Want to know what our booksellers read? Here are some of our handpicked recommendations.
- by John Koenig
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
"It's undeniably thrilling to find words for our strangest feelings...Koenig casts light into lonely corners of human experience...An enchanting book. " --The Washington Post
A truly original book in every sense of the word, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows poetically defines emotions that we all feel but don't have the words to express--until now.
Have you ever wondered about the lives of each person you pass on the street, realizing that everyone is the main character in their own story, each living a life as vivid and complex as your own? That feeling has a name: "sonder." Or maybe you've watched a thunderstorm roll in and felt a primal hunger for disaster, hoping it would shake up your life. That's called "lachesism." Or you were looking through old photos and felt a pang of nostalgia for a time you've never actually experienced. That's "anemoia."
If you've never heard of these terms before, that's because they didn't exist until John Koenig set out to fill the gaps in our language of emotion. The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows "creates beautiful new words that we need but do not yet have," says John Green, bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars. By turns poignant, relatable, and mind-bending, the definitions include whimsical etymologies drawn from languages around the world, interspersed with otherworldly collages and lyrical essays that explore forgotten corners of the human condition--from "astrophe," the longing to explore beyond the planet Earth, to "zenosyne," the sense that time keeps getting faster.
The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows is for anyone who enjoys a shift in perspective, pondering the ineffable feelings that make up our lives. With a gorgeous package and beautiful illustrations throughout, this is the perfect gift for creatives, word nerds, and human beings everywhere.
- by B. Archambeault
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"A woman lives alone in a small house situated in a tidy yard surrounded by a seemingly impenetrable wall. She spends her days reading, swimming, and watching TV. She eats regular meals and keeps her house clean. But the simplicity is deceiving, because the woman has no idea how she came to live in her house, and--most importantly--what exists beyond the wall. Her only source of information is a talking TV monitor in her living room called Shiatsung. The entity controlling the monitor is committed to keeping the woman hydrated and educated, but it refuses to answer any of her existential questions and keeps her under constant surveillance. Lonely and frustrated, the woman begins to search for answers of her own. The Shiatsung Project explores surveillance culture and authoritarian control, and how they disrupt our very human need for connection, intimacy, and a meaningful life. "
- by Stuart Turton
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A brilliantly original high concept murder mystery from a fantastic new talent: Gosford Park meets Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express
'Somebody's going to be murdered at the ball tonight. It won't appear to be a murder and so the murderer won't be caught. Rectify that injustice and I'll show you the way out.'
It is meant to be a celebration but it ends in tragedy. As fireworks explode overhead, Evelyn Hardcastle, the young and beautiful daughter of the house, is killed.
But Evelyn will not die just once. Until Aiden - one of the guests summoned to Blackheath for the party - can solve her murder, the day will repeat itself, over and over again. Every time ending with the fateful pistol shot.
The only way to break this cycle is to identify the killer. But each time the day begins again, Aiden wakes in the body of a different guest. And someone is determined to prevent him ever escaping Blackheath...
- by Charles Stross
Mass market paperback
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"ONE NIGHTMARISH PANOPTICON." - The New York Times
When Robin wakes up in a clinic with most of his memories missing, it doesn't take him long to discover that someone is trying to kill him. It's the twenty-seventh century, when interstellar travel is by teleport gate and conflicts are fought by network worms that censor refugees' personalities--including Robin's earlier self.
On the run from a ruthless pursuer and searching for a place to hide, he volunteers to participate in a unique experimental polity: the Glasshouse, a simulated pre-accelerated culture where participants are assigned anonymized identities. But what looks like the perfect sanctuary turns into a trap, placing Robin at the mercy of the experimenters--and at the mercy of his own unbalanced psyche...
- by Douglas Coupland
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A lethal joyride into today's new breed of technogeeks, Coupland's JPod updates Microserfs for the age of Google.
Ethan Jarlewski and five co-workers whose names start with J are bureaucratically marooned in jPod, a no-escape architectural limbo on the fringes of a massive Vancouver game design company.
The six workers daily confront the forces that define our era: global piracy, boneheaded marketing staff, people smuggling, the rise of China, marijuana grow-ops, Jeff Probst and the ashes of the 1990s financial tech dream. jPod's universe is amoral and shameless. The characters are products of their era even as they're creating it.
