Our dear friend Jon Yahalom is coming back to Pittsburgh to celebrate the release of his first book, CARING FOR THE PEOPLE OF THE CLOUDS: Aging and Dementia in Oaxaca. Are you a fan of clinical psychology? Medical anthropology? Or shoot, just Jon Yahalom? Come on out, it’s going to be a party.
Our very favorite day of the year, when we get to celebrate the best business in the world (the business of books). We’ll have tons of special book swag (pins! totes! onesies! limited editions!), a raffle, local authors, snacks, and MUCH more. Put this on your calendar—it’s going to be one for the books.
Baby animals don't play with blocks. They don't have favorite colors. And they don't learn any songs unless they're for self-defense. The first few weeks of your favorite animal's life are an adorable fight for survival, full of strange foods, hungry predators, and complicated smells. You'll laugh, you'll cry, and you'll have another reason to hug the next baby animal you see.
In the compulsively readable Bright Burning Stars, Pittsburgher and debut author A. K. Small pens a propulsive, heartfelt story about girls at their physical and emotional extremes, the gutting power of first love, and what it means to fight for your dreams. Come help us celebrate!
Feminist Book Club was on a two month hiatus, and we return this summer with a bang! We’ve been itching to discuss this beautifully told, gut-wrenching book since we read it as a galley.
Based on real events, Miriam Toews’ much-anticipated new novel is about a group of Mennonite women who have been repeatedly assaulted by men in their isolated colony, and told that they were being punished by demons for their sins. The story is told through a series of conversations in a hay loft, where, after the truth about their attackers is discovered, the women meet in secret to discuss their options.
“This amazing, sad, shocking, but touching novel, based on a real-life event, could be right out of The Handmaid's Tale.” --Margaret Atwood, on Twitter
Anjali Sachdeva’s short story collection, All the Names They Used for God, was named a Best Book of 2018 by NPR, Refinery 29, and BookRiot, longlisted for the Story Prize, and chosen as the 2018 Fiction Book of the Year by the Reading Women podcast. Sachdeva is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and teaches at the University of Pittsburgh and in the MFA program at Randolph College.
"A gripping, sinister fable!"--MARGARET ATWOOD, via Twitter.
Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, this is a dystopic feminist revenge fantasy about three sisters on an isolated island, raised to fear men. A haunting, riveting debut about the capacity for violence and the potency of female desire, The Water Cure both devastates and astonishes as it reflects our own world back at us.
* Book club picks are 15% off.
Caroline Carlson has a new book! The Pittsburgh writer’s newest is The Door at the End of the World, an otherworldly middle grade story perfect for fans of A Wrinkle in Time and Stranger Things. Caroline’s previous novels include the Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates series and the Agatha Award nominee The World’s Greatest Detective.
Please join us for the launch of TWO chapbooks—BLOODFISH, by Jennifer Jackson Berry, and FEED by Emily Mohn-Slate, co-winners of the 2018 Keystone Chapbook Prize offered by Seven Kitchen Press!
Help us celebrate bestselling author and Pittsburgher Stewart O’Nan’s latest work! Henry, Himself tells the poignant story of a member of the greatest generation as he looks back on the loves and losses of his past, and comes to treasure the present anew. Stewart will be joined in conversation with writer Jane McCafferty.
Pittsburgher Lauren Burdette’s book, This Life That Is Ours, offers 40 gentle meditations on the spiritual journey of motherhood. These practical, soul-affirming meditations nurture a mother's heart and spiritual life in a season fraught with exhaustion and loss of identity. Through the lens of Burdette's real-life stories, the reader is invited to ponder her experience and to contemplate where God might be present.
Pittsburgh native Ian Johnson’s memoir is part hoops history, part story of one person’s attempt to find peace with a game he so desperately wanted to love. The Bounce and The Echo is a story for every athlete who has ever picked up a ball and wondered why, and a book for anyone who has ever wanted to know what happens to a star athlete once the spotlight fades away.
We’re stoked to pair up with BELLETRIST as their Indie Bookstore of the Month. Join your fellow Belles and Beaus for an in-store event to discuss this month’s pick: GINGERBREAD.
