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Kat's Reviews

KatsronautKat first came to Bookshop Santa Cruz by winning the short story contest in 2008. She convinced the management to give her a job, and went on to become an event host, the used book manager and an avid connoisseur of fiction. In her other life, she is often found enjoying tacos. She now works for the Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks managing their ParkStores.

Great House by Nichole Krause

Great House is one of the best books about writing I've read, though it's not really about writing. If asked, I'd have to say it's really about a large desk that manages to link together a cast of otherwise disparate characters. One of those characters is a writer, and her take on the habit and art of writing brings the story to life. This is a novel quite worthy of its National Book Award nomination.

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Kat
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Great House: A Novel Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9780393340648
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 6th, 2011

Pirate King by Laurie R. King

I get cranky if I go too long without a Mary Russell fix. God of the Hive was published a scant year and a half ago, but it feels like much longer since I've checked in with my favorite detectives, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes. In Pirate King we are taken to Lisbon, where a mystery involving silent films and Gilbert and Sullivan awaits. King's dexterous plotting skills are hard at work in this novel, and surprises are in store. I can't wait!

Reviewed by: 
Kat
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Pirate King: A novel of suspense featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes Cover Image
$25.00
ISBN: 9780553807981
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Bantam - September 6th, 2011

Here Comes Trouble by Michael Moore

Michael Moore has been holding out on us. We've all seen his documentaries, but it turns out that the man with the camera has left plenty of stories untold. A memoir's worth, in fact. Here Comes Trouble is a collection of 24 vignettes, spanning the hilarious, the poignant and the strange (such as an exorcism lesson from a priest. No, really). It's a fresh glimpse of one of our most well known provocateurs.

Reviewed by: 
Kat
Here Comes Trouble: Stories from My Life Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780446532242
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Grand Central Publishing - September 13th, 2011

A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee

The Emperor of All Maladies is the kind of book that could only be written by a passionate expert. Luckily, we have Siddhartha Mukherjee, an oncologist and writer who has penned a stunning 'biography' of one of the world's worst afflictions. This volume spans the history of cancer and includes stories of Mukherjee's patients, and it is in these chapters that the author's devotion and compassion shines clearest. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, this moving and important book should be widely read.

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Kat
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The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer Cover Image
$20.00
ISBN: 9781439170915
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner - August 9th, 2011

Fables v1: Legends in Exile by Bill Willingham

If you’re the kind of grown-up who obsesses over fairy tales, you should be reading this series. Welcome to Fabletown, a secret city-within-a-city where Snow White, the Big Bad Wolf, Goldilocks and others reluctantly cohabitate after being exiled from their homeland by an evil empire. The art is stunning and sexy, and the stories told will seriously mess with your Disney memories. 

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Kat
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Fables Vol. 1: Legends in Exile Cover Image
By Bill Willingham, James Jean (Illustrator), Alex Maleev (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9781401237554
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Vertigo - May 22nd, 2012

Love Begins in Winter by Simon Van Booy

Simon Van Booy can create a planet in a sentence, a character with two words. I read his short stories with the occasional twinge of outright jealousy. These stories touch upon love in many forms, its bewildering ambiguity and its unexpected power to push people forward. It’s quiet, philosophical and beautiful, the kind of book that turns your mind on and leaves it humming. 

Reviewed by: 
Kat
Staff Pick Badge
Love Begins in Winter: Five Stories Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780061661471
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - May 12th, 2009

The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood

I will always have a fond spot in my heart for this particular book; it was my introduction to the wonder that is Atwood. It’s a Booker-winning play on genre that twists gothic romance with pulpy science fiction, populated by astonishingly vivid characters and scenery. When I finished it I found myself torn between reading it again and grabbing one of her many other masterpieces. 

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Kat
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The Blind Assassin: A Novel Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780385720953
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Anchor - August 28th, 2001

Sum by David Eagleman

David Eagleman is a neuroscientist who also majored in British and American literature, which is the best kind of neuroscientist. Sum, his first book, is a beautiful oddity, philosophical and playful and best read out loud. If you’re unconvinced, pick it up and read the first story. It will take just a minute, and it might take you somewhere unexpected. 

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Kat
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Sum: Forty Tales from the Afterlives Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780307389930
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - January 12th, 2010

The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman

I love what Christopher Buckley said about this book: "so good I had to read it twice simply to figure out how he pulled it off." It’s not quite a novel, but not really a short story collection either, but I don’t think that really matters. What matters is Rachman’s ability to form a character in two sentences and turn a whole story on a word. I’m still not quite sure how he pulled it off.   

Reviewed by: 
Kat
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The Imperfectionists: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780385343671
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Dial Press Trade Paperback - January 4th, 2011

Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok

If there were ever a story about the American dream, this is it. But not perhaps the dream you expect; this is a story of immigration, sweatshops, and desperate poverty, and of one girl’s struggle to rise into a better life using the only asset she has: her miraculous, untrammeled intelligence. I started reading this book in the middle of a move, and I burned through it in two days—it’s really that good!
Reviewed by: 
Kat
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Girl in Translation Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781594485152
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - May 3rd, 2011

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