Books

James Sturm's new graphic novel is "Off Season."
courtesy Drawn & Quarterly

In his new graphic novel Off Season, cartoonist James Sturm charts the narrative of one couple trying to cope with the bewildering unraveling of their marriage and the political landscape of the 2016 presidential election.

Three students sit at a table with a poster of drawn book spines hanging on the wall in the background.
Meg Malone / VPR

In Ban This Book some of 9-year-old Amy Anne Ollinger’s favorite books have started to disappear off her school library's shelves, and she discovers that adults are challenging the books and the school board is banning them from the library.

Dorothy’s List readers at Montpelier’s Kellogg-Hubbard Library had a lot to say about banned and challenged books — especially when they discovered some of their favorite titles have been questioned.

The cover of Chard deNiord's book I Would Like To You If I Could: Interviews with Ten American Poets. It has a blue-green background.
University of Pittsburgh Press, Courtesy

Vermont's poet laureate, Chard deNiord, took up a different role recently: interviewing other poets about their lives and work. The result is a book called I Would Lie to You if I Could: Interviews with Ten American Poets.

M.T. Anderson accepts the 2006 National Book Award for Young People's Literature and speaks at a podium with the National Book logo.
Stuart Ramson / Associated Press

Vermont-based author M.T. Anderson is this year's winner of the American Library Association's Margaret A. Edwards Award. It's an annual honor recognizing an author's body of work in the area of young adult literature.

A group of students gather around a laptop computer
Meg Malone / VPR

The historical novel Refugee weaves the stories of three refugee families fleeing their homes in different parts of the world and during different time periods: Germany in the 1930s, Cuba in the 1990s and Syria just a few years ago.

Author Emily Bernard with her book.
Bayla Metzger / VPR

Emily Bernard has stories to tell. Some are hers and some were passed down by family members, but all of them connect in a deeply personal way to her sense of being as a black woman in America. The essays are collected in a new book called "Black Is the Body: Stories From My Grandmother's Time, My Mother's Time, and Mine."

The Monumental Arch in Palmyra, Syria in 2003, is one of the 100 photographs of pre-war Syria captured by Shaftsbury photographer Kevin Bubriski in "Legacy In Stone."
Kevin Bubriski

Syria—and its nearly decade-long civil war—has been the subject of countless news stories and foreign policy debates. Syrians fleeing violence from war and the Islamic State weigh heavily in the international conversation about refugees and migration.

In 2003, Shaftsbury photographer Kevin Bubriski started documenting what would become some of the final images of pre-war Syria. His stark black-and-white pictures of the architecture, places and people of Syria are collected in a new book called Legacy In Stone: Syria Before War.

Students at Castleton Village School - from left, Brian Lenox, Leah Reynolds, Jade Traverse and Rosalie Bates - sit holding up the book "Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus" by Dusti Bowling, a nominee for the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award.
Meg Malone / VPR

Have you ever wondered what life would be like if you had no arms? How would you eat? Or write? Or turn the pages of a book? Those are some of the everyday challenges facing 13-year-old Aven Green, the main character in Dusti Bowling’s novel Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus.

Ann Braden's new book is "The Benefits of Being an Octopus."
courtesy Ann Braden

Brattleboro writer Ann Braden became known to many Vermonters when she started the advocacy group GunSenseVT in 2013. Meanwhile, Braden, a former teacher, was raising two small children and writing. And now her debut novel has been published to rave reviews.

The Book Concierge is back! Explore more than 300 standout titles picked by NPR staff and critics.

Open the app now!

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Two teenagers sit at a table looking at a book titled The Whydah: A Pirate Ship Feared, Wrecked and Found.
Meg Malone / VPR

The real lives of pirates are documented in Martin W. Sandler’s The Whydah: A Pirate Ship Feared, Wrecked and Found. And after reading the book — nominated for the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award — a group of Dorothy’s List readers at Springfield Town Library did some pirate research of their own.

