West Slope Library Booklist – May 2015

This month, find a book that takes you outside of yourself and provokes you to?examine life and the world from a different perspective. Books like the ones below can be an important tool in exploring the diversity of cultures that make up our neighborhood, city, state, country, and world.

American Born Chinese

American Born Chinese

By Yang, Gene Luen
Illustrator Pien, Lark
2007-10 – First Second
9781596433731



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A tour-de-force by rising indy comics star Gene Yang, "American Born Chinese" tells the story of three apparently unrelated characters: Jin Wang, who moves to a new neighborhood with his family only to discover that he’s the only Chinese-American student at his new school; the powerful Monkey King, subject of one of the oldest and greatest Chinese fables; and Chin-Kee, a personification of the

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The Complete Persepolis

The Complete Persepolis

By Satrapi, Marjane
2007-10 – Pantheon Books
9780375714832



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Satrapi?s autobiographical graphic novel about growing up in Iran during the Islamic revolution was an international bestseller. Yet in 2013 it was removed from a Chicago middle school district due to inappropriate images and language.

In response, students mobilized a media campaign opposing the banning of a book that is itself about freedom of speech. Their actions led to the book

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Girls of Riyadh

Girls of Riyadh

By Alsanea, Rajaa
Translator Alsanea, Rajaa
Translator Booth, Marilyn
2008-07 – Penguin Books
9780143113478



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A bold new voice from Saudi Arabia spins a fascinating tale of four young women attempting to navigate the narrow straits between love, desire, fulfillment, and Islamic tradition as the hidden world of today’s upper-class Saudi women is revealed by an insider.

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Purple Hibiscus

Purple Hibiscus

By Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi
2012-04 – Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
9781616202415



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A promising new voice from Nigeria delivers an exquisite and powerful first novel about a 15-year-old Nigerian woman who is awakening at a time when both her country and family are on the cusp of change.

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Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories

Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories

By Alexie, Sherman
2012-10 – Grove Press
9780802120397



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Awards:
Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Award (2013)

A bold and irreverent observer of life among Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest, the daring, versatile, funny, and outrageous Alexie showcases all his talents in his newest collection, "Blasphemy," where he unites fifteen beloved classics with fifteen new stories in one sweeping anthology for devoted fans and first-time readers.

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The Bookseller of Kabul

The Bookseller of Kabul

By Seierstad, Asne
2004-10 – Back Bay Books
0316159417



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A BookPage Notable Title
An international phenomenon translated into 17 languages, "The Bookseller of Kabul" has become not only the bestselling nonfiction book ever published in the author’s native Norway, but also a tremendous success throughout Europe and around the world.


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The Messenger of Athens

The Messenger of Athens

By Zouroudi, Anne
2010-07 – Reagan Arthur Books
9780316075428



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The Greek island of Thiminos seems untroubled by the modern world, so when the battered body of a young woman is discovered at the foot of a cliff, the local police quickly dismiss her death as an accident. Refusing to accept their findings, Hermes Diaktoros sets out to uncover the truth.

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Palace Walk: The Cairo Trilogy, Volume 1

Palace Walk: The Cairo Trilogy, Volume 1

By Mahfouz, Naguib
Author Mahfuz, Najib
1990-12 – Anchor Books
0385264666



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Volume I of the masterful "Cairo Trilogy. A national best-seller in both hardcover and paperback, it introduces the engrossing saga of a Muslim family in Cairo during Egypt’s occupation by British forces in the early 1900s.

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Kabul Beauty School: An American Woman Goes Behind the Veil

Kabul Beauty School: An American Woman Goes Behind the Veil

By Rodriguez, Deborah
With Ohlson, Kristin
2007-04 – Random House (NY)
9781400065592



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In the tradition of "Reading Lolita in Tehran," Rodriguez tells the story of the beauty school she founds in the middle of the Afghan city of Kabul, and lifts the veil of secrecy about the vibrant women who were her students there.

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Mutant Message Down Under

Mutant Message Down Under

By Morgan, Marlo
2004-05 – Harper Perennial
9780060723514



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In this "New York Times" bestseller, Morgan leads readers on the fictional spiritual odyssey of an American woman in the Australian outback.

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A Pigeon and a Boy

A Pigeon and a Boy

By Shalev, Meir
Translator Fallenberg, Evan
2007-10 – Schocken Books Inc
9780805242515



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Awards:
National Jewish Book Award (2007)

This mesmerizing novel, set both in contemporary Israel and during the 1948 War of Independence, intertwines two stories of love that are separated by half a century but connected by one magical act of devotion.

