Book Lists

This category is for lists of books (example: Top 10 Books for Summer Reading)

Book List: Top Six Books by Indigenous Writers to Read Right Now

Nature Poem Cover Image
ISBN: 9781941040638
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Tin House Books - May 9th, 2017

Nature Poem follows Teebs--a young, queer, American Indian (or NDN) poet--who can't bring himself to write a nature poem. For the reservation-born, urban-dwelling hipster, the exercise feels stereotypical, reductive, and boring. He hates nature. He prefers city lights to the night sky. He'd slap a tree across the face. He'd rather write a mountain of hashtag punchlines about death and give head in a pizza-parlor bathroom; he'd rather write odes to Aretha Franklin and Hole. The closer his people were identified with the "natural world," he figures, the easier it was to mow them down like the underbrush. But Teebs gradually learns how to interpret constellations through his own lens, along with human nature, sexuality, language, music, and Twitter.

There There: A novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780525520375
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - June 5th, 2018

The New York Times called THERE THERE “groundbreaking” and “extraordinary.” People Magazine calls it “brilliant and propulsive.” Tommy Orange’s novel — linked narratives of various individuals attending the Big Powwow in Oakland, California –– shows how multifaceted, intergenerational, and complex the American Indian experience is. He visits the Inprint Margarett Root Brown reading series in February. We can’t wait to see what Tommy does next.

Where the Dead Sit Talking Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616958879
Availability: Backordered
Published: Soho Press - February 20th, 2018

Longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award!

Set in rural Oklahoma during the late 1980s, Where the Dead Sit Talking is a startling, authentically voiced and lyrically written Native American coming-of-age story.

With his single mother in jail, Sequoyah, a fifteen-year-old Cherokee boy, is placed in foster care with the Troutt family. Literally and figuratively scarred by his mother’s years of substance abuse, Sequoyah keeps mostly to himself, living with his emotions pressed deep below the surface. At least until he meets seventeen-year-old Rosemary, another youth staying with the Troutts. Sequoyah and Rosemary bond over their shared Native American background and tumultuous paths through the foster care system, but as Sequoyah’s feelings toward Rosemary deepen, the precariousness of their lives and the scars of their pasts threaten to undo them both.

Jonny Appleseed Cover Image
ISBN: 9781551527253
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Arsenal Pulp Press - May 15th, 2018

Off the reserve and in the big city, two-spirit (Indigiqueer) Jonny Appleseed must figure out a way to make a living in the week before he must return to the reservation to attend his stepfather’s funeral. The seven days are like a fevered dream: stories of love, trauma, sex, kinship, ambition, and the heartbreaking recollection of his beloved kokum (grandmother). Jonny's world is a series of breakages, appendages, and linkages--and as he goes through the motions of preparing to return home, he learns how to put together the pieces of his life. Jonny Appleseed is a unique, shattering vision of Indigenous life, full of grit, glitter, and dreams.

Trail of Lightning (The Sixth World #1) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781534413504
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Saga Press - June 26th, 2018

Rebecca Roanhorse is a remarkable writer, known for her speculative, digital, wrenching short story “Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience” (Hugo and Nebula Short Story Winner). In TRAIL OF LIGHTNING, she returns to a fantasy landscape of indigenous gods, heroes –– and monsters. This book is an impeccable apocalypse story featuring two great characters: Maggie Hoskie, a Dinétah monster hunter, and a medicine man named Kai Arviso. Love this one? It’s the first of a series; the next installment comes out early next year.

Future Home of the Living God: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062694058
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper - November 14th, 2017

This book covers several topics — struggles to control reproductive rights, viral disease, governmental abuse of control, and many other disastrous situations that we currently don’t have to grapple with. As a strange epidemic sweeps the country affecting newborns, our main character, a pregnant woman named Cedar Hawk Songmaker, must find her birth mother — an Ojibwe living on the reservation — to understand her roots and her baby’s future. FUTURE HOME OF THE LIVING GOD interrogates lots of timely political issues, but also deeper, fundamental struggles about personhood and agency.

