October 2019: Staff Favorites, Author Readings, Halloween, and New in Performing Arts

October 2019: Staff Favorites, Author Readings, Halloween, and New in Performing Arts
Check out our new staff reviews, take a peak at our Halloween section, find out which authors are reading here soon, and see which books are new in music and film. But first....
New & Upcoming Releases
These books are among the most anticipated new releases. Click on a cover or title to order from our website.
by J.K. Rowling and Jim Kay
Out Now!
The fourth book in the Harry Potter series is now illustrated in glorious full color by award-winning artist Jim Kay. Harry Potter wants to get away from the pernicious Dursleys and go to the International Quidditch Cup with Hermione, Ron, and the Weasleys. He wants to dream about Cho Chang, his crush (and maybe do more than dream). He wants to find out about the mysterious event involving two other rival schools of magic, and a competition that hasn't happened for a hundred years. He wants to be a normal, fourteen-year-old wizard. Unfortunately for Harry Potter, he's not normal--even by wizarding standards. And in this case, different can be deadly.
by Elizabeth Strout
Out Now!
Prickly, wry, resistant to change yet ruthlessly honest and deeply empathetic, Olive Kitteridge is "a compelling life force" (San Francisco Chronicle). The New Yorker has said that Elizabeth Strout "animates the ordinary with an astonishing force," and she has never done so more clearly than in these pages, where the iconic Olive struggles to understand not only herself and her own life but the lives of those around her in the town of Crosby, Maine. Whether with a teenager coming to terms with the loss of her father, a young woman about to give birth during a hilariously inopportune moment, a nurse who confesses a secret high school crush, or a lawyer who struggles with an inheritance she does not want to accept, the unforgettable Olive will continue to startle us, to move us, and to inspire moments of transcendent grace.
by John le Carré
Out Today!
Nat, a 47 year-old veteran of Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, believes his years as an agent runner are over. He is back in London with his wife, the long-suffering Prue. But with the growing threat from Moscow Centre, the office has one more job for him. Nat is to take over The Haven, a defunct substation of London General with a rag-tag band of spies. The only bright light on the team is young Florence, who has her eye on Russia Department and a Ukrainian oligarch with a finger in the Russia pie.
by Prince
Out: October 29
This is the story of how Prince became Prince—a first-person account of a kid absorbing the world around him and then creating a persona, an artistic vision, and a life, before the hits and fame that would come to define him. The book is told in four parts. The first is the memoir Prince was writing before his tragic death, pages that bring us into his childhood world through his own lyrical prose. The second part takes us through Prince's early years as a musician, before his first album was released, via an evocative scrapbook of writing and photos. The third section shows us Prince’s evolution through candid images that go up to the cusp of his greatest achievement, which we see in the book's fourth section: his original handwritten treatment for Purple Rain—the final stage in Prince’s self-creation, where he retells the autobiography of the first three parts as a heroic journey.
Staff Favorites
Check out these two new reviews from our staff!
by Stanisław Lem
reviewed by: Andy
The Polish science fiction writing genius, gave us a short story par excellence with The Seventh Voyage. It's one of many adventures of his indefatigable comedic protagonist Ijon Tichy. In this instance the innocent Ijon is merely cruising in his space ship when he gets caught in a time loop. As a result, past and future Ijons begin showing up inside the ship and hilarious mayhem ensues as they attempt to extricate themselves from the loop. Not all of the Ijons work well together and the potential frustrations of arguing with oneself are hysterically exploited. An enormous added bonus is that the Caldecott winning illustrator Jon Muth has turned the text into a graphic novel! His playful pictures perfectly complement the text and have made a unique masterpiece into a double masterpiece.
by Iain Reid
reviewed by: Sharon
Reid's second novel is a one-of-a-kind psychological mystery. The story takes place in the future on an isolated farm. We don't know much about this possibly dystopian world except for the hints we get from our main characters, Junior and Henrietta. They live a quiet life together away from society, until one day a mysterious man, Terrance, shows up and informs them that Junior has won a special kind of lottery (that he didn't even enter) and he may be chosen to participate in a test group that will be sent to live in space for a trial period. Junior and Henrietta react with a reluctant acquiescence that seems strange, and you can't help but think that we are not being given the full picture. This is a deeply personal story of their relationship with an eerie backdrop of the unknown. I was tempted to go back and read some parts again once I finally figured out what was going on!
Upcoming Author Readings
Street Journalist
Wednesday, October 23, 7pm
Portland journalist Lisa Loving will be reading from her book, Street Journalist: Understand and Report the News in Your Community. Responsible journalism begins with you! A corrupt politician. A local business in trouble. A neighbor with a heroic story. An opportunity to work together for positive change. Whatever the stories are in your community that most need to be told, the best person to tell them is you. Whether you're writing for your local newspaper, producing a podcast or video series, or simply sharing what you see and learn every day on social media, the power of journalism is in your hands, as is the responsibility to use it ethically and wisely.
