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What you think your job is at Left Bank Books: Hair model

If you had a Super Power, what would it be? Animal shape shifting would check all of my boxes. Not only am I intensely curious about animals, but then I would get to experience flight, the depths of the sea, and everything in between.

What’s your sign? One of those duck crossing signs.

What’s in the trunk of your car? A sun bleached Illini bag containing a roll of painters tape, a front license plate bracket, and a trunk net that is missing the equipment to be hung. It has been there since I bought the car. That was in 2014.

What’s your favorite memory? I remember driving down the highway with my mom and needing to be ready to roll up the windows at any given second. She would bark at the dogs poking their heads out of other people's cars. As a teenager that was fantastically embarrassing, but it still makes me smile.

Using only one word, describe yourself. Ugh, bumbling.

If they made a movie about your life, who would play you? They actually already make a TV show staring me. It's called Bob's Burgers, but they had to rename my character Tina Belcher for legal reasons.

Stick or Automatic? I really miss driving stick. I love feeling like I'm an essential part of the whole driving experience.

Author you love to hate: I'm not sure about love to hate, but I have VERY strong mixed feelings about James Patterson.

Theme song to your life: Lousy Connection by Ezra Furman

Favorite smell: I honestly do not know. Pizza? My cat smells wonderful for some reason, so maybe her? Is that too weird?

Favorite pair of shoes (past or present): I have a pair of over the top floral print Doc Martens that are simply wonderful.

Staff Pick Logo
Jade City Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316440868
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Orbit - November 7th, 2017

This book reads like an action mob movie with a flair of magically super powered brawls. It's fast paced, but also well fleshed out. The culture of the Green Bones has a wonderful depth that includes everything from the necessity of these ruling gang families to all the flaws of their pride.  It's a well thought out, well written, and fantastically delivered read.

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The Power Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316547611
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little Brown & Co - October 10th, 2017

This is one of those amazing books where it hits you so hard and makes your blood pump so fast that you need to take a break to breathe through and process what you just read. Naomi Alderman writes in such a way that you can feel the impact of this power in every ounce of the book. The Power is incredibly well thought out and well written.

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Star Wars: Lost Stars Cover Image
ISBN: 9781368013789
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Disney Lucasfilm Press - August 1st, 2017

Claudia Gray managed to accurately capture the feel of the Star Wars Universe while simultaneously exploring a new perspective that focuses less on heroes, and more on the people that are actually wrapped up in the mess of this intergalactic war. This was the Star Wars book I didn't know I needed. It has sent me down both a spiral of consuming Star Wars novels, and made me a strong fan of Claudia Gray.

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The Witch Boy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781338089516
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Graphix - October 31st, 2017

 I find all of Molly's work fun and engaging. Witch Boy is no different. It's a wonderful graphic novel that takes a fun story and uses that as a vessel to introduce discussion on gender issues and the damages of forcing social norms. Meant for younger readers, but I think would be fun for anyone.

Defy the Stars Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316394031
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - April 4th, 2017

By all accounts this should have been a pretty standard YA novel. Instead it took the tropes and turned them over to discuss things like what defines person-hood, what makes a person good or bad, and how do we stand up for the things we want to fight for. I'm not sure when it happened, but I was pulled in and could not put it down until I was done.

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Super Late Bloomer: My Early Days in Transition Cover Image
ISBN: 9781449489625
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Andrews McMeel Publishing - May 1st, 2018

Julia Kaye put the words to the confusing mess of thoughts I have had for a lifetime. I knew from that point this book was going to hit me on a deeply emotional level. Kaye uses her words and highly expressive illustrations to perfectly capture emotions that I've struggled with (and that I thought I was alone in experiencing). In the hour it took me to get through this book I was tearing up, laughing, smiling, sighing, and everything in between. Thank you Julia Kaye, if nothing else you have positively impacted my life by telling your story.