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Into the Wild

Jon Krakauer

A Rods and Reading Book Club pick

 

In April 1992, a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a party of moose hunters. How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild. Immediately after graduating from college in 1991, McCandless had roamed through the West and Southwest on a vision quest like those made by his heroes Jack London and John Muir. In the Mojave Desert he abandoned his car, stripped it of its license plates, and burned all of his cash. He would give himself a new name, Alexander Supertramp, and, unencumbered by money and belongings, he would be free to wallow in the raw, unfiltered experiences that nature presented. Craving a blank spot on the map, McCandless simply threw the maps away. Leaving behind his desperate parents and sister, he vanished into the wild.

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Let the Great World Spin

Colum McCann

A Walking Book Club @ Calvert City pick

 

NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER • Colum McCann’s beloved novel inspired by Philippe Petit’s daring high-wire stunt, which is also depicted in the film The Walk starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt
In the dawning light of a late-summer morning, the people of lower Manhattan stand hushed, staring up in disbelief at the Twin Towers. It is August 1974, and a mysterious tightrope walker is running, dancing, leaping between the towers, suspended a quarter mile above the ground. In the streets below, a slew of ordinary lives become extraordinary in bestselling novelist Colum McCann’s stunningly intricate portrait of a city and its people.

Let the Great World Spin is the critically acclaimed author’s most ambitious novel yet: a dazzlingly rich vision of the pain, loveliness, mystery, and promise of New York City in the 1970s.

Corrigan, a radical young Irish monk, struggles with his own demons as he lives among the prostitutes in the middle of the burning Bronx. A group of mothers gather in a Park Avenue apartment to mourn their sons who died in Vietnam, only to discover just how much divides them even in grief. A young artist finds herself at the scene of a hit-and-run that sends her own life careening sideways. Tillie, a thirty-eight-year-old grandmother, turns tricks alongside her teenage daughter, determined not only to take care of her family but to prove her own worth. Elegantly weaving together these and other seemingly disparate lives, McCann’s powerful allegory comes alive in the unforgettable voices of the city’s people, unexpectedly drawn together by hope, beauty, and the “artistic crime of the century.”

A sweeping and radical social novel, Let the Great World Spin captures the spirit of America in a time of transition, extraordinary promise, and, in hindsight, heartbreaking innocence. Hailed as a “fiercely original talent” (San Francisco Chronicle), award-winning novelist McCann has delivered a triumphantly American masterpiece that awakens in us a sense of what the novel can achieve, confront, and even heal.

Praise for Let the Great World Spin

“This is a gorgeous book, multilayered and deeply felt, and it’s a damned lot of fun to read, too. Leave it to an Irishman to write one of the greatest-ever novels about New York. There’s so much passion and humor and pure lifeforce on every page of Let the Great World Spin that you’ll find yourself giddy, dizzy, overwhelmed.”—Dave Eggers

“Stunning . . . [an] elegiac glimpse of hope . . . It’s a novel rooted firmly in time and place. It vividly captures New York at its worst and best. But it transcends all that. In the end, it’s a novel about families—the ones we’re born into and the ones we make for ourselves.”USA Today

“The first great 9/11 novel . . . We are all dancing on the wire of history, and even on solid ground we breathe the thinnest of air.”Esquire

“Mesmerizing . . . a Joycean look at the lives of New Yorkers changed by a single act on a single day . . . Colum McCann’s marvelously rich novel . . . weaves a portrait of a city and a moment, dizzyingly satisfying to read and difficult to put down.”The Seattle Times

“Vibrantly whole . . . With a series of spare, gorgeously wrought vignettes, Colum McCann brings 1970s New York to life. . . . And as always, McCann’s heart-stoppingly simple descriptions wow.”Entertainment Weekly

“An act of pure bravado, dizzying proof that to keep your balance you need to know how to fall.”O: The Oprah Magazine

 

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Going There

Katie Couric

A Memoir Matinee Celebrity Book Club @ Calvert City pick

This heartbreaking, hilarious, and brutally honest memoir shares the deeply personal life story of a girl next door and her transformation into a household name.



For more than forty years, Katie Couric has been an iconic presence in the media world. In her brutally honest, hilarious, heartbreaking memoir, she reveals what was going on behind the scenes of her sometimes tumultuous personal and professional life - a story she's never shared, until now. Of the medium she loves, the one that made her a household name, she says, "Television can put you in a box; the flat-screen can flatten. On TV, you are larger than life but smaller, too. It is not the whole story, and it is not the whole me. This book is."



Beginning in early childhood, Couric was inspired by her journalist father to pursue the career he loved but couldn't afford to stay in. Balancing her vivacious, outgoing personality with her desire to be taken seriously, she overcame every obstacle in her way: insecurity, an eating disorder, being typecast, sexism . . . challenges, and how she dealt with them, setting the tone for the rest of her career. Couric talks candidly about adjusting to sudden fame after her astonishing rise to co-anchor of the TODAY show, and guides us through the most momentous events and news stories of the era, to which she had a front-row seat: Rodney King, Anita Hill, Columbine, the death of Princess Diana, 9/11, the Iraq War . . . In every instance, she relentlessly pursued the facts, ruffling more than a few feathers along the way. She also recalls in vivid and sometimes lurid detail the intense pressure on female anchors to snag the latest "get"--often sensational tabloid stories like Jon Benet Ramsey, Tonya Harding, and OJ Simpson.



Couric's position as one of the leading lights of her profession was shadowed by the shock and trauma of losing her husband to stage 4 colon cancer when he was just 42, leaving her a widow and single mom to two daughters, 6 and 2. The death of her sister Emily, just three years later, brought yet more trauma--and an unwavering commitment to cancer awareness and research, one of her proudest accomplishments.



Couric is unsparing in the details of her historic move to the anchor chair at the CBS Evening News--a world rife with sexism and misogyny. Her "welcome" was even more hostile at 60 Minutes, an unrepentant boys club that engaged in outright hazing of even the most established women. In the wake of the MeToo movement, Couric shares her clear-eyed reckoning with gender inequality and predatory behavior in the workplace, and downfall of Matt Lauer--a colleague she had trusted and respected for more than a decade.



Couric also talks about the challenge of finding love again, with all the hilarity, false-starts, and drama that search entailed, before finding her midlife Mr. Right. Something she has never discussed publicly--why her second marriage almost didn't happen.



If you thought you knew Katie Couric, think again. Going There is the fast-paced, emotional, riveting story of a thoroughly modern woman, whose journey took her from humble origins to superstardom. In these pages, you will find a friend, a confidante, a role model, a survivor whose lessons about life will enrich your own.

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The Ministry of Time

Kaliane Bradley

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
A GOOD MORNING AMERICA BOOK CLUB PICK

“This summer’s hottest debut.” —Cosmopolitan • “Witty, sexy escapist fiction [that] packs a substantial punch...It’s a smart, gripping work that’s also a feast for the senses...Fresh and thrilling.” —Los Angeles Times • “Electric...I loved every second.” —Emily Henry

“Utterly winning...Imagine if The Time Traveler’s Wife had an affair with A Gentleman in Moscow...Readers, I envy you: There’s a smart, witty novel in your future.” —Ron Charles, The Washington Post

A time travel romance, a spy thriller, a workplace comedy, and an ingenious exploration of the nature of power and the potential for love to change it all: Welcome to The Ministry of Time, the exhilarating debut novel by Kaliane Bradley.

In the near future, a civil servant is offered the salary of her dreams and is, shortly afterward, told what project she’ll be working on. A recently established government ministry is gathering “expats” from across history to establish whether time travel is feasible—for the body, but also for the fabric of space-time.

She is tasked with working as a “bridge”: living with, assisting, and monitoring the expat known as “1847” or Commander Graham Gore. As far as history is concerned, Commander Gore died on Sir John Franklin’s doomed 1845 expedition to the Arctic, so he’s a little disoriented to be living with an unmarried woman who regularly shows her calves, surrounded by outlandish concepts such as “washing machines,” “Spotify,” and “the collapse of the British Empire.” But with an appetite for discovery, a seven-a-day cigarette habit, and the support of a charming and chaotic cast of fellow expats, he soon adjusts.

Over the next year, what the bridge initially thought would be, at best, a horrifically uncomfortable roommate dynamic, evolves into something much deeper. By the time the true shape of the Ministry’s project comes to light, the bridge has fallen haphazardly, fervently in love, with consequences she never could have imagined. Forced to confront the choices that brought them together, the bridge must finally reckon with how—and whether she believes—what she does next can change the future.

An exquisitely original and feverishly fun fusion of genres and ideas, The Ministry of Time asks: What does it mean to defy history, when history is living in your house? Kaliane Bradley’s answer is a blazing, unforgettable testament to what we owe each other in a changing world.

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This Summer Will Be Different

Carley Fortune

THE INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

A glorious and tantalizing new escape from #1 New York Times bestselling author Carley Fortune.

This summer they’ll keep their promise. This summer they won't give into temptation. This summer will be different.


Lucy is the tourist vacationing at a beach house on Prince Edward Island. Felix is the local who shows her a very good time. The only problem: Lucy doesn’t know he’s her best friend’s younger brother. Lucy and Felix’s chemistry is unreal, but the list of reasons why they need to stay away from each other is long, and they vow to never repeat that electric night again.

It’s easier said than done.

Each year, Lucy escapes to PEI for a big breath of coastal air, fresh oysters and crisp vinho verde with her best friend, Bridget. Every visit begins with a long walk on the beach, beneath soaring red cliffs and a golden sun. And every visit, Lucy promises herself she won’t wind up in Felix’s bed. Again.

If Lucy can’t help being drawn to Felix, at least she’s always kept her heart out of it.

When Bridget suddenly flees Toronto a week before her wedding, Lucy drops everything to follow her to the island. Her mission is to help Bridget through her crisis and resist the one man she’s never been able to. But Felix’s sparkling eyes and flirty quips have been replaced with something new, and Lucy’s beginning to wonder just how safe her heart truly is.

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Southern Man

Greg Iles

"Greg Iles is one of America's great storytellers." -Stephen King, #1 New York Times bestselling author

"A first-rate political thriller."-John Grisham, #1 New York Times bestselling author

The hugely anticipated new Penn Cage novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Natchez Burning trilogy and Cemetery Road, about a man--and a town--rocked by anarchy and tragedy, but unbowed in the fight to save those they love

Fifteen years after the events of the Natchez Burning trilogy, Penn Cage is alone. Nearly all his loved ones are dead, his old allies gone, and he carries a mortal secret that separates him from the world. But Penn's exile comes to an end when a brawl at a Mississippi rap festival triggers a bloody mass shooting--one that nearly takes the life of his daughter Annie.

As the stunned cities of Natchez and Bienville reel, antebellum plantation homes continue to burn and the deadly attacks are claimed by a Black radical group as historic acts of justice. Panic sweeps through the tourist communities, driving them inexorably toward a race war.

But what might have been only a regional sideshow of the 2024 Presidential election explodes into national prominence, thanks to the stunning ascent of Robert E. Lee White, a Southern war hero who seizes the public imagination as a third-party candidate. Dubbed "the Tik-Tok Man," and funded by an eccentric Mississippi billionaire, Bobby White rides the glory of his Special Forces record to an unprecedented run at the White House--one unseen since the campaign of H. Ross Perot.

To triumph over the national party machines, Bobby evolves a plan of unimaginable daring. One fateful autumn weekend, with White set to declare his candidacy in all fifty states, the forces polarizing America line up against one another: Black vs. white, states vs. the federal government, democracy vs. Fascism. Teaming with his fearless daughter (now a civil rights lawyer) and a former Black Panther who spent most of his life in Parchman Prison, Penn tears into Bobby White's pursuit of the Presidency and ultimately risks a second Civil War to try to expose its motivation to the world, before the America of our Constitution slides into the abyss.

In Southern Man, Greg Iles returns to the riveting style and historic depth that made the Natchez Burning trilogy a searing masterpiece and hurls the narrative fifteen years forward into our current moment--where America itself teeters on the brink of anarchy.

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The Demon of Unrest: A Saga of Hubris, Heartbreak, and Heroism at the Dawn of the Civil War

Erik Larson

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The author of The Splendid and the Vile brings to life the pivotal five months between the election of Abraham Lincoln and the start of the Civil War in this “riveting reexamination of a nation in tumult” (Los Angeles Times).

“A feast of historical insight and narrative verve . . . This is Erik Larson at his best, enlivening even a thrice-told tale into an irresistible thriller.”—The Wall Street Journal

On November 6, 1860, Abraham Lincoln became the fluky victor in a tight race for president. The country was bitterly at odds; Southern extremists were moving ever closer to destroying the Union, with one state after another seceding and Lincoln powerless to stop them. Slavery fueled the conflict, but somehow the passions of North and South came to focus on a lonely federal fortress in Charleston Harbor: Fort Sumter.

Master storyteller Erik Larson offers a gripping account of the chaotic months between Lincoln’s election and the Confederacy’s shelling of Sumter—a period marked by tragic errors and miscommunications, enflamed egos and craven ambitions, personal tragedies and betrayals. Lincoln himself wrote that the trials of these five months were “so great that, could I have anticipated them, I would not have believed it possible to survive them.”

At the heart of this suspense-filled narrative are Major Robert Anderson, Sumter’s commander and a former slave owner sympathetic to the South but loyal to the Union; Edmund Ruffin, a vain and bloodthirsty radical who stirs secessionist ardor at every opportunity; and Mary Boykin Chesnut, wife of a prominent planter, conflicted over both marriage and slavery and seeing parallels between them. In the middle of it all is the overwhelmed Lincoln, battling with his duplicitous secretary of state, William Seward, as he tries desperately to avert a war that he fears is inevitable—one that will eventually kill 750,000 Americans.

Drawing on diaries, secret communiques, slave ledgers, and plantation records, Larson gives us a political horror story that captures the forces that led America to the brink—a dark reminder that we often don’t see a cataclysm coming until it’s too late.

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You Like It Darker

Stephen King

From legendary storyteller and master of short fiction Stephen King comes an extraordinary new collection of twelve short stories, many never-before-published, and some of his best EVER.

“You like it darker? Fine, so do I,” writes Stephen King in the afterword to this magnificent new collection of twelve stories that delve into the darker part of life—both metaphorical and literal. King has, for half a century, been a master of the form, and these stories, about fate, mortality, luck, and the folds in reality where anything can happen, are as rich and riveting as his novels, both weighty in theme and a huge pleasure to read. King writes to feel “the exhilaration of leaving ordinary day-to-day life behind,” and in You Like It Darker, readers will feel that exhilaration too, again and again.

“Two Talented Bastids” explores the long-hidden secret of how the eponymous gentlemen got their skills. In “Danny Coughlin’s Bad Dream,” a brief and unprecedented psychic flash upends dozens of lives, Danny’s most catastrophically. In “Rattlesnakes,” a sequel to Cujo, a grieving widower travels to Florida for respite and instead receives an unexpected inheritance—with major strings attached. In “The Dreamers,” a taciturn Vietnam vet answers a job ad and learns that there are some corners of the universe best left unexplored. “The Answer Man” asks if prescience is good luck or bad and reminds us that a life marked by unbearable tragedy can still be meaningful.

King’s ability to surprise, amaze, and bring us both terror and solace remains unsurpassed. Each of these stories holds its own thrills, joys, and mysteries; each feels iconic. You like it darker? You got it.

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Camino Ghosts

John Grisham

#1 New York Times bestselling author John Grisham takes you back to Camino Island where bookseller Bruce Cable and novelist Mercer Mann always manage to find trouble in paradise.

In this new thriller on Camino Island, popular bookseller Bruce Cable tells Mercer Mann an irresistible tale that might be her next novel. A giant resort developer is using its political muscle and deep pockets to claim ownership of a deserted island between Florida and Georgia. Only the last living inhabitant of the island, Lovely Jackson, stands in its way. What the developer doesn't know is that the island has a remarkable history, and locals believe it is cursed...and the past is never the past...

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Icebreaker

Hannah Grace

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
Over 1 million copies sold!

A TikTok sensation! Sparks fly when a competitive figure skater and hockey team captain are forced to share a rink.

Anastasia Allen has worked her entire life for a shot at Team USA. It looks like everything is going according to plan when she gets a full scholarship to the University of California, Maple Hills and lands a place on their competitive figure skating team.

Nothing will stand in her way, not even the captain of the hockey team, Nate Hawkins.

Nate’s focus as team captain is on keeping his team on the ice. Which is tricky when a facilities mishap means they are forced to share a rink with the figure skating team—including Anastasia, who clearly can’t stand him.

But when Anastasia’s skating partner faces an uncertain future, she may have to look to Nate to take her shot.

Sparks fly, but Anastasia isn’t worried…because she could never like a hockey player, right?

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Extinction

Douglas Preston

With Extinction, #1 New York Times bestselling author Douglas Preston has written an epic thriller in the Michael Crichton mode that explores the very real effort to resurrect the woolly mammoth and other extinct megafauna from the Pleistocene Age.