Joy Seeker
Tuesday, October 29, 7pm
Join Portland self-help author Shannon Kaiser for the launch of her new book, Joy Seeker: Let Go of What's Holding You Back So You Can Live the Life You Were Made For. The relentless pressure to succeed, measure up, and reach for ever higher goals can leave us feeling like we're just not good enough—or that something's missing. At the end of the day, after giving it our all, the last thing we want to feel is hopeless, anxious, and disconnected. Kaiser understands why so many of us, despite our best intentions, cling to these patterns. Better yet, she knows how to get us out of the vicious, draining cycle. Committed to finding meaning, connection, and joy in our day-to-day lives, she's traveled the world in search of the universal truths and spiritual wisdom we desperately need today. Joy Seeker is her transformational approach to life, drawn from her own life-changing experiences. It is a path to discovering our true self—the hero within.
Far West
Wednesday, October 30, 7pm
The Portland author will be reading from his latest collection of poems, Far West, which intertwines the past and present, as time alternates between racing and standing still. Crafting poems that confront memory lapses and painful recollections, Skloot traces his moments of purest perception and expression: his wife practicing music, his daughter finding delight in the presence of wildlife, Vladimir Nabokov able to lose himself when playing goalie in a soccer match. In poems that range from traditional forms and short lyrics to longer narratives and free verse, Skloot explores how emotional experiences--memory and forgetting, love and loss, reverie and urgent attention--all come together in our search for coherence and authentic self-expression.
Moments of the Heart
Tuesday, November 5, 7pm
The Portland author will read from her new book. There are many paths to Jewish ideals, and Moments of the Heart takes readers by the hand in a non-intimidating way to explore Jewish thoughts, choose a kinder life, and be empowered. Approachable and inviting to both secular readers and all walks of faith who wish to cultivate a deeper ethical awareness and spiritual connection, Dorice Horenstein's book serves to encourage everyone to live fully and wholeheartedly--heart, mind, and soul.
This Particular Happiness: A Childless Love Story
Wednesday, November 6, 7pm
The local author will read from her memoir and will be joined in conversation with her husband, Bill Hollis. When Jackie marries Bill, a man who does not want children, she joyfully commits to a childless life. But soon after the wedding, she returns to the family ranch in rural Oregon and holds her newborn niece. Jackie falls deep into baby love and longing and begins to question her decision. As she navigates the overlapping roles of wife, daughter, aunt, sister, survivor, counselor, and friend, she explores what it really means to choose a different path. This Particular Happiness delves into the messy and beautiful territory of what we keep and what we abandon to make the space for love.
BigFoot Moon: formerly The American Quarterly Review: a Portland Novel
Thursday, November 7, 7pm
The Portland author will read from his novel. When beatnik sailor Bill Caxton waded ashore near Manzanita in 1958, he encountered an extraordinary local woman. 40 years later, he's searching for the son they conceived. But the eccentric detective he's hired must also solve a murder. Given these distractions, Caxton hands over the operation of his literary magazine--The American Quarterly Review--to two newcomers, and they argue about how to revamp the magazine. Their next issue becomes this novel. Portlanders will recognize Manzanita, the American Stonehenge at Maryhill WA, Portland's West Hills and the Pittock Mansion, the setting for the climax. Some may have heard the story of Sir Francis Drake's alleged landing on Oregon's coast in 1579, or recognize Portland in 1895--to which one character finds himself transported.
Tuesday, November 12, 7pm
Please join Annie Bloom's Books for this special event with local children’s book authors Dawn Prochovnic, Elizabeth Rusch, Hannah Holt, and Carmen Bernier-Grand. Connecting personally with an author can spark a lifelong interest in reading, writing, the arts -- and even science. The authors will cover the many ways students can connect with authors including web-based resources, classroom-based resources, educational YouTube videos, and good old fashioned fan letters, and they’ll discuss tips for attracting authors to school and community events. Meet these four local authors, get signed copies of their latest books, and learn about a variety of educational and enrichment resources available to support teachers, librarians, and parents of young readers.
Poetry Reading
Thursday, November 14, 7pm
Annie Bloom's welcomes these three wonderful local poets. The poems in Melanie Green's A Long, Wide Stretch of Calm (Poetry Box) are an invitation to slow down, to rest deep into quiet and the contemplative. In Shadow Man (Poetry Box), Margaret Chula brings her father out of the shadows where he had been since 1957, the day her mother packed their five children—all under the age of ten—into the car and drove away. From the universal to the personal, the formal to the experimental, Carolyn Martin's fourth poetry collection, A Penchant for Masquerades (Unsolicited Press), takes an unflinching look at the fluidity of truth, time, identity, history, death, and relationships.
