Articles tagged "poetry"

Required Friday Reading (8/10/18)

It’s important, now more than ever, to continue reading, reflecting, and engaging in open dialogue about the issues facing us all as a nation. Here are our picks to help you do just that:

A HOPE MORE POWERFUL THAN THE SEA: One Refugee’s Incredible Story of Love, Loss, and Survival by Melissa Fleming

2018 Alex Award Winner

2018 ALA Amelia Bloomer List

“This poignant tale of survival and loss gives immediacy to the plight of Syrian refugees. Fleming’s skillful writing brings new vividness to Doaa Al Zamel’s dramatic story. This book amply demonstrates why Al Zamel has since become a symbol of hope for other refugees. Fleming should be congratulated for bringing [this] inspiring and illuminating story to the page.” — Publishers Weekly

BUTTERFLY: From Refugee to Olympian – My Story of Rescue, Hope, and Triumph by Yusra Mardini

BUTTERFLY is a powerful story of survival, inspiration, and hope with a resounding message: no one chooses to be a refugee; rather, horrific circumstances force ordinary people to take extraordinary measures to save themselves. This unforgettable memoir shines a spotlight on the refugee experience and the role sports can play in giving a voice to those affected by conflict throughout the world… Teens who enjoyed I AM MALALA will find another heroine in this inspirational memoir of a Syrian swimmer who became an advocate for refugees.” Booklist, starred review

CITY OF THORNS: Nine Lives in the World’s Largest Refugee Camp by Ben Rawlence

Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist

Kirkus Reviews Best Books of the Year

“[A] remarkable book…Like Dadaab itself, the story has no conclusion. It is a portrait, beautifully and movingly painted. And it is more than that. At a time when newspapers are filled with daily images of refugees arriving in boats on Europe’s shores, when politicians and governments grapple with solutions to migration and erect ever larger walls and fences, it is an important reminder that a vast majority of the world’s refugees never get as far as a boat or a border of the developed world.” — Caroline Moorehead, The New York Times Book Review

IN THE COUNTRY WE LOVE: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero

“Guerrero relates her struggle to hold her life together, get through high school and college, and find her feet in the world—challenges that will resonate with many readers… [She] writes with humor and heartbreaking honesty. Offering readers the story she needed to hear as a child, Guerrero shines a light on this country’s flawed immigration system, eloquently calling for reform without diminishing her appreciation for the opportunities US citizenship has afforded her. A timely and enlightening read.” — Booklist

SPARE PARTS: Four Undocumented Teenagers, One Ugly Robot, and the Battle for the American Dream by Joshua Davis

“A gratifying human interest story that calls attention to the plight and promise of America’s undocumented youth.” — Library Journal

“Davis takes what could have been another feel-good story of triumphant underdogs and raises the stakes by examining the difficulties of these young immigrants in the context of the societal systems that they briefly and temporarily overcame.” — Publishers Weekly

ONE PERSON, NO VOTE: How Voter Suppression Is Destroying Our Democracy by Carol Anderson

“This whiplash-inducing chronicle of how a nation that just a few short years ago elected its first black president now finds itself in the throes of a deceitful and craven effort to rip this most essential of American rights from millions of its citizens.” — Booklist, starred review

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July 2018 All-Stars

Whether it’s literary fiction, mystery, poetry, or graphic novels, these books all have the same thing in common: multiple starred reviews!

THE GOLDEN STATE by Lydia Kiesling
“Kiesling’s intimate, culturally perceptive debut portrays a frazzled mother and a fractious America, both verging on meltdown. But perhaps best of all is her thought-provoking portrait of a pioneer community in decline as anger and obsession fray bonds between neighbors, family, and fellow citizens.” Publishers Weekly, starred review

“There’s so much to love about this novel… Strongly recommended for readers who enjoy contemporary literary fiction and can handle a few swear words.” Library Journal, starred review

BONE ON BONE by Julia Keller — 3 starred reviews!
“Keller can spin a mystery plot with the best of them, but it’s her full-bodied characters and the regard they have for one another that really sets her crime fiction apart: a bride’s back-of-the-hand caress of her new husband’s cheek, and his response, is a moment that will linger in memory long after the crime is solved.” Booklist, starred review

