Mischief, sanity, death, witches and bunnies

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Lots of new books just arrived via the nicest courier ever:

– “The Memory Tree” by Britta Teckentrup
A beautiful and heartfelt story about the death of a loved one and the memories that comfort those left behind.

– “Bart Simpson’s Manual of Mischief” by Matt Groening
Absolutely bursting with tips and tricks to help readers develop their inner pranksters.

Bart Simpson is truly the unrivaled master of mischief. Amateur pranksters around the world take their tips and learn their tricks from Bart, the sneakiest of sneaks. The nightmare of every sister and the destroyer of a calm composure for every grown-up, this clever kid knows how to push everyone’s buttons and get away with it all. Now Bart shares his mischievous secrets with the world, from the contents of the perfect spy kit to the ideal methods of agonizing annoyance. Packed to the brim with inserts and special features, including removable “Sneaky Hall of Fame” cards and a booklet on the complete art of the prank phone call, Bart Simpson’s Manual of Mischief includes everything readers need to become a true technician of trouble. This is the second installment in the Vault of Simpsonology series and a follow-up to the wildly popular Homer Simpson’s Little Book of Laziness.

– “Lord and Lady Bunny – Almost Royalty!” translated from “The Rabbit” by Polly HorvathIn this hilarious sequel to Mr. and Mrs. Bunny—Detectives Extraordinaire!—that even includes a guest appearance by J. K. Rowling a.k.a. “Oldwhatshername”—Madeleine wants nothing more than to save money for college, but her impractical, ex-hippie parents are broke. When the family unexpectedly inherits a sweet shoppe in England that has the potential to earn serious profit, they see an answer to all their problems. . . . Meanwhile, Mr. and Mrs. Bunny—formerly of the detecting persuasion—are looking for new professions, and Mrs. Bunny decides she would like to be Queen. Soon they, too, are headed across the pond. Brought to you by National Book Award-winning author Polly Horvath and illustrator Sophie Blackall, the adventures of Madeleine and the Bunnys are zanier than ever.

– “The Rithmatist” by Brandon Sanderson
More than anything, Joel wants to be a Rithmatist. Chosen by the Master in a mysterious inception ceremony, Rithmatists have the power to infuse life into two-dimensional figures known as Chalklings. Rithmatists are humanity’s only defense against the Wild Chalklings — merciless creatures that leave mangled corpses in their wake. Having nearly overrun the territory of Nebrask, the Wild Chalklings now threaten all of the American Isles.

As the son of a lowly chalkmaker at Armedius Academy, Joel can only watch as Rithmatist students study the magical art that he would do anything to practice. Then students start disappearing — kidnapped from their rooms at night, leaving trails of blood. Assigned to help the professor who is investigating the crimes, Joel and his friend Melody find themselves on the trail of an unexpected discovery — one that will change Rithmatics — and their world — forever.

Bestselling author Brandon Sanderson brings his unique brand of epic storytelling to the teen audience with an engrossing tale of danger and suspense—the first of a series. With his trademark skills in world-building, Sanderson has created a magic system that is so inventive and detailed that that readers who appreciate games of strategy and tactics just may want to bring Rithmatics to life in our world.

– “Why Are You Doing That?” by Elisa Amado
Chepito is full of questions. Why is his mother cooking eggs and frying beans? Why is Manuel digging around the corn? Why is Ramón milking the cow? Why is Maria slapping dough between her hands? In this simply told story, a little boy learns all about food and where it comes from. Following on the success of What Are You Doing? Elisa Amado and Manuel Monroy have created another gem of a picture book, this time about food — where it comes from, how we nurture food plants and animals, and what we eat to be healthy and strong. Manuel Monroy sweetly depicts Chepito’s world — a rural community where people grow much of their own food and raise chickens and cows — giving young children a clear picture of the origins of foods they consume every day. Includes a short glossary.

– “Salvage the Bones” by Jesmyn Ward
A hurricane is building over the Gulf of Mexico, threatening the coastal town of Bois Sauvage, Mississippi, and Esch’s father is growing concerned. A hard drinker, largely absent, he doesnt show concern for much else. Esch and her three brothers are stocking food, but there isn’t much to save. Lately, Esch can’t keep down what food she gets; she’s fourteen and pregnant. Her brother Skeetah is sneaking scraps for his prized pitbull’s new litter, dying one by one in the dirt. Meanwhile, brothers Randall and Junior try to stake their claim in a family long on child’s play and short on parenting.

