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Staff Pick

His Dark Materials : The Golden Compass/ The Subtle Knife/ The Amber Spyglass 12/2014

Pullman, Philip; Hughes-Hallet
$36.00
Woman of No Importance

Woman of No Importance

Purnell, Sonia
$18.00
A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Chosen as a BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR by NPR, the New York Public Library, Amazon, the Seattle Times, the Washington Independent Review of Books, PopSugar, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, BookBrowse, the Spectator, and the Times of London

Winner of the Plutarch Award for Best Biography

"Excellent...This book is as riveting as any thriller, and as hard to put down." -- The New York Times Book Review

A compelling biography of a masterful spy, and a reminder of what can be done with a few brave people -- and a little resistance. - NPR

A meticiulous history that reads like a thriller. - Ben Macintyre

A never-before-told story of Virginia Hall, the American spy who changed the course of World War II, from the author of Clementine.

In 1942, the Gestapo sent out an urgent transmission: She is the most dangerous of all Allied spies. We must find and destroy her.

The target in their sights was Virginia Hall, a Baltimore socialite who talked her way into Special Operations Executive, the spy organization dubbed Winston Churchill's Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare. She became the first Allied woman deployed behind enemy lines and--despite her prosthetic leg--helped to light the flame of the French Resistance, revolutionizing secret warfare as we know it.

Virginia established vast spy networks throughout France, called weapons and explosives down from the skies, and became a linchpin for the Resistance. Even as her face covered wanted posters and a bounty was placed on her head, Virginia refused order after order to evacuate. She finally escaped through a death-defying hike over the Pyrenees into Spain, her cover blown. But she plunged back in, adamant that she had more lives to save, and led a victorious guerilla campaign, liberating swathes of France from the Nazis after D-Day.

Based on new and extensive research, Sonia Purnell has for the first time uncovered the full secret life of Virginia Hall--an astounding and inspiring story of heroism, spycraft, resistance, and personal triumph over shocking adversity. A Woman of No Importance is the breathtaking story of how one woman's fierce persistence helped win the war.

Nora says: Fascinating account of an unsung heroine of World War II, Virginia Hall, an American socialite from Baltimore who became an agent in Britain’s Special Operations and a linchpin in the French resistance. Harrowing and thrilling, Purnell spins a riveting tale of courage and daring. 

Bridgerton [tv Tie-In]: The Duke and I

Bridgerton [tv Tie-In]: The Duke and I

Quinn, Julia
$16.99

A #1 New York Times Bestseller

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn comes the story of Daphne Bridgerton, in the first of her beloved Regency-set novels featuring the charming, powerful Bridgerton family, now a series created by Shondaland for Netflix.

In the ballrooms and drawing rooms of Regency London, rules abound. From their earliest days, children of aristocrats learn how to address an earl and curtsey before a prince--while other dictates of the ton are unspoken yet universally understood. A proper duke should be imperious and aloof. A young, marriageable lady should be amiable...but not too amiable.

Daphne Bridgerton has always failed at the latter. The fourth of eight siblings in her close-knit family, she has formed friendships with the most eligible young men in London. Everyone likes Daphne for her kindness and wit. But no one truly desires her. She is simply too deuced honest for that, too unwilling to play the romantic games that captivate gentlemen.

Amiability is not a characteristic shared by Simon Basset, Duke of Hastings. Recently returned to England from abroad, he intends to shun both marriage and society--just as his callous father shunned Simon throughout his painful childhood. Yet an encounter with his best friend's sister offers another option. If Daphne agrees to a fake courtship, Simon can deter the mamas who parade their daughters before him. Daphne, meanwhile, will see her prospects and her reputation soar.

The plan works like a charm--at first. But amid the glittering, gossipy, cut-throat world of London's elite, there is only one certainty: love ignores every rule...

This novel includes the 2nd epilogue, a peek at the story after the story.

Elsie's pick: Who is not watching Bridgerton? Become a groupie with the first book following this 19th Century family.

Alice Network

Alice Network

Quinn, Kate
$16.99

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller

An NPR's Best Book of the Year

A Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick!

The 2017 Girly Book Club Book of the Year!

A Summer Book Pick from Good Housekeeping, Parade, Library Journal, Goodreads, Liz and Lisa, and BookBub

In this enthralling novel from New York Times bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women--a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947--are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption.

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie's parents banish her to Europe to have her little problem taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she's recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she's trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the Queen of Spies, who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy's nose.

Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn't heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth...no matter where it leads.

"Both funny and heartbreaking, this epic journey of two courageous women is an unforgettable tale of little-known wartime glory and sacrifice. Quinn knocks it out of the park with this spectacular book!"--Stephanie Dray, New York Times bestselling author of America's First Daughter

It moves fast, it has suspense, romance, and a crime to solve. Usually I start a new book immediately after finishing one, but this one kept me thinking about it for days before I started another one.— Neighbor Pick by Linda from Palmer Ranch

Rose Code

Rose Code

Quinn, Kate
$17.99

"The reigning queen of historical fiction" -- Fiona Davis, New York Times bestselling author of The Lions of Fifth Avenue

The New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Huntress and The Alice Network returns with another heart-stopping World War II story of three female code breakers at Bletchley Park and the spy they must root out after the war is over.

