Ep. 18: Lisa Gozashti, Owner and Manager of Brookline Booksmith

Have you stopped into your local independent bookstore this holiday season? Lisa Gozashti joins me this week to chat about one of my favorites: Brookline Booksmith in Brookline, Massachusetts. Lisa gives us the inside scoop on bookstore life and recommends some of her favorite reads.

 

 

You can also listen on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

 

I hope you are able to stop in at Brookline Booksmith or your local indie to finish your holiday shopping!

 

Lisa’s Favorites:

An Unnecessary Woman by Rabih Alameddine

There There by Tommy Orange

Immigrant Montana by Amitava Kumar

Nine Continents by Xiaolu Guo

Emissary by Yoko Tawada

Go, Went, Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck

Disoriental by Negar Djavadhi

Border by Kapka Kassabova

Happiness by Aminatta Forna

 

 

Brookline Booksmith’s Kids’ Department Favorites:

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Make Way For Ducklings by Robert McCloskey

The Track series by Jason Reynolds

The Dog Man series by Dav Pilkey 

Refugee by Alan Gratz 

Rescue and Jessica by Jessica Kensky and Patrick Downes illustrated by Scott Magoon

The Wild Robot series by Peter Brown 

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Meltdown by Jeff Kinney

One of Us is Lying by Karen McManus 

Not Quite Narwhal by Jessie Sima 

The Wings of Fire series by Tui Sutherland 

 

If you’re enjoying the podcast, please share it with a friend and be sure to subscribe. If you could also take a moment to rate and review A Bookish Home on iTunes to help people find the show.

 

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

 

 

Affiliate links for Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase a book through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

What I’ve Been Reading…

Lately, I’ve been loving hibernating with a good read while the snow falls.

Luckily, there are books from my TBR list scattered all over the house, so I have quite the stockpile at the ready.

Here are some of the books I’ve been reading lately:

One Day in December

by Josie Silver 41wMPIhMMHL._SX339_BO1,204,203,200_-2

This is the perfect book for fans of Love Actually and One Day to curl up with this holiday season. I spent a completely delightful afternoon on the couch devouring this one as I sipped hot chocolate. A lovely escape.

“Laurie is pretty sure love at first sight doesn’t exist anywhere but the movies. But then, through a misted-up bus window one snowy December day, she sees a man who she knows instantly is the one. Their eyes meet, there’s a moment of pure magic…and then her bus drives away. 

Certain they’re fated to find each other again, Laurie spends a year scanning every bus stop and cafe in London for him. But she doesn’t find him, not when it matters anyway. Instead they “reunite” at a Christmas party, when her best friend Sarah giddily introduces her new boyfriend to Laurie. It’s Jack, the man from the bus. It would be. 

What follows for Laurie, Sarah and Jack is ten years of friendship, heartbreak, missed opportunities, roads not taken, and destinies reconsidered. One Day in December is a joyous, heartwarming and immensely moving love story to escape into and a reminder that fate takes inexplicable turns along the route to happiness.”

Jane Austen at Home: A Biography

by Lucy Worsley


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Have you read Pride and Prejudice over and over? Own a prized copy of Persuasion Jane Austen At Home is a must read. I love books about books and this one does not disappoint. Lucy Worsley’s writing is engaging and this book was full of surprising, inspiring details about Jane’s home life and writing career that make me adore Jane Austen even more.

“Take a trip back to Jane Austen’s world and the many places she lived as historian Lucy Worsley visits Austen’s childhood home, her schools, her holiday accommodations, the houses–both grand and small–of the relations upon whom she was dependent, and the home she shared with her mother and sister towards the end of her life. In places like Steventon Parsonage, Godmersham Park, Chawton House and a small rented house in Winchester, Worsley discovers a Jane Austen very different from the one who famously lived a ‘life without incident’.

Worsley examines the rooms, spaces and possessions which mattered to her, and the varying ways in which homes are used in her novels as both places of pleasure and as prisons. She shows readers a passionate Jane Austen who fought for her freedom, a woman who had at least five marriage prospects, but–in the end–a woman who refused to settle for anything less than Mr. Darcy.”

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Girl, Wash Your Face

by Rachel Hollis

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If you’re looking for some tough love to start chasing down New Year’s resolutions, Girl Wash Your Face fits the bill. I recently started listening to Rachel Hollis’s Rise podcast and following her on social media. I found some of the chapters more helpful than others, but there are definitely useful insights and it’s an interesting peek behind the scenes at this online personality. To preview some of the book, you can listen to Hollis read chapters on several episodes of the podcast.

“As the founder of the lifestyle website TheChicSite.com and CEO of her own media company, Rachel Hollis developed an immense online community by sharing tips for better living while fearlessly revealing the messiness of her own life. Now, in this challenging and inspiring new book, Rachel exposes the twenty lies and misconceptions that too often hold us back from living joyfully and productively, lies we’ve told ourselves so often we don’t even hear them anymore.

With painful honesty and fearless humor, Rachel unpacks and examines the falsehoods that once left her feeling overwhelmed and unworthy, and reveals the specific practical strategies that helped her move past them. In the process, she encourages, entertains, and even kicks a little butt, all to convince you to do whatever it takes to get real and become the joyous, confident woman you were meant to be.”
 

The Perfect Score

by Rob Buyea

Rob Buyea is the master of the middle grade school story. I can’t count the number of times his Because of Mr. Terupt books were devoured by eager readers in my elementary school library! I recently picked up The Perfect Score and Buyea is definitely at it again, capturing the daily life at school and the dynamics between children, teachers, and parents so well. Next up for me is the recently published sequel, The Perfect Secret.

