Beth's Picks

Elizabeth Reynolds has been in the world of books since college. She is now the Children's Librarian at the Norwich Public Library and we get her for one day a week. Beth, her husband Michael, and red-haired son Toby live in Norwich in a house full of books to read and yarn to knit.


$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780812994780
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House, 7/2014
Dr. Thomas Eapen isn’t performing surgery at the hospital anymore, instead he’s at home trying to talk to his dead son. Called back to New Mexico to help with the latest family crisis, Amina leaves her life as a photographer behind to try and discover what’s going on with her father. While dealing with her own devastating loss, she meets up with the boy she used to love-- complicating everything. Life in America isn’t quite what anyone had expected it would be, but the ways in which the Eapens deal with heartbreak and happiness makes this tale of familial love truly stand out. Jacob’s debut of immigrant life shimmers as it shows all the ways in which we hang on to the past. This debut novel takes us through decades and across continents. Lyrical passages, tempered with the reality of the sandwich generation, illustrates this truth: You can’t outrun the past—or your parents.

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9781596439856
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Roaring Brook Press, 6/2014
I love this little librarian, her recommendations and her adorable storytimes. I wish I could be more like her when I grow up and that I had a few owls for assistants. This is a book I would happily read upon request no matter how often the little person wanted to hear it: at bedtime or naptime or just because it’s Thursday. A high-contrast but simple palette provides the perfect backdrop for this endearing story. It turns out libraries--and bookstores--offer more than just books. (But of course, you probably already knew that.)

Flashlight (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9781452118949
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books, 8/2014
Kids' faces are sure to light up as they make their own discoveries in this artfully rendered picture book. Harkening back to a simpler time, the striking color palette makes the book truly stand out and promises to be incredibly engaging and interactive. Thoughtfully created and beautifully crafted, this is the way a picture book experience was meant to be. Give this as a gift and you'll be the coolest grown-up around. Sit with a child as they turn the pages and they'll want you to stay forever.

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9781442490611
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 8/2014
If I could have any fictional friend come over for an afternoon it would have to be Will (aka Wildcat) Silver. It would take me a "handful of ands"' to describe all of the trouble we would get into. With her tomboyish ways and her engaging manner, Wilhelmina Silver is going to be quite the spritely mover this season. No sooner will she be in your store, then she'll be on her way home ready to make a believer out of anyone who pokes their nose into these pages. Here's the opportunity for all of your spirited readers to cartwheel, flip and dance for joy at the chance to read an unconventional and utterly delightful story.

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9781476738963
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster, 6/2014
McBride came to the writerly world later in life, and she's become my inspiration. Her debut novel entwines the lives of several individuals in modern day Las Vegas. She gives us these living, breathing characters that cry and mourn and continue to survive in the face of loss and adversity. They are extraordinary amidst their everyday, ordinary lives. That alone is reason enough to immerse yourself in this story and has become--for me--the bar against which other books are measured.

My Salinger Year (Hardcover)

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780307958006
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf, 6/2014
We read to escape, we read to experience, and often we read to be reminded. My Salinger Year made me nostalgic for my own New York bookseller past-- but this time I got a glimpse into the publishing side. Rackoff writes of a truly golden age; before computers and digital correspondence, and how her brush with celebrity affected her life. For book lovers and Salinger fans to savor and enjoy.

The Vacationers (Hardcover)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9781594631573
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Hardcover, 5/2014
This summer there is a chance you are either A). headed to the beach or B). wishing you were on a beach. Either way, this is the book you want with you--trust me. Straub's novel might be easily dismissed as light fare, but her insights into this family and their relationships add a gravity that beach reads often exclude. Witty,wry and often surprising, I would happily spend time in a hammock turning these pages.

Say What You Will (Hardcover)

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780062271105
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Teen, 6/2014
Amy can only speak with the aid of a voice box and she can't walk more than a few steps without assistance. Matthew has his own obsessive worries. When Matthew starts helping Amy, a relationship begins to take shape. But can their friendship weather all that their lives have in store? ‘Wonder’ meets ‘Eleanor and Park’ in this authentic romance with beautifully crafted characters.

Dorothy Must Die (Hardcover)

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780062280671
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Harper Torch, 4/2014
Paige takes a beloved literary/cinematic icon and turns the whole story on its head. Literally. In this new version of Oz, everything as we know is upside down and right side up. Dorothy has become a little too obsessed with her new found power and must be stopped. Everyone thinks our new little heroine, Amy, is just right for the job. But who should she trust; is everyone she thought to be evil really on her side? This is one of those books that must have originated from a curious author asking, "But what if?" It's fun, sassy and even though it's written for teens you won't want to let this good time pass you by. If you've always had a soft spot for those flying monkeys, this book's for you.

$14.99
ISBN-13: 9780062246875
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial, 4/2014
Hard to imagine how its even possible to create such beautiful writing from such a devastating tragedy. McKeon's debut novel glitters and sparkles like something elusive and wild; you can't help but chase after it in the hopes of catching it and keeping it for your very own. His writing makes me want to take back everything I've said about other novels. If I were a gambler, I'd put all my money on this one. If I could I'd rent one of those billboards at a football game to proclaim how amazing this story is. I want you to look past the obvious sadness and sorrow, and trust me when I say its worth it. This is the novel you really must read. It gets under your skin and somehow transforms you quietly from the inside out.

