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Staff Fiction Favorites

A rotating selection of some of our staff's favorite titles. New reviews added quarterly.

The Lola Quartet by Emily St. John Mandel

This is The Great Gatsby for the disillusioned, overworked, economically desperate late-20s readership. Idealistic reporter Gavin loses his job when he includes false quotes to embellish a series of newspaper articles. He reluctantly returns to Florida, where he finds that his friends and girlfriend are involved in a scheme too crazy to be believed, one that cannot possibly end well.

Reviewed by: 
Andrea
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ISBN: 9781609530792
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Unbridled Books - May 1st, 2012

Sugar Frosted Nutsack by Mark Leyner

I love zany postmodern vulgar imaginations like Leyner's, because no one else could write about the gods getting out of an ice cream van, getting drunk on Gravy (the drug, not the condiment), and creating existence. You might say that no one can make this sh*t up, but Mark Leyner just did. Prepare to be a little offended, a little grossed out, and extremely entertained.

Reviewed by: 
Andrea
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ISBN: 9780316608459
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Little, Brown and Company - March 26th, 2012

Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

The Russian snow maiden fairy tale was never one of my favorites as a kid, but Ivey makes it lush and irresistible. Set against the harrowing backdrop of the Alaskan wilderness, the story unfolds with a touch of magical realism. There's an emphasis on the real, meaning that the characters behave as believably as one would expect when a girl made of snow comes to life in their backyard.

Reviewed by: 
Andrea
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The Snow Child: A Novel Cover Image
$31.00
ISBN: 9780316175678
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Reagan Arthur Books - February 1st, 2012

Forgotten Country by Catherine Chung

This is a beautifully written novel about death, culture shock, and enduring xenophobia. It's about sisterhood, favoritism, and duty. It's about resenting your culture and being unable to escape it. It's about the secrets that families keep from the world and from each other. The story is honest and difficult and emotional, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Reviewed by: 
Andrea
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ISBN: 9781594488085
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Riverhead Books - March 1st, 2012

Fool by Christopher Moore

My favorite Moore title by far, Fool takes on Shakespeare in a hilarious novel that takes its cues from King Lear. Moore twists things around and adds quite a few surprises, so don't feel like you already know what will happen. There's enough tragedy, sexuality and flummery for a whole slew of plays and Moore's almost trademark humor brings the whole thing together perfectly.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
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Fool: A Novel Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780060590321
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - February 23rd, 2010

The Sisters Brothers by by Patrick DeWitt

Get out your six-shooter, put on your cowboy hat, and settle in for a thoroughly unsettling read. Full of dark comedy and creative vernacular, DeWitt's novel depicts a wild west full of violence, misfortune, and opportunity. His narrative style is full of flourishes and subtle humor and his main characters, while completely psychotic, are immensely entertaining.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
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The Sisters Brothers Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062041289
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ecco - February 14th, 2012

The Inquisitor by Mark Allen Smith

Fans of Dexter will love this thriller featuring an "information retrieval" expert (read that as torturer) whose personal code of conduct leads him to betray his clients and champion a 12-year-old boy. It's fast-paced and exciting, with a great balance of action and psychological twists. You'll never love Geiger, but you'll respect him, fear him, and whole-heartedly root for him.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
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ISBN: 9780805094268
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Henry Holt & Company - April 10th, 2012

Edge of Dark Water by Joe Lansdale

Reminiscent of Huckleberry Finn, Lansdale's character Sue Ellen leads a diverse crew on an exhilarating adventure down river trying to stay one step ahead of pursuit. Her narrative voice is authentic, precocious and honest. Lansdale sets a tone that is beautiful and suspenseful, building up his story and fleshing out his characters into a profound masterpiece.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
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ISBN: 9780316188432
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Mulholland Books - March 27th, 2012

Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory

Let me admit that this was my first Philippa Gregory read. I was very impressed by her writing style, by the level of detail she provided, and by her ability to create suspense despite the general outcome being a forgone conclusion. I love the women she writes--they are complex characters, neither good nor altogether bad, who arouse your sympathies while making choices you disagree with.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
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The Lady of the Rivers: A Novel (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels) Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781416563716
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Washington Square Press - April 3rd, 2012

Say Her Name by Francisco Goldman

Say Her Name is an autobiographical novel about the loss of Francisco Goldman's wife, Aura. I don't think anyone has ever loved anyone as much as Goldman loves his late wife - his devotion radiates from every sentence. I felt haunted by this book for weeks, and found myself thinking about Aura as if I had met her. It's a sad book, but trust me, it is well worth any tears.

Reviewed by: 
Kat
Say Her Name Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780802145802
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Grove Press - April 10th, 2012

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