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Waiting

Waiting

By Jin, Ha
1999-09 – Pantheon Books
0375406530



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Winner – 2000 ALA Notable Fiction Selection
Winner – 1999 National Book Award for Fiction
Lin Kong is a devoted doctor in love with a modern young woman–a nurse who is educated, clever, and vivid. The only complication is the wife to whom he was married when they were very young–a tiny woman, humble and touchingly loyal, whom he visits in order to ask, again and again, for


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What Is the What

What Is the What

By Eggers, Dave
2006-11 – McSweeney’s Books
9781932416640



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Awards:
Independent Publisher Book Awards (2007), National Book Critics Circle Award (2006)

In a sprawling and epic novel, Dave Eggers illuminates the history of the civil war in Sudan through the eyes of a young boy, Valentino Achak Deng. What is the What tells the story of Valentino and another boy, both caught in the Sudanese civil war. One, at seven, is too young to know what’s happening; the other, at ten, is old enough to fight for the rebel army. The two struggle through

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Interpreter of Maladies

Interpreter of Maladies

By Lahiri, Jhumpa
1999-06 – Mariner Books
9780395927205



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Awards:
Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award (1999), New Yorker Book (2000), Pulitzer Prize (2000)

Navigating between the Indian traditions they’ve inherited and a baffling new world, the characters in Lahiri’s elegant, touching stories seek love beyond the barriers of culture and generations.

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A Fine Balance

A Fine Balance

By Mistry, Rohinton
2001-11 – Vintage
9781400030651



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With a compassionate realism and narrative sweep that recall the work of Charles Dickens, this magnificent novel captures all the cruelty and corruption, dignity and heroism, of India. The time is 1975. The place is an unnamed city by the sea. The government has just declared a State of Emergency, in whose upheavals four strangers–a spirited widow, a young student uprooted from his idyllic hill

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Into the Beautiful North

Into the Beautiful North

By Urrea, Luis Alberto
2009-05 – Little Brown and Company
9780316025270



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Awards:
Grand Canyon Reader Award (2013)

Nineteen-year-old Nayeli works at a taco shop in her Mexican village and dreams about her father, who journeyed to the U.S. to find work. "Into the Beautiful North" is the story of a young woman’s quest to find herself on both sides of the fence.

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Of Bees and Mist

Of Bees and Mist

By Setiawan, Erick
2009-08 – Simon & Schuster
9781416596240



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Setiawan’s atmospheric debut is a beautiful, engrossing fable of three generations of women in two families, their loves and losses, their destructive jealousies and deceptions, and their triumphs.

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The Piano Tuner

The Piano Tuner

By Mason, Daniel Philippe
2002-09 – Knopf Publishing Group
0375414657



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An extraordinary first novel that tells the story of a British piano tuner sent deep into Burma in the nineteenth century.
In October 1886, Edgar Drake receives a strange request from the British War Office: he must leave his wife and his quiet life in London to travel to the jungles of Burma, where a rare Erard grand piano is in need of repair. The piano belongs to an army surgeon-major whose


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Saving Francesca

Saving Francesca

By Marchetta, Melina
2004-09 – Alfred A. Knopf
0375829822



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2005 ALA Young Adult Top Ten Selection
Teenage Francesca is constantly battling her mother over what it best for her. But when her mother becomes severely depressed, her family begins to fall apart, and Francesca realizes that without her mother’s high spirits, she hardly knows who she is.


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Say You're One of Them

Say You’re One of Them

By Akpan, Uwem
2009-09 – Little Brown and Company
9780316086363



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Awards:
Dayton Literary Peace Prize (2009), Hurston/Wright LEGACY Award (2009)

Each story in this jubilantly acclaimed collection pays testament to the wisdom and resilience of children, even in the face of the most agonizing circumstances. A family living in a makeshift shanty in urban Kenya scurries to find gifts of any kind for the impending Christmas holiday. A Rwandan girl relates her family’s struggles to maintain a facade of normalcy amid unspeakable acts. A young

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Dreams of My Russian Summers

Dreams of My Russian Summers

By Makine, Andrei
Translator Strachan, Geoffrey
2011-05 – Arcade Publishing
9781611450545



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Every summer, young Andrei visits his grandmother, Charlotte Lemmonier, whom he loves dearly. In a dusty village overlooking the vast Russian steppes, she captivates her grandson and the other children of the village with wondrous tales–watching Proust play tennis in Neuilly, Tsar Nicholas II’s visit to Paris, French president Felix Faure dying in the arms of his mistress. But from his mysterious

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Day After Night

Day After Night

By Diamant, Anita
2009-09 – Scribner Book Company
9780743299848



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In a heart-wrenching new novel, bestselling author Diamant ("The Red Tent") tells the story of four women, refugees from Nazi Europe, who find friendship, love, and salvation in a postwar British camp in Palestine.

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Boy, Snow, Bird

Boy, Snow, Bird

By Oyeyemi, Helen
2014-03 – Riverhead Books
9781594631399



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Awards:
L.A. Times Book Prize (2014)

A reimagining of the Snow White story set in the United States during the 1950s and 1960s.

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The Club Dumas

The Club Dumas

By Perez-Reverte, Arturo
Translator Soto, Sonia
1997-02 – Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH)
0151001820



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Lucas Corso is searching for the original of The Book of the Nine Doors to the Kingdom of Darkness, which supposedly contains the secret to summoning the Devil. It is said that only one copy survived the Inquisition. How is it then that Corso has tracked down three authenticated copies? Who is the beautiful woman, named after an Arthur Conan Doyle character, following him – is she a threat, a

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Baking Cakes in Kigali

Baking Cakes in Kigali

By Parkin, Gaile
2009-08 – Delacorte Press
9780385343435



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In a land where human tragedy is wrought in epic proportions due to AIDS, famine, and genocide, one woman has a gift for fighting hardship one cake at a time.

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