What We’re Reading This Week


The Annotated Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite books of all time. I have seen every movie or mini-series, read the modern-day adaptations, and I own eight copies of the book. So, whenever I need a pick-me-up, Jane Austen has my back. This time around, I’m reading the annotated edition, which is full of historical context, close readings, and insights into Austen’s life. Any Jane Austen nerd will easily devour this.



Conclave by Robert Harris

I’m perfectly willing to admit that the idea of a locked room mystery novel taking place inside a Papal Conclave doesn’t necessarily scream ‘You Must Read This!’ at anybody but me, but believe me when I tell you, You Must Read This! When the pope dies, more than a billion people become fascinated with the secret goings on of the College of Cardinals as they meet in Rome to elect a new Supreme Pontiff. One of the reasons we become so enamored is the mystery that surrounds this event, and in Conclave, Robert Harris peels that mystery back layer by layer to reveal to us the ceremonies, celebrations, and plain politics of a Papal election. Harris was given unprecedented access to the inner workings of the conclave process, as well as those of the Dean of Cardinals, and this shows in his vividly detailed writing of the scene in the Sistine Chapel as each man votes his conscience, or so we hope. But woven in with these rich details are terrible stories of corruption rife within the highest ranks of the Church. A front runner laid low as the young postulant he once forced an illicit affair on surprisingly returns to Rome just in time for the conclave. An under the radar Cardinal begins to gather steam, but is his rise the will of God or does his abnormally large bank account have something to do with it? These questions and more face Dean Jocopo Lomelli, our slightly cynical and world weary protagonist, as he must dig into the crimes of his fellow Cardinals and solve their mysteries before one of them ends up the Pope!

-Thomas W


And to conclude, one of our booksellers wrote her review in verse! 

blood water paint

Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough

This week I’ve opened
Pages. Sent them–
Whirring by.
Consuming poems
Like flames.
Joy McCullough’s
The YA verse novel
of artist
Artemisia Gentileschi.
Filled with
words that
Artemisia’s veins
Run thick with
All converge.
Her subjects,
Given life
To help the artist
Reclaim hers.
I am a terrible poet–
But McCullough’s verse
Bleeds. Bleeds. Bleeds.


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