Staff Picks

Recent Picks

Concrete Rose book cover
Concrete Rose book cover

Concrete Rose


Young Adult

Maverick feels strongly about family ties, making choices he feels necessary to help support his mom while his King father serves time, and leave him literally holding his son in a doctor's waiting room after he gets paternity test results back and his babymomma ghosts. Now the child he's raising is impacting the lives of his family and his girlfriend, and the gang life he led to support them all financially could leave them all bearing his responsibilities since it endangers his life. It looks like he may have been offered a chance to go straight, but leaving the King Lords won't be easy, and a "real" job has high demand for low return.

Victoria's picture

Incredible prequel to Angie Thomas' The Hate U Give. Learning about who Maverick and Lisa are as teenagers as well as looking at exploring a different generation in Garden Heights felt like I gained so much perspective into Starr's life and upbringing. In a recent interview I watched with Thomas, she said the novels are stand-alone in a way and could be read in any order so if you missed The Hate U Give, check it out while you wait! -Victoria

Nana in the City book cover
Nana in the City book cover

Nana in the City

Lauren Castillo


A young boy is frightened by how busy and noisy the city is when he goes there to visit his Nana, but she makes him a fancy red cape that keeps him from being scared as she shows him how wonderful a place it is.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Grandma's Purse book cover
Grandma's Purse book cover

Grandma's Purse

Vanessa Brantley-Newton


When Grandma Mimi comes to visit, her granddaughter cannot wait to see what treasures she has hidden in her purse.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Drawn Together book cover
Drawn Together book cover

Drawn Together

Minh Le


A boy and his grandfather cross a language and cultural barrier using their shared love of art, storytelling, and fantasy.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

My Grandparents Love Me book cover
My Grandparents Love Me book cover

My Grandparents Love Me

Claire Freedman


Picture Books

A visit to Gran and Grandpa's house is always a special and fun time for a child.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Encyclopedia of Grannies book cover
Encyclopedia of Grannies book cover

Encyclopedia of Grannies

Eric Veille


Picture Books

An offbeat, humorous book that answers all your questions about grandmas-especially the ones you never thought to ask: Why do grannies always tell us to speak up? Why do they have creases on their faces? Are grannies flexible? How do you cheer up a sad granny? Exactly how old are grannies anyway?

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

The truth about grandparents book cover
The truth about grandparents book cover

The truth about grandparents

Elina Ellis


Picture Books

A child relates strange things that might be heard about grandparents but concludes that they are amazing.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

A Stopwatch from Grampa book cover
A Stopwatch from Grampa book cover

A Stopwatch from Grampa

Loretta Garbutt


Picture Books

A sensitive portrayal of loss and grief, told through a grandchild's inheritance of a stopwatch that belonged to Grampa. In this touching debut picture book about the loss of a beloved grandfather, author Loretta Garbutt explores the stages of grief with a delicate hand. The story opens with our narrator inheriting a stopwatch. For the grandchild, the object carries many cherished memories. "Grampa used to time everything. He timed me when I ran to the end of our street and back. Best speed, 24 seconds." As the year passes, and the seasons change, our narrator slowly moves through the five stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance). At first, the stopwatch is a painful reminder of Grampa. But in time, our character finds a special way to honor Grampa and carry forward his traditions.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Our Favorite Day book cover
Our Favorite Day book cover

Our Favorite Day

Joowon Oh


Follows Papa and his granddaughter as they spend another Thursday together.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Finding Grandma's Memories book cover
Finding Grandma's Memories book cover

Finding Grandma's Memories

Jiyeon Pak


Picture Books

A little girl helps her grandma with her memory.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Where Are You From book cover
Where Are You From book cover

Where Are You From

Yamile Saied Mendez


Picture Books

"When a young girl is asked where she's from--where she's really from--she's no longer as she was. She decides to turn to her dear abuelo for some help with this ever-persistent question. But he doesn't quite give her the answer she expects."

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Hey Grandude! book cover
Hey Grandude! book cover

Hey Grandude!

