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New & Recommended Fiction from our 2020 Winter Newsletter

These titles were featured in our 2020 Winter Newsletter.

 

Jack by Marilynne Robinson

Barack Obama’s favorite novelist graces us all once again, this time with Jack, which delves back into the inner lives of the characters Robinson introduced many years ago with Gilead. Jack tells the story of the relationship between ne’er-do-well preacher’s son Jack, and Della, the Black woman he loves, and the complications they face in midcentury America’s racist society. Prepare yourself for the tender, stolid prose that characterizes Robinson’s best work—like a perfectly crafted Arts and Crafts–era table, it’s impossibly elegant in its simplicity. — Jess

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Jack: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780374279301
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - September 29th, 2020

The Last Great Road Bum by Héctor Tobar

Though billed as a novel, this book is essentially the true story of a world traveler, vagabond, writer, and guerilla fighter in El Salvador’s bloody civil war named Joe Sanderson. Tobar spent more than a decade reading Sanderson’s journals and other writings and interviewing his family, friends, and fellow revolutionaries. Throughout the book, “Sanderson” playfully interrupts the narrative to correct Tobar on points of fact and call out places where he might be taking too much literary license. In writing this story of an American from the Midwest, Tobar, the son of Guatemalan immigrants, has created a book that is both a big, old-fashioned novel of adventure, personality, and daring-do, and a meditation on narrative authority. — Rico

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The Last Great Road Bum: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780374183424
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: MCD - August 25th, 2020

Homeland Elegies by Ayad Akhtar

Homeland Elegies defies genres. Calling it a novel implies it’s not true, but I’ve never read anything more brutally honest, relevant, or personal. Akhtar may be known as an author and a playwright, but this book reads like an opera with recurring choruses, haunting variations on a theme, dramatic tension, characters that are larger than life, sex scenes, death scenes, and cliff hangers. And all along you know that you too play a part, because this is all actually happening right now on the world stage. This is not a novel about immigration and integration. This is an elegy, a poem of serious reflection, a lament, about home. — Jenny

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Homeland Elegies: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780316496421
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company - September 15th, 2020

Bestiary by K-Ming Chang

K-Ming Chang’s debut novel is delicious to read, equally beautiful and grotesque, harrowing and tender. Told across three generations of Taiwanese American women, Bestiary is intimately recognizable and audaciously new: an immigrant journey, a love story, a family saga, a coming-of-age tale. All are exploded by imagery, mythos, and experimentation, where girls grow tails, damage is done, truths are built and shifted, and the reader is drenched, filled to the brim with wonder. Comparisons to Maxine Hong Kingston and Helen Oyeyemi are apt, but Chang’s promising young voice is all her own. — Melinda

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Bestiary: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780593132586
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: One World - September 29th, 2020

Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

As the world becomes more anxious and frayed than ever, one of our greatest remedies is to read a Fredrik Backman novel. Backman, through his humor, emotion, and honesty, reminds us that it is precisely the messiness of being human that makes us more connected to each other than we ever think possible. In Anxious People, Backman introduces us to a group of characters who happen to be in the wrong place (hostage situation) at the wrong time (apartment viewing) but whose willingness to listen and connect to each other turn everything right. This novel is a balm for the soul. — Casey

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Anxious People: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781501160837
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atria Books - September 8th, 2020

Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi

Twenty-eight-year-old Gifty is a brilliant grad student at Stanford with a promising career ahead of her. Raised in poverty in Alabama and the daughter of Ghanaian immigrants, Gifty projects the image of an American success story. But when her depressed, elderly mother comes to stay with her, painful memories begin to resurface and cracks start to emerge in her stoic facade. Flitting between past and present, Gyasi tackles some very heavy themes; death, abandonment, racism, and the opioid crisis all come into play. Beautiful and heart wrenching, Gyasi’s sophomore novel does not disappoint. — Jade
 

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Transcendent Kingdom: A novel Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780525658184
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - September 1st, 2020

The Lying Life of Adults by Elena Ferrante

Ferrante (My Brilliant Friend) returns us to her beloved Naples, where we meet 13-year-old Giovanna and her family, who straddle the upper echelon and the working-class areas of the city. The novel combines Ferrante’s trademark touches—an indelible cast of characters and a stingingly honest coming-of- age story—with a complex narrative about what composes the truth. Be transported once again in one of this fall’s biggest books. — Casey

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The Lying Life of Adults Cover Image
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translator)
$26.00
ISBN: 9781609455910
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Europa Editions - September 1st, 2020

What Are You Going Through by Sigrid Nunez

I was first introduced to Nunez many years ago when my book club selected The Last of Her Kind. While that book remains one of my favorite contemporary novels, I was equally impressed with The Friend, for which Nunez won the 2018 National Book Award for fiction. Honest and wise, with a wicked sense of humor, she writes prose that uses few words to create deeply layered characters, settings, and moments. Her new novel tackles big issues—death, the meaning of life, and contemporary politics, among others, and promises the same rich reading experience I’ve come to expect from her. I can’t wait to get started. — Rico

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What Are You Going Through: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780593191415
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - September 8th, 2020

Memorial by Bryan Washington

Benson’s boyfriend Mike goes to Japan and leaves his mother, who barely speaks English, in his stead. While Mike is in Osaka working as a bartender for his dying father, Benson works through his own family trauma. This is the debut novel by a rising literary star, the author of last year’s breakout short story collection, Lot. Fans of There There and On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous will devour this meditation on love and loss. — Jason

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Memorial: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780593087275
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - October 27th, 2020

The End of the Day by Bill Clegg

With our world more socially isolated, I believe that readers are searching for stories in which characters can help us understand our connection with each other. Bill Clegg (Did You Ever Have a Family?) is a master of exploring these connections. The End of the Day follows a wealthy East Coast family, the families who served them, and those who lived in their universe. How these worlds collide, and the secrets and longings trapped within them, provide a mysterious, multifaceted and deeply emotional book that will make you want to start again as soon as you get to the last page. — Casey

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The End of the Day Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781476798202
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Gallery/Scout Press - September 29th, 2020

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