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Staff Picks - Goleta's Favorite Fiction

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All items are shelved in the fiction section alphabetically by the author’s last name.

Distant Shores
by Kristin Hannah
When her daughters leave for college and her husband lands the job of his dreams, Elizabeth Shore struggles to renew her dreams and passion for life. 

The Forgotten Garden
by Kate Morton
Abandoned on a 1913 voyage to Australia, Nell is raised by a dock master and his wife who do not tell her until she is an adult that she is not their child, leading Nell to return to England and eventually hand down her quest for answers to her granddaughter. 

Night School
by Lee Child
A military policeman fresh off a mission in 1996, Jack Reacher is assigned to a covert task force with two government experts to track down an American who is about to make a mysterious sale to Middle Eastern radicals.  

Abide with Me
by Elizabeth Stroud
After the tragic death of his young wife, Reverend Tyler Caskey, a New England minister, struggles to hold together his own life, his family, and his town, while dealing with his personal anger, grief, and loss of faith. 

Together Alone
by Barbara Delinsky
In a novel that interweaves the stories of three different women, Emily Arkin, Kay Davies, and Celeste Prince find their lives, families, personal relationships, and dreams forever altered after their daughters leave for college. 

by Ann Patchett
Struggling with single parenthood and a scandal that cost him his political career, Bernard Doyle fights his disappointment with his adopted sons' career choices before a violent event forces the members of his family to reconsider their priorities.

Rogue Lawyer
by John Grisham
A nomadic lawyer because of frequent death threats, Sebastian Rudd takes on a case involving a brain-damaged young man accused of murdering two little girls.

The Weight of Water
by Anita Shreve
Journeying to Smuttynose Island, off the coast of New Hampshire, to shoot a photo essay about a century-old double murder, a photographer becomes absorbed by the crime and increasingly obsessed with jealousy over the idea that her husband is having an affair.

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
by Carson McCullers
Mick Kelly, a quiet, sensitive, and wise-beyond-her-years young girl, searches for beauty in a small, but damned Southern town in the 1930s, as she develops a relationship with deaf-mute John Singer.

The Good Mother
by Sue Miller
Anna Dunlap is newly divorced and finds physical satisfaction with a new lover for the first time until her ex-husband sues for custody of her beloved young daughter. 

The Overlook
by Michael Connelly
Having left the LAPD's Open Unsolved Unit for the prestigious Homicide Special squad, Harry Bosch investigates the murder of a doctor whose death is linked to the theft of a dangerous radioactive substance that Harry fears may be part of a large-scale terrorist plot.

The Space Between Us
by Thrity N. Umrigar
Captures the delicate balance of class and gender in contemporary India as witnessed through the lives of two women--Sera Dubash, an upper middle-class housewife, and Bhima, an illiterate domestic hardened by a life of loss and despair. 

The Dubliners
by James Joyce
15 stories about Joyce’s beloved Irish City. 

Hope to Die
by James Patterson
Detective Alex Cross embarks on the most wrenching case of his career to secure the lives of family members who have been abducted by a psychotic genius. 

Say When
by Elizabeth Berg
Relates the story of a family in turmoil from the perspective of a husband who must work through denial and anguish to redemption and personal responsibility after his overnight transformation from lover to roommate. 

Stone Cold
by C. J. Box
Investigating allegations about a hit man who lives a life of wealth and secrecy on a remote Wyoming ranch, troubleshooter Joe Pickett discovers two men at the ranch including a ruthless killer and a disturbing person from his past. 

Blue Moon
by Luanne Rice
The Keating sisters, owners of a generations-old New England restaurant, are finding it hard to keep the family together, until Cass' husband is lost at sea and the family must weather the tragedy. 

True Colors
by Kristin Hannah
Despairing of receiving their critical father's love, Winona occupies herself in books and dreams, while Vivi Ann makes a fateful decision to follow her heart instead of dutifully fulfilling their father's ambitions. 

English Creek
by Ivan Doig
The events of summer, 1939, in Two Counties, Montana--the herding of sheep onto the summer range and the rodeo, picnic, and square dance on the Fourth of July counterpoint the coming of age of Jick McCaskell.

The Guilty
by David Baldacci
After failing a critical assignment overseas, Will Robie must investigate a murder accusation against his father--but to save him, he'll have to face a violent and deadly fallout. 

The Island
by Elin Hilderbrand
After her daughter Chess' ex-fiance dies in a rock-climbing accident, Birdie Cousins encourages her younger daughter, Tate, and her sister, India, to join her and Chess on Tuckernuck Island for a month, a time when deep secrets are soon revealed. 

The Light Between Oceans
by M. L. Stedman
A novel set on a remote Australian island, where a childless couple live quietly running a lighthouse, until a boat carrying a baby washes ashore. 

City of Thieves
by David Benioff
Documenting his grandparents' experiences during the siege of Leningrad, a young writer learns his grandfather's story about how a military deserter and he tried to secure pardons by gathering hard-to-find ingredients for a powerful colonel's daughter's wedding cake. 

The Husband’s Secret
by Liane Moriarty
Discovering a tattered letter that says she is to open it only in the event of her husband's death, Cecelia is unable to resist reading the letter and discovers a secret that shatters her life and the lives of two other women. 

The Distant Hours
by Kate Morton
Edie Burchill visits Milderhurst Castle where her mother stayed during World War II, discovering the three elderly sisters of the castle still alive but haunted by the secrets of their past life with their father, a famous children's author. 

