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Little known fact: I have a master's in education, and I have helped create and implement literacy programs for people of all ages. I have read lots of books about how to get kids interested in books, and How to Raise a Reader is among the best. I love the authors' approachable style, and I appreciate the inclusive nature of their recommendations. We'll be using this at Avid Bookshop as a resource to find books for various challenges and rites of passage in young readers' lives. —Janet
Continue to not let the bastards grind you down this September.
Avid favorite, Rachel Cusk's highly anticipated essay collection is coming in September.
Known for his essays and his powerful Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coat's first work of fiction comes this September.
I couldn't put down The Dutch House, an intricate weaving of two lives - brother and sister Danny and Maeve. Their whole tale is set with the Dutch House, a once-abandoned, intricately ornamented mansion, as the backdrop. As the pair's lives change the house stays the same, somehow frozen in time, giving their life a purpose and a point in which they can always compare. Patchett's novel is a tale of family, loss, love, and grounding. It is filled with intrigue and class conflict, and all of the messiness that happens when imperfect families are thrown in seemingly perfect conditions. I feel like I know Danny and Maeve better than I'll ever know my own siblings, and I love these imagined yet so real characters more for it. —Christy
Alternating between lucid memoir and mystical, dreamlike sketches of the world around her, Patti Smith spends The Year of the Monkey dreading and mourning the loss of her friends and America as it once was. It's strange, beautiful, troubling, comforting. —Tyler
Lara Vapnyar’s Divide Me By Zero is about love. It’s about a mother’s love, love lost, falling in love, what one would do for love, for, after all, isn’t love the most important thing? Katya Geller is an immigrant from the Soviet Union whose father died young (broke her mother’s heart), and whose mathematician mother was more than a little harsh. While in the midst of a mid-life crisis and her mother’s death, Katya finds the notes for her mother’s last unwritten math textbook. Using them to reflect upon her life and analyze how she got to this point is ridiculously entertaining. Vapnyar writes beautiful, weird, funny characters and the book is full of “warning notes to parents” regarding their children that are spot-on. —Rachel
Zadie Smith's first short story collection comes out this October.
An exciting declaration of passion and tenacity and what it’s like to be young, gifted, black, and queer in an America where every corner is marked with the specter of hatred, ignorance, and tragedy. Through adversity, Saeed Jones still manages to find a path to remain whole and resolute—within the tears, he finds purpose. This book cuts a groove into you. —Luis
Utterly perfect. —Janet
The sequel to Aciman's Call Me By Your Name arrives in October.
Some authors write about the strange and the absurd with cold aloofness. Kevin Wilson writes about weirdness in a way that is funny and warm--downright fiery, in fact. I couldn't have enjoyed this story of a young, acerbic woman and the creation of her own misfit family more. —Tyler
An engrossing and necessary work of memoir, queer perspective, and groundbreaking artistry examining a history of abuse through a series of prismatic episodes dissecting road trips, meetings with parents, Disney villains, and gaslighting. Stumbling through each new layer you delve deeper into the unshakeable, irrational hold of abuse. At times what seemed like romance transforms in the next page into folklore, raw emotion, queer theory, criticism, and horror. I am immensely grateful for the work Carmen Maria Machado has done in writing as generous a book as In the Dream House. —Luis
This book is for lovers of stories. It acts as a maze as it dares you to run blindly through the labyrinth inside its pages, which are brimming with fairytales, allegories, secret societies beneath New York City, pink hair, rich sensory details, time travel, doors that lead to unexpected places, and shimmering magic that seeps under your fingertips. There's a lot contained in these pages so it's a bit lengthy, but each location and character is richly developed so that it's nice to stay in the world, especially for fans who have been waiting for something as immersive after finishing The Night Circus. —Julie
Margaret Sexton Wilkerson’s The Revisioners is a tribute, a prayer, a triumphant cry of gratitude to those who came before us. The intergenerational memories and desire for freedom and survival push Ava forward when things get hard. Moving into her grandmother’s house with her son seems to be a temporary fix, but she has no idea the legacy she has inherited. The Revisioners honors with reverence the histories of those who had no voice. —Rachel
While it evokes the wild, untamable, and gritty essence of a western filled with free-spirited adventure, romance, and danger, at its core beats a tender and vulnerable heart. Everything's a high-stake gamble and our protagonists--despite the secrets they'e burdened with--allow themselves to get carried away. Refreshingly queer with a palpable sense of longing and lush beauty. —Luis
The epitomy of evocativeness (not really a word, I know, but it somehow works here) -- how so slight a volume can so completely envelope a reader in a specific period in history (Chile in the Pinochet regime) is the mark of a truly gifted writer. —Tamara
This one's for those of us who have cried half-naked in the kitchen, who have looked in the mirror, eyes puffy, snot dripping down your chin and wondered what the hell you're doing. It's a collection of curiosities, memories, and deep research into art, history, politics, and poetry where Christle has fashioned together a hybrid compendium memoir of a little-understood yet everyday function of our lives. Such a weird, beautiful, insightful gift that will help me feel a little less alone in my next cry. —Luis
This novel is hilarious, thoughtful, beautifully written, and totally addictive. I read it in a day and am so eager to talk about it with everyone. Too bad I have to wait a long time to do that since it’s not out until 2020. #humblebrag I know, but it’s the truth. —Janet
I usually don't laugh out loud while reading but this book had me at a whole new level. Hilliard weaves her journalism background with her messy childhood to produce a surprisingly well-researched memoir filled with food and admirable naiveté. I loved getting a glimpse into her hilarious, insightful world. —Christy
Oona Out of Order is a work of fiction that genuinely encouraged me to reflect upon my own mortality and the trajectory of my life. Oona wakes up on her birthday every year in a different part of her life. The difficulty this imposes is fascinating. Pop culture and music is ever present, as Oona is a musician and chapter titles are taken from song titles or lyrics. What would it be to live your life out of order? To instinctively want to second guess and redo what you saw as failures? At the heart, OONA OUT OF ORDER is about mastering the art of living in the moment and it is a terribly fun romp. —Rachel