Readers Circle Recommendations


The Snail's Readers Circle, our team of volunteer reviewers, is working for you — reading, reviewing, and telling you all about their favorites. Think of these as our "staff picks," books specially selected by all kinds of readers. Click on each title to read the full review. We'll be glad to deliver these highly rated books to you! 

Click HERE to find even more recent favorites from the Readers Circle!

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Fox Creek: A Novel (Cork O'Connor Mystery Series #19) By William Kent Krueger Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781982128715
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Atria Books - August 23rd, 2022

William Kent Krueger delivers a another page-turner in "Fox Creek," his latest entry in the Cork O'Connor mystery series. In the Northwoods of Minnesota, a mysterious woman, Delores Morriseau, comes to town seeking help and spiritual guidance from the Obijwe healer Henry Meloux, who is over 100 years old. Cork O'Connor, former sheriff, is working at a local burger joint, Sam's Place, when a stranger enlists his help in locating Delores and Meloux. O'Connor works to uncover the meaning behind his interaction with the stranger, and becomes even more personally invested when his wife becomes involved in Delores' pilgrimage. Meloux, Delores and O'Connor's wife are forced to flee to safety deep in the Boundary Waters as they are pursued by mercenaries who will stop at nothing until Delores is captured. I loved this novel because it nudged me out of a bit of a reading rut. Krueger is a gifted storyteller. I was captivated by his character development, as well as his descriptions of the Minnesota Northwoods, and insight into Obijwe culture. Although I have only read one other novel in his Cork O'Connor series, I was able to track this story line easily. The ending was very satisfying. Like Krueger's "Tender Land" and "Lightning Strike," "Fox Creek" is an excellent work that I highly recommend to all readers.
—Allison Hendrix, Snail Readers Circle


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One Hundred Saturdays: Stella Levi and the Search for a Lost World By Michael Frank, Maira Kalman (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Michael Frank, Maira Kalman (Illustrator)
$28.00
ISBN: 9781982167226
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - September 6th, 2022

There's a reason the publisher reps are raving about this book: it is a one-of-a-kind gem. I enjoyed getting to know Stella through the eyes of author Michael Frank, who made it a priority to spend his Saturdays with her. Stella Levi is more than a Holocaust survivor. She's a storyteller who reveals so much about life, love, family, community, and courage through the tales she shares with him. I know everyone will be as deeply drawn into this book as I was.
—Lady, Snail owner 


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Stories from the Tenants Downstairs By Sidik Fofana Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781982145811
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Scribner - August 16th, 2022

I highly recommend this amazing debut from Sidik Fofana. Stories from the Tenants Downstairs is a collection of eight short stories each written from the point of view of a tenant living in Bannekar Terrace, a low-income high-rise in Harlem. His storytelling is exceptional, and he gives life and depth to his characters. This book provides intimate and emotional perspectives from characters struggling not only with everyday worries like making rent, but bigger concerns with gentrification threatening the future of their homes.
— Abby Lindemann, Snail Readers Circle


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Daisy Darker: A Novel By Alice Feeney Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781250843937
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Flatiron Books - August 30th, 2022

Daisy Darker is a top-notch murder mystery. The Darker family has secrets, and this is a story about those secrets. Who is murdering the Darker family and why? I loved this book because it kept me guessing. The characters were so well developed that you hated some, loved some, and pitied others. There were so many great quotes throughout the novel that I kept a note page just for them. "The people who love us the most hurt us the hardest because they can."
— Candice Kirk, Snail Readers Circle


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Keya Das's Second Act By Sopan Deb Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781982185473
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Simon & Schuster - July 5th, 2022

Keya Das's Second Act is about grief, redemption, regret, and the power of second chances. We never meet the main character, Keya, because she has already died when the book begins. After coming out as gay to her traditional family of Bengali heritage and not being accepted, she leaves home. During this time, her close family - mother, father, and sister - try to become more open-minded and accepting of Keya's difference. Unfortunately, before they can share this with Keya, she gets into a car accident and dies. Keya's family discovers a box in the attic when cleaning out her things which contains a play manuscript she and her girlfriend, Pamela, wrote in high school about two young girls coming out to their unaccepting parents as gay. As homage to Keya's memory and to give her the love she deserved when she was alive, they decide to all work together with the help of famous directors and Broadway actors to put on the play for their local community. This brings Keya back to life briefly and allows her family to reconnect with her on a deeper, more spiritual level. Throughout the book, the characters each have hardships of their own to overcome – the grief of a child and sister, broken family ties, divorce and finding new love, alcohol and drug addictions, and the regret of not showing Keya the support she deserved before it was too late. I want to give credit to the author, Sopan Deb, as this book contains a plot I have never read before which shows how creative and talented he is! A great read, coming out next month!
—Abby Lindemann, Snail Readers Circle


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Woman of Light: A Novel By Kali Fajardo-Anstine Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780525511328
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: One World - June 7th, 2022

