Good Morning, Monster: A Therapist Shares Five Heroic Stories of Emotional Recovery Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250271488
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: St. Martin's Press - September 22nd, 2020

An ex-therapist shares stories from the lives of five of her patients. This book is harrowing, shocking, and heavy, but it is also heart-wrenching, touching, and deeply inspiring. I had planned to read one story at a time but ended up reading it all in one go. It's always a treat to find a work of nonfiction that invites fervent page turning like fiction!

TRIGGER WARNING: this book does not hold back. There are detailed descriptions of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse; animal abuse; and trauma in general.

- Clarisse

Frankenstein: The 1818 Text Cover Image
By Mary Shelley, Charlotte Gordon (Introduction by), Charlotte Gordon (Contributions by), Charles E. Robinson (Contributions by)
ISBN: 9780143131847
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Classics - January 16th, 2018

Written in the poetic formalness of the Nineteenth century, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is less the cult horror we're well acquainted with today and more a meditation on humanness. Monologic passages on loneliness, nurture, vengeance, love, death, and the endless pursuit of knowledge comprise some of the themes of this deep classic.

If you're familiar with one of the many iterations of Frankenstein but not its origins, maybe it's time to introduce yourself to Shelley's original intentions with the story.

- Clarisse

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The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780618526413
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Mariner Books - September 6th, 2022

This is my all-time favorite book. McCullers wrote this when she was just 23 years old in 1940. Described as a Southern Gothic, this magnificent work of literary fiction is brimming with motifs of anti-capitalism, anti-racism, music, and deep, platonic love. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter is beautifully written, quaint, relevant, profound, and character-based. It is a story I will revisit many times.

(I'd like to thank local musician, calligrapher, typewriter collector, and jazz aficioinado, Rollie Tussing for first gifting me this book.) 

- Clarisse

How to Blow Up a Pipeline Cover Image
ISBN: 9781839760259
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Verso - January 5th, 2021

As the desecration of the Earth becomes ever more violent, should the environmental movement respond with according fervor? Are marches and petitions getting us anywhere in combatting climate change? Andreas Malm addresses these increasingly relevant questions. In this manifesto, Malm deconstructs traditional narratives that center peace and passivity as the most effective tool in achieving social change, advocating instead for a "radical flank effect."

"What is the best way to resist?" wondered SNCC secretary Charles Cobb. If you hold the same question, read this book.

- Clarisse

Just Above My Head: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385334563
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Delta - June 13th, 2000

Just Above My Head is Baldwin's final and most expansive work of fiction. It is a story of love, Blackness, and music. Not only does music serve as a primary driver of the plot, but Baldwin's writing style itself is rhythmic and lyrical. Thus, when reading this it is important to not just hear Baldwin's prose, but to actively listen to it. This is true with much of Black music, that there are often hidden meanings embedded in the lyrics which only certain audiences hold the key to unlock. In his essay, "Many Thousands Gone," Baldwin says, "It is only in his music, which Americans are able to admire because a protective sentimentality limits their understanding of it, that the Negro in America has been able to tell his story..." Keep that in mind when reading this masterpiece.

- Clarisse

Purple Hibiscus: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616202415
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books - April 17th, 2012

Purple Hibiscus is a coming-of-age story about a girl in Nigeria who must navigate her life under the watchful eyes of her religious and abusive father. She is caught between wanting to live up to her father's expectations and coming to terms with the cult-like way in which he runs his household. 

Reading this book feels like eating a perfectly balanced meal that leaves you feeling comfortably satisfied. To be sure, that does not mean this is light-hearted or particularly jovial, but it offers all the best substance a novel can contain and concludes with a delightful catharsis. It is a book you can enjoy many times, as I have.

- Clarisse

Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143109396
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - April 26th, 2016

Who knew surf could translate so well into prose? With every page of mere ink and paper I feel I am gliding across the ocean. Finnegan is able to pull me into faraway waters, where sharp coral, sea creatures, and the surprisingly niche culture of hardcore surfing life abound. 

Barracoon: The Story of the Last
By Zora Neale Hurston, Alice Walker (Foreword by), Deborah G. Plant (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9780062748218
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Amistad - January 7th, 2020

Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples Cover Image
ISBN: 9781786998132
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Zed Books - June 3rd, 2021

Decolonizing Methodologies offers a look into the whiteness of academia and research as a facet of imperialism that has harmed indigenous communities around the world. Knowledge has been shaped by Western frameworks and has led to ideas about what knowledge is considered legitimate and universal. This book advocates for indigenous-led research agendas that give "non-traditional" research methodologies a chance to be utilized in spaces where they have traditionally been considered incorrect. 

A must-read for anyone in academia. 

- Clarisse