Wellesley Books Newsletter | September 29th, 2021
Rarely has an image-turned-Internet meme so perfectly summed up the prevailing mood in the book business as the picture at right. If you've spent any time caring about the printed word within the last month or two, you've probably heard that widespread supply chain disruptions are expected to last through this autumn and winter. Not only is it difficult to source paper and boxes, but shipping container scarcity and final-leg transportation delays are also combining to create a holiday season that will require some resourcefulness. To that end, some of the most hotly-anticipated titles of the fall have already been released, and many more will be on our shelves by the end of October; you can check out reviews for a number of them below. We also love a good book-recommendation puzzle--when you're looking for advice, it's often our pleasure to steer you towards the unexpected! But, if you absolutely must have that specific new hardcover novel, we're fully in stocking-up mode at the moment. Come by soon while the days are warm and the books are plentiful.
Gift Sale & Used Books News
Last chance for our biggest gift sale (possibly) ever! Our sale continues for just one more week at 75% off. We've also added new items to our two tables on the front sidewalk – stop by while we still have them out!

Used Book trade-ins are now appointment-free! Melinda will be on duty Tuesdays and Saturdays from 1-4 to accept your gently used books for store credit. To learn more about trade-ins and the types of books we're accepting, please click here.
Prison Book Program
Banned Books Week
In the last two years, we've sent more than 60 bags and boxes of new books to the Prison Book Program, and that is all thanks to you! We refresh our wishlist frequently, so check back often.

DURING BANNED BOOKS WEEK (SEPT 26 - OCT 2), ALL PRISON BOOK PROGRAM PURCHASES WILL BE MATCHED BY A GENEROUS SUPPORTER. Please consider making a purchase this week to provide twice the benefit to those who need these books.
Upcoming Events
Tuesday, October 5th at 7:00 PM (**now online**)
This event, which was originally listed as in-person, will now take place online through Zoom. Hank Phillippi Ryan, author of The First to Lie, presents her new thrilling and personal standalone novel, Her Perfect Life. Everyone knows Lily Atwood—and that may be her biggest problem. The beloved television reporter has it all—fame, fortune, Emmys, an adorable seven-year-old daughter, and the hashtag her loving fans created: #PerfectLily. To keep it, all she has to do is protect one life-changing secret: her own.

“Shocking, suspenseful, with clever twists and an abundance of secrets. Her Perfect Life kept me guessing until the end. I loved it!” —B. A. Paris, internationally bestselling author of The Therapist and Behind Closed Doors
Wednesday, October 6th at 7:00 PM, Anthony Doerr joins us in person to discuss his hauntingly beautiful new novel, Cloud Cuckoo Land.

The heroes of Cloud Cuckoo Land are trying to figure out the world around them: Anna and Omeir, on opposite sides of the city walls during the 1453 siege of Constantinople; teenage idealist Seymour in an attack on a public library in present day Idaho; and Konstance, on an interstellar ship bound for an exoplanet, decades from now. Like Marie-Laure and Werner in All the Light We Cannot See, Anna, Omeir, Seymour, and Konstance are dreamers and outsiders who find resourcefulness and hope in the midst of peril.
Friday, October 8th at 7:00 PM (online)
Joyce Carol Oates, author of We Were the Mulvaneys, Blonde, and The Falls, discusses her new novel, Breathe, in conversation with Jonathan Santlofer, author of The Last Mona Lisa.

"Shards of nightmarish grief coalesce in Oates’s powerful latest, a fever dream unleashed when a woman fails to come to terms with the death of her husband. Fecund with fear and anguish, and driven by raw, breathless narration, this hallucinatory tale will not disappoint. Oates is on a roll."—Publishers' Weekly (starred review)
Tuesday, October 12th at 7:00 PM (online)
Author Hope Larson (All Summer Long) and illustrator Rebecca Mock (Compass South) join us on publication day to celebrate the release of their new graphic novel, Salt Magic. When a jealous witch curses her family's well, it's up to Vonceil to set things right in an epic journey that will leave her changed forever.

"The best comics reading experience I've had in a long time."
–Ben Hatke, author-illustrator
Bookseller Recommendations
Gillian recommends:
Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr
Is it possible that Anthony Doerr has surpassed the brilliance of All the Light We Cannot See? Offering a hint of Station Eleven, a whiff of Cloud Atlas and an abundance of nothing you’ve ever encountered, Cloud Cuckoo Land is an absolute marvel. Five sets of characters spin through three distinct time periods: the final days of Constantinople, 21st century small town America, and an uncanny near-future in space. An ancient folktale and a timeworn manuscript are woven gracefully throughout each story binding them, and us, with ageless messages of hope and appreciation for love, endurance, home, books and our planet.
Ashleigh recommends:
The Reading List by Sara Nisha Adams
A sweet and poignant book illuminating our need to connect with others, especially when we don't see it, and how books and libraries have the power to unite us. The growth of the characters and their relationships with one another are profound and tender; the list of books is delightful. I somehow did not expect the ending, and it left me weeping with its thoughtfulness. A true gem of a story, and just what we need in this time of stress.
Summer Sons by Lee Mandelo
Lucy says:
Easily one of my favorite books of the year! When his best friend Eddie dies under suspicious circumstances, Andrew follows in his footsteps to Vanderbilt, determined to uncover the truth of Eddie's final days. There, he finds himself thrust into a world of cutthroat academic competition by day and liquor-fueled street-racing by night -- all the while haunted by the gruesome specter of the man he loved. This stunning debut functions as both a mind-bending Southern Gothic and a visceral exploration of loss and grief, served up with a healthy dose of queer longing. I was captivated from start to finish.

