friday reads

Friday Reads: Summer Camp!

Are you sending your kids to summer camp? Do you have fond memories of bygone summer adventures yourself? July is a big month for camps – whether it be themed day camps or the excitement of sleep-away camp. Deep and lasting friendships, as well as milestones of independence, are often formed at camp and the following books (for children and adults) take us there without the bug bites!

  Perennials by Mandy BermanPERENNIALS: A NOVEL by Mandy Berman The quintessential summer read: a darkly poignant coming-of-age novel about the magic of camp and the enduring power of female friendship. Rachel Rivkin and Fiona Larkin used to treasure their summers together as campers at Camp Marigold. Now that they are reunited as counselors, after their first year of college, their relationship is more complicated. Through them, as well as from the perspectives of their fellow counselors, their campers, and their mothers, we witness the tensions of the turbulent summer build to a tragic event, which forces Rachel and Fiona to confront their pasts—and the adults they’re becoming.   The Interestings by Meg WolitzerTHE INTERESTINGS: A NOVEL by Meg Wolitzer The summer that Nixon resigns, six teenagers at a summer camp for the arts become inseparable. Decades later the bond remains powerful, but so much else has changed. In The Interestings, Wolitzer follows these characters from the height of youth through middle age, as their talents, fortunes, and degrees of satisfaction diverge.   Honor GirlHONOR GIRL: A GRAPHIC MEMOIR by Maggie Thrash; Young Adult Camp Bellflower is an impossible place for a girl to fall in love with another girl, and Maggie’s savant-like proficiency at the camp’s rifle range is the only thing keeping her heart from exploding.     Sports Camp by Rich WallaceSPORTS CAMP by Rich Wallace; Ages 9 to 12 Riley feels like the smallest kid at sports camp. In fact, he is. He just turned eleven in April, but most kids here are twelve, and a few are even thirteen—and gigantic. It’s hard enough for a shrimp like Riley to fit in. He just doesn’t want to be the weak link as his bunk competes for the Camp Olympia Trophy.   Roller Girl by Victoria JamiesonROLLER GIRL by Victoria Jamieson; Ages 8-12 For most of her twelve years, Astrid has done everything with her best friend Nicole. But after Astrid falls in love with roller derby and signs up for derby camp, Nicole decides to go to dance camp instead. And so begins the most difficult summer of Astrid’s life as she struggles to keep up with the older girls at camp, hang on to the friend she feels slipping away, and cautiously embark on a new friendship.   Summer Ball by Mike LupicaSUMMER BALL by Mike Lupica; Ages 8-12 Danny Walker is heading to Right Way basketball camp for the summer, and he knows that with the country’s best players in attendance, he’s going to need to take his game up a notch if he wants to match up. But it won’t be easy. Old rivals and new battles leave Danny wondering if he really does have what it takes to stand tall.   For more on these and related titles, visit Summer Camp Friday Reads  

Friday Reads: Hotel Lit

This summer, readers and reviewers are loving A Gentleman in Moscow and The Dollhouse which set us thinking about the sub-genre of hotel lit… books where the hotel setting is so prominent and intriguing that the hotel, or inn, becomes another character.  Whether these establishments are historical or fictional, we give

