Spring Booknotes 2018

Handpicked new releases, brought to you by the staff of Elliott Bay.

 

Audiobooks available for select titles through our friends at Libro.fm.

 

Winter Gazette 2017 Summer Booknotes 2018

 

Staff Pick Logo
Freshwater Cover Image
$24.00
ISBN: 9780802127358
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - February 13th, 2018

Akwaeke Emezi has crafted a powerful debut in Freshwater. Ada, a Nigerian girl brought into existence by her father's prayers, is unique. She is inhabited by nebulous forces with many names from beyond mortal realms that, once awakened, take the shape of spirits living in her mind. They pull her life in dangerous directions out of both love and spite. We follow her, and the spirits that embody and own her, as she comes of age and attempts to reconcile her sense of self with the occupants sharing her body. Freshwater is as wrenching and unsettling as it is stunning and beautiful. There's a reason no one can stop talking about this novel. -Amy


Staff Pick Logo
America Is Not the Heart: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780735222410
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Viking - April 3rd, 2018

Elaine Castillo combines family saga and sweeping history in her dazzling novel, America Is Not the Heart. Castillo’s passion for her characters—Paz, Hero, and Roni—is contagious and immersive to the point of being unputdownable. But as dreamy and detailed as Castillo’s writing is, it is also bold and direct enough to shed serious light on immigrant experiences in America, challenging whether or not the American Dream is as equal-opportunity as it promises to be. Reminiscent of Junot Díaz and Emma Straub, this debut is not to be missed. -Alex


Staff Pick Logo
Sadness Is a White Bird: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781501176265
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atria Books - February 13th, 2018

Despite my tendency to avoid war stories, this coming-of-age novel captured me instantly. Jonathan, the protagonist, is caught in the midst of a battle between loyalty to nation and morals of the heart—a battle with no true winners. Bits of Arabic and Hebrew dialogue bring the characters to life, as do poems from Israeli and Palestinian authors. Jonathan’s bisexuality is refreshingly normalized, not used as a source of contention. The prose is elegant, mournful, and anxious, yet joyful, silly, and passionate, and it reminds us of the importance of looking outside our own perspectives. -Liz


Staff Pick Logo
Tangerine: A Novel Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780062686664
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ecco - March 27th, 2018

How valuable are friendships that survive the test of time? Lush, dangerous, and foreboding, the atmosphere of Morocco in the 1950s mirrors the friendship of Lucy and Alice, once inseparable college roommates, now estranged after an unexplained fatal accident. The more confident Lucy pays a surprise visit to Alice in hot, dusty Tangiers and finds her fragile, unable to adapt to a new life and marriage. When Alice's disagreeable husband disappears, it becomes difficult to distinguish devotion from obsession and alliance from betrayal. This taut, mesmerizing thriller answers the friendship question with chilling clarity. -Erica


Staff Pick Logo
A Long Way from Home: A novel Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9780525520177
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - February 27th, 2018

Peter Carey’s new novel takes us on a road trip through Australia's Redex Trial in the 1950s—a motorsport rally that covered the entire continent—traversing roads that are, at times, brutal and barely passable. We journey from White Australia into the rugged Aboriginal past and present of a vast continent. Characters’ histories, secrets, and vulnerabilities are exposed, altering their lives in unexpected ways. Home is more than a place. It is more than a destination. Might it be the very fabric of our being? If so, do we need a map to reach it? And how do we get there? -Greg


Staff Pick Logo
The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore Cover Image
By Kim Fu
$23.00
ISBN: 9780544098268
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - February 13th, 2018

At that awkward yet exciting age of insecurity and self-discovery, five young girls at a summer camp in the Pacific Northwest take a kayaking trip to a nearby island. In a horrific turn of events, they find themselves stranded and alone, left to fend for themselves. Once home, the trauma of their fight for survival ripples through each girl’s life in a unique way. Kim Fu’s crisp language, intriguing narrative structure, and sharp humor guided me through stories of resilience, hurt, friendship, and joy. It all reminded me: I would never want to be eleven years old again, but I’m glad that I once was. -Sage


