January 2011 - Vol 5, Issue 6
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Magers & Quinn is ringing in the new year with a storewide sale. And we'll keep the January chill at bay throughout the month with hot new titles and great author readings guaranteed to get you out of the house.

In this month's newsletter:

  • The M&Q Customer Appreciation Sale--25% off everything in the store--Saturday, January 1 only
  • Gryphon: New and Selected Stories by Charles Baxter will be published January 11
  • The author of Stuff White People Like comes to M&Q
  • The Big Bang Book Club discusses human sacrifice
...and more.

We've got some good news for our loyal customers. M&Q is having a sale.

This holiday season was the busiest ever at Magers & Quinn. We had more people browsing, more events, and more satisfied customers than ever before--despite the snow and the "death of the book." In Uptown, at least, the book is alive, thank you very much.

We're very grateful for your support, and to show our thanks, M&Q is having a customer appreciation sale. We'll be open from 10:00am until 11:00pm, Saturday, January 1. Everything in the store will be 25% off the marked price. (No further discounts or coupons apply.) Come in and pick up the books you didn't get for Christmas--at bargain prices.

M&Q is unpacking hundreds of books for the new year. Here are a couple of them.

The Lake of Dreams by Kim Edwards

In the store: $23.99
Online: $26.21 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $26.95
Available January 4
At a crossroads in her life, Lucy Jarrett returns home from Japan, only to find herself haunted by her father's unresolved death a decade ago. Old longings stirred up by Keegan Fall, a local glass artist who was once her passionate first love, lead her into the unexpected. Late one night, as she paces the hallways of her family's rambling lakeside house, she discovers, locked in a window seat, a collection of objects that first appear to be useless curiosities, but soon reveal a deeper and more complex family past. As Lucy discovers and explores the traces of her lineage--from an heirloom tapestry and dusty political tracts to a web of allusions depicted in stained-glass windows throughout upstate New York--the family story she has always known is shattered, Lucy's quest for the truth reconfigures her family's history, links her to a unique slice of the suffragette movement, and yields dramatic insights that embolden her to live freely. With surprises at every turn, brimming with vibrant detail, The Lake of Dreams is an arresting saga in which every element emerges as a carefully place piece of the puzzle that's sure to enthrall the millions of readers who loved The Memory Keeper's Daughter.

Gryphon: New and Selected Stories by Charles Baxter

In the store: $24.99
Online: $20.96 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $27.95
Available January 11
Ever since the publication of The Harmony of the World in 1984, Charles Baxter has slowly gained a reputation as one of America's finest short-story writers. His gift for capturing the immediate moment, for revealing the unexpected in the ordinary, for showing how the smallest shock can pierce the heart of an intimacy. Gryphon brings together the best of Baxter's previous collections with seven new stories, giving us the most complete portrait of his achievement.

Charles Baxter once described himself as "a Midwestern writer in a postmodern age": at home in a terrain best known for its blandness, one that does not give up its secrets easily. In each of Baxter's stories we see the delicate tension between what we want to believe and what we need to believe.

We've got the right book for every reader. Stop in today.

Dig out of your snowbank and get to M&Q for these great January events.

January's Events
Wednesday, January 19 Christian Lander discusses Whiter Shades of Pale, 7:30pm

Thursday, January 20 Bill Johnston discusses Stone Upon Stone, 7:30pm

Friday, January 21 Kelly Durrow reads from The Girl Who Fell from the Sky, 7:30pm

Tuesday, January 25 The Big Bang Book Club discusses Cahokia: Ancient America's Great City on the Mississippi, 7:30pm

Thursday, January 27 Three poets celebrate the launch of Lowbrow Press: Matt Mauch (Prayer Book), MC Hyland (Neveragainland), and Brad Liening (Ghosts and Doppelgangers), 7:30pm

Visit www.magersandquinn.com
for details on all our upcoming events.

Wednesday, January 19, 7:30pm--Christian Lander discusses his new book Whiter Shades of Pale: The Stuff White People Like, Coast to Coast, from Seattle's Sweaters to Maine's Microbrews

In the store: $13.50
Online: $11.25 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $15.00
Available Now
The author of Stuff White People Like is back with a new collection of Caucasian foibles.

