Alex was born and schooled in Michigan, spent some years living and selling books in New Jersey, and is now happy to call Seattle home. Alex enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, drawing, watching cartoons, collecting enamel pins, and soaking up the sun whenever it decides to show its beautiful face.

Reviews & Recommendations

Startup Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316360388
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little Brown and Company - April 25th, 2017

A deeply empowering and funny debut novel from Buzzfeed senior culture writer Doree Shafrir, with characters and a setting that will be familiar to those acquainted with startup culture and the growing tech industry. I found echoes of my friends’ experiences in these pages, and my own too. If you’re looking for a story where strong, smart, everyday women combat misogyny, this is it! More than that though, this novel moves beyond just highlighting women’s perseverance, and ultimately testifies to the importance of creating a world where women don’t have to combat misogyny in the first place.

Giant Days, Volume 1 Cover Image
ISBN: 9781608867899
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Boom Box - December 1st, 2015

Oh how I love vicariously living through Esther, Susan, and Daisy's university days. Each character is fun and entertaining in their own right, but put them together and you have panel after panel of a funny and enduring friendship. It's always a good week when I see a new issue of Giant Days on the graphica table.

Supermutant Magic Academy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781770461987
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Drawn & Quarterly - April 28th, 2015

I came to drawing late in life, and this is the book that finally convinced me to start putting pen to paper. I want to be friends with all of the students of SuperMutant Magic Academy, and I love how Tamaki blends the paranormal with the everyday to both hilarious and heartfelt effect. This is a book you'll want to revisit again and again.

Caramelo Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679742586
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage Contemporaries - September 9th, 2003

Like many young people, I read Sandra Cisnero's The House on Mango Street at some point in my early education. As much as I would like to pretend that it was a profoundly moving literary experience in my young life, the truth is that I remember hating it. Lucky for me though, I had the chance to revisit Cisneros when my book club chose to read Caramelo and I loved every word. Cisneros is a master storyteller, and I love how her writing pushes me to new depths of empathy and understanding. Caramelo is such a tender and funny coming of age tale, and I can't help myself from recommending it whenever I get the chance. 

Bitter: A Taste of the World's Most Dangerous Flavor, with Recipes Cover Image
By Jennifer McLagan, Aya Brackett (Photographer)
ISBN: 9781607745167
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ten Speed Press - September 16th, 2014

Whenever I see my copy of McLagan's Bitter on my kitchen counter, I can't help but leaf through its pages and be glad I stumbled across this cookbook. Bitterness as a flavor makes a lot of people uncomfortable, but McLagan's engaging writing and the eerily beautiful food photography it's paired with show that bitter flavors have the power to take cooking and baking to the next level.  

The Name of the Wind Cover Image
ISBN: 9780756405892
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Daw Books - April 7th, 2009

Fans of George R. R. Martin and Terry Goodkind will enjoy Rothfuss' epic fantasy series, The Kingkiller Chronicles. In the first installment, The Name of the Wind, readers are immersed in an intricate world with fascinating characters and intense struggles. In fact, Rothfuss created one of my favorite characters of all time in these books--Bast. The only thing I don't like about this series is that Rothfuss has been writing the third installment of the series for years, and I just can't wait to read it! TIP: If you're in the same boat and also a fan of Bast, check out Rothfuss' short story "The Lightning Tree," which can be found in the short story collection Rogues.

Scrapper Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616957650
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Soho Press - August 23rd, 2016

Enter the seemingly post-apocalyptic world of modern-day Detroit where abandoned buildings crumble and are looted for anything that can be sold. Kelly travels deep into "the zone" every night looking for anything of value that can be scrapped the next day. Never does he imagine the value of what he will find behind a closed basement door, but opening it reveals a young boy—naked, chained, and crying out. Matt Bell's haunting, lyrical prose challenges readers to consider the lasting effects of transgressions, both experienced and enacted in our pasts, as well as what we might do to protect those we love.

Rules of the House Cover Image
By Mac Barnett, Matt Myers (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781423185161
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Disney-Hyperion - May 3rd, 2016

Ian thinks rules are meant to be followed, but his sister Jenny thinks they are meant to be broken. When Dad takes them to a vacation house, Ian marvels at the list of rules framed on the wall and is quick to point out that Jenny is not following them. She gets mud on the rug, lets her hair clog the bathtub, never refills the stove with firewood, and even opens the forbidden red door. And she gets away with it all! Or so it seems—until the rug, the bathtub, and the stove come to life and have a hunger for rulebreaker soup.

On Trails: An Exploration Cover Image
ISBN: 9781476739236
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster - July 4th, 2017

After thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2009, Robert Moor began to wonder about the nature of trails. How do trails form? Why do some trails last while others fade with time? And once created, why are trails followed? Attempting to answer these and other provocative questions, Moor spent seven years travelling the world in order to investigate trails of a surprising variety: ancient fossil trails, insect pheromone trails, forgotten Native American trails, and even today’s modern roadways and technological infrastructure. Chapter by chapter, Moor weaves a highly readable and fascinating account of his explorations, philosophy, science, and history.

Towers Falling Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316262224
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - July 12th, 2016

It’s been quite some time since Dèja lived in a happy and comfortable home. Ma works long hours, Pop suffers from a sickness Dèja does not understand, and the whole family lives in a homeless shelter. When her fifth grade teachers start talking about two towers missing from the New York skyline, Dèja asks why she should care about something that happened before she was born. But when Pop becomes angry at the mere mention of the towers, Dèja guesses that they might have something to do with his illness, and she starts to wonder if history ever really stays in the past.

The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World Cover Image
ISBN: 9781476738246
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster - September 5th, 2017

Think your cat is nothing but a cute, little purr-baby? Think again! Tucker's study of the house cat has deeply expanded the way I look at and engage with my own feline friend. Cute? Oh yeah. Apex predator and master manipulator? Yes, those things too! A fascinating read.

Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Book of Tarot Cover Image
ISBN: 9781578634088
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Weiser Books - September 30th, 2009

I'm pretty new to tarot and this book has been an indispensable resource for getting to know the cards. Though the illustrations and some descriptions focus on the Rider-Waite deck—a deck I don't personally use—I still enjoy consulting Pollack's book to push my understanding further. The card descriptions are rich, but not overloaded, which makes it very easy to grab and peruse even when you're short on time.