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Riley's Picks

In elementary school, her teachers would tell Riley they'd never seen a kid with such an innate passion for reading. Her love of books quickly graduated to a love of writing, and she is currently working toward a Professional Writing degree at Champlain College. Her greatest dream is to be a bestselling novelist.

The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

Reviewed by: 
Riley
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The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9780679763888
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Vintage - October 4th, 2011

I don't normally read history, but this book gripped me from start to end. Wilkerson's research is phenomenal, writing about these real people and stories with such detail and passion that it is as if she had created them herself. Well worth all 525 pages!


The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

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Riley
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The Vanishing Half: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780525536291
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Riverhead Books - June 2nd, 2020

There's a reason this topped the Indie Bestseller's list and a reason I now list it as one of the best books I've read. I would have believed anything who told me that this was a true story because of eloquent way Bennett crafted and wrote Desiree, Stella, Jude, and Kennedy. Two separate worlds that have more in common than they care to admit, and what happens when someone crossed from one into the other without looking back.


My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante

Reviewed by: 
Riley
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My Brilliant Friend: Neapolitan Novels, Book One Cover Image
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translated by)
$17.00
ISBN: 9781609450786
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Europa Editions - September 25th, 2012

Truly captures what it is like to grow up with a best friend. Relatable, humble, and stark, I breezed through the first book in the series.


The Candymakers by Wendy Mass

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Riley
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The Candymakers Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780316002592
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - October 3rd, 2011

All of Wendy Mass' books are extraordinary, but this one is something else. Unassuming with its goofy cover and candy theme, The Candymakers pleasantly surprised me with winding plot and thirst-quenching mystery. One timeline with four perspectives told one at a time. With each new POV, there is explanation... yet the mystery seems only to thicken...


Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

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Riley
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Heart of Darkness and the Secret Sharer Cover Image
By Joseph Conrad, Joyce Carol Oates (Introduction by), Vince Passaro (Afterword by)
$5.95
ISBN: 9780451531032
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Signet - August 5th, 2008

Short in length, dense in substance. This book can be read with new layers of understanding each time. Conrad takes you deep into the jungle of the Congo and illustrates what it means to be beastly. I closed the back cover in awe.


All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Reviewed by: 
Riley
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All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781501173219
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Scribner - April 4th, 2017

Everyone should read this book! Two characters from very different origins at the start of the 2nd World War find a connection in the place you'd least expect. Let Doerr take you back in time and introduce you to Marie-Laure and Werner, both who will steal your heart and bring tears to your eyes.


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