Bookstores and their proprietors have a special place in the hearts of bibliophiles (even bibliophiles who rely heavily on the library!). We’re lucky enough to have not one but two independent bookstores in Montclair Village, The Book Tree and A Great Good Place for Books.
Over the years, A Great Good Place for Books has been kind enough to partner with FOML on author events at the library, help us purchase books to give away and donate prizes for our art contest.
In honor of indie booksellers everywhere, here are a dozen books that try to capture what’s special about books and bookshops:
Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan (FIC SLOAN) (not at Montclair) – After a layoff during the Great Recession sidelines his tech career, Clay Jannon takes a job at the titular bookstore in San Francisco, and soon realizes that the establishment is a facade for a strange secret. Also available as an audiobook and ebook.
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin (FIC ZEVIN) – “A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. His wife has died, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen….And then a mysterious package appears at the bookstore.” (GoodReads) Also available as an audiobook and ebook.
The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George (FIC GEORGE) – “Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself; he’s still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared….[One day] he hauls anchor and departs on a mission to the south of France, hoping to make peace with his loss and discover the end of the story.” (Publisher) Also available as an audiobook and ebook.
A Novel Bookstore by Laurence Cosse (FIC COSSE) (not at Montclair) – A mysterious death, unusual car accident, and anonymous threats have one thing in common — the victims are all members of the Good Novel bookstore’s secret selection committee. Set in Paris, this tale combines mystery, romance, and French literature.
The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan (FIC COLGAN) (not at Montclair) – A “literary matchmaker” who takes joy in pairing readers with perfect books moves from the city to a sleepy village where she becomes a bookmobile driver and rediscovers her sense of adventure while searching for a happy ending of her own. Also available as an ebook.
The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop: A Memoir, a History by Lewis Buzbee (BIO BUZBEE) (not at Montclair) – A former bookseller celebrates the experiences of being in a bookstore, from the smell and touch of books to getting lost in between shelves and joining a silent reader community.
The Bookstore by Deborah Meyler (FIC MEYLER) (not at Montclair) – Discovering she is pregnant after her boyfriend dumps her, a young British student in New York takes on a part-time job at a shabby used book store and finds salvation among the colorful characters who work and shop there.
My Bookstore: Writers Celebrate Their Favorite Places to Browse, Read, and Shop, edited by Ronald Rice (381.45002 MY) – In this enthusiastic, heartfelt, and sometimes humorous ode to bookstores and booksellers, 84 well-known writers — including Isabel Allende, Dave Eggers, Louise Erdrich, Ian Frazier, John Grisham, Chuck Palahniuk, Ann Patchett and Terry Tempest Williams — pay tribute to the bricks-and-mortar stores they love and often call their second home.
The Secret of Lost Things by Sheridan Hay (FIC HAY) (not at Montclair) – Coming to New York from Tasmania at the age of eighteen, Rosemary takes a job at a used and rare bookstore run by the gruff Mr. Pike and his idiosyncratic staff and becomes caught up in the search for a long-lost Melville manuscript.
The Love Letter by Cathleen Schine (FIC SCHINE) (not at Montclair) – Smart and independent, Helen MacFarquhar owns a tiny bookstore in an idyllic seaside town, where her life is exactly as she planned it, comfortable and full. But then an anonymous love letter arrives in her mail one steamy summer morning. Written by an unknown lover to a mysterious beloved, the letter becomes Helen’s obsession.
Parnassus on Wheels by Christopher Morley (FIC MORLEY) (not at Montclair) – Published in 1917, this classic novella features a traveling horse-drawn bookstore called Parnassus.
The Bookshop by Penelope Fitzgerald (FIC FITZGERAL) (not at Montclair) – Shortlisted for the Booker Prize, this comic story follows a kindhearted English widow’s struggle to open a bookshop in a seaside town against the polite but uncompromising opposition of the town’s arbiters of culture.
P.S. If you can never have enough books, come to our book sale this Saturday, October 15, 2016 from 10:30am-3pm at the library.
P.P.S. If you need help checking out ebooks and audiobooks, sign up for the next Library Apps Workshop, Saturday, October 29, 2016.