“No one likes or wants to take the statewide assessment tests. Not the students in Mrs. Woods’s sixth-grade class. Not even Mrs. Woods. It’s not as if the kids don’t already have things to worry about. . . .
 
Under pressure to be the top gymnast her mother expects her to be, RANDI starts to wonder what her destiny truly holds. Football-crazy GAVIN has always struggled with reading and feels as dumb as his high school–dropout father. TREVOR acts tough and mean, but as much as he hates school, he hates being home even more. SCOTT’s got a big brain and an even bigger heart, especially when it comes to his grandfather, but his good intentions always backfire in spectacular ways. NATALIE, know-it-all and aspiring lawyer, loves to follow the rules—only this year, she’s about to break them all.
 
The whole school is in a frenzy with test time approaching—kids, teachers, the administration. Everyone is anxious. When one of the kids has a big idea for acing the tests, they’re all in. But things get ugly before they get better, and in the end, the real meaning of the perfect score surprises them all.”

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Crafty Llama

by Mike Kerr, Illustrated by Renata Liwska

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I’ve been loving reading this book to my toddler. Crafty Llama has such a sweet, cozy feel (perfect for this time of year) and I really like the message about the joy of “making”.

“Llama loves to make things. It doesn’t matter what, really–something special, something lovely. Beaver loves to make things, too. But he likes things to be useful. On this lovely day, Llama is inspired. She is having fun making things, like gifts for her friends. And soon many of her friends are inspired right along with her. But Beaver needs to think about what Llama and the other animals are making. What useful thing can he do with this day?”

The Elephant

by Jenni Desmond

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I am such a big fan of Jenni Desmond’s nonfiction picture books. The Blue Whaleis one of the most engaging books I’ve read aloud to kids and full of facts that I still remember several years later! The Elephant continues in that vein with a book brimming with surprising bits of knowledge (For example an elephant produces 300 pounds of dung a day and their tusks measure the length of 8 feet, or two seven-year-old children toe to toe.) The illustrations are useful to kids and beautiful. Highly recommend as a class read aloud to spark more research or discussion.

“In this, Jenni Desmond’s third nonfiction children’s book about one of the large, endangered animals of Earth, we join a young boy as he learns about The Elephant.
From Africa to Asia, the elephant makes its home. Light on their feet, despite their great weight, these magnificent creatures appear light and graceful because they’re always walking on their tip-toes. They have excellent hearing and can detect the rumblings of other elephants from six miles away.”

There’s still time to wrap up read alouds you already own for your little ones! A Christmas Wish and Fa La La Tra-la-la are two of our favorite books from the Bookish Advent Calendar I made for my little one. Check out that post for all the details.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links for Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase an item through some of the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

Bookish Gifts for the Readers on Your Holiday Shopping List

Are you looking for gift ideas for the readers in your life?

Here are some literary presents for the book nerds on your holiday shopping list:

 

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Books Turn Muggles Into Wizards Socks

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Jane Austen Candle,  

“There Is Nothing Like Staying Home For Real Comfort”41+jpBTxSWL

 

 

Library Card Mug

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“This Is How We Roll” Sweatshirt

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Persuasion Tote Bag

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“Read” Onesie

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Wonder Blanket

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“Book Nerd” Hat

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Vintage Library 1000 Piece Puzzle

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Enjoy 50% Off All Holiday Season! Sign up for a Bluprint subscription today, and we'll automatically take 50% off the full price of your Craftsy items every time you shop from now until December 31. Offer valid at myBluprint.com through 12/25/18.

 

 

“When In Doubt, Go To The Library” Zippered Pouch

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What are your favorite bookish gift ideas this holiday season?

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

 

 

Affiliate links for Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase an item through some of the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

Ep. 16: Candlewick Press Senior Editor, Katie Cunningham

This week we’re getting a behind the scenes peek at Candlewick Press, a publisher that is constantly putting out kidlit that I adore. Candlewick Senior Editor, Katie Cunningham highlights standout titles and gives insights about her work as an editor that bibliophiles will love hearing about.

You can also listen on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Start your FREE 7 Day Bluprint Trial! Dive into thousands of hours of expert taught videos.

To learn more about Candlewick and stay in the know about forthcoming titles, you can visit Candlewick.com and follow them on social media @Candlewick.

Books Mentioned On This Week’s Episode:

Alma And How She Got Her Name

House of Dreams: The Life of L.M. Montgomery

Journey

Because of Winn Dixie

Louisiana’s Way Home

Maps

Yaqui Delgado

Shapes Trilogy

This Is Not My Hat

Rescue and Jessica

Julian Is A Mermaid

We Are Here to Stay

Merci Suarez Changes Gears

Patchwork Bike

The Stuff of Stars

The Assassination of Brangwain Spurge

An American Marriage

Sex Object

Teaching My Mother to Give Birth

All You Can Ever Know

There Will Be No Miracles Here

If you’re enjoying the podcast, please share it with a friend and be sure to subscribe. If you could also take a moment to rate and review A Bookish Home on iTunes to help people find the show, I’d be so grateful.

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links for  Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase a book through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

Ep. 15: Sarah McCoy, Author of Marilla of Green Gables

This week, I’m thrilled to welcome a kindred spirit to the podcast. Sarah McCoy is here to discuss her new book, Marilla of Green Gables. This prequel to Anne of Green Gables brings the world and characters of L.M. Montgomery back to life.

If you’ve ever wondered about Marilla’s story before Anne arrives (and that time she called John Blythe her old beau) you’ll love Marilla of Green Gables. Sarah McCoy comes at this novel with a true love and deep knowledge of Montgomery’s characters and the Prince Edward Island setting. It’s a must read for Anne fans!

