Staff Favorites List- Winter 2019

Each of these titles is personally recommended by one of our Brilliant Booksellers.  The list features both newly published and older books and draws from a wide array of writers, styles, and genres, making for a list as eclectic and unique as our Brilliant customers.

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Fox 8: A Story Cover Image
By George Saunders, Chelsea Cardinal (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781984818027
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House - November 13th, 2018

Fox 8 is a fox who learns "Yuman" by listening to a mother tell her children bedtime stories. But when "danjer" comes, in the form of a new shopping mall that is destroying their habitat, Fox 8 must help his pack find a new source of food before they all starve to death. A heart-breaking story about nature, human nature, and the value of kindness. —Anthony

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City of Crows Cover Image
ISBN: 9781609454708
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: Europa Editions - September 18th, 2018

In search of her kidnapped son, Charlotte Picot braves the plague-ridden countryside of seventeenth century France. There are plenty of dangers—bandits, thieves, and the like—and a few unexpected perils, like demons and witchcraft. The supernatural elements are well played, subtle, and tricky. Though the characters are convinced of their power, the reader might be more skeptical. It reads like a window into the parts of history intentionally left out of the textbooks. —Caitlin

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Revolution Française: Emmanuel Macron and the quest to reinvent a nation Cover Image
ISBN: 9781472948601
Availability: Special Order - Check for Availability
Published: Bloomsbury Continuum - August 14th, 2018

The president of France is, in most regards, the polar opposite of the American president, except for the role they share: disruptor of the political status quo. Macron's technocratic and philosophical optimism is a strange beast in the land of ennui. Pedder provides comprehensive access to the rise of this charismatic figure and an insightful guide to politics in post-Brexit Europe. Whether Macron's ambitious project to transform France can succeed remains to be seen, but meanwhile, this book is an important work of journalism. —Sharon

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The Fall of Gondolin Cover Image
By J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (Editor), Alan Lee (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781328613042
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - August 30th, 2018

Christopher Tolkien's final installment in the Middle Earth saga. In this volume, we find several versions of a tale J.R.R. Tolkien was never able to finish in his lifetime, concerning the hidden city of Gondolin. A fantastic look into the early days of Middle Earth and the tales which would later shape the Lord of the Rings trilogy. A must have for Tolkien scholars and Middle Earth fans alike. —Jodie

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Land of Smoke (Pushkin Collection) Cover Image
By Sara Gallardo, Jessica Sequeira (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781782274032
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pushkin Collection - July 10th, 2018

Gallardo's short stories read like a vivid dream—caves stalked by monsters, a garden lost at sea, and clouds that determine patterns in human history. Her imagination is dark and knowing, and Gallardo easily slips between characters to deliver an intense collection. Some stories flow over many pages, and others last just a few paragraphs. Read this in its entirety or pick it up for a moment to read at random. You won't be disappointed. —Rachel

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Sometimes I Lie: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250144850
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Flatiron Books - October 30th, 2018

I'm not a huge fan of thrillers. I mean, I enjoyed Gone Girl as much as the next person, but I usually find the 'shocking twists' of the plots to be prosaic and predictable. But Sometimes I Lie pulls it off superbly. The twists are unexpected, and even when you think you know what's happening, you don't. I promise. —Caitlin

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The Sundial Cover Image
By Shirley Jackson, Victor LaValle (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9780143107064
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Classics - January 28th, 2014

When a spinster aunt has an apocalyptic vision (brought to her by her dead father), 12 people in a country house await the end of the world in this classic, but lesser-known, Shirley Jackson tale. As the assembled characters prepare for the coming end, tensions mount, egos rise, and a wonderful party is planned. This is Jackson at her darkest, funniest best. —Anthony

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This Is Marketing: You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn to See Cover Image
ISBN: 9780525540830
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Portfolio - November 13th, 2018

