February 2018 Readings, New Biographies and Memoirs, and More!

In This Issue:
First Friday
Upcoming Readings
Indie Bookseller Picks
New Bios and Memoirs
First Friday
February 2 is First Friday!

Come visit us during First Friday in Multnomah Village. For your browsing enjoyment, we'll be serving wine. Plus, we'll be giving away great prizes for our monthly drawing.

Drop by Annie Bloom's anytime after 6:00 on Friday night and register to win!

One adult will win:
Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House
by Michael Wolff

And one lucky kid will win:
Dog Man and Cat Kid
by Dav Pilkey   
Love
We're feeling the love in our latest Theme section. Browse these titles and many others at the front of the store:
 
edited by Deepak Chopra
 
 
 
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February 2018 Readings, New Biographies and Memoirs, and More!
Check out our upcoming readings! Plus, read about the latest Biographies and Memoirs, and find out which new titles indie booksellers across the country are loving. And drop by and see us on First Friday!
Upcoming Readings
Readings at Annie Blooms:
       
Michael Strelow
Some Assembly Required
TONIGHT! Wednesday, January 31, 7pm

Oregon author Michael Strelow will read from his latest novel, Some Assembly Required. Jake hears voices, always has. They've never been a problem as long as he kept them to himself. While on a writing assignment to cover an A.I. convention, Jake reads the paper of a Dr. Sewall. What he discovers is puzzling, incomprehensible, maybe even impossible. Jake visits Dr. S after the convention and finds his creation, Rex--which looks like a bowl of gray-green oatmeal--whose voice somehow mingles with voices Jake has heard all his life. So begins an affair of impossible science. The world becomes funny right on the edge of fearful, the cosmic goof at large, and growing larger...

Carl Wolfson
Slide!
Thursday, February 8, 7pm

The Portland radio personality presents his tale of the greatest collapse in baseball history, told from the perspective of a boy who lived it. The Philadelphia Phillies' bid for the pennant in 1964 was an almost flawless run. With twelve games to play, the team's lead seemed insurmountable. For 11-year-old Carl Wolfson, it was the happiest summer of his young life. Then the unthinkable happened. With each late-season loss, Phillies fans were thrown into despair, and Carl's crumbling dream of a World Series forced him to take refuge in comedy. Luckily, it was all around him.

Diana Saltoon-Briggs
Wife, Just Let Go
Thursday, February 15, 7pm

An extraordinary love story, Wife, Just Let Go are the last words Robert Briggs wrote to his wife before he passed away from Alzheimer's disease. A publisher, literary agent, and author who deeply felt the influence of the Beat era, Robert never stopped writing. Even in his later stages of Alzheimer's, Robert was able to share insights into what he called "the power of aging," and his love of poetry, jazz, and Zen. His wife Diana, as his long-time partner and primary caregiver, joined him in this telling, as a way to restore for the reader, and for Robert, the parts of the story he was losing. Wife, Just Let Go navigates not only the waters of grief and loss, but also the other side of Alzheimer's: gifts that sustain and inspire loved ones left behind.

Anne Hendren
Curious Tusks
Thursday, February 22, 7pm

The Portland author returns to read from her mystery, Curious Tusks. Stuart Lehrman crosses North and East Africa in search of his grandfather, George Atkinson's assassin. A photojournalist, George was found dead on his porch in Arusha Tanzania after several articles revealing inhumane, but lucrative, practices by Africans and others. As Stuart makes his way through the continent others are murdered, including Atkinson's editors. With the help of a clever African family, Stuart collects the story to be certain it is released to the world. This character driven novel is a must read for those curious about the devastating effects of colonialism and resilience of Africans from this scourge.

