Staff Picks by Tag

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Clear: A Novel By Carys Davies Cover Image
ISBN: 9781668030660
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Scribner - April 2nd, 2024

Presbyterian minister John has broken off from the Scottish church.  He needs money and takes a job from a wealthy landowner to clear the only inhabitant off a remote Scottish Island. Ivar is the last of his family and his community to try and eke out a living on the island.  Forced together, the two men without common background or language forge a friendship.  Spare, beautiful and big hearted, this is one of my favorite books so far this year.

Review by Charlotte

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The Fox Wife: A Novel By Yangsze Choo Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250266019
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Henry Holt and Co. - February 13th, 2024

Snow is on the hunt, seeking revenge; her quarry is always just steps ahead of her. Meanwhile, Bao finds himself following Snow’s trail. Both Snow and Bao become intertwined with the same family, a curse, and the lore and veneration of the old fox gods at a time of great political and social change. 

Part historical fiction, part fable. This sweeping story is driven by great - and sly - characterizations, and mostly by love.

Review by Laura

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River Sing Me Home: A GMA Book Club Pick (A Novel) By Eleanor Shearer Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593548066
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Berkley - August 1st, 2023

Looking for your next great historical fiction read? Look no further! Rachel's journey to reclaim her lost children takes you from Barbados down to Guyana and finally to Trinidad. Rich with historical details and engaging characters, I'm already excited for what Shearer writes next. 

Review by Natalie

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Cursed Bread: A Novel By Sophie Mackintosh Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385548304
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Doubleday - April 4th, 2023

I read this in one sitting, unable to look away. The straightforward, graceful prose is a powerful counterpoint to the sense of creeping dread that builds throughout the story. An obsessive meditation on desire and shame.

Review by Kit

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When We Lost Our Heads: A Novel By Heather O'Neill Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593422915
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 3-10 days
Published: Riverhead Books - February 7th, 2023

I don't normally read historical fiction but this cover is gorgeous and I love O'Neill's writing so I had to give this a try. So glad I did because I loved every minute of it. A queer AF story of friendship class, and feminism during the 19th century.

Review by Rosa

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The Manningtree Witches: A Novel By A. K. Blakemore Cover Image
ISBN: 9781646221578
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Catapult - August 30th, 2022

Drawing influences from Silvia Federici and historical accounts from 17th century England, A.K. Blakemore's debut is as stunning in its language as it is terrifying in its subject matter. And while the persecution of strange women is by no means new territory, the internal battle between Rebecca and her youthful desires, as well as her relationship to the accused women around her, make this less a story about the Witchhunter General and more about the women who were sent to the gallows because they dared to live and survive beyond the edges of a patriarchal and puritanical society. 

Review by Sarah C.

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To Keep the Sun Alive: A Novel By Rabeah Ghaffari Cover Image
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9781948226769
Published: Catapult - January 21st, 2020

It is 1979, and the Islamic Revolution is at the doorstep of one family's fruit orchard in Northeastern Iran. The simplicity of family life becomes more difficult to maintain as each character's path becomes more complex by the risk of losing love, duty, traditions, and their safety. Not necessarily a light read, but a rich, lyrical story. 


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The Book of Lost Saints: A Cuban American Family Saga of Love, Betrayal, and Revolution By Daniel José Older Cover Image
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9781250185815
Published: Imprint - November 5th, 2019

I could not put this book down. Marisol's spirit visits her nephew Ramon in modern-day New Jersey and prompts him to unearth painful family history and discover what happened to her after she disappeared during the Cuban Revolution. This story is many things - funny, heart-warming, captivating - and it is one of the few books that can make me laugh and cry while reading the same page.

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Deep River By Karl Marlantes Cover Image
ISBN: 9780802148971
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Grove Press - July 14th, 2020

Amazing characters and regional history. One of my top 10 books of the year.

Review by Robert

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The Nickel Boys: A Novel By Colson Whitehead Cover Image
ISBN: 9780345804341
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Vintage - June 30th, 2020

Whitehead lined up the plot of this novel as meticulously as dominos and then with a flick tore everything down in moments.

I sobbed at the end. Read it read it read it.

Review by Allie