From the very beginning, I was completely captivated with this story. The book is told through a multi-generational storyline with the main focus on Luz "Little Light" Lopez. Luz is a tea leaf reader who is able to sense the future or "stories" of people. What I loved about this story is the vivid and descriptive scenes displayed throughout the book. It is heavily character based and each character's development was fully fleshed out. So much struggle, heartache, and pain was experienced through the years with the family but also so much love and happiness. I loved every minute of this beautiful and must-read book!
—Nicole Granville, Snail Readers Circle


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The Grand Design: A Novel of Dorothy Draper By Joy Callaway Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781400234370
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Harper Muse - May 17th, 2022

The Draper Effect. The Grand Design follows the rise of Dorothy Draper and her colorful, rule breaking design business. From a young woman visiting the esteemed Greenbrier resort with her family and dreaming of escaping her future trapped in Tuxedo Park, Dorothy always dreamed of color and ways to make a room spark awe and conversation. Dorothy didn’t just break the rules when it came to interior design but she pushed the boundaries for what was deemed acceptable for a society lady of her time and was the head of her own company. Often keeping it afloat with her personal funds. She designed many hotels but the Greenbrier is considered her masterpiece. The love she felt for the place really showed in her designs. Dorothy succeeded in her true passion. Design. She stayed true to herself and her vision. Never wavering or changing for anyone. I admire her greatly for that.
—Candice Kirk, Snail Readers Circle 


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The Truth about Ben and June By Alex Kiester Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780778311959
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Park Row - June 28th, 2022

This novel deals with some heavy themes: motherhood, death of a parent, postpartum struggles and suicide, so be warned. Alex Kiester writes about motherhood and postpartum in ways that are considered "taboo" and often go unspoken and unwritten, but I appreciated reading a real and raw account of a couple's journey in the first months of having a child. The story starts with Ben waking up to find June has left him and their baby. He realizes he doesn’t really know his wife or where she would go, and he pieces together June's whereabouts by enlisting help from friends and discovering her journal, in which she writes to her dead mother. This book definitely leaves room for conversation! 
— Abby Lindemann, Snail Readers Circle

Note on content: postpartum struggles, suicide, death of a parent


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Managing Expectations: A Memoir in Essays By Minnie Driver Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063115309
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: HarperOne - May 3rd, 2022

One of the better written celebrity memoirs, Minnie Driver is poignantly self-aware in this essay collection. It’s sweet and funny and has genuine tear-jerker moments, all while providing a glimpse into a very real childhood, motherhood, and grief story.
—Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle 


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The Italian Ballerina: A World War II Novel By Kristy Cambron Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780785232193
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Thomas Nelson - July 12th, 2022

I'm a sucker for a historical fiction story. Especially one set during WWII that involves a romance. The story of Court, AJ, Julia, Matteo, Delaney and Calla are all intertwined in the most beautiful and tragic way. It's a story of love and loss and sacrifice. How a ballerina and two soldiers save the life of one little Jewish girl. The premise behind the story is real. The raid on the Italian Jewish ghetto by the Gestapo in 1943, the hospital that offered refuge to the few Jews who managed an escape and the amazingly self-less doctors, priests and soldiers who fought to protect them. It was a story I had a hard time putting down and one that I never tired of reading.
—Candice Kirk, Snail Readers Circle 


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The Frederick Sisters Are Living the Dream: A Novel By Jeannie Zusy Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781982185381
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Atria Books - September 20th, 2022

This novel is funny and sweet. Maggie is busy—raising teenage sons, pacifying demanding clients, dealing with her ex-husband, and attempting to have a social life. When she decides her disabled sister Ginny can’t live alone anymore, adding caretaker to her list of duties, it seems like Maggie’s barely keeping her head above water. And while Maggie drowns in responsibilities, her other sister, professional surfer Betsy seems to blithely ride the waves of life. While the story is told from Maggie’s perspective, all the other characters shine through, too. Ginny’s relationships with her sisters, her dog Rascal, her home health aides, and her disability are written with heart and a sense of humor.
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle


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The Lives of Diamond Bessie By Jody Hadlock Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781684631179
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Sparkpress - April 5th, 2022

The Lives of Diamond Bessie was a fast-paced, historical suspense novel that is inspired by a true story. Set during the women's rights movement, the story follows Bessie as she is forced to live at a convent for fallen women after getting pregnant out of wedlock. After being treated horribly and having her baby taken away from her at birth, she escapes and has to make a living and a life for herself on her own. Few rights and opportunities were available to women during the 1860s so she finds herself having to resort to prostitution even though she swore she would never go down that path. The need to survive changed her mind. As a prostitute, Bessie gets expensive gifts from her clients, money to help support herself and her love for shopping and a few love interests along the way. During this time, Bessie finds the only way out of prostitution is to get married. She has her sights set on a bachelor with a wealthy family and a gambling problem and after many missed warning signs, she finds herself marrying him. A man who turns out not to love her, but rather, he loves her precious jewels. Though he betrays her in the worst way possible, she does not let it stop her as she continues to haunt his mind and life from above.
(Note on subject matter: includes domestic violence and prostitution)
—Abigail Lindemann, Snail Readers Circle