Cassie says:
A [expletive] perfect book.
Higher academia, hungry ghosts, drag racing, and latent queer desire in Appalachia. A look at the intricate rituals we construct in order to touch each other. Andrew and Eddie shared a bond that went deeper than brotherhood. They had followed each other around since childhood. But Eddie went off to Vanderbilt before Andrew and now Eddie is dead. As Andrew traces his footsteps to Tennessee, just a drive away from their childhood home, ghosts and roommates and professors and friends and so-called friends emerge from the woodwork, all with a claim to Eddie. Claims that he never told Andrew about. Soaked in fumes and blood, every page will grasp at your heart. The landscape comes to life through Mandelo’s powerful writing, and it will dig its claws into you, try to keep you from leaving. I know I didn’t want to.
New in Hardcover
Karl Ove Knausgaard
Richard Powers
Richard Osman
Naomi Novik
Steven Pinker
Anderson Cooper & Katherine Howe
Bob Woodward & Robert Costa
Laurie Woolever
Joseph J. Ellis
Anita Hill
New in Paperback
Elena Ferrante
Susanna Clarke
Jonathan Lethem
Alex Ross
Jonathan Alter
Malcolm Gladwell
David S. Reynolds
Nick Hornby
Bookseller Recommendations for Kids and Teens
Lorna recommends:
This second volume of the adventures of Skunk and Badger confirm for me that they are a new modern classic. Skunk and Badger are so appealing they will be loved by children and adults alike. The camping trip plotline in this story had me reading parts aloud to anyone around me. The illustrations by Jon Klassen are perfect (of course).
Lauren recommends:
Set Me Free by Ann Clare LeZotte
Mary Lambert has always felt safe on her beloved Martha’s Vineyard. She, like many Chilmark residents, is deaf. Nearly everyone, both hearing and deaf, communicate in a sign language that is unique to the island. Yet not everything is as idyllic as it appears. Mary’s family is still grieving the accidental death of her brother months before; it has left a hole in the home that Mary is desperate to close, but isn’t sure how to begin. She’s also begun to notice the prejudice that exists between some of the white settler descendants and the local Wampanoag tribe, worsened by disputes over land rights. The town experiences additional turmoil when a cunning young scientist, Andrew Noble, has arrived looking to discover the origin of Chilmark’s prevalent deafness. In his increasingly frenzied drive to find the answers, Noble kidnaps Mary, bringing her to Boston as a “live specimen” to be studied. Her struggle to rescue herself and return to her community is the heart of this historical thriller. This is a deaf book written by a Deaf author, and it pushes at our perceptions of ability and disability. I want to put this in every customer's hand.
Middle-Grade Monthly: A Subscription Club
Middle-Grade Monthly is our new subscription service for kids ages 8-12! Each month our children's book buyer Lauren and school liaison Cassie will select a newly-released chapter book. Get your hands on the newest and soon-to-be coveted books of the year. We offer monthly and yearly subscriptions, and you can pick up your book at the store or have it mailed to you. Click on the link below for FAQs about the program.

The October 2021 pick is Cuba In My Pocket by Adrianna Cuevas. To find out more about our subscription service, click here.
Picture Book Subscription Club: A Perfect Gift!
A Child's Library is a subscription service for children ages 0-5! Lauren and Cassie select one newly-released picture book each month to be sent or picked-up from the store. The goal of A Child's Library is to help foster a love for books within the child's home. It makes a great baby shower gift!

The October 2021 pick is It Fell From the Sky by The Fan Brothers. To find out more about our subscription service, click here.
New Releases for Kids & Teens
Brian Selznick

Amanda Gorman & Loren Long
Kelly Yang
Kate DiCamillo & Sophie Blackall
R.J. Palacio
Maisie Chan & Natelle Quek
Chris Colfer
Samira Ahmed
Soman Chainani
Xiran Jay Zhao
Brendan Keily
In the Gift Department
Fall fell in Wellesley Books! Would these adorable woodland animals like to live in a forest of vintage fabric pumpkins?
What We're Reading
Dog of the Week
Odin's a Wellesley Bernadoodle who turns 1 on October 1st! You can follow all of his adventures on Instagram at @bernadoodle_odin. Odin's fond of nontraditional nap locations (particularly the shower), pushing his humans into the water, and doing anything that mats his beautiful fur, to the consternation of his groomer. Come back soon, Odin!
Thank you for supporting your community independent bookstore!
Rebecca Stimpson
82 Central Street
Wellesley, MA 02482