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Amy has been reading books for a long time, always figured she'd end up working in a bookstore, figured right, and has been doing so for awhile now. She's hoping that's a sign of untapped clairvoyance. When not reading she enjoys going to local arts events, tending to her Animal Crossing town, and taking pictures of the stray cats in her neighborhood. When reading she likes books that tell her things she didn't know she needed to know, and books that hold magic between their pages. When she's lucky she finds ones that do both.
The Witch Boy is a wonderful story about embracing your true calling, regardless of whether that calling follows the norms of your community or gender, and about how when you do this you're able to be yourself fully, and help those around you that much more.
Teagan White's beautiful illustrations bring to life this whimsical ABC book, pairing each letter with an adventure to go on with an adorable cast of woodland creatures (and a triceratops!).
Sweet Blue Flowers follows childhood friends Fumi and Akira as they reunite going into high school. Fast friends again, we follow them through navigating school, friendships, and crushes. Their story is told with tenderness and honesty. Akira strives to be a steadfast and supportive friend for Fumi, while Fumi struggles to come to terms with falling for a classmate. This is sure to be a lovely series.
Margaret Hamilton is one of the most important people in NASA history. Without her knowledge of computers, and her love of mathematics and astronomy we would not have successfully made it to the moon. Margaret and the Moon is a marvelous introduction to a truly remarkable woman.
Two friends find a hat, but there is only one hat, and there are two of them. A story about sharing, and about the internal struggle to do the right thing... even if you REALLY want that hat for yourself. As always, Klassen delights in both his story and illustration.
While possibly best known for his novels, Gaiman shows his true talent in the form of his short fictions. Crossing an array of subjects and genres, the stories in Smoke and Mirrors captivate and enchant. This is a book that I tend to come back to frequently, re-reading my favorite stories.
Good Omens is, quite possibly, my favorite book... or at the very least, it's in constant battle with another book for that title. I've read and re-read this book, owned ten or more copies over the years and given them away (more than once to complete strangers), and read it out loud to my parents once as a sort of reverse of the bedtime story tradition. Immensely funny, and incredibly insightful underneath its humor. I have been recommending Good Omens to everyone I become friends with, and to every bookstore customer who asks me for a personal recommendation, since I first read it many years ago.
As the title suggests this is the story of a Magical Do-Nothing Day. A lovely reminder of the adventures that await us in nature. Perfect for anyone - child in age or at heart - who gets caught up in video-games and fighting martians from their couch, and forgets about the magic there is to discover outside.
Found Audio is a unique work of fiction presented to the reader as the transcripts to audio cassettes as written by Amrapali Anna Singh. The cassettes were delivered to her under curious circumstances, curiouser still is the content of these cassettes, and the experiences described therein. I found myself staying up late into the night to finish this book, and quickly counted it among my favorite reads.
In these essays Chocano dissects the representation of women in popular culture, and it's influence on how women are viewed and treated, and how they view and treat themselves as a result of that representation. As the title suggests the essays vary in topic, from Playboy Bunnies to Stepford Wives, from Frozen to reality television. Thought provoking, and a conversation starter, this often visited topic in modern Feminism is brought in a refreshing manner, no empty and hasty solutions offered, just an analysis of the way things are, and a new way to look at the, sometimes seemingly innocuous, media that surrounds us.
Erin has been told many times about the dangers of Black Rock, but in this beautifully illustrated adventure she learns that not all things are as they seem, and that the ocean is a more beautiful and mysterious place than she thought.
Set in the UK, Giant Days is a delight of a comic series about friendship, growing up, university life, and the shenanigans that go along. I was hooked from the first issue. Susan, Esther, and Daisy feel like close friends
I had more fun reading The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue than I've had reading a book in absolute ages. A brilliantly written adventure tale, with a cast of characters you can't help but become very attached to, and just the right amount of angst inducing, won't-they-just-kiss-already-!, romance. I did not want to put this book down, or say goodbye to the characters in it.
Neil Gaiman has proved himself a master story-tell for adults and children, his short stories - especially those written with children in mind - are my favorite of his work.
There's an indescribable magic in the way the stories in this collection are woven together. While I'd suggest savoring each story, a night at a time, you may find that you have to read them all in one sitting.
I find my interest in minimalism-as-lifestyle contradictory to the part of my personality that has an extensive CD collection, and refuses to part with it. Oh well.
The immediate comparison that came to mind when picking this up was The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, but while the end goal is the same - living a less cluttered-by-stuff life - the path is different. Without frills or "sparks" Sasaki details his journey from borderline hoarder to someone divesting himself of nearly all physical possessions. While I don't see the need for such an extreme measure in my life, I found his reasoning sound and insightful. There's a gaining of freedom when curating your belongings - and arguably, your life. This book helped me narrow down how I'd like to curate my minimal collection of physical belongings, and showed me what things I might actually be lacking.
