Edmonds Booktalk: Still plenty of time for summer reading

Here are a few of our staff recommendations for the rest of your summer reading — and don’t forget to check our staff-recommended shelves next time you are in the shop – we keep a great, rotating selection of our favorites on our shelves.

A brief list:

“The Wager” by David Grann.

“All the Sinner’s Bleed” by S.A. Cosby.

“The Covenant of Water” by Abraham Verghese.

“Trust” by Hernan Diaz.

“The Bookseller’s Secret” by Michelle Gable.

“Harlem Shuffle” and “Crook Manifesto” by Colson Whitehead.

“Pines” by Blake Crouch.

“Hide” by Kiersten White.

“When Women Were Dragons” by Kelly Barnhill.

“Thursday Murder Club” by Richard Osman.

“Drowning” by T.J. Newman.

More information about all of these on our blog here.

And more great lists to add to your stacks and take you into fall:

From the Washington Post, for the rest of the summer.

From the Washington Post, for the end of summer, and beyond.

From The New York Times, books recommended for August.

Moira MacDonald, from The Seattle Times recommends summer paperbacks.

Barack Obama recommends books to read this summer.

Edmonds Bookshop Events.

Edmonds Bookshop Book Club:

Book Club news! We are bringing the evening book club meetings back as of July 2023! You may choose morning or evening gatherings. Thursday evening meetings will be the second Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday morning meetings will remain the third Wednesday at 9 a.m. Questions about anything? Ask here.
More information about the book club is here.

Author Liz Wong

Friday, Aug. 25, 2023: 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Join us for Children’s Story Time with Liz Wong.
We will open the shop a bit early [at 9:30 a.m.] for this special event.

Join in the fun with local author Liz Wong, author of “Quackers” and “I Am Not a Penguin: A Pangolin’s Lament.”

From her website: Liz Wong was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, where she spent her early childhood painting and clambering about in mango trees. Winning the first-place trophy in her elementary school poster contest encouraged her to pursue art instead of a sensible career in finance like the rest of her family. Liz holds bachelor’s degrees in art and anthropology from the University of Washington and currently resides in Edmonds with her husband and son.
“Connecting with children is one of my favorite things about being an author/illustrator.”
Find Liz on her website and on Twitter.

Recent book releases of note:
“Wolfsong : Green Creek #1” by TJ Klune. A fantasy romance sensation by staff favorite author TJ Klune, about love, loyalty, betrayal, and family. The Green Creek Series is for adult readers. LGBTQIA+

“The Librarianist: A Novel” by Patrick deWitt. When a retired librarian volunteers at a senior center, he starts to build a community, and an unexpected brush with the past reveals more about our buttoned-up protagonist.
For kids  “Let the Games Begin! The Bad Guys #17” by Aaron Blabey.

“The Housekeepers” by Alex Hay. When a housekeeper raised by con artists and thieves is unexpectedly dismissed from her position, she recruits a group of women to help her exact revenge…

For Ages 6-9 “The Skull: A Tyrolean Folktale” by Jon Klassen. The Caldecott Medalist and best-selling author-illustrator delivers a deliciously macabre treat for folktale fans.

“The Paris Agent: A Gripping Tale of Family Secrets” by Kelly Rimmer. Her latest book blends historical fiction and mystery in a web of courageous women.

“Silver Nitrate” by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. The genre-shifting author of “Mexican Gothic,” and “The Daughter of Doctor Moreau,” melds together threads of Mexican horror movies and Nazi occultism in her latest tale.

“Immortal Longings: Flesh & False Gods #1” by Chloe Gong. The bestselling YA author’s adult debut puts a high-octane fantasy twist on Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra.

“Crook Manifesto: A Novel” by Colson Whitehead. The two-time Pulitzer Prize winner continues his Harlem saga in a powerful and hugely-entertaining novel that summons 1970s New York in all its seedy glory. Staff recommended!

“The Collector” by Daniel Silva. Legendary art restorer and spy Gabriel Allon joins forces with a brilliant and beautiful master-thief to track down the world’s most valuable missing painting but soon finds himself in a desperate race to prevent an unthinkable conflict between Russia and the West. Highly recommended series!