Erebus Resort, occupying a magnificent, hundred-thousand acre valley deep in the Colorado Rockies,
offers guests the experience of viewing woolly mammoths, Irish Elk, and giant ground sloths in their
native habitat, brought back from extinction through the magic of genetic manipulation. When a
billionaire's son and his new wife are kidnapped and murdered in the Erebus back country by what is
assumed to be a gang of eco-terrorists, Colorado Bureau of Investigation Agent Frances Cash partners
with county sheriff James Colcord to track down the perpetrators.

As killings mount and the valley is evacuated, Cash and Colcord must confront an ancient, intelligent,
and malevolent presence at Erebus, bent not on resurrection—but extinction.

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James

Percival Everett

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - A brilliant, action-packed reimagining of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, both harrowing and ferociously funny, told from the enslaved Jim's point of view - From the "literary icon" (Oprah Daily) and Pulitzer Prize Finalist whose novel Erasure is the basis for Cord Jefferson's critically acclaimed film American Fiction

"Genius"--The Atlantic - "A masterpiece that will help redefine one of the classics of American literature, while also being a major achievement on its own."--Chicago Tribune - "A provocative, enlightening literary work of art."--The Boston Globe - "Everett's most thrilling novel, but also his most soulful."--The New York Times

"If you liked Demon Copperhead, by Barbara Kingsolver, read James, by Percival Everett" --The Washington Post

When the enslaved Jim overhears that he is about to be sold to a man in New Orleans, separated from his wife and daughter forever, he decides to hide on nearby Jackson Island until he can formulate a plan. Meanwhile, Huck Finn has faked his own death to escape his violent father, recently returned to town. As all readers of American literature know, thus begins the dangerous and transcendent journey by raft down the Mississippi River toward the elusive and too-often-unreliable promise of the Free States and beyond.

While many narrative set pieces of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn remain in place (floods and storms, stumbling across both unexpected death and unexpected treasure in the myriad stopping points along the river's banks, encountering the scam artists posing as the Duke and Dauphin...), Jim's agency, intelligence and compassion are shown in a radically new light.

Brimming with the electrifying humor and lacerating observations that have made Everett a "literary icon" (Oprah Daily), and one of the most decorated writers of our lifetime, James is destined to be a major publishing event and a cornerstone of twenty-first century American literature.

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Twisted Love

Ana Huang

From New York Times bestselling author and BookTok sensation Ana Huang comes a billionaire brother's best friend romance!

He has a heart of ice...but for her, he'd burn the world

A diverse new adult steamy romance from Tiktok sensation and USA Today bestselling author Ana Huang.

Alex Volkov is a devil blessed with the face of an angel and cursed with a past he can't escape.

Driven by a tragedy that has haunted him for most of his life, his ruthless pursuits for success and vengeance leave little room for matters of the heart.

But when he's forced to look after his best friend's sister, he starts to feel something in his chest:

A crack.

A melt.

A fire that could end his world as he knew it.

***

Ava Chen is a free spirit trapped by nightmares of a childhood she can't remember.

But despite her broken past, she's never stopped seeing the beauty in the world...including the heart beneath the icy exterior of a man she shouldn't want.

Her brother's best friend.

Her neighbor.

Her savior and her downfall.

Theirs is a love that was never supposed to happen-but when it does, it unleashes secrets that could destroy them both...and everything they hold dear.

Twisted Love is a contemporary brother's best friend/grumpy sunshine romance. It's book one in the Twisted series but can be read as a standalone.

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Just for the Summer

Abby Jimenez

A sharp and scintillating summer novel that will make readers laugh out loud and cry happy tears from the New York Times bestselling author of Yours Truly.

Justin has a curse, and thanks to a Reddit thread, it's now all over the internet. Every woman he dates goes on to find their soul mate the second they break up. When a woman slides into his DMs with the same problem, they come up with a plan: They'll date each other and break up. Their curses will cancel each other's out, and they'll both go on to find the love of their lives. It's a bonkers idea... and it just might work.

Emma hadn't planned that her next assignment as a traveling nurse would be in Minnesota, but she and her best friend agree that dating Justin is too good of an opportunity to pass up, especially when they get to rent an adorable cottage on a private island on Lake Minnetonka.



It's supposed to be a quick fling, just for the summer. But when Emma's toxic mother shows up and Justin has to assume guardianship of his three siblings, they're suddenly navigating a lot more than they expected--including catching real feelings for each other. What if this time Fate has actually brought the perfect pair together?

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A Calamity of Souls

David Baldacci

Set in the tumultuous year of 1968 in southern Virginia, a racially-charged murder case sets a duo of white and Black lawyers against a deeply unfair system as they work to defend their wrongfully-accused Black defendants in this courtroom drama from #1 New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci. 

Jack Lee is a white lawyer from Freeman County, Virginia, who has never done anything to push back against racism, until he decides to represent Jerome Washington, a Black man charged with brutally killing an elderly and wealthy white couple. Doubting his decision, Lee fears that his legal skills may not be enough to prevail in a case where the odds are already stacked against both him and his client. And he quickly finds himself out of his depth when he realizes that what is at stake is far greater than the outcome of a murder trial.



Desiree DuBose is a Black lawyer from Chicago who has devoted her life to furthering the causes of justice and equality for everyone. She comes to Freeman County and enters a fractious and unwieldy partnership with Lee in a legal battle against the best prosecutor in the Commonwealth. Yet DuBose is also aware that powerful outside forces are at work to blunt the victories achieved by the Civil Rights era.  



Lee and DuBose could not be more dissimilar. On their own, neither one can stop the prosecution's deliberate march towards a guilty verdict and the electric chair. But together, the pair fight for what once seemed impossible: a chance for a fair trial and true justice.



Over a decade in the writing, A Calamity of Souls breathes richly imagined and detailed life into a bygone era, taking the reader through a world that will seem both foreign and familiar.

 

 

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Funny Story

Emily Henry

Named a Most Anticipated book of 2024 by TIME ∙ The New York Times ∙ Goodreads Entertainment Weekly ∙ Today.com ∙ Paste ∙ SheReads ∙ BookPage Woman's World ∙ The Nerd Daily and more!

A shimmering, joyful new novel about a pair of opposites with the wrong thing in common, from #1 New York Times bestselling author Emily Henry.


Daphne always loved the way her fiancé Peter told their story. How they met (on a blustery day), fell in love (over an errant hat), and moved back to his lakeside hometown to begin their life together. He really was good at telling it…right up until the moment he realized he was actually in love with his childhood best friend Petra.
 
Which is how Daphne begins her new story: Stranded in beautiful Waning Bay, Michigan, without friends or family but with a dream job as a children’s librarian (that barely pays the bills), and proposing to be roommates with the only person who could possibly understand her predicament: Petra’s ex, Miles Nowak.
 
Scruffy and chaotic—with a penchant for taking solace in the sounds of heart break love ballads—Miles is exactly the opposite of practical, buttoned up Daphne, whose coworkers know so little about her they have a running bet that she’s either FBI or in witness protection. The roommates mainly avoid one another, until one day, while drowning their sorrows, they form a tenuous friendship and a plan. If said plan also involves posting deliberately misleading photos of their summer adventures together, well, who could blame them?
 
But it’s all just for show, of course, because there’s no way Daphne would actually start her new chapter by falling in love with her ex-fiancé’s new fiancée’s ex…right?

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He's Not My Type

Meghan Quinn

Word to the Wise, never become roommates with a girl you've been pining over for the better part of a year.

 

You're probably wondering why I would do such a thing? Well, I didn't.

 

It was my teammates.

 

They moment they found out Blakely White was single, they took it upon themselves to play cupid and instruct me on how I should win her over.

 

Don't wear a shirt around her.

 

Make her dinner.

 

Lightly touch her shoulder when you say goodbye.

 

I'm so flustered, so overwhelmed, so madly in love with this woman who barely notices me, that I lose control of the situation and make one huge mistake: I offer to be her fake date for a wedding so she can make her ex jealous.

 

That means, for one whole night I get a free pass with her. I get to hold her, dance with her, kiss her...stare at her from across the room like she's my entire world because she has been for months now.

 

But when the night comes to an end, I'm faced with two option: bring her back to my bedroom and show her how I really feel, or let her walk away, succumbing to the fact that I very well might not be her type.

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More of Us to the West

Trinity Dunn

"I wanted to disappear ... and then I did. On a trip to reignite the spark in her marriage, Alaina Grace's upgraded first-class ticket places her far from her husband and next to the notorious Jack Volmer, a former teen actor who'd previously hung on posters in her childhood bedroom. When an unusual storm forces their plane out of the sky, her ticket will save her life and require her to question everything. Ripped from the comforts of her world and injured, Alaina finds herself on an island in the middle of the Pacific, completely separated from her husband among eleven strangers. Seeking comfort in the presence of the single familiar face, Alaina quickly finds herself torn between her past and her present; between two loves in two contrasting worlds. As they navigate life on the island, they uncover mystery around the storm they encountered and begin to question whether it was indeed a storm at all. In this new foreign place, as they search for signs of rescue, these strangers will find adventure, hidden secrets, and in each other: family"--

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Lost Birds

Anne Hillerman

"Anne Hillerman is a star."--J. A. Jance, New York Times bestselling author

From New York Times bestselling author Anne Hillerman, a thrilling and moving chapter in the Leaphorn, Chee & Manuelito series involving several emotionally complex cases that will test the detectives in different ways.

Joe Leaphorn may be long retired from the Navajo Tribal Police, but his detective skills are still sharp, honed by his work as a private detective. His experience will be essential to solve a compelling new case: finding the birth parents of a woman who was raised by a bilagáana family but believes she is Diné based on one solid clue, an old photograph with a classic Navajo child's blanket. Leaphorn discovers that his client's adoption was questionable, and her adoptive family not what they seem. His quest for answers takes him to an old trading post and leads him to a deadly cache of long-buried family secrets.

As that case grows more complicated, Leaphorn receives an unexpected call from a person he met decades earlier. Cecil Bowleg's desperation is clear in his voice, but just as he begins to explain, the call is cut off by an explosion and Cecil disappears. True to his nature, Leaphorn is determined to find the truth even as the situation grows dangerous. Investigation of the explosion falls in part to Officer Bernadette Manuelito, who discovers an unexpected link to Cecil's missing wife.

Bernie also is involved in a troubling investigation of her own: an elderly weaver whose prize-winning sheep have been ruthlessly killed by feral dogs.

Exploring the emotionally complex issues of adoption of Indigenous children by non-native parents, Anne Hillerman delivers another thought-provoking, gripping mystery that brings to life the vivid terrain of the American Southwest, its people, and the lore and traditions that make it distinct.

 

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Patchwork Quilt Murder

Leslie Meier

 


During a heatwave in Tinker’s Cove, Maine, part-time reporter Lucy Stone becomes unseasonably entangled in handmade quilts—and a twisted case of murder . . .

When a community center opens in town, many embrace it as a space where locals of all ages can gather and create. Others view it as a waste of taxpayer dollars. The director, Darleen Busby-Platt, is no less controversial. Intense and showy, Darleen has huge plans for her new role. But Lucy believes the woman isn’t exactly as warm hearted—or qualified—as she seems. That hunch deepens when Darleen and a young employee vanish . . . and dismembered remains appear!

With lots of clues and few concrete answers, Lucy rushes to connect loose ends. First there’s the disappearance of Tim Stillings, a troubled twenty-something who endured harsh treatment on the job. Next there’s Darleen herself, who made fast enemies as the highest-paid resident in Tinker’s Cove. Finally, there’s Darleen’s rich ancestry and ties to heirlooms worth either a fortune or nothing at all.

The closer Lucy gets to the facts, the more she realizes that solving this murder depends on the lies. Because the truth rests somewhere between wild rumors, a trusted friend’s emotional new sewing project, and the authenticity of a mysterious three-hundred-year-old patchwork quilt. And Lucy must piece together the big picture—before she becomes part of crafty killer’s deadly design . . .

 

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The Courage to Be Disliked

Ichiro Kishimi

An international bestseller and TikTok sensation with more than 10 million copies sold worldwide, The Courage to Be Disliked is a transformative and practical guide to personal happiness and self-fulfillment.

Now you can unlock your full potential and free yourself from the shackles of past traumas and societal expectations to find true personal happiness. Based on the theories of renowned psychologist Alfred Adler, this book guides you through the principles of self-forgiveness, self-care, and mind decluttering in a straightforward, easy-to-digest style that’s accessible to all.

The Courage to Be Disliked unfolds as a dialogue between a philosopher and a young man, who, over the course of five enriching conversations, realizes that each of us is in control of our life’s direction, independent of past burdens and expectations of others.

Wise, empowering, and profoundly liberating, this book is a life-changing experience that shows you a path to lasting happiness and how to finally be the person you truly want to be. Millions are already benefiting from its teachings—and you can be next.

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Trail of the Lost

Andrea Lankford

** THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER **



** AN AMAZON "BEST BOOKS OF THE MONTH" FOR AUGUST 2023 (Biographies & Memoirs) **



From an award-winning former law enforcement park ranger and investigator, this female-driven true crime adventure follows the author's quest to find missing hikers along the Pacific Crest Trail by pairing up with an eclectic group of unlikely allies.




As a park ranger with the National Park Service's law enforcement team, Andrea Lankford led search and rescue missions in some of the most beautiful (and dangerous) landscapes across America, from Yosemite to the Grand Canyon. But though she had the support of the agency, Andrea grew frustrated with the service's bureaucratic idiosyncrasies, and left the force after twelve years. Two decades later, however, she stumbles across a mystery that pulls her right back where she left off: three young men have vanished from the Pacific Crest Trail, the 2,650-mile trek made famous by Cheryl Strayed's Wild, and no one has been able to find them. It's bugging the hell out of her.



Andrea's concern soon leads her to a wild environment unlike any she's ever encountered: missing person Facebook groups. Andrea launches an investigation, joining forces with an eclectic team of amateurs who are determined to solve the cases by land and by screen: a mother of the missing, a retired pharmacy manager, and a mapmaker who monitors terrorist activity for the government. Together, they track the activities of kidnappers and murderers, investigate a cult, rescue a psychic in peril, cross paths with an unconventional scientist, and reunite an international fugitive with his family. Searching for the missing is a brutal psychological and physical test with the highest stakes, but eventually their hardships begin to bear strange fruits--ones that lead them to places and people they never saw coming.



Beautifully written, heartfelt, and at times harrowing, TRAIL OF THE LOST paints a vivid picture of hiker culture and its complicated relationship with the ever-expanding online realm, all while exploring the power and limits of determination, generosity, and hope. It also offers a deep awe of the natural world, even as it unearths just how vast and treacherous it can be.



On the TRAIL OF THE LOST, you may not find what you are looking for, but you will certainly find more than you seek.

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Mostly What God Does

Savannah Guthrie

 

 

#1 New York Times Bestseller

 

 

Guthrie persuasively renders the evolution of a hard-won religious belief that makes room for imperfection and "does not require us to ignore... the sorrows we experience or the unjustness we see but to believe past it." This openhearted offering inspires. - Publishers Weekly

Mostly what God does is love you.
 

If we could believe this, really believe this, how different would we be How different would our lives be How different would our world be

If you ever struggle with your connection to God (or whether you even feel connected to a faith at all!), you're not alone. Especially in our modern world, with its relentless, never-ending news cycle, we can all grapple with such questions. Do we do that alone, with despair and resignation Or do we make sense of it with God, and with hope In these uncertain times, could believing in the power of divine love make the most sense

In this collection of essays, Savannah Guthrie shares why she believes it does. Unspooling personal stories from her own joys and sorrows as a daughter, mother, wife, friend, and professional journalist, the award-winning TODAY show coanchor and New York Times bestselling author explores the place of faith in everyday life.

Sharing hard-won wisdom forged from mountaintop triumphs, crushing failures, and even the mundane moments of day-to-day living, Mostly What God Does reveals the transformative ways that belief in God helps us discover real hope for this life and beyond.

A perfect companion to your morning cup of coffee, this incisive volume--not a memoir but a beautiful tapestry of reflections crafted as a spiritual manual--includes:

  • a fresh, biblically rooted look at six essentials of faith: love, presence, grace, hope, gratitude, and purpose;
  • an honest exploration of questions, doubts, and fears about the love of God;
  • a dose of encouragement for the faith-full, the faith-curious, and the faith-less; and
  • ...and much more.

 

This deeply personal collection is designed to engage the practical ways that God loves you--not just the world, but you--and to inspire you to venture down a path of faith that is authentic, hopeful, destiny-shaping, and ultimately life-changing.

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The Made-from-Scratch Life

Melissa K. Norris

Podcaster and author Melissa K. Norris introduces readers to the basics of modern homesteading with expert advice on how to live a healthier, more self-sufficient life.

Are you concerned about the rising costs of feeding your family, where your food comes from, or what’s in the cleaning products you use every day? Melissa K. Norris, host of the popular Pioneering Today podcast, wants to help you embrace a simpler, more natural lifestyle.

