We are open for browsing, and thrilled to see you! Masks are optional but recommended, and we have extras on hand if you'd like one!
Contemporary Fiction Book Club: Just your regular ol' fiction book club with discussion, opinions, and wine!
What we're reading: The Rose Code by Kate Quinn
Next Meeting is Wednesday, May 25th at 7:30pm, here at RoscoeBooks. For the safety of our members, the book club is open only to fully-vaccinated individuals.
Classics in Brief Book Club: All the classics you meant to read...kept short!
What we're reading: The Mysterious Stranger and Other Stories by Mark Twain
Next Meeting is Thursday, June 23rd at 7:00pm, here at RoscoeBooks. For the safety of our members, the book club is open only to fully-vaccinated individuals.
You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty, by Akwaeke Emezi: If Emezi published their grocery list, I'd read it. They set out to write a romance with complex relationships and succeeded spectactularly. Their writing continues to take my breath away. This isn't the kind of romance novel where you swoon and turn your brain off but rather one that takes on grief and loss and death and the life that can emerge from those cracks.
Banned Book Club, by Kim Hyun Sook, Ko Hyung-Ju, and Ryan Estrada: Banned Book Club is a memoir in graphic novel form, telling the true story of university students in South Korea in the 80's, and how their secret banned book club tied in with the widespread pro-democracy protests of the time. I wish there were more books like this!
Trust, by Hernan Diaz: Diaz's utterly brilliant novel is more than one thing: It's a fine piece of historical fiction. It's a book (multiple books, really) within a book. And it's a thoughtful examination of how money and power are related, and how they both affect what we're willing and able to believe. To say much more might spoil some of the wonderful surprise of this book, but I will say that this is some of the most thoughtful, elegant writing I've encountered in a long time. There is no way this book won't be among my favorites of the year.
One Italian Summer, by Rebecca Serle: Fans of Serle's Five Years Later will find themselvesonce again in very capable hands when it comes to explaining the nuances of great loves of lives -- and this time, instead of romantic love, Serle turns her lens toward the love between mothers and daughters. After Katy's mother dies, she goes on a pre-planned trip to Positano, Italy (one they'd planned to take together) and is shocked to run into a very alive version of her mother's younger self. A story about discovering the versions of our loved -- and ourself -- in and out of the binds of relationships. And a fantastic love letter to Italy!
Marrying the Ketchups, by Jennifer Close: Chicago, fall 2016: It was the best of times (Cubs win!), it was the worst of times (the election). These events are the backdrop for this exceptional novel about the Sullivans, a semi-dysfunctional restaurant-owning Oak Park family. And it's just terrific! You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll cringe, as each of these people struggle with love and life and the ever-shifting restaurant business. I really loved this!
The World Cannot Give, by Tara Isabella Burton: Dark academia fans, here's another boarding school novel for you! Welcome to St. Dunstan's, set in coastal Maine, where Evensong is mandatory and the chapel choir is the most elite clique. The choir is led by the icy and mysterious Virginia, but when a new girl transfers in and a new priest takes over, alliances shift and betrayals abound. How far will they go to get their "shipwreck of the soul?"
These Precious Days: Essays, by Ann Patchett: Ann Patchett writes with such warmth. It's her super power! And it's on full display here. This book is, no exaggeration, one of the best essay collections I've EVER read. All written during the pandemic, most of these are less than 10 pages, so you can read them as nice little literary treats throughout your day. But still, the few longer pieces are the highlights, especially the title essay. I can't recommend this more highly!
The Swimmers, by Julie Otsuka: This is that rare one- or two-sitting read that starts out as one thing, and then becomes something different about halfway through. Otsuka begins with a group of avid recreational swimmers who are puzzled and alarmed when they discover a crack at the bottom of their pool. But what is at first a meditation on how human beings deal with the unknown becomes even lovelier and more poignant as Otsuka narrows her focus to one swimmer in particular. This is a gem of a book, one to read and reread, and so easy to love.
What The Fireflies Knew, by Kai Harris: It's been a long time since I absolutely could not shut up about a book, but I've been intolerable about this one. Our narrator, 10-almost-11-year-old KB is like Scout in To Kill A Mockingbird in her insight and wisdom. She and her sister spend a summer with their grandfather when their dad dies and their mother struggles to care for them. Read this so I can talk to someone about it.
Chelka and Erika Recommend
Joan Is Okay, by Weike Wang: It baffles me that Weike Wang can say so much while saying so little. JOAN IS OKAY reads like a short story, with spare prose and an understated plot. But this tiny book packs a big existential punch. And if you appreciate humor, you'll be cry-laughing through most of it. (Warning: This book includes Covid plotlines.)
Olga Dies Dreaming, by Xochitl Gonzalez: When Olga and Prieto's mom abandons them to become a Puerto Rican revolutionary, they are raised by their abuelita, their tia, and their community. As adults, Olga is a wedding planner for Mannhattan's elite, and Prieto is a congressman for the neighborhood in which they were raised. Yet their mother's presence (or lack thereof) continues to make itself known. This was a beautiful novel that kept me up late reading -- a difficult task!
Lost & Found, by Kathryn Schulz: This here is one of the best-written books I have EVER read. In an 18-month span, Kathryn Schulz grieved the passing of her beloved father, and met the woman who would become her wife -- and this book is a meditation on how both losing and finding factor into the experience of life. This is the kind of book that helps a reader make sense of the world in all its beauty and heartbreak, and has the makings of a modern classic. I cannot recommend it highly enough.
Small World, by Jonathan Evison: A train speeds through a snowy night in Oregon. Several people on the train are connected in ways they couldn't possibly imagine. And that's what this fantastic, ambitious, completely immersive novel is about: How weare ALL connected in striving for the Great American Dream. This is a novel you'll get totally lost in -- Evison absolutely nails this!
Monday — Saturday: 10am - 7pm
Sunday: 11am - 6pm
Please Note: our website updates stock once per day, so the book quantities indicated on our site may not be an accurate representation of what we actually have in stock at the store. But please know we very much appreciate your order and will do everything we can to get you your books as quickly as humanly possible!
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RoscoeBooks hosts a weekly Story Time at the store Tuesdays and Saturdays at 11:00 am. All are welcome! Story Time is currently on hold due to COVID-19. Thanks for understanding!