Paul McCartney


Picture Books

Grandude brightens a dreary weekend for his visiting grandchildren, Lucy, Tom, Em, and Bob, by using his magic compass and postcards to take them on adventures around the world.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

MY Hippie Grandmother book cover
MY Hippie Grandmother book cover

MY Hippie Grandmother

Reeve Lindbergh


Picture Books

A young girl describes all the things she likes about her grandmother, including the purple bus she drives, growing vegetables, picketing City Hall, and playing the banjo.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Nana Akua goes to school  book cover
Nana Akua goes to school  book cover

Nana Akua goes to school

Tricia Elam Walker


Picture Books

Zura is worried about how her classmates will react to her Ghanaian Nana's tattoos on Grandparents Day, but Nana finds a way to show how special and meaningful they are.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Little Owl's bedtime book cover
Little Owl's bedtime book cover

Little Owl's bedtime

Debi Gliori

jE Gliori

Little Owl cannot sleep--his pillow is lumpy, his quilt too hot, and he hears strange noises--until Mommy Owl says that tomorrow, and his grandparents' visit, will come sooner if he sleeps.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

A day at the museum book cover
A day at the museum book cover

A day at the museum

Christine A. Platt

jREADER Platt Christin
Early Readers

"It's a surprise visit! Ana & Andrew are excited when Grandma comes to visit. While she is there, the family tours the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture and learns about important African American achievements"--Page [4] of cover.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

I'll be the water : a story of a grandparent's love book cover
I'll be the water : a story of a grandparent's love book cover

I'll be the water : a story of a grandparent's love

Alec Aspinwall

jE Aspinwal
Picture Books

Joshua and his grandfather love being together. More than anything else they love fishing. But Grandpa gets sick and is in the hospital a long time. When he gets out, he and Joshua share one more fishing adventure, and Grandpa promises Joshua that he will always be near. "Think of it this way," Grandpa says. "Today, you and I are like two fish swimming together in this lake. When I die, things will be different. I won't be a fish anymore, but I'll become something even better. My love will be like the water in the lake. You might think I'm not with you, but we'll be closer than ever because you'll be surrounded by my love."

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Someday we will : a book for grandparents and grandchildren book cover
Someday we will : a book for grandparents and grandchildren book cover

Someday we will : a book for grandparents and grandchildren

Pam Webb

jE Webb

Grandparents and children anticipate their next visit by imagining all of the wonderful things they will do together, such as playing games, reading library books, and riding bicycles.

Karen's picture

Added by Karen

Coquí in the city book cover
Coquí in the city book cover

Coquí in the city

Nomar Perez


A heartfelt picture book based on the author-illustrator's own experiences, about a boy who moves to the U.S. mainland from Puerto Rico and realizes that New York City might have more in common with San Juan than he initially thought.

Karen's picture

The cover art is so colorful! I'm looking forward to reading this one. Book is on order -Karen

The Patron Saints of Nothing book cover
The Patron Saints of Nothing book cover

The Patron Saints of Nothing


Read Woke, Young Adult

When seventeen-year-old Jay Reguero learns his Filipino cousin and former best friend, Jun, was murdered as part of President Duterte's war on drugs, he flies to the Philippines to learn more.

Victoria's picture

This is the story of Jay- a Filipino-American straddling two countries; the US where he's spent most of his life and the Philippines, where his parents chose to leave shortly after he was born in pursuit of a better life. Author Randy Ribay excels in exploring identity, what it means to look a certain way and be interpreted in another. Another theme I appreciated was no matter how much you feel a part of the country you left behind, you will often be seen as an outsider once you leave making you question where your home really is. This book is an excellent read for young adults and adults. It humanizes victims of the war on drugs in the Philippines and allows the reader to explore the conflict from alternative perspectives. This is an exceptional read and provides many opportunities for discussion around immigration, politics, family tradition and connections. -Victoria

King and the Dragonflies book cover
King and the Dragonflies book cover

King and the Dragonflies


Black History, Diverse Characters

"In a small but turbulent Louisiana town, one boy's grief takes him beyond the bayous of his backyard, to learn that there is no right way to be yourself"-- Provided by publisher.