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780307962904
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf, 4/2014
Some books are the gateway to another world: a few pages in and you lose yourself entirely. Shipstead has worked her magic here in her sophomore novel. Somehow she managed to unlock the backstage door and is quickly ushering us inside. From the behind-the-scenes vantage point, we witness the dancers in their entirety: their lives in front of the stage lights and under the street lights. Their persona for the audience and the stripping away of the costumes and make-up, to the person hidden underneath. Come spend some time--as they say in "A Chorus Line"-- At. The. Ballet.

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780374346676
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), 4/2014
Dear Reader, Not everyone likes to read novels told in a letter format, but I am drawn to them. It must be the voyeur in me. I promise though, once you start reading Dellaira’s debut, you’ll get hooked. As Laurel’s story evolves, we learn about many famous people whose lives all ended as abruptly as her sister May’s did. In the end, it is the healing power of writing that allows her to accept her loss and move on. Though it may sound tragic, I found it to be: funny, moving, honest, and intimate--almost as if the author were writing this book to me. Sincerely, An Adult Who Can’t Stop Reading YA

The Other Language (Hardcover)

$24.95
ISBN-13: 9780307908360
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pantheon, 4/2014
Having read Marciano’s other books I eagerly looked forward to immersing myself in this one. She has this gift for transporting you to places like Italy and Africa. This new collection of stories doesn’t disappoint. I originally thought I might feel cheated, that a novel was what I needed. And yet each new set of characters and each fresh setting was a chance to visit another culture and experience another part of these countries. I found them deceptively simple and when I was finished I wanted to give her a standing ovation, because this woman can write rings around other authors. Trust me, this is what you need right now – a little vacation to a warmer, exotic location.

List Price: $16.99
Our Price: $10.59
(Save: $6.40 38%)
ISBN-13: 9780763670474
Published: Candlewick Press, 04/08/2014
In this heartfelt debut, Gloria discovers that being disconnected from the rest of the world can give you the space to find new friends and form bonds that will last past high school. You can tell that Coombs drew from her own personal camp experience, and writing this novel is really a gift to her readers. She has this great way of describing her characters--it’s not hard to imagine them standing in front of you, breathing, with all their hopes, wishes, wants and desires. I have so many dog-earred pages of lines I want to copy down in my journal, you'd think I was using the book to study from for a test. I guess a better question might be-- what pages didn't I mark?

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9780770436421
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Hogarth, 2/2014
Each month we highlight what we feel are the books we want you to read; partly in the hopes that we can talk about them with you and perhaps so that you will love them as much as we do. Every once in awhile a book comes along that makes me want to thrust it into everyone's hands, to say "You must drop everything and read it now. Your life will be incomplete until you do." I felt that way about "The Bookthief", and Marra's debut novel is my latest obsession. If you loved "City of Thieves" or "No One is Here Except for All of Us" you will want to read this tragic but uplifting story of a young girl and the village that raises her. Carin and I both agree: It's truly exceptional.

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780345516534
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ballantine Books, 1/2014
Has the snow, prolonged low temperatures and lack of green got you down? The best cure I know is to take a trip, even a virtual one can help you escape winter's evil clutches. As she did in "Loving Frank" Nancy Horan illuminates a period of history through the eyes of a woman. Here she brings to light the relationship between Robert Louis Stevenson and Fanny: his wife, inspiration and muse. Sometimes accompanied by one or more of her children, they take fantastic journeys around the world. While reading about their days spent sailing on a boat, farming in the South Seas or staying on the family estate in Scotland, the inspiration for RLS's famed novels emerges.

Clever Girl (Hardcover)

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9780062270399
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Torch, 3/2014
I adore books that follow a person through several decades, I love to see their transformation slowly unfold. Here we see scenes of Stella's life from the 60's to present day. As a young girl, she thinks herself clever until the weight of the years changes her. In the words of Tolstoy, 'True life is lived when tiny changes occur.' In this series of connected stories we watch Stella change and grow, we see the effect the world has on her and her family. The writing is lyrical, and certain scenes leave their indelible mark on you. This is truly a shining achievement in Hadley's writing career. Fans who have been waiting for a new offering from Ellen Gilchrist will find much to savor and delight in here.

Cartwheel (Hardcover)

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780812995862
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Random House, 10/2013
Having read her first, I was curious about duBois's second novel. I find it interesting that both stories involve relationships between young women, which should be seemingly straightforward... But somehow you're never sure which character to trust, who's side to be on. It's not off-putting, nor does it make you uncomfortable; instead the intrigue draws you further into the story. Truly, duBois is a talented, masterful writer whose splendid choice of words-- and her glorious descriptions of characters and their motivations--make her books a joy to read and recommend.

