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Staff Picks

you can't be serious by kal penn

 

Recommended by Laura

You Can't Be Serious by Kal Penn

Kal Penn's unlikely career arc has taken him from nerdy American kid from an immigrant family in the New York suburb of Montclair, New Jersey, to world-famous actor, to White House staffer under President Obama, and back to actor again. Now, in You Can't Be Serious, he reflects on the most ridiculous, offensive, and rewarding moments that have stood out during his journey. With intelligence, humor, and charm on every page, Penn explores what it means to be the embodiment of the American Dream, as the child of immigrant parents who came to this country with very little, and who never expected to see their son get his big break by sliding off an oiled-up naked woman in a raunchy Ryan Reynolds movie. He also pulls back the curtain on racism in Hollywood and the constant reminders that he would never fit in. And of course, he reveals how, after twenty-five years fighting for success in Hollywood, he made the terrifying but rewarding decision to walk away from it all for a career in politics.

the first day of spring by nancy tucker

 

Recommended by Lillian

The First Day of Spring by Nancy Tucker

Chrissie is eight years old and she has a secret: she has just killed a boy. The feeling of it made her belly fizz like soda pop. Across her neighborhood, Chrissie's playmates and their parents are tearful and terrified. But Chrissie rules the roost - she's the best at wall-walking, she knows how to get free candy, and now she has a secret, thrilling power she doesn't get to experience much at home, where food is scarce and attention scarcer. Twenty years later, Chrissie has a new identity and a new name. As "Julia," she is working in a cafe to support herself and her six-year-old daughter, Molly. All she wants is a fresh start, but the past hasn't seemed to let her and Molly alone, and when, suddenly, their future together is threatened, Chrissie/Julia must find a new way to take matters into her own hands.

Hurricane lizards and plastic squid

 

Recommended by Kathryn

Hurricane Lizards and Plastic Squid: The Fraught and Fascinating Biology of Climate Change by Thor Hanson

In his three previous books-Feathers, The Triumph of Seeds, and Buzz-Thor Hanson has taken his readers on unforgettable journeys into nature, rendered with great storytelling, the soul of a poet, and the insight of a biologist. In this new book, he is doing it again, but exploring one of the most vital scientific and cultural issues of our time: climate change. As a young biologist, Hanson by his own admission watched with some detachment as our warming planet presented plants and animals with an ultimatum: change or face extinction. But his detachment turned to both concern and awe, as he observed the remarkable narratives of change playing out in each plant and animal he studied. In Hurricane Lizards and Plastic Squid, Hanson tells the story of how nature-both plants and animals, from beech trees to beetles-are meeting the challenges of rapid climate change head-on, adjusting, adapting, and sometimes noticeably evolving.

laserwriter II

 

Recommended by Lillian

LaserWriter II: A Novel by Tamara Shopsin

LaserWriter II is a coming-of-age tale set in the legendary 90s indie NYC Mac repair shop TekServe—a voyage back in time to when the internet was new, when New York City was gritty, and when Apple made off-beat computers for weirdos. Our guide is Claire, a 19-year-old who barely speaks to her bohemian co-workers, but knows when it’s time to snap on an antistatic bracelet. Tamara Shopsin brings us a classically New York novel that couldn’t feel more timely. Interweaving the history of digital technology with a tale both touchingly human and delightfully technical, Shopsin brings an idiosyncratic cast of characters to life with a light touch, a sharp eye, and an unmistakable voice. Filled with pixelated philosophy and lots of printers, LaserWriter II is, at its heart, a parable about an apple.

The silence of the girls

 

Recommended by Kit

The Silence of the Girls: A Novel by Pat Barker

The ancient city of Troy has withstood a decade under siege of the powerful Greek army, who continue to wage bloody war over a stolen woman: Helen. In the Greek camp, another woman watches and waits for the war's outcome: Briseis. She was queen of one of Troy's neighboring kingdoms, until Achilles, Greece's greatest warrior, sacked her city and murdered her husband and brothers. Briseis becomes Achilles's concubine, a prize of battle, and must adjust quickly in order to survive a radically different life, as one of the many conquered women who serve the Greek army. When Agamemnon, the brutal political leader of the Greek forces, demands Briseis for himself, she finds herself caught between the two most powerful of the Greeks.