Victoria's picture

Kacen Callendar's 2021 Coretta Scott King Author Honor is a fantastic read. This book will have you hooked from the beginning; highly descriptive locations, complex and relatable characters and important themes that will evoke discussion with young readers. I would recommended this for ages 10 and up. -Victoria

The midnight library : A Novel book cover
The midnight library : A Novel book cover

The midnight library : A Novel

Matt Haig

eAUDIO
Fiction, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Literary Fiction

"'Between life and death there is a library, and within that library, the shelves go on forever. Every book provides a chance to try another life you could have lived. To see how things would be if you had made other choices... Would you have done anything different, if you had the chance to undo your regrets?' A dazzling novel about all the choices that go into a life well lived, from the internationally bestselling author of Reasons to Stay Alive and How To Stop Time. Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. While we all wonder how our lives might have been, what if you had the chance to go to the library and see for yourself? Would any of these other lives truly be better? In The Midnight Library, Matt Haig's enchanting new novel, Nora Seed finds herself faced with this decision. Faced with the possibility of changing her life for a new one, following a different career, undoing old breakups, realizing her dreams of becoming a glaciologist; she must search within herself as she travels through the Midnight Library to decide what is truly fulfilling in life, and what makes it worth living in the first place"-- Provided by publisher.

Anne M's picture

Before I begin, The Midnight Library contains themes of depression and a description of a suicide. Nora Seed believes she has made some very wrong choices in her life and none of it can be rectified. In trying to end her life, Nora finds herself in a library--a library of her own somewhere between life and death. All the books on the shelf contain different versions of her life if she had made different choices along the way, both small and large. Nora Seed gets to explore these lives from pursuing Olympic swimming to fronting a rock band with the opportunity to make a permanent swap. But Nora begins to understand that there are many things about her original life that were significant and meaningful. Carey Mulligan narrates the audio and she is wonderful. -Anne M

How to be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals book cover
How to be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals book cover

How to be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals


Memoir, Animals, Nature

A naturalist and adventurer discusses the personalities and quirks of thirteen animals who have profoundly affected her, exploring themes of learning to become empathetic, creating families, coping with loss, and the otherness and sameness of people and animals.

Victoria's picture

A delightful book for anyone who admires the sentient intellect and all the life lessons animals outside of own species can share with us-if we're paying attention. -Victoria

Sing, unburied, sing : a novel book cover
Sing, unburied, sing : a novel book cover

Sing, unburied, sing : a novel

Jesmyn Ward

FICTION Ward Jesmyn
Fiction, Diverse Characters, Read Woke

"A searing and profound Southern odyssey through Mississippi's past and present"--

Jason's picture

Ward's story grapples with the trauma of racism, gun violence, and incarceration via a multi-generational household. Her story is set in rural southern Mississippi yet these themes are familiar to many in America. Chapters are told from alternating character's point of view including those of a ghost. -Jason

One day : the extraordinary story of an ordinary 24 hours in America book cover
One day : the extraordinary story of an ordinary 24 hours in America book cover

One day : the extraordinary story of an ordinary 24 hours in America

Gene Weingarten

973 /Weingarten
Nonfiction, History

"The Extraordinary Story of an Ordinary 24 Hours in America"--

Anne M's picture

Washington Post humor columnist Gene Weingarten picked a single day from the last 40 years to see if there was anything worth noting about an ordinary day in America. At first, he thought he was doomed. The day chosen at random was December 28, 1986, a Sunday that landed right in the middle of two major holidays. This time of year is always a slow news time. But Weingarten found some truly extraordinary stories from around the country, including Cedar Rapids. This book is both funny and heartbreaking, containing stories of individual triumphs as well as tragedies. It may be a snapshot of America in the late 1980's, but many of the themes hold for today. -Anne M

