This week, we're featuring Staff Picks from Mary Ann!
Raw, powerful, engrossing, disturbing, brutal, heart-pounding.
Best book I've read this year.
Mostly a fascinating insight into the author's mania due to Bipolar I. Her treatment with lithium leads her to some interesting investigations regarding this element.
"Furiously Happy" is ridiculously funny!!
About a boy growing up in the South at the turn-of-the-century. Full of enjoyable characters and descriptions of life at the time.
Cleverly and beautifully written - about a boy born to a prostitue in Yemen, growing up in a brothel in Egypt, sent to a Catholic school by his wealthy father, and ending up in San Fancisco at the start of the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco.
A beautiful love story of people, of place, of spirit.
When I told people I was reading this book, they all said, "I love that book!" Now I am one of them.
The story is mysterious, dark, clever, entertaining, and beautifully written (and translated well).
I love this book!
I do enjoy a good story-teller, and you've got to be good at your craft to be able to tell your stories in short form. Ray Bradbury is among the best. Here is Bradbury without the veil of Sci-Fi/Futurama (though I don't consider him a Sci-Fi writer, anyway).
Mary Roach does it again. She gets funnier each time.
Historical fiction about the clash as well as merging of cultures toward the end of the 19th century along Cook Inlet. Powerful and sensitive, this is a richly told tale of people blazing toward the future, maintaining the past, seeking adventure, winning and losing.
First in a series of young reader mysteries set in the late 19th centruy New England. Newly-arrived adventurous Abigail Rook teams up with quirky detective Jackaby to solve fantastical crimes. A lot of fun.
Second installment in the Jackaby yount mysteries series takes Jackaby and Miss Rook to an archaeological dig, where things soon get fantastically out of hand.
Number 3 in the series. As good as1 and 2.
Including stories written in her early twenties, before duMaurier attained fame for her gothic tale "Rebecca", these clever short stories are of varying styles and genres - some are witty, some are disturbing, all are beautifully crafted.
There are mounds of books that try to explain schizophrenia written by doctors, therapists, family, and friends. Here's a narrative as told by the schizophrenic himself. The author has struggled with substance abuse and addiction, as well as various forms of mental illness, including psychosis. His creative storyline pus the reader right into the world of a schizophrenic teen.
"I hope it shows that mental illness is not a death sentence." -Nic Sheff
There are not many books for the layperson regarding Hansen's Disease (aka leprosy, but here is a good one. Though originally published in 1940, it is still a relevant and moving account of the life of an exile on a Leper Colony island.
A charming story about a tiny mouse with ears too-big, and his love for a kind and compassionate princess.
A charming story about a woman who inherit her great-aunt's much beloved bookstore. Business-minded June prepares to close the financially struggling shop for good, but in the process, she discovers a heart-warming secret about her great-aunt, which leads to more discoveries about life's simple joys.
A hauntingly lyrical telling of a desperate existence in a bleak reality. The plot is engrossing; the writing superb.
The Anchorage Mafia? Yup, you bet. Running gambling dens and strip clubs during the oil boom years. Kim Rich recalls growing up amidst the seedy folks of Alaska's largest city. Her dad was in the business, and she saw a lot. A fascinating look into Anchorage's history that they don't tell the tourists.
First published in 1899, Kate Chopin's "The Awakening" covers taboo topics of the era, such as a woman's self-identity separate from her husband and family. An engaging short-story with an historical perspective on women's rights to choose her path in life.