In The Made-from-Scratch Life, Melissa shares easy-to-follow instructions (and plenty of inspiration) on how to…

  • grow and preserve your own food
  • build a well-stocked pantry
  • cook hearty meals featuring homegrown ingredients
  • create safe and effective cleaning products      
  • raise animals for healthier and more sustainable sources of meat and dairy

Filled with helpful charts, checklists, and recipes, this guide gives you the know-how you need to incorporate time-tested homesteading practices into your everyday life.          
 

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The Black Box: Writing the Race

Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

“Henry Louis Gates is a national treasure. Here, he returns with an intellectual and at times deeply personal meditation on the hard-fought evolution and the very meaning of African American identity, calling upon our country to transcend its manufactured divisions.”
— Isabel Wilkerson, author of The Warmth of Other Suns and Caste

“This is a literary history of Black America, but it is also an argument that African American history is inextricable from the history of African American literature.”
The New York Times

A magnificent, foundational reckoning with how Black Americans have used the written word to define and redefine themselves, in resistance to the lies of racism and often in heated disagreement with each other, over the course of the country’s history.


Distilled over many years from Henry Louis Gates, Jr.’s legendary Harvard introductory course in African American Studies, The Black Box: Writing the Race, is the story of Black self-definition in America through the prism of the writers who have led the way. From Phillis Wheatley and Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington, to Zora Neale Hurston and Richard Wright, James Baldwin and Toni Morrison—these writers used words to create a livable world—a "home" —for Black people destined to live out their lives in a bitterly racist society.

It is a book grounded in the beautiful irony that a community formed legally and conceptually by its oppressors to justify brutal sub-human bondage, transformed itself through the word into a community whose foundational definition was based on overcoming one of history’s most pernicious lies. This collective act of resistance and transcendence is at the heart of its self-definition as a "community." Out of that contested ground has flowered a resilient, creative, powerful, diverse culture formed by people who have often disagreed markedly about what it means to be "Black," and about how best to shape a usable past out of the materials at hand to call into being a more just and equitable future. 

This is the epic story of how, through essays and speeches, novels, plays, and poems, a long line of creative thinkers has unveiled the contours of—and resisted confinement in—the "black box" inside which this "nation within a nation" has been assigned, willy nilly, from the nation’s founding through to today. This is a book that records the compelling saga of the creation of a people.

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This Book Is Cheaper Than Therapy

Liz Kelly

Tired of feeling like shit but can't afford therapy?

Finding a good therapist is hard. Finding a good therapist you vibe with--and who won't break the bank--is even harder. In This Book Is Cheaper Than Therapy, seasoned therapist Liz Kelly brings the therapy office to you. So even if money is tight, your insurance doesn't cover therapy, you can't find quality practitioners in your area, or you've been stuck on a therapist's waitlist for months, you can still feel better now.

With her cheeky humor, undeniable wit, and perfectly timed f-bombs, Liz has a talent for explaining complex mental health concepts in a way you can understand and can put into practice immediately. And don't worry--at no point in this book will you ever hear the phrase "healing journey," "your truth," or any other over-used therapy platitudes.

Instead, you'll learn how to:

- Practice real self-care when life feels overwhelming
(and no, shopping doesn't count)
- Quiet and tame your inner critic
(because, let's be honest, you're way too hard on yourself)
- Manage all the feels
(even the ones you pretend you can ignore)
- Set boundaries and master the art of saying no
(especially when it's really, really hard)
- Maintain healthy relationships and find your people
(I promise, they're out there!)
- Cope with the pain of grief and loss
(even when it feels like it'll never get better)
- Prioritize your values to create a more meaningful, kick-ass life
(because you deserve it!)

Imagine if Tina Fey were your best friend and next-door neighbor... and she also just happened to be an experienced therapist. It is possible to feel better--just take that first step and let Liz be your guide.

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Perfect Day Kentucky

Kathy Witt

"Heaven must be a Kentucky kind of place." Explorer Daniel Boone made this observation two centuries ago and it still holds true today: Kentucky is a place of awe-inspiring wonder and natural beauty, of pristine, well-preserved historic downtown districts and rolling backcountry roads framed by miles of black paddock and dry-stone fencing. From the longest known cave system in the world at Mammoth Cave to the world's longest underground suspension bridge at Horse Cave, from the most natural arches in the country east of the Mississippi River--like Creelsboro Natural Arch, aka the Rockhouse--to the second-largest waterfall by volume in the eastern United States (hello, Cumberland Falls!), from heritage bourbon distilleries like Heaven Hill and Wild Turkey to historic horse farms like Claiborne and Our Mims, and from the world's most famous secret-recipe chicken at the place where it all began to the Birthplace and Boyhood Home of Abraham Lincoln, Kentucky has so many unique, extraordinary, and authentic experiences. But what if you have only a limited amount of time to spend at a destination? Perfect Day Kentucky puts the quintessential experiences before you, while also presenting additional suggestions to inspire further exploration and encourage longer stays. Will it be sipping along the Kentucky Bourbon Trail or singing your way down the Country Music Highway? Hurtling along a network of zip lines at up to 60 miles an hour atop Black Mountain or climbing up, up, and away by sky lift to Natural Bridge? Feeding carrots to a Kentucky Derby racing champ or plunging into the crystal-clear depths of Laurel River Lake? Author Kathryn Witt has lived in Kentucky all her life and has written about its attractions for many years. In Perfect Day Kentucky, she shares insights and insider tips to help visitors make the very most of their time in each place and irresistible reasons to return to the Bluegrass State.

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Momfluenced

Sara Petersen

How momfluencer culture impacts women psychologically as consumers, as performers of their stories, and as mothers

On Instagram, the private work of mothering is turned into a public performance, generating billions of dollars. The message is simple: we’re all just a couple of clicks away from a better, more beautiful experience of motherhood.

Linen-clad momfluencers hawking essential oils, parenting manuals, baby slings, and sponsored content for Away suitcases make us want to forget that the reality of mothering in America is an isolating, exhausting, almost wholly unsupported endeavor. In a culture which denies mothers basic human rights, it feels good to click “purchase now” on whatever a momfluencer might be selling. It feels good to hope.

Momfluencers are just like us, except they aren’t. They are mothers, yes. They are also marketing strategists, content creators, lighting experts, advertising executives, and artists. They are businesswomen. The most successful momfluencers offer content that differs very little from what we used to find in glossy women’s magazines like Glamour and Real Simple, only they’re churning it out daily and that content is their lives.

We flock to momfluencers to learn about fashion, wellness, parenting, politics, and to find Brooklyn-designed crib sheets printed with radishes. Chances are, if you’re a mother reading this (and maybe even if you’re not!), you are an arm’s length away from something you’ve purchased because a momfluencer made it look good.

Drawing on her own fraught relationship to momfluencer culture, Sara Petersen incorporates pop culture analysis and interviews with prominent momfluencers and experts (psychologists, academics, technologists) to explore the glorification of the ideal mama online with both humor and empathy. At home on a bookshelf with Lyz Lenz’s Belabored and Jia Tolentino’s Trick Mirror, Momfluenced argues that momfluencers don’t simply sell mothers on the benefits of bamboo diapers, they sell us the dream of motherhood itself, a dream tangled up in whiteness, capitalism, and the heteronormative nuclear family.

Momfluenced considers what it means to define motherhood for ourselves when society is determined to define motherhood for us.

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It's Not You: Identifying and Healing from Narcissistic People

Ramani Durvasula PhD

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

From clinical psychologist and expert in narcissistic relationships Dr. Ramani Durvasula, a guide to protecting and healing yourself from the daily harms of narcissism

AN OPEN FIELD PUBLICATION FROM MARIA SHRIVER


It’s not always easy to tell when you’re dealing with a narcissistic person. One day they draw you in with their charm and charisma, the next they gaslight you, wreck your self-esteem, and leave you wondering, What should I have done differently? As Dr. Ramani explains in It’s Not You, the answer is: absolutely nothing.

Just as a tiger can’t change its stripes, a narcissist will not stop manipulating and invalidating you, no matter how much you try to appease them. The first step toward healing from their toxic influence—and to protect yourself from future harm—is to accept that you are not to blame for their behavior.

Drawing on more than two decades of studying the landscape of narcissism and working with survivors, Dr. Ramani explores how narcissists hijack our well-being and offers a healing path forward. Unpacking the oft-misunderstood personality, she reveals the telltale behavioral patterns that indicate you may be dealing with a narcissist. Along the way, you’ll learn how to become gaslight resistant, chip away at the trauma bonds that keep you stuck in the cycle, grieve the loss of these painful relationships, create and maintain realistic boundaries, discern unhelpful behaviors from narcissistic behaviors, and recover your sense of self after constant invalidation.

Thriving after, or even during, a narcissistic relationship can be challenging, but It’s Not You shows you it is possible. Dr. Ramani invites you to stop blaming yourself and trying to change the narcissistic person, and to start giving yourself permission to let go of their hold on you and finally embrace your true self.

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Briefly Perfectly Human

Alua Arthur

A deeply transformative memoir that reframes how we think about death and how it can help us lead better, more fulfilling and authentic lives, from America's most visible death doula.

"A truly unique, inspiring perspective on the time we have, what we do with it, and how we let go of this world.... There is no one I'd trust more to guide me through an understanding of death, and how it informs life." -- Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of Mad Honey and The Book of Two Ways

"Briefly Perfectly Human is a beautiful, raw, light-bringing experience. Alua's voice is shimmering, singular, and pulses with humor, vulnerability, insight, and refreshing candor.... Be prepared for it to grab you, hold you tight, and raise the roof on the power of human connection." -- Tembi Locke, author of From Scratch: A Memoir of Love, Sicily, and Finding Home

For her clients and everyone who has been inspired by her humanity, Alua Arthur is a friend at the end of the world. As our country's leading death doula, she's spreading a transformative message: thinking about your death--whether imminent or not--will breathe wild, new potential into your life.

Warm, generous, and funny AF, Alua supports and helps manage end-of-life care on many levels. The business matters, medical directives, memorial planning; but also honoring the quiet moments, when monitors are beeping and loved ones have stepped out to get some air--or maybe not shown up at all--and her clients become deeply contemplative and want to talk. Aching, unfinished business often emerges. Alua has been present for thousands of these sacred moments--when regrets, fears, secret joys, hidden affairs, and dim realities are finally said aloud. When this happens, Alua focuses her attention at the pulsing center of her clients' anguish and creates space for them, and sometimes their loved ones, to find peace.

This has had a profound effect on Alua, who was already no stranger to death's periphery. Her family fled a murderous coup d'état in Ghana in the 1980s. She has suffered major, debilitating depressions. And her dear friend and brother-in-law died of lymphoma. Advocating for him in his final months is what led Alua to her life's calling. She knows firsthand the power of bearing witness and telling the truth about life's painful complexities, because they do not disappear when you look the other way. They wait for you.

Briefly Perfectly Human is a life-changing, soul-gathering debut, by a writer whose empathy, tenderness, and wisdom shimmers on the page. Alua Arthur combines intimate storytelling with a passionate appeal for loving, courageous end-of-life care--what she calls "death embrace." Hers is a powerful testament to getting in touch with something deeper in our lives, by embracing the fact of our own mortality. "Hold that truth in your mind," Alua says, "and wondrous things will begin to grow around it."

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Cooking in Real Life

Lidey Heuck

USA TODAY Bestseller
ONE OF THE BEST COOKBOOKS OF SPRING 2024: Eater, Epicurious • ONE OF THE TOP 10 COOKBOOKS OF SPRING 2024: Food & Wine

“Lidey subscribes to the same theory of home cooking that I do. We all want recipes that have ingredients you can buy in almost any grocery store, recipes that are easy enough to make without breaking a sweat that will be delicious and satisfying for either an ordinary weekday dinner or for a special occasion.” —Ina Garten, from the Foreword

From the rising star who learned to cook when she worked for Ina Garten, 100 recipes that are cook-pleasing and crowd-pleasing and written with the shopper, chopper, and dish-doer in mind.

Lidey Heuck landed the most plum after-college job—working for Ina Garten in her East Hampton kitchen. There, she learned how to develop recipes that work every time and how to put together dishes that are at once special and unfussy.

Cooking in Real Life represents the golden middle ground that new and experienced home cooks crave: recipes that are inventive but not overly complicated, that use familiar ingredients but encourage us to do things a little bit differently. They are designed to be low-effort, practical, and high-reward. Lidey combines straight-forward delicious cooking with innovative, vegetable-forward recipes, inspired by bold flavors from near and far. Chapters and recipes include the following:

Busy, fuss-free weeknights: Salmon with Honey and Chili Crunch, Cider-Glazed Sausages with Apples and Fennel, Saucy Shrimp alla Vodka. Plus, dozens of ideas for turning single recipes into one complete meal (Think: adding some sauteed shrimp to Shaved Carrot Salad with Ginger Tahini Dressing).

Flexible, seasonally-inspired recipes with easy-to-find ingredients: Maple-Roasted Squash with Grapes and Shallots, Escarole with Cara Cara Oranges, Spicy Paloma Punch.

Celebratory dishes for occasions that call for something extra special: Short Ribs with Port, Shallots, and Cranberries; Champagne Chicken; and Rainbow Sprinkle Ice Cream Cake.

Throughout, Lidey includes swaps, make-ahead hacks, and tips for making leftovers into something new. Cooking in Real Life meets you where you are—whether you’re here for the practical tips or the endless possibilities.

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The Secret Lives of Booksellers and Librarians

James Patterson

This "celebration of the world of books" (Kirkus) serves up "comfort food for bookworms" (Publishers Weekly) in true stories from the booksellers and librarians--the superheroes of reading--as told to the greatest storyteller of our time, James Patterson.

To be a bookseller or librarian...

You have to play detective.

Be a treasure hunter. A matchmaker. An advocate. A visionary.

A person who creates "book joy" by pulling a book from a shelf, handing it to someone and saying, "You've got to read this. You're going to love it."

Step inside The Secret Lives of Booksellers and Librarians and enter a world where you can feed your curiosities, discover new voices, find whatever you want or require. This place has the magic of rainbows and unicorns, but it's also a business. The book business.

Meet the smart and talented people who live between the pages--and who can't wait to help you find your next favorite book.

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The Princess of Las Vegas

Chris Bohjalian

One of Elle's Best and Most Anticipated Mysteries of 2024 * THE PRINCESS IS FAKE. THE MURDERS ARE REAL * From the New York Times bestselling author of The Flight Attendant and The Lioness, a Princess Diana impersonator and her estranged sister find themselves drawn into a dangerous game of money and murder in this twisting tale of organized crime, cryptocurrency, and family secrets on the Las Vegas strip.

Crissy Dowling has created a world that suits her perfectly. She passes her days by the pool in a private cabana, she splurges on ice cream but never gains an ounce, and each evening she transforms into a Princess, performing her musical cabaret inspired by the life of the late Diana Spencer. Some might find her strange or even delusional, an American speaking with a British accent, hair feathered into a style thirty years old, living and working in a casino that has become a dated trash heap. On top of that, Crissy's daily diet of Adderall and Valium leaves her more than a little tipsy, her Senator boyfriend has gone back to his wife, and her entire career rests on resembling a dead woman. And yet, fans see her for the gifted chameleon she is, showering her with gifts, letters, and standing ovations night after night. But when Crissy's sister, Betsy, arrives in town with a new boyfriend and a teenage daughter, and when Richie Morley, the owner of the Buckingham Palace Casino, is savagely murdered, Crissy's carefully constructed kingdom comes crashing down all around her. A riveting tale of identity, obsession, fintech, and high-tech mobsters, The Princess of Las Vegas is an addictive, wildly original thriller from one of our most extraordinary storytellers.

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The Reaper Follows

Heather Graham

Death comes for everyone.

Deep in the Florida Everglades, the body of a woman is discovered in pieces, presumably ravaged by an alligator. Upon closer inspection, it's determined no animal could make such perfectly precise cuts. Only a blade could do that. Wielded by a human. Soon, dozens of oil drums emerge amid the river of grass. Each one packed to the brim with body parts.

FDLE special agent Amy Larson and her partner, FBI special agent Hunter Forrest, share a bad feeling that extends beyond the horrifying nature of the grim discovery. They've seen this kind of sadistic killing before, and when a small beige horse is discovered at the bottom of one of the barrels, they know exactly what it means. The fourth horseman of the apocalypse rides a pale horse--and his name is Death.

With so many bodies to identify, connecting one victim to the next is easier said than done. But finding a pattern in the chaos might be the only way Amy and Hunter can zero in on the killer, testing their skills as agents--and their relationship--like never before. And when the disturbing trail of clues signals these slayings are just the beginning, the agents will have to return to where it all started before it's too late. The apocalypse is coming, and Hunter and Amy have only one chance to stop it, even if it means sacrificing each other.
 

