agraves's blog

Alden Graves - Bookseller in Manchester

A native Vermonter, Alden works in the music department at the Northshire. He is also in charge of the DVDs and tries very hard to have titles that customers might not readily find elsewhere. He loves film, especially ones that have either trains or Elizabeth Taylor in them. Alden contributes a weekly column on the movies to the Bennington Banner. His other interests include shipwrecks, Jack the Ripper, Peggy Lee, and real country music. Other staff members at the Northshire are very tolerant as he rambles on about the Andrea Doria and they probably know a lot more about the Ripper than they ever thought they would.

Sipsworth by Simon Van Booy - Book Review

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Sipsworth By Simon Van Booy Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781567927948
Availability: Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: David R. Godine Publisher - May 7th, 2024

Helen Cartwright is passing the time she has left making tea, listening to the radio, and watching old movies on the BBC. Each day is the equivalent of another shovelful of soil into a grave that she looks forward to occupying. She is alone after the deaths of both her husband and son. One rainy morning, she decides to bring home a fish tank discarded by a neighbor and discovers that a mouse has made his home in it. Caring for the little creature forces Helen to reexamine her life of enforced loneliness and to venture out beyond the confines of her small home and back into the world. Some novels transcend words of praise and inspire a sense of awe in the reader. In its beautifully wrought simplicity, Sipsworth is that kind of novel. ~ Reviewed by Alden Graves


All the Colors of the Dark: A Novel by Chris Whitaker - Book Review

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All the Colors of the Dark: A Novel By Chris Whitaker Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780593798874
Availability: Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Crown - June 25th, 2024

Patch Macauley has always been a loner. His closest friend in Monta Clare is Saint, who takes a certain pleasure in her own status as a misfit. Patch is taken captive by a serial killer and, after his rescue, is determined to find the young woman who comforted him throughout his ordeal. His determination becomes an obsession, even if it ultimately leads to another grave. The new novel by the author of "We Begin At the End" is wildly ambitious and uniquely formatted in very short chapters. Its considerable length allows the reader to form attachments to the central characters and the relentless search almost becomes a deeply personal endeavor. ~ Reviewed by Alden Graves


Leaving: A Novel by Roxana Robinson - Book Review

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Leaving: A Novel By Roxana Robinson Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781324065388
Availability: Click Title for IN STORE Location
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - February 13th, 2024

Warren is the head of an architectural firm in Boston. He has been married for a long time, drifting along with a comfortable wife and the spirited daughter he adores. The reappearance of Sarah, the woman he loved during his college years, makes him reevaluate the way he wants to spend the rest of his life. Warren's wife and daughter, however, aren't going to let him go without making him painfully aware of the cost. This is a tough and unsentimental look at relationships, regrets, and revenge. Strains of "You Can't Always Get What You Want" kept running through my mind. ~ Reviewed by Alden Graves


Renegade for Justice: Defending the Defenseless in an Outlaw World by Stephen Saltonstall - Book Review

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Renegade for Justice: Defending the Defenseless in an Outlaw World By Stephen Saltonstall, Michael Meltsner (Foreword by) Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9780700633678
Availability: Click Title for IN STORE Location
Published: University Press of Kansas - October 28th, 2022

The word "hero" is applied so often today it has attained the status of a cliche. The author turned away from the green pastures that beckoned to so many young lawyers and followed his conscience rather than the money. This is an unflinching look at a justice system that, for all its pretensions towards fairness, is irrevocably skewed towards the rich and the privileged in America. Mr. Saltonstall defended people who some might call indefensible and he walked side by side with some of the great men of the previous century. He emerges from the pages of this remarkable book as my idea of a genuine hero. This memoir could serve as a template for living a profoundly useful and selfless life. ~ Reviewed by Alden Graves


This Other Eden: A Novel by Paul Harding - Book Review

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This Other Eden: A Novel By Paul Harding Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781324036296
Availability: Backordered
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - January 24th, 2023

State authorities have decided that an island off the coast of Maine first occupied by freed and runaway slaves and home for generations to come is unfit for habitation, especially since it seems an ideal spot for an upscale resort. This is a profoundly moving story about people caught up in officially sanctioned cruelty and thrown out into a world as alien to them as the dark side of the moon. The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Tinkers has written one of the most quietly profound and beautifully executed novels I have read in a very long time and it is one I will long remember. ~ Reviewed by Alden Graves


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