Kate

Kate loves to read fiction and is drawn to excellent storytelling, history, and social issues. In between novels, she likes to read non-fiction and has a particular interest in nature & science writing, theory, criticism, social justice and memoirs.


 

In the Distance with You Cover Image
By Carla Guelfenbein, John Cullen (Translated by)
$17.95
ISBN: 9781590518700
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Other Press - June 5th, 2018

This is a truly compelling novel in which Carla Guelfenbein expertly weaves together the life of a famous writer with a chilling mystery.


How Do We Look: The Body, the Divine, and the Question of Civilization Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9781631494406
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - September 4th, 2018

I know a staff pick when I read it… This book was GREAT! For those who’d like to take a trip through the history of civilization, through the world’s visual relics and artifacts, this book is for you! Great Read for Art Admirers.


The House of Broken Angels Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780316154888
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown and Company - March 6th, 2018

I read this book when I was covered neck to knee in hives and a rash that persisted for nine weeks. I had begun reading the Patrick Melrose Novels by Edward St. Aubyn and quickly realized that, although I wanted to be immersed in a complex plot, I needed something a bit more meditative at that time.
 
I picked up the advanced reader's copy of Luis Alberto Urrea's House of Broken Angels and his storytelling and characters immediately resonated with me. This is a dazzling family saga that unfolds in the midst of a funeral, a birthday, and the ruminative last days of Big Angel's (the patriarch's) life.


We're Going to Need More Wine: Stories That Are Funny, Complicated, and True Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780062693983
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dey Street Books - October 17th, 2017

This memoir is both funny and intense. In tackling social and personal issues, Gabrielle Union is blunt and biting. I was impressed with her ability to shed light on darkness.


Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781501126062
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner - September 5th, 2017

This story sank deep into my bones as it unfolded. I was haunted by the ghostly spirit of the Deep South that shaped a family bound by blood, history, and loss. Jesmyn Ward smoothly conveys the harrowing details of each character’s experience with an imaginative clarity. I loved this book.


Ema the Captive Cover Image
By Cesar Aira, Chris Andrews (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9780811219105
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - December 6th, 2016

Alcohol, painted skies, and wild weather set the stage for a bizarre and exquisite journey set in historic South America. The title and synopsis are deceiving. Ema the Captive is a dedicated and deliberate story of ceremony and freedom. Every time I read Aira, I am sure to find myself living in a painting.


The Vegetarian: A Novel Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9781101906118
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Hogarth - August 23rd, 2016

Haunting. Han Kang conquers a plot so eerily close to home -- and yet so foreign, it feels unexpected. As a visual person, the imagery in this novel nearly brought me to tears.

This book is at once beautiful and difficult ... to swallow.


Swing Time Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781594203985
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Press - November 15th, 2016

The thing I love most about Zadie Smith is the way her brain works. However, reading her novels, I had always felt her writing was perhaps too dense. Then I read Swing Time.

The complex themes interweave with an intriguing plot about a woman always on the verge of finding herself in the worlds of media, travel, and dance. The story unfolds with motion and left me with a feeling of completion throughout.


Scary Old Sex Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781632862341
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Bloomsbury USA - February 7th, 2017

I really liked this unique collection of short stories. Heyman explores humanity through art, science, love, loss, aging, and relationships. The topics are very well-researched and the dynamic characters have soul. Each story is smart, raunchy, and meaningful. Unlike anything I’ve ever read.


See You in the Morning Cover Image
$13.95
ISBN: 9780983186359
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Featherproof Books - October 13th, 2015

A poignant portrayal of a teenage girl in a small American Midwestern town. The unnamed narrator works at “Chapters” bookstore, goes to the diner with friends, and makes sense of strange nights, awkward relationships, and growing up. Mairead Case’s writing dazzles from beginning to end.


A Thousand Acres: A Novel Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781400033836
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Anchor - December 2nd, 2003

The story unfolds on a family farm in Iowa. Land and memory shape a timeless tale that had me entranced. I was left saying: “Jane Smiley. I can’t believe she went there.”


The Sellout: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250083258
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Picador - March 1st, 2016

Reading The Sellout was like experiencing the making of public art.
Dark.
Humorous.
Imaginative.
I deeply enjoyed Beatty’s refreshing perspective on history in this boldly-realized novel.


Song of Solomon (Vintage International) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781400033423
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - June 8th, 2004

Song of Solomon is timeless in its meditations on race and violence, relationships, love, and struggle. Deeply moving and culturally relevant, Morrison’s story is embedded with a historical narrative that still lives on. This book is fearless in its purity, exposing darkness and corruption with vivid imagery and emotional depth. Song of Solomon is an essential and significant piece of literature. Read this.


Salvage the Bones: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781608196265
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Bloomsbury USA - April 24th, 2012

Jesmyn Ward immortalizes the deep South amid the tension of Hurricane Katrina. Told from the gaze of a blossoming young woman, Esch narrates a story of motherhood, betrayal, poverty, and survival.

Gritty. Beautiful.


The Hummingbird's Daughter Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780316154529
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Back Bay Books - April 3rd, 2006

A mesmerizing work of historical fiction, family lineage and brilliant story-telling.  Luis Alberto Urrea's tale is full of life, color and soul.


Geek Love: A Novel (Vintage Contemporaries) Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780375713347
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - June 11th, 2002

An albino hunchback dwarf, a seductress with a tail, siamese twins, and a boy with fins all intertwine in this novel of freaks, family, obscenity, the beautiful, the ugly, rivalry, and LOVE.

Dunn's tale is dark and raw, pure and empathetic in its grotesque examination of strange love.


Desert Solitaire: A Season in the Wilderness Cover Image
$7.99
ISBN: 9780345326492
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ballantine Books - January 12th, 1985

This account of Edward Abbey's season in the desert of southern Utah is exquisite. Vivid imagery and memory come together through the poetic gaze of a lone ranger in the wilderness to make for a rugged and contemplative journey.

Abbey's writing mirrors the desert landscape: unforgiving and elegant at once.


Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780393334791
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 6th, 2009

Witty, educational, funny, and intriguing. Roach elaborates on scientific curiosities with style and humor.

Also recommended: Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers.


This Is How You Lose Her Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781594631771
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - September 3rd, 2013

A tightly knitted collection of stories that explore love.  Dialogue intertwines with plot and character development to display the complex ways in which we communicate.  Junot Diaz is raw, unapologetic, ugly, honest and beautiful in each work.


Cunt: A Declaration of Independence (Live Girls) Cover Image
By Inga Muscio, Betty Dodson (Foreword by)
$16.00
ISBN: 9781580050753
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Seal Press - October 15th, 2002

Inga Muscio is clever and entertaining in her elaboration on the cunt. It is an empowering and intriguing examination of the female body through a personal and cultural lens. Her manifesto is revolutionary in its bold and provocative declarations. This is the text that made me a self-defined feminist.


The Thing Around Your Neck Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780307455918
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Anchor - June 1st, 2010

An intimate examination of relationships & culture in this beautifully crafted work of short stories that focus on the dichotomy between Africa and America.


An Episode in the Life of a Landscape Painter Cover Image
By Cesar Aira, Chris Andrews (Translator), Roberto Bolano (Preface by)
$12.95
ISBN: 9780811216302
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - May 25th, 2006

An astounding novel from Argentina that is a meditation on the beautiful and grotesque in nature, the art of landscape painting, and one experience in a man's life that became a lightning rod for inspiration.