I Capture the Castle
by Dodie Smith
The 1934 journal of seventeen-year-old Cassandra Mortmain reveals her perspective on six stormy months in the eccentric and poverty-stricken life of her family in a ruined Suffolk castle, ending with the revelation that Cassandra is deeply in love. 

A Turn in the Road
by Debbie Macomber
Three women--Bethanne Hamlin, her daughter Annie and her former mother-in-law Ruth--go on a road trip across the country, in an adventure that changes all of their lives as they each contemplate taking different paths in their romantic lives. 

The Memory Keeper’s Daughter
by Kim Edwards
In a tale spanning twenty-five years, a doctor delivers his newborn twins during a snowstorm and, rashly deciding to protect his wife from their baby daughter's affliction with Down Syndrome, turns her over to a nurse, who secretly raises the child. 

This is Where I Leave You
by Jonathan Tropper
Judd Foxman is thrown together with his dysfunctional family when his father dies, while at the same time coping with his wife's infidelity and the end of his marriage. 

Her Own Rules
by Barbara Taylor Bradford
Forced to see a psychiatrist when she falls seriously ill, Meredith Stratton traces her past, discovering that she had been placed in an orphanage when she was four years old, and follows her roots to England to find her mother, meeting a man who holds the key to her past--and her future.

Winesburg, Ohio
by Sherwood Anderson
Twenty-one interconnected stories follow the lives of the solitary inhabitants of a small Midwestern town who confide their disappointments in life and dashed hopes to George Willard, a local reporter. 

Between Husbands and Friends
by Nancy Thayer
The West's and the Cunninghams have summer together in Nantucket for many years, but when Lucy West's son becomes gravely ill, the secrets and illicit activities shared between the two couples in earlier, wilder times begin to surface.

Hanna’s Daughters
by Marianne Fredriksson
At her mother's deathbed Anna becomes determined to learn more about both her mother Joanna, and her grandmother, Hanna, and looks through old diaries, letters, and photographs. 

by Julia Alvarez
The center of many lives, thrice-married writer Yolanda Garcia celebrates her fame while entangling others in her web, in a story that is told from the viewpoints of the confused people whose lives she touches. 

My Antonia
by Willa Cather
Tells the struggles and triumphs of Ántonia Shimerda, daughter of a Bohemian immigrant, on the Nebraska prairie in the 1880s, as seen through the eyes of Jim Burden, her tutor and admirer. 

Before You Know Kindness
by Chris Bohjalian
After a decade of spending a delightful summer week at their country house in New Hampshire, the members of the extended Seton family are confronted by a terrible accident, testing the values and relationships that hold them together. 

The Rosewood Casket
by Sharyn McCrumb
As Randall Stargill's four sons prepare to bury their late father, Randall's former sweetheart, Nora Bonesteel, brings a small box to be buried with him, a box containing a child's bones, in a mystery complicated by the efforts of a real-estate developer to obtain the Stargill homestead.  

Big Girl
by Danielle Steel
After her sister gets engaged to a carbon copy of her narcissistic father, plus-size woman Victoria Dawson, who has fled L.A. for less-body-conscious New York City, must learn to love herself for who she is if she is ever going to get on with her life.

Home to Big Stone Gap
by Adriana Trigiani
Ave Maria Mulligan MacChesney confronts dramatic changes in her life--her daughter's marriage and move to Italy, her husband's new job, and a mysterious stranger with a long-buried secret. 

The Sealed Letter
by Emma Donoghue
Emily "Fido" Faithfull, a spinster pioneer in the British women's movement, is distracted from her cause by the details of her friend's failing marriage and affair with a young army officer, in this drama of friends, lovers, and divorce, Victorian style. 

by Kent Haruf
Returning to the high plains region around Holt, Colorado, an evocative, profoundly moving novel of small-town life follows the challenges, emotional upheaval, tragedies, struggles, and intertwined destinies of the local inhabitants as they cope with the changes they encounter.

Bad Move
by Linwood Barclay
Paranoid writer Zack Walker moves his family from the city to the safety of the suburbs, but when he stumbles across the body of a dead environmentalist in a nearby creek, havoc ensues as he goes in search of the killer.

Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons
by Lorna Landvik
From the initial formation of The Freesia Court Book Club and over the course of the next thirty years, five women in small-town Minnesota share the events, triumphs, tragedies, hardships, joys, and sorrows of their lives.

The Matchmakers
by Janette Oke
A young woman decides to meddle in her widowed father's affairs and fix him up with an older widow in the neighborhood, but when she enlists the woman's son to help get them together, the outcome is completely unexpected. 

The Rag Nymph
by Catherine Cookson
Orphaned at a tender age, Millie Forester is adopted by "Raggie Aggie" Winkowski, and she suffers misfortune and misplaced love as she grows to adulthood side by side with Aggie's son, Ben, whose love for Millie increases over the years.

Imperfect Birds
by Anne Lamott
Anticipating a successful final year of high school in a new community, star student and athlete Rosie gives way to behaviors that reveal to her increasingly horrified parents that she has been abusing drugs and telling costly lies.

The All of it
by Jeannette Haien
As Father Declan attends Kevin on his deathbed, Enda reveals that she and Kevin, who have been living as a married couple, are actually siblings, leaving the Irish priest with a problem in squaring Catholic doctrine with the scandalous situation.

Saving CeeCee Honeycutt
by Beth Hoffman
Relegated to the care of an eccentric great-aunt after her mentally unbalanced mother's accidental death, 12-year-old CeeCee is quickly surrounded by the strong women and cultural elements of her new Savannah community.