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Book Kit Titles

2020 Summer/Fall List

The Address by Fiona Davis
Fiona Davis, author of The Dollhouse, returns with a compelling novel about the thin lines between love and loss, success and ruin, passion and madness, all hidden behind the walls of the Dakota, New York City's most famous residence.

The Beekeeper of Aleepo by Christy LefteriNuri is a beekeeper and Afra, his wife, is an artist. Mornings, Nuri rises early to hear the call to prayer before driving to his hives in the countryside. On weekends, Afra sells her colorful landscape paintings at the open-air market. They live a simple life, rich in family and friends, in the hills of the beautiful Syrian city of Aleppo; until the unthinkable happens. When all they love is destroyed by war, Nuri knows they have no choice except to leave their home. But escaping Syria will be no easy task: Afra has lost her sight, leaving Nuri to navigate her grief as well as a perilous journey through Turkey and Greece toward an uncertain future in Britain.

Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue
A compulsively readable debut novel about marriage, immigration, class, race, and the trapdoors in the American Dream—the unforgettable story of a young Cameroonian couple making a new life in New York just as the Great Recession upends the economy.

Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo A. Anaya
Chronicles the story of an alienated New Mexico boy who seeks an answer to his questions about life in his relationship with Ultima, a magical healer. This coming-of-age classic and the bestselling Chicano novel of all time follows a young boy as he questions his faith and beliefs -- now one of PBS's "100 Great American Reads."

Bowlaway by Elizabeth McCracken
A sweeping and enchanting new novel from the widely beloved, award-winning author Elizabeth McCracken about three generations of an unconventional New England family who own and operate a candlepin bowling alley. 

The Book of Polly by Kathy Hepinstall
With a kick like the best hot sauce, this is the laugh-out-loud story of a girl determined to keep up with her aging, crazy-as-a-fox mother.  The Book of Polly has a great blend of humor and sadness, pathos and hilarity. This is a bittersweet novel about the grip of love in a truly quirky family and you’ll come to know one of the most unforgettable mother-daughter duos you’ve ever met.

The Burning Girl by Claire Messud
Two lifelong friends find their relationship tested as their paths diverge during adolescence as one of the pair embarks on a dangerous journey.

City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert
Beloved author Elizabeth Gilbert returns to fiction with a unique love story set in the New York City theater world during the 1940s. Told from the perspective of an older woman as she looks back on her youth with both pleasure and regret (but mostly pleasure), City of Girls explores themes of female sexuality and promiscuity, as well as the idiosyncrasies of true love.

The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith 
Working as a private investigator, veteran Cormoran Strike investigates a supermodel's suspicious suicide and finds himself in a world of multi-millionaire beauties, rock star boyfriends, desperate designers, and hedonist pursuits.

Eleanor Olphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
Meet Eleanor Oliphant: She struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office.

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
A story of the divisions between cultures and the rifts within a family explores the fallout of the drowning death of Lydia Lee, the favorite daughter of a Chinese-American family in 1970s Ohio.

Georgia: A Novel of Georgia O'Keefe by Dawn Tripp
In 1916, Georgia O’Keeffe is a young, unknown art teacher when she travels to New York to meet Stieglitz, the famed photographer and art dealer, who has discovered O’Keeffe’s work and exhibits it in his gallery. Their connection is instantaneous. O’Keeffe is quickly drawn into Stieglitz’s sophisticated world, becoming his mistress, protégé, and muse, as their attraction deepens into an intense and tempestuous relationship and his photographs of her, both clothed and nude, create a sensation.

Gone So Long by Andre Dubus III 
An ex-con who did time for murder, the estranged daughter he hasn’t seen in forty years, and the grandmother angry enough to kill him all come together in this riveting family drama.

