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Our customers read great books! Take a look:
From a series of free standing stories, a landscape emerges depicting the complex layers of East German society in the early days of reunification. Fascinating historical anthropology, but wait: there's also an intriguing homicide that slowly emerges as clues are gradually revealed in barely connected stories. What a brilliant literary method! It can be challenging to follow the plethora of characters--I had to read it twice before I figured out several of the subtler connections--but greatly worthwhile. I've never read anything quite like this book! -Wayne
I have next to no interest in science fiction, but I am interested in technology and literature. This brilliant short story collection supplies both in abundance as the author executes skillful storytelling on wildly creative premises in believable ways. -Steve M.
Billed as a novel, this letter from Little Dog to his Vietnamese mother, who can't read, is poetic, intimate, graphic, deep, and yes, gorgeous. -Steve M.
Probably the best book you will ever read. If you like trees going into this novel, you'll love them coming out. If you love them going in, you'll worship them at the end. -Steve M.
Faulkner is my favorite writer - and I'm English. I don't think any other writer has attempted the novelistic experiments he managed over forty years. Published in 1940, The Hamlet follows the exploits of the Snopes family, formerly poor outcasts now become the up-and-coming grasping class, especially in the character of the wonderfully named Flem Snopes. The novel incorporates some of Faulkner's best stories - "Spotted Horses," "Lizards in Jamshyd's Courtyard," and "Barn Burning," but perhaps the highlight of the book is the extended chapter about young Ike Snopes's love of a cow, at once hilarious and moving, though I also admire the long chapter about Mink Snopes and his long night with the hound. -Roland G.
I've persuaded many people to read this outstanding Icelandic novel written by its only Nobel Prize winning author, called "one of the best books of the twentieth-century." No one has complained. Bjartur has finally saved enough money to buy a modest farm in the country, a place he optimistically calls Summerhouses. But if his homestead is modest, Bjartur isn't. Stubborn, strong-willed, independent, he takes on the world and the past and anything else to make his way. It's a novel that seems to be set in a timeless space, an epic, and it breaks your heart. -Roland G.
Despite having a Croation mother and knowing about the Balkan war in the '90's, it wasn't until I read a BOOK that I was moved to visit and explore one of my honelands. The Cellist of Saragevo by Steven Galloway-his historical fiction-depicts the story of 3 people who interact with the cellist from the Sarajevo Symphony. He put on his tuxedo, left the safety(?) of his flat, and played Albinoni's 'Adagio for Strings" for 22 days at the site of a bombing which killed 22 people in a bread line in the besieged city, despite shells and sniper's bullets exploding all around him. Learning to live with war, acting on one's principles, and believing in humanity are all a part of this mesmerizing story based on true events. -Larry J.
Immerse yourself in this Oregon town, the people with their quirky natures , the web of relationships, a bit of the fantastical. A totally enjoyable READ. -Hilary C.
How does a community go on after a civil war has split family and friends? Forna slowly reviels the secrets of the past. Great story telling, fascinating story--- a great READ. -Hilary C.
"Homegoing", by Yaa Gyasi, fed my current fascination with social history and family genealogy with its tales of the lineage of two half-sisters from Ghana to the United States. Written as short stories that could stand on their own, "Homegoing" ties the two continents through the eyes of these generations of women and tells an overall story of resilience and courage.
An imaginative, magical universe that uses wit to play on our expectations of “black magic” and “magician”. The rich backstories of Schwab's characters unravel as they leap from world to world, tantalizing the reader with a partially rendered picture that fills in as the plot darkens. Schwab’s heroine, Delilah Bard, has little to lose except the red blood in her veins, which leaks out at an alarming rate as she cuts her way through entangled plotlines. She'd have no business getting caught up in them, if not for Kell, whose frown and nefarious-looking blackened eyeball play counterpoint to Delilah’s sparkling Cheshire Cat grin. Schwab takes Delilah from her graying world to new adventures. By the end, however, it feels as if Delilah’s dragging Kell by the sleeve of his enigmatic overcoat.
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles is a gorgeous, lyrical novel that will pull you in from the first page. Told from the perspective of the former noble, now "non-person" Count Rostov, the story spans the history of Russia from the Revolution to the rise of Kruschev, weaving the personal, political, and the poetic into a mystery of loss and redemption. One of the best books I've read in years.
Set in a small town in North Carolina, Cash's first novel is the story of misplaced faith and the way singular events have a way of unraveling our lives. Jess Hall's little brother Stump sees something he was not supposed to see, and what seems like an event that could have disappeared into the boys' heads as another adventure in adolescence, quickly propels Jess into adulthood in a heartbreaking way he never saw coming. A dark story with memorable, full-hearted characters.