$18.99
ISBN-13: 9780670012091
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Viking Juvenile, 1/2014
Most authors of Young Adult books conveniently take their protagonist's parents and hide them away. In Anderson's latest, she has Haley's dad take center stage. He's suffering from PTSD and as he deals with those demons, Haley has to figure out how to be parent enough for both of them. All the while there's a boy who's caught her attention. (Finn's such a great character he had my attention too.) Original, compassionate, engaging and thoroughly compelling, The Impossible Knife raises the bar in teen literature.

$30.00
ISBN-13: 9780316055437
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company, 10/2013
When Donna Tartt releases a new book, it's an event. Her stories take about 10 years to write and they are meant to be savoured when read. This year the Goldfinch won my gold medal. I told someone that it was the reason I became a bookseller. There were a few passages that shone when I read them, as if she had written them just for me. The characters, the descriptions the fast paced story-- there were so many things that pulled me in, that made me feel connected. These are the books that should be read, shared, talked about, passed on and remembered.

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9781451689761
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Simon & Schuster, 8/2013
I couldn't put this one down. Guzeman's first novel contains a quest,a road trip, and deathbed confessions; while focusing on family relationships and art history-- which sounds like an overstuffed sandwich. But imagine a meal in one of your favorite restaurants where the chef has lovingly prepared the meal and you want it to last and last. Such is Guzeman's story. She cares for her characters and in turn we feel as if they are sitting next to us enjoying meals of their own. (I can only imagine what each of them would order.) The ending isn't neat and tidy but satisfying and earned. I would happily readanything she writes next.

Sea Creatures (Hardcover)

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9780062219602
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Harper, 7/2013
Perhaps the best novels are those that introduce you to a new place, one you hadn't known existed. It takes a talented author to accomplish that goal realistically without resorting to writing fantasy. I was totally absorbed and fascinated by Georgia's life. I felt her pain as she struggled with being a mother and a wife, while trying to care for this hermit who lived in the middle of the ocean. That Daniel chose to revisit the setting of her first novel, “Stiltsville” was interesting; to have written a second with such grace and fortitude is an achievement.

Love All (Hardcover)

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780805096972
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Henry Holt and Co., 6/2013
Wright gets it right. She has a feel for the minutiae and intricacies of small town life, revealing both the advantages and claustrophobic atmosphere. She astutely mines the intimate, day-to-day moments; weaving together past and present events to construct a complete portrait of a family. Funny to think that lives and marriages could be undone by something as “harmless” as a book. As the characters discover "The Sex Cure" it gives them a glimpse into their own history, while Wright's novel is the lens through which we see lives and loves shatter before coming together again.

Sisterland (Hardcover)

$27.00
ISBN-13: 9781400068319
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Random House, 6/2013
Sittenfeld’s latest—featuring twins gifted with sight—is a domestic story, that’s deceptively simple. Imagine that you can foresee the future and yet life always gets in the way, no matter how you try to run from it. Stay with an author long enough and you can watch their evolution, the ebb and flow, how their life affects what they write. This novel may not be as strong as her others, but it firmly held my attention. I wanted to know about Vi and Kate so I kept reading and was surprised at the turn of events. It took my breath away as I realized how our passionate actions can have such startling consequences.

The Testing (Hardcover)

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780547959108
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 6/2013
So many novels now proudly proclaim they are "The Next Hunger Games!" How to know if they are worthy of your time--merely a knock off or a solid entry into the now crowded field of dystopias? If you're a fan of the genre you'll find much to enjoy here. Charbonneau has created an interesting premise with believable characters that appeal to both teens and adults alike. She hasn't done anything original or ground-breaking, but this opera singer turned writer definitely has a promising future ahead of her. I've started a countdown to book two, won't you join me? (Jan 2014)

$24.00
ISBN-13: 9780547759265
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 4/2013
As we move further ahead into the digital age, I find that some books are gifts. They feel just right; their weight in your hands bringing forth a muscle memory of years past. The paper is smooth to the touch, and pleasing when you turn the page, even as you are utterly engrossed in the story. Soffer has given us such tenderhearted characters-- tormented youth meets tortured older person-- and they connect in ways that they hadn't anticipated. And in the end we are left with the thought that food heals, and that finding the right recipe can be a lifelong search. A gift for yourself and all the foodies that you know

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780375870897
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers, 6/2013
Such fun, like Gollywhopper Games and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory all rolled up into one. If your fantasy involves being locked in a library overnight (and really who hasn't wished for that) this entertaining action-packed, treasure hunt-filled book is for you. I kept reading parts aloud to my family, who felt that by the end “reading it” had become a team effort. If I were headed off to camp, this would be the book I would take with me, it's definitely good enough to read at least twice in a row. For book-lovers and gamers alike.

$40.00
ISBN-13: 9781607741916
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ten Speed Press, 3/2013
I think cookbooks should be obvious-- filled with the kind of recipes that you would want to make. Yet the author must also be knowledgeable enough to teach you a little something, or surprise you in the best way possible. ( I don’t think that’s asking too much—familiar but adventuresome, that’s the optimum!) Here, Madison groups the vegetables and plants you already know in surprising ways in order to show you new ways of cooking. A must for anyone who loves to read cookbooks in bed. (I can’t be the only one?!)

