Welcome to The Bookies' Latest Update!                               December 2015
The Bookies Newsletter
Socks for Christmas!
Does it sound crazy if we say we are all about socks this Christmas? It might sound less crazy if you check out the fun range of socks we have in the store!

Read on to discover what we're giving our families and friends (apart from socks). We also have a suggestion from special guest star, Maureen Corrigan. All these books and gifts are available in the store now - while stocks last - and, remember, we wrap for free! And if you really have no idea what to buy, how about a Bookies gift card?
But don't forget about the socks...they're even better if they come with a book!
We give you a 15% discount on every purchase made by cash or check! (10% for a credit card)

Susan T.  
The Princess in Black and the Perfect Princess Party

For my two little granddaughters, I'm getting the second Princess in Black book from Shannon and Dean Hale, The Princess in Black and The Perfect Princess Party. Such a big hit and lots of fun for little girls. I bought Devotion by Adam Makos for one of my sons in law (see our review of Devotion below).  And I think this will be a sock Christmas since we have such great, colorful socks in the store. (The girls in our family read the newsletter, so I won't say what I am getting them...)

Elephant and Piggie
I am planning on buying my three-and-a-half-year old grandson a few more of the Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Willems, along with the finger puppets set. I'm working toward completing the collection by the time he is five or so. The characters are fun and their expressions are priceless. Very imaginative writing for young kids.

Omnivore_s Dilemma
For my mom, I'm getting the game Swish Junior and The Man Who Counted. For my grandma, a crossword fan, one of our huge selection of New York Times crossword puzzle books. Sticker books are perfect for my two-year-old niece and I'm giving my sister-in-law a Manatea infuser and some tea to go with it. I'm treating myself to an adult coloring book and the new young reader's version of The Omnivore's Dilemma -  the adult version was a little too dense for me, but I think the info is important!
The Boy Who Carried Bricks 
All my grandkids of grade 6 and up are getting the remarkable The Boy Who Carried Bricks for Christmas. Author Alton Carter had every reason to allow life to crush him. But as a teen he decided he wanted to be different and took control of his life. This is a great book to give to any teen asking, who am I and who do I want to be, whether they are a child of privilege or of social disadvantage. I finished this book with tears in my eyes. There is no better review from a bookseller than forking out my own cash to make sure the people I love benefit from reading this book. 


I took a photo of part of my kids' Christmas stash from The Bookies! I'm updating our games collection with Settlers of Catan and Cha-Ching!; exercising their brains with Kanoodle Genius (a 2015 Toy of the Year finalist) and a Hanayama puzzle; adding to  the bookcase with Peak by Roland Smith and the first in the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson - and, of course, giving them socks!  And let's not forget, the 2016 calendar for my Pusheen fan and the Magic Boxers - nifty tiny boxer shorts that expand in water. All great things for teens and pre-teens.

I'm putting together gift packages using different things from around the store.
Zen Socks
Jon Muth's Zen books with a stuffed panda make a great gift for a child who likes peaceful reads, and a friend to read them with. For a younger child, I like Sandra Boynton's Philadelphia Chickens book and CD, along with a stuffed chicken (yes, we do have almost every type of stuffed animal!). We've got so much for horse lovers, for example, horse classic National Velvet paired with a horse ranch music box. For adults, I'm looking at The Martian, by Andy Weir, paired with freeze
dried ice cream dots and Martian socks - and a pair of Sherlock Holmes socks with a book of short stories for the Sherlock Holmes fan. Finally, for the reader who loves to cook, I can't look past Voracious: A Hungry Reader Cooks Her Way Through Great Books by Cara Nicoletti, which gives recipes for meals eaten in some of our favorite books - from the 'perfect soft-boiled' egg in Jane Austen's Emma to the brown butter crepes in Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl.

I love the 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles we have in the store! My favorites for the holidays are 'I Had One of Those!', 'Storytime' and 'Bestsellers' - all featuring pictures of things we know and love!

Big Magic 
Last year I was raving about Amanda Palmer's The Art of Asking for my creative and artsy friends, and this year Elizabeth Gilbert's Big Magic tops my self-helpish, get your work out into the world memoir/manifesto. She's walking her talk (and making me laugh along the bumpy way). Likewise, Claudia Rankin blew me away with Citizen. It's part poetry, essays, and visual art. She explores race, the past and present and "what it means to be black in our racially divided society." It was on the NY Times 100 Notable books of 2015  and I have an activist friend who's getting it.

Maureen Corrigan
Maureen Corrigan
NPR book critic, Maureen Corrigan, recently visited the
No Better Friend
store, and, of course, we couldn't resist asking her for a recommendation! She suggested  No Better Friend: One Man, One Dog, and Their Extraordinary Story of Courage and Survival in WWII by Robert Weintraub, This is a true story from WW II when flight technician Frank Williams found himself in an internment camp in the Pacific, where he struck up a bond with a pointer dog named Judy. Their bond helped them survive brutality, starvation and disease, and became a beacon of hope for the other struggling internees. Judy was the the war's only official canine POW. Her bond with Frank endured through the war and beyond. It's an inspiring and beautiful story.

