small books


The warm weather is calling us outdoors!  Whether we’re gardening or jogging or strolling the Downtown Mall, we’re happy to enjoy the onset of Spring.  So this weekend, I’ll offer a few small books, books you might read over the weekend and still have time to play outside.

Grief is the Thing with Feathers by Max Porter

A father and his two sons are grieving the sudden loss of their wife and mother.  Who shows up to help them?  Crow – trickster, instigator, babysitter and therapist –  who “finds humans dull except in grief” and threatens to stay until they no longer need him.  This unusual story is told from the three voices – Dad, the Boys, and Crow – as months go by and this little family moves through its sadness and begins to recover.  With poetry woven throughout, this is quite an extraordinary little book!

The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett

One of my favorites and not just because it involves a bookmobile!   Following her corgis from the garden, Queen Elizabeth is led to the bookmobile parked by the palace kitchen doors.  Always polite, she steps aboard to apologize for the dogs’ behavior and, for the first time in her life, is offered the opportunity to read something for pleasure.  This act changes all her relationships: with her staff, other heads of state, the British people, and herself.   This small book will cause you to reflect, laugh, and examine the power of the written word.

Bachelor Brothers’ Bed & Breakfast by Bill Richardson

A sweet little book, this one is for lovers of literature everywhere.   Bachelor twins Hector and Virgil consider their B&B a refuge for gentle, bookish people like themselves.   Guests may bring their own books or peruse the brothers’ considerable library.  So whether one is looking for some quiet time to finally make it through War and Peace or happily re-reading Beatrix Potter yet again, all are welcomed by these delightful brothers.

BookShots series by James Patterson

James Patterson has a theory that some folks today aren’t willing, or able, to commit to reading an entire novel.  To address this issue, last year he started publishing “BookShots” – small paperback novels, complete at 150 pages or less, that sell for $4.95.  Some of these stories include his regular characters (e.g. Michael Bennett and Alex Cross) and some introduce new protagonists.  I’m not sure whether they’re such a success because of their size or because of Patterson’s popularity, but they have been a hit.  JMRL has quite a few in our catalogue which are searchable under “keyword: book shots.”  Check them out!

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