Staff Picks by Tag

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Pachinko (National Book Award Finalist) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781455563920
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Grand Central Publishing - November 14th, 2017

Multi-generational sagas don't get better than this beautiful story of one poor Korean family that moves to Japan. Spanning the years 1910 to 1989, this book describes the immigrant's experience in a way that is completely relevant today. Min Jin Lee has found the perfect image, the pachinko board, to represent the uncertainties in life. I haven't read a novel with such emotion since Rohinton Mistry's A Fine Balance. 


Review by Kalani

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This Is How It Always Is: A Novel Cover Image
$25.99
ISBN: 9781250088550
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 1-5 days
Published: Flatiron Books - January 24th, 2017

Sweet and unassuming, This Is How It Always Is explores the strength of familial bonds with tender love and sharp wit. I fell in love with the eccentric Walsh-Adams clan (particularly Poppy) and felt my heart break over the hardships that plagued them as the result of having a "non-traditional" family. A heartwarmingly empathetic debut.


Review by Avery

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A Separation: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780399576119
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Riverhead Books - February 6th, 2018

A hypnotic, witchy tale of a woman's desultory search for her estranged husband who has gone missing in Greece, A Separation is an enigmatically seductive narrative whose gauzy embrace draws easy comparisons to DeLillo (or his innumerable acolytes).

It is a powerfully engrossing quagmire and its misty atmosphere of isolation and emotional riddles are truly haunting.


Review by Wesley

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Transit: A Novel (Outline Trilogy #2) Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781250151797
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Picador - December 19th, 2017

The follow-up to Outline is an even more satisfying exposition of a woman’s rich interior life; it is a fascinating, subdued illumination of the mundane’s transformation into profundity when examined in the right light.

The main pleasure in Cusk’s cycle of novels is their meditative effect. Like a mindfulness exercise disguised as fiction, their palliative energy make them necessary reading.


Review by Wesley

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Nobody Is Ever Missing: A Novel Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780374534493
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: FSG Originals - July 8th, 2014

Those vague, errant anxieties which plague and paralyze us, strengthened by subjectivity's inability to aptly describe them, are painted in precise, vivid colors in Lacey's debut novel. Our heroine, floundering (literally and figuratively) through New Zealand with mostly just her perturbation to keep her company, is as mysterious and fascinating as the landscape.

 


Review by Wesley

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For Today I Am a Boy Cover Image
By Kim Fu
$14.95
ISBN: 9780544538528
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Mariner Books - March 10th, 2015

A stunning debut pioneering in its accurate portrayal of a first generation Chinese immigrant family (refreshingly free of stereotypes) and the pressure of the expectations, both societal and familial, forced upon them in a contradiction of identity. Within the first page, I was drawn to Fu's lyrical writing and vibrant characters that gradually intertwined with quiet brilliance and wit.
 
Fu explores the debacle of what life is when constricted to a suffocating outlook of self-denial - what are we willing to sacrifice and suffer though in order for a few sparing moments of authenticity and the happiness it brings? Is complacency all we can accept when faced with overwhelming fear?
 
All in all, an essential and engrossing read from an author whose further works I will be keeping an eye out for.


Review by Avery

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The Red Car: A Novel Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781631493393
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Liveright - September 12th, 2017

Disillusionment is a risky theme to tackle; a character adrift can easily come across as too thorny or unsympathetic, making even a masterfully written story insufferable. Luckily, we have Marcy Dermansky.

In the sea of earnest, self-conscious, cloyingly "witty" (and ultimately forgettable) modern fiction, she and The Red Car are acerbic salvation.


Review by Wesley

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Children of the New World: Stories Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250098993
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Picador - September 13th, 2016

Dystopian fiction that will resonate well with fans of Black Mirror, Children of Men, and Fahrenheit 451; every story held me spellbound and fully immersed in a world that I was reluctant to leave afterward.


Review by Avery

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Hav Cover Image
By Jan Morris, Ursula K. Le Guin (Introduction by)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781590174494
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 1-5 days
Published: NYRB Classics - August 30th, 2011

Take an unforgettable trip to the historic city of Hav! Watch the exciting roof-race! Explore the caves of the mysterious Kretevs! Marvel at the secret rites of the Cathars! Morris evokes a place so rich and fascinating that you'll wish you were there!


Review by Stephen

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The Collective: A Novel Cover Image
By Don Lee
$15.95
ISBN: 9780393345421
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - July 8th, 2013

Addressing identity and the role we play in one another's lives, The Collective is the haunting, moving and wryly drawn novel I wanted The Interestings to be. Don Lee is writing at the height of his powers in this novel, the acuity common to all of his work tempered here with the perfectly rendered melancholy of growing pains. 


Review by Wesley

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