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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.

The Art of Breakfast: B&b Style Recipes to Make at Home by Dana Moos

Reviewed by: 
Heather
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The Art of Breakfast: B&b Style Recipes to Make at Home Cover Image
$29.95
ISBN: 9781608935963
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Down East Books - August 13th, 2019

If you want to jazz up your breakfast, Moos provides a medley of recipes-a feast for your family and friends. We like to make Poached Eggs on Potato, Onion, and Bacon Hash with Grated Sharp White Cheddar, Truffled Sour Cream, and Fresh Chives (photo) The contents include fruit course, sweet entrees, savory entrees, baked goods, side dishes it garnishes, sauces, syrups or flavored butters, guest gifts and menus.


This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger

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Heather
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This Tender Land: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781476749297
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Atria Books - September 3rd, 2019

A Huckleberry Finn like odyssey set during the Great Depression, this novel follows the journey of four children, brothers Albert and Odie O'Banian,a Sioux Indian Mose, and orphan Emmeline Frost, who escape the hands of a cruel headmistress at an Indian Training School in North Dakota to paddle the Gilead River to the headway of the Mississippi River and find their way to the O'Banian boys home in St. Louis. Some of the people they encounter on their journey are evil and malicious while others are kind and considerate. Krueger gives us a portrait of the great destitute masses that camp in tents along the river or live in ramshackle huts in St Paul. Rebellious Odie learns to have faith in humanity and find the goodness in his own soul even when he feels he is not worthy of it.


The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich

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Heather
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The Night Watchman Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780062671189
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Harper - March 3rd, 2020

Another stellar novel by masterful storyteller Louise Erdrich. All life is fragile. Erdrich shows how family holds it together.  Erdrich’s grandfather (Thomas), the night watchman decides to organize the tribe to fight against Senator Watkins intent to remove the tribe from their land in North Dakota in the 1950s. His niece Patrice wants to find her sister Vera who has fallen into bad hands in the city. When families endure hardship, they care for one another, show resolve, and trust in the spirits of their ancestors watching over them in the Northern Lights. 


The Overstory by Richard Powers

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Heather
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The Overstory: A Novel Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9780393356687
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 2nd, 2019

Enlightening. A book deserving of all of the accolades and prizes (Pulitzer 2019) it has received. As humans, we share 25% of our genes with trees, and yet as we have evolved, we know so little of the biosystems that trees possess in order to survive, thrive and support other life. Powers' knowledge of the intricacy of forest life makes us see our relationship to the planet in a new way.


Lost Children Archive by Valerie Luiselli

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Heather
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Lost Children Archive: A novel Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780525436461
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Vintage - February 4th, 2020

Riveting! Creative! Luselli captures the dark side of the American dream when a family of four heads west on a road trip in search of Geronimo's ghosts and two lost sisters, undocumented children seeking asylum in the United States. The ten year old boy and five year old girl join the search in the desert. The author refers to Children's Crusades, Orphan Trains as well as trans from Central America to remind us of our shared humanity.


The Nickel Boys

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Heather
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The Nickel Boys (Winner 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction): A Novel Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9780385537070
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Doubleday - July 16th, 2019

Colin Whitehead is a powerful storyteller whose narrative is based on a true story. For 111 years, the Florida Reform School silently mistreated its young men until archaeologists from the University of Southern Florida unearthed unmarked graves of some of its residents. Two boys Elwood Curtis and Turner hope to earn enough points to be released from the torturous conditions. Elwood, inspired by the words of Martin Luther King Jr. "Love your enemies", hopes for the best. Decades later Turner pays tribute to Elwood's idealism.


Apeirogon by Colum McCann

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Apeirogon: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781400069606
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Random House - February 25th, 2020

A masterpiece! Two fathers, Bassam (Palestinian) and Rami (Israeli) share unending grief as a result of their daughters' deaths- ten year old Abir shot by an 18 year old Israeli trooper and 14 year old Smadar killed by three Palestinian suicide bombers in Jerusalem. Within the 1001 short chapters, some one sentence long, McCann provides readers with an amazing story of humanity-of what is possible if we can see each other with kindness and hope. This book is a compelling read-full of history, philosophy, music, art and archaeology.


Fly Girls, by Keith O'Brien

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Heather
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Fly Girls: How Five Daring Women Defied All Odds and Made Aviation History Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781328592798
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Eamon Dolan/Mariner Books - March 5th, 2019

As a biography of five early female aviators, O'Brien traces the development of the airline industry in the 1920's and 1930's. These five talented aviators strove to be recognized for their skill and courage as pilots, not as women pilots. They paved the way for women to be accepted in the workforce. Their personal stories are filled with sacrifice and indomitable courage.


Washington Black, by Esi Eduyan

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Heather
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Washington Black Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780525563242
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Vintage - April 9th, 2019

Who could imagine an eleven year old field slave, Washington Black, escaping a Barbados sugar plantation to travel with his master's brother to the Arctic, Nova Scotia and eventually to England. A skilled artist, Washington Black produces illustrations that help to record natural history. A strong narrator, an unforgettable character.


Lost Children Archive, by Valeria Luiselli

Reviewed by: 
Heather
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Lost Children Archive: A novel Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780525520610
Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days
Published: Knopf - February 12th, 2019

A book for our times. Luiselli shows how callousness toward other cultures erodes our own. A family of four leaves NYC with 7 boxes of poems, documents, maps and music in search of Geronimo and the last Apaches (father's quest) and ins search of two lost children who have runaway from a deportation center at the Mexican border (mother's quest). The road trip pulls the couple apart while the son and daughter are intent upon finding the lost children. Creative storytelling that transcends the usual road trip story.


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