Starred Review

Bangkok Wakes to Rain

by Pitchaya Sudbanthad

Pitchaya Sudbanthad's Bangkok Wakes to Rain is a kaleidoscope of perspectives and stories: a flurry of lives that pass by each other, inhabit the same spaces and impact their city. Reminiscent of David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas, this is a novel comprised of many stories that crisscross and break apart, forming a fractured, buzzing depiction of one of the world's great metropolises.

With no strict chronology, Bangkok Wakes to Rain follows inhabitants of a building in the middle of the city

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The Art of Leaving

by Ayelet Tsabari

Ayelet Tsabari (The Best Place on Earth) grew up in Israel, part of a large Yemeni Jewish family. When Ayelet was only nine years old, her beloved father passed away, leaving her rootless and restless for many decades to come, as her mother struggled to provide for her and her siblings. Tsabari's uncertainty about her place in the world was caused partly by her fatherless status, and partly by being Yemeni in Israel in a time when Ashkenazi (European) Jews looked down on the Mizrahi (Middle Eastern).

Tsabari

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The Owls Have Come to Take Us Away

by Ronald L. Smith

Twelve-year-old Simon is picked on by other kids. He lives on an Air Force base with his white father and black mother and is obsessed with aliens. One kind of alien in particular freaks him out: Grays. "It's such a simple word. A color.... Something unknowable. Something that makes [him] not want to sleep."

When Simon's dad tells him the family is going camping that coming weekend, Simon is not happy. But his dad is a man's man, always talking up "the great outdoors" and dragging his family along on camping

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Shelf Discovery

One Another

by Monique Schwitter, trans. by Tess Lewis

A writer, shocked at the death of her first lover, recalls other past affairs and struggles to understand their impact on her life as a wife and mother.

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Spectacle

by Jodie Lynn Zdrok

In 1880s Paris, 16-year-old Nathalie grapples with her job as morgue reporter as well as her rather macabre "gift."

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The Cassandra

by Sharma Shields

An historical novel about a woman working on the Manhattan Project takes on a surreal edge when her visions of a violent future start to come true.

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Never Tell

by Lisa Gardner

A homicide detective, a survivor advocate and an accused murderer work to solve a shooting death that has sinister connections to previous violent and noteworthy crimes.

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A Friend for Henry

by Jenn Bailey, illus. by Mika Song

A young child on the autism spectrum struggles to find a friend among his loud, disorganized classmates, but ultimately triumphs.

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American Spy

by Lauren Wilkinson

A young black FBI agent is assigned to undermine the communist president of Burkina Faso in a compelling debut set during the Cold War.

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Abrams Press: No One Man Should Have All That Power: How Rasputins Manipulate the World by Amos Barshad

Media Heat

Thursday, February 21, 2019

KCRW's Bookworm: Sam Lipsyte, author of Hark (Simon & Schuster, $27, 9781501146060).

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Daily Show: Senator Kamala Harris, author of The Truths We Hold: An American Journey (Penguin Press, $30, 9780525560715).

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Fresh Air: Andrew McCabe, author of The Threat: How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terror and Trump (St. Martin's Press, $29.99, 9781250207579). He also appeared on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

KCRW's Bookworm: Amanda Sthers, author of Holy Lands (Bloomsbury, $22, 9781635572834).
 
Daily Show: Chris Wilson, author of The Master Plan: My Journey from Life in Prison to a Life of Purpose (Putnam, $27, 9780735215580).

Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Pete Buttigieg, author of Shortest Way Home: One Mayor's Challenge and a Model for America's Future (Liveright, $27.95, 9781631494369).

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Trevor Noah, author of Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood (Spiegel & Grau, $18, 9780399588198).
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