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Kat's Reviews

KatsronautKat first came to Bookshop Santa Cruz by winning the short story contest in 2008. She convinced the management to give her a job, and went on to become an event host, the used book manager and an avid connoisseur of fiction. In her other life, she is often found enjoying tacos. She now works for the Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks managing their ParkStores.

Shout Her Lovely Name by Natalie Serber

If you enjoyed If I Loved You, I Would Tell You This by Robin Black (a major Bookshop favorite), then Natalie Serber's debut collection of short stories is right up your ally. The theme here is mothers and daughters--how their bonds are formed, then broken, then clumsily mended again. These stories are nuanced, riveting, and ripe for discussion. I can't imagine a better literary poolside read!
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Kat
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Shout Her Lovely Name Cover Image
$13.99
ISBN: 9780544002210
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Mariner Books - June 11th, 2013

The News From Spain by Joan Wickersham

Each of these seven stories is, in a way, a love story, but one is hardly recognizable from the other. The News From Spain examines love from surprising angles, from the precarious relationship between a choreographer and a ballerina stricken with polio, a woman and her ailing mother, and a single female student at an all boys school. The patterns that emerge are strange and lovely; this is a book that will linger with you for a very long time.
Reviewed by: 
Kat
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The News from Spain (Vintage Contemporaries) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780307949295
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Vintage - July 2nd, 2013

Dear Life by Alice Munro

If rumors are to be believed, this is Alice Munro's last book. She claims she is retiring from writing (though she said the same thing several years ago), and while the thought is devastating, it gives new meaning to this collection. Munro writes about her own childhood here, in four stories that she says are "the closest things I have to say about my own life." Dear Life is beautifully illuminating. To call these novels compressed into stories does not do them justice--they are stories, brilliantly executed and in a class of their own. I didn't want any of them to end, but when they did, it was perfect.
Reviewed by: 
Kat
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Dear Life: Stories (Vintage International) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780307743725
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Vintage - July 30th, 2013

TransAntlantic by Colum McCann

TransAtlantic is the first novel from Colum McCann since his National Book Award winner, Let the Great World Spin. There is something both tremendous and intimate about McCann’s writing; he works his way into the head of a single person and shows you the entire world. His latest novel ties together narratives from various eras—a slave seeking freedom in Ireland in 1845, two soldiers leaving World War I—and presents history as a living  entity.   
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Kat
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TransAtlantic: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780812981926
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - May 20th, 2014

Cocktails for a Crowd by Kara Newman

Making drinks for more than two people can be exhausting, especially if you’re using a cocktail shaker. But what if you have more than one friend? Help is on the way with Cocktails for a Crowd, which features lush photography and 40 recipes for large-batch cocktails. You’re sure to please any crowd with a bowl of French 75 Punch, which brims over with gin, champagne, and orange wheels. Make ’em ahead of time and enjoy your shindig!

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Kat
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Cocktails for a Crowd: More than 40 Recipes for Making Popular Drinks in Party-Pleasing Batches Cover Image
By Kara Newman, Teri Lyn Fisher (Photographs by)
$18.95
ISBN: 9781452109497
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Chronicle Books - May 14th, 2013

Full Body Burden by Kristen Iversen

Kristen Iversen grew up downwind from a plant that produced plutonium triggers for nuclear bombs, and her parents and neighbors were told that the land, water, and air were perfectly safe from contamination. This was not true. Decades later, Iversen twines her own intimate family history with piercing investigative journalism, and reveals a level of corruption and incompetence that is just staggering. The result is a powerful, horrifying, and very important memoir.

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Kat
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Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780307955654
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Broadway Books - June 4th, 2013

The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel

The men who were picked to become the first U.S. astronauts were subject to a number of strict requirements, including one that might seem odd today: They had to be happily married. The Astronaut Wives Club explores the extraordinary lives of the women married to America’s heroes, women who became instant celebrities and often struggled with their new public personas. It’s a breezy, fascinating book that would be perfect for summer book club meetings.

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Kat
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The Astronaut Wives Club: A True Story Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781455503247
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Grand Central Publishing - June 3rd, 2014

Broken Harbor by Tana French

Tana French’s latest mystery is one of her best yet. It takes place around a “ghost estate” in Ireland, a crumbling, creepy housing development that went bust along with the Irish economy. A heinous triple murder has taken place, and the question of “whodunit” is complicated by issues of economic misfortune, mental illness, and fragile family ties. A suspenseful, thoughtful mystery, eloquently written, that reminds us how close we all live to ruin.

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Kat
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Broken Harbor: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143123309
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - April 30th, 2013

Claire DeWitt and the Bohemian Highway by Sara Gran

Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead is one of my favorite crime novels, and ever since I finished its last page I’ve been eager for another book from Sara Gran. Claire DeWitt is a private detective who has much in common with Sherlock Holmes, such as unorthodox methods, a prickly demeanor, and the occasional substance abuse issue. Her latest mystery takes place in California, including a stop at the famed Bohemian Grove. How can you resist?

Reviewed by: 
Kat
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Claire DeWitt and the Bohemian Highway (Claire DeWitt Novels) Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780544227781
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Mariner Books - May 20th, 2014

City of Women by David R. Gillham

City of Women is a novel about the women left behind in Berlin during World War II while their husbands were away. These women weren’t sitting around knitting; they endured air raids, the secret police, and hostility on every corner. A simple trip to the movies could be life altering, as Sigrid Schroeder finds out when she is thrust into a double life of espionage and clandestine meetings with devastating consequences. I simply couldn’t put this one down.
Reviewed by: 
Kat
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City of Women: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780425252963
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - May 7th, 2013

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