The Guest Book by Sarah Blake
An exquisitely written, poignant family saga that illuminates the great divide, the gulf that separates the rich and poor, black and white, Protestant and Jew. Spanning three generations, The Guest Book deftly examines the life and legacy of one unforgettable family as they navigate the evolving social and political landscape from Crockett’s Island, their family retreat off the coast of Maine. Blake masterfully lays bare the memories and mistakes each generation makes while coming to terms with what it means to inherit the past.  

Heat and Light by Jennifer Haigh
A latest tale set in the Pennsylvania town depicted in Baker Towers finds an agreement to lease mineral rights to frackers causing unexpected complications in the life of farmer Rich Devilin, his family members and his neighbors throughout Bakerton.

I Was Anastasia by Ariel Lawhon
An enthralling feat of historical suspense that unravels the extraordinary twists and turns in Anna Anderson's fifty-year battle to be recognized as Anastasia Romanov. Is she the Russian Grand Duchess or the thief of another woman's legacy? 

The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende
A multi-generational epic by the New York Times best-selling author of The House of the Spirits follows the impossible romance between a World War II escapee from the Nazis and a Japanese gardener's son, whose story is discovered decades later by a care worker who would come to terms with her past

The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan
Having collected a lifetime of lost objects in order to deal with the loss of his fiancâee, Anthony Peardew bequeaths his secret life's mission to his unsuspecting assistant, Laura, leaving her his house and all its lost treasures--and the responsibility to return each one to its owner.

Leopard at the Door by Jennifer McVeigh
After six years in England, Rachel has returned to Kenya and the farm where she spent her childhood, but the beloved home she’d longed for is much changed. Her father’s new companion—a strange, intolerant woman—has taken over the household. The political climate in the country grows more unsettled by the day and is approaching the boiling point. And looming over them all is the threat of the Mau Mau, a secret society intent on uniting the native Kenyans and overthrowing the whites.

The Little Old Lady Who Broke All the Rules by Catharina Ingleman-Sundberg
Fed up when the new management of their retirement home begins cutting corners, a group of seniors begin a life of white collar crime and plot to carry out a complex, untraceable heist at the National Museum.

The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
Prescribing books that offer therapeutic benefits to his customers, a literary apothecary in a floating bookstore on the Seine struggles with private heartbreak before embarking on a journey of healing at the side of a blocked writer and a lovelorn chef.

Love and Ruin by Paula McLain
In 1937, twenty-eight-year-old Martha Gellhorn travels alone to Madrid to report on the atrocities of the Spanish Civil War and becomes drawn to the stories of ordinary people caught in the devastating conflict. It’s her chance to prove herself a worthy journalist in a field dominated by men. There she also finds herself unexpectedly—and unwillingly—falling in love with Ernest Hemingway, a man on his way to becoming a legend.

The Map of Salt and Stars by Jennifer Zevnab Joukhadar
This powerful and lyrical debut novel is the story of two girls living eight hundred years apart- a modern day Syrian refugee seeking safety and an adventurous mapmaker's apprentice- "perfectly aligns with the cultural moment" (The Providence Journal) and "shows how interconnected two supposedly opposing worlds can be" (New York Times Book Review).

Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner
Growing up in 1950s Detroit, they live in a perfect &;Dick and Jane&; house, where their roles in the family are clearly defined. Jo is the tomboy, the bookish rebel with a passion to make the world more fair; Bethie is the pretty, feminine good girl, a would-be star who enjoys the power her beauty confers and dreams of a traditional life. This novel  is the story of two sisters who, with their different dreams and different paths, and offer answers to the question: How should a woman be in the world?

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Edward Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. One of his fellow passengers must be the murderer.

The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
Gathering to confront their older brother, who has recently been released from rehab after a drunk driving accident, the Plumb siblings watch as the trust fund left by their father rises and falls according to self-inflicted problems.

Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton
Marisol Ferrera returns to her grandmother's homeland to fulfill her last wish to have her ashes scattered in Havana and discovers her family history amidst Cuba's tropical beauty and dangerous political environment.  