An unkindness of ghosts

 

Recommended by Kit

An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

Aster has little to offer folks in the way of rebuttal when they call her ogre and freak. She's used to the names; she only wishes there was more truth to them. If she were truly a monster, she'd be powerful enough to tear down the walls around her until nothing remains of her world. Aster lives in the lowdeck slums of the HSS Matilda, a space vessel organized much like the antebellum South. For generations, Matilda has ferried the last of humanity to a mythical Promised Land. On its way, the ship's leaders have imposed harsh moral restrictions and deep indignities on dark-skinned sharecroppers like Aster. Embroiled in a grudge with a brutal overseer, Aster learns there may be a way to improve her lot--if she's willing to sow the seeds of civil war.

How beautiful we were by imbolo mbue

 

Recommended by Linda

How Beautiful We Were by Imbolo Mbue

A fearless young woman from a small African village starts a revolution against an American oil company in this sweeping, inspiring novel.

Below the Edge of Darkness by Edith Widder

 

Recommended by Kathryn

Below the Edge of Darkness: A memoir of expoloring light and life in the deep sea by Edith Widder, Ph.D

A pioneering marine biologist takes us down into the deep ocean to understand bioluminescence—the language of light that helps life communicate in the darkness—and what it tells us about the future of life on Earth in this thrilling blend of hard science and high adventure

The musical human

 

Recommended by Jeff

The Musical Human by Michael Spitzer

A colossal history spanning cultures, time, and space to explore the vibrant relationship between music and the human species. 165 million years ago saw the birth of rhythm. 66 million years ago was the first melody. 40 thousand years ago Homo sapiens created the first musical instrument.

All the Murmuring bones

 

Recommended by Lillian

All the Murmuring Bones by A.G. Slater

Orphaned as a young child, Mirin O'Malley has been brought up by her grandparents on their isolated, rambling estate Hob's Hallow. Long ago her family prospered due to a deal struck with the mer, the terrifying creatures who live in the depths of the sea: safety for their merchant ships in return for a child of each generation. But for many years the family have been unable to keep their side of the bargain and their fortunes have suffered as a result. When Mirin's grandfather dies, her grandmother puts in train a plans to restore their glory - but at the price of Mirin's freedom. Finding amongst her grandfather's papers evidence that her parents may still be alive, Mirin is determined to escape and discover the truth about her origins. This takes her on a treacherous journey to Blackwater, the estate her parents built when they fled Hob's Hallow, but on arrival Mirin finds the estate in decline and her 'Uncle Edward' in charge: where are her parents, and who is this Edward Elliott really? A story of mystery and magic and the strange creatures that lurk beneath the waves.

A Fiancee's guide to first wives and murder

 

Recommended by Kathryn

A Fiancées Guide to First Wives and Murder by Dianne Freeman

Frances Wynn, widow to the late Earl of Harleigh, has no sooner sent her mother and daughter off on a shopping trip to Paris than she and her fiancé, George Hazelton, are socializing with visiting members of the Russian royal family. Scandal also comes calling: Inspector Delaney turns up outside Frances's house with a young French woman claiming she is Mrs. George Hazelton. Mrs. Hazelton, aka Irena, also insists that she is the illegitimate daughter of Russian royalty, that she has been abducted and held for ransom many times, and that someone is sending her threatening letters. When George arrives, he clarifies that he is not married to Irena, but he can confirm her royal parentage. When Irena is found strangled in Frances' garden, Frances and George must determine which of Irena's outlandish stories were based in fact.

The Painted Drum

 

Recommended by Linda

The Painted Drum by Louise Erdrich

From the author of the National Book Award Winner The Round House, Louise Erdrich's breathtaking, lyrical novel of a priceless Ojibwe artifact and the effect it has had on those who have come into contact with it over the years.

