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Cafe Collection @ UAB Libraries: Popular Literature

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September 2019

The Glass Woman

A young woman follows her new husband to his remote home on the Icelandic coast in the 1680s, where she faces dark secrets surrounding the death of his first wife amidst a foreboding landscape and the superstitions of the local villagers.

Akin

Noah Selvaggio is a retired chemistry professor and widower living on the Upper West Side, but born in the South of France. He is days away from his first visit back to Nice since he was a child, bringing with him a handful of puzzling photos he's discovered from his mother's wartime years. But he receives a call from social services: Noah is the closest available relative of an eleven-year-old great-nephew he's never met, who urgently needs someone to look after him.

The Testaments

More than fifteen years after the events of The Handmaid's Tale, the theocratic regime of the Republic of Gilead maintains its grip on power, but there are signs it is beginning to rot from within. At this crucial moment, the lives of three radically different women converge, with potentially explosive results.

We Are the Weather

Some people reject the fact, overwhelmingly supported by scientists, that our planet is warming because of human activity. But do those of us who accept the reality of human-caused climate change truly believe it?

The Future of Another Timeline

1992: After a confrontation at a riot grrl concert, seventeen-year-old Beth finds herself in a car with her friend's abusive boyfriend dead in the backseat, agreeing to help her friends hide the body. This murder sets Beth and her friends on a path of escalating violence and vengeance as they realize many other young women in the world need protecting too.

How to Start a Revolution

Lauren Duca shares a smart and funny guide for challenging the status quo in a much-needed reminder that young people are the ones who will change the world. Here, Duca combines extensive research and first-person reporting to track her generation's shift from political alienation to political participation. Throughout, she also draws on her own story as a young woman catapulted to the front lines of the political conversation (all while figuring out how to deal with her Trump-supporting parents).

The Day It Finally Happens

Taking inspiration from his virally popular Vice column "How Scared Should I Be?," Mike Pearl in The Day It Finally Happens games out many of the "could it really happen?" scenarios we've all speculated about, assigning a probability rating, and taking us through how it would unfold.

Red at the Bone

Moving forward and backward in time, Jacqueline Woodson's taut and powerful new novel uncovers the role that history and community have played in the experiences, decisions, and relationships of these families, and in the life of the new child.

The Water Dancer

This is the dramatic story of an atrocity inflicted on generations of women, men, and children--the violent and capricious separation of families--and the war they waged to simply make lives with the people they loved. Written by one of today's most exciting thinkers and writers, The Water Dancer is a propulsive, transcendent work that restores the humanity of those from whom everything was stolen. 

May 2019

Orange World and Other Stories

Karen Russell's comedic genius and mesmerizing talent for creating outlandish predicaments that uncannily mirror our inner in lives is on full display in these eight exuberant, arrestingly vivid, unforgettable stories.

 

Middlegame

Meet Roger. Skilled with words, languages come easily to him. He instinctively understands how the world works through the power of story. Meet Dodger, his twin. Numbers are her world, her obsession, her everything. All she understands, she does so through the power of math. Roger and Dodger aren't exactly human, though they don't realise it. They aren't exactly gods, either. Not entirely. Not yet.

 

Light from Other Stars

Eleven-year-old Nedda Papas is obsessed with becoming an astronaut. In 1986 in Easter, a small Florida Space Coast town, her dreams seem almost within reach--if she can just grow up fast enough. 

 

Lanny

There's a village an hour from London. It's no different from many others today: one pub, one church, redbrick cottages, some public housing, and a few larger houses dotted about.  This village belongs to the people who live in it, to the land and to the land's past. It also belongs to Dead Papa Toothwort, a mythical figure local schoolchildren used to draw as green and leafy... He is listening, intently, for a mischievous, ethereal boy whose parents have recently made the village their home. 

 

The Guest Book

Moving through three generations and back and forth in time, The Guest Book asks how we remember and what we choose to forget. It shows the untold secrets we inherit and pass on, unknowingly echoing our parents and grandparents. 

 

The Flatshare

After a bad breakup, Tiffy Moore needs a place to live. Fast. And cheap. But the apartments in her budget have her wondering if astonishingly colored mold on the walls counts as art. Desperation makes her open minded, so she answers an ad for a flatshare.  Even though they are opposites, they soon become friends. And then maybe more. But falling in love with your roommate is probably a terrible idea...especially if you've never met.

 

The Farm

Nestled in New York's Hudson Valley is a luxury retreat boasting every amenity: organic meals, personal fitness trainers, daily massages--and all of it for free. In fact, you're paid big money to stay here--more than you've ever dreamed of. The catch? For nine months, you cannot leave the grounds, your movements are monitored, and you are cut off from your former life while you dedicate yourself to the task of producing the perfect baby. For someone else. 