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Booth By Karen Joy Fowler Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780593331439
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - March 8th, 2022

Karen Joy Fowler has written a page turner about the infamous Booth family. This novel is gripping from the first page, and maintains momentum as it explores the family behind John Wilkes Booth, the rise of Abraham Lincoln to the presidency and the tensions of a nation reaching a boiling point in the 19th century. Through her captivating storytelling, Fowler gives voice to the lesser known members of the Booth family, while also revealing family scandals and the rise of the Booth brothers to fame on the American stage. Theatre buffs especially will enjoy the frequent Shakespeare references, quotes and stage directions. History buffs will appreciate the way Fowler’s in-depth research has driven her writing.
(Note on subject matter: includes death of children and violence)
—Allison Hendrix, Snail Readers Circle


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Cover Story: A Novel By Susan Rigetti Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063072053
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: William Morrow - April 5th, 2022

Imagine "The Devil Wears Prada" meets "Inventing Anna", and you'll have this glamorous story from Susan Rigetti. An intern at a major fashion magazine is hired by a rich, famous editor to be her ghostwriter, and the intern is sucked into the star's entire world. The world, fashionable and luxurious as it may appear, is not what it seems, as becomes immediately clear to the reader through the editor's emails, bank transfers, and personal reflections. A great read that you'll fly right through--all the way to the shocking twist of an ending!
— Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle


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Counterfeit: A Novel By Kirstin Chen Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063119543
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: William Morrow - June 7th, 2022

Hold onto your Balenciagas because the plot twist in Kristin Chen's novel Counterfeit will give you whiplash! I honestly didn't see it coming which is what makes this book so great. It's a very interesting look into luxury goods and how they are made and who profits and who loses. Ava and Winnie are old college roommates who find themselves thrown together into a life of glittering and high-end deceit. They work for Boss Mak but really it's Winnie who designed the scheme and built the business into the success it is. Dip your toe into the world of luxury one-to-one counterfeits and see if you spot the plot twist early and whose really the driving force of the counterfeit bag business.
—Candice Kirk, Snail Readers Circle


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The Evening Hero By Marie Myung-Ok Lee Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781476735078
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Simon & Schuster - May 24th, 2022

Dr. Yungman Kwak, a small-town OBGYN, is one of the most endearing characters I've come across in a long time, and I was so invested in the future he faces when modernity and capitalism sweep in to disrupt his entire existence. Partially a story following Dr. Kwak's new role as a boutique medicine provider under the tutelage of his ambitious son, and partially a story following Yungman's Korean upbringing, this book was beautiful and heartwrenching. Marie Myung-Ok Lee will wrap you around her finger with these characters and take you on a journey through time, family, and the future of American healthcare. 
— Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle


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Sea of Tranquility: A novel By Emily St. John Mandel Cover Image
$25.00
ISBN: 9780593321447
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Knopf - April 5th, 2022

** The Snail has signed copies of this new novel. While supplies last.** 

I loved Sea of Tranquility because it was so relatable and easy to emotionally connect with. It deals partly with a pandemic and many emotions that most of us have become quite familiar with in the last two years. It was heartbreaking, tender, and thought provoking making it such an interesting and immersive read. I truly enjoyed this novel and feel that it touches on topics that will make it effortless for many readers to deeply connect with. Sea of Tranquility beautifully weaves together past, present, and future in such a believable way that time travel, simulation theory, and life on the moon seem entirely possible. Emotional, enjoyable, relatable, and relevant to our current time, Sea of Tranquility explores the very heart of what it means to be human and how our seemingly small actions have the power to affect space and time.
—Jess Depew, Snail Readers Circle 


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The Double Life of Katharine Clark: The Untold Story of the Fearless Journalist Who Risked Her Life for Truth and Justice By Katharine Gregorio Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781728248417
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Sourcebooks - March 15th, 2022

Secrets. Spies. Journalism. Intrigue. THE DOUBLE LIFE OF KATHARINE CLARK surprised me with how much I loved it. I didn't know much about Cold War era Yugoslavia, but I couldn't put this book down! Katharine Clark's friendship with Milovan Djilas turned the world upside down. He was a plagued writer who was stripped of his leadership, and she had a way to get his words to the world. This is a must read for any one looking for untold history. Plus, author Katharine Gregorio writes in such an engaging way, you'll forget you're reading nonfiction!
—Kirsten Wilson, Snail Readers Circle 


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Gallant By V. E. Schwab Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780062835772
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Greenwillow Books - March 1st, 2022

I’ve been a huge Schwab fan since I first read “Vicious” years ago. While I prefer her adult books to her excellent YA series, one of my favorite traditions when I take off on a long plane flight is to listen to the latest audiobook of her Cassidy Blake series and chill, enjoying her spooky, ethereal worldbuilding. So I was very excited for “Gallant”, a MG standalone book about a girl searching for family within the backdrop of Gallant, a cold, frightening house. You’ll read a lot of “Coraline” comparisons, and they’re there, but the obvious “girl lost in another world” comparison goes to “Alice in Wonderland”. Olivia is a worthy heroine, and her bravery while facing strange twisted shadows and her own past is compelling. I particularly loved the sections with her mother’s diary, as they contained gorgeous artwork that enhanced what I was reading. Go into Gallant without the weight of Schwab’s previous books, and you’ll enjoy yourself. It’s creepy, bittersweet, dusty and sad. This is the perfect book for a cold spring, because while it’s chilly and bleak, there is that hint of hope nestled between the pages. Great for teenagers, tweens, fans of spooky stories, and anyone who likes a cozy read!
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle


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Anna: The Biography By Amy Odell Cover Image
$29.99
ISBN: 9781982122638
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Gallery Books - May 3rd, 2022

In this comprehensive biography of Anna Wintour, Odell pushes beyond the tropes you've heard a thousand times about the queen of Vogue. Spanning her entire life, Odell paints a picture of Wintour as a strong, determined business leader who is willing to be innovative and make and own her mistakes, not the villainous movie character we love to hate. Just in time to pour over pictures from this year's Met Gala, this book is the fashion spark we needed in 2022.
—Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle


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Take My Hand By Dolen Perkins-Valdez Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780593337691
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Berkley - April 12th, 2022

This book is an intimate tour through reproductive justice topics. Readers will be captivated by the characters and the story while learning about the real way that institutions have perpetrated reproductive injustices against women of color in the United States, coerced sterilization, to abortion restrictions, to the denial of safe and health environments in which to raise children. The characters are nuanced and although the topics are heavy, the book never feels weighed down. I read it quickly and it will stay with me for a long time. 
(Note on subject matter: includes forced sterilization, abortion, and abuses to Black bodies)
—Amanda, Snail Readers Circle 


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Like a House on Fire By Lauren McBrayer Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780593331828
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - April 26th, 2022

I love Merit and Jane’s love, and I devoured this novel in a single afternoon because I was completely invested in their relationship and could not stop reading until I knew they had the happy ending they deserve. Like a House on Fire follows Merit, a young architect who is unhappily married to a man she has been with since college, has two young children, and is feeling many mixed feelings about soon turning 40 and deciding to go back to work. She begins to feel like a stranger in her own life and loses touch with her identity. Upon going back to work at an architectural firm, Merit quickly befriends her new boss, Jane, a brilliant and beautiful married woman 20 years older than Merit who appears to go through life with an ease that Merit is drawn to immediately. They have a beautiful friendship that blossoms into a deep love and admiration for each other that Merit never believed could exist. Jane changes everything for Merit — most importantly, her view on love and desire. Their story is real and heartwarming, and I was rooting for their happiness the whole way through. Love is love and it always wins!
(Note on subject matter: includes miscarriage and infidelity)
—Abigail Lindemann, Snail Readers Circle


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The Younger Wife: A Novel By Sally Hepworth Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781250229618
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: St. Martin's Press - April 5th, 2022

An incredible domestic suspense novel from the perspective of three women, THE YOUNGER WIFE showcases Sally Hepworth's incredible writing. Tully, Rachel, and Heather all have something to hide, yet one common hidden reality unites them together. It's not often a book can make me feel like I'm a character in the story, but I really identified with what these three women felt. They doubted their intuition and felt guilty for having those thoughts, and as the reader I did, too. Sally wrapped me into this story in such a masterful way, and it's definitely one to read!
(Note on subject matter: includes covid-19, sexual assault, kleptomania, abuse, alcoholism, murder, miscarriage, and gaslighting)
—Kirsten Wilson, Snail Readers Circle


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Easy Beauty: A Memoir By Chloé Cooper Jones Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781982151997
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - April 5th, 2022

This beautiful memoir highlights the lived experience of a woman moving through the world differently than the considered norm. Chloe Cooper Jones congenital condition may impact her physicality and mobility, but the way it has shaped her personality, world outlook, and relationships is beautifully recounted in this book. An incredible reflection on beauty--its meaning, sources, and perceptions--, this book will challenge readers in the best possible way.
—Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle 


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The Moment I Met You: A Novel By Debbie Johnson Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780063003699
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - March 8th, 2022

The Moment I Met You is a beautifully written story with vivid imagery and I found it riveting right from the start. I couldn't put it down because I wanted so badly to find out what happens to Elena that I was completely absorbed; this is a book I have continued to think about even once I finished it. Elena's story is an emotional one full of love, sacrifice, and an exploration of what it means to be faithful and courageous. If you are looking for a book with complex, compelling characters that will make you laugh, cry, and really think about how the choices we make affect our own lives as well as those around us, this book is for you.
This is one of the best books that I've read in a while! It was much heavier than I thought it would be (I thought it was going to be more light-hearted) but I appreciated how thought-provoking and emotional it actually was.
— Mica, Snail Readers Circle


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Young Mungo By Douglas Stuart Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780802159557
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Grove Press - April 5th, 2022