Staff Pick Logo
The Largesse of the Sea Maiden: Stories Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780812988635
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House - January 16th, 2018

To say that reading The Largesse of the Sea Maiden is bittersweet would be an understatement. This final collection of stories from National Book Award-winning author Denis Johnson, who passed in May of last year, is sad—immensely sad—but it is still an absolute joy to spend 224 pages with Johnson's voice one last time. Graceful, haunted, and emphatic, Johnson's work here is, according to poet John Duvernoy, "a return to peak form, and a fitting capstone to a life devoted to musicality in literature about human beings struggling and stumbling and striving toward meaning." -Eric


Staff Pick Logo
The Emissary Cover Image
By Yoko Tawada, Margaret Mitsutani (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9780811227629
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - April 24th, 2018

The world of Tawada's new novel is about as delightful as a dystopia can get. Set in a quarantined, post-disaster Japan, the story juxtaposes the lives of Yoshiro, a 108-year-old man living a healthy, seemingly eternal life, and his young great-grandson, Mumei, who, despite being sickly, white-haired, and frail, is a keeper of great wisdom. Built into this surreal role reversal is Tawada's deft and poetic commentary on East and West and the blindness of our shortsighted world, which regains its light and beauty when filtered through Mumei’s eyes. A quick read sure to assuage some of the angst that the modern world throws at us these days. -Tony


Staff Pick Logo
The Overstory Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780393635522
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 3rd, 2018

The Overstory is a powerful and provocative story about the world of trees and how that world mingles with our own. Each of Powers's characters bursts from the page, and the interweaving of their stories with those of the trees they know is both emotional and energizing. Powers is a continuously surprising writer in whose work it’s always easy to find details, phrases, and ideas in which to delight. This is a story that leaves deep roots, so much so that I couldn’t help but imagine growing vines with each flip of the page, and my eyes kept finding their way back to the big tree outside my front window. -Alex


Staff Pick Logo
Jagannath Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781101973974
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - February 6th, 2018

In both their language and their perplexing premises, Tidbeck's stories float on a plane of existence oddly parallel to our own. Some are rooted in Scandinavian history, others in day-to-day life, but they all bend to the same authoritative strangeness once a young man falls in love with an airship, an alien creature is found on the balcony, or an aunt grows so fat she produces a smaller version of herself. Tidbeck is less concerned with the empirical nitty-gritty of sci-fi than with the feelings that such fantastic situations evoke. These understated stories are sure to please fans caught in the new flurry of soft science fiction. -Tony


Staff Pick Logo
The House of Broken Angels Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780316154888
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company - March 6th, 2018

Two gatherings of the de la Cruzes—one funeral, one birthday party—form the backdrop for The House of Broken Angels, the story of a Mexican-American family in San Diego. They are a tireless chaos; rarely-seen grandkids party with their ailing patriarch, whose devoted daughter drunk-texts her prodigal uncle, who lusts after his aging sister-in-law, who mourns her dead son. Urrea stitches the de la Cruzes together like a crazy quilt. The pieces aren't neat or precise and they may clash, but the final product is big and soft and smells like your grandparents’ house when you were ten, and it was warm, and the windows were wide open. -Shawn


Staff Pick Logo
An American Marriage (Oprah's Book Club): A Novel Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781616208776
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books - February 6th, 2018

This searing fourth novel from Tayari Jones centers on Celestial and Roy, a newlywed couple whose future is all but guaranteed. They are educated professionals, own a successful business, and someday hope to start a family. But their fortunes change in a horrific instant: Roy is imprisoned for a crime he did not commit, suddenly facing years away from home. In his absence Celestial also faces years of putting her life on hold. How the two respond to their new reality is a compellingly human story not just of tragedy, but also of resilience in the face of a deeply flawed society. A beautiful and frightening novel from a masterful storyteller. -Justin