Sarah McCoy is also the New York Times bestselling author of The Mapmaker’s Children, The Baker’s Daughter, and The Time it Snowed in Puerto Rico.

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

**BOOK GIVEAWAY: Win a copy of Marilla of Green Gables!

To enter, head over to @ABookishHome on Twitter or Instagram to follow me and share the giveaway by Friday 11/23.**

For more things Green Gables, check out an earlier post:

ggheritageplace

Plan A Bookish Vacation: Visit the World of Anne of Green Gables on Prince Edward Island.

You can also listen to an earlier episode of this podcast:

HouseofDreamsInterview

Ep 3: Author Liz Rosenberg On “House of Dreams: The Life of L.M. Montgomery”.

Books Mentioned on This Week’s Episode:

marilla

Indiebound    Amazon

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Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

bakers-daughter-400w.jpg

Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound     Amazon

clockmakersdaughter.jpg

Indiebound     Amazon

lewis.jpg

Indiebound     Amazon

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Indiebound     Amazon

If you’re enjoying the podcast, be sure to subscribe and rate and review on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links for Indiebound and Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase a book through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

Create A Bookish Advent Calendar

I’m so excited to add a new bookish tradition to our family’s holiday celebration this year!

I made an advent calendar using Christmas books:

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I’m all about finding ways to bring my love of reading into our family life. I also am trying to avoid too much holiday busyness and choose what traditions I start carefully, so while I didn’t make time for a holiday card and will probably forget to move the Elf on the Shelf half the time, creating this was pure joy for my inner book nerd.

I’m beyond excited to share this with my daughter and celebrate the season with a different holiday read aloud each day. If you’re looking for a new tradition or a way to bring books into the holidays, here’s how I went about creating this advent calendar.

First, I searched my house for Christmas board books or picture books that we already own or have gotten as gifts. Once I figured out how many I had (fifteen), I requested others from the library. I decided not to buy new books for this project, but you certainly could if you want.

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I wrapped the books, marked them 1 to 25 with a sharpie, and will put them under our tree. My toddler and I will open one book together each day and have a special Christmas read aloud.

I made sure to put any library books first in the order so we can return them quickly! I chose to keep all my books Christmas themed, but you could wrap up any books in your house or incorporate general winter read alouds.

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I’m looking forward to snuggling up with my daughter and having a Christmas read aloud every day for the next few weeks. Adding in some cups of hot chocolate and cookies for a few of these story times also sounds festive.

Most of these books will only take a few minutes to read together, but I think this will be a great way to build anticipation and connect over a busy few weeks.

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We celebrate Christmas in our family, but you could  wrap up a book for each night of Hannukah and number them one through eight. If your family isn’t religious, another idea would be to choose a week’s worth of winter books sometime in December and wrap them up to create some special read aloud moments.

TistheSeason

Enjoy 50% Off All Holiday Season! Sign up for a Bluprint subscription today, and we'll automatically take 50% off the full price of your Craftsy items every time you shop from now until December 31. Offer valid at myBluprint.com through 12/25/18.

Here are the 25 books in our Bookish Advent Calendar:

1. Fa La La 

by Leslie Patricelli

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“Baby is so excited about the upcoming Christmas season! There are things to decorate: a tree, a gingerbread house, a doggy! Celebrate the season with humor and joy as everyone s favorite baby puts a special spin on Christmas.”

2. Pick A Pine Tree

by Patricia Toht

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“Part of the magic of the Christmas season stems from the traditions that families and friends take part in every year: hanging up stockings; putting lights in the windows; and, one of the most important of all, picking out and taking home the Christmas tree”.

3. A Christmas Wish: A Peter Rabbit Tale

Peter Rabbit Christmas Wish

“It’s Christmas Eve and Peter Rabbit is wide awake, listening out for Santa Claus. He hears all sorts of noises in the night, but none of them turn out to be Santa! Can Peter stay awake long enough to see Santa? Another addition to the adorable line of very young stories set in Peter Rabbit’s world. The simple tales deal with the early experiences and emotions of small children, as seen through the eyes of Beatrix Potter’s classic characters.”

4. Red & Lulu

by Matt Tavares

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“Red and Lulu make their nest in a particularly beautiful evergreen tree. It shades them in the hot months and keeps them cozy in the cold months, and once a year the people who live nearby string lights on their tree and sing a special song: O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree. But one day, something unthinkable happens, and Red and Lulu are separated. It will take a miracle for them to find each other again. Luckily, it’s just the season for miracles. . . . From Matt Tavares comes a heart-tugging story combining the cheer of Christmas, the magic of New York City, and the real meaning of the holiday season: how important it is to be surrounded by love.”

5. Olivia Helps With Christmas

by Ian Falcon

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“Christmas is coming, and Olivia is incredibly busy. She has to wait for Santa, make sure dad sets up the tree, wait for Santa, watch mom make the Christmas dinner, wait for Santa, oversee the care with which the stockings are hung and, of course, OPEN HER PRESENTS! Do you see how hard it is to be so helpful during the holidays? A lovingly-told and lavishly-illustrated Olivia Helps With Christmas is the perfect stuffing for any stocking, and a bright star atop the Olivia series.”

