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Kristen's Take Ten

A member of the Institutional Sales trio, Kristen is a recent New Jersey transplant. She's had a blast over the last year exploring the Triangle and sampling all its delicious new southern foods (particularly hushpuppies). She has a penchant for achingly depressing yet satirical and funny fiction. She thinks the best books are ones you read with a pen as your bookmark to underline the most beautiful sentences.

Alias Grace: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385490443
Availability: Available from warehouse in 1-5 business days
Published: Anchor - October 13th, 1997

My all-time favorite novel is The Handmaid's Tale, but you already know it's great! Now dive into the mind of another complex Atwood narrator as she struggles to find her memory, sanity, and freedom. As always, Atwood's writing is breathtakingly beautiful.

On the Road Cover Image
ISBN: 9780140042597
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Penguin Books - December 28th, 1976

Jump into the passenger seat as Sal Paradise and Dean Moriarty take you on a coast to coast tour of the Beat Generation. Few authors have had as great an impact on me as Kerouac—his jazz-like, poetic writing was my greatest companion on the journey through my twenties.

Slaughterhouse-Five: A Novel (Modern Library 100 Best Novels) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385333849
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Dial Press Trade Paperback - January 12th, 1999

When the question is asked, “Who, living or dead, would you invite to a dinner party?” my answer, first and foremost, will always be Vonnegut. His brutally honest wit knew no bounds, and his wild blend of history, social commentary, and science fiction will forever find relevance (particularly in today's political climate). 

The Things They Carried Cover Image
ISBN: 9780618706419
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Mariner Books - October 13th, 2009

I’ve never read another novel quite like this. Structured as a series of interconnected short stories, it follows the character Tim O'Brien as he navigates the hell of the Vietnam War. O'Brien beautifully asks us to examine the meaning of death, duty, loyalty, and above all, truth.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest: (Penguin Orange Collection) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143129516
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Penguin Classics - October 18th, 2016

 A classic Best Picture winner—and the book was still better! This incredibly readable novel is both an examination of human nature and a hilarious party of unforgettable characters. It's equal parts disturbing, uplifting, and fun. 

The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Five Novels in One Outrageous Volume Cover Image
ISBN: 9780345453747
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Del Rey - April 30th, 2002

What is the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe and Everything? You'll find out in this five-novel, complete volume of Douglas Adams' cult classic. Adams' stories are sharp, dry, sarcastic, satirical, and adventurous...basically, all the best things. 

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Lincoln in the Bardo: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780812985405
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - February 6th, 2018

This is the best book I've read this year. It's a daring, imaginative masterpiece that's unlike anything you've encountered before. Don't let the wacky, play-like structure scare you—it’ll only take a few pages to immerse yourself into this quirky mix of history and fantasy.

The Bell Jar Cover Image
ISBN: 9780060837020
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Harper Perennial Modern Classics - August 2nd, 2005

No book has captured depression quite so acutely as Plath's only novel. While a tragic, harrowing vision of her own struggle with mental illness, the book also offers sharp commentary on what it meant to be a young woman in the 1950s.

A Moveable Feast: The Restored Edition Cover Image
By Ernest Hemingway, Patrick Hemingway (Foreword by), Sean Hemingway (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9781439182710
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Scribner - July 20th, 2010

“All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.'” So says Ernest Hemingway in this rich memoir that covers the craft of writing, the Lost Generation expats of the 1920s, and the city of Paris, of which he claims, “Wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.”

Jane Eyre: (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) Cover Image
By Charlotte Bronte, Ruben Toledo (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780143106159
Availability: On our shelves now
Published: Penguin Classics - November 30th, 2010

This classic Victorian story has it all—Gothic mystery, pining, passionate love, and best of all a fiercely independent female narrator. Jane is poor and plain, but her strong spirit and bold self-reliance are refreshing even 171 years after the novel was first published.