Some new releases that caught my eye this month!
Alexander Chee's latest novel has just the right amount of history, intrigue, and opera. It follows a 19th-century opera diva on the cusp of fame, but at what cost will that fame come?
WHY WE CAME TO THE CITY follows a group of young friends who have come to NYC in hopes of making it--whatever "it" is. The book traces their friendships as times get tougher and darker.
A meditation on place, travel, and identity. How do the places we live in define us? And what about the places we do not live in? Majka's collection will leave the reader reflecting and perhaps yearning for times and places past.
It's the end of the world--or maybe the beginning of a new one. Childhood friends Patricia and Laurence thought they'd seen each other for the last time years ago; he a technical genius who invented a time machine, even if it could only travel two seconds into the future, and she a burgeoning magician. Until they meet in San Francisco in what seems like the last days of a crumbling world.
A book of short stories full of the surreal, strange, and uncanny. A book full of a variety of human situations and emotions that make the familiar strange, this one has the potential to be deeply unsettling and perhaps funny as well.
Did you fall in love with a new Middle Grade book in the month of love?
Kick off 2016 with a batch of fresh Middle Grade reads!
Kick off your year with a nonfiction release!
- see all 8 →
January 12. #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER. For readers of Atul Gawande, Andrew Solomon, and Anne Lamott, a profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir by a young neurosurgeon faced with a terminal cancer diagnosis who attempts to answer the question 'What makes a life worth living'?
January 15. In a tribute to the late legend, Time presents a lavishly illustrated special edition tracing Bowie's life story and legendary career.
January 5. Japanese decluttering guru Marie Kondo’s 'The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up' has revolutionized homes—and lives—across the world. Now, Kondo presents an illustrated guide to her acclaimed KonMari Method. "Just in time to make good on your New Year’s vow to get organized." – The Washington Post
January 12. “[Pope Francis] deepens his calls for a more merciful Catholic Church. . . . The question-and-answer book is told in simple, breezy language, with the pope referring to experiences and people in his own life including a niece and prisoners he has visited.” – Newsday
January 19. Twenty years ago, Bill Bryson went on a trip around Britain to discover and celebrate that green and pleasant land. The result was Notes from a Small Island, a true classic and one of the bestselling travel books ever written. Now he has traveled about Britain again, by bus and train and rental car and on foot, to see what has changed—and what hasn’t.
Going into hibernation this January? Tales of winter's naps, friendship, and civil rights are abound this month, so curl up with one of these new releases while you're stuck inside!
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"Dennis was an ordinary boy... who expressed himself in EXTRAORDINARY ways." From the author of the Penguin series, Be a Friend is a such a sweet book that will delight any reader, but will particularly be a hit with kids who may feel like misfits, showing that friendship is possible for anyone. (Also, it vindicates mimes, who have been the butt of jokes for far too long!)
"When you live in the arctic in winter, everything is a shade of white." The young girl in this tale wishes for some color to brighten her world (a feeling many can relate to this time of year), and finds it unexpectedly one far frozen night. The illustrations definitely evoke the mood, and the switchover to color is like seeing Dorothy come to Oz.
Another bedtime book, this one is interactive. The reader helps the book go to sleep, talking through all the bedtime procedures in the process. Not so much a story-driven as an activity-driven book, but it does the trick.
This book helps to talk about African American rights by focusing on the struggles of one child. In 1847, Sarah Roberts was banned from her school in Boston on account of the school becoming segregated. The Roberts v. City of Boston case was the first to challenge segregated schools, as well as the first time an African American lawyer argued in supreme court. This book brings the history to life in a meaningful way.
The latest addition to Brad Meltzer's Ordinary People Change the World series focuses on the civil rights leader who celebrates a birthday this month. The Peanuts/Calvin and Hobbes-esque illustrations make this biography fun and accessible, but still emphasizes with seriousness the issues Dr. King fought in his life. Good to pair with Meltzer's books on Jackie Robinson and Rosa Parks.
Books published in January 2016 that classics lovers should check out!
December's best nonfiction releases, as chosen by your very own Riffle team.
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December 1. “In this bubbly linguistic endeavor, journalist and polyglot Dorren covers the evolution of 60 European languages . . . Dorren thoughtfully walks readers through the weird evolution of languages . . . with quirky tidbits aplenty . . . Rounded out with insights such as . . . the refutation of the notion that Eskimos have 100 words for snow." — Publishers Weekly
December 2. “The term ‘medieval biography’ doesn’t necessarily conjure up a lot of excitement among the general book-loving population. But . . . it really should. This blood, guts, gore and gallantry romp through medieval history, following the great knight William Marshall . . . is way more fun than it should be.” — New York Post
December 1. We are not born knowing what to eat; as omnivores it is something we each have to figure out for ourselves. From childhood onward, we learn how big a “portion” is and how sweet is too sweet. We learn to enjoy green vegetables—or not. But how does this education happen?
December 1. Fighting God is a firebrand manifesto from one of the most recognizable faces of atheism. In his book, Silverman—a walking, talking atheist billboard known for his appearances on Fox News—discusses the effectiveness, ethics and impact of the in-your-face-atheist who refuses to be silent.
December 8. "An absolute rhapsody of informational wisdom on how to achieve a life of health and longevity without disease."— Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr. M.D., author of Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease
November's featured releases are all about yetis and snow, friendship and fantasy. Get ready for winter with these cozy titles!
Our 8 favorite biographies, history books, and sciencey reads from November!
- see all 8 →
November 3. This November new release is already firmly a #1 bestseller. Outspoken actress, talk show host, and reality television star, Leah Remini, offers up a no-holds-barred memoir, including an eye-opening insider account of her tumultuous and heart-wrenching thirty-year-plus association with the Church of Scientology.
November 24. "Carly Simon could have gotten away with just the name-dropping. In her life, she's crossed paths with an astonishing range of famous people, from Cat Stevens... to Albert Einstein. So it's a pleasant surprise that in her compelling new autobiography she lays out her naked emotions and insecurities, and that she proves to be a supple writer with a gift for descriptions."— Rolling Stone
November 24. Soon to be a major motion picture starring Will Smith, Concussion is the riveting, unlikely story of Dr. Bennet Omalu, the pathologist who made one of the most significant medical discoveries of the twenty-first century, a discovery that challenges the existence of America’s favorite sport and puts Omalu in the crosshairs of football’s most powerful corporation: the NFL.
November 3. One of the NY Times' 50 best books of 2015. “Augustine [is] a work of scholarship as readable as any historical novel.” — Literary Review (UK)
November 3. A #1 bestseller, Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates reads like an edge-of-your-seat, page-turning thriller. “Thomas Jefferson. Pirates. And national security. This is how you make history exciting. I dare you to put this book down.” — Brad Meltzer, bestselling author of The President’s Shadow