Staff Suggestions

 

Our most popular section of the store, Staff Suggestions is a great place to discover an overlooked gem. Many of our staff picks also come in ebooks - just click on the title of the book and look under other editions. Enjoy!

 

 

$27.00
ISBN: 9781476704647
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - March 3rd, 2015

I didn't know I was a fan of Spy vs. Spy until I came across Kanon's previous novel, "Istanbul Passage." Now he does for Berlin what he did so well for Istanbul. There is the shadowy atmosphere, the building tension and a slew of memorable characters that jump off the page. I especially love his staccato-style dialog that assumes that the reader is paying close attention. Really gets your heart racing.--Mary T.


$26.00
ISBN: 9781476769813
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery Books - March 17th, 2015

When an x-ray for a minor problem reveals a bullet at the base of her brain, Caroline Cashion is launched on a journey to discover her true identity and the truth about her unknown past. Can you guess the surprise ending? Enjoyable, fast-paced whodunnit. Breezy style will keep you turning the pages to discover what's next!--Gail


By Jo Nesbo, Jo Nesb, Neil Smith (Translator)
$23.95
ISBN: 9780385354196
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - April 7th, 2015

I have spent enough time with Mr. Nesbo, having read all his books, to have a tiny insight into his creative process. While staying true  to the traditional narrative, he needs to push his boundaries to keep himself and the reader interested. He certainly succeeds here in his stand-alone (no Harry Hole) novel about an Oslo hitman.  This is challenging in the best possible sense. --Peggy

 


$27.99
ISBN: 9780062349378
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ecco Press - March 31st, 2015

In the past I have preferred this author's short stories to his novels. I found his sarcasm tiresome. Now I think I can compare Boyle to fine wine. Age and patience have allowed a mature, serious "vintage" to emerge. Set in Northern California, this is the story of  a seventy-year old retiree and his mentally disturbed son. Boyle addresses serious issues for serious times. --Peggy

 

 

 


$25.95
ISBN: 9781616203740
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill - April 7th, 2015

This exquisite debut novel begins in 1990 when Orhan's grandfather wills his home in Turkey to a woman in a nursing home in California. Orhan needs sto understand who the stranger is and travels to meet her. Reuctant at first, she ultimately shares her harrowing story. This is a beautifully written , devastating story of love and overwhelming loss during the Armenian genocide in 1914 Turkey.--Julie


$27.95
ISBN: 9780525953500
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dutton Books - March 24th, 2015

To be completely honest, I haven't read a thriller in quite a while. Knowing how much I love suspense,  Andrew, our Head Book Buyer, suggested I read Harlan Coben. This is a stand-alone thriller and from the first page I was hooked. I even stayed up through the night to read until I coudn't keep my eyes open!--Tracey


$26.00
ISBN: 9781476769813
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery Books - March 17th, 2015

When an x-ray for a minor problem reveals a bullet at the base of her brain, Caroline Cashion is launched on a journey to discover her true identity and the truth about her unknown past. Can you guess the surprise ending? Enjoyable, fast-paced whodunnit. Breezy style will keep you turning the pages to discover what's next!--Gail

 


$25.95
ISBN: 9780804197953
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Pantheon Books - April 7th, 2015

"Emma" is a no-brainer. For Austen followers a "modern retelling" will garner a whole new generation of fans as McCall Smith is right on his game with this charming and funny rendition. Emma is that friend you love because she is flawed but means well.  She is also that friend that you don't like because she can be self-centered and a tad mean at times. Either way she is as human as a literary character can get. Make tea and enjoy.--Mary T.

 

 


$26.00
ISBN: 9780812997538
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House - March 17th, 2015

"Anna was a good wife, mostly." And with that, the author has left us with a problem because the "mostly"  amounts to some very bad behavior. So what shall we do about Anna?  If it was just a question of taking her by the shoulders and shaking her out of her bordeom and other miseries, I would be first in line. She has it all. So the darkness and sadness that pervades all of Anna's days, causing her to act out, is hard to understand. Part Anna Karenina. Part Ana from Fifty Shades of Grey. An Anna you wish you could figure out and help. --Peggy


$27.00
ISBN: 9781476704647
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - March 3rd, 2015

I didn't know I was a fan of Spy vs. Spy until I came across Kanon's previous novel, "Istanbul Passage." Now he does for Berlin what he did so well for Istanbul. There is the shadowy atmosphere, the building tension and a slew of memorable characters that jump off the page. I especially love his staccato-style dialog that assumes that the reader is paying close attention. Really gets your heart racing.--Mary T.