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The Sweet Blue Distance

Sara Donati

 

A young midwife travels west to the New Mexico Territory to care for women in need and faces dangers more harrowing than the ones she’s fleeing in this epic tale of survival, redemption, and love from Sara Donati, the international bestselling author of the Wilderness series.
1857: In a bid to outrun her past, Carrie Ballentyne accepts a nursing position with a doctor in the New Mexico Territory. She knows the journey from New York to Santa Fe will not be easy, but she relishes the adventure. However, nothing could have prepared her for the wilderness she encounters. Its vastness and power are awe-inspiring, stunning in both beauty and brutality. To endure, she must learn to rely on her fellow travelers—and one enigmatic man in particular. As the small, tight-knit group tackles challenge after challenge, she feels her heart opening to this rugged land—and the people willing to risk so much for one another.
 
The trip west is only the beginning of Carrie’s challenges, though. In Santa Fe, she compassionately helps women bring new life into the world, making her beloved among new mothers. Soon, however, she realizes that her employer and his wife are keeping secrets from her, and she must ferret out the truth to protect their young daughter. But to save the little girl she’s come to cherish, Carrie will have to confront the demons in her own past—a feat that will take all of her bravery with the help of the man she’s grown to love and depend on above all others.
 
With its vivid descriptions of the breathtaking western landscape and its irresistible characters, The Sweet Blue Distance is the unforgettable story of one woman’s courage to heal herself, her family, and the women entrusted to her care.

 

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Sharpe's Command

Bernard Cornwell

New York Times bestselling author Bernard Cornwell returns to the early years of the nineteenth century, capturing the bravery, battles, and bloodshed of Britain's peninsular wars with this epic tale featuring his iconic hero Richard Sharpe.

Outsider.

Hero.

Rogue.

If any man can do the impossible it's Richard Sharpe.

And the impossible is exactly what the formidable Captain Sharpe is asked to do when he's sent on an undercover mission to a small village in the Spanish countryside, far behind enemy lines.

For the quiet, remote village, sitting high above the Almaraz bridge, is about to become the center of a battle for the future of Europe. Two French armies march towards the bridge, one from the North and one from the South. If they meet, the British are lost.

Only Sharpe's small group of men--with their cunning and courage to rely on--stand in their way. But they're rapidly outnumbered, enemies are hiding in plain sight, and as the French edge ever closer to the frontline, time is running out. . . .

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The Husbands

Holly Gramazio

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - READ WITH JENNA'S APRIL BOOK CLUB PICK - An exuberant debut, The Husbands delights in asking: how do we navigate life, love, and choice in a world of never-ending options? ("A time-bending gem"--Gabrielle Zevin; "Kaleidoscopic and bright and very, very funny." -Claire Lombardo)

When Lauren returns home to her flat in London late one night, she is greeted at the door by her husband, Michael. There's only one problem--she's not married. She's never seen this man before in her life. But according to her friends, her much-improved decor, and the photos on her phone, they've been together for years.

As Lauren tries to puzzle out how she could be married to someone she can't remember meeting, Michael goes to the attic to change a lightbulb and abruptly disappears. In his place, a new man emerges, and a new, slightly altered life re-forms around her. Realizing that her attic is creating an infinite supply of husbands, Lauren confronts the question: If swapping lives is as easy as changing a lightbulb, how do you know you've taken the right path? When do you stop trying to do better and start actually living?

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I Cheerfully Refuse

Leif Enger

BARNES & NOBLE'S APRIL BOOK CLUB PICK - A career defining tour-de-force from New York Times bestselling, award-winning and "formidably gifted" (Chicago Tribune) author of Peace Like a River Leif Enger.

"A rare, remarkable book to be kept and reread--for its beauty of language, its gentle wisdom and its steady, unflagging hope." -- Laurie Hertzel, Minneapolis Star Tribune

A storyteller "of great humanity and huge heart" (Minneapolis Star Tribune), Leif Enger debuted in the literary world with Peace Like a River which sold over a million copies and captured readers' hearts around the globe. Now comes a new milestone in this boldly imaginative author's accomplished, resonant body of work. Set in a not-too-distant America, I Cheerfully Refuse is the tale of a bereaved and pursued musician embarking
under sail on a sentient Lake Superior in search of his departed, deeply beloved, bookselling wife. Rainy, an endearing bear of an Orphean narrator, seeks refuge in the harbors, fogs and remote islands of the inland sea. Encountering lunatic storms and rising corpses from the warming depths, Rainy finds on land an increasingly desperate and illiterate people, a malignant billionaire ruling class, crumbled infrastructure and a lawless society. Amidst the Gulliver-like challenges of life at sea and no safe landings, Rainy is lifted by physical beauty, surprising humor, generous strangers, and an unexpected companion in a young girl who comes aboard. And as his innate guileless nature begins to make an inadvertent rebel of him, Rainy's private quest for the love of his life grows into something wider and wilder, sweeping up friends and foes alike in his strengthening wake.

 

I Cheerfully Refuse epitomizes the "musical, sometimes magical and deeply satisfying kind of storytelling" (Los Angeles Times) for which Leif Enger is cherished. A rollicking narrative in the most evocative of settings, this latest novel is a symphony against despair and a rallying cry for the future.

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Sandcastle Inn

Irene Hannon

Vienna Price never intended to return for more than a passing visit to Oregon and all the bad memories she'd left behind. But when your career tanks, home is where you go to nurse your wounds and chart a new course. Only temporarily, of course--because as much as she loves her quirky mom, anything more than a short stay would drive them both crazy.

A trip to Oregon isn't in Matt Quinn's plans, either, until a perfectly timed appeal for help arrives from his sister. What better place to decompress after a shattering loss than a quiet, seaside town named Hope Harbor? But R&R isn't on the agenda when he arrives to find his sister's new enterprise on life support.

Vienna, however, may have just the skills needed to resuscitate the foundering B&B--if Matt can convince her to hang around long enough to mend an inn . . . and his heart.

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One by One

Freida McFadden

A heart pounding, twisting thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of The Housemaid and The Coworker!

One by one, they will get what they deserve...

Claire Matchett needs this trip. It will be a break from work and raising children. A chance to repair her damaged marriage. A week of hiking and hot tubbing with friends at a luxurious hotel in the woods, disconnected from the pressures of real life.

Then, on a lonely dirt road, Claire's minivan breaks down. With no cell reception, the group has no choice but to walk the rest of the way to their remote accommodation. But the forest is dark and difficult to navigate and, hours later, they are lost. Hopelessly lost.

As they venture deeper into the woods, the members of their party are struck down mysteriously, one by one. Are they being hunted? And by what--or who? As Claire's dream vacation descends into a nightmare, something becomes clear: only one of them will return home alive.

A taut story of betrayal and survival from New York Times bestselling author Freida McFadden that will leave you wondering if there's any way out of the woods...

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The Corpse in the Closet

Lucy Score

From the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Things We Never Got Over

Summer is heating up for reluctant psychic Riley Thorn and her handsome private investigator boyfriend, Nick Santiago.

First, her disapproving grandmother arrives determined to make Riley take her powers seriously or face the wrath of "the Guild." Then there's the homicide detective who needs her help figuring out who murdered the well-dressed corpse in the walk-in closet.

Nick's got his own hands full with a tricky missing person case and his parents who want to know why he didn't tell them about his live-in girlfriend. Then there's the fact that he's still the tiniest bit stressed about Riley almost getting murdered earlier that summer. The last thing he wants is her getting involved in another investigation.

Things go from bad to worse when the body count starts stacking up, the meet-the-parents dinner goes horribly wrong, and their elderly roommate is up to no good...dressed like a mime.

To top it off, Riley is forced to return to Channel 50 on official police business to question her spray-tanned news anchor ex-husband and his new weather girl fiancée.

The trouble comes to a head when Riley receives a warning from the killer: Back off or she's next. Someone has to solve these murders before she becomes the next corpse.

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One of Us Knows

Alyssa Cole

From the critically acclaimed and New York Times bestselling author of When No One Is Watching comes a riveting thriller about the new caretaker of a historic estate who finds herself trapped on an island with a murderer--and the ghosts of her past.

Years after a breakdown and a diagnosis of dissociative identity disorder derailed her historical preservationist career, Kenetria Nash and her alters have been given a second chance they can't refuse: a position as resident caretaker of a historic home. Having been dormant for years, Ken has no idea what led them to this isolated Hudson River island, but she's determined not to ruin their opportunity.

Then a surprise visit from the home's conservation trust just as a Nor'easter bears down on the island disrupts her newfound life, leaving Ken trapped with a group of possibly dangerous strangers--including the man who brought her life tumbling down years earlier. When he turns up dead, Ken is the prime suspect.

Caught in a web of secrets and in a race against time, Ken and her alters must band together to prove their innocence and discover the truth of Kavanaugh Island--and their own past--or they risk losing not only their future, but their life.

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Strawberry Lane

Jodi Thomas

Fans of Robyn Carr and Susan Mallery will adore this heartwarming new book from the beloved New York Times bestselling author. In a small Texas town where most families go back generations, four strangers meet and unite as they bury a father none of them has ever seen and begin slowly to piece together a bond that will not only change them, but the community for the better.

Starri Knight is a big believer in fate. How else to explain the compelling connection she feels to the stranger she pulls out of a wrecked car on the very same road where her parents died twenty years earlier? Alongside Auntie Ona-May, the only mother she’s ever known, Starri saves Rusty O’Sullivan’s life—just as Ona-May once did when Starri was an orphaned babe. But convincing Rusty he has something to live for is going to take all of Starri’s faith in miracles . . .

Like a wish he hadn’t even known to make, Starri landed in Rusty’s life, filling him with a longing for a family. . . . Then Jackson Landry, a new lawyer, turns up to present a surprise that will change the direction of his life: An inheritance from the father Rusty never knew—and the promise of the family he’d never had. It’s a lot for the hard-bitten loner to accept as love rushes into his life . . .

A sense of duty has Rusty heading to Honey Creek to deal with his father’s estate—and find his lost siblings. But having family is one thing, learning to love them is another. Good thing new friends are by his side to help him along the way.

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North of Nowhere

Allison Brennan

New York Times bestseller Allison Brennan’s latest standalone is an unputdownable race to the dramatic finish.

After five years in hiding from their murderous father, the day Kristen and Ryan McIntyre have been dreading has arrived: Boyd McIntyre, head of a Los Angeles crime family, has at last tracked his kids to a small Montana town and is minutes away from kidnapping them. They barely escape in a small plane, but gunfire hits the fuel line. The pilot, a man who has been raising them as his own, manages to crash land in the middle of the Montana wilderness. The siblings hike deep into the woods, searching desperately for safety—unaware of the severity of the approaching storm.

Boyd’s sister Ruby left Los Angeles for the Army years ago, cutting off contact in order to help keep her niece and nephew safe and free from the horrors of the McIntyre clan. So when she gets an emergency call that the plane has gone down with the kids inside, she drops everything to try save them.

As the storm builds, Ruby isn’t the only person looking for them. Boyd has hired an expert tracker to find and bring them home. And rancher Nick Lorenzo, who knows these mountains better than anyone and doesn’t understand why the kids are running, is on their trail too.

But there is a greater threat to Kristen and Ryan out there. More volatile than the incoming blizzard, more dangerous than the family they ran from or the natural predators they could encounter. Who finds them first could determine if they live or die. . .

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All Good People Here

Ashley Flowers

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER In the propulsive debut novel from the host of the #1 true crime podcast Crime Junkie, a journalist uncovers her hometown’s dark secrets when she becomes obsessed with the unsolved murder of her childhood neighbor—and the disappearance of another girl twenty years later.

ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: PopSugar

 
You can’t ever know for sure what happens behind closed doors.

Everyone from Wakarusa, Indiana, remembers the infamous case of January Jacobs, who was discovered in a ditch hours after her family awoke to find her gone. Margot Davies was six at the time, the same age as January—and they were next-door neighbors. In the twenty years since, Margot has grown up, moved away, and become a big-city journalist. But she’s always been haunted by the feeling that it could’ve been her. And the worst part is, January’s killer has never been brought to justice.

When Margot returns home to help care for her uncle after he is diagnosed with early-onset dementia, she feels like she’s walked into a time capsule. Wakarusa is exactly how she remembers—genial, stifled, secretive. Then news breaks about five-year-old Natalie Clark from the next town over, who’s gone missing under circumstances eerily similar to January’s. With all the old feelings rushing back, Margot vows to find Natalie and to solve January’s murder once and for all.

But the police, Natalie’s family, the townspeople—they all seem to be hiding something. And the deeper Margot digs into Natalie’s disappearance, the more resistance she encounters, and the colder January’s case feels. Could January’s killer still be out there? Is it the same person who took Natalie? And what will it cost to finally discover what truly happened that night twenty years ago?

Twisty, chilling, and intense, All Good People Here is a searing tale that asks: What are your neighbors capable of when they think no one is watching?

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The Amish Matchmakers

Beth Wiseman

This Amish matchmaker is an expert at finding love for others, but will she find it for herself?

Widowed sisters Esther and Lizzie are the town innkeepers--and the town matchmakers. But when a new tenant moves into a guest cottage at their Peony Inn, the sisters are shocked to discover that maybe this time, one of them might finally find a match of her own. Retired dentist Dr. Benjamin Stoltzfus has signed a six-month lease at the cottage--and gentle Esther and spirited Lizzie are in a surprising competition for the kind doctor's affections. Dr. Stoltzfus doesn't appear to be Amish, but his last name and his mysterious background have the sisters guessing--and open to the possibility of finding love again.

Things really heat up when Benjamin's granddaughter, Mindy, comes to visit. Escaping her big-city life in Texas, Mindy has moved to Amish country to be closer to her grandfather and to embrace the simpler life she has longed for. But she's unprepared for what happens when an attractive young Amish man, who spends time at the inn helping out the widows, runs his lawnmower right into her little red sports car. Sure, Gabriel is cute and funny and nice--but can a romance between an Englisch girl and an Amish boy end well?

As Mindy and Gabriel find themselves thrown together time after time, they forge a friendship and start making matchmaking plans of their own. Which sister would be better for Mindy's grandfather--Esther or Lizzie? And as the two young people put their energy into playing Cupid, it looks like love and the life they've both dreamed of might also be finding them.

  • Charming Amish romance featuring a later-in-life love triangle
  • Stand-alone novel, but returning to the world of The Amish Inn series
  • Includes discussion questions for book clubs
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A Calamity of Souls

David Baldacci

 

 

Set in the tumultuous year of 1968 in southern Virginia, a racially-charged murder case sets a duo of white and Black lawyers against a deeply unfair system as they work to defend their wrongfully-accused Black defendants in this courtroom drama from #1 New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci. 

Jack Lee is a white lawyer from Freeman County, Virginia, who has never done anything to push back against racism, until he decides to represent Jerome Washington, a Black man charged with brutally killing an elderly and wealthy white couple. Doubting his decision, Lee fears that his legal skills may not be enough to prevail in a case where the odds are already stacked against both him and his client. And he quickly finds himself out of his depth when he realizes that what is at stake is far greater than the outcome of a murder trial.



Desiree DuBose is a Black lawyer from Chicago who has devoted her life to furthering the causes of justice and equality for everyone. She comes to Freeman County and enters a fractious and unwieldy partnership with Lee in a legal battle against the best prosecutor in the Commonwealth. Yet DuBose is also aware that powerful outside forces are at work to blunt the victories achieved by the Civil Rights era.  



Lee and DuBose could not be more dissimilar. On their own, neither one can stop the prosecution's deliberate march towards a guilty verdict and the electric chair. But together, the pair fight for what once seemed impossible: a chance for a fair trial and true justice.



Over a decade in the writing, A Calamity of Souls breathes richly imagined and detailed life into a bygone era, taking the reader through a world that will seem both foreign and familiar.

 

 

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James

Percival Everett

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - A brilliant, action-packed reimagining of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, both harrowing and ferociously funny, told from the enslaved Jim's point of view - From the "literary icon" (Oprah Daily) and Pulitzer Prize Finalist whose novel Erasure is the basis for Cord Jefferson's critically acclaimed film American Fiction

"Genius"--The Atlantic - "A masterpiece that will help redefine one of the classics of American literature, while also being a major achievement on its own."--Chicago Tribune - "A provocative, enlightening literary work of art."--The Boston Globe - "Everett's most thrilling novel, but also his most soulful."--The New York Times

"If you liked Demon Copperhead, by Barbara Kingsolver, read James, by Percival Everett" --The Washington Post

When the enslaved Jim overhears that he is about to be sold to a man in New Orleans, separated from his wife and daughter forever, he decides to hide on nearby Jackson Island until he can formulate a plan. Meanwhile, Huck Finn has faked his own death to escape his violent father, recently returned to town. As all readers of American literature know, thus begins the dangerous and transcendent journey by raft down the Mississippi River toward the elusive and too-often-unreliable promise of the Free States and beyond.

While many narrative set pieces of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn remain in place (floods and storms, stumbling across both unexpected death and unexpected treasure in the myriad stopping points along the river's banks, encountering the scam artists posing as the Duke and Dauphin...), Jim's agency, intelligence and compassion are shown in a radically new light.

Brimming with the electrifying humor and lacerating observations that have made Everett a "literary icon" (Oprah Daily), and one of the most decorated writers of our lifetime, James is destined to be a major publishing event and a cornerstone of twenty-first century American literature.

