Staff Pick

Following his award-winning profiles of Benjamin Franklin, Steve Jobs, and Albert Einstein, Walter Isaacson continues his exploration of creative genius with this in-depth and insightful study of Leonardo da Vinci (Simon & Schuster, $35), the great Italian painter, architect, and engineer.  Isaacson keeps da Vinci in a dual focus, portraying him as both a great artist and a man of science and technology; in vivid tableaux, he shows us the quintessential Renaissance man in the act of dissecting cadavers to learn about human physiology, observing water and wind, and pursuing any and all ways to better understand his world. Isaacson also chronicles how da Vinci, because he was born out of wedlock, was prevented from attending Latin school, which spared him from the need to conform to many of his era’s social exigencies. Using the great treasure of da Vinci’s Notebooks, Isaacson mines the master’s work itself for insight into various periods of his subject’s life, analyzing paintings for both the history they convey and the invaluable glimpses they offer into da Vinci’s artistic techniques. The book is generous with illustrations, illuminating not just Isaacson’s portrait but also serving as an immediate reference to Leonardo’s brilliance.

Leonardo da Vinci Cover Image
ISBN: 9781501139154
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - October 17th, 2017

Staff Pick

Already published to great acclaim in Sweden, Quicksand is Malin Persson Giolito’s first book published in the U.S. After a school shooting in a wealthy Stockholm suburb, only one person in the classroom is unharmed. This is Maja, the novel’s central character and narrator, and the sole surviving suspect. We follow her through her trial and her incarceration as well as the events leading up to the tragedy. Most beguiling is the way the story makes you fall in love with Maja, at the same time uncertain of her complicity in the murder. From the courtroom scenes to the portrayal of wealthy disaffected Swedish youth, everything in Quicksand feels spot on.

Quicksand: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781590518571
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Published: Other Press - March 7th, 2017

Staff Pick

Borne of his experience fighting in Iraq, Brian Van Reet’s Spoils is a clear-eyed, gritty, and tension-filled story of young soldiers caught up in impossible circumstances. At the heart of the story is Cassandra, a 19 year old machine gunner who is captured by the enemy. Her ordeal as captive, along with two fellow soldiers, is harrowing but also insightful into the characters of the soldiers and their captors. Recent and current conflicts have inspired some excellent fiction and Spoils ranks with the best of it.

Spoils Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316316163
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Lee Boudreaux Books - April 18th, 2017