the authors of the following titles a five-star rating for transporting us into their stories. It’s not all vacation either!   A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor TowlesA GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW by Amor Towles In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin.  Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.   The Dollhouse by Fiona DavisTHE DOLLHOUSE: A NOVEL by Fiona Davis Fiona Davis’s stunning debut novel pulls readers into the lush world of New York City’s glamorous Barbizon Hotel for Women, where a generation of aspiring models, secretaries, and editors lived side-by-side while attempting to claw their way to fairy-tale success in the 1950s, and where a present-day journalist becomes consumed with uncovering a dark secret buried deep within the Barbizon’s glitzy past.   High Dive by Jonathan LeeHIGH DIVE: A NOVEL by Jonathan Lee One of the Best Books of the Year The Wall Street Journal • The Washington Post • San Francisco Chronicle  One of The New York Times “Critics’ Top Books” of the Year A moving and darkly funny novel, set around a bustling seaside hotel that’s poised to become ground zero for the assassination of a political leader: In September 1984, a bomb was planted at the Grand Hotel in the seaside town of Brighton, England, set to explode on the day Margaret Thatcher and her entire cabinet would be staying there. In High Dive, Jonathan Lee takes us inside this audacious assassination attempt, and into the hearts and minds of a group of unforgettable characters.   The Girl Who Knew Too Much by Amanda QuickTHE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH by Amanda Quick At the exclusive Burning Cove Hotel on the coast of California, rookie reporter Irene Glasson finds herself staring down at a beautiful actress at the bottom of a pool…The dead woman had a red-hot secret about an up-and-coming leading man, a scoop that Irene couldn’t resist.   HOTEL DU LAC by Anita BrooknerHOTEL DU LAC by Anita Brookner In the novel that won her the Booker Prize and established her international reputation, Anita Brookner finds a new vocabulary for framing the eternal question “Why love?” It tells the story of Edith Hope, who writes romance novels under a pseudonym. When her life begins to resemble the plots of her own novels, however, Edith flees to Switzerland, where the quiet luxury of the Hotel du Lac promises to restore her to her senses.   Hotel World by Ali SmithHOTEL WORLD by Ali Smith Five people: four are living; three are strangers; two are sisters; one, a teenage hotel chambermaid, has fallen to her death in a dumbwaiter. But her spirit lingers in the world, straining to recall things she never knew. And one night all five women find themselves in the smooth plush environs of the Global Hotel, where the intersection of their very different fates make for this playful, defiant, and richly inventive novel.   Life at the Marmont by Raymond Sarlot and Fred E. BastenLIFE AT THE MARMONT: THE INSIDE STORY OF HOLLYWOOD’S LEGENDARY HOTEL OF THE STARS–CHATEAU MARMONT by Raymond Sarlot, Fred E. Basten Raymond Sarlot bought the Chateau Marmont in 1975, but what was originally a business purchase became a love affair as he delved into the hotel’s incredible history. From its perch overlooking the Sunset Strip, the glamorous Marmont reigned for decades as the spot for artists, writers, musicians, and actors of every stripe. Here, Sarlot and Basten share a wealth of scandalous and intriguing tales about them all.   Ocean Sea by Alessandro BariccoOCEAN SEA by Alessandro Baricco At the Almayer Inn, a remote shoreline hotel, an artist dips his brush in a cup of ocean water to paint a portrait of the sea. A scientist pens love letters to a woman he has yet to meet. An adulteress searches for relief from her proclivity to fall in love. And a sixteen-year-old girl seeks a cure from a mysterious condition which science has failed to remedy. When these people meet, their fates begin to interact as if by design.   The Hotel Cat by Esther AverillTHE HOTEL CAT by Esther Averill; Ages 5 to 9 One wintry day a lonely stray cat wandered into the Royal Hotel. He chased mice so well that he was given the job of Hotel Cat. Tired of always spending time in the cellar Tom ventured upstairs and met the gentle Mrs. Wilkins, a longtime hotel resident who had the ability to communicate with cats. She encouraged Tom to keep an open mind about the hotel guests…   For more on these and related titles, visit Hotel Lit

Friday Reads: Fourth of July!

Are you ready for the long holiday weekend? Looking for something relevant to read? The Fourth of July—also known as Independence Day or July 4th—has been a federal holiday in the United States since 1941, but the tradition of Independence Day celebrations goes back to the 18th century and the American

