Things You Should Know About

Staff Pick: Arctic Dreams by Barry Lopez

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A study of the arctic from all angles. Lopez’s lyrical prose is is somehow adept at describing both the beauty of natural phenomena and the technical mechanisms from which they arise.

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Barry Lopez's National Book Award-winning classic study of the Far North is widely considered his masterpiece.

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Staff Pick: Art & Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland

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The quintessential self-help book for every artist, Art & Fear will make you understand how and why you make art, and even why you don’t. If you’ve ever found yourself in an art dry-spell, this is the book you will turn to time and time again for support.

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Staff Pick: All the Birds, Singing by Evie Wyld

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Reminiscent of a 19th century Gothic novel (moors, wolves, mysterious strangers appearing at the door in the middle of the night), Wyld creates an eerie landscape where everyone is suspect. Who knew a sheep farm could be so creepy?

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Staff Pick: The Dog Stars by Peter Heller

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The Dog Stars gives us the gripping story of a man who has already survived the first wave of the apocalypse and finds himself asking the question, “What now?” If you don’t stay up reading all night to find out and the world falls apart tomorrow, all I can say is good luck.

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Hig somehow survived the flu pandemic that killed everyone he knows. Now his wife is gone, his friends are dead, and he lives in the hangar of a small abandoned airport with his dog, Jasper, and a mercurial, gun-toting misanthrope named Bangley.

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Staff Pick: Kindred by Octavia Butler

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Kindred, a terrifyingly realistic journey through time, is brought to you by Octavia Butler, a MacArthur, Nebula and a two time Hugo Award winner. The protagonist Dana, a 21st century black woman, is drawn back to the antebellum south to save a prominent white ancestor repeatedly throughout the course of the novel. Butler has a incredible ability to make the reader believe in the impossible. Kindred is a prefect introduction to her fantastically executed science fiction novels. ENJOY!

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Staff Pick: The Invention of Murder by Judith Flanders

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An entertaining survey of high profile murder cases in Victorian Britain, Judith Flanders takes the reader on a journey from murder as crime to murder as art. In her course, Flanders proves Thomas de Quincey right when he said, “the world in general... are very bloody-minded; and all they want in a murder is a copious effusion of blood.”

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Staff Pick: Loitering by Charles D'Ambrosio

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Whales. Suicide. Russian orphans. Human waste as fertilizer. Sharp without being didactic, it doesn’t really matter what D’Ambrosio is writing about - you’ll want to read what he has to say.

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Staff Pick: Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey

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A tremendously detailed fantasy novel set in a reimagined France, this first in a series also happens to be fabulously sexy. Phèdre nó Delaunay is a believable and sympathetic courtesan, spy, and divinely-ordained masochist who puts her many talents to all possible use. Join the many fans who have cosplayed in "that dress" (you'll know the one), fantasized about the virginal male bodyguard Joscelin and the intensely dangerous villain Melisande, or even gotten a replica of Phèdre's iconic tattoo.

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Staff Pick: Fiend by Peter Stenson

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This novel is not for the faint of heart, or for those who are easily offended. Just when Chase thought his life was over… it only just began.

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There's more than one kind of monster. When Chase first sees the little girl in umbrella socks disemboweling the Rottweiler, he's not too concerned. As a longtime meth addict, he's no stranger to such horrifying, drug-fueled hallucinations.

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Staff Pick: The Hunting Gun by Yasushi Inoue

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A tragic love affair and its aftermath are charted in this emotional but completely unsentimental masterpiece.

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