Reader Meet Writer Presents – Allan Gurganus This Tuesday

Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition

Allan Gurganus

Let us deliver authors to your living room. The next author in the Southern Edition series is Allan Gurganus. Allan Gurganus will be talking with us about their newest book The Uncollected Stories of Allan Gurganus and answering your questions. Allan Gurganus is one of many authors we’ll be bringing into your living room.

Allan Gurganus is widely translated, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Adaptations of his fiction have earned four Emmys, and his stories have been appearing in The New Yorker since 1974. He lives in a small town in North Carolina.

Here are the details you need:
Date: 1/12/2021
Time: 4:00:00 PM CST
RSVP here

The Uncollected Stories of Allan Gurganus

John Irving writes of Allan Gurganus: “His narration becomes a Greek chorus, Sophocles in North Carolina.” Since the explosive publication of Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All decades back, Gurganus has dazzled readers as “the most technically gifted and morally responsive writer of his generation” (John Cheever).

These ten classic tales attest to the growing depth of his genius. Offering characters antic and tragic, Gurganus charts the human condition as we live it now. His parables recall William Faulkner’s scope, Flannery O’Connor’s corrosive wit. We encounter a seaside couple fighting to save their dog from Maine’s fierce undertow; a mortician whose dedication to his departed clients exceeds all legal limits. A virginal 78-year-old grammar-school librarian has her only erotic encounter with a Joe Exotic-like polyamorous snake farmer. In the lead-off story, already excerpted in The New Yorker, cholera strikes a rural village in 1850 and citizens blame their doomed young doctor, who saved hundreds. A sublime ventriloquist, Gurganus again proves himself among our wisest writers.

To see a list of all upcoming authors booked so far, click here.

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Reader Meet Writer Presents This Thursday – Rachel Hawkins

Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition

Rachel Hawkins

Let us deliver authors to your living room. The next author in the Southern Edition series is Rachel Hawkins. Rachel Hawkins will be talking with us about their newest book The Wife Upstairs and answering your questions. Rachel Hawkins is one of many authors we’ll be bringing into your living room.

RACHEL HAWKINS is the New York Times bestselling author of multiple books for young readers, and her work has been translated in over a dozen countries. She studied gender and sexuality in Victorian literature at Auburn University and currently lives in Alabama. The Wife Upstairs is her first adult novel.

Here are the details you need:
Date: 1/7/2021
Time: 6:00:00 PM CST
RSVP here

The Wife Upstairs

A delicious twist on a Gothic classic, The Wife Upstairs pairs Southern charm with atmospheric domestic suspense, perfect for fans of B.A. Paris and Megan Miranda.
Meet Jane. Newly arrived to Birmingham, Alabama, Jane is a broke dog-walker in Thornfield Estates—a gated community full of McMansions, shiny SUVs, and bored housewives. The kind of place where no one will notice if Jane lifts the discarded tchotchkes and jewelry off the side tables of her well-heeled clients. Where no one will think to ask if Jane is her real name.

But her luck changes when she meets Eddie­ Rochester. Recently widowed, Eddie is Thornfield Estates’ most mysterious resident. His wife, Bea, drowned in a boating accident with her best friend, their bodies lost to the deep. Jane can’t help but see an opportunity in Eddie—not only is he rich, brooding, and handsome, he could also offer her the kind of protection she’s always yearned for.

Yet as Jane and Eddie fall for each other, Jane is increasingly haunted by the legend of Bea, an ambitious beauty with a rags-to-riches origin story, who launched a wildly successful southern lifestyle brand. How can she, plain Jane, ever measure up? And can she win Eddie’s heart before her past—or his—catches up to her?

With delicious suspense, incisive wit, and a fresh, feminist sensibility, The Wife Upstairs flips the script on a timeless tale of forbidden romance, ill-advised attraction, and a wife who just won’t stay buried. In this vivid reimagining of one of literature’s most twisted love triangles, which Mrs. Rochester will get her happy ending?

