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Fiction Recommendations

Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr

Can you judge a book on the way it makes you feel? If so, Anthony Doerr, author of the beloved All the Light We Cannot See, delivers one of the most potent novels I’ve read in many years, about the power of storytelling and our personal legacies. Epic in scope, the book follows characters during the siege of Constantinople, in present-day Idaho, and into the future in space. Ultimately, their stories connect through one ancient Greek manuscript, in what can only be described as a transformative reading experience, one filled with adventure, history, and a multilayered examination of our shared humanity. —Casey

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Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9781982168438
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner - September 28th, 2021

Bewilderment by Richard Powers

As with each book, Richard Powers centers a subject of curiosity and explores it deep and wide, adding layers of resonance: here it is outer space and inner. Bewilderment is stunning in its simplicity, heart, and genius. It is the story of a grieving father and his unique, troubled son Robin, and the experimental treatment to improve Robby’s behavior by tapping into the emotions of his dead mother. It is a book about our current world in crises and how to endure, about the universe and its infinite possibilities, going beyond humanity, and in so doing, offering astonishing hope. Bewilderment asks for your whole heart, your intellect, and your imagination, and the only answer is yes—truly the most moving book I’ve read this year. —Melinda

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Bewilderment: A Novel Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780393881141
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 21st, 2021

My Monticello by Jocelyn Nicole Johnson

This is a remarkable debut collection of five short stories and the title novella. The stories are brilliant, with themes of race, home, and family. The novella features Da’Naisha, a direct descendent of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings. In a time when violent white supremacists are in ascendance, society disintegrates. Da’Naisha leads a band of refugees to a final stand at fabled Monticello, home of her ancestors. A moving, cautionary tale that speaks to the dangers of our present time. —Trey

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My Monticello: Fiction Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781250807151
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Henry Holt and Co. - October 5th, 2021

Crossroads by Jonathan Franzen

Franzen’s new novel opens on a precarious moment in the life of the Hildebrandt family. Two days before Christmas in 1971, the parents, Russ and Marion, have grown widely apart and are exploring other options. Meanwhile, their three older children are navigating personal and spiritual difficulties that may help define them as people and possibly ruin their lives. The novel represents a turn for Franzen, away from the eviscerating social critique of The Corrections and Freedom and toward a deeply compassionate realism. The novel’s depth of character, powerful exploration of morality, and astounding scope suggest it’s time to stop comparing him to his contemporaries and start comparing him to Proust and Tolstoy.—Rico

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Crossroads: A Novel Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780374181178
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - October 5th, 2021

Sankofa by Chibundu Onuzo

Anna is a mixed-race, middle-aged British woman who unexpectedly learns that her absent father is the leader of an African country and whose political record shines a light on both the best and worst of his radical approach. We follow her journey of self-discovery as she meets her father to understand her place with him, her family, and her racial identity. Deep in discussions of belonging, identity, and forgiveness, Sankofa is a captivating and intriguing story, filled with complexity in both the personal and political realms. —Casey

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Sankofa: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781646220830
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Catapult - October 5th, 2021

Dreaming of You by Melissa Lozada-Olivia

Melissa Lozado-Oliva’s debut novella balances somewhere between memory and moment, between story and verse, between selves and non-actors. With a form reminiscent of Carmen Maria Machado’s In the Dream House and a voice laced with hints of Kurt Vonnegut, Lozado-Oliva carries her reader through a surrealist dreamscape of dead singers, ex-boyfriends, and foggy mirrors that begs the question, “Where does the skin end and the dream begin?” —Holly V.

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Dreaming of You: A Novel in Verse Cover Image
$23.00
ISBN: 9781662600593
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Astra House - October 26th, 2021

The Wrong End of the Telescope by Rabih Alameddine

Three stories are woven together in this masterful, wise, and empathetic novel. Mina, an Arab American trans woman doing medical work with refugees on the Greek island of Lesbos. A Syrian migrant family led by their dying matriarch Sumaiya. And the writer of the story, struggling to convey the depth of so many unanswerable questions. Alameddine writes with care and precision about existence in the midst of impossibility. This is a special, moving book. Don’t miss our event with Rabih Alameddine on December 1st. —Trey

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The Wrong End of the Telescope Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780802157805
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - September 21st, 2021

The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki

If you read The Book of Form and Emptiness, the exquisite new novel by the author of A Tale for the Time Being, you won’t soon forget 13-year-old Benny or his loveable but deeply disturbed mother, Annabelle. After his father’s untimely death, Benny starts hearing voices in inanimate objects and seeks refuge in the local library, where other patrons and the books themselves transform his life. An inventive, immersive, deeply moving story about life outside the bounds of being “normal” and the ways humanity exists in each of us, no matter the form. —Casey

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The Book of Form and Emptiness: A Novel Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780399563645
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Viking - September 21st, 2021

L.A. Weather by María Amparo Escandón

In this smart romp of a novel, Oscar and Keila, heads of the Alvarado family, begin another drought year with the talk of divorce as secrets threaten to undo their long marriage. This shocking news reverberates through the lives of their three adult daughters, disrupting what has always been and forcing them to act on their own truths. What follows is a year of revelation in this delicious, heartfelt family drama, lush with relationship and atmosphere, and fervent hopes for rain. —Melinda

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L.A. Weather: A Novel Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781250802569
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Flatiron Books - September 7th, 2021

Matrix by Lauren Groff

Lauren Groff is a master of language, and I will follow her wherever her prose takes me. This time, it’s to 12th-century France, where Marie, an awkward-looking member of Eleanor of Aquitaine’s royal court, learns that she’s bound for the abbey, by the queen’s command. Though not initially religiously inclined, Marie does as she’s bid and spends a lifetime rising through the ranks of nunhood. Every paragraph of this novel is gorgeously wrought; a must for readers of Hamnet. —Jess

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Matrix: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781594634499
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - September 7th, 2021

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