$29.99
ISBN-13: 9781449427511
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Andrews McMeel Publishing, 4/2013
As I stand next to Beth as she is exploring this book, she says to me, “Katie, I can’t even tell you how much I LOVE this book. Just looking at the pictures, I want to take this one, and THIS one, and THIS ONE! And that’s even before raving about the recipes.” Although she’s not traveling to Paris this summer...every moment she’s perusing this book she is on a journey of delicious sites and flavors.

$16.00
ISBN-13: 9781451667264
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Gallery Books, 8/2012
Unreliable narrators, how do you trust one? If the author and the main character share a name, who do you trust? What is true? Is there a truth to be found here? Words that come to mind to describe his writing: creepy, sinister, sweet, tender, compelling and mind-blowing. This novel reads like a turn at an amusement park-- reading it is the equivalent of riding a roller coaster, the fun house and taking turns on the paddle boats in the park. Here you'll find puzzles, games, inception-like labyrinths that take you, the reader from Paris to New York. I imagine you picking this book up, paging through, and taking it with you on a vacation somewhere. The plane ride will surely be spent turning these pages as fast as you possibly can.

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780399162091
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: A Marian Wood Book/Putnam, 5/2013
I confess, I LOVED the Jane Austen Book Club. I have read it a multitude of times; sometimes picking out parts at random, waiting to see where the words lead. The passages written in second person plural never cease to fascinate me. Fowler’s ability to convey a group’s intentions and thoughts leaves me smiling. In her latest novel, she focuses on the group dynamic of a family. How past informs the present and how some types of love—though unconventional—you never really get over. Remember: There are as many ways to break something apart as there are to put it all back together again. A perfect conversation starter for your next book group meeting, a discussion that promises to be thought-provoking and memorable.

$27.95
ISBN-13: 9781594486401
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Riverhead Hardcover, 6/2013
Summertime. Dreamtime. The perfect time to find a book that offers a new world to be explored, a departure from your own life. What is it about those coming-of-age narrators that we find some appealing, so intriguing, so hard to look away from the inevitable outcome-- even those on the scale of a personal train wreck? Could it be the strong voice that grips you and won’t let you look away? You may want to reach in the pages and redirect the character’s choices, to help them see things more clearly; but if you did it would change the author’s heartbreaking lines that cut you so deeply. For fans of Prep, Secret History and Schooling. Oh reader, “Ours is not to question why. Rather we are meant to take it all in and sigh.” (And then pass it on.)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9781594487958
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Riverhead Hardcover, 5/2013
I know that not everyone is a fan of short stories. For me it can be like eating several starters for a meal-- you don’t think you can fill up on something so small, but when you’re done you feel satisfied and full. Ausubel is such a master that reading one story a few pages long can feel like experiencing a person’s whole life. Their flaws and strengths are constructed out of sparse words and phrases that conjure up sparkling imagery. Think of these stories like shining little specks of gold in a hand filled with sand. They are a treasure to behold.

Life After Life (Hardcover)

$27.99
ISBN-13: 9780316176484
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Reagan Arthur Books, 4/2013
I love Ursula this little bear. I fell in love with her life and her family. When she is torn from us we ache. And when she is born again there is cause for rejoicing. You think after several times of this “being born and dying” it would get repetitive and boring, making you want to throw the book across the room. In fact you’ll want to hold on tight so that no one steals your copy while you immerse yourself in this world. That also means your hands aren’t free for dishes or driving or all of those other pesky chores and errands. I think they can wait, you’ve got more important things to do, like finishing this book so you can come in and we can talk about it. What are you waiting for, go ahead and get started, Ursula and all the others are on these pages ready to be discovered and adored.

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780670026005
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Viking Adult, 3/2013
In a nutshell I think Jansma’s first novel is a bit like Gone Girl meets Truth in Advertising. As I rule I try to stay away from books with too much hype, that are too pretentious and too gimmicky. And those unreliable narrators, hasn’t it been done before and how can we ever trust them? In fact there’s a whole rant against lies in the middle of this book, exploring the idea of truth telling and media; which is then wrapped up in these other layers. It’s complicated and yet the writing is simple and clean-- like shot to the heart after the panther attacks… Wait leopard, I meant leopard. Did you know that some panthers have black spots on black fur making them the hardest to see? Just something I picked up while reading the first time. I know I’ll be rereading it again soon, I can just tell. Would I lie to you?

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9780062184849
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Harper Torch, 3/2013
My life as a bookseller: pick up a book, read, ponder, hope for a connection. When you find one, it's a powerful force--one you want to share with everybody within shouting radius. Reading Graver's latest novel I began to think about relationships between person and place and the effect each has on the other. As I followed this family through the generations, I experienced their highs and lows, the lives they lived on the surface and the hidden parts unseen by others. But the author’s words bring them all to light, like a treasure brought up from the sea-- held up and examined, then kept close. This book is such a treasure.

