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Book List: An Ode to Open Letter Books

This week, we are highlighting a small press we love: Open Letter Books. Based at the University of Rochester, Open Letter is a nonprofit that specializes in translations.

The Brother Cover Image
By Rein Raud, Adam Cullen (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781940953441
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - September 13th, 2016

"When was the last time you read a contemporary Estonian spaghetti Western? Recounted in sparse yet provocative prose, this is the story of a mysterious stranger who arrives in town to take revenge on the corrupt officials that cheated his sister out of her inheritance. Menacing, funny, dreamlike, and philosophical, this allegorical page-turner reads like the love-child of Cormac and Camus." –– Keaton


Tomas Jonsson, Bestseller Cover Image
By Guoberger Bergsson, Lytton Smith (Translator)
$17.95
ISBN: 9781940953601
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - July 11th, 2017

Justine Cover Image
By Iben Mondrup, Kerri A. Pierce (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781940953489
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - November 15th, 2016

Frontier Cover Image
By Canxue, Karen Gernant (Translator), Zeping Chen
$16.95
ISBN: 9781940953540
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - March 14th, 2017

"Frontier is an epic dreamscape of a novel. It starts with the point of view of Liujin, a single woman who has decided to stay in Pebble Town even after her parents move across the mountains. She sells goods in the market, ruminates on the lives of those around her, interacts with characters that may or may not be real. As the book moves through the viewpoints of various characters in the city, it unites all the individuals through similar sense of the placid, illuminating curiousity we find only in our dreams." –– Sara


The Things We Don't Do Cover Image
$13.95
ISBN: 9781940953182
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - August 25th, 2015

War, So Much War Cover Image
By Merce Rodoreda, Martha Tennent (Translator), Maruxa Relano (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781940953229
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - November 10th, 2015

"I have so much love for this amazing, slim novel – the last published during influential Spanish writer Rodereda's lifetime. Charting the adventures of a young runaway by traversing the wartorn countryside of his homeland, it reads like a Catalonian CANTERBURY TALES by way of THE ROAD. A thrilling, uncanny, and haunting rumination on finding one's place in the world and the reality of evil. You won't be able to put it down."  –– Keaton


Street of Thieves Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781940953014
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - November 11th, 2014

A Greater Music Cover Image
By Suah Bae, Deborah Smith (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781940953465
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - October 11th, 2016

"Bae Suah is one of my favorite writers right now. She is able to create layers upon layers of narrative and texture in such a small book. Pick it up and it will carry you for an impressively long period of time. Not a quick read, but a compelling one for sure!" –– Sara 


The Invented Part Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781940953564
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - May 16th, 2017

Chronicle of the Murdered House Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781940953502
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - December 13th, 2016

"Have you ever read a book and felt that you were holding in your hands a classic, something indipsensable to a language and a culture? Chronicle of the Murdered House is such an example. This book has hints of Dostoyevsky, Garcia Marquez and Antonio Lobo Antunes. Already a classic in Brazil - this book is not only beautifully written and profound, but a joy to read. The dysfunction of a prestigious family in a provincial Brazilian jungle, complete with gossip, backstabbing, cross-dressing and suicide attempts.There’s a fully-formed universe taking place in a run-down mansion rotting away in the jungle. Despite having the weight and breadth of a classic, its 600 pages fly by. I dare anyone to read it and not appreciate its artistry and breadth." –– Mark


Salki Cover Image
By Wojciech Nowicki, Jan Pytalski (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781940953588
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - June 13th, 2017

The Future Is Not Ours: New Latin American Fiction Cover Image
By Diego Trelles Paz (Editor), Janet Hendrickson (Translator)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781934824641
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - July 17th, 2012

Staff Chat: Cormac McCarthy Book Club

This summer, Brazos Bookstore is hosting a Cormac McCarthy-themed Book Club. We sat down as a staff to discuss the highs and lows (and more lows, and more lows) of Cormac McCarthy's work. 