Brazos Bestsellers

Here's a list of the top selling books at Brazos Bookstore this week!

A Spark of Light: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780345544988
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Ballantine Books - October 2nd, 2018

On a Sunbeam Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250178138
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: First Second - October 2nd, 2018

The Author Is Dead Cover Image
ISBN: 9781942856306
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Literary Wanderlust - October 1st, 2018

Feminasty: The Complicated Woman's Guide to Surviving the Patriarchy Without Drinking Herself to Death Cover Image
ISBN: 9781455571864
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - September 4th, 2018

Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101871867
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pantheon - March 27th, 2018

Beautiful Country Burn Again: Democracy, Rebellion, and Revolution Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062688842
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ecco - September 25th, 2018

The Taiga Syndrome Cover Image
ISBN: 9780997366679
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dorothy a Publishing Project - October 1st, 2018

Wild Milk Cover Image
ISBN: 9780997366686
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dorothy a Publishing Project - October 1st, 2018

Ticker: The Quest to Create an Artificial Heart Cover Image
ISBN: 9780804138000
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Crown - August 7th, 2018

Less (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize): A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316316132
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Back Bay Books - May 22nd, 2018

What Makes Brazos Bestsellers So Special

As you might know, we keep a running updated list of bestselling books each week. A lot of bookstores and organizations do this –– obviously there's a New York Times bestseller list, Publishers Weekly's list, and way, way more. But if you check out our bestselling books, often there's something very special to each title. Below, check out a few of this week's bestsellers and why we're so proud to share them.

Proud: My Fight for an Unlikely American Dream Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316518963
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Hachette Books - July 24th, 2018

Ibtihaj was the first Muslim-American woman to medal at the Olympic games, and has been named one of Time's 100 Most Influential People. If that alone isn't enough to thrill you, think about this: on the heels of starting her own clothing line, organization, AND inspiring the first hijabi Barbie (modeled after her likeness), Ibtihaj came to Brazos for a packed event, sharing both this title and the Young Readers version (also on our bestsellers list). Plus, she's on the SABER fencing squad. Now, that should thrill you.

Bluebird, Bluebird Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316363273
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mulholland Books - August 28th, 2018

Don’t know about Attica Locke? You should. She's the award-winning author of Pleasantville, Black Water Rising, and The Cutting Season, along with being a writer and producer for the show Empire. We've hosted her multiple times for her releases, at Brazos and in other locations (including our local library). Though Attica lives in LA now, she’s a Houston native, and we adore her smart, Houston area-based mystery fiction.

In Another Time Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062459916
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperTeen - August 28th, 2018

Caroline Leech is another locally-based author on our bestseller list, and we couldn’t be more proud! Though she’s a beloved Houston writer now, Caroline Leech grew up in Scotland, which informs the setting of her gorgeous, romantic historical fiction. We recently interviewed her about In Another Time, which is her second book. Check it out here.

After the Winter Cover Image
ISBN: 9781566895255
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - September 4th, 2018

We are thrilled to have Guadalupe Nettel’s After the Winter on our bestseller list for multiple reasons.

1. Most generally: we prize indie presses at Brazos (as you may know, based on our obsessive posts and recommendations). These presses do huge work representing independent thought and intellect, and as an indie bookstore, we share values with many of these fabulous folks. Coffee House Press is high on that list.

2. Our staff members are all big fans of Guadalupe Nettel’s work, from her short story collection, Natural Histories, to her last novel, The Body Where I Was Born

3. We interviewed her a few years ago, but now we’re actually bringing her to Houston! She will be at Brazos Bookstore later this month in conversation with Rodrigo Hasbun (author of The Affections). Check out the event page here, preorder a book to get personalized, and geek out with us on September 18!