Eleanor & Park (Hardcover)

$18.99
ISBN-13: 9781250012579
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: St. Martin's Griffin, 2/2013
Reading Rowell's Young Adult novel was like a trip down memory lane: the music, the books, the walkmans and the bus rides. It was, in a sense, an 80's flashback. But what makes this story so powerful is the universality and the timelessness of her subject-- first love has no specific era or age. In class, Park states that we read books like Romeo & Juliet to experience a love such as that one over and over again in our lives. This is one of the greatest truths. Meet Eleanor and Park, experience their friendship, the ways in which they comfort and help each other and delight in their discovery of first love. A story you'll be happy to read and then reread for the sheer pleasure of connecting with these teens again.

Schroder (Hardcover)

$21.99
ISBN-13: 9781455512133
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Twelve, 2/2013
I was first introduced to Schroder through my One Story subscription. It arrived in my mailbox with a striking red cover and a block printed font with the words “The Soul Keeps the Body Up.” I read it hurriedly in one fast gulp; wishing for more, but satisfied. Discovering this book was like moving a secret passageway and finding the hidden volumes of a library, or accidentally stumbling on a sequel to a favorite book. Follow Kennedy and his daughter on this journey as he writes to his wife telling her why and how he came to take Meadow. Such a gift that Gaige gives us: an interesting premise, a story well-told, with beautiful moments that will make you want to pause and savor them before reaching the inevitable ending.

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780375867125
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers, 1/2013
As with their previous collaboration, Bryant and Sweet bring to life an artist previously unknown to children. As with most biographies meant for the younger generation, there is time spent on the individual's struggle with adversity. Yet it is the collaboration between the carefully chosen words and the charming yet unsentimental artwork that gives this book a timeless, almost ageless appeal. I want to give to everyone I know who may be in need of a little inspiration. What better time than in February to find a splash of red out there in the world and make it your own.

The Imposter Bride (Hardcover)

$24.99
ISBN-13: 9781250010063
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: St. Martin's Press, 1/2013
This book, which takes you from war torn Europe to Montreal, was a complete and total surprise. Richler gives us unexpected points of view, and fully fleshed characters; showing us that we all make choices, and that we sometimes make mistakes. Hopefully, we learn and move on. However, those choices often affect others, others who may live their lives with a hole around a loss. In this case there is a mom-shaped space in which Eva wonders about her life both in the past and present. Yet confronting the past is not always easy, for time is continuous and as forward moving as a river. This is a book about connections, one to get lost in. May it leave you thoughtful, wondering about the lives of those around you.

$16.00
ISBN-13: 9781594486494
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Trade, 2/2013
I want to tell you how much I Iove this book. I want to gush and thrust it into your hands, but yet I know if I am heavy handed you won't trust me. Perhaps I should show you my own copy. The underlined passages on most every page, the marginalia that contains arrows, stars and – yes, I confess -- even exclamation marks. Somehow Ausubel's words keep circling my mind, phrases that are now written on my heart. Truly she is a talented author to watch, this book is a wonder.

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780399162114
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Putnam Adult, 1/2013
Do you ever go to the bookshelf and stare at it hard enough, hoping for a certain book to appear? Ever since I read The School of Essential Ingredients I have longed to go back to Lillian's Kitchen. Finding this sequel made me feel as if I wished it into existence. Bauermeister's luscious descriptions of food and cooking are like melted butter, and yet they are only one part of the recipe. There are the characters we care about, as well as their interesting histories and intriguing connections to each other. Maybe it's true that reading about cooking is like dancing about architecture, but I'd happily curl up with a Bauermeister novel and a cup of tea on any afternoon that I could.

Emma (Hardcover)

$35.00
ISBN-13: 9780674048843
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Belknap Press, 9/2012
Austen’s books are the ones you own many copies of. There are the dog-eared ones that go to the beach or sit in the car ready to keep you company when you are forced to wait (kids, spouse, appointments, etc.) Then there are the nice-ish copies you lend to friends.  Finally there are gorgeous books like these. Paging through them is a joy akin to love. The perfect gift to give or receive for any special (real or imagined) occasion.

$19.95
ISBN-13: 9781567923643
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: David R. Godine Publisher, 6/2012
From the beautiful endpapers, to the amazing amount of information included—this is a book to sit with and pore over. A real family book for a variety of ages. Whether you’ve ever been to New York City or only watched the ball drop on television, following this city block through the decades makes for entertaining and informative reading.

Just One Day (Hardcover)

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780525425915
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Dutton Juvenile, 1/2013
True Confessions: I loved Forman's book, If I Stay. I was equally entranced by the sequel, Where She Went.  In her latest, I found myself in Paris discovering the hidden secret sections of the city along with Allyson. I took the heartbreak pretty hard, I think I had some sympathy pains. (There were indeed, tears.) I started to smile a bit more when Allyson met her friend Dee-- he just about jumps off the pages. Consider yourself warned: you'll want to read Willem's story as soon as you finish this one. I just wish we didn't have to wait until October to find out what happened. I need to know now, people. Now. Maybe if enough of us read it we can start a petition to get the release date changed. Read it, and let me know if you're with me.

