July Staff Favorites

By Malvern Books

By Malvern Books

A High Wind in Jamaica

Richard Hughes

$15.95 $14.67

Recommended by Tracey. "A surprisingly terrifying short novel about children kidnapped by pirates, elevated from its silliness by surprising moments of violence and introspection, as well as repeated flourishes of literary brilliance. Also, it's funny." —Emily Temple, Lit Hub, '20 Short Novels to Stay Up All Night Reading'

A Map Is Only One Story: Twenty Writers on Immigration, Family, and the Meaning of Home

$16.95 $15.59

Recommended by Tracey. "A moving, deeply personal examination of what it can mean to be an immigrant―or the child of immigrants or even the grandchild of immigrants . . . reminds readers that the collective gaze isn’t passive. It has power to connect as well as to limit." —Bridey Heing, Paste

Paper Houses

Dominique Fortier

$17.95 $16.51

Recommended by Tracey. "An exquisite fictional imagining of Dickinson’s life." —Sue Carter, The Star

The Book of X

Sarah Rose Etter

$17.99 $16.55

Recommended by Kelsey. Celia says, "This book is a lot of things, but I loved it for its fantastic and gross dream worlds."

Potted Meat

Steven Dunn


Kelsey says, "Steven Dunn’s 'Potted Meat' will make you take a beat. You will use this beat to think about everything and then nothing at all. His words will conjure up from the pit of your stomach things you try to ignore. Meaty bits, fuzzy bits. Hurtful things. It is an extraordinary book. Lift Tab, Peel Back, Enjoy Contents."


Albertine Sarrazin


Recommended by Kelsey. F says, "A literary punk rock classic, and essential reading."

The Passion According to G.H.

Clarice Lispector

$15.95 $14.67

Recommended by Kelsey. Schandra says, "It’s a puzzle worth puzzling over. Lispector defines what it is to be both a woman and an existentialist in an existence codified by male lovers, male rulers, and male gods. To borrow its final line, 'I adore it.'"

I Scream Social Anthology Volume 2


Recommended by Schandra, in honor of our I Scream Social Reading Series and Open Mic coming to a close (and also... July is National Ice Cream Month!)

Tarka the Otter

Henry Williamson and Charles Tunnicliffe

$17.95 $16.51

Recommended by Schandra. "The supreme writer of the English countryside." —Christopher Somerville, The Daily Telegraph


Eduardo Lalo

$17.00 $15.64

Recommended by Schandra. "'Simone' is reminiscent of Albert Camus’s 1942 masterpiece, 'The Stranger,' a study in alienation and impotence ... a thought-provoking book ... Lalo’s dark portrayal of a sunny Caribbean city turns the conventional urban novel on its head . . . . Lalo’s distinct perspectives make 'Simone' a surprising adventure and a worthwhile read." —Washington Independent Review of Books

Fighting for Life

S Josephine Baker


Recommended by Schandra. "Baker was the first director of a children’s public health agency, and the first woman to get a doctorate in public health. She tangled repeatedly with Typhoid Mary. More important, her ideas saved thousands of lives and permanently changed the focus and mission of public health. Her just-reissued 1939 autobiography proves to be one of those magical books that reaches effortlessly through time, as engaging and as thought-provoking as if it were written now." —The New York Times

Toni Morrison: The Last Interview: And Other Conversations

$16.99 $15.63

Recommended by Schandra. "A wide-ranging collection of talks with the beloved author finds her refreshingly candid about her books and her life, race and misogyny, and more."

The Man in a Hurry

Paul Morand


Recommended by Becky. "Pushkin Press’s gorgeous new edition of Morand’s masterpiece, written in 1941, is a shockingly clever farce ... This is a strange book, written in prose as speedy as its impossible hero, and Morand deserves to be widely revisited both for the ageless appeal of his style and the specific (sometimes worrying) portrait of human nature at war with 1940s modernity." —Publishers Weekly

In the Dream House: A Memoir

Carmen Maria Machado

$26.00 $23.40

Recommended by Becky. "'In the Dream House' is the most innovative memoir I've ever read." —Gabino Iglesias, NPR

The Big Clock

Kenneth Fearing


Recommended by Becky. Schandra says, "This early example of noir fiction, which profoundly influenced the conception of film noir, boasts some exquisite literary qualities not often seen in your everyday mystery."

The Diary of a Bookseller

Shaun Bythell

$25.99 $23.39

Recommended by Becky. "Often hilarious ... 'The Diary of a Bookseller' is a charming mix of wacky characters and caustic diatribe, an ode to that perilous trade." —The Record

Toxicon and Arachne

Joyelle McSweeney

$16.95 $15.59

Recommended by Celia. "McSweeney is one of our most dynamic poets of theme, mood, and syntax, and this new paired collection unifies those ranges in a most powerful fashion." —The Millions

The Faggots and Their Friends Between Revolutions

Larry Mitchell and Ned Asta

$16.95 $15.59

Celia says, "Originally written in 1977, this is a celebration of love and solidarity in the face of an oppressive world. There are two important things to remember about the coming revolutions. The first is that we will get our asses kicked. The second is that we will win."