Islands of abandonment

 

Recommended by Jeff

Islands of Abandonment: Nature Rebounding in the Post-Human Landscape by Carole Stivers

A beautiful, lyrical exploration of the places where nature is flourishing in our absence. Some of the only truly feral cattle in the world wander a long-abandoned island off the northernmost tip of Scotland. A variety of wildlife not seen in many lifetimes has rebounded on the irradiated grounds of Chernobyl. A lush forest supports thousands of species that are extinct or endangered everywhere else on earth in the Korean peninsula's narrow DMZ.

the mother code

 

Recommended by Kit

The Mother Code by Carole Stivers

It is 2049. When a U.S. attempt at stealth biowarfare goes awry, a team of scientists is engaged to ensure human survival on earth. Their best efforts fail, and they must turn to their last resort: a plan to place genetically engineered children inside the cocoons of large-scale robots - to be incubated, birthed, and raised by these machines, which have been programmed with the latest advances in artificial intelligence: the Mother Code. Kai is born in America's desert Southwest, his only companion his robotic Mother, Rho-Z. Equipped with the knowledge and intuition of a human mother, Rho-Z raises Kai and teaches him how to survive. As children like him come of age, their Mothers transform too - in ways that were never predicted. When government survivors decide that the machines who raised the children must be destroyed, Kai must fight to save the only parent he has ever known

Lady Killers

 

Recommended by Kathryn

Lady Killers: Deadly women throughout history by Tori Telfer

In 1998, an FBI profiler infamously declared in a homicide conference, "There are no female serial killers"--but Lady Killers offers fourteen creepy examples to the contrary.

This is Chance

 

Recommended by Linda

This is Chance!: the shaking of an all-American city, a voice that held it together by Jon Mooallem

The Good Friday, 1964, Anchorage, Alaska earthquake, and newscaster Genie Chance remaining on-air to broadcast events.

In the spring of 1964, Anchorage, Alaska, was a modern-day frontier town yearning to be a metropolis - the largest, proudest city in a state that was still brand-new. But just before sundown on Good Friday, the community was jolted by the most powerful earthquake in American history, a catastrophic 9.2 on the Richter Scale. For four and a half minutes, the ground lurched and rolled. Streets cracked open and swallowed buildings whole. And once the shaking stopped, night fell and Anchorage went dark. The city was in disarray and sealed off from the outside world. Slowly, people switched on their transistor radios and heard a familiar woman’s voice explaining what had just happened and what to do next. Genie Chance was a part-time radio reporter and working mother who would play an unlikely role in the wake of the disaster, helping to put her fractured community back together. Her tireless broadcasts over the next three days would transform her into a legendary figure in Alaska and bring her fame worldwide - but only briefly. That Easter weekend in Anchorage, Genie and a cast of endearingly eccentric characters - from a mountaineering psychologist to the local community theater group staging Our Town - were thrown into a jumbled world they could not recognize. Together, they would make a home in it again.

Hag

 

Recommended by Lillian

Hag: Forgotten Folktales Retold

Dark, Potent, and uncanny, Hag Bursts with the untold stories of our isles, captured in voices as varied as they are vivid. Here are sisters fighting for the love of the same woman, a pregnant archaeologist unearthing impossible bones and lost children following you home. A panther runs through the forests of England and pixies prey upon violent men. From the islands of Scotland to the coast of Cornwall, the mountains of Galway to the depths of the Fens, these forgotten folktales howl, cackle and sing their way into the 21st century, wildly reimagined by some of the most exciting women writing in Britain and Ireland today.

Breasts and eggs

 

Recommended by Kit

Breasts and Eggs: A Novel by Mieko Kawakami

Breasts and Eggs paints a portrait of contemporary womanhood in Japan and recounts the intimate journeys of three women as they confront oppressive mores and their own uncertainties on the road to finding peace and futures they can truly call their own. It tells the story of three women: the thirty-year-old Natsu, her older sister, Makiko, and Makiko's daughter, Midoriko. Makiko has traveled to Tokyo in search of an affordable breast enhancement procedure. She is accompanied by Midoriko, who has recently grown silent, finding herself unable to voice the vague yet overwhelming pressures associated with growing up. Her silence proves a catalyst for each woman to confront her fears and frustrations. On another hot summer's day ten years later, Natsu, on a journey back to her native city, struggles with her own indeterminate identity as she confronts anxieties about growing old alone and childless

American republics

 

Recommended by Jeff

American Republics: A continental history of the United States, 1783-1850 by Alan Taylor

