Starred Review

So Much Blue

by Percival Everett

Percival Everett's So Much Blue is a masterstroke of a novel that blends biting humor, beautiful ekphrasis and heartbreaking pathos in a stirring, unforgettable composition.

Everett (Erasure) is known for his literary skill and probing intelligence. Here he combines three stories from the point of view of painter Kevin Pace. Pace's present-day life entails family troubles with his daughter and wife, and a secretive, giant painting he keeps under lock and key. Intermittent flashbacks form two underlying narratives,

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The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II 

by Svetlana Aleksievich, trans. by Larissa Volokhonsky, Richard Pevear

Since Svetlana Alexievich won the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature, a number of publishers have rereleased her decades-old classics in English translation, including Voices from Chernobyl and Zinky Boys. Originally published in 1985, The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II is a brilliant work of history and reporting that showcases Alexievich's boundless empathy and inimitable style.

Instead of a chronological history focused on military affairs, The

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Hello Goodbye Dog

by Maria Gianferrari, illus. by Patrice Barton

"There was nothing Moose loved more than hello," especially greetings from her human, Zara. But dogs aren't allowed at Zara's school and "There was nothing Moose disliked more than goodbye." Smart pup that she is, for every "goodbye," Moose finds a way to say "hello": she zooms out the door to Mrs. Perkins's classroom for story time ("Moose... loves story time"), she chews through the backyard rope to sneak into Mrs. Chen's library hour and she even manages a cafeteria dash for homemade cookies and a Zara-read

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Shelf Discovery

A Stone of Hope

by Jim St. Germain, Jon Sternfeld

A young Haitian immigrant who rose out of poverty embodies the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: "Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope."

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Refugee

by Alan Gratz

Action-filled short chapters provide painstaking portraits of three young refugees from Nazi Germany, Castro's Cuba and contemporary Syria in Alan Gratz's middle-grade novel.

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Chester B. Himes

by Lawrence P. Jackson

Jackson's outstanding and intimate biography of Chester Himes is essential reading for fans of noir fiction, and those interested in race relations in history and lives of adversity.

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Kingdom Cons

by Yuri Herrera, trans. by Lisa Dillman

The last of Yuri Herrera's well-regarded border trilogy to be translated into English, Kingdom Cons is an allegory of power, class and art set in the remote compound of a Mexican cartel boss.

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The Changeling

by Victor LaValle

This dark fairy tale for grownups explores the emotional stakes of fatherhood and uncovers a New York hiding in plain sight.

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Minotaur Books: Paradise Valley (Cassie Dewell #3) by C.J. Box

Media Heat

Monday, July 24, 2017

Fresh Air: Cary Fowler, author of Seeds on Ice: Svalbard and the Global Seed Vault (Prospecta Press, $45, 9781632260574).

Thursday, July 20, 2017

KCRW's Bookworm: Jim Gauer, author of Novel Explosives (Zerogram Press, $15.95, 9781557134332).

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Fresh Air: Billy Bragg, author of Roots, Radicals & Rockers: How Skiffle Changed the World (Faber & Faber, $29.95, 9780571327744).

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Fresh Air: Joshua Green, author of Devil's Bargain: Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, and the Storming of the Presidency (Penguin Press, $27, 9780735225022).

Monday, July 17, 2017

CBS This Morning: Joshua Green, author of Devil's Bargain: Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, and the Storming of the Presidency (Penguin Press, $27, 9780735225022).
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