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Staff Pick

Complete Patrick Melrose Novels: Never Mind, Bad News, Some Hope, Mother's Milk, and At Last

Complete Patrick Melrose Novels: Never Mind, Bad News, Some Hope, Mother's Milk, and At Last

St. Aubyn, Edward
$30.00

NOW COLLECTED INTO ONE VOLUME FOR THE FIRST TIME, ALL FIVE INSTALLMENTS OF EDWARD ST. AUBYN'S CELEBRATED PATRICK MELROSE NOVELS

Soon to be a Showtime TV series starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Blythe Danner


Edward St. Aubyn has penned one of the most acclaimed series of the decade with the Patrick Melrose Novels. Now you can read all five novels in one volume: Never Mind, Bad News, Mother's Milk, Some Hope, and At Last.

By turns harrowing and hilarious, this ambitious novel cycle dissects the English upper class. Edward St. Aubyn offers his reader the often darkly funny and self-loathing world of privilege as we follow Patrick Melrose's story of abuse, addiction, and recovery from the age of five into early middle age.

The Patrick Melrose Novels are a memorable tour de force (The New York Times Book Review) by one of the most brilliant English novelists of his generation (Alan Hollinghurst).

Nora says: Psychologically acute, savagely honest and raw -- St. Aubyn can write!

Neighbors

Neighbors

Steel, Danielle
$31.00

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - In Danielle Steel's gripping new novel, a reclusive woman opens up her home to her neighbors in the wake of a devastating earthquake, setting off events that reveal secrets, break relationships apart, and bring strangers together to forge powerful new bonds.

Meredith White was one of Hollywood's most recognizable faces. But a personal tragedy cut her acting career short and alienated her from her family. For the last fifteen years, Meredith has been living alone in San Francisco with two trusted caretakers. Then, on a muggy late summer day, a massive earthquake strikes Northern California, plunging the Bay Area into chaos. Without a moment's hesitation, Meredith invites her stunned and shaken neighbors into her mostly undamaged home as the recovery begins.

 

These people did not even realize that movie star Meredith White was living on their street. Now, they are sharing her mansion, as well as their most closely kept secrets. Without the walls and privacy of their own homes, one by one, new relationships are forged. For every neighbor there is a story, from the doctor whose wife and children fear him, to the beautiful young woman dating a dishonorable man, to the aspiring writer caring for a famous blind musician.

 

In the heart of the crisis, Meredith finds herself venturing back into the world. And thanks to the suspicions and the dogged detective work of a disaster relief volunteer, a former military officer named Charles, a shocking truth about her own world is exposed. Suddenly Meredith sees her isolation, her estranged family, and even her acting career in a whole new light.

 

Filled with powerful human dramas, Neighbors is a penetrating look at how our world can be upended in a moment. In a novel of unforgettable characters and stunning twists, acts of love and courage become the most powerful forces of all.

Elsie says: I love to sit and enjoy a Danielle Steele easy to read with a great heroine, you have to believe in magic. She has been a special part of my adult life. Love always triumphs.


Crossing to Safety

Crossing to Safety

Stegner, Wallace Earle; Willia
$17.00
Introduction by Terry Tempest Williams
Afterword by T. H. Watkins

Called a "magnificently crafted story . . . brimming with wisdom" by Howard Frank Mosher in The Washington Post Book World, Crossing to Safety has, since its publication in 1987, established itself as one of the greatest and most cherished American novels of the twentieth century. Tracing the lives, loves, and aspirations of two couples who move between Vermont and Wisconsin, it is a work of quiet majesty, deep compassion, and powerful insight into the alchemy of friendship and marriage.

Nora says: Stegner is a skilled, assured stylist, weaving a psychologically keen narrative  about love, marriage, creativity, productivity and friendship. Highly recommended.

Art of Racing in the Rain, The

Art of Racing in the Rain, The

Stein, Garth
$16.99

NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE FROM FOX 2000 STARRING MILO VENTIMIGLIA, AMANDA SEYFRIED, AND KEVIN COSTNER

MEET THE DOG

WHO WILL SHOW THE WORLD

HOW TO BE HUMAN

The New York Times bestselling novel from Garth Stein--a heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family, love, loyalty, and hope--a captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life . . . as only a dog could tell it.

"Splendid." --People

"The perfect book for anyone who knows that compassion isn't only for humans, and that the relationship between two souls who are meant for each other never really comes to an end. Every now and then I'm lucky enough to read a novel I can't stop thinking about: this is one of them." --Jodi Picoult

"It's impossible not to love Enzo." --Minneapolis Star Tribune

"This old soul of a dog has much to teach us about being human. I loved this book." --Sara Gruen

Roxanne says: What if an Indy Driver had a philosophical yellow lab as a narrator? Incredibly moving.

