Ken T.'s Picks

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A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters (Vintage International) By Julian Barnes Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679731375
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - November 27th, 1990

Ten short stories with no recurring characters, whose settings include Noah’s Ark, an archeological expedition, and Heaven; a little essay; and a reproduction of a painting. It doesn’t sound like a novel, much less a history of the world, but it really is both.

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Travesty By John Hawkes Cover Image
ISBN: 9780811222167
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions - April 19th, 2016

This short novel is one monologue by a man speeding through the French countryside intending to crash his sportscar—with his daughter and his wife’s lover in the backseat—into a stone wall, and it’s among the least disquieting of Hawkes’ unyieldingly lyrical fiction.

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The Undocumented Americans By Karla Cornejo Villavicencio Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399592706
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: One World - April 6th, 2021

My favorite nonfiction of this year so far: Essays full of tension between love, obligation, rebellion and violence that inform a bigger picture of everyday injustice. The author insists she’s not a proper journalist, but her observations articulated through the immediacy of her voice constantly tell you otherwise.