The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

The hardscrabble folks of Troublesome Creek have to scrap for everything--everything except books, that is. Thanks to Roosevelt's Kentucky Pack Horse Library Project, Troublesome's got its very own traveling librarian,  If Cussy wants to bring the joy of books to the hill folks, she's going to have to confront prejudice as old as the Appalachias and suspicion as deep as the holler. Inspired by the true blue-skinned people of Kentucky and the brave and dedicated Kentucky Pack Horse library service of the 1930s, 

 

Biloxi

Louis has been forlorn since his wife of thirty-seven years left him, his father passed, and he impulsively retired from his job in anticipation of an inheritance check that may not come. Yet the past is no predictor of Louis's future. On a routine trip to Walgreens to pick up his diabetes medication, he stops at a sign advertising free dogs and meets Harry Davidson, a man who claims to have more than a dozen canines on offer, but offers only one: an overweight mixed breed named Layla. 

 

The Ghost Collector

Ghosts aren't meant to stick around forever... Shelly and her grandmother catch ghosts. In their hair. Just like all the women in their family, they can see souls who haven't transitioned yet; it's their job to help the ghosts along their journey. When Shelly's mom dies suddenly, Shelly's relationship to ghosts--and death--changes. 

 

Big Ideas for Curious Minds

Without prompting children often ask some of the largest questions about time, mortality, happiness and the meaning of life. Yet all too often their inborn curiosity is not developed and, with age, the questions fall away.  Presented in an interactive question and answer format this book takes us to meet leading figures of philosophy from around the world and from all eras--and shows us how their ideas continue to matter.

 

April 2049

What My Mother and I Don't Talk About

Fifteen brilliant writers explore what we don't talk to our mothers about, and how it affects us, for better or for worse. While some of the writers in this book are estranged from their mothers, others are extremely close. As Filgate writes, "Our mothers are our first homes, and that's why we're always trying to return to them." 

 

Walking on the Ceiling

After her mother's death, Nunu moves from Istanbul to a small apartment in Paris. One day outside of a bookstore, she meets M., an older British writer whose novels about Istanbul Nunu has always admired. They find themselves walking the streets of Paris and talking late into the night. A wise and unguarded glimpse into a young woman's coming into her own, Walking on the Ceiling is about memory, the pleasure of invention, and those places, real and imagined, we can't escape.

 

Instructions for a Funeral

.With each story Means pushes into new territory, writing with tenderness and compassion about fatherhood, marriage, a homeless brother, the nature of addiction, and the death of a friend at the hands of a serial-killer nurse. Means transmutes a fistfight in Sacramento into a tender, life-long love story; two FBI agents on a stakeout in the 1920s into a tale of predator and prey, paternal urges and loss; a man's funeral instructions into a chronicle of organized crime, real estate ventures, and the destructive force of paranoia. 

 

Emily Eternal


Emily is an artificial consciousness, designed in a lab to help humans process trauma, which is particularly helpful when the sun begins to die 5 billion years before scientists agreed it was supposed to. Her beloved human race is screwed, and so is Emily. That is, until she finds a potential answer buried deep in the human genome that may save them all. 

 

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World

.My name's Griz. My childhood wasn't like yours. I've never had friends, and in my whole life I've not met enough people to play a game of football. My parents told me how crowded the world used to be, but we were never lonely on our remote island. We had each other, and our dogs. Then the thief came. There may be no law left except what you make of it. But if you steal my dog, you can at least expect me to come after you. Because if we aren't loyal to the things we love, what's the point?

 

 

 

Normal People

.At school Connell and Marianne pretend not to know each other. He's popular and well-adjusted, star of the school football team, while she is lonely, proud, and intensely private. But when Connell comes to pick his mother up from her job at Marianne's house, a strange and indelible connection grows between the two teenagers--one they are determined to conceal. 

 

 

Trust Exercise

.In an American suburb in the early 1980s, students at a highly competitive performing arts high school struggle and thrive in a rarified bubble, ambitiously pursuing music, movement, Shakespeare, and, particularly, their acting classes. When within this striving "Brotherhood of the Arts," two freshmen, David and Sarah, fall headlong into love, their passion does not go unnoticed--or untoyed with--by anyone, especially not by their charismatic acting teacher, Mr. Kingsley. The outside world of family life and economic status, of academic pressure and of their future adult lives, fails to penetrate this school's walls--until it does...

 

 

Everything Is Just Fine

In this brilliant, laugh-out-loud satire, image-conscious parents on a Beverly Hills junior soccer team struggle to keep up appearances as their private lives careen out of control. Coach Randy is working mightily to keep it together, and not simply with his vaguely unhappy wife, distant child, and a new boss who's eliminating half the sales force. This season's soccer parents are a demanding bunch. 

 

 

The Book of Dreams

Henri Skinner is a hardened ex-war reporter on the run from his past. On his way to see his son, Sam, for the first time in years, Henri steps into the road without looking and collides with oncoming traffic. He is rushed to a nearby hospital where he floats, comatose, between dreams, reliving the fairytales of his childhood and the secrets that made him run away in the first place.   

 

 

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