Revolution. To honor the occasion, this Friday Reads installment turns to no lesser topic than America itself, from a variety of perspectives and with something for everyone. So here’s to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness!   THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE AND THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION edited by Richard Beeman What is the President, Congress, and the Supreme Court really allowed to do? This unique and handy guide includes the documents that guide our government, annotated with accessible explanations from one of America’s most esteemed constitutional scholars.   1776: A MUSICAL PLAY by Sherman Edwards, Peter Stone Before there was “Hamilton”, “1776” took to the stage in 1969 winning five Tony Awards, including Best Book and Best Musical, this oft-produced musical play is an imaginative re-creation of the events from May 8 to July 4, 1776 in Philadelphia, when the second Continental Congress argued about, voted on, and signed the Declaration of Independence.   JEFFERSON’S AMERICA: THE PRESIDENT, THE PURCHASE, AND THE EXPLORERS WHO TRANSFORMED A NATION by Julie M. Fenster The surprising story of how Thomas Jefferson commanded an unrivaled era of American exploration—and in doing so, forged a great nation.     AMERICA AND AMERICANS AND SELECTED NONFICTION by John Steinbeck More than four decades after his death, John Steinbeck remains one of the nation’s most beloved authors. Yet few know of his career as a journalist who covered world events from the Great Depression to Vietnam. Now, this distinctive collection offers a portrait of the artist as citizen, deeply engaged in the world around him.   THE SMITHSONIAN’S HISTORY OF AMERICA IN 101 OBJECTS edited by Richard Kurin A magnificent history of America told through 101 objects taken from the Smithsonian’s collections, the country’s largest and most important, selected by the beloved head of its history, art and culture museums.   BECOMING AMERICANS: IMMIGRANTS TELL THEIR STORIES FROM JAMESTOWN TO TODAY edited by Pete Hamill et al… Immigration is the essential American story, though one often told in terms of its impact on those already here. Becoming Americans tells this epic story from the inside, gathering for the first time over 400 years of writing by first-generation immigrants about the immigrant experience.   AMERICA FIRST! : ITS HISTORY, CULTURE, AND POLITICS by Bill Kauffman, Gore Vidal Lively and iconoclastic, America First! explores the rich heritage, turbulent present, and possible future of the political and cultural tendency known as “America First.” Bill Kauffman, a columnist for the American Conservative, examines the nineteenth-century underpinnings and twentieth-century eruptions of American isolationism and nationalism.   FOR YOUNGER READERS WHAT IS THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE?; Ages 8-12 by Michael C. Harris, Jerry Hoare, Kevin McVeigh Step back in time to the birth of America and meet the real-life rebels who made this country free!     THIS IS AMERICA: A NATIONAL TREASURY by Miroslav Sasek Selections from M. Sasek’s most popular illustrated children’s travel guides compiled into one big look at the United States and its unique history.     For more on these and related titles visit the collection: Fourth of July

Friday Reads: Father’s Day

fridayreadstnailSunday, June 18, is Father’s Day. For this installment of Friday Reads we focus on dad and his myriad interests with some of our bestselling titles.

    FEATURED TITLES 9780399180859_08457ATTITUDE: DEVELOP A WINNING MINDSET ON AND OFF THE COURT by Jay Wright, Michael Sheridan, Mark Dagostino In this behind-the-scenes look at the making of a champion, the coach of the Villanova University men’s basketball team shares his competitive and cooperative philosophy, along with lessons from his coaching career and the story of his personal road to success.   9781101985878_fa6a5THE AWKWARD THOUGHTS OF KAMAU BELL: TALES OF A 6′ 4″, AFRICAN AMERICAN, HETEROSEXUAL, CISGENDER, LEFT-LEANING, ASTHMATIC, BLACK AND PROUD BLERD, MAMA’S BOY, DAD, AND STAND-UP COMEDIAN by W. Kamau Bell A memoir and manifesto from the comedian, hit podcast host, and star of United Shades of America.   9781594205071_33c34BEHAVE: THE BIOLOGY OF HUMANS AT OUR BEST AND WORST by Robert M. Sapolsky From the great neurobiologist and primatologist, a landmark, genre-defining examination of the decisive factors that dictate the boundaries of human behavior, both good and bad.     9780812995343_5c7adLINCOLN IN THE BARDO: A NOVEL by George Saunders The captivating first novel by the best-selling, National Book Award nominee George Saunders, about Abraham Lincoln and the death of his eleven year old son, Willie, at the dawn of the Civil War.     9780812993547_1f8f9BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME: NOTES ON THE FIRST 150 YEARS IN AMERICA by Ta-Nehisi Coates A bold investigation into America’s racial history and its contemporary echoes from “the single best writer on the subject of race in the United States” (New York Observer), told through the author’s own evolving understanding of the subject over the course of his life.   9780140280197_398bfTHE 48 LAWS OF POWER by Robert Greene, Joost Elffers Robert Greene and Joost Elffers have distilled three thousand years of the history of power into 48 essential laws by drawing from the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun Tzu, and more. Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, The 48 Laws of Power is the definitive manual for anyone interested in gaining, observing, or defending against ultimate control.   9780143109396_ac73eBARBARIAN DAYS: A SURFING LIFE by William Finnegan Winner of the Pulitzer Prize: A deeply-rendered self-portrait of a life-long surfer by the acclaimed New Yorker journalist.     9780143128854_aa6b6ORIGINALS: HOW NON-CONFORMISTS MOVE THE WORLD by Adam Grant, Sheryl Sandberg The #1 national bestseller that examines how people can champion new ideas—and how leaders can fight groupthink     For more on these and other great books for dad, visit the collection: Fathers Friday Reads