From a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, the powerful story of a fragile nation as it expands across a contested continent. In this beautifully written history of America's formative period, a preeminent historian upends the traditional story of a young nation confidently marching to its continent-spanning destiny. The newly constituted United States actually emerged as a fragile, internally divided union of states contending still with European empires and other independent republics on the North American continent. Native peoples sought to defend their homelands from the flood of American settlers through strategic alliances with the other continental powers. The system of American slavery grew increasingly powerful and expansive, its vigorous internal trade in Black Americans separating parents and children, husbands and wives. Bitter party divisions pitted elites favoring strong government against those, like Andrew Jackson, espousing a democratic populism for white men. Violence was both routine and organized: the United States invaded Canada, Florida, Texas, and much of Mexico, and forcibly removed most of the Native peoples living east of the Mississippi. At the end of the period the United States, its conquered territory reaching the Pacific, remained internally divided, with sectional animosities over slavery growing more intense. Taylor's elegant history of this tumultuous period offers indelible miniatures of key characters from Frederick Douglass and Sojourner Truth to Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Margaret Fuller. It captures the high-stakes political drama as Jackson and Adams, Clay, Calhoun, and Webster contend over slavery, the economy, Indian removal, and national expansion. A ground-level account of American industrialization conveys the everyday lives of factory workers and immigrant families.

beloved beasts

 

Recommended by Kathryn

Beloved Beasts: Fighting for Life in an Age of Extinction by Michelle Nijhuis

A vibrant history of the modern conservation movement-told through the lives and ideas of the people who built it. In the late nineteenth century, as humans came to realize that our rapidly industrializing and globalizing societies were driving other animal species to extinction, a movement to protect and conserve them was born. In Beloved Beasts, acclaimed science journalist Michelle Nijhuis traces the movement's history: from early battles to save charismatic species such as the American bison and bald eagle to today's global effort to defend life on a larger scale. She describes the vital role of scientists and activists such as Aldo Leopold and Rachel Carson as well as lesser-known figures in conservation history; she reveals the origins of vital organizations like the Audubon Society and the World Wildlife Fund; she explores current efforts to protect species such as the whooping crane and the black rhinoceros; and she confronts the darker side of conservation, long shadowed by racism and colonialism. As the destruction of other species continues and the effects of climate change escalate, Beloved Beasts charts the ways conservation is becoming a movement for the protection of all species-including our own

sumac

 

Recommended by Lillian

Sumac: Recipes and Stories from Syria by Anas Atassi and Ajda Mehmet

The Syrian kitchen, shaped by influences from neighboring countries, has deep historical roots and evolved to perfection over thousands of years. Sumac is filled with traditional and contemporary Syrian recipes that were inspired by personal stories. The gorgeous photography illustrates how beautiful this country was and still is, and family photographs add depth to the author's history. Each chapter is filled with the author's memories of family celebrations and the country that inspired the book. He tells stories of traditional weekend breakfasts in his grandmother's garden and of the mezze his mother cooked for family gatherings. There are memories of the rich aromatic flavors of the Syrian kitchen where fragrant spices like the lemony and deep red sumac are prized ingredients. In the author's words: "With this book, I hope to build a bridge between Syrian culture and the rest of the world, with food the common denominator. But even more, I hope that Sumac will present a positive image of my country, in spite of all the unfortunate events now taking place in Syria." Over eighty recipes, inspired by the author's family recipes and his travels. Beautifully photographed by Rania Kataf, who shot Humans of Damascus For anybody curious about a country so often in the news headlines but so difficult to visit as a tourist

book of v

 

Recommended by Linda

The Book of V by Anna Soloman

Lily is a mother and a daughter. And a second wife. And a writer, maybe? Or she was going to be, before she had children. Now, in her rented Brooklyn apartment, she's grappling with her sexual and intellectual desires while also trying to manage her roles as a mother and a wife. Vivian Barr seems to be the perfect political wife, dedicated to helping her charismatic and ambitious husband find success in Watergate-era Washington D.C. But one night he demands a humiliating favor, and her refusal to obey changes the course of her life - along with the lives of others. Esther is a fiercely independent young woman in ancient Persia, where she and her uncle's tribe live a tenuous existence outside the palace walls. When an innocent mistake results in devastating consequences for her people, she is offered up as a sacrifice to please the king, in the hopes that she will save them all..

just like you

 

Recommended by Kit

Just Like You by Nick Hornby

Lucy used to handle her adult romantic life according to the script she'd been handed. She met a guy just like herself: same age, same background, same hopes and dreams; they got married and started a family. Too bad he made her miserable. Now, two decades later, she's a nearly-divorced, forty-one-year-old schoolteacher with two school-aged sons, and there is no script anymore. So when she meets Joseph, she isn't exactly looking for love--she's more in the market for a babysitter. Joseph is twenty-two, living at home with his mother, and working several jobs, including the butcher counter where he and Lucy meet. It's not a match anyone one could have predicted. He's of a different class, a different culture, and a different generation. But sometimes it turns out that the person who can make you happiest is the one you least expect, though it can take some maneuvering to see it through.

