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Fiction Recommendations

Touch & Go by Thad Nodine

Local author Thad Nodine has done the impossible and written a novel that is funny, telling, original, and heartfelt. I know on their own perhaps those adjectives might not stand out, but together they make a whirlwind of a read. Narrated by Kevin, a blind and recently unemployed journalist, we are introduced to a make-shift family that has as many unlikable traits as they do likeable. As the family sets out on a road trip, we find ourselves rooting for them, wanting them to figure it out, to grow up and listen to one another. This is that book that has you shaking your head in exasperation, laughing, and tearing up all at the same time. What a read!

Reviewed by: 
S.M.C.
Touch and Go Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781609530617
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Unbridled Books - September 27th, 2011

Swamplandia! by Karen Russell

This was by far one of my favorite novels of the year—and it turns out—one of the New York Times too. Landing itself on the coveted NYT’s best ten books of the year list, this novel is an incredible debut. Telling the tale of 13-year old Ava who has grown up on an island in her family’s alligator-wrestling theme park (I know, I know, but it works) Russell introduces us to by far one of the most valiant and true heroine’s I have read in a long time. The bravery and pluckiness Ava has in her determination to hold her family together when circumstances threaten to tear them apart is beautiful and stoic. This is an original, incredible, and touching novel—a great read for fans of The Secret Life of Bees.

Reviewed by: 
S.M.C.
Swamplandia! (Vintage Contemporaries) Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780307276681
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - July 26th, 2011

The Red Garden by Alice Hoffman

A wonderful woven tapestry that centers around one small town in America with a legendary garden Hoffman takes us through three hundred years of history. Starting with the town’s founder, a brave young woman from England who has no fears of bears and ending in modern day with a desperate young man who craves solace after being an EMT in New York City , Hoffman has crafted an exquisitely magical book whose characters are vivid and unexpected. For fans of Isabel Allende, this is one of those magical books that tells a true tale of humanity with a bit of magic thrown in.

Reviewed by: 
S.M.C.
The Red Garden: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780307405975
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Crown - August 2nd, 2011

The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

Eugenides’ long-awaited third novel is a grand slam. It studies a love triangle between three recent college graduates, and the way they stretch into the world as they begin to truly grow up. If you’ve ever studied literature in an academic setting, you simply must read this book. It will have you in stitches. A moving and thoughtful treatise about how we learn to live and love

Reviewed by: 
Kat
The Marriage Plot: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780374203054
Availability: Backordered
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - October 11th, 2011

Nightwoods by Charles Frazier

This book gave me goosebumps. This book demands to be read with a hot toddie. This book is a strange combination of achingly beautiful nature writing and tense, riveting crime fiction. I will be recommending this book to people for the rest of my life – there were certain lines that I want to frame and hang on the wall. Read this book if you want to be caught up in something amazing.

Reviewed by: 
Kat
Staff Pick Badge
Nightwoods: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780812978803
Availability: Backordered
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - June 12th, 2012

Birds of Paradise by Diana Abu-Jaber

Like the elaborate pastries created by Felice’s mother, this novel will melt in your mouth. It’s not fluff – a run-away teenager, a marriage on the rocks, a hidden secret – but it’s rich and sensual and delicious. Perhaps more troubling than a sugared item should be, but certainly as amazing.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
Birds of Paradise: A Novel Cover Image
Email or call for price
ISBN: 9780393064612
Availability: Out of Print
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 6th, 2011

Joe the Barbarian by Grant Morrison

Joe’s life is not the greatest: he and his mom face foreclosure after his dad’s death in Iraq. And his health…Home alone, an accident leads Joe into literal mortal peril–and a land where the battle of Light vs. Dark is reaching its climax. Has Joe really been transported to a magic kingdom, or are these the hallucinations of a frightened boy, dying alone? Read on.

Reviewed by: 
Jocelyn
Joe the Barbarian Deluxe Edition Cover Image
By Grant Morrison, Sean Murphy (Illustrator)
$29.99
ISBN: 9781401229719
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Vertigo - November 8th, 2011

Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka

Whether new to superhero comics or a true believer, Batwoman is unlike any you’ve seen before. ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ booted Kate from the army, but her combat training fuels a crusade against the Religion of Crime, who prey on the innocent of Gotham. Following a dark trajectory of enemies and hard truths about her past, Elegy is a book you don’t want to miss.

Reviewed by: 
Jocelyn
Batwoman: Elegy Cover Image
By Greg Rucka, Jh Williams Iii (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781401231460
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: DC Comics - June 14th, 2011

Scarlet by Brian Michael Bendis

Scarlet was an ordinary 20-something. Maybe a little directionless–but in love, happy. Then a corrupt police officer ended her world – and no one cared. In a world where “Occupy” is now more than a verb, this book is eerily and violently prescient of the idea that things are not okay – and it’s up to you to do something about it. Beautiful, violent, powerful.

Reviewed by: 
Jocelyn
Scarlet: Book 1 Cover Image
By Brian Michael Bendis (Text by), Alex Maleev (Illustrator)
Email or call for price
ISBN: 9780785152514
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Marvel - July 20th, 2011

Everything Beautiful Began After by Simon Van Booy

When it comes to beautiful prose, this book has a spot at the top of my 2011 list. Van Booy’s sentences are so exquisite and perfectly weighted that you could spend an hour reading a single page. But you won’t, because the story and the characters insist that you continue. It takes place in Athens and circles around a peculiar love triangle between three lost souls. Just stunning.

Reviewed by: 
Kat
Staff Pick Badge
Everything Beautiful Began After: A Novel Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780061661488
Availability: Not On Our Shelves, But Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - July 5th, 2011

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