Mark: Alright, Cormac McCarthy. An American icon. Today we’re talking about our book group this summer: we’ll be reading three different books, a variety of books that trace the career of Cormac McCarthy, one of America’s best living contemporary writers.

Keaton: Consummate prose stylist.

*laughs*

Hemingday: A Book List

Hemingday (Hemingway's birthday) is coming up on July 21! We plan on celebrating with beverages provided by Spec's Wines, Spirits, and Finer Foods and themed activities. In the meantime, here are books by and about Hemingway to get you in the mood.

Ernest Hemingway: A Biography Cover Image
$35.00
ISBN: 9780307594679
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - May 16th, 2017

A Moveable Feast: The Restored Edition Cover Image
By Ernest Hemingway, Patrick Hemingway (Foreword by), Sean Hemingway (Introduction by)
$16.00
ISBN: 9781439182710
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - July 20th, 2010

The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway: The Hemingway Library Edition Cover Image
$35.00
ISBN: 9781476787626
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - July 18th, 2017

The Sun Also Rises Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501121968
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - February 16th, 2016

A Farewell to Arms Cover Image
By Ernest Hemingway, Patrick Hemingway (Foreword by), Sean Hemingway (Introduction by)
$17.00
ISBN: 9781476764528
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - July 8th, 2014

Ernest Hemingway: The Last Interview: And Other Conversations Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781612195223
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Melville House Publishing - December 15th, 2015

Hemingway in Love: His Own Story: A Memoir by A. E. Hotchner Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250078964
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador USA - November 1st, 2016

For Whom the Bell Tolls Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780684803357
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - July 1995

The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway Cover Image
$22.00
ISBN: 9780684843322
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - August 3rd, 1998

Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy: Ernest Hemingway's Secret Adventures, 1935-1961 Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780062440136
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow & Company - March 14th, 2017

The Ambulance Drivers: Hemingway, DOS Passos, and a Friendship Made and Lost in War Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780306823831
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Da Capo Press - March 28th, 2017

To Have and Have Not Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780684818986
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - March 20th, 1996

Islands in the Stream Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780684837871
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - December 10th, 1997

Everybody Behaves Badly: The True Story Behind Hemingway's Masterpiece the Sun Also Rises Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780544944435
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - May 16th, 2017

The Old Man and the Sea Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9780684801223
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - May 5th, 1995

Staff Chat: Bullet Journaling

Sara: Hi! This is Sara, and I’m with Ülrika and Kevin chatting about Bullet Journaling today! We’ve got a workshop coming up on the 20th at 6:30pm, so in preparation for that I want to get everyone in the #BuJo mood. Let’s start simple: what is bullet journaling?

Buyer's Corner: Best of 2017 So Far

Hard to think that half the year has gone by already. But I know it has, because, as Brazos Bookstore buyer, I'm already thinking about Christmas. Let's not get ahead of ourselves just yet, though! There have already been so many amazing books released in 2017. And I'm bound to leave many deserving titles off this list, but these are the ten titles--in chronological order--that have affected me the most this year. There is so much more to look forward to, but, if you've missed any of these, I recommend you remedy that oversight immediately.

Human Acts Cover Image
$22.00
ISBN: 9781101906729
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Hogarth Press - January 17th, 2017

The recent winner of the Man Booker International turns out a shockingly emotional take on a national tragedy little known outside of Korea--a 1980 student/worker uprising that was violently put down by the military police, resulting in 100s of deaths. Kang's portrayal of this event is at once immediate and visceral, while also focusing on how the aftermath has reverberated through individuals and the nation over the subsequent three decades. A whirlwind reading experience that explores the nature of oppression and resistance, and the psychological toll of immense violence.


Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity Cover Image
By Carlo Rovelli, Simon Carnell (Translator), Erica Segre (Translator)
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735213920
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - January 24th, 2017

An expanded version–actually published first in Italy–of Rovelli's SEVEN BRIEF LESSONS ON PHYSICS. Accessible and astounding, this book provides an excellent introduction to the history of physics, its major contributors, achievements, lessons, and our best current understanding of how the natural world works. Rovelli even manages to find common ground between Dante's and Einstein's conception of the universe. Fascinating science writing.