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Just for the Summer

Abby Jimenez

A sharp and scintillating summer novel that will make readers laugh out loud and cry happy tears from the New York Times bestselling author of Yours Truly.

Justin has a curse, and thanks to a Reddit thread, it's now all over the internet. Every woman he dates goes on to find their soul mate the second they break up. When a woman slides into his DMs with the same problem, they come up with a plan: They'll date each other and break up. Their curses will cancel each other's out, and they'll both go on to find the love of their lives. It's a bonkers idea... and it just might work.

Emma hadn't planned that her next assignment as a traveling nurse would be in Minnesota, but she and her best friend agree that dating Justin is too good of an opportunity to pass up, especially when they get to rent an adorable cottage on a private island on Lake Minnetonka.



It's supposed to be a quick fling, just for the summer. But when Emma's toxic mother shows up and Justin has to assume guardianship of his three siblings, they're suddenly navigating a lot more than they expected--including catching real feelings for each other. What if this time Fate has actually brought the perfect pair together?

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Extinction

Douglas Preston

With Extinction, #1 New York Times bestselling author Douglas Preston has written a page-turning thriller in the Michael Crichton mode that explores the possible and unintended dangers of the very real efforts to resurrect the woolly mammoth and other long-extinct animals.

Erebus Resort, occupying a magnificent, hundred-thousand acre valley deep in the Colorado Rockies, offers guests the experience of viewing woolly mammoths, Irish Elk, and giant ground sloths in their native habitat, brought back from extinction through the magic of genetic manipulation. When a billionaire's son and his new wife are kidnapped and murdered in the Erebus back country by what is assumed to be a gang of eco-terrorists, Colorado Bureau of Investigation Agent Frances Cash partners with county sheriff James Colcord to track down the perpetrators.

As killings mount and the valley is evacuated, Cash and Colcord must confront an ancient, intelligent, and malevolent presence at Erebus, bent not on resurrection—but extinction.

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The Murder Inn

James Patterson

From #1 New York Times bestselling author James Patterson, Bill Robinson returns to the rocky shores of Massachusetts where he must solve a string of murders if he wants to save his inn.

The doors of the Inn at Gloucester are always open to anyone running from trouble or hiding from life. Its owner, former Boston police detective Bill Robinson, welcomes them with no questions asked.

Until two strangers arrive for a temporary stay and a longtime resident starts looking over his shoulders. There's another newcomer in town who puts the Inn under surveillance.

When the surveillance turns into a series of attacks. Robinson launches an all-out fight to defend his town, his chosen family, and his home.

 

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The Summer We Started Over

Nancy Thayer

Two sisters reconnect and pursue their dreams on the beautiful island of Nantucket, overcoming life’s challenges and finding new love, in this heartwarming and hopeful novel by New York Times bestselling author Nancy Thayer.

Eddie Grant is happy with her life and her work as a personal assistant to Dinah Lavender, one of the most famous and renowned romance authors in the business. But being a spectator to notoriety and glamour isn’t as fulfilling as she once thought. Thankfully, Eddie has the perfect excuse for a vacation: Her hardworking younger sister, Barrett, is opening her gift shop on Memorial Day weekend, and could use all the help she can get. 

But going home to the beautiful island of Nantucket means facing the family’s difficult past. Shortly after the death of Eddie and Barrett’s brother, their mother left them and their father made the spontaneous decision to buy a small farm. Eddie stayed there for only a year before her family’s grief threatened to consume her as well, and had been living in Manhattan ever since. Now that she is back, Eddie must face all she left behind: her father’s increased eccentricities, which has led to a house bursting at the seams with books; her sister’s resentment over Eddie’s escape; and a past love connection, one that is still undeniable and complicated, all these years later. But the Grant sisters are nothing if not resilient and capable, opening a used bookstore in their father’s abandoned barn to manage his hoarding, and navigating the discovery of a long-buried family secret that will change all of them forever. 

In The Summer We Started Over, beloved storyteller Nancy Thayer transports readers with a moving story about family, courage, and the resiliency of young women.

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Funny Story

Emily Henry

Named a Most Anticipated book of 2024 by TIME ∙ The New York Times ∙ Goodreads Entertainment Weekly ∙ Today.com ∙ Paste ∙ SheReads ∙ BookPage Woman's World ∙ The Nerd Daily and more!

A shimmering, joyful new novel about a pair of opposites with the wrong thing in common, from #1 New York Times bestselling author Emily Henry.


Daphne always loved the way her fiancé Peter told their story. How they met (on a blustery day), fell in love (over an errant hat), and moved back to his lakeside hometown to begin their life together. He really was good at telling it…right up until the moment he realized he was actually in love with his childhood best friend Petra.
 
Which is how Daphne begins her new story: Stranded in beautiful Waning Bay, Michigan, without friends or family but with a dream job as a children’s librarian (that barely pays the bills), and proposing to be roommates with the only person who could possibly understand her predicament: Petra’s ex, Miles Nowak.
 
Scruffy and chaotic—with a penchant for taking solace in the sounds of heart break love ballads—Miles is exactly the opposite of practical, buttoned up Daphne, whose coworkers know so little about her they have a running bet that she’s either FBI or in witness protection. The roommates mainly avoid one another, until one day, while drowning their sorrows, they form a tenuous friendship and a plan. If said plan also involves posting deliberately misleading photos of their summer adventures together, well, who could blame them?
 
But it’s all just for show, of course, because there’s no way Daphne would actually start her new chapter by falling in love with her ex-fiancé’s new fiancée’s ex…right?

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The Housemaid

Freida McFadden

Don't miss the New York Times and USA Today bestseller and addictive psychological thriller with a jaw-dropping twist that's burning up Instagram and TikTok--Freida McFadden's The Housemaid is perfect for fans of Ruth Ware, Lisa Jewell, and Verity.



Every day I clean the Winchesters' beautiful house top to bottom. I collect their daughter from school. And I cook a delicious meal for the whole family before heading up to eat alone in my tiny room on the top floor.



I try to ignore how Nina makes a mess just to watch me clean it up. How she tells strange lies about her own daughter. And how her husband Andrew seems more broken every day. But as I look into Andrew's handsome brown eyes, so full of pain, it's hard not to imagine what it would be like to live Nina's life. The walk-in closet, the fancy car, the perfect husband.



I only try on one of Nina's pristine white dresses once. Just to see what it's like. But she soon finds out... and by the time I realize my attic bedroom door only locks from the outside, it's far too late.



But I reassure myself: the Winchesters don't know who I really am.



They don't know what I'm capable of...

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Butcher & Blackbird

Brynne Weaver

A New York Times and USA TODAY Bestseller

"I want to ruin her so that she's mine, my beautiful disaster. My wild creature. My goddess of chaos."

The viral TikTok friends-to-lovers dark romantic comedy full of murder, chaos, and sizzling chemistry--unlike anything you've read before--now available in all bookstores

When a chance encounter sparks an unlikely bond between rival murderers Sloane and Rowan, they find something elusive--the friendship of two like-minded, pitch-black souls who just happen to enjoy killing other serial killers.

From small-town West Virginia to upscale California, and from downtown Boston to rural Texas, the two hunters collide in an annual game of blood and suffering, one that pits them against the most dangerous monsters in the country.

But as their friendship develops into something more, the restless ghosts left in their wake are only a few steps behind, ready to claim more than just their newfound love.

Can Rowan and Sloane dig themselves out of a game of graves?
Or have they finally met their match?

Tropes:
Golden retriever x black cat
He falls first
Touch him/her and die
Friends to lovers
Forced proximity
One bed

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A Court of Silver Flames

Sarah J. Maas

Sarah J. Maas's sexy, richly imagined series continues with the journey of Feyre's fiery sister, Nesta.

Nesta Archeron has always been prickly-proud, swift to anger, and slow to forgive. And ever since being forced into the Cauldron and becoming High Fae against her will, she's struggled to find a place for herself within the strange, deadly world she inhabits. Worse, she can't seem to move past the horrors of the war with Hybern and all she lost in it.

The one person who ignites her temper more than any other is Cassian, the battle-scarred warrior whose position in Rhysand and Feyre's Night Court keeps him constantly in Nesta's orbit. But her temper isn't the only thing Cassian ignites. The fire between them is undeniable, and only burns hotter as they are forced into close quarters with each other.

Meanwhile, the treacherous human queens who returned to the Continent during the last war have forged a dangerous new alliance, threatening the fragile peace that has settled over the realms. And the key to halting them might very well rely on Cassian and Nesta facing their haunting pasts.

Against the sweeping backdrop of a world seared by war and plagued with uncertainty, Nesta and Cassian battle monsters from within and without as they search for acceptance-and healing-in each other's arms.

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Haunting Adeline

H. D. Carlton

"The Manipulator. I can manipulate the emotions of anyone who lets me. I will make you hurt, make you cry, make you laugh and sigh. But my words don't affect him. Especially not when I plead for him to leave. He's always there, watching and waiting. And I can never look away. Not when I want him to come closer. The Shadow. I didn't mean to fall in love. But now that I have, I can't stay away. I'm mesmerized by her smile, by her eyes, and the way she moves. The way she undresses... I'll keep watching and waiting. Until I can make her mine. And once she is, I'll never let her go. Not even when she begs me to." --

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The Anxious Generation

Jonathan Haidt

THE INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice

From New York Times bestselling coauthor of The Coddling of the American Mind, an essential investigation into the collapse of youth mental health—and a plan for a healthier, freer childhood.

“Erudite, engaging, combative, crusading.” —New York Times Book Review

“Words that chill the parental heart…  thanks to Mr. Haidt, we can glimpse the true horror of what happened not only in the U.S. but also elsewhere in the English-speaking world… lucid, memorable… galvanizing.” —Wall Street Journal

"[An] important new book...The shift in kids’ energy and attention from the physical world to the virtual one, Haidt shows, has been catastrophic, especially for girls." —Michelle Goldberg,
The New York Times

After more than a decade of stability or improvement, the mental health of adolescents plunged in the early 2010s. Rates of depression, anxiety, self-harm, and suicide rose sharply, more than doubling on many measures. Why?

In The Anxious Generation, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt lays out the facts about the epidemic of teen mental illness that hit many countries at the same time. He then investigates the nature of childhood, including why children need play and independent exploration to mature into competent, thriving adults. Haidt shows how the “play-based childhood” began to decline in the 1980s, and how it was finally wiped out by the arrival of the “phone-based childhood” in the early 2010s. He presents more than a dozen mechanisms by which this “great rewiring of childhood” has interfered with children’s social and neurological development, covering everything from sleep deprivation to attention fragmentation, addiction, loneliness, social contagion, social comparison, and perfectionism. He explains why social media damages girls more than boys and why boys have been withdrawing from the real world into the virtual world, with disastrous consequences for themselves, their families, and their societies.

Most important, Haidt issues a clear call to action. He diagnoses the “collective action problems” that trap us, and then proposes four simple rules that might set us free. He describes steps that parents, teachers, schools, tech companies, and governments can take to end the epidemic of mental illness and restore a more humane childhood.

Haidt has spent his career speaking truth backed by data in the most difficult landscapes—communities polarized by politics and religion, campuses battling culture wars, and now the public health emergency faced by Gen Z. We cannot afford to ignore his findings about protecting our children—and ourselves—from the psychological damage of a phone-based life.

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The Goldfinch

Donna Tartt

Walking Book Club @ Calvert City selection

 

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE

"The Goldfinch is a rarity that comes along perhaps half a dozen times per decade, a smartly written literary novel that connects with the heart as well as the mind....Donna Tartt has delivered an extraordinary work of fiction."--Stephen King, The New York Times Book Review

Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his longing for his mother, he clings to the one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

As an adult, Theo moves silkily between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty labyrinth of an antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love--and at the center of a narrowing, ever more dangerous circle.

The Goldfinch is a mesmerizing, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the ruthless machinations of fate.

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Year of Wonders

Geraldine Brooks

Walking Book Club @ Calvert City selection

 

This gripping historical novel is based on the true story of Eyam, the "Plague Village", in the rugged mountain spine of England. In 1666, a tainted bolt of cloth from London carries bubonic infection to this isolated settlement of shepherds and lead miners. A visionary young preacher convinces the villagers to seal themselves off in a deadly quarantine to prevent the spread of disease. The story is told through the eyes of eighteen-year-old Anna Frith, the vicar's maid, as she confronts the loss of her family, the disintegration of her community, and the lure of a dangerous and illicit love. As the death toll rises and people turn from prayers and herbal cures to sorcery and murderous witch-hunting, Anna emerges as an unlikely and courageous heroine in the village's desperate fight to save itself. Exploring love and learning, fear and fanaticism, and the struggle of science and religion to interpret the world at the cusp of the modern era, Year of Wonders is at once a story of unconventional love and a richly detailed evocation of a riveting moment in history. Like Arthur Golden's Memories of a Geisha and A. S. Byatt's Posession, Year of Wonders blends learning and romance into an unforgettable read.

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I'm Glad My Mom Died

Jennette McCurdy

Memoir Matinee Celebrity Book Club @ Calvert City pick

 

* #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * #1 INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER * MORE THAN 2 MILLION COPIES SOLD!

A heartbreaking and hilarious memoir by iCarly and Sam & Cat star Jennette McCurdy about her struggles as a former child actor—including eating disorders, addiction, and a complicated relationship with her overbearing mother—and how she retook control of her life.

Jennette McCurdy was six years old when she had her first acting audition. Her mother’s dream was for her only daughter to become a star, and Jennette would do anything to make her mother happy. So she went along with what Mom called “calorie restriction,” eating little and weighing herself five times a day. She endured extensive at-home makeovers while Mom chided, “Your eyelashes are invisible, okay? You think Dakota Fanning doesn’t tint hers?” She was even showered by Mom until age sixteen while sharing her diaries, email, and all her income.

In I’m Glad My Mom Died, Jennette recounts all this in unflinching detail—just as she chronicles what happens when the dream finally comes true. Cast in a new Nickelodeon series called iCarly, she is thrust into fame. Though Mom is ecstatic, emailing fan club moderators and getting on a first-name basis with the paparazzi (“Hi Gale!”), Jennette is riddled with anxiety, shame, and self-loathing, which manifest into eating disorders, addiction, and a series of unhealthy relationships. These issues only get worse when, soon after taking the lead in the iCarly spinoff Sam & Cat alongside Ariana Grande, her mother dies of cancer. Finally, after discovering therapy and quitting acting, Jennette embarks on recovery and decides for the first time in her life what she really wants.

Told with refreshing candor and dark humor, I’m Glad My Mom Died is an inspiring story of resilience, independence, and the joy of shampooing your own hair.

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We Are All the Same in the Dark

Julia Heaberlin

Death and Donuts @ Benton pick

 

NATIONAL BESTSELLER - PEOPLE PICK - OPTIONED BY SISTER PICTURES FOR TELEVISION - The discovery of a girl abandoned by the side of the road threatens to unearth the long-buried secrets of a Texas town's legendary cold case in this superb, atmospheric novel from the internationally bestselling author of Black-Eyed Susans

"If you only read one thriller this year, let it be this one. Psychologically absorbing, original and atmospheric. I could not turn the pages fast enough."--Elin Hilderbrand, #1 New York Times bestselling author of 28 Summers

It's been a decade since Trumanell Branson disappeared, leaving only a bloody handprint behind. Her pretty face still hangs like a watchful queen on the posters on the walls of the town's Baptist church, the police station, and in the high school. They all promise the same thing: We will find you. Meanwhile, Tru's brother, Wyatt, lives as a pariah in the desolation of the old family house, cleared of wrongdoing by the police but tried and sentenced in the court of public opinion and in a new documentary about the crime.

When Wyatt finds a lost girl dumped in a field of dandelions, making silent wishes, he believes she is a sign. The town's youngest cop, Odette Tucker, believes she is a catalyst that will ignite a seething town still waiting for its own missing girl to come home. But Odette can't look away. She shares a wound that won't close with the mute, one-eyed mystery girl. And she is haunted by her own history with the missing Tru.

Desperate to solve both cases, Odette fights to save the lost girl in the present and to dig up the shocking truth about a fateful night in the past--the night her friend disappeared, the night that inspired her to become a cop, the night that wrote them all a role in the town's dark, violent mythology.

In this twisty psychological thriller, Julia Heaberlin paints unforgettable portraits of a woman and a girl who redefine perceptions of physical beauty and strength.

Praise for We Are All the Same in the Dark

"This chilling tale of buried sins is relentlessly unpredictable."--The Times (South Africa)

"[Julia] Heaberlin knows how to build to a truly shocking twist, how to break a reader's heart and then begin mending it. 'What's coming is always unimaginable, ' Odette's one-time therapist tells her, 'and by that, I mean just that. It cannot be imagined. What's coming never acts or behaves the way we think it will.' That's true for this novel, too."--The Dallas Morning News

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The House at Riverton

Kate Morton

Death and Donuts @ Benton pick

 

The House at Riverton is a gorgeous debut novel set in England between the wars. It is the story of an aristocratic family, a house, a mysterious death and a way of life that vanished forever, told in flashback by a woman who witnessed it all and kept a secret for decades.

