from Square Books

News from Square Books

Signed Gift Books Position Square Books For Brisk Holiday Sales

Led by several Mississippi-related gift books, booksellers at Square Books head into the holiday season eager to please many shoppers looking for interesting and appealing gift books.   

What Can I Bring? by Today Show regular Elizabeth Heiskell from here in Lafayette County, and Oxford's John Cofield with his marvelous Oxford, Mississippi: The Cofield Collection lead the pack, while Oxford's Sarah Camp Milam's Southern Foodways Alliance Guide to Cocktails and Mississippian foodie Robert St John and artist Wyatt Waters, who have teamed up again, this time for A Mississippi Palate, are close behind, as is the instantly classic The Mississippi Encyclopedia, signed by editors Ann Abadie, Charles Wilson, Ted Ownby, and James Thomas.

Garden & Gun editor-in-chief David Dibenedetto recently visited with several other contributors to sign copies of S is for Southern, an armchair compendium of classic and obscure pieces on all the sorts of things that make us what we are, y'all. We may have a few signed copies of The Chef and the Slow Cooker, signed by the Georgia restaurateur originally from Canada, Hugh Acheson, as well as John T. Edge's Potlikker Papers

Beth Ann Fennelly's Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro Memoirs, a great literary stocking stuffer, and Perennials by Julie Cantrell, have been hot, and we have perhaps more signed titles in stock than ever, including John Grisham's latest three -- The Rooster BarCamino Island, and The Whistler; Jesmyn Ward's National Book Award winning novel, Sing, Unburied, SingThe Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant, signed by its three editors -- John Marszalek, David Nolen, and Louie Gallo; plus The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead; My Soul Looks Back, Jessica Harris; Joe Hagan's excellent account of Jann Wenner's Rolling StoneSticky Fingers; Kathleen Wickham's great account of twelve reporters who covered the Ole Miss desegregation crisis, We Believed We Were Immortal; and Mark Bowden's epochal account of the American war in Vietnam, Hue 1968.

Oman National Day


Danielle (far left), Richard (center), and Sarah (far right) of Square Books were surprised November 21st in the late afternoon with roses given to them by Alla and Shamsa, University of Mississippi students from Oman celebrating Oman's National Day. Sometimes this troubled world surprises us with gifts of joy and love.

Jesmyn Ward wins the 2017 National Book Award for Fiction

Sing, Unburied, SingJesmyn Ward made history when she became the first woman to win two National Book Awards for Fiction. This past week she received the award for her latest novel Sing, Unburied, Sing and first won in 2011 for her novel Salvage the Bones. She visited Square Books for a signing with both books and was the University of Mississippi's Grisham Writer in Residence in 2010-2011. 

As a native of DeLisle, Mississippi, Ward continues the tradition of Mississippi literature. Sing, Unburied, Sing depicts a rural African American family in south Mississippi. Rich with Ward's distinctive, lyrical language, Sing, Unburied, Sing is a majestic new work and an unforgettable family story. We have signed first editions for both Sing, Unburied, Sing and Salvage the Bones. Email us at books@squarebooks.com to learn about a special offer for the two books.

Robert St. John & Wyatt Waters at Square Books

Robert St. John & Wyatt Waters sign A Mississippi Palate

Wednesday, November 8th at 5pm

Robert St. John and Wyatt Waters have done it again. These Mississippians are pleased to introduce their fourth collaboration. With St. John's innovative versions of traditional and contemporary Mississippi recipes, along with Waters' famed watercolors of the state's most indelible images, it's sure to be another classic from the pair that brought us A Southern PalateSouthern Seasons, and An Italian Palate.

All About Oxford

On Monday, October 16th, at the Chancellor's House, John Cofield signs Oxford, Mississippi: The Cofield Collection, which is a pictorial history of Oxford featuring phographs from the Dain, Meek, Leslie, and Cofield collections, as well as many private collections. This event is at the Chancellor's House at 5pm (no on-site parking available).

Elizabeth Heiskell, the owner of Woodson Ridge Farm and The Debutante Farmer, treats us with another cookbook. What Can I Bring? is based on her monthly Southern Living magazine feature "What Can I Bring?" No matter the occasion, this cookbook will guide you in bringing the perfect dish to any sort of soirée. She signs on Tuesday, October 17th at 5pm at Off Square Books.

For a full listing of our events, visit squarebooks.com/event.

Beth Ann Fennelly reading at Square Books

Beth Ann Fennelly takes the stage at Off Square Books Tuesday evening with her new book, Heating and Cooling: 52 Micro-Memoirs. Some pieces are only a half-page long, none is longer than perhaps three pages, and, while this is not exactly poetry, the author, a poet, writes these mostly personal vignettes poetically, excising any narrative excess in order to get to the gist of memory and meaning, thus having the effect of poetry — very good poetry, that is — and causing the virtuosic novelist, Richard Ford, to confess, "I wish I'd written it." — RH

Fall is here

Cool air descends upon Oxford as we prepare for another month filled with events. Here's a look at the week ahead. For a complete listing, visit here.

Nathan Englader visits with his new novel Dinner at the Center of the Earth, which might be the best work yet from the Pulitzer finalist and bestselling author—a political thriller that unfolds in the highly charged territory of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and pivots on the complex relationship between a secret prisoner and his guard. Wednesday, October 4th at 5pm.

Two authors read on this week's Thacker Mountain Radio Show. Robert Olmstead reads from his latest novel Savage Country. "Robert Olmstead gets better with every book. If you know all of his previous books, you know how startling this fact is, and how startlingly good this writer is." — Tom Franklin. In Trouble Boys, Bob Mehr presents his epic biography about the notorious rock 'n' roll band The Replacements. A roaring road adventure, a heartrending family drama, and a cautionary showbiz tale, Trouble Boys has deservedly been hailed as an instant classic of rock lit. Thursday, October 5th at 6pm.

For Storytime at Square Books, Jr., Josh Funk reads from his picture book The Case of the Stinky Stench. There's a stinky stench in the fridge—and our favorite foodie friends must solve a smelly mystery! Saturday, October 7th at 10am.

Jesmyn Ward returns to Square Books

National Book Award-winning author Jesmyn Ward returns to Square Books on Monday, September 25th, in support of her latest novel Sing, Unburied, Sing, which was longlisted for the 2017 National Book Award in Fiction. Ward, a Mississippian, was the Grisham Writer in Residence in 2010.

In her first novel since Salvage the Bones, this singular American writer brings the archetypal road novel into rural twenty-first-century America. An intimate portrait of a family and an epic tale of hope and struggle, Sing, Unburied, Sing journeys through Mississippi’s past and present, examining the ugly truths at the heart of the American story and the power—and limitations—of family bonds.

As former Square Books bookseller Purvis Cornish says, "Ward delivers again. Told mainly through the voices of Jojo, a teenager and pseudo-father to his younger sister, Kayla, and their estranged mother, Leonie, Sing, Unburied, Sing is a multi-generational and multi-racial family's odyssey through Mississippi, and through the legacies—ghosts—of slavery and Jim Crow, which shape this family's present."

She'll be joined in conversation with the 2017 Grisham Writer in Residence Catherine Lacey. For more information, visit the event page.

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