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June 2020 eNewsletter

"For all those that have to fight for the respect that everyone else is given without question."

— N. K. Jemisin, The Fifth Season

This month marks two months closed to the public. We are so thankful for our community's support. In order to re-open our doors when it is safe, we need to continue to keep afloat and still need your support.

You can find more information on how you can support us throughout this newsletter. We want to take this space to acknowledge the kind and encouraging notes from our customers. WE APPRECIATE YOU!

"Thank you for your quick and pleasant staff who are ready to assist us customers when we call. Island Books is 'THE BEST'!"
Mercer Island, WA

"I placed an order with you after reading about your store on Slate. I just received my book yesterday and it was gift-wrapped, plus had a sew-on patch. It felt like a birthday present. Thank you for the personal touch." Naperville, IL

"I'm desperate to get back into reading and haven't been able to focus lately. I loved your blog post on the topic and recommendations, and I can't wait to come get even ONE book from you all IN PERSON!!!" Seattle, WA

"My household misses the hours spent in your cozy chairs! We so look forward when we can all get together again." Mercer Island, WA

"I'm sorry you had to close, these are difficult times. I hope we will all get out soon. I hope everyone and all your families are home safe. Thank you for continuing to provide storytime. My baby loves it." Mercer Island, WA

"I grew up on MI and spent an inordinate amount of time in your store as a child. Hoping this little bit helps, and am of course looking forward to reading some great titles!!" Seattle, WA

"I saw your 'Coronavirus Diaries' entry on Slate and wanted to help in a small way. I'm sure our local community (including my own small business) will be feeling the same effects shortly, but wanted to reach out while I can. All our best... hang in there! And keep pulling for one another." Glenview, IL

We want to extend our gratitude to everyone near and far for their support. It is not lost on us that we would not be here without each and every one of you. Your calls, emails, and continuous love of our bookstore is what keeps us going.

We also want to acknowledge the heartbreak we feel for black people around the country. It is difficult not to be able to hold our community close during this time, but we do not want to stay silent in the face of the injustices they have been fighting for centuries. We are a resource to help educate our community, and as such we will continue to lift up the voices of black people through their works.

On a personal note, my third child, Liuci, will graduate from Mercer Island High School next week. While it's not how any of us imagined she, or any of the graduating class of 2020, would celebrate ending their high school years, we are proud of her and know that she will go on to do amazing things in this world. (Go Cougs!)

Be well, stay safe, and wash your hands,
Laurie Raisys

Featured Event: Pebble Preschool Book Fair

mercer-island-books-activity-workbooks-localThis year, Pebble Preschool is donating all proceeds from their book fair on June 10 to Mercer Island Youth and Family Services. We are so excited to turn our attention to our community during this time and work with Pebble Preschool to support MIYFS. Please click the link and read on to see how you can participate. All are welcome to join in on the fundraiser!


Kids: Funny Books for June

mercer-island-books-activity-workbooks-localSummer is almost here, and it's time to capture some of that joy we associate with school being out and the warm weather arriving. Take a look at these goofy and delightful kids books for a variety of ages.


Counter Intelligence: Caitlin & Nancy's May Pick

island-books-book-of-longings-sue-monk-kidd-pre-order-independent-bookstore-mercerThis month, Caitlin and Nancy recommend A Burning by Megha Majumdar.
The book follows Jivan, a Muslim girl from the slums, Lovely, an outcast with dreams of glory, and PT Sir, an opportunistic gym teacher. Their fates become entangled as Jivan is accused of performing a terrorist attack, Lovely holds Jivan's alibi at a cost, and the gym teacher's political aspirations rise. The book is powerful force as it combines a thriller and a complex social commentary.

See More Staff Picks

Post of the Month: May

island-books-mercer-coronavirus-covid-19-stay-at-home-shop-local"Did you see us in @king5evening with @ellenmeny? We have been working hard getting those deliveries out there to everyone and marking sure you get to keep reading while at home! Keep supporting your local bookstores and small businesses. Read more here #saveindiebookstores"

How to Continue to Support Island Books During COVID-19

The Island Books team has been so grateful for the support you have been showing us for the past month, but we need more! Here are some concrete ways you can continue to support us:
  • Set up a virtual shopping appointment to buy merchandise not available on our website! We are available to shop with you over FaceTime or the phone between 11:00am-4:00pm. Email us to set up an appointment here.
  • Purchase gift cards to use at a later time or donate them to sequestered seniors on Mercer Island. We will use donated gift cards to purchase items currently on our shelves for gift baskets for seniors.
  • Purchase books from our website that are marked "On Our Shelves Now". Selling what is currently in our inventory is the best way to keep us moving.
  • Email us to set up shopping appointments for gifts, or call the store between the hours of 10:00am-4:00pm. This way we can put aside time to help you pick out items in the store that you would normally be able to browse.

Reading-Related Rambles

In May, Cindy reviewed a new thriller and discussed how she chooses what to read. Kelleen talked about how reading sci-fi can challenge our discomfort with the unknown, and Lori explored her relationship with Madeleine L'Engle.

To keep up with our newest posts,
sign up to get our Store Journal by email.



Upcoming Events

All events listed are virtual! Participants must register to view.

Sat, June 6, 6:00pm:
Kids Event
Saturday Storytelling Series: Norm Brecke

Wed, June 10
Pebble Preschool Bookfair

Thurs, June 11, 7:00pm:
Brad Chase, Author of Strategy First

Sat, June 13, 6:00pm:
Kids Event
Norm Brecke & Trish Anderson, Author & Illustrator of The Man who Loved Dragons

Mon, June 22, 7:00pm:
Erica Bauermeister, author of House Lessons

Tues, June 23, 5:00pm:
Wine + Poetry: Abi Pollokoff

Thurs, June 24, 7:30pm:
Virtual Open Book Club: A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry

Thurs, July 9, 4:30pm:
Knitting Book Club: Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

We will notify you through our social media and website if new virtual events are scheduled!

Purchase Our Stay Home T-Shirt and Support Us from Afar! has generously agreed to help us raise money by selling our fantastic Stay Home T-Shirts. Grab yours while they are in stock!

Open Book Club

In June, our Open Book Club will be reading A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry.
Register for this event here!
With a compassionate realism and narrative sweep that recall the work of Charles Dickens, this novel captures all the cruelty and corruption, dignity and heroism, of India. Unlikely friends are thrust together, forced to share a cramped apartment and an uncertain future in city by the sea in 1975 creating an enduring panorama of the human spirit in an inhuman state.

Knitting Book Club

In July, our Knitting Book Club will be reading Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid.
Daisy is a girl coming of age in L.A. in the late sixties, sneaking into clubs on the Sunset Strip, sleeping with rock stars, and dreaming of singing at the Whisky a Go Go. As her popularity rises, so does that of The Six, a band led by the brooding Billy Dunne. Daisy and Billy cross paths, and the rest is a rock legend. This novel is written as an oral history of one of the biggest bands in the seventies, making it unforgettable and fun.

Storybook Corner Online!

Nancy Stewart has been filming and posting her Storybook Corner sessions on to Facebook. Take a look to see them and more content from her!