What We’re Reading This Week

this is not my hat jan


this is not my hatThis Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen

“It’s about a tiny fish who collects hats. I’m pretty sure that he probably likes motorcycles and has the singing voice of an angel, but I can’t know for certain. All I know is this book is adorable and makes me irrationally happy!”


kindredKindred by Octavia Butler

“This is the first Octavia Butler I have ever read and it’s so compelling I have a hard time putting it down. The subject matter is emotionally difficult and Butler’s writing barrels forward leaving barely enough time to breath. But she seems to know exactly when to pull me back from the precipice. I’m officially a fan.”


the gastronomical meThe Gastronomical Me by MFK Fisher

“I’m making my way through MFK Fisher’s The Gastronomical Me this week (in the collection of her work The Art of Eating). It’s a memoir in very brief essays about encounters with food—stories about her first oysters at an all-girls’ school, her family’s best cook who committed gruesome suicide, nightly meals at a French boarding house whose Madame eats with her terrier on her lap. Some of these are truly surreal! And surprisingly racy. Fisher was queer like many mid-century foodies, so there’s great gossip in these pages. I love the way Fisher’s writing about food taps into so many other categories of experience: love and dissatisfaction and confusion and delight.”


inherent viceInherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon

“Pynchon melds crime fiction with the American counter-culture to illustrate the establishment taking over in the 70s. Set mostly in Gordita Beach, the laid-back stoner attitude and Pynchon’s hilarious, yet precise, prose makes for a thrilling page-turner that one can take in leisurely. This has to be one of the greatest love letters to the end of an era…”


the souls of black folkThe Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. DuBois

“I am reading one African-American authors for Black History Month and this is my inaugural nonfiction pick. Some say that these essays from 1903 are no longer relevant, but I’m finding them prescient and vital for understanding what happened in the 20th century and its defining problem – “the problem of the color line.” DuBois’ influence on MLK is also striking, from words like “men will judge men by their souls and not by their skins,” to his insistence, against those leaders who counselled patience and conciliation, that leaders could not wait to fight for civil rights. Plus, he’s one of the greatest prose stylists this country has ever seen (and driven to Ghana). A must read!”

You can find the books listed about on our shelves (with the exception of The Gastronomical Me, available through special order) and via bookpeople.com – just click on the title to view on our website.

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