 

Grace Bradley went to work at Riverton House as a servant when she was just a girl, before the First World War. For years her life was inextricably tied up with the Hartford family, most particularly the two daughters, Hannah and Emmeline.

 

In the summer of 1924, at a glittering society party held at the house, a young poet shot himself. The only witnesses were Hannah and Emmeline and only they -- and Grace -- know the truth.

 

In 1999, when Grace is ninety-eight years old and living out her last days in a nursing home, she is visited by a young director who is making a film about the events of that summer. She takes Grace back to Riverton House and reawakens her memories. Told in flashback, this is the story of Grace's youth during the last days of Edwardian aristocratic privilege shattered by war, of the vibrant twenties and the changes she witnessed as an entire way of life vanished forever.

 

The novel is full of secrets -- some revealed, others hidden forever, reminiscent of the romantic suspense of Daphne du Maurier. It is also a meditation on memory, the devastation of war and a beautifully rendered window into a fascinating time in history.

 

Originally published to critical acclaim in Australia, already sold in ten countries and a #1 bestseller in England, The House at Riverton is a vivid, page-turning novel of suspense and passion, with characters -- and an ending -- the reader won't soon forget.

 

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Blood in the Machine

Brian Merchant

"The most important book to read about the AI boom" (Wired): The "gripping" (New Yorker) true story of the first time machines came for human jobs--and how the Luddite uprising explains the power, threat, and toll of big tech and AI today

Named one of the best books of the year by The New Yorker, Wired, and the Financial Times - A Next Big Idea Book Club "Must-Read"

The most urgent story in modern tech begins not in Silicon Valley but two hundred years ago in rural England, when workers known as the Luddites rose up rather than starve at the hands of factory owners who were using automated machines to erase their livelihoods.

The Luddites organized guerrilla raids to smash those machines--on punishment of death--and won the support of Lord Byron, enraged the Prince Regent, and inspired the birth of science fiction. This all-but-forgotten class struggle brought nineteenth-century England to its knees.

Today, technology imperils millions of jobs, robots are crowding factory floors, and artificial intelligence will soon pervade every aspect of our economy. How will this change the way we live? And what can we do about it?

The answers lie in Blood in the Machine. Brian Merchant intertwines a lucid examination of our current age with the story of the Luddites, showing how automation changed our world--and is shaping our future.

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The Blues Brothers: An Epic Friendship, the Rise of Improv, and the Making of an American Film Classic

Daniel de Visé

The story of the epic friendship between John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd, the golden era of improv, and the making of a comedic film classic that helped shape our popular culture

"They're not going to catch us," Dan Aykroyd, as Elwood Blues, tells his brother Jake, played by John Belushi. "We're on a mission from God." So opens the musical action comedy The Blues Brothers, which hit theaters on June 20, 1980. Their scripted mission was to save a local Chicago orphanage. But Aykroyd, who conceived and wrote much of the film, had a greater mission: to honor the then-seemingly forgotten tradition of rhythm and blues, some of whose greatest artists--Aretha Franklin, James Brown, John Lee Hooker, Cab Calloway, Ray Charles--made the film as unforgettable as its wild car chases. Much delayed and vastly over budget, beset by mercurial and oft drugged-out stars, The Blues Brothers opened to outraged reviews. However, in the 44 years since, it has been acknowledged a classic: it has been inducted into the National Film Registry for its cultural significance, even declared a "Catholic classic" by the Church itself, and re-aired thousands of times on television to huge worldwide audiences. It is, undeniably, one of the most significant films of the twentieth century.

The story behind any classic is rich; the saga behind The Blues Brothers, as Daniel de Visé reveals, is epic, encompassing the colorful childhoods of Belushi and Aykroyd; the comedic revolution sparked by Harvard's Lampoon and Chicago's Second City; the birth and anecdote-rich, drug-filled early years of Saturday Night Live, where the Blues Brothers were born as an act amidst turmoil and rivalry; and, of course, the indelible behind-the-scenes narrative of how the film was made, scene by memorable scene. Based on original research and dozens of interviews probing the memories of principals from director John Landis and producer Bob Weiss to Aykroyd himself, The Blues Brothers illuminates an American masterpiece while vividly portraying the creative geniuses behind modern comedy.

 

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Toxic: Women, Fame, and the Tabloid 2000s

Sarah Ditum

A scathing reexamination of the lives of nine female celebrities in the 2000s, and the sexist, exploitative culture that took them down. Welcome to celebrity culture in the early aughts: the reign of Perez Hilton, celebrity sex tapes, and dueling tabloids fed by paparazzi who were willing to do anything to get the shot. It was a time when the Internet was still the Wild West, and when slut-shaming, fat-shaming, and revenge porn were all considered perfectly legitimate. Celebrity was seen as a commodity to be consumed, and for the famous women of this era, they were never as popular--or as vulnerable--as when they were in crisis. Toxic tells the stories of nine women who defined the hell of celebrity in the 2000s and explores how they were devoured by fame, how they attempted to control their own narratives, and how they succeeded or (more often) failed. These women come from all walks of fame--pop music, acting, reality TV, and WWE wrestling. Some of them you think you know already, and others will be less familiar, but Toxic reveals these women neither as pure victims nor as conniving strategists, but as complex individuals trying to navigate celebrity while under attack from a vicious and fast-changing media. Their portrayal has shaped the way that all women--famous or otherwise--are viewed today, and their experiences preempted the now-universal condition, especially thanks to social media, of living under the public gaze. In this book, Ditum brings readers back to a time before second chances and redemption arcs, and traces the ripple effects that came in the wake of spending a decade vilifying our idols. We'll see how these women's stories intersect with the birth of YouTube, the rise of Internet pornography, and the emergence of Donald Trump as a political force. It's time to come to terms with how those cultural events shaped the way we see ourselves, our bodies, our relationships, our aspirations, and our presence in the wider world. We are all products of the toxic decade.

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Charlie Hustle

Keith O'Brien

A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK • From New York Times bestselling author Keith O'Brien, a captivating chronicle of the incredible story of one of America’s most iconic, charismatic, and still polarizing figures—baseball immortal Pete Rose—and an exquisite cultural history of baseball and America in the second half of the twentieth century

"Comprehensive, compulsively readable and wholly terrific."
Wall Street Journal

“Baseball biography at its best. With Charlie Hustle, Pete Rose finally gets the book he deserves, and baseball fans get the book we’ve been craving, a hard-hitting, beautifully-written tale that will stand for years to come as the definitive account of one of the most fascinating figures in American sports history.”—Jonathan Eig, New York Times bestselling author of King: A Life


Pete Rose is a legend. A baseball god. He compiled more hits than anyone in the history of baseball, a record he set decades ago that still stands today. He was a working-class white guy from Cincinnati who made it; less talented than tough, and rough around the edges. He was everything that America wanted and needed him to be, the American dream personified, until he wasn’t.

In the 1980s, Pete Rose came to be at the center of one of the biggest scandals in baseball history. He kept secrets, ran with bookies, took on massive gambling debts, and he was magnificently, publicly cast out for betting on baseball and lying about it. The revelations that followed ruined him, changed life in Cincinnati, and forever altered the game.

Charlie Hustle tells the full story of one of America’s most epic tragedies—the rise and fall of Pete Rose. Drawing on firsthand interviews with Rose himself and with his associates, as well as on investigators' reports, FBI and court records, archives, a mountain of press coverage, Keith O’Brien chronicles how Rose fell so far from being America’s “great white hope.” It is Pete Rose as we've never seen him before.

This is no ordinary sport biography, but cultural history at its finest. What O’Brien shows is that while Pete Rose didn’t change, America and baseball did. This is the story of that change.

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American Woman: the transformation of the modern First Lady, from Hillary Clinton to Jill Biden

Katie Rogers

The first definitive exploration of the changing role of the twenty-first-century First Lady, painting a comprehensive portrait of Jill Biden—from a White House correspondent for The New York Times

“A fascinating and deeply researched exploration into the most public facing and least understood role in Washington.”—Kate Andersen Brower, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Residence and First Women

Since the Clinton era, shifts in media, politics, and pop culture have all redefined expectations of First Ladies, even as the boundaries set upon them have often remained anachronistic. With sharp insights and dozens of firsthand interviews with major players in the Biden, Obama, Trump, Bush, and Clinton orbits, including Jill Biden and Hillary Clinton, New York Times White House correspondent Katie Rogers traces the evolution of the role of the twenty-first-century First Lady from a ceremonial figurehead to a powerful political operator, which culminates in the tenure of First Lady Jill Biden.
 
Dr. Jill Biden began her journey toward public life in 1975 as a twenty-three-year-old who caught the eye of a widowed Senator Joe Biden. Recovering from the heartbreak of her failed first marriage, she found a man who was still grieving. She knitted his life together after unspeakable tragedy and stood by his side through three presidential campaigns.
 
In some ways, her legacy as First Lady was set before she ever entered the White House: She is the first presidential spouse in history to work in a paid role outside the White House, a decision that blazes the path for future first spouses. But as a prime guardian of one of the most insular operations in modern politics, she is also a central part of her husband’s presidential legacy.
 
Through deep reporting and newly discovered correspondence, American Woman is the first book to paint a full picture of Jill Biden while exploring how she helps answer the evolving question of what the role of the modern First Lady should be.

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Dear Mom and Dad

Patti Davis

Written with dignity and grace in the form of a letter to her parents, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, Dear Mom and Dad is that surprisingly poignant work that succeeds not only as a memoir but as a moving account that will inspire readers to recall their own childhoods in a totally new light.



Eager to retell the narrative of her own family and her coming-of-age, Patti Davis casts aside misperceptions that defined her in the past. Far from being the enfant terrible, Dear Mom and Dad reveals young Patti as a sensitive child, who was not able to be the public person her family demanded. Just as she re-examines her own role in an increasingly dysfunctional family drama, Davis casts an empathetic yet honest eye on her parents--on her father, the eternal lifeguard, who saved seventy-seven people, yet failed to create a coherent AIDS policy, and her mother, who never escaped her own tortured youth.



What comes across are Davis's burnished skills as a writer, something she always dreamed of becoming. Even as she unravels her mother's highly edited persona, and her father's loving but distant personality, Davis remains steadfast in her artistic expression, as she melds irony, comedy, and tragedy with dreamlike memories of an ever-present past. Dear Mom and Dad, with its account of her father's Alzheimer's and her mother's end-of-life struggles, becomes an account of forgiveness, reaching levels of redemption rarely found in contemporary memoirs.

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Relinquished

Gretchen Sisson

“Sisson vividly renders a world where children are treated like consumer products and shifted around “for the benefit of others’ family-making desires and a lucrative industry.” She also dares to imagine a different world where Americans treat adoption like the justice issue it is.” —Washington Post

“Impressively reported...[Sisson] uses her deep well of knowledge to make the case that adoption is no solution for Americans’ reduced access to abortion.” —San Francisco Chronicle

A powerful decade-long study of adoption in the age of Roe, revealing the grief of the American mothers for whom the choice to parent was never real


Adoption has always been viewed as a beloved institution for building families, as well as a mutually agreeable common ground in the abortion debate, but little attention has been paid to the lives of mothers who relinquish infants for private adoption. Relinquished reveals adoption to be a path of constrained choice for those for whom abortion is inaccessible, or for whom parenthood is untenable. The stories of relinquishing mothers are stories about our country's refusal to care for families at the most basic level, and to instead embrace an individual, private solution to a large-scale, social problem.

With the recent decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization revoking abortion protections, we are in a political moment in which adoption is, increasingly, being revealed as an institution devoted to separating families and policing parenthood under the guise of feel-good family-building. Rooted in a long-term study, Relinquished features the in-depth testimonies of American mothers who placed their children for domestic adoption. The voices of these women are powerful and heartrending; they deserve to be heard.

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The Waltham Murders

Susan Clare Zalkind

A crusade to find a killer becomes a gripping, intensely personal investigation into a shocking cold case and the radicalization of a terrorist.

In September 2011, Erik Weissman and two friends were murdered in a brutal triple homicide in Waltham, Massachusetts. The case went unsolved for months and then years, with no discernible leads. Erik's friend Susan Zalkind, an investigative journalist, needed closure and knew that finding it would be up to her. As Susan began digging, and as the Boston Marathon bombing exposed startling new leads, the case led her down a tangled and sometimes dangerous path to the truth.

With every person Susan interviewed came a new thread. She followed each one through a web of conspiracy theories, corruption, and crime until she eventually arrived at a decade-defining act of domestic terrorism.

A true-crime memoir and the culmination of more than ten years of reporting, The Waltham Murders is an in-depth probe into a dark American underworld by a journalist coming to grips with both personal grief and the collective anguish of a nation in her tireless pursuit of the truth.

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Our Biggest Fight

Frank H. McCourt, Jr.

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • The internet as we know it is broken. Here’s how we can seize back control of our lives from the corporate algorithms and create a better internet—before it’s too late.

“In the spirit of Thomas Paine’s Revolution-era Common Sense, this manifesto challenges us to create new digital architectures to safeguard democracy.”—Walter Isaacson, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Elon Musk

It was once a utopian dream. But today’s internet, despite its conveniences and connectivity, is the primary cause of a pervasive unease that has taken hold in the U.S. and other democratic societies. It’s why youth suicide rates are rising, why politics has become toxic, and why our most important institutions are faltering.
 
Information is the lifeblood of any society, and our current system for distributing it is corrupted at its heart. Everything comes down to our ability to communicate openly and trustfully with each other. But, thanks to the dominant digital platforms and the ways they distort human behavior, we have lost that ability—while, at the same time, we’ve been robbed of the data that is rightfully ours.

The roots of this crisis, argue Frank McCourt and Michael Casey, lie in the prevailing order of the internet. In plain but forceful language, the authors—a civic entrepreneur and an acclaimed journalist—show how a centralized system controlled by a small group of for-profit entities has set this catastrophe in motion and eroded our personhood.
 
And then they describe a groundbreaking solution to reclaim it: rather than superficial, patchwork regulations, we must reimagine the very architecture of the internet. The resulting “third-generation internet” would replace the status quo with a new model marked by digital property rights, autonomy, and ownership.

Inspired by historical calls to action like Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, Our Biggest Fight argues that we must act now to embed the core values of a free, democratic society in the internet of tomorrow. Do it right and we will finally, properly, unlock its immense potential.

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The Exvangelicals

Sarah McCammon

"An intimate window into the world of American evangelicalism. Fellow exvangelicals will find McCammon’s story both startlingly familiar and immensely clarifying, while those looking in from the outside can find no better introduction to the subculture that has shaped the hopes and fears of millions of Americans." —Kristin Kobes Du Mez, New York Times bestselling author of Jesus and John Wayne

The first definitive book that names the massive social movement of people leaving the church: the exvangelicals.

Growing up in a deeply evangelical family in the Midwest in the ‘80s and ‘90s, Sarah McCammon was strictly taught to fear God, obey him, and not question the faith. Persistently worried that her gay grandfather would go to hell unless she could reach him, or that her Muslim friend would need to be converted, and that she, too, would go to hell if she did not believe fervently enough, McCammon was a rule-follower and—most of the time—a true believer. But through it all, she was increasingly plagued by fears and deep questions as the belief system she'd been carefully taught clashed with her expanding understanding of the outside world.

After spending her early adult life striving to make sense of an unraveling worldview, by her 30s, she found herself face-to-face with it once again as she covered the Trump campaign for NPR, where she witnessed first-hand the power and influence that evangelical Christian beliefs held on the political right.

Sarah also came to discover that she was not alone: she is among a rising generation of the children of evangelicalism who are growing up and fleeing the fold, who are thinking for themselves and deconstructing what feel like the “alternative facts” of their childhood.

Rigorously reported and deeply personal, The Exvangelicals is the story of the people who make up this generational tipping point, including Sarah herself. Part memoir, part investigative journalism, this is the first definitive book that names and describes the post-evangelical movement: identifying its origins, telling the stories of its members, and examining its vast cultural, social, and political impact.

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Grief Is for People

Sloane Crosley

One of the Most Anticipated Books of the Year: TIME, The Washington Post, Vogue, Vanity Fair, Publishers Weekly, Paste, The Millions, Kirkus Reviews, Lit Hub, Real Simple, Nylon, BookPage, The Story Exchange, Sunset, and Zibby Mag

Disarmingly witty and poignant, Sloane Crosley’s memoir explores multiple kinds of loss following the death of her closest friend.

How do we live without the ones we love? Grief Is for People is a deeply moving and suspenseful portrait of friendship, and a book about loss that is profuse with life. Sloane Crosley is one of our most renowned observers of contemporary behavior, and now the pathos that has been ever present in her trademark wit is on full display. After the pain and confusion of losing her closest friend to suicide, Crosley looks for answers in philosophy and art, hoping for a framework more useful than the unavoidable stages of grief.

