A fantastic piece of nonfiction that shows you life in a small village in the south of Spain seemingly so peaceful and idyllic that it feels unreal. This is not a book about communism, this is a book about the hope and strength of the people. The people of Marinaleda who decided after the fall of Franco that they had a responsibility and desire to take care of each other and that a democracy alone couldn’t solve their problems. They spent decades performing sit ins, peaceful protests and marches all in an effort to build a utopia. In this village no one goes hungry, no one is homeless and property is communal as are almost all aspects of life. This book showed me that a better world is possible because it already exists in this little town in Spain.
- Annie

A fantastic piece of nonfiction that shows you life in a small village in the south of Spain seemingly so peaceful and idyllic that it feels unreal. This is not a book about communism, this is a book about the hope and strength of the people. The people of Marinaleda who decided after the fall of Franco that they had a responsibility and desire to take care of each other and that a democracy alone couldn’t solve their problems. They spent decades performing sit ins, peaceful protests and marches all in an effort to build a utopia. In this village no one goes hungry, no one is homeless and property is communal as are almost all aspects of life. This book showed me that a better world is possible because it already exists in this little town in Spain.

- Annie


I read a lot of books about young girls, all of them wonderful but none so appealing as this. Translated for the first time since it’s publication in 1931, Gilgi is both the story of a young girl struggling to find her independence and a revolutionary work for it’s time dealing with issues such as abortion, and single motherhood. A powerful novel filled with Gilgis determination to make something of herself. Working and taking language classes in an attempt to leave Germany she spends her days fending off advances from her boss sure she wants no romantic attachments. Until she meets Martin a poor travelling writer living off his wealthy friends, he’s not exactly who she pictured falling in love with. Superbly written and translated, this is absolutely the best novel I’ve read all year.
- Annie

I read a lot of books about young girls, all of them wonderful but none so appealing as this. Translated for the first time since it’s publication in 1931, Gilgi is both the story of a young girl struggling to find her independence and a revolutionary work for it’s time dealing with issues such as abortion, and single motherhood. A powerful novel filled with Gilgis determination to make something of herself. Working and taking language classes in an attempt to leave Germany she spends her days fending off advances from her boss sure she wants no romantic attachments. Until she meets Martin a poor travelling writer living off his wealthy friends, he’s not exactly who she pictured falling in love with. Superbly written and translated, this is absolutely the best novel I’ve read all year.

- Annie


Obsess much?  Nora Eldridge sure does. In this case, over a family. Nora is a teacher, an artist, a daughter, & a friend to many. The Shahids enter her life, and she’s totally taken with them—-especially Sirena Shahid. Nora narrates her story & tells you all she sees and feels.  With the recent death of her mother, the Shahids fill a void.  However, the devotion & attention Nora dotes on the family lead to devastating consequences. Intense, insightful, and creepy writing make this novel quite satisfying.
- AnnJ

Obsess much?  Nora Eldridge sure does. In this case, over a family. Nora is a teacher, an artist, a daughter, & a friend to many. The Shahids enter her life, and she’s totally taken with them—-especially Sirena Shahid. Nora narrates her story & tells you all she sees and feels.  With the recent death of her mother, the Shahids fill a void.  However, the devotion & attention Nora dotes on the family lead to devastating consequences. Intense, insightful, and creepy writing make this novel quite satisfying.

- AnnJ


Not only for those physically “locked down”, but for those seeking to break the bonds of mental shackles.
With the success of Hill Harper’s motivational books many fan letters came his way, seeking further guidance and support. Harper had noticed an alarming amount of letters coming from corrections institutions. Faced with those letters and the United States’ horrifying statistics of African American incarceration, Harper sought to answer some of the very tough questions that this devastating epidemic has brought on. By using a personal correspondence with a young man facing time in jail, readers are given a front seat in what goes on in the mind of someone locked down.
Knowing that he does not have all the answers, Harper is smart enough to gather wisdom from the likes of Dr. Rudolph E Tanzi, Russell Simmons, Charles “ the rock “Dutton. He places quotes from Aristotle, John F Kennedy, and Malcolm X along the way. The book has a layout that is simple and clear, with illustrations, charts and highlighted quotes it feels partially like a journal. Included in the back of the book is an “owners manual”. Letter to an Incarcerated Brother convinces readers that a “hard time” does not have to be the thing that breaks you.
- Dominique

Not only for those physically “locked down”, but for those seeking to break the bonds of mental shackles.