Light of the Jedi book cover
Light of the Jedi book cover

Light of the Jedi

Charles Soule

SCIENCE FICTION Star Wars
Science Fiction

"The lead book in an exciting cross-publishing event, exploring a new era of Star Wars storytelling: the never-before-seen in any medium High Republic"--

Brian's picture

Light of the Jedi marks the beginning of a brand new era in Star Wars--The High Republic. It takes places 200 years before Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, and introduces us to a huge new cast of characters. We meet many of them at a breakneck pace and get to see the Jedi in their prime. This is an exciting novel that I think is a perfect introduction to Star Wars books. -Brian

Solutions and other problems book cover
Solutions and other problems book cover

Solutions and other problems

Allie Brosh

817.6 /Brosh
Memoir, Graphic Novels

Solutions and Other Problems includes humorous stories from Allie Brosh's childhood; the adventures of her very bad animals; merciless dissection of her own character flaws; incisive essays on grief, loneliness, and powerlessness; as well as reflections on the absurdity of modern life.

Frannie's picture

The latest from graphic memoirist Allie Brosh builds on her previous book Hyberbole and a Half in the best way possible. Same great childlike scrawl done in MS Paint, new deeper truths. At times I sat on my couch giggling and kicking my legs from laughter trying not to disturb other people in my home, and at others I was paralyzed with some of the darker turns. I won't divulge details, but urge you to challenge yourself not to laugh and then also look deeper. This was also 1 of 10 2021 Alex Award winners, a prize for books written for adults that have special appeal to young adults. -Frannie

Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder book cover
Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder book cover

Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder

Richard Louv


Nature, Science

As children’s connections to nature diminish and the social, psychological, and spiritual implications become apparent, new research shows that nature can offer powerful therapy for such maladies as depression, obesity, and attention deficit disorder. Environment-based education dramatically improves standardized test scores and grade-point averages and develops skills in problem solving, critical thinking, and decision making. Anecdotal evidence strongly suggests that childhood experiences in nature stimulate creativity. In Last Child in the Woods, Louv talks with parents, children, teachers, scientists, religious leaders, child-development researchers, and environmentalists who recognize the threat and offer solutions. Louv shows us an alternative future, one in which parents help their kids experience the natural world more deeply—and find the joy of family connectedness in the process.

Mari's picture

This book presents an interesting examination of why children no longer play outside, the health benefits of interacting with nature and ways to encourage kids and communities to reconnect with and the outdoor world. All of this resonated deeply with me, and I felt grateful for the parts of my childhood spent running around in the woods, in the creek, through the farmlands, on bikes, all unsupervised with the neighborhood kids. Now when I go back to visit my dad at my childhood home, the forest is gone and the rural countryside is developed with new houses, streets, businesses, schools, and even hotels and a sports plex. think it's hard to dispute the author's message of how formative these experiences are to the development of children in becoming productive members of society and personally made me want to be engaged more in nature as adult. It also left me feeling a little sad knowing that most children today and in the future, as quoted by a child in the book, "like to play indoors better 'cause that's where all the electrical outlets are." -Mari

The great influenza : the epic story of the deadliest plague in history book cover
The great influenza : the epic story of the deadliest plague in history book cover

The great influenza : the epic story of the deadliest plague in history

John M. Barry

614.518 /Barry
Science

At the height of WWI, history’s most lethal influenza virus erupted in an army camp in Kansas, moved east with American troops, then exploded, killing as many as 100 million people worldwide. It killed more people in twenty-four months than AIDS killed in twenty-four years, more in a year than the Black Death killed in a century. But this was not the Middle Ages, and 1918 marked the first collision of science and epidemic disease. Magisterial in its breadth of perspective and depth of research and now revised to reflect the growing danger of the avian flu, The Great Influenza is ultimately a tale of triumph amid tragedy, which provides us with a precise and sobering model as we confront the epidemics looming on our own horizon. John M. Barry has written a new afterword for this edition that brings us up to speed on the terrible threat of the avian flu and suggest ways in which we might head off another flu pandemic.