6. How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

by Dr. Seuss

How_the_Grinch_Stole_Christmas_cover

“Every Who down in Who-ville liked Christmas a lot . . . but the Grinch, who lived just north of Who-ville, did NOT!” Not since “’Twas the night before Christmas” has the beginning of a Christmas tale been so instantly recognizable. This heartwarming story about the effects of the Christmas spirit will grow even the coldest and smallest of hearts. Like mistletoe, candy canes, and caroling, the Grinch is a mainstay of the holidays, and his story is the perfect gift for young and old. “

7. Waltz of the Snowflakes

by Elly Mackay

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“It is a cold and rainy evening when Gran gives her granddaughter something special: tickets to the ballet. Her granddaughter is reluctant to go. The weather is terrible and they have to wear fancy, uncomfortable clothes. But as the curtains rise on The Nutcracker, the girl’s eyes light up as she’s introduced to the magic of the theater. The bright costumes, the intricate dances, the magical music, and a new friend all combine to captivate the girl and to bring color to an otherwise dreary evening. Waltz of the Snowflakes is Elly MacKay at her finest, mixing her acclaimed paper-cut artwork with vibrant colors in this whimsical, dreamlike, and inspiring wordless picture book. A must-have for any ballet- and theater-obsessed reader and the perfect gift to be shared during the holidays or any time of year when the world outside needs a little bit of color and vibrancy.”

8. The Polar Express

by Chris Van Allsburg

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“A young boy, lying awake one Christmas Eve, is welcomed aboard a magical trip to the North Pole . . . Through dark forests, over tall mountains, and across a desert of ice, the Polar Express makes its way to the city atop the world, where the boy will make his Christmas wish.”

9. A Very Merry Christmas Prayer

by Bonnie Rickner Jensen

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“Enjoy the wonder of Christmas with a thankful heart. These little woodland animals are full of joy over so many blessings, from twinkling lights and sparkling snowflakes to family fun and the gift of God’s love. Join the celebration with gratitude and make this your own very merry Christmas prayer!”

10. The Little Reindeer 

by Nicola Killen

9781481486866

When a jingling sound wakes her from her sleep, a little girl’s dreams come true when she meets a lost reindeer in the forest. They set off on a magical adventure and it becomes a Christmas never to forget

11. The ABCs of Christmas 

by Jill Howarth

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“LEARN the ALPHABET and DECK the HALLS! Spread the joy of Christmas with this sparkly board book that features clever word associations and delightfully festive illustrations.”

12. Too Many Tamales 

by Gary Soto

Too-Many-Tamales-by-Gary-Soto

Christmas Eve started out so perfectly for Maria. Snow had fallen and the streets glittered. Maria’s favorite cousins were coming over and she got to help make the tamales for Christmas dinner. It was almost too good to be true when her mother left the kitchen for a moment and Maria got to try on her beautiful diamond ring . . . This is the story of a treasure thought to be lost in a batch of tamales; of a desperate adn funny attempt by Maria and her cousins to eat their way out of trouble; and the warm way a family pulls together to make it a perfect Christmas after all.

13. A Christmas for Bear

by Bonny Becker

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Celebrating Christmas for the first time, Bear and his friend Mouse have a party, but whenever Bear comes back from the kitchen with more treats Mouse has vanished in search of a present.

14. Santa’s Sleigh Is On Its Way To… series

by Eric James

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“It’s Christmas Eve and Santa’s sleigh is already on its way to your home-town. It promises to be the best Christmas ever; But things don’t go according to plan! Is Santa okay? And what was that very important task you meant to do before you went to bed?

The story is available in over 120 different locations within the UK, US and Canada (generic version also available) with bespoke artwork and locations unique to your chosen location.”

15. The Gingerbread Man Loose at Christmas

by Laura Murray

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“Everyone in class is busy practicing songs and making goodies for their trip to town to thank community helpers, and the Gingerbread Man has made a gift for someone extra sweet. But before he can deliver his gift, whipping wind and swirling snow come to town, too. Slushy sidewalks are no place for a cookie, but this Gingerbread Man won’t let a little bad weather stop him!”

16. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Lift the Tab Board Book

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Pictures of Rudolph, Santa, Sam the Snowman and other characters from the original stop motion animation appear on the pages of this Lift-the-Flap Tab Book, which has tabbed edges and fun flaps to lift on every page.

17. Christmas for Greta and Gracie

by Yasmeen Ismail

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Greta and Gracie are sisters – Greta is chatty while Gracie is quiet and it’s all fine until, one day, everything changes. It’s nearly Christmas and together the sisters decorate the tree, shop for presents and even try a spot of ice-skating! But Greta, of course, always knows best – poor Gracie can’t get a word in edgeways. Then on Christmas Eve, while Greta is quietly sleeping, Gracie hears a funny noise …whatever could it be? She creeps downstairs to investigate, and the next morning her very special revelation leaves chitty chatty Greta lost for words!

18. The Nutcracker in Harlem

by T.E. McMorrow

The-Nutcracker-in-Harlem

“In Harlem in the 1920s, in the middle of a family Christmas party, Marie receives a nutcracker from her Uncle Cab, which leads to a marvelous dream in this resetting of E.T.A. Hoffmann’s familiar tale. Includes historical notes.”

19. Duck & Goose: It’s Time for Christmas

by Tad Hills

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Goose is more interested in skating, sledding, and making snow angels than in helping Duck decorate their big Christmas tree.

20. Ninja Claus

by Arree Chung

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It’s nearly Christmas, and Maxwell only has one thing on his mind–catching a glimpse of Santa Claus. No sweat for an experienced ninja like himself!On Christmas Eve, Maxwell rigs a super-special ninja trap and lies in wait. But when the trap is sprung, is it Santa who’s been captured? And might Santa have some super-special ninja tricks of his own?

21. A World of Cookies for Santa: Follow Santa’s Tasty Trip Around the World

by M. E. Furman

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A World of Cookies for Santa takes readers across the globe to see all the treats that await Santa on Christmas Eve. M. E. Furman provides recipes for children to bake some of Santa’s cookies for themselves.

