User menu

Shopping cart

New store hours: 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM Daily. Masks encouraged.

Ivy's Reviews

Ivy grew up very close to Santa Cruz and is a UC Santa Cruz graduate. She is the head of the Hardback section, History, and helps with Sci-Fi/Fantasy. Her voracious reading appetite can include anything from history, fiction, graphic novels, and anything in between.



Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood

With her poetic language and impeccable dramatic timing, Margaret Atwood has crafted an altogether compelling retelling of The Tempest. Prospero is an aging, grieving father named Felix Phillips. The island is a literal prison where, after having been relieved of his duties as a theater festival’s artistic director, Phillips teaches inmates Shakespeare. For an Atwood and Shakespeare fan, this book is a perfect storm. It gives plenty of nods to its source but is a fantastic story on its own. Just remember: The play’s the thing.  —Ivy


Staff Pick Badge
Hag-Seed: William Shakespeare's The Tempest Retold: A Novel (Hogarth Shakespeare) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780804141291
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Hogarth - October 11th, 2016

The Fortunes by Peter Ho Davies

Living history through another’s eyes is a long tradition in American literature, but it is often from a very white perspective. Peter Ho Davies, through his superb mastery of language, shows us what it means to be an American while also being Chinese. Davies takes four unique characters from different eras and draws readers into their story at once distinct and familiar. Over and over, I recalibrated my understanding of history and how much is owed to overlooked, but vast communities.  —Ivy

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

It is a rare storyteller who can make a new tale seem familiar. Naomi Novik deftly accomplishes this feat in Uprooted. Agnieszka is a compelling, stubborn protagonist and the exacting “Dragon” is her perfect foil. The premise is precise and well crafted, combining Russian folktales with a classic European fairytale. It felt like coming home to the fantasy roots of my youth. —Ivy

Staff Pick Badge
Uprooted: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780804179058
Availability: Backordered
Published: Del Rey - March 1st, 2016

The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins

The story starts with a girl in a bloody dress walking down a dark highway and only gets stranger from there. The girl, after being orphaned at a young age, was taken in by a mysterious figure known only as Father. He trains her to become a Librarian of Languages in his odd library. This book takes all the elements of a fantasy novel and turns them on their head. Wherever you think this story is going, you're wrong. —Ivy
Staff Pick Badge
The Library at Mount Char: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780553418620
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Crown - March 15th, 2016

Everybody’s Fool by Richard Russo

It’s amazing what can happen in a podunk town in upstate New York over the course of a few days, and Richard Russo’s splendid new novel explores it all with assured writing, hilarious (and true) observation, and characters that could not be more full of real life. Heartfelt comic genius at its best, a stand-alone sequel to Nobody’s Fool and a damn fine book—you deserve to enjoy this masterpiece of modern storytelling.  —Melinda

Staff Pick Badge
Everybody's Fool: A novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307270641
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Knopf - May 3rd, 2016

This Too Shall Pass by Milena Busquets

After her mother’s death, Blanca is adrift. Her generous love and flawed friendships bring ease to an otherwise devastating time. Every word of this gorgeous novel is colored by grief, and the story twists and turns to avoid and simultaneously face that grief head on. This Too Shall Pass paints a vibrant picture of how life stops and yet marches on after a major loss. Amazing and cathartic.  —Ivy

Staff Pick Badge
This Too Shall Pass: A Novel Cover Image
By Milena Busquets, Valerie Miles (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781101903704
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Hogarth - May 24th, 2016

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

When Rose Franklin falls into a hole near her home, she has no idea how much it will color her life. At the bottom, there is a large hand. Years later, after she’s almost forgotten about it, she ends up studying the hole’s origins, which are far stranger than anyone could imagine. Most of the story is told through interview transcripts and journal excerpts; the disconnect adds to the mystery. Each page got my heart pounding and hungering for more.  —Ivy

Staff Pick Badge
Sleeping Giants (The Themis Files #1) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101886694
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Del Rey - April 26th, 2016

The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley

A mysterious watch in the pocket of Nathaniel Steepleton makes its way through Victorian London, leading its owner toward his destiny. On the way, Steepleton meets the watch’s mysterious owner, Keita Mori, and an Oxford physicist, Grace Carrow. The story is fascinating and keeps you guessing, while the Victorian-style prose creates a picture of a city in turmoil. Even with the book’s dark overtone, I couldn’t help but be charmed.  —Ivy


Staff Pick Badge
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street Cover Image
ISBN: 9781620408346
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Bloomsbury USA - May 3rd, 2016

"Most Blessed of the Patriarchs" by Annette Gordon-Reed & Peter S. Onuf

History is cyclical. Jefferson in one era is different in the next. Our modern sense of Jefferson, especially with the redemption of Sally Hemings, is of him as a divisive man fraught with contradictions. This book strives very hard to find the middle ground between demon and saint. Before I began reading it, I believed in Alexander Hamilton’s characterization of Jefferson as a villain, but “Most Blessed of the Patriarchs” paints a more nuanced picture of a man who strove to serve his country well.  —Ivy

Staff Pick Badge
ISBN: 9780871404428
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Liveright - April 13th, 2016

The Last Days of Magic by Mark Tompkins

Though a small island, world powers—real and mystical—have wanted to tame Ireland’s wild people for time immemorial. The faeries, or sidhe, protect its people, but rely on the appearance of the Morrigana, a goddess in human form, when in dire straits. Aisling, the current incarnation, is expected to save her people, but her power has been halved by tragedy and betrayal. Impeccably researched, this blend of history and magic made me long to visit Ireland’s dew soaked greens. —Ivy

Staff Pick Badge
The Last Days of Magic Cover Image
ISBN: 9780525429531
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Viking - March 1st, 2016


Make a donation to our Holiday Book Drive:


Subscribe to RSS - Ivy's Reviews