Small Strokes

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BOOK PICKS

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HEY there, HERsay Podcast book lovers! We know what's on the minds of women, and each month we're sharing books that we think women will LOVE. We scour the bookshelves of Barnes & Noble for titles by female authors, stories featuring female characters you'll love or love to hate, books that inspire us, teach us something new, and which help us face the challenges that uniquely arise for women each month. November is one of our favorite months for reading. Chilly air, apres leaf-peeping, snuggled under a cozy blanket with a warm drink...it's the quiet before the proverbial holiday storm - and you're gonna need a good book with that! This month's picks include some creepy, spine tinglers to get us in the Halloween spirit, feel-good inspiration sparkers, cookbooks to feed the body and soul, an autobiography from the universe HERself(!), and gift books to share with your favorite trick-or-treaters. Check out our picks below, order online (links provided) or - better yet! - stop into your closest Barnes & Noble store to experience IRL that incomparable smell of Starbucks + books and perusing book covers that we just can't get from shopping the internet. Proceeds from books purchased here this month will be donated to Foundation for Women Warriors, helping moms and kids alike alleviate the stress of food insecurity on weekends when school lunches aren't available. Listen to Caroline's conversation with Barnes & Noble's Clare Hilton, and visit us on Instagram to share what you think of our selections and what YOU'RE reading this month. Happy Reading!

NEW RELEASE/FICTION

 

"This "dark academia" novel grapples with student revolutions, colonial resistance, and the use of language and translation as the dominating tool of the British empire.

Traduttore, traditore: An act of translation is always an act of betrayal.

1828. Robin Swift, orphaned by cholera in Canton, is brought to London by the mysterious Professor Lovell. There, he trains for years in Latin, Ancient Greek, and Chinese, all in preparation for the day he’ll enroll in Oxford University’s prestigious Royal Institute of Translation—also known as Babel.

Babel is the world's center for translation and, more importantly, magic. Silver working—the art of manifesting the meaning lost in translation using enchanted silver bars—has made the British unparalleled in power, as its knowledge serves the Empire’s quest for colonization.

For Robin, Oxford is a utopia dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge. But knowledge obeys power, and as a Chinese boy raised in Britain, Robin realizes serving Babel means betraying his motherland. As his studies progress, Robin finds himself caught between Babel and the shadowy Hermes Society, an organization dedicated to stopping imperial expansion. When Britain pursues an unjust war with China over silver and opium, Robin must decide…Can powerful institutions be changed from within, or does revolution always require violence? 

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PARENTING

"The oldest cultures in the world have mastered the art of raising happy, well-adjusted children. What can we learn from them?

Hunt, Gather, Parent is full of smart ideas that I immediately wanted to force on my own kids.” —Pamela Druckerman, NYT Book Review 


When Dr. Michaeleen Doucleff becomes a mother, she examines the studies behind modern parenting guidance and finds the evidence frustratingly limited and often ineffective. Curious to learn about more effective parenting approaches, she visits a Maya village in the Yucatán Peninsula. There she encounters moms and dads who parent in a totally different way than we do—and raise extraordinarily kind, generous, and helpful children without yelling, nagging, or issuing timeouts. What else, Doucleff wonders, are Western parents missing out on?

In Hunt, Gather, Parent, Doucleff sets out with her three-year-old daughter in tow to learn and practice parenting strategies from families in three of the world’s most venerable communities: Maya families in Mexico, Inuit families above the Arctic Circle, and Hadzabe families in Tanzania. She sees that these cultures don’t have the same problems with children that Western parents do. Most strikingly, parents build a relationship with young children that is vastly different from the one many Western parents develop—it’s built on cooperation instead of control, trust instead of fear, and personalized needs instead of standardized development milestones.

Doucleff talks to psychologists, neuroscientists, anthropologists, and sociologists and explains how these strategies can impact children’s mental health and development. Filled with practical takeaways that parents can implement immediately, Hunt, Gather, Parent helps us rethink the ways we relate to our children, and reveals a universal parenting paradigm adapted for American families."

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BIOGRAPHY

 

"A bit Bill Bryson, a dash Mary Roach, the canvas of Neil deGrasse Tyson, and all the excitement of a Ms. Frizzle Magic School Bus field trip. With an expertise in astrophysics and folklore, Moiya McTier is the perfect tour guide for all of us to have gazed transfixed at the heavens, full of wonder and questions. The Milky Way is a delightful and constantly surprising treat! Thrilling, eye-opening, and just plain fun.