To see a list of all upcoming authors booked so far, click here.

Pre-Order Signed Copies of Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas

Support our store by pre-ordering signed copies of Concrete Rose, releasing 1/12/2021 for $19.99.

About Concrete Rose

The engrossing and hard-hitting third novel by Angie Thomas, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling, award-winning The Hate U Give and On the Come Up, about a teen, Maverick Carter, Starr’s father

International phenomenon Angie Thomas revisits Garden Heights seventeen years before the events of The Hate U Give in this searing and poignant exploration of Black boyhood and manhood.

If there’s one thing seventeen-year-old Maverick Carter knows, it’s that a real man takes care of his family. As the son of a former gang legend, Mav does that the only way he knows how: dealing for the King Lords. With this money he can help his mom, who works two jobs while his dad’s in prison.

Life’s not perfect, but with a fly girlfriend and a cousin who always has his back, Mav’s got everything under control.

Until, that is, Maverick finds out he’s a father.

Suddenly he has a baby, Seven, who depends on him for everything. But it’s not so easy to sling dope, finish school, and raise a child. So when he’s offered the chance to go straight, he takes it. In a world where he’s expected to amount to nothing, maybe Mav can prove he’s different.

When King Lord blood runs through your veins, though, you can’t just walk away. Loyalty, revenge, and responsibility threaten to tear Mav apart, especially after the brutal murder of a loved one. He’ll have to figure out for himself what it really means to be a man.

COVID Exposure Alert – We’ll be temporarily closing to in-store browsing

Hello my bookstore family,

I feel like it’s my duty as a responsible shop owner, as a responsible employer, and as a responsible friend to all of you to let you know that one of our beloved employees went to get a rapid test today for COVID and it’s come back positive. We’ve been following protocols and wearing masks, so I’m hopeful (of course I’m hopeful!) that this helped mitigate risk to any of you who shopped with us recently, but I would be remiss in not alerting you.

I was able to get an appointment in the morning to be tested, but regardless, I’ve made the difficult decision to close the store to in-store browsing for at least a week but my gut tells me to just close for the rest of the month (which is only two weeks) due to the increasing spikes. I was already toying with that last week, but settled on just cancelling our participation in artwalk Friday night.

I’m  not going to lie, this will affect my business. Of course it will. But, BUT, BUT I would much rather err on the side of caution and do the right thing for the community. The store will weather through this. We weathered through April, which was the worst month–we only made a quarter of what we normally would have made. By July we’d crept back up to 50% of normal and this Fall we’ve been just on par with last year at this time. If we can make it through April, we can do it again.

I’ll still be here to do contactless delivery and curbside pickup and will be wearing gloves when I pull books, but if you’d rather not take a chance, I totally understand. If you still want to support my store, I can ship most books to you by having them go to your home straight from my distributor–how that works is you order a book for shipping and I log into my distributor’s website and instead of having the book delivered here, I select Home Delivery and it just goes straight from the warehouse in Tennessee to you. If you want to save the step of ordering from me, you can just go to our Bookshop.org page and they’ll fulfill the order and ship it to you (and we’d still get a cut).

This is such an uncertain time and my heart goes out to all of you. I’m extremely encouraged, however, by the results I’m hearing about the Pfizer vaccine.

Together we can get through this. Thank you for your continued support. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Love,
Angela Trigg
Owner, The Haunted Book Shop

Pre-Order A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Mayhem and get a signed bookplate

I’m especially excited about this book because 1) Manda Collins is a local author and friend of mine 2) it’s a charming, hip historical and 3) we’re the only bookstore in the country that is doing signed bookplates if you pre-order with us!

My review:

For fans of Evie Dunsmore and early Amanda Quick! I thoroughly enjoyed this whip-smart heroine and the hero who is her match. I recommend for anyone who is loving the new crop of rom-coms but aches for historicals and would also love a murder mystery plot!

