Staff Picks

Mrs Harkness and the Panda

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Mrs. Harkness and the Panda Cover Image
By Alicia Potter, Melissa Sweet (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780375844485
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers - March 13th, 2012

In 1934, the panda was a seldom-seen and even mythical creature. So too, the woman explorer. Enter Ruth Harkness, fashionista, determined to go to China and find herself such an elusive beast. Local author Potter honors her heroine’s panache with lively, plucky prose, and Melissa Sweet forgoes the saccharine in favor of a vibrant scrapbook approach. An inspired expedition, with a little bit of something very cute.


Rachel


Killer Stuff and Tons of Money

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Killer Stuff and Tons of Money: An Insider's Look at the World of Flea Markets, Antiques, and Collecting Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143121053
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Penguin Books - May 29th, 2012

A killer read and enthralling sneak peak behind the scenes of the modern day antique business.  It includes an honest look at the Brimfield Fair from a dealer's point of view,  and features eye-widening information on addictive collecting and an amazing amount of knowledge and antiquing tips on how not to appear a rank amateur.  Truly fascinating reading for anyone even slightly interested in the business and for those of us who have ever been seduced by a "unique" find or deal.

Susannah


The Man Who Planted Trees

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The Man Who Planted Trees: Lost Groves, Champion Trees, and an Urgent Plan to Save the Planet Cover Image
$25.00
ISBN: 9781400069064
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Spiegel & Grau - April 17th, 2012

After a near-death experience David Milarch has made his life’s work the propagation by cloning of the world’s Champion trees in hopes of protecting both those species and the planet itself. One can remain skeptical of Milarch’s mystical experiences yet be fascinated by the new research Robbins reports regarding the amazing effects trees have on their local ecosystems and that of the entire planet.

Dale


No One Ever Told Us That

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No One Ever Told Us That: Money and Life Letters to My Grandchildren Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781455511556
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Business Plus - April 3rd, 2012

John Spooner writes from the heart in friendly and upbeat letters to his grandchildren, giving financial lessons and kindly advice about life. It is easy to read and hard to put down once you start. Some essential tidbits from Spooner's book include 'always have a dream', 'never spend the money until it is in your pocket', 'all life is relationships'. This is a treasure for your own grandchildren and a perfect gift for graduates. Spooner is a natural storyteller and his wisdom and love for life resound in these insightful, affectionate letters.

Megan


Midnight in Peking

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Midnight in Peking: How the Murder of a Young Englishwoman Haunted the Last Days of Old China Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780143121008
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Penguin Books - April 24th, 2012

Midnight in Peking is a story of empire, fascism, colonialism, lust, and murder. Set against the background of impending Japanese occupation and lingering mistrust among the Chinese and foreigners in the city, the body of a prominent young girl is found. Despite (or because) of multiple players in the investigation, the mystery of her death was never officially solved. Paul French, journalist, analyst and Shanghai resident brings life to this dusty story. Midnight in Peking provided me with one of my favorite benefits to reading – a whole world of other books to explore!
Jane J.


The Bluebird Effect

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The Bluebird Effect: Uncommon Bonds with Common Birds Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780547003092
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Houghton Mifflin - March 20th, 2012

A delightful book of skillful backyard birding, organized by season and species and illustrated with the author's beautiful sketches and paintings.  From talking starlings and rescued bluebirds to starving turkey vultures, each chapter provides entertainment, educates and draws back the curtain on the private lives of the birds we see so often but never really know.  