Ticker: The Quest to Create an Artificial Heart Cover Image
ISBN: 9780804138000
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Crown - August 7th, 2018

While you may think of Houston merely as the city with the best bookstore in the world (har har), it’s home to so many integral industries and barrier-breaking individuals. Mimi Swartz, one of the editors at Texas Monthly, does a wonderful job of encapsulating the research process that went into creating the first artificial heart. This book is dazzling, featuring an array of characters (many of whom walk among us). Be still our hearts.

August Is Women In Translation Month: A Book List

Welcome to August –– or as it's designated in my bullet journal, #WITMonth! Women In Translation Month is a relatively new term, started in 2014 by translator Meytal Radzinski to share the fairly dismal statistics around the percentage of female-authored books translated into English (read a great interview with her here).

Little Beast Cover Image
By Julie DeMers, Rhonda Mullins (Translator)
ISBN: 9781552453667
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coach House Books - April 24th, 2018

Little Beast is a singular, beautiful novella; its protagonist, a girl who is hidden away by her family. She knows she is different. Her parents argue about her monstrosity. When it seems the villagers have found her out, she escapes and makes her way into the forest. This book is a fairytale, but one turned on its head in order to question agency, groupthink, and forced normalcy of female bodies.

Pretty Things Cover Image
By Virginie Despentes, Emma Ramadan (Translator)
ISBN: 9781936932276
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Feminist Press - August 14th, 2018

I'm thrilled to see the English release of another Despentes book! Emma Ramadan has done so many amazing translations, and this one is no different. When one Paris twin, on the verge of musical stardom, commits suicide, the other must take her place in the world. Now alone, she takes on the role of a sexual icon, but all the while questioning what a woman is, and how she should act, to the public. Pretty Things is gritty and angry and all the things I wanted from an early-2000's feminist novel. 

Ms Ice Sandwich (Japanese Novellas #4) Cover Image
By Mieko Kawakami, Louise Heal Kawai (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781782273301
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pushkin Press - January 23rd, 2018

Sometimes novellas take the opportunity to grapple with huge cultural ideas, and sometimes they are just marvelous vignettes of one little life. This book is the latter. This little nugget concerns a boy's first love: the woman making sandwiches behind the counter at his local grocery store. It's funny, it's precious, and it's thoughtful. The Pushkin Japanese Novellas series can't seem to do wrong, so check out the rest of them, too. 

The Iliac Crest Cover Image
By Sarah Booker (Translator), Cristina Rivera Garza, Elena Poniatowska (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9781558614352
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Feminist Press - October 10th, 2017

I hope you didn't miss Cristina Rivera Garza's 2017 visit to Brazos for THE ILIAC CREST's release! If you did, fear not –– this strange, dark tale is still on our shelves and continues to be a staff favorite. One stormy night, two strangers invade a man's home and harass him endlessly, claiming to know a secret –– that he isn't a man at all, but in fact, a woman. THE ILIAC CREST is timely and ferocious. Plus, Garza is a Houstonian! We host her again on October 1st for the release of her STUPENDOUS next book, THE TAIGA SYNDROME. Be there.

Poso Wells Cover Image
By Gabriela Aleman, Dick Cluster (Translator)
ISBN: 9780872867550
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: City Lights Books - July 15th, 2018

This book has had my heart for months. In a thrilling political noir, a corrupt group of politicians, led by a suave political candidate, suddenly go ablaze when the electricity shorts out. Meanwhile, the real social struggles of the area are able to come to light, thanks to a journalist and a dogged local woman: that women have been disappearing from the Poso Wells settlement without notice, and that the area's forest reserves are being plundered by a mysterious magnate. Alemán rounds up ecoterrorism, corruption, political action, journalism, and a hefty dose of humor in this slim book. POSO WELLS is NOT to be missed. 

There are a few more books I simply have to mention that haven't come out yet, but that are already on my list of top books for the year.

