Summer Staff Picks, Round 5

  • SARAH: The Royal Runaway by Lindsay Emory
  • PAM: Twice in a Blue Moon by Christina Lauren
  • MARY: Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
  • MARIELLE: A Curse So Dark & Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer
  • JENNIFER: Wow, No Thank You. by Samantha Irby
  • HADLEY: The Sun is a Compass by Caroline van Hemert
  • ELISE: Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson
  • DREW: Upon a Burning Throne by Ashok K. Banker
  • CHRISTOPHER: The Maze Runner by James Dashner
  • CHARLIE: The Great Mortality by John Kelly
  • ANNA: Darius the Great is Not Okay by Adib Khorram
Staff Pick Badge
The Royal Runaway Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501196614
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Gallery Books - October 9th, 2018

What a fun book! I started reading and absolutely could not put it down. I'm a sucker for a great royal adventure and characters with good chemistry. The Royal Runaway certainly did not disappoint, and it's Scottish and Scandinavian setting made me love it even more! - SARAH


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Twice in a Blue Moon Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501197420
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Gallery Books - October 22nd, 2019

First love, heartbreak, and second chances, this book has it all. While in London travelling with their grandparents Tate (18) and Sam (21) meet and experience an intense two-week romance but fate has other plans and they each leave London heartbroken and alone. Fourteen years later, they are reunited when Tate is cast as the leading actress in the movie version of Sam's novel, Milkweed. - PAM


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Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780399588198
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: One World - February 12th, 2019

Comedian Trevor Noah's sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes hilarious memoir of growing up in South Africa under apartheid is a gem. With a black mother and a white father, he was literally "born a crime." Like a chameleon, Noah could change people's perception of his color. His father was a closed book and his stepfather was an abusive alcoholic. His mother, Patricia, is the hero of this story. Stubborn, self-confident and never scared, she taught Noah how to think. The miracle ending was unexpected and heartwarming. - MARY


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A Curse So Dark and Lonely (The Cursebreaker Series) Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9781681195100
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury YA - January 7th, 2020

A very original retelling of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, the richly described world of A CURSE SO DARK AND LONELY had me hooked from the very first line. With Harper as our very fierce Beauty, Rhen as our tragic but not pitiable Beast, and the mysterious enigma that is Grey, this story is far too exciting to put down. If a dark classic fairytale combined with a modern day girl power vibe sounds good, then this is your kind of read. - MARIELLE


Staff Pick Badge
Wow, No Thank You.: Essays Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780525563488
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - March 31st, 2020

With her previous books, “Meaty” and “We Are Never Meeting In Real Life,” Irby quickly became one of my favorite humorous writers. In this, her fourth collection of essays, she hilariously opines among other things, iphones and the internet, the perfect mixtape and what the chosen songs mean to her, the pain of homeownership, and whether or not her dead cat Helen is haunting her. She is beyond honest so you’ll feel like your new best friend is spilling her guts while simultaneously making you spray drink out of your nose from laughing. - JENNIFER


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The Sun Is a Compass: My 4,000-Mile Journey into the Alaskan Wilds Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780316414449
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown Spark - February 25th, 2020

When the thick, muggy Mid-Atlantic summer hits, don't you just want to leave it all behind and camp out in the snow with the sound of the rushing Yukon River filling your ears? OK, OK, that's probably just me. Jokes aside, The Sun Is a Compass, a memoir from Van Hemert about her and her husband's 4,000-mile trek to the north coast of Alaska and across to the west coast of the state, will indeed take you away to places barely anyone has seen while grounding you deeply in truths and questions about the day to day--how we chart a course through life, choose our roles in our relationships, cope with loss, and more. It's an excellent pick for a recent college grad, too. And if you do need to cool off, you'll find this book filled with gorgeous photos of the otherworldly Arctic and awe-inducing natural descriptions. Grab an ice pop, head outside (safely, of course), and dive in. - HADLEY


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Since You've Been Gone Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9781442435018
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers - May 5th, 2015

Morgan Matson is known for her summer contemporaries, and this one doesn't dissapoint. Emily's (much more adventourous and outgoing) best friend Sloane disappears, only leaving behing a to-do list for the summer. On this list include anything from "kiss a stranger" to "dance until dawn." Not only is the plot entertaining, but the characters, song playlists, and overall feeling of summer are so fun to read about! I related a lot to Emily's personality, and I loved following her on this journey. You will be in the mood for a true "rom-com esque" adventure after reading "Since You've Been Gone!" - ELISE


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Upon a Burning Throne (The Burnt Empire) Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780358299295
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: John Joseph Adams/Mariner Books - March 24th, 2020

If you enjoy great epic fantasies and are looking for the next one then look no further! Upon a burning throne is one part game of thrones, one part Illiad, and one part Mahabharta. Full of gods, wars, magic and empires Upon a Burning throne is a spectacular read - DREW


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The Maze Runner (Maze Runner, Book One): Book One (The Maze Runner Series #1) Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780385737951
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Delacorte Press - August 24th, 2010

Waking up with no memory and surrounded by a seemingly impossible and horrifying labyrinth, Thomas is forced to work together with the other trapped within if they want to find a way to survive, let alone escape. The never-ending secrets of the maze are always keeping you on edge, while Dashner’s writing always keeps things moving. This great combination makes The Maze Runner a solid pick for anyone looking to get back into reading YA, or in general. - CHRISTOPHER


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The Great Mortality: An Intimate History of the Black Death, the Most Devastating Plague of All Time Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780060006938
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial - January 31st, 2006

Think coronavirus is bad? Just wait till you read what it was like for Europeans in 1347, when the Black Death arrived! John Kelly paints a vivid picture of life in Europe in the mid-14th century, the conditions that led to the pandemic, how the plague spread like wildfire, and how people ultimately survived it. This book treats the disease like its own character—an unwieldy beast that runs roughshod over medieval communities powerless to stop it—and explores the impact on both broad and very intimate scales, often detailing individual people’s stories amidst the bigger picture. For those looking to learn more about the nature of diseases and pandemics, this is a great starting point - CHARLIE


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Darius the Great Is Not Okay Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780525552970
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - August 20th, 2019

This book made me feel more understood than any other book has, and I am so grateful for its existence! Darius deals with depression and it is written from an Own Voice's perspective, which made it all the more real and relatable. I also love that this followed a friendship and not a love story the way that most books do. The friendship between Darius and Sohrab is so beautiful to read about because they both have such innocence about them that make them so lovable. This book made me feel happy, sad, and even angry at the way that certain families are treated because of their religion. This book was so insightful on a culture that I knew next to nothing about. The way that the families were so close and so loving in their own ways was refreshing for me to read - ANNA