$14.99
ISBN-13: 9780316129381
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Back Bay Books, 11/2012
Orner's short stories have never been far from my thoughts since I read them years ago. The NYT said of this book: 'it takes up residence in your brain and stays there.' How true. Whenever I am reading any
book, I now get this image of Kat reading, fingers in front of her mouth as she eats her candy bar. I see it vividly. But then again, any writer who says, "Books are weight, the weight of our lives. They are
supposed to ache your heart-- and your back." is so invested in their writing that they will conjure up living, breathing characters to sit beside us as we go out on our literary journeys. Thumb through and see Orner's fabulous sketches for yourself.

Every Day (Hardcover)

$17.99
ISBN-13: 9780307931887
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers, 8/2012
How does he do it? In this seemingly unassuming teen book, David Levithan has managed to pack more thought-provoking prose than any reader could imagine. He's like the authors in those cookbooks that suggest ways to hide vegetables in brownies-- but with words. First he comes up with this interesting premise, then he creates this love story in an impossible situation. By the third chapter you're so hooked you can't put the book down. The next thing you know you're giving serious thought to illegal immigration and teen depression. You'll have to keep reading to see how it ends, (Can A and Rhiannon find true love? then pass it to a friend or maybe host a book group. A guaranteed discussion starter for teens and adults alike.

Winter Journal (Hardcover)

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780805095531
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Henry Holt and Co., 8/2012
Written with such brutal and unflinching honesty, yet with prose that shines like windowed ice crystals. Auster’s latest memoir somehow examines life with a clinical eye and at the same time preserves the beauty and joy of the past. Whether he's writing about his father's death, or his first true love in an apartment in Paris, there's something here that will appeal to your fundamental basic nature. If only we could all examine our own bodies as carefully and with such grace.

Keeping The Castle (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780670014385
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Published: Viking Juvenile, 6/2012
Young fans of Austen or Smith’s beloved I Capture the Castle will feel right at home here. Look past the crooked architecture and rickety chairs; not to mention the facsimiles of the tapestries and the portraits or the stepsisters with a tightfisted grip on their inheritance. True love manages to shine through all of the adversities to make “A Happily Ever After” worth waiting for.

$15.95
ISBN-13: 9780307949332
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage, 7/2012
After devouring Wild, I wanted something more from Strayed. I found it; and in a word, WOW! As an advice columnist for the Rumpus, Dear Sugar has a knack for finding the very essence of her readers. No matter the situation-- may it be drugs, affairs, depression, writer's block or infidelity-- she shows how it would be possible to change. Somehow after reading these strangers’ letters you get a better picture of Strayed's life and a chance to reexamine your own. The part about “change being a gesture” on Page 181 really resonated with me. Give yourself the gift of discovering some of the words meant for you.

The Girl Giant (Paperback)

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9781451656176
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Simon & Schuster, 6/2012
Funny how a book about a giant is small and lovely to hold in your hands. The size was what drew me to the book originally, only to discover that is was written by one of my favorite authors. Such a pleasant surprise sitting there on the shelf just waiting for me. Den Hartog again weaves her fairytale magic into a "could be true" story. This time we see the effects of a larger than life girl trying to fit in with her normal sized family, trying to make friends, and fit in with the world around her. Such universal themes for all of us. Maybe a small book with bigger than the page characters is an apt read for such a bittersweet time of year. Perfectly fitting for teens and adults alike.

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780679644194
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: The Dial Press, 6/2012
Brunt's debut novel is the story of Junie who's doing her tender age-of-fourteen-best to get over the loss of Finn, her favorite uncle and best friend. When Finn's boyfriend Toby secretly contacts her, June is torn between what she should do and what she wants to do. This visit to the somewhat "simpler" time of the 1980s, is a coming-of-age tale that is sweet without being cloying. As June enjoys pretending to be somewhere else (the medieval era is her passion) so too are we given this once in a lifetime chance to lose ourselves and forget about the world around us. I say you should take it--a world of teapots, letters and beautiful secret rooms awaits.

$18.95
ISBN-13: 9780811879262
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Chronicle Books, 5/2012
Beautiful and inspiring, these three talented collaborators each feel a deep connection to film cameras. Polaroid, a seemingly outdated medium that is experiencing a resurgence, provides an immediacy and intimacy that digital cannot. With chapters covering the basics, composition and projects, it's enough to make you run right out and get your own camera. Page through and see these stunning visuals for yourself.

The Age of Miracles (Hardcover)

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780812992977
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Random House, 6/2012
Quiet and thought provoking, reading Thompson's debut novel is like stepping out into a bright sunny day. It's when you realize that the sun isn't going set that (ironically) things start to turn a bit dark and sinister. Imagine what the world would be like if days were never-ending and you were in sixth grade wondering if that boy was ever going to talk to you....and that's only just the beginning. The fabulously pin-holed cover, and the fact that it's signed, make this a fantastic summer read--and the perfect teen crossover book.

