Also published on this date: Wednesday, September 25, 2019: Maximum Shelf: Dear Edward

Shelf Awareness for Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Yen Press: The God of Nishi-Yuigahama Station by Takeshi Murase, Translated by Guiseppe Di Martino

Peachtree Publishers: Erno Rubik and His Magic Cube by Kerry Aradhya, Illustrated by Kara Kramer

Beacon Press: Kindred by Octavia Butler

Inkshares: Mr. and Mrs. American Pie by Juliet McDaniel

Tundra Books: On a Mushroom Day by Chris Baker, Illustrated by Alexandria Finkeldey

Simon & Schuster: Register for the Simon & Schuster Fall Preview!

St. Martin's Press: Sacrificial Animals by Kailee Pedersen


SCIBA Board Votes to Dissolve Association at End of 2019


At a special meeting of the Southern California Independent Booksellers Association board of directors on Sunday, board members voted to pass a resolution to dissolve the association at the end of the year, citing a budget review that showed a "lack of income to offset expenses going forward" and projected insolvency.

SCIBA president Maryelizabeth Yturralde of Mysterious Galaxy and Creating Conversations explained that the review of SCIBA's finances, which usually takes place after the annual Fall Trade Show, happened earlier than usual this year because of ongoing talks with the Northern California Independent Booksellers Association about forming a new, all-California association. Part of that process, she continued, was trying to project what finances would look like with a combined budget, necessitating the early review.

"It's a reflection of the changing climate in a lot of ways," Yturralde said, of SCIBA's projected insolvency and the resolution to dissolve the association. "This isn't anything except a recognition of the hard numbers, and the board meeting our responsibility to take appropriate action."

SCIBA intends to meet all current fiscal obligations and will hire an accountant to provide an audit of the association's finances. Yturralde stressed that while audit is often a very "freighted word," in this instance it is simply a result of the board doing its due diligence to members while closing out the association, and was "not in any way triggered by anything."

Yturralde noted that the board's resolution will be voted on by members at the SCIBA annual meeting this Friday. When asked what would happen if the resolution is voted down or the vote is evenly split, Yturralde said the SCIBA board is seeking advice from those with more experience in laws and regulations pertaining to nonprofits and trade associations in California.

"I am incredibly appreciative to all of the board members who have put a lot of thoughtful, hard work into this," said Yturralde. "We're trying to look at this not so much as an end of something, but as an opportunity and the beginning of something."

BINC: Do Good All Year - Click to Donate!

Book Shop of Beverly Farms in Mass. for Sale


Pam Price and Lee Simonds Brown, owners of The Book Shop of Beverly Farms, Beverly, Mass., plan to retire at the end of the year and have put the store up for sale. In a note to friends of the store, they wrote in part, "We have each worked at The Book Shop for over thirty years and we've enjoyed coming to work every single day. Loyal customers, great co-workers, gifted authors, diligent sales reps, and a wide circle of avid readers have made this our dream job.

"We would love to see someone new take over the shop. We envision someone with passion, creativity, and a deep appreciation of books and reading--someone who wants The Book Shop to continue to serve the community. Someone with energy and enthusiasm, ready to put new ideas into action while carrying on a grand tradition. (Our ideal 'someone' may be two or more partners as well.)"

The Book Shop of Beverly Farms was founded in 1968. Price and Brown bought it in 1997. The store celebrated its 50th anniversary last year.

For more information, please contact Pam Price at 978-927-2122 or via e-mail.

GLOW: Torrey House Press: Life After Dead Pool: Lake Powell's Last Days and the Rebirth of the Colorado River by Zak Podmore

Bookstore and Coffeehouse Coming to Bartow, Fla.


Unfiltered, a combination new and used bookstore, coffeehouse and vintage marketplace, is coming to Bartow, Fla., News Chief reported.

The business will span an entire two-story building in Bartow's downtown, with the bookstore, called the Unbound Bookery, residing in the front of the building's first floor. The coffeehouse and marketplace will also be featured on the first floor, while the second floor will house a variety of artists who will sell their work in Unfiltered.

Geanie Folder

"It will be a really cool, eclectic, artsy place where we can all hang out," Geanie Folder, Unfiltered's creator, told News Chief. Prior to founding Unfiltered, she owned The Beatnik Exchange, where she sold home goods, furnishings and handmade clothing.