Keep an eye out for AFTER THE WINTER, a gorgeous novel by Guadalupe Nettel that seems to exceed every standard for fiction. We host Nettel September 18, so if you are in Houston, please mark your calendars!

THE NAKED WOMAN, by Armonia Somers, is coming out from Feminist Press in October. After being published in Ecuador in 1950, critics doubted the gender of its author due to the shocking content. It's a fabulist little fever dream, feminist, biblical, bodily and strange, and definitely worth a look.

THE LONESOME BODYBUILDER is a collection of short stories by Yukiko Motoya, and it's out in November. It already has fabulous reception with the likes of Kenzaburo Oe and Hiromi Kawakami, so, hello. This is a splendid book for fans of the playful, the fabulist, and the alien.

Last but not least, I am shrieking about the release of REVOLUTION SUNDAY, by  Cuban author Wendy Guerra. Her main character, Cloe, explores the ins and outs of poetry, surveillance, and private/public absurdities in 2000s Cuba. Plus, it's been translated by Achy Obejas, a marvelous author in her own right. 

Sara's June Pride List

Happy Pride Month, y'all! While we can all appreciate the "queer canon," so to speak, that is popularized year after year, the new releases are what really thrill me. I am so excited to see the new titles coming out from queer authors, or featuring queer characters from across the LGBTQIA spectrum. As we progress through June, keep an eye out for more literary pride spotlights!

The House of Impossible Beauties: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062676979
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Ecco - February 6th, 2018

With the reemergence of the documentary Paris is Burning and a new wave of ballroom culture, check out Cassara's novel about the subject. The House of Impossible Beauties focuses on the house of Xtravaganza, a ballroom house that featured Latinx and POC individuals. Angel, Hector, Venus, and more come to life with this unflinching narrative of New York in the 80s and 90s.

This is a fictionalized version of their stories, but even that fact pinpoints something we should pay attention to: trans histories have been erased, and continue to be erased. Books like Cassara's preserve these icons instead of allowing them to disappear into history.

Trenton Makes: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385543385
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Doubleday - March 20th, 2018

This book is fairly slim but just brilliant. After a woman kills her husband, she assumes his identity as Abe Kunstler and pursues the American dream of a job, a car, a wife –– and hopefully, a son. Koelb interrogates desperation, lineage, and the power of gender in this novel spanning from the 40's to the 70's. Unlike so many, this book pursues a long-term narrative of trans identity and aging, and I appreciate that so strongly.

How to Write an Autobiographical Novel: Essays Cover Image
ISBN: 9781328764522
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - April 17th, 2018

Okay, so I cried a few times reading this book. And wrote down a few quotes that made my heart tremble. After Joseph Osmundson wrote a gorgeous article about about Chee's recreation of a queer lineage in the wake of the HIV/AIDS crisis, how could I skip this gem? From tarot to moving across the country for writing to ACT UP protests, Chee pours out thoughtful advice and personal anecdotes galore.

Junk Cover Image
ISBN: 9781941040973
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Tin House Books - May 8th, 2018

Tommy Pico is a prolific Native writer who has become integral to our contemporary sense of what queer poetry can be. He started with the epic poem IRL and hasn't stopped yet. Your heart will be absolutely wrenched out by his thoughtful, intellectual, yet grounded verse. Plus, check out the raunchy but hilarious podcast he runs with three other fantastic queer writers. 

Queer City: Gay London from the Romans to the Present Day Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419730993
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harry N. Abrams - May 8th, 2018

I love London. After reading this book, I love London more. Ackroyd runs through the gay history of the city seemingly in a single breath, from Romans to the present-day. His writing is sharp and often witty, and the contents of this book elucidate so much about the history of queer culture that I'd never heard of. I like to think of this book as Foucault plus disco. Plus, who doesn't want to walk around with this book jacket? Hardcore. 

