1

Weeks on List: 22

The Help

The Help

by Kathryn Stockett

Paperback, 534 pages, Penguin Group USA, $16, published June 28 2011 | purchase
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  • Kathryn Stockett

Limited and persecuted by racial divides in 1962 Jackson, Miss., three women — an African-American maid, her sassy and chronically unemployed friend (also a maid) and a recently graduated white woman — team up for a clandestine project.

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2

Weeks on List: 107

Sarah's Key

Sarah's Key

by Tatiana De Rosnay

Paperback, 316 pages, St Martins Pr, $13.99, published July 5 2011 | purchase
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  • Sarah's Key
  • Tatiana De Rosnay

On the anniversary of the roundup of Jews by the French police in Paris, Julia is asked to write an article on this dark episode and embarks on an investigation that leads her to long-hidden family secrets and to the ordeal of Sarah.

3

Weeks on List: 84

Cutting for Stone

Cutting for Stone

by Abraham Verghese

Paperback, 667 pages, Random House Inc, $15.95, published January 26 2010 | purchase
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  • Cutting for Stone
  • Abraham Verghese

Twin brothers born from a secret love affair between an Indian nun and a British surgeon in Addis Ababa, Marion and Shiva Stone come of age in Ethiopia, where their love for the same woman drives them apart.

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4

Weeks on List: 24

A Visit from the Goon Squad

A Visit From The Goon Squad

by Jennifer Egan

Paperback, 340 pages, Random House Inc, $14.95, published March 22 2011 | purchase
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  • A Visit From The Goon Squad
  • Jennifer Egan

Working side by side for a record label, former punk rocker Bennie Salazar and the passionate Sasha hide illicit secrets from one another while interacting with a motley assortment of equally troubled people from 1970s San Francisco to the postwar future.

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5

Weeks on List: 17

Room

Room

by Emma Donoghue

Paperback, 352 pages, Little Brown & Co, $14.99, published May 5 2011 | purchase
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  • Room
  • Emma Donoghue

A 5-year-old narrates a story about his life growing up in a single room where his mother aims to protect him from the man who has held her prisoner for seven years — since she was a teenager.

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6

Weeks on List: 10

One Day

One Day

by David Nicholls

Paperback, 437 pages, Random House Inc, $14.95, published May 24 2011 | purchase
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  • One Day
  • David Nicholls

David Nicholls' romantic comedy One Day has become one of Britain's most popular novels. Each chapter is a snapshot of where July 15 finds the main characters over the 20 years following their high school graduation, as they keep finding — and just missing — each other.

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7

Weeks on List: 40

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand

by Helen Simonson

Paperback, 368 pages, Random House Inc, $15, published November 30 2010 | purchase
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  • Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
  • Helen Simonson

Forced to confront the realities of life in the 21st century when he falls in love with Pakistani widow Mrs. Ali, Major Pettigrew finds the relationship challenged by local prejudices that view Mrs. Ali, a Cambridge native, as a perpetual foreigner.

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8

Weeks on List: 117

The Art of Racing in the Rain

The Art Of Racing In The Rain

by Garth Stein

Paperback, 321 pages, HarperCollins, $14.99, published June 1 2009 | purchase
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  • The Art Of Racing In The Rain
  • Garth Stein

Faithful canine Enzo, on the eve of his death, takes stock of his life while recalling the sacrifices, unexpected losses and personal struggles of his would-be race car driver human, Denny, in the latter's efforts to retain custody of his daughter.

9

Weeks on List: 1

Fall of Giants

Fall of Giants

by Ken Follett

Paperback, 985 pages, Penguin Group USA, $25, published August 30 2011 | purchase
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  • Fall Of Giants
  • Ken Follett

Follows the fates of five interrelated families — American, German, Russian, English and Welsh — as they move through the dramas of World War I, the Russian Revolution and the struggle for women's suffrage.

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10

Weeks on List: 31

The Postmistress

The Postmistress

by Sarah Blake

Paperback, 371 pages, Penguin Group USA, $15, published February 1 2011 | purchase
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  • Sarah Blake

The stories of a Cape Cod postmistress and an American radio reporter stationed in London collide on the eve of the United States' entrance into World War II, a meeting shaped by a broken promise to deliver a letter.

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11

Weeks on List: 136

Water for Elephants

Water for Elephants

A Novel

by Sara Gruen

Paperback, 350 pages, Workman Pub Co, $14.95, published March 1 2011 | purchase
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  • Water for Elephants
  • A Novel
  • Sara Gruen

Ninety-something-year-old Jacob Jankowski remembers his time in the circus as a young man during the Great Depression, and his friendship with Marlena, the star of the equestrian act, and Rosie, the elephant, who gave them hope.

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12

Weeks on List: 35

The Imperfectionists

The Imperfectionists

by Tom Rachman

Paperback, 281 pages, Random House Inc, $15, published January 4 2011 | purchase
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  • The Imperfectionists
  • Tom Rachman

Preoccupied by personal challenges while running a struggling newspaper in Rome, an obituary writer confronts mortality, an eccentric publisher obsesses over his dog, and other staff members uncover the paper's founding by an impulsive millionaire.

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13

Weeks on List: 6

Swamplandia!

Swamplandia!

by Karen Russell

Paperback, 400 pages, Random House Inc, $14.95, published July 26 2011 | purchase
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  • Swamplandia!
  • Karen Russell

The Bigtree children struggle to protect their Florida Everglades alligator-wrestling theme park from a sophisticated competitor after losing their parents.

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14

Weeks on List: 81

Little Bee

Little Bee

by Chris Cleave

Paperback, 271 pages, Simon & Schuster, $15, published February 16 2010 | purchase
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  • Little Bee
  • Chris Cleave

The Somerset Maugham Award-winning author of Incendiary presents a tale of a precarious friendship between an illegal Nigerian refugee and a recent widow from suburban London, a story told from the alternating and disparate perspectives of both women.

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15

Weeks on List: 7

The Cookbook Collector

The Cookbook Collector

by Allegra Goodman

Paperback, 405 pages, Random House Inc, $15, published July 12 2011 | purchase
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  • The Cookbook Collector
  • Allegra Goodman

While executive Emily questions her choices about her career and a long-distance relationship with a successful man, her environmental activist sister, Jessamine, struggles with her own doubts about her beliefs and love affair.

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