Photo of bookseller Charlie

Charlie grew up in San Mateo and frequently found himself at Kepler's as a kid. He loves reading literature in translation, science fiction and fantasy, cookbooks, graphic novels and books on film criticism. When he's not reading, he's playing and thinking about basketball, or trying to perfect a butter mochi recipe.

Favorite Genres: 
Graphic Novels
Science Fiction
Book Recommendations: 
Staff Pick Badge
Camera Man: Buster Keaton, the Dawn of Cinema, and the Invention of the Twentieth Century By Dana Stevens Cover Image
ISBN: 9781501134197
Availability: Usually Arrives at Kepler's in 3-14 Days
Published: Atria Books - January 25th, 2022

Stevens writes a clever biography of Keaton’s career, with informative tangents on other silent stars and modern inventions that made our world modern.  ~Charlie 


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Survival of the Richest: Escape Fantasies of the Tech Billionaires By Douglas Rushkoff Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393881066
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 6th, 2022

Rushkoff surveys the psychology of some of the richest people on the planet, and though disconcerting, uses his sardonic and earnest voice to try to suggest an alternative - Charlie


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The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity By David Graeber, David Wengrow Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374157357
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - November 9th, 2021

If the future doesn’t look too bright, take a note from the past! Did bands of hunter-gatherers spend all their time on food? Were early farmers creating dominating hierarchies? These scholars carefully and thoughtfully use recent studies to argue for a more interesting approach to our species' past. --Charlie

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Burnt Toast and Other Disasters: A Book of Heroic Hacks, Fabulous Fixes, and Secret Sauces By Cal Peternell Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062986740
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: William Morrow Cookbooks - September 21st, 2021

Try as we might to get the best ingredients and best produce each time we cook, sometimes time, budget, and mistakes plague our cooking process. Peternell, who spent two decades at Chez Panisse, teaches us how to right our wrongs deliciously, and to transform ordinary staples into treasured meals. --Charlie

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The Baseball 100 By Joe Posnanski Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982180584
Availability: Usually Arrives at Kepler's in 3-14 Days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - September 28th, 2021

Posnanski guides the reader through the best players in baseball history and definitively ranks each from 100 to 1, with some choices which are bound to be controversial. From the inception of the game to the present, he shares many fascinating stories about the legends that made baseball America’s favorite pastime. --Charlie

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Iron Widow By Xiran Jay Zhao Cover Image
ISBN: 9780735269934
Availability: Usually Arrives at Kepler's in 3-14 Days
Published: Penguin Teen Canada - September 21st, 2021

A Chinese mecha fantasy with a feminist revenge plot? What more does one need? Zhao is able to write action and adventure viscerally, with careful attention to detail in describing ancient Chinese themes and future universal dangers. A vivid page-turner that will leave you craving more. --Charlie

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Mrs. Caliban By Rachel Ingalls, Rivka Galchen (Introduction by) Cover Image
By Rachel Ingalls, Rivka Galchen (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9780811226691
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: New Directions - November 28th, 2017

A neglected housewife finds solace in the appearance of a man-sized frog man. A perfect novel that encapsulates loneliness, and the pleasure of friendship. --Charlie

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The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins By Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing Cover Image
ISBN: 9780691220550
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: Princeton University Press - June 8th, 2021

Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing guides us through the strange and magical world of the Matsutake mushroom, whose fantastic flavor and odd growth patterns tell a tale that weaves through Japanese haute cuisine, Pacific Northwest foraging communities, and South Asian refugee policies. This ethnography reads so beautifully, and sheds light on how interconnected our world is. --Charlie

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The Last Samurai By Helen DeWitt Cover Image
ISBN: 9780811225502
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: New Directions - May 31st, 2016

One of the most daring and innovative books I've ever read, a powerful argument that the novel form is alive and kicking. Helen DeWitt's debut is expansive and molecular at the same time, a magnificent narrative of motherhood and the frightening power of genius. Single mother Sibylla can barely support her son Ludo and herself, let alone give him the educational stimulus that he craves. As a substitute for a masculine presence, Sibylla repeatedly shows her son the Akira Kurosawa movie Seven Samurai. A touching and strange tale ensues, about what cultivating taste can do for a mother and child. --Charlie

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The Third Plate: Field Notes on the Future of Food By Dan Barber Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143127154
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: Penguin Books - April 7th, 2015

How do we eat and cook sustainably, in a world ruled by monoculture and industrial meat and vegetable production? Michelin-starred chef Dan Barber highlights sustainable agriculture practices that value flavor and freshness over profit and shelf life. From fishermen in Spain to seasonal farmers in New York, Barber suggests a systemic overhaul for the way we purchase and cook the food we take for granted. --Charlie

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Berlin Alexanderplatz By Alfred Doblin, Michael Hofmann (Translated by), Michael Hofmann (Introduction by) Cover Image
By Alfred Doblin, Michael Hofmann (Translated by), Michael Hofmann (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9781681371993
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: NYRB Classics - March 6th, 2018

Doblin is a less common name you hear when you think of the modernist masterpieces, but Berlin Alexanderplatz feels so lively and vibrant that it could be directed by the Safdie Brothers. Doblin's voice is masterfully translated by Michael Hoffman, who really captures the voice of a city, filled to the brim with petty dramas and carnivalesque folly. Magnificent. --Charlie

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This Little Art By Kate Briggs Cover Image
ISBN: 9781910695456
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: Fitzcarraldo Editions - April 17th, 2018

The greatest book ever written on the "little art" of translation. Tender and melancholic, Briggs grapples with the difficulty of what it means to transform language, and what gets lost and gained in translation. --Charlie

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An Elemental Thing By Eliot Weinberger Cover Image
ISBN: 9780811216944
Availability: In Stock at Kepler's Now
Published: New Directions - May 17th, 2007

The greatest essayist you've never heard of. Every Weinberger essay extends the arms of literature around the world, to ancient Chinese scholars to the poetic significance of the wind, he deftly rejuvenates the essay form to previously unexplored terrain. --Charlie