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Louise's Reviews

Louise has been working at Bookshop Santa Cruz since 2012, and is now Head of Receiving. When she's not absorbed in a book (be it a law dictionary or a biography) she likes to play strange games with her cat Heyhey and discuss the more refined aspects of Star Trek. Louise is a transplant from the Central Valley of California, where she spent a lot of time developing a hay allergy and sitting on the edge of her bed playing guitar.

A Good Cry by Nikki Giovanni

This collection by poet Nikki Giovanni is absolutely wonderful. The diversity between short prose and poetry in this collection lends it a great readability, and there is a lovely rhythm to the book. Of note is the poem dedicated to Maya Angelou that embraces tears and sadness as necessary and healing. The personal is political, and as always Giovanni reminds us why. - Louise

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A Good Cry: What We Learn From Tears and Laughter Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780062399458
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow - October 24th, 2017

Five-Carat Soul by James McBride

My most-loved short story collections are those that offer hoards of enjoyment in small, fully contained pieces. Five-Carat Soul possesses this trait, as McBride shows excellent range across the collection. The voices he produces in each story are unique and satisfying. I particularly enjoyed the final tale, “Mr. P and the Wind,” told by animals and influenced by their communication with humans. - Louise

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Five-Carat Soul Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780735216693
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - September 26th, 2017

Iraq + 100 edited by Hassan Blasim

Hassan Blasim, author of the haunting book The Corpse Exhibition, has assembled science fiction stories from Iraqi writers, all set 100 years after the U.S. occupation of Iraq. These stories demonstrate how Iraq's past will influence its future by blending history with fantastical technology. The defiance to imagine the future so creatively when at times even the arrival of the next day is uncertain is the spirit of this collection. - Louise

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Iraq + 100: The First Anthology of Science Fiction to Have Emerged from Iraq Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781250161321
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tor Books - September 12th, 2017

Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones

A young boy sees his dead father every night in his home, dressed head to toe in fancydance regalia. Why is he appearing now, and only at night, and only to the boy? There's conflict here-both inward in terms of identity, loss, and cultural ties, and outward with the disturbingly mystical events trailing behind the ghost's appearance. Reading before bedtime is thrilling, but not necessarily endorsed by this reader, due to creepiness. - Louise

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Mapping the Interior Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780765395108
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tor.com - June 20th, 2017

Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood

Normally I shy away from memoirs written by poets, afraid that their style of writing won’t translate into a cohesive narrative. But Patricia Lockwood’s clever turns of phrase and eccentric personality are right at home in this book, which is primarily the story of her beer-drinking Catholic priest of a father and how growing up in this paradoxical environment shaped her life. It’s real and irreverent and will delight fans of Jenny Lawson and Mary Karr. - Louise

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Priestdaddy: A Memoir Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781594633737
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - May 2nd, 2017

Like a Mule Bringing Ice Cream to the Sun by Sarah Ladipo Manyika

I’m a huge fan of anything under 200 pages, and this story of Dr. Morayo Da Silva, a Nigerian woman living in San Francisco, fits the bill perfectly. Our 75-year-old protagonist is at an age that our culture inaccurately assumes is filled only with death and physical decline. While there are elements of both here, there is also a luminous and lively center upon which her story pivots; the narrative floats effortlessly between the bustling present and Da Silva’s nostalgia-worthy past. It’s a natural next read for fans of Fredrik Backman. - Louise

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Like a Mule Bringing Ice Cream to the Sun Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781911115045
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Cassava Republic Press - April 11th, 2017

The End of San Francisco by Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore

I am obsessed with Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore. She tells us a unique history of San Francisco during the years when it was still a supremely weird place that the moneyed hadn't (completely) ruined yet. The valuable underground knowledge and lore it unearths and the undeniably queer spark of intelligence and self-reflection make this a vital historical document. - Louise

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The End of San Francisco Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780872865723
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: City Lights Books - March 19th, 2013

Dietland by Sarai Walker

Plum anticipates the awesome life she imagines will materialize after her weight-loss surgery. Then her happenstance encounters with a strange woman lead her to Calliope House, where the daughter of a deceased diet mogul looking to make amends folds her into a subculture of radical feminists rallying against the diet-industrial complex. This book is truly exceptional. - Louise

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Dietland Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780544704831
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - May 24th, 2016

Jack London Edited by Alessia Tagliaventi

As the centennial of Jack London’s death approaches, this fresh compilation of photographs, journals, and essays offers readers a much more personal look at the author. Chapters about London’s life and career are arranged chronologically and include his photographs. Few great authors have left an impression in photography as well as in letters, but Jack London has. You’ll feel as though you’re on the deck of the Snark, looking through binoculars, outward toward adventure. —Louise

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Jack London. the Paths Men Take Cover Image
By Jack London, Davide Sapienza (Introduction by), Alessia Tagliaventi (Editor)
$24.95
ISBN: 9788869656392
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Contrasto - September 13th, 2016

Dietland by Sarai Walker

Sarai Walker’s mysterious, engaging, and politically charged story about a woman who is sick of waiting for her perfect life to begin is pitched to perfection. It’s obvious from the first page that a major amount of lived experience shaped the story—as I read I was nodding in recognition so often I got a little dizzy. I’m also madly in love with this book because there’s a book within the book! It’s a two for one!   —Louise

 

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Dietland Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780544704831
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - May 24th, 2016

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