“Everyone Here Is Lying” by Shari Lapena. “The most addictive book I’ve read in ages–so slick and disquieting and clever. Just brilliant.” –Lisa Jewell, bestselling author of “The Family Remains.”

“Kala: A Novel” by Colin Walsh. A gripping literary page-turner from a rising Irish talent in which former friends, estranged for twenty years, reckon with the terrifying events of the summer that changed their lives. Perfect for fans of Tana French.

“Somebody’s Fool” by Richard Russo. The Pulitzer Prize-winning author returns to the characters that captured the hearts and imaginations of millions of readers in his beloved best sellers “Nobody’s Fool” and “Everybody’s Fool.” Staff recommended.

For Young Adult Readers  “One of Us Is Back: One of Us Is Lying #3” by Karen M. McManus. Someone from the Bayview Crew’s past has resurfaced to finish what they started in the third installment of this electrifying mystery series.
“The Whalebone Theatre” by Joanna Quinn. Now in paperback. Staff recommended: one of Michelle’s favorite books of 2022!

“Light Bringer: A Red Rising Novel” by Pierce Brown. “Brown’s plots are like a depth charge of nitromethane dropped in a bucket of gasoline. His pacing is 100% him standing over it all with a lit match and a smile, waiting for us to dare him to drop it.”—NPR. Staff favorite author.

Books of note being released in August:

“Time’s Mouth” by Edan Lepucki. Lepucki spins a multigenerational tale around a 1950s cult leader named Ursa, who flees Connecticut as a teenager after discovering she can travel back in time. She lands in California, where she sets up a women-only commune. But her abilities alter the lives of her family…  Great interview of Edan Lepucki by friend of the bookshop Neal Thompson on his substack, here. One of NPR’s Most Anticipated Books of the Summer. August 1, 2023.

“Tom Lake” by Ann Patchett. A meditation on youthful love, married love, and the lives parents have led before their children were born. Both hopeful and elegiac, it explores what it means to be happy even when the world is falling apart. As in all of her novels, she combines compelling narrative artistry with piercing insights into family dynamics. Patchett will be at Seattle Arts + Lectures September 6, 2023. Info here. One of NPR’s Most Anticipated Books of the Summer. Recommended by NYT. August 1, 2023.

“The Last Ranger: A Novel” by Peter Heller. Chosen for August Indie Next. Staff favorite author! August 1, 2023.

“The End of August” by Yu Miri. From the National Book Award-winning author, an extraordinary, ground-breaking, epic multi-generational novel about a Korean family living under Japanese occupation. August 1, 2023.

“Jezebel” by Megan Barnard. With a bold voice reminiscent of Madeline Miller’s Circe, a stunning reimagining of the story of a fierce princess from Tyre and her infamous legacy. In paperback. August 1, 2023.

“Family Lore: A Novel” by Elizabeth Acevedo. Partial review from Moira Macdonald: Acevedo, who won the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature with her novel “The Poet X,” here makes her debut in fiction for adults with a family saga of Dominican American sisters, one of whom has the gift of knowing when people will die.[from her ‘books to look forward to in 2023’ column, here.] One of NPR’s Most Anticipated Books of the Summer. August 1, 2023.

“The Keeper of Hidden Books” by Madeline Martin. A heartwarming story about the power of books to bring us together, inspired by the true story of the underground library in WWII Warsaw, by the author of The Last Bookshop in London. In paperback. August 1, 2023.

“The Underworld: Journeys to the Depths of the Ocean” by Susan Casey. The best-selling author has written extensively about sea life, takes readers to one of the world’s most remote reaches: the deep ocean, which has fascinated humans for centuries. It’s home to otherworldly creatures and a wholly distinct ecosystem with volcanoes and mountains — and we’re only beginning to understand its complexity. August 1, 2023.

“Pie School: Lessons in Fruit, Flour, and Butter” by Kate Lebo. A completely updated and expanded edition of Pie School, a cookbook about the art and science of flaky crust, lush fruit fillings, and the magic that happens when you put them together. Now with 20 new mouthwatering pies! August 1, 2023.

“Now is Not the Time to Panic” by Kevin Wilson. Now in paperback. August 1, 2023.

“Bridge” by Lauren Beukes. While emptying her mother’s house, Bridget finds a “dreamworm” — an object that allows her to visit all the possible versions of her life, including those where her mother might still be alive. Staff recommended author! August 8, 2023.