Life in early 1990’s working class Glasgow has strict classifications: Protestant versus Catholic, working class versus middle class. And when Mungo—a Protestant named for the patron saint of the city—falls in love with a Catholic boy, he discovers another line he’s not supposed to cross. While Mungo’s brother Hamish seems content to relish in gang fights and council estate life, Mungo, his sister, and his mother all struggle to escape their fates. Young Mungo is brutal, but sometimes heartbreakingly sweet. This story is great for fans of queer lit, coming-of-age novels, Scottish lit, and literary fiction.
(Note on subject matter: includes rape).
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle


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Scoundrel: How a Convicted Murderer Persuaded the Women Who Loved Him, the Conservative Establishment, and the Courts to Set Him Free By Sarah Weinman Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780062899767
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Ecco - February 22nd, 2022

“Scoundrel” tells the tale of a Edgar Smith convicted for murdering a teenage girl and sent to prison on death row. Smith’s story is eventually championed by an influential journalist who believes him to be innocent - not for any reason of lack of evidence or police incompetence, but because Smith is a white, articulate, educated, conservative man: how such an individual be so violent? Eventually, Smith’s conviction is overturned only for him to attack again after only a short time of freedom. “Scoundrel” tells the story of the intersection of race, class, and the birth of modern conservatism in America. The man who founded the National Review, William Buckley, was by all accounts intelligent, empathetic, and passionate. His championing of Edgar Smith as innocent came from a place of privilege and camaraderie originating in race and class, in the belief that someone “like Edgar” could never have done such a crime. As a reminder: Smith was convicted of brutally murdering a teenage girl. Naturally a chunk of Buckley’s time was spent painting that poor 15 year old in a terrible light, because that’s one thing that’s never changed: if a woman or a POC is killed, then someone makes it seem as if they might have deserved it. This book was vital, frustrating, smart, and well-researched. I recommend anyone who has the interest to seek it out. Amazing how so little has changed in fifty years in terms of beliefs of “who” can commit crimes and whether or not we should empathize with them.
(Note on subject matter: includes murder and rape).
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle


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The Golden Couple: A Novel By Greer Hendricks, Sarah Pekkanen Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781250273208
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: St. Martin's Press - March 8th, 2022

From the authors of The Wife Between Us and An Anonymous Girl we are thrown into a whirlwind story of a couple and their unlicensed therapist. When Marissa and Mathew Bishop come for relationship therapy, they're apparently only there to heal from marital infidelity, but as their unconventional therapist begins to work with the couple, it becomes more and more clear that deeper, more sinister problems exist---and everyone is at risk.
—Sarah Catherine, Snail Readers Circle


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How High We Go in the Dark: A Novel By Sequoia Nagamatsu Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063072640
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: William Morrow - January 18th, 2022

When I started reading Sequoia Nagamatsu’s How High We Go In The Dark, I would have hesitated to call it hopeful, but now I think that’s a perfect description. This novel reads like a series of connected short stories, and part of the joy of this book is finding the threads that connect these characters. Each chapter centers on people struggling through their own slice of a world steeped in death and damaged by plague and floods. But the time I got to the end of this novel, I felt hope that we can get through calamity; there are possibilities, and there is hope.
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle 


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Nightcrawling: A novel By Leila Mottley Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780593318935
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Knopf - June 7th, 2022

Wow, what an incredible debut! Leila Mottley delivers a sensitive and lyrical tale about Kiara, a 17 year old who stumbles into the world of night walking which gets her tangled up in a web of police deception. Based on true events, this is a book for those that want to explore another perspective - one that often gets overlooked and silenced.
(Note on subject matter: includes sex, abuse, rape, gaslighting, abandonment, drugs, trafficking, and police brutality)
—Kirsten Wilson, Snail Readers Circle


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The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections: A Novel By Eva Jurczyk Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781728246598
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Poisoned Pen Press - January 25th, 2022

Liesl Weiss, who works in a university's rare books department, is in a bit of a bind: her boss suffers a stroke, and just as she steps up to take over his position temporarily a priceless series of books goes missing. It's obvious that one of her coworkers took the books. But who and why? With library donors demanding to see what they've paid for, Liesl must navigate politics, lies, and her own inadequacies to get to the bottom of the mystery.
The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections is a cozy mystery to curl up with in the dark days of winter. Unlike many thrillers, the stakes remain realistic and Liesl's challenges relatable: the need to protect her professional reputation and determine which of her colleagues are lying to her. This is a mystery more focused on characters than on body count. Nearly everyone in this book is over the age of 40, which makes for a mature, thoughtful puzzle. Jurcyzk's writing style is breezy and meanly funny, and her dialogue is pitch-perfect for a bunch of irritated academics wanting to get through the day and onto their next whiskey. I thoroughly enjoyed this small slice-of-life mystery and highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys books about books.
— Whitney, Snail Readers Circle


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The World Cannot Give By Tara Isabella Burton Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982170066
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Simon & Schuster - March 8th, 2022

