Staff Picks

We help you find the books you'll love!!

Welcome to the Staff Picks Page! Every two weeks we'll be sharing with you the books that we're really excited about! Each book can be found on our staff picks shelf in the store!

Check out our top picks from 2016!

Featuring Picks from:

PK, our fearless leader and owner, Mary, our sweetest, kindest and longest tenured employee, Sarah, our energetic assistant manager, Abby, lover a humor with a darker twist, Jennifer, our children's book guru, Pam, our go-to women's fiction lover, Su, our lover of mysteries and all things out-of-the ordinary, and Lisa and Norah, our newest employees!

Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9781524732684
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - April 24th, 2017

MARY'S PICK

From Facebook's COO and Wharton's top-rated professor, the #1 New York Times best-selling authors of Lean In and Originals: a powerful, inspiring, and practical book about building resilience and moving forward after life's inevitable setbacks.

 

After the sudden death of her husband, Sheryl Sandberg felt certain that she and her children would never feel pure joy again. "I was in 'the void, '" she writes, "a vast emptiness that fills your heart and lungs and restricts your ability to think or even breathe." Her friend Adam Grant, a psychologist at Wharton, told her there are concrete steps people can take to recover and rebound from life-shattering experiences. We are not born with a fixed amount of resilience. It is a muscle that everyone can build.
Option B combines Sheryl's personal insights with Adam's eye-opening research on finding strength in the face of adversity. Beginning with the gut-wrenching moment when she finds her husband, Dave Goldberg, collapsed on a gym floor, Sheryl opens up her heart--and her journal--to describe the acute grief and isolation she felt in the wake of his death. But Option B goes beyond Sheryl's loss to explore how a broad range of people have overcome hardships including illness, job loss, sexual assault, natural disasters, and the violence of war. Their stories reveal the capacity of the human spirit to persevere . . . and to rediscover joy.
Resilience comes from deep within us and from support outside us. Even after the most devastating events, it is possible to grow by finding deeper meaning and gaining greater appreciation in our lives. Option B illuminates how to help others in crisis, develop compassion for ourselves, raise strong children, and create resilient families, communities, and workplaces. Many of these lessons can be applied to everyday struggles, allowing us to brave whatever lies ahead. Two weeks after losing her husband, Sheryl was preparing for a father-child activity. "I want Dave," she cried. Her friend replied, "Option A is not available," and then promised to help her make the most of Option B.
We all live some form of Option B. This book will help us all make the most of it.


The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9781101875681
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - March 7th, 2017

PK'S PICK

In 1986, a shy and intelligent twenty-year-old named Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the forest. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even through brutal winters, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store edibles and water, and to avoid freezing to death. He broke into nearby cottages for food, clothing, reading material, and other provisions, taking only what he needed but terrifying a community never able to solve the mysterious burglaries. Based on extensive interviews with Knight himself, this is a vividly detailed account of his secluded life--why did he leave? what did he learn?--as well as the challenges he has faced since returning to the world. It is a gripping story of survival that asks fundamental questions about solitude, community, and what makes a good life, and a deeply moving portrait of a man who was determined to live his own way, and succeeded.


Bad Girls Throughout History: 100 Remarkable Women Who Changed the World Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781452153933
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books - September 6th, 2016

SARAH'S PICK

Aphra Behn, first female professional writer. Sojourner Truth, activist and abolitionist. Ada Lovelace, first computer programmer. Marie Curie, first woman to win the Nobel Prize. Joan Jett, godmother of punk. The 100 revolutionary women highlighted in this gorgeously illustrated book were bad in the best sense of the word: they challenged the status quo and changed the rules for all who followed. From pirates to artists, warriors, daredevils, scientists, activists, and spies, the accomplishments of these incredible women vary as much as the eras and places in which they effected change. Featuring bold watercolor portraits and illuminating essays by Ann Shen, Bad Girls Throughout History is a distinctive, gift-worthy tribute.


Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us about Who We Really Are Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780062390851
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dey Street Books - May 9th, 2017

ABBY'S PICK

Blending the informed analysis of The Signal and the Noise with the instructive iconoclasm of Think Like a Freak, a fascinating, illuminating, and witty look at what the vast amounts of information now instantly available to us reveals about ourselves and our world--provided we ask the right questions.

By the end of an average day in the early twenty-first century, human beings searching the internet will amass eight trillion gigabytes of data. This staggering amount of information--unprecedented in history--can tell us a great deal about who we are--the fears, desires, and behaviors that drive us, and the conscious and unconscious decisions we make. From the profound to the mundane, we can gain astonishing knowledge about the human psyche that less than twenty years ago, seemed unfathomable.

