Fiction

After Sappho

After Sappho

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"The first thing we did was change our names. We were going to be Sappho," so begins this intrepid debut novel, centuries after the Greek poet penned her lyric verse. Ignited by the same muse, a myriad of women break from their small, predetermined lives for seemingly disparate paths: in 1892, Rina Faccio trades her needlepoint for a pen; in 1902, Romaine Brooks sails for Capri with nothing but her clotted paintbrushes; and in 1923, Virginia Woolf writes: "I want to make life fuller and fuller." Writing in cascading vignettes, Selby Wynn Schwartz spins an invigorating tale of women whose narratives converge and splinter as they forge queer identities and claim the right to their own lives. A luminous meditation on creativity, education, and identity, After Sappho announces a writer as ingenious as the trailblazers of our past.

"This book is splendid: Impish, irate, deep, courageous. . . . Brava!"--Lucy Ellmann, author of Ducks, Newburyport

After the Rain

After the Rain

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During a furious storm a young woman's destiny is revealed . . . and her life is changed forever

After the Rain is a graphic novel adaptation of Nnedi Okorafor's short story "On the Road." The drama takes place in a small Nigerian town during a violent and unexpected storm. A Nigerian-American woman named Chioma answers a knock at her door and is horrified to see a boy with a severe head wound standing at her doorstep. He reaches for her, and his touch burns like fire. Something is very wrong. Haunted and hunted, Chioma must embrace her heritage in order to survive. John Jennings and David Brame's graphic novel collaboration uses bold art and colors to powerfully tell this tale of identity and destiny.

Agatha of Little Neon

Agatha of Little Neon

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"Sublime." --Oprah Daily

"Wry, insightful and remarkable." --Scott Simon, NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday

Claire Luchette's debut, Agatha of Little Neon, is a novel about yearning and sisterhood, figuring out how you fit in (or don't), and the unexpected friends who help you find your truest self

Agatha has lived every day of the last nine years with her sisters: they work together, laugh together, pray together. Their world is contained within the little house they share. The four of them are devoted to Mother Roberta and to their quiet, purposeful life.

But when the parish goes broke, the sisters are forced to move. They land in Woonsocket, a former mill town now dotted with wind turbines. They take over the care of a halfway house, where they live alongside their charges, such as the jawless Tim Gary and the headstrong Lawnmower Jill. Agatha is forced to venture out into the world alone to teach math at a local all-girls high school, where for the first time in years she has to reckon all on her own with what she sees and feels. Who will she be if she isn't with her sisters? These women, the church, have been her home. Or has she just been hiding?

Disarming, delightfully deadpan, and full of searching, Claire Luchette's Agatha of Little Neon offers a view into the lives of women and the choices they make.

Age of Wonders
Age of Wonders

Age of Wonders

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“A marvelous and disturbing book . . . an experience both painful and joyous.”―Times Literary Supplement

The secure world of a well-established and apparently perfectly assimilated Jewish writer living in an Austrian town before World War II, disintegrates under the force of political and social realities that daily sanctify the old and endemic Austrian anti-Semitism. We learn what we learn through Bruno, the thirteen-year-old son of the family, whose spare and uninflected account discloses the slow onset of disaster. His father, a successful Austrian intellectual, refuses the implications of what’s happening and embraces the humiliating routines of Jewish self-hatred. To the vicious attacks on his writing and character, he adds his own voice until, with nothing left―not faith, not family, not dignity―he disappears. Thirty years later, the war long over, Bruno, at a low point in a childless marriage, responds to ambiguously positive inquiries about his father’s work, and travels from his home in Jerusalem to the Austrian town of his childhood. What he encounters in that town, “now clean of Jews,” means something more than confronting his own profound losses.

1st English edition; translated by Dalya Bilu. Signed by author in Hebrew. Embossed on endpaper "From the Library of David S. Ariel." Dust jacket in protective mylar cover. VG/VG

Ain't It Fun: Peter Laughner & Proto-Punk in the Secret City

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Air He Breathes

Air He Breathes

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Tristan used to have it all, but now he's a broken shell of a man angrily lashing out at anyone who comes too close. He's fully prepared to be the monster everyone claims he is...until he meets a woman whose heart is just as shattered as his own. Together, they're no longer lost alone in the dark. Together, at last, they are free.

"VIVID AND BEAUTIFULLY EMOTIONAL." -ELLE KENNEDY, NYT BESTSELLING AUTHOR

I was warned about Tristan Cole.

"Stay away from him," people said. "He's cruel. He's cold. He's damaged."

It's easy to judge a man because of his past. To look at Tristan and see a monster. But I couldn't do that. I had to accept the wreckage that lived inside of him because it also lived inside of me.

We were both empty. We were both looking for something else. Something more. We both wanted to put together the shattered pieces of our yesterdays.

Then perhaps we could finally remember how to breathe.

Consistently topping BOOKTOK's "Books That Make You Ugly Cry" lists, The Air He Breathes brings the angst, the spice, and the beautifully painful longing...

THE ELEMENTS SERIES:

The Air He Breathes, book 1

The Fire Between High & Lo, book 2

The Silent Waters, book 3

The Gravity of Us, book 4

Akata Warrior

Akata Warrior

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The newest novel by the author of Akata Witch and the forthcoming Marvel comic book series about Shuri, Black Panther's sister!