As the twelve days that make up the novel’s framework yield to their dramatic conclusion, this unforgettable family—motherless children sacrificing for one another as they can, protecting and nurturing where love is scarce—pulls itself up to face another day. A big-hearted novel about familial love and community against all odds, and a wrenching look at the lonesome, brutal, and restrictive realities of rural poverty, Salvage the Bones is muscled with poetry, revelatory, and real.

– “Sane New World: Taming the Mind” by Ruby Wax
Comedian, writer and mental health campaigner shows us why and how our minds can send us mad and how we can rewire our thinking, especially through mindfulness, to calm ourselves in a frenetic world. Ruby Wax – comedian, writer and mental health campaigner – shows us how our minds can jeopardize our sanity. With her own periods of depression and now a Masters from Oxford in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy to draw from, she explains how our busy, chattering, self-critical thoughts drive us to anxiety and stress. If we are to break the cycle, we need to understand how our brains work, rewire our thinking and find calm in a frenetic world. Helping you become the master, not the slave, of your mind, here is the manual to saner living.

– “Half Bad” by Sally Green
Sixteen-year-old Nathan lives in a cage: beaten, shackled, trained to kill. In a modern-day England where two warring factions of witches live amongst humans, Nathan is an abomination, the illegitimate son of the world’s most terrifying and violent witch, Marcus. Nathan’s only hope for survival is to escape his captors, track down Marcus, and receive the three gifts that will bring him into his own magical powers – before it’s too late. But how can Nathan find his father when his every action is monitored, when there is no one safe to trust, not even the girl he loves?

Half Bad is an international sensation and the start of a brilliant trilogy: a gripping tale of alienation and the indomitable will to survive.

– “Otis Loves to Play” by Loren Long
Featuring the New York Times bestselling character Otis!

Children three and older will love this adorable board book, the perfect companion to Otis and Otis and the Tornado. In this new story, the beloved tractor loves to play with his friends–the calf, the cows, the horses, and of course, the ducks. Together, they jump, they play, they chase, and they march. And they always have fun–young readers will, too!

– “In Darkness” by Nick Lake (2013 Winner of the Michael Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature)
In darkness I count my blessings like Manman taught me. One: I am alive. Two: there is no two. In the aftermath of the Haitian earthquake a boy is trapped beneath the rubble of a ruined hospital: thirsty, terrified and alone. ‘Shorty’ is a child of the slums, a teenage boy who has seen enough violence to last a lifetime, and who has been inexorably drawn into the world of the gangsters who rule Site Soleil: men who dole out money with one hand and death with the other. But Shorty has a secret: a flame of revenge that blazes inside him and a burning wish to find the twin sister he lost five years ago. And he is marked. Marked in a way that links him with Toussaint L’Ouverture, the Haitian rebel who two-hundred years ago led the slave revolt and faced down Napoleon to force the French out of Haiti. As he grows weaker, Shorty relives the journey that took him to the hospital, a bullet wound in his arm. In his visions and memories he hopes to find the strength to survive, and perhaps then Toussaint can find a way to be free…

– “The Full Ridiculous” by Mark Lamprell
A funny, compelling novel about love, family, and the precarious business of being a man.

Michael O’Dell is hit by a car. When he doesn’t die, he is surprised and pleased. But he can’t seem to move from the crash position. In fact, the accident is just the first in a series of family crises: His wife Wendy is heroically supportive, but when his daughter Rosie punches out a vindictive schoolmate, all hell breaks loose. His son Declan is found with a stash of illicit drugs. A strange policeman starts harassing the family and ordinary mishaps take on a sinister desperation. To top it all off, Michael’s professional life starts to crumble.

Mark Lamprell’s extraordinary debut examines the terrible truth: sometimes you can’t pull yourself together until you’ve completely fallen apart.

– “Waiting For the Man” by Arjun Basu
Joe, a 35-year-old advertising copywriter for a slick New York company, feels disillusioned with his life. Soon he starts dreaming of a mysterious man and, not long after, begins seeing him on the street and hearing his voice. The voice overwhelms Joe and he starts to listen to it, camping out on the front steps of his stoop, waiting for instructions. The media take note. And soon he has become a story, a media sensation, the centre of a storm. When the voice tells him to “go West,” he does, all the while searching for this Man, this mysterious voice that won’t leave him alone. Until it does.

Waiting for the Man is a compelling and viscerally emotional story about the struggle to find something more in life.

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