Larry and Dona's Adult Book Selection for the Holidays

Thing Explainer
Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words
Randall Munroe
$24.95, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

If you've ever wondered how things work, this is the book for you. Now you can find out, with the help of simple words and diagrams, and a good dose of humor. Brand new from Randall Munroe, who wrote last year's best-selling What If?

The Horse: The Epic History of Our Noble Companion
Wendy Williams
$26.00, Farrar, Straus and Giroux

An epic history of the horse for aficionados and admirers alike. This book is full of history, beauty and incredible insights about horses. A stunning gift book for the holidays.

The Anchoress
Robin Cadwallader
$26, Sarah Crichton Books

This book is set in 12th Century England, when Sarah vows to spend her life in an Anchor Hold, contemplating and praying away her days. Although she seeks to retreat from the world, she finds it comes to her anyway. This is a spiritual, but not religious book, contemplative, historically interesting, and refreshingly positive.  

Leaving Berlin
Joseph Kanon
$27, Atria Books

This book thoroughly conveys the danger hanging in the atmosphere of Berlin in 1947 when the Allies were jockeying for position as the Cold War began. A thrilling spy story which is also historically accurate. 

American Blood
American Blood
Ben Sanders
$24.99, Minotaur

A former undercover cop finds himself drawn into the search for a missing woman. Dark, violent and fast-paced! Action followed by action - hard to put down! Already optioned for a movie with Bradley Cooper.

Bohemian Gospel
Bohemian Gospel
Dana Chamblee Carpenter
$25.95, Pegasus

Set in 13th-century Bohemia, this is a great read, particularly for those who enjoyed Elizabeth Kostova's The Historian. Mouse possesses unnatural senses and an uncanny intellect that help her unravel threats against young King Ottaker - but they bring danger too.

The Girl From the Train
The Girl From The Train
Irma Joubert
$15.99, Thomas Nelson

The story of an orphaned German girl who is rescued from her journey to a concentration camp in Poland and adopted by a family in South Africa. Insightful about confronting and expressing emotions - a very positive and wholesome book. Recommended for older students and adults

Devotion: An Epic Story of Heroism, Friendship and Sacrifice
Adam Makos
$28, Ballantine Books

Devotion is the true story of how Tom Hudner won the Medal of Honor during the Korean War, but also of two pilots who were devoted to each other, their families, country and fellow service members. A good read for adults and young adults from about 14 up. Adam Makos is the author of the best-selling WWI history, A Higher Call - and we got to meet him recently when he came in for a signing.

Best Boy
Eli Gottlieb
Liveright/Norton, August 2015

This is a book that will not let me go. It is the story of Todd Aaron, an adult living in a care center for people on the autism spectrum. The real impact of the story comes from how the author takes us into the land of Todd's mind. There were times when my mood soared while reading, moments of laughter, and also sadness, fear and confusion. Todd is a man with challenges, but who is never to be pitied.

Fortune Smiles
The Hollow Land
Short stories are great to dip in and out of over the busy holiday season. A couple of our favorites are: Adam Johnson's National Book Award winner Fortune Smiles ($27, Random House), in-the-moment short stories which are thought-provoking, memorable, and gritty, and The Hollow Land, stories about two Cumbrian children, by Jane Gardam. Gardam also wrote the Old Filth Trilogy, which remains a constant on our list of recommended reads. 

Something a Little Different
We've upgraded our credit card systems - and now we have added Discover to the credit cards that we take! Discover card holders rejoice!

Sue Birthday
We recently celebrated owner Sue Lubeck's birthday in the store, with a delicious chocolate cake and a poem from Bookies' colleagues that made her cry!

Speaking of poetry - we have an original and wonderful Bookies Christmas poem on our website, you can read it here.

If you have any friends struggling for holiday gift ideas - or if you would like to drop a hint or two about what you would like - forward this newsletter to a friend!
Stocking stuffers
Quick Gifts and Stocking Stuffers!
Clockwise from top left: mini Broncos figure, snowman pen, ornament craft, mini Rubix cube, My Dog the Paradox gift book, dinosaur shape board book, Magic Boxer shorts (expand in water), reindeer baby rattle, mini pencils and notebook, A Letter to My Future Self book and a mini melting snowman. Lots more in the store!
Elf baby
Christmas Storytime!
Join us on Tuesday, December 22nd at 10:30 a.m. for a special Christmas Preschool Storytime with Elf Ryan, aka Santa's Little Book Helper. He's picked out lots of wonderful Christmas picture books to share with our young readers!