Miguel S

Merchandise Buyer

The written word really inspires Miguel’s paintings and, as a result, he has the longest reading list ever! Among his favorite writers are visionaries like Octavia E. Butler (Wild Seed, Mind of My Mind), Christopher Pike (The Blind Mirror, Thirst) and Clive Barker (Hellbound Heart). Mainly, he looks for books where vampires, werewolves, plagues and catastrophes of the human soul horrify lovable characters for pages on end. Good times!

Would you like other recommendations? Email me at staff+miguel@strandbooks.com

Miguel S's Reviews

The Book of Night Women

by: Marlon James

Marlon James is a genius! Poetic and scary. Be brave and read this!

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Widow Basquiat: A Love Story

by: Jennifer Clement

I read this in a hypnotic state, cover to cover, spellbound. The NY in this book is gone, but the legends of that time live on. Clement writes such beautiful passages! Heartbreaking/stunning!

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by: J.G. Ballard

A wild read! Everyone in this book is (or is slowly going crazy). A raging comment on modernity and class, this is Ballard at his murderous best. Thrilling!

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Dept. of Speculation

by: Jenny Offill

A powerful meditation on love and marriage that you can/will read in one sitting. Don’t let it’s quickness dissuade you. It will stay with you. Offill is a poetic and beautiful voice.

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The Stepford Wives

by: Ira Levin

Ira Levin is an amazing writer! The Stepford Wives is a creepy, claustrophobic tale of suburban desperation.

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The Book of Strange New Things

by: Michel Faber

Faber's writing is so mesmerizing you don't realize he is leading you down a very messed up rabbit hole until it's too late. Epic, heartbreaking,ambitious. A summer must read!

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The Lathe of Heaven

by: Ursula K. Le Guin

A great starting point if you are new to Le Guin's work. I have given night terrors and lucid dreaming a lot of thought throughout the years and this novel strikes a creepy cord in me. This book questions the nature of reality and the power of hopes and dreams. Also giant flying turtles!

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Under The Skin

by: Michel Faber

DO NOT WATCH THE MOVIE BEFORE YOU READ THIS GEM OF A BOOK! THE 1ST SCENE WILL RUIN MUCH OF THE STORY. As heartbreaking as it is horrifying, this book will haunt you and make you feel for monsters. Really super good!

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A Single Man

by: Christopher Isherwood

At a time when Isherwood and his much younger lover were having problems, the author boldly imagines his life as a single man. The title character, George, loses his lover in a car accident. This was my honeymoon read.

I knew the premise before I picked it as my beach read. My husband looked at it with “Really?” in his eyes. But I figured this would be the best time to read such a book. I have always wanted to read it, but the prospect of a life without my lover was a bit terrifying. I guess being married made me feel more secure; mortality be damned.

What I did not expect was a celebration of life, of love, and of the present. George goes through stages of extreme bitterness and rage. In a way isolating himself further from the people around him. But these moments don't last. Little things bring him happiness, or rather ease his loss. In the end it's a novel about cherishing all that life gives, whether it be grief or love.

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Seed to Harvest

by: Octavia E. Butler

I read this book about once a year - it's that great! These four novels are Octavia Butler's masterworks. Here you meet Doro and Anyanwu, two immortals engaged in an epic battle of wills. Together they travel history loving and hating each other. Needing each other. They become mother and father to a race of new humans - madmen, telepaths, and shape-shifters. An empire they can belong to. Bulter's themes of power, race, and gender are beautifully illustrated here. Her prose is lean and exquisite, at times heartbreaking. Read this book - you're welcome!

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The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk

by: Suzy Menkes

Fashion bad boy Jean Paul Gaultier shows off in this beautiful tribute to androgyny, cone bras, Madonna, stripes, and the avant-garde. This tome contains sketches and stories from behind the scenes of his notorious runway shows. Generously illustrated with never before seen photos this monograph is a must for your coffee table!

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  • Animal Farm

    By George Orwell

    Our Price: $12.60
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780452277502
    • Publisher: Berkley
    • Published: June 1996
    As ferociously fresh as it was more than a half century ago, ANIMAL FARM is a parable about would-be liberators everywhere. In witnessing the rise and bloody fall of these revolutionary animals through the lens of human history, the seeds of totalitarianism in the most idealistic organizations are visible; and in the most charismatic leaders, the souls of the cruelest oppressors appear. 101p.
  • Annihilation (Southern Reach Trilogy, Book 1)

    By Jeff VanderMeer

    Our Price: $7.00 - $12.60
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780374104092
    • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    • Published: February 2014
    In the first volume of Jeff VanderMeer's Southern Reach trilogy, we join the twelfth expedition. The group is made up of four women: an anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain, record all observations of their surroundings and of one anotioner, and, above all, avoid being contaminated by Area X itself. 208p.
  • Authority (Southern Reach #2)

    By Jeff VanderMeer

    Our Price: $7.50
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780374104108
    • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    • Published: May 2014
    In the second volume of Jeff VanderMeer's Southern Reach trilogy, Area X's most disturbing questions are answered . . . but the answers are far from reassuring. 352p.
  • Beloved

    By Toni Morrison

    Our Price: $14.40
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9781400033416
    • Publisher: Vintage International
    • Published: June 2004
    Staring unflinchingly into the abyss of slavery, Morrison's spellbinding novel transforms history into a story on a biblical scale as well as a lullaby. Sethe, the protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. There are too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things occurred. Her new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved. Morrison is the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature. The New York Times Book Review Fiction Survey finds Beloved 'the single best work of American fiction published in the last 25 years.' 324p.
  • Black Hole

