Table of Contents
What’s better than a good book? A good book written by your neighbor. Brew up a batch of your favorite tea or coffee and get ready to meet your next read, because we’re talking about locally written books in San Jose.
- “Volaria” by M.D. Neu | Release date: Oct., 1, 2022 | A supernatural, erotic thriller set in San Jose — 100 years in the future.
- “Nothing Got Broke” by Larry Slonaker | Release date: June 28, 2022 | A Bay Area reporter gets caught in the death of a San Jose man.
- “Bestiary” by K-Ming Chang | Release date: Sept. 29, 2020 | A woman grows a tiger tail in this debut novel about myth and memory.
- “The Aloha Spirit” by Linda Ulleseit | Release date: Aug. 18, 2020 | This domestic romance is set in 1920s Hawaii.
- “A Thousand Ways to Fail & Other Stories” by Charles Joseph Albert | Release date: Nov. 23, 2019 | These stories range from speculative sci-fi to magical realism.
- “TAD” by M. D. Neu | Release date: Sept. 23, 2019 | A disgraced angel of death and a drag queen become friends in New York City.
- “Had He Worn a Different Body? and 20 other Unexpected Tales” by Brad Ashmore | Release date: Aug. 30, 2019 | These absurd + soft sci-fi stories include inverse guacamole, lunar poles, and wearable bodies.
- “Kankin’s Kingdom, Foreseen” by Enrique S. Flores | Release date: Aug. 2, 2019 | This sci-fi novel explores family, Catch-22 situations, and metaphysics.
- “The Antiquities Hunter” by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff | Release date: Oct. 2, 2018 | This mystery novel follows a private eye on the hunt for stolen Mayan artifacts.
- “Hicks Road: Jacob’s Story” by Julian P. Flores |Release date: Jan. 6, 2017| Set in 1850s Almaden, an outcast boy discovers a mystic secret around Mount Umunhum.
- “The Sympathizer” by Viet Thanh Nguyen | Release date: | Apr., 12, 2016 | This Pulitzer Prize winning novel follows a Vietnamese spy life as a refugee after the Fall of Saigon.
📖 Expand your worldview
- “Our National Monuments” by QT Luong | Release date: Nov. 9, 2021 | Discover spectacular landscapes less traveled than our bustling national parks.
- “We Can: Portraits of Power” by Tyler Gordon | Release date: Sept. 28, 2021 | This 15-year-old, nationally-recognized artist shares some of his bold artwork of iconic leaders.
- “Seductive Venice” by Kathleen Ann González | Release date: Jan. 3, 2021 | Take a walking tour of Venice following Casanova’s historic footsteps.
- “Helen and the Masters: A Portrait of A California Mystic” by Lisa Francesca | Release date: July 9, 2020 | A family biography about a Bay Area transplant with alleged medium abilities.
- “Frida in America: The Creative Awakening of a Great Artist” by Celia Stahr | Release date: Mar. 3, 2020 | Explore Frida Khalo’s time living in San Francisco, Detroit, and New York.
- “White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism” by Robin Jeanne DiAngelo | Release date: June 26, 2018 | Better understand concepts around internalized racism and “color blindness.”
- “MINE: El Despojo de María Zacarías Bernal de Berreyesa” by Jenny Clendenen | Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 | Part biography, part nature writing — this story about California history involves murder, betrayal, and theft.
- “Thread of the Silkwormk” by Iris Chang | Release date: Nov. 15, 1996 | Meet the Chinese scientist who assisted on the Manhattan Project + started the Chinese space program.
📖 Local interest
- “Haunted San Jose” by Elizabeth Kile | Release date: Sept. 12, 2022 | Creepy local legends abound — with haunting stories about the Sainte Claire Hotel, Overfelt High, and more.
- “Silicon Alleys: Selected Metro Columns, 2005-2020" by Gary Singh | Release date: Nov. 16, 2020 | Discover the unseen stories from San Jose’s alternative scene.
- “Secret San Jose: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure” by Cassie Kifer | Release date: Sept. 15, 2020 | Test your knowledge of obscure San Jose landmarks and facts.
- “Haunts of San Jose” by David Lee | Release date: Sept. 12, 2008 | Even more contemporary stories of local ghosts + haunted houses.
📖 Personal stories
- “Power to Change Lives” by Helen Chong | Release date: Apr. 6, 2021 | The story of a Hong Kong immigrant seeking the American Dream and finding financial success.
- “Creole Son: An Adoptive Mother Untangles Nature & Nurture” by E. Kay Trimberger | Release date: Apr. 1, 2020 | Explore the connections between birth families and adoptees of different races.
- “Mozart in the Garden” by Tom Liggert | Release date: Jan. 3, 2020 | This snapshot of mid-century California features the unlikely friendship between a child of dysfunction and a “witch” on a hill.
- “East Side Dreams” by Art Rodriguez | Release date: Jan. 15, 2010 | A local’s story of finding hope and success after incarceration.
📖 For the family
- “Peach and Plum: Here We Come!” by Tim McCanna | Release date: Aug. 2, 2022 | School’s out for these rhyming fruits in this graphic novel series.
- “In My Life” illustrated by Genevieve Santos (with lyrics by John Lennon + Paul McCartney) | Release date: Feb. 2, 2021 | A story about memories across three generations in a family that are meant to be treasured.
- “Harvest” by Casey Jane Satterlund | Release date: March 2021 | A child learns to plant the seeds of positive thoughts to build self-esteem.
- “The Peculiar Pig” by Joy Steuerwald | Release date: June 8, 2019| Will a group of piglets accept a puppy among their group?
- “Like A Solid to A Shadow” by Janice Lobo Sapigao | Release date: Apr., 26, 2022 | This recent Santa Clara County Poet Laureate writes about her father’s love letters to her mother.
- “Sweet Nothings” by Dan Brook | Release date: Sept. 21, 2020 | Explore the combination of prose and haiku known as a haibun.
- “The Behavior of Clocks” by Sally Ashton | Release date: Apr. 1, 2019 | An exploration of time and memory inspired by Einstein’s theories about relativity.
- “Erratic Facts” by Kay Ryan | Release date: Oct., 6, 2015 | This US Poet Laureate’s latest collection deals with loss.
Is your favorite not on our shelf? Let us know.
Need more recommendations? Stop by Hicklebee’s or the Recycle Bookstore to get expert advice from San Jose’s local booksellers. 📚