New Nonfiction Roundup – September 2019

September marks the beginning of the fall publishing season, and you’ll see new releases from some big names: Malcolm Gladwell, Demi Moore, Patti Smith, Edward Snowden and Tegan & Sara, just to name a few. Happy reading!

Audience of OneJames Poniewozik explains how Trump mastered television as a businessman, TV host and President.

A Beginner’s Guide to JapanA ruminative guide to Japan, from Pico Iyer (The Art of Stillness). 

Call Sign Chaos. A guide to leadership from former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis. Will be at Temple de Hirsch Sinai September 16!

Creative Calling. Chase Jarvis argues that you don’t find fulfillment, you create it.  Will be at Town Hall September 23!

CoventryRachel Cusk dissects memoir, art and literary criticism through a feminist lens in her first essay collection.

Economist’s Hour. Binyamin Applebaum surveys the influence of economists exert on the U.S. government.

Education of an Idealist. A memoir from humanitatian and former Ambassador to the U.N under Obama. Will be at Town Hall September 16!

Everything is Figureoutable. Life coach Marie Forleo gives you the tools to confront any crisis and persevere.  Will be at Town Hall September 17!

Generation Friends. A behind-the-scenes look at Friends on the 25th anniversary of its premiere.

High SchoolMusicians Tegan & Sara Quin detail their first loves and first songs from their high school years.

House on Stilts. This memoir by Paula Becker (Looking for Betty McDonald focuses on mothering a son with an opioid addiction. Will be at Central Library September 21 and Third Place Lake Forest Park September 26!

How To. More absurd scientific advice from xkcd‘s Randall Munroe.  Will be at Third Place Books Lake Forest Park on September 9! A Peak Pick!

IndistractableNir Eyal explores the roots of distraction and develops a framework to control your attention and focus.

Inside Out. Demi Moore tells the story of her life, film career and high profile relationships in her first memoir.

Make It Scream, Make It BurnThe latest eclectic essay collection from Leslie Jamison combines memoir, criticism and journalism.

The Meritocracy TrapDaniel Markovits dispels the myth that meritocracy values ability and effort above all else.

On Fire. Naomi Klein (The Shock Doctrine) makes the case for a Green New Deal with trenchant essays. Will be at Town Hall September 24! A Peak Pick!

Our Dogs, Ourselves.  Alexandra Horowitz examines our unique relationship with dogs. Will be at Town Hall September 28!

Over the TopQueer Eye star Jonathan Van Ness shares how he overcame ridicule and trauma to be “the radiant human he is today.”

Own Your SelfHolistic psychiatrist Kelly Brogan argues that working through physical and emotion pain is better than pharmaceuticals.

Permanent Record. Edward Snowden tells the story of his life, from childhood to whistle-blower in exile.

Proof of ConspiracySeth Abramson follows up Proof of Collusion with a further investigation into Trump’s relationship with world leaders.

Second FoundingHistorian Eric Foner posits that the “Reconstruction Amendments” marked the second founding of the U.S.

She SaidJodi Kantor & Megan Twohey won the Pulitzer Prize for investigating allegations against Harvey Weinstein, launching the #metoo movement. Will be at Benaroya Hall January 20!

SontagBenjamin Moser delivers a massive biography of essayist, novelist and critic Susan Sontag.

Super Attractor. Gabrielle Bernstein gives readers the confidence to unleash their power and achieve all that they desire.

Super Pumped. Mike Isaac covers the rise and fall of Uber in a twelve-month period.  Will be at Third Place Lake Forest Park September 14!

Talking to Strangers. Malcolm Gladwell examines why our interactions with strangers often go wrong.  Will be at Benaroya Hall September 23! A Peak Pick! 

Think Black. Clyde Ford tells the story of his father, the first black software engineer at IBM.  Will be at Town Hall September 22!

Tools & Weapons. Microsoft president Brad Smith tackles thorny issues that tech companies face. Will be at Town Hall September 20!

