Bookseller Recommendations: November

Bookstore / Roundup

Bookseller Recommendations: November

Daley Farr — 11/11/2018

This month’s recommendations from our bookstore staff feature foldout folktale monsters, reflections on freeing ourselves from legacies of harm, lovingly-told tales from the basketball court, and unusual, textured stories of women and mystery. Each of these books is uniquely suited to be revisited—all four are made up of stories, histories, and ideas that merit our returning to them over and over again, to lending them out to friends and family, to unpeeling a new layer with every re-read. We like to think that makes these titles a good fit for this season, when we find ourselves caught between bustle and hibernation. 

If you haven’t yet, SIGN UP for the Milkweed Books newsletter, newly launched in September. We promise not to issue this reminder every single month, but now is a good time to make sure you’re in the loop for our holiday hours, specials, and other festive goings-on, like our upcoming Small Business Saturday. Thanks to those of you who have signed up! And if you have feedback or suggestions of what you would like to see, please get in touch—we’re all ears.

Here are this month’s recommendations, in which four real people suggest good books we think you might like, too. Read on!

BERIT
Inside the Villains

by Clotilde Perrin
Gecko Press  |  September 2018  |  $21.99

This book takes three great villains—The Wolf, The Giant, and The Witch—and provides a biography and fun facts for each. My favorite part is the intricate and detailed portraits of each villain with folds, flaps, and pulls. For The Giant, there are kids hiding in his boot next to knives; The Witch has a trove of treasures under her feathered cloak; The Wolf has a small stomach you can pull out to see the last thing he ate! This book reminds of The Stinky Cheese Man, but better. The art is beautiful and takes a very cool spin on the classic fairy tales I grew up with. Buy now»​


DALEY
Heavy: An American Memoir
by Kiese Laymon

Scribner  |  October 2018  |  $26.00

A devastating and brilliant new memoir whose many praises I can’t sing adequately in this space, so trust me. At its core, Heavy examines how the abusive legacies of American culture take root in our lives, causing us to harm ourselves and our loved ones. I say “us” because I love this book and everyone should read it, but it’s also specifically about black people, black families, black children, being black in the American South and everywhere else in this country. We have a responsibility to each other. That truth, and this book, are weights worth shouldering. Buy now»​ 


HANS
Basketball: A Love Story
edited by Jackie MacMullan, Rafe Bartholomew, and Dan Klores

Crown Archetype |  September 2018  |  $30.00

Basketball: A Love Story is a terrific book—really, it’s an oral history lesson compiled from interviews with 165 of the greatest, most talented people to touch the game. The book is best at giving the reader a sense of the sport and its people building on one another. You’ll read about the different coaches, mostly from HBCUs, who created the zone press defense; then Nolan Richardson talks about his Arkansas teams inventing “forty minutes of hell.” The aspects of culture and sport coming together is a treat. You will learn from this book and marvel at it and laugh with it. It is so much fun. Buy now»​


ROSEANNE
The Isle of Youth
by Laura van den Berg

FSG Originals  |  November 2013  |  $14.00

Laura van den Berg’s female characters navigate unusual inner and outer landscapes: sisters who operate as South Florida private eyes, a mother-daughter duo who run a magic show con, a youthful gang of gorilla-mask-wearing bank robbers; there’s even a woman who ends up following a troupe of acrobats around Paris after her husband leaves her. My favorite, “Antarctica,” about a sister investigating her brother’s death, is so saturated with grief, mystery, and regret, I was not surprised when it was also anthologized in Best American Mystery Stories. I’m amazed by how these stories are simultaneously fun and melancholic. Bewitching! Buy now»​

Daley Farr is bookseller and events coordinator at Milkweed Books, the independent bookstore operated by Milkweed Editions. Daley began at Milkweed as an intern in 2016 and worked in events at Magers & Quinn before taking on her current position. She studied literature at the University of Oxford and graduated from Augsburg College with a BA in English. Please contact Daley with event inquiries for Milkweed Books.