Everybody in Ethan's life inhabits a moral grey zone. Nobody is exempt, not even his seemingly straitlaced parents or Coupland himself, as readers will see.
Full of word games, visual jokes and sideways jabs, this book throws a sharp, pointed lawn dart into the heart of contemporary life. JPod is Douglas Coupland at the top of his game.
- by David Mitchell
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Shortlisted for the 2004 Man Booker Prize.
A reluctant voyager crossing the Pacific in 1850; a disinherited composer blagging a precarious livelihood in between-the-wars Belgium; a high-minded journalist in Governor Reagan’s California; a vanity publisher fleeing his gangland creditors; a genetically modified ‘dinery server’ on death-row; and Zachry, a young Pacific Islander witnessing the nightfall of science and civilisation – the narrators of CLOUD ATLAS hear each other’s echoes down the corridor of history, and their destinies are changed in ways great and small.
In his extraordinary third novel, David Mitchell erases the boundaries of language, genre and time to offer a meditation on humanity’s dangerous will to power, and where it may lead us.
- by Cormac McCarthy
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Winner of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
The searing, postapocalyptic novel destined to become Cormac McCarthy's masterpiece.
A father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and when the snow falls it is gray. The sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don't know what, if anything, awaits them there. They have nothing; just a pistol to defend themselves against the lawless bands that stalk the road, the clothes they are wearing, a cart of scavenged food-—and each other.
The Road is the profoundly moving story of a journey. It boldly imagines a future in which no hope remains, but in which the father and his son, "each the other's world entire," are sustained by love. Awesome in the totality of its vision, it is an unflinching meditation on the worst and the best that we are capable of: ultimate destructiveness, desperate tenacity, and the tenderness that keeps two people alive in the face of total devastation.
- by Kayleb Ra Candrilli
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Both radically tender and desperate for change, Water I Won't Touch is a life raft and a self-portrait, concerned with the vitality of trans people living in a dangerous and inhospitable landscape. Through the brambles of the Pennsylvania forest to a stretch of the Jersey Shore, in quiet moments and violent memories, Kayleb Rae Candrilli touches the broken earth and examines the whole in its parts. Written during the body's healing from a double mastectomy--in the wake of addiction and family dysfunction--these ambitious poems put new form to what'sbeen lost and gained. Candrilli ultimately imagines a joyful, queer future: a garden to harvest, lasting love, the insistent flamboyance of citrus.
- by Lisa Bird-wilson
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For readers of Tommy Orange's There There and Terese Marie Mailhot's Heart Berries, Probably Ruby is an audacious, brave and beautiful book about an adopted woman's search for her Indigenous identity.
Relinquished as an infant, Ruby is placed in a foster home and finally adopted by Alice and Mel, a less-than-desirable couple who can't afford to complain too loudly about Ruby's Indigenous roots. But when her new parents' marriage falls apart, Ruby finds herself vulnerable and in compromising situations that lead her to search, in the unlikeliest of places, for her Indigenous identity.
Unabashedly self-destructing on alcohol, drugs and bad relationships, Ruby grapples with the meaning of the legacy left to her. In a series of expanding narratives, Ruby and the people connected to her tell their stories and help flesh out Ruby's history. Seeking understanding of how we come to know who we are, Probably Ruby explores how we find and invent ourselves in ways as peculiar and varied as the experiences of Indigenous adoptees themselves. Ruby's voice, her devastating honesty and tremendous laugh, will not soon be forgotten.
Probably Ruby is a perfectly crafted novel, with effortless, nearly imperceptible shifts in time and perspective, exquisitely chosen detail, natural dialogue and emotional control that results in breathtaking levels of tension and points of revelation.
- by Naomi Novik
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER o From the author of Uprooted and Spinning Silver comes the first book of the Scholomance trilogy, the story of an unwilling dark sorceress who is destined to rewrite the rules of magic.
FINALIST FOR THE LODESTAR AWARD o "The dark school of magic I've been waiting for."--Katherine Arden, author of the Winternight Trilogy
I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life.
Everyone loves Orion Lake. Everyone else, that is. Far as I'm concerned, he can keep his flashy combat magic to himself. I'm not joining his pack of adoring fans.
I don't need help surviving the Scholomance, even if they do. Forget the hordes of monsters and cursed artifacts, I'm probably the most dangerous thing in the place. Just give me a chance and I'll level mountains and kill untold millions, make myself the dark queen of the world.