Staff Pick Logo
Red Clocks: A Novel Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780316434812
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company - January 16th, 2018

Leni Zumas's Red Clocks is a tale of women—their stories, truths, and histories. In a near future where a reactionary and religious government has outlawed abortion and in-vitro fertilization, we follow the lives of four women categorized by monikers—the biographer, the wife, the daughter, and the mender. These complex and enrapturing characters navigate the realities of being women in this slightly altered, but hauntingly familiar, world. -Amy


Staff Pick Logo
Frankenstein in Baghdad: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143128793
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - January 23rd, 2018

The first Iraqi novel to win the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, Ahmed Saadawi's Frankenstein in Baghdad is a visceral, complex tale about the horrors faced by one neighborhood in US-occupied Baghdad. Their monster is both literal and metaphorical, the cycle of violence and the titular creature born from that violence. Stitching together the grotesque, the comical, and the fantastical with the stark realities of its setting, Frankenstein in Baghdad is a profound, contemporary allegory. It's dark, very dark—but it's also very funny. -Eric


Staff Pick Logo
The Female Persuasion: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781594488405
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - April 3rd, 2018

Clear a space in your to-be-read pile because Meg Wolitzer has done it again. Her newest novel, The Female Persuasion, tackles many issues faced by women in modern American society, from the ever-present menace of sexual assault to the crucial influence of empowering mentors. As our protagonist, Greer, moves from college to a career, her relationships grow more complex in the face of her ambition, especially the one between her and her second-wave feminist mentor, Faith. Greer must grapple with the ways in which people change throughout their lives as they make compromises to gain (and avoid losing) privilege and power. -Liz


Staff Pick Logo
The Great Alone: A Novel Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780312577230
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: St. Martin's Press - February 6th, 2018

The name Kristin Hannah needs no introduction, especially since she is the author of more than twenty novels, including The Nightingale, which spent twenty weeks on the New York Times Best Sellers list. That aside, if you’re new to the world of Kristin Hannah you can expect raw emotion, deep unequivocal love, and hope from her seasoned pen. When Leni’s father, a released POW, returns from Vietnam, Leni and her mother hold on to their love for each other as they learn to care for a man who is still living in a nightmare. Often, I was on the brink of tears with the hope of atonement for the Allbright family. -Teasha


Staff Pick Logo
The Line Becomes a River: Dispatches from the Border Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735217713
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - February 6th, 2018

Born and raised on the US-Mexico border, with an education in international relations, immigration, and border security, Cantú decides to join the Border Patrol to gain on-the-ground experience. Innocent at the start, he soon realizes the horrors he has involved himself in. After a few years, filled with more questions than ever before, he begins to have constant nightmares of the job, which weigh heavily on him. After he leaves the Border Patrol to pursue a graduate degree, Cantú befriends an immigrant named José. When José is caught trying to cross the border to return to his family, Cantú tries to help, only to relive his nightmares. -Allen


Staff Pick Logo
The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow's World Cover Image
$28.95
ISBN: 9780307961693
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - January 23rd, 2018

How have two people, Norman Borlaug (the wizard) and William Vogt (the prophet), dictated the oftentimes opposing beliefs of present-day environmentalism? Do we innovate and utilize advancements in science to save the planet and ourselves? Or, do we focus on conservation to fend off inevitable disaster? These are the big questions that Mann analyzes without prioritizing one view over the other. Despite its length, this book is very digestible, weaving history, biology, philosophy, and ecology into one fascinating, significant story. -Thomas


Staff Pick Logo
Return of the Sea Otter: The Story of the Animal That Evaded Extinction on the Pacific Coast Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781632171375
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sasquatch Books - March 20th, 2018