    By Charles Burns

    Our Price: $10.00 - $19.95
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780375714726
    • Publisher: Pantheon
    • Published: January 2008
    A chilling graphic novel set in suburban Seattle during the mid-1970s describes the lives of the area's teenagers, who are suddenly faced with a devastating, disfiguring, and incurable plague that has descended on the young people of Seattle. Reprint. 40,000 first printing.
  • Bloodchild and Other Stories

    By Octavia E. Butler

    Our Price: $12.60
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9781583226988
    • Publisher: Seven Stories Press
    • Published: October 2005
    Named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and now supplemented with new stories, this volume is author Octavia E. Butler’s only collection of shorter work and features the Hugo and Nebula award-winning stories “Bloodchild” and “Speech Sounds.” These works of the imagination are parables of the contemporary world. Butler proves constant in her vigil, an unblinking pessimist hoping to be proven wrong, and one of contemporary literature’s strongest voices. Seven stories and two essays. 214p.
  • Hotel Lachapelle: Photographs

    By David Lachapelle

    Our Price: $35.00
    • Format: Oversize Hardcover
    • ISBN-13: 9780821226360
    • Publisher: Bulfinch Press
    • Published: November 1999
  • Just Kids

    By Patti Smith

    Our Price: $15.29
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780060936228
    • Publisher: Ecco
    • Published: November 2010
    JUST KIDS starts out as a love story and ends up on Elegy Row. Serving as a Baudelarian salute to New York City during the late sixties and seventies and to its rich and poor, its hustlers and hellions, it makes for a true fable, a portrait of two young artists, Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe, ascending the halcyon daze to fame. Smith's penchant for immortalizing herself this side of the graveyard dog, lets all the struggle and morphing genius connect for a rhythmic ride through that singular time and space. Smith plants herself at the epicenter of a time when the worlds of poetry, rock and roll, art, and sexual politics were colliding and exploding. In this milieu, fueled by their mutual dreams and drives, Smith/Mapplethorpe would prod and provide for one another during the hungry years. And starring the Hotel Chelsea. With b&w photos. A New York Times Bestseller.
  • Maus I, A Survivor's Tale: My Father Bleeds History

    By Art Spiegelman

    Our Price: $15.95
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780394747231
    • Publisher: Random House Inc
    • Published: September 1986
    The author-illustrator traces his father's imprisonment in a Nazi concentration camp through a series of disarming and unusual cartoons arranged to tell the story as a novel
  • Revenge: Eleven Dark Tales

    By Yoko Ogawa

    Our Price: $15.30
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780312674465
    • Publisher: Picador
    • Published: January 2013
    Offers eleven interwoven macabre short stories that take an ominous look at grotesque characters, violent emotions, and murder.
  • Seed to Harvest

    By Octavia E. Butler

    Our Price: $19.79
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780446698900
    • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
    • Published: January 2007
    Contains the novels Wild Seed, Mind of My Mind, Clay's Ark, and Patternmaster.
  • Sumo

    By Helmut Newton

    Our Price: $150.00
    • Format: Oversize Hardcover
    • ISBN-13: 9783836517300
    • Publisher: Taschen
    • Published: September 2009
    The biggest, most lavish book production of the 20th century is back! - in a more economical edition, but one with the same DNA as its unique progenitor! The original, edited by June Newton, featured over 350 pictures, most published for the first time, covering every aspect of Helmut Newton's career: from the stunning fashion images to the powerful, erotic nudes and celebrity portraits. Also included is a 'making of' section, detailing the meticulous selection process. Well, 10 years after the original publication, SUMO is back! Text in German, French, English. 480p. The book that redefined the photographic monograph!
  • The Book of Imaginary Beings

    By Jorge Luis Borges

    Our Price: $17.10
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780143039938
    • Publisher: Penguin Books
    • Published: September 2006
    Borges's whimsical compendium of more than a hundred of 'the strange creatures conceived through history by the human imagination.' Imbued with the author's characteristic wit anderudition, this unique contribution to fantasy literature ranges widely across the world's mythologies and literatures to bring together in one delightful encyclopedia the fantastical inventions, ranging from the Kabbalah through Kafka. Notes. B&W illus. 236p.
  • The Captain's Verses / Los versos del Capitan: The Love Poems

    By Pablo Neruda

    Our Price: $7.50 - $14.35
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9780811218214
    • Publisher: New Directions
    • Published: February 2009
    Neruda, a Nobel Prize for Literature laureate, finished writing The Captain's Verse in 1952 while in exile on the island of Capri - the paradisal setting for the blockbuster film Il Postimo (The Postman). Surrounded by sun, sea, and Capri's natural splendors, Neruda addressed these poems to his lover Matilde Urrutia before they were married, but didn't publish them publicly until 1963. This complete, bilingual edition has become a classic for love-struck readers around the world - passionate, sensuous, and exploding with all the erotic energy of a new love. 160p.
  • The Chrysalids

    By John Wyndham

    Our Price: $13.45
    • Format: Paperback
    • ISBN-13: 9781590172926
    • Publisher: New York Review Books
    • Published: November 2008
    (New York Review Books Classics). This work is set in the future after a devastating global nuclear wear. David, the young hero of the novel, lives in a tight-knit community of religious and genetic fundamentalists, always on the alert for any deviation from the norm of God’s creation. Abnormal plants are publicly burned, with much singing of hymns. Abnormal humans are also condemned to destruction - unless they succeed in fleeing to the Fringes, that Wild Country where, as the authorities say, nothing is reliable and the devil does his work. 200p.