Staff Picks

Enjoy a selection of our staff's favorite recent reads!

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Such Color: New and Selected Poems Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781644450673
Availability: Available in 3-7 Days
Published: Graywolf Press - October 5th, 2021

After reading Smith's poem "Duende," I remember looking up from the page and thinking "It almost feels dangerous that something so powerful can just be casually bought at a bookstore".

—Jack


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Bad Gays: A Homosexual History Cover Image
$29.95
ISBN: 9781839763274
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Verso - May 31st, 2022

While many recent biographies shine light on overlooked LGBT heroes, Bad Gays revisits the villainous queers of yesteryear, from Emperor Hadrian to J. Edgar Hoover. With equal parts compassion and sharp wit, the authors investigate how and when white queerness has abetted imperial agendas and how we might move forward.

—Andy


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Book of the Other: Small in Comparison Cover Image
By Truong Tran, Bhanu Kapil (Foreword by)
$18.95
ISBN: 9781885030757
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Kaya Press - November 9th, 2021

This book feels like an unveiling, a reckoning with the history of hierarchies that has become routine. That history saturates the places we exist in. It dismisses and flattens some bodies while perpetuating the inequalities that keep those bodies dismissed and flattened. But what Truong offers us is a guidebook, a navigation device, a model for how we come to know and love ourselves. Here we're offered a way not only through the racial labyrinth, but also a way out.

—Uyen 


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Everyone in This Room Will Someday Be Dead: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781982167356
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atria Books - July 6th, 2021

Gilda is anxious. So anxious, in fact, that she accidentally stumbles into a job as a Catholic church receptionist-- despite being an atheist lesbian. As she struggles to hide her new job from her maybe-girlfriend, and her sexuality from her new boss, she learns that her predecessor's death wasn't as innocent as it may have seemed. This curious, unusual novel bubbles over with heart, honesty, and empathy.

—Skylar


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Notes on an Execution: A Novel Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063052734
Availability: Available in 3-7 Days
Published: William Morrow - January 25th, 2022

Fiercely beautiful and unflinching prose tells the tales of three multifaceted women whose lives are intertwined by a serial killer. It’s a breathtaking contemplation of compassion: what it means to have it, to see it, and to lack it.

—Halla


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Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780812984965
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: One World - August 18th, 2015

This book quite literally made me reevaluate every academic and career choice I have ever made. Just Mercy unpacks the systemic ways in which poverty, race, mental illness, domestic violence, and a whole host of other factors play a role in the dispersion of "justice" in america. It is a captivating and heartbreaking read that still manages to leave one hopeful, even at the end of it all.

—Donia


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Bluets Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781933517407
Availability: Available in 3-7 Days
Published: Wave Books - October 1st, 2009

In this small book of poems, Nelson paints her life in the color blue and brings readers along on her journey of discovering love, loss, and grief. Through witty prose and heartfelt poetry, we travel through Nelson's life and how she marks her life and the tragic events relayed to us with the color blue. It is personified as the author's most trusted and constant companion and in reading Bluets, it becomes a guiding hand for readers as well.

—Peili


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The First Cat in Space Ate Pizza Cover Image
By Mac Barnett, Shawn Harris (Illustrator)
$15.99
ISBN: 9780063084087
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - May 10th, 2022

Originating as a quarantine Youtube series of author-illustrator duo extraordinaire, Mac and Shawn, The First Cat in Space can now be found in stores near you! (And in space, too). If you like laughing, comics, and/or pizza, give this graphic novel a go. In my opinion, this book is for everyone of all ages. Unless you don't like fun. Then you should probably stay away from it.

—Jen


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The Zen of Therapy: Uncovering a Hidden Kindness in Life Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780593296615
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Press - January 11th, 2022

As an avid reader of texts about therapy but someone who shies away from writing on spirituality, I have typically avoided the slew of books at the intersection of Buddhism and psychotherapy. As a result, I nearly overlooked The Zen of Therapy. But its focus on the therapeutic relationship over either therapist or patient as an individual pulled me in, and I am so glad it did. In his account of a year's worth of sessions, interspersed with psychoanalytic readings of Buddhist and western poetry, Epstein explores how therapy functions as a shared meditation in which the therapist's presence enables growth. Do not let the subtitle confuse you—this is not a self-help book. It is an engaging, thought-provoking exploration of our psychological ways-of-being. A must-read for anyone looking for a greater understanding of the therapeutic relationship and, in turn, any other relationship.

—Allie


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You Never Get It Back (Iowa Short Fiction Award) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781609388133
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: University Of Iowa Press - December 15th, 2021

Quietly funny, insanely observant, and poetic in all the right places. In these gorgeously written interlinked short stories, we see so many sides to Kate as she navigates modern America, trying and failing and trying again to strive beyond social class, gender, abusive relationships, grief. Pretty heavy things in such a slim book, but Adams’ illuminates a young woman’s lifetime of love, hope and devastation that can land in deeply moving ways. 