22. The Night Before Christmas

by Clement C. Moore

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“Capture the thrill of a traditional Christmas with Clement C. Moore’s treasured seasonal rhyme. Brought to life with the warm and playful artwork of Henry Fisher, this magical story is full of character and humour, and will delight children new to the story as well as parents who know it from their own childhood.”

23. Merry Christmas, Little One!

by Sandra Magsamen

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Little ones will love this gently refreshed backlist classic Christmas lift-the-flap board book from the bestselling baby and toddler brand creator, Sandra Magsamen. With heartfelt rhymes, adorable illustrations, and engaging lift-the-flaps, children will be merrily reading and playing along all through the season.

24. Pete the Cat Saves Christmas

by Eric Litwin

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Spend the holidays with your favorite blue cat! In this rockin’ spin on the traditional tale The Night Before Christmas, Pete the Cat proves that giving your all in the spirit of Christmas is the totally groovy thing to do.

25. Little Blue Truck’s Christmas

by Alice Schertle

Cover image for Little Blue Truck's Christmas

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Little Blue Truck is spreading cheer by delivering Christmas trees to his animal friends. Can you help count each green tree from one to five and back again? Don’t forget to save one for Blue! Beep! Beep!

What books will you use in your bookish advent calendar? I’d love to hear and see your photos! Tag me on Instagram or Twitter @ABookishHome.

And if you decide to make this a tradition for your family, you could ask relatives to give children’s Christmas books as presents or keep your eyes peeled at used bookstores or tag sales this year

Have you subscribed to the blog? Sign up to receive a notification whenever there’s a new post or podcast episode.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links for Indiebound and Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase a book through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

Ep. 14: Eric Carle Museum–Bookish Destination

Happy Picture Book Month! This week I’m featuring a special bookish destination for picture book fans: the Eric Carle Museum in Amherst, Massachusetts. Courtney Waring, Director of Education at the Carle, joins me to discuss planning your visit, upcoming exhibitions and events, and the picture books topping her list.

You can also listen on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Visit the Eric Carle Museum’s website to learn more about this bookish destination.

Learn more about all the upcoming exhibitions and events mentioned on this week’s podcast.

Books Mentioned On This Week’s Episode:

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Shop your local indie bookstore”>Indiebound    Amazon

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Shop your local indie bookstore”>Indiebound     Amazon

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Shop your local indie bookstore”>Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound     Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

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Shop your local indie bookstore”>Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

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Indiebound    Amazon

If you’re enjoying the podcast, be sure to subscribe and rate and review on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Are you reading a book mentioned on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear. Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading and Listening!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links for Indiebound and Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase a book through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

What I’ve Been Reading…

“There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.” –Jane Austen

Fall reading is in full swing and I’m embracing chilly nights reading by the fire.

Here are a few of the books topping my list this month:

Marilla of Green Gables

by Sarah McCoy

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Calling all kindred spirits! This new prequel by Sarah McCoy brings the world and characters of L.M. Montgomery back to life. If you’ve ever wondered about Marilla’s story before Anne arrives (and that time she called John Blythe her old beau) you’ll love Marilla of Green Gables. Sarah McCoy comes at this novel with a true love and deep knowledge of Montgomery’s characters and the Prince Edward Island setting.

**You won’t want to miss my interview with Sarah McCoy on next week’s episode of the podcast! She is a true kindred spirit and we had a delightful conversation about all things Green Gables. **

Book Reporter calls Marilla of Green Gables a “winning prequel” and Bustle writes, “If you happened to be a book lover during the last century, or so, you know Anne of Green Gables. You’ve walked the great White Way of Delight with her, rowed across the Lake of Shining Waters, traipsed the Haunted Wood, considered the name ‘Cordelia’ for yourself. You’ve fallen in love with Matthew Cuthbert, found Mrs. Rachel Lynde a challenging personality, and developed a particular disdain for the Pye girls. And, if you’re anything like author Sarah McCoy, you’ve wondered about the mysteries of Marilla Cuthbert’s life as well — mysteries that McCoy’s brand new novel, Marilla Of Green Gables, seeks to answer.”

From the publisher: “A bold, heartfelt tale of life at Green Gables . . . before Anne: A marvelously entertaining and moving historical novel, set in rural Prince Edward Island in the nineteenth century, that imagines the young life of spinster Marilla Cuthbert, and the choices that will open her life to the possibility of heartbreak—and unimaginable greatness.”

Order on  Indiebound     Amazon

Fogland Point

by Doug Burgess

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Looking for a great mystery to curl up with this month? Fogland Point is my favorite kind–quirky small town, richly drawn characters, and a plot that keeps me guessing. I think fans of Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache series would enjoy this book as well. For me, it was a nice bonus that Fogland Point is set in Little Compton, Rhode Island–next door to my hometown.

Publisher’s Weekly gave Fogland Point a starred review, noting ““Elegant prose, a veritable chinese box of puzzles, and authentic, well-rounded characters make this a standout.” And author Francine Mathews says,“If only we all had friends like the Laughing Sarahs: fiercely loyal, mordantly funny and murderously clever. Doug Burgess’ Fogland Point brings a wildly original amateur detective to the table of the most secretive small town in New England. I can’t wait to go back.”

From the publisher: “David Hazard wanted nothing more than to forget his renegade family and the foggy New England village “on the wrong side” of Narragansett Bay where he grew up. When sudden tragedy brings him back to Little Compton to care for his grandmother during her struggle with dementia, he discovers her fragile memories may hold the key to a bizarre mystery half a century old – and perhaps to the sudden and brutal murder right next door.”

