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“Eclectic” might be the best one-word description for Tegan’s picks. From layered literary fiction to super-geeky sci fi and US history, her tastes run the gamut. As our buyer for teens and kids, Tegan has a particular fondness for those genres. Below are her recommendations, split by age group.
This true story page-turner has it all: daring escapes, zany teamwork, inspiring grit, and even evil twins! For folks who enjoy WWI history, British eccentricity, or pulse-racing survival stories, this makes a great gift.
Readers get a year’s worth of curated wine suggestions and food pairings from the Seattle author/ Master of Wine. Recommended wines are from all over the world, with one white, one red, and one other (like a rose or sparkling) each month. This will be used season after season. Filled with humor and knowledge, it will lead to great meals for years to come.
The latest Oxford Junior Dictionary dropped words that weren’t considered as relevant to today’s children-- words like “acorn” and “newt.”This book stunningly reclaims those words of nature and wonder. Acrostic poems are accompanied by gorgeous illustrations in a large-format picture book that works as a coffee table book as well as a children’s book.
Follow five thrilling points of view in this complex and dark fantasy world. Twisted loyalties, secret plots, passion, addiction, greed, and tyranny make this great for "Game of Thrones" fans!
This clever contemporary mystery features a modern, African American Holmesian investigator, Isaiah Quintabe, aka IQ, who has a more complicated relationship with his Watson-- his former partner in actual crime, Dodson. With an emotionally compelling backstory, loveable but troubled characters, satirical asides about fame, astute observations about race and class, and wonderfully satisfying deductions and action scenes, IQ had everything I wanted and more. I’ve already preordered book #3 in the series, Wrecked, out 10/9/18.
Whether you’re looking for a fulfilling novel, a transporting reading experience, or a great book club discussion book, choose local author Haupt’s debut. It portrays interweaving journeys in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide with a sensitivity and universality that make the unbearable bearable. It’s the story of an American daughter’s journey to find the father who abandoned her; the saga of an orphanage before, during, and after the carnage; and the tragedy of neighbors slaughtered by neighbors followed by the uneasy miracle of survivors living together again. It’s an epic of hearts broken, scars healing, and the everyday and extraordinary choices people have to make. The characters’ individual strength and the unbelievable community will live on in your memory. Brace yourself, open the cover, and allow yourself to be transformed.
After watching “Black Panther,” I wanted to go to Wakanda. The next best thing was to pick up this astonishingly creative YA fantasy set in Nigeria. 12-year-old Sunny was born in America to Nigerian parents, and then her family moved back to their homeland. She is albino, so she needs to hide from the African sun. But as she becomes friendlier with two of her neighbors, she discovers another special thing about her: like her new friends, she is a “Leopard Person,” a person with magical abilities. Unexpectedly, they are chosen to form a team to stop a sorcerer serial killer-- and ultimately save the world. If you love this richly-imagined world and these strong characters as much as I did, you’ll be particularly happy to know that the sequel, Akata Warrior, is available, too.
This hilarious travelogue/memoir by Seattleite DeRuiter is about finding your bearings-- being geographically and navigationally challenged all over the world, and even more importantly finding even more strength, satisfaction, and joy as she falls even deeper in love with her husband. Fans of Jenny Lawson, take note! If you could use a sassily sweet snapshot of modern love-- and you, too, enjoy a good poop joke as well as lyrical descriptions of exotic locales-- treat yourself to this.
This daring and dazzling international bestseller is told from the points of view of characters from three countries and three times. Themes of connection, ambition, sacrifice, the environment, and yes, bees tie them together in a quietly suspenseful novel. The translation from Norweigan is seamless, providing powerful, clean writing for a complex story. It would be great for book club discussion.
What a treat to have not just one fun book, but a whole trilogy to dive into! I am so happy that I finally got around to reading the first of this sassy, compulsive series set in modern Singapore. The “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” elements combine with skewering social commentary and some sweet romances and friendships to make these perfect beach, plane, or just good-ol’-diversion reads. Book two is China Rich Girlfriend, and then Rich People Problems.
