Staff Favorites for October 2018

Happy Fall!

Early October is peak-leaf season in Steamboat, and if a book factors into your fall aesthetic, you need to come see what we've been reading lately.  Everything from excellent picture books to Beat writers and more.

Make that cup of apple-cinnamon tea, cozy up, and watch the leaves fall from behind the pages of one of these great reads.

We're so glad we live in a world where there are Octobers.

Books: 
Staff Pick Badge
A Spark of Light: A Novel Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780345544988
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ballantine Books - October 2nd, 2018

Pro-Life, Pro-Choice, Pro-Abortion continue to be a debate in our country, each group operating from unshakeable beliefs. There’s a world of difference between the legal rights of an unborn child and the constitutional rights of a living human being. After interviewing believers from each conviction, author Picoult created a powerful novel about a hostage standoff at a Women’s Clinic in Mississippi. Although those who entered the clinic had to push past protestors who told them they were going to hell, each character was in the clinic for a different reason. It was insightful to “hear” each character express her own thinking, born from life experiences. The story is tense and fast moving,  with the added complication of the hostage negotiator realizing his own teen daughter is one of the hostages in the clinic. The story of the stand-off is written backwards in time, beginning with the end and ending with the beginning. This is a very intriguing story - just another thought-provoking book by Jodi Picoult!

-- Recommended by Virgie


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Louisiana's Way Home Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780763694630
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick - October 2nd, 2018

Louisiana Elefante is a 12 year old orphan living with her Granny. Granny whisks her away in the dead of night to escape their Florida home, explaining to Louisiana that the “day of reckoning has arrived” and together they must face their “date with destiny.” It all has to do with a curse. Just like that Louisiana’s world is turned upside down, when Granny tells her the truth about her background!

You might remember Louisiana Elefante from DiCamillo’s book Raymie Nightingale. She is one of the Rancheros, and this is Louisiana’s story. It will bring out the reader’s deepest feelings; confusion, fear, anger, tears and pure joy. This is the latest DiCamillo book and I found it delightful, simply delightful!

--Recommended by Virgie


Staff Pick Badge
The Dream Daughter: A Novel Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781250087300
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: St. Martin's Press - October 2nd, 2018

The love of a mother can make a hero out of an everyday woman! That’s exactly what became of Carly when the unborn child she was carrying was diagnosed with a fatal heart condition. Fetal surgery was not available in 1970, so she decided to take a leap of faith to save her child. It’s amazing what a mother will do for her child.

I can’t say much more about the plot because it would ruin your experience. I will be honest to say that at first I felt uncomfortable with the direction the story was leading, but believe me when I say it grabbed me and I could not let go! I loved the comparison between the energy of the technical 21st century with the quieter and slower 60’s & 70’s. This story certainly took me back in time!

Recommended by Virgie


The Long Path to Wisdom: Tales from Burma Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781590519646
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Other Press - October 23rd, 2018

Sendker, author of one of my all-time favorite books, The Art of Hearing Heartbeats, first traveled to Burma in 1995, when this isolated, struggling country finally opened its doors to tourism. Untouched by western consumerism, he described Burma as a country like no other he had experienced. Sendker felt as if he was traveling back in time, and this is where, after visiting Burma 24 times, he obtained his background for his books.

The Long Path to Freedom  is a compilation of folktales from Burma, that represent the soul of the country. I thoroughly enjoyed reading these stories which reveal so much about a country, its people, its culture, its values. In addition to the folktales Sendker  includes a Preface and Epilogue, which details Burma’s past, a country so shaped by tradition. Prepare yourself to journey into another world. Enjoy! I certainly did!

** Combine The Art of Hearing Heartbeats and The Long Path to Freedom as a perfect gift for a fellow reader. They complement each other.

Recommended by Virgie


The War Outside Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780316316699
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - September 25th, 2018

Margot is a German American  and has been sent to an internment camp in Texas.

Hurako is Japanese American and has been sent to an internment camp in Texas.

This is the only mixed camp.  Both girls have no understanding of why they are there, other than the country that they call their own has turned on them and their families.  Now they really only have each other, which is not something that they can share with anyone else because the other one is the enemy. This is story of their friendship and how this unlikely bond will keep them through the war.

If you liked this you should read:

The Salt to the Sea

Orphan Monster Spy

Code Name Verity

Recommended by Chris


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My Father's Words Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062687692
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - October 2nd, 2018

When tragedy befalls Fiona And Finn, they volunteer to care for rescue dogs. Through the act of nurturing the dogs they find their own healing. Their motto is, “Be the person your dog thinks you are.” This story just goes to show the reader the wisdom that children carry within. Don’t underestimate that wisdom!

The inspiration for this story comes from the author’s own life experiences. It’s a great read, leaving the reader with thoughts to ponder!

--Recommended by Virgie


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Hotel Fantastic Cover Image
By Thomas Gibault, Thomas Gibault (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781771389921
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Kids Can Press - October 2nd, 2018

This is super fun book!!  You have to take you time or read it multiple times to try and see everything that is happening in the Hotel Fantastic.  It also has a great lesson for sharing!! Take the time to see how many times the king with the gold crown and brown hair show up.

