Heather's Picks

Heather found her way to Phoenix Books after retiring from full-time teaching. Her primary interest is in fiction, but she also ventures into poetry, nature, gardening, biography, history, and mystery. Lately, she has been reading some middle grade fiction to help young people.

Reviewed by: 
Heather
The Sunlit Night Cover Image
$30.16
ISBN: 9781632861122
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Bloomsbury USA - June 2nd, 2015

In the barren landscape of the Far North, Frances and Yasha find refuge in each other. She escapes a broken relationship by going to an artist's colony, and Yasha arrives from Brooklyn to bury his father whose wish is to be buried at the top of the world in Lofoten, 95 miles from the Arctic Circle. Love gives them a place to call home.


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Heather
At the Water's Edge Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780385523233
Availability: Special Order
Published: Spiegel & Grau - March 31st, 2015

Set in the Scottish Highlands during WWII, this novel follows a search for the Loch Ness monster by a socialite's husband and partner. Full of romance and drama.


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Heather
My Brilliant Friend, Book One: Childhood, Adolescence Cover Image
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translator)
$17.00
ISBN: 9781609450786
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Europa Editions - September 25th, 2012

Set in Naples in the 1950s, My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante is the first in a series about the friendship of two working class young women, Elena Greco and Lila Cerullo. The women depend on each other to confront life's challenges even though friendship is not a perfect shelter from hardship. The author shows a city and a nation undergoing change. This series would appeal to readers who like a sense of place and complex character development. Fans of Downton Abbey or Mr. Selfridge would gravitate to this story.


The Story of a New Name Cover Image
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translator)
$18.00
ISBN: 9781609451349
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Europa Editions - September 3rd, 2013

The second book in the Elena Ferrante's Neopolitan novels.


Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay Cover Image
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translator)
$18.00
ISBN: 9781609452339
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Europa Editions - September 2nd, 2014

The third book in Elena Ferrante's Neopolitan novels.


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Heather
Blue Horses: Poems Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9781594204791
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Press - October 14th, 2014

In her most recent collection of poems, Oliver again captures my attention. Her poems are like meditations.  She encourages us to be still, to know nature and our relationship to it. She helps us to treasure small moments.


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Heather
Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780805095159
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Metropolitan Books - October 7th, 2014

A professor at Harvard Medical School, Gawande shows how modern medicine counters the realities of aging and death.  By including research on nursing homes and   hospitals and by telling the stories of his own patients and hi own family, Gawande reveals the suffering that this dynamic has created.  His book is hopeful as he shows the ways that doctors, family members and patients can hard the hard conversation to make sure that they do not sacrifice what people care about in their lives. A book we all should read for those we love and for ourselves.


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Heather
Mister Owita's Guide to Gardening: How I Learned the Unexpected Joy of a Green Thumb and an Open Heart Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780399157981
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons a Member of Penguin Group - March 4th, 2014

This memoir shows how a magnetic man from Kenya, who is skilled at gardening, transforms the life (and garden) of a middle-aged woman.  By putting assumptions aside, each one of them develops a caring bond for the other.  Moving, uplifting, gently rendered story of love.


Reviewed by: 
Heather
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage Cover Image
By Haruki Murakami, Philip Gabriel (Translator)
$16.00
ISBN: 9780804170123
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - May 5th, 2015

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki  is another masterpiece by the renowned Japanese author. I couldn’t put this book down.  How masterfully Murakami tells the story of one young man who becomes an outsider from   his tightknit group of friends from his youth.  He seeks to reconnect with his friends and to understand his relationship to others. “Some things are too complicated to explain in any language.”  This book resonates with you long after it has been read. --Heather


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Heather
All the Light We Cannot See Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781476746586
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - May 6th, 2014

An amazing storyteller, Doerr weaves together the lives of two teenagers-one Marie-Lure, a blind French girl, and the other, Werner, an orphaned German youth.  With alternating chapters, flash forwards and flash backs, Doerr shows us the capacity for people to care for one another amidst the carnage of WWII. The light which was invisible is made visible. Shortlisted for the National Book Award.2014


Reviewed by: 
Heather
Draw! Cover Image
By Raul Colon, Raul Colon (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781442494923
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books - September 16th, 2014

A child’s imagination is fully expressed in this magnificently illustrated book.  Both humorous and fanciful, Colon inspires us to tap into our creativity.


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Heather
The Heart of Everything That Is: The Untold Story of Red Cloud, an American Legend Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781451654660
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Simon & Schuster - November 5th, 2013

“The white man made a lot of promises and they kept one. They promised to take my land and
they took it.” Red Cloud (1821-1909)

Written from primary sources including an autobiography by Red Cloud, Drury and Clavin
recount the story of the Lakota Sioux chief Red Cloud whose story makes him an American
legend. As the son of an alcoholic Brule who died young, Red Cloud was a self-made man who
rose to be the warrior chief and spiritual leader of is people. Red Cloud learned to control his
rage and remain still. He developed a self-discipline that enabled him to assess the bluecoats
and achieve what many great generals had been unable to do. He was able to unite the
warring tribes under his leadership to defeat the Americans at Ft. Phil Kearny and force the US
government to approach him to negotiate a peace.

Drury and Clavin neither romanticize Red Cloud nor the Plains Indians’ struggle to survive the
westward movement- of homesteaders, miners, and eventually the railroaders. From the
trains, the white man wiped out the buffalo, the life-sustaining food for the Sioux. The authors
do provide a new perspective that of the Sioux chief as he saw the white man’s ineptness,
political ambition, greed and land grabbing instincts destroy the land he loved.


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