Music of the Swamp Reissued

Lewis Nordan
1939 - 2012

Our friends at Algonquin did the book world a favor last year by returning to print Lewis Nordan’s classic novel based on the murder of Emmett Till, Wolf Whistle (paperback, 13.95), which Randall Kenan once compared to Zora Neale Hurston, Calderon, Shakespeare, and Eudora Welty. Now they have done one better, reissuing Nordan’s breakout classic, the novel-in-stories Music of the Swamp (paperback, 14.95). In its first few pages you are introduced to singing mice, a bare-breasted mermaid (perhaps), the voice of Elvis Presley that boyhood-hero Sugar Mecklin is hearing for the first time on the family’s Philco radio, and finding that, “Today was a Sunday, this was a whole summer, in fact, in which magic might prove once and for all to be true.”  

Lewis Nordan lived in Pennsylvania, where he taught at the University of Pittsburgh, but he was born and raised in Itta Bena, Mississippi. Buddy, as he was known, visited here a number of times, each one memorable but none more than his first visit to Square Books with Music of the Swamp. This new edition includes an essay by the author, “The Invention of Sugar: An Essay about Life in Fiction – or Vice Versa.” Whenever I am asked for the best books by Mississippi writers, the remarkable Music of the Swamp is among the first few I clutch.  R.H.



Children's Book Week


We are thrilled to participate in the 95th celebration of Children’s Book Week this year (May 12th-18th).

Children's Book Week is the annual celebration of books for young people and the joy of reading.

Established in 1919, Children's Book Week is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country. Every year, commemorative events are held nationwide at schools, libraries, bookstores, homes -- wherever young readers and books connect!

 

 

Children's Book Week is a truly national celebration, with events taking place from coast to coast.

Square Books Jr. will participate by hosting:

Sarah Frances Hardy, with her new book Paint Me May 10 at 10 a.m.
Laurie Fisher with Where Do the Go on Game Day? May 14 at 10 a.m.
Indie's First Storytime with Curious George and Ace Atkins May 17 at 10 a.m.
Live mannequin readings in the Square Books Jr. window all day Saturday May 17.
Volunteer mannequins can sign up in the store for twenty minute shifts.

Special Books for Special Moms




ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE (Scribner, $27.00) Anthony Doerr is masterful writer and this latest novel is as enthralling as the legendary diamond at the center of the story. We have signed copies.

THE LITTLE BOOK OF MARY (Chronicle, $19.95) Stories of the Virgin Mary with pictures from prayer cards and missals, this is a lovely gift for any mother with a special devotion to Mary.

THE GIRLS OF ATOMIC CITY (Simon & Schuster, hd. $27.00, pb. $16.00) Denise Kiernan has brought to light a remarkable forgotten chapter of American history of the thousands of women who worked in Oak Ridge, Tennessee during WWII.

UNDER MAGNOLIA: A MEMOIR (Crown, $26.00) Frances Mayes, who brought us UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN, has revisited her childhood growing up in the South with a chaotic, loving family and the importance of place.

THE B.T.C. OLD-FASHIONED GROCERY COOKBOOK (Potter, $29.99) With text and recipes from Alexe Van Beuren and Dixie Grimes, this is a celebration of food and community with lots of love from right down the road in Water Valley.




HOW TO TIE A SCARF (Potter, $12.95) Scarves are de rigueur for women of a certain age these days. This elegant little book has 33 styles. 

COOKED (Penguin, $17.00) Get Michael Pollan's latest, now in paperback, and you'll receive two free tickets to see him speak on May 21st. One for you, one for Mother.

EVERYTHING I NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED FROM A LITTLE GOLDEN BOOK (Golden, $9.99) I know your mother knows everything. This is where she learned it.

DEAR MOM ACTIVITY BOOK
(Knock Knock, $9.99) A directed book for kids to show how their mom is the coolest.

NATCHEZ BURNING
(Morrow, $27.99) After five years, Greg Iles' latest Penn Cage novel is finally here. Stephen King says "fiendishly suspenseful." Signed copies available.


Spring/Summer 2014 Dear Reader


A generous selection of the proven, prevailing and promising literary offerings available at your favorite local bookstore, provided by its dedicated staff.

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.