When there's a deal on a great book, we want you to know about it! Usually, we'll highlight Kindle books, just because they seem to have the best sales, but if there's a deal on a hard copy, we'll let you know about that, too. We will ONLY post sales for books someone on our staff has read and recommended (or, very occasionally, books that we really, really want to read but haven't gotten around to yet). Prices are correct when we post them here, but always check before you buy—digital prices can change frequently.
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2017
The Guardian called this classic of African literature "the first novel in English which spoke from the interior of an African character, rather than portraying the African as exotic, as the white man would see him," and that's just one reason this novel ended up on our reading list for our Not White Men World History year. The other reason is that it's a profound, powerful story about family, love, community, faith, justice, and forgiveness.
Flowers for Algernon is one of the first books I can remember that made me ugly-cry in public—I luckily read Little Women and Anne of Green Gables in the privacy of my own bedroom, but this was assigned reading in school. I loved it in spite of that—it's the story of man who longs to be like everybody else and, thanks to an experimental operation, achieves his dream—for a little while. A great late middle school/early high school title for your reading list.
I loved this book about a girl who manages to befriend the local dragons (thanks in part to magical pair of shoes) and save the kingdom while following her dream of setting up a dressmaking shop. From our review: "This is a delightful, girl-powered story—and one in which the heroine doesn’t have to become a warrior to save the day."
We recommended this book as essential reading for our Lewis and Clark road trip (Winter 2017) because it's a fascinating and obsessively researched account of the 1803 expedition that first defined the American West. A great high school U.S. history book that reminds you that good nonfiction is as readable as a good novel.
This is one of those children's books that stuck with me—and I hope ended up making me a kinder person. The girls in Wanda's class mock her stories about her imaginary wardrobe of dresses (and her immigrant status) until Wanda moves away and they have to face the fact that they've been bullies. Amazon says: "This gentle Newbery Honor Book convincingly captures the deeply felt moral dilemmas of childhood, equally poignant for the teased or the tormentor."
AUDIOBOOK: Neil Gaiman reads his spooky story about a girl who discovers another world behind a secret door in her new apartment. At first the other world seems perfect—great food! fun clothes! people who actually say her name correctly!—but Coraline soon realizes that she's trapped herself and her parents inside a nightmare that won't be easy to escape. Great Halloween listening!
Audiobook: My mom kept telling me I had to read this book, and even though I took forever to follow her advice, boy, she was right. Equal parts hilarious and heartbreaking, this story chronicles a road trip in the life of Salamanca Tree Hiddle, as she travels from Ohio to Idaho with her grandparents, who have been taking care of her since her mother left. Hope Davis—whom I adore—is the narrator of this Audible version.
Audiobook: The ultimate tear-jerker combo: Robert Sean Leonard (who made me sob—and sob and sob—in Dead Poet's Society) reads Katherine Paterson's heart-wrenching tale of friendship and the power of imagination. It's wonderful. Just make sure you have plenty of tissues in your bag if you're carschooling this one.
65 million years ago, during the early Paleocene era, just years after the enormous C-T dieback event, mammals are changing. From School Library Journal: "Only Dusk, youngest son of the chiropter colony's leader, has made an evolutionary leap; not only can he fly, he can also see at night, using echo vision. Predictably, the others regard him as a mutant to be shunned—all but his father, who wisely considers his son's differences as gifts. Dusk's real nemesis, however, is a beast (a "felid") called Carnassial, who is the first of his kind to be carnivorous and, like Dusk, is shunned by his own. Clearly the world is poised on the brink of remarkable change, and the future belongs to these two."
School Library Journal called this middle grades novel "a perfect starter story for budding horror fans." A group of friends on the cusp of growing up set off on a quest to appease a ghost and lay a haunted china doll to rest.
Lin-Manuel Miranda recommends this book as a great read for theater kids, so I'm not really sure how we can talk about this book in any way that is not anticlimactic after a recommendation like that! But this story about a small-town boy who takes the bus to NYC to audition for "E.T.: The Musical" really is pure drama geek delight.