Sue?os Y Pesadillas

Dalia Rosetti Laguna


Recommended by Celia. "This is a picaresque that upturns the Latin American novel, Catholicism, and the quest story all at once, and leaves us simultaneously panting to keep up and begging for more." —Veronica Gonzalez Peña

The Mirror & the Light

Hilary Mantel

$30.00 $27.00

Recommended by Celia. "The triumphant capstone to Mantel's trilogy on Thomas Cromwell ... Mantel is often grouped with writers of historical fiction, [but] the more apt, and useful, comparison might be with Robert Caro, the biographer of Robert Moses and Lyndon Johnson, the great anatomizer of political power." —Parul Sehgal, The New York Times

I Served the King of England

Bohumil Hrabal

$15.95 $14.67

Recommended by Joe. F says, "This book captures the absurdity, hilarity, and pain of working in the food industry like no other. Not only that, it is also very beautiful and moving. If I had to choose the fifteen best books of the 20th Century this would be one of them, and it wouldn’t be too far down the list."

Prelude to Bruise

Saeed Jones

$16.00 $14.72

Recommended by Joe. "The poems of this book are harrowing and heartbreaking, treating family, sexuality, and race with unrelenting intensity." —Publishers Weekly

Phantom Pains of Madness

Noelle Kocot

$18.00 $16.56

Recommended by Joe. "Kocot is one of the more energetic poets working today and this books showcases her multifaceted talents." —Misfit Magazine

How to Be Drawn

Terrance Hayes

$20.00 $18.00

Julie says, "If you want to be constantly in awe of language, form, the poet as a prescient seer, then read Terrance Hayes."


Mary Ruefle

$18.00 $16.56

Julie says, "I don't know why I resisted reading Mary Ruefle for so long—perhaps because everyone seemed to like her work so much. Now, I see the light. Ruefle wins my heart. 'Dunce' is one of her best books yet."

Condition of Secrecy

Inger Christensen

$16.95 $15.59

Julie says, "I don't recommend this book enough; part of me wants to keep it a secret because it contains so much cosmic magic. If you are interested in writing as an agent of change, this book will reinvigorate your relationship to art and its ability to electrify us down to our bodily cells."

Heavy: An American Memoir

Kiese Laymon

$16.00 $14.72

Julie says, "After reading 'Heavy,' I will now proceed to read every word Kiese Laymon has ever written. 'Heavy' has officially changed the genre of memoir for good—powerful, aching, and, at moments, painfully funny, there's no other book like it."

Sick: A Memoir

Porochista Khakpour

$15.99 $14.71

Julie says, "Someone please scold me for not reading this book sooner! 'Sick' is not only cathartic to read, it describes what it means to be gaslit by medical professionals better than any work on illness that I've come across yet."

The Glass Eye: A Memoir

Jeannie Vanasco

$15.95 $14.67

Julie says, "To be let into the world of Vanasco's family is nothing short of a gift. Not simply a story about grief and mental illness, but also a striking depiction of a close-knit father and daughter relationship that seems to me painfully lacking in contemporary literature."

Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning

Cathy Park Hong

$27.00 $24.30

Julie says, "OK. I have not read this book yet—I've only heard Cathy Park Hong read an excerpt, but from that excerpt alone I knew instantly that 'Minor Feelings' was going to be one of the most essential books of the year. I'm currently waiting for my copy to arrive in the mail."

Last Night in Nuuk

Niviaq Korneliussen

$16.00 $14.72

Recommended by Tracey. "Young people often aren’t the best at writing about youth, but Korneliussen, who is not yet 30, knocks it out of the park. 'Last Night in Nuuk' is a stunning book, at once audacious and honest, sorrowful and triumphant, and Korneliussen seems certain to have a remarkable career ahead of her." —NPR


Georges Perec

$17.95 $16.51

Recommended by Tracey. "Wishes' is the sort of writing that one lingers over, re-reading bit by bit, flipping back and forth to the table-guides, a collection of variations on a game that is puzzle as well as entertainment ... A must for fans of Perec, the Oulipo, and anyone interested in translation." —Complete Review

Tropic of Violence

Nathacha Appanah

$16.00 $14.72

"Searing, lyrical, and ultimately devastating, Appanah's latest novel might be her finest yet." —Kirkus Reviews


Percival Everett

$16.00 $14.72

"Sometimes, almost indifferently, one of [Percival Everett’s] novels turns out to be truly exceptional and memorable, and confuses me in the best possible way. . . . Everett’s most recent novel, ‘Telephone,’ is one of these standouts. . . . Everett pulls off a gently tremendous technical feat." —Rivka Galchen, The New York Times Book Review

The Fallen

Carlos Manuel Álvarez

$16.00 $14.72

"An extraordinarily pointed and poignant commentary on one of the twentieth century’s most calamitous social experiments, and on the inheritors of its ruins." —New York Review of Books

Catrachos: Poems

Roy G. Guzmán

$16.00 $14.72

"Poems of resilience, invention, and queerness call on pop culture, immigrant stories, and an imagined dinosaur called the ‘Queerodactyl’ for a work of humor and heart." —Minnesota Monthly