Chris's Picks


Satisfaction is often greater than the effort required, particularly with books. Here are a few selections from Chris:

It Can't Happen Here Cover Image
By Sinclair Lewis, Michael Meyer (Introduction by), Gary Scharnhorst (Afterword by)
ISBN: 9780451465641
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Signet - January 7th, 2014

Originally published in October 1935, this novel describes the rise of a demagogic populist politician named Berzelius ("Buzz") Windrip who is elected president of the United States and establishes a dictatorship to save the country from welfare cheats, sex, crime, and a liberal press. Written shortly after Hitler's rise to power, the title is deliberately ironic. The author -- the first American to win the Nobel Prize for Literature -- was clearly trying to warn Americans that fascism could in fact come to the U.S.A.

Even before Election Day 2016, political commentators like Ross Douthat of The New York Times were comparing Donald Trump to "Buzz" Windrip. According to Publishers Weekly magazine, sales of this novel increased 12,346% in the first four weeks of 2017. - cm

Moby Dick (Oxford World's Classics) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780199535729
Availability: Not in the stores. Ships from Warehouse 1-5 Days
Published: Oxford University Press, USA - June 1st, 2008

I've read the complete work twice and I'm still not sure I understand it. Is it simply a detailed, semi-autobiographical account of the joy of going to sea, but also of the innumerable horrors and dangers of serving on board a whaling ship in the mid-1800s? Is it a prose poem to the beauty and mystery of the whale, nature's most magnificent creation? Is it a cautionary tale about madness and about how obsessed authoritarian leaders can hypnotize their followers and destroy almost everyone and everything around them? Or is it all those things -- and more? Read it and decide for yourself! - cm

Trinity Cover Image
ISBN: 9780060827885
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Avon - July 25th, 2006

This sweeping epic tells the story of several imaginary Irish families, from the time of the Potato Famine of 1845-1852 up until the Easter Rising of 1916. It paints a stark picture of the despair which stalked the Catholics of Ireland after the Famine, the bitter divisions between Protestant and Catholic workers in the linen mills and shipyards of the northern part of the island, and how all that culminated in a desperate, brave rebellion in the midst of the First World War. - cm