Everybody Lies offers fascinating, surprising, and sometimes laugh-out-loud insights into everything from economics to ethics to sports to race to sex, gender and more, all drawn from the world of big data. What percentage of white voters didn't vote for Barack Obama because he's black? Does where you go to school effect how successful you are in life? Do parents secretly favor boy children over girls? Do violent films affect the crime rate? Can you beat the stock market? How regularly do we lie about our sex lives and who's more self-conscious about sex, men or women?

Investigating these questions and a host of others, Seth Stephens-Davidowitz offers revelations that can help us understand ourselves and our lives better. Drawing on studies and experiments on how we really live and think, he demonstrates in fascinating and often funny ways the extent to which all the world is indeed a lab. With conclusions ranging from strange-but-true to thought-provoking to disturbing, he explores the power of this digital truth serum and its deeper potential--revealing biases deeply embedded within us, information we can use to change our culture, and the questions we're afraid to ask that might be essential to our health--both emotional and physical. All of us are touched by big data everyday, and its influence is multiplying. Everybody Lies challenges us to think differently about how we see it and the world.


Princess Cora and the Crocodile Cover Image
By Laura Amy Schlitz, Brian Floca (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780763648220
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - March 28th, 2017

JENNIFER'S PICK

Princess Cora is sick of boring lessons. She's sick of running in circles around the dungeon gym. She's sick, sick, sick of taking three baths a day. And her parents won't let her have a dog. But when she writes to her fairy godmother for help, she doesn't expect that help to come in the form of a crocodile--a crocodile who does not behave properly. With perfectly paced dry comedy, children's book luminaries Laura Amy Schlitz and Brian Floca send Princess Cora on a delightful outdoor adventure -- climbing trees getting dirty having fun -- while her alter ego wreaks utter havoc inside the castle, obliging one pair of royal helicopter parents to reconsider their ways.


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781400052189
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Broadway Books - March 8th, 2011

PAM'S PICK

Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells--taken without her knowledge in 1951--became one of the most important tools in medicine, vital for developing the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping, and more. Henrietta's cells have been bought and sold by the billions, yet she remains virtually unknown, and her family can't afford health insurance. This phenomenal New York Times bestseller tells a riveting story of the collision between ethics, race, and medicine; of scientific discovery and faith healing; and of a daughter consumed with questions about the mother she never knew.


Burntown Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9780385541367
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Doubleday Books - April 25th, 2017

SU'S PICK

A fantastic machine that can reunite the living with the dead. A haunting--and dangerous--legacy that could destroy one family for generations.

All families have secrets, but Eva Sandeski's family has a secret that someone is willing to kill for.

Find out why she's hiding in a mysterious place called Burntown...


Little Women Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781607105480
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Canterbury Classics - September 18th, 2012

LISA'S PICK

Loiusa May Alcott's Little Women is a beloved and time honored classic tale about a quartet of 19th century New England sisters who learn to work together in the care and keeping of their family homestead while their father is off at war. 
 
Jo, Meg, Beth and Amy transition from the innocence of girlhood and into the responsibilities of womanhood with the dutiful assistance of their beloved Marmee, who guides them in their efforts to meld their varied personalities as they tread the path of ties that bind and feminine strengths.
 
A quintessential classic of American literature, Little Women remains a favored read over the generations for its charm, innocence and wistful insights!
A must have addition of fiction to the family bookshelf! 


Doctor Sleep Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9781451698862
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pocket Books - July 26th, 2016

NORAH'S PICK

On highways across America, a tribe of people called the True Knot travel in search of sustenance. They look harmless--mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RVs. But as Dan Torrance knows, and spunky twelve-year-old Abra Stone learns, the True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the steam that children with the shining produce when they are slowly tortured to death.

 

Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel, where he spent one horrific childhood year, Dan has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father's legacy of despair, alcoholism, and violence. Finally, he settles in a New Hampshire town, an AA community that sustains him, and a job at a nursing home where his remnant shining power provides the crucial final comfort to the dying. Aided by a prescient cat, he becomes "Doctor Sleep."

 

Then Dan meets the evanescent Abra Stone, and it is her spectacular gift, the brightest shining ever seen, that reignites Dan's own demons and summons him to a battle for Abra's soul and survival. This is an epic war between good and evil, glorious story that will thrill the millions of devoted readers of The Shining and satisfy anyone new to this icon in the Stephen King canon.