So Lucky: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374265922
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: MCD x FSG Originals - May 15th, 2018

Nicola Griffith has long been a favorite of mine, and I was so thrilled to hear that she would have a new book out this year. Something I love about Griffith's books is her ability to alternately put a heavy weight on the sexuality of her characters or barely mention it at all, blending their romantic identity into the greater maelstrom of the plot progression.

This book is utterly personal and emotional; the main character, Mara, runs a multimillion-dollar AIDS foundation but must step down when she has to suddenly come to terms with her own chronic illness. Griffith tackles the identity politics of being sick: being treated like a "victim" and "inspiration" and breaking harmful narratives about sickness, all while recognizing one's own shortcomings and weaknesses. 

Happy Birthday Larry McMurtry!: A Book List

Larry McMurtry's birthday is June 3, so we're celebrating with a list of a few of our favorite Westerns! Not all of these are traditional Westerns –– some subvert the setting, some the cowboy archetype, some the purpose of the protagonist. But they have a sense of landscape that is unique to the Western genre and typified by Larry McMurtry's many novels.

In the Distance Cover Image
ISBN: 9781566894883
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - October 10th, 2017

If you've been in the store in the past six months, you've heard us talk about IN THE DISTANCE. Hernan Diaz's novel takes tropes of the Western genre and turns them on their heads, while maintaining elegance and a unique clarity of vision. Hakan and his brother ship to the US from Sweden, but are separated in England –– one of them ends up in New York, as planned, and the other in San Francisco. What results is a seemingly endless trek as Hakan attempts to reach New York and find his brother against the landscape of 19th century America.

News of the World: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062409218
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - June 20th, 2017

No cowboy protagonist here; the main character of Paulette Jiles' captivating book is a professional itinerant who moves around the Texas countryside to read the news to curious audiences. He is paid to transport a young woman back to her family after she has been captured by the Kiowa tribe, and both the landscape and the girl herself prove to be unfamiliar and uncivilized. The duo's resulting bond is tenuous but touching. 

The Gloaming Cover Image
ISBN: 9781937512477
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Two Dollar Radio - September 20th, 2016

Melanie Finn's protagonist, Pilgrim Jones, must find something out of nothing. After a divorce and a terrible accident, she is ostracized and attempts a safari in Africa as a means of escape. Instead of staying with the group, she sets out on her own in an attempt to cope with a shockingly empty future and a past that has receded from familiarity. This book merges high drama, loss, and violence with the possibility of redemption in an alien landscape.

Train Dreams: A Novella Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250007650
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador - May 22nd, 2012

A haunting and surreal portrait of a man’s entire life as it interacts with a troubled American century. Johnson’s masterwork is irrefutable proof that no book need be longer than 90 pages.

Thalia: A Texas Trilogy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781631493751
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - September 19th, 2017

We couldn't complete the list without including one by the icon himself! Or rather, three; Thalia collects his first three novels, written at a time when McMurtry was first arriving on the literary scene with his voice already fully formed. Never read McMurtry? This is the perfect place to start. Read everything he's ever written? This striking volume will have you obsessed again.

Mother's Day at Brazos

Take a look at a few of our mother's day picks. Though these books may not be obvious choices, they explore motherhood in deeply thoughtful, evocative, and multifaceted ways.

And Now We Have Everything: On Motherhood Before I Was Ready Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316393843
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company - April 10th, 2018

Filled with explicit candor and hilarious, biting wit, these essays provide a record of modern motherhood for the new generation. And while this will absolutely resonate with the women who read it, young fathers (and would-be parents) will also benefit from O’Connell’s insights into their partners’ experiences. This is the book about parenting I wish I’d had.


The Art of Waiting: On Fertility, Medicine, and Motherhood Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555977498
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Graywolf Press - September 6th, 2016

A favorite of mine from the recent explosion in literary nonfiction. Boggs writes with beauty and precision about motherhood—not only personally (though yes, personally), but also culturally, historically, artistically. I didn’t think this book would be for me; boy, was I wrong.


Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781501126062
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner - September 5th, 2017

In rich, lyrical prose, Ward reckons with the relationship 13-year-old Jojo has with his biracial family, but most of all his mom Leonie and her relatives. She’s an inconsistent presence, but she’s the mother figure he has. Jojo learns from the past, present, and future, living and dead, humans, plants, and animals; for this text, all are necessary to tell Jojo (and the reader) the story of America from slavery to chain gangs to Jim Crow to Trayvon Martin.


The Changeling Cover Image
ISBN: 9781941040898
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tin House Books - April 10th, 2018

Joy Williams pursues motherhood in its darkest form, and I’m so glad to see this book republished. When we meet Williams’ main character, Pearl, she’s drunkenly attempting to escape her abusive ex-husband with her new baby. As the novel unwinds, it expands into a paranoid postpartum fairy tale, full of children who aren’t Pearl’s but whom she loves, and her own kid, Sam, who takes on a haunting role entirely estranged from normal childhood.


The Desert and Its Seed Cover Image
By Jorge Baron Biza, Camilo Ramirez (Translator)
ISBN: 9780811225809
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - April 24th, 2018

The Desert and Its Seed is an autobiographical novel that focuses on Mario, moments after his father has thrown acid on his mother’s face (a true story). The novel follows Mario and his stoic mother, Eligia, as she moves from a clinic in Argentina to a clinic in Milan. The descriptions of her face and the changes it undergoes are both harrowing and strangely beautiful. Mario attempts to deal with the violence upon his mother (by his own father, no less) as he navigates the provincial streets of a small Italian town, drinking with strangers and getting lost (both literally and figuratively).


Tomb Song: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555977993
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Graywolf Press - March 6th, 2018

This book tells of Julián’s unconventional life as he sits at the bedside of his mother who is fighting leukemia. In fiery and often hallucinogenic prose Herbert describes his struggles as a child, his desire to be a writer and the traveling circus of his youth moving from city to city. At the root of this novel is a young man troubled by the mixed feelings he has for his mother, the courage Guadalupe had to fight for herself and her son. The writing is stunning and always brutal.


The Days of Abandonment Cover Image
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781933372006
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Europa Editions - September 1st, 2005

Elena Ferrante is known for her Neapolitan Quartet, but this visceral book is truly unforgettable. After a woman is abandoned by her husband, she must care for two children on her own. Days of Abandonment is personal, fiercely intelligent, and self-aware.


Memoirs of a Geisha: A Novel (Vintage Contemporaries) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679781585
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - January 10th, 1999

It’s not a traditional mother-daughter relationship, but Sayuri’s relationship with the Mother of her ryokan is as formative as it is tense. Later on, Mameha is another mother-figure who helps Sayuri to grow into a mature woman. So, it’s a non-traditional look at the mother-figures in our lives and how they create a sense of family.


On Immunity: An Inoculation Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555977207
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Graywolf Press - September 15th, 2015

This book-length essay explores the realm of public health through an attempt to understand the anti-vaccine movement, Dracula, Biss’ own experience as a new mother, and herd immunity, etc. An incredible insight into a contemporary moment.


Men and Their Mothers: Mark Talks Two New Releases

Often when reading I’ll conflate the books I’ve recently read with the ones I’m currently reading, making connections, finding similarities and resemblances that may (or may not) be there. This could be the consequence of being a voracious reader, having an active imagination or, put quite simply, sometimes the similarities are just there, undeniably present and impossible to avoid, books like distant cousins or siblings.

Let Brazos Bookstore Plan Your Houston Staycation!

Spring Break is officially upon us. For those of you who are planning on taking advantage of all Houston has to offer, allow us to make a few suggestions for the perfect staycation.

1. Go to a movie!

The Shape of Water Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250165343
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Feiwel & Friends - March 6th, 2018

2.Brunch every day!

