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Staff Pick

Citizens of London : The Americans Who Stood With Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour BC

Citizens of London : The Americans Who Stood With Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour BC

Olson, Lynne
$18.00
The acclaimed author of Troublesome Young Men reveals the behind-the-scenes story of how the United States forged its wartime alliance with Britain, told from the perspective of three key American players in London: Edward R. Murrow, the handsome, chain-smoking head of CBS News in Europe; Averell Harriman, the hard-driving millionaire who ran FDR's Lend-Lease program in London; and John Gilbert Winant, the shy, idealistic U.S. ambassador to Britain. Each man formed close ties with Winston Churchill--so much so that all became romantically involved with members of the prime minister's family. Drawing from a variety of primary sources, Lynne Olson skillfully depicts the dramatic personal journeys of these men who, determined to save Britain from Hitler, helped convince a cautious Franklin Roosevelt and reluctant American public to back the British at a critical time. Deeply human, brilliantly researched, and beautifully written, Citizens of London is a new triumph from an author swiftly becoming one of the finest in her field.
There There

There There

Orange, Tommy
$16.00
"Powerful. . . . a revelation." --The New York Times

"With a literary authority rare in a debut novel, it places Native American voices front and center before readers' eyes." --NPR/Fresh Air

One of The New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year and winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award, Tommy Orange's wondrous and shattering bestselling novel follows twelve characters from Native communities: all traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow, all connected to one another in ways they may not yet realize. Among them is Jacquie Red Feather, newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind. Dene Oxendene, pulling his life together after his uncle's death and working at the powwow to honor his memory. Fourteen-year-old Orvil, coming to perform traditional dance for the very first time. Together, this chorus of voices tells of the plight of the urban Native American--grappling with a complex and painful history, with an inheritance of beauty and spirituality, with communion and sacrifice and heroism. Hailed as an instant classic, There There is at once poignant and unflinching, utterly contemporary and truly unforgettable.

One of the Best Books of the Year: The Washington Post, NPR, Time, O, The Oprah Magazine, The Dallas Morning News, GQ, Entertainment Weekly, BuzzFeed, San Francisco Chronicle, The Boston Globe

Andrea says: An amazingly powerful debut novel. 12 interwoven stories of urban Native American. Propulsive energy and urgency. I was blown away!

Listen to the Marriage

Listen to the Marriage

Osborn, John Jay
$17.00

A riveting drama of marital therapy

Gretchen and Steve have been married for a long time. Living in San Francisco, recently separated, with two children and demanding jobs, they've started going to a marriage counselor. Unfolding over the course of ten months and taking place entirely in the marriage counselor's office, John Jay Osborn's Listen to the Marriage is the story of a fractured couple in a moment of crisis, and of the person who tries to get them to see each other again. A searing look at the obstacles we put in our own way, as well as the forces that drive us apart (and those that bring us together), Listen to the Marriage is a poignant exploration of marriage--heartbreaking and tender.

Roxanne says: A fascinating inside look at what goes on in a marriage counseling session. Suspensful in not knowing if the marriage will be "salvaged."

Fake Accounts

Fake Accounts

Oyler, Lauren
$26.00
A NATIONAL BESTSELLER * A NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW EDITORS' CHOICE

An invigorating work, deadly precise in its skewering of people, places and things . . . Stylish, despairing and very funny, Fake Accounts . . . adroitly maps the dwindling gap between the individual and the world. --Katie Kitamura, The New York Times Book Review

A woman in a tailspin discovers that her boyfriend is an anonymous online conspiracy theorist in this "absolutely brilliant take on the bizarre and despicable ways the internet has warped our perception of reality" (Elle, One of the Most Anticipated Books of the Year).

On the eve of Donald Trump's inauguration, a young woman snoops through her boyfriend's phone and makes a startling discovery: he's an anonymous internet conspiracy theorist, and a popular one at that. Already fluent in internet fakery, irony, and outrage, she's not exactly shocked by the revelation. Actually, she's relieved--he was always a little distant--and she plots to end their floundering relationship while on a trip to the Women's March in DC. But this is only the first in a series of bizarre twists that expose a world whose truths are shaped by online lies.

Suddenly left with no reason to stay in New York and increasingly alienated from her friends and colleagues, our unnamed narrator flees to Berlin, embarking on her own cycles of manipulation in the deceptive spaces of her daily life, from dating apps to expat meetups, open-plan offices to bureaucratic waiting rooms. She begins to think she can't trust anyone--shouldn't the feeling be mutual?

