Past Winners for August 2016

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Below are the past winners for the month of August 2016

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  1. By Gaslight
    by Steven Price 'Canada'
    McClelland & Stewart
    Aug 23, 2016
    FICTION / Literary
    Alternate ISBNs 9780771069437 (EPUB)

    Description

    Longlisted for the 2016 Scotiabank Giller Prize

    No. 1 National Bestseller

    Globe and Mail's "20 Books to Read in 2016," Maclean's bestseller, Toronto Star bestseller, Ottawa Citizen's "Best on the Shelf," Huffington Post's "Best Fall 2016 Books," Publishers Weekly "Books of the Week," National Post bestseller, Vanity Fair 2016 "Must Read Books of the Fall"



    "A dark tale of love, betrayal and murder that reaches from the slums of Victorian London to the diamond mines in South Africa, to the American Civil War and back. Superb storytelling." --Kurt Palka, author of The Piano Maker

    A magnificent literary historical-suspense novel in the tradition of Eleanor Catton's The Luminaries, Patrick DeWitt's The Sisters Brothers, and Michael Faber's The Crimson Petal and the White, By Gaslight is destined to be one of the most acclaimed and talked-about books of the year.



    London, 1885. In a city of fog and darkness, the notorious thief Edward Shade exists only as a ghost, a fabled con, a thief of other men's futures -- a man of smoke. William Pinkerton is already famous, the son of a brutal detective, when he descends into the underworld of Victorian London in pursuit of a new lead. His father died without ever tracing Shade; William, still reeling from his loss, is determined to drag the thief out of the shadows. Adam Foole is a gentleman without a past, haunted by a love affair ten years gone. When he receives a letter from his lost beloved, he returns to London in search of her; what he learns of her fate, and its connection to the man known as Shade, will force him to confront a grief he thought long-buried. What follows is a fog-enshrouded hunt through sewers, opium dens, drawing rooms, and seance halls. Above all, it is the story of the most unlikely of bonds: between William Pinkerton, the greatest detective of his age, and Adam Foole, the one man who may hold the key to finding Edward Shade.
    Epic in scope, brilliantly conceived, and stunningly written, Steven Price's By Gaslight is a riveting, atmospheric portrait of two men on the brink. Moving from the diamond mines of South Africa to the battlefields of the Civil War, the novel is a journey into a cityscape of grief, trust, and its breaking, where what we share can bind us even against our darker selves.

    Featured Review

    "A finely crafted tale that plunges the reader into the Victorian era, through multiple cities and lands, and deep into the psyches of two men, one a detective, and the other a gentleman criminal. A superb literary historical novel and one of the best of its kind in 2016."
    Michelle Whitehead, Greater Victoria Public Library
  2. The House Between Tides
    by Sarah Maine
    Atria Books
    Aug 02, 2016
    FICTION / Contemporary Women
    Alternate ISBNs 9781501126932 (EPUB)

    Description

    An atmospheric debut novel about a woman who discovers the century-old remains of a murder victim on her family’s Scottish estate, plunging her into an investigation of its mysterious former occupants.

    Following the death of her last living relative, Hetty Deveraux leaves London and her strained relationship behind for Muirlan, her ancestral home in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides. She intends to renovate the ruinous house into a hotel, but the shocking discovery of human remains brings her ambitious restoration plans to an abrupt halt before they even begin. Few physical clues are left to identify the body, but one thing is certain: this person did not die a natural death.

    Hungry for answers, Hetty discovers that Muirlan was once the refuge of her distant relative Theo Blake, the acclaimed painter and naturalist who brought his new bride, Beatrice, there in 1910. Yet ancient gossip and a handful of leads reveal that their marriage was far from perfect; Beatrice eventually vanished from the island, never to return, and Theo withdrew from society, his paintings becoming increasingly dark and disturbing.

    What happened between them has remained a mystery, but as Hetty listens to the locals and studies the masterful paintings produced by Theo during his short-lived marriage, she uncovers secrets that still reverberate through the small island community—and will lead her to the identity of the long-hidden body.