Friday Reads: May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

fridayreadstnailMay is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. Originating with Congress in the 1970s, this celebration was initially only one week in May (a resolution signed by President Jimmy Carter). In 1992, Congress passed Public Law 102-450 which designated May as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month. The

official Asian Pacific American Heritage Month website has more information, including audio, video, and information for teachers. We’ve put together a collection of amazing titles featuring authors and characters from Asian and/or Pacific Islander heritage and cultures.   FEATURED TITLES 9781594633805_6411eMAMBO IN CHINATOWN by Jean Kwok From the bestselling author of Girl in Translation, an inspiring novel about a young woman torn between her family duties in Chinatown and her escape into a more Western world.     9780143117506SHORT GIRLS by Bich Minh Nguyen
Bich Minh Nguyen made her fiction debut with this deeply moving and entertaining story of two Vietnamese sisters. Aside from their petite stature, Van and Linny Luong couldn’t be more different. Diligent, unassuming Van works as an immigration lawyer in the Michigan suburbs where she resides with her handsome, Chinese-American lawyer husband. Beautiful, fashionable Linny lives in Chicago and has drifted into an affair with a married man. When Van’s picture-perfect marriage collapses and Linny finds herself grappling to escape her dead-end life, the long-estranged sisters are unable to confide in one another- until their eccentric inventor father calls them back home to the Vietnamese American community they fled long ago.
9781573225311NATIVE SPEAKER by Chang-Rae Lee L is for Lee. Korean American Henry Park is “surreptitious, B+ student of life, illegal alien, emotional alien, Yellow peril: neo-American, stranger, follower, traitor, spy…” or so says his wife, in the list she writes upon leaving him. Henry is forever uncertain of his place, a perpetual outsider looking at American culture from a distance. And now, a man of two worlds, he is beginning to fear that he has betrayed both and belongs to neither. Chang-Rae Lee’s first novel Native Speaker is a raw and lyrical evocation of the immigrant experience and of the question of identity itself.   9780307362933_73471THE SELECTOR OF SOULS by Shauna Singh Baldwin In Shauna Singh Baldwin’s enthralling novel, two fascinating, strong-willed women must deal with the relentless logic forced upon them by survival: Damini, a Hindu midwife, and Anu, who flees an abusive marriage for the sanctuary of the Catholic church. When Sister Anu comes to Damini’s home village to open a clinic, their paths cross, and each are certain they are doing what’s best for women. What do health, justice, education and equality mean for women when India is marching toward prosperity, growth and becoming a nuclear power? If the baby girls and women around them are to survive, Damini and Anu must find creative ways to break with tradition and help this community change from within.   9781594486524FORGOTTEN COUNTRY by Catherine Chung The night before Janie’s sister, Hannah, is born, her grandmother tells her a story: Since the Japanese occupation of Korea, their family has lost a daughter in every generation, and Janie is told to keep Hannah safe. Years later, when Hannah inexplicably cuts all ties and disappears, Janie goes to find her. Thus begins a journey that will force her to confront her family’s painful silence, the truth behind her parents’ sudden move to America twenty years earlier, and her own conflicted feelings toward Hannah.   9781594631931THE KITE RUNNER by Khaled Hosseini The unforgettable, heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant, caught in the tragic sweep of history, The Kite Runner transports readers to Afghanistan at a tense and crucial moment of change and destruction. A powerful story of friendship, it is also about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption; and an exploration of the power of fathers over sons—their love, their sacrifices, their lies.   COMING ATTRACTIONS 9781401270933_f9e0aNEW SUPERMAN VOL. 1: MADE IN CHINA by Gene Luen Yang On Sale Date: June 27, 2017 An impulsive act of heroism thrusts an arrogant young man into the limelight of Shanghai as China begins to form its own Justice League of powerful heroes. As the government creates their own Superman, will they live to regret the person they’ve chosen? Rising from the ashes of SUPERMAN: THE FINAL DAYS OF SUPERMAN and the death of the Man of Steel, will this New Super-Man step up to the challenge, or be crushed under the weight of his hubris and inexperience?   9780399589386_4baceSOUR HEART by Jenny Zhang On Sale Date:  August 1, 2017 A sly debut collection that conjures the experience of adolescence through the eyes of Chinese American girls growing up in New York City—for readers of Zadie Smith, Helen Oyeyemi, and Junot Díaz. Narrated by the daughters of Chinese immigrants who fled imperiled lives as artists back home only to struggle to stay afloat—dumpster diving for food and scamming Atlantic City casino buses to make a buck—these seven stories showcase Zhang’s compassion, moral courage, and a perverse sense of humor reminiscent of Portnoy’s Complaint. A darkly funny and intimate rendering of girlhood, Sour Heart examines what it means to belong to a family, to find your home, leave it, reject it, and return again.   9780735224292_fc528LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE by Celeste Ng On Sale Date:  September 12, 2017 Little Fires Everywhere explores the weight of secrets, the nature of art and identity, and the ferocious pull of motherhood – and the danger of believing that following the rules can avert disaster.   For more on these and related titles visit the collection Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
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Friday Reads: Teacher Memoirs