Recommended by Chris


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The Art of Hearing Heartbeats: A Novel Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781590514634
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Other Press - January 31st, 2012

This amazing, yet unconventional love story between Tin Win and MiMi lasts for over 50 years. The story begins when distraught daughter, Julia Win, travels to Burma to find her father (Tin Win) who disappeared 4 years ago, after living with his US family for 35 years. Once in Burma the love story unfolds. Without giving away the plot, let me say that Tin Win’s story makes one think about the essence of true love and the importance of each day of your life.

Step into the shoes of a blind man to “see” how he experiences the world. Travel with a handicapped woman to experience the resiliency and unique ideas of what makes a good life. Follow a couple to observe deep love in action. Then, look at your own relationships, your own life, with a new perspective!

** Combine The Art of Hearing Heartbeats and The Long Path to Freedom as a perfect gift for a fellow reader. They complement each other.

Recommended by Virgie


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There's a Dinosaur on the 13th Floor Cover Image
By Wade Bradford, Kevin Hawkes (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780763686659
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Candlewick - October 2nd, 2018

Have you ever been somewhere where you just wanted to sleep and things keep happening to you so that you can’t?  That is what happens to Mr. Snore. So now you have to see why Mr. Snore winds up on the 13th Floor. I think my favorite floor is the 9th floor.  You will have to read this to find out.

Recommended by Chris


Staff Pick Badge
Don't Hide the Madness: William S. Burroughs in Conversation with Allen Ginsberg Cover Image
By William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg (Various Artists (VMI)), Steven Taylor (Editor)
$26.00
ISBN: 9781941110706
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Three Rooms Press - October 16th, 2018

DON’T HIDE THE MADNESS, William S. Burroughs in Conversation with Allen Ginsberg, is as rule-bending as their literature. Annotated by Ginsberg’s former assistant, Steven Taylor, the collection of records is an impressionistic peak at the Beat generation in its older age. The conversation begins at surface level, a reconnection of sorts, which the reader will feel grateful for as the conversation opens up; their dialogue is just as witty and neurotic as we hope it would be.

Recommended by Jonah


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Virgil Wander Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780802128782
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - October 2nd, 2018

Virgil Wander, by Leif Enger, begins with the regaining of consciousness; and yet, a new birth. Middle-aged Virgil awakens from a car accident to a new world, one that he once found unworthy of such delicate descriptions that Enger provides. His loss of memory impacts his synonyms, and he finds himself searching for descriptors. But his newfound fascination and wonder leads the reader to consider; is it a loss of memory, or is he finally considering the beauty of the world around him?

Recommended by Jonah


Notes from a Public Typewriter Cover Image
By Michael Gustafson (Editor), Oliver Uberti (Editor)
$18.00
ISBN: 9781538729113
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Grand Central Publishing - March 27th, 2018

NOTES from a PUBLIC TYPEWRITER, collected by Michael Gustafson and Oliver Uberti, is an intimate portrait of the common person. The collection is exactly as it sounds; a typewriter set out in the midst of a bookstore, accessible to anyone willing to open up to it. The anonymous nature of the project instills a courage reminiscent of Beat poetry and memoirs. Raw, untamed, and empathic.

Recommended by Jonah


Staff Pick Badge
Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780316551243
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown and Company - August 7th, 2018

Anyone who keeps an eye on the news is aware of the opioid epidemic occurring all over the nation. People who otherwise would be thriving in life are caught in addictions that cripple them. Beth Macy excellently describes what it is like for these “dopesick” individuals who struggle for years at a time to only achieve months of sobriety. She talks about the hard facts of where the drug crisis originated, with the pharmaceutical industry and the doctors whom we are supposed to place our trust into. This eye opening expose of our times will have you in tears with the realization of how sinister those trying to “help” us can truly be. However, Beth Macy doesn’t leave you hopeless. In her talk at the library on the book, she said her friend told her to look at those who are helping fix this to keep it from bringing her into despair. So, at the end we are able to see how much love and care is going into the treatment of those in the most need. She also covers how to help treat addicts with love and to build community around them instead of ostracizing them. This is an important read for the families of addicts or for anyone in the medical field to gain awareness and tools to assist in healing this crisis.

Recommended by Brett

 

Also reviewed by Chris

Dopesick by Beth Macy is a very poignant book about drug overdose on opioids.  This is something that is starting to affect everyone. While it is not as prevalent in Routt county as it is others, this still goes on here.  Macy covers the whole story of where and why it started to some thoughts on how to change this tide. This is one of those books that everyone should read.