Susannah


Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest for Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, and Other Dwellers of Imaginary Realms

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Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest for Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, and Other Dwellers of Imaginary Realms Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781599219943
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Lyons Press - September 1st, 2010

Even if you've never rolled a polyhedral die in your life, you're bound to enjoy Ethan Gilsdorf's journey from teenage dungeon master to geek scholar extraordinaire.  Written in the form of a quest, this book chronicles the author's travels through various fantasy subcultures, while attempting to answer some big questions: What makes fantasy appealing?  Is it escapism, and is that healthy?  Why would a self-respecting liberal feminist pine for the Middle Ages?  Whether donning a monk tunic for a live action role playing game or trying to pick up chicks at DragonCon, Gilsdorf turns out witty, insightful journalism that's a pleasure to read.  
Kim


The Peculiars

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The Peculiars Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781419701788
Availability: It's Complicated--Contact Us for More Info
Published: Amulet Books - May 1st, 2012

When Lena sets out to learn the truth about her long lost father, she wonders if she, too, is violent, wild, peculiar.  Drawing heavily from the gothic tradition and set in an alternative version of the late 1800's, McQuerry's exceptional novel is both bildungsroman and roaring steampunk adventure--flying machines and goggles included.  It's also a thought-provoking examination of difference, criminality, science, and faith which features a strong protagonist trying to navigate a culture of genetic prejudice and enforced femininity.  Don't judge by the cover--you don't want to miss this gorgeous ride.
Kim


Thinking the 20th Century

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Thinking the Twentieth Century Cover Image
$36.00
ISBN: 9781594203237
Availability: It's Complicated--Contact Us for More Info
Published: Penguin Press HC, The - February 2nd, 2012

Judt, the late great author of Postwar, Past Imperfect etc. had been thinking long and deeply about history, Europe, America, and the state and weal of the world when he became ill and could not physically write. He produced this remarkable dialogue/rumination with historian Timothy Snyder via a unique long-form interview format.  Thought-provoking and full of intellectual pleasures.

Gary


The Information

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The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781400096237
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Vintage - March 6th, 2012

Talking drums, the difference engine, code breaking and computer software. As with Chaos, Gleick’s The Information is not just a story of science, but a story of how we think about ourselves and our world. Filled with fascinating people and eye-opening perspectives, Gleick guides us through the discovery, growth, and development of one of the most important ideas in the modern world.
Josh


Z is for Moose

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Z Is for Moose Cover Image
By Kelly Bingham, Paul O. Zelinsky (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780060799847
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Greenwillow Books - February 28th, 2012

Moose cannot wait for his turn during the Alphabet Photo-shoot to take center stage. As each letter, A, B, C, D, parades by, Moose can barely contain his excitement. But when the alphabet rolls on to M, Moose finds himself passed over for ‘Mouse’. His fury unleashed, Moose begins disrupting many other letters’ photo-shoots, in this hilarious, new alphabet book. Paul Zelinsky’s detailed illustrations ask to be pored over, only eliciting more laughs.

Jory


Peaches,

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Peaches Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780060733070
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: Harper Teen - April 24th, 2012

Three very different girls end up on a peach farm in Georgia for the summer. Initially, Birdie, Leeda, and Murphy want nothing to do with each other. But as the summer progresses, they find their lives weaving meaningfully together, as they negotiate their families, deep secrets, and boys who they may (or may not) be falling in love with. The first book in the Peaches series triumphs unlikely friendships, and is full of warmth.
Jory


The Cat’s Table

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The Cat's Table Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780307700117
Availability: It's Complicated--Contact Us for More Info
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - October 4th, 2011

Imagine letting your eleven year old son board a ship in Colombo bound for England.  This is the stage Ondaatje set’s for three young adolescent boys traveling alone in the 1950’s. I still feel the sheer sense of joy the boys experience finding each other at the Cat’s Table and begin their adolescent romp exploring the ship.  In exquisite prose Ondaatje weaves this well told story of their adventures on board ship and after.
Jane D.


HIPPOPPOSITES

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Hippopposites Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781419701511
Availability: Available at Warehouse
Published: ABRAMS - May 1st, 2012

Just when you thought you'd seen every possible version of an opposites board book, along comes one that is the opposite of all the rest!! Gorgeous graphics and unusual pairings (clear - blurry; invisible-visible) make this book a must for every child's library. Take a look.
Carol


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