by Carolyn Parkhurst
The Hammond family is living in DC, where everything seems to be going just fine, until it becomes clear that the oldest daughter, Tilly, is developing abnormally. Once Tilly is kicked out of the last school in the area, her mother Alexandra is out of ideas. The family turns to Camp Harmony in New Hampshire and the wisdom of child behavior guru Scott Bean for a solution. But what they discover in the woods of New Hampshire will push them to the very limit. This is a unputdownable story about the strength of love, the bonds of family, and how you survive the unthinkable.
Genre: Contemporary Fiction; Domestic Fiction
Also by Carolyn Parkhurst: The Dogs of Babel, Lost and Found
by Dorah Blume
In 1477, Italian Renaissance artist Sandro Botticelli never thought his life was going to be easy after being fired by his prestigious patron and friend Lorenzo de' Medici. His creative well runs dry until the day he sees Floriana, a Jewish weaver imprisoned in his sister's convent. So begins a tale of one of the world's most beloved paintings, La Primavera, as Sandro, a confirmed bachelor, and Floriana, a headstrong artist in her own right, enter into the most turbulent of relationships.
Genre: Historical Fiction
by Rainbow Rowell
Cath is a Simon Snow fan. Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan... But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving. Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone. Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Similar: Carry On (Rainbow Rowell)
History of Wolves
by Emily Fridlund
Fourteen-year-old Madeline lives with her parents in the beautiful, austere woods of northern Minnesota, where their nearly abandoned commune stands as a last vestige of a lost counter-culture world. And then the young Gardner family moves in across the lake and Madeline finds herself welcomed into their home as a babysitter for their little boy, Paul. It seems that her life finally has purpose but with this new sense of belonging she is also drawn into secrets she doesn’t understand. Over the course of a few days, Madeline makes a set of choices that reverberate throughout her life. Recently short-litsed for the Man Booker Prize.
Genre: Literary Fiction; Psychological Fiction; Coming-of-age Stories
Similar: Once Upon a River (Bonnie Jo Campbell)
Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance
by Angela Duckworth
In this must-read book for anyone striving to succeed, pioneering psychologist Angela Duckworth shows parents, educators, athletes, students, and business people-both seasoned and new-that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a focused persistence called “grit.” Why do some people succeed and others fail? Sharing new insights from her landmark research on grit, MacArthur “genius” Angela Duckworth explains why talent is hardly a guarantor of success. Winningly personal, insightful, and even life-changing, Grit is a book about what goes through your head when you fall down, and how that-not talent or luck-makes all the difference.
Genre: Non-fiction; Society and Culture
Similar: David and Goliath (Malcolm Gladwell)
To the Bright Edge of the World
by Eowyn Ivey
Ivey portrays a fictional 1885 expedition, led by Colonel Allen Forrester of the U.S. Army, into the newly acquired Alaska Territory to map the area’s rivers and gather information about the Native populations. By means of the colonel’s journal entries and letters between him and his wife, Sophie, who remains at the Vancouver barracks, Ivey deftly draws the reader into the perils of the journey. Forrester is accompanied by only two other officers and a few Indian guides they enlist en route; their goal as they embark in February 1885 is to return to Vancouver before the next winter. Forrester describes the challenges he faces, in a late-nineteenth-century style Ivey captures perfectly, including traveling on rivers of ice, dodging huge ice boulders loosened by the spring thaw, re-routing around narrow canyons, and suffering near-starvation and gut-wrenching illnesses. Sophie is a strong character as well; a feminist who chafes at the social restrictions of the barracks, she teaches herself photography in her husband’s absence. Ivey presents a compelling historical saga of survival. - Deborah Donovan for Booklist
Genre: Historical Fiction; Magical Realism
Similar: San Miguel (T.C. Boyle)
Quiet Until the Thaw
by Alexandra Fuller
Lakota Oglala Sioux Nation, South Dakota. Two Native American cousins, Rick Overlooking Horse and You Choose Watson, though bound by blood and by land, find themselves at odds as they grapple with the implications of their shared heritage. When escalating anger towards the injustices, historical and current, inflicted upon the Lakota people by the federal government leads to tribal divisions and infighting, the cousins go in separate directions: Rick chooses the path of peace; You Choose, violence.
