Thursday, June 20, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"You must be afraid, my son. That's how you become an honest citizen . . ."
--Jean-Paul Sartre
1) THE SPY WHO LOVED ME . . . Much like the Soviet Union's Cold War show trials, the NSA Chief was trotted out before a senate committee and assured the American people that they have stopped over one gazillion terrorist plots by spying on us. Of course, no one in the intelligence community would ever misuse or abuse the information that they receive through these methods. Apparently, many of my fellow Americans are excited about this utopian future and consequently, sales for George Orwell's 1984 (9780451524935) 9.99 have skyrocketed. Along the same lines, George Packer's The Unwinding: The Inner History of the New America (9780374102418) 27.00 seems to have benefited from the NSA publicity. His book deals more with what has happened to the social and economic compact between the American people and our government over the past 30 years, but one could make the argument that the NSA surveillance is yet another example of a violation of that trust. I'm glad someone is trying to figure out what the heck has happened to our country in the last few decades, but other than the rich getting richer at the expense of the rest of us, I'm not sure there are any easy answers. Hey, did you see that Kim Karadashian and Kanye had their baby?

2) YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE . . . We were saddened to learn that Vince Flynn, after a long bout with prostate cancer, passed way today at the age of 47. He will be missed. Vince Flynn's main protangonist CIA operative Mitch Rapp is due to star in his first movie, American Assassin, which is based on his novel Consent to Kill (9781416505013) 9.99. Bruce Willis has been tapped to play Mitch Rapp, so it should be a blockbuster. Mr. Flynn's latest novel was The Last Man (9781416595212) 27.99. The paperback edition is due out in September. We extend our condolences to his friends and family . . .

3) GOLDFINGER . . . These days, like a latter day King Midas, anything Neil Gaiman touches turns to gold. Last night, I watched a Dr. Who episode from last season that was written by Mr. Gaiman, and I have to admit that it was one of the better episodes I've seen. (I still think the Vincent Van Gogh episode is the best one ever, but I'll save that for another time.) Now, Mr. Gaiman has released his first adult title in over eight years, The Ocean at the End of the Lane (9780062255655) 25.99 and the book critics are gushing: "[E]qual parts sweet, sad, and spooky . . . Poignant and heartbreaking, eloquent and frightening . . . Gorgeously written." Yup, that sounds like a lot like Neil Gaiman . . .

On this day in Byzantine History (June 18)
Leo III the Isaurian died of dropsy on June 18, 741 AD.
Leo is best known as an iconoclast, in which the worship of images was forbidden.

Odds & Sods

Our friends at History Press are on quite a roll. We have just received Lisa Rose Starner's Grand Rapids Food: A Culinary Revolution (9781609497316) 19.99. It is less of a cookbook, and more of a history of food in the Grand Rapids area. Next month we're anticipating Nicole Bray's Ghosts of Grand Rapids (9781626192058) 19.99 to sell like crazy on the western side of the state, too. Boo Appetit!

Congrats go out to Susan Nussbaum's Good Kings Bad Kings (9781616202637) 23.95, which has been awarded the coveted PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction . . .

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"A novel is just a short story that hasn't yet discovered a way to be brief . . ."
--George Saunders

A 1000 Mile Great Lakes Walk (9781933987217) 16.95 Niewenhuis

Canoeing Michigan Rivers 3rd (9781933272337) 16.95 Dennis

Haunted Michigan 3 (9781933272375) 15.95 Hunter

What I Saw on Mackinac (9781933272368) 10.95 Powell

Invaders of the Great Lakes (9781591932925) 6.95 Wildlife Forever

Belle Isle to 8 Mile (9781467557528) 22.00 Linn

Know Your Ships 2013 (9781891849169) 18.95 Lelievre

Great Lakes Cold Case Files (9781892384652) 17.95 Kadar

Shipwrecks!! (9781892384683) 17.95 Oleszewski

The Way North (9780814338650) 18.95 Reikki

Hard Ground (9780762781263) 16.95 Heywood

The Skeleton Box (9781451650303) 16.00 Gruley

Views of Michigan (9781933272351) 19.95 Thunder Bay

Cruelest Month (9781478358145) 15.95 Stander

The Gales of November (9780989284608) 14.99 Benson

1) JUNGLE LOVE . . . For me, nothing says summer in Michigan like an excursion to Pine Knob to see one of my favourite bands. Back in the day, you could pick up a cheap $10 ticket for 'The Hill', bring your own six-pack of Detroit's own Strohs, and dig the groovy sounds of Lynyrd Skynyrd or Crosby, Stills, and Nash. Good times. In Steve Miller's Detroit Rock City: The Uncensored History of Rock 'N' Roll in America's Loudest City (9780306820656) 16.99, you can now surreptitiously relive those days. I remember the warm up act Iggy Pop getting booed offstage by Rolling Stones' fans at the Silverdome on the Tattoo You Tour. And who can forget the stench of stale cigarrettes and even staler beer at Harpos, which was a mecca for many local up and coming bands? I can assure you that Dad would love to get this book for Father's Day . . .

2) TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN . . . I caught the tail end of Transformers last Sunday (in anticipation of seeing the season premiere of Falling Skies), and there's a wonderful little snippet during the credits where two of the parents are being interviewed. The husband says something about how the American government would never lie to us. His wife concurrs and says we're protected from duplicity by 'the powers that be' since we have our freedoms. With the NSA squabble going on right now, it felt a bit ironic. Consequently, George Orwell's 1984 (9780451524935) 9.99, one of my favourite books, has hit the bestseller lists again. I don't think I have to connect the dots for you . . .

Odds & Sods

As a science fiction geek, I was saddened to learn that Iain Banks passed away this past week. He was always one of those authors that I've meant to read, but it never seemed to happen. Fellow geeks swear by his Culture series and they use words like smart, clever, and brilliant to describe it. He will be missed . . .

William Gass' Middle C (9780307701633) 28.95 was recently reviewed in The New York Times and it piqued my curiosity. Again, another one of those authors I should have read by now. So no time like the present, eh? He is definitely a writer's writer. His sentence structure is impeccable. His word choices are wonderful. I think I'm in love . . .

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*
"Look around -- there's only one thing of danger for you here -- poetry."
--Pablo Neruda, speaking to Pinochet's Chilean Secret Police
1) EXTRAVAGARIA . . . I'm not exactly sure what the heck is going on in the book biz, but quirky animal books are the latest craze. From the people who brought you How to Tell If Your Cat is Plotting to Kill You (9781449410247) 14.99 comes My Dog: The Paradox (9781449437527) 9.99. I haven't had a chance to take a peek at the dog one yet, but I have to admit that there were a few laugh out loud moments in the cat one. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg; internet sensation Grumpy Cat not only has Grumpy Cat: A Grumpy Book (9781452126579) 12.95 due to release on September 18, but a Grumpy Cat 2014 Wall Calendar (9781452126609) 13.99 as well. I'm sure there will be refrigerator magnets, bumper stickers, and a line of Grumpy Cat feline apparel, too. And Halloween costumes. On the heels of this huge literary event, I learned yesterday that another animal internet sensation, The Baby Pig in a Wheelchair aka Chris P. Bacon has signed a three-book deal with Hay House. I checked out Mr. Bacon on the intrawebs and doggone it, he is as adorable as advertised. Mmmm, bacon. I guess I better start shopping around the book about my dog, Casey: A Major Pain in the A** before it's too late . . .

2) THE CAPTAIN'S VERSES . . . Jessilynn from Petoskey alerted us to a great new series of children's books that highlight the tireless efforts of the U.S. Coast Guard to keep the straits of Mackinac safe. The series is called The Adventures of Onyx by Tyler Benson. Onyx is a homeless dog who stows away aboard a Coast Guard cutter and is adopted by his new found friends. The first title is The Guardians of the Straits (9780615627373) 13.99 and the just-released The Gales of November (9780989284608) 14.99 arrived here yesterday. If your store is near Mackinac or St. Ignace, then you should be stocking both of these books. By the way, this title should not be confused with The Gales of November (9781882376339) 16.95 by Robert Hemming. The heroism of Onyx almost makes me too embarrassed to hawk my book about Casey to publishers. Almost . . .

3) THE YELLOW HEART . . . If you're a fan of the Alex McKnight series by Steve Hamilton, then you should check out Gus Carpenter in Brian Gruley's The Skeleton Box (9781451650303) 16.00. Brand new in trade paper, this is the sequel to the award-winning first two books in this series, The Hanging Tree (9781416563648) 15.00 and Starvation Lake (9781416563624) 15.00. Gus is the editor of the local newspaper in the small town of Starvation Lake in northern Michigan and after the 'Bingo Night Burglaries' become deadly, he has yet another murder to solve. It becomes personal when it appears that his mother Bea may be implicated in the victim's death . . .

Odds & Sods

There seems to be a big buzz building up around Philipp Meyer's The Son (9780062120397) 27.99. A multi-generational epic set in the Old West, it is being compared to the best works of Cormac McCarthy and Larry McMurtry. We have few copies left in the stash. Maybe Philipp should change his name to McMeyer . . .

Also the deluge of diet books seems to continue unabated. Jorge Cruise's The 100: Count ONLY Sugar Calories and Lose Up to 18 lbs. in Two Weeks (9780062227072) 25.99 appears to be the flavor of the week right now. Again, we do have some stock hidden in the stash. Hor-hay . . .