Wellesley Books Newsletter September 27th, 2023

Join us on Monday, October 2nd, at 7 PM!

Buy tickets here

Carli Muñoz—rock and jazz sensation and former pianist of the Beach Boys—joins us on October 2nd to discuss his tell-all memoir, A Fool's Journey, and perform a mini concert!

From his formative years at a Puerto Rican jazz club, through dark days in 1960s New York, and on to the sunshine and hedonism of the 1970s Laurel Canyon scene, follow Carli Muñoz's incredible journey through cultural and personal history.

Populated with an eclectic cast of artists, musicians, clairvoyants, record producers, hippies, hobos, and superstars, A Fool’s Journey is a vivid snapshot of an era-defining moment that will never be repeated.

Upcoming Events

Thursday, October 5th, at 7 PM (in-person)

Dian Seidel joins us to discuss her new book, Kindergarten at 60: A Memoir of Teaching in Thailand

Part travel memoir and part second act story, Kindergarten at 60 is a retirement tale like none other. With gentle humor and polished prose, Seidel explores universal themes via the adventures of everyday life.

RSVP here

Saturday, October 7th, at 2 PM (in-person)

Susan Lynn Meyer joins us to read from and discuss her latest book for children, A Sky Full of Song, a heartwarming, beautifully written middle-grade historical novel about Jewish immigrants on the American frontier. 

"Meyer layers richly detailed depictions of Jewish traditions, stunning descriptions of the landscape, and a highly sympathetic narrator to convey an underreported historical arc."

–Publishers Week

RSVP here

Tuesday, October 10th, at 7 PM (in-person)

Sofia T. Romero, Pushcart Prize-nominated author, joins us to discuss We Have Always Been Who We Are, her breathtaking debut collection of interrelated stories suffused with magical realism. 

"We Have Always Been Who We Are stuns and soars. Romero has the staggering ability to depict unforgettable characters in their dreamlike states, losses, freedoms, and magic. With majestic, cleanly conceived prose and a wonderful attunement to the pulses of the human heart, this book is a winner. Highly recommend!"

–Jennifer Maritza McCauley, author

RSVP here
See the Full Event Calendar

Bookseller Recommendations

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Shanna recommends:

The River We Remember by William Kent Krueger

William Kent Krueger gives us another very readable literary mystery in his third stand-alone book outside of the Cork O’Connor series. The small town of Jewel, Minnesota is turned upside down after the murder of a prominent citizen in the post-WWII era. With Sheriff Brody Dern at the helm of the investigation and a cast of characters including a war widow and her adolescent son, a female lawyer, and a nosy newspaperman, Krueger addresses PTSD and racial discrimination against people of Native American, German, and Japanese descent in 1950s America. His writing describes the power of nature with the river that runs through town as a central character, and he once again delivers a love song to the landscapes of Minnesota. 

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Jerry recommends:

A Man of Two Faces by Viet Thanh Nguyen

publishes October 3rd

Viet Thanh Nguyen has created an unforgettable, at times uncomfortable look at his life, his family origins and his place in both family and society. As a refugee from Vietnam he recalls growing up in the 1980s in San Jose and, later, LA with brutal honesty, especially as he recounts his relationship with his parents and their own histories, both in Vietnam and America. His pointed emphasis on the meaning of words and language within the American immigrant experience is truly thought-provoking. At times angry, painful, political, hilarious but always brilliant, with a keen focus on the treatment of “others" in America, this memoir is a true introspection of one man’s life journey as he comes to terms with his own Defiant/Quiet set of two faces.

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Ashleigh recommends:

After the Forest by Kell Woods

publishes October 3rd

One of my 2023 favorites! This stunning debut tells the story of Greta and Hans years after their legendary kidnapping by the gingerbread house witch. It beautifully grapples with PTSD, discovering truths amongst myths and secrets, allowing for growth in spite of trauma, and lots of found family. It is dark, ambient, moody, and gloriously written. I adore books with setting-as-character, and After the Forest is perfection with its 1650s Bavarian mountain village setting. Perfect for fans of Hannah Whitten, Naomi Novik, Katherine Arden, and Shelley Parker-Chan.

New in Hardcover

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Nathan Hill

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The Armor of Light

Ken Follett

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The Unsettled

Ayana Mathis

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Democracy Awakening

Heather Cox Richardson

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The Iliad

Homer, trans. Emily Wilson

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Of Time and Turtles

Sy Montgomery

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The Book of (More) Delights

Ross Gay

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The Fragile Threads of Power

V.E. Schwab

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What About Men?

Caitlin Moran

Click here for more new hardcovers!

New in Paperback

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The Passenger

Cormac McCarthy

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Stella Maris

Cormac McCarthy

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Strangers To Ourselves

Rachel Aviv

Click here for more new paperbacks!

Bookseller Recommendations for Young Readers

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Kali recommends:

Pigs Can't Look Up by Vincent D'Onofrio & Shelly Cunningham

In this delightful picture book, we follow a young girl as she sets out on a mission to share the wonder of the stars with the family pig, who has never seen them before, as she cannot look up. This tale highlights the joys of kindness and how helping others will only bring you closer together. A heartwarming tale that is sure to capture the imagination of readers of all ages!

New Books for Kids

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Dory Fantasmagory: Can't Live Without You

Abby Hanlon

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Something, Someday

Amanda Gorman & Christian Robinson

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The Wild Robot Protects

Peter Brown

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Carl Hiaasen

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Katherine Applegate, Gennifer Choldenko & Wallace West

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Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Chalice of the Gods

Rick Riordan

New Books for Young Adults

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The Siren, the Song, and the Spy

Maggie Tokuda-Hall

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This Indian Kid

Eddie Chuculate

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Foul Heart Huntsman

Chloe Gong

Click here for more new kids' and YA books!

Kids' Book Subscriptions

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A Child's Library and Middle-Grade Monthly are our two book subscriptions for children aged 0-5 and 8-12, respectively. Each month, Lauren selects a newly-published picture book or middle-grade novel. Subscriptions can be purchased on a month-to-month basis, or for a year, and may be shipped to the child's home or picked up in-store. They make a great gift!

Our September 2023 selections are The Welcome Home by Amy June Bates and Deephaven by Ethan M. Aldridge. Please click on the book covers for more information.

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In the Gift Department

Get psyched to celebrate the best holiday of the year! (Of course, if you're under 12 or so, you probably started thinking about Halloween in July.)

What We're Reading Now

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North Woods


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The Vaster Wilds


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If I Survive You


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The Last Devil to Die


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The Best Short Stories 2023: The O. Henry Prize Winners


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The Kingdom of Sand


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Night Watch


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Chinese Menu


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Gender: A Graphic Guide


Dog of the Week


Jolene is a 15 month old Bloodhound, a recent rescue from a bad break-up in Tennessee. She didn't steal someone's man just because she can; but she sure is stealing the hearts of her new family, Wellesley Books bookseller Ashleigh! Jolene loves sniffaris to local stores, tracking rabbits in the yard, zoomies with tennis balls, and lounging like a queen on any soft surface she can find. She can often be found staring wistfully out doors and windows, resting her jowls on windowsills and chair arms, and giving the best chin nibbles and nose kisses.

Thank you for supporting your community independent bookstore!


Rebecca Stimpson

Wellesley Books

82 Central Street

Wellesley, MA 02482


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