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"It circulated for five years, through the halls of fifteen publishers, and finally ended up with Vanguard Press, which as you can see is rather deep into the alphabet. "


— Patrick Dennis

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2012 Noteworthy Fiction       View List as Printable PDF

Bring Up the Bodies

Bring Up the Bodies
by Mantel, Hilary
FICTION MAN
The sequel to Hilary Mantel's 2009 Man Booker Prize winner and New York Times bestseller, Wolf Hall delves into the heart of Tudor history with the downfall of Anne Boleyn. Though he battled for seven years to marry her, Henry is disenchanted with Anne Boleyn. She has failed to give him a son and her sharp intelligence and audacious will alienate his old friends and the noble families of England. When the discarded Katherine dies in exile from the court, Anne stands starkly exposed, the focus of gossip and malice. At a word from Henry, Thomas Cromwell is ready to bring her down. Over three terrifying weeks, Anne is ensnared in a web of conspiracy, while the demure Jane Seymour stands waiting her turn for the poisoned wedding ring. But Anne and her powerful family will not yield without a ferocious struggle. Hilary Mantel's Bring Up the Bodies follows the dramatic trial of the queen and her suitors for adultery and treason. To defeat the Boleyns, Cromwell must ally with his natural enemies, the papist aristocracy. What price will he pay for Anne's head?

Canada

Canada
by Ford, Richard
FICTION FOR
After his parents are arrested and imprisoned for robbing a bank, fifteen-year-old Dell Parsons is taken in by Arthur Remlinger who, unbeknownst to Dell, is hiding a dark and violent nature that interferes with Dell's quest to find grace and peace on the prairie of Saskatchewan.

Dear Life

Dear Life
by Munro, Alice
FICTION MUN
A collection of stories illuminates moments that shape a life, from a dream or a sexual act to simple twists of fate, and is set in the countryside and towns of Lake Huron.

Flight Behavior

Flight Behavior
by Kingsolver, Barbara
FICTION KIN
Set in the present day in the rural community of Feathertown, Tennessee, this novel tells the story of Dellarobia Turnbow, a petite, razor-sharp 29-year-old who nurtured worldly ambitions before becoming pregnant and marrying at seventeen. Now, after more than a decade of tending to small children on a failing farm, oppressed by poverty, isolation and her husband's antagonistic family, she has mitigated her boredom by surrendering to an obsessive flirtation with a handsome younger man. In the opening scene, Dellarobia is headed for a secluded mountain cabin to meet this man and initiate what she expects will be a self-destructive affair. But the tryst never happens. Instead, she walks into something on the mountainside she cannot explain or understand: a forested valley filled with a lake of silent red fire that appears to her a miracle. In reality, the forest is ablaze with millions of butterflies. Their usual migratory route has been disrupted, and what looks to be a stunningly beautiful view is really an ominous sign, for the Appalachian winter could prove to be the demise of the species. Her discovery of this phenomenon ignites a media and religious firestorm that changes her life forever. After years lived entirely in the confines of one small house, Dellarobia finds her path suddenly opening out, chapter by chapter, into blunt and confrontational engagement with her family, her church, her town, her continent, and finally the world at large.

This is How You Lose Her

This is How You Lose Her
by Diaz, Junot
FICTION DIA
Presents a collection of stories that explores the heartbreak and radiance of love as it is shaped by passion, betrayal, and the echoes of intimacy.

The Invisible Ones

The Invisible Ones
by Penney, Stef
FICTION PEN
Hovering between paralysis and delirium in a hospital bed, half-Romany private investigator Ray Lovell evaluates a case involving the missing wife of a charismatic traveling Gypsy whose hostile family is hiding a tragic secret.

NW

NW
by Smith, Zadie
FICTION SMI
Four Londoners - Leah, Natalie, Felix, and Nathan - try to make adult lives outside of Caldwell, the council estate of their childhood. From private houses to public parks, at work and at play, their London is a complicated place, as beautiful as it is brutal, where the thoroughfares hide the back alleys and taking the high road can sometimes lead you to a dead end.

The Round House

The Round House
by Erdrich, Louise
FICTION ERD
When his mother, a tribal enrollment specialist living on a reservation in North Dakota, slips into an abyss of depression after being brutally attacked, 14-year-old Joe Coutz sets out with his three friends to find the person that destroyed his family.

Some Kind of Fairy Tale

Some Kind of Fairy Tale
by Joyce, Graham
FICTION JOY
For twenty years after Tara Martin disappeared from her small English town, her parents and her brother, Peter, have lived in denial of the grim fact that she was gone for good. And then suddenly, on Christmas Day, the doorbell rings at her parents' home and there, disheveled and slightly peculiar looking, Tara stands. It's a miracle, but alarm bells are ringing for Peter. Tara's story just does not add up. And, incredibly, she barely looks a day older than when she vanished.

The Song of Achilles

The Song of Achilles
by Miller, Madeline
FICTION MIL
Patroclus, an awkward young prince, follows Achilles into war, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they have learned, everything they hold dear. And that, before he is ready, he will be forced to surrender his friend to the hands of Fate. Set during the Trojan War.

Telegraph Avenue

Telegraph Avenue
by Chabon, Michael
FICTION CHA
In this novel the author takes us to Telegraph Avenue. It is a story that explores the profoundly intertwined lives of two Oakland, California families, one black and one white. Here he creates a world grounded in pop culture: Kung Fu, 1970s Blaxploitation films, vinyl LPs, jazz and soul music, and an epic of friendship, race, and secret histories. Longtime band mates Archy and Nat preside over Brokeland Records, a used-record emporium. All is well until a former NFL quarterback, one of the country's richest African Americans, decides to build his latest Dogpile megastore on nearby Telegraph Avenue. Not only could this spell doom for the little shop and its cross-race, cross-class dream, but it opens up past history regarding Archy's untethered dad and a Black Panther-era crime.

The Yellow Birds

The Yellow Birds
by Powers, Kevin
FICTION POW
In the midst of a bloody battle in the Iraq War, two soldiers, bound together since basic training, do everything to protect each other from both outside enemies and the internal struggles that come from constant danger.