At least, that's what the world expects. Most of the other students in here would be delighted if Orion killed me like one more evil thing that's crawled out of the drains. Sometimes I think they want me to turn into the evil witch they assume I am. The school certainly does.
But the Scholomance isn't getting what it wants from me. And neither is Orion Lake. I may not be anyone's idea of the shining hero, but I'm going to make it out of this place alive, and I'm not going to slaughter thousands to do it, either.
Although I'm giving serious consideration to just one.
With flawless mastery, Naomi Novik creates a school bursting with magic like you've never seen before, and a heroine for the ages--a character so sharply realized and so richly nuanced that she will live on in hearts and minds for generations to come.
The magic of the Scholomance trilogy continues in The Last Graduate
"The can't-miss fantasy of fall 2020, a brutal coming-of-power story steeped in the aesthetics of dark academia. . . . A Deadly Education will cement Naomi Novik's place as one of the greatest and most versatile fantasy writers of our time."--BookPage (starred review)
"A must-read . . . Novik puts a refreshingly dark, adult spin on the magical boarding school. . . . Readers will delight in the push-and-pull of El and Orion's relationship, the fantastically detailed world, the clever magic system, and the matter-of-fact diversity of the student body."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
- by Premee Mohamed
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"This packs a punch." -- Publishers Weekly "One of the most unique and engaging voices in genre fiction." -- Booklist "In this rich and nuanced universe, Mohamed offers an emotionally fierce and human story that takes the time and space to personalize apocalypse." -- STARRED review, Quill & Quire A novella set in post-climate disaster Alberta; a woman infected with a mysterious parasite must choose whether to pursue a rare opportunity far from home or stay and help rebuild her community The world is nothing like it once was: climate disasters have wracked the continent, causing food shortages, ending industry, and leaving little behind. Then came Cad, mysterious mind-altering fungi that invade the bodies of the now scattered citizenry. Reid, a young woman who carries this parasite, has been given a chance to get away -- to move to one of the last remnants of pre-disaster society -- but she can't bring herself to abandon her mother and the community that relies on her. When she's offered a coveted place on a dangerous and profitable mission, she jumps at the opportunity to set her family up for life, but how can Reid ask people to put their trust in her when she can't even trust her own mind? With keen insight and biting prose, Premee Mohamed delivers a deeply personal tale in this post-apocalyptic hopepunk novella that reflects on the meaning of community and asks what we owe to those who have lifted us up.
- by Tamsyn Muir
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15+ pages of new, original content, including a glossary of terms, in-universe writings, and more!
A USA Today Best-Selling Novel, and one of the Best Books of 2019 according to NPR, the New York Public Library, Amazon, BookPage, Shelf Awareness, BookRiot, and Bustle!
WINNER of the 2020 Crawford Award
Finalist for the 2020 Hugo, Nebula, and Locus Awards
"Unlike anything I've ever read. " --V.E. Schwab
"Lesbian necromancers explore a haunted gothic palace in space!" --Charles Stross
"Brilliantly original, messy and weird straight through." --NPR
The Emperor needs necromancers.
The Ninth Necromancer needs a swordswoman.
Gideon has a sword, some dirty magazines, and no more time for undead nonsense.
Tamsyn Muir's Gideon the Ninth, first in The Locked Tomb Trilogy, unveils a solar system of swordplay, cut-throat politics, and lesbian necromancers. Her characters leap off the page, as skillfully animated as arcane revenants. The result is a heart-pounding epic science fantasy.
Brought up by unfriendly, ossifying nuns, ancient retainers, and countless skeletons, Gideon is ready to abandon a life of servitude and an afterlife as a reanimated corpse. She packs up her sword, her shoes, and her dirty magazines, and prepares to launch her daring escape. But her childhood nemesis won't set her free without a service.
Harrowhark Nonagesimus, Reverend Daughter of the Ninth House and bone witch extraordinaire, has been summoned into action. The Emperor has invited the heirs to each of his loyal Houses to a deadly trial of wits and skill. If Harrowhark succeeds she will be become an immortal, all-powerful servant of the Resurrection, but no necromancer can ascend without their cavalier. Without Gideon's sword, Harrow will fail, and the Ninth House will die.
Of course, some things are better left dead.
