Nancy Pearl | KUOW News and Information

Nancy Pearl

If reading more in 2017 was one of your new year's resolutions, Nancy Pearl is here to help. Every once in a while, the Seattle-based librarian sends host Steve Inskeep a big stack of books. They're generally "under-the-radar" reads — titles she thinks deserve more attention than they've been getting.

This year, the stack includes breathtaking thrillers, a multi-generational crime story, an unforgettable family tale, and more. Pearl tells Inskeep why she loves these novels, and why she thinks you will, too.

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about Nick Harkaway's novel, "The Gone-Away World."

If you like your summer reading to take you beyond the beaten path, librarian Nancy Pearl is here to help. NPR's go-to books guru joins us once again to share "under the radar" reads — books she thinks deserve more attention than they've been getting. Pearl talks with NPR's Steve Inskeep about some of the titles she picked out for the summer reading season — several of which will make you reconsider the way you think about maps.

Nancy Pearl
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So many good books, so little time. If you're searching for a book that would make a perfect holiday gift or just looking for your next great read, here are Nancy Pearl's favorite books of 2012.

I'm often asked how I choose the books that I'm going to talk about on Morning Edition's "Under the Radar" segments. Simple: I just pick some of the titles that I've most enjoyed since the last time I was on, without concern for whether they're fiction or nonfiction, genre or not, or aimed or classified as being for children or teens.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Librarian Nancy Pearl gives Weekday listeners her recommendations for science-fiction titles (and a few fantasy novels, too). Here are Nancy's picks:

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Many of us pass along books we love to family and friends. If you could only pass along one book — one you truly love — which book would it be? Librarian Nancy Pearl gives Weekday her list of books that should be passed along to loved ones.

Unlike a lot of people I know, my summer reading doesn't differ significantly from the reading I do the rest of the year. I'm always looking for new authors, older titles I might have missed, books I want to reread, and a nice mixture of fiction and nonfiction. While I understand the concept of beach reading, for me it doesn't mean light reading, but rather choosing books whose ultimate destruction by sand and water won't concern me overly much because I know that I can easily replace them.

Truth to tell, I have a real love/hate relationship with memoirs. Because I very much enjoy reading about people's lives (an unappreciative therapist might term my predilection voyeurism), I gravitate toward the biography and memoir section of libraries and bookstores. But despite the fact that memoirs are, by definition, self-referential and are therefore -- to one degree or another -- filled with variations of me, me, me, I don't really enjoy (and therefore tend not to read) what I call the "Children of Job," subgenre of memoir-writing.