About A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Mayhem

“[Manda] Collins is a delight” (Elizabeth Hoyt) in this fun and flirty historical rom-com, where an intrepid female reporter matches wits with a serious, sexy detective — perfect for fans of Evie Dunmore, Julia Quinn, and Tessa Dare!

England, 1865: Newspaper columnist Lady Katherine Bascomb finds herself the subject of speculation when her latest article leads to an arrest in the murders plaguing London. The English believe women ought not to write about such vulgar things as crime, and a particularly attractive detective inspector is incensed that she’s interfered with his investigation. To escape her sudden notoriety, Katherine heads to the country-only to witness a murder upon her arrival.

Detective Inspector Andrew Eversham is appalled when Lady Katherine entangles herself in one of his cases-again. Her sensationalist reporting already nearly got him kicked off the police force, and he’ll be damned if he permits her to meddle a second time. Yet, her questions are awfully insightful, and he can’t deny his attraction to both her beauty and brains. As the clues point to a dangerous criminal, the two soon realize their best option is working together. But with their focus on the killer lurking in the shadows, neither is prepared for the other risk the case poses-to their hearts.

Reader Meet Writer Presents – Julia Fowler This Thursday

Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition

Julia Fowler

Let us deliver authors to your living room. The next author in the Southern Edition series is Julia Fowler. Julia Fowler will be talking with us about their newest book Embrace Your Southern, Sugar! and answering your questions. Julia Fowler is one of many authors we’ll be bringing into your living room.

South Carolina native, Julia Fowler, is the creator of YouTube’s Southern Women Channel, home of the viral video series, “Sh%t Southern Women Say.” She is an actor, writer and producer who has worked in television, film and on Broadway. She currently resides in Venice Beach, California, and is generally irritated that it’s void of proper fried okra. Visit her at http://www.southernwomenchannel.com.

Here are the details you need:
Date: 11/12/2020
Time: 6:00:00 PM CST
RSVP here

Embrace Your Southern, Sugar!

More irresistible stories and sayings from the creator of YouTube’s Southern Women Channel.

Ms. Julia Fowler is back, and this time she’s goin’ to talk her lipstick off about even more things Southern. If you’re not from the South, we hope to learn ya a thing or two that you can tote back into your own culture. If you are from the South, then you’re ’bout to be happier than a mule in a pickle patch: Julia’s laugh-out-loud essays cover the dadblame weather, your obsession with football, your Southern fried palate, comin’ and goin’, your health, and bein’ country, all complemented by a list of sayings you will only ever hear in the South. Julia says to embrace it all, as there is nothing purdier than authenticity: Embrace Your Southern, Sugar!

To see a list of all upcoming authors booked so far, click here.

Pre-Order Cat Kid Comic Club: From the Creator of Dog Man

Pre-Order Cat Kid Comic Club: From the Creator of Dog Man

Support our store by pre-ordering Cat Kid Comic Club: From the Creator of Dog Man, releasing December 1, 2020 for $12.99.

About Cat Kid Comic Club: From the Creator of Dog Man

A pioneering new graphic novel series by Dav Pilkey, the author and illustrator of the internationally bestselling Dog Man and Captain Underpants series.

In Cat Kid Comic Club, Li’l Petey, Flippy, and Molly introduce twenty-one rambunctious, funny, and talented baby frogs to the art of comic making. As the story unwinds with mishaps and hilarity, readers get to see the progress, mistakes, and improvements that come with practice and persistence.

Squid Kid and Katydid, Baby Frog Squad, Monster Cheese Sandwich, and Birds Flowers Trees: A Haiku Photo Comic are just some of the mini-comics that are included as stories-within-the-story, each done in a different style, utilizing humor and drama, prose and poetry, illustrated in different media including acrylics, pastels, colored pencils, felt-tip markers, clay, hand-made cardboard sculptures, photographs, pipe cleaners, construction paper collages, and cookies.

Readers of all ages will be inspired to dream up their own stories and unleash their own creativity as they dive into this new graphic novel adventure from Dav Pilkey and his heartfelt, humorous, and amazing cast of characters in the Cat Kid Comic Club.