Mari's picture

I found this book to be a generally fascinating account of medical research history. It provides a history of American medicine, especially the development of modern day medical schools, an explanation of viruses, histories of other epidemics. Of course my interest was sparked to read this in order to draw a comparison between this pandemic a century ago and the current one, but this book has a lot more, and provides a great deal of perspective. Lasting from February 1918 to April 1920, the Spanish-flu infected 500 million people–about a third of the world's population at the time. The death toll is estimated between 17 million and 50 million, some even claim 100 million, making it one of the deadliest pandemics in human history. I think this would be a great read for any individuals in leadership roles who have the power to control the outcome of this pandemic, and of course those are simply curious. -Mari

We are all the same in the dark : a novel book cover
We are all the same in the dark : a novel book cover

We are all the same in the dark : a novel


Thriller, Suspense

A seasoned cop's interest in a mysterious one-eyed girl takes her back to the worst night of her life in this fast-paced thriller from the internationally bestselling author of Black-Eyed Susans. They call her Angel. Found on the side of a remote highway, half-dead and blowing wishes in a field of dandelions, the young girl refuses to speak. No one knows who she is or where she came from--only that she fell from the sky. It's Wyatt who finds her and takes her home to nurse her back to health, setting into motion the town's rumor mill. A pariah, Wyatt still believes he can still communicate with his long-gone sister, and he might be the only one left who knows the truth about the night of her disappearance. The night that Wyatt's cousin, Odette Tucker, also lost something important: her leg. Now a cop, uninhibited by her prosthetic, Odette must reenter Wyatt's ghost-ridden world. In Angel's case and her beautiful green eye, she sees her once-broken self and all the things she was told she'd never do. As she begins to coax Angel into speaking and slowly pieces together her identity, Odette is ignited to reopen the cold case that has haunted her. Soon she is ensnared in a lethal game of cat and mouse with someone who doesn't want that night revisited. The night that inspired her to become a cop, the night her friend disappeared and they both exploded into a small Texas town's dark, violent mythology.

Mari's picture

A gritty, violent thriller set in Texas with a new mystery sparked by an old one. Odette Tucker follows in her cop father's footsteps after a decade old disappearance of a small town's homecoming queen and sweetheart, Trumanell on a night that changes Odette's life forever. Trumanell's brother Wyatt, the town's outcast, picks up a young girl with a missing eye, and Odette rushes to action and brings the young girl, whom Wyatt dubs Angel, to keep her safe. I quickly devoured this gut-wrenching and suspenseful story. -Mari

Caste : the origins of our discontents book cover
Caste : the origins of our discontents book cover

Caste : the origins of our discontents

Isabel Wilkerson

305.5122 /Wilkerson

The hierarchy of caste is not about feelings or morality. It is about power-- which groups have it and which do not. Wilkerson explores how America today and throughout its history has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human rankings. Linking the caste systems of America, India, and Nazi Germany, Wilkerson explores eight pillars that underlie caste systems across civilizations, including divine will, bloodlines, stigma, and more. She discusses why the cruel logic of caste requires that there be a bottom rung for those in the middle to measure themselves against. Finally, she points forward to ways America can move beyond the artificial and destructive separations of human divisions, toward hope in our common humanity. -- adapted from jacket

Victoria's picture

This book has helped me to process much of what has happened in the US recently. Inequity goes beyond racism and classism. Rather, Wilkerson contends it's rooted in caste; an historically manufactured human pecking order set on ranking humanity that has had lasting impacts not only on our institutions but also in framing our daily individual biases and worldviews. Though originally designed to produce well-oiled economic systems and societies (at the behest of those who were subjugated,) today caste still effectively divides; foreshadowing how others see us, how we see them and our perceived place in economies. Insightful, impactful and I could not put this down until I had read every last word! A fantastic piece of Nonfiction! -Victoria