In this satirical romp of a story, British novelist, Iris Murdock, employs her glorious gift of prose to dig below the surface of romantic love and skewer the illusions that lead people into marriage, love affairs and a virulent form of snake oil psychoanalysis. Her characters, hilariously draped in British reserve, commit outrageous acts and continuously keep you guessing. Murdoch's insight and mastery of language is second to none. She's worth rereading many times.
O.K., so call me a romantic. Sometimes I need a break from gritty realism. This is a sweet, unexpected lovestory that transports you and gets to the heart of love.
Mormon Bishop’s son Sebastian is discovering his sexual orientation as our narrator Tanner and fellow teen falls for him in a big way; this love story is beautifully told and doesn’t demonize the Mormon faith, but it also doesn’t shy away from the difficulties of being gay within that framework. Relationships are realistic, interesting, and characters show development. A sweet and solid addition to the LGBTQ canon of young adult literature featuring a bisexual main character – it’s swoonworthy, even!
Mitchell is better known for Cloud Atlas, an ambitious and far-reaching novel, but for my money, this follow-up novel is the real gem. Set in the space of a year (1982, the year of the Falklands war) in a small town in Worcestershire, England, it again features a teenager trying to make sense of the world he finds himself in. Jason is a stammerer (as is Mitchell himself) trying to hide the fact from his schoolchums - he'd rather look stupid and say that 9 times 11 is 100 than struggle to say "ninety-nine" - and his story is written with compassion, humor, and deep insight.
A young adult novel with a heroine who defines her own path in life, defies expectation, and takes the world by storm. Don’t let the title scare off the young readers in your life as there is actually very little blood. Meyer tells an adventure story on a turn-of-the- century battle ship, where a ship’s “boy” finds a place where she can show leadership and survival skills she learned living as an orphan in a kids gang on the hard streets of London. Jackie’s precocious spirit steers her though one blustery gale after another, whether it be a dangerous mid-shipman on her own crew or a pirate captain. An adventure that will keep you captivated till the end of the book.
Looking for a fast paced thriller that will pin you to your favorite reading spot from beginning to end? Then pick up "Conviction" by Denise Mina. It has all the perfect ingredients: the pitfalls and advantages of social media, ghost stories, a quick run through Venice, and even a gruesome underwater video. Trust me, you won’t come back to the surface until the last page.
Okay, so this is teen angsty – but it’s compelling and poignant, oddly humorous, and is completely un-putdownable; in a way, it’s like an accident: you just can’t look away. Evan Hansen purports to have been friends with an acquaintance – Connor Murphy, who has committed suicide – a bizarre mix-up sends an odd situation on a new trajectory - one that gets Evan in deeper and deeper as he befriends Connor's grieving family, and he attempts to get the girl he’s been ogling - who happens to be the Connor’s sister. The book was written following the smash Broadway musical, and it’s most definitely read-worthy despite its novelization of that show: sweet, important, relatable.
If the idea of a serial killer with memory loss is intriguing - this may be the book for you! A fun, at times bizarre, collection of short stories, Young-Ha Kim's book does not disappoint.
Although Dracul is bound to appeal to fans of Dracula it will also fascinate admirers of horror, gothic, and historically set novels. The book uses Bram Stoker’s journal and the diary entries and letters of his siblings to tell the story of Stoker’s childhood. It exposes the reader to the events that lead to the creation of Dracula. Dracul expertly creates the dark mood of a gothic tale, while moving the story to a thrilling climax. I recommend this shadowy, frightening tale.
I have next to no interest in science fiction, but I am interested in technology and literature. This brilliant short story collection supplies both in abundance as the author executes skillful storytelling on wildly creative premises in believable ways.
Oh, that stubborn, independent Bathsheba Everdene! With a following of three suitors, she manages one of the largest estates in the area but her willfullness, decisions and their consequences threaten the community as lust, murder and mayhem ensue. Looking for love in all the wrong places....makes a really good story.
Great collection of short stories by one of my new favorite writers. I just read her work recently and she is just the right amount of twisted!
I'm a sucker for a collection of intertwining short stories. MacArthur's collection takes place in the Vermont wilderness, and in the words of the blurb, span the lives of "adolescent girls, aging hippies, hardscrabble farmers, disconnected women, and solitary men" over a forty year period. I just fell into this book both crying and laughing the whole way through. Read if you want to feel that deep, pit of the stomach, "life is fleeting but lovely" feeling.
How does a community go on after a civil war has split family and friends? Forna slowly reveals the secrets of the past. Great story telling, fascinating story--- a great read.
A retelling of the Antigone story set in the modern day but with a twist - the action centers around a Muslim family and its political beliefs or lack of belief. The son Parvaiz, loyal to the memory of his radical father, goes to Raqqa to join the ISIS, but is sickened by the violence he sees. His sisters disagree over what to do. Told from various points of view, it a very affecting story, whose final scene is gripping. Shamsie studied fiction writing at the University of Massachusetts, although she is a Londoner.