**I’ll be featuring an interview with Doug Burgess on the podcast in December. Be sure to subscribe in iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts so you never miss an episode.**

Order on  Indiebound    Amazon

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Winter in Paradise

by Elin Hilderbrand

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Elin Hilderbrand delivers again with another vacation read to tuck into your suitcase, this time set on St. John. I brought Winter in Paradise on a recent trip to San Fransisco and it was perfect entertainment for a long flight.

Booklist writes, “As she does in her books set on Nantucket, Hilderbrand excels at establishing a setting (the food! the luxury! the sea turtles!) that will inspire wanderlust. This first book in a planned trilogy ends with unanswered questions, but, with engaging characters on a picturesque island, this is the perfect escape.”

From the publisher: “Irene Steele shares her idyllic life in a beautiful Iowa City Victorian house with a husband who loves her to sky-writing, sentimental extremes. But as she rings in the new year one cold and snowy night, everything she thought she knew falls to pieces with a shocking phone call: her beloved husband, away on business, has been killed in a plane crash. Before Irene can even process the news, she must first confront the perplexing details of her husband’s death on the distant Caribbean island of St. John.”

Order on  Shop your local indie bookstore</a”>Indiebound    Amazon

The Benefits of Being an Octopus

by Ann Braden

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This middle grade novel from Ann Braden is a must-read for parents, librarians, educators and the young people in their lives. The Benefits of Being An Octopus ranks right up there with Wonder in terms of a story that will touch your heart and change your perspective after walking in a character’s shoes. Highly recommended. In a starred review, School Library Journal says, “This heartbreaking, beautifully written book about finding one’s voice will offer some readers a relatable reflection and others a window that can help build empathy and understanding. Braden’s story raises many thought-provoking and timely questions about the difficulty of escaping poverty and the prevalence of gun violence.”

From the publisher: “Seventh-grader Zoey has her hands full as she takes care of her much younger siblings after school every day while her mom works her shift at the pizza parlor. Not that her mom seems to appreciate it. At least there’s Lenny, her mom’s boyfriend—they all get to live in his nice, clean trailer. At school, Zoey tries to stay under the radar. Her only friend Fuchsia has her own issues, and since they’re in an entirely different world than the rich kids, it’s best if no one notices them. Zoey thinks how much easier everything would be if she were an octopus: eight arms to do eight things at once. Incredible camouflage ability and steady, unblinking vision. Powerful protective defenses. Unfortunately, she’s not totally invisible, and one of her teachers forces her to join the debate club. Even though Zoey resists participating, debate ultimately leads her to see things in a new way: her mom’s relationship with Lenny, Fuchsia’s situation, and her own place in this town of people who think they’re better than her. Can Zoey find the courage to speak up, even if it means risking the most stable home she’s ever had?”

Order on  Indiebound    Amazon

**Ann Braden will be joining me for an upcoming episode of the podcast to discuss this incredible book for young readers!**

Kick It, Mo!

by David A. Adler, illustrated by Sam Ricks

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Mo is back in this popular early reader series. Young readers will enjoy the play by play as Mo tests out his soccer skills. Kirkus notes, “Simple in its storytelling, strong in its diversity, this is an entertaining as well as enlightening read.”

The soccer season is starting, and Mo has been working hard on his kicking skills so he can help his team, the Billy Goats, score a goal. But when he gets on the field on game day, it seems like all he gets to do is run back and forth. Will Mo ever get the chance to show his team what he can do?”

Order on  Shop your local indie bookstore</a”>Indiebound    Amazon

Adrian Simcox Does NOT Have a Horse

by Mercy Campbell and Corinna Luyken

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I discovered this picture book at Books Inc. in San Fransisco and completely fell in love with it. The illustrations are stunning and the message will certainly resonate with young readers and spark conversations about empathy and kindness in classroom or bedtime read alouds. Teachers: pair this one with your class read aloud of The Benefits of Being An Octopus.

From the publisher:Adrian Simcox tells anyone who will listen that he has a horse–the best and most beautiful horse anywhere. But Chloe does NOT believe him. Adrian Simcox lives in a tiny house. Where would he keep a horse? He has holes in his shoes. How would he pay for a horse? The more Adrian talks about his horse, the angrier Chloe gets. But when she calls him out at school and even complains about him to her mom, Chloe doesn’t get the vindication she craves. She gets something far more important. Written with tenderness and poignancy and gorgeously illustrated, this book will show readers that kindness is always rewarding, understanding is sweeter than judgment, and friendship is the best gift one can give.”

Order on  Shop your local indie bookstore</a”>Indiebound    Amazon

What have you been reading? Share your recommendations! And if you’ve picked up a book after reading the blog or listening to the podcast, I’d love to hear. Leave a note in the comments or tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

If you’re enjoying the blog, be sure to tell a friend and subscribe to make sure you’ll never miss a new post.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Affiliate links for Indiebound and Amazon are used in this post. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission if you purchase a book through the links provided. Thanks for supporting A Bookish Home!

“How Motherhood Changed My Reading Life (For The Better)”– My Essay on Art of Simple

This week I’m sharing an essay I wrote that was recently published on Art of Simple

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Read more over at Art of Simple.

 

There are some very exciting A Bookish Home podcast episodes coming up!

Thursday, November 8th: Jarrett J. Krosoczka, author/illustrator of Hey, Kiddo, finalist for the National Book Award.

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Thursday, November 15th: Bookish Destination: Celebrate Picture Book Month with a visit to the Eric Carle Museum

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Tuesday, November 20th: Sarah McCoy,

author of Marilla of Green Gables

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Have you subscribed to A Bookish Home? You’ll receive an email each time a new post or podcast episode goes up.