Sandi Silverman, a belly dance instructor based in Lakeland, Fla., will curate Unbound Bookery's selection of titles. She plans to focus on new and used fiction and nonfiction, and said: "I love old books and I've collected for years."

In addition to coffee, Unfiltered's cafe will sell soups, salads, sandwiches and baked goods, along with artisan waffles and gourmet hot dogs. Beer and wine will be added to the menu at a later date, and Folder's son Tray Towles will manage the coffee operations.

The building that will house Unfiltered dates back to 1900 and is currently undergoing renovations. Major changes include the addition of windows to the building's entranceway and the installation of a modern coffee bar.

Once Unfiltered is open, Folder hopes to host various workshops and art classes in the building as well as farm-to-table dinners in the cafe.

Harpervia: Only Big Bumbum Matters Tomorrow by Damilare Kuku

Indie Booksellers Mark #BannedBooksWeek


Independent booksellers celebrate Banned Books Week annually with a variety of displays, events and promotions celebrating our freedom to read. By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, the week draws national attention to the dangers of censorship. Here's a sampling of indie bookstore responses under the #BannedBooksWeek hashtag on social media:

Harvey's Tales, Geneva, Ill.: "It's Banned Book Week! Visit our banned book room, you'll be surprised at how many you've already read and find a new one to try! Take our banned book quiz and if you correctly match all of the descriptions to the book titles you'll receive 10% off of one banned book!"

Fabled Bookshop & Café, Waco, Tex.: "It's Banned Book Week in the book world, and we'll take a minute any day to give a shout out to some of our favorites.We're grateful for the efforts of librarians, teachers, students, and booksellers who have worked to keep some of our most-loved books available to the public...."

Zenith Bookstore, Duluth, Minn.: "See our new store display, and pick up a free bookmark and sticker. Celebrate the freedom to read!"

Tsunami Books, Eugene, Ore.: "We've put together a display of banned and challenged books in celebration of the freedom to read."

Horton's Books & Gifts, Carrollton, Ga.: "How can I celebrate Banned Book Week? Well, Poe says you should buy a Banned Book. Another way to celebrate is to stay informed. Read about Banned Books week and learn about the history of books that have been challenged and banned."

The BookMark, Neptune Beach, Fla.: "It's time to celebrate our freedom to read with Banned Book Week. It's an annual event to remind us of our freedoms and the attempts to censor what we read. We invite you to visit our windows displaying books that have been banned and get a list of recent banned books. It's always interesting to see how many you've read and to take the opportunity to read one this week."

Leaves Book & Tea Shop, Fort Worth, Tex.: "We are kicking off Banned Book Week in the shop! Come check out our selection of banned books, join us for an author panel at 2pm, and Friday we will be hosting Banned Book readings (including open mic) during After Hours! Support your local bookstore in celebration of freeing those banned books!"

Riverwalk Books, Chelan, Wash.: "Censorship leaves us in the dark. Keep the light on! Tomorrow is the beginning of Banned Books Week, an annual celebration of your freedom to read, free of censorship. Riverwalk Books along with the the entire book community--librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types--are supporting the freedom to seek and express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular. Pop by RB over the next week to see our #BannedBooksWeek window display, our curation of banned books, and join the conversation!"

Readers World Bookstore, Holland, Mich.: "Sept. 22-28th is Banned Books Week to spotlight and challenge current and historical attempts to silence books. All week long we will be highlighting famously banned books. Follow along with our Instagram stories (@readersworldholland) this week to learn more about these books."

Hearthside Books & Toys, Juneau, Alaska: "Happy #bannedbooksweek 2019! This week only get 15% off your entire web order with coupon code: BANNED19 on our website.... Don't forget stop in both locations to browse our banned displays for your favorite banned and challenged books!"

Obituary Note: A. Alvarez

British poet, critic and essayist A. Alvarez, "who played a pivotal role in bringing the poetry of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath to the public, and whose acclaimed book on the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas helped transform high-stakes professional poker from a cult to a televised sport," died September 23, the New York Times reported. He was 90. As poetry editor at the Observer, Alvarez "made it his mission to publish the work of younger poets like Mr. Hughes and Ms. Plath, who were opening up new emotional territory in their verse. Both became close friends of his."

