The Best of Books

What you’re reading

What If: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
  1. The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution, by Walter Isaacson (hardcover)
  2. Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s “Learned,” by Lena Dunham (hardcover)
  3. Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn (paperback)
  4. Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, by Daniel Brown (paperback)
  5. City of Thieves, by David Benioff (paperback)
  6. Blood of Olympus (Heroes of Olympus Book 5), by Rick Riordan (hardcover)
  7. Minecraft Construction Handbook: An Official Mojang Book (hardcover)
  8. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future, by Peter Thiel (hardcover)
  9. Tie: The Doubt Factory, by Paolo Bacigalupi (hardcover); Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future, by A.S. King (hardcover)
  10. The Tender Bar, by J. R. Moehringer (paperback)

What If: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

by Randall Munroe

The creator of popular online comic xkcd has written a delightful book exploring the crazy answers to crazy science questions. For example, could the Little Prince have really lived on an asteroid? How long could a nuclear submarine stay in space? What would happen if you tried to hit a baseball pitched at 90 percent of the speed of light? Funny, educational, and filled with Munroe’s trademark stick figure drawings, this is a science book for fans of both science and humor.

Oliver and the Seawigs (Not-So-Impossible Tales)

by Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre

This ingenious story for 6–8 year olds has something for everyone. Oliver’s parents have gone missing at sea, and he sets out to find them. Along with his crew, they meet the denizens of the sea and have to save his parents from an evil captain and his crew of sea monkeys!

The Princess in Black

by Shannon and Dean Hale, illustrated by LeUyen Pham

Another wonder for 6-8 year olds, imagine if Bruce Wayne were a prince, and he still fought crime as Batman at night. Now imagine that he’s a she, and you’ve got the gist of this funny and touching story of a princess for whom princess-ing is not enough.

Once Upon an Alphabet: Short Stories for All the Letters

by Oliver Jeffers

Perennial kid’s favorite author Oliver Jeffers has done it again with this picture book illustrating a short story for every letter of the alphabet. Funny, imaginative, and gorgeously illustrated, this is a great book for the young kids in your life for the holidays.

Citizens Creek: A Novel

by Lalita Tademy

The author of Oprah’s book club selection in 2001 brings us this lushly gorgeous novel of the lives of the first black chief of the Creek Indian nation and his granddaughter Rose, living parallel lives in time but linked by their courage and love fortheir heritage.

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Brian Pettus is the manager of Books Inc. in the Marina.