The Opposite of Everyone by Joshilyn Jackson
After being placed in foster care, Paula Vauss grows up to become a tough divorce attorney only to have her life thrown into chaos by an astonishing revelation and a cryptic message from the mother she has not seen in years.

The Other Alcott by Elise Hooper
A tale inspired by the life of Louisa May Alcott's youngest sister finds young May longing to study art outside of the confines of her Concord home before turning down a marriage proposal and pursuing an identity in contrast to the spoiled and worldly character of Amy in her sister's famed novel.

The Passenger by Lisa Lutz
Changing her name and appearance to flee town after leaving her husband dead, a fugitive woman forges an uneasy alliance off the grid at the side of a female bartender with whom she races from city to city to escape her past.

A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza 
As an Indian wedding gathers a family back together, parents Rafiq and Layla must reckon with the choices their children have made. There is Hadia: their headstrong, eldest daughter, whose marriage is a match of love and not tradition. Huda, the middle child, determined to follow in her sister’s footsteps. And lastly, their estranged son, Amar, who returns to the family fold for the first time in three years to take his place as brother of the bride.

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
A socially awkward genetics professor who has never been on a second date sets out to find the perfect wife, but instead finds Rosie Jarman, a fiercely independent barmaid who is on a quest to find her biological father.

Rumbo al Hermoso Norte by Luis Alberto Urrea
Nayeli es una chica de diecinueve años que trabaja en una taquerí­a de tres Camarones, un poblado mexicano. Ve en sueños a su padre, que emigrá al norte cuando era niña. Recientemente se ha dado cuenta de que su padre no es el único hombre que se ha ido del pueblo, de hecho ya casi no quedan hombres, todos se han ido al otro lado, a los Estados Unidos. Un grupo de narcotraficantes también se ha percatado de ese hecho y ven la oportunidad para apoderarse.

Salt Houses by Hala Alyan
Foreseeing blessings and troubles in the lives of her daughter and grandchildren, Salma endures hardships stemming from the Six-Day War of 1967 in Palestine before rebuilding in Kuwait, and again when the family is scattered by Saddam Hussein's regime.

Sin In the Second City by Karen Abbott
A history of America's most famous brothel, Chicago's Everleigh Club, which catered to some of America's leading moguls, actors, and writers from 1900 to 1911, profiles its aristocratic proprietors and their efforts to elevate the industry to new heights.

Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
Living with his grandparents and sister on a Gulf Coast farm, Jojo navigates the challenges of his mother's addictions and his grandmother's cancer before the release of his father from prison prompts a road trip of danger and hope.

Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo
Secure in the love of her husband in spite of pressure for him to have a polygamous marriage, Yejide is overwhelmed by shock and pain when her inability to become pregnant compels her husband to take a second wife, sending her on a desperate quest to conceive a child.

The Swans of Fifth Avenue by Melanie Benjamin  
A novel steeped in the glamour and smoky atmosphere of New YorkÆs high society follows Babe Paley, known for her high-profile marriage to CBS founder William Paley, her ranking in the International Best-Dressed Hall of Fame and her scandalous, headline-making friendship with Truman Capote.

There There by Tommy Orange
A novel—which grapples with the complex history of Native Americans and a plague of addiction, abuse and suicide—follows 12 characters, each of whom has private reasons for traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow. 

We Never Asked for Wings by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
When her parents return to Mexico, 15-year-old Letty Espinosa is forced to become a parent to her children and considers a risky move that jeopardizes their fragile hopes for the future.

The Winter Soldier by Daniel Mason
From the gilded ballrooms of Imperial Vienna to the frozen forests of the Eastern Front; from hardscrabble operating rooms to battlefields thundering with Cossack cavalry, The Winter Soldier is the story of war and medicine, of family, of finding love in the sweeping tides of history, and finally, of the mistakes we make, and the precious opportunities to atone.

The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck
In a novel set at the end of World War II, in a crumbling Bavarian castle that once played host to all of German high society, three widows' lives and fates become intertwined.

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