the man who ate too much

 

Recommended by Kathryn

The Zoologist's Guide to the Galaxy: What Animals on Earth Reveal About Aliens--and Ourselves by Arik Kershenbaum

From a noted Cambridge zoologist, a wildly fun and scientifically sound exploration of what alien life must be like, using universal laws that govern life on Earth and in space. Scientists are confident that life exists elsewhere in the universe. Yet rather than taking a realistic approach to what aliens might be like, we imagine that life on other planets is the stuff of science fiction. The time has come to abandon our fantasies of space invaders and movie monsters and place our expectations on solid scientific footing. But short of alien's landing in New York City, how do we know what they are like? Using his own expert understanding of life on Earth and Darwin's theory of evolution--which applies throughout the universe--Cambridge zoologist Dr. Arik Kershenbaum explains what alien life must be like: how these creatures will move, socialize, and communicate. For example, by observing fish whose electrical pulses indicate social status, we can see that other planets might allow for communication by electricity. As there was evolutionary pressure to wriggle along a sea floor, Earthling animals tend to have left/right symmetry; on planets where creatures evolved mid-air or in soupy tar they might be lacking any symmetry at all. Might there be an alien planet with supersonic animals? A moon where creatures have a language composed of smells? Will aliens scream with fear, act honestly, or have technology? The Zoologist's Guide to the Galaxy answers these questions using the latest science to tell the story of how life really works, on Earth and in space

just like you

 

Recommended by Lillian

Amoralman by Derek DelGaudio

A thought-provoking and brilliantly entertaining work of nonfiction, from one of the most acclaimed conjurors and gifted sleight-of-hand artists in a generation, the creator and star of the astonishing one-man show, In and of Itself. Conscious of his own rather mind-boggling ability to deceive others professionally, Derek DelGaudio believed that the artifice in his life was always reserved exclusively for the stage. But when irrefutable evidence to the contrary is found in an old journal, Derek is forced to question his ability to see through an illusion, something he trained his whole life to do. Using his youthful notebook entries as a roadmap, DelGaudio embarks on a soulful, often funny, sometimes dark journey through his own past, stopping at the significant signposts that led him into the heart of a world populated by swindlers, con artists and card cheats. As stories are peeled away and deceptions are revealed, Derek discovers the meaning of the mystery behind his father's vanishing act; the deep need, i nherited from his mother, to keep secrets; the urge to create stories that could keep cruel schoolmates and a judgmental church at bay; the obsession he developed with illusions and sleight-of-hand that shaped his future; and the attraction he felt for the charismatic criminal who taught him how to use his talents to deceive, cheat and steal. It all leads to a period in his life where he becomes the crooked dealer in a big money Hollywood card game, where he begins to question his own sense of morality, reexamine his relationship with truths and lies, and uncovers a secret he has managed to keep even from himself. Amoralman is alternatingly tender, thrilling, and hilarious; a wildly engaging exploration of the nature of fact versus fiction, a book about t he lies we tell ourselves and the truths we manufacture in others, and shows how even a master of deception can find himself trapped inside of an illusion

the man who ate too much

 

Recommended by Kit

The Man Who Ate Too Much: The Life of James Beard by John Birdsall

The definitive biography of America's best-known and least understood food personality, and the modern culinary landscape he shaped. After World War II, a newly affluent United States reached for its own gourmet culture, one at ease with the French international style of Escoffier, but also distinctly American. Enter James Beard, authority on cooking and eating, his larger-than-life presence and collection of whimsical bow ties synonymous with the nation's food for decades, even after his death in 1985. In the first biography of Beard in twenty-five years, acclaimed writer John Birdsall argues that Beard's struggles as a closeted gay man directly influenced his creation of an American cuisine. Starting in the 1920s, Beard escaped loneliness and banishment by traveling abroad to places where people ate for pleasure, not utility, and found acceptance at home by crafting an American ethos of food likewise built on passion and delight. Informed by never-before-tapped correspondence and lush with details of a golden age of home cooking, The Man Who Ate Too Much is a commanding portrait of a towering figure who still represents the best in food

the invisible life of addie larue

 

Recommended by Cheryl

The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E. Schwab

France, 1714. In a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever-- and cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets. Addie LaRue's life will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art. After nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore. He remembers her name-- and everything changes. How far will she go to leave her mark on the world?

