Staff Picks by Tag

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On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous: A Novel By Ocean Vuong Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780525562047
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Penguin Books - June 1st, 2021

Writing a review for this book is gonna be hard but I'm going to try. This may be the I best book I've read this year. So many raw and stunning sentences just waiting for you to fall in love with.  Told through letters from a son to a mother, I underlined the hell out of my copy. It broke my heart but it also put it back together. Read this and join the Ocean Vuong fan club with me. 


Review by Rosa

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Ghost Wall: A Novel By Sarah Moss Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250234957
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Picador - December 31st, 2019

A reenactment of a romanticized past becomes an inescapable descent into the ugliest and most primitive side of humanity. Succinct in its suspense, you won't realize you've been holding your breath until the very last page. Good thing it's a short book... 


Review by Sarah C.

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We Set the Dark on Fire By Tehlor Kay Mejia Cover Image
$11.99
ISBN: 9780062691323
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - January 14th, 2020

Latinx culture. Near-future fantasy island. Espionage and arranged marriage. Queer romance.

In short, a gripping feminist story with excellent stakes, world-building, and character development that ends in a cliff-hanger. Let's just say I need book two of this duology immediately.



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The Raven Tower By Ann Leckie Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780316388702
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Orbit - October 1st, 2019

Ann Leckie is so intelligent and so wise about the way she crafts her stories. What we have here is a slow burn fantasy novel told from the perspective of an ancient god that resides in a huge rock, a plot summary which does not sound even remotely exciting. But friends, I'm here to tell you that it is. You will see life evolve, languages emerge and change, cultures form and get subsumed, and religious worship come into being. There is war, there is blood sacrifice, there are fully developed queer / trans characters. There is the deep, echoing feeling that life existed before you were born and will continue after you die.


Review by Anje

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The Merry Spinster: Tales of Everyday Horror By Daniel M. Lavery Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781250113429
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Holt Paperbacks - March 13th, 2018

What if the Wind in the Willows was less of a warm-hearted tale about forest friends and more about a sinister plot to gaslight Mr. Toad? What if the Velveteen Rabbit was a cold-blooded sociopath intent on becoming Real, no matter the cost? The reimagined fairy tales in the Merry Spinster answer these questions and ones I didn't even know I had.


Review by Sarah C.

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Everything Under: A Novel By Daisy Johnson Cover Image
$16.00
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9781555978266
Published: Graywolf Press - October 23rd, 2018

In this gender-bending retelling of the Oedipus myth, Johnson's words gnash, bite, and bruise, taking on a harsh beauty that mirrors the darkness of the river canal wilderness. With interweaving perspectives and characters on the edge of madness or beyond, this book is one of my most memorable reads of the last few years. 


Review by Sarah C.

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Fence Vol. 1 By C.S. Pacat, Johanna the Mad (Illustrator), Rebecca Nalty (With) Cover Image
By C.S. Pacat, Johanna the Mad (Illustrator), Rebecca Nalty (With)
$9.99
ISBN: 9781684151929
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: BOOM! Box - July 31st, 2018

Take:

  • Cutthroat competion
  • Heartthrob athletes in various states of (un)dress
  • Painfully well-executed cliffhangers
  • Rivalry rife with sexual tension

and you get this cheeky, enthralling, character-driven volume for those who wish the Rocky movies were a little gayer.



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Julián Is a Mermaid By Jessica Love, Jessica Love (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Jessica Love, Jessica Love (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780763690458
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Candlewick - April 23rd, 2018

Julian is a mermaid - of this there is no doubt. But how will this identity expression be met by his family? This is a question we get to explore through this book's resplendent watercolor illustrations and streamlined story. It's about the transformative power of loving acceptance during pivotal moments of self-doubt. For the mermaid in all of us. 



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George (Scholastic Gold) By Alex Gino Cover Image
$7.99
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9780545812573
Published: Scholastic Inc. - April 25th, 2017

The titular character of this book is a transgender 4th grade girl whose unwavering faith in herself provides a model for all readers to aspire to. The supportive relationship that Melissa has with her best friend Kelly assures readers that, with friends who encourage you to be your most authentic self, anything is possible. 

Additionally, the author has encouraged folks to change the title of their own copies of this book (so as not to deadname the protagonist) to "Melissa's Story." I think this is such an inventive way to encourage a book's evolution long after it leaves our bookstore shelves and what kid could resist an author's permission to scribble on a book?



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Meet Cute By Jennifer L. Armentrout, Katie Cotugno, Jocelyn Davies, Huntley Fitzpatrick, Nina LaCour, Emery Lord, Katharine McGee, Kass Morgan, Julie Murphy, Meredith Russo, Sara Shepard, Nicola Yoon, Ibi Zoboi Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9781328604286
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Clarion Books - May 21st, 2019

This short story collection celebrates the chance encounters and first connections that teens invariably make in their romantic lives. The stories are diverse in genre and perspective, and flutter with balanced doses of hope and heartbreak. Read somewhere cozy with a cup of something warm and sweet. 



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