Hey kids! Waldo, our favorite red-white-and-blue wanderer, is back again this summer touring the special places that make our community unique — and of course weird! All month long he’ll be daring you to find him as he visits some of our most notable local independent businesses.
To participate in our fun and festive Find Waldo Local scavenger hunt, visit our website to download your official Find Waldo Passport that lists participating businesses (or pick one up in-store). Beginning July 1st, visit as many of the businesses as you can and find Waldo!
When you find Waldo, someone at each store will either sign or stamp your card. Bring your stamped passport to BookPeople on Saturday, August 3 at 12pm for our Wonderful Waldo Wrap Up Party for prizes, games, pizza courtesy of Austin’s Pizza, and fun with our friend Waldo in person! If you collect at least 10 different store stamps/signatures, you can bring them to BookPeople to claim an “I Found Waldo” sticker PLUS be entered in a drawing for a 6-volume deluxe set of Waldo books and other great prizes.
If you can’t make it to the party, bring your stamped passport back to BookPeople any time in July to receive your official sticker and enter our Grand Prize Drawing!
On your mark… Get set… Get ready for July 1st!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged austin, BookPeople, candlewick, find waldo local | Leave a Comment »
I prefer reading at home, draping myself across various chair-, bed-, and floor-like surfaces. Instrumental music is… well, instrumental. As the photo suggests, perhaps ukulele is an appropriate summer soundtrack.
1. Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates by Tom Robbins
Change your paradigm this summer with the master of taboo; Tom Robbins is usually all over the place with his prose, but this is a proper novel with taboo subject matter ranging from psychedelic curses to inappropriate romance. A smooth yet hilarious read.
2. Island by Aldous Huxley
If anthropologists study unknown cloistered societies to find unexpected enlightenment or perfection, Aldous Huxley mapped the fantasy of such a world for them. One of his later works, Island houses much more appreciation for moment-by-moment experience, still with a healthy dose of political irony. It’s the greatest classic nobody told you about.
3. Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra
Our Top Shelf pick for June, this is the book that has gotten rave reviews from one staff member after another, and I only know one thing: I must read it. (Reading now.)
4. Point Your Face at This by Demetri Martin
Demetri Martin came to BookPeople recently, and I realized that for a comedian, he’s a pretty down to earth guy. You wouldn’t know it by these ridiculous drawings, though. They’re the perfect antidote to your summer blues.
5. Hundred Secret Senses by Amy Tan
I loaned my copy to a friend this summer. It’s a beautiful journey through the world of the dead, the world of dreams, and past lives. Amy Tan’s ability to touch the heart of Asian mysticism while keeping a firm ground on American soil is one of the reasons that I love her. The other is her woven prose.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged austin, BookPeople, summer reads | 1 Comment »
The Silver Star by Jeannette Walls
Reviewed by Kate
Over the time it took me to finish Jeannette Walls’s newest novel, The Silver Star, I experienced that blissful craving to read the book at every possible moment. I became wrapped up in the lives of twelve-year-old Jean (called Bean) and fifteen-year-old Liz. Abandoned by their mother, the sisters make their way to the only other family they know, their Uncle Tinsley, who lives in the decaying family mansion in the small town of Byler, Virginia. The sisters have little knowledge of their family history, and in adjusting to rural life uncover truths about their past and about themselves.
One of my favorite aspects of the novel was the strong sister relationship, the heart of the story. With Bean and Liz, Walls captures the powerful bond that is unique to sisterhood. Despite their differences–Bean is scrappy and optimistic while Liz is intelligent, quirky, withdrawn–they support each other and act as a team, each receptive to the other’s strengths and weaknesses. Liz saved Bean’s life when Bean was just a baby, and when Liz gets in trouble Bean is the first to fight back. Through Bean’s concern for Liz, the novel echoes To Kill a Mockingbird, as she refuses to passively accept the victimization of her older sister by cruel peers and adults who abuse their power.
I haven’t read Walls’s work before, but I imagine she does here as she does best in her other works: weave beauty into painful, unjust situations. While she may be crafting a work of fiction, her novel clearly echoes with personal struggle and emotion, which enhances her writing and strengthens its emotional impact on the reader. I found myself feeling as the sisters must have felt; frustrated with horrible injustice, yet amazed by the support and friendship of the community. In the end, I think that the strong emotional connection that Walls establishes both among the characters and between the characters and reader are the foremost aspects of the novel that made it such a heartbreaking, yet supremely enjoyable read. I loved it, and I think you will, too.