Robin Gainey
Light of the Northern Dancers
Wednesday, February 28, 7pm

In the Seattle author's historical novel, Eden Rose has tended a foundering marriage and failing ranch at the corner of Crazy Woman Creek and the Powder River for a decade. Best friend, backwoods spitfire Maddie True, has her own woes a few miles away: widowed with a passel of young children, and caretaker to her addled father. Abandoned by her husband during the height of Wyoming Territory's worst drought in history, Eden depends on her inept brother, Aiden, to see her through the coming winter. But when he disappears into the wild Bighorn mountains, she shuns Maddie's fearful cautions, teaming with enigmatic Lakota holy man, Intah, to find her brother before the wicked snow holds them all hostage.

Phillip Margolin
The Third Victim
Tuesday, March 6, 7pm

Local author Phillip Margolin returns for the launch of his latest mystery! A woman who has survived kidnapping and torture in rural Oregon identifies the house where she was held captive and the owner, Alex Mason--a prominent local attorney--is arrested for the murder of two other women. Legendary criminal defense attorney Regina Barrister has agreed to defend Mason. Robin Lockwood, a young lawyer and former MMA fighter, has just left a clerkship at the Oregon Supreme Court to work for Barrister. The Alex Mason trial is her first big one, a likely death penalty case, and she's second chair to Regina. Increasingly, she's worried her boss's behavior and the details in the case against their client don't quite add up.
February Indie Next List 
Every month, the coalition of independent bookstores puts together a list of titles recommended by booksellers across the country. Come in soon to browse these and other great February Indie Next picks.

The Great Alone
by Kristin Hannah

"Kristin Hannah's The Great Alone is a powerful, compelling story of survival--survival of the natural elements and of the human spirit. It's 1974, and 13-year-old Leni Allbright lives with her devoted mother, Cora, and abusive father, Ernt, who was a prisoner of war during Vietnam. America is changing after the war, and Ernt thinks their best chance at a fresh start is to move off the grid, to America's last frontier--Alaska. Grizzlies, wolves, and dropping temperatures are Leni's worries outside of her family's cabin, but as Ernt's battle with his demons rages on, it's no safer inside. The result is a beautifully descriptive, heart-wrenching adventure."-Hillary Taylor, Lemuria Bookstore, Jackson, MS  
 
by Matt Haig

"Both incredibly poignant and unceasingly charming, How to Stop Time is the story of a man who has an abundance of time and a scarcity of love. Tom Hazard ages very slowly, so slowly that nothing feels new to him as memories from the past crowd every moment of his present. He has also discovered that time without the people we love loses all meaning. Matt Haig takes us from Shakespeare's London to the Roaring Twenties in Paris, from conquering the new world with Captain Cook to present-day Los Angeles. Scenes both familiar and exotic thrum with life, but the real magic is in how he makes us believe in this 439-year-old man who is only now learning how to live." -Luisa Smith, Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA 

Red Clocks
by Leni Zumas

"I never understood what it meant for someone's writing to be 'lyrical' until I picked up Red Clocks. With beautiful prose, Leni Zumas tells the story of a young girl seeking an abortion in a world where abortion is illegal and dangerous; a woman on the quest to have children when in-vitro fertilization is illegal and folks aren't allowed to adopt without a partner; a woman in a dead-end marriage desperate to escape from her husband and children; and a woman considered a witch by most who provides homeopathic reproductive healthcare, including illegal abortions. Zumas beautifully weaves these stories together and gives each individual a strong and unique voice, while also maintaining suspended disbelief. These characters felt real and this world felt possible. I suspect this will be one of the best books published in 2018." -Hanna Foster, BookPeople, Austin, TX

White Houses
by Amy Bloom

"Lorena Hickok, the most prominent female reporter in America, meets Eleanor Roosevelt in 1932 while reporting on Franklin Roosevelt's first presidential campaign. Almost immediately, Hick and Eleanor connect passionately and deeply, and Hick moves into the White House as 'First Friend.' The story of their bond is told with art and grace and a bit of intrigue by the wise and gifted Amy Bloom. A love story and historical novel, based on a true romance and unabashedly sensual, White Houses is extraordinary." -Cathy Langer, Tattered Cover Book Store, Denver, CO

