Book Buzz Episode 22 – Witch King & These Precious Days

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Air date: Nov. 5, 2023

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Witch King

These Precious Days

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Hi, this is Jessica Russell. I’m the assistant director of collection services at Sno-Isle Libraries. And welcome to Book Buzz.

Today's reading recommendations range from action-packed fantasy to contemplative essays.

First, we’re going to hear from Shannon, a library associate at the Sultan Library, who will introduce us to a world of witches and demons. Take it away, Shannon.


Martha Wells of “Murderbot Diaries” fame has made a triumphant return to epic fantasy in her unique and character-driven novel “Witch King.”

Meet Kai, a body-hopping demon known for sucking the lifeforce out of things, having the worst start to his day. Kai wakes up trapped inside an underwater tomb with no memory of how he got there – except that he’s been betrayed. To get answers, Kai must unravel both his past and his present on a bloody path of danger and revenge.

As an avid reader of fantasy, I appreciate that Wells gets right to the action and doesn’t hold your hand. The world-building is imaginative and clever; I love the way Wells plays on the familiar mythology surrounding witches and demons in a way that feels fresh and unique.

Kai is a captivating antihero we can’t help but root for, thanks to his dry humor and fierce loyalty. Kai is supported by a ragtag group of allies – time-honored friends from his past, and newcomers he ropes in for the ride – who add life and dimension to a world still reeling from a brutal conquest.

Fans of complex, pulse-pounding fantasies will find lots to love here, with a healthy splash of wit, adventure, and sweet, sweet vengeance.


Thanks, Shannon! Sounds like a riveting fantasy adventure.

Next, let’s switch gears to hear from Jude, library manager of the Snohomish Library, for heartfelt personal stories. Go ahead, Jude.


Recently, I enjoyed Ann Patchett’s “These Precious Days.” Patchett shares this collection of essays about relationships in her life. While there is loss and grief, these are stories of people and the varied ways they celebrate growth and hope.

“The First Thanksgiving” resonated as she described checking out “The Joy of Cooking” from the library and planning a Thanksgiving dinner to share with some college friends. She wrote “What I had that day was self-reliance and a book, which, as I would later learn, was all I really needed.”

Patchett used the essays to introduce the reader to her life and loves. I met her “Three Fathers” and watched her chance encounters develop into deep friendships forged in the surreal experience of sharing her house with a near stranger because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

If you’re a fan of audiobooks, the author narrates it herself. The warmth and honesty in her storytelling will make you feel like she’s your dear friend confiding in you.

Patchett’s essays convey truth. Yes, truth from her life. More so, truth of experiences that moved me to reflect on how I live. To be grateful for the gifts that shape my life. Her essays are at once windows into her life and mirrors to help me see myself and my relationships in a truer light.


Thanks, Jude! Stories that make the reader reflect on their own life can be so powerful.

Our recommendations this week are: “Witch King” by Martha Wells and “These Precious Days” by Ann Patchett.

Join us next time, when we’ll explore more great reading recommendations – interesting books you can find at your favorite local bookstore or at your local library.

Until then, I’m Jessica Russell from Sno-Isle Libraries.

Thanks for joining us for Book Buzz on KSER.

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