If you thought you had white people pegged as Oscar-party-throwing, Prius-driving, Sunday New York Times-reading, self-satisfied latte lovers--you were right. But if you thought diversity was just for other races, then hang on to your eco-friendly tote bags. Author and veteran white person Christian Lander is back with fascinating new information and advice for dealing with the Caucasian population.

Sure, their indie-band T-shirts, trendy politics, vegan diets, and pop-culture references make them all seem the same. But a closer look reveals that from Austin to Australia, from L.A. to the U.K., indigenous white people are as different from one another as 1 percent rBGH-free milk is different from 2 percent. Where do skinny jeans and bulky sweaters rule? Where is down-market beer the nectar of the hip? What are the capitals of vintage board games, Vespa scooters, Birkenstocks, and Frisbee sports? If you want to know the places cute girls with bangs and cool guys with beards roam and emo musicians and unpaid interns call home, you'd better switch off the Adult Swim reruns, put down that copy of The Onion, pick up this book, and prepare to see the white.

Christian Lander is the creator of the popular blog StuffWhitePeopleLike.com and the author of the New York Times bestselling book Stuff White People Like. A one-time Ph.D. candidate and acclaimed public-speaking instructor, he has traveled extensively in the United States and Europe, living among white people and studying their native customs. He presently resides in Los Angeles, where he enjoys such local pleasures as Ray Ban Wayfarers, skinny jeans, yoga, interior design, and crippling debt.

Thursday, January 20, 7:30pm--Translator Bill Johnston discusses Stone Upon Stone by Wieslaw Mysliwski

In the store: $17.99
Online: $15.00 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $20.00
Available Now
Bill Johnston is a prolific Polish language literary translator. His work has helped to bring English-speaking readers to classic and contemporary Polish poetry and fiction. In 2008 he received the Found in Translation Award for his translation of new poems by Tadeusz Różewicz; this book was also a finalist for the National Books Critics Circle Poetry Award.

Wieslaw Myśliwski's Stone Upon Stone is an epic novel of rural life--a profound and irreverent stream of memory cutting through the rich and varied terrain of one man's connection to the land, to his family and community, to women, to tradition, to God, to death, and to what it means to be alive. Wise and impetuous, plain-spoken and compassionate Szymek, recalls his youth in their village, his time as a guerrilla soldier, as a wedding official, barber, policeman, lover, drinker, and caretaker for his invalid brother. Filled with interwoven stories and voices, by turns hilarious and moving, Szymek's narrative exudes the profound wisdom of one who has suffered, yet who loves life to the very core.

Friday, January 21, 7:30pm--Heidi Durrow reads from The Girl Who Fell from the Sky

In the store: $12.55
Online: $10.46 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $13.95
Available Now
"A heartbreaking debut . . . keeps the reader in thrall."--Boston Globe

Rachel, the daughter of a Danish mother and a black G.I., becomes the sole survivor of a family tragedy after a fateful morning on their Chicago rooftop. Forced to move to a new city, with her strict African American grandmother as her guardian, Rachel is thrust for the first time into a mostly black community, where her light brown skin, blue eyes, and beauty bring a constant stream of attention her way. It's there, as she grows up and tries to swallow her grief, that she comes to understand how the mystery and tragedy of her mother might be connected to her own uncertain identity.

"The Girl Who Fell from the Sky can actually fly. . . Its energy comes from its vividly realized characters, from how they perceive one another. Durrow has a terrific ear for dialogue, an ability to summon a wealth of hopes and fears in a single line."--New York Times Book Review

Thursday, January 27, 7:30pm--Three Lowbrow Press authors read from their new books

Lowbrow Press is a Minnesota-based poetry press dedicated to publishing excellent books by excellent poets. Three of their poets visit Magers & Quinn Booksellers in January to read from their new work: Matt Mauch, MC Hyland, and Brad Liening.