Haunted Book Shop Halloween: Vamp It Up

Here at the Haunted Book Shop, we go hard on Halloween. This year, our theme is Vamp It Up–we’ve made a display of every vampire-centric work we could lay our hands on. Even the wonderfully befanged Mr. Bingley is getting in on it.

Here’s a selection of some them:

Dracula–Bram Stoker’s classic work of horror that put vampires firmly in the public imagination. We have several editions–paperback, graphic novels, hardback, and a limited number of an unabridged illustrated edition.

Interview With A Vampire–The first in the awesome series by Anne Rice, you can’t go wrong with reading Louis and Lestat’s story.

Twilight— Stephenie Meyer’s breakout hit, and for many people the first series they read and reread. The story of Bella Swan, the woman that makes forever worth living for Edward Cullen, whose century-plus as a vampire hasn’t made him relish the eternity before him.

Anno Dracula–Kim Newman’s alternative history and sequel to Dracula, start from the premise “What if Dracula won in Bram Stoker’s novel?” The answer: Dracula was never run out of Britain, hypnotized his way into marrying Queen Victoria, and vampirism has become open and legal. This book presents a look at the often-gruesome social changes that have to happen if the vampires came out of the night to trouble to warm.

Giracula–Vampires aren’t always scary! Giracula, by Caroline Watkins, is an adorably silly kids’ book about a vampire giraffe–a vampire just couldn’t stay away from that much neck, you see.

Bunnicula–Deborah and James Howe’s adorable kids’ classic about a vampire bunny rabbit (he doesn’t drink blood, he sucks the juice out of vegetables until they turn white), told from the point of view of the family dog, Harold.

The Vampire Files–P.N. Elrod’s fun mysteries set in Depression-era Chicago. Narrated by Jack Fleming, a decent guy who got turned into a vampire on his first day in town, these horror-mysteries are great fun.

Crave — If you’re missing Twilight, this is your next YA vampire read. I thoroughly enjoyed the magic school setting and the addition of the witch and dragon characters. Grace has lost both of her parents in a car wreck and moved to a remote Alaskan academy run by her uncle. She’s warned away by the brooding male protagonist and comes to realize all is not what (or who) it seems. One of the main differences between Crave and the Twilight series is that Grace isn’t pining away, trying to run from the trauma of her life like Bella was. She has agency and is actively trying to build a life and unravel the mysteries surrounding her. As the story progresses, the plot thread that most captured me is what or who Grace actually is. It became an un-put-downable book because I just had to know.

Preacher–Garth Ennis’ graphic novel masterpiece features a Texas preacher on a journey to, quite literally, find God. He’s accompanied on the way by, among others, a hundred-year-old hard-partying Irish vampire who takes the view that being a vampire who burns in sunlight isn’t a good enough reason to not have fun.

American Vampire–a graphic novel collaboration between Scott Snyder and Stephen King, this story features a world where vampires are feared–even by other vampires. New vampire bloodlines have their own unique strengths and weaknesses, and learning what it takes to put them in the ground costs lives–even for vampires. In comes a woman named Pearl and a man named Skinner, the first of a new vampire bloodline which scares the old guard back into their coffins.

Carpe Jugulum — Terry Pratchett’s salute to vampires and horror films of old, set in Discworld. Verence, King of Lancre, wants to be a fair and reasonable monarch who is on good terms with his neighbors, so he invites some vampire nobility from across the border to his country–not knowing that vampires really only can go where they’re invited, and this family of bloodsuckers are liking the idea of an increased territory.

The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires–Hendrix describes his book as an ode to the underestimated: housewives as people, the 90s as a decade, and vampires as monsters. But be warned—the Southern charm and heart of this book will lure you in so when the horror hits, it really knocks you for a loop. There were a couple times I had to put the book down to catch my breath, but I just had to know what this group of true crime-loving book club ladies would do next. Especially when their whole world—their husbands, the family livelihoods, their social standing (all huge stakes in Southern society)—was against them. What saves the day in the end is such an important message to the monsters we fight against today in our own lives too.