“Beautifully written… This thoughtful, painfully empathetic story will long linger in the reader’s memory.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“This haunting, thought-provoking story proves Keller is one of a kind. Readers of Julia Spencer-Fleming’s mysteries of communities torn apart by crime may also want to try.”Library Journal, starred review

CITY OF INK by Elsa Hart
“Rich in period detail, a sharply rendered exotic setting, and a web of well-crafted plots, Li Du’s third novel will appeal to fans of historical mysteries by Lisa See, Laura Joh Rowland, and Abir Mukherjee.” Booklist, starred review

“Superb… As always, Hart excels at making even walk-on characters fully realized and at combining a gripping whodunit plot with a vivid evocation of the period. This entry solidifies her status as a top-notch historical mystery author. ” — Publishers Weekly, starred review readmoreremove

Stars for MIRAGE

We’re thrilled that Somaiya Daud’s YA sci-fi/fantasy debut, MIRAGE,  has received two starred reviews!

Readers are thrown right into this incredibly built world with fully developed cultures and characters. Daud expertly uses a sci-fi setting to explore issues within our own society, particularly the effects of colonization on both individuals and cultures as a whole. This poetically written novel will appeal to many, particularly fans of CINDER by Marissa Meyer and AN EMBER IN THE ASHES by Sabaa Tahir.” School Library Journal, starred review

“Daud’s gorgeously written novel features lush and poetic language that brings the setting into vivid color. In addition to the blend of [science fiction] and fantasy, Daud supplies a dash of forbidden romance destined to leave the reader gasping for breath . . . With an ending that is gut wrenching yet still hopeful, this immersive, captivating series starter is sure to have fans eager for the sequel.” Booklist, starred review

MIRAGE will be available August 28 from Flatiron Books and Macmillan Young Listeners. readmoreremove

Day’s YA – MIRAGE

Hello, YA librarians!

Whew! We’re back from ALA Annual and, with that, our 2018 conference season comes to a close! The past few months have been such a fun and wild ride, and we certainly ended on a high note.

Speaking of ALA, some of you may have picked up this magical YA debut. If you were one of the lucky ones who got a copy, you’re going to want to put it at the top of your pile.

MIRAGE by Somaiya Daud
9781250126429
Available August 28, 2018 from Flatiron Books and Macmillan Young Listeners
Ages 13 to 18

Amani lives “on a small moon orbiting a large planet, in a small farmhouse in a small village” with her family. Their moon, Cadiz, is part of Mizaal Galaxy and is ruled by the Vathek Empire’s cruel king, Mathis, and his daughter, Princess Maram.

On Amani’s Majority Night—the night she is to become an adult in the eyes of her village and celebrate her coming-of-age—she is kidnapped by Vathek guards and forced to become Princess Maram’s body double. The one bright spot in Amani’s bleak situation is Idris, Maram’s fiancé (who’d mistaken Amani for Maram the first time they met). As Amani perfects her role as Maram and draws closer to Idris, she discovers the rebellion and an opportunity to use her position in an unexpected way. readmoreremove

Publishers Weekly Spotlight on Somaiya Daud

Somaiya Daud, author of MIRAGE (available August 28, 2018 from Flatiron Books and Macmillan Audio), was featured in Publishers Weekly earlier this month.

In the feature, Daud discusses the role that her Moroccan heritage plays in the novel, specifically the inspiration she found in Moroccan poet Laabi Abdellatif.

“‘I’d known that poetry could be and often was a form of dissent,’ Daud says, ‘but it took on new meaning as I wrote this novel because I was drawing so heavily on my Moroccan roots to shape the world.’ With the assistance of her mother and her aunt, Daud sought out and translated poems from Arabic-speaking women to include in the novel, bringing these works to an audience who likely would not have read them otherwise. For [the main character,] Amani, as her days as a prisoner in the imperial palace become increasingly bleak, the poems [in the novel] serve as ‘a light in the darkness.'”

Click here to read the full article.

Check out all of our 2018 Books for Teens here.

