What we're reading: Reviews from the staff at Bartleby's

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The following are staff reviews from Bartleby's Books in Wilmington:

Ana's pick

"Spying on the South" by Tony Horowitz

Before he made a name for himself as an architect of public spaces designed to be enjoyed by all walks of society, most famously New York City's Central Park, Frederick Law Olmsted was a young farmer and freelance journalist. Assigned to visiting the antebellum American South by the fledgling New York Times, the young writer became "Yeoman Olmsted," a keen observer of Southern mores in an age of radical political and social divide within the United States.

One hundred sixty years later, Tony Horowitz has retraced Olmsted's epic trek across the South, from Baltimore to the border of Texas, and through the Eastern Seaboard on down to New Orleans. Horowitz's new book, "Spying on the South," is both a travelogue through our contemporary southern states and a history of a landmark journey from the American past. The author uses his and Olmsted's journeys as an exploration of the demons which still divide us as a country, and the places where our commonalities bind us together as a people. It is a timely read, and a complimentary addition to similar cultural depictions such as "Hillbilly Elegy" and "Strangers in Their Own Land."

Maria's picks

"My Sister, the Serial Killer" by Oyinkan Braithwaite

Who's worse? The sister who keeps killing her boyfriends or the sister who keeps cleaning them up? This darkly funny, suspenseful, novel has you empathizing with both sisters, the murderous and suffer no fools Ayoola, and the practical and envious Korede. When Korede's crush askz for Ayoola's phone number, she questions how far she will go to protect her sister. A quick, funny, and wicked read.

"She Spoke: 14 Women Who Raised Their Voices and Changed the World" by Kathy MacMillan and Manuela Bernardi

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When we first laid our eyes on this book, , Illustrated by Kathrin Honesta, there were several audible gasps, posts to social media, and several copies set aside for our own budding young feminists. We've stocked up on this amazing collection of outspoken women biographies, which, literally has the audio of their famous words available at a push of a button. When your two year old is parroting Abby Wambach and Malala Yousafzai you know you've made a smart decision in purchasing this book.

Lisa's picks

"The Last House Guest" by Megan Miranda

The perfect thriller to read as summer winds down. Set in a fictional coastal summer resort town in Maine, the plot centers around the apparent suicide of Sadie Loman, a wealthy summer resident and her best friend, Avery Greer, a local. As Avery questions what really happened to her friend, the twists and turns in this fast-paced mystery keep the reader guessing until the very end.

"Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud and the Last Trial of Harper Lee" by Casey Cep

In the years following the publication of "To Kill a Mockingbird," Harper Lee became fixated on the case of an Alabama serial killer. Sitting in on the trial, she intended to write a book about it. This book dives into the case itself, a Baptist reverend killing members of his family and wives, only to be killed himself by his final victim's uncle, and it also discusses the beginnings of the insurance industry and insurance fraud. Interwoven is the story Harper Lee's struggle to write a second book after the success of To Kill a Mockingbird. Well-written and engaging.

Betty's pick: "Save Me the Plums" by Ruth Reichl

If you are a Ruth Reichl fan or a Gourmet Magazine fan, you will be sure to love this book. From food writer and restaurant critic, Reichl chronicles her move and tenure to Editor in Chief of Gourmet Magazine, Inspired by this magazine since she was eight years old, there was no way she could say no to this offer. She writes an intoxicating story of the food world, her personal world and the publishing world. Reading this memoir is a delicious journey, sure to delight and fill your appetite!

About Bartleby's Books: Bartleby's Books is celebrating 30 years in business in 2019. The store is located at 17 West Main Street in historic downtown Wilmington and is open daily 10am - 6pm year-round and until 8pm during the months of July and August. Phone: 802-464-5425. myvermontbookstore.com


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