For holiday gifts and reading, your friendly librarians recommend...

The staff of the Los Angeles Public Library has once again offered its recommendations for the best books of 2013. They give you four lists: fiction, nonfiction, teen fare and books for children. Let's sample the nonfiction list a bit.

roy-choi-book.jpgThe selections include "American Savage: Insights, slights, and fights on faith, sex, love, and politics" by sex writer Dan Savage; "The Autistic Brain: Thinking across the spectrum" by Temple Grandin; "Ava Gardner: The secret conversations" by Peter Evans; Roy Choi's "L.A. son: My life, my city, my food;" and "The short, strange life of Herschel Grynszpan: A boy avenger, a Nazi diplomat, and a murder in Paris" by Jonathan Kirsch.

The nonfiction recommendations also include "Ann Dvorak: Hollywood's forgotten rebel." The author, Christina Rice, is the research librarian at the Central Library who is the keeper of the LAPL photo collection. This book has been a consuming project for Rice. Say her colleagues:

"A brilliantly researched and beautifully written biography of the talented actress who fought the studio system and paid the price of stardom deferred. This book transcends most film biographies because of the exhaustive study of Ms. Dvorak’s personal and public life that unfolds in Christina Rice’s polished prose full of real affection for the subject. A must read for those interested in the star system and the life of one of Hollywood’s leading ladies who paid the price for being truly independent."

More by Kevin Roderick:
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