Starred Review


by Matt Gallagher

In the opening pages of Youngblood, Lieutenant Jack Porter reflects on his time in Iraq and the challenges of explaining his experiences to those who weren't there. "What was it like? Hell if I know. But next time someone asks.... I'll answer crooked, and I'll answer long. And when they get confused or angry, I'll smile. Finally, I'll think. Someone who understands." What unfolds in the following pages of Matt Gallagher's debut novel is an exquisite story that perfectly reflects that crooked, long, confusing,

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Always Too Much and Never Enough: A Memoir

by Jasmin Singer

Although Jasmin Singer says her journey toward health and self-actualization "started with juice," it is the wisdom of her grandmother that suffuses and illuminates each page of this memoir: "You are exactly where you should be." From the earliest scenes describing her parents' divorce and revolving step-parents--when food became the one constant Singer could control--to a painful moment in a San Francisco bathroom stall avoiding her own reflection in the mirror, she is unflinchingly forthright and refreshingly

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Mom, There's a Bear at the Door

by Sabine Lipan, trans. by Tulipan Verlag, illus. by Manuela Olten

Something's up with that big brown bear, because before the story ever starts, he's hiding behind a tree. Then, a boy spots the bear in his apartment hallway, looking terribly suspicious. The boy closes the door behind him and says to his cake-baking mother: "Mom, there's a bear at the door!"

So begins this charming, ingeniously crafted German import, with a funny conversation between mother and son. Mom's lines are in red: "How did the bear get up here?" "He took the elevator." "The elevator?" "The elevator."

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Click here to enter a giveaway for LUST & WONDER by Augusten Burroughs

Shelf Discovery

Where It Hurts

by Reed Farrel Coleman

Retired New York cop Gus Murphy tries to find closure for his son's unexpected death by investigating the murders of a ex-con and his son.

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Unspeakable Things

by Kathleen Spivack

Combining realistic and surreal elements, poet Kathleen Spivack's first novel explores the lives of a family of Jewish refugees in early 1940s New York.

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The Evening Spider

by Emily Arsenault

Two women, separated by more than a century, face odd circumstances in their respective pasts while navigating the ups and downs of new motherhood.

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City of Blades

by Robert Jackson Bennett

This excellently plotted sequel to City of Stairs mixes science and the divine and meditations on the nature of war, and has a satisfying, exciting conclusion.

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Quercus Books: Runaway by Peter May

Media Heat

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Diane Rehm: Erika Christakis, author of The Importance of Being Little: What Preschoolers Really Need from Grownups (Viking, $28, 9780525429074).

CNBC's Squawk Box: Jeff Kinney, author of Diary of a Wimpy Kid #10: Old School (Abrams, $13.95, 9781419717017).

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Diane Rehm: Dr. Saul J. Weiner, co-author of Listening for What Matters: Avoiding Contextual Errors in Health Care (Oxford University Press, $39.95, 9780190228996).

Fresh Air: Joel Grey, author of Master of Ceremonies: A Memoir (Flatiron Books, $27.99, 9781250057235).

Monday, February 8, 2016

Diane Rehm: Yann Martel, author of The High Mountains of Portugal: A Novel (Spiegel & Grau, $27, 9780812997170).

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Fresh Air: Bee Wilson, author of First Bite: How We Learn to Eat (Basic Books, $27.99, 9780465064984).

KCRW's Bookworm: Larissa MacFarquhar, author of Strangers Drowning: Grappling with Impossible Idealism, Drastic Choices, and the Overpowering Urge to Help (Penguin Press, $27.95, 9781594204333).

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Alexander Chee, author of The Queen of the Night (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $28, 9780618663026).
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