    Featured Review

    "For fans of Kate Morton, this beautifully debut written novel takes place in Scotland's Outer Hebrides. Twin narratives - one in 1910 and one in 2010 uncovers the mysteries which lead to the discovery of a century old murder victim. The vivid descriptions of the landscape and weather enhance the excellent storytelling."
    Claire Westlake, North Vancouver District Public Library
  3. Britt Marie Was Here
    by Fredrik Backman
    Sceptre
    Sep 06, 2016
    FICTION / Literary
    Alternate ISBNs 9781473617216 (paperback)

    Description

    The number 1 European bestseller by the author of New York Times bestseller and international phenomenon A Man Called Ove, Britt-Marie was Here is a funny, poignant and uplifting tale of love, community, and second chances.

    For as long as anyone can remember, Britt-Marie has been an acquired taste. It's not that she's judgemental, or fussy, or difficult - she just expects things to be done in a certain way. A cutlery drawer should be arranged in the right order, for example (forks, knives, then spoons). We're not animals, are we?

    But behind the passive-aggressive, socially awkward, absurdly pedantic busybody is a woman who has more imagination, bigger dreams and a warmer heart than anyone around her realizes.

    So when Britt-Marie finds herself unemployed, separated from her husband of 20 years, left to fend for herself in the miserable provincial backwater that is Borg - of which the kindest thing one can say is that it has a road going through it - and somehow tasked with running the local football team, she is a little unprepared. But she will learn that life may have more to offer her that she's ever realised, and love might be found in the most unexpected of places.
  4. The Best Kind of People
    by Zoe Whittall 'Canada'
    House of Anansi Press
    Aug 27, 2016
    FICTION / Literary
    Alternate ISBNs 9781770899438 (EPUB)

    Description

    National Bestseller

    2016 Scotiabank Giller Prize finalist

    National Post 99 Best Books of the Year

    Indigo Best Book of the Year

    Globe and Mail Best 100 Books of 2016

    What if someone you trusted was accused of the unthinkable?

    George Woodbury, an affable teacher and beloved husband and father, is arrested for sexual impropriety at a prestigious prep school. His wife, Joan, vaults between denial and rage as the community she loved turns on her. Their daughter, Sadie, a popular over-achieving high school senior, becomes a social pariah. Their son, Andrew, assists in his father’s defense, while wrestling with his own unhappy memories of his teen years. A local author tries to exploit their story, while an unlikely men’s rights activist attempts to get Sadie onside their cause. With George locked up, how do the members of his family pick up the pieces and keep living their lives? How do they defend someone they love while wrestling with the possibility of his guilt?

    With exquisite emotional precision, award-winning author Zoe Whittall explores issues of loyalty, truth, and the meaning of happiness through the lens of an all-American family on the brink of collapse.

  5. The Couple Next Door
    by Shari Lapena
    Pamela Dorman Books
    Aug 23, 2016
    FICTION / Thrillers / Crime
    Alternate ISBNs 9780385686945 (paperback), 9780385686952 (EPUB), 9780735288782 (audio)

    Description

    AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    Shari Lapena’s new thriller, A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE, is available now from Viking Books!

    The twists come as fast [as] you can turn the pages. People

    Provocative and shocking.” —Lisa Gardner, New York Times bestselling author of Find Her

    “I read this novel at one sitting, absolutely riveted by the storyline. The suspense was beautifully rendered and unrelenting!” —Sue Grafton, New York Times bestselling author of X


    It all started at a dinner party. . .

    A domestic suspense debut about a young couple and their apparently friendly neighbors—a twisty, rollercoaster ride of lies, betrayal, and the secrets between husbands and wives. . .

    Anne and Marco Conti seem to have it all—a loving relationship, a wonderful home, and their beautiful baby, Cora. But one night, when they are at a dinner party next door, a terrible crime is committed. Suspicion immediately lands on the parents. But the truth is a much more complicated story.

    Inside the curtained house, an unsettling account of what actually happened unfolds. Detective Rasbach knows that the panicked couple is hiding something. Both Anne and Marco soon discover that the other is keeping secrets, secrets they've kept for years.