I loved this geeky, nostalgic book set in 1987 in “the Armpit of New Jersey.” The narrator, a 14-year-old named Billy, has two great friends, Alf and Clark, who may not be the greatest influences. The three are determined to get their hands on a copy of the Vanna White Playboy, and they’re willing to go to ridiculous lengths. The plot becomes a mash-up of Goonies-esque determination and the most awkward Dangerous Liasons ever as Billy is chosen to woo a shop-owner’s daughter to get the boys access to a rooftop… Humor, honesty, and some darn fun early computer game coding made this a fast, fun read that scratched my Ready Player One itch.
I adored the cleverness and heart of this dazzling time travel novel. Imagine a mash-up of Gary Shteyngart and "The Jetsons," with the high tech/ high emotional intelligence storytelling from Ready Player One.
This richly-imagined, thought-provoking novel is well-researched and extremely readable. Mitza is a strong and compelling character, and readers will connect to her all-too-universal struggles balancing life and love, career and motherhood, ideals and demands. I can't wait to give this to Nancy Horan fans and folks who've pondered the book "Lean In!"
*Holiday 2015 Recommendations*
The true story of a group of Japanese-American swimmers from the sugar plantations of Maui who trained for the Olympics in the 1930s is eye-opening, uplifting, heart-bursting history, like The Boys in the Boat.
*Holiday 2015 Recommendations*
Quirky, unique, and wildly imaginative, this will appeal to the reader with an appreciation for the eclectic. If Sisters Brothers was twist on a Western, this is DeWitt’s black comedy fairy tale, complete with a castle, love, murder, and deception.
*Holiday 2015 Recommendations*
Sherlock has Watson, and Mycroft has Douglas, a trusty friend from Trinidad. Mystery, atmosphere, and adventure to satisfy Sherlockian cravings, plus fascinating looks at race and colonialism.
*Holiday 2015 Recommendations*
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate-- and not just for dessert. This cookbook is beautiful and delicious, from the chocolate makers in Fremont.
Part memoir, part history, part sociological exploration of maps and the people who love them, this is wonderfully entertaining! Maps make Ken Jennings happy, and he perfectly shares the joy.
This is the kind of novel that takes my breath away and makes me put everything on hold. Marlantes writes with rugged, evocative prose to unflinchingly explore the politics, racism, gore, fear, isolation, and brotherhood of war.
As light and delightful as you'd hope! Kaling, an actress and screenwriter from "The Office" and "The Mindy Project," mixes personal stories with surpisingly good advice.
Reading this is like getting ice cream with that girlfriend who always makes you feel better.
This novel is pure fun-- kind of a sci-fi book version of “The Goonies” filled with video games and 80s nostalgia. It’s an AWESOME, geeky, exciting rush. Embrace your inner nerd and love this!
Dazzling, complex, and delightful! I guess I’ve come to expect that from Pears (Instance of the Fingerpost). Londoner John Stone dies in suspicious circumstances in 1909, and the mysteries surrounding him get more intriguing the deeper you delve into this layered novel. Passion and high finance combine in a deadly dance in this fascinating look at the British Empire before World War I.
Pure bliss! It's a bookish combination of "Amelie" and "Fried Green Tomatoes," all set in a magical house in Cambridge, England. Quirky, charming, and delightful!
[Some dark things happened in the past, but this book is all about healing. If you have any triggers of things that bring you down, let us know-- we'll tell you if you'll be safe with this for pure enjoyment!]
Exciting and fascinating true stories of animal smuggling (geoducks, dungeness crabs, and much more!) and the agents who protect our environment.
Strange but true-- and local to boot!
Hollywood star Evelyn Hugo decides to tell her whole, passionate, glamorous life story to a young journalist. Evelyn fought her way to stardom using sex, strategy, and a ton of hard work. She had seven husbands, but only one true love… Like Evelyn’s biographer, you’ll be hanging on Ms. Hugo’s every word in this glitzy, suspenseful novel with heart.