Half a Yellow Sun

 

Recommended by Sandra

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi

With effortless grace, celebrated author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie illuminates a seminal moment in modern African history: Biafra's impassioned struggle to establish an independent republic in southeastern Nigeria during the late 1960s. We experience this tumultuous decade alongside five unforgettable characters: Ugwu, a thirteen-year-old houseboy who works for Odenigbo, a university professor full of revolutionary zeal; Olanna, the professor’s beautiful young mistress who has abandoned her life in Lagos for a dusty town and her lover’s charm; and Richard, a shy young Englishman infatuated with Olanna’s willful twin sister Kainene.

Nutshell

 

Recommended by Kit

Nutshell: a Novel by Ian McEwan

Trudy has betrayed her husband, John. She's still in the marital home--a dilapidated, priceless London townhouse--but John's not here. Instead, she's with his brother, the profoundly banal Claude, and the two of them have a plan. But there is a witness to their plot: the inquisitive, nine-month-old resident of Trudy's womb. Told from a perspective unlike any other, Nutshell is a classic tale of murder and deceit from one of the world's master storytellers

The authenticity project

 

Recommended by Cheryl

The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

A story about a solitary green notebook that brings together six strangers and leads to unexpected friendship, and even love--think Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine meets Love, Actually "Everybody lies about their lives. What would happen if you shared the truth?" This is the question that Julian Jessop, an eccentric, seventy-nine-year-old artist, poses within a pale green exercise book that he labels The Authenticity Project, before leaving it behind in Monica's Café. When Monica discovers Julian's abandoned notebook, not only does she add her own story to the book, she is determined to find a way to help Julian feel less lonely. And so it goes with the others who find the green notebook that will soon contain their deepest selves. It will also knit the group together In Real Life at Monica's Cafe, where they'll discover the thrill and sometime-risk of being completely honest--and, for some, find unexpected love. With a cast of characters who are by turns quirky and funny, heartbreakingly sad and painfully true-to-life, The Authenticity Project is a novel readers will take to their hearts and read with unabashed pleasure

Year One Trilogy

 

Recommended by Vanessa

Year One by Nora Roberts

It began on New Year's Eve. The sickness came on suddenly, and spread quickly. The fear spread even faster. Within weeks, everything people counted on began to fail them. The electrical grid sputtered; law and government collapsed--and more than half of the world's population was decimated. Where there had been order, there was now chaos. And as the power of science and technology receded, magic rose up in its place. Some of it is good, like the witchcraft worked by Lana Bingham, practicing in the loft apartment she shares with her lover, Max. Some of it is unimaginably evil, and it can lurk anywhere, around a corner, in fetid tunnels beneath the river--or in the ones you know and love the most...

Stuff You Should Know

 

Recommended by Kathryn

Stuff You Should Know: An incomplete compendium of mostly interesting things by Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant with Nils Parker

The duo behind the massively successful podcast, "Stuff You Should Know", offers an unexpected look at weird, fascinating, delightful, or unexpected elements of a wide variety of topics, featuring new subjects that they've long wondered about and wanted to explore.

 

the echo wife

 

Recommended by Lillian

The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey

When they said all happy families are alike, I don't think this is what they meant...' Evelyn Caldwell's husband Nathan has been having an affair - with Evelyn Caldwell. Or, to be exact, with a genetically cloned replica. After a morning that begins with a confrontation and ends with Nathan's body bleeding out on the kitchen floor, the two Caldwell wives will have to think fast-before sharing everything includes sharing a jail cell. The Echo Wife is a non-stop thrill ride of lies, betrayal, and identity, perfect for fans of Big Little Lies and Killing Eve

 

Sisters

 

Recommended by Lillian

Sisters by Daisy Johnson

a haunting story about two sisters caught in a powerful emotional web and wrestling to understand where one ends and the other begins. Born just ten months apart, July and September are thick as thieves, never needing anyone but each other. Now, following a case of school bullying, the teens have moved away with their single mother to a long-abandoned family home near the shore. In their new, isolated life, July finds that the deep bond she has always shared with September is shifting in ways she cannot entirely understand.

