I'll be the first to admit that I'm a sap when it comes to a good love story. I swoon over Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy of Pride and Prejudice, laugh at Beatrice and Benedick of Much Ado About Nothing, and when David Copperfield finds true love after so many years of loneliness, I weep with joy.

And yet, all of these stories pale in comparison with how Calvin Trillin loved his wife Alice. It's not so much a book as part love letter, part tribute to the woman he treasured above all else, who died of cancer in 2001. This heart-wrenchingly beautiful, achingly funny and tender account of his life with his wife will leave you wondering and hoping, to paraphrase a young woman who writes to Trillin, if anyone will love you as much as Calvin loved Alice. If you've read any of Trillin's columns or books on food over the years, you've gotten to know a side of Alice as he shares her thoughts about his eating adventures.

Trillin freely admits in the book that Alice was the most wonderful woman he'd ever met, that he was honored by the fact that she loved him unconditionally, and that everything he ever wrote was an attempt to impress her. He loved her, flaws and all, in a way that all of us want to be loved, and every page of this slim volume bears testament to that fact. When you close this book, I hope you have tears in your eyes, not just for the loss of the lovely Alice, but at the blessing that love like this truly is.

About Alice Cover Image
ISBN: 9781400066155
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Random House - December 26th, 2006

I'll be the first to admit that I am happiest when I've got a routine. I abhor surprises, and I tend to get twitchy when I'm not sure where I'm going or what to expect when I get there. Charles Unwin, protagonist of Jedediah Berry's remarkable debut novel The Manual of Detection, is a man after my own heart. When he is suddenly plucked from his quiet, methodical, happy life of clerking for the most famous detective in the city and actually made a detective himself, Unwin becomes a man on a mission: Get life back to normal, and pronto. On his quest, he finds out that all is not as it seems: The cases his missing detective got credit for were solved incorrectly, he doesn't know who to trust, and his narcoleptic assistant isn't much help. As the mystery deepens (Why are all the alarm clocks being stolen? Who is the woman with the mirror-gray eyes who keeps turning up everywhere? Why won't it stop raining?) you'll be drawn inexorably into its complex and shocking conclusion.

The Manual of Detection: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143116516
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Penguin Books - January 26th, 2010

The guilt runs strong in me, I’ll admit. When I do something even remotely bad, I agonize over it for days (sometimes weeks), I lay awake worrying about it, I apologize profusely, sometimes I shed a few tears, ask for forgiveness and eventually, try to find some way to redeem myself and move on. But some sins haunt you forever, revealing your true character in how you deal with them. Andrew, Sarah, and Little Bee must come to terms with the violent encounter that brings them together on a Nigerian beach in Little Bee by Chris Cleave. This book kept me up at night worrying about Little Bee and her sister. I couldn’t stop reading: I read on the train, on the bus, over lunch, and even (shhh…don’t tell) during my register shift at P&P. Is redemption possible for these lovely, flawed, broken people? Read Little Bee and see for yourself.

Little Bee: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781416589648
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - February 16th, 2010