“Masters of Death” by Olivie Blake. From the bestselling author, a story about vampires, ghosts, and death itself.
*Now newly revised and edited with additional content, this hardcover edition will include new interior illustrations from Little Chmura and special illustrated endpapers from artist Polarts.* August 8, 2023.

“The Paris Mystery” by Kirsty Manning. Manning launches a new mystery series starring intrepid reporter Charlie James, who faces off against professional sexism and a cold-blooded killer in late-1930s Europe. After a circus party ends in death, Manning embarks on a serpentine investigation that takes her through swinging Paris at its hedonistic peak. In paperback. August 8, 2023.

“Mister Magic: A Novel” by Kiersten White. Who is Mister Magic? Former child stars reunite to uncover the tragedy that ended their show—and discover the secret of its enigmatic host—in this “skin-crawling story of pop culture fandom and ‘90s nostalgia.”  Staff recommended author! August 8, 2023.

“The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store” by James McBride. From the author of the bestselling Oprah’s Book Club pick “Deacon King Kong” and the National Book Award–winning “The Good Lord Bird,” a novel about small-town secrets and the people who keep them. Great review in The Washington Post, here. Recommended by NYT.Staff recommended author! August 8, 2023.

“Medusa’s Sisters” by Lauren J. A. Bear. Even before they were transformed into Gorgons, Medusa, Stheno, and Euryale were unique among their immortal family. A vivid and moving reimagining of the myth of Medusa and the sisters who loved her. August 8, 2023.

“Sun House” by David James Duncan. This novel of ideas, which took Duncan 16 years to complete, follows all manner of people who are staring down crises of faith. These lost souls — from cowboys to urban refugees — make their way to Montana and build new communities for themselves. “I’m really trying to portray something that might give somebody hope,” Duncan said of the book in an interview with The Idaho Mountain Express. “When I shatter a heart, I try as best as I can to at least partially mend it as well.” August 8, 2023.

“California Golden” by Melanie Benjamin. Two sisters navigate the thrilling, euphoric early days of California surf culture in this dazzling saga of ambition, sacrifice, and the tangled ties between mothers and daughters from the bestselling author of “The Aviator’s Wife.” Staff recommended author! August 8, 2023.

“None of This Is True” by Lisa Jewell. A scintillating new psychological thriller about a woman who finds herself the subject of her own popular true crime podcast. August 8, 2023.

“Whalefall” by Daniel Kraus. “The Martian” meets 127 Hours in this “powerfully humane” (Owen King, New York Times bestselling author) and scientifically accurate thriller about a scuba diver who’s been swallowed by an eighty-foot, sixty-ton sperm whale and has only one hour to escape before his oxygen runs out.
Suspenseful and cinematic, “Whalefall” is an “astoundingly great” (Gillian Flynn, New York Times bestselling author) thriller about a young man who has given up on life…only to find a reason to live in the most dangerous and unlikely of places. Interview on NPR. Recommended by NYT. August 8, 2023.

“Shark Heart: A Love Story” by Emily Habeck. A gorgeous debut novel of marriage, motherhood, metamorphosis, and letting go, this intergenerational love story begins with newlyweds Wren and her husband, Lewis — a man who, over the course of nine months, transforms into a great white shark. Washington Post Recommends Books for Summer. Also the #1 pick for Indie Next August! August 8th, 2023.

“The Invisible Hour” by Alice Hoffman. From the beloved author of the Practical Magic series comes an enchanting novel about love, heartbreak, self-discovery, and the enduring magic of books. Staff beloved author! August 15, 2023.

“Fever House” by Keith Rosson.  A small-time criminal. A has-been rock star. A shadowy government agency. And a severed hand whose dark powers threaten to destroy them all. One of NPR’s Most Anticipated Books of the Summer. August 15, 2023.

For Ages 14 +   “The Last Girls Standing” by Jennifer Dugan. As the only two survivors of a summer camp massacre, Sloan and her girlfriend Cherry form a seemingly unbreakable bond, but as Sloan discovers more about the attack she begins to suspect Cherry may be more than just a survivor.
Young Adult Fiction | Thrillers & Suspense | Romance | Horror | LGBTQ+  August 15, 2023

Spin a Black Yarn: Novellas” by Josh Malerman.  Five harrowing novellas of horror and speculative fiction from the singular mind of the New York Times bestselling author of “Bird Box.” In paperback. August 15, 2023.

