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AWM Staff Reads: February

Reading Recommendations from the staff of the 诚信在线娱乐.

We think Leap Years are fun because it means there is one extra day in the year to read books! We took full advantage this past February, taking all 29 days to read some fantastic books from some talented writers. Without further ado, here’s what the 诚信在线娱乐 staff read in February. Do you see any of your favorites? What have you been reading? Let us know in the comments!


Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury

Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury

诚信在线娱乐Beautifully described story. Childhood summers are sweet and golden and Bradbury captures the mood enough for me to forget it is February in Chicago.

–Christopher, Director of Operations

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Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Since this year is the , I decided that I should probably read his classic bestseller and I’m sure glad I did! I love a good thriller, and this futuristic novel about burning books to suppress thoughts and opinions was one of the most frightening that I’ve read.

–Karie, Director of Marketing & Special Events

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Followers by Megan Angelo

Followers by Megan Angelo

This novel offers a biting critique of privacy, technology, celebrity, and Internet culture packaged inside a hilarious multi-timeline story.

–Courtney, Storyteller

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Follow Me to Ground by Sue Rainsford

Follow Me to Ground by Sue Rainsford

This one is…strange, and dreamlike, and deeply disturbing. But at under 200 pages, I finished it in a day. It starts as an interesting concept: two human-like beings with power to heal people by opening them, thumbing through their innards, and singing away the sources of pain. Sometimes they must bury patients in a plot of magical soil to heal them. It soon unravels, revealing the darkness of every character. This is as much a work about women’s bodies as it is about magic as it is about the consequences of certain desires.

–Bisola, Assistant Director of Programming and Education

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The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

Focused on how one deaf-mute man captures the attention of four very different individuals in a small southern town and the connections that result because of him, this book thoughtfully examines the deeper consequences of loneliness and seclusion. McCullers seamlessly bound together themes of isolation, racial inequality, interconnection, and a bildungsroman into one riveting book that will leave you with a heavy heart. A must read whose themes elude time and whose characters are unforgettable.

–Elizabeth, Intern

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The House of Broken Angels b y Luis Alberto Urrea

The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea

Reading this story made me feel part of the family and Little Angel driving around the old neighborhood noticing all the changes really hit home. He especially made me think of the struggle to not forget the past and where your family came from as you strive for the American dream. The novel was full of humanity and relationships everyone can identify with. Luis Alberto Urrea and this novel are also featured in our special exhibit My America: Immigrant and Refugee Writers Today.

–Christopher, Director of Operations

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The Incendiaries by R.O. Kwon

The Incendiaries by R. O. Kwon

Draws the reader in slow and steady, never letting go. You hardly know you’re sucked in until you’re all in and can’t wait to get back to it, like the cult the book’s characters are drawn into. R. O. Kwon is also one of the featured writers in My America.

–Linda, Director of Development

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Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls by T Kira Madden

Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls by T Kira Madden

When my friend heard that T Kira Madden will be at the AWM on March 12, she jumped in excitement! Then she immediately went to her bookshelf, pulled this book down and told me to read it. I’m glad she did. Written with brutal honesty and vulnerability, Madden’s memoir deals with themes of addiction, sexuality, family and more as she finds her place in the world. In the face of rather horrific and traumatic experiences, Madden gets through it with humor and compassion, which comes across brilliantly in her writing. I can’t wait to meet her in just a couple of weeks!

–Nate, Content & Communications Coordinator

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1919 by Eve Ewing

1919 by Eve L. Ewing

Eve L. Ewing’s collection explores the Chicago Race Riot of 1919 by sharing historical documents intertwined with vividly commanding poetry. I’ve never encountered literature quite like this before, and I think it is a unique and wonderful way to make history accessible.

–Courtney, Storyteller

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The Vanished Birds by Simon Jimenez

The Vanished Birds by Simon Jimenez

A new book this month, The Vanished Birds will be one of my favorite reads this year. It gave me the same feeling as I did after reading N.K. Jemisin’s The Fifth Season. It’s a space opera and coming of age story with poetic prose and several sympathetic characters. Some parts made me laugh aloud, and by the end I was sobbing (on a plane next to a stranger, no less).

–Bisola, Assistant Director of Programming and Education

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The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates

The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates

In this work of historical fiction, Coates expertly blends fact with powerful imaginations creating a world that is both believable and awe-inspiring. There is great power in stories, specifically the act of remembering and telling stories, and in The Water Dancer诚信在线娱乐, storytelling allows characters to travel across time and space in a very literal sense. By telling their own stories and not letting memories fade, they achieve a very real power. A great book from one of our country’s most important voices.

–Nate, Content & Communications Coordinator

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The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L Frank Baum

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

Growing up with the MGM film and the Broadway musical Wicked诚信在线娱乐, I’ve always been interested in going back to the work that started it all. Reading through the book, it’s clear how artists of all kinds saw amazing potential in Baum’s world and characters. It was a delightful read and I’m looking forward to checking out the rest of the Oz series in the future.

–Matt, Storyteller

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World's End by James Corley

World’s End by James Corley

诚信在线娱乐In his debut play, James Corley tells the story of two teenage boys at the run-down World’s End estate in London. As they bond over their shared love of video games, they begin to understand they may have more in common than either originally thought. As the war in Kosovo rages on, Ben and Besnik must battle their parent’s expectations and their own fears as their young love blooms into something deeper. I really enjoyed this play and found myself engrossed in the story and the characters. The play also led me to research about a period of history I didn’t know anything about which was really interesting. I would recommend this book to anyone who’s looking for a fresh take on new love.

–Matt, Storyteller

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