fridayreadstnailNational Teacher Day is May 9th – a day celebrating some of the most influential people in any child’s life. There are more than 3 million teachers in the United States, and that’s not counting all the aides and school librarians. So we say “thank you” to all of these hard-working, dedicated individuals with this Friday Reads

collection of educator memoirs for adults and information and picture books for kids. Celebrate the teacher in your life! FEATURED TITLES 9780399160981_8ee1aSUBSTITUTE by Nicholson Baker In 2014, after a brief orientation course and a few fingerprinting sessions, Nicholson Baker became an on-call substitute teacher. What emerges from Baker’s experience is a complex, often touching deconstruction of public schooling in America: children swamped with overdue assignments, overwhelmed by the marvels and distractions of social media and educational technology, and staff who weary themselves trying to teach in step with an often outmoded or overly ambitious standard curriculum.   9780385339285TALES FROM THE TEACHERS’ LOUNGE by Robert Wilder From the critically acclaimed author of Daddy Needs a Drink comes a series of irreverent, wickedly observant essays about what it really means to be a teacher today. With his trademark wit and wisdom, Robert Wilder dissects the world’s noblest profession—whether he’s taming a classroom full of hormonal teenagers or going one-on-one with the school bully.   9781594632808_3871dDRAMA HIGH by Michael Sokolove Friday Night Lights meets Glee—the incredible and true story of an extraordinary drama teacher who has changed the lives of thousands of students and inspired a town.     9780307588890THE NEW COOL by Neal Bascomb In The New Cool, Neal Bascomb manages to make even those who know little about – or are vaguely suspicious of – technology care passionately about a team of kids questing after a different kind of glory.  In these kids’ heartaches and headaches – and yes, high-five triumphs — we glimpse the path not just to a new way of educating our youth but of honoring the crucial skills a society needs to prosper.  A new cool.   FOR YOUNGER READERS 9780399539053_f2a61HERE COMES THE TEACHER CAT by Deborah Underwood It’s back to school for the New York Times bestselling Cat when he steps in as a substitute teacher.     9780375868450_a82edA LETTER TO MY TEACHER by Deborah Hopkinson This funny, touching picture book –the perfect gift for a child to give to his/her own teacher– celebrates the difference a good teacher can make. Written as a thank-you note to a special teacher from the student who never forgot her, this moving story makes a great read-aloud and a perfect gift for Teacher Appreciation Day or the end of the school year.   For more on these and related titles visit the collection EDUCATOR MEMOIRS  

Friday Reads: Lies and More Lies…

fridayreadstnailThat t.v. taste-maker HBO is at it again with the brilliantly cast adaptation of Liane Moriarty’s bestselling novel BIG LITTLE LIES. But Liane’s isn’t the only book with lying eyes. For this Friday Reads installment, we proffer tantalizing fiction centered on deceit. Oh what a tangled web these characters do weave!

