Staff Book Recommendations

During the month of December, take 15% off any of these staff favorites, currently available in our bookstore.

The Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce.

A gripping fictional account of Harold’s 600-mile walk from Devon to Berwick-upon-Tweed, and all its twists, and turns along the way. It’s a journey about his own self-awareness in his later years. It’s her debut novel, looking forward to her next one!

Kathy Pottetti

Simple Dreams: A Musical Memoir by Linda Ronstadt 

A story of rock and roll success, Broadway stages, and maintaining a deep sense of self in a fast-moving, not always kind, world. Discovering that Ronstadt still holds the record for making the biggest-selling non-English language record in history, Canciones de Mi Padre, which she made to celebrate her Mexican American heritage, was stunning. 

Chris Fanning 

19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult

Given the heightened awareness of school shootings as a threat in America, 19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult brings this tragic reality into fiction. Picoult forces readers to question their humanity and recognize the long term impact bullying imprints on youth. 

Misty Yarnall

Dune by Frank Herbert

The intricate overlap of ecology, scarcity, aristocracy, jihad, and cults of personality drive human history, but this we already know. What Dune teaches is how to judge what is important by how much water it carries.

Tristan Tomaselli

Eugene Onegin by Alexander Pushkin

Eugene Onegin is heartbreaking in its depiction of youthful innocence destroyed by rejection and unrequited love. It has the most painfully beautiful dream sequence I’ve ever read. A great winter read.

Laura Trowbridge

How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

This is one of the most important books I have read. Part memoir, part history, part philosophical instruction, Kendi illustrates the concept that there is no such thing as “not being racist.” Policies and actions are either anti-racist, or they are racist. This book is a page-turning call to action. 

Sally Bittner Bonn

The Faraway Nearby by Rebecca Solnit

“Stories are compasses and architecture…to be without a story is to be lost in the vastness of a world that spreads in all directions like arctic tundra or sea ice.” In grappling with her mother’s fading memory, Rebecca Solnit turns her famously discursive, lyrical mind over apricots, arctic explorers, Che Guavera in leper colonies, fairy tales, and in an essay that unwinds across the bottom of each page, moths that drink the tears of sleeping birds.

Dan Herd

Her Body and Other Parties: Stories by Carmen Maria Machado

I love spending time in Machado’s eerie worlds, where the fears of our age play out in folklorish style. Plus, you can’t go wrong with stories that are queer in every sense of the word.

Clara O’Connor