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Shane's World Lit Picks

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Never Anyone But You Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9781590519134
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Other Press (NY) - June 5th, 2018

This is truly an innovative look at a classic love story. The main characters (Claude and Suzanne) of this book were historically way ahead of their time. They were gender fluid pre-WWII!! As far as the secondary characters go, I kept looking up to find more information on these movers and shakers of the European art scene. But the thing that kept me coming back was the love story. It was so inspiring to see love conquer so many battles. This is a book that I will be reading again!


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Paris by the Book Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781101986271
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dutton Books - April 3rd, 2018

Everyone romanticizes Paris. This book has a way of romanticizing that romance in a way that feels original and mysterious. Truly a book for book lovers and lovers in general. If you have ever dreamed of writing a book or owning a bookstore, let this book show you one of the most bizarre ways to end up doing so.


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Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows: A Novel Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062645111
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - March 6th, 2018

I spent the entire weekend reading Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows. It is a fantastically delightful novel. It is a little bit of everything from mystery to love story to titillating short stories. Definitely not erotica but also not for the faint of heart. This is one of those books that you get done with reading and you just want to clap to show it thanks.


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Missing, Presumed Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780812987744
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Trade - February 7th, 2017

If you love Happy Valley as much as I do (please say you know what I am talking about), you will love this book! The detective at the heart of this procedural is flawed and wonderful and needs a police scanner to be able to fall asleep. I loved the characters. I loved the mystery. And the TWIST!


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In the Midst of Winter Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781501178139
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atria Books - October 31st, 2017

Allende starts the book and you think it is going to be an innocent love story between two academics. Then she throws in a dead body in a trunk during a snowstorm in New York. Allende is a master of her craft. She is also the only author so far that has called me bossy!


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The Power Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780316547611
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little Brown and Company - October 10th, 2017

This book altered my imagination! I don't read a lot of post-apocalyptic fiction, but I know that this is definitely on the list of must reads. It isn't even really post-apocalyptic in the way that you might be imagining. It is just like if women developed this ability and the world that we know immediately changes. This book is what happens when the whole world changes.

It won the Bailey's Prize for Women's Fiction which is quickly becoming my list of favorite books.


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Reservoir 13 Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781936787708
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Catapult - October 3rd, 2017

When something tragic happens in a small town, it alters the town in ways that might not even be seen or noticed for years. This novel reads like a Christmas card reliving each year with the many inhabitants of the town continuing on after the tragedy of a young girl disappearing. I grew up in a small town and find this depiction to be incredibly accurate.


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Stay with Me Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9780451494603
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - August 22nd, 2017

Hold on to your emotions: this book is deeply affecting. Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo is a profound look into a very troubled relationship over twenty years in a turbulent Nigeria. It may not be an easy read, but it is a very fulfilling one that will leave you thinking about the characters long after you finish.

Yejide and Akin are young and trying everything they can to have children. The need for offspring has altered all aspects of their once blissful marriage. Akin is pressured into taking a second wife in hopes for a child. Yejide will do anything to make sure she is the one to give Akin the child that he so desperately desires.

Stay With Me was shortlisted for the Bailey’s Prize for Women’s Fiction. Their shortlist added quite a few books to my reading stack, including the winner, The Power by Naomi Alderman, which comes out in October.


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Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735220683
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Pamela Dorman Books - May 9th, 2017

Eleanor Oliphant is the quirky female character that we deserve. So many people recommended this book to me, and they were right. It was original and weird and wonderful.


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Quicksand Cover Image
$20.76
ISBN: 9781590518571
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Other Press (NY) - March 7th, 2017

For everyone who wants more behind the scenes of a courtroom, this is the book. The narrator keeps you so involved in the story.  I could not put this book down. I had to find out the rest of the story. There were several points where I audibly gasped because I was so surprised. For fans of SVU and so much more.


