December 2019 eNewsletter

"I heard a bird sing in the dark of December. A magical thing. And sweet to remember. We are nearer to Spring than we were in September. I heard a bird sing in the dark of December."

—Oliver Herford
December is here. The days are chilly, and the darkness comes way too quick, but our complimentary Peppermint M&Ms are out on the counter shedding a little light (Thanks, Molly!). Holiday wrap is up and getting used every day. We still have four book fairs to finish out... Needless to say, the years and seasons go by too quickly. It's hard to believe that Christmas and Hanukkah are only a couple weeks away. In preparation, we have stocked the shelves with a variety of great fiction and nonfiction titles, as well as many amazing non-book items, for you or for gifts.

As per tradition, here are my Top Ten Happenings from 2019 here at Island Books. While all events and interactions with our community are equally important, these are just a few that stood out to me.
  1. Hosting William Kent Krueger for his latest book This Tender Land
  2. Taylor Jenkins Reid returning to Island Books for her Daisy Jones and the Six Tour. I got to sit down and talk with her about this fantastic book
  3. Attending the Elton John concert with Victor and some fellow bookstore owners, Suzanne (Liberty Bay) and Janis (Queen Anne Book Company), compliments of Henry Holt Books
  4. Speaking with Covenant Shores Senior Group with Pastor Greg Asimakoupoulos about owning Island Books
  5. Being invited to chat with Lora Poepping on After the Blue Badge Podcast, a Microsoft Aumni Network project
  6. Celebrating 46 years as an independent bookstore on Mercer Island
  7. Being invited to sell books for Seattle Arts & Lectures for Melinda Gates's huge Moment of Lift event
  8. Updating the store with new carpets, shelves, signs
  9. Selling books and attending the Seattle premiere of Garth Stein's The Art of Racing in the Rain
  10. Hosting the candidate forums for the Mercer Island City Council race

We all look forward to seeing you during the holidays and throughout the next year. Your support means everything, as we would not be here without it.

Happy, Merry Everything from all of us to all of you,
Laurie Raisys


Audiobook Oasis

imageOver the past 6 months, I have discovered the joy and magic of audiobooks. For busy people audio books are a great way to immerse yourself in narrative and language, while moving at the speed your life goes. For most of the summer I nannyed (not sure on the spelling on this one) my cousins, one of which was born in May of this year. This meant I had no hands, but a lot of time just me and the baby. To stay awake I would listen to audio books while the warm bundle cuddled on my chest. Now, when I get ready for the day, brushing my teeth and making breakfast, I listen to an audio book. I listen to them while in the car. I listen to them while cooking. I listen to them pretty much any time I am alone and unable or not wanting to read a physical book ...continued.

Lori's Best of the Year

I keep forgetting it’s November. Even though I’ve had to pack my bag with a hat and gloves for chilly walks to the car, and I’m wearing my puffy jacket every day, it still doesn’t seem like we are this close to the end of the year, the long nights and the longer gift lists. It’s time to take a look back and see what stood out. These selections are my own personal favorites from the year. In my reading journal, I note the books that I’ve particularly loved. Last week I went through and made a list of all my starred reviews. Here it is for those of you who read like me and tend to shop my recommended shelf…


Romantic Reads for Fall

imageIt is not February, but love is in the air. I’m blaming it on myself. I have been walking around with my head in the clouds, narrowly avoiding car accidents, and staring off into space when I should be writing. Reader, I’m going to marry him, I repeat to myself because my longtime boyfriend and I have, in fact, decided to get married.

Although of little consequence to anyone other than us and our family, it sparked the idea for this blog post. All summer I devoured contemporary romance novels, preparing myself for what I knew and hoped was to come (a proposal) and getting into a festively romantic mindset. Once properly proposed to, I decided to do a scholarly investigation into the history of the romance novel that would deepen the appreciation I already have today... continued.


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