Mention sea otters to any group of people and the word “cute” is going to enter the conversation. But for all their popularity, not much is known about their behavior and role in the Pacific Coast ecosystem. Return of the Sea Otter aims to solve this deficiency in knowledge. Todd McLeish spent more than three years researching sea otters and offers an in-depth natural history in this book. Tracing their story from pre-fur trade days, through their near-extinction, and into the present, McLeish's book delights and fascinates! -Justus


Staff Pick Logo
Natural Causes: An Epidemic of Wellness, the Certainty of Dying, and Killing Ourselves to Live Longer Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781455535910
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Twelve - April 10th, 2018

Are aging, illness, and death avoidable? Barbara Ehrenreich draws upon her study of cellular biology, health policy, and truth-seeking to argue—despite popular claims that death is due to a poor work ethic—that our mortality is built into us at the deepest cellular level. Along the way, she explains how our cells work and raises questions about social factors that may be under our control, uncovering some convincing explanations for the shrinking mortality gap between rich and poor. Skeptical about self-improvement as always, she encourages engagement with the fascinating, vibrant world within and beyond our bodies. -Karen


Staff Pick Logo
The Recovering: Intoxication and Its Aftermath Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780316259613
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company - April 3rd, 2018

Leslie Jamison, author of 2014's standout essay collection, The Empathy Exams, is back with a giant slab of a memoir. Essentially a detailed account of her own ruinous relationship with alcohol, Jamison intermittently leavens the personal tone with biographical analyses of several iconic alcoholic writers (such as Raymond Carver, John Berryman, and Jean Rhys). Jamison writes sharp, unsparing prose, with a gift for imagery and pacing. As painful as the subject matter can be, the reader's anxiety is relieved by the awareness that Jamison has been able to maintain her sobriety while focusing her energies on a successful writing career. -John


Staff Pick Logo
I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9780525520221
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - February 6th, 2018

O’Farrell turns her distinctive style and award-winning talents from fiction to memoir in this reflective examination of her life through the lens of near-death experiences. She leaves behind linear timeline and lets her body speak its story of trauma and survival, unearthing deeply personal insights on the fragility of life. At once fascinating, challenging, emotionally raw, and even humorous, O’Farrell’s story delivers hard-earned wisdom. Both a love letter to her daughter and a guide to her readers, she invites us to look beyond survival and to consider our very humanity. -Seth


Staff Pick Logo
Why Art? Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781683960829
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Fantagraphics Books - March 13th, 2018

"Old and weak people, who have a hard time standing, are being held up by people who are strong. Our faces are lit up from the fires burning all around." This quote summarizes the depths this graphic work reaches. It starts with a narrator simply explaining some of the possibilities and approaches one can take when creating art, but seamlessly turns into an adventure full of imagination that will have you turning page after page hoping that Davis never runs out of ideas. After reading this book, you will champion Davis and eagerly await her next published work. -Alberto


Staff Pick Logo
Wade in the Water: Poems Cover Image
$24.00
ISBN: 9781555978136
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Graywolf Press - April 3rd, 2018

Tracy K. Smith is our current US Poet Laureate, and her newest collection is a fierce reminder why. Wade in the Water bristles with fury at the state of our country but never collapses into complacency. On the contrary, Smith demands answers, asking: "How much more will we bury / in the earth? How much / in this dark where the earth floats?" She's at her best, and most gutting, with a series of erasure poems born out of letters from black soldiers fighting in the Civil War and the families awaiting their return. Addressing President Lincoln, one soldier's request: "you will please / let me know if we are free and what i can do" -Shawn


Staff Pick Logo
And Now We Have Everything: On Motherhood Before I Was Ready Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780316393843
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown and Company - April 10th, 2018

And Now We Have Everything is a raw, honest account of pregnancy, birth, and motherhood. In her late 20s and recently engaged, O’Connell realized she was pregnant. It wasn't part of the plan, but it was what she wanted—and not at all what she expected. Funny, sarcastic, and blisteringly sincere, O'Connell doesn't pull any punches. She willingly exposes the fears, anxieties, and selfish thoughts few of us admit to and all of us have. And Now We Have Everything is part memoir, part manual, a little horrifying, and completely endearing. -Emma