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Beartown Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781501160769
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - April 25th, 2017

By now, you probably recognize the name Fredrik Backman as one of the world's favorite emerging authors. This book holds up to his canon of fantastic works, but it is quite different from his others. It has the usual Backman qualities in that it will make you laugh and cry, but this one seems deeper and more complex. Beartown deals with the struggles of an entire town trying to become significant again. This is a book about hockey much like how Friday Night Lights is a series about football. It is there, but the human aspect of the story is much more important than the sport. Beartown will break your heart.


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Exit West Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735212176
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - March 7th, 2017

Mohsin Hamid is one of my favorite authors. His worldview is one of the most unique voices working in literary fiction. I was fascinated by the story and compelled by how timely an issue this is. If I had to guess, I would say that Mohsin Hamid has magical abilities himself. This book will transport you to places near and far. 


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The End of Eddy Cover Image
By Edouard Louis, Michael Lucey (Translator)
$23.00
ISBN: 9780374266653
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - May 2nd, 2017

Young Eddy is growing up gay in a small factory town in France. The novel focuses on the many experiences that Eddy has growing up and finding out that he is different from the other members of his family. This is going to be a classic gay novel that has already been translated into many languages and has gotten international attention. 


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The North Water Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250118141
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador USA - March 14th, 2017

I could not believe how disgustingly evil one of the characters in this book completely embodies. It is so violent and so bleek. Think if Quentin Tarantino wrote Moby Dick. That is what this book made me feel.


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A Word for Love Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780399185854
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - January 16th, 2018

Delicate but powerful. At its core, this is a love story, yet it is so much more. Each word is power and the story slowly unfolds into this beautiful flower. It is not what I would typically find myself reading, but I am so happy that I did. I wanted to hold the book when I wasn't reading just so that I could stay with the story.


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Selection Day Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501150845
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - June 6th, 2017

I watched a YouTube video on the rules of cricket and how a game is played. I recommend doing that and then throwing yourself into this book. I was fascinated by the sport and the two boys that are the focus of the book! Manju and Radha were raised to be cricket stars in India, but fate has a way of making things difficult. It is not a story about cricket but about the brothers and their lives growing from the slums to promising stars. And the ending blew me away.


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And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer: A Novella Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781501160486
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - November 1st, 2016

This is entirely possible to read in one sitting, but I would not recommend it. I should have learned my lesson with any of his three previous books and not finished it in public either. The lessons that I have learned from Fredrik Backman are tear streaked. I have read all of his books and can recommend them for anyone.


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The Association of Small Bombs Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143109273
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - October 18th, 2016

Such breadth and yet so intimate.Mahajan looks at the lives of many people affected by a bomb set off in a marketplace in India. The characters are more intertwined than they first appear. Muslim and Hindu, friend and foe, their lives are drastically changed in ways that they might not even realize until years afterwards. Stunningly beautiful!


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Homegoing Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781101971062
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - May 2nd, 2017

If you loved Americanah or Twelve Tribes of Hattie, you must read this book. It is an epic family saga that will make your heart ache. So beautifully conceived and flows through history with you furiously turning pages. I could not put this down.


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Behold the Dreamers (Oprah's Book Club) Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780525509714
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Trade - June 26th, 2017

Struggling Cameroonian immigrants attempt surviving New York during the economic crisis in this captivating debut novel. This is definitely in my top 5 books for the year. I fell in love with the characters and want so much for them to succeed. This novel gives such a view of the trickle down impact of the collapse starting at the top of Lehman Brothers. Jende and Nini's story is one that will stay with you for a long time.


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We Eat Our Own Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781501128318
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner Book Company - September 6th, 2016

I loved so many things about this book. The characters were heartfelt, the plot was intense, the historical story it was inspired by is insane, and everything pays off so well. The story revolves around the making of a horror film set in the Amazon. The way Wilson captures the dangerous feel of the jungle, the drug trade, and humans, in general, is so thrilling. Pick it up and let the fear wash over you. 