Turn Around Time. This book-length poem by David Guterson (Snow Falling on Cedars) celebrates the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Will be at the Central Library September 10! A Peak Pick! 

Ungrateful Refugee. This memoir by Dina Nayeri shines a light on the lives of refugees like herself.  Will be at Elliott Bay Book Co. September 18!

United States of TrumpBill O’Reilly obtained exclusive interviews with Trump to explain his unlikely ascendancy to the presidency.

We Are the Weather. Jonathan Safran Foer(Eating Animals) argues that limiting our consumption of animal products will help save the planet.  Will be at Town Hall September 25!

Whose Story is This? A new, provocative essay collection from progressive voice Rebecca Solnit.

Wilding. A married couple decide to restore their failing farm to the wild, before human intervention. Will be at Town Hall September 26!

Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs? -Caitlin Doughty (Smoke Gets in Your Eyes) answers dozens of questions about death in entertaining guide.  Will be at Town Hall September 16!

Year of the MonkeyPatti Smith (Just Kidsreflects on 2016, which saw the loss of a close friend and the election of Donald Trump. A Peak Pick!

New fiction roundup, September 2019

9/3: Bringing Down the Duke by Evie Dunmore – England, 1879: a fiercely independent vicar’s daughter earns a place among the first cohort of female students at the University of Oxford, and ultimately takes on a powerful duke in a fiery love story that threatens to upend the British social order.

9/3: Dominicana by Angie Cruz – To help her family’s immigration prospects, 15-year-old Ana marries a man twice her age and moves with him from the Dominican Republic to New York City. Once there, she’ll balance duty to her family against her own desires.

9/3: The Grammarians by Cathleen Schine – Twins Laurel and Daphne Wolfe share an obsession with words, a love that binds them together until it pushes them apart in a war over custody of their most prized family heirloom: Merriam Webster’s New International Dictionary, Second Edition.

9/3: The Long Call by Ann Cleeves – Returning to the North Devon evangelical community he grew up in for his father’s funeral, Detective Matthew Venn is called to consult on a nearby murder. First in a new series by the author of the Vera and Shetland mystery series.

9/3: Quichotte by Salman Rushdie – Middling writer Sam DuChamp creates a Don Quixote for the modern age, a character obsessed with television who falls in love with a TV star and sets off on a quest or prove himself worthy of her. At the same time, Sam faces a midlife crisis of his own.

9/3: The Sweetest Fruits by Monique Truong – A single mother living in Ireland in 1852; an African American woman working as a cook at a boarding house in 1872; a former samurai’s daughter in 1891 Japan. Three women tell stories of their time with Lafcadio Hearn, a globetrotting writer, while also bearing witness to their own existence and their will to live unbounded by the mores of their time.

9/10: Akin by Emma Donoghue – A retired New York professor’s life is thrown into chaos when he takes a young great-nephew to the French Riveria, in hopes of discovering his own mother’s wartime secrets.

9/10: Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir – Called into service as swordswoman for the Ninth Necromancer, Gideon will have to navigate a system of swordplay, cut-throat politics and lesbian necromancers to achieve her freedom.

9/10: The Institute by Stephen King – Lured from his bedroom, Luke wakes up at The Institute, in a bedroom that looks just like his on a hallway with kids who have special talents. The director is dedicated to extracting the force of their extranormal gifts. No one has ever escaped from the Institute.

9/10: Out of Darkness, Shining Light by Pettina Gappah – The captivating story of the men and women who carried explorer and missionary Dr. Livingstone’s body, papers and maps across Africa so his remains could be returned to England, as told by the cook, Halima, and a freed slave, Jacob Wainwright.

9/10: The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow – in the early 1900s, January Scaller lives as a ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke. Exploring his mansion, she finds a strange book, one that tells of secret doors, love, danger, and the fantastical journey of self-discovery that awaits.

9/10: The Testaments by Margaret Atwood – In this sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, Atwood picks up Offred’s tale 15 years later, as told by three female narrators from Gilead. A Peak Pick!