"The most imaginative, gripping, enchanting fantasy novels I have ever read!" --Laurie Halse Anderson, New York Times bestselling author of Speak

A year ago, Sunny Nwazue, an American-born girl Nigerian girl, was inducted into the secret Leopard Society. As she began to develop her magical powers, Sunny learned that she had been chosen to lead a dangerous mission to avert an apocalypse, brought about by the terrifying masquerade, Ekwensu. Now, stronger, feistier, and a bit older, Sunny is studying with her mentor Sugar Cream and struggling to unlock the secrets in her strange Nsibidi book.

Eventually, Sunny knows she must confront her destiny. With the support of her Leopard Society friends, Orlu, Chichi, and Sasha, and of her spirit face, Anyanwu, she will travel through worlds both visible and invisible to the mysteries town of Osisi, where she will fight a climactic battle to save humanity.

Much-honored Nnedi Okorafor, winner of the Hugo, Nebula, and World Fantasy awards, merges today's Nigeria with a unique world she creates. Akata Warrior blends mythology, fantasy, history and magic into a compelling tale that will keep readers spellbound.

ALGERNON BLACKWOOD'S THE WILLOWS

ALGERNON BLACKWOOD'S THE WILLOWS

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This immortal novella of extra-dimensional weirdness on the Danube comes to vivid life in graphic comic form thanks to the incredibly detailed black-and-white linework of talented newcomer, Sam Ford. Writer Nathan Carson's thoughtful retelling reverently preserves the plot while breathing character-driven depth into this all-time classic. Two adventurous women, one British, one Swedish, encounter strange horrors in the Hungarian wilderness of 1907. What they discover on that crumbling sandbar makes them question their sanity, fear for their lives, and revel in otherworldly strangeness. Readers familiar with the story will delight in seeing it depicted in such painstaking, quality illustrations. And those for whom it is new will want to leave a light on for many nights after.
Alice Sadie Celine

Alice Sadie Celine

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"Obsessed!" --Chloë Sevigny
"I am literally obsessed." --Busy Philipps

Hailed as "richly intimate" and "wickedly delightful" (The New York Times Book Review), this steamy and incisive debut adult novel follows one woman's affair with her daughter's best friend, testing the limits of love and ambition.

It's opening night, but Alice's performance in the local Bay Area production of The Winter's Tale is far from glamorous. She doesn't have dreams of stardom, but the basement theater in a wildfire-choked town isn't exactly what she envisioned for her career back home in Los Angeles. To make matters worse, her best friend Sadie is not even coming.

Pragmatic, serious Sadie and flighty, creative Alice have been best friends since high school--really one another's only friends--but now that they are through with college (which they attended together) and living on opposite ends of California, Alice would at least expect her friend's support. Sadie, determined not to cancel her plans with her boyfriend, ends up enlisting the help of her mother, Celine.

A professor of women's and gender studies at UC Berkeley, Celine's landmark treatise on sex and identity made her notorious, but she's struggling to write her new book in a post-second-wave feminist world. So, when Sadie begs her to attend Alice's play, she relents, if only to escape writer's block. But in a turn of perplexing events, Celine becomes entranced by Alice's performance and realizes that her daughter's once lanky, slightly annoying best friend is now an irresistible young woman.

Set over the course of decades--from Alice and Sadie's early friendship days and Celine's decision to leave her husband to the radical movements of 1990s Berkeley and navigating contemporary Hollywood--Alice and Celine's affair will test the limits of their love for Sadie and their own beliefs of power, agency, and feminism. Witty and relatable, sexy and surprising, Sarah Blakley-Cartwright's debut adult novel is a mesmerizing portrait of the inner lives of three very different women.

All American Boys

All American Boys

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$5.50 - $12.99
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A 2016 Coretta Scott King Author Honor book, and recipient of the Walter Dean Myers Award for Outstanding Children's Literature.

In this New York Times bestselling novel, two teens--one black, one white--grapple with the repercussions of a single violent act that leaves their school, their community, and, ultimately, the country bitterly divided by racial tension.

A bag of chips. That's all sixteen-year-old Rashad is looking for at the corner bodega. What he finds instead is a fist-happy cop, Paul Galluzzo, who mistakes Rashad for a shoplifter, mistakes Rashad's pleadings that he's stolen nothing for belligerence, mistakes Rashad's resistance to leave the bodega as resisting arrest, mistakes Rashad's every flinch at every punch the cop throws as further resistance and refusal to STAY STILL as ordered. But how can you stay still when someone is pounding your face into the concrete pavement?

There were witnesses: Quinn Collins--a varsity basketball player and Rashad's classmate who has been raised by Paul since his own father died in Afghanistan--and a video camera. Soon the beating is all over the news and Paul is getting threatened with accusations of prejudice and racial brutality. Quinn refuses to believe that the man who has basically been his savior could possibly be guilty. But then Rashad is absent. And absent again. And again. And the basketball team--half of whom are Rashad's best friends--start to take sides. As does the school. And the town. Simmering tensions threaten to explode as Rashad and Quinn are forced to face decisions and consequences they had never considered before.

Written in tandem by two award-winning authors, this four-starred reviewed tour de force shares the alternating perspectives of Rashad and Quinn as the complications from that single violent moment, the type taken directly from today's headlines, unfold and reverberate to highlight an unwelcome truth.