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Amanda's Fiction Picks

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Oona Out of Order: A Novel Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781250236609
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Flatiron Books - February 25th, 2020

Wow what a book! The perfect blend of angst, romance, and pop-culture. This is a poignant, moving, tremendously thought-provoking book that is so beautifully written. I love books about time travel, especially those which deal with the emotional aspects rather than the scientific. There were so many wondrous moments to be found here. I didn't want it to end.


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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781501161933
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Washington Square Press - May 29th, 2018

This book is so much more than what meets the eye. Evelyn's  story is one of being a woman in a man’s world, one of being a Cuban woman in a white woman’s world. She's played the Hollywood game, dated famous men to further her career, and used her body to get what she wanted. She has experienced the full force of the industry's sexism and, in some ways, capitalized on it. She is deeply flawed and aware of it. She has traded important aspects of her identity for more fame, more roles, more money, but now it is time to tell her whole story. She's ready to talk about the void, the unhappiness underneath the smile, her age, her divorces, and all the other unglamorous things that Hollywood likes to pretend never happens to its starlets. One of my favorite books of the year! 


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My Year of Rest and Relaxation: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780525522133
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - June 25th, 2019

Moshfegh has written a book unlike any I have read before. The pages slide by, in a drugged haze. There's some repetition here: lots of taking pills, watching 80s movies, feeling confused about what might have happened during a blackout, or feeling frustrated at the lack of efficacy of the current chemical cocktail. Never though, did my interest wane. This is a character study expertly rendered. I never grew to like the main character, however I could not stop reading, much like not being able to take your eyes off of a horrific car accident. 


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Where the Crawdads Sing Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735219090
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - August 14th, 2018

This book had a little bit of everything that I love: a likable main character who pulls at your heartstrings, murder mystery, atmosphere, drama, coming of age, and romance. It's a beautifully written and thoughtful story, which evokes emotion, and transports the reader back in time to the Marsh. To the reader who appreciates nature’s effortless beauty honored in fiction; to those who seek a love story every bit true as it is tender; to the one who needs a tantalizing murder/mystery to spice things up, and for those who tend to root for the underdog — this one’s for you!


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You Know You Want This:
$24.99
ISBN: 9781982101633
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery/Scout Press - January 15th, 2019

You may remember the short story, “Cat Person” which was  published in the New York Times in 2018, now you can read a slew of Kristen's short stories, which all center around the connections between sex, gender, and power across genres. There were times when this book made me cringe, but at the same time I could not put it down. There were numerous  parallels to women’s issues today, most of them depicted in very extreme examples. I really appreciated the emotions that the stories evoked in me, even if some of the emotions were uncomfortable. 


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Normal People: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781984822178
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Hogarth - April 16th, 2019

This book is a quiet character study of the complex and profoundly lonely on-again off-again relationship between Marianne and Connell. Without fully realizing it, this book had crept quietly under my skin. The relationship between Marianne and Connell is angsty, but it felt painfully real. They are so flawed, marred by unlikable characteristics, and yet, I could not stop caring about them.  This book deserves all the praise it has received!


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Queenie Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781501196010
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Gallery/Scout Press - March 19th, 2019

I really enjoyed this book for its humor, honesty, and for its ability to take me into a world that I’ve never experienced before. Queenie is a 25-year-old Jamaican British woman living in London, searching for who she is and what she wants after a terrible breakup from her long-term white boyfriend. She is left reeling after this breakup and makes some very poor decisions that end up putting her in a spiral. However, even in her weak moments, Queenie is a bold, complex, real, and flawed character, which I found to be very relatable. 


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Miracle Creek: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780374156022
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Sarah Crichton Books - April 16th, 2019

This is Kim's debut novel and it was definitely worth all the hype I saw featuring  it on social media. This novel is so multifaceted and layered that I really had to take my time with it. The novel deals with a variety of themes including immigration, sexual assault, and family drama all of which revolve around an intense court case dealing with the tragic death of two from a mysterious explosion in an HBOT (hyperbaric oxygenation) machine, which is said to treat a wide spectrum of health issues, including male infertility, CP, and autism. Told from multiple points of view, the reader gets to see how this tragedy unfolds over the course of the novel as each narrator divulges secrets of his/her own that may or may not be related to the explosion and the circumstances surrounding it. 


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The Alice Network: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062654199
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - June 6th, 2017

What a fascinating story! And to discover it's based on a real woman and events makes it even better. Telling two parallel tales, one of several female spies in Lille during WWI, the other of a pregnant college student looking for her cousin who went missing after the end of WWII. It was such a unique perspective of WWII that I had never heard before. Definitely one of my favorite historical fiction novels! 


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Pachinko (National Book Award Finalist) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781455563920
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - November 14th, 2017

This is both a fictional and a true story. The fictional characters the author creates come sparking off the page - from the resilient Sunja who once foolishly believed in the love of an older man, to Noa who will never quite recover from the dishonor of his lineage, to Solomon who is still trying to escape the negative stereotypes associated with Koreans many years after his grandmother arrived in Japan. And it is a true story because much of this book was the reality for many Koreans. A deeply affecting read and a look at an area of history oft-forgotten outside of East Asia.


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How to Hack a Heartbreak Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781525834257
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Graydon House - July 30th, 2019

Kristin delivers a sassy, funny, uplifting, and addicting romance novel. Like many of today’s women, Mel Strickland is fed up with the quagmire of online dating.  Enough is enough. Time to develop her own online app to weed out those creeps that are not truly looking for love! A thoroughly adorable and heartwarming book about searching for love in a digital world. It reminds us that maybe love isn’t just a swipe away, but perhaps standing right in front of you. Or, maybe even in the next cubicle over.


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The Bookish Life of Nina Hill Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780451491879
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Berkley - July 9th, 2019

What a delightful book! This is for all those book worms out there, especially for those for whom books are one of the most perfect elements in an imperfect world, and for anyone else who enjoys well written contemporary fiction with oodles of warmth.  


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Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780735220690
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - June 5th, 2018

It took me a minute to warm up to Eleanor’s particular quirks and personality, but once I did I fell in love with this book! All of us have felt alone at some point in our lives, Eleanor’s story serves as a reminder that we are a lot more alike than we realize and a bit of kindness can go such a long way. I did not want this book to end!