Everything Here Is Beautiful
by Mira T. Lee

"Everything Here Is Beautiful is a remarkable debut about two sisters and the strength of their bond. At the heart of this story is Lucia--a sister, mother, and woman who struggles with mental illness. Told from alternating points of view, Mira T. Lee gives an honest and emotional look at living with mental illness and its impact on not only your own life but the lives of those you love most. Captivating doesn't begin to cover this novel. You will find me eagerly waiting on the edge of my seat for the next book by this talented author." -Kaitlin Smith, Copperfield's Books, Sebastopol, CA
 
Plus, here are some previous Indie Next entries, now out in paperback:  
by Bryn Chancellor

Recommended in hardcover by Pierre Camy, Schuler Books, Grand Rapids, MI
 
A Piece of the World
by Christina Baker Kline

Recommended in hardcover by Phyllis Spinale, Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA
New Biographies and Memoirs
Here are the latest true life stories:
     
Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder
by Caroline Fraser
Millions of readers of Little House on the Prairie believe they know Laura Ingalls--the pioneer girl who survived blizzards and near-starvation on the Great Plains, and the woman who wrote the famous autobiographical books. But the true saga of her life has never been fully told. Now, drawing on unpublished manuscripts, letters, diaries, and land and financial records, Caroline Fraser--the editor of the Library of America edition of the Little House series--masterfully fills in the gaps in Wilder's biography. Spanning nearly a century of epochal change, from the Indian Wars to the Dust Bowl, Wilder's dramatic life provides a unique perspective on American history and our national mythology of self-reliance. With fresh insights and new discoveries, Prairie Fires reveals the complex woman whose classic stories grip us to this day.
 
The Monk of Mokha
by Dave Eggers
This is the exhilarating true story of a young Yemeni American man, raised in San Francisco, who dreams of resurrecting the ancient art of Yemeni coffee but finds himself trapped in Sana'a by civil war. Mokhtar Alkhanshali is twenty-four and working as a doorman when he discovers the astonishing history of coffee and Yemen's central place in it. He leaves San Francisco and travels deep into his ancestral homeland to tour terraced farms high in the country's rugged mountains and meet beleaguered but determined farmers. But when war engulfs the country and Saudi bombs rain down, Mokhtar has to find a way out of Yemen without sacrificing his dreams or abandoning his people. 
 
Leonardo Da Vinci
by Walter Isaacson
The author of the acclaimed bestsellers Steve Jobs, Einstein, and Benjamin Franklin brings Leonardo da Vinci to life. Based on thousands of pages from Leonardo's astonishing notebooks and new discoveries about his life and work, Walter Isaacson weaves a narrative that connects his art to his science. He shows how Leonardo's genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves. Leonardo's delight at combining diverse passions remains the ultimate recipe for creativity. So, too, does his ease at being a bit of a misfit: illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted, and at times heretical. His life should remind us of the importance of instilling, both in ourselves and our children, not just received knowledge but a willingness to question it--to be imaginative and, like talented misfits and rebels in any era, to think different.

The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State
by Nadia Murad
The author was born and raised in Kocho, a small village of farmers and shepherds in northern Iraq. A member of the Yazidi community, she and her brothers and sisters lived a quiet life. In 2014, when Nadia was just twenty-one years old, this life ended. Islamic State militants massacred the people of her village, and Nadia was taken to Mosul and forced, along with thousands of other Yazidi girls, into the ISIS slave trade. Finally, she managed a narrow escape. Today, Nadia's story--as a witness to the Islamic State's brutality, a survivor of rape, a refugee, a Yazidi--has forced the world to pay attention to the ongoing genocide in Iraq. It is a call to action, a testament to the human will to survive, and a love letter to a lost country, a fragile community, and a family torn apart by war.