Lake Forest Park

Latest Staff Picks

For anyone who follows current events, Samantha Power tells a riveting, personal and poignant story.  She details her Irish upbringing, emigration at age 9 to the U.S., and her journey as a student, activist, journalist, and academic prior to becoming Special Assistant to the President and then US Ambassador to the UN under the Obama administration. With humor, self-deprecation, and sobering descriptions of how policies, decisions, and relationships are forged at the highest levels of government and diplomacy, she recounts difficult personal, public health, and political issues she and often times many others tried to address.  At the foundation is her idealism and the growing realization that while we may not be able to fix everything, we must do our best.

Picked by Elisabeth

Be prepared to glide across time, distance, and families in Regina Porter’s debut novel.  Her writing has rightly been described as “effortless” and is a joy to read.  You come to know well two families, one black and one white, and how related they (and we all) are.  As I marveled at her ability to portray each family member so deftly, I wondered– what would happen if she spent a week with my extended family?!

Picked by Elisabeth

I wanted to hug these characters and never let go; live out my life on these salty shores, in the tiny shops; claim the metaphors as my own, never thinking of happy moments as anything other than pebbles on my own beach.  Julia Drake expertly captures the precious and painful experiences of family, friendship, and love in a net of small town lore, diverse journeys toward mental health, and some of the most beautifully poetic lines I've ever read. Simply put, The Last True Poets of the Sea made me ache for an understanding I didn’t know I needed.

Picked by Katelynn

Micah knows what all children know, what imagination and their hearts (and exceptional adults like Micah's grandpa) tell them: miracles and magic are real, they exist just out of sight, and if you look at just the right time you can find them.  And Micah is just the sort of person we all want to be. Though he isn't perfect (or even perfectly confident) he is determined, he won't let life give him No for an answer, and he has a couple of people in his life who care enough about him to help in risky-crazy ways.

Picked by Adam

This gorgeous book is a historical, Sapphic, friends-to-lovers romance between a tenacious astronomer and a wealthy widow (who happens to be skilled in embroidery). AMAZING COVER ASIDE, this is an excellent "gateway" book for Romance: readers will enjoy how Waite draws parallels between women's experiences in the 19th century and the 21st.  Our heroines get to work translating a new astronomical text despite rebuffs from London's Scientific Society. As their friendship flourishes and their pursuits war against societal gatekeepers, they ask each other: who determines Art? What is the difference between Scientist and Hobbyist? And best of all -- can ladies have happy endings?

Picked by Danielle

Part memoir, part backyard natural history Late Migrations packs a wallop in a tiny package. Renkl treats the lives and deaths she sees in her backyard with the same deference and respect as that of her family. A beautiful study on grief and loss and the importance of living a full life. 

Picked by Erin

I can’t remember the last book I’ve been absolutely glued to like this one. There was a moment where I had to get up and start pacing the room as I was reading because my love for these characters quite literally affected my mind, body, & soul. It’s ultimately a story about survival; one that cuts deep while healing you at the same time. Quite simply, this book is “swoon” incarnate.

Picked by Claire

Who is Gideon Nav?


- Badass swordswoman

- Lover of women and smutty magazines

-  Hater of wretched old necrotic nuns and skeleton armies

- Bound in servitude to a power-hungry (maybe mad?) necromancer intent on making her life a living hell

- Absolutely f-in hilarious, even when under an oath of silence by aforementioned necromancer

- Looks like she could kill you, could definitely kill you, but is also actually a cinnamon roll

- Love of my life?! (and could be yours too, if you read this AMAZING book)

Picked by Ashley

Do I really have to sell you on a book with this kind of title? If you insist... Caitlin Doughty is back with another in-depth look at death, and this time the subject matter is derived from the morbid curiosity of 100%, non-GMO kids. She continues to write of death and all its natural oddities with a dose of humor, respect, and endless knowledge as a working mortician, even when it comes to something as simple as burying your pet hamster.

Picked by Sarah C.