—Uyen


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Pure Colour: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780374603946
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - February 15th, 2022

Heti's new novel is a fable exploring life's high-frequency moments (a group of students studying criticism discuss Manet's paintings and feel their aesthetic world expanded and subverted) and the low-frequency ones as well (A woman in grief can't seem to do anything but play candy crush in bed). Somehow reads both like Rumi and Mary McCarthy.

—Jack


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The Office of Historical Corrections: A Novella and Stories Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780593189450
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - November 9th, 2021

These expertly crafted short stories bring an unflinching eye into microcosms of modern American society. The title novella is an imaginative and hard-hitting piece of satire, at once comedic and shocking. The stories range from slyly comedic to gravely thought-provoking to surprisingly touching. A must-read! 

—Skylar


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So Sad Today: Personal Essays Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781455562725
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - March 15th, 2016

For all of my fellow Pisces out there, a book by the queen of Pisces, herself.

—Donia


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American Cult: A Graphic History of Religious Cults in America from the Colonial Era to Today Cover Image
By Robyn Chapman (Editor)
$24.99
ISBN: 9781945509636
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Silver Sprocket - May 18th, 2021

Somtimes I grapple with the ethics of reading true crime stories, but the comic creators in this anthology approach the cults they write about with thoughtfulness and curiosity. It's a far-reaching and well-researched anthology, and even seasoned cult experts will find something to enjoy in the beautiful illustrations.

—Andy


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Three Women Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781451642308
Availability: Available in 3-7 Days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - July 7th, 2020

This is an expertly and beautifully written work of literary nonfiction that reads like fiction. Drawing on eight years of research, Lisa Taddeo presents an unapologetic and honest account of female desire, love, and loss by weaving together the real lives and stories of - you guessed it - three women.

—Bess


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Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize): A Novel Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780316316132
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Back Bay Books - May 22nd, 2018

Poor Arthur Less... down on his luck both professionally and romantically. This so-charming-it-hurts protagonist takes that old adage "move a body, change a thought" maybe too seriously and heads to Mexico, Italy, Germany, France, India and more in hopes of finding his joy again. This literary page turner is masterfully crafted and has the most romantic ending to a book I've ever encountered.

—Jack


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Salvage the Bones: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781608196265
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury USA - April 24th, 2012

There is a beautiful and breathless quality to this novel, from the characters, to the place, to the prose. Ward's sentences are just as thick and all encompassing as the heat in Bois Savage; you move through the prose, one slow sentence at a time, like you do a hot, humid, emotionally charged day. In Esch, Ward created a grieving but fierce young woman coming into her power and femininity. This novel will force you to reconsider the definitions of hope and strength, and will leave you celebrating the loyalty and love of the Batiste family.

 —Kim


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Tunnels Cover Image
By Rutu Modan, Ishai Mishory (Translated by)
$29.95
ISBN: 9781770464667
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Drawn and Quarterly - November 16th, 2021

Have you ever watched Raiders of the Lost Arc and thought "I love this archaeological adventure but I can't stop thinking about the geopolitical and cultural implications of it all?" Tunnels might be the book for you! It features a cast of complicated characters that attempt to outwit and deceive each other (often with hilarious results), and a style reminscent of The Adventures of Tintin. Great fun, but also substantive!

—Andy


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

This read was nothing short of a masterpiece. Spanning three separate eras, Doerr introduces five characters all with unique stories, bound together by a single Greek manuscript. While there are some shocking turns, the highlight of this book is the marvelously detailed storytelling.

—Jessie


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Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143109396
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - April 26th, 2016

A super interesting biography with a focus on Finnegan’s life surrounding surfing, and prompts a lot of self reflection on one’s direction and passions. Very comforting to see an account of someone going against the status-quo and a really great adventure tale!

—Millie


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The World Cannot Give Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982170066
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster - March 8th, 2022

This campus novel explores cults, queer yearning, and the limits of religious zealotry. The relentless pace and mysterious backstories propelled me through the book in just one night. Burton's characters brim with life, longing, and menace, right up to the explosive ending. I was absolutely haunted and capitvated. A must-read for fans of The Secret History and The Girls.

—Skylar


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Three Women Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781451642308
Availability: Available in 3-7 Days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - July 7th, 2020

This is an expertly and beautifully written work of literary nonfiction that reads like fiction. Drawing on eight years of research, Lisa Taddeo presents an unapologetic and honest account of female desire, love, and loss by weaving together the real lives and stories of - you guessed it - three women.

—Bess


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Inheritance Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781948579131
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Alice James Books - November 10th, 2020

This book is full of quiet, clever poems that offer precise and personal takes on Big Topics--capitalism, gender, race, etc. Anchored in the small observations Johnson makes while walking through their neighborhood in DC, there's a thread of stillness through the book that makes for a meditative reading experience. Start with "States of Decline" or "Menace To."

—Ira