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Spring Reading, 2019

Some of the best books of the season, recommended by Bookshop Santa Cruz staff. See our recommendations for young readers here.

Sea People by Christina Thompson

From meteorology to mystery and mythology, this book has it all. Although the title alludes to the history of a set of islands covering a small fraction of our planet’s surface, Christina Thompson sails the globe in this thrilling exploration of the driven humans who chanced upon the pacific islands. Perhaps one of the most touching points is Thompson’s personal connection to Polynesian society in her Maori husband. - R.H.

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Sea People: The Puzzle of Polynesia Cover Image
$29.99
ISBN: 9780062060877
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper - March 12th, 2019

Doing Justice by Preet Bharara

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this book by the former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, who oversaw cases involving terrorism, corruption, and organized crime (among others) and was famously fired by President Trump. Preet Bharara has written a fascinating, compelling, and surprisingly readable book. I was really taken in by the tales from his legal career (including tragic and triumphant cases) and by the insight into what prosecutors must consider when prosecuting and crime and recommending sentences. From the importance of a fair and open justice system to regrets in Bharara’s career, Doing Justice is a page-turner. - S.B.

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Doing Justice: A Prosecutor's Thoughts on Crime, Punishment, and the Rule of Law Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780525521129
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - March 19th, 2019

The Sun is a Compass by Caroline Van Hemert

When ornithologist Caroline Van Hemert decided she needed to get out of the lab and back into the wild, she and her husband embarked on the journey of a lifetime, spending six months traveling four thousand human-powered miles from Bellingham, Washington to the Alaskan Arctic. What follows is this incredible book, part outdoor adventure, part travel memoir, part nature writing, all grit and heart, as they canoe, hike, ski and raft their own way into the wilderness. I am by turns inspired and stunned by the knowledge and willpower needed on the trail, and by the beauty and wisdom left on the page. - Melinda

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The Sun Is a Compass: A 4,000-Mile Journey into the Alaskan Wilds Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780316414425
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown Spark - March 19th, 2019

What You Have Heard is True by Carolyn Forché

My current favorite work of nonfiction, written by one of our best poets. It chronicles in stunning fashion her work in support of the revolutionary movement in El Salvador. Includes some of the stories she told us when she first visited Bookshop in the early 80s. Beautifully written and compelling. - Patrick

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What You Have Heard Is True: A Memoir of Witness and Resistance Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780525560371
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Press - March 19th, 2019

Horizon by Barry Lopez

What a treat we have been given by one of our finest writers and thinkers – this is exactly the book I have wanted from Barry Lopez. Horizon is a gorgeous tome that is a journey through his own life and travels around the world, as well as those who came before him, reflecting on a greater history of exploration, and offering thoughtful, fervent, hopeful ways forward for all of us in these uncertain times. Personal, powerful, important, this is narrative nonfiction that we both need and crave. - Melinda

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Horizon Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780394585826
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - March 19th, 2019

Burnout by Emily Nagoski & Amelia Nagoski

Jenny Lawson's Furiously Happy was the first book that made me cry within the first five pages, and now Burnout is the second, and for the same reason: I've found my people. Burnout strikes that nice balance between easily readable and scientific backing, in addition to recognizing the amount of stress and crap that women are faced with. The authors provide tl;dr "cheat sheets" at the end of each chapter, understanding the need for quick references in high stress times. Burnout and Furiously Happy allow folks to see that they're not alone in their head, burdened with stress, mental illness, self-doubt, and other debilitating thoughts. Everyone goes through those on some level, and Burnout provides the tools needed to thrive during challenging times. - Rachel

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Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781984817068
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ballantine Books - March 26th, 2019

Greek to Me by Mary Norris

I found myself telling everyone I knew how much I enjoyed reading this, and how they needed to read it right now! Norris takes us through her interest in all things Greek, from the language to the place to the literature and how she relates to it all. Her genius lies in moving agilely from one topic to another, giving insight and sparking interest while never letting the reader become weary of the subject. Perfect to delight the brain, spice up your dinner conversation, and to transport you to “the wine-dark sea.” - Jax

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Greek to Me: Adventures of the Comma Queen Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9781324001270
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 2nd, 2019

The Field Guide to Dumb Birds of North America by Matt Kracht

There are birders, and then there are Birders. But what about the rest of us? We all come across that noisy blue pokey one that screams*, the herds of tiny round brown birbs**, and the tubby grey sacks with tiny heads*** but there hasn’t been a specific guide for us meh-birders until now. Crass, blunt, and incredibly accurate, this is a field guide begging to be gifted, loved, and worn down by use. (Either in the field or just showing it off to folks.) - Rahcel

*“Stupid-Ass Stellar’s Jay”; **”  Western Wood Pew-Pew“; ***”Effing Pigeon”

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The Field Guide to Dumb Birds of North America (Bird Books, Books for Bird Lovers, Humor Books) Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781452174037
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books - April 2nd, 2019

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