The sky atlas : the greatest maps, myths and discoveries of the universe book cover
The sky atlas : the greatest maps, myths and discoveries of the universe book cover

The sky atlas : the greatest maps, myths and discoveries of the universe

Edward Brooke-Hitching

520.9 /Brooke-Hitching
Nonfiction, Art / Art History, Science

"THE SKY ATLAS assembles some of the most beautiful maps and charts ever created to understand the skies above us. This richly illustrated treasury showcases the finest examples of celestial cartography-a glorious art often overlooked by modern map books-as well as medieval manuscripts, masterpiece paintings, ancient star catalogues, antique instruments, and other curiosities. This is the sky as it has never been presented before: the realm of stars and planets, but also of gods, devils, weather wizards, flying sailors, ancient aliens, mythological animals, and rampaging spirits. Here are the crystal cosmos of the ancient Greeks; the medieval sea, sailed by ships above the clouds; Tibetan sky burials; secret messages hidden in starlight, and much more. With thrilling stories and gorgeous artwork, this remarkable atlas explores our fascination with the sky across time and cultures to form an extraordinary chronicle of cosmic imagination and discovery"-- Provided by publisher.

Melody's picture

Excited to say I'm first in line for this book! I happened upon this book while cataloging and it's just gorgeous. It's full of illustrations of historic interpretations of our sky and its relationship to earth. I can't wait to take it home and flip through it on my downtime. -Melody

The office : the untold story of the greatest sitcom of the 2000s book cover
The office : the untold story of the greatest sitcom of the 2000s book cover

The office : the untold story of the greatest sitcom of the 2000s

Andy Greene

791.4572 /Office
Art / Art History

"The untold stories behind The Office, one of the most iconic television shows of the twenty-first century, told by its creators, writers, and actors"--

Amanda's picture

I loved the show, I loved the characters, and I could feel the love and devotion everyone working on the show had for The Office as I read this book. I've watched the episodes with the commentaries and am an avid listener of the Office Ladies Podcast, and even with all that random trivia in my head, I learned so many fun facts about the show through this book. So many gems! Well worth reading for any fan of the show. You're going to fall in love with the episodes and actors (in particular Steve Carell!!) and gain a whole new appreciation for the writers and crew. Highly recommended! -Amanda

Sisters in hate : American women on the front lines of white nationalism book cover
Sisters in hate : American women on the front lines of white nationalism book cover

Sisters in hate : American women on the front lines of white nationalism

Seyward Darby

322.42 /Darby
Political

"After the election of Donald J. Trump, journalist Seyward Darby went looking for the women of the so-called "alt-right" -- really just white nationalism with a new label. The mainstream media depicted the alt-right as a bastion of angry white men, but was it? As women headlined resistance to the Trump administration's bigotry and sexism, most notably at the Women's Marches, Darby wanted to know why others were joining a movement espousing racism and anti-feminism. Who were these women, and what did their activism reveal about America's past, present, and future? Darby researched dozens of women across the country before settling on three -- Corinna Olsen, Ayla Stewart, and Lana Lokteff. Each was born in 1979, and became a white nationalist in the post-9/11 era. Their respective stories of radicalization upend much of what we assume about women, politics, and political extremism. Corinna, a professional embalmer who was once a body builder, found community in white nationalism before it was the alt-right, while she was grieving the death of her brother and the end of her marriage. For Corinna, hate was more than just personal animus -- it could also bring people together. Eventually, she decided to leave the movement and served as an informant for the FBI. Ayla, a devoutly Christian mother of six, underwent a personal transformation from self-professed feminist to far-right online personality. Her identification with the burgeoning "tradwife" movement reveals how white nationalism traffics in society's preferred, retrograde ways of seeing women. Lana, who runs a right-wing media company with her husband, enjoys greater fame and notoriety than many of her sisters in hate. Her work disseminating and monetizing far-right dogma is a testament to the power of disinformation. With acute psychological insight and eye-opening reporting, Darby steps inside the contemporary hate movement and draws connections to precursors like the Ku Klux Klan. Far more than mere helpmeets, women like Corinna, Ayla, and Lana have been sustaining features of white nationalism. Sisters in Hate shows how the work women do to normalize and propagate racist extremism has consequences well beyond the hate movement."--Amazon.

