Book Buzz: 52 Ways to Nature

52 Ways to Nature: Washington: Your Seasonal Guide to a Wilder Year by Lauren Braden Now that the Fourth of July has come and gone, signaling summer has finally arrived to Whatcom County, it’s time to make adventure plans to make the most of each precious weekend. Seattle-based travel writer Lauren Braden’s “52 Ways to … Read more

Book Buzz: The Family Chao

The Family Chao by Lan Samatha Chang Lan Samantha Chang’s latest novel, “The Family Chao,” centers around a murder, but it’s less of a whodunit than a psychological study of complicated family relationships. The plot is similar to “The Brothers Karamazov,” but you need not be a scholar of 19th-century Russian literature to appreciate this … Read more

Book Buzz: Everything Left to Remember

Everything Left to Remember: My Mother, Our Memories, and A Journey Through the Rocky Mountains by Steph Jagger Bainbridge Island author Steph Jagger follows up her memoir “Unbound” with “Everything Left to Remember: My Mother, Our Memories, and a Journey Through the Rocky Mountains,” a heart-wrenching yet hopeful recounting of a mother-daughter road trip taken … Read more

Book Buzz: Northwest Know-how: Beaches

Northwest Know-how: Beaches by Rena Priest Nature lovers and poetry enthusiasts have a couple of chances to meet a local treasure, Washington State Poet Laureate Rena Priest. Priest will be speaking about her latest book, “Northwest Know-How: Beaches” from 7-8:30 p.m. Friday, June 10 at Village Books in Bellingham as part of the spring “Nature of Writing” … Read more

Book Buzz: Very Cold People

Very Cold People by Sarah Manguso

Very Cold People by Sarah Manguso If Edith Wharton wrote Ethan Frome in 1986, it might look like Very Cold People. Also set in a fictional Massachusetts town, Sarah Manguso’s first novel is a pithy coming-of-age story with a bleak outlook. Ruthie doesn’t know why her non-WASP family lives in Waitsfield– they can’t afford it … Read more

Book Buzz: The Swimmers

The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka

The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka At the community pool, obsessive lap swimmers adhere to a strict, unspoken social code. They stick to their lanes and keep an eye out for each other–especially Alice, who has been swimming laps here for 35 years. Her dementia doesn’t seem as big of a deal when she’s at the … Read more

Book Buzz: Black Cake

Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson

Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson. FRUIT, RUM, SUGAR, spices — their mother Eleanor’s black cake is a family tradition that runs throughout Benny and Byron’s childhoods, tying them to their Caribbean heritage and to one another. When Eleanor passes away, she leaves her children one final black cake to share, along with a mysterious recorded … Read more

Book Buzz: Tell Me an Ending

Tell Me an Ending by Jo Harkin

Tell Me an Ending by Jo Harkin. Our lives are shaped by our memories. They influence our understanding of the world, and through them we develop our sense of self. But what if you could excise a piece of your past? At Nepenthe, memory erasure is big business, allowing clients to eliminate snippets of recall … Read more

Book Buzz: Orhan’s Inheritance

Orhan’s Inheritance by Aline Ohanesian Long before President Biden declared Russia’s Ukraine war “genocide,” and long before the word was first coined during World War II to describe Nazi Germany’s actions toward European Jews, the Ottoman Empire’s ruling Committee of Union and Progress systematically implemented the mass murder of approximately 1 million Armenians in what … Read more

Book Buzz: The Salt Fields

The Salt Fields by Stacy D. Flood In spare prose with haunting images, Stacy D. Flood’s novella, “The Salt Fields,” tells of a Black man’s train journey north, leaving South Carolina with its ghosts and grief for a fresh start in the northern steel mills. Set just after World War II during the beginning of … Read more