 

Are you reading a book that was recommended on the blog or podcast? I’d love to hear! Tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com

Boston Author Event Roundup: November Edition

Are you looking for a bookish event to add to your calendar?

Here is just a sampling of some of the wonderful author events coming to the Boston area this month.

Be sure to check your local library and bookstore’s event calendar to see what author events are coming to your community.

Not in the Boston area? This list is still a great way to find a book to add to your TBR list!

 

 

Thursday, November 1st – 6-pm at Boston Public Library, Copley

Readable Feast @ BPL: The Making of a Cookbook

“The Readable Feast is partnering with the Boston Public Library for a series of culinary author talks at the Newsfeed Cafe! The first event will be a panel conversation on “The Making of a Cookbook: Assembling the Right Ingredients”, with Leigh Belanger, author My Chalkboard Kitchen, and Todd Heberlein and Ryan Conroy, co-authors of The Volante Farm Cookbook and Nicole Vecchiotti, publisher of Union Park Press. Both books won top awards in the June, 2018 Readable Feast festival.

You can find more even information here.

 

Saturday, November 3rd – 11am at Silver Unicorn Books, Acton

Aisha Densmore-Bey, Who Made My Stuff?

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“Aisha has written a book called Who Made My Stuff? This is a STEM-based book, about just what it says. Miles becomes curious about things he uses in every day life, and learns how they are made. This is a perfect story for your curious children. Aisha is an accomplished architect by day, specializing in interiors, lighting design, graphic design, film and art. She has been working in and around Boston for nearly 20 years, and she wrote, produced and directed the short film, The Built Perception: Boston. We are thrilled to welcome her to the Silver Unicorn!”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

Saturday, November 3rd – 3pm at Porter Square Books

Francie LaTour, Auntie Luce’s Talking Paintings

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“Every winter, a young girl flies to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter.The moment she steps off the plane, she feels a wall of heat, and familiar sights soon follow — the boys selling water ice by the pink cathedral, the tap tap buses in the busy streets, the fog and steep winding road to her aunt’s home in the mountains. The girl has always loved Auntie Luce’s paintings — the houses tucked into the hillside, colorful fishing boats by the water, heroes who fought for and won the country’s independence. Through Haiti’s colors, the girl comes to understand this place her family calls home. And when the moment finally comes to have her own portrait painted for the first time, she begins to see herself in a new way, tracing her own history and identity through her aunt’s brush.”

You can find more event information here.

**Francie LaTour and Ken Daley will be on an upcoming episode of A Bookish Home, the podcast! Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts to be notified when there is a new episode.

Sunday, November 4th – 3pm at Concord Bookshop

Julie Dobrow, After Emily

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“Please join us on Sunday, November 4 at 3pm, when Julie Dobrow presents After Emily, the previously untold story of the extraordinary mother and daughter who brought Emily Dickinson’s genius to light. There will be time for Q&A and book signing after the author presentation. Julie Dobrow is a professor with appointments in the department of Child Study and Human Development and the Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University and serves as director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies. Her writing has appeared in the Boston Globe Magazineand the Huffington Post, among other publications. She lives outside of Boston.
“You can find more event information here.

 

 

 

Wednesday, November 7th – 7pm at Wellesley Books

Aaron Thier, The World is a Narrow Bridge


“From the author of Mr. Eternity, a darkly comic road novel about a millennial couple facing the ultimate question: how to live and love in an age of catastrophe.”

Note: This is a free event, but you must RSVP. You can find more information here.

 

Thursday, November 8th – 7pm at Belmont Books

Peter Stark, Young Washington

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A new, brash, and unexpected view of the president we thought we knew, from the bestselling author of Astoria. Two decades before he led America to independence, George Washington was a flailing young soldier serving the British Empire in the vast wilderness of the Ohio Valley. Naïve and self-absorbed, the twenty-two-year-old officer accidentally ignited the French and Indian War—a conflict that opened colonists to the possibility of an American Revolution. With powerful narrative drive and vivid writing, Young Washington recounts the wilderness trials, controversial battles, and emotional entanglements that transformed Washington from a temperamental striver into a mature leader. Enduring terrifying summer storms and subzero winters imparted resilience and self-reliance, helping prepare him for what he would one day face at Valley Forge. Leading the Virginia troops into battle taught him to set aside his own relentless ambitions and stand in solidarity with those who looked to him for leadership. Negotiating military strategy with British and colonial allies honed his diplomatic skills. And thwarted in his obsessive, youthful love for one woman, he grew to cultivate deeper, enduring relationships. By weaving together Washington’s harrowing wilderness adventures and a broader historical context, Young Washington offers new insights into the dramatic years that shaped the man who shaped a nation.”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

 

Friday, November 9th – 7pm at Brookline Booksmith

Jeff Speck, Walkable City Rules

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“Nearly every US city would like to be more walkable—for reasons of health, wealth, and the environment—yet few are taking the proper steps to get there. The goals are often clear, but the path is seldom easy. Jeff Speck’s follow-up to his bestselling Walkable City is the resource that cities and citizens need to usher in an era of renewed street life. Walkable City Rules is a doer’s guide to making change in cities, and making it now.”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

Friday, November 9th – 7pm at Wellesley Books

Elin Hilderbrand, Winter in Paradise

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“A husband’s secret life, a wife’s new beginning: escape to the Caribbean with New York Times bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand.”

Note: This is a ticketed event. You can find more event information here.

