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Notable Books List
"Purpose: Since 1944, the goal of the Notable Books Council has been to make available to the nation’s readers a list of 25 very good, very readable, and at times very important fiction, nonfiction, and poetry books for the adult reader" (see citation below*).
The Notable Books Council is made possible by ALA, the American Library Association. They compile a new list every year for readers. This guide is similarly separated by year (see tabs above) with indications for fiction and nonfiction selections held by the Saratoga Springs Public Library. Notable Books of poetry are contained in their own tab.
* "Notable Books List." Reference and User Services Association: A Division of the American Library Association. 2016. Web. 24 Sept. 2016. www.ala.org/rusa/awards/notablebooks.
Waiting for Eden: A Novel
by Eden Malcom lies in a bed, unable to move or to speak, imprisoned in his own mind. His wife Mary spends every day on the sofa in his hospital room. He has never even met their young daughter. And he will never again see the friend and fellow soldier who didn't make it back home--and who narrates the novel. But on Christmas, the one day Mary is not at his bedside, Eden's re-ordered consciousness comes flickering alive.
Call Number: Fict Ack
Publication Date: 2018-09-25
by A piercingly raw debut story collection from a young writer with an explosive voice; a treacherously surreal, and, at times, heartbreakingly satirical look at what it's like to be young and black in America.
Call Number: Fict Adj
Publication Date: 2018-10-23
Washington Black: A Novel
by George Washington Black, or "Wash," an eleven-year-old field slave on a Barbados sugar plantation, is terrified to be chosen by his master's brother as his manservant. To his surprise, the eccentric Christopher Wilde turns out to be a naturalist, explorer, inventor, and abolitionist.
Call Number: Fict Edu
Publication Date: 2018-09-18ELECTRONIC FORMAT: eBook
An American Marriage: A Novel
by Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American dream and the New South. He is a young business executive and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are suddenly ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined when, while visiting Roy's parents in their small Louisiana town, Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years in prison for a crime Celestial knows he didn't commit.
Call Number: Fict Jon
The Mars Room
by It's 2003 and Romy Hall is at the start of two consecutive life sentences at Stanville Women's Correctional Facility, deep in California's Central Valley. Outside is the world from which she has been severed: the San Francisco of her youth and her young son, Jackson. Inside is a new reality: thousands of women hustling for the bare essentials needed to survive...
Call Number: Fict Kus
Publication Date: 2018-05-01ELECTRONIC FORMAT: eBook
The Great Believers
by In 1985, Yale Tishman, the development director for an art gallery in Chicago, is about to pull off an amazing coup, bringing in an extraordinary collection of 1920s paintings as a gift to the gallery. Yet as his career begins to flourish, the carnage of the AIDS epidemic grows around him.
Call Number: Fict Mak
Publication Date: 2018-06-19ELECTRONIC FORMAT: eBook
by Decades after World War II, Nathaniel Williams reflects on his experiences in 1945, when his parents left him and his sister in the care of a mysterious neighbor.
Call Number: Fict Ond
There There: A Novel
by A multi-generational, relentlessly paced story about violence and recovery, hope and loss, identity and power, dislocation and communion, and the beauty and despair woven into the history of a nation and its people.
Call Number: Fict Ora
Publication Date: 2018-06-05ELECTRONIC FORMAT: eBook
The Overstory: A Novel
by Strangers--each summoned in different ways by trees--are brought together in a last and violent stand to save the continent’s few remaining acres of virgin forest.
Call Number: Fict Pow
Publication Date: 2018-04-03ELECTRONIC FORMAT: eBook
The House of Broken Angels
by In his final days, beloved and ailing patriarch Miguel Angel De La Cruz, known affectionately as Big Angel, has summoned his entire clan for one last legendary birthday party. But as the party approaches, his mother, nearly one hundred, dies herself, leading to a farewell doubleheader.
Call Number: Fict Urr
Publication Date: 2018-03-06
Don't Skip Out on Me: A Novel
by Determined to prove his worth, a half-Paiute, half-Irish ranch hand who was abandoned by his parents leaves his aging guardians to become a champion boxer before matches organized in Mexico and Las Vegas lead to his realization that he cannot change his identity or outrun his destiny.
Call Number: Fict Vla
Publication Date: 2018-02-13
Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America
by Chronicles America's more than twenty-year struggle with opioid addiction, from the introduction of OxyContin in 1996, through the spread of addiction in distressed communities in Central Appalachia, to the current national crisis.
Call Number: 362.2909 Mac
Publication Date: 2018-08-07
High-Risers: Cabrini-Green and the Fate of American Public Housing
by Blends personal narrative, city politics, and national history in the story of Chicago's iconic public housing project to trace its evolution from a 1940s slum to a towering community only blocks from the Gold Coast, where crime and government failures impacted the lives of countless families.
Call Number: 363.585 Aus
Publication Date: 2018-02-13
The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century
by Home to one of the largest ornithological collections in the world, the Tring museum was full of rare bird specimens whose gorgeous feathers were worth staggering amounts of money to the men who shared Edwin's obsession: the Victorian art of salmon fly-tying. Once inside the museum, Edwin grabbed hundreds of bird skins--some collected 150 years earlier--and escaped into the darkness.
Call Number: 364.15 Joh
Publication Date: 2019-04-23
Beneath a Ruthless Sun: A True Story of Violence, Race, and Justice Lost and Found
by In December 1957, Blanche Bosanquet Knowles, the wealthy young wife of a citrus baron, is raped in her home while her husband is away. Journalist Mabel Norris Reese and an inexperienced young lawyer pursue the case, winning unlikely allies and chasing down leads until at long last they begin to unravel the unspeakable truths behind a racial conspiracy that shocked a community into silence.
Call Number: 364.1532 Kin
Publication Date: 2018-04-24
Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore
by With every passing day, and every record-breaking hurricane, it grows clearer that climate change is neither imagined nor distant--and that rising seas are transforming the coastline of the United States in irrevocable ways. In Rising, Elizabeth Rush guides readers through some of the places where this change has been most dramatic.
Call Number: 551.457 Rus
Publication Date: 2018-06-12
The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life
by Nonpareil science writer David Quammen explains how recent discoveries in molecular biology can change our understanding of evolution and life’s history, with powerful implications for human health and even our own human nature.
Call Number: 591.38 Qua
Publication Date: 2018-08-14
Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom
by The definitive, dramatic biography of the most important African-American of the nineteenth century: Frederick Douglass, the escaped slave who became the greatest orator of his day and one of the leading abolitionists and writers of the era.
Call Number: B Douglass
Publication Date: 2018-10-16ELECTRONIC FORMAT: eBook
Call Me American: A Memoir
by The incredible true story of a boy living in war-torn Somalia who escapes to America--first by way of the movies; years later, through a miraculous green card. Abdi Nor Iftin first fell in love with America from afar... Sporting American clothes and dance moves, he became known around Mogadishu as Abdi American, but when the radical Islamist group al-Shabaab rose to power in 2006, it suddenly became dangerous to celebrate Western culture.
Call Number: B Iftin
Publication Date: 2018-06-19
Heavy: An American Memoir
by Seeks to bring what has been hidden into the light and to reckon with all of its myriad sources, from the most intimate--a mother-child relationship--to the most universal--a society that has undervalued and abused black bodies for centuries.
Call Number: B Laymon
Publication Date: 2018-10-16
Educated: A Memoir
by The family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara's older brothers became violent. As a way out, Tara began to educate herself, learning enough mathematics and grammar to be admitted to Brigham Young University.
Call Number: B Westover