Nick Schenkel


Nick Schenkel is the director of the West Lafayette Public Library, and reviews books from all walks of literature.

Ways to Connect

Agony of the Leaves

Jul 13, 2012

The Agony of the Leaves: the ecstasy of my life with tea is a tangy “foodies” remembrance and celebration of teas past – and present!


Jul 6, 2012

Mid-Life a graphic novel that tells the story of 40 year John, an every-man who struggles to make sense of the often perilous territory that is the life of so many men today.  For all John’s and the other characters foibles, our story ends on a surprisingly optimistic note.

Mary Granville Pendarves Delany, upon her second husband's death, arose from her grief, picked up a pair of scissors, and, at the age of seventy-two, created a new art form: mixed media collage.

Join Poggio Brocciolini, Renaissance Humanist, as he uncovers a long lost poem from Ancient Rome that shakes up the Western World’s way of thinking about our world and our place in it. A blend of mystery, biography, intellectual adventure and the quirky ways that luck plays into life, The Swerve is a marvelous example of intelligent writing and storytelling!”

An illustrated 'field' guide to the technology that keeps our cities and town working!

Deciding the family’s condo is much too small for her newly blended family, amateur sleuth Claire Malloy falls in love with the home of her dreams – too bad it’s located in a neighborhood populated by an extended family whose members sport a range of eccentricities which Claire discovers includes murder!   Still….there’s the lure of THAT house….When the last page was turned I found Claire Malloy is a character I’d like to spend more time with and I think you will too!

How Rome Fell

Jun 1, 2012

What happened to the greatest empire the Western world has ever known? Historian Adrian Goldsworthy takes up his pen after his marvelously written biography of  Caesar and takes up the epic history of the last centuries of the Roman Empire, telling the story with a novel’s ebb and flow, enough characters to make the eyes and the mind dance, and a few hints here and there about what Rome’s decline may – or may not – portend for our modern world.

Bess, a young professional, is swept into a stranger’s twisted story of love and threat – set in a London gripped by the uncertainty of World War I.  It’s the type of novel that in “olden days” would have been written by Victoria Holt or Phyllis Whitney – but today’s story British manor house intrigue takes up topics Holt and Whitney disdained – Bitter Truth is written with a modern reader in mind.

The America portrayed here by this Depression Era WPA writer’s project is truly a “younger land” – the foodways of America before the US highways of the postwar WW II ear, before the colonization of our highways and even our byways by the national chains and before superstores and microwave cooking changed the way Americans shop and eat. These are until-now-unpublished essays, recipes and even poems of an America still enraptured by its immigrant food traditions – from the coast of New England through the vast rolling plains of the Midwest…from north to south, east to west.

Stratton-Porter had talents and intelligence that brought her one of the largest reading audiences of the 20th century.  And she was, through and through, a Hoosier legend that we celebrate even today: photographer of nature, writer, conservationist, Gene Stratton Porter.