The New Poetry (1962), his "enormously influential" anthology, brought the poetry of Hughes, Thom Gunn and Geoffrey Hill, as well as American poets John Berryman and Robert Lowell to a wide audience in Britain, the Times noted. Plath and Anne Sexton were added to the 1966 edition of the book, which was a standard text in schools and universities for decades.

Alvarez drew on his own passion for poker for his book The Biggest Game in Town (1983), which grew out of a 1981 New Yorker article chronicling his experiences at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. "I felt like I had walked into a Sam Peckinpah movie," he wrote in his memoir, Where Did It All Go Right? (1999). 

"A suicide attempt in 1960, after the failure of his first marriage, served as the starting point" for The Savage God: A Study of Suicide (1972), the Times wrote. The surprise bestseller "examined the subject from all sides, with special attention to the suicide of Ms. Plath in 1963, a critical moment in his life because of their close friendship."

His other books include Life After Marriage: Scenes From Divorce (1982); Offshore: A North Sea Journey (1986); Feeding the Rat: Profile of a Climber (1989); Autumn to Autumn, and Selected Poems, 1953-1976 (1978); and New and Selected Poems (2002).

In his later years, Alvarez began swimming regularly in outdoor ponds on Hampstead Heath, which inspired Pondlife: A Swimmer's Journal (2015). It closed with the last words of the Mexican revolutionary Pancho Villa: 'Don't let me die like this. Tell them I said something clever.' "


Image of the Day: Llama Llama Visits Vermont

Phoenix Books, Essex, Vt., hosted a special story time for fans of the Llama Llama series by Anna Dewdney. Reed Duncan, author of the latest Llama book, Mess Mess Mess (Viking Young Readers), was there as well. "We were expecting a good turnout but were delightfully surprised when we had close to 200 people come to our event," said Phoenix Books manager Colleen Shipman.

Bookshop Cat RIP: Oscar Wilde at Village Lights

Village Lights Bookstore, Madison, Ind., is mourning the death of its feline co-founder: "It is with heavy hearts that we have seen the passing of our beloved kitty, Oscar Wilde. He came to us off the street eleven years ago, as we were in the midst of restoring our building and creating the bookstore that our friends and customers now know. He became woven into the fabric of our shop and our lives. To say that he was special would be an understatement. He had the most remarkable personality, the quintessential Gentleman Cat... Oscar Wilde, Esquire, B.C.E. (Best Cat Ever). Our hearts are broken. Goodbye, dear Oscar."

Chalkboard of the Day: Curious Iguana

"So, WWTHOMFBD?" asked Curious Iguana, Frederick, Md., on Facebook, where it shared a photo of the shop's latest sidewalk chalkboard message: "Whenever you're in a bind, be sure to ask yourself: WWTHOMFBD? What Would the Hero of My Favorite Book Do?"

Bookshop Window Display: The Briar Patch

The Briar Patch, Bangor, Maine, shared a photo on Facebook of its front window display, noting: "Aven Green is back! And she's about to take on the biggest challenge of her life... high school. Momentous Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling is finally here. The sequel to Insignificant Events continues Aven's armless adventures with old and new friends at the Stagecoach Pass theme park and even takes them to Comic Con. Stop in for your copy and take a window selfie with our cactus."

Personnel Changes at Lonely Planet

Mariko Conner has joined Lonely Planet as a publicist for trade titles. Conner was formerly marketing and publicity manager at Heyday.

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Bobby Flay on Late Night with Seth Meyers

Wendy Williams: Rakim, author of Sweat the Technique: Revelations on Creativity from the Lyrical Genius (Amistad, $24.99, 9780062850232).

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Bobby Flay, co-author of Bobby at Home: Fearless Flavors from My Kitchen: A Cookbook (Clarkson Potter, $32.50, 9780385345910).

TV: The Old Man

Amy Brenneman (The Leftovers, Judging Amy) will co-star with Jeff Bridges in FX's drama pilot The Old Man, based on the book by Thomas Perry, Deadline reported. The cast also includes John Lithgow.

Written by Black Sails co-creators Jon Steinberg and Robert Levine, The Old Man is executive produced by Warren Littlefield, Steinberg, Dan Shotz, Levine, Jeff Bridges, David Schiff and Jon Watts, who also directs the pilot. Fox 21 Television Studios produces in association with the Littlefield Company.