With the success of Hill Harper’s motivational books many fan letters came his way, seeking further guidance and support. Harper had noticed an alarming amount of letters coming from corrections institutions. Faced with those letters and the United States’ horrifying statistics of African American incarceration, Harper sought to answer some of the very tough questions that this devastating epidemic has brought on. By using a personal correspondence with a young man facing time in jail, readers are given a front seat in what goes on in the mind of someone locked down.

Knowing that he does not have all the answers, Harper is smart enough to gather wisdom from the likes of Dr. Rudolph E Tanzi, Russell Simmons, Charles “ the rock “Dutton. He places quotes from Aristotle, John F Kennedy, and Malcolm X along the way. The book has a layout that is simple and clear, with illustrations, charts and highlighted quotes it feels partially like a journal. Included in the back of the book is an “owners manual”. Letter to an Incarcerated Brother convinces readers that a “hard time” does not have to be the thing that breaks you.

- Dominique


This book shows you how to make beautiful gifts. Skill level and experience don’t matter: the way the book is laid out makes it easy to learn a new craft, and then two, and three.
- Leti

This book shows you how to make beautiful gifts. Skill level and experience don’t matter: the way the book is laid out makes it easy to learn a new craft, and then two, and three.

- Leti


A young girl who would risk her life for the sake of the education helps put your own wants and needs into perspective.
Malala Yousafzai made world news in 2012 after being shot in the head for her fight for girls education in her community. Co-written with Christina Lamb (one of the world’s leading correspondents) this book allows readers further insight into not only the life of this brave young woman, but a perspective on the people and the culture around her.
- Dominique

A young girl who would risk her life for the sake of the education helps put your own wants and needs into perspective.

Malala Yousafzai made world news in 2012 after being shot in the head for her fight for girls education in her community. Co-written with Christina Lamb (one of the world’s leading correspondents) this book allows readers further insight into not only the life of this brave young woman, but a perspective on the people and the culture around her.

- Dominique


Brown nerds across the land, rejoice! We have not been decimated by various meteorites nor have we fallen prey to the inevitable zombie apocalypse. We exist in the future; we were meant to explore the deepest reaches of space, and this book proves that we’ve always intended to. With an extensive look at everything from music to movies to gender studies, Afrofuturism affirms that the sci-fi fantasy genre can and will be as diverse and all-encompassing as our world is now.
- Alicia

Brown nerds across the land, rejoice! We have not been decimated by various meteorites nor have we fallen prey to the inevitable zombie apocalypse. We exist in the future; we were meant to explore the deepest reaches of space, and this book proves that we’ve always intended to. With an extensive look at everything from music to movies to gender studies, Afrofuturism affirms that the sci-fi fantasy genre can and will be as diverse and all-encompassing as our world is now.

- Alicia


In which a child can learn:
The proper thing to do when one observes a person in distress.
The importance of being observant.
Truth, in relation to The Press.
Also including: Toshers, ‘Orrible Murderers, Royals, Reporters, and a Flatulent Dog.
- Leti

In which a child can learn:

The proper thing to do when one observes a person in distress.

The importance of being observant.

Truth, in relation to The Press.

Also including: Toshers, ‘Orrible Murderers, Royals, Reporters, and a Flatulent Dog.

- Leti


A serious and humorous story about love and loss. This is Maya’s story and she conveys through writing in her journal how events in your life can affect how you can evolve as a person in a positive or negative way. Even though the book deals with serious subjects as usual Allende can show us the humorous side of situations even in their dark moments. This is Isabel Allende at her best.
- Cheryl

A serious and humorous story about love and loss. This is Maya’s story and she conveys through writing in her journal how events in your life can affect how you can evolve as a person in a positive or negative way. Even though the book deals with serious subjects as usual Allende can show us the humorous side of situations even in their dark moments. This is Isabel Allende at her best.

- Cheryl

greenturtleisland:

Nina Simone as captured by Alfred Wertheimer, December 1964.


Sounding like a Rust Belt Don DeLillo - complete with abundant deadpan surreality - and conjuring images reminiscent of the weirdest Harmony Karine film, this anti-coming of age novel is not for the faint of heart. If, however, you’re looking for proof that American literature is not stale or dying or dead, or if you’re holding out hope that radically new voices are out there waiting to be heard, then read this book. After all, don’t you want to be able to say, one day, that you read Jeff Jackson before everyone else did?
- Alex

Sounding like a Rust Belt Don DeLillo - complete with abundant deadpan surreality - and conjuring images reminiscent of the weirdest Harmony Karine film, this anti-coming of age novel is not for the faint of heart. If, however, you’re looking for proof that American literature is not stale or dying or dead, or if you’re holding out hope that radically new voices are out there waiting to be heard, then read this book. After all, don’t you want to be able to say, one day, that you read Jeff Jackson before everyone else did?