Staff Pick Logo
Your Art Will Save Your Life Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781936932290
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Feminist Press - April 10th, 2018

This book is a love letter to artists and a cry to keep making art no matter what challenges arise. Driven by current American politics and a passion for the arts, Pickens argues that in times of uncertainty and pain, communities need art more than ever to illuminate their personal and collective possibilities. The knowledge Pickens shares from her own experiences in the arts and in advocacy, along with the workbook exercises in the latter half of the book, will give every creator the foundation they need to move forward no matter what they face. -Justus


Staff Pick Logo
Something Old, Something New: Classic Recipes Revised Cover Image
By Tamar Adler, Mimi Sheraton (Foreword by), Mindy Dubin (Illustrator)
$27.00
ISBN: 9781476799612
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scribner - April 3rd, 2018

Tamar Adler doesn't so much reinvent as renew and reinvigorate vanished recipes, techniques, and even apocrypha of kitchen lore. With a meditative tone and a light touch, she offers recipes both familiar (such as Crab Louis) and nearly mythical (Vicomte of Maduit's rose liqueur brandy). Adler deftly comments on her journey with each recipe and invites us to consider our own explorations. Plainspoken enough for the home cook, yet reveling in useful arcana, Something Old, Something New is a wise and affectionate nudge to explore forgotten food. -Julia


Staff Pick Logo
Tomorrow Will Be Different: Love, Loss, and the Fight for Trans Equality Cover Image
By Sarah McBride, Joe Biden (Foreword by)
$26.00
ISBN: 9781524761479
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Crown Archetype - March 6th, 2018

Not many 27-year-olds have a list of accomplishments as impressive as Sarah McBride: first openly transgender woman to intern at the White House, first transgender woman to speak at a major party convention, spokesperson and advocate in lobbying for equal marriage and transgender non-discrimination protections. McBride chronicles her powerful story of political work, trans advocacy, and her romance and marriage to her late husband, Andrew Cray. It serves as both an autobiography and a guide for those who want to learn more about transgender rights, issues, and terminology. -Amy


Staff Pick Logo
Heart Berries: A Memoir Cover Image
$23.00
ISBN: 9781619023345
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Counterpoint LLC - February 6th, 2018

Mailhot's memoir is filled with the shards of her life. Raised on the Seabird Island Reservation, she sought the care and affection of her often absent (and also troubled) mother until, as a young adult with no obvious way out, she marries and has a child. The marriage fails and she loses custody of her son as she is giving birth to her second. It is her second husband who becomes the witness to her increasingly difficult battles with mental health. Her writing is nearly synesthetic and often dreamlike, which makes reading the darkness even more compelling. -Holly


Staff Pick Logo
So You Want to Talk About Race Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781580056779
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Seal Press - January 16th, 2018

It’s 2018 and a concept that still mystifies some, distresses others, and is often left unresolved is the social construct of race. From income inequality and education to housing and police brutality, race touches myriad issues in bounteous ways and for Oluo it is high time to finally address these intersections. Part heart-wrenching memoir and part hard-hitting sociological analysis, Oluo provides agency to marginalized voices and education to those with unseen privilege. Writing like this is a cornerstone of intersectional feminist thought and action. -Teasha


Staff Pick Logo
Feel Free: Essays Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781594206252
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Press - February 6th, 2018

A critical theory book in disguise, Zadie Smith's critique of neoliberalism feels heartbreaking and emancipating at the same time. Through personal accounts that range from being a parent to enjoying a library, Smith details the struggles of everyday life in a way that's simple and easy to read, yet digs deep into the issues at hand. A unique voice in today's troubled world, this book of collected essays not only proves Smith's prowess in going beyond the bounds of fiction, but cements her as a writer of our time, for our time. -Alberto


