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Fax: (250) 595-1458
#111-1644 Hillside Ave.
Victoria, B.C. V8T 2C5
Last fall, we offered a money-back guarantee on hardcover copies of Erin Morgenstern‘s stunning debut novel The Night Circus. We had never done that before with a book, but then, there’s never been a book like The Night Circus.
Everyone who read it here loved it. And more, we believed in it. Enough to make an unprecedented offer: “buy it, and try it. If you don’t like it, we’ll give you your money back, no questions asked.”
Of the hundreds of copies of The Night Circus that we sold in hardcover, we didn’t have a single person ask us for a refund.
It really is that good a book.
Now, just in time for summer reading, The Night Circus is out in paperback. The money-back guarantee offer no longer applies, but we have every confidence in promising that you WILL love it.
Last September, I wrote of The Night Circus in the Globe and Mail: “Occasionally, though, and all too rarely, you’ll encounter a book that stops you in your tracks, a book the experience of which tears you open and leaves you gasping, a book that affects your head and your heart in equal measure. A book that makes the hair on your arms stand on end, and that has you picking up the phone or sending a text to tell everyone you know, “You have to read this.”
The Night Circus is one of those books. One of those rare, wonderful, transcendent books that, upon finishing, you want to immediately start again.”
I think I’m going to spend my weekend with the new paperback of The Night Circus; you should too.
It is within my personal opinion, that the world is an inherently good place. Be it by the simple gestures of holding a door, or letting someone ahead of you with fewer items in a grocery checkout… people will always try and do the best thing. However, and I’m sure a few other people may feel like this, as of late I’ve been getting the bad news blues every time I turn on the radio (yes, I still listen to the radio) or read a newspaper. There just never seems to be any good news… that’s where this book comes in.
Worldchanging 2.0 is probably without a doubt my favorite book we have ever carried in the store.
With that mammoth sentence aside, let me explain why. Where as most people I know are beginning to become bogged down by disaster X or annoying government issueY, this book not only shines a light onto said problems but offers a simple, blunt, humorous and most of all optimistic list of what you can do to help. Let me be clear, these are not ways you can think of helping, or struggle with how you could manage to help… but a book dedicated to reasonable projects that anyone can easily start today should they wish.
This incredibly thick soft-cover is not also gorgeous to look at cover-wise, but features many innovative and simple designs created to make life more sustainable, enjoyable, and most importantly meaningful. It also has some great interviews with the people who design these brilliant contraptions, a chapter sized bibliography for further reading on issues close to your heart, and thousands of working links to groups and documentation that will help you go forth and change the world. You can find Worldchanging 2.0 by Alex Steffen and other fascinating reads in our Ecology-Lifestyle section.
It would be easy to tell you about 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami in a single sentence; it’s a beautifully curious and unique story of love, loss and the enormous humanity to be found in the unknown. However, that makes it sound far more typical than it actually is. I’d rather ramble on a bit and try to more accurately express just how rewarding 1Q84 truly is. One thing I won’t tell you though is what the title means. That’s just one of the many perks for those who’ve read it.
1Q84 is a beautifully mysterious story, which in itself is enough to make for a great read. The aspect I enjoyed the most though was Murakami’s characters. The story is told from the perspective of two people, both of whom ever so cleverly toe the line between being bizarrely unique and completely typical. I often found myself pausing mid-page to consider just how similar, yet completely odd each and every one of us actually is. I’m at a loss to think of any other author who can simultaneously tell a great story as well as tell us about ourselves in such a comfortable manner. Murakami’s patient and introspective pace delivers something more than just a rewarding tale. What that something is though likely varies from reader to reader, so if you do read 1Q84 I’d love to hear what you took away from it.
Since 1Q84 was originally written in Japanese, I was skeptical of how well I would understand the translation and subject matter. However, I was never once at a loss to understand what was happening. Instead of being confused by the foreign setting, I was instead gently educated about life in Japan. The translation certainly seems to have been expertly handled as I would have been unable to tell it was not originally written in English.
