realize that she was born in New York State.  OK, her degrees are from St. Lawrence and Cornell.  But since 1984 she has taught at the University of Wisconsin in Madison so I am going to be loyal to the Badgers.

Truth be told, Lorrie Moore has a great track record and is a natural pick for our state librarians to read.  Whether you are enjoying her two other novels (especially the great Who Will Run the Frog Hospital?) or any of her numerous short stories collected in four volumes (including her first and still admirable collection, Self-Help), she is an author any state would be proud of. 

I’ll be back in May to tell you how it went.  In the meantime, Go Badgers!



About the Author:

Gary Niebuhr is the author of Make Mine a Mystery (2003), Caught up in Crime (2009), and other readers' guides to mystery and detective fiction. He was a Booklist contributor from 2008-2014.

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