9780399587191_29e1eBIG LITTLE LIES by Liane Moriarty Now an HBO® Limited Series starring Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley, Alexander Skarsgård, Laura Dern, Adam Scott, and Zoë Kravitz from the director of Wild and Dallas Buyers Club, Jean-Marc Vallée, and Writer David E. Kelley. Big Little Lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the little lies that spiral slowly, dangerously out of control. 9780143118541LIES OF THE HEART by Michelle Boyajian “Boyajian’s psychologically astute debut combines courtroom drama with a heartbreaking portrait of a wife’s grief.” -People Katie Burelli is living a nightmare. Her husband Nick, a speech therapist, is dead-shot by Jerry, one of his mentally handicapped patients. As Jerry stands trial, Katie plays and replays the events that led up to Nick’s murder, and searches her own recollections for answers. 9780425188613SACRAMENT OF LIES by Elizabeth Dewberry When Grayson Guillory’s mother died, she helped her father get rid of the empty vodka and pill bottles next to the body. It wouldn’t do for the governor of Louisiana to have a wife who committed suicide after years of mental illness—especially just as he’s contemplating the presidency. Grayson’s husband—her father’s speechwriter—helps him keep the story quiet, and the family doctor makes sure the cause of death will be listed as a heart attack. But Grayson has a problem. When she thought she was helping her father cover up a suicide, she might actually … 9780307948328_e3eccSUMMER LIES: STORIES by Bernhard Schlink, Carol Janeway From Bernhard Schlink, the internationally best-selling author of The Reader, come seven provocative and masterfully calibrated stories. A keen dissection of the ways in which we play with truth and less-than-truth in our lives.   9780307336828BEAUTIFUL LIES: A NOVEL by Lisa Unger Ridley Jones has been living a lie. A mysterious package showed up on her doorstep one morning and the beautiful lie she used to call her life was over. Suddenly, everyone she knows feels like a stranger.   9780449001172WARTIME LIES: A NOVEL by Louis Begley As the world slips into the throes of war in 1939, young Maciek’s once closeted existence outside Warsaw is no more. When Warsaw falls, Maciek escapes with his aunt Tania. Together they endure the war, running, hiding, changing their names, forging documents to secure their temporary lives—as the insistent drum of the Nazi march moves ever closer to them and to their secret wartime lies.   FOR YOUNG ADULT READERS 9780147510167_2ee86THE SACRED LIES OF MINNOW BLY by Stephanie Oakes Brought to the Community at age five, the cult has taken so much from Minnow: her childhood, her family, her ability to trust. And when she rebelled, they took her hands, too. Now their Prophet has been murdered and their camp set aflame, and it’s clear that Minnow knows something—but she’s not talking.   9781616955151_87d6dLITTLE WHITE LIES by Brianna Baker, F. Bowman Hastie; Ages 14 and up Seventeen-year-old honors student Coretta White’s Tumblr, Little White Lies—her witty thoughts on pretty much…everything—has gone viral. She’s got hundreds of thousands of followers; she’s even been offered a TV deal. But Coretta has a secret. She hasn’t been writing all her own posts… “Little White Lies is a hilarious, righteous, and page-turning coming-of-age story. Imagine Judy Blume meets Candace Bushnell meets Harper Lee all in one novel.”  —Dorian Warren, host of MSNBC’s Nerding Out 9780385734905_85e39KISSES AND LIES by Lian Tanner; Ages 14 and up After discovering that someone saw what looked like Dan’s emergency EpiPen in A-lister Plum’s designer handbag, Scarlett and her tough American sidekick, Taylor, sneak into a posh London nightclub, where Plum has a private table. Scarlett is stunned to discover a piece of evidence that might implicate another girl in Plum’s exclusive circle. Which means Scarlett must cast a wider net in order to catch the right suspect.   For more on these and related titles visit the collection: Lies

#FridayReads: Love Letters

Untitled-1 copyWho doesn’t love a love letter? Even one not intended for its reader? Perhaps especially those! In anticipation of Valentine’s Day, we turn our rose-colored, voyeuristic, reading glasses to books of love letters from some of our most beloved poets and writers.

  9780679446897LOVE LETTERS edited by Peter Washington (Everyman’s Library) Here are 200 irresistible love letters from over the centuries, love letters both historic and fictional, love letters by poets and by princes, love letters enchanting, tragic, comic, superbly selected, beautifully printed, conveniently portable, to have with you wherever and whenever you’re in the mood for love.   9780143117742BRIGHT STAR: LOVE LETTERS AND POEMS OF JOHN KEATS TO FANNY BRAWNE by John Keats, Foreword by Jane Campion The epic romance of one of the most celebrated poets in the English language. Bright Star is a collection of Keats’ romantic poems and correspondence in the heat of his passion, and is a dazzling display of a talent cut cruelly short.   9780307593368LETTERS TO VERA by Vladimir Nabokov From their first encounter in 1923, Vladimir’s letters to Véra form a narrative arc that tells a half-century-long love story, one that is playful, romantic, pithy and memorable. At the same time, the letters tell us much about the man and the writer.   9780147516220YOURS FOR ETERNITY: A LOVE STORY ON DEATH ROW by Damien Echols, Lorri Davis New York Times bestselling author Damien Echols and his wife Lorri Davis reveal their intimate and affecting letters, written while Echols was wrongfully imprisoned on death row.   9780140448993THE LETTERS OF ABELARD AND HELOISE by Peter Abelard, Heloise, Michael Clanchy Through the letters between Abelard and Heloise, we follow the path of their 12th-century romance, from its reckless and ecstatic beginnings when Heloise became Abelard’s pupil, through the suffering of public scandal and enforced secret marriage, to their eventual separation.   For more on these and related titles visit the collection: Love Letters

