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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.

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

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

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


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


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