Edmonds Booktalk: Celebrate Banned Books Week and enjoy October events

By Elaine Mattson

This year, Banned Books Week is Sept. 30-Oct. 6, 2012, and celebrates the 30th Anniversary of the Freedom to Read. Once again, I feel the need to say: “Thanks, Mom!” She never censored what we read as we were growing up. I’m not saying that she didn’t suggest good and/or better books for us to read, but I certainly don’t remember her not allowing specific books. We could read whatever we wanted. Think about that for a moment: We could read whatever we wanted. I’m guessing that this is a true statement for most of you. How lucky are we?! Embrace your freedom! Read a banned book. Here is a current list of “frequently challenged books.” It doesn’t matter what you read, just keep reading!

October Events at the Edmonds Bookshop

Our Book Club book for Oct. 4 and 17:  “The Tiger’s Wife” by Tea Obreht.
In a Balkan country mending from war, Natalia, a young doctor, is compelled to unravel the mysterious circumstances surrounding her beloved grandfather’s recent death. Searching for clues, she turns to his worn copy of “The Jungle Book” and the stories he told her of his encounters over the years with “the deathless man.” But most extraordinary of all is the story her grandfather never told her—the legend of the tiger’s wife.

Thursday, Oct. 11, 6-7 p.m.: To celebrate Literacy Month, The Cat in the Hat will be at The Edmonds Bookshop to pose for photos, and to read to children; and he will appear again at Comstock Jewelers during Third Thursday Art Walk, October 18, 2012 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Comstock Jewelers is also accepting donations of new children’s books which will be distributed through the Seattle Alumnae Club of Pi Beta Phi and Page Ahead to at-risk children who have never owned a new book. To encourage this, The Edmonds Bookshop will give a 20-percent discount on any books purchased for this endeavor and also provide a coupon for a drawing at Comstock Jewelers. Book donors at the jewelry store will also receive a coupon for the drawing for a pair of pearl stud earrings valued at $195. AND! The Cat in the Hat will draw the winning coupon on Nov. 1!

Saturday, Oct. 20, at noon. We are happy to welcome Elizabeth Dost with her book, “Home Alone in America.”

Saturday, Oct. 27, at 11 a.m. Joanne Nelson, favorite local author of “The Witches Little Sister,” will be here to read her book and chat with her fans. Dressing up is welcome.

Recent book releases of note:
“Where’d You Go, Bernadette” by Maria Semple. On the local bestseller lists, and getting great word-of-mouth reviews since it was first published, this novel is centered around eighth-grader Bee: the daughter of a Microsoft genius and Bernadette Fox, a once-famous architect who has become a recluse in her Seattle home. Review in The Seattle Times. Chosen as a “Great Late-Summer Read” by Parade magazine!

“The Casual Vacancy” by JK Rowling. A blackly comic adult novel about a small English town. A few articles about this new book: the launch event in Britain; and a review of this new adult novel. And good news for Harry Potter fans: Rowling says she plans to return to writing for young people – and doesn’t rule out another book set in Harry Potter’s magical world.

“Winter of the World: Book Two of the Century Trilogy” by Ken Follett.  The second book in the Century Trilogy, follows the families Follett wrote about in “Fall of Giants” as they confront the chaos of World War II. Great review in The Seattle Times.

“San Miguel” by T.C. Boyle. On a tiny, desolate, windswept island off the coast of Southern California, two families, one in the 1880s and one in the 1930s, come to start new lives and pursue dreams of self-reliance and freedom. New review [9/23/12] in The Seattle Times.

For little kids. “The Further Tale of Peter Rabbit” by Emma Thompson, illus. by Eleanor Taylor. Actress Emma Thompson and illustrator Taylor collaborate on this new adventure starring the mischievous bunny who first appeared 110 years ago in Beatrix Potter’s original tale. Chosen as a Best Book of Fall 2012 by Publisher’s Weekly.  Great little article in Parade Magazine about how this book happened.

“In Sunlight and Shadow” by Mark Helprin. An old-fashioned pair of mismatched lovers in 1940’s Manhattan set against the spectacle of a vibrant and corrupt city in the wake of World War II. Review in The Seattle Times. Oct. 2

“Telegraph Avenue: A Novel” by Michael Chabon. This exuberant new novel chronicles life along an Oakland street, where two record-shop owners awash in nostalgia for the past confront the appetite of voracious capitalism. Great review in the Seattle Times.

“Garment of Shadows: A novel of suspense featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes” by Laurie R. King.

“It’s Fine by Me” by Per Petterson. A spare but memorable novel notable for Petterson’s ability to convey the alienation of a young man caught between a childish need for protection and a powerful desire to protect. Oct. 2

“Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories” by Sherman Alexie. Fifteen classic stories combined with 15 recent stories that show Alexie’s versatility, as well as his gifts for wicked humor. Oct. 2

“Live by Night” by Dennis Lehane. This new novel chronicles the rise of Joe Coughlin, an Irish-American gangster, in a masterful crime epic that spans from Prohibition-era Boston to Batista’s Cuba. Chosen as a Best Book of Fall 2012 by Publisher’s Weekly. Already being developed as a film for Leonardo DiCaprio, who starred in the film adaptation of Lehane’s “Shutter Island” [which has perhaps the best plot twist in contemporary fiction!] Oct. 2

Middle grade readers, age 10 and up. “The Mark of Athena: Heroes of Olympus, Book 3” by Rick Riordan. With old friends and new friends joining forces, a marvelous ship, fearsome foes, and an exotic setting, this promises to be another unforgettable adventure by the master storyteller. Oct. 2

“The Round House:  A Novel” by Louise Erdrich. One of the most revered novelists of our time delivers a page-turning masterpiece of literary fiction—at once a powerful coming-of-age story, a mystery, and a tender, moving novel of family, history, and culture. Oct. 2

And coming later in October:
For little kids. “This is Not My Hat” by Jon Klassen. From author of staff favorite “I Want my Hat Back,” comes further adventures of animals and hats, undersea this time! Oct. 9

“Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis” by Timothy Egan. One of the best non-fiction writers of our time takes on one of my favorite subjects: cannot wait! Oct. 9

“The Twelve: Book Two of The Passage Trilogy, A Novel” by Justin Cronin. Finally! Oct. 19

“Who Could That Be at This Hour?” (All the Wrong Questions) by Lemony Snicket and Seth. In a fading town, far from anyone he knew or trusted, a young Lemony Snicket began his apprenticeship in an organization nobody knows about. He began asking questions that shouldn’t have been on his mind. Now he has written an account that should not have been published, in four volumes that shouldn’t be read. This is the first volume, that really shouldn’t be read. Oct. 23

“Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust” by Ina Garten. A brand new cookbook coming this Fall! Interview in the Seattle Times, before her appearance at Benaroya on 9/16/12. And a mini-review of her appearance here. Book due out Oct. 30.

As always, check our website for all the latest in book news! Happy reading!

  1. Very excited about the Edmonds Bookshop and Comstock Jewelers promoting literacy! This helps to stop the cycle of poverty and all of the socio-economic problems that accompany it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Real first and last names — as well as city of residence — are required for all commenters.
This is so we can verify your identity before approving your comment.

By commenting here you agree to abide by our Code of Conduct. Please read our code at the bottom of this page before commenting.