To Name Those Lost Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781609453497
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Europa Editions - February 7th, 2017

A violent and heartbreaking revenge story that winds up being about the relationships between parents and children, especially the mistakes and sacrifices committed to give the young a better chance in a cruel world. All of the characters are memorable, caught in intricate ethical webs that pit their consciences against their circumstances. The slow burning plot revolves around the dual, colliding narratives of Thomas Toosey–an itinerant bush outlaw looking to collect his son from a lawless frontier town, and the Flynns–a father and daughter doggedly searching for Toosey in order to right terrible wrongs their family incurred at his hand.


300 Arguments: Essays Cover Image
$14.00
ISBN: 9781555977641
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Graywolf Press - February 7th, 2017

Manguso is a master of the minimalist form. She can do more with a sentence than many authors can do with an entire book. In this collection of brief ruminations, she covers everything from sex and mortality, to ambition, mental illness, writing, desire, and motherhood. These "arguments" are aphoristic gems, in which a seemingly random thought has hardened into a bold, cutting, crystalline truth. There is no exposition. Manguso lets these minute statements stand on their own, and the reader is left with nowhere to hide from direct engagement with a most remarkable literary mind.


Lincoln in the Bardo Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780812995343
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House - February 14th, 2017

Saunders' first novel is a historical phantasmagoria narrated by a chorus of voices–both living and dead–whose input adds up to a commentary on life, morality, love, and loss framed against a most crucial turning point in the American saga. Quite simply an amazing novel told in a unique way from one of our time's greatest storytellers. Utilizing real historical sources and tantalziing flights of imagination, Saunders has created a true gothic masterpiece that scrapes right up against Great American Novel territory. Hilarious, grotesque and touching.


Animals Strike Curious Poses Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781941411391
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sarabande Books - February 28th, 2017

From wooly mammoths to headless chickens, Pasarello's second collection of essays chronciles some of the most famous, revealing and odd animal/human interractions in history. She muses over our broken connection with the natural world, exposes our exploitation and cruelty towards animal life, and marvels at the latent wonders of spiders and horses alike. But it is Pasarello's inimitable voice, always inventive and playful, that is the real attraction. Who else would explore the history of natural science from the perspective of a lovelorn tortoise? Humorous and quirky without being fluff, critical and unflinching without being didactic, there is no one writing nonfiction like Pasarello.


Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in 40 Questions Cover Image
$12.95
ISBN: 9781566894951
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - April 4th, 2017

A nuanced, insightful and human perspective on the "immigration crisis" from one of the brightest young stars of Mexican Literature. Luiselli criticizes both US and Mexican public policy, while also providing a voice for those rarely heard: immigrant children. This is a timely take on one of the most pressing humanitarian crises of the 21st century. Without a doubt the most essential read of the year, this slight book can do some real good in the world. Luiselli is a badass.


Camanchaca Cover Image
By Diego Zauaniga, Megan McDowell (Translator)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781566894609
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - March 7th, 2017

A sparse, innovative and heartrending study of a broken family. The story jumps back and forth between a young man's divorced parents in small chunks of prose that Zuniga ingeniously juxtaposes on each facing page. The reader follows along as the recent past and the present inevitably collide in a startling climax. A debut novella that is quite stunning in its compact emotional heft.


Such Small Hands Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781945492006
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Transit Books - April 11th, 2017

An unsettling waking nightmare of a novella that captures all the strange wonder and nascent cruelty of childhood. It's set in an all-girls' orphanage where they play a strange game of affection and punishment once the lights go out, and boasts an ending that will make your jaw drop. A big house favorite across the board for Brazos booksellers this year, you won't soon forget this book.


