San Francisco Public Library

Previous Selections 2011

Model Home

November/December 2011

Model Home
Eric Puchner

Warren Ziller moved his family to California in search of a charmed life and to all appearances, he found it: a gated community not far from the beach, amid the affluent splendor of Southern California in the 80s.But his American dream has been rudely interrupted. Despite their affection for each other, Warren, his wife Camille, and their three children have veered into separate lives, as distant as satellites. Worst of all, Warren has squandered the family’s money on a failing real estate venture.

Packing for Mars

September/October 2011

Packing for Mars
Mary Roach

Known for her candid and hilarious explorations of the odder side of science, Mary Roach now turns to her most compelling subject yet – space– a world devoid of the things we need to live and thrive: air, gravity, hot showers, fresh produce, privacy, beer.

Crossing to Safety

July/August 2011

Crossing to Safety
Wallace Stegner

Since its publication in 1987, Crossing to Safety has established itself as one of the greatest and most cherished American novels of the twentieth century. Tracing the lives, loves, and aspirations of two couples who move between Vermont and Wisconsin, it is a work of quiet majesty, deep compassion, and powerful insight into the alchemy of friendship and marriage.

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May/June 2011

Will Grayson, Will Grayson
by John Green & David Levithan

One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, two teens—both named Will Grayson—are about to cross paths. As their worlds collide and intertwine, the Will Graysons find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, building toward romantic turns-of-heart and the epic production of history’s most fabulous high school musical.

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March/April 2011

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
Helen Simonson

You are about to travel to Edgecombe St. Mary, a small village in the English countryside filled with rolling hills, thatched cottages, and a cast of characters both hilariously original and as familiar as the members of your own family. Among them is Major Ernest Pettigrew (retired), the unlikely hero of Helen Simonson's debut novel. Wry, courtly, opinionated, and completely endearing, Major Pettigrew is one of the most indelible characters in contemporary fiction, and from the very first page he will steal your heart.

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January/February 2011

The Fortune Cookie Chronicles
Jennifer 8. Lee

Part memoir, part journalistic investigation, The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food, focuses not on the ancient art of Chinese cuisine but rather on the relatively recent history of North American Chinese restaurant fare -- take-out included. An interesting fact dished out by the author is that the number of Chinese restaurants in the U.S. exceeds the total of all the McDonald’s, Burger King and Wendy’s outlets combined. We learn, too, that Chinese food is served on all seven continents (even Antarctica).