September 2012 Staff Reviews & More

Constant Contact
In This Issue:
More Staff Favorites
Call for Comics
Staff Reviews
New Fiction
More Staff Faves
Our staff enjoyed these books, too.

The Headmaster's Wager
by Vincent Lam

by Deon Meyer

The Speech
by Bernie Sanders

On Canaan's Side
by Sebastian Barry 
Call for Comics!
sunday comics Done reading the Sunday Comics? Finished with the Funny Pages? We want 'em for wrapping! Instead of recycling, please let us reuse your colorful funnies. Thanks! 
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September 2012: Staff Reviews & More


Here are three new staff reviews for you! We also have some great events coming up. Plus, check out the new fiction titles out this month.   
Staff Reviews
Our staff brings you three new favorites:

The Dog Stars
by Peter Heller
reviewed by Jennifer

This is a standout among the many dystopian novels on the bookshelves these days. Heller's writing is both exciting and poetic, and his storytelling ability will leave you on the edge of your seat. The Dog Stars is about a pilot who has taken refuge with his beloved dog in an abandoned airport after a pandemic has wiped out most of the population. Part adventure, part love story, Heller's novel (his third) is above all a very human story about loss, risk, and survival. I highly recommend this great read!

Under Wildwood
by Colin Meloy
reviewed by Kate
Like the first book in Colin Meloy's series, Under Wildwood is a well-written adventure in and around a magical version of Portland's Forest Park. Curtis is now a bandit-in-training, while Prue has returned to school, where she can't quite forget about her adventures in Wildwood, not least because various plants keep talking to her. New characters and locations are introduced, but Curtis and Prue continue to have major roles. Unafraid of dealing with big issues such as family and death in a kid's book, Meloy nonetheless keeps the plot moving along and there are plenty of moments to make readers giggle. Grand adventure, dastardly villains, and some moments of genuine suspense all go in to making this an instant kid's classic.

The Emily Dickinson Reader
by Paul Legault
reviewed by Brian
With Paul Legault's impeccable translations of Emily Dickinson's complete poems, we can finally know what the strange and enigmatic poet was talking about. If you think you don't like Dickinson, Legault may just change your mind. Here's a taste:

48.  Whose face is this? Oh, it's a dead person's face.
1017.  Souls are itching to get the hell out of their bodies.
1739.  I'm lame, because I'm not a bird.

Now that's some poetry that takes the top of my head off. 
Readings & Hobbit Party
Upcoming Events at Annie Blooms:


Yuvi Zalkow

A Brilliant Novel in the Works

Thursday, September 20, 7pm

Yuvi worries. He has a wife who wants things he can't give her, an editor who wants a book he can't deliver, a brother-in-law whose gastrointestinal disease may lead him to a morbid end, and dead parents who, well, they don't really want anything, but that doesn't stop the memory of them from haunting him. Heartbreaking and hilarious, A Brilliant Novel in the Works is the utterly original debut novel from Yuvi Zalkow, praised by Cheryl Strayed as "the secret love child of the smartest person you've ever met and the weirdo who lives down the block."

BOOK RELEASE ANNOUNCEMENT: A Brilliant Novel in the Works
A Brilliant Novel in the Works book trailer 


The Hobbit Party!

Sunday, September 23, 2pm

Annie Bloom's Constant Contact logo Join us for a fun celebration of The Hobbit. This year is the 75th anniversary of J.R.R. Tolkien's classic tale of Bilbo Baggins, who ventures forth from the comfort of his home in the Shire to win a share of the treasure guarded by the dragon, Smaug. Mark your calendars now, and look forward to future details on all the awesome activities we'll have in store for you at our Hobbit Party!


Walter Stahr

Seward: Lincoln's Indispensable Man

Tuesday, October 2, 7pm

This biography is the first full life of the leader of Lincoln's "team of rivals" to appear in more than forty years. William Henry Seward was one of the most important Americans of the nineteenth century. He was also fascinating. Most nights this well-known raconteur with unruly hair and untidy clothes would gather diplomats, soldiers, politicians, or actors around his table to enjoy a cigar, a drink, and a good story. Drawing on hundreds of sources not available to or neglected by previous biographers, Walter Stahr sheds new light on this complex and central figure, as well as on pivotal events of the Civil War and its aftermath.


Matthew Dickman with Jay Nebel


Thursday, October 4, 7pm

At the center of Matthew Dickman's Mayakovsky's Revolver is the suicide of his older brother. Known for poems of universality of feeling, expressive lyricism of reflection, and heartrending allure, Dickman is a powerful poet whose new collection explores how to persevere in the wake of grief.

Jay Nebel will be reading from his chapbook, Loud Mouth. His poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Tin House, Narrative, and others. He lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and kids.   


William L. Sullivan 

"Folk Heroes of the Northwest" Slideshow 

Wednesday, October 10, 7pm

The author of the "100 Hikes" guide book series presents a slideshow on "D.B. Cooper & the Exploding Whale: Folk Heroes of the Northwest." Sullivan's new historical mystery is The Case of D.B. Cooper's Parachute. Portland police detective Neil Ferguson uncovers a series of puzzling and threatening clues that lead to the identity of D.B. Cooper, the mysterious man who hijacked a plane and parachuted with $200,000 in 1971. But when Ferguson delves deeper into a web of blackmail and murder, he realizes there may in fact be two D.B. Coopers.

New Fiction
by Hillary Jordan
From the author of Mudbound comes this fable about a stigmatized woman struggling to navigate an America of the not-too-distant future. Hannah unknowingly embarks on a path of self-discovery that forces her to question the values she once held true and the righteousness of a country that politicizes faith. Now out in paperback!

Telegraph Avenue
by Michael Chabon
Archy Stallings and Nat Jaffe are co-owners of Brokeland Records, a used vinyl store located in Oakland. When ex-NFL star Gibson Goode plans to build a megastore nearby, Nat and Archy fear it means certain doom for their vulnerable enterprise. Meanwhile, their wives (also business partners) have their profession and friendship tested; Archy's deadbeat dad comes back to town; and Archy's unacknowledged teenage son appears.

This Is How You Lose Her
by Junot Diaz
Here, Diaz writes of love: obsessive love, illicit love, fading love, maternal love. At the heart of these stories is the irrepressible, irresistible Yunior, a young hardhead whose longing for love is equaled only by his recklessness--and by the extraordinary women he loves and loses: artistic Alma; the aging Miss Lora; Magdalena, who thinks all Dominican men are cheaters; and the love of his life, whose heartbreak ultimately becomes his own.

by Zadie Smith
This tragi-comic new novel follows four Londoners--Leah, Natalie, Felix and Nathan--as they try to make adult lives outside of Caldwell, the council estate of their childhood. From private houses to public parks, at work and at play, their London is a complicated place, as beautiful as it is brutal, where the thoroughfares hide the back alleys and taking the high road can sometimes lead you to a dead end.