Staff Pick Logo
The Road to Unfreedom: Russia, Europe, America Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780525574460
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tim Duggan Books - April 3rd, 2018

Snyder's straightforward and perceptive book is what he calls "an attempt to win back historical time." He is calling for political choice and action, supported by the rule of law and opposed by national mythologies that encourage anti-democratic forces, either by appealing to a mythical, perfect past or to the inviolable continuity of the status quo. Snyder's history of these ideas and their weaponization by Russia against Europe and the United States is chilling, but his insistence on the power of historical witness by journalists and engaged citizens makes this an optimistic and empowering read. -Wes


Staff Pick Logo
Islandborn Cover Image
By Junot Díaz, Leo Espinosa (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780735229860
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dial Books - March 13th, 2018

The kids in Lola's class come from lots of different places, so her teacher has asked them to draw pictures of where they emigrated from. Lola doesn't remember very well because she was only a baby when her family moved from the Island. As Lola asks her neighbors what they remember, a vibrant picture of food and music and people starts to form. The energetic illustration perfectly matches Lola’s spirit in this beautiful tribute to the home of our hearts. -Holly


Staff Pick Logo
The Hazel Wood: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250147905
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Flatiron Books - January 30th, 2018

Here's a book you can judge by its cover! Albert has written a dark, dizzying tale spanning from present-day New York to a mysterious storybook land. Her prose is dreamy and metaphorical in the classic fairy-tale style, but the plot offers refreshing twists on the common tropes. My favorite bits were the stories read from the grandmother's book, reminiscent of creepy Brothers Grimm narratives. While there are allusions to Alice in Wonderland, this is not a retelling. It's more like Alice in Wonderland's goth cousin. -Liz


Staff Pick Logo
Hello Hello Cover Image
By Brendan Wenzel (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781452150147
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books - March 20th, 2018

Hello Hello is the loveliest, brightest celebration of creatures and the connections between them. Illustrator and animal lover Brendan Wenzel uses a mix of media, from cut paper to pastels, to show us that different animals (including the human ones!) are more alike than we ever imagined. Poignantly, many of the creatures Wenzel chose to include are at risk, and Hello Hello includes an identification chart encouraging young readers to learn more about how species become vulnerable and what we can do to help them. Burgeoning zoologists, take note! -Shawn


Staff Pick Logo
Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781626728691
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: First Second - March 6th, 2018

Brazen is full of fresh takes on stories of strong, inspiring women. To my delight, I got to learn about some women I was already familiar with and some I'd never heard of before. With representation from different geographic regions, professions, accomplishments, and time periods, the diversity of stories is what impressed me most. An approachable text format, succinct and informative narratives, feisty humor, and playful illustrations make for a smooth, enjoyable read. -Sage


Staff Pick Logo
The Journey of Little Charlie Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780545156660
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scholastic Press - January 30th, 2018

Charlie Bobo doesn't know much beyond the fields he tills as a young sharecropper in Possum Moan, South Carolina. When he is tasked to help Cap'n Buck capture a family of escaped slaves, he doesn't think beyond settling his father's debt to the slave driver. But his journey reveals another debt Charlie didn’t realize he owed, a debt to half of humanity, and he’ll need to unlearn his prejudices to repay it. Charlie reminds us we are all capable of recognizing and fighting injustice, and of doing the right thing. -Emma


Staff Pick Logo
They Say Blue Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781419728518
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harry N. Abrams - March 13th, 2018

Stunning illustrations make They Say Blue a feast for the eyes. Its colorful, vibrant pages would be enough on their own, but the lyrical text is a welcome complement. Jillian Tamaki’s focus on perception and inquisitive learning is a valuable one—an ode to childhood surprise, wonder, and curiosity. The gentle innocence with which the story’s young girl discovers the world through colors, and the delight she takes in what she finds, brought a warmth to my heart that left me feeling at ease. -Sage