PW Best Summer Books of 2018

Publishers Weekly recently announced their Best Summer Books of 2018, including these 9 Macmillan titles:
Top 10 (full list)

NEW POETS OF NATIVE NATIONS, edited by Heid E. Erdrich
Rather than anthologize contemporary and emerging authors alongside classic or familiar ones, Erdrich introduces readers to 21 Native poets whose writing was first published after 2000. It’s a simple, powerful framing and all that is needed to introduce readers to a group of writers whose breadth and diversity of styles represent some of the best of contemporary poetry today. —Alex Green, New England correspondent

Fiction (full list)

BABY TEETH by Zoje Stage
Stage’s debut novel is a deviously fun domestic horror story that takes child-rearing anxiety to demented new heights. Frustrated stay-at-home mom Suzette attempts to pacify her seven-year-old daughter Hanna, who adores her father but distrusts Suzette, has dangerous tantrums, and only speaks in the voice of a 17th-century girl who was burned at the stake. As Suzette tries to connect with Hanna, Hanna plots ways to “step up her game against Mommy.”

BROTHER by David Chariandy
Set during the summer of 1991 in the Park, a housing complex in the Toronto suburb of Scarborough, Chariandy’s powerful and incendiary novel tracks the coming of age of two mixed-heritage brothers. Sensitive Michael fumbles through his first relationship while volatile Francis becomes obsessed with the burgeoning hip-hop scene. Chariandy imbues his resilient characters with strength and hope.

KUDOS by Rachel Cusk
Cusk’s final book in a trilogy (after OUTLINE and TRANSIT) expertly concludes the story of protagonist British author Faye. Like its predecessors, the novel eschews chronicling Faye’s life via traditional narrative, instead filling each page with conversations with and monologues by the many writers, journalists, and publicists she meets during her travels. As always, Cusk’s ear for dialogue and language is stunning. The author ends Faye’s trilogy with yet another gem.

Mystery (full list)

CAGED by Ellison Cooper
In her debut thriller, Cooper, an anthropologist who has worked as a murder investigator in Washington, D.C., channels “equal parts Kathy Reichs and Thomas Harris” (according to Lisa Gardner). In the basement of a D.C. house, a woman is found dead in a cage—left to slowly starve to death in a cold and calculating experiment with no clear motive. readmoreremove

Macmillan Wins Three 2018 Pulitzer Prizes!

HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to our 2018 Pulitzer Prize Winners!

Biography
PRAIRIE FIRES: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser (Metropolitan Books)
A deeply researched and elegantly written portrait of Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of the Little House on the Prairie series, that describes how Wilder transformed her family’s story of poverty, failure and struggle into an uplifting tale of self-reliance, familial love and perseverance.

Poetry
HALF-LIGHT: Collected Poems 1965-2016 by Frank Bidart (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
A volume of unyielding ambition and remarkable scope that mixes long dramatic poems with short elliptical lyrics, building on classical mythology and reinventing forms of desires that defy societal norms.

Nonfiction
LOCKING UP OUR OWN: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr. (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
An examination of the historical roots of contemporary criminal justice in the U.S., based on vast experience and deep knowledge of the legal system, and its often-devastating consequences for citizens and communities of color.

And a big round of applause for our 2018 Pulitzer finalists:

Nonfiction
NOTES ON A FOREIGN COUNTRY: An American Abroad in a Post-America World by Suzy Hansen (Farrar, Straus and Giroux) readmoreremove

April 2018 All-Stars

These books are swimming in stars—make sure to add them to your shelves ASAP!

WITCHMARK by C.L. Polk

“Polk’s stellar debut, set in an alternate early 20th century in an England-like land recovering from a WWI-like war, blends taut mystery, exciting political intrigue, and inventive fantasy . . . The final revelations are impossible to see coming and prove that Polk is a writer to watch for fans of clever, surprising period fantasy.”Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Polk has created an amazing new world with hints of Edwardian glamour, sizzling secrets, and forbidden love that crescendos to a cinematic finish. WITCHMARK is a can’t-miss debut that will enchant readers.” —Booklist, starred review

SONG OF BLOOD & STONE: Earthsinger Chronicles, Book One by L. Penelope

“Penelope delivers an engrossing story with delightful characters in this fantastic opening to a promising series . . . The tale is infused with optimism but never cloying, and it culminates in a well-earned and satisfying ending, leaving readers impatient for the next installment of the series.” Publishers Weekly, starred review

This debut . . . shines a bright light into epic fantasy. Battle-scarred lands and peoples, ancient powers at war, star-crossed loves and hints of racial and refugee themes give this a solid place on library shelves.”Library Journal, starred review

MOTHERHOOD by Sheila Heti

A May Indie Next Pick! 