    What follows is the nerve-racking unraveling of a family—a chilling tale of deception, duplicity, and unfaithfulness that will keep you breathless until the final shocking twist.
  6. Behold the Dreamers (Oprah's Book Club)
    by Imbolo Mbue
    Random House
    Aug 23, 2016
    FICTION / Literary
    Alternate ISBNs 9780812989847 (paperback), 9780147523099 (audio)

    Description

    A compulsively readable debut novel about marriage, immigration, class, race, and the trapdoors in the American Dream—the unforgettable story of a young Cameroonian couple making a new life in New York just as the Great Recession upends the economy

    New York Times BestsellerWinner of the PEN/Faulkner Award • Longlisted for the PEN/Open Book Award • An ALA Notable Book

    NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
    NPR • The New York Times Book Review • San Francisco Chronicle • The Guardian • St. Louis Post-Dispatch • Chicago Public Library • BookPage • Refinery29 • Kirkus Reviews

    Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem, has come to the United States to provide a better life for himself, his wife, Neni, and their six-year-old son. In the fall of 2007, Jende can hardly believe his luck when he lands a job as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, a senior executive at Lehman Brothers. Clark demands punctuality, discretion, and loyalty—and Jende is eager to please. Clark’s wife, Cindy, even offers Neni temporary work at the Edwardses’ summer home in the Hamptons. With these opportunities, Jende and Neni can at last gain a foothold in America and imagine a brighter future.

    However, the world of great power and privilege conceals troubling secrets, and soon Jende and Neni notice cracks in their employers’ façades.

    When the financial world is rocked by the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the Jongas are desperate to keep Jende’s job—even as their marriage threatens to fall apart. As all four lives are dramatically upended, Jende and Neni are forced to make an impossible choice.

    Praise for Behold the Dreamers

    “A debut novel by a young woman from Cameroon that illuminates the immigrant experience in America with the tenderhearted wisdom so lacking in our political discourse . . . Mbue is a bright and captivating storyteller.”The Washington Post

    “A capacious, big-hearted novel.”The New York Times Book Review

    “Behold the Dreamers’ heart . . . belongs to the struggles and small triumphs of the Jongas, which Mbue traces in clean, quick-moving paragraphs.”Entertainment Weekly

    “Mbue’s writing is warm and captivating.”People (book of the week)

    “[Mbue’s] book isn’t the first work of fiction to grapple with the global financial crisis of 2007–2008, but it’s surely one of the best. . . . It’s a novel that depicts a country both blessed and doomed, on top of the world, but always at risk of losing its balance. It is, in other words, quintessentially American.”—NPR

    “This story is one that needs to be told.”Bust

    Behold the Dreamers challenges us all to consider what it takes to make us genuinely content, and how long is too long to live with our dreams deferred.”O: The Oprah Magazine

    “[A] beautiful, empathetic novel.”The Boston Globe

    “A witty, compassionate, swiftly paced novel that takes on race, immigration, family and the dangers of capitalist excess.”St. Louis Post-Dispatch

    “Mbue [is] a deft, often lyrical observer. . . . [Her] meticulous storytelling announces a writer in command of her gifts.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune
  7. To the Bright Edge of the World
    by Eowyn Ivey
    Little, Brown and Company
    Aug 02, 2016
    FICTION / Historical

    Description

    One of the Best Books of 2016--Amazon
    A Washington Post Notable Book of 2016
    A Goodreads Choice Award Nominee
    A Library Journal Top 10 Book of 2016
    A BookPage Best Book of 2016

    An atmospheric, transporting tale of adventure, love, and survival from the bestselling author of The Snow Child, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize
    .

    In the winter of 1885, decorated war hero Colonel Allen Forrester leads a small band of men on an expedition that has been deemed impossible: to venture up the Wolverine River and pierce the vast, untamed Alaska Territory. Leaving behind Sophie, his newly pregnant wife, Colonel Forrester records his extraordinary experiences in hopes that his journal will reach her if he doesn't return--once he passes beyond the edge of the known world, there's no telling what awaits him.

    The Wolverine River Valley is not only breathtaking and forbidding but also terrifying in ways that the colonel and his men never could have imagined. As they map the territory and gather information on the native tribes, whose understanding of the natural world is unlike anything they have ever encountered, Forrester and his men discover the blurred lines between human and wild animal, the living and the dead. And while the men knew they would face starvation and danger, they cannot escape the sense that some greater, mysterious force threatens their lives.

    Meanwhile, on her own at Vancouver Barracks, Sophie chafes under the social restrictions and yearns to travel alongside her husband. She does not know that the winter will require as much of her as it does her husband, that both her courage and faith will be tested to the breaking point. Can her exploration of nature through the new art of photography help her to rediscover her sense of beauty and wonder?