Bloodsucking Fiends — if humor is more your thing, buckle up for Christopher Moore! 

Black Dagger Brotherhood series — This paranormal romance series by J.R. Ward  is seriously addictive. Featuring sexy alpha vampires, this series has a strong voice and flipped the trope in its day by having the vampires be the good guys and the religious zealots hunting them the baddies.

Dead Until Dark — the first book in the series by Charlaine Harris that was made famous in its HBO adaptation True Blood. These are also addictive with a dash of mystery set in Louisiana. The books diverge significantly from the show. 

Also, be sure to check out our Vamp it Up window display designed by Coco! The theme is Vampyre Attack on the Bayou, Mobile 1776 and it’s chock full of fun details, like cicadas in the lady’s hair and more!

Do you have any fave vamp books?

Dyslexic Characters in Children’s Literature

October is Dyslexic Awareness Month and we can’t think of a better way to raise awareness than to spotlight six of our favorite children’s books that feature dyslexic characters.

Three million people in the United States are diagnosed with dyslexia each year. One in five children have this neurological condition that creates difficulty in reading, memorizing, and interpreting words, letters, symbols, and their subsequent sounds. It does not affect general intelligence, and dyslexic readers often think more creatively and have stronger critical thinking skills.

It’s not a disease so there is no cure. Early diagnosis is key so that learning is approached from different angles. Understanding the restrictions avoids frustration and brain-fatigue, and finding ways to work around them using multisensory structured learning incorporates touch, movement, sight, and hearing.

Seeing characters in books work around their dyslexia shows young readers that they’re intelligent, that their efforts matter, and that needing more time to process is okay. This can open doors of self-worth—and book covers—that might be previously closed.

Chapter Book (Ages 7-10)

Niagara Falls, Or Does It? Hank Zipzer #1 by Henry Winkler and Lin Oliver

Inspired by the true life experiences of Henry Winkler, whose undiagnosed dyslexia made him a classic childhood underachiever, the Hank Zipzer series is about the high-spirited and funny adventures of a boy with learning differences.

It’s science project time in Ms. Adolf’s class. This is good news and bad news for Hank-he loves science, but he hates the report part. So Hank turns to TV to take his mind off things. But when the program directory scrolls by too quickly for Hank to know what’s on, he decides to take apart the cable box to try to slow down the crawl. Great! Now Hank has found the perfect science project! But what he wasn’t counting on was his sister’s pet iguana laying eighteen eggs in the disassembled cable box. How is Hank going to get out of this one?

Middle Grade (Ages 8-12)

Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

The author of the beloved One for the Murphys gives readers an emotionally-charged, uplifting novel that will speak to anyone who’s ever thought there was something wrong with them because they didn’t fit in.

“Everybody is smart in different ways. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its life believing it is stupid.”

Ally has been smart enough to fool a lot of smart people. Every time she lands in a new school, she is able to hide her inability to read by creating clever yet disruptive distractions. She is afraid to ask for help; after all, how can you cure unintelligence? However, her newest teacher Mr. Daniels sees the bright, creative kid underneath the trouble maker. With his help, Ally learns not to be so hard on herself and that dyslexia is nothing to be ashamed of. As her confidence grows, Ally feels free to be herself and the world starts opening up with possibilities. She discovers that there’s a lot more to her—and to everyone—than a label, and that great minds don’t always think alike.

This story has all the heart-squishes in it. Yes, I cried.

The Lightning Thief Percy Jackson & the Olympians series by Rick Riordan

Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school . . . again. And that’s the least of his troubles. Lately, mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Percy’s Greek mythology textbook and into his life. And worse, he’s angered a few of them. Zeus’s master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect. Now Percy and his friends have just ten days to find and return Zeus’s stolen property and bring peace to a warring Mount Olympus. But to succeed on his quest, Percy will have to do more than catch the true thief: he must come to terms with the father who abandoned him; solve the riddle of the Oracle, which warns him of betrayal by a friend; and unravel a treachery more powerful than the gods themselves.