Amanda's picture

This book shows how easily a person can be seduced by racism and white nationalism, how innocuous it can seem, and how deep a person can get into it. One of the main women featured is no longer a participant in the culture, and has found a different way to belong, and I really wish the best for her. This was a fascinating and engaging read, and I highly recommend it. -Amanda

Sometimes you have to lie : the life and times of Louise Fitzhugh, renegade author of Harriet the spy book cover
Sometimes you have to lie : the life and times of Louise Fitzhugh, renegade author of Harriet the spy book cover

Sometimes you have to lie : the life and times of Louise Fitzhugh, renegade author of Harriet the spy

Leslie Brody

BIOGRAPHY Fitzhugh, Louise
Biographies

"The protagonist and anti-heroine of Louise Fitzhugh's masterpiece Harriet the Spy, first published first in 1964, continues to mesmerize generation after generation of readers. Harriet is an erratic, unsentimental, and endearing prototype--someone very like the woman who dreamed her up, author and artist Louise Fitzhugh. Born in 1928, Fitzhugh was raised in a wealthy home in segregated Memphis, and she escaped her cloistered world and made a beeline for New York as soon as she could. Her expanded milieu stretched from the lesbian bars of Greenwich Village to the dance clubs of Harlem, on to the resurgent artist studios of post-war New York, France, and Italy. Her circle of friends included artists like Maurice Sendak and playwrights like Lorraine Hansberry. In the 1960s, Fitzhugh wrote Harriet the Spy, and in doing so she introduced "new realism" into children's books-she launched a genre of children's books that allowed characters to experience authentic feelings and acknowledged topics that were formerly considered taboo. Fitzhugh's books are full of resistance: to liars, to conformity, to authority, and even (radically, for a children's author) to make-believe. As a commercial children's author and lesbian, Fitzhugh often had to disguise the nature of her most intimate relationships. She lived her life as a dissenter--a friend to underdogs, outsiders, and artists--and her masterpiece remains long after her death to influence and provoke new generations of readers. Harriet is massively influential among girls and women in contemporary culture; she is the missing link between Jo March and Scout Finch, and it's not surprising that writers have thought of her as a kind of patron saint for misfit writers and unfeminine girls. This lively, rich biography brings Harriet's creator into the frame, shedding new light on an extraordinary author and her marvelous creation"--

Amanda's picture

An absolutely delightful and engaging biography on the woman behind one of my favorite books, Harriet the Spy. I knew absolutely nothing about Louise Fitzhugh prior to reading this, and found her a truly wonderful artist who knew so many people and had a genuine talent that Harriet the Spy was able to exemplify... but she had so much more to offer. I highly recommend this to fans of Harriet, anyone who appreciates LGBTQ+ history, and fans of midcentury literature in general. -Amanda

The only good Indians : a novel book cover
The only good Indians : a novel book cover

The only good Indians : a novel

Stephen Graham Jones

eAUDIO
Horror, Read Woke

"Peter Straub's Ghost Story meets Liane Moriarty's Big Little Lies in this American Indian horror story of revenge on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. Four American Indian men from the Blackfeet Nation, who were childhood friends, find themselves in a desperate struggle for their lives, against an entity that wants to exact revenge upon them for what they did during an elk hunt ten years earlier by killing them, their families, and friends"--

Casey's picture

The Only Good Indians is a masterpiece, and not for the faint of heart. If you're up for it, I recommend going into this title cold, cover material only, and no spoilers here! However, I will say that Shaun Taylor-Corbett's narration lends the perfect tone to Stephen Graham Jones's hauntingly beautiful prose. I'm adding it to my 2021 rereads list for the Fall, as I'm still thinking about it and have yet to pick up another novel after finishing weeks ago. -Casey