Imagine Wanting Only This Cover Image
$29.95
ISBN: 9781101870839
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pantheon Books - April 18th, 2017

The managing editor at Sarabande Books turns out a bravura performance with an intensely personal and philosophical graphic memoir. Weaving together the early death of a beloved uncle, a fascination with modern urban decay, and an existential bildungsroman narrative, Radtke delves into the idea of impermanence and our emotional connections to people and places that will all eventually be severed. Her images are mesmerizing in their simplicity and directness. The storyline is perfectly relatable, yet complex and idiosyncratic enough to standout against most other memoirs and/or graphic novels. A terrific work that raises the bar for both genres.


Love Gone Wrong: Joy Interviews Lauren Strasnick

The arrival of a new Lauren Strasnick book is always cause for celebration! For me, there is just something uniquely brilliant about her spare prose, about her willingness to go to darker places and to tell relationship stories that don’t always have happy endings. Not that I’m opposed to happy endings or anything, but I do appreciate when an author writes the ending the story needs, even if it might not be the one readers are rooting for.

16 Ways to Break a Heart Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062418722
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - July 25th, 2017

Gift Buyer Spotlight: Meal Planning

  

For anyone who cooks, meal plans or throws dinner parties you begin to realize that there’s not always a lot of options to help you prepare. I started bullet journaling my meal plans because I couldn’t find anything that fit my needs, which resulted in me falling into a bullet journal rabbit hole. I became so excited when both Elūm and Ruth and Ramona launched their Meal Planners and Girl of Work launched their Recipe Editor.

Roxane Gay Draws Blood

To read Roxane Gay is to also feel, in an odd way, like you’re reading yourself at the same time. More than most contemporary “public intellectuals” (I put those words in quotes, not because Gay is neither public nor intellectual, but because the term doesn’t encapsulate the sum total of what she does), her essays are not “hot takes,” but are like the thorns of a cactus that looks beautiful from a distance (she’s a hell of a prose stylist, after all) but draws blood when you get close. When you finish one of Gay’s essays, you see something of yourself that usually stays on the inside.

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body Cover Image
$25.99
ISBN: 9780062362599
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper - June 13th, 2017

Staff Chat: Our Narco-Fairytale #BrazosBest

Keaton: It’s Keaton here with Mark and Sara to discuss our Brazos Best pick for July 2017: KINGDOM CONS by the inimitable Yuri Herrera, translated by Lisa Dillman (also incomparable).

This is the third in a thematic trilogy by Herrera, also including SIGNS PRECEDING THE END OF THE WORLD and THE TRANSMIGRATION OF BODIES, which was the Best Translated Book Award winner of 2016. Definitely one of the most vital and talked-about writers from the remarkable Mexican literary scene of today.

Kingdom Cons Cover Image
By Yuri Herrera, Lisa Dillman (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781908276926
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: And Other Stories - June 13th, 2017

The Transmigration of Bodies Cover Image
By Yuri Herrera, Lisa Dillman (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781908276728
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: And Other Stories - July 5th, 2016

Signs Preceding the End of the World Cover Image
By Yuri Herrera, Lisa Dillman (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781908276421
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: And Other Stories - March 10th, 2015

Brazos Staff Summer Picks

AUGUSTA

We Are Never Meeting in Real Life.: Essays Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781101912195
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - May 30th, 2017

Out today!

Hilarious essayist! Reads like you are gossiping with your best girlfriend. I read her book MEATY a few years ago at the suggestion of a friend and I laughed until I cried. Blurbed by many well-respected lady authors so looking forward to this great summer read.


Slow Boat Cover Image
By Hideo Furukawa, David Boyd (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781782273288
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pushkin Press - June 6th, 2017

Magical realism! Japanese novella! Pushkin Press! These are a few of my favorite things!


The Followers Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781609454012
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Europa Editions - July 25th, 2017

This suspenseful cult novel from Europa had me on the edge of my seat. It starts off with one of the main characters in prison so you know some crazy stuff is going to happen. This is a great summer read -- dark and compelling with a shocking twist.


