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Kristen's Picks

Phoenix Books’ events and publicity manager, Kristen has worked and traveled in Ireland, Italy, Maine, and Philadelphia, and has since returned home to Vermont. Kristen is a fan of nonfiction with an anthropological bent and of fiction authors who walk the line between fantasy and reality (e.g. Alice Hoffman and Neil Gaiman). She will forever be devoted to Terry Pratchett (and Granny Weatherwax). She has completed an apprenticeship with herbalist Rosemary Gladstar, and has a particular interest in books on herbalism.

Birthmarked by Caragh M. O'Brien

Reviewed by: 
Beth

As part of her duty as a midwife, Gaia, only 16 years old, must "advance" the first three babies born in her sector to the wealthy and powerful Enclave. After her parents disappear, Gaia begins to question her loyalty to those in charge.

Birthmarked (The Birthmarked Trilogy #1) Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781596435698
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Roaring Brook Press - March 30th, 2010

Birthmarked (The Birthmarked Trilogy #1) Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9780312674724
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Square Fish - October 11th, 2011

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Reviewed by: 
Beth

In post-disaster Chicago, society is organized into five distinct factions, based upon personality traits, in order to maintain the peace. After tesing at age 16, teens must choose which faction to join. Those who don't fit neatly into a faction, like Beatrice, are considered dangerous and labelled Divergent. Fast-paced and action-packed, Divergent is a thrilling read, especially if you loved The Hunger Games.

Divergent Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780062024039
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - February 28th, 2012

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Reviewed by: 
Beth

In this futuristic fairy tale, Cinder is a cyborg, despised by her stepmoter and forced to work long hours to support her Family. When handsome Prince Kai asks her to fix his robot, Cinder is thrown into a whole new world. Thrillng, romantic, funny, and sad, this was a great read.

Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780312641894
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Feiwel & Friends - January 3rd, 2012

Rosemary Gladstar's Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner's Guide: 33 Healing Herbs to Know, Grow, and Use

Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Staff Pick Badge
Rosemary Gladstar's Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner's Guide: 33 Healing Herbs to Know, Grow, and Use Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781612120058
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing, LLC - April 10th, 2012

This is an ideal book for the beginning herbalist.  It starts out with
easy-to-follow instructions on growing and using herbs, and continues
with profiles of 33 easy to use and easy to find herbs.  Having read
this book - written in Rosemary's friendly and inviting style - I think
even the most tentative students of herbalism will be inspired to dive
in and start gardening and harvesting, concocting and decocting.


Rosemary Gladstar's Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health

Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Staff Pick Badge
Rosemary Gladstar's Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health: 175 Teas, Tonics, Oils, Salves, Tinctures, and Other Natural Remedies for the Entire Family Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781603420785
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing, LLC - September 3rd, 2008

Learn to keep yourself and your family healthy with an array of recipes to boost immunity, calm
coughs, sooth dry skin, mitigate stress, and generally encourage wellness. The bulk of
this accessible, fun, well-balanced book is dedicated to specific
herbal remedies for everyone in the family -- children, men, women, and
elders. There are tons of yummy herbal dishes and treats, as well as a
chapter full of easy and indulgent herbal cosmetic treatments.

Rosemary Gladstar is the founder of the California School of Herbal
Studies and of United Plant Savers, and is the co-founder of Traditional
Medicinals Tea Co. She organizes the International Herb Symposium.
Rosemary lives & works from her home, Sage Mountain Herbal Retreat
Center, a 500 acre botanical preserve in central VT.


The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry

Reviewed by: 
Kristen

Towner Whitney hails from a family of Salem women who can read the future in lace, and who have guarded a history of secrets going back generations - secrets that are only now coming to light. This "[u]nusual and otherworldly" tale is "a gorgeously written literary novel that's also a doozy of a thriller, capped with a jaw-dropping denouement that will leave even the most careful reader gasping" (Kirkus Reviews, Dallas Morning News). "Evocative, smart, layered, and astonishing," with a vivid sense of place and strong, complex, and "intriguingly real" characters, this book is an ideal choice for book clubs (Joshilyn Jackson, San Antonio Express-News).

The Lace Reader: A Novel Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9780061624773
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - August 18th, 2009

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

Reviewed by: 
Kristen

American Gods contains both the magical and the mundane, a fantastic world of divine beings and bizarre happenings and a world of prisons, rundown roadside attractions, and quaint small towns. It is, in many ways, a classic road trip novel through an America at once eerily familiar and utterly alien.

American Gods Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780060558123
Availability: Special Order
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - September 2003

American Gods Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780380789030
Availability: Special Order
Published: HarperTorch - April 30th, 2002

Blindspot by Jill Lepore & Jane Kamensky

Reviewed by: 
Kristen

A smart, rollicking comedic romance that never patronizes the reader.  Great for anyone looking for a fun but still compelling read.

Written with wit and exuberance by accomplished historians, Blindspot is an affectionate send-up of the best of eighteenth-century fiction. It celebrates the art of the Enlightenment and the passion of the American Revolution by telling stories of ordinary people caught up in an extraordinary time.

Stewart Jameson, a Scottish portrait painter fleeing his debtors in Edinburgh, has washed up on the British Empire's far shores--in the city of Boston, lately seized with the spirit of liberty. Eager to begin anew, he advertises for an apprentice, but the lad who comes knocking is no lad at all. Fanny Easton is a fallen woman from Boston's most prominent family who has disguised herself as a boy to become Jameson's defiant and seductive apprentice.

Blindspot: A Novel Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780385526203
Availability: Special Order
Published: Spiegel & Grau - December 29th, 2009

At Home with Handmade Books

Reviewed by: 
Kristen

This beautiful, high-quality book contains a range of projects to inspire you - most using repurposed materials.  The clearly laid out instructions for Japanese stab bindings are a huge bonus.  Take your love of books to a new level!

At Home with Handmade Books: 28 Extraordinary Bookbinding Projects Made from Ordinary and Repurposed Materials (Make Good: Crafts + Life) Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781590308226
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Roost Books - April 12th, 2011

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