Theories and Documents of Contemporary Art: A Sourcebook of Artists' Writings (Second Edition, Revised and Expanded by Kristine Stiles)

Theories and Documents of Contemporary Art: A Sourcebook of Artists' Writings (Second Edition, Revised and Expanded by Kristine Stiles)

Stiles, Kristine
$34.95

First published in 1996, this irreplaceable resource has now been updated, revised, and expanded by Kristine Stiles to represent thirty countries and more than one hundred new artists. Stiles has added forty images and a diverse roster of artists, including many who have emerged since the 1980s, such as Julie Mehretu, Carrie Mae Weems, Damien Hirst, Shirin Neshat, Cai Guo-Qian, Olafur Eliasson, Matthew Barney, and Takashi Murakami. The writings, which as before take the form of artists' statements, interviews, and essays, make vivid each artist's aesthetic approach and capture the flavor and intent of his or her work. The internationalism evident in this revised edition reflects the growing interest in the vitality of contemporary art throughout the world from the U.S. and Europe to the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Australia.

Scott says: Packed with artist statements, interviews, and essays covering formalist to feminist and modernist to postmodernist art, Stiles and Selz's book is the best of its kind, essential and irreplaceable.


Oh William!

Oh William!

Strout, Elizabeth
$27.00

Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout explores the mysteries of marriage and the secrets we keep, as a former couple reckons with where they've come from--and what they've left behind.

"Elizabeth Strout is one of my very favorite writers, so the fact that Oh William! may well be my favorite of her books is a mathematical equation for joy. The depth, complexity, and love contained in these pages is a miraculous achievement."--Ann Patchett, author of The Dutch House

 

I would like to say a few things about my first husband, William.

Lucy Barton is a writer, but her ex-husband, William, remains a hard man to read. William, she confesses, has always been a mystery to me. Another mystery is why the two have remained connected after all these years. They just are.

 

So Lucy is both surprised and not surprised when William asks her to join him on a trip to investigate a recently uncovered family secret--one of those secrets that rearrange everything we think we know about the people closest to us. What happens next is nothing less than another example of what Hilary Mantel has called Elizabeth Strout's "perfect attunement to the human condition." There are fears and insecurities, simple joys and acts of tenderness, and revelations about affairs and other spouses, parents and their children. On every page of this exquisite novel we learn more about the quiet forces that hold us together--even after we've grown apart.

 

At the heart of this story is the indomitable voice of Lucy Barton, who offers a profound, lasting reflection on the very nature of existence. "This is the way of life," Lucy says: "the many things we do not know until it is too late."

Andrea says: Lucy Barton and her ex-husband William are not likable people. I kept thinking about this as I read "Oh William" and found myself totally absorbed in their story. Both are damaged, both are self-centered, and both are missing love, but somehow they both had my sympathy. As the phrase "Oh William" repeats throughout the book, I thought "Oh Elizabeth Strout," you've done it again. The language sings throughout this moving story.


Olive Kitteridge Pulitzer Prize 2009

Olive Kitteridge Pulitzer Prize 2009

Strout, Elizabeth
$17.00
WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE - The beloved first novel featuring Olive Kitteridge, from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Oprah's Book Club pick Olive, Again

"Fiction lovers, remember this name: Olive Kitteridge. . . . You'll never forget her."--USA Today

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post Book World - USA Today - San Francisco Chronicle - Chicago Tribune - Seattle Post-Intelligencer - People - Entertainment Weekly - The Christian Science Monitor - The Plain Dealer - The Atlantic - Rocky Mountain News - Library Journal

At times stern, at other times patient, at times perceptive, at other times in sad denial, Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher, deplores the changes in her little town of Crosby, Maine, and in the world at large, but she doesn't always recognize the changes in those around her: a lounge musician haunted by a past romance; a former student who has lost the will to live; Olive's own adult child, who feels tyrannized by her irrational sensitivities; and her husband, Henry, who finds his loyalty to his marriage both a blessing and a curse.

As the townspeople grapple with their problems, mild and dire, Olive is brought to a deeper understanding of herself and her life--sometimes painfully, but always with ruthless honesty. Olive Kitteridge offers profound insights into the human condition--its conflicts, its tragedies and joys, and the endurance it requires.

The inspiration for the Emmy Award-winning HBO miniseries starring Frances McDormand, Richard Jenkins, and Bill Murray

Georgia says: A real busybody! But I just love her!

Shuggie Bain: A Novel (Booker Prize Shortlist)

Shuggie Bain: A Novel (Booker Prize Winner 2020)

Stuart, Douglas
$17.00

WINNER OF THE BOOKER PRIZE
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD


A stunning debut novel by a masterful writer telling the heartwrenching story of a young boy and his alcoholic mother, whose love is only matched by her pride.


Shuggie Bain is the unforgettable story of young Hugh "Shuggie" Bain, a sweet and lonely boy who spends his 1980s childhood in run-down public housing in Glasgow, Scotland. Thatcher's policies have put husbands and sons out of work, and the city's notorious drugs epidemic is waiting in the wings.