This is sure to be a marvelous series.
Orphans? Kid detectives? Literary references? Murder mysteries? Robot dogs? This has all that and more.
Hoxton Mini Press has been putting out this lovely East London photo series, my favorite of which is What I've Learned in 86 1/2 Years. In this book of photos and quotes we become acquainted with Joseph Markovitch, a gentleman who never left East London, but who traveled far via his love of books. Striking photos help you get to know a man you may otherwise have never heard of, and his brief musings on family, art, technology, and celebrities give you insight into his personality and values. This is something I plan to keep on my coffee-table for years to come, and go-back to whenever I need to lift my spirits.
Shark Lady introduces children to zoologist Eugenie Clark.
A story of determination as well as one of nature and science. We're taken on a journey through Eugenie's life with vibrant illustrations as she learns about her favorite fish, and teaches us about them along the way, dispelling myths about the dangers sharks pose, and informing readers about their great importance to the ocean's ecosystem.
One of the better teen dystopian novels I've read recently.
The Jewel has elements of both The Selection and The Handmaid's Tale, but remains an original and compelling story.
I flew through this book, and can't wait to read the next two installments!
Lucifer is one of the rare spinoffs that, in my opinion, doesn't just match the quality of its parent series, but in many aspects goes as far as to surpass it. Carey managed to write what I consider one of the great approaches to Lucifer-as-character.
"They used to call the devil the father of lies. But for someone whose sin is meant to be pride, you'd think that lying would leave something of a sour taste. So my theory is that when the devil wants to get something out of you, he doesn't lie at all. He tells you the exact, literal truth. And he lets you find your own way to hell."
Derrick Brown brings honesty in his metaphor, and presents his love poems with raw grit. Simultaneously a warm embrace, and a sucker-punch, as every collection of love poems should be.
Have you ever wanted a unicorn? Probably. Have you ever thought about the pros and cons of actually having a unicorn? Probably not. Lucky for you, this book exists, and it can tell you all of the reasons why you definitely DO NOT want a unicorn.
Marin stays in her empty dorm over the Christmas holiday, alone with her thoughts, trying to avoid confronting the loss of her grandfather, and the life in San Francisco she abruptly left behind after he passed. She has made a list of things to keep her occupied: meditate, find new music, watch documentaries. When her friend Mabel flies to New York to visit her during break, she learns she has to confront the things she's been avoiding. We Are Okay deals with what it means to shut down after a tragedy. To be friends with someone, and then more than friends, and then friends again. It deals with grief, love, and the pain of learning that sometimes you don't know the people you were closest to as well as as you thought. Beautifully told with an introspective narrator, We Are Okay quickly made its way to my list of favorite reads.
"Be patient and tough, someday this pain will be useful to you"
This is a book for anyone who has led a rich interior life, sometimes to the detriment of their exterior life.
James is introspective, protective of his identity to a degree that sometimes doesn't allow anyone to know who he is, and because of these things he is a very naive and sometimes harsh narrator. However it's through this interior-narrative that we come to know this very genuine boy on the cusp of adulthood and all his fears. Preoccupied with dreams of leaving Manhattan, and the looming threat of college - what he believes will amount to forced socialization with his peers - for a modest home in Kansas where he can be alone with himself, James learns to deal with the world around him through oftentimes difficult interactions with his family members, psychiatrist, and others. When I first read this book, I was close to James' age, in subsequent re-readings I've learned a lot about James, about myself at varying ages, and about what it means to become a person. Hopefully this book can do the same for you.
Saenz tells his stories with an unparalleled insight and empathy for his characters.
We meet Salvador at a turning point in his life, a coming of age where he explores what it means to be adopted, to lose people you love, to struggle with anger and identity. This is a story about the families we create, and of the families that choose us and take us in when we most need it. The Inexplicable Logic of My Life guided me through the many emotions and experiences of it's characters, and ultimately left me with an overwhelming feeling of love, belonging, and hope.
Nightlights is a visually stunning story about fear and imagination. Alvarez's whimsical and sometimes eerie illustrations tell the story of Sandy, and of the strange girl Morpie who takes perhaps too much interest in Sandy's art. An entirely enchanting all-ages comic.
Jeremy works in an independent video rental shop in Iowa in the late '90s when the likes of Hollywood Video loomed large, threatening their existence. His days are routine until multiple customers return videos complaining that there's "something" on them, something that isn't supposed to be... and from there things only get stranger.
Darnielle again proves his ability to craft a wholly original story while still giving you the sense that everything going on is eerily familiar.