Lists

Staff Profiles

Amanda's picture

Amanda

Interests: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, Romance, Biographies, History, Memoir, Music, Religion, Self Help
Angie's picture

Angie

Interests: Kids, Fiction, Early Readers, Picture Books, Board Books, Early Chapter Books, Graphic Novels, Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Chick Lit, True Crime, Cookbooks
Anne M's picture

Anne M

Interests: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Classics, Mystery, Nonfiction, History, Cookbooks, Crafts, Biographies, Gardening
Anne W's picture

Anne W

Interests: Fiction, Kids, Adventure, Dystopian, Historical Fiction, Early Chapter Books, Picture Books, Memoir, Self Help
Becky's picture

Becky

Interests: Fiction, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery, Classics, Nature, Kids
Beth's picture

Beth

Interests: Fiction, Mystery, Romance, Suspense, Crafts, Gardening, Young Adult
Bond's picture

Bond

Interests: Suspense, Thriller, Humor, True Crime, Picture Books
Brent's picture

Brent

Interests: Humor, Mystery, Science, Nature, Science Fiction
Brian's picture

Brian

Interests: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Mystery, LGBTQ+, Graphic Novels, Religion, Humor, Young Adult, Science, Short Story
Candice's picture

Candice

Interests: History, Travel, Science, Nature, Cookbooks, Thriller, Suspense
Casey's picture

Casey

Interests: Read Woke, Picture Books, Board Books, Early Readers, Graphic Novels, Young Adult, Classics, Fantasy, Nature, LGBTQ+, Music, Gardening, Memoir, Humor, Horror, Crafts, Cookbooks
Doug's picture

Doug

Interests: Memoir, Music, Cookbooks, Dystopian, Horror, Science Fiction, Short Story
Frannie's picture

Frannie

Interests: Graphic Novels, Memoir, Classics, Literary Fiction, Humor
Hanna's picture

Hanna

Interests: Science Fiction, Young Adult, Dystopian, Classics, Self Help, LGBTQ+, Literary Fiction, Crafts, Music, Memoir, Poetry, Short Story
Heidi K's picture

Heidi K

Interests: Fiction, Memoir, Science Fiction, Historical Fiction, Classics, Fantasy, Short Story, History, Biographies, Philosophy, Poetry, Gardening, Graphic Novels
Jacy's picture

Jacy

Interests: Fiction, Horror, Fantasy, Cookbooks, Crafts, Young Adult, Short Story
Jason's picture

Jason

Interests: Fiction, Classics, Fantasy, Humor, Mystery, Nonfiction, Science, Short Story
Karen's picture

Karen

Interests: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Memoir, Health, Nature, Gardening, Cookbooks, Crafts, Picture Books, Short Story, Graphic Novels
Mari's picture

Mari

Interests: Graphic Novels, Picture Books, Crafts, Early Chapter Books, True Crime, Dystopian, Memoir, Historical Fiction, Suspense
Melody's picture

Melody

Interests: Fiction, Fantasy, Nonfiction, Cookbooks, Health, Poetry, Romance
Paul's picture

Paul

Interests: Science Fiction, Classics, Picture Books, History, Technology, Gardening, Graphic Novels, Short Story
Sam's picture

Sam

Interests: Christian, Classics, Diverse Characters, Graphic Novels, LGBTQ+, Nonfiction, Poetry, Read Woke
Shawna's picture

Shawna

Interests: Horror, Suspense, Thriller, True Crime, Crafts, Cookbooks, Gardening, History, Biographies
Stacey's picture

Stacey

Interests: Humor, Fantasy, Fiction, Graphic Novels, Crafts, Philosophy, Self Help, Nonfiction
Tom's picture

Tom

Interests: Humor, Health, History, Philosophy, Science, Sports
Victoria's picture

Victoria

Interests: Black Lives Matter, Black History, Humor, LGBTQ+, Picture Books, Cookbooks, Crafts, Gardening, Science, Travel, Young Adult