Ed Koren's new collection is titled: "Ed Koren: In the Wild."
Jon Gilbert Fox

Ed Koren. Even if you don't know his name, you probably recognize his work. Think furry people with big pointy noses, plus a whole lot of shaggy animals.  The longtime New Yorker cartoonist and Vermont's former cartoonist laureate joins Vermont Edition to talk about his new collection Koren: In the Wild.

National Book Award nominees from Vermont are Rebecca Makkai's novel "The Great Believers," left; M.T. Anderson's "The Assassination Of Brangwain Spurge," middle; and Colin Calloway's nonfiction book "The Indian World of George Washington."
Viking / Candlewick Press / Oxford University Press

The National Book Award is one the most prestigious literary prizes in the country, given every year since 1950 to celebrate the best writing in America. This year, three finalists for the award have links to Vermont.

From left: Bailey Boardman, Cadyn Jarvis and Jonathan Cole  work on stacking library books.
Meg Malone / VPR

Author Mary E. Lambert was a master’s degree student in a Vermont College of Fine Arts low-residency program while she was writing Family Game Night and Other Catastrophes — now the novel is nominated for the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award.

A baseball glove lies in the grass with a baseball in it.
Michael Dwyer / Associated Press

Though there are a number of sports in which gloves play a prominent role, the glove is most readily associated with baseball — a game in which every player on the field wears one. 

The cover of Melanie Finn's novel "The Underneath" next to a photo of her in the woods.
From left: Two Dollar Radio / Libby March, Courtesy

The Northeast Kingdom is known for its pastoral beauty — but that’s only part of the view of the region presented in Melanie Finn’s latest novel, The Underneath. Her characters exist in the brutal underbelly of rural Vermont that’s ravaged by the opioid epidemic.

Retired lawyer James Dunn's book "Breach of Trust" looks at the scandal surrounding Chittenden County Assistant Judge Jane Wheel in the 1980s, tracing the growing controversy as it made its way up to the Vermont Supreme Court.
Onion River Press, courtesy

Lying under oath. Twisting court decisions for personal gain. Misuse of public money. And corruption in the judiciary that went all the way to Vermont’s highest court.

It may sound like the latest legal thriller, but it's the true story that rocked the state in the 1980s, ending with an investigation that saw the first-ever felony charges brought against a Vermont judge.

Cartoonist Jason Lutes, whose self portrait appears top left, spent more than 20 years writing and drawing the multi-volume historical epic "Berlin." The final volume was published in September.
Jason Lutes / Drawn & Quarterly

A grizzled journalist writing through his middle age. A young artist in her 20s fleeing an upper middle-class life traced out by her parents. The two meet on a train headed to Berlin in 1928, and their lives unfold, connect and diverge amid the backdrop of a changing Germany between the World Wars. They're among the characters in the graphic novel Berlin by cartoonist and Center for Cartoon Studies professor Jason Lutes.

Madeleine Kunin joined "Vermont Edition" and a live audience to discuss her new book, "Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties."
Anna Ste. Marie / VPR

Former Gov. Madeleine Kunin has been an author, ambassador, advocate and governor in a career that's spanned decades. Now that long life is the focus of her new book about aging.

Gov. Kunin joins Vermont Edition in front of a live audience to talk about her "journey to the eighties" and how aging changes us in mind and spirit. And as the only woman who's served as Vermont's Governor, we'll ask her about the role of women in our current political climate.

Illustrator Harry Bliss, his dog Penny, author Kate DiCamillo and The Flying Pig Bookstore owner Elizabeth Bluemle pose at The Film House, in Burlington. All three (humans) happen to be creators of picture books about dogs, published by Candlewick Press.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Over the weekend, a crowd of picture book fans got a chance to meet award-winning author Kate DiCamillo and illustrator Harry Bliss, a part-time Burlington resident. Attendees also got to know one of the furry, four-legged inspirations for the duo's new picture book.

Pages