Staff Picks 2011

Staff Pick Logo
The Night Circus Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780385534635
Availability: Backordered
Published: Doubleday - September 13th, 2011

What a fabulous first novel! Two young magicians are pitted against each other in a contest, which will leave only one standing. The stage for this is an amazing circus like none I've ever seen. A magical, dream-like reading experience.

Carol



Staff Pick Logo
The Lost Wife Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780425244135
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Berkley - September 6th, 2011

In 1939 Prague, Lenka and Joseph, who are both Jewish, meet, fall in love, and marry, only days later to be separated for a lifetime. In her historical novels, Richman develops the plot with a question in mind. How could beauty and art come from the horrific conditions within the walls of the Terezin Concentration Camp? This is a difficult subject, but don't be hesitant to dive into this incredibly written work of Holocaust literature.
Kathy


Staff Pick Logo
Driftless Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781571310682
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Milkweed Editions - May 5th, 2009

This is one of my favorite reads to recommend.  It takes place in a tiny town in Southwestern Wisconsin (the Driftless area).  It is beautiful writing, and Rhodes skillfully weaves together the stories of the fascinating cast of characters.                                                               Carol



Staff Pick Logo
Northwest Angle: A Novel (Cork O'Connor Mystery Series #11) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781439153963
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atria Books - April 10th, 2012

Krueger's 2011 entry to this great series finds Cork and his family in a houseboat in the Northwest Angle of Minnesota, just as a major storm hits. And more than natural destruction is left in its wake... Carol


Staff Pick Logo
State of Wonder: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062049810
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - May 8th, 2012

I love Ann Patchett, and her newest does not disappoint. A mysterious death, bioethics, the Amazon jungle, and suberb writing add up to a great read. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Secret Daughter: A Novel Cover Image
$13.99
ISBN: 9780061928352
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - April 5th, 2011

A novel about adoption in the voices of the adoptive mother and the mother from India, who unwillingly gives her child away.  The daughter finds herself living in Mumbai on a journalism scholarchip, and while there, attempts to search out her mother.  While reading, I felt immersed in the Indian culture.                Kathy


Staff Pick Logo
A Discovery of Witches: A Novel (All Souls Trilogy) Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143119685
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - December 27th, 2011

Yes, it's a paranormal story with vampires, but I especially love the witches. The first in a planned trilogy. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
When She Woke: A Novel Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781616201937
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books - September 18th, 2012

Inspired by The Scarlet Letter, Jordan's second novel is set in a future where an extremist agenda has been implemented with harrowing results. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
The Tower, the Zoo, and the Tortoise Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780307476913
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Anchor - August 23rd, 2011

A charmingly eccentric story about the Beefeaters, who live where they work in the Tower of London. Balthazar, whose marriage is suffering after the death of his son, is now tasked with creating a Tower zoo for the animals given to the Queen. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Georgia Bottoms: A Novel Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780316033039
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Back Bay Books - February 8th, 2012

This fits the bill for a good summer read. A faithful churchgoer & seemingly typical Southern woman, Georgia Bottoms earns her living from her bedroom with certain high profile men in this small Southern community. Kathy


Staff Pick Logo
Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader Cover Image
$13.00
ISBN: 9780374527228
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - November 25th, 2000

One of the most delightful books I read this year. In a number of succinct essays Fadiman treats a subject we all love: books! She talks about things like getting married and mixing "her" books with "his", about book topics of her choice--not the most expected ones, I might add--and about just how to treat a book with the right amount of reverence. A funny, light, and delightfully intellectual book. Eva


Staff Pick Logo
Wingshooters Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781936070718
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Akashic Books - February 8th, 2011

Another story set in small town Wisconsin. It's 1974, and the arrival of the first black couple to fictional Marshfield brings out the worst in some in the community. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Caleb's Crossing: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143121077
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - April 24th, 2012

Brooks writes superb historical fiction. In her newest, she tells the story of the first Native American to graduate from Harvard, in 1665. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Cutting for Stone Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780375714368
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - January 26th, 2010

If you haven't yet read this excellent story set in Ethiopia, you are in for a treat. It's a lovely saga of twin boys born to a British surgeon and an Indian nun, then adopted by two Indian doctors and raised in the mission clinic. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
The Most Dangerous Thing Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9780062122926
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - May 1st, 2012

An absorbing novel about loss and old secrets. Norm & Alene


Staff Pick Logo
The Summer of the Bear Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780802145888
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - June 12th, 2012

A mother and her children return to the Outer Isles of Scotland after the death of the father. The Cold War is at its height, and he was a British diplomat whose role may not have been what it seemed. The escape of a magical bear adds to this moving story that reads like a thriller. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
As Nora Jo Fades Away: Confessions of a Caregiver Cover Image
By Lisa Cerasoli, Leeza Gibbons (Foreword by)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781589851900
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Five Star Publishing (MI) - April 1st, 2010

Cerasoli, a California actor, returns home to the U.P. to care for her grandmother who has Alzheimer's. She writes with much humor about a tragic disease. Kathy


Staff Pick Logo
Turn of Mind Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780802145901
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Grove Press - March 27th, 2012

A novel narrated by a former hand surgeon with Alzheimer's. It is at once a fascinating, if startling and haunting glimpse of the disease, as well as a mystery, as the police investigate the murder of her best friend. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781400052189
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Broadway Books - March 8th, 2011

A superb work of non-fiction about the immortal cancer cells gathered from a woman in 1951, the researchers who used, and sometimes profited from, the cells, and the family of Henrietta Lacks. Excellent for discussions, with issues ranging from medical ethics to race. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Beauty Queens Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780439895989
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks - June 1st, 2012

This is a young adult title, but I highly recommend it to adults, too. A plane full of teen beauty pageant contestants crashes on a deserted island. The girls may appear to be vapid stereotypes, but by the end both the reader and the girls have learned the complexity and depth of their characters. The story is full of adventure, humor, exploration of the girls' sexuality, reality show pirates, product placement, possible war, and an all powerful corporation. And the pageant sponsor appears to be channeling a certain ex-governor of Alaska... Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Paradise of the Blind: A Novel Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9780060505592
Availability: Backordered
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - August 20th, 2002

A moving novel about women in North Vietnam. While it takes place during and after the war there, it is not a story of war. Banned in North Vietnam, it is the first Vietnamese novel published in the states. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
Before I Go To Sleep: A Novel Cover Image
$25.99
ISBN: 9780062060556
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper - June 14th, 2011

A riveting story about a woman with amnesia who can only remember the current day's events until she falls asleep. Every day she awakes remembering nothing. Norm & Alene


Staff Pick Logo
Birds Without Wings (Vintage International) Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781400079322
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - June 28th, 2005

An older title my book club recently read, this tells the story of war, politics, and love through the lives of the people in a small village in Turkey in the early 1900's. Politics and intolerance, then as now, have devastating consequences in this beautifully written book. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
The Dressmaker of Khair Khana: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780061732478
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - March 20th, 2012

A riveting story of women who find ways to survive, and even prosper, amid horrendous cultural changes and oppression. Alene


Staff Pick Logo
The Winter Rose Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781401307462
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Hachette Books - January 1st, 2009

I could not put this down. It is the second of a trilogy about a woman doctor in 1900 London and a notrious gangster. Jennifer Donnelly also writes great young adult fiction. Carol


Staff Pick Logo
The Devil Colony: A Sigma Force Novel (Sigma Force Novels #6) Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780061785658
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper - March 27th, 2012

This was my first book by Rollins, and it was a lot of fun. The mystery involves the founding fathers, Native American mythology, physics, and Fort Knox. An excellent page-turner. Carol