Monday, February 28, 2011

Book Cover of the Week

Forgotten Mysteries
By R. DeWitt Miller
Cloud, 1947
Our price used: $10

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Wise Man's Fear

So, the book I've been waiting for all my life (or so it feels) is finally coming out. Tuesday, March 1st is the release date for The Wise Man's Fear, second book in Patrick Rothfuss's Kingkiller Chronicle.


Book Cover of the Day

The Invention of Hugo Cabret
By Brian Selznick
Scholastic $24.99

After this post, 'Book Cover of the Day' will turn into 'Book Cover of the Week'. Keep an eye out!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Little Red Riding Hood
By The Brothers Grimm
Illustrated by Daniel Egneus
Harper Design $14.99

The Last One!

Early last month tragedy struck in the bookstore. I dropped my beloved tea mug while I was standing at the top of the stairs leading from the Rare Book Room. It didn't fall all the way down the stairs, but it fell hard enough and far enough to break off the handle. I was crushed.

Let me explain, this isn't just any mug. It's a mug I received from Knopf in 2007 to promote their title, Well Behaved Women Seldom Make History by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich. Anyone who knows me knows that's a quote I can get behind. It was also an excellent book of women's history by a Pulitzer Prize winning historian whose work is well known nationally and beloved in Utah. Less well known is that Laurel Thatcher Ulrich coined the phrase "Well behaved women seldom make history." For years the mug was my constant meeting companion, it held my hot tea winter mornings, iced tea in summer, and it even held a shot of whiskey a time or two after particularly difficult days. It was permanently tea stained and frequently lipstick stained. It was the perfect mug for me.

When Ron Smith, my Random House sales representative for Knopf called on me last, I showed him my sad mug. I wanted him to see how much I had appreciated and enjoyed it over the years. I also couldn't bear to throw it away and was about to make it my new pen holder. Ron shook his head and said something to the effect that Random House doesn't really do things like that anymore. I understood, no one in the book business has the money for that kind of promotion these days. I wasn't asking for another mug, just sharing the love. Ron said he might have a couple left in his garage. He'd check. That was weeks ago.

This morning I opened a mysterious package. In it was a bubble wrapped object with a note that said, "The last one!" It was a new mug and it's made my day. Over and over again I am reminded of the generosity and love possessed by people in the book business. They freely donate books to schools, they give their personal time to community projects, they give their own scarce money to other bookstores that have suffered fires, floods, earthquakes, catastrophes of all kinds. They send tea mugs to booksellers made ridiculously happy by little things.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Sweetest Valentine

Last week I got some of the best valentines I'd ever received. They were from Bennion Elementary students. Mrs. Hartman, Bennion's librarian, and her students made valentines to thank me for the book donations I delivered to their school in late January. Each valentine tells of each child's love of books and reading. They still bring tears to my eyes.

Really, they should have been sent to all of you who bought books from our holiday Angel Tree and at the January Be $ensible gathering. I donated a couple of titles I loved. But mostly I was the courier for the titles you bought for the school.

Thank you generous customers for allowing me to deliver books to kids who love and need them. You really came through.


Book Cover of the Day

Open City
By Teju Cole
Random House $25

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

A Widow's Story, A Memoir
By Joyce Carol Oates
Ecco $27.99

Not only is this cover beautiful, the book is too. This book will become as a classic memoir of loss alongside Joan Didion's "Year of Magical Thinking". Highly recommended.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Bald Coot and Screaming Loon: Adventures in the Curious, Mysterious and Remarkable World of Birds
By Niall Edworthy
Perigee $17.95

Monday, February 21, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Tax Revolt: The Rebellion Against an Overbearing, Bloated, Arrogant, and Abusive Government
By Phil Valentine
Nelson Current 2005
Our price used: $9

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation
By Steven Johnson
Riverhead Books $26.95

Friday, February 18, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Fadeaway Girl
By Martha Grimes
Viking $26.95

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Journal of a U.F.O. Investigator
By David Halperin
Viking $25.95

(Oh no, I missed a few days! Sorry, everyone!)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Tales of the Madman Underground
By John Barnes
Penguin $9.99

Friday, February 11, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

The Dead Boys
By Royce Buckingham
Penguin $16.99

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Talk of the Devil: Encounters with Seven Dictators
By Riccardo Orizio
Walker 2003
Our price used: $10

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Be $ensible: An Update

If you missed the first Be $ensible event on January 22nd, you missed two hours (it seemed shorter!) of intelligent, non-inflammatory political discussion courtesy of Pat Shea, Rod Decker, and Paul Rolly. You also missed some dynamite bagels courtesy of Black Market Bagels and coffee courtesy of Sam Weller's and the Coffee Garden.

I'm also pleased to report that many books were bought for the Bennion Elementary School library. In fact, it looked like a plague of locusts had swept over the table displaying the books that Bennion needed. The best kind of locusts of course: the reading, giving kind. Delivering the books was the highlight of my week. The librarian went through the box ooohing and aaahing over every title. She's already got plans for many of the books. Thank you all.

Don't feel bad, dear readers, if you missed January's Be $ensible event. There are still ways to get involved. First of all, visit the Be $ensible web site and nominate your favorite legislative actions for the most sensible, least sensible, and the best alternative to legislative actions this Session. You can also nominate the Pat Bagley cartoon that best captures the 2011 Legislative Session. We will award prizes—books of course!—to the nominees whose suggestions win in their respective categories. Awards will be given at the Session wrap up.

Yes, we'll be meeting again. On Saturday, March 12th at 4:00 p.m. we'll review the General Session of the 59th Utah State Legislature with the same wonderful panelists. Come prepared to discuss, celebrate, commiserate, and do whatever it takes to put the Leg to bed. As previously mentioned, we'll award the Be $ensible prizes at that time. We'll also have another table of books for donation to the Bennion Elementary School library.

Oh and don't forget to wear your Be $ensible button to the store during the time the Legislature meets. If you do, you'll get a 10% discount when you buy a book.

Book Cover of the Day

Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World
By Jane McGonigal
Penguin $26.95

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

By Karen Russell
Random House $24.95

Monday, February 7, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

The Illumination
By Kevin Brockmeier
Random House $24.95

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother
By Amy Chua
Penguin $25.95

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

By Chuck Klosterman
Simon & Schuster $15.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Book Cover of the Day

Zombie Spaceship Wasteland
By Patton Oswalt
Simon & Schuster $24.