Archive for October 2007

Yippie kaya! A Local Author Signing

October 31, 2007

bonner.jpgHey, isn’t it always great when a local author publishes a book? As I mentioned before, Robert E. Bonner, author and professor emeritus of Carleton College, will appear at River City Books to sign copies of his recently released book, William F. Cody’s Wyoming Empire: The Buffalo Bill Nobody Knows, from 7 to 8 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 1.

The book looks like a fascinating piece of historical research about a character we all think we know. “William F. Cody’s Wyoming Empire” sheds light on the life of the legendary “Buffalo Bill Cody,” unearthing little-known historical facts about this mythologized character of the American Wild West. This captivating study, laced with engaging anecdotes and featuring more than twenty photographs, demonstrates that there was much more to “Buffalo Bill” than his infamous cowboy shows.


Here’s a Way to Get in the Mood

October 28, 2007

christie.jpgHalloween is highly under-rated as a holiday. Sure, it’s not a time to give or receive big-ticket items — though there’s perhaps nothing better than a bar of gooey chocolate — but what other day of the year can you dress like the opposite sex or like your favorite politician, go as a fruit (pumpkins aren’t vegetables) or a household appliance and not have people think you’ve forgotten your meds? It’s a beautiful thing. This year you may even want to dress as a certain literary bird and, if so, please do.

This is also a great time to scare and be scared. And down at the neighborhood bookstore they have a display of new Agatha Christie hardcovers for twelve bucks each (click on the photo). No, these aren’t bargain books. They are new books that just happen to be offered at bargain book prices. So even if you’re not going to dress like a toaster or Dick Cheney consider getting in the mood with a book that is perfect for the season.

We Went to Italy and Met an Attractive Pauper

October 26, 2007

heather.jpgThose who filled the performance half of the Contented Cow Thursday night know what a fun time it was to hear Heather McElhatton take us on the sorts of adventures — and force us to make universal life-changing decisions — found in Pretty Little Mistakes: A Do-Over Novel. The best part, though, was that we could fly off to Italy, sell out with the rich guy and not have to be ashamed when we looked at our faces in the the mirror in morning (at least not for that reason).

We also learned how to actually pronounce McElhatton — I know I was puréeing it myself.

sue-and-heather.jpgThanks to Ms. McElhatton for coming to Northfield and to Norm and the rest of the gang down at The Cow for serving as terrific hosts. I took some photos. It was pretty dark in there so please don’t send e-mails telling me what a lousy photographer I am. I already know I could use some work.

By the way, River City Books is still selling copies of “Pretty Little Mistakes” and some of them are even signed by the author.

Big Event Tonight at The Cow!

October 25, 2007


I can’t let you forget: Tonight — at 7 p.m. — Heather McElhatton will appear at the Contented Cow to read from and sign copies of her book Pretty Little Mistakes: A Do-Over Novel. The paperback is on sale for 15 percent off through the event. See you there (save some popcorn for me)!

Two-Week Warning

October 24, 2007

middlesex.jpgHave you started reading the current River City Books fiction book club selection? If not, it’s time to get cracking!

The club — which, of course, is free and open to the public — will meet at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 6, to discuss Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides.

Says the New York Times of this national bestseller: “Part Tristram Shandy, part Ishmael, part Holden Caulfield, Cal is a wonderfully engaging narrator. … A deeply affecting portrait of one family’s tumultuous engagement with the American twentieth century.”

Don’t forget that participants receive 20 percent off selected books. Plus, the meetings are always a great time. The club knows how to dissect a book and still have fun.

Barkeep, Pour Me A Book

October 22, 2007

little-mistakes.jpgI just love when River City Books and The Contented Cow team up on events because there’s always a festive atmosphere, thirst-quenching beverages, and literary enlightenment rolled into one fun evening. It is, you could say (and I will), two for the price of none.

I am happy to say the next Cow-RCB jointly sponsored event is coming up when author Heather McElhatton will read from and sign copies of her book Pretty Little Mistakes: A Do-Over Novel at 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 25, at The Cow.


What Is This ‘What’?

October 21, 2007

what.jpgEver since What Is the What came out in hardcover last year it has confused the heck out of me. It’s supposed to be an autobiography written by a person, bestselling author Dave Eggers, other than the subject of the story — a living man who is the subject of this fictionalized account. I really can’t explain it, but I can tell you the kids are loving it no matter which genre label is used. In fact, down at River City Books they don’t even have it on a shelf. It’s such a big seller — now in paperback — it has its own display (click to enlarge).

Said Francine Prose of The New York Times Book Review: “Lit by lightening flashes of humor, wisdom and charm. … An extraordinary work of witness, and of art.”

Raining Books, Too

October 19, 2007

plame.jpgIt’s a pretty cool time to be a reader. There are so many great books out there and, well, what else are we going to do in this weather — surf?

Two books in particular seem to be making news nearly everywhere I fly — Come on People: On the Path from Victims to Victors and Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House. Of course, you can check them out down at the neighborhood bookstore. Or you order online by clicking on the respective book covers.

Here are short summaries:


Stephen Colbert Visiting RCB (Or Is He?)

October 17, 2007

colbert.JPGI was fortunate to be at the neighborhood bookstore this week when, of all people, Stephen Colbert, of the Comedy Central Colberts, was appearing at the store (see the attached photo; click to enlarge).

Wow, what a thrill, to be able to go up to a truly great American and shake his hand (stiff as it seemed to be) and tell him how much I appreciate his patriotism (unfortunately, he must have had laryngitis because he didn’t say much in reply). Of course, even better was buying a copy of his hilarious new book I Am America (And So Can You). The only disappointment was that when I stuck a pen in his hand to have him sign my copy he didn’t seem to be able to hold on.

But, really, how much can I complain? Not every bookstore can say they have Mr. Colbert standing at the door every day, greeting customers, wearing a smile that never seems to leave his face.

Local Author Event Added to Calendar

October 15, 2007

cody.JPGHey, I just heard some nifty news: River City Books has added an event to the November calendar: a local author booksigning. Robert E. Bonner, author of the just-published William F. Cody’s Wyoming Empire: The Buffalo Bill Nobody Knows, longtime Northfield resident and professor emeritus of history at Carleton College, will sign copies of his book from 7 to 8 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 1, at the store.

The event, like all events at RCB, is free and open to the public. To pick up a copy of the book, stop by the store or order online. Here’s a summary:



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