$27.00
ISBN: 9781476746586
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - May 6th, 2014

A blind French girl. An orphaned German boy. A relentless Nazi soldier searching for a rare gem... these are only 3 of the beautifully developed, yet imperfect characters in Anthony Doerr’s WWII historical fiction novel. All the Light We Cannot See has such an emotional depth that weaves simultaneous stories together into a true masterpiece. If you’re a fan, it’s a bit reminiscent of Sarah’s Key. One of the many things I loved about this book is that it’s not your typical WWII story. Doerr explores human nature and the inner horror of some difficult choices.

 

-Lori

 

 

 


$24.95
ISBN: 9780385354127
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - March 10th, 2015

A uniquely told tale of an elephant, a poacher and a cocumentary filmmkaer that will cause you to think about manking'd sometimes beautiful, sometimes brutal relatinship with the pachiderm. It's no surprise that you will sympathize with the elephant despite his homicidal leanings. The real surpirse lies in how you will come to view the poachers despite the seemingly cruel and greedy nature of their buiness. An astonishing and brilliant story. --Mary T.


$25.00
ISBN: 9780812996678
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House - March 3rd, 2015

$26.99
ISBN: 9780465055999
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Basic Books (AZ) - March 24th, 2015

$16.00
ISBN: 9781250056108
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Picador USA - December 2nd, 2014

$16.00
ISBN: 9780812983432
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House Trade - February 24th, 2015

The promise of a sister to take care of her brother begins this extraordinary debut novel. Fragments of diaries and bits of knowledge are intertwined until I realized their story is just a small part of an old dark secret in Victorian London. Foggy lamp-lit streets are the perfect backdrop for the moral and philosophical questions, and the quiet intense love stories. Owen is a mesmerizing storyteller!

 

- Jamie

 


$26.00
ISBN: 9781476755670
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - January 20th, 2015

$28.95
ISBN: 9781594633119
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - September 16th, 2014

This is the story of a young spinster in Great Britain, 1922, who falls madly in in love and then continues to fall...deeper and deeper into a pit of immorality. Watching her justify the means to her goals, juggling white lies and then performing criminal acts is beyond fascinating. A+ --Mary


$35.00
ISBN: 9780385534116
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Nan A. Talese - October 28th, 2014

Forget Ferdinand--Queen Isabelle was a strong, politically savvy, zealous welder of power in 15th century Spain, Europe, and the New World. This is a wonderful, readable, thorough and illuminating biography of a remarkable, passionate woman in a time of turmoil, religious upheaval, skullduggery and adventure. A great read. --Nancy


$27.95
ISBN: 9780393073720
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - October 13th, 2014

"The Pill" is a riveting account of the conception of one of the most important discoveries of the 20th century! This page-turner chronicles the efforts of Margaret Sanger, Katherine McCormick, Gregory Pincus and John Rock--the four primary individuals wo would revolutionize birth control (a previously forbidden term) and ultimately form Planned Parenthood. From the early 1900's through the sexual revolution of the 60's, this is our incredible story of changing attitudes, scientific breakthroughs and social evolution. Definitely one of my top picks of the year! -- Barb


$25.99
ISBN: 9781250061928
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Thomas Dunne Books - January 20th, 2015

$27.00
ISBN: 9781439138335
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - October 7th, 2014

I love Toibin's writing--he makes me feel like I'm in Ireland (and I've never been there)! He didn't disappoint me with Nora Webster. You'll want to jump into the pages to yell at her family and neighbors and cheer her on as she learns to stand on her own two feet. Widowhood at its best/worst. -- Val S.


