Things You Should Know About

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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Staff Pick: Chicks Dig Gaming by Jennifer Brozek

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The question isn’t “why don’t more women enjoy gaming?,” but “why aren’t more people aware that women enjoy gaming on their own terms?” This collection of entertaining, provocative, eye-opening essays offers some intriguing answers.

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Staff Pick: The City & the City by China Mieville

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Equal parts science fiction and detective noir, The City & The City follows a murder investigation that spans two cities with mysterious boundaries.

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Staff Pick: Pyongyang: A Journey in North Korea by Guy Delisle

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On a two month assignment in Pyongyang Delisle adjusts to curfews, the choice between Restaurant #1 or Restaurant #2 for dinner, and music that "sounds like a barney remix of 'god save the queen.'" With artistry and wit he shares a critical and compassionate glimpse into the world's most isolated country.

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Staff Pick: Hollywood Trilogy by Don Carpenter

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If you loved all the scenes from Mad Men when Don floated off w/ grifters, losers, fallen angels and prostitutes, then Mr. Don Carpenter will provide your re-up.

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From the publisher:

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Staff Pick: Molly Fox's Birthday by Deirdre Madden

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An unnamed playwright spends time in her friend's, the famous actor Molly Fox, home reflecting on their lives. The narrator ponders not only the nature of her work but her place in the world and role as daughter and sister. Contemplative and emotional without melodrama, this novel combines pathos, humor, and insight to sophisticated effect.

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From the publisher:

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Staff Pick: Encounters at the Heart of the World by Eliabeth Fenn

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This 2015 Pulitzer Prize winner is the thoughtful journey of one historian as she travels the varied paths of archaeology, ecology, and the many fragments of the past to rediscover a fascinating people who cut as deeply into the American landscape as the broad Missouri River itself.

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From the publisher:

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