For most of her adult life, Sloane and Russell worked together and played together as they navigated the corridors of office life, the literary world, and the dramatic cultural shifts in New York City. One day, Sloane’s apartment is broken into. Along with her most prized possessions, the thief makes off with her sense of security, leaving a mystery in its place.

When Russell dies exactly one month later, his suicide propels Sloane on a wild quest to right the unrightable, to explore what constitutes family and possession as the city itself faces the staggering toll of the pandemic.

Sloane Crosley’s search for truth is frank, darkly funny, and gilded with resounding empathy. Upending the “grief memoir,” Grief Is for People is a category-defying story of the struggle to hold on to the past without being consumed by it. A modern elegy, it rises precisely to console and challenge our notions of mourning during these grief-stricken times.

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A Murder in Hollywood

Casey Sherman

USA TODAY BESTSELLER

"A wild ride beneath the glitz and glamour of 1950s Hollywood, proving once again that Casey Sherman is a master of the genre."

--Ben Mezrich, New York Times bestselling author of Dumb Money, Bringing Down the House, and The Accidental Billionaires

The dark story behind the bright lights of Tinseltown

From the outside, Hollywood starlet Lana Turner seemed to have it all--a thriving film career, a beautiful daughter, and the kind of fame and fortune that most people could only dream of. But when the famous femme fatale began dating mobster Johnny Stompanato, thug for the infamous west coast mob boss Mickey Cohen, her personal life became violent and unpredictable. Lana's teenage daughter, Cheryl, watched her beloved mother's life deteriorate as Stompanato's intense jealousy took over. Eventually, the physical and emotional abuse became too much to bear, and Lana attempted to break it off with Johnny--with disastrous consequences. The details of what happened that fateful night remain foggy, but it ended in a series of frantic phone calls and Stompanato dead on Lana's bedroom floor, with Cheryl claiming to have plunged a knife into his abdomen in an attempt to protect her mother. The subsequent murder trial made for the biggest headlines of the year, its drama eclipsing every Hollywood movie.

New York Times bestselling author Casey Sherman pulls back Tinseltown's velvet curtain to reveal the dark underbelly of celebrity, rife with toxic masculinity and casual violence against women, and tells the story of Lana Turner and her daughter, who finally stood up to the abuse that plagued their family for years. A Murder in Hollywood transports us back to the golden age of film and illuminates one of the 20th century's most notorious true crime tales.

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Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts

Crystal Wilkinson

 

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A lyrical culinary journey that explores the hidden legacy of Black Appalachians, through powerful storytelling alongside nearly forty comforting recipes, from the former poet laureate of Kentucky.
“With Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts, Crystal Wilkinson cements herself as one of the most dynamic book makers in our generation and a literary giant. Utter genius tastes like this.”—Kiese Laymon, author of the Carnegie Medal-winning Heavy

People are always surprised that Black people reside in the hills of Appalachia. Those not surprised that we were there, are surprised that we stayed.

Years ago, when O. Henry Prize-winning writer Crystal Wilkinson was baking a jam cake, she felt her late grandmother’s presence. She soon realized that she was not the only cook in her kitchen; there were her ancestors, too, stirring, measuring, and braising alongside her. These are her kitchen ghosts, five generations of Black women who settled in Appalachia and made a life, a legacy, and a cuisine.

An expert cook, Wilkinson shares nearly forty family recipes rooted deep in the past, full of flavor—delicious favorites including Corn Pudding, Chicken and Dumplings, Granny Christine’s Jam Cake, and Praisesong Biscuits, brought to vivid life through stunning photography. Together, Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts honors the mothers who came before, the land that provided for generations of her family, and the untold heritage of Black Appalachia.

As the keeper of her family’s stories and treasured dishes, Wilkinson shares her inheritance in Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts. She found their stories in her apron pockets, floating inside the steam of hot mustard greens and tucked into the sweet scent of clove and cinnamon in her kitchen. Part memoir, part cookbook, Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts weaves those stories together with recipes, family photos, and a lyrical imagination to present a culinary portrait of a family that has lived and worked the earth of the mountains for over a century.

 

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Kitchen Gardening for Beginners: Regrow Your Leftover Greens, Stalks, Seeds, and More

Katie Elzer-Peters

Discover how to easily regrow vegetable discards and scraps and turn them into harvestable, edible plants—even if you have no gardening experience.

Stop tossing your carrot tops, leafless herb sprigs, lettuce and celery stumps, and beet greens in the trash! Cut back on your food waste and cultivate your own homegrown veggies easily with advice from Kitchen Gardening for Beginners, a beginner-friendly edition of No-Waste Kitchen Gardening.

Learn how to grow indoors and maintain your regrown plants until they are ready for harvest. The accompanying photos highlight each step of the process, showing you what the root section, seed, leaf, stem, or other plant part should look like when you replant it and then what it should look like when it’s ready for harvest. Many of the featured vegetables can be regrown in water or in soil. Full instructions are supplied.

A diverse selection of large and small edibles—some that are quick to regrow and others that take a bit longer—are included, so you can decide what regrown foods are the best fit for your family. A few of the many plants featured include:
 

  • Green onions
  • Ginger
  • Celery
  • Tomatoes
  • Melons
  • Herbs
  • Avocados
  • Potatoes
  • Carrots


The expert advice in Kitchen Gardening for Beginners gives you all the instruction and tricks you’ll need to regrow produce from food waste to provide your family with fresh, homegrown goodness from your own windowsill.

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The Teacher

Freida McFadden

INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"Superb...[The Teacher] rivets." Publishers Weekly, starred review

A mind-bending, psychological thriller from Freida McFadden, the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Housemaid!

Lesson #1: trust no one

Eve has a good life. She gets up each day, gets a kiss from her husband Nate, and heads off to teach math at the local high school. All is as it should be. Except...

Last year, Caseham High was rocked by a scandal involving a student-teacher affair, with one student, Addie, at its center. But Eve knows there is far more to these ugly rumors than meets the eye.

Addie can't be trusted. She lies. She hurts people. She destroys lives. At least, that's what everyone says.

But nobody knows the real Addie. Nobody knows the secrets that could destroy her. And Addie will do anything to keep it quiet.

From the New York Times bestselling author Freida McFadden comes a story of twisting secrets and long-awaited revenge.

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Happy Place

Emily Henry

INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

“The beach-read master hooks us again."—People


Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2023 by BuzzFeed ∙ Paste Magazine ∙ Elle Southern Living ∙ SheReads Culturess ∙ Medium ∙ Her Campus Readers Digest ∙ Zibby Mag and more!

A couple who broke up months ago pretend to still be together for their annual weeklong vacation with their best friends in this glittering and wise new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Emily Henry.

 
Harriet and Wyn have been the perfect couple since they met in college—they go together like salt and pepper, honey and tea, lobster and rolls. Except, now—for reasons they’re still not discussing—they don’t.
 
They broke up five months ago. And still haven’t told their best friends.
 
Which is how they find themselves sharing a bedroom at the Maine cottage that has been their friend group’s yearly getaway for the last decade. Their annual respite from the world, where for one vibrant, blissful week they leave behind their daily lives; have copious amounts of cheese, wine, and seafood; and soak up the salty coastal air with the people who understand them most.
 
Only this year, Harriet and Wyn are lying through their teeth while trying not to notice how desperately they still want each other. Because the cottage is for sale and this is the last week they’ll all have together in this place. They can’t stand to break their friends’ hearts, and so they’ll play their parts. Harriet will be the driven surgical resident who never starts a fight, and Wyn will be the laid-back charmer who never lets the cracks show. It’s a flawless plan (if you look at it from a great distance and through a pair of sunscreen-smeared sunglasses). After years of being in love, how hard can it be to fake it for one week…in front of those who know you best?

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It's Hard for Me to Live with Me

Rex Chapman

A powerful memoir from the University of Kentucky basketball legend, NBA veteran, and social media influencer about his recovery from addiction.

He is considered by many the greatest basketball player ever produced by the hoops-crazy state of Kentucky. In two years at the University of Kentucky, he scored over 1,000 points, led the Wildcats to a Sweet Sixteen appearance and was nicknamed “King Rex.” The first player ever drafted by the Charlotte Hornets, he spent twelve seasons in the NBA, dazzling in dunk contests and sinking one of the most memorable buzzer-beaters in league history. But by the end of his career, Rex Chapman was harboring a destructive secret.

Years before America’s opioid crisis would become national news, Chapman developed a dependency on Vicodin and Oxycontin, ultimately ingesting fifty painkillers a day. In addition, he developed a severe gambling addiction, once nearly losing $400,000 at a Las Vegas blackjack table. All this would cost him his family as well as most of the $40 million fortune he’d made in basketball, leaving him to live in his car and shoplift to support his addictions. Only when he was arrested—and his mugshot made national news—did he finally commit to getting clean.

In It’s Hard for Me to Live With Me, Chapman—who has amassed millions of social media followers for his relatable and uplifting posts—tells the story of his addiction and recovery in unflinching detail. With equal frankness, he describes his history with depression; the racism he witnessed growing up and how that shaped his outspokenness on matters of social justice; and his complex and volatile relationship with his father, also a former professional basketball player. Cowritten with New York Times bestselling author Seth Davis, Chapman’s memoir is an equally devastating and inspiring story about the human struggle for self-acceptance.

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One Dark Window

Rachel Gillig

BookTok Book Club @ Hardin pick

 

THE FANTASY BOOKTOK SENSATION!



For fans of Uprooted and For the Wolf comes a dark, lushly gothic fantasy about a maiden who must unleash the monster within to save her kingdom--but the monster in her head isn't the only threat lurking.




Elspeth needs a monster. The monster might be her.



Elspeth Spindle needs more than luck to stay safe in the eerie, mist-locked kingdom she calls home--she needs a monster. She calls him the Nightmare, an ancient, mercurial spirit trapped in her head. He protects her. He keeps her secrets.

But nothing comes for free, especially magic.

When Elspeth meets a mysterious highwayman on the forest road, her life takes a drastic turn. Thrust into a world of shadow and deception, she joins a dangerous quest to cure the kingdom of the dark magic infecting it. Except the highwayman just so happens to be the King's own nephew, Captain of the Destriers...and guilty of high treason.

He and Elspeth have until Solstice to gather twelve Providence Cards--the keys to the cure. But as the stakes heighten and their undeniable attraction intensifies, Elspeth is forced to face her darkest secret yet: the Nightmare is slowly, darkly, taking over her mind. And she might not be able to stop him.

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Where the Forest Meets the Stars

Glendy Vanderah

Booktok Book Club @ Hardin pick

 

An Amazon Charts, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post bestseller.

In this gorgeously stunning debut, a mysterious child teaches two strangers how to love and trust again.

After the loss of her mother and her own battle with breast cancer, Joanna Teale returns to her graduate research on nesting birds in rural Illinois, determined to prove that her recent hardships have not broken her. She throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the appearance of a mysterious child who shows up at her cabin barefoot and covered in bruises.

The girl calls herself Ursa, and she claims to have been sent from the stars to witness five miracles. With concerns about the child's home situation, Jo reluctantly agrees to let her stay--just until she learns more about Ursa's past.

Jo enlists the help of her reclusive neighbor, Gabriel Nash, to solve the mystery of the charming child. But the more time they spend together, the more questions they have. How does a young girl not only read but understand Shakespeare? Why do good things keep happening in her presence? And why aren't Jo and Gabe checking the missing children's website anymore?

Though the three have formed an incredible bond, they know difficult choices must be made. As the summer nears an end and Ursa gets closer to her fifth miracle, her dangerous past closes in. When it finally catches up to them, all of their painful secrets will be forced into the open, and their fates will be left to the stars.

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The Women

Kristin Hannah

From the celebrated author of The Nightingale and The Four Winds comes Kristin Hannah's The Women—at once an intimate portrait of coming of age in a dangerous time and an epic tale of a nation divided.

Women can be heroes. When twenty-year-old nursing student Frances “Frankie” McGrath hears these words, it is a revelation. Raised in the sun-drenched, idyllic world of Southern California and sheltered by her conservative parents, she has always prided herself on doing the right thing. But in 1965, the world is changing, and she suddenly dares to imagine a different future for herself. When her brother ships out to serve in Vietnam, she joins the Army Nurse Corps and follows his path.

As green and inexperienced as the men sent to Vietnam to fight, Frankie is over-whelmed by the chaos and destruction of war. Each day is a gamble of life and death, hope and betrayal; friendships run deep and can be shattered in an instant. In war, she meets—and becomes one of—the lucky, the brave, the broken, and the lost.

But war is just the beginning for Frankie and her veteran friends. The real battle lies in coming home to a changed and divided America, to angry protesters, and to a country that wants to forget Vietnam.

The Women is the story of one woman gone to war, but it shines a light on all women who put themselves in harm’s way and whose sacrifice and commitment to their country has too often been forgotten. A novel about deep friendships and bold patriotism, The Women is a richly drawn story with a memorable heroine whose idealism and courage under fire will come to define an era.

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The Dead Romantics

Ashley Poston

BookTok Book Club @ Hardin pick

 

A New York Times Notable Book of 2022!

The New York Times Bestseller and Good Morning America Book Club Pick!


"I LOVED this book! ...Funny, breathtaking, hopeful, and dreamy.”—Ali Hazelwood, New York Times bestselling author of The Love Hypothesis

A disillusioned millennial ghostwriter who, quite literally, has some ghosts of her own, has to find her way back home in this sparkling adult debut from national bestselling author Ashley Poston.

Florence Day is the ghostwriter for one of the most prolific romance authors in the industry, and she has a problem—after a terrible breakup, she no longer believes in love. It’s as good as dead.
 
When her new editor, a too-handsome mountain of a man, won't give her an extension on her book deadline, Florence prepares to kiss her career goodbye. But then she gets a phone call she never wanted to receive, and she must return home for the first time in a decade to help her family bury her beloved father.
 
For ten years, she's run from the town that never understood her, and even though she misses the sound of a warm Southern night and her eccentric, loving family and their funeral parlor, she can’t bring herself to stay. Even with her father gone, it feels like nothing in this town has changed. And she hates it.
 
Until she finds a ghost standing at the funeral parlor’s front door, just as broad and infuriatingly handsome as ever, and he’s just as confused about why he’s there as she is.
 
Romance is most certainly dead . . . but so is her new editor, and his unfinished business will have her second-guessing everything she’s ever known about love stories.

"One of the Summer's Hottest Reads"—Entertainment Weekly

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The Bourbon Kings

J.R. Ward

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Black Dagger Brotherhood delivers the first novel in an enthralling new series set amid the shifting dynamics of a Southern family defined by wealth and privilege—and compromised by secrets, deceit, and scandal. . . .
 
Upstairs on the sprawling estate of Easterly, the kings of the bourbon capital of the world—the Bradford family—appear to play by the rules of good fortune and taste. Downstairs, the staff works tirelessly to maintain the impeccable Bradford facade. And never the twain shall meet.
 
For Lizzie King, Easterly’s head gardener, crossing that divide nearly ruined her life. Falling in love with Tulane, the prodigal son of the bourbon dynasty, was nothing she intended—and their breakup proved her instincts right. Now, after two years, Tulane is coming home. And no one will be left unmarked. . . .

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Sing, Unburied, Sing

Jesmyn Ward

Walking Book Club @ Calvert City pick

 

*WINNER of the NATIONAL BOOK AWARD for FICTION
*A TIME MAGAZINE BEST NOVEL OF THE YEAR and A NEW YORK TIMES TOP 10 OF 2017
*Finalist for the Kirkus Prize
*Finalist for the Andrew Carnegie Medal

*Finalist for the Aspen Words Literary Prize
*Publishers Weekly Top 10 of 2017
*Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award

A finalist for the Kirkus Prize, Andrew Carnegie Medal, Aspen Words Literary Prize, and a New York Times bestseller, this majestic, stirring, and widely praised novel from two-time National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward, the story of a family on a journey through rural Mississippi, is a “tour de force” (O, The Oprah Magazine) and a timeless work of fiction that is destined to become a classic.

In Jesmyn Ward’s first novel since her National Book Award–winning Salvage the Bones, this singular American writer brings the archetypal road novel into rural twenty-first-century America. An intimate portrait of a family and an epic tale of hope and struggle, Sing, Unburied, Sing journeys through Mississippi’s past and present, examining the ugly truths at the heart of the American story and the power—and limitations—of family bonds.

Jojo is thirteen years old and trying to understand what it means to be a man. He doesn’t lack in fathers to study, chief among them his Black grandfather, Pop. But there are other men who complicate his understanding: his absent White father, Michael, who is being released from prison; his absent White grandfather, Big Joseph, who won’t acknowledge his existence; and the memories of his dead uncle, Given, who died as a teenager.

His mother, Leonie, is an inconsistent presence in his and his toddler sister’s lives. She is an imperfect mother in constant conflict with herself and those around her. She is Black and her children’s father is White. She wants to be a better mother but can’t put her children above her own needs, especially her drug use. Simultaneously tormented and comforted by visions of her dead brother, which only come to her when she’s high, Leonie is embattled in ways that reflect the brutal reality of her circumstances.