Halloween Books
At the front of the store, we have spooky books for kids and adults.
by Doreen Cronin and Betsy Lewin
Farmer Brown does not like Halloween. So he draws the shades, puts on his footy pajamas, and climbs into bed. But do you think the barnyard animals have any respect for a man in footy pajamas? No, they do not. For them, the Halloween party has just begun. And we all know these critters far prefer tricks over treats. There are big surprises in store for Farmer Brown!
by Eric James and Karl West
An unexpected visitor arrives in town. But who is he? What is he? Where did he come from? Readers will learn the answers to all these questions as they watch the mysterious visitor travel through places they know and love in Oregon. Come along and celebrate an unforgettable Halloween night.
by Laura Ellen Anderson
This illustrated middle grade series for reluctant readers stars a vampire girl, Amelia Fang. Welcome to the world of Nocturnia, where darkness reigns supreme, glitter is terrifying, and unicorns are the stuff of nightmares! Amelia Fang would much rather hang out with her pet pumpkin Squashy and her friends Florence the yeti (DON'T CALL HER BEAST!) and Grimaldi the reaper than dance at her parents' annual Barbaric Ball. Then the King's spoiled son Tangine captures Squashy, Amelia and her friends must escape the party to plan a daring rescue! In their race against time, they begin to realize things in Nocturnia may not be quite what they seem...
by Rory Power
It's been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty's life out from under her. It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don't dare wander outside the school's fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything. But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there's more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true.
by Helene Tursten
Maud is an irascible 88-year-old Swedish woman with no family, no friends, and... no qualms about a little murder. This funny, irreverent story collection by Helene Tursten, author of the Irene Huss investigations, features two-never-before translated stories that will keep you laughing all the way to the retirement home. Over the course of her adventures—or misadventures—this little bold lady will handle a crisis with a local celebrity who has her eyes on Maud's apartment, foil the engagement of her long-ago lover, and dispose of some pesky neighbors. But when the local authorities are called to investigate a dead body found in Maud's apartment, will Maud finally become a suspect?
New in Performing Arts
by Elton John
Reginald Dwight was a shy boy with Buddy Holly glasses who grew up in the London suburb of Pinner and dreamed of becoming a pop star. By the age of twenty-three he was performing his first gig in America, facing an astonished audience in his bright yellow dungarees, a star-spangled T-shirt, and boots with wings. Elton John had arrived and the music world would never be the same again. In Me, Elton writes powerfully about getting clean and changing his life, about finding love with David Furnish and becoming a father. In a voice that is warm, humble, and open, this is Elton on his music and his relationships, his passions and his mistakes. This is a story that will stay with you by a living legend.
by Shea Serrano
This book combines the fury of a John Wick shootout, the sly brilliance of Regina George holding court at a cafeteria table, and the sheer power of a Denzel monologue, all into one. One chapter answers which race Kevin Costner was able to white savior the best. Another chapter answers what other high school movie characters would be in Regina George's circle of friends if we opened up the Mean Girls universe to include other movies. Another chapter creates a special version of the Academy Awards specifically for rom-coms, the most underrated movie genre of all. Many, many things happen in Movies (And Other Things), some of which are funny, others of which are sad, a few of which are insightful, and all of which are handled with the type of care and dedication to the smallest details and pockets of pop culture that only a book by Shea Serrano can provide.
by David Schiller
An obsessive, full-color book presented in an irresistible slipcase, Guitar features 200 instruments in stunning detail. Here are icons, like Prince's Yellow Cloud, Willie Nelson's "Trigger," Muddy Water’s Thunderbird, and "Rocky," lovingly hand-painted by its owner, George Harrison. Historic instruments—Fender's Broadcaster, Les Paul's "Log," the Gibson Nick Lucas Special, the very first artist model. Hand-carved archtops, pinnacles of the luthier's art, from John D'Angelico to Ken Parker. Stunning acoustics from a new wave of women builders, like Rosie Heydenrych of England, who's known to use 5,000-year-old wood retrieved from a peat bog. And quirky one-of-a-kind guitars, like Linda Manzer's Pikasso II—four necks, 42 strings, and a thousand pounds of pressure. Marrying pure visual pleasure with layers of information, Guitar is a glorious gift for every guitar-lover.
by Debbie Harry
Musician, actor, activist, and the iconic face of New York City cool, Debbie Harry is the frontwoman of Blondie, a band that forged a new sound that brought together the worlds of rock, punk, disco, reggae and hip-hop to create some of the most beloved pop songs of all time. As a muse, she collaborated with some of the boldest artists of the past four decades. The scope of Debbie Harry’s impact on our culture has been matched only by her reticence to reveal her rich inner life—until now. Face It is a cinematic story of a woman who made her own path, and set the standard for a generation of artists who followed in her footsteps—a memoir as dynamic as its subject.
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