Books & Authors

Awards: Rogers Writers' Trust Finalists; Editorial Excellence Winner

Finalists have been announced for the C$50,000 (about US$37,725) Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize, recognizing "Canadian writers of exceptional talent for the year’s best novel or short story collection." The winner will be named November 5 at the Writers' Trust Awards ceremony in Toronto. The five finalists are:

Days by Moonlight by André Alexis
Season of Fury and Wonder by Sharon Butala
The Innocents by Michael Crummey
Shut Up You're Pretty by Téa Mutonji
Dual Citizens by Alix Ohlin


Ileene Smith has won the 2019 Editorial Excellence Award, sponsored by Biographers International Organization. Smith has been v-p and executive editor at Farrar, Straus, and Giroux since 2012. She is also editorial director of the Jewish Lives series published by Yale University Press and the Leon D. Black Foundation. Smith has previously been the recipient of the PEN/Roger Klein Award, the Tony Godwin Memorial Award, and a Jerusalem Fellowship.

Smith will receive the award November 13 in New York City.

Reading with... Gabby Rivera

photo: Julieta Salgado

Gabby Rivera (she/her) is a queer Puerto Rican writer from the Bronx, N.Y. Rivera's debut novel, Juliet Takes a Breath, was called "f**king outstanding" by Roxane Gay and was just published in hardcover for the first time by Dial Books for Young Readers. Rivera is first Latina to write for Marvel Comics (America, the debut solo series for America Chavez). You can catch Rivera on tour this fall and follow her on Instagram.

On your nightstand now:

Pleasure Activism by adrienne maree brown is by my side at all times. Under my pillows. Stuffed between blankets and snacks in my bag. And when I'm trying to re-center myself, I reach for it. Pleasure Activism reminds me that I'm worthy of love, pleasure and deep, affectionate, liberatory relationships with other QTPOC.

Also, Shout by Laurie Halse Anderson because I just met her and oh my god, what a miraculous human being she is. Plus, the writing in Shout is gorgeous, like everything I aspire to in my secret heart of hearts.

Favorite book when you were a child:

I read and re-read Matilda by Roald Dahl like a million times as a kid. Matilda's brilliance and deep-rooted sense of kid justice fascinated me. Also, I think my first ever crush was on Ms. Honey, book and movie version.

As a kid, all I ever wanted was to go on a wild adventure. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis gave me that and more. They were kids who had a whole other magical life in another realm and it was so damn inspirational.

And of course, Superfudge and Deenie by Judy Blume, Charlotte's Web by E.B. White, Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman, the Goosebumps series by R.L. Stine, The Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Sideways Stories from Wayside High by Louis Sachar... any and all books where kids got to act all goofy and real, where they got to be free in the world.

Note: I totally hate that I had to learn, as an adult, that both Dahl and Lewis were super problematic--racist, anti-Semitic and sexist. But thankfully, now my whole damn life is dedicated to reading and amplifying works by queer and trans folks of color.

Your top five authors:

Vanessa Mártir, Nayyirah Waheed, Roxane Gay, Audre Lorde and Cristy Road.

Book you've faked reading:

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson. Thought I could handle the watered-down version of science but, alas, I could not.

Book you're an evangelist for:

Bingo Love by Tee Franklin, cuz we deserve to be swept off our feet and filled with all the butterflies of first love. It's about two church girls, Hazel and Mari, who fall for each other during the 1960s in Atlanta--like can you get any dreamier? Nope. You cannot.

Book you've bought for the cover:

Lotería by Mario Alberto Zambrano

Book you hid from your parents:

Memnoch the Devil by Anne Rice because I grew up Pentecostal Protestant Evangelical and anything with vampires, witchcraft, etc. was considered "of the devil." A book with his name on it would have sent my parents spiraling into a prayer circle or something. I hid Memnoch under my pillows, blankets, other books and let myself be thrilled and terrified late at night when everyone else was sleeping.

Book that changed your life:

Flaming Iguanas by Erika Lopez is that book. It's the first book I read that wasn't a kids book, where people talked like I did.

