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Anne's Staff Picks

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Anne is the visual merchandising manager at Vroman's 

"She is too fond of books, and it has turned her brain." 
-- Louisa May Alcott

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Lovecraft Country: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062292070
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial - February 14th, 2017
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Matt Ruff's 1950s-set novel combines several seemingly disparate elements - H.P. Lovecraft's weird fiction, early sci-fi fandom, the very real problems faced by African-American road trippers, and more - to great effect. Jordan "Get Out" Peele is developing an HBO series based on Lovecraft Country, so you know it has some meat. 


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The Immortalists Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780735215092
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - February 5th, 2019
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How would you choose to spend your life if you knew the date of your death? That's the question faced by four children, all siblings, after they visit a fortuneteller in New York City in the late 1960s. This wonderful novel follows each of them in turn as they live out their days, all in very different ways, with the "knowledge" of when it wll all end. The deeper I got into this book, the more I loved it! A very auspicious debut from Chloe Benjamin. 


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How to Stop Time: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780525522898
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - June 11th, 2019
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Tom Hazard has a rare condition that causes him to age very slowly - he is now over 400 years old but looks about 40. His preternatural youth has piqued the curiosity of the authorities over the centuries, as well as endangered the lives of those he cares about, so he now lives a life on the run, devoid of real human connection. Now, in 21st century London, another teacher at the school where he has taken a job catches his eye...but the secretive Albatross Society, devoted to protecting those like Tom, has different plans for him. Bittersweet and thought-provoking. 


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Everything Matters!: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143117513
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - July 27th, 2010
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Junior Thibodeaux is still in utero when he receives a prophecy that the world will end on a certain date. He must live his entire life with this knowledge, and the question becomes, Does anything really matter when you know it will all - every bit of it - end? Funny and smart and so, so sad: Currie takes a foregone conclusion and spins it into something gratifyingly unexpected. 
 


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Roadfood, 10th Edition: An Eater's Guide to More Than 1,000 of the Best Local Hot Spots and Hidden Gems Across America Cover Image
$23.99
ISBN: 9780451496195
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Clarkson Potter - March 7th, 2017
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The Sterns have the best job EVER: they travel the USA in search of great diners, cafes, truck stops, and the like, and they write about their discoveries. This brand-new edition of more than 800 restaurant reviews from around the country (38 in CA. alone!) is a hash house connoisseur’s dream.


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Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781101970263
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - March 6th, 2018
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Kory Stamper has one of the most enviable jobs I can imagine: she's a lexicographer for Merriam-Webster, helping to choose and define words that appear in America's most popular dictionary. Thrill as she traces the origin of the phrase "dope slap"! Laugh as she makes peace with the word "irregardless"! Stamper is anything but a stuffy academic, and this lighthearted look at her career and the dictionary industry is an absolute pleasure. 


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Booked to Die: A Cliff Janeway Novel (The Cliff Janeway Series #1) Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781501147258
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner - February 7th, 2017
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Back in print at long last! Booked to Die is the first in a series of hard-boiled crime novels featuring cop-turned-rare-bookseller Cliff Janeway. It's a dark, violent mystery full of fascinating details about the rare book trade. In other words, absolutely my cup of tea! 


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In Harm's Way: The Sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780805073669
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: St. Martin's Griffin - May 1st, 2003
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Possibly the greatest real-life adventure ever! It’s the riveting story of the naval cruiser USS Indianapolis, torpedoed after delivering the bomb that would be dropped on Hiroshima. Fans of Jaws may recognize the events described but won’t be prepared for the astonishing details. Terrifying, maddening, and ultimately very moving. A GREAT READ!


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The Intern's Handbook: A John Lago Thriller Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781476733845
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster - February 24th, 2015
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An R-rated summer action/comedy blockbuster in book form! Shane Kuhn knows to keep the story moving in this acidly funny “handbook” for employees of Human Resources, Inc.,a training ground for assassins disguised as lowly corporate interns/ Graphic violence, vulgar language, rampant drug use, and kinky sex all add to the ambience. Delightful fun for a certain sensibility!


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The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780385720960
Availability: Usually arrives at our store within 4-7 days
Published: Anchor - April 19th, 2011
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Aimee Bender’s novel is a sweet-tart saga of a family full of secrets. Nine-year-old Rose Edelstein can taste the feelings of those whose cooking she eats; her mother is having an affair; and her older brother Joseph is dealing with… something. Only Mr. Edelstein seems not to be coping with some mystery – or is he? Simply and beautifully written, a bit reminiscent of Myla Goldberg’s Bee Season, it’s a fine, dreamy read.