The prize-winning, bestselling author of Boy, Snow, Bird and What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours returns with a bewitching and inventive novel. Influenced by the mysterious place gingerbread holds in classic children's stories, Helen Oyeyemi invites readers into a delightful tale of a surprising family legacy, in which the inheritance is a recipe. "[W]ildly inventive…In Oyeyemi’s hands, a simple premise becomes a story about class, myth, and dark family histories. Her prose is not without its playful bite." –Vogue
Children's Story Time with Luke Flowers, illustrator of A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood: The Poetry of Mister Rogers
Calling all Mr. Rogers fans: this one’s for you. As every Pittsburgher knows, Fred Rogers was beloved for bringing his warm, deeply human message to millions of children on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood for over 30 years. The television show, along with its spinoff Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, is still one of the few programs that creates a safe haven for children to explore their emotions and discover the world around them. For the first time ever, the lyrics from Fred Rogers' inimitable songs are collected in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood: The Poetry of Mister Rogers, a children's book illustrated by Luke Flowers that showcases the thoughtful values for which Mister Rogers is best known.
Luke Flowers has illustrated over 42 children’s books, including his author/illustrator debut series Moby Shinobi, a blockbuster Scholastic Easy Reader series. Luke will be doing a special early evening story time at White Whale--discussing Mr. Rogers’ values and impact, reading from the book, and drawing. Bring the whole family!
Walsh's debut collection of poetry explores the impacts of extractive industries on rural communities and the environment, particularly in Appalachia, while also celebrating the persistent beauty of the natural world and human love. Ryan will be in conversation with West Virginia writer and essayist Ann Pancake!
"Ryan Walsh’s poetry makes plain that the hurt earth, which includes the people hurt by the earth’s hurting, resides in our imaginations and bodies. But by naming that sorrow, by turning it over, he makes a garden. And with that garden he feeds us.”
— Ross Gay
Award-winning author Irina Reyn explores what it means to be a mother in a world where you can't be with your child. Irina will be in conversation with Pittsburgh writer Clare Beams.
Starred reviews from Library Journal and Publishers Weekly
On many 2018 best book lists (including the Morning News Tournament of Books, which our book club members are always enthusiastic about!), America is Not the Heart “is a sprawling, soulful debut about three generations of women in one family struggling to balance the promise of the American dream and the unshakeable grip of history. With exuberance, grit, and sly tenderness, here is a family saga; an origin story; a romance; a narrative of two nations and the people who leave one home to grasp at another.”
Third Thursday Book Club selections are 15% off.
For our nonfiction pick this month, we’ll read Jessi Klein’s hilariously candid memoir about modern femininity and trying to find her place in the world as “are-you-a-lesbian-or-what tom man.”
* All proceeds from Feminist Book Club support Planned Parenthood.
Authors Jane Bernstein and Charlotte Glynn read from their new children’s book. Based on a true story, Gina From Siberia addresses displacement, family, and the meaning of home. All little minnows welcome!
Author Anastasia Higginbotham reads her children’s book Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness , a picture book that invites white children and parents to become curious about racism, accept that it's real, and cultivate justice. All little minnows welcome!
NAMED ONE OF SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL'S BEST BOOKS OF 2018.
What happens when fossil fuels run out? How do communities and cultures survive? Told through interviews and photographs collected during the making of the documentary film After Coal, this book considers the resonances between Appalachia and Wales in the realms of labor, environment, and movements for social justice. This event is free and will be moderated by Angela Wiley, producer of the After Coal film.
“Milkman vibrates with the anxieties of our own era, from terrorism to sexual harassment to the blinding divisions that make reconciliation feel impossible. . . . It’s as though the intense pressure of this place has compressed the elements of comedy and horror to produce some new alloy.”―The Washington Post
Winner of The Man Booker Prize.
Third Thursday Book Club selections are 15% off.
All are welcome! We switch off fiction and non-fiction every other month. This month we’re reading VOX, a dystopian story that’s been likened to The Handmaid’s Tale. It imagines a future where women are only allowed to speak 100 words per day (most adults currently average about 16,000). TImely, no?
*Since 11/6 is election night, this meeting has been moved to 10/30. Proceeds benefit Planned Parenthood.
Thomas Page McBee’s Lambda award-winning memoir, Man Alive, was named a best book of 2014 by NPR Books, BuzzFeed, Kirkus, and Publisher's Weekly. His groundbreaking new book, Amateur: A True Story About What Makes a Man, is a reported memoir about learning how to box—and eventually become the first trans man to fight in Madison Square Garden—in order to understand masculinity’s tie to violence. A wide-ranging exploration of gender in our society, Amateur is ultimately a story of hope, as McBee traces a new way forward, a new kind of masculinity, inside the ring and outside of it. Join us for a reading, discussion, Q&A, and book signing!
"McBee takes us in his capable hands and shows us what it takes to become a man who is gloriously, gloriously alive.”—Roxane Gay