Tomato Rodriguez is a sh*t-talking, motorcycle-riding, bisexual, tattooed Puerto Rican babe on a cross-country road trip. I didn't even know someone could be all those things back when I was a teenager. She cursed, spit, f*cked and cried and didn't give one damn about what anyone else thought, and without her, I wouldn't have ever seen the impact of a truly relatable character. Without Tomato f*cking Rodriguez, I wouldn't have known that you could put yourself, your mannerisms, your family and all the other wild things in your life into a story and make magic.

Flaming Iguanas is one of my forever books.

Favorite line from a book:

"Standing there in the gateway between life and death, I was a divine incarnation of my own strange predicament; where I'd always been neither/nor, suddenly I was both and all and so much more. I was the crisis of the universe, the turning point and fulcrum upon which all life and death spun." --Battle Hill Bolero, Daniel José Older

Five books you'll never part with:

Flaming Iguanas by Erika Lopez
salt. by Nayyirah Waheed
Palante: Young Lords Party by Young Lords Party
Pleasure Activism by adrienne maree brown  
Zami: A New Spelling of My Name by Audre Lorde

Book you most want to read again for the first time:

How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents by Julia Alvarez

Book Review

Children's Review: Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story

Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story by Kevin Noble Maillard, illus. by Juana Martinez-Neal (Roaring Brook Press, $18.99 hardcover, 48p., ages 3-6, 9781626727465, October 22, 2019)

While Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story is recommended for audiences ages three to six, it's undoubtedly a book that will last on shelves well into readers' double digits. Kevin Noble Maillard--co-editor of Loving v. Virginia in a Post-Racial World, Syracuse University law professor and a member of the Seminole Nation, Mekusukey band--has effectively written two books for multiple age groups.

The first two-thirds is an affecting picture book that features family and friends gathering, creating and enjoying fry bread together. Glorious double-page spreads introduced by pithy, resonating phrases define the Native American staple: "FRY BREAD IS FOOD," "FRY BREAD IS COLOR," "FRY BREAD IS HISTORY." Pura Belpré-awarded illustrator Juana Martinez-Neal's (Alma and How She Got Her Name) artistry revels in the faces: the children's hungry delight at the "light like snow and cream/ Warm like rays and sun" results; the adults' joy in "moments together"; the elders' anguish when forced to explain "the stolen land/ Strangers in our own world/ With unknown food/ We made new recipes/ From what we had." Maillard's text readily convinces that "FRY BREAD IS US," as "we strengthen each other/ To learn, change, and survive."

Then comes book two, which augments the simple, sincere verses with illuminating edification for older readers. The final section begins with "Kevin's Fry Bread" recipe--hinted at in Martinez-Neal's earlier illustration of handwritten notes held by children anticipating the sizzling, golden dough--and graced with both Maillard's likeness as well as what must be a portrait of his "gourmand" Aunt Fannie, who bequeathed Maillard her "culinary, scientific" secrets. Maillard's expansive author's note follows across nine pages, amplifying every descriptive "Fry bread is..." phrase with context, background, history and personal tidbits. "Fry bread is food..." reveals the individual creator of the bowl in which the batter is mixed and the controversies surrounding "right" and "wrong" recipes. "Fry bread is sound..." points to Seminole symbol-tattoos and discusses longstanding health issues in underserved Native communities. "Fry bread is color..." displays the diversity of Native Americans, highlighting the "intermingling between tribes and also with people of European, African, and Asian descent," so that blonde hair or black skin are all part of being Native American. "Fry bread is time..." explains how Maillard became his family's "lady" to inherit the recipe, "gender requirements aside." "Fry bread is history..." provides a sobering overview of Native American dispersion and destruction by the U.S. government--which continues today. "Fry bread is nation..." presents introductory insight into the "573 federally recognized Native American tribes in the United States," with a disturbing reminder of the additional "groups who were not successful in their attempts to achieve official status with the U.S. or state governments"; Maillard insists on inclusive recognition, giving "voice to the Indigenous nations and communities within the United States" by including tribe names across the endpapers. Remarkable in balancing the shared delights of extended family with onerous ancestral legacy, Maillard both celebrates and bears witness to his no-single-recipe-fits-all community. --Terry Hong, Smithsonian BookDragon

Shelf Talker: In Kevin Noble Maillard's debut, the simple act of making Native American Fry Bread becomes a practice of tradition, a celebration of community and the honoring of crucial historical legacy.

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