“This lively, exhilaratingly smart, and deliberately, appropriately frustrating affair asks difficult questions about women’s responsibilities and desires, and society’s expectations.”Publishers Weekly, starred review

“As her character seeks and ultimately chooses, as she must, the aspects of life and art she’ll lay claim to, Heti writes with courage, curiosity, and uncommon truth: ‘To go along with what nature demands and to resist it—both are really beautiful—impressive and difficult in their own ways.'” Booklist, starred review readmoreremove

April is National Poetry Month

Happy National Poetry Month! Celebrate with our recent award-winning titles:

HALF-LIGHT: Collected Poems 1965-2016 by Frank Bidart
2017 National Book Award Winner in Poetry
2017 Triangle Award Finalist (Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry)

WHEREAS: Poems by Layli Long Soldier
2017 National Book Critics Circle Award Winner for Poetry
2018 PEN/Jean Stein Book Award Winner (Poetry)
2017 National Book Award Finalist in Poetry

DON’T CALL US DEAD: Poems by Danez Smith
2017 National Book Award Finalist in Poetry
2018 Lammy Award Finalist (Gay Poetry)
2017 Triangle Award Finalist (Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry & the Publishing Triangle Award for Trans and Gender-Variant Literature)
2018 Over the Rainbow Reading List

WADE IN THE WATER by Tracy K. Smith
The U.S. Poet Laureate’s new collection is an April 2018 Indie Next pick and was named a Most Anticipated Book of Spring 2018 by Buzzfeed, Nylon, Bustle, and Publishers Weekly.

SOME SAY: Poems by Maureen N. McLane
2017 Triangle Award Finalist (Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry) readmoreremove

Buzzfeed’s “Amazing New Books You Need To Read This Spring” 2018

Poetry, essays, short stories… these Buzzfeed-recommended books will spring off your library’s shelves!

WADE IN THE WATER by Tracy K. Smith
US Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith returns with WADE IN THE WATER, a new collection of poems that feels both timely and timeless. In lines that are as lyrical as they are wise (and so poignant you’ll want to write them down immediately), Smith makes connections between the current state of American culture and its history — police brutality, slavery, immigration, the Civil War, the Declaration of Independence (which she turns into an erasure poem). What does it mean to be an American, to be a woman in a society still dominated by men? Smith captures memories, found language, music, and the voices of the past to get to the beating heart of our nation today — and you’ll feel it in every fiber of your being while reading.

A LUCKY MAN by Jamel Brinkley
The nine stories in Jamel Brinkley’s collection A LUCKY MAN are about black men grappling with their place in the world, their pasts, their friendships, and their families — boys coming of age and encountering firsthand how privilege is tied to race and class, brothers navigating strained relationships, parents and children disappointing each other. Brinkley shows both the great beauty and ugliness of humanity — but always with empathy — and captures the ways in which our world is defined and divided by power. A LUCKY MAN so real and alive, much like its characters, that you’ll be eager to read whatever Brinkley writes next.

EYE LEVEL by Jenny Xie
US Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Hererra chose Jenny Xie as the winner of the Academy of American Poets’ 2017 Walt Whitman Award, and it’s easy to see why in her debut collection EYE LEVEL. Xie’s poems take us on a journey to new places (Vietnam, Cambodia, even a Greek island) in such vivid detail that you’ll feel as if you really traveled, as well as to new questions about immigration, identity, and loneliness. How do we really find home? What do we lose when we leave? Reading EYE LEVEL feels like taking a trip with someone who truly sees you, and the world, as it is. readmoreremove

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