$24.00
ISBN-13: 9781451643350
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Scribner, 3/2012
Vermont author Bergman brings us a series of stories-- some featuring birds, and most focusing on animals. Her characters are young and are facing decisions, life changes, conflict, and crisis in a variety of settings. After only a few pages in, I felt like I knew them, that if we met on the street there would be an instant recognition. We might grab a coffee or bring them home to meet my pets. Bergman is a talented author to watch. Even if you're not a fan of short stories, these may just make you convert.

$26.99
ISBN-13: 9780061257094
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Harper, 4/2012
If the trip to Italy you had planned to give as a Mother’s Day present fell through—don’t fret—Trigiani’s book is the perfect gift. Her epic, sprawling tale of two people meeting at a young age in Italy and then meeting again in America is based on the story of her grandparents. She has lovingly crafted this story, including many interesting tidbits from her research. As a result, I felt like I was in Italy and then actually seated at the opera hearing Caruso sing. This is the type of book you’ll want to share with everyone you know.

$16.00
ISBN-13: 9780452297647
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Plume, 12/2011
I’ll admit it, it was difficult to let go of Downton Abbey. But reading Solomon’s novel of a young Jewish woman fleeing her home in Vienna, to become a parlor maid in England made me feel like I was back there again. All the upstairs/downstairs conflict and connection kept me reading until the wee hours. (I so desperately wanted to find out if Elise was going to be happy in her new life.) This just might help you pass the time until Season Three.

My Name Is Mina (Hardcover)

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9780385740739
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 10/2011
Almond’s prequel to Skellig is beautiful, powerful and so crazy insane to look at. But to quote Mina: ‘Why should a book tell a tale in a dull straight line? Words should wander and meander.’ You should really read the rest of that passage, it’s page 11. Open up and read a little. I promise it will make you feel energized and alive. If you love words and a good story you’ll need this book for your very own. Clutch it to your chest and know that the rest of the book is just as amazing.

Friends Like Us (Hardcover)

$24.95
ISBN-13: 9780307268112
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Knopf, 2/2012
Reading Fox’s latest novel, I felt like I had gotten into a time machine and traveled back to my 20’s. Such a delicate fragile time, almost like Spring. The air--and life for these well-drawn characters--is full of possibilities. Willa and Jane share an apartment, and almost everything else. When Ben, Willa’s oldest friend, comes back into her life, it’s Jane he ends up falling for. This story about friendship and love shows us that each decade of our lives is a stepping stone to the next. Take Friends Like Us on your next trip, they’re perfect company.

My Name Is Mina (Hardcover)

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9780385740739
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 10/2011
Almond’s prequel to Skellig is beautiful, powerful and so crazy insane to look at. But to quote Mina: ‘“Why should a book tell a tale in a dull straight line? Words should wander and meander.” You should really read the rest of that passage, it’s on page 11. Open up and read a little. I promise it will make you feel energized and alive. If you love words and a good story you’ll need this book for your very own. Clutch it to your chest and know that the rest of the book is just as amazing.

$35.00
ISBN-13: 9781584799207
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Stewart, Tabori and Chang, 3/2012
The stunning images in this book are like a magnet, I can’t stop looking through it and imagining. There’s so much inspiration packed into these pages. I admire Natalie’s philosophy of re-purposing and that special style she possesses. One that encompasses the art of transformation and the potential that all things have for amazing possibilities-- if only we could see it. I can’t wait to put this book on my shelves next to her others. But what to make first?

Wonder (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780375869020
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2/2012
I was drawn to the cover and the first few pages confirmed what I thought: this was a kid’s book worth my time. It’s well written, and funny; inspirational without being preachy or saccharine. Palacio’s first novel is totally fresh and original, and filled with characters she truly seems care about. If someone you love has been on Fantasy overload lately, hand them this book. You’ll probably want to read it first though—it’s that good!

Pure (Hardcover)

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9781455503063
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Grand Central Publishing, 2/2012
In this fully imagined futuristic world, a great catastrophe has occurred causing those left outside to be fused with objects that were next to them. Fans of The Hunger Games will find much to be excited about here, and a reason to be frustrated — it’s the first in a trilogy. But don’t let that stop you from tearing through this at breakneck speed. If I close my eyes I can almost picture some of these characters and the lands that they inhabit, and a refrain keeps echoing in my head: write faster Ms. Baggott, write faster.

The Apothecary (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780399256271
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Putnam Juvenile, 10/2011
It is the rare bird who can turn her quill and start writing for kids in addition to her books geared towards adults. Meloy's latest is for teens but also for those of us grown-ups who enjoy a touch of magical realism with their historical fiction. Filled with spies, nuclear weapons and a big book of magical spells, it was the friendship between Janie and Benjamin that kept me glued to the page. I loved the atmospheric illustrations and am very fond of this specific time period in history when it was especially important to stand up for what you believed in. Hoping (on a wing and a prayer) for a follow up to this auspicious, dazzling debut.