Jeannette Walls speaks about and signs copies of The Silver Star here at BookPeople on Tuesday, June 18 at 7pm. Tickets are required for the signing portion of the event and available only with the purchase of a copy of The Silver Star from BookPeople. Books and tickets are available in-store and via bookpeople.com. The speaking portion of the event is free and open to the public.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged austin, BookPeople, JEannette Walls, scribner, the silver star | Leave a Comment »
Cindy and Khaled
Hundreds of people packed our second floor last night to hear Khaled Hosseini read from his new novel, And the Mountains Echoed. Before he took to the podium, we chatted with him about – what else – books. Here are a few titles he personally recommends:
A Hologram for the King by Dave Eggers
How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Mohsin Hamid
Dear Life: Stories by Alice Munroe
Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann
He told us that right now, he’s reading The Lowland, a new novel by Jhumpa Lahiri that will be on shelves in September. He said it’s “really, really good.” Next on his list: We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler and A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra.
So there’s your summer reading list, as compiled by Khaled Hosseini. While talking books he also managed to sign many, many extra copies of And the Mountains Echoed for us. They’re available on our shelves and via bookpeople.com. Thanks to everyone who came out to see him, it was an incredible night!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged and the mountains echoed, austin, BookPeople, jhumpa lahiri, khaled hosseini, riverhead books, the lowland | 2 Comments »
Transatlantic by Colum McCann
Reviewed by Consuelo
Colum McCann is back, and doing what he does best – weaving disparate storylines across time and place into one stunning work of fiction.
TransAtlantic begins with the stories of four real-life men with ties to Ireland. Jack Alcock and Teddy Brown make the first transatlantic flight from Newfoundland to the Irish coast. McCann’s decision to start with these two men is brilliant and his account of their adventure is gripping and attention grabbing. He also provides a glimpse of Frederick Douglass, on a book tour in Ireland, that humanizes such a legendary figure. The section that describes Senator George Mitchell’s attempts at promoting peace in Northern Ireland is subtle, and more personal than political.
And then McCann uses his special brand of literary magic and tells the tale of four generations of women who tie these men together. It never feels like a mere machination or manipulation because it’s done with such balance and precision that each character is needed or none of them would exist. Irish housemaid Lily Duggan makes the courageous decision to immigrate to the United States and must reinvent herself several times as she struggles with multiple hardships. Her journalist daughter leads an unconventional life in Newfoundland with her own daughter, Lottie, until life leads them back to Ireland. Lottie and her daughter Hannah must endure a terrible tragedy that breaks both their hearts.
Each of these women is both strong and vulnerable, deepening the humanity of the men that came before them in the first half of the book. McCann has a range of emotional nuance that allows his characters to come to life. He so carefully chooses the moments in these characters’ lives that best tell us who they are and connect with each other, that a novel that seems epic in scope has a beautiful simplicity that truly soars.
Copies of Transatlantic are available in-store and via bookpeople.com.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged austin, BookPeople, colum mccann, random house, transatlantic | Leave a Comment »
Tonight’s the big night! Khaled Hosseini, bestselling author of The Kite Runner, is here at 7pm with his new novel, And the Mountains Echoed. Books and tickets for the signing are still available. You can get them in-store or via bookpeople.com (please note: we will stop processing online orders for this event at 3pm today; after 3pm, books will be available in-store).
If you can’t make it to the event and would like a signed copy of the book, you have until 3pm today to order one via bookpeople.com or by giving us a call (512-472-5050). We ship all over the world. After 3pm, we will no longer accept orders for signed copies. Your best bet is to give us a call tomorrow to inquire about signed stock.
If you’re planning on coming down to the store tonight for the event (and we certainly do hope you can make it), please be aware of the following guidelines:
The speaking portion of this event is free and open to the public. Seating is limited and is first come, first serve.
Tickets are required for the signing portion of the event.
Tickets are only available with the purchase of a copy of And the Mountains Echoed from BookPeople.
Hosseini will sign an unlimited number of copies of And the Mountains Echoed per person who has a ticket. He will sign up to three other books in addition to And the Mountains Echoed per person who has a ticket.
Only books will be signed at this event, no memorabilia.
If you have any questions, send an email to online (at) bookpeople.com or give us a call (512-472-5050).
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged and the mountains echoed, austin, BookPeople, khaled hosseini, riverhead books | 2 Comments »