A Gate at the Stairs - Lorrie Moore

A Gate at the Stairs, Lorrie Moore’s smart, funny and eccentric novel, introduces Tassie Keltjin a 20 year old college student at a fictional Wisconsin university, “the Athens of the Midwest.” Instead of returning to her parents’ farm at the semester break, she takes a job as would-be nanny for a restaurant owner/chef and her husband who are trying to adopt a child. Tassie’s easy-going manner, small town charm, and wry sense of humor seem to be the perfect complement to the obsessive, neurotic, demanding chef, Sarah. When Sarah does finally adopt Mary-Emma, a mixed race child, Tassie proves to be an able caretaker and learns a lot about herself and the world. I fell in love with A Gate at the Stairs in the opening pages, immediately attracted to the observant and intelligent narrator.
A Gate at the Stairs (Vintage Contemporaries) By Lorrie Moore Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375708466
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Vintage - August 24th, 2010

Train Dreams - Denis Johnson

National Book Award-winner Denis Johnson’s compact and intense Train Dreams (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $18) tells the story of Robert Granier, who spent his life from the early 1900s through the early 1960s working on lumber crews in Idaho and Montana.  After losing his wife and daughter in a fire, Granier led a mostly solitary life homesteading and dealing with the enormous changes taking place around him, such as the advent of the automobile and the airplane. Rather than tell the story of a man’s life in exhaustive detail, Johnson captures the totality of Granier’s life by detailing just a few experiences over the course of his lifetime. Granier never lets go of the tragic deaths of his wife and daughter, and their passing merges in his mind with local folklore. Johnson’s character study reveals the essence of an ordinary man, and in that very ordinariness lies his glory.

We The Animals: A Novel By Justin Torres Cover Image
ISBN: 9780547844190
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mariner Books - September 11th, 2012

The Angel Esmeralda: Nine Stories - Don DeLillo

The stories collected in The Angel Esmeralda (Scribner, $24) were written over the course of novelist Don DeLillo’s long and distinguished career.  Like his novels, they display the author’s penchant for looking behind societal, institutional, and personal curtains to show, in language and gesture, the reality underlying everyday life  In the title story an elderly nun working in one of the poorest sections of New York tries to help a teen-aged runaway girl. The interactions of life, memory, and image surface as Sister Edgar confronts the notion of the miraculous after the girl’s death.  In another story, two astronauts aboard an orbiting space craft monitor World War III from above after successful nuclear disarmament has made the world safe for war.  While the stories are diverse, they share DeLillo’s impeccable prose and his unfailing eye for seeing the world stripped of the inessential.

The Angel Esmeralda: Nine Stories By Don DeLillo Cover Image
ISBN: 9781451659092
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner - October 2nd, 2012