What I read: literary fiction (especially short story collections); science books - anything about physics or space travel 

What sound do you love? The sound of cars driving past in the rain; the sound of the television on very low so you can hear the cadence of voices but not the words; The Sound of Silence by Simon and Garfunkel

If you could be any fictional character, who would you choose? A character in a Rainbow Rowell novel. I already relate to most of them on a spiritual level.

Do you love or hate rollercoasters? Love and hate in equal measure. I hate the part where you're climbing up the first hill agonizingly slowly (I'm afraid of heights), but everything after that is great.

What was your favorite cartoon growing up? Rugrats. I maintain that it is and always will be the best thing Nickelodeon ever produced. 

What’s the coolest thing you’ve ever been for Halloween? I will never be as cool as when I dressed up as the Yellow Power Ranger in 1st grade. 

What’s your fondest childhood memory? Spending all day in the climbing tree in my grandma’s backyard with my cousins making up games when we were kids. 


Read the rest of Lauren's picks here.


Staff Pick Logo
Spaceman of Bohemia Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316273435
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little Brown and Company - March 7th, 2017

Jakub Procházka is not your ordinary spaceman: selected by the Czech Republic for a (potential suicide) mission to collect samples from a cloud of mysterious space dust, Jakub has traded his quiet scientist's life in Prague with his wife, Lenka, for the eternal glory that comes with being his country's first astronaut. But when Lenka falls off the map, not showing up for one of their schedule video chats, Jakub falls into an existential crisis that involves a Nutella-loving alien spider named Hanuš, a trip back into his troubled past, and revelations about what exactly makes life worth living. The Martian by way of Kafka, The Spaceman of Bohemia is funny, beautifully written, poignant, and mind-bending in the best way.

Staff Pick Logo
Things to Do When You're Goth in the Country: And Other Stories Cover Image
ISBN: 9781609807450
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Seven Stories Press - May 16th, 2017

As someone who grew up near the areas of Southern Illinois that Chavisa Woods writes about in Things to Do When You're Goth in the Country, this collection of short stories punched me in the gut in the best way. And for those unfamiliar with the landscape of the rural Midwest, Woods's blend of magical realism and razor-sharp prose and dark humor is a perfect lens through which to view and understand the people of the region: the poor, the ostracized, the addicts, and the outsiders, those who got out and those who stayed, and how they deal with the realities of modern America we all face, the endless wars and the blind eye turned towards those who need the most. This collection is biting and funny, intense and necessary.

Staff Pick Logo
Fail Better: Why Baseball Matters Cover Image
ISBN: 9781771961530
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Biblioasis - April 18th, 2017

A great summer read to celebrate the return of the game "designed to break your heart." Mark Kingwell ruminates on everything from baseball history & lore and personal anecdotes from his childhood to philosophical meditations on the passage of time, cheating, nostalgia, language, racism, nationalism, and beauty. The undercurrent of these ruminations is a single theme: that baseball can, in many ways, teach us how to fail, but more importantly, how to learn and change through failure. Thoughtful and witty and relevant.