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Nici's Reviews

Raised on Tolkein and Star Trek, Nici can usually be found in the Science Fiction and Fantasy aisle. She’s spent over a decade in Santa Cruz, attending UCSC first to get an undergraduate degree in Mathematics and then to do graduate work in the art field. She has worked at Bookshop for the past eight years as a Floor Supervisor, Used Book Buyer, and Local Author Specialist and is now the Community Marketing Coordinator.

Blood at the Root A Racial Cleansing in America by Patrick Phillips

This is a stunning account of the tragic and brutal history of Forsyth County, Georgia, and the campaign of atrocious racial terror used to force African Americans out of the community and to keep the area “all white” into the 1990s. Extensively researched and carefully constructed, it is a shocking story from our collective past that needs to be acknowledged and shared. The ugly tendencies toward racism and violence are not gone from our society; facing the truth of the past is only a small step, but it is a first step and an important step. Phillips’ compelling narrative, powerful prose, and personal honesty will help start that journey. —Nici


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Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America By Patrick Phillips Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393293012
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 20th, 2016

The Rain in Portugal by Billy Collins

If you enjoy Collins’ light, conversational style, you will enjoy this new collection. Full of accessible poems about (mostly) familiar subjects, written in the slyly humorous style that I do so love, The Rain in Portugal is thought provoking and entertaining. Collins has a knack for taking a serious poem and sending it twisting into whimsy and for finding the hidden depth in a moment of frivolity. —Nici

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The Rain in Portugal: Poems By Billy Collins Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679644064
Availability: Hard to Find - Believed to be Out of Stock Indefinitely
Published: Random House - October 4th, 2016

Ghost Talkers by Mary Robinette Kowal

This charming adventure features a young American medium working during the Great War as part of a spiritualist effort to support the British military, and is full of brave deeds, creative magic, and tragic love. This fantasy is truly made remarkable by Kowal’s ability to describe a world extending beyond what our eyes can see; her writing gives vivid life to auras, spirits, and mystical forces. A unique premise and excellent supporting characters make this a sure-to-please fantasy.  —Nici

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Ghost Talkers By Mary Robinette Kowal Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780765378255
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Tor Books - August 16th, 2016

A Field Guide to Lies by Daniel J. Levitin

I often scream “correlation does not imply causation” at the TV, so I’m predisposed to like this book. That said, it’s a delightful explanation of a whole slew of useful tools for critical thinking that will appeal to more people than just those of us who shout statistical clichés at inanimate objects. A Field Guide to Lies describes the ways information can be misrepresented, skewed, or otherwise manipulated to make “the facts” mislead your brain. Even if you think you’re already hip to all these tricks, I think you’ll enjoy Levitin’s charming presentation of the “lying weasels” and the sneaky things they do. —Nici

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A Field Guide to Lies: Critical Thinking in the Information Age By Daniel J. Levitin Cover Image
ISBN: 9780525955221
Availability: Hard to Find - Believed to be Out of Stock Indefinitely
Published: Dutton - September 6th, 2016

A Crown for Cold Silver by Alex Marshall

Fans of battle scenes, revenge plots, kick-ass females, creative demonology, and non-hetero-normative characters rejoice. Crown for Cold Silver is the fantastic start to a fresh fantasy series that turns so many of the genre’s tropes on their heads. It's fun, feisty, and ferocious. BONUS: Book 2—A Blade of Black Steel—was recently released, and it’s excellent as well. —Nici

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A Crown for Cold Silver (The Crimson Empire #1) By Alex Marshall Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316379410
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Orbit - September 15th, 2015

Prayers the Devil Answers by Sharyn McCrumb

Set in the depression-era Appalachian mountains, this atmospheric mystery builds off folklore to examine destiny, desperation, and morality. After convincing the county commissioners to let her take over her deceased husband’s role as sheriff, Ellie Robbins becomes responsible for carrying out an execution and—in a time when women were considered incapable of handling many tasks—this makes everyone unhappy. —Nici

The Crow Girl by Erik Axl Sund

This tightly-wound psychological thriller begs the question, “How well can you truly know someone?” As D.S. Jeanette Kihlberg navigates a series of abominable child murders across Stockholm, a deftly woven web of secrets and lies bubbles to the surface, both on the case and in her personal life. Friends, family, lovers—are they all just roles to be played? A dark well-crafted page-turner that takes the reader to the depths of the human conscience and all the furtive secrets shrouded within. —Sylvie

Silver on the Road by Laura Anne Gilman

This book had so much to make me happy: awesome world building, great female lead, neat and novel magic, and intriguing supporting characters. A fresh and wonderful fantasy set in an American West that is both comfortingly familiar and fantastically foreign, this novel is a promising start to Gilman's new series.  -Nici


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Silver on the Road (The Devil's West #1) By Laura Anne Gilman Cover Image
ISBN: 9781481429689
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Gallery / Saga Press - October 6th, 2015

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Amazing! Homegoing is an epic narrative that is sure to become a treasured staple. Two sisters in Ghana are marked by tragedy; one is married off to an Englishman (and slave trader) and the other is sold to be enslaved in America. The storyline follows their descendants, generation by generation. It will break your heart over and over, impress you with the resilience of the human spirit and the amazing power of forgiveness, and leave you optimistic and in awe.  —Nici

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Homegoing: A novel By Yaa Gyasi Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101947135
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Knopf - June 7th, 2016


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