Genre: Historical Fiction; Literary Fiction; Western
Similar: LaRose (Louise Erdrich)
American Food Writing: An Anthology with Classic Recipes
Edited by Molly O'Neill
This exhaustive collection of essays, anecdotes and recipes spans three centuries of American food writing, from Meriwether Lewis's account of killing “two bucks and two buffaloe” during his famous trek across the continent, to Michael Pollan's up-to-the-minute account of the politics of organic food. In between are countless gems. Ably organized and edited, this collection features numerous accounts of foodways long since vanished in this country. Famous food writers are well represented here, but perhaps even more rewarding are the wonderful but lesser-known players on the American food scene; either Elizabeth Robins Pennell's discussion of the spring chicken or Eugene Walter's tale of gumbo alone would make this volume a treasure. - Publishers Weekly review
Genre: Non-fiction; Food Writing; Cookbooks
Similar: The Cooking Gene (Michael Twitty)
Dear Fahrenheit 451: Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks
by Annie Spence
A Gen-X librarian's snarky, laugh-out-loud funny, deeply moving collection of love letters and break-up notes to the books in her life. Through the lens of the books in her life, Annie comments on everything from women’s psychology to gay culture to health to poverty to childhood aspirations.
Genre: Non-fiction; Memoir; Books About Books
Similar: My Life with Bob (Pamela Paul)
by Francis Spufford
In 1746, a man named Smith arrives in New York City, population 7,000, in his hand, a bill for 1,000 pounds payable in New York. No one can vouch for him, and he won't explain why he needs so much money. Why should New Yorkers trust him? Smith is forced to wait 60 days for the arrival of a ship from London to verify the transfer. Thus starts this wild adventure, in the rarest of commodities, the modern-day picaresque novel: the trickster or innocent wandering through the world, digging beneath convention to unearth hidden truths about how we behave toward one another. - David Keymer for Library Journal
Genre: Historical Fiction
Similar: A Star Called Henry (Roddy Doyle)
The Hate U Give
by Angie Thomas
Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two very different worlds: one is her home in a poor black urban neighborhood; the other is the tony suburban prep school she attends and the white boy she dates there. Her bifurcated life changes dramatically when she is the only witness to the unprovoked police shooting of her unarmed friend Khalil. As the case becomes national news, violence erupts in her neighborhood, and Starr finds herself and her family caught in the middle. Beautifully written in Starr’s authentic first-person voice, this is an important book that demands the widest possible readership. - Michael Cart for Booklist
Genre: Young Adult; Contemporary Fiction; Realistic Fiction
Similar: All American Boys (Jason Reynolds)
by Libba Bray
After humiliating her parents with her unrestrained behavior at a party, privileged young Evie O'Neill is sent to live with her eccentric uncle in New York City - a "punishment" that utterly delights Evie, who can't wait to mix with Ziegfield girls and sneak into some big-city speakeasies (it's the Roaring Twenties). But when her Uncle Will, curator of the Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult, is called on to help solve a rash of bizarre, other-worldly murders, Evie is drawn in to the investigations because of a special ability she's tried to keep secret. Check out the audiobooks narrated by January LaVoy, including number two in the series, Lair of Dreams. The third book in the series, Before the Devil Breaks You, is due out on October 3, 2017.
Genre: Young Adult; Historical Fiction; Fantasy/Paranormal
Similar: The Name of the Star (Maureen Johnson)
by Vimala McClure
In this completely updated version of her renowned classic, Vimala McClure, founder of the International Association of Infant Massage, and its premier proponent in the United States, helps you master the techniques of infant massage so you can incorporate this joyful and wonderful healing art into your baby's life. She shows you why a daily massage can be one of the greatest gifts you give your child... and yourself.
Genre: Family; Parenting; Nonfiction
Llama Llama Gives Thanks (Board Book)
by Anna Dewdney
It's Thanksgiving time for Llama Llama and his family! That means yummy foods and autumn leaves and being thankful for everything from pumpkin pies to blue skies. Thanksgiving may only come once year, but in Llama's family, giving thanks is always here!
