User menu

Shopping cart

0 Items $0.00

Bookshop Santa Cruz staff recommendation:

The following books are recommended by our staff as great choices for book groups. Sign up for our Book Ends email newsletter to receive more great book group recommendations.

At 21, Johnson was kidnapped and held captive by her abusive ex-boyfriend in the soundproof room where he intended to kill her, but her incredible memoir isn’t about that. It’s about the before and after, a reminder to believe survivors when they do the hard work of telling their stories. Johnson tells hers through lyrical prose that turns even the ugliest tragedy into something beautiful. - Kristi

Staff Pick Badge
The Other Side Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781935639831
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tin House Books - July 15th, 2014


General Dumas’ story deserves epic operas and an acclaimed HBO series it’s so thrilling and adventurous. As the son of a Marquis and a Haitian slave, Dumas rose to the highest ranks of the French army and commanded the respect of nations. Reiss’ quest to uncover Dumas’ story is a joy to read and discovering the seeds of his son’s novels is an eye-opening pleasure. - Clara

Staff Pick Badge
The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo (Pulitzer Prize for Biography) Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780307382474
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Broadway Books - May 14th, 2013


Published just three years after 9/11, this is a powerful meditation on the intention behind and consumption of war photography. Sontag explores the necessary act of acknowledging violence while challenging ourselves to respond to it with empathy, not apathy. Today, when acts of mass violence are as common as the hashtags that represent them, this book feels particularly urgent. - Kristi

Staff Pick Badge
Regarding the Pain of Others Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780312422196
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador - February 1st, 2004


Most of us walk through our daily lives without thinking too much about our mortality, but O’Farrell’s connection to life has been more tenuous than most. Over seventeen essays, she examines the experiences that have taught her how thin the membrane between life and death really is. Told in elegant prose that will resonate in your heart, this book is, ultimately, incredibly life-affirming. - Jess

Staff Pick Badge
I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780525436058
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - March 26th, 2019


Are you a fan of the popular sitcom The Good Place?  Would you like to dig a bit deeper into the ethical dilemmas explored on the show? If so, this book is for you! Russell uses traditional and modern thought experiments to provide a concise, illuminating tour of the main issues humans face when trying to "do the right thing". This is a great introduction to Ethical Philosophy. - Trey

Staff Pick Badge
The Forking Trolley: An Ethical Journey to The Good Place Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781786750792
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Palazzo Editions - May 4th, 2019


A history and assessment of California’s (misguided) water distribution system and the population growth it has engendered, The Dreamt Land reads like an expansive, expertly crafted novel. Propelled by endless curiosity and the courage to go where his story leads, Arax captures the personalities and voices of farmers, land barons, developers, laborers, environmentalists, politicians, and consumers who depend on (and fight over) access to our state’s most precious natural resource, and details the shady dealings and political nonsense that determines who gets to profit from it. What Marc Reisner’s Cadillac Desert is to the Western United States, this book is to California—an imperative and timely work that will be around for decades to come. - Rico

Staff Pick Badge
The Dreamt Land: Chasing Water and Dust Across California Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9781101875209
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - May 21st, 2019


Robert Macfarlane writes with such agility and scope that when exploring the natural world that lies beneath us, he also plumbs the depths of our cultures, mythologies, and histories—not as an exercise in what has been, but in where we are now, and what can still be done. Tracking across time and the planet, each page is a revelation, a way to think more deeply and place ourselves more fully in the world, making Underland both pleasurable reading and important work. - Melinda

Staff Pick Badge
Underland: A Deep Time Journey Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780393242140
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - June 4th, 2019


Moraga is one of the most powerful voices of Xicana feminism. In this biography of her mother Elvira, she grapples with the struggles and erasure of women (especially of indigenous women) in the Mexican diaspora. Elvira is the strong, difficult backbone in Moraga’s life journey from the mixed-race Los Angeles household of her childhood to the hard-won “queer familia” of her present. A beautiful reclamation of language, memory, and culture. - Clara

Staff Pick Badge
Native Country of the Heart: A Memoir Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780374219666
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - April 2nd, 2019


The world is not black and white, so why do we approach gender as a binary? In Me, Myself, They, Joshua Ferguson breaks down on historical, scientific, and societal bases why a two-gender outlook ignores reality. The world is filled with so many colors and the idea that we all fit into one of two boxes is preposterous. This unflinchingly honest memoir made me rethink everything I know about gender and I can’t wait to give it to everyone I know. - Ivy

Staff Pick Badge
Me, Myself, They: Life Beyond the Binary Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781487004774
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: House of Anansi Press - May 7th, 2019


While working in a large hospital in Philadelphia, Dr. Virji realized that due to the number of his patients he was assigned, he was practicing “turnstyle” medicine. Upon hearing of a shortage of doctors in rural communities, he and his family moved to a town of 1400 people in Minnesota, where he opened a clinic. After a few years, he was finally practicing personable medicine in a community that seemed warm and welcoming. Then the 2016 elections hit. Virji, a devout Muslim, woke to find a swastika on his sidewalk. The atmosphere in the town seemed to shift overnight and things got dangerous and intense. At the verge of leaving entirely, a town meeting was called and Virji found himself in the burdened position of having to educate and explain his religion to a less-than-open crowd. Love Thy Neighbor offers a view of the bravery that is required and the shifts that can take place when compassion and faith are used to combat fear. - S.M.C.

Staff Pick Badge
Love Thy Neighbor: A Muslim Doctor's Struggle for Home in Rural America Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780525577201
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Convergent Books - June 11th, 2019


Pages