Staff Picks by Tag

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Roadside Picnic (Rediscovered Classics) Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781613743416
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 1-5 days
Published: Chicago Review Press - May 2012

The aliens have already packed up and left as Roadside Picnic begins, but their brief and apparently pointless visit has left the earth irrevocably altered. And in writing this brief, beguiling novel of first contact, the Strugatsky brothers forever altered the terrain of science fiction; their book has gone on to inspire successive generations of artists and writers, most famously Andrei Tarkovsky and Jeff VanderMeer.

In my mind, the thing that really makes this edition essential for science fiction readers is the forward provided by another pillar of the genre, Ursula K. Le Guin. In a few short, pithy pages, Le Guin uses the numerous possible readings of Roadside Picnic--a parable of Soviet failure? a referendum on human intelligence?--to prompt a much broader meditation on the possibilities of the genre.


Review by Theo

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The Best of Richard Matheson Cover Image
By Richard Matheson, Victor LaValle (Editor), Victor LaValle (Introduction by)
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143130178
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Penguin Classics - October 10th, 2017

Do you like the Twilight Zone? Of course you do. But you might not know Richard Matheson. And you should, because arguably the most iconic episodes were adapted from his masterfully-written short fiction. Each story is so tightly crafted as to border on pulp, each ending twists with a stinger that demands your return. If I'm on a plane: 1) I have a Richard Matheson collection in my carry on and 2) I'm not going to look at the wing of the plane. Yeah. He wrote that. 


Review by Dean

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The Knife of Never Letting Go (Reissue with bonus short story): Chaos Walking: Book One Cover Image
$12.00
ISBN: 9780763676186
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Candlewick - July 22nd, 2014

It's been years since alien bio-warfare killed off all the women on the new world, leaving the men alone with nothing but their thoughts. Literally. They call it the Noise. It is constant, it sounds like the inner voices of everyone nearby, and it is all Todd has ever known. When he senses an impossible gap in the Noise, he looks for the source, and discovers a second impossible thing: the source of the gap in the Noise is a girl. If you like post apocalyptic societies, science fiction, or nail-bitingly compulsive reads, this is for you.


Review by Kitri

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Mars One Cover Image
$11.99
ISBN: 9781481461627
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers - March 27th, 2018

I often wish that there was more real science fiction in the young adult category. I was super excited to read Mars One and was amazed at the depth and thought put into this amazing story. A private company foots the bill to send the first humans to Mars. The impact on society and the world is profound. It was fascinating to experience first hand what life would be like if you were going to leave earth forever, live in space for months, and ultimately populate another planet. I raced through this and loved every minute!


Review by Patti H.

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The Collapsing Empire (The Interdependency #1) Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780765388902
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Tor Science Fiction - January 2nd, 2018

Cardenia Wu has a lot to deal with when she unexpectedly becomes the next in line to rule the Interdependency. Empire politics, unwanted marriage proposals, oh yeah, and the potential disintegration of all the interconnected human settlements. Fast and enticing, Scalzi does not disappoint.


Review by Ashley

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Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation Cover Image
By Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings (Illustrator), Damian Duffy (Adapted by)
$24.95
ISBN: 9781419709470
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Harry N. Abrams - January 10th, 2017

If you haven't read Octavia Butler's Kindred, this is a very compelling introduction. If you have, this graphic novel will add a new layer of understanding for this classic text. 


Review by James

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Record of a Spaceborn Few (Wayfarers #3) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062699220
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Harper Voyager - July 24th, 2018

Once again Becky Chambers has lived up to my every expectation. Through the perspectives of five very different people (plus an alien for good measure) she unfolds the intersections of life and death, stability and displacement, all through the every-day lives of the citizens of the Exodus Fleet, the original ships that left Earth in search for a better life. As always Chambers' characters feel more real than written, and her proposed future a hopeful, but complex, existence. 


Review by Ashley

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Borne: A Novel Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780374537654
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: MCD - February 27th, 2018

This is a book about relationships wrapped in the a guise of apocalyptic-landscapes, strange biotech, nameless cities, and survival-horror.

Come for the 5-story tall bear and feral, ruthless children.

Stay for the soul-crushing exposition of personal connections torn apart by guilt and distrust.


Review by Ashley

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Jagannath Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781101973974
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Vintage - February 6th, 2018

If you enjoy the fiction of Ursula Le Guin, and seek something new, read Karin Tidbeck. Her novel Amatka is powerful but Tidbeck's short stories are nigh perfect, perfectly weird.


Review by Alex

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Unearthed Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781484758052
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 1-5 days
Published: Disney-Hyperion - January 9th, 2018

A sci-fi bender that details what would happen if Lara Croft and Indiana Jones reluctantly teamed up to decode and ancient alien message in an ancient alien temple. 

Read while waiting for OBSIDIO, the final book in the Third Place bookseller-beloved Illuminae trilogy.


Review by Niki

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