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The Mystery of the Vintage Bookshelf

There's been a new addition back in the kids' section -- a lovely collection of vintage Nancy Drew books. Many of us (myself included) read the yellow spine ones at some point in our childhood, and it's been fun hearing people reminisce. The most knowledgeable person at Island Books for all things Nancy Drew, to the point of having a tire cover on her car featuring the famous silhouette of the girl detective, is our very own Cindy. 

Cindy: First off, I have to start by saying that Island Books is kind of a weirdly random and magical place. If you take time while shopping here to look around, you'll notice some stuff that has been incorporated into our decor over the last bunch of years that was bequeathed to us by customers and former employees and friends who just wanted a home for some thing that they loved but no longer had space for or need for but couldn’t quite cast out into the unknown universe. We have a weird huge vase and a strange statue, a beautiful old set of World Book Encyclopedias above the travel section, a bunch of typewriters, an ancient mysterious machine, a ceramic Kleenex tissue dispenser that’s supposed to look like a leather bound classic and I don't even know what else without wandering around the store and admiring it all. But my personal favorite donation of late has been this: Donna Murphy, of Issaquah (There are two other Donna Murphys not-from-Issaquah who shop here), donated her entire Nancy Drew Collection to Island Books.

Book Notes: Twelfth Knight

Football and tabletop games. Shakespeare and MMORPG’s. Fandom, feminism and the perils of falling in love. Alexene Farol Fallmuth's new YA, Twelfth Knight, has all this and more in its pages.

Viola (Vi) Reyes would like it if she lived in a world where no one questioned her abilities in ConQuest, a tabletop game, or in the MMORPG Twelfth Knight simply because she’s female. Since that isn’t the case, and Vi spends enough of her time fighting to be taken seriously in real life, she’s crafted a male alter-ego, Cesario, for Twelfth Knight, so she can simply play the game.

Jack (Duke) Orsino is ready to have the senior year of his dreams, leading his high school football team to state championships. But when an injury sidelines him indefinitely at the beginning of the season, Jack’s friend introduces him to the diverting world of Twelfth Knight. In the online game, Jack has a body that isn’t restricted by injury, and he quickly becomes engrossed by the challenges and quests. Before long, Jack encounters Cesario in the game, and the two team up to take on the most epic quest in Twelfth Knight-- the quest for Camelot.

Book Notes: Ocean's Godori

I am not the biggest sci-fi reader. I did adore Becky Chamber’s Monk and Robot novellas (Psalm for the Wild-Built and Prayer for the Crown-Shy), though I have yet to try her full-length novels. I have a soft spot in my heart for all things Star Wars. I do my best when people ask for recommendations, but I have much more knowledge (and opinions) in fantasy. So here are the features that initially sold me on Ocean’s Godori by Elaine U. Cho:

The gorgeous cover.

A misfit crew.

The promise of humor.

When I then found out the author of this debut novel is also Pacific Northwesterner and a former bookseller at Elliott Bay Book Company, I was even more interested to give it a try. I am so glad I did.

Ocean Yoon is a disgraced pilot who is part of a crew in the lower echelons of the Alliance space program. She’s Korean, and from a long line of the famed female free divers of Jeju, but she’s never felt truly a part of the culture she comes from. When a job her captain takes on goes sideways, and Ocean’s best friend Teo is accused of murder, the stakes suddenly climb very high. Ocean is torn between loyalty to her friend or obedience to her captain. With a diverse cast of characters and a plot packed both with action and quiet pockets of introspection, this was one fantastically wild ride.


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