Fiction

Dept. of speculation book cover

Dept. of speculation

Jenny Offill

FICTION Offill Jenny
Fiction

"Dept. of Speculation is a portrait of a marriage. It is also a beguiling rumination on the mysteries of intimacy, trust, faith, knowledge, and the condition of universal shipwreck that unites us all. Jenny Offill's heroine, referred to in these pages as simply "the wife," once exchanged love letters with her husband, postmarked Dept. of Speculation, their code name for all the uncertainty that inheres in life and in the strangely fluid confines of a long relationship. As they confront an array of common catastrophes--a colicky baby, bedbugs, a faltering marriage, stalled ambitions--the wife analyzes her predicament, invoking everything from Keats and Kafka to the thought experiments of the Stoics to the lessons of doomed Russian cosmonauts. She muses on the consuming, capacious experience of maternal love, and the near total destruction of the self that ensues from it, as she confronts the friction between domestic life and the seductions and demands of art. With cool precision, in language that shimmers with rage and wit and fierce longing, Jenny Offill has crafted an exquisitely suspenseful love story that has the velocity of a train hurtling through the night at top speed. Exceptionally lean and compact, Dept. of Speculation can be read in a single sitting, but there are enough bracing emotional insights in these pages to fill a much longer novel. "--

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Angle of repose book cover

Angle of repose

Wallace Earle Stegner

FICTION Stegner, Wallace Earle
Fiction, Historical Fiction

Confined to a wheelchair, retired historian Lyman Ward sets out to write his grandparents’ remarkable story, chronicling their days spent carving civilization into the surface of America’s western frontier. But his research reveals even more about his own life than he’s willing to admit. What emerges is an enthralling portrait of four generations in the life of an American family.

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The imperfectionists book cover

The imperfectionists

Tom Rachman

BOOK CLUB KIT Imperfectionists
Fiction

Preoccupied by personal challenges while running a struggling newspaper in Rome, an obituary writer confronts mortality, an eccentric publisher obsesses over his dog, and other staff members uncover the paper's founding by an impulsive millionaire.

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And then there were none book cover

And then there were none

Agatha Christie

MYSTERY Christie, Agatha
Fiction, Mystery

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This is the book that got me into Agatha Christie. It is smart, well-crafted, and surprising. -Anne M

Infinite jest book cover

Infinite jest

David Foster Wallace

FICTION Wallace, David Foster
Fiction

A spoof on our culture featuring a drug-and-alcohol rehabilitation house near Boston. The center becomes a hotbed of revolutionary activity by Quebec separatists in revolt against the Organization of North American Nations which now rules the continent.

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The magnificent Ambersons book cover

The magnificent Ambersons

Booth Tarkington

FICTION Tarkington, Booth
Fiction, Classics

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George Amberson Minafer's family was the most prominent family in late 19th century Indianapolis--but then Indianapolis begins to change and with it, George's family fortunes. If you love descriptions of houses, clothes, and cotillions with a dash of comeuppance and urban renewal, then this book is for you. -Anne M

The year of the runaways book cover

The year of the runaways

Sunjeev Sahota

FICTION Sahota Sunjeev
Fiction

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Short-listed for the 2015 Man Booker Prize, we’ve waited a long time for this novel to cross the pond. The book follows the paths of three Indian men, who are recent immigrants to England, as they try to navigate living in a new country and coming to terms with what they left behind. -Anne M

My brilliant friend book cover

My brilliant friend

Elena Ferrante

FICTION Ferrante Elena
Fiction, Historical Fiction

A modern masterpiece from one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. Ferrante’s inimitable style lends itself perfectly to a meticulous portrait of these two women that is also the story of a nation and a touching meditation on the nature of friendship. The story begins in the 1950s, in a poor but vibrant neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples. Growing up on these tough streets the two girls learn to rely on each other ahead of anyone or anything else. As they grow, as their paths repeatedly diverge and converge, Elena and Lila remain best friends whose respective destinies are reflected and refracted in the other. They are likewise the embodiments of a nation undergoing momentous change. Through the lives of these two women, Ferrante tells the story of a neighborhood, a city, and a country as it is transformed in ways that, in turn, also transform the relationship between her protagonists, the unforgettable Elena and Lila.

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The power : a novel book cover

The power : a novel

Naomi Alderman

SCIENCE FICTION Alderman Naomi
Dystopian, Fiction, Fantasy

A rich Nigerian boy; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. When a vital new force takes root and flourishes, their lives converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls and women now have immense physical power-- they can cause agonizing pain and even death. And everything changes ...

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