Seth Godin is universally accessible, even to the layman. His approach is ever more relevant with today's focus on creating an experiential environment over selling a product: earning the consumer's trust though authentic actions and philosophy rather than simple slogans. He presents principles with clear insight and observation, with his trademark examples making this a book that can genuinely make you better at connecting with people. —Peter

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The Current: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616206772
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: Algonquin Books - January 22nd, 2019

On a dark winter night, two college girls are plunged into an icy river by an unknown assailant. The survivor becomes obsessed with the unsolved murder of another girl in the same river 10 years earlier. But this is not a whodunit. With sublime prose, Johnston has painted a character study of small town life with its warts and beauty and the menace created by suspicion. This transcendent novel has an intoxicating blend of stark realism with a touch of the paranormal. I can't stop thinking about it. —Sharon

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Cræft: An Inquiry Into the Origins and True Meaning of Traditional Crafts Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393356571
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - January 15th, 2019

Craeft is a fascinating look at some traditional handcrafts, their roots and occasional downfall due to technological advancements. Langlands doesn't shy away from instructional description, sometimes leaving the reader feeling ready to tackle a new project. This is also part philosophical text on the state of 'modern' society and the place of hand craft, and a bit of background on Langlands' own journey as an archaeologist and crafter. —Jack

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Nausea Cover Image
By Jean-Paul Sartre, Richard Howard (Translated by), James Wood (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9780811220309
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions - March 25th, 2013

Antoine Roquentin is researching the Marquis de Rollebon, a long dead French aristocrat, in order to justify his own existence, but he is stricken with a peculiar illness that stalls his research. In order to make sense of the Nausea that he feels he begins writing a diary. The story follows those diary entries and the confrontations that occur because of his realizations. —Andrew

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The Old Drift: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101907146
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Hogarth - March 26th, 2019

So much life burst from the pages of this epic, set in colonial Africa, that buzzes and weaves with an intoxicating energy. The scope of the story is immense, multi-generational and full of growing pains, set in an ever changing Zambia. Lovers of Gabriel Garcia Marquez will be awed by this staggering work which spills over with an incredible tear-you-apart beauty. —Rachel

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Skyward (The Skyward Series #1) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399555770
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: Delacorte Press - November 6th, 2018

Brandon Sanderson delivers a science fiction yarn full of action, betrayal, and the extreme world building he's known for. In Skyward we meet Spensa "Spin" Nightshade, the daughter of a displaced pilot charged with cowardice. Spin fights her way through prejudice and opposition in an attempt to restore her family's name. While marketed toward Young Adults, fans of Sanderson's other worlds will find this just as enjoyable. —Jodie

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The Secret Lives of Color Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143131144
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: Penguin Books - October 24th, 2017

Ever wonder where the term "dragon's blood" comes from? Or thought about the social implications of "nude" pantyhose? Do you just like books full of pretty colors? Then this is the volume for you! A concise history of the colors of the world from "aubergine" to "zaffre," organized by shade, with easily digestible information about each one. Perfect for artists, aesthetes, or anyone with a curious mind and an eye for colors. —Anthony

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Someone Like Me Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316477420
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: Orbit - November 6th, 2018

This is a book that just gets stranger the more you think about it. On the surface, it's a fast paced thriller with all the fixings, including murder, mayhem, and madness. But it also raises lots of "what if?" questions. What if there was a world where something just a little different had happened? Would there be someone like me there? And what if that person wasn't the hero of the story, but the villain? —Caitlin

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A Wild Sheep Chase: A Novel (Vintage International) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375718946
Availability: Ships Today - Not Currently In-Store
Published: Vintage - April 9th, 2002

A nondescript magazine features an ad with an image of a sheep with a star on its back. This draws the attention of a man known only as the Boss, who tasks our unnamed narrator—the only one with a link to the photo—with finding the sheep from the image in exchange for a large sum of money. Murakami is one of my favorite authors and this is one of his strangest yarns. —Andrew