Houston has so many great dining options featuring such diverse cuisines and culinary flavors that you could eat until you explode. While you’re nursing that post-brunch food coma, why not pick up a copy of THE POTLIKKER PAPERS, a food history of the Modern South. This book explores the impact that slavery and race relations has shaped American culinary identities for generations, and Houston is featured prominently.

The Potlikker Papers: A Food History of the Modern South Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143111016
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - February 6th, 2018

3. Go to a concert!

Houston’s vibrant rap scene features local talent like Slim Thug and Bun B, kings of rap in the South. Slab cars, chopped-and-screwed beats as pioneered by DJ Screw (R.I.P.), and sippin’ syrup: these are the emblematic elements of H-Town’s music. The repertoire of artists is deep, and there are plenty of options for a great show. The day after, when your ears are still ringing, expand your consciousness with RAW: MY JOURNEY INTO THE WU-TANG by U-God to learn about more rap royalty from a different scene. A founding member, he details the birth and rise of the Clan from the streets of NYC in his signature no-holds-barred voice. (Also, thanks to U-God's recent visit, we've got a few signed copies).

Raw: My Journey into the Wu-Tang Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250191168
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Picador - March 6th, 2018

4. Take a day trip down to NASA!

Head just south to the Johnson Space Center to check out NASA’s Mission Control, a massive Saturn V rocket, and touch a moon rock in the adjoining museum. Afterward, be sure to pick up a copy of VIEW FROM ABOVE by Commander Terry Virts. This gorgeous book features photos taken by Virts as he spent 200 days on the International Space Station orbiting the planet, along with diagrams and corresponding stories. We can’t all go to space, but this book makes it possible to imagine that you’ve been.

View From Above: An Astronaut Photographs the World Cover Image
By Terry Virts, Buzz Aldrin (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9781426218644
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: National Geographic - October 3rd, 2017

5. Cruise the coast with your favorite tunes!

The sun is out and the weather is perfect for a windows-down, radio-up drive to Galveston. No trip to the beach is complete without sand, volleyball, or, of course, Kenny Loggins. Be sure to crank the yacht rock and sing yourself hoarse, and once you’re lounging in the sand wondering, just what the hell is yacht rock?, just break out your fresh copy of THE YACHT ROCK BOOK to find your answers. An oral history of the genre from Greg Prato, this book features interviews from artists like John Oates, Don Felder, and the captain himself, Kenny Loggins. Beach reading at its finest.

The Yacht Rock Book: The Oral History of the Soft, Smooth Sounds of the 70s and 80s Cover Image
By Greg Prato, Fred Armisen (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9781911036296
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Jawbone Press - March 6th, 2018

6. End your Spring Break with a weekend getaway!

And if you need help picking a destination, just flip open SPECTACULAR WEEKEND GETAWAYS OF TEXAS by Jolie Berry. Broken up by region, this book features amazing resorts, rentals, inns, and B & B’s that all make for an unforgettable getaway. Gorgeous pictures and brief write-ups will get your imagination firing on all cylinders as you load up the car for a quick trip. Also, plenty of time in the car for more yacht rock!

Spectacular Weekend Getaways of Texas: A Collection of Lakeside, Ocean Front, Hill Country and City Hotels, Resorts and Rentals for the Modern Day Explorer Cover Image
ISBN: 9780996424035
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Signature Boutique Books - December 13th, 2017

Weird and Wondrous: Books that Defy Genre

Weird, wondrous, and walking the border between genres: here are a few books that defy categorization and push the status quo on how we think about literature. Whether it’s a beautifully-written book that blends poetry and prose or a title that blurs the line between fact and fiction, each of the below is sure to offer a unique reading experience unlike anything you’ve encountered before. Is it a novel? Is it poetry? By the time you get to the back cover you still won’t know what to call it, but you won’t care because it’s just that good.