Matt Mauch
Among the laundromats, VFWs, parking lots, and backyard cookouts of Matt Mauch's Prayer Book are humorous portraits of vulnerability warring with a kind of I-don't-want-to-wilt-too-much strength. The various speakers are lying in a ditch, wanting to become a brick in a building, communing with a pigeon, stuck in moments they want to get out of (or get something out of), wandering and wondering when they crave the ability to be arriving and deciding. Matt Mauch grew up in small Midwestern towns in the snow and wind-chill belt. Mauch teaches writing and literature in the AFA program at Normandale Community College, and also coordinates the reading series there. He lives in Minneapolis.

MC Hyland
The poems in Neveragainland construct a poetics of space, evoking films, maps, magazines, homes--things with plots, markers, events. "These are spaces in which to play, to dream, to feel at home," says Farrah Field, author of Rising. MC Hyland lives in Minneapolis, where she runs DoubleCross Press and the Pocket Lab Reading Series, and works as an administrator and occasional letterpress instructor at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts.

Brad Liening
"The poems in Brad Liening's Ghosts and Doppelgängers offer up a surrealist melting pot full of oozing, bubbling, nightmarish Americana. They sound like Emma Lazarus on acid; like Thomas Paine and Eric Bogosian playing Exquisite Corpse exquisitely; like a young Charles Simic guest hosting TMZ. Through ironic memoirs, political rants, dramatic monologues in the voice of Nicolas Cage and other sizzling larks, Liening pokes fun at the wounded, consumerist megalomaniac in all (or most) of us. Ghosts and Doppelgängers is a fabulous book full of both absurdist pyrotechnics and satirical force. There's a new and complicated beauty here that's "like what you see / when you stare at the sun / with your eyes closed." -- Gregory Lawless, author of I Thought I Was New Here. Brad Liening is a graduate of the University of Michigan and the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop. He lives in Minneapolis.

Learn more about Lowbrow Press at lowbrowpress.com.

In the months ahead, M&Q will be hosting great authors including
  • Tea Obrecht (March 14)
  • Joshua Foer (March 24)
  • Tiphanie Yanique (April 3)
  • Phillip Connors (April 6)
  • John Sayles (May 31)
A complete listing of all our events is available at www.magersandquinn.com.

The Big Bang Book Club is a science book club for non-scientists. Our next meeting will be 7:00pm, Tuesday, January 25, at duplex restaurant.bar, 2516 Hennepin Ave S, in Minneapolis.

In the store: $12.60
Online: $10.50 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $14.00
Available Now
January's book is Cahokia: Ancient America's Great City on the Mississippi. Cahokia has long drawn the attention of generations of archaeologists, whose work produced evidence of complex celestial timepieces, feasts big enough to feed thousands, and disturbing signs of human sacrifice. Drawing on these fascinating finds, Cahokia presents a lively and astonishing narrative of prehistoric America.

The Big Bang Book Club mixes arts and science into a heady brew. It is sponsored by

Several recent bestsellers are out now in paperback. Check out our front table for these and many, many more good books.

The Hundred Secret Senses by Amy Tan

In the store: $14.40
Online: $12.00 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $16.00
Available Now
"The wisest and most captivating novel tan has written."--The Boston Globe

Set in San Francisco and in a remote village of Southwestern China, Amy Tan's The Hundred Secret Senses is a tale of American assumptions shaken by Chinese ghosts and broadened with hope. In 1962, five-year-old Olivia meets the half-sister she never knew existed, eighteen-year-old Kwan from China, who sees ghosts with her "yin eyes." Decades later, Olivia describes her complicated relationship with her sister and her failing marriage, as Kwan reveals her story, sweeping the reader into the splendor and violence of mid-nineteenth century China. With her characteristic wisdom, grace, and humor, Tan conjures up a story of the inheritance of love, its secrets and senses, its illusions and truths.

The king's Speech: How One Man Saved the British Monarchy by Mark Logue

In the store: $13.45
Online: $11.21 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $14.95
Available Now
It's the eve of World War II, and King Edward VIII has abdicated the throne of England to marry the woman he loves. Never has the nation needed a leader more. But the new monarch, George VI--father of today's Queen Elizabeth II--is painfully shy and cursed with a terrible stammer. How can he inspire confidence in his countrymen when he cannot even speak to them? Help arrives in speech therapist Logue, who not only is a commoner, but Australian to boot. Will he be able to give King George his voice? The King's Speech tells an inspiring tale of triumph over adversity and the unlikely friendship between a reluctant king and the charismatic subject who saved the throne.

Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro

In the store: $13.50
Online: $11.25 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $15.00
Available Now
With clarity and ease, Alice Munro once again renders complex, difficult events and emotions into stories that shed light on the unpredictable ways in which men and women accommodate and often transcend what happens in their lives. In the first story a young wife and mother receives release from the unbearable pain of losing her three children from a most surprising source. In another, a young woman, in the aftermath of an unusual and humiliating seduction, reacts in a clever if less-than-admirable fashion. Other stories uncover the "deep-holes" in a marriage, the unsuspected cruelty of children, and how a boy's disfigured face provides both the good things in his life and the bad. And in the long title story, we accompany Sophia Kovalevsky--a late-nineteenth-century Russian émigré and mathematician--on a winter journey that takes her from the Riviera, where she visits her lover, to Paris, Germany, and, Denmark, where she has a fateful meeting with a local doctor, and finally to Sweden, where she teaches at the only university in Europe willing to employ a female mathematician. Too Much Happiness is a compelling, provocative, and daring collection.

Magers & Quinn is collecting books for Reach Out and Read, which promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud. Books collected at M&Q will go to children and families at well-child visits, in the waiting room, and in the newborn program at the Broadway Family Medicine Clinic in North Minneapolis.

You can participate by donating new or gently used books at the drop off at Magers and Quinn. Below are some great choices, available at bargain prices at Magers & Quinn.

Boardbooks--$2.99 each

Illustrated Books and Early Readers--from $4.99

Young Adult Books--from $3.99

We've got a great selection of calendars and planners to keep you organized throughout 2011. Get yours while they last.

Books & Bars meets twice a month--at Bryant-Lake Bowl in Uptown and at the Aster Cafe in St Anthony Main. Attend either meeting or come to both for a double dose of literary merriment.

6:30pm, Tuesday, January 11, 2011, at Bryant-Lake Bowl

In the store: $13.49
Online: $11.24 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $14.99
Available Now
The first book of 2011 is The Financial Lives of Poets. What happens when small-time reporter Matthew Prior quits his job to gamble everything on a quixotic notion: a Web site devoted to financial journalism in the form of blank verse? Before long, he wakes up to find himself jobless, hobbled with debt, spying on his wife's online flirtation, and six days away from losing his home. . . . Until, one night on a desperate two a.m. run to 7-Eleven, he falls in with some local stoners, and they end up hatching the biggest--and most misbegotten--plan yet.

6:30pm, Tuesday, January 25, 2011, at Aster Cafe

In the store: $13.45
Online: $11.25 (plus S/H)
Publisher's price: $15.00
Available Now
January's second book is The Likeness by Tana French. French astonished critics and readers alike with her mesmerizing debut novel, In the Woods. Now both French and Detective Cassie Maddox return to unravel a case even more sinister and enigmatic than the first. Six months after the events of In the Woods, an urgent telephone call beckons Cassie to a grisly crime scene. The victim looks exactly like Cassie and carries ID identifying herself as Alexandra Madison, an alias Cassie once used. Suddenly, Cassie must discover not only who killed this girl, but, more importantly, who is this girl? A disturbing tale of shifting identities, The Likeness is a triumph of suspense fiction.

Books & Bars is not your typical book club. We provide a unique atmosphere for a lively discussion of interesting authors, fun people, good food and drinks. You're welcome even if you haven't read the book.

Books & Bars is presented by Jeff Kamin and Magers & Quinn Booksellers, sponsored by Bryant-Lake Bowl, Aster Cafe, Metro Magazine and Surly Brewing.


Magers & Quinn is the largest independent bookstore in the Twin Cities. Stop in today or check our inventory on our website any time.

We'll be back next month with more great book news.

Until then,

David Enyeart
Magers and Quinn Booksellers

Call us: 612/822-4611
Or visit our website: http://www.magersandquinn.com
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