kvanalkemade_75542's blog

Kim van Alkemade - Bookseller in Saratoga Springs

Hello! I'm Kim van Alkemade, an avid reader, a published writer, and a bookseller at the Saratoga Springs store. My greatest affinity is for historical fiction, especially stories featuring queer protagonists and diverse perspectives.

Housemates: A Novel by Emma Copley Eisenberg - Book Review

Staff Pick Badge
Housemates: A Novel By Emma Copley Eisenberg Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593242230
Availability: Click Title for IN STORE Location
Published: Hogarth - May 28th, 2024

I loved this mesmerizing novel inspired by the life of photographer Berenice Abbott and her partner, Elizabeth McCausland, reimagined as the contemporary tale of twenty-somethings Bernie and Leah as they set out on a roadtrip to document a changing Pennsylvania, an art project reminiscent of Abbott's own work. I appreciated the distinct portrayals of lesbian identity and the time-slip quality of a narrative voice that casts a gentle eye on our present moment while evoking a past where one's partner in life could only be known as a "housemate." ~ Reviewed by Kim van Alkemade

Spitting Gold: A Novel by Carmella Lowkis - Book Review

Staff Pick Badge
Spitting Gold: A Novel By Carmella Lowkis Cover Image
ISBN: 9781668024959
Availability: Click Title for IN STORE Location
Published: Atria Books - May 14th, 2024

More steam-punk than deeply historical, this story of rival sibling spiritualists in 1860s Paris kept me engaged with headstrong female characters who felt contemporary and malevolent ghosts that harkened back to the French Revolution. Family secrets are revealed when the point-of-view shifts from one sister to the other and everything you thought you knew is turned on its head. I can see this fun novel being a gateway for readers to Sarah Waters' more sophisticated novels on similar themes, such as Affinity and Fingersmith. ~ Reviewed by Kim van Alkemade

Shy Creatures: A Novel by Clare Chambers - Book Review

Staff Pick Badge
Shy Creatures: A Novel By Clare Chambers Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063258228
Availability: Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Mariner Books - November 12th, 2024

A wonderfully old-fashioned novel that I absolutely loved sinking into. I cared about every character in this deeply felt story of love and loss set among the staff and patients in a psychiatric facility in the 1960s. As past traumas are suspensefully revealed, characters are challenged to make hard choices, heal old wounds, and right past wrongs, leading to a satisfying and uplifting conclusion. Beautifully written, this novel will linger long in my mind. ~ Reviewed by Kim van Alkemade

The Golden Doves: A Novel by Martha Hall Kelly - Book Review

Staff Pick Badge
The Golden Doves: A Novel By Martha Hall Kelly Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593354902
Availability: Click Title for IN STORE Location
Published: Ballantine Books - April 2nd, 2024

From the author of the best-selling Lilac Girls comes this exciting, globe-trotting story with two sympathetic young women at its heart. During WWII in occupied France, Resistance spies Arlette and Josie are known as "The Golden Doves" until their arrest leads to their internment at Ravensbruck. Post-war, Josie vets German scientists for the US government while Arlette works in a Parisian cafe when an urgent mission brings the two former spies back together to find the truth about a Nazi doctor and--perhaps--reclaim Arlette's lost son. FIlled with real history, this historical novel is a fast-paced and well-plotted read that I enjoyed from beginning to end! ~ Reviewed by Kim van Alkemade

Keep by Jenny Haysom - Book Review

Staff Pick Badge
Keep By Jenny Haysom Cover Image
ISBN: 9781487012427
Availability: Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: House of Anansi Press - October 1st, 2024

I really enjoyed this gentle novel that thoughtfully explores how the things we choose to keep can hold us back, and the opportunity for growth that can come from letting go—of hoarded stuff, yes, but also old resentments, unrealistic expectations, damaging relationships, and negative perceptions. As the characters in this novel struggle with love, money, family, and one another—as well as their true selves—tragic revelations pave the way for unexpected connections. A quick read that will linger long in your mind. ~ Reviewed by Kim Van Alkemade


Subscribe to RSS - kvanalkemade_75542's blog