The Collected Works of Billy the Kid (Vintage International) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679767862
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - March 19th, 1996

First published in 1970, THE COLLECTED WORKS OF BILLY THE KID marks the beginning of Ondaatje’s forays into fiction. This novel-in-verse collects period photos, poems, and short journal-like prose entries to create a version of the legendary gunslinger that goes beyond rote historical account or a romanticized nostalgia. Every page is dreamlike and rooted in memory, blurring the line between fact and fiction and opening the consciousness of the story from one man to that of an entire landscape. (Psst, have you heard we’re hosting Michael Ondaatje on May 23rd to celebrate his new novel, WARLIGHT? Find the details here.)

Unbearable Splendor Cover Image
ISBN: 9781566894517
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Coffee House Press - October 11th, 2016

UNBEARABLE SPLENDOR is a wonderful, weird, uncategorized collection of sparse poems that sprawl across the page, charts and graphs, and story-essays that interrogate our most intimate dichotomies like host/guest, child/orphan, and light/dark. The book is full of black holes, singularities, and cyborgs, but at its heart of the subject matter is Shin’s identity as a Korean American immigrant that fled a military dictatorship. The book moves through concepts and ideas as easily as it moves through genres, coalescing into a reading experience with its own gravitational pull. As stated in one of the opening epigraphs, “a black hole is anything but empty space,” and this is one singularity you’ll enjoy getting sucked into.

The Way of Florida: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780995705203
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little Island Press - September 21st, 2017

Persson’s debut novel blends historical account, personal narrative, and poetic prose into a story that reads almost like an incantation to the past. Based on a real, historical event, the Narváez Expedition, a failed attempt to establish Spanish colonies along the Gulf Coast, the narrator of THE WAY OF FLORIDA describes the minutiae of the journey in language that is intensely lyric and visceral. The novel is broken into chapters that are broken into half-page chunks, and each entry swirls with an almost-mystic sense of place and the creatures that occupy it. Fans of Cormac McCarthy’s earlier novels will find themselves right at home in these pages.

Autobiography of Red: A Novel in Verse (Vintage Contemporaries) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375701290
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - July 27th, 1999

There is perhaps no one writing today that is more intellectual, intense, and committed to her own conceits as Anne Carson, and AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF RED is one of her greatest achievements. At once a poem and a novel, a myth and a contemporary coming-of-age story, the book follows Geryon, at once a young boy and a monstrous mythical creature, chronicling the events of his life. As he escapes a household of abuse and falls for a drifter named Herakles, Geryon begins to find himself as an artist and photography. Geryon faces devastation when Herakles leaves him, and when the drifter resurfaces years later Geryon is forced to confront his own griefs, pains, and desires. A moving love story that is steeped in literary craft and deconstruction.

SKU: 9781933959337

One of two books published by Roberto Harrison in 2017, BRIDGE OF THE WORLD is a collection of poems and prose poetry interrupted by an essay on poetics in the middle of the text. However, describing Harrison’s work as two genres put together in the same book is an oversimplification. The essay, titled “snake vision,” is as much an exploration of psychology, mental illness, and human interaction as it is a statement of poetic philosophy. The poems are lyric and experiment with form, with a focus on light, color, and sound. Throughout the book language is being interrogated, and the way that we make meaning, or if meaning is possible at all, the bridge of the world both a geographic phenomenon and a linguistic conceit.

Citizen: An American Lyric Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555976903
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Graywolf Press - October 7th, 2014

Continuing in the style of DON’T LET ME BE LONELY, Claudia Rankine turns her attention toward race in America. Prose poems and micro-essays share pages with visual art and photographs, and subject matter ranges from daily micro-aggressions to Serena Williams to police brutality to Zinedine Zidane’s infamous headbutt. In turns critical, analytical, heartbreaking, and hopeful, CITIZEN is a collection reflective of a country in a moment of crisis, a book that is as necessary as it is timely, unfortunately. As Rankine writes, “because white men can’t / police their imagination / black people are dying.” Read this book. If you already have, read it again, and then gift it to a friend.