 

Fiber Fuel

 

Recommended by Stacy

Fiber Fueled : The Plant-based Gut Health Program for Losing Weight, Restoring Your Health, and Optimizing Your Microbiome by Will Bulsiewicz

A bold new plant-based plan that challenges popular keto and paleo diets, from an award-winning gastroenterologist. The benefits of restrictive diets like paleo and keto have been touted for more than a decade, but as renowned gastroenterologist Dr. Will Bulsiewicz, or "Dr. B," illuminates in this groundbreaking book, the explosion of studies on the microbiome makes it abundantly clear that eliminations are in fact hazardous to our health.

 

Silver in the Wood

 

Recommended by Kathryn

Kindred: Neanderthal Life, Love, Death and Art by Rebecca Wragg Sykes

Neanderthal expert Rebecca Wragg Sykes shoves aside the cliché of the shivering ragged figure in an icy wasteland, and reveals the Neanderthal you don’t know, our ancestor who lived across vast and diverse tracts of Eurasia and survived through hundreds of thousands of years of massive climate change. This book sheds new light on where they lived, what they ate, and the increasingly complex Neanderthal culture that researchers have discovered.

 

King of the World

 

Recommended by Jeff

King of the World : The Life of Louis XIV by Philip Mansel

Philip Mansel's book is poised to become the new standard English-language biography of Louis XIV, one that takes into account the revolution in the last fifty years in knowledge about every aspect of the king's reign: the army; Catholicism; diplomacy; the arts; music; medicine; homosexuality at his court; the role of women and the publication of the entire correspondence of his second wife, Madame de Maintenon. This is a global biography of a global king.

 

ballad of songbirds and snakes

 

Recommended by Vanessa

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

It is the morning of the reaping that will kick off the tenth annual Hunger Games. In the Capitol, eighteen-year-old Coriolanus Snow is preparing for his one shot at glory as a mentor in the Games. The once-mighty house of Snow has fallen on hard times, its fate hanging on the slender chance that Coriolanus will be able to outcharm, outwit, and outmaneuver his fellow students to mentor the winning tribute. The odds are against him. He's been given the humiliating assignment of mentoring the female tribute from District 12, the lowest of the low. Their fates are now completely intertwined, every choice Coriolanus makes could lead to favor or failure, triumph or ruin. Inside the arena, it will be a fight to the death. Outside the arena, Coriolanus starts to feel for his doomed tribute, and must weigh his need to follow the rules against his desire to survive no matter what it takes.

 

Whisper Man

 

Recommended by Stacy

The Whisper Man by Alex North

After the sudden death of his wife, Tom Kennedy believes a fresh start will help him and his young son Jake heal. A new beginning, a new house, a new town. Featherbank. But the town has a dark past. Twenty years ago, a serial killer abducted and murdered five residents. Until Frank Carter was finally caught, he was nicknamed "The Whisper Man," for he would lure his victims out by whispering at their windows at night. Just as Tom and Jake settle into their new home, a young boy vanishes. His disappearance bears an unnerving resemblance to Frank Carter's crimes, reigniting old rumors that he preyed with an accomplice. Now, detectives Amanda Beck and Pete Willis must find the boy before it is too late, even if that means Pete has to revisit his great foe in prison: The Whisper Man. And then Jake begins acting strangely. He hears a whispering at his window.

 

plain bad heroines

 

Recommended by Lillian

Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth

A century after the macabre deaths of several students at a New England girls' boarding school, the release of a sensational book on the school's history inspires a horror film adaptation that renews suspicions of a curse when the cast and crew arrive at the long-abandoned building. 1902, the Brookhants School for Girls. Flo and Clara are obsessed with each other and with Mary MacLane, the author of a scandalous bestselling memoir. The girls establish their own private club and call it the Plain Bad Heroine Society. Their bodies are discovered in a nearby apple orchard, with a copy of Mary's book splayed beside them, the victims of a swarm of stinging, angry yellow jackets. within five years three more people die on the property-- and the Brookhants School for Girls closes its doors forever. The now abandoned and crumbling Brookhants is back in the news when writer Merritt Emmons publishes a breakout book celebrating the queer, feminist history surrounding the "haunted and cursed" Gilded Age institution.