1940. As England prepares to fight the Nazis, three very different women answer the call to mysterious country estate Bletchley Park, where the best minds in Britain train to break German military codes. Vivacious debutante Osla is the girl who has everything--beauty, wealth, and the dashing Prince Philip of Greece sending her roses--but she burns to prove herself as more than a society girl, and puts her fluent German to use as a translator of decoded enemy secrets. Imperious self-made Mab, product of east-end London poverty, works the legendary codebreaking machines as she conceals old wounds and looks for a socially advantageous husband. Both Osla and Mab are quick to see the potential in local village spinster Beth, whose shyness conceals a brilliant facility with puzzles, and soon Beth spreads her wings as one of the Park's few female cryptanalysts. But war, loss, and the impossible pressure of secrecy will tear the three apart.

1947. As the royal wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip whips post-war Britain into a fever, three friends-turned-enemies are reunited by a mysterious encrypted letter--the key to which lies buried in the long-ago betrayal that destroyed their friendship and left one of them confined to an asylum. A mysterious traitor has emerged from the shadows of their Bletchley Park past, and now Osla, Mab, and Beth must resurrect their old alliance and crack one last code together. But each petal they remove from the rose code brings danger--and their true enemy--closer...

Melanie says: Following her highly successful books: The Alice Network and The Huntress, Kate Quinn enthralls us with the story of three young women who meet at Bletchley Park. There the best and most unusual minds in England are trying to break the German Enigma codes. After the war they are confronted with Rose Code which threatens their friendship and possibly their lives. Intriguing!

In the Valley

In the Valley

Rash, Ron
$26.95
*Named a Garden & Gun and Atlanta Journal Constitution best book of the year*

Winner of the 2020 Thomas Robinson Prize for Southern Literature

Mesmerizing...He's one of the best living American writers.--Janet Maslin, New York Times Book Review

From bestselling and award-winning writer Ron Rash (One of the great American authors at work today.--The New York Times) comes a collection of ten searing stories and the return of the villainess who propelled Serena to national acclaim, in a long-awaited novella.

Ron Rash has long been a revered presence in the landscape of American letters. A virtuosic novelist, poet, and story writer, he evokes the beauty and brutality of the land, the relentless tension between past and present, and the unquenchable human desire to be a little bit better than circumstances would seem to allow (to paraphrase Faulkner).

In these ten stories, Rash spins a haunting allegory of the times we live in--rampant capitalism, the severing of ties to the natural world in the relentless hunt for profit, the destruction of body and soul with pills meant to mute our pain--and yet within this world he illuminates acts of extraordinary decency and heroism. Two of the stories have already been singled out for accolades: Baptism was chosen by Roxane Gay for inclusion in The Best American Short Stories 2018, and Neighbors was selected by Jonathan Lethem for The Best American Mystery Stories 2019. And in revisiting Serena Pemberton, Rash updates his bestselling parable of greed run amok as his deliciously vindictive heroine returns to the North Carolina wilderness she left scarred and desecrated to make one final effort to kill the child that threatens all she has accomplished.

A gorgeous, brutal writer (Richard Price) working at the height of his powers, Ron Rash has created another mesmerizing look at the imperfect world around us.

Doug says: You love his poems, but have you ever read his fiction? You are going to. I was wary. I often say, had enough of the south. All those twenty years spent getting to Florida from New York! But his stories are gems. He’s got a strength and sensitivity that rings something of beauty without going on about it. “His heart was settled. No ups, no downs. Be grateful for that, he told himself.” –from “Last Bridge Burned”

Alive: Sixteen Men, Seventy-Two Days, and Insurmountable Odds--The Classic Adventure of Survival in the Andes

Alive: Sixteen Men, Seventy-Two Days, and Insurmountable Odds--The Classic Adventure of Survival in the Andes

Read, Piers Paul
$17.99

#1 New York Times Bestseller

"No one will come away unmoved by the book, and no one will be able to put it down.... There is no way of reading Alive without a heightened sense of one's own life and its value." -- New Republic

Sixteen Men, Seventy-Two Days, and Insurmountable Odds--the Classic Adventure of Survival in the Andes

On October 12, 1972, an Uruguayan Air Force plane carrying a team of rugby players crashed in the remote snowy peaks of the Andes. Ten weeks later, only sixteen of the forty-five passengers were found alive. This is the story of those ten weeks spent in the shelter of the plane's fuselage without food and with scarcely any hope of a rescue. The survivors protected and helped one another, and came to the difficult conclusion that to live meant doing the unimaginable. Confronting nature at its most furious, two brave young men risked their lives to hike through the mountains looking for help. A tale of astonishing bravery and adventure, Alive is much more than a survival story, it is a breathtaking saga of human courage

The P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including interviews, recommended reading, and more.

Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

Richardson, Kim Michele
$15.99

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
A USA TODAY BESTSELLER
A LOS ANGELES TIMES BESTSELLER
AN OKRA PICK

The bestselling historical fiction from Kim Michele Richardson, this is a novel following Cussy Mary, a packhorse librarian and her quest to bring books to the Appalachian community she loves, perfect for readers of Lee Smith and Lisa Wingate. The perfect addition to your next book club!

The hardscrabble folks of Troublesome Creek have to scrap for everything--everything except books, that is. Thanks to Roosevelt's Kentucky Pack Horse Library Project, Troublesome's got its very own traveling librarian, Cussy Mary Carter.

Cussy's not only a book woman, however, she's also the last of her kind, her skin a shade of blue unlike most anyone else. Not everyone is keen on Cussy's family or the Library Project, and a Blue is often blamed for any whiff of trouble. If Cussy wants to bring the joy of books to the hill folks, she's going to have to confront prejudice as old as the Appalachias and suspicion as deep as the holler.

Inspired by the true blue-skinned people of Kentucky and the brave and dedicated Kentucky Pack Horse library service of the 1930s, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek is a story of raw courage, fierce strength, and one woman's belief that books can carry us anywhere--even back home.

This gem of a historical from Richardson features an indomitable heroine navigating a community steeped in racial intolerance...Readers will adore the memorable Cussy and appreciate Richardson's fine rendering of rural Kentucky life. --Publishers Weekly

Other Bestselling Historical Fiction from Sourcebooks Landmark:
The Only Woman in the Room by Marie Benedict
The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict
The Engineer's Wife by Tracey Enerson Wood
Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris

Melanie says: A fascinating story of the blue-skinned people and the pack horse librarians of Kentucky.

High Conflict

High Conflict

Ripley, Amanda
$28.00
When we are baffled by the insanity of the "other side"--in our politics, at work, or at home--it's because we aren't seeing how the conflict itself has taken over.

That's what "high conflict" does. It's the invisible hand of our time. And it's different from the useful friction of healthy conflict. That's good conflict, and it's a necessary force that pushes us to be better people.

High conflict, by contrast, is what happens when discord distills into a good-versus-evil kind of feud, the kind with an us and a them. In this state, the normal rules of engagement no longer apply. The brain behaves differently. We feel increasingly certain of our own superiority and, at the same time, more and more mystified by the other side.

New York Times bestselling author and award-winning journalist Amanda Ripley investigates how good people get captured by high conflict--and how they break free.

Our journey begins in California, where a world-renowned conflict expert struggles to extract himself from a political feud. Then we meet a Chicago gang leader who dedicates his life to a vendetta--only to find himself working beside the man who killed his childhood idol. Next, we travel to Colombia, to find out whether thousands of people can be nudged out of high conflict at scale. Finally, we return to America to see what happens when a group of liberal Manhattan Jews and conservative Michigan corrections officers choose to stay in each other's homes in order to understand one another better.

All these people, in dramatically different situations, were drawn into high conflict by similar forces, including conflict entrepreneurs, humiliation, and false binaries. But ultimately, all of them found ways to transform high conflict into something good, something that made them better people. They rehumanized and recatego-rized their opponents, and they revived curiosity and wonder, even as they continued to fight for what they knew was right.

People do escape high conflict. Individuals--even entire communities--can short-circuit the feedback loops of outrage and blame, if they want to. This is a mind-opening new way to think about conflict that will transform how we move through the world.

Georgia says: Engagingly written exploration of “high conflict” (binary us vs. them) situations and how several individuals or groups worked their way out. This is about more than merely looking for common ground, although that is part of it. I recommend this book heartily….especially in our divided and divisive environment.  


Girl of the Lake: Stories

Girl of the Lake: Stories

Roorbach, Bill
$15.26
$16.95
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$1.69
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Nine richly varied, often funny, always moving stories that reveal the complex workings of the human heart.

Bill Roorbach conjures vivid characters whose layered interior worlds feel at once familiar and extraordinary. He first made his mark as the winner of an O. Henry Prize for the title story of Big Bend, his first collection, which won the Flannery O'Connor Award. His new collection, The Girl of the Lake, captures a virtuoso in his prime.

Roorbach's characters are unforgettable: among them an adventurous boy who learns what courage really is when an aging nobleman recounts history to him; a couple hiking through the mountains whose vacation and relationship ends catastrophically; a teenager being pursued by three sisters all at once; a tech genius who exacts revenge on his wife and best friend over a stolen kiss from years past.

These moving and funny stories are as rich in scope, emotional, and memorable as Bill Roorbach's novels. He has been called "a kinder, gentler John Irving... a humane and entertaining storyteller with a smooth, graceful style" (the Washington Post), and his work has been described as "hilarious and heartbreaking, wild and wise" (Parade magazine), all of which is evident in spades (and also hearts, clubs, and diamonds) in every story in this arresting new collection.

Kate says: A real page-turner of a book. An insightful collection of short stories that feels true to life and offers hope and humor.