Astrophysicist and folklorist Dr. Moiya McTier channels The Milky Way in this approachable and utterly fascinating autobiography of the titular galaxy, detailing what humans have discovered about everything from its formation to its eventual death, and what more there is to learn about this galaxy we call home.

After a few billion years of bearing witness to life on Earth, of watching one hundred billion humans go about their day-to-day lives, of feeling unbelievably lonely, and of hearing its own story told by others, The Milky Way would like a chance to speak for itself. All one hundred billion stars and fifty undecillion tons of gas of it.

It all began some thirteen billion years ago, when clouds of gas scattered through the universe's primordial plasma just could not keep their metaphorical hands off each other. They succumbed to their gravitational attraction, and the galaxy we know as the Milky Way was born. Since then, the galaxy has watched as dark energy pushed away its first friends, as humans mythologized its name and purpose, and as galactic archaeologists have worked to determine its true age (rude). The Milky Way has absorbed supermassive (an actual technical term) black holes, made enemies of a few galactic neighbors, and mourned the deaths of countless stars. Our home galaxy has even fallen in love.

After all this time, the Milky Way finally feels that it's amassed enough experience for the juicy tell-all we've all been waiting for. Its fascinating autobiography recounts the history and future of the universe in accessible but scientific detail, presenting a summary of human astronomical knowledge thus far that is unquestionably out of this world."

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COOKBOOK

"Join the Sanderson sisters just in time for Halloween with this USA Today bestselling cookbook that is sure to put a spell on you!

Since its debut in 1993, the movie Hocus Pocus has achieved cult-classic fame, with both children and adults as a loyal fanbase. Fans fall in love with the delightful, demonic and diva-esque Sanderson Sisters and the sleepy New England town they torment. Now you can conjure up your own spooky treats and bewitching drinks to celebrate Halloween, whether you’re attending a surprise rave in town, or just spending “a quiet evening at home.”

The Unofficial Hocus Pocus Cookbook is filled with over 60 recipes for fare inspired by everyone’s favorite witches and their spells, potions, and schemes. It is the ultimate must-have for fans of all ages—but don’t worry, no children were harmed in the test of these recipes. Inside you’ll find frightfully delicious recipes for:

  • Burning Rain of Death Punch

  • William’s Wormy Grave Tombstone Cake

  • Dead Man’s Toes Sausage Appetizers

  • Baked Witch Casserole

  • “Way to Go, Virgin” mocktails

  • And much more!"

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CHILDRENS/PICTURE BOOK

"Equal parts spooky and charming, Oliver Jeffers once again puts his brilliance on display in this uniquely creative and ghostly tale that breaks the fourth wall. A natural, yet distinct complement to What We’ll Build and Here We AreThere’s a Ghost in This House is an enchanting twist that everyone should experience.

A captivating and utterly unique picture book with interactive, transparent pages about a girl who lives in a haunted house from world-renowned artist Oliver Jeffers.

A young girl lives in a haunted house, but she has never seen a ghost. Are they white with holes for eyes? Are they hard to see? Step inside and help the girl as she searches under the stairs, behind the sofa, and in the attic for the ghost.

From New York Times bestselling author-illustrator Oliver Jeffers comes a delightful picture book that breaks the fourth wall about young girl's determination to find the ghost haunting her house. Includes tracing paper pages that make the silly ghosts appear on each page. Perfect for Halloween!

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NEW RELEASE/HISTORICAL FICTION

 

"Perfect for readers of Margaret Atwood and Girl, Interrupted, the evocative new book from the New York Times bestselling author of The Orphan Collector blends fact, fiction, and the urban legend of Cropsey in 1970s New York. This is the haunting story of a young woman mistakenly imprisoned at Willowbrook State School, the real-life institution later shuttered for its horrendous abuses.
 

Sage Winters always knew her sister was a little different even though they were identical twins. They loved the same things and shared a deep understanding, but Rosemary—awake to every emotion, easily moved to joy or tears—seemed to need more protection from the world.

Six years after Rosemary’s death from pneumonia, Sage, now sixteen, still misses her deeply. Their mother perished in a car crash, and Sage’s stepfather, Alan, resents being burdened by a responsibility he never wanted. Sage is stunned to discover that Alan has kept a shocking secret: Rosemary didn’t die. She was committed to Willowbrook State School and has lingered there until just a few days ago, when she went missing.

Willowbrook has always been a place shrouded by rumor and mystery. A place local parents threaten to send misbehaving kids. With no idea what to expect, Sage secretly sets out for Willowbrook, determined to find Rosemary. What she learns, once she steps through its doors and is mistakenly believed to be her sister, will change her life in ways she never could imagined . . ."

