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In the Spotlight

Like, Try, Why: Books for Your Inner Child

Remember that book that hooked you as a kid? Those stories that turned you on to reading? Here are some suggested adult reads matched to those books you loved as a kid.  Read More..

The Encyclopedia of Trouble and Spaciousness

Rebecca Solnit, though not widely known, is one of the country’s finest writers of non-fiction, in all its many guises. Twenty-nine essays, articles, and letters are included in her wonderful new book, plus book prefaces and text written to accompany art exhibits. The resulting constellation of stellar pieces connects the dots, in typical Solnit fashion, from Wall Street to the arid West, tsunamis to Thoreau, gold mining to oil drilling, gardening to Google, climate change to country music, landscapes to limits, and Haiti to hope. Read More..

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RUSSIA!

In a year filled with excellent new releases, I still find it easy to single out Gary Shteyngart’s hilarious memoir Little Failure as my absolute favorite. Shteyngart was born a sickly but good little Soviet boy in 1972, in what was then Leningrad, with a devotion to his country so strong that an early childhood foray into fiction writing finds him pairing a magical goose with no other than Vladimir Lenin himself. When a rare opportunity emerges for Soviet Jews to immigrate to the US as part of a diplomatic exchange for grain, his parents pack up the family settling in Queens, NY.  Upon arriving they decide that his given name of Igor should be replaced with the more American sounding name of Gary. But a new name, and a growing love for the US, isn’t enough for his class-mates, who inevitably see him as a “commie” from the feared “evil empire” seen in the movies. Read More..

Like Try Why: Graphic Novels

Whether you love graphic novels or are new to the format, we’re hear to help. This guide covers three different genres within graphic novels: superheroes, fantasy/sci-fi, and horror. If you’re looking to check out more 2014 releases in graphic novels, check out this list of Fisher’s favorites in the catalogRead More..

Like, Try, Why: Janet Evanovich Edition

If you love sassy and smart slapstick mysteries, chances are you’re a Janet Evanovich fan. If you’re looking to branch out and try some new authors or series, we’ve got some suggestions for you.  Read More..

Creep’n: An Excavation of Best-Selling Authors’ Goodreads Profiles

Admit it: you love stalking people on social media. It’s normal. It’s natural. Healthy, even. We all do it. There is absolutely nothing questionable in spending hours trawling through every bit of a person’s digital presence. At least that’s what I tell myself.

Popular book discussion website Goodreads has enticed a bevy of big-name authors to create their own profiles, through which they can rate books, leave comments, and add titles to their “to read” lists. Upon finding this wealth of mostly-random-and-trivial data, I sifted through each recognizable writer like a crazed ex-lover or a noir-era P.I. with one last chance to redeem himself.  Here are my findings: Read More..

Like, Try, Why: Holiday Favorites

Need some holiday spirit? No, not the holiday spirits that haunted Scrooge; some fun holiday spirits! Here are three items perfect for that night for the fireside with cocoa and cookies.  (Just be sure to leave a few for Santa!) Read More..

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Like, Try, Why: Nonfiction by Women Writers

We’ve explored a lot of fiction in our like, try, why series, but this week we thought we’d offer some reading suggestions for fans of nonfiction. These books are all written by women who examine culture. Read More..

Signed, Sealed, Delivered: Celebrate National “Write to a Friend” Month

In elementary school, my fourth grade classroom was assigned the task of managing our school’s internal postal service for one glorious semester. It was a highly-coveted responsibility that rotated among classes and, by the time it reached us, I was overjoyed. We spent time learning about the Pony Express and the history of the U.S. Postal Service, looked at all kinds of interesting stamps, and — most importantly — managed the mail delivery for the entire (note: tiny) elementary school. Students were able to send one another letters addressed to their name and classroom, and we were responsible for collecting and distributing these letters. It. Was. Awesome.

Now, nearly two decades later, I still love mail. I enjoy sending letters, packages and postcards, and my day is instantly improved when I find anything other than bills or junk in my mailbox. In today’s email-centric society, it’s nice to slow down and celebrate the quiet art of letter-writing.

Fortunately for my fellow proponents of post, December is National Write to a Friend Month and I’ve compiled a list of letter-centric books and movies to help you celebrate. Read More..

Like Try Why: Ursula K. Le Guin

Ursula K. Le Guin is the 2014 recipient of the National Book Foundation’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. Her novels transcend the (artificial) division between literary and genre fiction. If you’ve never read Le Guin, this guide will give you a place to start, and if you’re already a fan, hopefully you’ll find a new book.  Read More..