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Some Assembly Required: Decoding Four Billion Years of Life, from Ancient Fossils to DNA by Neil Shubin

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Some Assembly Required: Decoding Four Billion Years of Life, from Ancient Fossils to DNA Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781101871331
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Published: Pantheon - March 17th, 2020

“Nothing begins where you think it does.” This includes our very existence. Humans didn’t just spring forth fully formed like Athena, but rather through chance and many years of intense evolution. Shubin manages to take the smallest part of us, DNA, and show just why it looms so large in everything we do. My mind was blown more than once and I raced to find the next revelation.  —Ivy


The Story of More: How We Got to Climate Change and Where to Go from Here by Hope Jahren

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The Story of More: How We Got to Climate Change and Where to Go from Here Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780525563389
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Published: Vintage - March 3rd, 2020

Climate change is overwhelming in its scope, severity, and immediacy. While there are plenty of books out there tackling this pressing topic, Jahren’s work is absolutely worth a read. In just a few short chapters, she’s managed to condense many of the complex aspects of climate change into layman's terms. Jahren describes some of the changes she’s seen in her own lifetime (she was born in 1969) and then applies her expertise as a scientist to offer solutions that actually seem doable. Written in the witty, conversational style that endeared her to readers in Lab Girl, Jahren’s follow-up is an impactful and important read.  —Jade


The Man in the Red Coat by Julian Barnes

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$26.95
ISBN: 9780525658771
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Published: Knopf - February 18th, 2020

At its heart, this is the story of Dr. Samuel Pozzi, a late-Nineteenth-Century French surgeon, philosopher and societal figure, and subject of one of John Singer Sargent’s most famous portraits. But it’s really an intelligent, witty re-examination of the Belle Epoque. In addition to the era's glamour and artistic achievements (think Henry James, Sarah Bernhardt, Oscar Wilde, Proust, etc.), Barnes shows us its darker side—the prejudice and backward thinking—and the ways it parallels our current era (think Brexit, the broader global swing toward nationalism, and America’s own political situation). A great read for fans of art, literature, history and excellent writing. —Rico


Wow, No Thank You: Essays by Samantha Irby

Wow, No Thank You.: Essays Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780525563488
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Published: Vintage - March 31st, 2020

Samantha Irby’s new collection of hilarious, truth-telling essays has arrived, and not a moment too soon. This is exactly the mirror I need right now, if I dare look in a mirror at all, and I nodded, smiled, and howled my way through her book, basking in the comfort of shared humanity. Whether lamenting middle-aged girls’ nights out, skewering of-the-moment beauty regimens, or critiquing the social media wormhole, Irby has hit her stride; her honesty writ large and funny as hell, her gloriously messy but exactly right observations, her wit and heart, all are balm for our complex, conflicted, all too human souls.  —Melinda


How Much of These Hills Is Gold by C. Pam Zhang

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How Much of These Hills Is Gold: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780525537205
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Published: Riverhead Books - April 7th, 2020

This debut novel bursts with an emotion and raw energy that mirrors her chosen setting—California’s gold rush. Her story is from a perspective oft forgotten, that of a Chinese immigrant family searching for a home. I felt as if I walked every step with Lucy and Sam, shared their sorrows and their triumphs, and saw a side to my home state I never imagined. This story has lingered with me, and I find myself sifting through Zhang’s words again and again, always turning up another sliver of gold. —Jax


The Other Americans by Laila Lalami

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The Other Americans: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780525436034
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Published: Vintage - March 17th, 2020

The Other Americans is a novel that traces the aftermath of a Moroccan immigrant family after the father, Driss, is killed in a hit and run. Laila Lalami tells the story through the perspectives of nine narrators, alternating between the daughter, Nora, her family, and the residents of the town. Lalami is a master in character development and has created a beautiful novel that effortlessly combines family drama and murder mystery. 

—Natalie


The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel

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The Glass Hotel: A novel Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9780525521143
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Published: Knopf - March 24th, 2020

The distinctive writing style of Emily St. John Mandel (Station Eleven) is unmistakable in her new novel—a haunting, immersive story of ambition, greed, and guilt, and a cautionary tale about the far-reaching consequences of crossing moral lines. Quite apropos to our current times. The book starts at the end, builds intricate threads back and forth across two decades, then returns to the end. A remote island hotel, a Ponzi scheme, a container ship, and a cast of complex characters are woven together to create a remarkable dreamlike read. —Trey


Lot: Stories by Bryan Washington

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$16.00
ISBN: 9780525533689
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Published: Riverhead Books - March 17th, 2020

Washington’s debut collection of short stories would be an inhalation of brisk air, except the diverse neighborhoods of Houston are so fully realized that the experience is also steamy and thick with atmosphere. Lot is an all-encompassing read, seeking unapologetic truths, following those often forced to society’s margins; here they are centered, not as problems or issues or heartstrings to be pulled, but as people living their own messy, inconsequential, uniquely essential lives. The writing is real, gritty, and can be a challenge, but there is also a lightness to it, a palpable joy, and Washington’s evident intelligence and open gaze at what humanizes a story makes for necessary reading. —Melinda


City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert

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City of Girls: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781594634741
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Published: Riverhead Books - April 7th, 2020

Seeing few examples in literature, Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love; The Signature of All Things) set out to write a book about promiscuous girls “whose lives are not destroyed by their sexual desires.” Meet Vivian Morris, a naïve 19-year-old, dropped into the middle of the New York City theater scene in the 1940s. The drama, energy, and spirit of the city weaves into the unfolding of her identity. You’ll never forget this cast of characters or the ways in which Vivian struggles to claim her life as her own.  —Casey

 


Let's Go (So We Can Get Back) by Jeff Tweedy

Highly readable, hilarious, and at times even philosophical, Tweedy's memoir of discovering his passion for writing music and his rise to super-stardom is an excellent read. Like any good rock 'n roll memoir, sex and drugs make their appearance, but his wholesome stories about growing up in a small town, making a family and band-drama are what really make this book a memorable read. - Ashley

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Let's Go (So We Can Get Back): A Memoir of Recording and Discording with Wilco, Etc. Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781101985274
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Published: Dutton - October 1st, 2019

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