Mac Undercover (Mac B., Kid Spy #1) Cover Image
By Mac Barnett, Mike Lowery (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9781338143591
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Orchard Books - September 11th, 2018

Mac B: Kid Spy is the absolutely, positively, 100% true story of the author’s very own time as a kid spy for HRM the Queen of England.  Tasking with tracking down the Queen’s prized spoon, Mac, and Freddie the corgi, venture from London to Paris and all the way to Moscow to track down this valuable piece of tableware (and Mac’s missing Gameboy, and the Mona Lisa, but those aren’t important,) where Mac learns that saving the day requires bravery, intelligence, and no small amount of  quick thinking! Mixed with amazing and adorable illustrations of all the cool gear a kid spy might need, and corgi pictures of course, this is the perfect younger middle grade book for boys and girls! A great new read for fans of The Dork Diaries, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and Timmy Failure!

Recommended by Jenna


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Pearl Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780316465670
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - October 9th, 2018

Pearl is a lovely story about a little mermaid who is looking for her place.  Some mermaids tend to the great beasts of the sea, some guard the beautiful coral reefs, and some roll powerful waves onto the beaches, so Pearl is sad and disappointed when her mother tasks her with watching over a single grain of sand.  When Pearl sets her mind to her task though, she finds that a little bit of love can go a very long way, and that even the smallest grain of sand (or mermaid) can become something great! With beautiful colored pencil drawings done by the author, and a heartwarming story to boot, this is everything a picture book should be.  Perfect for fans of On the Night You Were Born author Nancy Tillman, or the illustrated trilogy by Aaron Becker, Journey, Quest, Return.

Recommended by Jenna


Staff Pick Badge
Giraffe Problems Cover Image
By Jory John, Lane Smith (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781524772031
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - September 25th, 2018

This is from the creators of Penguin Problems.  Which is also a great.

Graffe Problems is a wonderful book about learning to except yourself and it’s good to be different.  Different people can do different things to help others. This book makes you feel good at the end!!

Recommended by Chris


The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma Cover Image
$19.00
ISBN: 9780143127741
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - September 8th, 2015

Trauma is something which is extremely common in humans. In fact, Dr. Bessel van der Kolk found in his time treating patients that one in four children goes through some sort of major trauma in their early years. The effects of trauma can be drastic on people trying to live normal lives. From depression to bouts of rage, people who live with trauma struggle with surviving day to day life. Soldiers who come home from war who were once active members of society find it impossible to even venture out of the house. Children who grew up sexually abused by their own caretakers are lost in life because they cannot trust those closest to them. Dr.  Bessel van der Kolk found that these traumas which are experienced actually begin to amass in the part of the body where the trauma occurs. As a result, the body gets stuck in the past. However, this book gives you the tools needed to take the energy stuck in your past back to have it in your present. These tools include, meditations, breathing exercises, and methods for getting reacquainted into a community. This is a must read for anyone looking to get back on their feet in life.

Recommended by Brett


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The Real Lolita: The Kidnapping of Sally Horner and the Novel That Scandalized the World Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780062661920
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ecco - September 11th, 2018

The name Lolita is often incorrectly associated with sexual precociousness, however, pop culture has it all wrong. Weinman delves deep into the connection between the kidnapping of Sally Horner and Vladimir Nabokov’s book Lolita. Despite years of denial, Nabokov left many clues suggesting that his book had at least been somewhat inspired by the true crime.

 

Sally Horner was a child controlled by a predator through manipulation and fear; Sally was not some seductress trying to lure older men into her trap. She lived a short, tragic life, and was never able to regain a sense of normalcy before she died. Weinman extensively researched the case from start to finish, interviewing anyone she could contact. It is almost as if Weinman gave Sally a little bit of justice by humanizing her through all the relationships she had with others. If Nabokov’s book intrigued you, then this one will too.

Recommended by Kim T.


Space Unicorn Blues (The Reason #1) Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9780857667816
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Angry Robot - July 3rd, 2018

If you like this you will like this

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Snow Crash

 

On first glance Space Unicorn Blues is a whimsical and fairy tale story about a magical unicorn; however, don't be fooled.  This book is the exact opposite. This is disney fairy tales to the Grimm Brothers set in space and with fantastical characters.  Unicorns, Fairies, and other worldly figures keep popping up and causing problems for our band of heroes. The book feels as if I was living in their the world, as many of the issues faced by the main characters is in our world and very real and the reactions they give are genuine and heartfelt.  The main characters are meant to feel and hate and be alive in this story and the author does just that while keeping it action packed and funny.

Recommended by Kerric


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24 Hours in Nowhere Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781454929246
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sterling Children's Books - September 4th, 2018

Gus is a 13 year old living in Nowhere, Arizona, with big dreams of escaping his small town existence and making something of himself in the bigger world.  Unfortunately for now that means getting through the next day with Bo Taylor making Gus’ life miserable. During one particularly terrible bullying session, Gus is saved by Rossi Scott, but at the price of Rossi’s prized dirt bike, and to make matters worse, her biggest race of the year is the next day.  Gus promises to buy her bike back by sneaking into a goldmine and finding a gold nugget. Not willing to let him go alone, Gus is joined by Rossi herself, his friend Jessie, and Bo’s henchman Mathew. The next 24 hours may lead to riches or they may lead to ruin. Either way it’s going to be an adventure.  Perfect for fans of Holes, Hatchet, and Spy School!

Recommended by Jenna