Staff Picks by Tag

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Fifty Beasts to Break Your Heart: And Other Stories By GennaRose Nethercott Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780593314180
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Vintage - February 6th, 2024

I will likely be recommending all of Nethercott’s books; her blend of folklore, fantasy, and real life makes you question whether the monsters in these pages may exist in your own life. Her magical collection of short stories kept me curious (in the way one might be curious what that shadow is lurking on the other side of a foggy bog). Each monster is inspired by past lovers and partners, some more devious than others…but all with the capacity to eat break your heart.


Review by Bailey

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Dearborn By Ghassan Zeineddine Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781959030294
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Tin House Books - September 5th, 2023

These loosely connected stories exploring the lives of Arab Americans in their Dearborn Michigan community are pure lightning! A titanic survivor recounts a tale of lost love, a person juggles their secret identity with their traditional family responsibilities, and a man finds success in the unlikely world of audio book narration, or does he? These stories are fresh and exciting. Filled with Themes of family, otherness, and what it means to succeed. They are thought provoking and funny, but tender and joyful too. Just a lovely book. 


Review by Erin

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Self-Help (Vintage Contemporaries) By Lorrie Moore Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780307277299
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Vintage - March 13th, 2007

Recommended to me by two of our best booksellers (thank you, Wes; thank you, Emily), this is the first story collection I ever fell in love with. Lorrie's grief is heavy and familiar with a willingness to find relief and comfort in growing in and out of love and in the universality of death and loss. Allow her to bring solace to an achy heart and you'll want to swim in her wit and drown in her sorrows forever.  
 
 


Review by Sofia

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Every Drop is a Man's Nightmare By Megan Kamalei Kakimoto Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781639731169
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Bloomsbury Publishing - August 29th, 2023

One of the stories in this collection, Madwomen, is about a single mother raising her part Hawaiian son in West O’ahu after his father leaves. She is a wonderful character, full of self doubt, wondering how she can raise a son all alone in an ever-changing world. She is unsure how she can teach her son anything, and yet, there is a love that shines through every gorgeously written sentence. It is truly a perfectly crafted story, as are the other ten in this beautiful collection that honors the real voices of Hawai’i.


Review by Kalani

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Exhalation By Ted Chiang Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781101972083
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Vintage - June 30th, 2020

At first blush, this collection of SF stories seem to run the gambit - from a time traveling gate that could easily fit into a tale from 1001 nights, to a warning of predictive AI future, to stories of parenting. All share the question though of how do we, as humans, grapple with both big and small questions in an ever changing universe. 


Review by Alex

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Buffalo Is the New Buffalo By Chelsea Vowel Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781551528793
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Arsenal Pulp Press - June 7th, 2022

This beautiful collection invigorates and recontextualizes familiar futurist tropes with a powerful Metis voice. The stories range from historical fabulism to speculative fiction, and each story is followed by a note of context to help non-Metis better understand the author's choices. A taut, elegant, lingering work.


Review by Sophia H.

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A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories By Lucia Berlin Cover Image
$19.00
ISBN: 9781250094735
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Picador - August 2nd, 2016

This beautiful, semi-autobiographical collection of short stories delves into passion, alcoholism, work, family and death.  Berlin's keen observations about her life and the world around her are sparingly told but are so evocative she makes the smallest moments emotionally huge. She writes of recklessness and addiction with honesty and without shame, allowing the reader to be with her characters in all their complexity.  The 44 stories left me wanting more.

 


Review by Charlotte

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Cars on Fire By Mónica Ramón Ríos, Robin Myers (Translator) Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781948830164
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Open Letter - April 14th, 2020

This is a stunning collection of stories, the first few being quite slow and lyrical with the last three standing out as simply bizarre but so, so good. It's a remarkable exploration of xenophobia, feminism, violence, and social hierarchies that will make you uncomfortable, emotional, and simply stunned--especially "Dead Men Don't Rape," "Invocation," and "Instructions for the Eye." I've never read anything quite like this with a gorgeous translation to match. 


Review by Sofia

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When Trying to Return Home: Stories By Jennifer Maritza McCauley Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781640096349
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Counterpoint - February 6th, 2024

This was a stellar collection! The very first story pulls you right in and I couldn't stop reading more. Every story felt like it they could be full blown novels at some point. 

There is also this frantic and furious energy in many of the stories which IMO is very hard to pull off in short stories. This writer achieved something great here. 

One last note: Mavis and Estelle have my whole heart <3


Review by Rosa

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Shit Cassandra Saw: Stories By Gwen E. Kirby Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143136620
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Penguin Books - January 11th, 2022

Kirby offers up some dark, giddy feminism that really hit the spot for me during this time of BS. I had no idea what was happening when I started the first story, then I did, and I was like 'Yeeees!'. I live for Cassandra, watching the destruction of her temples with a smirk on her face, remembering that these men are barefaced cowards. 

"...men who think her mad driving her to madness. She wishes she could move far away to an islan and own a bird."

Word.



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