Fall Reading, 2017

Some of the best books of the season, recommended by Bookshop Santa Cruz staff.

It’s hard to imagine a memoir about one heartbroken single-ish mother’s struggle through the medical system to save her infant daughter being warm and joyful, and yet this book is exactly that. Harpham writes with such grace, honesty and humor, it is easy to follow her through the harrowing moments of her journey with her daughter Gracie and to discover with her the many different ways love and support can manifest and lead to outright joy. - Melinda

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Happiness: A Memoir: The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781250131560
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Henry Holt & Company - August 1st, 2017

To my mind, Greenblatt writes the gold standard for nonfiction. In his new book, he takes the story of Adam and Eve and looks at it from every possible perspective: its many origins, its use through history and its cultural effects through time. This is the story behind the story, and a fascinating, intelligent, well researched kaleidoscope of ways to think about it.

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The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780393240801
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 12th, 2017

Artificial Intelligence has arrived, bringing with it the very real possibility that we are on the verge of transforming what it means to be human. The first chapter of Life 3.0 reads like a science fiction thriller and then MIT professor Max Tegmark surveys the current state of AI implementation and details the crucial issues that need to be addressed going forward. Well written with exciting ideas and informed speculation, I found myself fascinated from beginning to end. - Trey

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Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781101946596
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - August 29th, 2017

Kassabova returns to the land of her childhood, Bulgaria, to explore the complex Balkan borderlands it shares with Turkey and Greece. Through extensive research, interviews with townsfolk, and personal reflection, she examines the forces that continue to shape this intriguing region. Lyrical and rich with stories, this book is travelogue, political history, and folklore all in one. - Natalie

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Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781555977863
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Graywolf Press - September 5th, 2017

Zoe Quinn was the eye of the Internet storm known as #gamergate. Some claim it was about “ethics in videogame journalism”, but the truth is so much scarier. The details are startling and upsetting, but this book has good steps for combating cyberbullying and keeping your information safe. Through it all, Quinn manages to tell her story with humor and even has a positive spin on the outcome. A must read especially if you know nothing or very little of the Internet. - Ivy

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Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781610398084
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: PublicAffairs - September 5th, 2017

Joyce Maynard (bestselling of author of At Home in the World) has written a touching and sincere book about finding strength and life in the midst of hardship. In their late 50’s, Joyce and her soon-to-be husband, Jim, met for the first time. Each had been married, had children, and also then subsequently divorced. Neither Jim nor Joyce was particularly looking for love again, but there was a deep connection between the two, that neither could ignore. Maynard writes their story of reclaiming love and romance, getting married, and then dealing with the blow of Jim’s diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. Praised by Anne Lamott for being full of “the tears and joy of life,” Maynard coveys with such clarity not just the honesty about the ugliness of illness, but also the unparalleled bond of intimacy and awareness that springs forth when life is on the line. - S.M.C.

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The Best of Us: A Memoir Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781635570342
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury UK - September 5th, 2017

This coalition of authors have created a moving collection of essays, short stories, poetry and more. The result is as varied and difficult to encapsulate as the American experience itself. From gentrification in the Bay Area, to eking out an existence in rural Michigan, each contribution is unique and powerful, and I was left deeply moved. - Jade

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Tales of Two Americas: Stories of Inequality in a Divided Nation Cover Image
By John Freeman (Editor)
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143131038
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - September 5th, 2017

For anyone who loves video games – or is even just interested - this book is a whole lot of fun. Getting to know the people and stories behind some of the biggest (and most infamous) games of the last decade is intriguing and enlightening, and the burdens and joys of being a game developer are now much clearer and easier to relate to. A true-to-life anthology giving you another way to experience your favorite games. - Jocelyn

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Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062651235
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Paperbacks - September 5th, 2017

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