Similar: Llama Llama Misses Mama (Anna Dewdney)
Secrets in Summer
by Nancy Thayer
After her marriage ends in an ugly divorce, librarian Darcy Cotterill retreats to her late grandmother’s home on Nantucket, settling into a routine as a year-round resident. She rebuilds her life with new friends, a great job, and a boyfriend, but her past comes back to haunt her when her ex-husband rents a nearby house for the summer. Their homes are separated by a hedge, allowing Darcy to hear the goings-on in her ex’s yard—including an encounter between his stepdaughter Willow and a local bad boy. Darcy steps in, and she soon finds that she and Willow are kindred spirits. Together with Mimi, an elderly neighbor with a wicked sense of humor, and Susan, the woman next door whose marriage seems to be falling apart, the women spend a memorable summer forgiving the people who have wronged them and celebrating the power of friendship. - Nanette Donahue for Booklist
Genre: Contemporary Fiction; Romance; Women's Live and Relationships
Similar: The Things We Do For Love (Kristin Hannah)
by Hervé Tullet
Make some noise! Shout "OH!" Whisper "oh!" Say "Zoop"? Yes! "Zoop!" "Zoop!" "Zoop!" The newest book from Hervé Tullet magically responds with bursts of color and moving shapes, empowering children by letting their imaginations liberate and direct each page's reaction. Tullet's books define the genre of participatory bookmaking, encouraging readers to explore and interact with the physical book in all its dimensions.
Similar: Press Here (Hervé Tullet)
Put 'em Up!
by Sherri Brooks Vinton
With simple step-by-step instructions and 175 delicious recipes, this book will have even the timidest beginners filling pantries and freezers in no time! Put ’em Up! includes complete how-to information for every kind of preserving: refrigerating, freezing, air- and oven-drying, cold- and hot-pack canning, and pickling. Sherri Brooks Vinton includes recipes that range from the contemporary and daring — Wasabi Beans and Salsa Verde — to the very best versions of tried-and-true favorites, including Classic Crock Pickles and Orange Marmalade. - Goodreads review
Genre: Nonfiction; Cookbooks; Reference
Similar: Homegrown Pantry (Barbara Pleasant)
The Wendy Project
by Melissa Jane Osborne and Veronic Flush
16-year-old Wendy Davies crashes her car into a lake on a late summer night in New England with her two younger brothers in the backseat. When she wakes in the hospital, she is told that her youngest brother, Michael, is dead. Wendy — a once rational teenager – shocks her family by insisting that Michael is alive and in the custody of a mysterious flying boy. Placed in a new school, Wendy negotiates fantasy and reality as students and adults around her resemble characters from Neverland. Given a sketchbook by her therapist, Wendy starts to draw. But is The Wendy Project merely her safe space, or a portal between worlds? - Goodreads
Genre: Young Adult; Fantasy; Graphic Novel
Similar: Snow White: A Graphic Novel (Matt Phelan)
by Matthew Desmond
In this Pulitzer Prize-winning book, A Harvard sociologist examines the under-represented challenge of eviction as a formidable cause of poverty in America, revealing how millions of people are wrongly forced from their homes and reduced to cycles of extreme disadvantage that are reinforced by dysfunctional legal systems. Based on years of embedded fieldwork and painstakingly gathered data, this masterful book transforms our understanding of extreme poverty and economic exploitation while providing fresh ideas for solving a devastating, uniquely American problem. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible.