- Alex


When people talk about Chicago, their eyes light up and no matter where they’re from or what language they speak, they always seem to say the same names: Al Capone. Michael Jordan. Barack Obama. Cabrini Green. Some people might remember pizza or Oprah or the damned Cubs, but the silhouettes of this city’s housing projects still loom large for out-of-towners driving past the still-empty lots that millions of black Chicagoans have called home since 1940. In High Rise Stories, Audrey Petty gives voice to twelve of the people who lived in these projects in an approachable, personal oral history format. Their stories offer a vastly different picture of life in the projects than decades of sensationalist news stories and the depiction here is buttressed by essays and comments from well-regarded scholars like Alex Kotlowitz, Larry Vale, and Brad Hunt. This isn’t just one of the best new books about the city, but one of the best works of first-person history I’ve ever read.
- Jeff Waxman

When people talk about Chicago, their eyes light up and no matter where they’re from or what language they speak, they always seem to say the same names: Al Capone. Michael Jordan. Barack Obama. Cabrini Green. Some people might remember pizza or Oprah or the damned Cubs, but the silhouettes of this city’s housing projects still loom large for out-of-towners driving past the still-empty lots that millions of black Chicagoans have called home since 1940. In High Rise Stories, Audrey Petty gives voice to twelve of the people who lived in these projects in an approachable, personal oral history format. Their stories offer a vastly different picture of life in the projects than decades of sensationalist news stories and the depiction here is buttressed by essays and comments from well-regarded scholars like Alex Kotlowitz, Larry Vale, and Brad Hunt. This isn’t just one of the best new books about the city, but one of the best works of first-person history I’ve ever read.

- Jeff Waxman

Let’s be clear shall we?
American Dream Machine is many things: a multi-generational tale; a fable of becoming and unbecoming and becoming again; a story of power and the myriad ways it shapes you and the world you inhabit; a brilliantly conceived and accomplished novel. It is also the closest thing to the Great American Novel I’ve encountered in some time. This isn’t just one of my picks for “Best of the Year,” it’s also firmly in my pantheon of “must reads.” I’ll be handselling it forever, so you might as well pick it up before I force it into your hands.
Just so we’re clear.
- Tom

Let’s be clear shall we?

American Dream Machine is many things: a multi-generational tale; a fable of becoming and unbecoming and becoming again; a story of power and the myriad ways it shapes you and the world you inhabit; a brilliantly conceived and accomplished novel. It is also the closest thing to the Great American Novel I’ve encountered in some time. This isn’t just one of my picks for “Best of the Year,” it’s also firmly in my pantheon of “must reads.” I’ll be handselling it forever, so you might as well pick it up before I force it into your hands.

Just so we’re clear.

- Tom

Pie charts, and bar graphs, and flow charts, oh my! This cheeky look at the actual graphics used in graphic novels is a great compilation of wit, eye-catching visuals, and meticulous breakdowns. It’s got a great handle on the whos, whats, whens, wheres (but never really whys) of the multiverses of my favorite vigilante superheros. The fact that this book even exists pleases the overly-curious, hyper-organizational, I-Really-Wish-I-Could-Draw-But-Can’t-So-I’ll-Drool-Over-Other-People’s-Work streak in me. Naturally.
- Alicia

Pie charts, and bar graphs, and flow charts, oh my! This cheeky look at the actual graphics used in graphic novels is a great compilation of wit, eye-catching visuals, and meticulous breakdowns. It’s got a great handle on the whos, whats, whens, wheres (but never really whys) of the multiverses of my favorite vigilante superheros. The fact that this book even exists pleases the overly-curious, hyper-organizational, I-Really-Wish-I-Could-Draw-But-Can’t-So-I’ll-Drool-Over-Other-People’s-Work streak in me. Naturally.

- Alicia

the snow and cold have put us in a northern state of mind and a Scandinavian lit kind of mood! Come in, grab some Pippi to lift your spirits or some Strindberg to darken them, curl up with a mug of glögg, and embrace the Nordic weather!

the snow and cold have put us in a northern state of mind and a Scandinavian lit kind of mood! Come in, grab some Pippi to lift your spirits or some Strindberg to darken them, curl up with a mug of glögg, and embrace the Nordic weather!