Elisabeth M's Picks

By Books on the Common

By Books on the Common

The Wolf in the Whale

Jordanna Max Brodsky

$15.99 $14.71

Where else are you going to find a story that combines Inuit shamanism and Norse mythology? Inspired by a single page of historical documentation, this is a fantastic story that transcends cultures, beliefs, societal practices – you name it. This is a story about how people can change their shapes, their minds, and the world.

The Raven Boys (the Raven Cycle, Book 1)

Maggie Stiefvater

$10.99 $10.11

My new favorite YA series! I love Stiefvater’s writing of relationships and interaction, as well as the way magic just seeps into everything throughout this series. A quartet that needs to be read at least twice!

The Witch Boy

Molly Knox Ostertag

$12.99 $11.95

I devoured all three of these kids’ graphic novels within days. This is a story about family expectations and gender roles, and about how important it can be to challenge those and be who you really need to be. The art style is beautiful, and the friendships are lovely. Some rules are meant to be broken.

Julie of the Wolves

Jean Craighead George and John Schoenherr

$7.99 $7.35

This book changed my life. I’m serious. Julie (or Miyax) is a young Inuit girl who runs away and is adopted by a pack of wild wolves. No magic here – Julie learns how to live alongside the pack by watching closely and remembering lessons from her father, and for what it is the story stays remarkably realistic in its portrayal of the pack. My mom thinks this is the book that made me love wolves – and now I work alongside real ones!

How to Be a Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals

Sy Montgomery and Rebecca Green

$20.00 $18.40

I could only read this book one chapter at a time, because it made me so emotional that I’d have to take a break. I have never related to anything so much in my life. Sy Montgomery is my favorite science writer, and in this book she draws on life lessons from our greatest teachers – the animals around us. Some are dogs and pigs, some are tree kangaroos and octopuses, all have important things to show us about who they are, who we are, and how to be a good creature. And when you’re done, you can read more about many of the guest stars featured here in Montgomery’s other works!

The Golden Compass: His Dark Materials

Philip Pullman

$8.99 $8.27

An amazing YA fantasy. Souls live outside bodies as animal-shaped daemons, mysterious Dust influences the world in ways we don’t understand, and little Lyra could not care less as long as she can play with her friends and her daemon Pantalaimon. I still think about this story regularly in all its strangeness and magicalness. The trilogy has been complete for years, but there are now two more books set in this world, so you can keep reading!