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Book Reviews

Dear Reader

Lawrencian Mary O'Connell's latest book Dear Reader will satisfy adult and young adult reader alike. The story is told from a dual point of view. One narrator, misfit Catholic school student Flanner, goes alone to New York City in search of her missing English teacher Miss Sweeney, when the copy of Wuthering Heights she finds in her teacher's bag takes on a life of its own; it literally becomes Miss Sweeney's own tale of lost love, leaving clues to her whereabouts along the way.

Dear Reader Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781250077080
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Flatiron Books - May 9th, 2017

"Dear Reader is a story for anyone who believes in the power of books to help you figure out your life and remind you to go out and live it." Book Riot


The Nakano Thrift Shop

Hiromi Kawakami’s The Nakano Thrift Shop is a charming and quirky novel  set almost entirely in a Tokyo secondhand store. It’s the first US translation from a promising and popular Japanese novelist, with more to come soon. Protagonist Hitomi works the register as the strange rhythms of life working for the eccentric Mr. Nakano unfold at an easy and enjoyable pace around her. This delightful novel, anchored by an unconventional and often funny love story, is a breezy look at everyday Tokyo life. Recommended by Danny

 

The Nakano Thrift Shop Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781609453992
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Europa Editions - June 6th, 2017

From the author of Strange Weather in Tokyo comes this funny, heartwarming story about love, life, and human relationships that features a delightfully offbeat cast of characters.


Meanwhile There Are Letters: The Correspondence of Eudora Welty and Ross MacDonald

I love discovering one writer through the relationship with another, as I did Ross MacDonald through his letters to Eudora Welty. This is a memoir of the relationship between the most talented and private of Southern novelists, Welty, and noir mystery writer, MacDonald, who had long admired each others writing before they began corresponding. Though many assumed Welty looked at life through the lens of a dutiful spinster, caring for her aging mother and ailing brother, this lovely book proves otherwise.

Meanwhile There Are Letters: The Correspondence of Eudora Welty and Ross MacDonald Cover Image
By Suzanne Marrs (Editor), Tom Nolan (Editor)
$19.99
ISBN: 9781628727531
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Arcade Publishing - June 6th, 2017

A 2016 Edgar Award finalist, the "intimate, luminous portrait of a friendship" of two American literary icons (Kirkus, starred review).


Meanwhile There Are Letters: The Correspondence of Eudora Welty and Ross MacDonald

I love discovering one writer through the relationship with another, as I did Ross MacDonald through his letters to Eudora Welty. This is a memoir of the relationship between the most most talented but most private of Southern novelists, Welty, and noir mystery writer, MacDonald, who had long admired each others writing before they began corresponding. Though many assumed Welty looked at life through the lens of a dutiful spinster, caring for her aging mother and ailing brother, this lovely book proves otherwise.

Meanwhile There Are Letters: The Correspondence of Eudora Welty and Ross MacDonald Cover Image
By Suzanne Marrs (Editor), Tom Nolan (Editor)
$19.99
ISBN: 9781628727531
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Arcade Publishing - June 6th, 2017

A 2016 Edgar Award finalist, the "intimate, luminous portrait of a friendship" of two American literary icons (Kirkus, starred review).


Needle in the Bone

I'm late to arrive at Lawrence-based writer Caryn Miriam-Golberg's book Needle in the Bone: How a Holocaust Survivor and a Polish Resistance Fighter Beat the Odds and Found Each Other. The book tells the difficult and yet ultimately triumphant tale of late Lawrence residents Lou Frydman and Jarek Piekalkiewicz who both survived Nazi death camps and marches during the Holocaust. Frydman, along with his brother Abe were taken by the German army during the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. By the end of the war, everyone in his extended family had been killed except the two brothers.

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Needle in the Bone: How a Holocaust Survivor and a Polish Resistance Fighter Beat the Odds and Found Each Other Cover Image
$29.95
ISBN: 9781612345680
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Potomac Books - November 1st, 2012

Needle in the Bone tells the astonishing stories of Holocaust survivor Lou Frydman and former Polish resistance fighter Jarek Piekalkiewicz. As mere teenagers during World War II, the two men defied daunting odds, lost everything and nearly everyone in the war, and yet summoned the courage to start new lives in the United States.