Taking what the character considers his weakness and making it his strength? Absolutely brilliant. In my opinion, that’s what makes this series about a dyslexic demigod resonate with so many readers.

Two-Minute Drill by Mike Lupica

Chris Conlan is the coolest kid in sixth grade–the golden-armed quarterback of the football team and the boy all the others look up to. Scott Parry is the new kid, the boy with the huge brain, but with feet that trip over themselves. These two boys may seem like an odd couple, but each has a secret that draws them together, and proves that the will to succeed is even more important than raw talent.

Double Dutch by Sharon Draper

Delia loves Double Dutch. And she’s good at it. Really good. So good that her team has a chance to win the World Double Dutch Championships this year — Delia is sure of it. What she is less sure of is her chance of passing the school’s state exam, because Delia has been using her success at Double Dutch to mask a secret that could jeopardize her place on the team, and also her future.
Delia’s not the only one with a secret. Her potential boyfriend, Randy, has one too — his dad has been missing for weeks, and Randy hasn’t told anyone for fear he’ll be put in a foster home. But he is running out of money and getting scared.

The one thing that isn’t a secret is that their classmates, the Tolliver twins, are out to cause trouble. With their skull caps, angry demeanors, and hints of violence emanating from even the way they stalk down the school halls, they seem to enjoy intimidating the other kids. But will they cross the line from intimidation to violence?

With consummate skill and an uncanny ability to capture how real kids think, act, and feel, Tears of a Tiger author Sharon M. Draper weaves these three stories tighter and tighter, creating a novel that tingles with suspense and emotion.

YA (Ages 13 +)

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist.

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone. . . .

A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

What are some of your favorite books that feature dyslexic characters?

Want to get your hands on some of these amazing books that show reading is accessible to all? Stop in during our open hours (terms and conditions apply). We’re still doing curbside pick-up, appointments, and shipping as well.

Happy reading!

Reader Meet Writer Presents – Miles McKenna This Tuesday

Reader Meet Writer, Southern Edition

Miles McKenna

Let us deliver authors to your living room. The next author in the Southern Edition series is Miles McKenna. Miles McKenna will be talking with us about their newest book Out! and answering your questions. Miles McKenna is one of many authors we’ll be bringing into your living room.

Miles McKenna is an actor and social media icon known for his comedic voice and LGBTQ+ advice and activism. He was recently awarded the Shorty Award for Best LGBTQ+ Account of 2017, headlined two nationwide tours that covered a total of 35 shows, and has creatively collaborated with companies like Google, HBO, ATT, and Lyft. Find out more on his YouTube channel, MilesChronicles, or on Instagram at @themilesmckenna.

Here are the details you need:
Date: 10/27/2020
Time: 6:00:00 PM CST
RSVP here

Out!

Miles McKenna is a queer and trans activist. He transitioned online in front of a million people. This is his survival guide.
When Miles came out on his YouTube channel in 2015–then transitioned online in 2017–his aim was to help other teens navigate their identities and take charge of their own coming-out stories. From that experience comes Out!, the ultimate coming-out survival guide for anyone questioning or queer.
Out! covers questions big and small: How to stay safe when coming out in a toxic environment, what to do if you don’t feel comfortable with your birth name, what style haircut best suits your identity, and how to find your chosen family. Miles offers readers coming-out conversation starters (“Can I have the bathroom pass? Also, the correct pronouns?”), a recipe for a very gay cake, and a guide to mastering the masculine haircut. You’ll find resources for finding a gender therapist, pointers for being a queer ally, and Miles’s Ten Commandments (#5: You are valid in your identity, even if you’re the only one who can define it).
If you’re a person seeking answers, look no further! This book is for you. And remember: Whoever you are, you are worth fighting for.

To see a list of all upcoming authors booked so far, click here.