Sunday, November 27, 2022

Boswell bestsellers, week ending November 26, 2022

Hardcover Fiction:
1. Lessons in Chemistry, by Bonnie Garmus
2. Liberation Day, by George Saunders
3. Demon Copperhead, by Barbara Kingsolver
4. Foster, by Claire Keegan
5. Our Missing Hearts, by Celeste Ng
6. Remarkably Bright Creatures, by Shelby Van Pelt
7. The Boys from Biloxi, by John Grisham
8. Horse, by Geraldine Brooks
9. Ithaca, by Claire North
10. The Marriage Portrait, by Maggie O'Farrell

Claire Keegan's Small Things Like These was one of our breakout books of 2021 and it looks like Foster is following in its footsteps. Originally published as a shorter piece in The New Yorker in 2010 and released in the UK and Ireland as a stand-alone novella, it has been named one of the Times (UK) 50 great novels of the 21st century, with David Mitchell calling it "as good as Chekhov."

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. What's for Dessert?, by Claire Saffitz
2. Modern Classic Cocktails, by Robert Simonson
3. The Light We Carry, by Michelle Obama
4. I'm Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy
5. The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams, by Stacy Mitchell
6. Go-To Dinners, by Ina Garten
7. Smitten Kitchen Keepers, by Deb Perelman
8. American Midnight, by Adam Hochschild
9. A Book of Days, by Patti Smith
10. Crying in H Mart, by Michelle Zauner

Smitten Kitchen Keepers: New Classic from Your Forever Files is the new book from Deb Perelman. From Neal Wyatt for Library Journal: "In her third cookbook, Perelman returns with a gathering of the best versions of her key dishes - recipes that she has tested, trialed, and tweaked until they became what she wants her kids and readers to learn by heart and cook with delight... The book is a joy to read, with Perelman’s confiding, cheering voice showcased in short prefaces and recipe notes."

Paperback Fiction:
1. Once Upon a December, by Amy E. Reichert (Last call for November 30 in-person event-register here)
2. The Art of the Break, by Mary Wimmer
3. The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida, by Shehan Karunatilaka
4. Kiss Her Once for Me, by Alison Cochrun
5. The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches, by Sangu Mandanna
6. Still Life, by Sarah Winman (Register for December 16 virtual event - register here)
7. The Family Chao, by Lan Samantha Chang
8. A Child's Christmas in Wales, by Dylan Thomas
9. The Priory of the Orange Tree, by Samantha Shannon
10. Crossroads, by Jonathan Franzen

Is A Child's Christmas in Wales the literary equivalent of Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You"? It shows up most years on our bestseller list. They reissued the 1954 edition this year, so we switched to that, after several years of stocking a 2016 edition with illustrations from the person who did Pablo Neruda's Love Poems - I can't find the artist of either edition anywhere, alas.

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. Brewtown Tales, by John Gurda (December 6 event sold out - no registration required for December 17, 2 pm signing at Boswell)
2. Cream City Chronicles, by John Gurda
3. Heart Speak, by Sherrill Knezel
4. Ejaculate Responsibly, by Gabrielle Blair
5. Entangled Life, by Merlin Sheldrake
6. The Body Keeps the Score, by Bessel van der Kolk
7. Pastoral Song, by James Rebanks
8. These Precious Days, by Ann Patchett
9. Say Nothing, by Patrick Radden Keefe
10. The Book of Delights, by Ross Gay

From Malcolm Forbes in The Wall Street Journal: "James Rebanks’s The Shepherd’s Life was an illuminating, warts-and-all memoir about working as a sheep farmer in the Lake District in northern England - an area that Wordsworth termed “a perfect Republic of Shepherds.” Six years on, Mr. Rebanks has returned with a second autobiographical work - not about a shepherd’s life but, as its subtitle has it, a farmer’s journey. Pastoral Song chronicles Mr. Rebanks’s development from youth to adult and from novice to full-fledged farmer. Superbly written and deeply insightful, the book captivates the reader until the journey’s end."

Books for Kids:
1. Construction Site: Farming Strong, All Year Long, by Sherri Deskey Rinker
2. Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site, by Sherri Duskey Rinker
3. The Tower of Life, by Chana Stiefel, illustrations by Susan Gal
4. Diper Overlode V17, by Jeff Kinney
5. Scattered Showers, by Rainbow Rowell
6. The Snowy Day, by Ezra Jack Keats
7. Moo Baa Fa La La La La, by Sandra Boynton
8. Snowscape, by Yoojin Kim
9. Noodle and the No Bones Day, by Jonathan Graziano with illustrations by Dan Tavis
10. Green Is for Charismas, by Drew Daywalt, illustrations by Oliver Jeffers (Meet Green Crayon - Saturday, December 10, 11 am, at Boswell - register here)

Jen's pop-up book pick for the year is Snowscape by Yoojin Kim, who neither wrote the story (that's Nicole Yen) nor did the artwork (illustrations by Kathryn Selbert) but did the pop-up engineering, the job that generally gets top billing in this genre. It was interesting for me to figure out that Jumping Jack Press is part of Up with Paper, a popular pop-up card line we've carried in the past.

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