"The World Cannot Give" is a rare breed of dark academia: one centered on the female experience and even more surprisingly taking place in high school. I've read a bunch of so-called "high school" dark academia, and they rarely stick the landing. So often characters in high school dark academia works are pretentious and positioned for maximum admiration, as they shun their social media accounts and drink old fashioneds. It's impossible to believe that they're supposed to be fifteen. Tara Isabella Burton brings equally pretentious, two-faced teens in "The World Cannot Give", but lends them a credibility and a tentative, fragile persona; these teens are trying on faces when they quote Proust and profess to love whiskey. They haven't figured themselves out yet. And so I loved "The World Cannot Give". I predict it'll be a controversial one. True, main character Laura Stearns is as frustrating as she is relatable: she's malleable, dramatic, and easily misled; more than a few times she's tricked by the eloquent and dynamic Virginia Strauss in such obvious ways that had me screeching at her to open her eyes. Virginia, the object of Laura's fascination and affection, is a horrible yet tender creature. I hated Virginia, even as I was intrigued by her. And, joy of all joys, this one's actually sapphic. If you enjoy tales of friend groups going to extremes to feel alive, romantic poetry, and descriptions of the cold North East, if you wish that The Secret History used women as more than set dressing... might I recommend The World Cannot Give?
(Note on subject matter: includes bullying, suicide, murder, and sexual behaviors).
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle


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Wahala: A Novel By Nikki May Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063084247
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Custom House - January 11th, 2022

I was drawn into a new world and fell in love with these characters. "Wahala" means trouble and starting from the first page you know this book is going to be full of it. As you're drawn into the world of four women in London with Nigerian heritage, you’ll constantly turn the page to find out what happens next. When a new friend enters into an already established group of three, who will end up in the most "Wahala"? For lovers of suspense, psychological thrillers, and books about friendship.
— Jennifer Elwell, Snail Readers Circle


A Ballad of Love and Glory: A Novel By Reyna Grande Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781982165260
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Atria Books - March 15th, 2022

In this novel spanning the Mexican-American war, heroine Ximena Salomé de Benitez y Catalán heeds the call to serve as an army nurse when her life is turned upside down upon the arrival of the US Army at the Rio Grande. Fighting on the American side, John Riley, an Irish immigrant, becomes fed up with the unjust treatment of his countrymen by nativist officers. Riley, risking the punishment of desertion, swims across the Rio Grande to join the Mexican Army. John and Ximena find each other in the hospital, and as the war intensifies, so does their relationship. Grande's historical saga, inspired by actual events, sheds light on a time in history that continues to impact the US-Mexico border even now.
—Allison Hendrix, Snail Readers Circle


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Fool Me Once By Ashley Winstead Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781525899744
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Graydon House - April 5th, 2022

When I started “Fool Me Once” I wasn’t sure about it. A dressed up Belle and Mrs. Potts running through Disney in a fantastical walk of shame?!? But as I continued to read I began to see the real person of Lee Stone - even before she could see it herself. I laughed, I cried, I shook my head, I wondered what would happen next and with each page I turned I learned a little more about Lee and about myself. If you’re looking for a read that is fun, spicy, and draws you all the way in then look no further and pick up “Fool Me Once.” You won’t be able to put it back down! 
(Note on subject matter: includes sexual content and drug use)
—Jennifer, Snail Readers Circle


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Daughter of the Moon Goddess: A Novel (Celestial Kingdom #1) By Sue Lynn Tan Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063031302
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Harper Voyager - January 11th, 2022

Sue Lynn Tan’s Daughter of the Moon Goddess is a beautiful fantasy novel, centered around a young woman’s quest to save her mother. In Chinese legend, Chang'e becomes immortal when she drinks an elixir of immortality and flees to the moon. But this is her daughter’s story. When Xingyin’s magic draws the attention of other immortals, she must flee her home and undertake a quest to save her mother. On the way, she discovers and develops her skills in magic and archery (and falls in love). The novel itself is infused in magic. It’s full of lush descriptions of courts of royal immortals and mythical creatures (including dragons!). And at its heart, it’s a story about loyalty, love, and family. Great for teen and YA lovers of fantasy. 
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle 


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Bloomsbury Girls: A Novel By Natalie Jenner Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781250276698
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: St. Martin's Press - May 17th, 2022

Bloomsbury Girls is written by the bestselling author of The Jane Austen Society. I thoroughly enjoyed Evie Stone and Vivian's characters. The self assured way Vivian moves through the male dominated bookshop and world all while exhibiting small acts of defiance in retaliation to the barriers around her made me want to cheer, laugh and be green with envy. If men were to learn anything from this story, it is never underestimate a determined and scorned woman. The genius way in which young Evie Stone secures her place, and the place of long forgotten female writers, firmly puts every entitled male in his place. And she does it all with the quiet determination the reader comes to rely on in the midst of the other character's chaos.
—Candice Kirk, Snail Readers Circle


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The Lightning Rod: A Zig & Nola Novel (Escape Artist #2) By Brad Meltzer Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780062892409
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: William Morrow - March 8th, 2022

 

In The Lightning Rod, Brad Meltzger delivers another winner. There is compelling character development, across a half a dozen characters, that keeps the reader in suspense until the very end. Nola Brown is the most complex character, and I'm sure she will appear in future novels given her mysterious ways. This book is highly recommended for anyone looking for a riveting thriller!
—Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle


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Our American Friend: A Novel By Anna Pitoniak Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982158804
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Simon & Schuster - February 15th, 2022

The story of a young, up-and-coming reporter getting the exclusive biography deal of a lifetime with the First Lady. While Sofie writes of the First Last's history with the KGB and CIA, they both get closer and closer to an inflection point that will change their lives, and the course of American history, forever. This was an engrossing story spanning the globe across decades that will certainly make you question loyalty, responsibility, and complicity in our own lives and politics. 
—Sarah Catherine Richardson, Snail Readers Circle 


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Human Blues: A Novel By Elisa Albert Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781982167868
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - July 5th, 2022

I wanted to start this review with the phrase “a lot can happen in nine months,” but Aviva, the main character of Elisa Albert’s Human Blues would think that was hackneyed and immediately dismiss me with a sneer. But a lot does happen in the novel’s nine-month trip—just not the baby that almost famous singer-songwriter Aviva Rosner desperately wants. And while fertility and conception (just not IVF, which she’s very vocally opposed to) try to take center stage in this story, Aviva’s career, religion, marriage, and obsession with Amy Winehouse are also along for the ride. And it’s a wild ride!
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle


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End of the World House: A Novel By Adrienne Celt Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982169480
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Simon & Schuster - April 19th, 2022

What would your life look like if just one thing was tweaked? In Adrienne Celt’s funny but mysterious novel End of the World House, we get to see two different versions of Bertie’s young adulthood: one that revolves around her best friend Kate and one with her boyfriend Dylan. Even though it’s Bertie’s life, it never seems like she’s in charge of it. And while it doesn’t feel like the main focus of the novel, I could relate to the very plausible near-future setting (tech bros are traveling to space, each vacation abroad could be your last, and coffee beans are scarce).
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle 


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The Children on the Hill By Jennifer McMahon Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982153953
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Gallery/Scout Press - April 26th, 2022

Jennifer McMahon is a favorite author of mine, because she writes "cozy horror" - books that will undoubtedly chill you, but nothing that will scar you for life. You can absolutely envision yourself slamming down one of her creepy tales while it gently rains outside and you drink cup after cup of hot tea. "The Children on the Hill" is no exception; it is lightly inspired by "Frankenstein" and while it has a few twists and moments of terror, on the whole it's more of a spooky ride than a gristly haunted house. It features dual timelines: one following Vi, a young woman whose grandmother takes in a mysterious and strange child from a psychiatric facility, and Lizzy, who is researching disappearances that have never been solved. How the two timelines connect is the primary mystery. I really enjoyed this book. It's easy to read, entertaining, and the plot moves quickly. Anyone who wants a fun thriller with a spooky bent would absolutely enjoy this book (as well as any of Jennifer McMahon's work).
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle 


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Dinner on Mars: The Technologies That Will Feed the Red Planet and Transform Agriculture on Earth By Lenore Newman, Evan D. G. Fraser Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781770416628
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: ECW Press - October 11th, 2022

“Dinner on Mars” is a fascinating nonfiction book about how and what we’ll eat when living on Mars. Assuming we are able to create a livable environment, how will we compensate for Mars colder temperatures, sun, and soil properties? Will we still eat meat? What foods can be grown in a lab, and how do we make it as satisfying as possible? I loved this book! Anything about space is fascinating to me, but Newman and Fraser are doing the kind of pie-in-the-sky thinking that makes living on Mars seem more real. I particularly enjoyed the chapters about 3D printing lab-grown “meat” to get the textures realistic - all this talk made me want to have a yummy impossible burger! The history of the pineapple was also really fun; I had no idea growing them was such a social status marker. Definitely check out “Dinner on Mars” if you’re remotely interested in deep space or how we may successfully live in it; it was written intelligently but I could still follow it easily. 
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle


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American Royals III: Rivals By Katharine McGee Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780593429709
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - May 31st, 2022

Rivals is an amazing third book in this series, and the only problem is that I’ve now finished it and have to wait on book 4! Watching Beatrice, Sam, Jeff, Nina, Daphne, and Teddy grow throughout the pages is enthralling. I love this world that Katharine McGee has created and can’t wait to read the next installment!
— Jennifer Elwell, Snail Readers Circle


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Take Your Breath Away: A Novel By Linwood Barclay Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780063035133
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: William Morrow - May 17th, 2022

This Linwood Barclay novel kept me turning pages well past my bedtime! I was fully invested in finding out what happened when Brie disappeared six years ago, and how that interacted with the present day. If you're looking for a book that will have you guessing and still deliver a satisfactory ending, try this book! 
—Kirsten Wilson, Snail Readers Circle 


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Conversations on Love: Lovers, Strangers, Parents, Friends, Endings, Beginnings By Natasha Lunn Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780593296585
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Viking - April 19th, 2022

 