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The Fishermen Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780316338356
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Back Bay Books - July 5th, 2016

I love the literature that is coming out of Nigeria right now.  This debut novel tells the story of four brothers and the fate that awaits them.  As much as I loved the prose and thought that it was captivating, I also thought it was going to be predictable.  I was WRONG.  The ending had my heart in its grip.  If you love Chimamanda Adichie, read this book.


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Britt-Marie Was Here Cover Image
$12.80
ISBN: 9781501142543
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Washington Square Press - February 7th, 2017

I LOVED this book.  I think Fredrik Backman is quickly becoming my favorite author.  His range of emotion and his depth of character is just stunning.  Britt-Marie is a minor character in My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry.  And you will fall in love with all of her quirks.  You will laugh and cry.  I want to describe it as a really intelligent "feel good" book.   What do you need from life?  What happens when everything you know is no longer relevant?  What is your favorite cleaning product is no longer manufactured?  How do you begin again?


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My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501115073
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Washington Square Press - April 5th, 2016

Dark humor, fairy tales, grieving, and love.  I did not expect this book to make me weep in the San Francisco airport at 4am, but it did.  It was really beautiful.  The way the narrator's grandmother wove fairy tales into her own world is just stunning.  This book is full of optimism in such a strange way.


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The Story of Hong Gildong Cover Image
By Minsoo Kang (Translator), Minsoo Kang (Introduction by), Minsoo Kang (Notes by)
$15.00
ISBN: 9780143107699
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - March 15th, 2016

Such an incredible tale.  Very well translated and researched.  Hong Gildong is less the Korean Robin Hood as he is the Korean Hercules.  He can do anything.


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The High Mountains of Portugal Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780812987034
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Spiegel & Grau - November 29th, 2016

Chimpanzees, religion, Portugal, pathology.  How do these make a beautiful novel?  I don't have the answer, but they do.  I loved Life of Pi (who didn't?) and could not wait for this novel.  It is so magical, so well crafted, so much beautiful detail.  It is a must read.


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Under the Udala Trees Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9780544811799
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mariner Books - September 20th, 2016

I fell in love with Okparanta's short stories a couple years ago and very much looked forward to her first novel.  This book has a stunning voice and a heartbreaking story.  Set in war-torn Nigeria, it explores Ijeoma's life and love.  It is a book examining a lesbian relationship in the most unforgiving of circumstances but speaks to so much more.  For fans of Americanah and The Fishermen.


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Flood of Fire (Ibis Trilogy #3) Cover Image
$19.00
ISBN: 9781250094711
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Picador USA - August 2nd, 2016

SO EPIC!!!  I am telling you that you are going to love a series of books set during the Opium Wars in China in the 1830s.  I never knew that a havildar was something I could be so interested in.  So many incredible characters to fall in love with.  Each book stands alone in its brilliance, but, all together, it is an opus of magnificence.  1st book- Sea of Poppies  2nd book- River of Smoke.


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A History of Loneliness Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781250094643
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Picador USA - May 10th, 2016

This is a definite must for historical fiction fans.  This book was not at all what I thought it would be.  And that is a good thing.  I thought this would be a book wholly about the child molestation scandal in the church.  But it was so much more.  The beauty of a historical novel set in recent history is how current and yet far away the world seems.  Spanning several decades in modern Ireland's rocky history, we get a picture of a man, a family, the church, the world around us.  And the ending was so powerful.


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A Brave Man Seven Storeys Tall: A Novel Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062280022
Availability: Special Order
Published: Harper Perennial - July 7th, 2015

If you want to read an incredible, epic, globetrotting, character driven book, then read this book!  I found this book when it popped up on several "best of 2014" lists and the synopsis intrigued me.  It is hard to say what I loved most about this book.  I would like to say that it all just worked so well.  Art, the Odyssey, sports, travel, anarchy, and a sprawling quest.  Read it and love it.