$25.00
ISBN: 9780307952493
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Crown Publishing Group (NY) - September 16th, 2014

A culture and gender study encompassing far more than just its subject country of Afghanistan, "The Underground Girls of Kabul" is investigative journalism at its finest. Jenny Nordberg, who first broke the story to the New York Times in 2012, provides a visceral narrative of the lives of several bacha posh-Dari for "dressed up as a boy. These girls spend their childhoods, and sometimes longer, presenting as male in order to gain the freedoms that would be otherwise unavailable to them because of their gender. In this deeply personal account, a mother, a doctor, a parliamentarian, a police officer, and several young girls give voice to a generation poised for radical social change. --Emily

 

 

 


$26.00
ISBN: 9780316216821
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mulholland Books - September 16th, 2014

Disturbing cover, disturbing story but sometimes that's exactly what I'm in the mood for! A talented artist causes chaos in Detroit when he creates tableaus incorporating corpses, say that 5 times fast. I especially like the female detective - She's a tough talking, no-nonsense kind of gal. --Mary

 


$25.99
ISBN: 9781476735375
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - August 5th, 2014

Ellen has never fit in with her high society family in England. She has thrown her phone into the Irish Sea and has escaped the expectations of her mother. She is now living with her Aunt Peg on the Irish country side. What will she discover on this trip? Is her mother really the high society woman she claims to be? What about the ghost who is haunting the manor? Dive in to this amazing story of family, finding one's self and maybe falling  in love. You will feel as if you are in Ireland. Read this book! You won't be able to put it down. --Kat


$28.00
ISBN: 9781476756660
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - August 19th, 2014

This is the most impressive novel I've read all year. It is both expansive and inwardly personal. The story of a family in the boroughs of New York City. A major literary debut that is not to be missed. --Andrew


$26.00
ISBN: 9780316250818
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little Brown and Company - July 8th, 2014

One of my favorite books of the year, "California" lives up to the hype and praised bestowed by Stephen Colbert. The story follows Cal and Frida in post-apocalyptic California. When Frida finds out she's pregnant, they move to a nearby community, but the adjustment is hard after being on their own so long. Very thought-provoking, You won't be able to put it down. --Liz
 


$26.99
ISBN: 9780062290366
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper - July 8th, 2014

Magic, fantasy and intrigue come together in this intoxicating debut novel by Erika Johansen. I was immediately drawn into this sweeping high fantasy through its vivid descriptions and engrossing plot. But what really hooked me was the likeable and oh-so-relatable main character, Kelsea.  Described as plain and unremarkable, she proves that our looks do not define who we are; that comes from within. Mesmerizing!!

--Kathy
   


$28.00
ISBN: 9780316206877
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mulholland Books - June 19th, 2014

After reading the first Cormoran Strike Mystery, I fell in love with the detective and the series. I couldn't wait for a sequel and The Silkworm does not disappoint. It follows Cormoran as he investigates the disappearance of the author Owen Quine, who recently attempted to publish a scandalous novel that has the ability to ruin many lives and possibly end some. --Katherine


$27.95
ISBN: 9780525426585
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Pamela Dorman Books - July 1st, 2014

Jojo Moyes fans - here you go! Another wonderful story-  more characters to love- always - smiles and joy! I oved this book and all its quirky twist and turns. Have fun with it! --Lori


$24.95
ISBN: 9781616203214
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill - April 2014

BOOK LOVERS! BOOKSTORE FOLKS! You'll love this story with its unconventional characters and many literary references. Shelf talkers even start each chapter giving you insight on bookstore owner AJ Fikry. The story takes off when AJ finds Maya, an abandoned baby in the store with a note pinned to her coat.  With Maya, Island Books becomes "the" place for the whole community.  It's a fast paced story which I read in a day.  It's also quirky and may seem unbelievable but it alwayscomes down to this: books have a magical way of connecting us all. 

--Sue

 

 


$24.95
ISBN: 9780871407863
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - May 7th, 2014

Once again, Larry McMurtry comes through with the most colorful characters and wittiest dialogue as the aging Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday “take their ease” on the saloon porch often – rehashing their heyday and occasionally trying to recreate it. This book had me wanting to belly up to a bar for a whiskey and a slab of antelope rump, find a high stakes poker game and then mosey on outback to smoke with a cowpoke.

--Va


$25.99
ISBN: 9781250043344
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: St. Martin's Press - April 15th, 2014

Set in the Scottish Islands and drawing on the magical stories of the Selkies (which I loved learning about - mythical creatures with sea form in the water and human form on land) this is a great story to simply get lost in. There's a big house with long buried secrets and characters on a path of self-discovery and healing. I love how the present is intermingled with the past and how Gifford weaves together the narratives of the 3 main characters. Love Kate Morton or Lucinda Riley? You'll love The Sea House.