The Art of Fielding (Hardcover)

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9780316126694
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Little, Brown and Company, 9/2011
Take a dash Richard Russo, mix in a splash of John Irving, and you've got smashing new debut that will keep you reading until the wee hours. This isn't really a book about baseball, it's about oh so much more than that. Passion, drive, decisions, fear, confidence, the sum of which brings you to the path you call your own life. Once you get started inhaling this book, you will savor the sensation of rounding the bases and heading for home as you reach the end. It's oh so sweet. But don'tw be surprised if you find yourself a little sad to say goodbye to these quirky characters.

The Grief of Others (Hardcover)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9781594488054
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Riverhead Hardcover, 9/2011
When asked why I constantly submit myself to books about awful horrible terrible things, I can only reply, "For the writing." Cohen's words feel as if they flow from her pen, the story and characters fully formed and dimensional. This is not a book you enjoy, rather an experience you are thankful to have had; a rare opportunity to wholly experience the living, breathing and dying of another family. You won't be disappointed.

The Magician King (Hardcover)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780670022311
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Viking Adult, 8/2011
Does every Fantasy story need to turn into a trilogy? That's the cynical bookseller in me making comments about the state of publishing, a voice which is quickly quieted by the reader in me who's quite happy, (read: overly excited) for an unexpected sequel to Grossman's original tale. If you're an adult fan who's missing Harry Potter, then book a trip to fantastic Fillory. I hear there's a third adventure on the way, and some of us are counting the minutes till we depart for that magical land again.

New York Stories (Hardcover)

$16.00
ISBN-13: 9780307594938
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Everyman's Library, 1/2011
I'm in a New York State of Mind recently. And when I get depressed or especially sad about something in particular, I find that reading about that topic always helps me to work through my funk. This latest Everyman collection brings together several stories about our beloved city, written by a talented group of authors that spans the years. With its convenient size and sewn in bookmark, this has been my constant companion for weeks. Turn to page 343 for a sample, it won't take but a minute to read.

Next to Love (Hardcover)

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780812992717
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Spiegel & Grau, 7/2011
At some point, one would think, there would just be enough war stories. Hasn't every nuance of the awful effects of WWII already been explored time and time again? This is my line of reasoning when I pick up a new book that centers around this topic. But something in my stirred when I first started reading the story that intertwines the lives of Babe, Mimi and Grace. If you've ever tried to rationalize like I have, let me help you by saying No (there are still interesting facets of the past worth writing about) and then Yes! (you should read this lovely character-driven novel.)

Joy For Beginners (Hardcover)

$24.95
ISBN-13: 9780399157127
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Putnam Adult, 6/2011
As the six friends gather to celebrate Kate’s recovery from cancer, she charges each of them with doing something they never thought they’d do. The kicker is that Kate is choosing each of their adventures. And now you’re invited to join each of them—all without leaving your own home. But if you’d rather be reading under a tree or on vacation, Joy for Beginners is the perfect companion.

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780811869836
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Chronicle Books, 10/2010
Everything works here—design, layout, format and subject matter all come together to create a fabulous book for all ages. As I pored over these pages, I found it to be the perfect companion to the recently released book of O’Keefe’s letters, My Faraway One. Here’s hoping that this is the very bit of artistic inspiration you, or a young person in your life, has been seeking.

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780312649616
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Feiwel & Friends, 5/2011
If I had to choose between the lyrical language, the interesting images, or the characters you wish could come to life, I don't know which I love best. I guess this is just one of those rare gems, where all of the elements work together to create a novel that is simply amazing. You can certainly trace September's literary lineage back to Dorothy and Alice; and I have to say, she's done them proud. A great read (aloud) for all ages.

The Soldier's Wife (Paperback)

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9781401341701
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Hyperion, 6/2011
How does one keep a family safe during wartime? Is it possible to steel yourself against falling in love when life is at its bleakest? Fans of ‚The Guernsey Literary & PP Society will welcome the chance revisit the island and read Leroy's latest historical novel. I imagine a sunny day, a bit of shade from a nearby tree, drink in one hand, book in the other and all the time in the world. Don't be surprised if you look up from reading and wonder where you are, it's just that lovely.

The Arrivals (Hardcover)

$24.99
ISBN-13: 9780316097710
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Reagan Arthur Books, 5/2011
Moore's debut takes place in Burlington, as the grown children of Ginny and William come home. As the story progresses and the house begins to fill, you may start to wonder when does cozy turn to claustrophobic? Being a modern day parent isn't easy as demonstrated by this new novel, but fiction helps put our own lives into perspective. In a word, I would say charming, yet tackling some serious issues. If you are looking for a book for your next trip, then spending time with these wonderfully drawn characters will give you a chance to leave your own worries behind for a while.

$24.99
ISBN-13: 9780316127394
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Little, Brown and Company, 6/2011
The title of McNeal's latest work perfectly sets the tone for this haunting, evocative novel. As looking through water blurs the lines we perceive to be straight so does Judith view her own life, which has become soft around the edges and not quite as she thought it would be. The story jumps from the present day California to the Nebraska past, as she starts to contemplate how taking the path she hadn't intended could suddenly and sharply change her life's direction. Being called back home by her first love shows her what might have been, giving her a chance to revisit old decisions. Be prepared, reading this will put you in search of more McNeal.