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Vernon's Reviews

Vernon lives, surfs, and reads in Santa Cruz, California.


The Complete Stories by Clarice Lispector

For a certain kind of reader this collection of short stories by Brazil’s greatest author may be the book of the year…decade…or century. Every story in here is a kind of spell as she infuses comic and existential significance into the seemingly mundane lives, loves and dreams of her characters. It’s definitely one of my favorite books of the year.

Reviewed by: 
Vernon
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The Complete Stories Cover Image
By Clarice Lispector, Benjamin Moser (Editor), Katrina Dodson (Translator)
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ISBN: 9780811219631
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - August 25th, 2015

Discontent and Its Civilizations by Mohsin Hamid

Pakistani novelist Mohsin Hamid offers a collection of succinct portraits and cultural observations on living in New York City, London and Lahore, Pakistan, since 9/11. Even as he details the hyperbolic paranoia, horror and culture shock of his (and our) media- saturated life in the time of terrorism and Internet 2.0, Hamid can't resist the absurd humor of our globalized freneticism.
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Vernon
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Discontent and Its Civilizations: Dispatches from Lahore, New York, and London Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9781594633652
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Riverhead Books - February 24th, 2015

Slow Is Fast: On the Road at Home

Slow is Fast chronicles a unique 700-mile bicycle journey down the California coast by a group of surfers and filmmakers. Along the way they document their travels, repair flat tires, surf remote breaks, visit friends and fellow journeymen and pitch in to help out artisans and organic farmers—including some in Santa Cruz—all in an effort to tell a simple story of livelihoods crafted in tune with our oceans and fields.

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Vernon
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Slow Is Fast: On the Road at Home [With Poster and DVD] Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781938340291
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Patagonia - April 8th, 2014

Dirty Wars by Jeremy Scahill

Jeremy Scahill’s new book is a chilling, exhaustive record of how our country chooses to pursue and perpetuate the seemingly limitless and globe-encompassing “war on terror.” A milestone in real journalism and easily one of the most important books of the decade.

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Vernon
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Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781568586717
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Nation Books - April 23rd, 2013

The Faraway Nearby by Rebecca Solnit

In the tradition of A Field Guide to Getting Lost, Rebecca Solnit returns with a lyrical, book-length collection of essay-stories that explores the way we tell each other’s stories to shape our various selves—as creators and artists of our lived and imagined consciousnesses. Don’t miss our event with Rebecca Solnit Thursday, June 27th.                                                       
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Vernon
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The Faraway Nearby Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9780670025961
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Viking Books - June 13th, 2013

Middle C by William H Gass

William H. Gass is one of the last remaining of a generation of post-modern writers that changed the aesthetic direction of fiction. Author of dozens of avante-garde essay and story collections as well as the groundbreaking novels Omensetter's Luck, The Tunnel and now Middle C, Gass is our current consumate prose stylist, trickster and innovative storyteller.
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Vernon
Middle C Cover Image
$28.95
ISBN: 9780307701633
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - March 12th, 2013

The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz

I blame Sandor Katz for all the smelly lactobacilli experiments I have growing in the corner of my kitchen. Ever since poring through his cult fermentation book, Wild Fermentation, I’ve been shredding, pounding, and brining cabbage with the feverish abandon of a sailor stricken with scurvy. Wild Fermenation is a witty and pungent introduction to the art of DIY fermentation, but the more comprehensive Art of Fermentation is anticipated to be the bible on the subject, a kind of How to Cook Everything/On Food and Cooking for the world of pickling/fermenting/rotting enthusiasts.
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Vernon
The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from Around the World Cover Image
By Sandor Ellix Katz, Michael Pollan (Foreword by)
$39.95
ISBN: 9781603582865
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chelsea Green Publishing Company - May 14th, 2012

On Bicycles edited by Amy Walker

The burgeoning bike cultures of Portland, New York City, San Francisco, and other cities aren’t a wave of passing trends—they are the emerging reality of daily life and transport for urban citizens in the United States. This essential bicycling anthology features a critical mass of bike writers and bicycling advocates writing from all fronts of bike culture.

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Vernon
On Bicycles: 50 Ways the New Bike Culture Can Change Your Life Cover Image
By Amy Walker (Editor)
$16.95
ISBN: 9781608680221
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: New World Library - September 20th, 2011

The Cat’s Table by Michael Ondaatje

Ondaatje (The English Patient, In the Skin of a Lion) is both a writer’s writer and a reader’s writer—he rewards the discerning eye with his exquisite prose and satisfies the adventurous reader willing to follow his prismatic storylines. Set aboard an oceanliner journeying from Ceylon to England in the 1950s, The Cat’s Table follows the life of an 11-year-old boy discovering the world in microcosm on board the gigantic ship.

The Cat's Table Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780307700117
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - October 4th, 2011

Zone One by Colson Whitehead

The Zombie Apocalypse storyline seems to have a seemingly indestructible appeal; an observer of pop culture has to wonder if the durability of zombie entertainment is a sign that we may be growing used to reflecting our own culture; that we eerily shuffle through life much like our brain-dead zombie enemies. At least this point may be what Colson Whitehead tries to unearth in his subtle take on the genre. He’s more concerned with his character’s emotional lives, with how they cope in the hordes of modern life and modern apocalypse, than with offering cheap zombie-movie thrills we’ve all grown accustomed to. Highly recommended.

Reviewed by: 
Vernon
Zone One: A Novel Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9780385528078
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Doubleday - October 18th, 2011

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