Staff Picks

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Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City Cover Image
ISBN: 9780553447453
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Broadway Books - February 28th, 2017


Recommended by: Heidi & Michael

A stunning book, a well-written, gripping account of the vicious cycles of eviction affecting the poor. Matthew Desmond follows eight families for two years. We get to know them and see how the smallest incident can set someone behind on rent--getting sick and taking a few days off work, paying funeral costs for a family member, wanting to buy kids new items for the school year. Not paying the full month's rent is grounds for immediate eviction and there are few safeguards in place to protect those in extreme poverty. Single mothers and kids end up in shelters or on the street. Or they go without food so they don't lose their home. It's heartbreaking and eye opening and one everyone should read.

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The Revolution of the Moon Cover Image
By Andrea Camilleri, Stephen Sartarelli (Translated by)
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ISBN: 9781609453916
Availability: Backordered
Published: Europa Editions - April 18th, 2017

Recommended by: Heidi 

A work of 17th century historical fiction (that's based on a true story), it's got everything: a corrupt upper class, a misbehaving bishop, a badass Lady Viceroy implementing reform, and whole bunch of crazy capers.

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The Makioka Sisters (Vintage International) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679761648
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - September 26th, 1995

Recommended by: Heidi & Michael 

Set in Pre World War II Japan, this novel follows the lives of the titular characters. It’s a sweeping portrait of an aristocracy grappling with modernity that features the ins and outs of family dynamics, scandalous love affairs, natural disasters, the coming war and so much more. You’ll be sucked in before you know it.

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The Poisoned City: Flint's Water and the American Urban Tragedy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250125149
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Metropolitan Books - July 10th, 2018

Recommended by: Heidi 

A thoroughly researched and readable account of the Flint water crisis. She looks not just at the immediate factors like pipe corrosion, but also at the factors that were building for years: segregation, housing discrimination, suburban flight and lack of investment both in urban centers and in infrastructure in general. She traces the crisis from the beginning to where we are today, and takes a hard look at the EPA and those in power who allowed things to get so bad. Most of all she demonstrates the ways in which America has been failing to invest in infrastructure nationwide and how we are all in a perilous situation because of it.

War in Val d'Orcia: An Italian War Diary, 1943-1944 Cover Image
By Iris Origo, Virginia Nicholson (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9781681372662
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: NYRB Classics - August 7th, 2018

NYRB Classics has recently brought the two volumes of Iris Origo’s Italian War Diary (A Chill in the Air:  An Italian War Diary 1939-1940 and War in Val D'Orcia: An Italian War Diary 1943-1944) back into print. An Englishwoman living in Italy under fascism, Origo writes about the run up to World War II and life during wartime (under both fascist and Nazi rule) with immediacy, directness, and humor that bring her experience to life. She writes of sheltering POWs and refugees as if not doing so could never be an option. Well worth reading, in these times especially.

One Person, No Vote: How Voter Suppression Is Destroying Our Democracy Cover Image
By Carol Anderson, Dick Durbin (Foreword by), Dick Durbin (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9781635571370
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury Publishing - September 11th, 2018

The author of the excellent White Rage is back with a timely, important book about voter suppression. From Voter ID laws to gerrymandering to voter roll purges, Anderson shows how, while poll taxes may be dead, there are always ways to stop the most vulnerable from making their voices at the polls. Ending on a much-needed note of hope, this book is a quick, essential read, and a reminder that voting is a right, not a privilege.

Averno: Poems Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374530747
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - February 6th, 2007

Chosen by : Heidi


This one cracks my heart open every time. "October" is an all time favorite. 

Selected Poems Cover Image
ISBN: 9781933517568
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Wave Books - August 16th, 2011

Diving Into the Wreck: Poems 1971-1972 Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393346015
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 1st, 2013

Chosen by: Summer

For the sad and angry and hopeful: I recommend Diving Into The Wreck by Adrienne Rich.  A beautiful and tough voice that was adept at weaving the private and personal with the social and political, Rich has the capacity to both nail you to your seat and inspire thoughtful action.

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