Shuggie's mother Agnes walks a wayward path: she is Shuggie's guiding light but a burden for him and his siblings. She dreams of a house with its own front door while she flicks through the pages of the Freemans catalogue, ordering a little happiness on credit, anything to brighten up her grey life. Married to a philandering taxi-driver husband, Agnes keeps her pride by looking good--her beehive, make-up, and pearly-white false teeth offer a glamorous image of a Glaswegian Elizabeth Taylor. But under the surface, Agnes finds increasing solace in drink, and she drains away the lion's share of each week's benefits--all the family has to live on--on cans of extra-strong lager hidden in handbags and poured into tea mugs. Agnes's older children find their own ways to get a safe distance from their mother, abandoning Shuggie to care for her as she swings between alcoholic binges and sobriety. Shuggie is meanwhile struggling to somehow become the normal boy he desperately longs to be, but everyone has realized that he is "no right," a boy with a secret that all but him can see. Agnes is supportive of her son, but her addiction has the power to eclipse everyone close to her--even her beloved Shuggie.


A heartbreaking story of addiction, sexuality, and love, Shuggie Bain is an epic portrayal of a working-class family that is rarely seen in fiction. Recalling the work of Édouard Louis, Alan Hollinghurst, Frank McCourt, and Hanya Yanagihara, it is a blistering debut by a brilliant novelist who has a powerful and important story to tell.

Andrea says: What a moving book. As the family struggles to survive their mother Agnes' demons, poverty, and the unsettled circumstances of their lives, Shuggie keeps trying to keep it together.  Although a tough story, it is one with so much feeling, you see a smidgen of beauty in Shuggie's love and perseverance.


Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore

Sullivan, Matthew
$18.00
When a bookshop patron commits suicide, his favorite store clerk must unravel the puzzle he left behind in this "intriguingly dark, twisty" (Kirkus Reviews) debut novel from an award-winning short story writer.

Lydia Smith lives her life hiding in plain sight. A clerk at the Bright Ideas bookstore, she keeps a meticulously crafted existence among her beloved books, eccentric colleagues, and the BookFrogs--the lost and lonely regulars who spend every day marauding the store's overwhelmed shelves.

But when Joey Molina, a young, beguiling BookFrog, kills himself in the bookstore's upper room, Lydia's life comes unglued. Always Joey's favorite bookseller, Lydia has been bequeathed his meager worldly possessions. Trinkets and books; the detritus of a lonely, uncared for man. But when Lydia flips through his books she finds them defaced in ways both disturbing and inexplicable. They reveal the psyche of a young man on the verge of an emotional reckoning. And they seem to contain a hidden message. What did Joey know? And what does it have to do with Lydia?

As Lydia untangles the mystery of Joey's suicide, she unearths a long buried memory from her own violent childhood. Details from that one bloody night begin to circle back. Her distant father returns to the fold, along with an obsessive local cop, and the Hammerman, a murderer who came into Lydia's life long ago and, as she soon discovers, never completely left. "Both charming and challenging" (Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review), Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore is a "multi-generational tale of abandonment, desperation, and betrayal...inventive and intricately plotted" (Publishers Weekly, starred review).

Book of Eels

Book of Eels

Svensson, Patrik
$17.99

Los Angeles Times Bestseller

IndieBound Bestseller

One of USA Today's "5 Books Not to Miss"

One of Forbes' "Best Summer Reads

One of the LA Times' "21 New and Classic Books to Keep You in Touch with the Natural World"

Part H Is for Hawk, part The Soul of an Octopus, The Book of Eels is both a meditation on the world's most elusive fish--the eel--and a reflection on the human condition

Remarkably little is known about the European eel, Anguilla anguilla. So little, in fact, that scientists and philosophers have, for centuries, been obsessed with what has become known as the "eel question" Where do eels come from? What are they? Are they fish or some other kind of creature altogether? Even today, in an age of advanced science, no one has ever seen eels mating or giving birth, and we still don't understand what drives them, after living for decades in freshwater, to swim great distances back to the ocean at the end of their lives. They remain a mystery.

Drawing on a breadth of research about eels in literature, history, and modern marine biology, as well as his own experience fishing for eels with his father, Patrik Svensson crafts a mesmerizing portrait of an unusual, utterly misunderstood, and completely captivating animal. In The Book of Eels, we meet renowned historical thinkers, from Aristotle to Sigmund Freud to Rachel Carson, for whom the eel was a singular obsession. And we meet the scientists who spearheaded the search for the eel's point of origin, including Danish marine biologist Johannes Schmidt, who led research efforts in the early twentieth century, catching thousands upon thousands of eels, in the hopes of proving their birthing grounds in the Sargasso Sea.

Blending memoir and nature writing at its best, Svensson's journey to understand the eel becomes an exploration of the human condition that delves into overarching issues about our roots and destiny, both as humans and as animals, and, ultimately, how to handle the biggest question of all: death. The result is a gripping and slippery narrative that will surprise and enchant.

Nora says: Masterfully written, unique book combining history, marine biology and personal history. Svensson explores the enduring fascination with the mysterious eel. The facts of an eel's life will enchant and puzzle any reader, no previous interest in marine biology required.