Fiction

The friend book cover

The friend

Sigrid Nunez

FICTION Nunez Sigrid
Fiction

A moving story of love, friendship, grief, healing, and the magical bond between a woman and her dog. When a woman unexpectedly loses her lifelong best friend and mentor, she finds herself burdened with the unwanted dog he has left behind. Her own battle against grief is intensified by the mute suffering of the dog, a huge Great Dane traumatized by the inexplicable disappearance of its master, and by the threat of eviction: dogs are prohibited in her apartment building. While others worry that grief has made her a victim of magical thinking, the woman refuses to be separated from the dog except for brief periods of time. Isolated from the rest of the world, increasingly obsessed with the dog's care, determined to read its mind and fathom its heart, she comes dangerously close to unraveling. But while troubles abound, rich and surprising rewards lie in store for both of them. Elegiac and searching, The Friend is both a meditation on loss and a celebration of human-canine devotion.

Jason's picture

Winner in the Fiction category -Jason

Love and other words book cover

Love and other words

Christina Lauren

FICTION Lauren, Christina
Fiction

Macy Sorensen works hard as a new pediatrics resident, plans a wedding to an older, financially secure man, and keeps her heart tucked away. When she runs into Elliot Petropoulos, the first and only love of her life, the careful bubble she's constructed begins to dissolve. As teenagers, Elliot and Macy spent lazy summers together in a house outside of San Francisco devouring books, sharing favorite words, and talking through their growing pains and triumphs. As adults, they have become strangers until their chance reunion. Will they overcome the past to revive a faith in the possibility of an all-consuming love?

Meredith's picture

This was such a great book. It made my heart happy. -Meredith

Every note played book cover

Every note played

Lisa Genova

eAUDIO
Fiction

A once accomplished concert pianist, Richard now has ALS. As he becomes increasingly paralyzed and is no longer able to live on his own, Karina becomes his reluctant caretaker. As Richard's muscles, voice, and breath fade, both he and Karina try to reconcile their past before it's too late. This is a masterful exploration of redemption and what it means to find peace inside of forgiveness

Meredith's picture

You MUST listen to Every Note Played by Lisa Genova. I finished the audiobook in one day; I could not stop listening! The impact of hearing how ALS affected Richard's speech was so powerful. I love all of Genova's books, but this may be my new favorite. -Meredith

Dietland book cover

Dietland

Sarai Walker

FICTION Walker Sarai
Fiction

"A fresh and provocative debut novel about a reclusive young woman saving up for weight loss surgery when she gets drawn into a shadowy feminist guerilla group called "Jennifer"--equal parts Bridget Jones's Diary and Fight Club"--

Meredith's picture

I'm late to the party on this one, but that does not take away from the book's impact at all. If anything, I think reading Dietland now, given everything that's happening in our world, makes the book's message that much stronger. -Meredith

I'll be seeing you book cover

I'll be seeing you

Suzanne Hayes

FICTION Hayes Suzanne
Fiction

"I hope this letter gets to you quickly. We are always waiting, aren't we? Perhaps the greatest gift this war has given us is the anticipation…" It's January 1943 when Rita Vincenzo receives her first letter from Glory Whitehall. Glory is an effervescent young mother, impulsive and free as a bird. Rita is a sensible professor's wife with a love of gardening and a generous, old soul. Glory comes from New England society; Rita lives in Iowa, trying to make ends meet. They have nothing in common except one powerful bond: the men they love are fighting in a war a world away from home. Brought together by an unlikely twist of fate, Glory and Rita begin a remarkable correspondence. The friendship forged by their letters allows them to survive the loneliness and uncertainty of waiting on the home front, and gives them the courage to face the battles raging in their very own backyards. Connected across the country by the lifeline of the written word, each woman finds her life profoundly altered by the other's unwavering support. A collaboration of two authors whose own beautiful story mirrors that on the page, I'll Be Seeing You is a deeply moving union of style and charm. Filled with unforgettable characters and grace, it is a timeless celebration of friendship and the strength and solidarity of women.

Meredith's picture

I love epistolary novels and this one about two female pen pals during World War II may be my new favorite. Bonus! One of the characters lives in Iowa City! -Meredith

The air you breathe book cover

The air you breathe

Frances de Pontes Peebles

FICTION Peebles Frances
Fiction, Historical Fiction

An orphan, Dores is working in the kitchen of a sugar plantation in 1930s Brazil when she meets Graça, the spoiled daughter of a wealthy sugar baron. Born to wildly different worlds, the girls quickly bond over shared mischief, and then, on a deeper level, over music. One has a voice like a songbird; the other feels melodies in her soul and composes lyrics to match. Music will become the only way out of the life to which each was born... but only one is destined to be a star. -- adapted from jacket.

Anne M's picture

"When Sofia Salvador finished a show, applause wasn't an obligation, but a release. Without even realizing it, you'd held your breath and tensed your body while she sang, as if you were afraid that even the smallest movement would startle her away. But as soon as she bowed and thanked you, every emotion she'd dredged up inside you was suddenly clamoring to be let loose. How could you not clap, howl, whistle, and call for one more? One more! Please, just one more? And of course, Sofia Salvador always relented." If you are in the mood for something lyrical that provides a great sense of place with a focus on character development and friendship, look no further than Frances de Pontes Peebles' The Air You Breathe. Set in Brazil, this is a story of two women, Dores and Graca, who are from very different backgrounds (yet from the same plantation) who love samba. They run away to Lapa and develop an act, but it quickly becomes apparent that it is Graca (as the stage name Sofia Salvador) that everyone wants to hear. The story is told from Dores' point of view as she struggles with being forced in the shadow of Graca's fame, while trying to find her own voice. I alternated between the print and the audiobook. Rebecca Mozo's reading of the book is fantastic. -Anne M

A dog's life : the autobiography of a stray book cover

A dog's life : the autobiography of a stray

Ann M. Martin

jFICTION Martin, Ann M.
Kids, Fiction, Animals

Squirrel, a stray puppy, tells her life story, from her nurturing mother and brother to making her own way in the world, facing busy highways, changing seasons, and humans both gentle and brutal.

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Added by Karen

The poet's dog book cover

The poet's dog

Patricia MacLachlan

jFICTION Maclachl Patricia
Kids, Fiction

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Added by Karen

Wonder book cover

Wonder

R. J Palacio

jFICTION Palacio, R. J.
Fiction

Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and was not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Harbor me book cover

Harbor me

Jacqueline Woodson

jFICTION Woodson Jacqueli
Fiction

"When six students are chosen to participate in a weekly talk with no adults allowed, they discover that when they're together, it's safe to share the hopes and fears they have to hide from the rest of the world"--

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Added by Karen