Matthew's Picks



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Cooking with Fernet Branca Cover Image
ISBN: 9781609455774
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Europa Editions - August 13th, 2019

The David Sedaris-like protagonist makes his living by ghost-writing celeb quickie memoirs: "Downhill All the Way! is about a skier; "Hot Seat!" is about a stock car driver... you get the idea. He finds the ideal little Tuscan villa to fix up, while satirizing every posh ex-pat book since the 1990s. But wait! There's a new neighbor, Marta--a shabby composer from a sketchy Eastern Bloc family--who absolutely insists on sharing our hero's penchant for 80-proof Fernet. A riotous farce worthy of rereading every few years.

I acquired my first copy from a display table at Looking Glass Books in Portland, Oregon. 

All My Puny Sorrows Cover Image
ISBN: 9781635574975
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury Publishing - October 15th, 2019

Somehow, this incredible book about things I know nothing about--being a sister, growing up Mennonite, parenthood--grabbed me tight. Once I started, I carried it everywhere until I finished. It's not light and fluffy; it's not a globe-traversing multi-generational epic. It's a perfect little gem of a novel.

This is finally legally available in paperback after years as a clothbound-only release. Worth the wait.

Gielgud Cover Image
ISBN: 9780982770467
Availability: Please contact store for availability
Published: Propeller Publishing - November 1st, 2018

Remember when novels conveyed the truth of a time and place through the life of a single character? DeWeese's protagonist crosses paths with Old Portland bicycle mechanics, New California money, and the life of one man caught in the middle. This is the novel John Cheever or Gustave Flaubert would have written about Obama-era Portland, Oregon, had they lived to see it.