BEN


Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body Cover Image
$25.99
ISBN: 9780062362599
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper - June 13th, 2017

I've been a fan of Roxane Gay's work for years, back when her books were coming out on micro-presses; her success seemed inevitable, even then. Her new book, HUNGER, is her most honest, devastating, and moving work yet: an account of her lifelong battle with weight. But this is no pro forma memoir, full of teary confessions. Instead, HUNGER probes the psyche of a culture obsessed with weight, and how that reflects back of Gay's own life, shattered early on by a traumatic incident. Her tone is varied--from humorous pop cultural exploration to focused anger--and the book, ultimately, never wallows, ending instead with a sense of profound hope.

We're lucky to be hosting Roxane Gay herself in partnership with Houston Public Libraries on July 10. You can buy tickets here. Each ticket comes with a hardcover copy of HUNGER!


CLARA


Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get on the Mat, Love Your Body. Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780761193111
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Workman Publishing - April 4th, 2017

When Jessamyn Stanley visited the Houston Public Library for her book tour EVERY BODY YOGA, I was enamored by her charm and her intelligence on the topic of yoga and loving oneself. For those who recognize Jessamyn via Instagram, she reiterates her aura in her book with fifty basic yoga poses and ten sequences.

The most spectacular component about this book is the way it addresses body acceptance and beauty with her Jessamyn tone and vibrant images of yoga poses (from the variety of body shapes). This book offers another facet to yoga, how yoga is a practice for your wellbeing regardless of exhibiting the template aesthetic of a yogi. Jessamyn’s yoga book goes beyond the individual’s body positivity and lengthens the individual’s body positivity experience with the backdrop of current social and political climate.

It has been a while since I practiced yoga (in home and studio set) and listening to Jessamyn voice how self care really is a form or resistance, Jessamyn reminds me that I need to project the attitude that is for both personal and political practice. JESSAMYN STANLEY is an internationally recognized yoga teacher and award-winning Instagram star (@mynameisjessamyn). She has been profiled and/or featured in a wide range of media outlets, including Good Morning America, New York, Glamour, Shape, People, and the Huffington Post, among others.


THE PROPELLER GROUP @ BLAFFER Yes! The Propeller Group show will be in Houston - in Blaffer Art Museum to be precise! The Propeller Group—an artist team based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam—blurs the boundaries between fine art and media production. My first encounter of the The Propeller Group was about half a year ago at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and I was in awe, captivated by the show. In particular the twenty-one minutes-and-fifteen- seconds video work, The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music (2014) is absolutely incredible especially with the visual installation. The Propeller Group states: “The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music is a visual and musical journey through the fantastical funeral traditions and rituals of south Vietnam.” A breathtaking experience for me and I cannot wait to see it again.

The Propeller Group in Houston is beyond meaningful. Apart from the strong Vietnamese scene in Houston, the show in Blaffer Art Museum, an art institution located in University of Houston, practically guarantees conversation that dissects binary forces such as life vs death, fine art vs commercial/media, poetry vs documentation, etc. The opening at the Blaffer Museum is June 2, 2017.


JOY


Once and for All Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780425290330
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Viking Books for Young Readers - June 6th, 2017

Two of the YA books I’m looking forward to this summer couldn’t be on more opposite ends of the spectrum! I can’t wait to read the finished version of Sarah Dessen’s ONCE AND FOR ALL, coming in June. Dessen’s novels are always a lovely, romantic treat, one with a substantive character journey--and always set in the summer. I’ve been a huge fan for years and this latest has the main character working in her mother’s wedding planner business, but (of course!) not believing in true love. And yes, that changes. And yes, it’s a grand pool-read page turner. Just what I need for the summer.


The Sandcastle Empire Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062484871
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Teen - June 6th, 2017

But I’m also looking forward to the more grim climes of Kayla Olson’s gritty, post-apocalyptic debut THE SANDCASTLE EMPIRE, where a group called the Wolfpack has taken over and imprisoned everyone who was against them into work camps. And then a girl named Eden manages to escape... Given our current political climate, it’s no wonder this was already optioned for a film by Leonardo DiCaprio. Full disclosure, I’ve known Kayla for a few years now as part of an ongoing writing retreat group I’m part of. So I’ve heard snippets of this book for awhile and I am more than thrilled that we’ll be hosting an event with her on Saturday June 17th at 3 PM! She and I will be ‘in conversation’ about her book, writing, and all sorts of things, so I hope you can join us!

