Holiday Picks from WBW Staff

The eager readers of Weller Book Works would like to share some of their favorite books of the year with you, all ideal for holiday giving.

Staff Pick Logo
The Mirror Thief Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781612195599
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Melville House Publishing - April 11th, 2017

The Mirror Thief - Martin Seay

Seay's prose, pacing and proportioning might be perfect. The writing in The Mirror Thief feels so natural that I practically tumbled into each of these intertwined worlds and eras. His word choice is so correct, I felt I was living his characters in real time. The Mirror Thief enchanted me Vegas to Venice, page one till the end. - Tony


Staff Pick Logo
Nothing Rhymes with Orange Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781452154435
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books - August 1st, 2017

Nothing Rhymes with Orange - Adam Rex
"Fruit! They're healthy, happy, colorful and cute!" But poor Orange is on the sidelines and sulky because grapes wear capes and canteloupe can be fed to antelope. Even Nietzsche makes an appearance in this rollicking rhyming book that ultimately finds a way to include Orange in its infectious fun. - Catherine


Staff Pick Logo
Wild Horse Country: The History, Myth, and Future of the Mustang Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780393247138
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - October 10th, 2017

Wild Horse Country: The History, Myth, and Future of the Mustang - David Philips
The wild mustang has from very early on become a symbol, not of greatness or strength like Paul Bunyan, but of Independence. Writers like Zane Grey created a mythos that included the White Stallion, which became embedded in the American Culture. This book also fits well in our area: we are surrounded by the hostile and vacant areas the mustang calls home.
 
Wild Horse Country wraps up with what may seem like an idealistic solution but one that might be feasible under new bureaucratic guidelines. Phillipps travels to remote Montgomery Pass, Nevada. There, a researcher has realized that the numbers have remained steady, due to the existence of mountain lions. Natural predation has kept the herd in check.


Staff Pick Logo
Honestly Ben Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780545858267
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Arthur A. Levine Books - March 28th, 2017

Honestly Ben - Bill Konigsberg

Honestly Ben is a marvelous young adult novel about a bright farmboy who wins a scholarship to an elite eastern private school for boys. While there he is confronted by the dilemmas of personal integrity, academic honesty, and sexual preference -- among others. How he deals with those problems makes for delightful reading. - Bruce


Staff Pick Logo
Go, Went, Gone Cover Image
By Jenny Erpenbeck, Susan Bernofsky (Translator)
$16.95
ISBN: 9780811225946
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - September 26th, 2017

Go, Went, Gone - Jenny Erpenbeck

If compassion is the ultimate subtext of the Holiday Season, then Jenny Erpenbeck, who grew up in East Germany and experienced the nationwide embrace of Reunification, has written an impeccable Holiday novel. Go, Went, Gone is the story of a retired university professor who reinvigorates his own life through a deepening involvement with African refugees, whose former lives have been erased more thoroughly than his own. José


Staff Pick Logo
The Best Land Under Heaven: The Donner Party in the Age of Manifest Destiny Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780871407696
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - June 6th, 2017

The Best Land Under Heaven - Michael Wallis

This is the new authoritative history of what has become known as the Donner Party. Wallis maintains perspective, cultivates context, and interweaves the tale seamlessly with first-hand accounts. It's more than an exposition on survival cannibalism, though that is covered extensively, it's about the overwhelming drive of Americans to uproot themselves in the search of something better, despite all costs. - Stephanie


Staff Pick Logo
Shakespeare's True Love Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781546337645
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform - May 23rd, 2017

Shakespeare's True Love - Helen E. Burton
This is the perfect title for any Shakespeare lovers out there, as well as fans of historical fiction in general. I also like it because the author is my girlfriend's mom. "Let me not to the marriage of true minds. Admit impediments." ~ Sonnet 116. - Lane


Staff Pick Logo
The Thief Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780060824976
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Greenwillow Books - December 27th, 2005

The Thief - Megan Whalen Turner

The thief, young, arrogant and irreverent, is taken out of prison by the court's Magus on a cross-country mission to steal a king-maker relic. But Gen isn't about to go quietly and this character-driven tale evolves into a thrilling, political, and mysterious intrigue in an Ancient Greece-like land, complete with a pantheon of Gods. The latest in the series came out this year, but start with The Thief! - Morgane


Staff Pick Logo
Today Will Be Different Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780316403450
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Back Bay Books - June 27th, 2017

Today Will Be Different - Maria Semple

Eleanor Flood is the most natural parts of us all embodied: insecure, off-kilter, and struggling to find joy in her life. A wealthy Seattle artist, mother approaching middle age, increasingly distant wife, and daughter of an alcoholic single father, Eleanor is overwhelmed and wondering if the aspirations she built her life around will ever be actualized. Wrought with everyday rumpus, Eleanor's story is relatable, heartfelt, hilarious, and satisfyingly concluded in Semple's gratifying yet realistic style. - Lila Ann


Staff Pick Logo
The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781455540013
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - September 5th, 2017

The Lost City of the Monkey God - Douglas Preston

Being a fan of non-fiction, I rarely encounter such an exciting read. The Lost City of the Monkey God is a real-life adventure involving the new technology "Lidar", used to scan the triple-canopy rainforest of Honduras, revealing ruins and artifacts of a lost civilization. Explorers encounter buzzing insects, torrential rain, poisonous snakes, howling monkeys and a bizarre infectious disease.  I read it, gave the book to my dad; he read it, and passed it on to his father: so it has been enjoyed by three generations of my family.


Al Franken, Giant of the Senate Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781455540419
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Twelve - May 30th, 2017

Giant of the Senate - Al Franken
Franken may improve your opinion of some politicians. Ted Cruz will not be one of them. - Tim


Staff Pick Logo
October: The Story of the Russian Revolution Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781784782771
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Verso - May 9th, 2017

October: The Story of the Russian Revolution - China Mieville

This is my favorite book of 2017. It is an erudite and informative chronicle of the Russian Revolution of 1917, but it is written in enthralling prose and is never dry. It's the perfect gift for the smart, savvy people in your life; maybe you yourself are among those people! - Holden


Staff Pick Logo
John Ronald's Dragons: The Story of J. R. R. Tolkien Cover Image
By Caroline McAlister, Eliza Wheeler (Illustrator)
$18.99
ISBN: 9781626720923
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Roaring Brook Press - March 21st, 2017

John Ronald's Dragons - Caroline McAlister

You don't have to love Tolkien to enjoy this story of a boy who loved dragons, but if you do it's pure magic. This biography follows Tolkien through each formative event that led to the writing of his first "English folktale", our beloved Hobbit.- Emma


Staff Pick Logo
How to Be Happy Cover Image
$24.99
ISBN: 9781606997406
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Fantagraphics Books - August 3rd, 2014

How to Be Happy - Eleanor Davis 

Fend off winter blues with Eleanor Davis's  compilation of graphic shorts, How to Be Happy. Absurdly comical and strangely tender, her characters explore some familiar human paradoxes and arrive at curious insights that strike home. The exquisite style and vibrant colors of Davis's illustrations add to the unique aura and charm of her work. This book is a real gem. - David