 

Saturday, November 10th – 2pm at the Eric Carle Museum

Grace Lin, A Big Mooncake for Little Star

A chance to see the incredible Grace Lin (Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, Ling and Ting, and many more) would be well worth the drive to Amherst!

“Little Star loves the delicious Mooncake that she bakes with her mama. But she’s not supposed to eat any yet! What happens when she can’t resist a nibble? Join Newbery Honor author Grace Lin as she reads from her new picture book A Big Mooncake for Little Star, a heartwarming original story that explains phases of the moon.”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

Saturday, November 10th – 3pm at the Boston Athenæum

Jarrett J. Krosoczka– Hey, Kiddo with guest author Jack Gantos

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In this talk about his National Book Award longlist graphic memoir for teens, Jarrett J. Krosoczka will take the audience through the steps he took to create this moving, raw book and present a multi-media reading, followed by a conversation with guest author Jack Gantos (who makes a cameo in Hey, Kiddo) about writing and the saving power of creativity and literature.

For more information visit the event website.

**Jarrett Krosoczka will be on an upcoming episode of A Bookish Home, the podcast! Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts to be notified when there is a new episode.

 

Saturday, November 10th – 6pm at Oberon, Cambridge:

sponsored by Harvard Bookstore

Jasmine Guillory, The Proposal 

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“Harvard Book Store welcomes bestselling novelist JASMINE GUILLORY for a discussion of The Proposal, the highly anticipated followup to her beloved romance The Wedding Date. She will be joined in conversation by award-winning author, editor, and professor ROXANE GAY. The evening will include a cash bar (with a signature cocktail!) and a book signing with Jasmine.”

Note: this is a ticketed event. You can find more event information here.

 

 

Monday, November 12th – 7pm at Harvard Bookstore

Chaya Bhuvaneswar, White Dancing Elephants

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“Harvard Book Store and GrubStreet welcome prize-winning writer CHAYA BHUVANESWAR for a discussion of her debut story collection, White Dancing Elephants. She will be joined in conversation by acclaimed novelist LAURA VAN DEN BERG.”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

Tuesday, November 13th – 7pm at First Parish Church:

sponsored by Harvard Bookstore

Jonathan Franzen, The End of the End of the Earth: Essays

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“Harvard Book Store welcomes renowned novelist and essayist JONATHAN FRANZEN—author of The Corrections and Freedom—for a discussion of his latest collection of essays, The End of the End of the Earth.”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

Saturday, November 17th – 6:30pm at Silver Unicorn Books, Acton

Author Dinner Party with Jenna Blum (The Lost Family), Crystal King (Feast of Sorrow), and Louise Miller (The Late Bloomers’ Club)

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This special event put on by my local bookstore sounds like the perfect night out for bookish foodies: “This is our first ticketed event ever, and it’s going to be a blast. Our three authors here have written three books that revolve around food in some way, and so of course we need to have them out for a dinner party! Orange Door Kitchen will be cooking a three-course meal — one course for each book — and the authors will rotate tables and talk with guests from course to course. Tickets will be $90, and will include signed copies of the three books — The Lost FamilyFeast of Sorrow and The Late Bloomer’s Club.”

You can find more event information here.

 

 

Saturday, November 24th – 10am at Allin Congregational Church, Dedham: Sponsored by Blue Bunny Books

Jan Brett, The Snowy Map

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“The Blue Bunny Bookstore is thrilled to welcome New York Times #1 Best Selling Author/ Artist JAN BRETT to Dedham on Saturday, November 24, 2018. Jan Brett will be presenting her newest book THE SNOWY NAP, a prequel to her children’s classics, THE MITTEN and THE HAT, at an event at the Allin Congregational Church on High Street, just 2 blocks away from The Blue Bunny. THE SNOWY NAP (G.P. Putnam’s Sons) is a cozy bedtime story starring Hedgie, Brett’s trademark character. Inspired by his friends’ tales of their marvelous past winter adventures, Hedgie is determined not to sleep through all the fun again.”

Note: This is a ticketed event. You can find more event information here.

 

 

Monday, November 26th – 7pm at Belmont Books

Elizabeth Berg, Night of Miracles

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“A delightful novel about surprising friendships, community, and the way small acts of kindness can change a life, from the bestselling author of The Story of Arthur Truluv. Lucille Howard is getting on in years, but she stays busy. Thanks to the inspiration of her dearly departed friend Arthur Truluv, she has begun to teach baking classes, sharing the secrets to her delicious classic Southern yellow cake, the perfect pinwheel cookies, and other sweet essentials. Her classes have become so popular that she’s hired Iris, a new resident of Mason, Missouri, as an assistant. Iris doesn’t know how to bake but she needs to keep her mind off a big decision she sorely regrets. When a new family moves in next door and tragedy strikes, Lucille begins to look out for Lincoln, their son. Lincoln’s parents aren’t the only ones in town facing hard choices and uncertain futures. In these difficult times, the residents of Mason come together and find the true power of community—just when they need it the most.”

You can find more event information here.

Wednesday, November 28th – 6pm at Boston Public Library, Copley

Thrill Me, Chill Me: Mystery Writers Panel

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“Join critically acclaimed authors Hank Phillippi Ryan, Peter Swanson, Kellye Garrett, and Paula Munier in conversation about the enduring thrill and lure of mysteries, and what makes them so appealing on the page and on the screen.”

You can find more event information here.

What bookish events are you planning to attend this month? I’d love to hear!  Leave a note in the comments or tag me on Twitter or Instagram @ABookishHome.

And if you’re enjoying the blog, be sure to tell a friend and subscribe to make sure you’ll never miss a new post.

Happy Reading!

Laura Szaro Kopinski

ABookishHome.com