Everyone could benefit from reading Conversations on Love. It truly has the ability to make you reflect, evaluate and gain a new appreciation for each of your relationships. This is a beautiful look at all forms and stages of love – finding love through partnerships, friendships, family, and parenthood, while also looking at how we can redefine romance, and even discusses the ugly parts of love like loneliness and grief when we lose those who we loved deeply. The biggest lesson I personally took was to pay attention and be present in the small, mundane parts of love because they end up being the things that matter the most in the end. Natasha Lunn is a journalist who uses her own experiences and incorporates the experiences of other authors and well-known people to help us answer and understand the difficult questions like How do we find love? How do we make it last? How do we grieve and learn to live again after we lose those we have loved? This is a book you can pick up whenever you feel you need some advice and insight from people who have already lived and experienced the information you are seeking. You can turn to any page, at any time, and find a gem of a sentence or passage that will resonate. It will make you feel seen and heard and felt like therapy in book form. I highly recommend it!
—Abby Lindemann, Snail Readers Circle


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The Night Ship: A Novel By Jess Kidd Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781982180812
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Atria Books - October 4th, 2022

This book had me hooked by the first paragraph. It’s heartbreaking, perfectly worded, and beautifully written. The narrative switches between the stories of two children, both recently motherless. Mayken's story (based on real-life events) is the tale of a curious, bold Dutch girl, traveling on the Batavia from the Netherlands to her father's home in the Dutch East Indies in the late 1620’s. Gil is a recent arrival to an island off of western Australia in 1989, sent to live with his grandfather. The author richly paints both characters and their surroundings and the two tales interweave perfectly. The narratives sometimes touch, breaking through the centuries that divide them because of the deliberate language Kidd uses.
—Elizabeth Hardin, Snail Readers Circle


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Nona the Ninth (The Locked Tomb Series #3) By Tamsyn Muir Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781250854117
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Tordotcom - September 13th, 2022

Anyone who has read the other offerings in the Locked Tomb series might think they know what to expect with "Nona the Ninth": a madcap, dense style of writing, rampant violence, humor and tragedy mixed with a gothic sensibility, and lots of queer yearning. "Nona" is all these things but slightly muted from "Gideon the Ninth"'s muscled, locked-door murder mystery or "Harrow the Ninth"'s grim space opera: Nona, as a character, is a riddle? Who is she? We know whose body she is in - these books love a good bodyswapping - but who is Nona? Why is this child-like, innocent, hopeful young woman the key to the growing fight between the Blood of Eden and... well, so many people? Having Nona as a brand new POV character is a bold choice, and Muir doesn't shy from those. This isn't a series you can dip a toe into; you can only acquiesce to its demands as it pulls your hair and drinks your beer and steals your girlfriend. Starting this book, I initially resented that we were in Nona's head, and not, say, any of the other loveable characters in this series. However, Nona swiftly won me over, and the revelations that ensued were truly mindblowing. I encourage anyone who reads this series to refresh yourself on Harrow's plot, because I struggled a bit with what was happening, who was who, and what title corresponded to which character (because, of course, Nona never refers to anyone really by their name). However despite my confusion, Nona was a pleasure to read and I highly recommend it to fans of this series.
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle


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Our Missing Hearts: A Novel By Celeste Ng Cover Image
$29.00
ISBN: 9780593492543
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Penguin Press - October 4th, 2022

"Our Missing Hearts" by Celeste Ng is a dystopian science fiction novel about the collapse of society following a terrible economic depression, and a young boy's search to find his missing mother. Ng to my knowledge has never written a science fiction novel before, and while I'm sure this will get shelved under 'fiction' due to her other work, make no mistake - it's a grandly horrific view of a shattered world much like Orwell's 1984, Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, or Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. Bird misses his mother, who left him with his dutiful father when he was little more than a child. His life is fraught: half-Asian, Bird is distrusted by many, and books, education, and opportunities are monitored by the government and thinly distributed. Bird's search for his mother uncovers a world he was not prepared for, and the novel is as brutal as it is sensitive in showing the consequences of racism, violence, and a surveillance state. It is a timely novel - we live in a world where rights for minorities and birthgivers are eroding daily. Books are being banned and challenged in court. This is not a happy novel, but it is a smart, kind one, and although its conclusion destroyed me for the rest of the day, I felt it earned its ending. This is one of those books I would recommend to literally anyone, and feel it is a modern classic of our time.
(Note on subject matter: sexual assault, racism, classism, and violence)
—Whitney Sheppard, Snail Readers Circle


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A Girlhood: Letter to My Transgender Daughter By Carolyn Hays Cover Image
$28.95
ISBN: 9781949467901
Availability: Ready for delivery or usually ships in 3-5 days
Published: Blair - September 13th, 2022

This book has profoundly changed me and my perspective — as a parent, a friend, a citizen, and an advocate. No matter how accepting we might consider ourselves, this mother's story of raising a transgender child points out our blind spots, because we all have them. With honesty and so much love, Carolyn Hays shares her family's journey as they first reach their own understanding of their child's gender identity and then navigate a world that won't always understand, even when it's attempting. A Girlhood is addressed to her daughter, but it speaks volumes to the rest of us about gender, community, and love. Required reading for anyone and everyone.
—Lady, Snail owner