When the children’s father is released from prison, Leonie packs her kids and a friend into her car and drives north to the heart of Mississippi and Parchman Farm, the State Penitentiary. At Parchman, there is another thirteen-year-old boy, the ghost of a dead inmate who carries all of the ugly history of the South with him in his wandering. He too has something to teach Jojo about fathers and sons, about legacies, about violence, about love.

Rich with Ward’s distinctive, lyrical language, Sing, Unburied, Sing is a majestic new work and an unforgettable family story.

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All the Light We Cannot See

Anthony Doerr

Walking Book Club @ Calvert City pick

 

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE
From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History where he works. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris, and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. They carry with them perhaps the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a German mining town, an orphan named Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. He becomes expert at fixing these new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the Resistance. Increasingly aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

Doerr’s “stunning sense of physical detail and gorgeous metaphors” (San Francisco Chronicle) are dazzling. Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, he illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another. Ten years in the writing, a National Book Award finalist, All the Light We Cannot See is a magnificent, deeply moving novel from a writer “whose sentences never fail to thrill” (Los Angeles Times).

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Fire Force 1

Atsushi Ohkubo

The fiery action manga that inspired the brand-new anime, from the creator of Soul Eater!

FIRE WALK WITH ME
The city of Tokyo is plagued by a deadly phenomenon: spontaneous human combustion! Luckily, a special team is there to quench the inferno: The Fire Force! The fire soldiers at Special Fire Cathedral 8 are about to get a unique addition. Enter Shinra, a boy who possesses the power to run at the speed of a rocket, leaving behind the famous "devil's footprints" (and destroying his shoes in the process). Can Shinra and his colleagues discover the source of this strange epidemic before the city burns to ashes?

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The Stranger in the Woods

Michael Finkel

Selected by Anita at Hardin

 

Many people dream of escaping modern life, but most will never act on it. This is the remarkable true story of a man who lived alone in the woods of Maine for 27 years, making this dream a reality—not out of anger at the world, but simply because he preferred to live on his own.

A New York Times bestseller

In 1986, a shy and intelligent twenty-year-old named Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the forest. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even through brutal winters, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store edibles and water, and to avoid freezing to death. He broke into nearby cottages for food, clothing, reading material, and other provisions, taking only what he needed but terrifying a community never able to solve the mysterious burglaries. Based on extensive interviews with Knight himself, this is a vividly detailed account of his secluded life—why did he leave? what did he learn?—as well as the challenges he has faced since returning to the world. It is a gripping story of survival that asks fundamental questions about solitude, community, and what makes a good life, and a deeply moving portrait of a man who was determined to live his own way, and succeeded.

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The Priory of the Orange Tree

Samantha Shannon

Selected by Anita at Hardin

 

The New York Times bestselling "epic feminist fantasy perfect for fans of Game of Thrones" (Bustle).

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY:
AMAZON (Top 100 Editors Picks and Science Fiction and Fantasy) * CHICAGO PUBLIC LIBRARY * BOOKPAGE * AUTOSTRADDLE

A world divided.
A queendom without an heir.
An ancient enemy awakens.


The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years. Still unwed, Queen Sabran the Ninth must conceive a daughter to protect her realm from destruction--but assassins are getting closer to her door.

Ead Duryan is an outsider at court. Though she has risen to the position of lady-in-waiting, she is loyal to a hidden society of mages. Ead keeps a watchful eye on Sabran, secretly protecting her with forbidden magic.

Across the dark sea, Tané has trained all her life to be a dragonrider, but is forced to make a choice that could see her life unravel.

Meanwhile, the divided East and West refuse to parley, and forces of chaos are rising from their sleep.

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House of Earth and Blood

Sarah J. Maas

Selected by Anita at Hardin

 

A #1 New York Times bestseller!

Sarah J. Maas's brand-new CRESCENT CITY series begins with House of Earth and Blood: the story of half-Fae and half-human Bryce Quinlan as she seeks revenge in a contemporary fantasy world of magic, danger, and searing romance.

Bryce Quinlan had the perfect life—working hard all day and partying all night—until a demon murdered her closest friends, leaving her bereft, wounded, and alone. When the accused is behind bars but the crimes start up again, Bryce finds herself at the heart of the investigation. She’ll do whatever it takes to avenge their deaths.

Hunt Athalar is a notorious Fallen angel, now enslaved to the Archangels he once attempted to overthrow. His brutal skills and incredible strength have been set to one purpose—to assassinate his boss’s enemies, no questions asked. But with a demon wreaking havoc in the city, he’s offered an irresistible deal: help Bryce find the murderer, and his freedom will be within reach.

As Bryce and Hunt dig deep into Crescent City’s underbelly, they discover a dark power that threatens everything and everyone they hold dear, and they find, in each other, a blazing passion—one that could set them both free, if they’d only let it.

With unforgettable characters, sizzling romance, and page-turning suspense, this richly inventive new fantasy series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas delves into the heartache of loss, the price of freedom—and the power of love.

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The Woods are Waiting

Katherine Greene

Selected by McKenzie at Hardin

 

In the tradition of Lisa Jewell and Ruth Ware, Katherine Greene’s debut thriller is a dark descent into the sinister traditions and customs of a small town in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. No superstition will prepare childhood friends Cheyenne and Natalie for the macabre truth that awaits them.

Cheyenne Ashby knows the dark and disturbing history of her hometown of Blue Cliff, Virginia, all too well. It’s why she left. Growing up deep within the woods with her eccentric mother, Constance, she was raised on the unusual customs and generational superstitions linked to the local legend of an evil entity that haunts the forest.

Five years ago, the bodies of three children were found in the woods. It was a man—not a mythical beast—named Jasper Clinton who was convicted of these heinous crimes. For five years the town breathed just a bit easier with a real-life monster behind bars.

But when another child goes missing, Cheyenne and Natalie are determined to discover the truth and uncover the town’s dangerous secrets rooted in its terrifying past.

The two women must confront the reality of the superstitions they always believed in and their town’s complicated connection with who—or what—lives in the woods.

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Red, White & Royal Blue

Casey McQuiston

Selected by Olivia at Benton

 

* Instant NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY bestseller *
* GOODREADS CHOICE AWARD WINNER for BEST DEBUT and BEST ROMANCE of 2019 *
* BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR* for VOGUE, NPR, VANITY FAIR, and more! *

What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?

When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius—his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when the tabloids get hold of a photo involving an Alex-Henry altercation, U.S./British relations take a turn for the worse.

Heads of family, state, and other handlers devise a plan for damage control: staging a truce between the two rivals. What at first begins as a fake, Instragramable friendship grows deeper, and more dangerous, than either Alex or Henry could have imagined. Soon Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret romance with a surprisingly unstuffy Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations and begs the question: Can love save the world after all? Where do we find the courage, and the power, to be the people we are meant to be? And how can we learn to let our true colors shine through? Casey McQuiston's Red, White & Royal Blue proves: true love isn't always diplomatic.

"I took this with me wherever I went and stole every second I had to read! Absorbing, hilarious, tender, sexy—this book had everything I crave. I’m jealous of all the readers out there who still get to experience Red, White & Royal Blue for the first time!" - Christina Lauren, New York Times bestselling author of The Unhoneymooners

"Red, White & Royal Blue is outrageously fun. It is romantic, sexy, witty, and thrilling. I loved every second." - Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones & The Six

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Spoiler Alert

Olivia Dade

Selected by Olivia at Benton

 

Olivia Dade bursts onto the scene in this delightfully fun romantic comedy set in the world of fanfiction, in which a devoted fan goes on an unexpected date with her celebrity crush, who's secretly posting fanfiction of his own. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name: Table Normal ; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow: yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent: ; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:8.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:107%; mso-pagination: widow-orphan; Marcus Caster-Rupp has a secret. While the world knows him as Aeneas, the star of the biggest show on TV, Gods of the Gates, he's known to fanfiction readers as Book!AeneasWouldNever, an anonymous and popular poster. Marcus is able to get out his own frustrations with his character through his stories, especially the ones that feature the internet's favorite couple to ship, Aeneas and Lavinia. But if anyone ever found out about his online persona, he'd be fired. Immediately. April Whittier has secrets of her own. A hardcore Lavinia fan, she's hidden her fanfiction and cosplay hobby from her real life for years--but not anymore. When she decides to post her latest Lavinia creation on Twitter, her photo goes viral. Trolls and supporters alike are commenting on her plus-size take, but when Marcus, one half of her OTP, sees her pic and asks her out on a date to spite her critics, she realizes life is really stranger than fanfiction. Even though their first date is a disaster, Marcus quickly realizes that he wants much more from April than a one-time publicity stunt. And when he discovers she's actually Unapologetic Lavinia Stan, his closest fandom friend, he has one more huge secret to hide from her. With love and Marcus's career on the line, can the two of them stop hiding once and for all, or will a match made in fandom end up prematurely cancelled?

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Truth & Beauty

Ann Patchett

Selected by Lenisa at Benton

 

Ann Patchett and the late Lucy Grealy met in college in 1981, and, after enrolling in the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, began a friendship that would be as defining to both of their lives as their work. In Grealy’s critically acclaimed memoir, Autobiography of a Face, she wrote about losing part of her jaw to childhood cancer, years of chemotherapy and radiation, and endless reconstructive surgeries. In Truth & Beauty, the story isn’t Lucy’s life or Ann’s life, but the parts of their lives they shared. This is a portrait of unwavering commitment that spans twenty years, from the long winters of the Midwest, to surgical wards, to book parties in New York. Through love, fame, drugs, and despair, this is what it means to be part of two lives that are intertwined . . . and what happens when one is left behind.

This is a tender, brutal book about loving the person we cannot save. It is about loyalty, and being lifted up by the sheer effervescence of someone who knew how to live life to the fullest.

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A Dark Room in Glitter Ball City

David Dominé

This true crime saga—with an eccentric Southern backdrop—introduces the reader to the story of a murder in a crumbling Louisville mansion and the decades of secrets and corruption that live within the old house’s walls.

On June 18, 2010, police discover a body buried in the wine cellar of a Victorian mansion in Old Louisville. James Carroll, shot and stabbed the year before, has lain for 7 months in a plastic storage bin—his temporary coffin. Homeowner Jeffrey Mundt and his boyfriend, Joseph Banis, point the finger at each other in what locals dub The Pink Triangle Murder.

On the surface, this killing appears to be a crime of passion, a sordid love tryst gone wrong in a creepy old house. But as author David Dominé sits in on the trials, a deeper story emerges: the struggle between hope for a better future on the one hand and the privilege and power of the status quo on the other.

As the court testimony devolves into he-said/he-said contradictions, David draws on the confidences of neighbors, drag queens, and other acquaintances within the city's vibrant LGBTQ community to piece together the details of the case. While uncovering the many past lives of the mansion itself, he enters a murky underworld of gossip, neighborhood scandal, and intrigue.

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Assistant to the Villain

Hannah Nicole Maehrer

Selected by Hayley at Calvert City

 

LIMITED FIRST PRINT RUN―featuring spray-painted edges, while supplies last.

Once Upon a Time meets The Office in Hannah Maehrer’s laugh-out-loud viral TikTok series turned novel, about the sunshine assistant to an Evil Villain...and their unexpected romance.

ASSISTANT WANTED: Notorious, high-ranking villain seeks loyal, levelheaded assistant for unspecified office duties, supporting staff for random mayhem and terror, and other Dark Things In General. Discretion a must. Excellent benefits.

With ailing family to support, Evie Sage's employment status isn't just important, it's vital. So when a mishap with Rennedawn’s most infamous Villain results in a job offer—naturally, she says yes. No job is perfect, of course, but even less so when you develop a teeny crush on your terrifying, temperamental, and undeniably hot boss. Don’t find evil so attractive, Evie.

But just when she’s getting used to severed heads suspended from the ceiling and the odd squish of an errant eyeball beneath her heel, Evie suspects this dungeon has a huge rat...and not just the literal kind. Because something rotten is growing in the kingdom of Rennedawn, and someone wants to take the Villain—and his entire nefarious empire—out.

Now Evie must not only resist drooling over her boss but also figure out exactly who is sabotaging his work...and ensure he makes them pay.

After all, a good job is hard to find.

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The Marriage Portrait

Maggie O'Farrell

Selected by Beth at Benton

 

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • The author of HamnetNew York Times best seller and National Book Critics Circle Award winner—brings the world of Renaissance Italy to jewel-bright life in this unforgettable fictional portrait of the captivating young duchess Lucrezia de' Medici as she makes her way in a troubled court.

"O’Farrell pulls out little threads of historical detail to weave this story of a precocious girl sensitive to the contradictions of her station ... You may know the history, and you may think you know what’s coming, but don’t be so sure."The Washington Post

Florence, the 1550s. Lucrezia, third daughter of the grand duke, is comfortable with her obscure place in the palazzo: free to wonder at its treasures, observe its clandestine workings, and devote herself to her own artistic pursuits. But when her older sister dies on the eve of her wedding to the ruler of Ferrara, Modena and Reggio, Lucrezia is thrust unwittingly into the limelight: the duke is quick to request her hand in marriage, and her father just as quick to accept on her behalf.
 
Having barely left girlhood behind, Lucrezia must now enter an unfamiliar court whose customs are opaque and where her arrival is not universally welcomed. Perhaps most mystifying of all is her new husband himself, Alfonso. Is he the playful sophisticate he appeared to be before their wedding, the aesthete happiest in the company of artists and musicians, or the ruthless politician before whom even his formidable sisters seem to tremble?
 
As Lucrezia sits in constricting finery for a painting intended to preserve her image for centuries to come, one thing becomes worryingly clear. In the court’s eyes, she has one duty: to provide the heir who will shore up the future of the Ferranese dynasty. Until then, for all of her rank and nobility, the new duchess’s future hangs entirely in the balance.
 
Full of the beauty and emotion with which she illuminated the Shakespearean canvas of Hamnet, Maggie O’Farrell turns her talents to Renaissance Italy in an extraordinary portrait of a resilient young woman’s battle for her very survival.

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Good Night, Irene

Luis Alberto Urrea

Selected by Beth at Benton

 

An Instant New York Times Bestseller

This "powerful, uplifting, and deeply personal novel" (Kristin Hannah, #1 NYT bestselling author of The Four Winds), at once "a heart-wrenching wartime drama" (Christina Baker Kline, #1 NYT bestselling author of Orphan Train) and "a moving and graceful tribute to heroic women" (Publishers Weekly, starred review), asks the question: What if a friendship forged on the front lines of war defines a life forever?

In the tradition of The Nightingale and Transcription, this is a searing epic based on the magnificent and true story of courageous Red Cross women.

"Urrea's touch is sure, his exuberance carries you through . . . He is a generous writer, not just in his approach to his craft but in the broader sense of what he feels necessary to capture about life itself." --Financial Times

In 1943, Irene Woodward abandons an abusive fiancé in New York to enlist with the Red Cross and head to Europe. She makes fast friends in training with Dorothy Dunford, a towering Midwesterner with a ferocious wit. Together they are part of an elite group of women, nicknamed Donut Dollies, who command military vehicles called Clubmobiles at the front line, providing camaraderie and a taste of home that may be the only solace before troops head into battle.

After D-Day, these two intrepid friends join the Allied soldiers streaming into France. Their time in Europe will see them embroiled in danger, from the Battle of the Bulge to the liberation of Buchenwald. Through her friendship with Dorothy, and a love affair with a courageous American fighter pilot named Hans, Irene learns to trust again. Her most fervent hope, which becomes more precarious by the day, is for all three of them to survive the war intact.

Taking as inspiration his mother's own Red Cross service, Luis Alberto Urrea has delivered an overlooked story of women's heroism in World War II. With its affecting and uplifting portrait of friendship and valor in harrowing circumstances, Good Night, Irene powerfully demonstrates yet again that Urrea's "gifts as a storyteller are prodigious" (NPR).

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The Vaster Wilds

Lauren Groff

Selected by Beth at Benton

 

AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY NPR, TIME, ESQUIRE and others

“Part historical, part horror, part breathless thriller, part wilderness survival tale, The Vaster Wilds is a story about the lengths to which we will go to stay alive."—NPR staff pick

“Lauren Groff just reinvented the adventure novel."—Los Angeles Times

Glorious…surroundings come alive in prose that lives and breathes upon the page." —Boston Globe


A taut and electrifying novel from celebrated bestselling author Lauren Groff, about one spirited girl alone in the wilderness, trying to survive

A servant girl escapes from a colonial settlement in the wilderness. She carries nothing with her but her wits, a few possessions, and the spark of god that burns hot within her. What she finds in this terra incognita is beyond the limits of her imagination and will bend her belief in everything that her own civilization has taught her.

Lauren Groff’s new novel is at once a thrilling adventure story and a penetrating fable about trying to find a new way of living in a world succumbing to the churn of colonialism. The Vaster Wilds is a work of raw and prophetic power that tells the story of America in miniature, through one girl at a hinge point in history, to ask how—and if—we can adapt quickly enough to save ourselves.

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