Narrated with seductive confidence and subversive wit, Fake Accounts challenges the way current conversations about the self and community, delusions and gaslighting, and fiction and reality play out in the internet age.

Katia says: This is a cantankerous book. Kind of about the internet, kind of about loneliness, kind of about nothing at all. It will make you chuckle, and then heave a deep sigh. However, as our sad little narrator describes herself in her OK Cupid profile, I do believe this novel is "difficult but worth it."


Book of Form and Emptiness

Book of Form and Emptiness

Ozeki, Ruth
$30.00

"Heart-breaking and heart-healing--The Book of Form and Emptiness is a triumph." --Matt Haig, New York Times bestselling author of The Midnight Library

 

A brilliantly inventive novel about loss, growing up, and our relationship with things

 

One year after the death of his beloved musician father, thirteen-year-old Benny Oh begins to hear voices. The voices belong to the things in his house--a sneaker, a broken Christmas ornament, a piece of wilted lettuce. Although Benny doesn't understand what these things are saying, he can sense their emotional tone; some are pleasant, a gentle hum or coo, but others are snide, angry and full of pain. When his mother, Annabelle, develops a hoarding problem, the voices grow more clamorous.

 

At first, Benny tries to ignore them, but soon the voices follow him outside the house, onto the street and at school, driving him at last to seek refuge in the silence of a large public library, where objects are well-behaved and know to speak in whispers. There, Benny discovers a strange new world. He falls in love with a mesmerizing street artist with a smug pet ferret, who uses the library as her performance space. He meets a homeless philosopher-poet, who encourages him to ask important questions and find his own voice amongst the many.

 

And he meets his very own Book--a talking thing--who narrates Benny's life and teaches him to listen to the things that truly matter.

 

With its blend of sympathetic characters, riveting plot, and vibrant engagement with everything from jazz, to climate change, to our attachment to material possessions, The Book of Form and Emptiness is classic Ruth Ozeki--bold, wise, poignant, playful, humane and heartbreaking.

James, Georgia, Roxanne and Melanie all loved this book. Here's what Roxanne had to say: A first time and now long time fan, Ozeki had me from page one.  Her descriptions of contemporary urban life are magical as she weaves between grief and the celebration of life.  Her mystical take of multiple narrators make every chapter fresh.    

Tale for the Time Being: A Novel - Kate SP

Tale for the Time Being: A Novel

Ozeki, Ruth
$18.00
A brilliant, unforgettable novel from bestselling author Ruth Ozeki, author of The Book of Form and Emptiness

Finalist for the Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award

"A time being is someone who lives in time, and that means you, and me, and every one of us who is, or was, or ever will be."

In Tokyo, sixteen-year-old Nao has decided there's only one escape from her aching loneliness and her classmates' bullying. But before she ends it all, Nao first plans to document the life of her great grandmother, a Buddhist nun who's lived more than a century. A diary is Nao's only solace--and will touch lives in ways she can scarcely imagine. Across the Pacific, we meet Ruth, a novelist living on a remote island who discovers a collection of artifacts washed ashore in a Hello Kitty lunchbox--possibly debris from the devastating 2011 tsunami. As the mystery of its contents unfolds, Ruth is pulled into the past, into Nao's drama and her unknown fate, and forward into her own future.

Full of Ozeki's signature humor and deeply engaged with the relationship between writer and reader, past and present, fact and fiction, quantum physics, history, and myth, A Tale for the Time Being is a brilliantly inventive, beguiling story of our shared humanity and the search for home.

Kate says: A lunchbox is found on the shore...an emotionally engaging, exquisite novel. Funny, tragic and moving.

Museum of Innocence Nobel 2006

Museum of Innocence Nobel 2006

Pamuk, Orhan
$17.00

It is 1975, a perfect spring in Istanbul. Kemal and Sibel, children of two prominent families, are about to become engaged. But when Kemal encounters Füsun, a beautiful shopgirl and a distant relation, he becomes enthralled. And once they violate the code of virginity, a rift begins to open between Kemal and the world of the Westernized Istanbul bourgeoisie. In his pursuit of Füsun over the next eight years, Kemal becomes a compulsive collector of objects that chronicle his lovelorn progress--amassing a museum that is both a map of a society and of his heart. Orhan Pamuk's first novel since winning the Nobel Prize is a stirring exploration of the nature of romance.

Georgia says: My favorite author and my favorite of his books. Fabulous story of obsessive love.


Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics

Parton, Dolly
$50.00
Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics is a landmark celebration of the remarkable life and career of a country music and pop culture legend.

