Sean's Picks

Sean really likes the books in our history section and is always happy to give a recommendation.

Reviewed by: 
Sean
American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143110002
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - March 14th, 2017

This is a historical and cultural look at the American juxtaposition of individual liberty and the common good. Not entirely liberal versus conservative, this looks at the cultural geographic regions of North America and how that influences perspective and how that can slowly change over time. It is a good way to ask what democracy really means to you, the individual, and what you want to get out of it.


Reviewed by: 
Sean
Arcadia Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781101970836
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - January 10th, 2017

The present is Oxford, England in the 50's. The future is a near-distant dystopian society. The third story arc is a utopian world in the mind of an Oxford professor who lives in the first arc. All three realities are integrally linked. Confused? This is a tasty literary treat about what constitutes reality, morality, and a just society. And oh yeah, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien are drinking buddies of said professor!


Reviewed by: 
Sean
Star Wars: Aftermath Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9781101885925
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Del Rey Books - March 29th, 2016

Probably not necessary reading for any other than Star Wars fans, Wendig nevertheless provides a much better read than most of the other fluff in this sub-genre. Although Leia, Han, and Chewie all make apprearances, this is really about a whole new set of characters, including a comically homicidal droid, set within a year of the rebellion's defeat of Darth Vader and the Empire. The action in these books attempts to bridge some of the gap between the original movie trilogy and the newest one.


Star Wars: Life Debt: Aftermath Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781101966938
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Del Rey Books - July 12th, 2016

Reviewed by: 
Sean
The Magician's Land Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780147516145
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - June 9th, 2015

The final book in the Magicians trilogy, this was somehow the most satisfying. I don't usually think series get better as they go along, but for anyone who thought Quentin Coldwater was just an older, angstier Harry Potter, keep reading! Beyond the obvious homage to Rowling and C.S. Lewis' Narnia, Grossman really creates an interesting set of characters who are very flawed, yet show more nuance than the previous beloved icons. How young people would truly behave with unbelievable powers is at the heart of this magical series.


Reviewed by: 
Sean
The Name of the Wind Cover Image
$19.00
ISBN: 9780756405892
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Daw Books - April 7th, 2009

This is an old favorite of mine that just keeps holding up! First in the Kingkiller Chronicles, it is an epic fantasy that recounts the life of an orphan who goes from poverty to wizarding university, where the power of magic is held by those who know the secret names of things. Deeply satisfying, this is something like Pillars of the Earth meets Harry Potter. It is the micro to Game of Thrones' macro!


Reviewed by: 
Sean
The Relic Master Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501125768
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - October 25th, 2016

An enjoyable, quick historical fiction about the "creation" of the Shroud Of Turin. Great for people into the Middle Ages/Renaissance/Reformation.


Reviewed by: 
Sean
A Fighting Chance Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781250062253
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Picador USA - March 31st, 2015

If we're up the creek, then Elizabeth Warren is our paddle! It doesn't feel like there's a lot of people in government fighting for the little people these days, but Senator Warren is a very loud exception! A great choice for fans of politics, progressive thought, or memoir. Her language is folksy and engaging.


Reviewed by: 
Sean
Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780767929714
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Anchor Books - June 12th, 2012

A gripping account of the assassination of a president and how the state of medicine (and the refusal to believe in antiseptics and sterilization) helped finish a job that would not have otherwise proven lethal. Historical narrative at its best!


Reviewed by: 
Sean
The Golem and the Jinni Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062110848
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - December 31st, 2013

A beautifully written historical novel that also just happens to be fantastical. Disparate lives thrown together in 1900 New York City's ethnic neighborhoods.
Will appeal to lovers of historical fiction, urban fantasy, and folklore.


Reviewed by: 
Sean
The Ocean at the End of the Lane Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062255662
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow & Company - June 3rd, 2014

A perfect novella of dark magical grace. Perhaps Gaiman's most satisfying fiction yet. Doesn't try to do too much, just tells a tale of youth and the dark dangerous side of fairy magic. Will appeal to fans of Gaiman and fans of urban fantasy. Also anyone who enjoys bittersweet tales of youth but can step away from realism.


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