Alden's Favorite Books of 2022

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Solito: A Memoir By Javier Zamora Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593498064
Availability: Available From Our Distributor -- Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Hogarth - September 6th, 2022

This is one of the best memoirs I’ve read in years! It’s so full of courage, hope, and resilience; and it’s ultimately about finding family in extraordinary circumstances. 

In 1999, a 9-year-old Javiercito began his harrowing    journey from El Salvador to the United States with a “coyote” to reunite with his parents. He left behind his grandparents and aunts, his school and classmates, and the only home that he has ever known. Can you imagine travelling 3,000 miles and crossing borders with fake documents with a group of strangers? At the age of 9!? 

I was absolutely enraptured by the author’s storytelling. He had me reading with my heart in my throat— this is truly a special story.  (P.S. I totally cried at the end)

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Babel: Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators' Revolution By R. F. Kuang Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063021426
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Published: Harper Voyager - August 23rd, 2022

Rebecca Kuang is brilliant and this book is a MASTERPIECE. It’s a heaping scoop of historical fiction with a pinch of fantasy. It’s dark academia and secret societies. It’s both the power and the weakness of translation. It’s an ode to language and a rebuke of colonialism. Ultimately, it begs the question: is violence a necessity of revolution?

The character development is phenomenal, her storytelling is addicting, and the content is so clearly well-researched and thought-provoking; Kuang has gifted us a blockbuster movie and a philosophical treatise in one literary package and I devoured it!

How High We Go in the Dark: A Novel By Sequoia Nagamatsu Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063072657
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - January 10th, 2023

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow: A novel By Gabrielle Zevin Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593321201
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - July 5th, 2022

This is not your typical love story, and by no means is it a romance novel. It’s about two childhood friends that reunite in adulthood to create art together: video games. 

Sam and Sadie care deeply for each other, but there’s  never been any intimacy between them. Together, they begin to create stunning digital worlds and tell stories that will live on forever— stories that can be restarted with the click of a button. 

The book is so human— it’s funny, heartbreaking, and real. The relationships aren’t perfect, the characters are broken in different ways; it’s about life, work, art, lovers, and friends, and we LOVED it! You don’t have to like video games to fall in love with this story, but you might appreciate it that much more. It’s so well-written and wonderful and you should just start reading it already!!

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If I Survive You By Jonathan Escoffery Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374605988
Availability: Available From Our Distributor -- Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: MCD - September 6th, 2022

This is a remarkable debut novel! Escoffery serves up a gut-punching and a soul-soothing literary  elixir of identity and belonging. It’s a triumph of generational stories I didn't know I needed. 

The book focuses on two generations of a Jamaican-American family and their struggles to survive the capitalism-driven and white-dominated ways of American life after immigrating to Miami. Themes of familial tension, racism, and flat-out bad luck are balanced with a pleasantly surprising dose of humor, making this portrait of everyday life incredibly readable.