As told by Dolly Parton in her own inimitable words, explore the songs that have defined her journey. Illustrated throughout with previously unpublished images from Dolly Parton's personal and business archives.

Mining over 60 years of songwriting, Dolly Parton highlights 175 of her songs and brings readers behind the lyrics.

- Packed with never-before-seen photographs and classic memorabilia
- Explores personal stories, candid insights, and myriad memories behind the songs

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics reveals the stories and memories that have made Dolly a beloved icon across generations, genders, and social and international boundaries.

Containing rare photos and memorabilia from Parton's archives, this book is a show-stopping must-have for every Dolly Parton fan.

- Learn the history behind classic Parton songs like Jolene, 9 to 5, I Will Always Love You, and more.
- The perfect gift for Dolly Parton fans (everyone loves Dolly!) as well as lovers of music history and country

Add it to the shelf with books like Coat of Many Colors by Dolly Parton, The Beatles Anthology by The Beatles, and Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen.

Deadly Cross

Deadly Cross

Patterson, James
$29.00

The murder of a glamorous DC socialite becomes Alex Cross's deadliest case since Along Came a Spider.
Kay Willingham led a life as glamorous as it was public--she was a gorgeous Georgetown socialite, philanthropist, and the ex-wife of the vice president. So why was she parked in a Bentley convertible idling behind a DC private school, in the middle of the night, with the man who was the head of that school? Who shot them both, point blank, and why? The shocking double homicide is blazed across the internet, TV, newspapers--and across Alex Cross's mind. Kay had been his patient once. And maybe more.

 

While John Sampson of DC Metro Police investigates the last movements of Christopher Randall, the educator killed along with Kay Willingham, detective Alex Cross and FBI special agent Ned Mahoney find unanswered questions from Willingham's past, before she arrived in DC and became known in DC society as someone who could make things happen. They travel to Alabama to investigate Kay's early years. There they find a world of trouble, corruption, and secrets, all of them closed to outsiders like Cross and Mahoney.

 

Kay had many enemies, but all of them seemed to need her alive. The harder the investigators push, the more resistance they find when they leave behind the polite law offices and doctors' quarters of the state capital. Alex Cross will need to use all his skills as a doctor, a detective, and a family man to prevent that resistance from turning lethal . . . again.

Elsie says: Detective Alex Cross and his family make me smile. I have followed them through tragedies and triumphs.He always gets his man and Nana Mama is the greatest cook. Patterson is easy reading and a great philanthropist to bookstores.


You Can't Be Serious

You Can't Be Serious

Penn, Kal
$28.00

In this refreshingly candid memoir, Kal Penn recounts why he rejected the advice of his aunties and guidance counselors and, instead of becoming a doctor or "something practical," embarked on a surprising journey that has included acting, writing, working as a farmhand, teaching Ivy League University courses, and smoking fake weed with a fake President of the United States, before serving the country and advising a real one.

 

You Can't Be Seriousis a series of funny, consequential, awkward, and ridiculous stories from Kal's idiosyncratic life. It's about being the grandson of Gandhian freedom fighters, and the son of immigrant parents: people who came to this country with very little and went very far--and whose vision of the American dream probably never included their son sliding off an oiled-up naked woman in a raunchy Ryan Reynolds movie...or getting a phone call from Air Force One as Kal flew with the country's first Black president.

 

With intelligence, humor, and charm on every page, Kal reflects on the most exasperating and rewarding moments from his journey so far. He pulls back the curtain on the nuances of opportunity and racism in the entertainment industry and recounts how he built allies, found encouragement, and dealt with early reminders that he might never fit in. And of course, he reveals how, after a decade and a half of fighting for and enjoying successes in Hollywood, he made the terrifying but rewarding decision to take a sabbatical from a fulfilling acting career for an opportunity to serve his country as a White House aide.

 

Above all, You Can't Be Serious shows that everyone can have more than one life story. Kal demonstrates by example that no matter who you are and where you come from, you have many more choices than those presented to you. It's a story about struggle, triumph, and learning how to keep your head up. And okay, yes, it's also about how he accidentally (and very stupidly) accepted an invitation to take the entire White House Office of Public Engagement to a strip club--because, let's be honest, that's the kind of stuff you really want to hear about.

Roxanne says: Reading Kal Penn’s memoir is like getting a visit from that friend you always look forward to seeing for his well spun hilarious tales.  From his humble New Jersey upbringing to his acting in comedies such as National Lampoon’s Van Wilder to his work as Associate Director of the Office of Public Engagement during the Obama Administration, Penn certainly has the fodder for truly engaging stories.