It’s likely that you’re one of the many sad people who have never read Jules Verne’s brotherly love letters to Edgar Allen Poe. You may not even know the secret story behind the cover of Nancy Drew books or just how brooding Heathcliff truly was. Fortunately, we can solve this, and many other dilemmas for you. There aren’t many people who can make history, literature or Canadian politics hilarious, but Kate Beaton does so with unrelenting zeal in Hark! A Vagrant.
If stereotypes are to be believed, many of the people who would enjoy this book the most would likely never find it on their own. Not very many history fanatics or bibliophiles make it to our graphic novel section. However, the days of comics being for kids are dead and buried and there are some outstanding, intellectual, and most importantly, hilarious books to be had in the comic section.
Thankfully, you don’t have to trust me on just how brilliant Hark! A Vagrant is. You can view many great examples of Kate Beaton’s comics on her website, harkavagrant.com. I definitely encourage you to click through her site and see just how cleverly she breathes life into the most unlikely of people and events. Then I encourage you to stop by and pick up her book here. I’m not a gambling man, but I wager you’ll either love it yourself or know someone who’ll love it.
I’m not going to lie to you, we’ve all experienced it too much in our lives to ignore its existance… The holidays can be (a tad) stressful. What with the endless lists of items we select to surprise and delight endless lists of people, it’s easy to become distracted in all the pandemonium. Heaven forbid that you miss-place one of these lists! Well that’s where we come in.
We’ve just received an new invention that puts a new spin on organization. It’s called the Lulalu 360 clip. It comes in a delightful variety of bright candy colors and with the name Lulalu 360, it’s not hard to imagine a calm tropical beach somewhere far away. This brilliant new invention uses a patented new form of stickiness to hold your important documents to a multitude of flat surfaces including glass, metal, wood and most plastics. It also doesn’t leave a mark on whatever surface it adheres to, so there’s no need to worry about stains or gooey spots. To top it off, should your Lulalu lose some of its stickiness, you can renew it by adding a few drops of water!
With a calming name, color, and simplistic use, it’s easy to say that you’ll be much calmer using it as well.
On a separate but related note…
UNICEF cards are selling out fast. If you’re finding yourself strapped for time trying to select the perfect card for those on your holiday mailing lists, why not purchase a box set of UNICEF cards? With every box sold, UNICEF will donate a portion of the card’s cost to their world-wide programs to help young children. Isn’t this what the holidays are all about? Box sets come in various designs so you’re guaranteed to find one you’ll love. But as I’ve said before, they’re selling fast.
Both the UNICEF box sets and LuLaLu 360′s are for sale on displays at our Side Desk (that’s the one by the C.I.B.C hallway.)
*More great holiday picks to come, so be sure to stay tuned to our blog or click here to subscribe to our e-newsletter*
Few novels are quite so beloved, or so popular, as Middlesex, Jeffrey Eugenides‘ transfixing bestseller first published in 2002. It’s been a long wait for his next book, but The Marriage Plot, now on the shelves, is worth it.
The novel, which focuses on a group of friends in college and after, circles around a couple of key questions: are the great love stories of the nineteenth century dead? Or can there be a new story, written for today and alive to the roller coaster of feminism, sexual freedom, prenups and divorce? The answers are powerful and affecting, as one would expect of Eugenides.
Here’s a short video with Eugenides discussing the book:
And in this article from New York magazine, Evan Hughes explores some of the possible autobiographical roots of The Marriage Plot in Eugenides’ friendship with writers like David Foster Wallace, Jonathan Franzen, and Mary Karr. It’s great reading.
The Marriage Plot is on sale now, at Bolen Books in Hillside Center.
He talked about:
The Giller Prize shortlist:
David Bezmozgis – The Free World
Lynn Coady – The Antagonist
Patrick deWitt – The Sisters Brothers
Esi Edugyan – Half-Blood Blues
Zsuzsi Gartner – Better Living Through Plastic Explosives
Michael Ondaatje – The Cat’s Table
The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern
David Bowie: Starman – Paul Trynka
Pearl Jam Twenty