Toss and turn? Count sheep? Desperate to escape your honey’s snoring? In Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep, journalist David K. Randall offers fascinating insights into the mystery of human slumber. Every moment of our lives depends on the quality of our sleep. Lack of sleep creates dangers on battlefields and football fields, roadways and school hallways, bedrooms and boardrooms. Randall’s research will change how you think about the time spent with closed eyes. —Ann Woodbeck
Available at Excelsior Bay Books. Ann Woodbeck has been a “bookseller extraordinaire” for Excelsior Bay Books for the past nine years. When not recommending the next great novel, she reads, writes and spends time with her husband and poodle in Excelsior.
Looking for an amazing Champagne at a reasonable price? Look no further than Jacques Chaput NV Le Brut Tradition. This historic, family-owned “bubbles” house is located in the southwest corner of France’s Champagne region, known as the Côte des Bar. The small sub-region shares the fossilized Kimmeridgian soils of the historic Chablis region of northern Burgundy. Chaput’s delicate blend provides wonderful acidic structure and a beautiful nose of apples and peaches. The palate is balanced by creamy notes of brioche and lemon custard in this sparkler’s lengthy finish. Enjoy it with wild game birds, foie gras or potato chips (my favorite pairing). —Tyler Melton
Justin Vernon of Bon Iver fame fronts super-group Volcano Choir, and their sophomore album Repave tightens up the loose noodlings of 2009’s Unmap. Most of Repave wouldn’t sound out of place alongside the woodsy, soaring folk on Vernon’s Grammy-winning Bon Iver. Starter “Tiderays” telegraphs the whole album with a slow burn to an explosive end. Massive single “Byegone” taps into the elusive freedom so characteristic of Vernon’s music; it’s no surprise that the catharsis comes on heavy when Vernon belts “Set sail!” And while Repave might not chart new sonic territory, Vernon doesn’t need to wander far when he’s on a hot streak. —Jack Kentala
Available at Barnes & Noble. Jack Kentala is a local filmmaker and writer. He has directed two feature films, Transmissions (2009) and Archetype (2012). He also wrote his first novel, Meridien K, in 2011.