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Staff Fiction Favorites

A rotating selection of some of our staff's favorite titles. New reviews added quarterly.

The First Bad Man by Miranda July

Hilarious and poignant, the fascinating novel brings us into the strange world of Cheryl Glickman, whose awkward, anxiety-fueled tendencies make us cringe in discomfort--or from the realization that we see ourselves in her thoughts and behaviors. The prose is smart and evocative, leaving the reader with new insights about what it means to love and be loved. - Kristi

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The First Bad Man: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781439172575
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner - September 8th, 2015

Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi by Geoff Dyer

The first half of this brilliant and intriguing novel takes place at the Biennale in Venice, where a world-weary freelance writer might be falling in love. The second part is set in Varanasi, India, where a world-weary Brit is going mad or finding nirvana, or both. Are the two characters the same guy? Are the stories connected? Dyer lets you come to your own conclusions. - Rico

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Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780307390301
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - April 6th, 2010

Seconds by Bryan Lee O'Malley

In your teens you’re becoming the person you’ll be. In your twenties you’re figuring out who you want to be. In your thirties, you start realizing you have to live with who you are and the choices you’ve made. This is a brilliant fable for that age when you know if you could go back with what you know now, you could live the life you were meant to live. - Jocelyn

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Seconds: A Graphic Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780345529374
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ballantine Books - July 15th, 2014

Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames

This book is a wicked good time. As someone who grew up on 70s/80s rock, the idea of reimagining monster fighting mercenaries as touring rock bands makes my heart pitter patter. Saga being the retired “we’ve seen it all, smoked it all, fought it all” on a comeback tour/rescue mission is ingenious and hilarious. Read this if you love adventure, laughs, and amazing band names. - Karena

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Kings of the Wyld (The Band) Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780316362474
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Orbit - February 21st, 2017

The Lost Vintage by Ann Mah

Burgundy France is the setting for this tale of fine wine, mystery, and romance. Ann Mah has crafted a dual timeline story that pairs present day Kate with 1940's Helen-Marie. A long lost diary found at the family's ancestral vineyard reveals secrets buried in the past. Compelling characters and descriptive language make this an enjoyable and enlightening read. - Trey

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The Lost Vintage: A Novel Cover Image
By Ann Mah
$26.99
ISBN: 9780062823311
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow - June 19th, 2018

A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin

Lucia Berlin's 43 captivating short stories are a sucker punch to your heart. Each one is alluring and provides an intimate insight into Berlin's life full of loss, heartbreak, and addiction. I have fallen in love with her writing and savored this collection with all of its tragedy, humor, and unpredictability. - Natalie O.

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A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781250094735
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador - August 2nd, 2016

Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield

This lovely and lyrical novel circles around a village tavern along the Thames after the mysterious happenings of a stormy night. An ensemble of unique characters reckon with the impossible, the power of storytelling, and the complexities of family in this warm feel-good tale. Brilliant use of folklore. - Clara

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Once Upon a River: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780743298070
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atria/Emily Bestler Books - December 4th, 2018

Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

Though Annihilation is a short piece, it was very easily one of the weirdest reading experiences I've ever had, and I loved it. Vandermeer doesn't fall into the sinkholes of tropes and predictable plot lines. I had no idea where the story would go and could barely put the book down to sleep. This is a perfect book to shake you out of a literary rut. - J

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Annihilation: A Novel (The Southern Reach Trilogy #1) Cover Image
$14.00
ISBN: 9780374104092
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: FSG Originals - February 4th, 2014

On Beauty by Zadie Smith

Zadie Smith understands people the way Dostoevsky understood people: the ways in which where they come from and who they come from influence where and how they end up. Reading this book is like joining another family, and though every member is flawed - to say the least - each character feels like a real person. A nearly perfect book. - Jess

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On Beauty: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143037743
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - August 29th, 2006

MEM by Bethany C. Morrow

Looking for more speculative fiction? I highly recommend Morrow's unique, character driven debut novel. In an alternative 1920s, memories are extracted from people and exist as a sort of clone stuck in time, reliving their scene until they fade away. Powerful and insightful, this is the type of book you'll find yourself thinking about months after you've finished. - Emma

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Mem Cover Image
$24.99
ISBN: 9781944700553
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Unnamed Press - May 22nd, 2018

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