--Sue


$25.00
ISBN: 9781476738017
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - July 15th, 2014

Just like the homeless cat that work its way into your heart, so will this grumpy old man - Ove. At times humorous and yet thoughtful, this is about the power of friendships and love to turn life around. Fans of The Unlikely Pilrimage of Harold Fry and Major Pettigrew's Last Stand will love this heat-warming story.

--Barb


$24.95
ISBN: 9780385351966
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - July 8th, 2014

I am so drawn to this book and especially to the frienship of the two main characters! As the girls grow up, their roles as the "good girl" and "always troubled girl" completely change. Reading it was like watching one blossom into a confident young lady as the other unravels before your eyes. So Real! So touching! --Lori


$25.00
ISBN: 9780804138567
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Crown Publishing Group (NY) - May 13th, 2014

Hold on for a gripping ride through exciting twists and turns to a beautifully told and satisfying end.  Bittersweet is so much more than a coming-of-age story; this is a mystery of dark and shocking secrets. Set in a wealthy, privileged family "camp" on Lake Champlain, VT, Mabel must choose between revealing the Winslow's ugly truths or re-evaluate her own moral compass to keep her new love, close friendships and sense of "belonging.”  This kept me totally entertained!

--Barb


$25.00
ISBN: 9781476738963
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - June 3rd, 2014

This is a contemporary story told with great love and compassion.  Yes, the characters are flawed but that's what makes them so real. Will they break your heart ? Absolutely, but they will also restore your faith in humanity. I can't stop thinking about this book. I feel changed by it. The story makes you want to be kinder and care more about other people.

--Mary T.

 

 


$16.00
ISBN: 9780802123701
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Grove Press - April 14th, 2015

This is a novel that sneaks up on you. King’s prose is effortless, and halfway through Euphoria, I wondered how she got me so involved. Set in New Guinea and loosely based on the life of Margaret Mead, pick this up if you want an enthralling love story.

--Andrew


$16.00
ISBN: 9781439177730
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - December 2nd, 2014

Killed in the heat of passion, a girl is found with her face missing! The main character is similar to Jason Bourne – no identity and a past filled with uncertainty. It is certain, however, that he has written a book and the crimes described in it are now being committed! Can he track down the person who is committing the perfect crimes? Or will he fail? Read this bone-chilling mystery.

--Kat


$24.00
ISBN: 9781476754222
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery Books - June 3rd, 2014

The Unexpected Waltz was a pleasure to read. Kelly Wilder, the main character, is loopy and a little lost. Discovering she is rich after her husband dies, Kelly needs to rediscover who she is without her husband. Through dance, she discovers new things about herself. Read this book and watch her transformation from insecure walthy house wife to dancer and a woman falling in love for the first tmie. Wright shows you that you are never to old to reinvent yourself.

--Kat


$26.00
ISBN: 9781439170878
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - June 3rd, 2014

Take This Man is a detailed, intimate glimpse into a very unconventional childhood. Brando Skyhorse was raised and lied to by an extremely dysfunctional mother who transformed him into who she wanted him to be: a full-blooded American Indian brave. It took him over 30 years to sift through her lies and to discover the truth about who he is, and who his biological father was. It’s a heartbreaking story and, on more than one occasion, you’ll find yourself saying this just can’t be real; but people can survive and Brando proves it. If you liked The Glass Castle or The Tender Bar, you should try this book. 

--Sue


$29.95
ISBN: 9781594204074
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Press - May 20th, 2014

Let's be honest, if food doesn't taste good, it really doesn't matter how environmentally-friendly it was grown or how good it is for you. Chef Dan Barber takes us along on his journey of discovery, weeding out even some of the more recently adopted philosophies (“Not all organic farms are good”), and taking others the next step further (“What is a chef's role in how food is perceived?”) His engaging style, and the entertaining people he meets, make this an enjoyable read, on a topic you need to know: this is the future and it can't get here fast enough for my taste buds!

--Jamie


$30.00
ISBN: 9781612193687
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Melville House Publishing - May 27th, 2014

This is football (our soccer) in words - repetitive, difficult, painful, exhilarating. Not for everyone, but Liverpool Fc, early moring broadcast enthusiasts of Barclay's games, and lovers of the beautiful game will enjoy and ponder this. Try it as you prepare for the World Cup. 


$26.99
ISBN: 9780062220509
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper - July 2014

An exquisite stand-alone novel about World War I from the creator of the Maisie Dobbs series. Ms. Winspear breathes life into best friends Kezia and Thea as they are swept into – and torn apart – by their very different wartime roles. Kezia's lovely letters to her soldiering husband are the heart and heartbreak of the novel. I never tire of this genre as there are endless stories to tell Ms. Winspear is one of the best storytellers of all time.

