Monthly Archives: January 2020

I Want My Hat & Lost and Found

Many things get left behind the bookshop but we usually manage to find the owner. My favourite reuniting happened while I was telling a customer about the wonderful book Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems (author/illustrator behind Pigeon series and Gerald & Piggie readers). A preverbal Trixie has lost her favourite toy Knuffle Bunny and Dad doesn’t know why she is upset. Just as we were at the counter book in hand, in rushed a distraught mother looking for a favourite bunny toy that had been lost that looked an awful lot like Knuffle Bunny. Luckily we tracked it down and returned it to the upset owner. Sadly, sometimes things are left behind and not collected so we’ve decided to do a Lost and Found window. Children’s sun hats would be the most common item lost so we have a Jon Klassen I Want My Hat theme (an excellent book series for the smaller reader). Please drop by and check if we can be not just like Michael Rowbotham but more like Oliver Jeffers.

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New Fiction for the New Year

2020 is shaping up to be an exceptionally good year for fiction (now we just need to work on the reality!) Why not escape fires, Iran, Trump, royal drama and Brexit with some top notch writing. In the first few months we will be seeing works from two giants of the literary world – Maggie O’Farrell and Hilary Mantel. Mantel will be finally releasing The Mirror and The Light, the last book in the Wolf Hall Trilogy. If you have not read the first two books in the series, Wolf Hall, and Bring Up the Bodies, rush in and grab a copy. Both of them are amazing works of literature and all-time favourites here in the shop. Maggie O’Farrell, another shop favourite, is back in March with the exquisitely written Hamnet, a departure for her as this is a work of historical fiction. I’m currently reading an advance copy at the moment and it is wonderful. But what to read while we are waiting for those to hit our shelves? To continue on the wolf theme, the answer is Lucy Treloar’s Wolfe Island which I read over the summer break. This is simply a wonderful book that has big ideas, indelible characters and perfect sentences. I loved it and expect it to still be on my favourites of 2020 at the end of the year even though I read it start of January. Kitty Hawke is the last inhabitant of a drowning island, that is sinking into Chesapeake Bay. Solitary, with only the company of her wolfdog, her world is turned upside down when her granddaughter arrives in the midst of a storm, begging for sanctuary for herself and her friends. Trouble follows in a world that has already troubled. This book has so much to say about the world that surrounds us as well as our ability to survive and love in the most difficult of circumstances. Highly recommended.

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Happy New Year

It is hardly a good start to the year for Australia, but still Happy New Year from all of us. As I write this is Heather is winging her way off to the American Booksellers Association Winter Conference in chilly Baltimore courtesy of a travel grant from the Neilma Sidney Literary Travel. It is a conference for independent bookshops only and Heather is looking forward to talking to our American counterparts as well as authors and getting ideas that she can bring back to us in Station Street. I’ve been doing lots of reading in the holidays and thought I’d post about some of my new favourites. First lets talk about food. Like many others I’ve started the year full of resolutions about eating healthier and has pulled out Michael Mosley’s The Fast 800 again. Full of science and tasty recipes, this is a great book if you are looking to lose weight, bring down cholesterol and be generally healthier. Helping with this is my new favourite vegetarian/ vegan cookbook East. It is a total winner packed full of delicious and simple recipes. Move over Ottolenghi, Meera Sodha is a genius. I was lucky enough to be cooked the following for a New Year’s Eve dinner by my 14 year old daughter (that’s how simple the recipes are) chilli salt pineapple, sweet chilli cashews, caramelised onion and chilli ramen and silken tofu with pine nuts and pickled chillies (guess the linking ingredient) – literally the best veggie meal I’ve ever had. Another book for assisting in the new year resolutions is The Resilience Project – Finding Happiness Through Gratitude, Empathy & Mindfulness by Hugh Van Cuylenburg. Many local parents might have come across Hugh as he regularly conducts school workshops or you might have listened to his popular podcast. Entertaining, informative, bursting with empathy, this is a great book for teenagers and up and just might change your life for the better. Recommended!

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