“Book of Night” by Holly Black. In paperback! August 15, 2023.

“They Called Us Exceptional” by Prachi Gupta. An Indian American daughter reveals how the dangerous model minority myth fractured her family in this searing, brave memoir. August 22, 2023.

“The Continental Affair: A Novel” by Christine Mangan. The bestselling author of “Tangerine,” returns with a tense and suspenseful train ride through Europe in the early 1960s–with stolen money, secret lives, and damaged pasts. Recommended by The Washington Post. August 22, 2023.

For Ages 8 to 12  “Rewind” by Lisa Graff. In this immersive, laugh-out-loud time-travel novel, Graff employs snarky, youthful prose and abundant nostalgic early 1990s callbacks to explore issues surrounding fate, destiny, and connection via one 12-year-old’s yearning to find a place—or time—where she truly belongs. August 22, 2023.

“Learned by Heart” by Emma Donoghue. Moira Macdonald: The Irish-born Donoghue is perhaps best known for “Room,” but her historical novels are a joy. This one’s set in the early 19th century in York, where two girls at boarding school fall dangerously in love. [from Moira’s “books to look forward to in 2023” column, here.] August 29, 2023.

“Vampires of El Norte” by Isabel Cañas. Vampires and vaqueros face off on the Texas-Mexico border in this supernatural western from the author of “The Hacienda.” August 29, 2023.

“The Breakaway” by Jennifer Weiner. Abby Stern is at a crossroads in her relationship with her boyfriend—to move in together or not to move in together?—so she jumps at the chance to lead a bike trip from New York City to Niagara Falls. But things get complicated in Weiner’s latest superb mix of hilarity and emotional depth. Recommended by NYT. August 29, 2023.

“Happiness Falls: A Novel” by Angie Kim. A Korean American family in Virginia is grappling with a crisis: When a teenager named Eugene — who has a rare genetic condition that prevents him from speaking — comes home from a walk covered in blood and without his father, the family must investigate the disappearance and find a way for Eugene to reveal what happened. Recommended by NYT. August 29th, 2023.

For Ages 9 to 12   “Barely Floating” by Lilliam Rivera. While trying to achieve her dream of one day joining the L.A. Mermaids, a synchronized swimming team, middle schooler Nat must overcome challenges stemming from others’ anti-fat bias, her parents’ disapproval, and her own intense feelings. August 29, 2023.

Some great blog posts/lists:

Summer escapist reads for the cabana or the beach! From WaPo and NYT. Here on our blog.

The New York Times recommends books coming in July.  On our blog here.

Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association [PNBA] bestseller list. Updated weekly. We do our best to have all of these books in stock.  [There is a link on the home page – under the picture – directly to the weekly bestseller list. Usually updated on Wednesdays!]

Author, journalist, whiskey-sipper and friend of the bookshop Neal Thompson has a fantastic blog/newsletter called Blood and Whiskey! It’s all about crime fiction and true crime: roundups, reviews, author interviews. Plus cocktails and playlists! Check it out here.

National bestselling authors [and friends of the Bookshop!] Marie Bostwick, Rachel Linden and Katherine Reayhost “The 10 Minute Book Talk” and gather with author friends weekly to chat about so many new and wonderful books! For 10 short and sweet minutes. Link to the free YouTube Channel is here!

We will keep posting our favorite reads, along with links to all kinds of book-related interesting things! In all the places: on our website, Facebook, and Instagram.

You may pre-order any forthcoming title by visiting our website. 

Stay safe. Enjoy the little things. And as always: Happy reading!

— By Elaine Mattson

Edmonds native Elaine Mattson has worked at The Edmonds Bookshop off and on since she was 12 years old, and has also worked at a book wholesaler, a book publisher, and for the book publishing division of a large local software company (yes, that one). “I was raised a book lover [thanks, Mom!],” Mattson says. “We got book lights by our beds as soon as we were old enough to read. And then I probably got in trouble for reading too late the very next night. And I still read too late!”



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