9/17: A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill – Noah sees monsters. So does his father, who built a shrine to them called The Wandering Dark, an immersive horror experience that the family runs. What happens when Noah chooses to let the monsters in?

9/17: Heaven, My Home by Attica Locke – In the follow up to Bluebird, Bluebird, Texas Ranger Darren Matthews is searching for a boy who’s gone missing while reckoning with in a small Texas town still wedded to the racial attitudes of ante-bellum Texas.

9/17: Red at the Bone by Jaqueline Woodson – An unexpected teenage pregnancy pulls together two families from different social classes, exposing the private hopes, disappointments, and longings that can bind or divide us. A Peak Pick!

9/17: What Rose Forgot by Nevada Barr – A grandmother in her 60s emerges from a mental fog to find she’s trapped in her worst nightmare, committed to an Alzheimer’s Unit in a nursing home with no memory of how she got there, and someone trying to kill her.

9/24: The Dutch House by Ann Patchett – A novel of the indelible bond between two siblings, their childhood home, and a past that will not let them go. A Peak Pick!

9/24: The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates – Born into bondage, young Hiram Walker has his mother sold away and loses all memory of her, but is also gifted with a mysterious power. After his power saves him from drowning in the river, he’s inspired to escape and seek out his family. A Peak Pick!

9/24: The Shadow King by Maaza Mengiste – Set during Mussolini’s 1935 invasion of Ethiopia, maid Hirut comes up with a plan to maintain morale. Disguising a peasant as the emperor, Hirut rallies her fellow women in the fight against fascism.

Book descriptions adapted from publisher copy.

~ posted by Andrea G.

Ale Yeah!

My dad’s favorite beer was Schmidt – during football games or working in the garage, that was his go-to drink of choice. Occasionally he might add some tomato juice, but more often than not it was just that simple can with a fish on the label. Camping in my twenties I often grabbed a pack of Rolling Rock or Corona, but I don’t think I started to appreciate beer until I met my husband. Born in Michigan, he was exposed to more floral notes of the hop rather than bitter. I didn’t like IPAs at all until he had me try Bell’s Two Hearted…a smile came to my face when I saw it too had a fish on the label. Not sure dad would have cared for it, but it taught me to discover I had a palate. Now drinking beer is all about trying and discovering. My local favorites are Dystopian’s Coconut Cream Ale and Georgetown’s Gusto Crema. Outside of state lines I’ve fallen for Founder’s Green Zebra as my go to gose; for a stout, Perennial nails it with their Abraxas; for a shandy, Short’s does it for me with their Soft Parade, and Riverbend kills it with their Milkshake IPAs…Hawaiian Crunch is calling my name right now! And now I know no matter where I go, I’ll find something I enjoy.

For those that can’t hit the road right now for a beer tour here are a few books to get some studying in before your beer imbibing adventure begins!

Tasting Cider: The Cidercraft Guide to Distinctive Flavors of North American Hard Cider by Erin James

Ciders were always sweet delights – hot ciders during high school football games or apple cider donuts at the pumpkin patch. Most hard ciders I had were filled with so much sugar I was guaranteed an instant headache in the morning. As more and more hard ciders started being produced, it was more the dry or English style that I enjoyed most. Finn River out of Chimicum is now my go-to with that bit of funk and twang that keeps me wanting more without my gut taking a punch. Cider has a long history and is incredibly diverse – this guide will walk you along the many flavors and ways of imbibing.

Complete IPA: The Guide to your Favorite Craft Beer by Joshua M. Bernstein

In the Pacific Northwest we love our hops…like really, really, really love our hops. We love them so much that our IPAs will often taste like someone is hitting me with a pillow filled with them. My face distorts and I forget where I am. But I think that is starting to change with more and more experimentation. I love hops, I do, but it’s their floral notes that really pull me in. Sweet and smooth is the kind of IPA I can cuddle up with. This guide will show you some of the places making some interesting changes in the IPA realm.

