Staff Picks

Don't Get Too Comfortable by David Rakoff

Think: David Brooks meets David Sedaris.

Somewhere along the line, our healthy self-regard has exploded into obliterating narcissism; our manic getting and spending have now become celebrated as moral virtues. Whether contrasting the elegance of one of the last flights of the supersonic Concorde with the good-times-and-chicken-wings populism of Hooters AirRakoff takes us on a bitingly funny grand tour of our culture of excess. He comes away from his explorations hilariously horrified. 

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The Best of the Kids in the Hall Vol. 1

 For fans of : Saturday Night Live and Monty Python.

Brilliant, absurd, and utterly unconventional. The Kids brought to life a bevy of edgy, irreverent, and still charming characters, from B-movie star Francesca Fiore to the mysterious Eradicator and the legendary Chicken Lady. This collection of the best sketches from Season 1 and 2 of the Kids’ groundbreaking series is a huge treat for fans and an eye-opening delight for the uninitiated.  

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The Keeper of Lost Causes

For fans of : Jo Nesbo, Stieg Larsson, and Camilla Lackberg.

The Keeper of Lost Causes, the first installment of Adler- Olsen's Department Q series, features the deeply flawed chief detective Carl MØrck, who used to be a good homicide detective-one of Copenhagen's best. Then a bullet almost took his life. Two of his colleagues weren't so lucky, and Carl, who didn't draw his weapon, blames himself.

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Mixed Emotions

 For fans of : John Maus, New Order, Gotye. 

Mixed Emotions plays like a great debut. It’s a fresh use of recycled-sounding ‘80s influence, which is hard enough to accomplish these days in itself, and it finds Tanlines further developing their sound into something all its own amid melancholic lyrics that show hints of maturity.


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The Newlyweds

 For fans of : The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides. 

In The Newlyweds, we follow the story of Amina Mazid, who at age twenty-four moves from Bangladesh to Rochester, New York, for love. A hundred years ago, Amina would have been called a mail-order bride. But this is an arranged marriage for the twenty-first century: Amina is wooed by—and woos—George Stillman online.  

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Enter the Vaselines (CD)

For fans of : Nirvana and The Raincoats.

The Vaselines wrote songs so sloppy and catchy and funny that they sound like complete accidents even after you’ve heard them 50 times—and they’re enticing enough to play that often. Enter The Vaselines is essentially the twee Scottish group’s entire discography twice over: 19 tracks recorded 1987-89 (previously included on The Way Of The Vaselines, which Sub Pop originally issued in 1992) plus a second disc of unreleased demos.

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Learning to Swim

For fans of : Gillian Flynn and S.J. Bolton.

When Troy Chance spots what she thinks is a small boy being tossed off the back of a passing ferry, she instinctively jumps into the icy waters of Lake Champlain. She rescues the youngster and discovers that his arms were bound with an adult sweatshirt. He’s incredibly frightened, speaks only French, and won’t tell her what happened. 

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Stepping out of Line (CD)

Unlike, say, Gang of Four, who fused the single-cell amoeba of the punk template with more complex melodic and rythmic variations, or Wire, who stripped down punk to explore more minimal terrain and art-school antics, the Au Pairs did something similar to what Joy Division did--they pushed rhythm to the foreground and articulated a very personal, emotional lyricism that defined the headspace of the post-punk era and beyond.


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The Stonecutter

The hottest crime genre of the moment is Nordic noir and Camilla Läckberg is one of the reasons. Darker, bleaker, and far more sinister than similar American fare...Local detective Patrik Hedstrom has just become a father. It’s his grim task to discover who could be behind the murder of a local child. What he does not know is how this case will reach into the dark heart of Fjallbacka, spanning generations, ripping aside its idyllic façade,perhaps forever.
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A Night to Remember

The 1958 British production of A Night to Remember remains a definitive dramatization of the disaster, adhering to the known facts of the time and achieving a documentary-like immediacy that matches (and in some ways surpasses) the James Cameron epic released 39 years later.

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Other People's Rejection Letters : Relationship Enders, Career Killers, and 150 Other Letters You'll Be Glad You Didn't Receive

Welcome to the rejection-letter hall of fame, where the hopes and dreams of celebrities (Jimi Hendrix, Andy Warhol, among others) are crushed alongside the aspirations of the rest of us.

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The Parking Lot Movie

Director Meghan Eckman's irreverently funny debut celebrates a brotherhood of eccentric attendants who man a unique parking lot in Charlottesville, Virginia. From grad students to middle-age slackers, indie-rock musicians to surly philosophers, these overeducated part-timers wax profoundly about car culture and capitalism, seek vengeance against entitled patrons and thieves, and make fun of drunken jerks. If the intersection between the status quo and the quest for freedom is their ultimate challenge, could a slab of asphalt be an emotional way station for The American Dream.

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I am an Executioner

An explosive, funny, wildly original fiction debut: nine stories about the power of love and the love of power, two urgent human desires that inevitably, and sometimes calamitously, intertwine. In I Am an Executioner, Rajesh Parameswaran introduces us to a cast of heroes—and antiheroes—who spring from his riotous, singular imagination. At once glittering and savage, daring and elegant, here are wholly unforgettable tales where reality loops in Borgesian twists and shines with cinematic exuberance, by an author who promises to dazzle the universe of American fiction.


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Wordplay" starts as the story of the New York Times crossword puzzle, and the current and historical creative forces behind it. But as it dances across the story, filling it in as one of its devotees might across the puzzles, it reveals an entire amazing world behind its practice, creation, and history, from the annual crossword convention in Stamford to the breadth of individuals who enjoy it daily. Features crossword aficionados Bill Clinton, Jon Stewart, Bob Dole, Mike Mussina, Indio Girls, and Ken Burns!

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What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank

These eight new stories from the celebrated novelist and short-story writer Nathan Englander display a gifted young author grappling with the great questions of modern life, with a command of language and the imagination that place Englander at the very forefront of contemporary American fiction...Beautiful and courageous, funny and achingly sad, Englander’s work is a revelation.

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