-Mary


$21.99
ISBN: 9780062282149
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow & Company - June 17th, 2014

At this point, if you ask me, anything Neil Gaiman touches turns to gold. Here, Neil has collaborated with renowned artist Eddie Campbell to bring to life his unbelievable story of family, the otherworld and an epic search for hidden treasure. Unlike anything you’ve ever seen before, Truth pieces together a spectrum of storytelling tools – from panels to paintings, rough sketches to smudged charcoal – to deliver one of the most unique pieces to add to your ever-growing Gaiman collection.  

- Courtney


$26.95
ISBN: 9780399169281
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Putnam Adult - June 12th, 2014

An Indian child is separated from his brother at the age of five. The story of his survival and faith is remarkable. A train ride takes him to the terrifying streets of Calcutta. He manages to survive by his wits and the kindness of strangers. Learn how he manages to find his mother and siblings after twenty-five years. The book is a celebration of special people, family, extraordinary feats and hope.

 

- Jesse

 


$25.00
ISBN: 9781476738963
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - June 3rd, 2014

This is a contemporary story told with great love and compassion.  Yes, the characters are flawed but that's what makes them so real. Will they break your heart ? Absolutely, but they will also restore your faith in humanity. I can't stop thinking about this book. I feel changed by it. The story makes you want to be kinder and care more about other people.

- Mary T.


$26.00
ISBN: 9780446550734
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Grand Central Publishing - June 3rd, 2014

The Farm is a psychological thriller of the highest order with some depraved Scandinavian style evil thrown in. Daniel is told by his father that his mother is insane, but she counters that accusation with claims of a terrifying conspiracy. Who to believe? You will be kept in page turning suspense until the conclusion you didn’t see coming.

-Julie


$24.95
ISBN: 9780871407863
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - May 7th, 2014

Once again, Larry McMurtry comes through with the most colorful characters and wittiest dialogue as the aging Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday “take their ease” on the saloon porch often – rehashing their heyday and occasionally trying to recreate it. This book had me wanting to belly up to a bar for a whiskey and a slab of antelope rump, find a high stakes poker game and then mosey on outback to smoke with a cowpoke.

-Val


$28.00
ISBN: 9781476727295
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - June 3rd, 2014

Rhee’s memoir is fascinating! As Rhee follows in his father’s footsteps as a doctor, discover how his experiences in the navy and in American urban communities shape him into one of the most sought after trauma specialists in America.  His team in Tucson kept Congresswoman Gabby Gifford alive!

 

- Andie

 


$25.99
ISBN: 9780062309662
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper - July 14th, 2014

Part psychological mystery and part meditation on memory and aging, an elderly woman named Maude embarks on a search to find her best friend, Elizabeth. Maud has lucid moments where she remembers her friend and the details of her sister Sukie’s disappearance right after WWII. Elizabeth is Missing is a highly intriguing novel that will keep you guessing until the very end.

- Elizabeth


By Herman Koch, Sam Garrett (Translator)
$24.00
ISBN: 9780804138819
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Hogarth - June 3rd, 2014

My advice: start reading and don't let up or even think about what you're reading until you've finished this book. I guarantee you will be challenged on so many levels because these are pretty awful people doing some pretty awful things. Yet, this is a must read in the same way that Koch's bestseller The Dinner was so widely admired and praised. There is a unique European sensibility to Koch's writing and he definitely takes us outside our comfort zone. His story of a family's summer holiday is filled with tension and dread from the beginning. You will be disturbed and shocked, but that is the point of literature sometimes, isn’t it?

- Peggy


By David Baldacci (Editor), Dennis Lehane (Contribution by), Michael Connelly (Contribution by)
$26.99
ISBN: 9781476762067
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - June 3rd, 2014

What a brilliant idea! Pair favorite mystery writers, using their well-known series characters, and assign each duo to write an original short story and call the collection Faceoff. Each story begins with an introduction that explains how the writers collaborated and how their characters ended up solving the case together. Think Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch and Dennis Lehane's Patrick Kenzie solving a cold case and you have the premise of this book. This is lots of fun and combines all my favorites: mysteries, short stories and something different. Loved it.

 

- Peggy