As for other media, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how I cannot wait for Season 4 of YOUNGER to begin on June 28th. If you haven’t been watching this TVLAND series, catch up immediately! The basic premise is that main character Liza--40 and newly divorced and in need of a job--has to pretend to be 26 in order to get hired in publishing where she used to work. Sutton Foster totally carries this off, trust me. And trust me that this show is nuanced and layered and much more than a guilty pleasure. In fact, it accurately and cleverly skewers everything about the frequently ageist (among other issues) world of publishing! Seriously, I adore this show and its spot on satire.


KEATON


In a Lonely Place Cover Image
By Dorothy B. Hughes, Megan Abbott (Afterword by)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781681371474
Availability: Coming Soon - Pre-Order Now
Published: New York Review of Books - August 15th, 2017

I love crime fiction, and this summer you should not miss this overlooked 1940s detective noir classic. Centering around the investigation of an apparent serial murder spree in the years following WWII, IN A LONELY PLACE is a timely and ahead-of-its-time novel that tackles themes of violence towards women, PTSD, and feminism. This vintage crime story--once adapted by Nicholas Ray into a Humphrey Bogart film--is a surprisingly modern take on the genre!

Movie - BABY DRIVER out 6/28 I am very much looking forward to this star-studded action comedy crime caper from Edgar Wright, director of SHAUN OF THE DEAD! This high octane thriller follows a young man conscripted as a heist getaway driver, but of course absolutely nothing goes as planned. Featuring everyone from Jon Ham to Jamie Foxx, and with a tremendously bumping soundtrack to boot, this is the flick I'm most likely to gorge myself to death on popcorn while watching!

 


Music - DANIEL ROMANO, "MODERN PRESSURE" ("When I Learned Your Name" music video) Canadian alt country singer-songwriter, Daniel Romano, has turned out one of my favorite albums of the year in any genre. Largely leaving behind the nostalgic retro trad country leanings of his earlier work, these new songs hearken back to Bob Dylan's delightfully off-kilter years--think "John Wesley Hardin" or the infamous Rolling Thunder Revue concert tour. Fully versed in rock and country, the expressionistic lyrics and unexpected song structures of these tracks will keep you hitting repeat all summer!

 

 


KEVIN


Infinite Jest Cover Image
By David Foster Wallace, Tom Bissell (Foreword by)
$20.00
ISBN: 9780316306058
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Back Bay Books - February 23rd, 2016

First off: INFINITE JEST. Trying for the fourth time to finish this monster of a book. Summer is an excellent time for this, as it will probably take me three months to finish.

As a fan of heavy metal, some great shows are coming up this summer, two I'm especially looking forward to are: Nails - June 23rd White Oak Music Hall, brutal tough as nails (pun intended) hardcore. Big Business- July 11 Walter's Downtown, lyrically one of my all time favorite bands. Atmospheric, gargantuan sound from these two heroes of sludge.

 

 

 

Lastly: baseball! Summer time is baseball time. Get out to Minute Maid and take in a ball game.


The Rum Diary Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780684856476
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - November 1999

Bonus: one of my favorite summertime beach reads: THE RUM DIARY by Hunter S. Thompson. Surreal, biting, full of rum and mischief.


MARK


The Little Buddhist Monk & the Proof Cover Image
By Cesar Aira, Nick Caistor (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9780811221122
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - May 30th, 2017

César Aira is a magician; he spins strange and wonderful tales out of thin air and makes delightful diversions that often turn into the stories themselves. He has an imitable imagination and is equally prolific. Every time New Directions publishes a new book by Aira (usually twice a year) I'm tickled and thrilled and reminded of the boundaries Aira has now problems pushing. This most recent book is actually two novellas packaged in a single book. The first is the story of a Korean monk who dreams of moving to the west. With the help of a pair of French tourists he thinks he's found his way. The second story takes place in Aira's native Argentina and involves a group of thugs who take hostages in a supermarket. These two novellas couldn't be more different, but then again, this seems symbolic of César Aira.