Friday Reads: Chinese Lit for the New Year

chinese-year-of-the-rooster-stamps-300x150This year, Chinese New Year – The Year of the Rooster – begins on Saturday January 28 and lasts until February 15th, 2018. The new year, also known as the Spring Festival, is marked by the lunisolar Chinese calendar, so the date changes from year to year. In honor of the occasion, we are highlighting some of our best novels by Chinese authors.

FEATURED TITLES 9780307911629_ee601THE BOAT ROCKER by Ha Jin From the award-winning author of Waiting: an urgent, timely novel that follows an aspiring author, an outrageous book idea, and a lone journalist’s dogged quest for truth in the Internet age.   9780804172066_c16b7CHINA RICH GIRLFRIEND by Kevin Kwan Kevin Kwan, bestselling author of Crazy Rich Asians, is back with a wickedly funny new novel of social climbing, secret e-mails, art-world scandal, lovesick billionaires, and the outrageous story of what happens when Rachel Chu, engaged to marry Asia’s most eligible bachelor, discovers her birth father.   9780142002186_91433THE FLOWER DRUM SONG by C. Y. Lee Originally published in 1957, The Flower Drum Song was a groundbreaking work of popular literature. An immediate bestseller, it inspired the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical. This charming, bittersweet tale of romance and the powerful bonds of family tells the story of Wang Ta, living in San Francisco’s Chinatown-with his widowed father, who wants what every young American man wants: a great career and a woman to love   9780452271586MCHINA BOY by Gus Lee Kai Ting is the only American-born son of an aristocratic Mandarin family that fled China in the wake of Mao’s revolution. Growing up in San Francisco’s ghetto, Kai is caught between two worlds—embracing neither the Chinese nor the American way of life.   9780143116530_91505THE PIANO TEACHER: A NOVEL by Janice Y. K. Lee In the sweeping tradition of The English Patient, Janice Y.K. Lee’s debut novel is a tale of love and betrayal set in war-torn Hong Kong. In 1942, Englishman Will Truesdale falls headlong into a passionate relationship with Trudy Liang, a beau …   9780812980356_c20daSNOW FLOWER AND THE SECRET FAN by Lisa See In nineteenth-century China, in a remote Hunan county, a girl named Lily, at the tender age of seven, is paired with a laotong, an “old same,” in an emotional match that will last a lifetime.   9780385722209_860a4BALZAC AND THE LITTLE CHINESE SEAMSTRESS by Dai Sijie An enchanting tale that captures the magic of reading and the wonder of romantic awakening. An immediate international bestseller, it tells the story of two hapless city boys exiled to a remote mountain village for re-education during China’s infamous Cultural Revolution.   9781594480201_54330BEIJING DOLL by Chun Sue Banned in China for its candid exploration of a young girl’s sexual awakening yet widely acclaimed as being “the first novel of ‘tough youth’ in China” (Beijing Today), Beijing Doll cuts a daring path through China’s rock-and-roll subculture.   9780143113270I LOVE DOLLARS: AND OTHER STORIES OF CHINA by Zhu Wen An immediate sensation upon publication in China, I Love Dollars is a hilarious send-up of China’s love affair with capitalism by one of its most gifted new writers. In the title story, a young man, acutely aware of his filial duty, sets out to secure a prostitute for his father, only to haggle his old man out of a good time.   9780140168549RED SORGHUM: A NOVEL OF CHINA by Mo Yan The acclaimed novel of love and resistance during late 1930s China by Mo Yan, winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Literature. Spanning three generations, this novel of family and myth is told through a series of flashbacks that depict events of staggering horror set against a landscape of gemlike beauty.   For more on these and related titles visit: Chinese Lit