The Language of Secrets

In her first book, The Unquiet Dead, Ausma Zehant Khan introduced us to Inspector Esa Khattak and his partner Rachel Getty of the RCMP in Ontario. Their unit—Community Policing Section—is charged with bridging gaps between the Muslim community and the police. The Language of Secrets takes up where the first novel left off: Khattak finds himself, as a devout Muslim, caught between his job and his faith community and undergoing an internal review based on his handling of a previous case.

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The Language of Secrets: A Mystery Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781250055170
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Minotaur Books - January 10th, 2017

Detective Esa Khattak heads up Canada's Community Policing Section, which handles minority-sensitive cases across all levels of law enforcement. Khattak is still under scrutiny for his last case, so he's surprised when INSET, Canada's national security team, calls him in on another politically sensitive issue.


Jane Steele

Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye is a wickedly thrilling read!  In the first chapter when Jane, the narrator says, “Reader, I murdered him” I was hooked.  Set in 19th century England, Jane lives at Highgate House with her mother and unfeeling aunt.  Her mother dies and Jane is sent to a dreadful boarding school for girls that’s run by a sadistic and cruel headmaster.  Jane escapes and flees to London, living by her wits for a few years.  (She has something in common with other literary characters who do bad things to bad people.).  She spies an a

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Jane Steele Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780425283202
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - March 14th, 2017

Nominated for the 2017 Edgar Award for Best Novel


Priestdaddy

Patricia Lockwood's memoir Priestdaddy is pretty unforgettable, primarily because nobody can craft a joke like Lockwood. She lends her manic comic energy to the story of moving home from Savannah to Kansas City after her husband's expensive eye surgery for a rare vision condition. Thing is, home is a bit stranger for Lockwood than for the rest of us: her father is a Catholic priest who's basically beyond description, but here goes: he walks around in boxers, playhs electric guitar loudly, is an ordained priest with five children, and watches Glenn Beck, well, religiously.

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Priestdaddy: A Memoir Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781594633737
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - May 2nd, 2017

"Consistently alive with feeling. . . Lockwood's prose is cute and dirty and innocent and experienced, Betty Boop in a pas de deux with David Sedaris."
--The New York Times

"You'll be wowed by Patricia Lockwood's darkly profane and poetic memoir Priestdaddy."
--Elle Magazine


A Reunion of Ghosts

A Reunion of Ghosts by Judith Claire Mitchell is one of the best novels I've read in years. A wry black comedy, it begins in 1999 and is the story of the forty-ish Alter sisters: Lady, Vee and Delph, who share an apartment on New York's Upper East Side. But it's also the story of four generations of the Alter family, beginning with their great-grandfather, a brilliant German chemist who invented chlorine gas, among other terrible things. Tragedies have occurred in each generation, leaving the Alter sisters to conclude that there is only one solution that will break the curse.

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A Reunion of Ghosts Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062355898
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - January 26th, 2016

A NATIONAL JEWISH BOOK AWARD FINALIST

"The Alter sisters are mordant, wry, and crystalline in wit and vision; it is a tremendous pleasure to rocket through generations of their family histories with them." --Lauren Groff, New York Timesbestselling author of Fates and Furies, The Monsters of Templeton, and Arcadia


Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsberg

As if we needed another reason to celebrate Ruth Bader Ginsberg! This book is about her insatiable desire to change the world and her commitment to equality. It is a great book for the ardent feminist, as well as a book for parents to read to their children. There are lots of photographs, timelines, and fun facts. This book is especially important with the recent addition  to the supreme court. Happy learning!  Recommended by Jenna.

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Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg Cover Image
$24.99
ISBN: 9780062415837
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dey Street Books - October 27th, 2015

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"The authors make this unassuming, most studious woman come pulsing to life. . . . Notorious RBG may be a playful project, but it asks to be read seriously. . . . That I responded so personally to it is a testimony to its] storytelling and panache."-- Jennifer Senior, New York Times


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