My Heart Hemmed in Cover Image
By Marie Ndiaye, Jordan Stump (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781931883627
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Two Lines Press - July 11th, 2017

Dark, strange, oppressive, Kafkaesque. These are just a few of the words I would use to describe the new novel by French author Marie N'diaye. A middle-aged couple who teach in a provincial French town are suddenly ostracized by the entire community. Their crime? They don't know and can't seem to find out. Add to this dilemma, the husband receives a grievous wound that won't seem to heal. Larger ideas are are work, but I'll merely say this is a devastating, visceral and harsh book dripping with paranoia. Not for the faint of heart, but beautifully written.

LCD SOUNDSYSTEM - TBA: I love dance music and when LCD Soundsystem came onto the world stage around 2005 I thought there was nothing like them. There was of course: New Order, The Velvet Underground and lot's more influential bands. Yet, somehow, LCD Soundsystem made it wholly their own. Frontman James Murphy is roughly my age so when he sings and laments about getting older I somehow relate to it more then when a young kid is singing. They famously annoucned they were retiring, famously played three final nights at Madison Square Garden and famously announced they were back together a few years later. Their new album, supposedly coming this summer, has been years in the making and something I will be listening to on repeat.


SARA


Found Audio Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781937512576
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Two Dollar Radio - July 11th, 2017

Another hit from a hometown publisher (for me), Two Dollar Radio out of Columbus, Ohio! FOUND AUDIO falls into the same reality-bending genre as favorites HOUSE OF LEAVES by Mark Danielewszki and PALE FIRE by Nabokov. The size of this book keeps it from being as daunting a literary dask as other similar reads might be, but the style is remarkably clever and Campbell retains the ability to traverse many landscapes in these brief pages.

I’m excited for everyone to see the CAMH summer show: A BETTER YESTERDAY, comprised of the works of JooYoung Choi, Jack Early, and Lily van der Stokker. All three of these artists engage the theme of childhood while managing a diversity of representations. Lily van der Stokker nudges a bit at the boundary of twee with her pastel colors and line drawings, while Jack Early confronts childhood sexuality with references to burgeoning masculinity and the human body. I’m MOST excited about JooYoung Choi’s contribution to the exhibition, a series of technicolor paintings and sculptures that shift between this universe and another she’s built from scratch containing a myriad of characters and science fictional landscapes (some of which might be familiar from her last show at Project Row Houses). While JooYoung Choi’s art absolutely draws strong inspiration from childhood nostalgia, Her work tackles sometimes dark, complex concepts with a radical tenderness I wish I saw more often in visual art. I’m in love. Houston is lucky to call her a resident.


ÜLRIKA


The Nakano Thrift Shop Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781609453992
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Europa Editions - June 6th, 2017

This wonderful book is a portrayal of human relationships by one of Japan’s most beloved authors. Objects for sale at the Nakano thrift shop appear as commonplace as the staff and customers that handle them. But like those same customers and staff, they hold many secrets. If examined carefully, they show the signs of innumerable extravagancies, of immeasurable pleasure and pain, of the deep mysteries of the human heart. Strange and fun and highly original, this is a book I've only just begun but already love.


A Catalog of Birds Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781609454036
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Europa Editions - July 11th, 2017

Set in 1970, this novel is the portrait of a family in the midst of recovery, the mysterious disappearance of a young woman, and of a brother and sister whose love of the natural world just might save their lives. With the backdrop of the Vietnam War, this is a stunning novel about family and the lengths to which love will take people.


The Flight of the Maidens Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781609454050
Availability: Coming Soon - Pre-Order Now
Published: Europa Editions - August 1st, 2017

Another wonderful novel by the incredible Jane Gardam. It's Yorkshire in 1946, a moment in time for three young women on the cusp of adulthood. With keen perception, the novel charts the course of this trio as they boldly face their uncertain futures. This novel follows the three young women as they try and make a path in life in post-World War II England.


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