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Exhalation: Stories by Ted Chiang - Book Review

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ISBN: 9781101947883
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Business Days
Published: Knopf - May 7th, 2019

"The universe is made of stories, not of atoms." - Muriel Rukeyser
It's been 10 years since Chiang's masterful collection Stories of Your Life and Others, and rather than a hiatus Exhalation feels like a culmination. Like Black Mirror for scientific theory, the stories in this collection help us better see our universe by looking at it from every (inter-)dimension. ~ Reviewed by Katelynne Shimkus

The Flame: Poems Notebooks Lyrics Drawings by Leonard Cohen - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780374156060
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Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - October 2nd, 2018

Leonard Cohen was my favorite poet long before this book arrived (though this book did manage to convert one of my coworkers to Cohenism). And now I know the sum total of the work he has in the world is finite, and I may never read anything new of his again. I am grateful for the enormous body of work that exists, but still, there is a bitter sweetness in reading the last words of someone you adored. ~ Reviewed by Katelynne Shimkus

HHhH: A Novel by Laurent Binet - Book Review

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By Laurent Binet, Sam Taylor (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781250033345
Availability: Special Order
Published: Picador - July 23rd, 2013

This debut novel from the author of another book close to my heart, The Seventh Function of Language, centers around Operation Anthropoid: the successful, if tragic, assassination attempt on Reinhard Heydrich, the "Butcher of Prague". It is also a story of the struggle of writing - Binet's obsession, his setbacks, the fear of reducing history to fiction and heroes to characters. "HHhH" stands for the German phrase "Himmler's brain is called Heydrich", and it is Binet's brain - with all its thoughts, its asides and doubts, and its enthusiasm - that takes us through the story. For anyone who writes, and anyone who is fascinated by the history we often miss, and everyone who is both. ~ Reviewed by Katelynne Shimkus

Goulash: A Novel by Brian Kimberling - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780307908070
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Published: Pantheon - February 26th, 2019

As someone who's lived abroad for a year, been to Prague, and taught English as a Second Language, I found a lot to enjoy in this story of a young expat teaching English in Prague (and trying to explain "ass" as a positive and negative modifier). Endearing, amusing, full of the absurdities of being American abroad trying to live in an already surreal country, this is a delightful gift your young traveler will enjoy. ~ Reviewed by Katelynne Shimkus

The Mere Wife: A Novel by Maria Dahvana Headley - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780374208431
Availability: Special Order
Published: MCD - July 17th, 2018

I didn't think I wanted to read a story about housewives, but there are no deadlier creatures than the women of Herot Hall. A modern retelling of Beowulf, every bit as bloody, dark, witchy, and poetic as the original. I was enthralled. Fantastic in every sense of the world - a perfect spooky Halloween read. ~ Reviewed by Katelynne Shimkus

If on a winter's night a traveler by Italo Calvino - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780156439619
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Published: Mariner Books - October 20th, 1982

I have a book type, the same way I have a romantic type, and this is it: A literary mystery both revering and poking fun at everything that goes into novels - the authors and the writing, the readers and the reading, the publishers and the translators and the printer's errors. A romance between literati. A meta-narrator who speaks directly to you. Modernist fiction in an unusual format. Marry me, book. ~ Reviewed by Katelynne Shimkus


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