Luisa's Picks

Luisa Smith is the Buying Director for Book Passage. She's been a part of the store staff for almost twenty years.







A Man Called Ove (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9781476738017
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Atria Books, 7/2014

A Man Called Ove is the most delightful novel of the year. Ove is an incredible grump, although he would say that he is just trying to do the right thing in a world filled with idiots. With his wife passed away, he is planning to do the only sensible thing and join her. The arrival of a strange new family next door ruin his well laid plans, as they insist on being friendly and seeing past his gruff exterior. With generous amounts of humor and warmth, woven throughout this tale of the world’s greatest curmudgeon, you cannot help but fall in love with the novel and its remarkable main character.


Goodhouse (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9780374165628
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 9/2014

In this amazing debut, Peyton Marshall imagines a disturbing version of our future, a child’s destiny rests on the contents of his DNA. Raised in a Goodhouse, James is taught to suppress his urges and is denied the opportunities of self-determination. While Marshall’s novel constructs a world resulting from the worst human impulses, she has also created an unforgettable and sympathetic hero in James. His alliance with the brilliant Bethany reveals cracks in the foundation of an oppressive society. Both thrilling and thought provoking, Goodhouse is a beautifully rendered portrait of the human spirit.


ISBN-13: 9780062336019
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Harper, 9/2014

From the dark and beautiful descriptions of 15th century Mainz, Germany, to the wild genius that was Gutenberg himself, every part of this debut novel was a revelation to me. The most startling part was the discovery of two fantastic characters who had played an important role in this famous and important achievement, the invention of the printing press. Johann Fust, a generous and visionary merchant, supported Gutenberg, not only with money but with the talents of his adopted son, Peter Schoeffer, a gifted scribe. Through Peter we see the conflict between the beauty of the old world and the possibilities of the new world. In reading Gutenberg’s Apprentice we discover not only a fascinating story but also a talented new writer.


The Bully of Order (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9780062297747
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Harper, 9/2014

A dark novel set in a wild coastal logging town in the late 1800’s, The Bully of Order is a tale of one family’s struggle to survive while their lives are brutally twisted by fate. Jacob Ellstrom and his wife Nell arrived in this town just past the last outpost of civilization with the hope of being among the first in a new frontier. Quickly it becomes apparent that there can be no bright future here, and when Jacob is revealed to be a fraud everything falls apart. With the skills of a master craftsman, Brian Hart has built a remarkable and haunting novel that examines the fight between strength and weakness; love and abuse, hope; and despair.


ISBN-13: 9781555976897
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Graywolf Press, 9/2014

On Immunity is a fascinating meditation on our culture of fear and how that has transformed into a distrust of vaccinations. Eula Biss carefully examines the difference between our view of our body as individuals, our body as a community, and the impact of vaccinations on both. Cleverly reminding us of the myths that we surround ourselves with and the science we should be listening to, Biss adds an eloquently written statement to the current discourse on vaccination. The many roads that she researched into the history of vaccinations lead to her decision that the answer for her family is vaccinate. However, the book journey resolves in more than a final answer. It underlines the importance of a thoughtful conversation in the face of fear.


ISBN-13: 9781250041241
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: St. Martin's Press, 7/2014

Seventeen-year-old Justin bonds with husband and wife Nick and Mary Ann, immersing himself in the life of a muscle car mechanic. Love, betrayal, and consequences force Justin to grow up in this world of unforgettable characters, tough situations, and beautiful machines. Inspired by the gleaming cars of his novel, Wayne Harrison has forged a powerful and beautiful story

ISBN-13: 9780385351966
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Knopf, 7/2014

Mia has always thought the world of her friend Lorrie Ann. Their friendship is built not on their similarities but on a deep respect for their differences. As opportunities grow for Mia, she watches her friend’s world crumble. Rufi Thorpe’s novel is an honest examination of friendship and fate. This novel is an emotional heavyweight and an impressive debut.

ISBN-13: 9780399169281
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Putnam Adult, 6/2014

This is a true story of the triumph of hope and perseverance. Five-year-old Saroo follows his older brother on a train ride and ends up lost and alone in Calcutta. After living on the streets for weeks,he is saved and eventually adopted by a couple in Australia. Saroo cannot remember his family name or the name of the town of his birth, and yet he is undeterred from looking for the family he lost. Using the internet, he searches for years until a familiar picture leads him home.

Lucky Us (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9781400067244
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Random House, 8/2014

Young Eva meets her older half-sister Iris at age twelve. Iris is an outgoing dreamer, and Eva is more than happy to follow her anywhere. While traveling from one coast to the next, the unlikely pair experience great highs and survive brutal lows. Amy Bloom once again proves she has a remarkable talent for creating fully formed and fascinating characters, and in Lucky Us she beautifully depicts the powerful bond between sisters and examines the importance of resilience. Some signed first editions

The Miniaturist (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9780062306814
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Ecco Press, 8/2014
Nella’s new home in 17th-century Amsterdam is beautiful but cold, while her new husband is kind but preoccupied. To keep Nella entertained, he buys her a beautiful miniature reproduction of their home. Nella becomes concerned as mysterious events appear to be linked to the beautifully crafted miniatures that arrive for her. A suspenseful novel of secrets, love, and obsession, this story weaves together the best of historical and mystery fiction.

Troika (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9780399167485
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Putnam Adult, 5/2014
Troika is a wonderfully unique story of love, sex, and devotion. Adam Pelzman has written a tightly woven tapestry of three lives: Julian, a successful businessman, Perla, a young stripper, and Sophie, Julian’s beautiful wife. Each one struggles to not become the victim of a cruel stroke of fate. Taking us from Russia to Miami to New York, Pelzman’s sure hand cleanly renders their individual stories, keeping the reader aching for more of these fascinating characters until the very end.

China Dolls (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9780812992892
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Random House, 6/2014
Once again Lisa See amazes us with a story that examines the intricacies of female friendships. Set in San Francisco in the 1930s where three women from different backgrounds are drawn together in an exclusive Chinese nightclub. The attack on Pearl Harbor changes everything and their friendships are strained as secrets are revealed.

ISBN-13: 9781476738963
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Simon & Schuster, 6/2014
Las Vegas is the setting of Laura McBride’s remarkable debut novel. In this city of contradictions, four lives are brought together by one tragic act: the wife whose marriage is falling apart, the young immigrant boy trying to navigate this new world, the Iraq veteran who is changed from the young man his family loved, and another veteran who has awoken confused and broken. McBride has created characters full of cracks and steel, and seamlessly woven a complex, and wholly compelling, story.

Shotgun Lovesongs (Hardcover)

ISBN-13: 9781250039811
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Thomas Dunne Books, 3/2014
This is both a love letter to the Midwestern town and a meditation on the meaning of home. Five close friends, who are living very different lives, voice different chapters of this beautiful novel. Henry and Beth appear to have a perfect marriage, Kip has an abundance of confidence, Ronny is loved for his big heart, and Lee is admired for his remarkable talent. The reader is drawn into a story where relationships get tested, frailties are revealed, and people find their way home again.

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