Most of you probably know that the books that
wash up on the shores of our idyllic forested isle in June started
their journey on an island of office towers in the far away land of New
York. Like most islands, Manhattan suffers from a little inbreeding. The
publishers there who are responsible for planning our spring tide
apparently went out for a long Friday lunch and all came back singing that
old Monty Python tune "Men, Men, Men...Men, Men, Men...."
Right now our bookshelves and tables are groaning with the weight of all
the Father's Day flotsam and jetsam that publishers could launch.
An entire years worth of manly books arrived in the last two weeks and there's way too much to absorb. It's hard to pick out the pearls amidst the crashing waves of Dan Brown's Inferno, Baldacci's The Hit, and LeCarre's A Delicate Truth. Wait there's more. James Patterson, Bill O'Reilly, Jeffrey Deaver, Tom Clancy, Ridley Pearson and even Jeffrey Archer are rolling in too.
There is a second set of perhaps more worthy works arriving simultaneously. Here are some highlights in history: Bunker Hill by the reliable Nathaniel Philbrick, Revolutionary Summer by Joseph Ellis, and what will be the best history book of the year, the finale of Rick Atkinson's on WWII trilogy, The Guns at Last Light. For historical fiction, turn to Paris by Edward Rutherford and Jeff Shaara's book on Vicksburg, A Chain of Thunder.
Sports: Eleven Rings by Phil Jackson (how cool is that!); Wherever I Wind Up, a great baseball memoir by knuckleballer R.A. Dickey; American Pastimes, the pure indulgence of Red Smith's sportswriting columns; and of all the Everest books, don't miss The West Ridge by Tom Hornbein.
Fiction: New ones like And the Mountains Echoed from Khaled Hosseini (The Kite Runner), TransAtlantic from Colum McCann (Let the Great World Spin), The Ocean at the End of the Lane from Neil Gaiman (!!!), and All That Is from James Salter (superb). Also check out the unheralded The Son, Truth in Advertising, and A Constellation of Vital Phenomena.
Assorted quirky, great stuff: Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls by David Sedaris, Cooked by Michael Pollan, and The World's Strongest Librarian (better than it sounds). There's of course a group of Unbroken wannabes, but I only have room for one more book, which just might be The Book. The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown is about the University of Washington rowing team's quest for gold in the 1936 Olympics. Great drama, history, and local color. That one just landed on June 4th.
Come! Summer is our season for browsing and beachcombing.
Thurs, June 27, 7:30pm: Open Book Club: Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple
From June 1st to Aug 31st, drop by our childrens' desk and pick up a "Ticket to Read." Each time you purchase a children's or teen title, we stamp your ticket, and when you've purchased 10 books you earn one free children's hardcover of your choice.
Father's Day is Sunday, June 16th. Maybe yours is the rare dad who wants to read a massive modernist classic about the torments of fatherhood. Not likely, though. This is a day to celebrate fathers and give them something they really want.
Island Books hosts an open book club that meets the last Thursday of each month at 7:30pm. All are welcome to attend, and if you purchase your book here in the store you'll always get a 10% discount.
Catch up on the titles dominating the indie bestseller lists and save 20% when you order online.
Did you know you can download ebooks from our website and read them instantly? Or that we sell top-notch ereaders and tablets ourselves?
Read more about it. You'll be glad you did.
Island Books | 3014 78th Ave. SE | Mercer Island | WA | USA | 98040