Pick of the Decade

Liberation Trilogy

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An Army at Dawn: The War in North Africa, 1942-1943, Volume One of the Liberation Trilogy Cover Image
ISBN: 9780805087246
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Holt Paperbacks - May 15th, 2007

Atkinson's magnum opus is a superb accomplishment, observing myriad aspects of the European War, from command personalities and tactics to foot soldiers. Every paragraph lives with fascinating anecdotes, and the whole of it is beautifully written. A great and honorable addition to WW2 history and analysis.


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The Day of Battle: The War in Sicily and Italy, 1943-1944 (The Liberation Trilogy #2) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780805088618
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Holt Paperbacks - September 16th, 2008

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The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945 (The Liberation Trilogy #3) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250037817
Availability: Available at Wholesaler
Published: Picador - May 13th, 2014

Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship and Marriage

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Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage: Stories (Vintage International) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375727436
Availability: Available at Wholesaler
Published: Vintage - October 8th, 2002

I'm a big fan of short stories, so for my pick of the decade I went with the master, Alice Munro.  These nine tender, honest stories capture the inner lives of ordinary people that are made to seem extraordinary.  With beautiful details, Munro is brilliant at describing the deepest of human emotions, while the plots twist in unexpected directions.  Read it and you'll understand why she won the Nobel Prize.


Master of the Senate

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Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson III Cover Image
ISBN: 9780394720951
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - April 25th, 2003

This is the best biography, and possibly the best history, I have ever read – whether or not you really know or think you care about Lyndon Johnson. It’s third in a series of four (eventually five, when Caro finishes the last volume), and I think the most dazzling and fascinating of them. As much about the Senate as about Johnson, the book explains how he radically reshaped the institution so he could take control of it – that control culminates in the passage of the first civil rights legislation since Reconstruction. It’s massive, meticulously researched, and incredibly engaging. Worth the effort.David

Brave Companions

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Brave Companions Cover Image
ISBN: 9780671792763
Availability: Available at Wholesaler
Published: Simon & Schuster - November 1st, 1992

This book is an appropriate choice for my pick of the decade as it has been a favorite of mine for much longer than that.  It's a wonderful collection of essays about historical figures, some famous and some not, related in McCullough's well loved style, which is to say informative without being preachy.  Not as daunting in size as some of his other works, this gem of a book does not need to be read in any particular order but can be, to borrow a word from the title, a dependable reading companion for any reader at any time.



City of Thieves

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City of Thieves: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780452295292
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - March 31st, 2009

During the Nazi siege of Leningrad, an unlikely duo have one chance to save themselves from execution - find a dozen eggs for a powerful Soviet colonel to use in his daughter's wedding cake. City of Thieves is a gripping adventure and coming of age story that ricochets between comedy and tragedy on a single page.


Talking Into The Ear of A Donkey

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Talking Into the Ear of a Donkey: Poems Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393343649
Availability: It's Complicated--Contact us for more info
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - November 5th, 2012

Robert Bly’s most recent book Talking Into the Ear of a Donkey contains poems that range from insight fully humorous to wildly precious observations of what being human entails.  He is this year’s recipient of the Poetry Society of America’s most prestigious award the “Frost Medal” for “ distinguished lifetime achievement in poetry.”


The Book Thief

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The Book Thief Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375842207
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers - September 11th, 2007

If there was ever a book that stood the test of time, The Book Thief is it. Since its publication in the U.S. in 2007 it has spent  over 400 weeks on the NY Times Bestseller List, been translated into 40 languages and continues to sell regularly – over 850 copies to date. The intricate story about life and death in World War II Germany is intriguing in itself. But just select any page and bask in Zusak’s language. It is an astonishing and lovely experience.




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