From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove and “writer of astonishing depth” (The Washington Times) comes a poignant, charming novel about a crime that never took place, a would-be bank robber who disappears into thin air, and eight extremely anxious strangers who find they have more in common than they ever imagined.
Looking at real estate isn’t usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage. The captives include a recently retired couple who relentlessly hunt down fixer-uppers to avoid the painful truth that they can’t fix their own marriage. There’s a wealthy bank director who has been too busy to care about anyone else and a young couple who are about to have their first child but can’t seem to agree on anything, from where they want to live to how they met in the first place. Add to the mix an eighty-seven-year-old woman who has lived long enough not to be afraid of someone waving a gun in her face, a flustered but still-ready-to-make-a-deal real estate agent, and a mystery man who has locked himself in the apartment’s only bathroom, and you’ve got the worst group of hostages in the world.
Each of them carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them—the bank robber included—desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next.
Rich with Fredrik Backman’s “pitch-perfect dialogue and an unparalleled understanding of human nature” (Shelf Awareness), Anxious People is an ingeniously constructed story about the enduring power of friendship, forgiveness, and hope—the things that save us, even in the most anxious times.
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At just twenty-one, the age when most people are starting to drink (well, legally at least), Victoria James became the country’s youngest sommelier at a Michelin-starred restaurant. Even as Victoria was selling bottles worth hundreds and thousands of dollars during the day, passing sommelier certification exams with flying colors, and receiving distinction from all kinds of press, there were still groping patrons, bosses who abused their role and status, and a trip to the hospital emergency room.
It would take hitting bottom at a new restaurant and restorative trips to the vineyards where she could feel closest to the wine she loved for Victoria to re-emerge, clear-eyed and passionate, and a proud leader of her own Michelin-starred restaurant.
Exhilarating and inspiring, Wine Girl is the memoir of a young woman breaking free from an abusive and traumatic childhood on her own terms; an ethnography of the glittering, high-octane, but notoriously corrosive restaurant industry; and above all, a love letter to the restorative and life-changing effects of good wine and good hospitality.
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Recommended by Leanne Shapton
An outrageously funny book about middle-aged women that re-examines romance, lust, and gender norms.
Translated from Korean by Janet Hong.
Lee Soyeon, Myeong-ok, and Yeonjeong are all mothers in their mid-fifties. And they’ve had it. They can no longer bear the dead weight of their partners or the endless grind of menial jobs where their bosses control everything, down to how much water they can drink. Although Lee Soyeon divorced her husband years ago after his gambling drove their family into bankruptcy, she’s found herself in another tired and dishonest decade-long relationship with Jongseok, a slimy waiter at a nightclub. Meanwhile, Myeong-ok is having an illicit affair with a younger man, and Yeonjeong, whose husband suffers from erectile dysfunction, has her eye on an acquaintance from the gym.
Bored with conventional romantic dalliances, these women embrace outrageous sexual adventures and mishaps, ending up in nightclubs, motels, and even the occasional back-alley brawl.
With this boisterous and darkly funny manhwa, Yeong-shin Ma defies the norms of the traditional Korean family narrative, offering instead the refreshingly honest and unfiltered story of a group of middle-aged moms who yearn for something more than what the mediocre men in their lives can provide. Despite their less than desirable jobs, salaries, husbands, and boyfriends, these women brazenly bulldoze their way through life with the sexual vulnerability and lust typically attributed to twenty-somethings.
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NEW YORK TIMES AND NATIONAL BESTSELLER
First loves, first songs, and the drugs and reckless high school exploits that fueled them—meet music icons Tegan and Sara as you’ve never known them before in this intimate and raw account of their formative years.
High School is the revelatory and unique coming-of-age story of Sara and Tegan Quin, identical twins from Calgary, Alberta, growing up in the height of grunge and rave culture in the ’90s, well before they became the celebrated musicians and global LGBTQ icons we know today. While grappling with their identity and sexuality, often alone, they also faced academic meltdown, their parents’ divorce, and the looming pressure of what might come after high school. Written in alternating chapters from both Tegan’s point of view and Sara’s, the book is a raw account of the drugs, alcohol, love, music, and friendships they explored in their formative years. A transcendent story of first loves and first songs, it captures the tangle of discordant and parallel memories of two sisters who grew up in distinct ways even as they lived just down the hall from one another. This is the origin story of Tegan and Sara.
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From the distinct and vibrant voice behind Hockey Night in Canada Punjabi comes the story of pursuing a dream and defying the odds, reminding us all of hockey’s power to unite.
Bonino Bonino Bonino!
Ask a hockey fan if they have heard the wonderfully electric call of Nick Bonino’s overtime-winning goal from the 2016 Stanley Cup Final and they will almost surely answer with a resounding yes! That’s because video clips of the Hockey Night in Punjabi broadcast immediately went viral, amplifying the profile of Harnarayan Singh, the voice behind the call.
Growing up in small-town Alberta, Singh was like many other kids who dreamed about a life within the sanctum of the game they idolized. There was only one small difference – he didn’t look like any of the other kids. And when he sat down on Saturday nights to tune in to Hockey Night in Canada with the rest of the nation, he couldn’t ignore the fact that the broadcasters or analysts didn’t look like him either. Undeterred, Singh worked his way from calling imaginary hockey games with his plastic toy microphone as a child, to funding secret flights from Calgary to Toronto every weekend in the early days of Hockey Night in Punjabi, to making history as the first Sikh to broadcast an NHL game in English.
Full of heart, humour, and bursting with personality (and maybe a few family prayers for Wayne Gretzky), One Game at a Time is the incredible and inspiring story of how Singh broke through the longstanding barriers and biases of the sport he loves. But more than that, Singh blends his unabashed love of hockey with a refreshing and necessary positive message about what it means to be a Canadian in the world, making him one of the most influential ambassadors of the game today.
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