    The truths that Allen and Sophie discover over the course of that fateful year change both of their lives--and the lives of those who hear their stories long after they're gone--forever.
  8. The Cauliflower
    by Nicola Barker
    Henry Holt and Co.
    Aug 09, 2016
    FICTION / Literary

    Description

    “Maddening, funny, playful and beautiful…Barker has once again invigorated an old form -- the historical biographical novel -- through electric wit and sheer bedazzlement.”
    --The Washington Post

    To the world, he is Sri Ramakrishna--godly avatar, esteemed spiritual master, beloved guru. To Rani Rashmoni, she of low caste and large inheritance, he is the brahmin fated to defy tradition. But to Hriday, his nephew and longtime caretaker, he is just Uncle--maddening, bewildering Uncle, prone to entering trances at the most inconvenient of times, known to sneak out to the forest at midnight to perform dangerous acts of self-effacement, who must be vigilantly safeguarded not only against jealous enemies and devotees with ulterior motives, but also against that most treasured yet insidious of sulfur-rich vegetables: the cauliflower.

    Rather than puzzling the shards of history and legend together, Barker shatters the mirror again and rearranges the pieces. The result is a biographical novel viewed through a kaleidoscope. Dazzlingly inventive and brilliantly comic, irreverent and mischievous,The Cauliflower delivers us into the divine playfulness of a twenty-first-century literary master.

  9. The Unseen World
    by Liz Moore
    WW Norton
    Aug 09, 2016
    FICTION / Literary

    Description

    Ada Sibelius is raised by David, her brilliant, eccentric, socially inept single father, who directs a computer science lab in 1980s-era Boston. Home-schooled, Ada accompanies David to work every day; by twelve, she is a painfully shy prodigy. The lab begins to gain acclaim at the same time that David’s mysterious history comes into question. When his mind begins to falter, leaving Ada virtually an orphan, she is taken in by one of David’s colleagues. Soon she embarks on a mission to uncover her father’s secrets: a process that carries her from childhood to adulthood. What Ada discovers on her journey into a virtual universe will keep the reader riveted until The Unseen World’s heart-stopping, fascinating conclusion.

    Featured Review

    "Ada has lived a sheltered life with her father David. A brilliant man, David has homeschooled Ada and his world has become hers. When David becomes ill, Ada is forced into the wider world and she soon discovers that her father is not the man she believes him to be. This book could have gone into dark places and I appreciate that at its core it is a lovely book about relationships and identity."
    Margaret Elwood, Toronto Public Library
  10. The Hike
    by Drew Magary
    Viking
    Aug 02, 2016
    FICTION / Fantasy / Contemporary
    Alternate ISBNs 9780399563867 (EPUB)

    Description

    The Hike just works. It’s like early, good Chuck Palahniuk. . . . Magary underhands a twist in at the end that hits you like a sharp jab at the bell. . . . It’s just that good.” —NPR.org

    “A page-turner. . . . Inventive, funny. . . . Quietly profound and touching.”—BoingBoing


    From the author of The Postmortal, a fantasy saga unlike any you’ve read before, weaving elements of folk tales and video games into a riveting, unforgettable adventure of what a man will endure to return to his family


    When Ben, a suburban family man, takes a business trip to rural Pennsylvania, he decides to spend the afternoon before his dinner meeting on a short hike. Once he sets out into the woods behind his hotel, he quickly comes to realize that the path he has chosen cannot be given up easily. With no choice but to move forward, Ben finds himself falling deeper and deeper into a world of man-eating giants, bizarre demons, and colossal insects.

    On a quest of epic, life-or-death proportions, Ben finds help comes in some of the most unexpected forms, including a profane crustacean and a variety of magical objects, tools, and potions. Desperate to return to his family, Ben is determined to track down the “Producer,” the creator of the world in which he is being held hostage and the only one who can free him from the path.

    At once bitingly funny and emotionally absorbing, Magary’s novel is a remarkably unique addition to the contemporary fantasy genre, one that draws as easily from the world of classic folk tales as it does from video games. In The Hike, Magary takes readers on a daring odyssey away from our day-to-day grind and transports them into an enthralling world propelled by heart, imagination, and survival.

    Featured Review

    "For a novel in which "sticking to the path" is of the utmost importance, the tale woven in "The Hike" meanders through a bizarre and wholly unpredictable world. Our hero sets out on a short jaunt to kill time before a business meeting and, in Job-like fashion, he finds himself on a long journey in which his will to live is tested at every turn. Give this one time to grow on you."
    Michael Ciccone, CELA
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