THE LOCKED TOMB SERIES
BOOK 1: Gideon the Ninth
BOOK 2: Harrow the Ninth
BOOK 3: Nona the Ninth
BOOK 4: Alecto the Ninth
- by Marie-renee Lavoie
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The eagerly anticipated sequel to the critically beloved and bestselling Autopsy of a Boring Wife finds the saucy and ever-appealing Diane, now turning fifty and with the wreckage of her marriage behind her, setting off on a new hilarious journey for romance.
A Boring Wife Settles the Score marks the return of Diane, the raunchy and entertaining heroine of the prize-winning and bestselling Autopsy of a Boring Wife. Despite the end of her marriage, Diane still has plenty of love to give. Determined not to waste her days -- that's just not her style -- she finds a job in a daycare and solace in cocktails with her best friend, Claudine, who convinces Diane her love life is not over. Diane wants romance and sees no reason why she shouldn't have it, but she soon discovers, in her typically chaotic and hilarious manner, that for a woman approaching her fifties the task is not so simple as it is for a man.
- by Julie Clark
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THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES, USA TODAY BESTSELLER, & INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER!
Look for The Lies I Tell, the next novel from Julie Clark, coming in June 2022!
"The Last Flight is thoroughly absorbing--not only because of its tantalizing plot and deft pacing, but also because of its unexpected poignancy and its satisfying, if bittersweet, resolution. The characters get under your skin."--The New York Times Book Review
Two women. Two flights. One last chance to disappear.
Claire Cook has a perfect life. Married to the scion of a political dynasty, with a Manhattan townhouse and a staff of ten, her surroundings are elegant, her days flawlessly choreographed, and her future auspicious. But behind closed doors, nothing is quite as it seems. That perfect husband has a temper that burns bright and he's not above using his staff to track Claire's every move.
What he doesn't know is that Claire has worked for months on a plan to vanish. A plan that takes her to the airport, poised to run from it all. But a chance meeting in the airport bar brings her together with a woman whose circumstances seem equally dire. Together they make a last-minute decision.
The two women switch tickets, with Claire taking Eva's flight to Oakland, and Eva traveling to Puerto Rico as Claire. They believe the swap will give each of them the head start they need to begin again somewhere far away. But when the flight to Puerto Rico crashes, Claire realizes it's no longer a head start but a new life. Cut off, out of options, with the news of her death about to explode in the media, Claire will assume Eva's identity, and along with it, the secrets Eva fought so hard to keep hidden.
For fans of Lisa Jewell and Liv Constantine, The Last Flight is the story of two women--both alone, both scared--and one agonizing decision that will change the trajectory of both of their lives.
Praise for The Last Flight:
"The Last Flight is a wild ride: One part Strangers on a Train, one part Breaking Bad, with more twists than an amusement park roller coaster! Julie Clark is a devilishly inventive storyteller."
--Janelle Brown, New York Times bestselling author of Watch Me Disappear and Pretty Things
"The Last Flight is everything you want in a book: a gripping story of suspense; haunting, vulnerable characters; and a chilling and surprising ending that stays with you long after the last page."
--Aimee Molloy, New York Times bestselling author of The Perfect Mother
"The perfect combination of beautiful prose and high suspense, and an ending that I guarantee will catch you off guard."
--Kimberly Belle, internationally bestselling author of Dear Wife and The Marriage Lie
"The Last Flight sweeps you into a thrilling story of two desperate women who will do anything to escape their lives. Both poignant and addictive, you'll race through the pages to the novel's chilling end. A must read of the summer!"
--Kaira Rouda, internationally bestselling author of Best Day Ever and The Favorite
- by Christopher Paolini
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Now a New York Times and USA Today bestseller!
Winner of Best Science Fiction in the 2020 Goodreads Choice Awards!
To Sleep in a Sea of Stars is a brand new epic novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author of Eragon, Christopher Paolini.
Kira Navárez dreamed of life on new worlds.
Now she's awakened a nightmare.
During a routine survey mission on an uncolonized planet, Kira finds an alien relic. At first she's delighted, but elation turns to terror when the ancient dust around her begins to move.
As war erupts among the stars, Kira is launched into a galaxy-spanning odyssey of discovery and transformation. First contact isn't at all what she imagined, and events push her to the very limits of what it means to be human.
While Kira faces her own horrors, Earth and its colonies stand upon the brink of annihilation. Now, Kira might be humanity's greatest and final hope . . .