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Originally published Tuesday, July 31, 2012 at 5:30 AM

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Northwest Books: tracing history in family photographs, 'Apple' by Nikki McClure

New books by Seattle-area authors: a memoir based on family photographs by Port Townsend author Judith Kitchen; the story of an apple by Olympia artist Nikki McClure; Peter Ward's "The Flooded Earth," new in paperback; and a new installment in Lisa Kleypas' "Rainshadow Road" series.

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New releases

"Half in Shade: Family, Photography and Fate" by Judith Kitchen (Coffee House Press, $16). In this memoir, Port Townsend author and teacher Kitchen uses a family collection of photographs to meditate on history, heritage and "the gray areas between the present and the past, family and self, certainty and uncertainty," says the publisher.

"Apple" by Nikki McClure (Abrams Appleseed, $12.95). For young readers: a new book by the talented Olympia author/illustrator, following the story of an apple through the cycles of the year. McClure uses intricate paper cuts to create her striking illustrations.

"The Flooded Earth: Our Future in a World Without Ice Caps" by Peter Ward (Basic Books, $16.99). New in paperback: University of Washington biology and space sciences professor Ward speculates on the likely consequences of a rise in sea level caused by global warming, including the flooding of much of Seattle. "Ward's pessimism turns what most climate scientists view as a worst-case but all-too-plausible scientific scenario into a dystopian vision — including a humanity-threatening mass extinction by hydrogen sulfide three millenniums from now," said Fred Bortz in a Seattle Times review.

"Dream Lake" by Lisa Kleypas (St. Martin's Press, $14.99). Washington state author Kleypas returns to her "Rainshadow Road" setting and milieu for another sweet-natured story based in Friday Harbor, where Zoe, a kindhearted and gentle innkeeper, bumps into the quintessential bad boy, a troubled alcoholic named Alex who doesn't believe in love. This series will continue in February with a third Friday Harbor novel.

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