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Everything Matters!: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143117513
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - July 27th, 2010
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Junior Thibodeaux is still in utero when he receives a prophecy that the world will end on a certain date. He must live his entire life with this knowledge, and the question becomes, Does anything really matter when you know it will all - every bit of it - end? Funny and smart and so, so sad: Currie takes a foregone conclusion and spins it into something gratifyingly unexpected. 
 


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52 Loaves Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781616200503
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books - October 25th, 2011
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William Alexander once at the perfect loaf of bread – crispy, chewy, sweet and yeasty – and he vows to recreate it. The result is 52 Loaves, a yearlong experiment in baking, in which Alexander bakes the same loaf of bread week after week, tweaking his ingredients, techniques, cooking time, and so on. He grows and grinds his own wheat. He builds and earth oven in his backyard. He travels to France to bake his single loaf in the oven of an ancient monastery. And somewhere along the way he figures out, in the words of Voltaire, that perfect is the enemy of good. Funny, exasperating, and very entertaining!


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The Lonely Polygamist: A Novel Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780393339710
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - May 9th, 2011
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How can you be lonely when you have four wives, twenty-eight children, a devoted dog, and the possibility of a new mistress? Golden Richards, the inept-at-everything title character, manages to feel utterly alone even while surrounded by the chaos that is his life. Told alternately by Golden, Trish, his fourth and youngest wife, and Rusty, his lovably aggravating son, The Lonely Polygamist is funny and heartbreaking, richly written by a superb storyteller.


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God's Middle Finger: Into the Lawless Heart of the Sierra Madre Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781416534402
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Free Press - March 4th, 2008
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British Grant is obsessed with a place that would terrify most Yanks: Mexico's Sierra Madre mountains. Populated with drug lords and drunkards, more than three hours from any law enforcement, the Sierra Madres are also fiercely beautiful and physically challenging. Grant learns firsthand how such beauty and ugliness can co-exist.


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The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780156035217
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - October 8th, 2007
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Absolutely my favorite book in the whole world, and one I never tire of recommending! True love, battles to the death, daring chases, sword fights, wrestling giants, pirates, killer spiders -- this book is non-stop action, and extremely funny to boot. The movie is entertaining, but the novel is far superior. Not to love it is . . . inconceivable.


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The Book of Air and Shadows: A Novel Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9780061456572
Availability: Usually arrives at our store within 4-7 days
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - February 26th, 2008
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A sort of Da Vinci Code for book lovers, this story of a heretofore undiscovered Shakespeare manuscript is exciting, smart, and good-humored; as much as I liked the thrilling hunt, the passages about the antiquarian book trade were my favorites.


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The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon (Vintage Departures) Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781400078455
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - January 26th, 2010
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A superb real-life adventure tale!  In 1925, famed explorer Percy Fawcett disappeared in the Amazon Basin during his quest to locate an ancient, fabled South American city he called "Z."  No one knows what happened to him; rumors abound, but he and his party were never seen again and no remains were ever found.  New Yorker staff writer David Grann learned of Fawcett's last great adventure and set out to see if he could solve the twin mysteries:  What happened to Percy Fawcett, and did the great city of Z ever exist?  The result is thrilling, harrowing & thought-provoking.  Highly recommended!


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The Forgotten Garden: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781416550556
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Washington Square Press - February 16th, 2010
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Sort of The Secret Garden for grown-ups, Australian novelist Morton’s sophomore effort is a romantic (in the broadest sense of the word), quietly dramatic saga of family secrets that spans four generations and two continents. The mystery at the heart of the story is not too hard to figure out, but it’s Morton’s ease with which she moves backward and forward in time to tell her story that really proves captivating.


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The Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781439112908
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Touchstone - October 25th, 2011
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British historian Mortimer has written an engaging history of 14th century England with a twist: it’s presented as a travel guide for modern-day visitors. In it, he offers readers suggestions for what to wear, what to eat, where to stay, how much to expect to pay for things, how the medieval legal system works, and more. The “travel guide” aspect is more than a gimmick: Mortimer constantly reminds readers that what seems alien and occasionally barbaric to our modern sensibilities was everyday life to our forebears. Truly a unique presentation of a fascinating period in history!


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The Star Machine Cover Image
$20.00
ISBN: 9780307388759
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - January 6th, 2009
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Film historian Basinger takes a detailed and wide-ranging look at the fabled Hollywood studio system, focusing on both major stars (Lana Turner, Tyrone Power, Errol Flynn) and actors who were huge in their day but are perhaps less well-known now (Deanna Durbin, Jean Arthur, Wallace Beery). My favorite chapters deal with "malfunctions" -- actors who were given every opportunity to become stars but failed -- and "bonuses" -- actors never expected to make it big but who somehow caught on with the public. Rich, juicy, opinionated, and thoroughly researched, The Star Machine is a bonanza for any film love.


Photo of Anne posing next to bookshelves