Spreading the Love of Reading

April 23rd marked the 3rd annual World Book Night, USA where volunteer book givers go out into their communities to give away donated books to light or non-readers or to people who have limited access to books. Square Books was proud to be a host bookstore for this event, which aims to spread the love of reading. Some of the local volunteer book givers are pictured below.


Joanne Wilkinson with books for the inmates at the Lafayette County Detention Center, Oxford MS.


Connie Ramsey and her daughter hand out copies of Bridge to Terabithia at the Pontotoc Library.


Adam Brady handed out Mrs. Darcy Falls in Love at Azalea Gardens.

Thank you to all 2014 World Book Night participants. For information on World Book Night please click here.

Megan Abbott and Dave Smith Reception



Square Books is pleased to host a reception honoring Megan Abbott and Dave Smith at 6 p.m., Thursday, April 24, at Off Square Books. There will be a brief reading during the reception.

Megan Abbott is completing her year as the John and Renee Grisham Vising Writer at the University of Mississippi. She is an Edgar Award-winning author of seven novels, including Queenpin, The End of Everything, and, most recently, Dare Me, which Gillian Flynn called, "tense, dark, and beautifully written."

Dave Smith is completing his first year as Senior Writer in the University of Mississippi's writing program. A native of Virginia, he has had a distinguished teaching career at Virginia Commonwealth University, LSU, and Johns Hopkins University. He has published over a dozen volumes of poetry, as well as volumes of fiction and criticism, including Little Boats, Unsalvaged, Hawks on Wires, and The Wick of Memory: New and Selected Poems 1970 - 2000. He has received numerous awards and fellowships, including the Poetry Award from the American Academy and Institute for Arts and Letters.

The event is free and open to all.

Taking Gifts from Square Books Into the Wider World

This time of year we find ourselves asked about gifts for graduates, some of which we have been recommending successfully for years, like Eudora Welty's timeless memoir One Writer's Beginnings (Harvard University Press, $18, pb) whose three parts, "Listening," "Learning to See," and "Finding a Voice," offer wisdom for writers or anyone else embarking upon a voyage toward independence (we also have the 3 - CD version of this in her own voice, $32.00); North Toward Home (Vintage, $15.95 pb), by Willie Morris, in which the writer explains how leaving Mississippi for Texas and New York was part of becoming fully adult. (Willie's My Two Oxfords, ($20, U. Press of Miss.) also makes a nice gift on this occasion); David Foster Wallace's This Is Water ($15, Little Brown), his commencement address of "some thoughts, delivered on a significant occasion, about living a compassionate life"; and The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (Hyperion, $21.99). 



  There are four new books just published (or about to be) that are quality suggestions, two of which seem especially good for those entering a business career -- Young Money ($27, Grand Central) by Kevin Roose, who spent three years shadowing eight post-2008 crash entry-level Wall Street recruits, an excellent account of what to expect in the financial world today, and the ever-reliable Michael Lewis on Wall Street revolt, Flash Boys ($27.95, Norton). Facebook CEO's Sheryl Sandberg has been atop the bestseller list for months now with Lean In, and she now has written a book tailor-made for a graduation gift, Lean In For Graduates ($24.95, Knopf), with new chapters by experts, including Find Your First Job, Negotiate Your Salary, and Own Who You Are.
 

  We expect to have in stock soon two graduation gift tomes to be published April 22 -- You Are Not Special: ...and Other Encouragements (Ecco, $21.99) by David McCullough, Jr, the schoolteacher son of the historian of the same name, and Congratulations, by the Way: Some Thoughts on Kindness ($14, also as a CD, $20), a graduation address by George Saunders, one of our favorite writers. Finally, there is The Opposite of Loneliness, Essays and Stories by Marina Keegan (Scribner, $23.00, with an introduction by Anne Fadiman), the 2012 Yale Magna Cum Laude graduate who was tragically killed in a car accident just five days after commencement. Even though she was only 22, she left behind a trove of writings that address the hope, uncertainty, and possibility of her generation.


Drop in to talk with us about these and get your free gift wrapping, or give us a call or an email.  - RH

 

Michael Pollan comes to Oxford

MEET THE AUTHOR

WEDNESDAY, MAY 21st
AT NUTT AUDITORIUM, 6:30 p.m.

In partnership with the Southern Foodways Alliance, Square Books is pleased to announce an evening with Michael Pollan on May 21 beginning at 6:30 p.m. in Nutt Auditorium on the University of Mississippi campus. On tour for the paperback release of Cooked (Penguin, $17.00), tickets are free with the purchase of this title at Square Books. A limited number of student tickets are available through the Southern Foodways Alliance at info@southernfoodways.org.

For the past twenty-five years, Michael Pollan has been writing books and articles about the places where nature and culture intersect: on our plates, in our farms and gardens, and in the built environment. He is the author of  Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation (available in paperback April 29) and of New York Times bestsellers: Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual (2010); In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto (2008); The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals (2006) and The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s-Eye View of the World (2001). The Omnivore’s Dilemma was named one of the ten best books of 2006 by both the New York Times and the Washington Post. It also won the California Book Award, the Northern California Book Award, the James Beard Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Pollan was named to the 2010 TIME 100, the magazine’s annual list of the world’s 100 most influential people. In 2009 he was named by Newsweek as one of the top 10 “New Thought Leaders.” A contributing writer to The New York Times Magazine since 1987, his writing has received numerous awards. In addition to publishing regularly in The New York Times Magazine, his articles have appeared in Harper’s Magazine (where he served as executive editor from 1984 to 1994), National Geographic, Mother Jones, The Nation, The New York Review of Books, Vogue, Travel + Leisure, Gourmet, House & Garden and Gardens Illustrated, among others. In 2009, he appeared in a two-hour PBS special based on The Botany of Desire as well as in the documentary, "Food Inc.," which received an Academy Award nomination.

*EVENT GUIDELINES*
- Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Event begins at 6:30 p.m.
- This is a ticketed event. Tickets are free with a purchase of the paperback edition of COOKED from Square Books (limit two per individual).
- Michael Pollan will sign immediately following the event at Nutt Auditorium. Books will not be sold at Nutt Auditorium.

On Loan to Square Books

City Grocery has its guest chef series (most recently hosting Donald Link), the University has a visiting writer in residence why not a guest bookseller? So we invited Bill Cusumano to visit us. A buyer and veteran bookseller at Nicola's Books in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Bill might hold the record for most Indie Next blurbs. Bill says that there is a rule at the ABA that if an author lives in Columbus, MS his blurb will be selected for the monthly Indie picks (Michael Farris Smith, RIVERS and Deborah Johnson THE SECRET OF MAGIC) He is a truly voracious reader and knowledgeable bookseller. Drop by in the next two weeks and see what Bill is recommending now.

2014 Book Conference Feature, Mar. 26-28



More than a murder mystery, Laura Lippman’s After I’m Gone explores what it means to be “blinded by love:” the wife whose adoring husband is unfaithful, the mistress who believes he’ll choose her, the daughters who love their father and thus ignore his crimes. Set against the backdrop of a cold case investigation, these characters are so striking that by the end, you won’t want to know which one of them is responsible. There’s no question about it: Laura Lippman is one of the best in the business. --Kaitlyn