 

"Powerful. Grounded in historical fact, it ends like a fast-paced thriller.” – Historical Novel Society

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PERSONAL GROWTH/INSPIRATION

 

"An inspirational book perfect for the season and spot-on in tone. Go on a journey with Instagram star Alessandra Olanow as she works through her life's ups and downs and hopes you can, too. Her witty illustrations and advice capture what many of us are going through today. A good gift for yourself and a thoughtful one for all ages. 

 

Balm for the soul—Alessandra Olanow offers advice, inspiration, and encouragement for anyone who needs a shoulder to lean on during a difficult time.

“I Know This Too Shall Pass. (But It Would Be Helpful to Know When).”

After a series of events left her a divorced single mother questioning herself, her relationships, and basically, everything she thought was true about her “picture-perfect” life, Alessandra Olanow began drawing and posting illustrations on Instagram that reflected her feelings and struggles to right her life. She chronicled her journey of healing, expressing the shock, delusion, denial, self-pity, and self-doubt she experienced and the self-empathy and forgiveness that ultimately helped her regain a sense of self—but stronger, more fearless, and more hopeful than before. Her charming illustrations and keen, memorable observations—struck a chord. Within a year, her audience grew dramatically, from 9,500 to 157,000 followers, including celebrities Katie Couric, Jennifer Garner, Elise Loehnen (chief content officer at Goop), the poet Joao Doederlein, and Joanna Goddard (founder of A Cup of Jo). 

Full of advice, commiseration, empathy, and wit that is comforting, helpful, direct, and remarkable in its truth, I Used to Have a Plan helps everyone through the painful yet ultimately uplifting process of healing."

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COOKBOOK

"Easy-to-make meals for every day eating. Not only is every recipe delicious, but Tieghan made sure that each dish is made with minimally processed ingredients. Whether you’re a professional chef or just starting out in the kitchen, this book is the perfect guide.

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • More than 120 all-new recipes that will leave everyone feeling good, from crowd-pleasers with a healthier twist to family favorites you can rely on every day—from the New York Times bestselling author of Half Baked Harvest Super Simple.

The millions of fans of the Half Baked Harvest blog and bestselling books have fallen in love with Tieghan Gerard’s recipes for their wholesome decadence, unfussy approach, and smart twists on comforting favorites. Written and photographed in the stunning mountains of Colorado, inspired by her big, unique family, and focused on what you’ll want to eat day-in-day-out, Half Baked Harvest Every Day delivers more than 120 all-new recipes that will feed your body and soul.


For Tieghan, feel-good food isn’t about restrictive eating. It’s about enjoying real food with lots of flavor, and the satisfaction of sharing it with those you love. Finding balance is about giving your body and your cravings what they need . . . whether that’s a light, vegetable-packed dish or a big ole plate of something comforting.

In this collection, there are plenty of plant-forward favorites, like Chipotle Cheddar Corn Chowder and Spinach and Pesto–Stuffed Butternut Squash. Tieghan also shares flavor-packed family go-tos, like Pizza Pasta with Pepperoni Bread Crumbs, Crispy Carnitas Taquitos, and Spicy Pretzel Chicken Fingers with Hot Honey. And to keep a smile on everyone’s face, you’ll find luscious desserts, like Chocolate Olive Oil Cake and a Lemon Tart with Vanilla Sugar, made with a focus on wholesome, minimally processed ingredients.

Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, snack time, dinner, or dessert . . . this book has tried-and-true recipes that will make you feel good about sharing them at your table."

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CHILDRENS/PICTURE BOOK

"A zombie-tastic take on a favorite fairy tale!  

“A horror spoof with a big heart: Lorenzo’s acrylic and colored pencil cartooning offers a warm glow, and readers will cheer for this undead family that finally feels complete.” —Publishers Weekly


Forget Goldilocks and the three bears—MOLDILOCKS and the THREE SCARES are here, in a delightful new version of the popular story. Papa Scare (a monster), Mama Scare (a mummy), and Baby Scare (a vampire) live in a haunted house where they eat finger sandwiches and alpha-bat soup. One night, they go out to walk their dog (a bloodhound, of course) to let their soup cool down. While they’re away, in walks the zombie Moldilocks, looking for food, a chair, and a bed that’s just right. Kids will love this hauntingly funny story with its surprise ending!"

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Thank You
to this month's women authors!

TOP(L-R): R.F. Kuang, Ellen Marie Wiseman, Michaeleen Doucleff, Alessandra Olanow
BOTTOM (L-R): Lynne Marie, Tieghen Gerard, Bridget Thoreson, Moiya McTier