Genre: Nonfiction; Sociology and Culture
Similar: White Trash (Nancy Isenberg)
The Essex Serpent
by Sarah Perry
Secret love and the suggestion of something unearthly moving in the Essex Blackwater drive the intricate plot of this atmospheric historical novel about Cora Seaborne, a widow visiting Colchester with her companion, ostensibly to explore the estuary for fossils. A medieval “winged serpent” myth still holds the inhabitants of Aldwinter in thrall, despite the best efforts of the local rector, Will Ransome. As the tale wends its way through mysterious disappearances, fog-laden visions, suspicion, and tragedy, it seems as if the monster is real. The vivid, often frightening imagery and the lush descriptions create a magical background for the sensual love story between Cora and Will. -Jen Baker for Booklist
Genre: Historical Fiction; Literary Fiction
Similar: Remarkable Creatures (Tracy Chevalier)
Do Not Become Alarmed
by Maile Meloy
Liv and Nora, who are cousins, decide to take their families on a cruise. Both have an eleven-year-old and a younger child as well. At one of the ports, the moms take the children out with another family they met on the ship. All goes well until the children, in a brief moment, aren’t observed and disappear. From here the nightmare begins, and the story alternates between what is happening to the children and the adults. The story is gripping and the characters are well-developed. The book explores family and marital dynamics, race, privilege, guilt, and responsibility. -Mary Bennett for LibraryReads.
Genre: Thriller; Mystery; Domestic Fiction
Similar: The Secrets She Keeps (Michael Robotham)
You Will Not Have My Hate
by Antoine Leiris
A book that no one would ever want to write proves powerfully, painfully difficult to read. One of the many casualties of the November 2015 terrorist attack on concertgoers at the Bataclan Theater in Paris was Leiris’ young wife, the mother of their 17-month-old son. His grief transcends any attempt at literary criticism, but his craft as a journalist allows him to focus on detail and avoid the bathos of sentimentality, thus allowing his shellshocked horror to stand on its own. - Kirkus Reviews
Similar: American Wife: Love, War, Faith, and Renewal (Taya Kyle)
by Layli Long Soldier
WHEREAS confronts the coercive language of the United States government in its responses, treaties, and apologies to Native American peoples and tribes, and reflects that language in its officiousness and duplicity back on its perpetrators. Through a virtuosic array of short lyrics, prose poems, longer narrative sequences, resolutions, and disclaimers, Layli Long Soldier has created a brilliantly innovative text to examine histories, landscapes, her own writing, and her predicament inside national affiliations.
Similar: Citizen: An American Lyric (Claudia Rankine)
The Novel of the Century
by David Bellos
A narrative account of the story behind Victor Hugo's literary masterpiece describes how he wrote the book under violent conditions and during exile, the considerable measures that were required for its publication and its various stage and screen interpretations. -NoveList
Genre: History; Books About Books
Similar: Arthur and Sherlock: Conan Doyle and the Creation of Holmes (Michael Sims)
Words are My Matter
by Ursula K. Le Guin
This collection of writing about writing by multi-award-winning author Le Guin includes talks, essays, introductions, and book reviews. The reviews alone make this a volume worth savoring, but the novelist's essays concerning the future of literature are of special note.
Genre: Literary Criticism; Essays; Books About Books
Similar: The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction (Neil Gaiman)
Naboko'vs Favorite Word is Mauve
by Ben Blatt
Statistician Ben Blatt applies data analysis techniques to the work of hundreds of authors to extract insights into literary art and human psychology. Blatt applies his techniques to look at topics such as adverb usage, the relationship between word choice and gender, and trends in writing complexity. Blatt provides amiable and intelligent narration, and literature enthusiasts will enjoy the hypotheses he poses and his imaginative methods.
Genre: Writing; Language; Books About Books
Similar: Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen (Mary Norris)
Behold the Dreamers
by Imbolo Mbue
Now an Oprah's Book Club pick!
Call it a recession novel, or an immigrant tale -- both are true. In 2007, Manhattan-based Cameroonian immigrant Jende Jonga gets a job chauffeuring for Lehman Brothers executive Clark Edwards, easing the financial strain on his family. At first, all goes well, but problems in the Edwards' marriage lead to problems for the Jongas, and when Lehman falls, both families are caught up in the terrible aftermath. The Jongas -- at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder, fearing deportation -- have much more to lose than the wealthy Edwards family, but together provide a perspective on the accessibility (or lack thereof) of the American Dream, as well as a poignant look at globalization and immigrant life. -Shauna Griffin
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary; Literary Fiction
Similar: Americanah (Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie)