Talia's Bit-of-Everything List - 2021 Favorites

Malibu Rising: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781524798659
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ballantine Books - June 1st, 2021

The Riva family is one of the most recognizable--and perhaps least understood--in 1980s Malibu. Over the course of one summer night, and one raucous party, their world literally goes up in flames. Delve into their family history, their loves & losses, and all of their tremendously compelling drama as the evening unfolds. Malibu Rising is about as close as you can get to a perfect beach read.

Somebody's Daughter: A Memoir Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250305978
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Flatiron Books: An Oprah Book - June 1st, 2021

Simultaneously heartbreaking & heart-healing, Ashley Ford's memoir recalls The Glass Castle and Educated in its delicate exploration of familial love & trauma. This is one of those books that hurts to read but that you can't put down, even for a moment. The painful parts make the ending--the author's strength and growth and incredible bravery--feel all the more powerful. Such a moving read.

The Flatshare: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250295651
Availability: Usually Available in 1-5 Days
Published: Flatiron Books - January 5th, 2021

Tiffy desperately needs a new place to live. Leon has a spare bed...at least while he works the night shift. Enter: the flatshare of convenience. Tiffy and Leon's joyous and organic romance blooms across post-it notes, scribbled consolations following rough days, and treats left in the fridge--all without them ever meeting face-to-face. Until...

Love, love, loved this book. Bubbly, delectable fun.

To Be Honest Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419743054
Availability: Usually Available in 1-5 Days
Published: Abrams Press - January 5th, 2021

Michael Leviton grew up in what he describes as an "honesty cult." His parents had little patience for half-truths, believing that absolutely nothing should be omitted, especially the details that make most people uncomfortable. As a consequence, Michael struggled to make friends, hold a job, or feel welcomed by others for most of his life. Eventually, heartbreak led him to question his honesty policy, and he began to explore what it would feel like to prioritize others' feelings over the painful truth. Here, Michael narrates his story with humor, self-awareness, and--of course--honesty.

Parachutes Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062941091
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - July 13th, 2021

Claire and Dani come from very different worlds. Claire is a "parachute," an exchange student sent from China, all by herself, to attend an elite California prep school. Dani attends that school on scholarship and spends her afternoons cleaning her peers' fancy houses to make ends meet. When Claire moves into Dani & her mom's spare bedroom, the disparities between the two girls weigh heavily on their minds. But over the course of the school year, as they cope with issues of gender & wealth & power & family & love, their friendship grows as they do. A gorgeous and ultra-compelling read.

Machine: A White Space Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781534403024
Availability: Usually Available in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery / Saga Press - July 6th, 2021

Take a break from dystopia with this brilliant, complex thriller. Set on a far-future intergalactic hospital where doctors and nurses of all sentient species work together to promote the collective health of all the universe's people, Machine offers a hopeful outlook for humanity. Main character Dr. Brookllyn Jens, a space EMT, believes wholeheartedly in the hospital's mission, so when mysterious AI glitches and bizarre cryochambers start piling up, her worldview is thrown a bit out of orbit. A delicious mix of hard sci-fi, medical drama, and thoughtful meditations on selflessness & purpose.

Driven: The Race to Create the Autonomous Car Cover Image
ISBN: 9781501199431
Availability: Usually Available in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - January 5th, 2021

Driven reads like The Social Network-meets-the montage scenes of Tony Stark building his Iron Man suits. It's an incredible combo of wacky DARPA directives, feuding Ivy League engineers, robot cars driving themselves across the desert Mad Max-style, and also corporate espionage. Not to mention, it's a super-readable primer on tech that will, in all likelihood, take the world by storm within the next few decades. Exceptional.

The Dutch House: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062963680
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial - January 5th, 2021

A modern fable by an absolutely incredible storyteller. I particularly loved the audiobook (narrated by American treasure Tom Hanks!) which is available on our partner site Libro.fm.

Just Like That Cover Image
ISBN: 9780544084773
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Clarion Books - January 5th, 2021

After her best friend dies suddenly, Meryl Lee slips into the "Blank," a deep and overpowering sense of grief. Her parents enroll her in a Maine boarding school, hoping that a change of scenery will help her heal. Despite early struggles to fit in at the strict St. Elene's prep school for girls, Meryl Lee soon forges strong connections with peers, teachers, and one Matt Coffin, a local boy who's fighting to overcome his own history of grief and loss. Brilliant characterization and a vividly realized late-60s setting make this novel really shine. Highly recommended for older KMG/early YA.

Katie the Catsitter Cover Image
By Colleen AF Venable, Stephanie Yue (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781984895639
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - January 5th, 2021

Katie starts her summer break focused on a single mission: saving up for sleepaway camp. When her first few efforts don't work out, Katie takes a job working for her neighbor, a glamorous woman whose apartment is overrun with 217 felines. How difficult could a little bit of catsitting possibly be? In Katie's city of superheroes, supervillains, and maybe even super-cats...it could be VERY difficult indeed. Cat lovers of all ages will adore this fast-paced, laugh-out-loud graphic novel.