Craft Beer Country: In Search of the Best Breweries From the South Pacific to the Pacific Coast by Kirk Richardson

Some great breweries in the craft beer game have found their way into this guide of the Pacific Coast – I see you Georgetown! While there are tons more to discover and explore, this guide will get you started and have you trying beers you might not have tried before, although I will always encourage folks to find those back roads! Some of the best breweries I’ve found have been road trips with friends like Fort George Brewing in Astoria and Bron Yr Aur in Naches.

My Beer Year: Adventures With Hop Farmers, Craft Brewers, Chefs, Beer Sommeliers, & Fanatical Drinkers as A Beer Master in Training by Lucy Burningham

Follow Lucy’s path as she gets her beer education on! Like the sommeliers of the wine world, Lucy dived into that beer knowledge so deep in order to become a certified cicerone (sis-uh-rohn). I’m also a sucker for a good memoir, so beer plus story has me taking some pretty big sips. Hello, beer goddess, tell me all the things!

Want the beer to come to you? Just check out the many beer festivals Washington has to offer! And take a look at our Booktoberfest events!

~posted by Kara P.

Bus Reads for August

Commuting to Seattle by bus five days a week gives me a lot of reading time. Here’s what I read on the bus in August:

Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee. I’m glad I gave myself a bit of time before I read this book. To Kill a Mockingbird was one of those books that really reached me, that molded me, and still lives with me to this day. Go Set a Watchman was what I needed to read now just like I needed Mockingbird back then. We live in a world with people on pedestals, pedestals that hide the wrong–this book reveals people are people, not gods. For those that grew up with Scout I think this is a read you can respect. I know there is controversy, I know how important Atticus is, but that’s the thing with those on pedestals; they eventually fall and what’s left determines who we are and what we stand for.

A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult. What a book! This book works its way backwards – taking you to the hostage situation inside of a clinic in Jackson, Mississippi where a gunman has fired shots. The story then moves hour by hour, slowly revealing the stories of the women who made their way to the clinic today, and also the staff working there. The narrative shows the connection we have to one another and how our decisions affect others. It was such a personal story for me; I couldn’t throw a rock between the ages of 16-21 without hitting someone pregnant. And those pregnancy stories really ran the gamut. This book really touches on the many different stories of each individual pregnancy. One of the saving graces of living in Washington State is that we have the access that many other regions don’t have. We still have some of the same prejudices, but not to the same extent either. We had clinics that had protesters, but many of us–once we told our stories–found out we weren’t alone. This book also highlights the fear we have in telling those stories, whether it’s simply going to the clinic for birth control or planning an abortion. While this book highlights such stories, I’m here to say they aren’t stereotypes–I’ve heard these stories, I’ve watched these stories, I am this story.

Bus Reads guest blogger:

Happy to be getting to Kimberly Brubaker Bradley’s sequel, The War I Finally Won. Loved the first book, excited for the follow up.

-submitted via Twitter by patron Tyler

Check out The War I Finally Won from the Library. And thanks for the recommendation, Tyler!

What are you reading on your commute? Tag your reads on social media #splbusreads

~posted by Kara P.

DIY Different

While gardening, cooking, and home improvement are what most people think of as do-it-yourself, or DIY, in a more general sense anything that you can pay someone else to do or buy ready-made, but do yourself, is do-it-yourself. Let’s DIY Different!

Whether you’re an incessant reader, enjoy binge-watching television shows, or love a long videogame session, it’s storytelling that drives many of our hobbies and passions. If you’d like to take this one step further and are looking to participate in the storytelling yourself, one fantastic possibility is through tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs) such as Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, or Numenera. Grab yourself a few friends, some paper and pencils, a set of dice, check out the Dungeons and Dragons Player’s Handbook (& Dungeon Master’s Guide, & maybe the Monster Manual), and you’re ready to roll! Continue reading “DIY Different”