LADY BANKS' COMMONPLACE BOOK

 
 
view in your browser | subscribe | unsubscribe
 
 
 
 
LADY BANKS COMMONPLACE BOOK
 
Week of January 24, 2019
 
>> IN THIS ISSUE
 
The Commonplace Book | Read This! | Okra Picks | Southern Indie Bestsellers | Events
 
 
{Books that spark joy.}
 
In which Mr. Charles Frazier and Hub City Press announce a new imprint, Mr. Tommy Tomlinson remembers "tea so sweet it could hold its shape without a cup" and her ladyship, the editor, contemplates which of her books "spark joy." The total exceeds thirty.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Dearest Readers

 

“Ideally, keep less than 30 books.”

Poor Ms. Marie Kondo's widely-disseminated, and completely misreported statement has been showing up in all sorts of places in her ladyship, the editor's life, usually followed by a righteously-outraged rant on the necessity of keeping more than thirty books on one's nightstand, never mind in the rest of the house.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying UpWhat Ms. Kondo actually said what that in her quest to declutter her own life, she tended to keep about thirty books. Which was perfectly fine for Ms. Kondo --if rather mystifying to her ladyship -- but was in no way a directive for anyone else. As she notes:

"The important concept of my method is that you focus not on what you want to discard but what you want to retain, what you want to keep in your life."

Or, as now quoted on coffee mugs and t-shirts everywhere: Keep the things that "spark joy." (Do those t-shirts spark joy in their owners, one wonders?)

But what does that mean, to "spark joy"? What does it mean when applied to one's library? Believe it or not, her ladyship does in fact regularly divest herself of books -- at a slower rate than she seems to accumulate new ones to be sure, but nevertheless books have been known to leave her and not return:

  • Review copies that are over 10 years old. Please, no comments on just how long her ladyship has been working in the book industry that she could have an entire bookcase-worth of such books.
  • Books that were created to be impulse purchases. rather than because someone was driven to say something. So no, her ladyship no longer owns a copy of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.
  • Books that her ladyship found to be boring. After some consideration, her entire collection of Miss Silver mysteries was relegated to her Little Free Library, mostly because of Miss Silver's rather tiresome habit of looking sternly at the murderer until they caved under her gimlet eye and confessed.

None of the books above "spark joy" -- which in her ladyship's lexicon means they don't prod her or challenge her or make her think about life differently. They don't connect her to important moments in her life, nor re-connect her with the strong feelings that overwhelmed her when she first read them. One can hardly say of Eichmann in Jerusalem, or Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, or The Grapes of Wrath, that they evoke "joy." Except, perhaps, in the sense Joseph Campbell suggests: "Joyful participation in the sorrows of the world.

 

Eichmann in Jerusalem Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee The Grapes of Wrath

 

Books -- the books her ladyship finds worth keeping -- are those that engage us in the world. That show us what a big and beautiful place it is. Naturally there are many, many, many more than thirty of them.

Read independently, and shop local.

 
 
her ladyship, the editar
her ladyship, the editor
 
 
 
 
Lady Banks' Pick of the Week
 
 
 
Lady Banks' Commonplace Book
 
Excerpted noteworthy poetry and prose from her ladyship's bedside reading stack.
 

Parkland Speaks

Third Floor
by Joseph DeArce

 

I was so flustered I couldn't think straight. A teacher told us to return to the other side of the hallway; once back by the door Mrs. Lippel pulled me into the room. I ran in and hid in a large pile of my classmates who were sitting down in the far corner of Mrs. Lippel's room. I will never forget their faces as pure terror and anxiety masked their quirky, imaginative selves. My mind began racing on regrets, death, and never seeing my family again. I felt like a bullet was going to hit me any second. Shaking, I managed to pull out my phone, mute it, and write a text to my immediate family. The text read "I just want you to know I love you all and don't worry, I will be okay."

 

Even though I had written this, I truly believed I was going to die. The gunshots grew louder, and I shut my eyes and held my hoodie tighter over my head. The worst part then came. Silence overtook the atmosphere, only to be disturbed by the fading screams of the victims crying for help down below. The sound of police soon echoed the halls as help finally arrived after what felt like years.

 

Once the police entered our room, tears of joy and cheers overtook the fear and intensity. We were then told to look straight up and put our hands over our heads and exit the stairwell. We entered a war zone. Smoke filled the air as rose petals and blood covered the floor. I looked up, as instructed, to see bullet holes and broken windows.

 

I came out of that building a different person than the one who left for school that day.

 

--Joseph Pearce, in Parkland Speaks: Survivors from Marjory Stonemason Douglas Share Their Stories edited by MSD teacher Sarah Lerner (Crown Books for Young Readers, 2019) 9781984849991

top | share this   fb   tw
 
>

 
 
 
Read This! Books with Street Ced
 
Recommended reading from Southern Indie Booksellers


The Night Agent by Matthew Quirk
This is literally a stay-up late, can't put it down action thriller. Peter Sutherland is an FBI agent whose career is tainted by the sins of his father, but guided by his own strong sense of right and wrong. When he receives a panic-stricken call from a young woman named Rose on a secret FBI hot line, he has no idea of the challenges he will soon be facing, or how the decisions he must make will test his moral codes. Sutherland is an approachable and honest character, not imbued by the author with superhuman strengths or abilities. The story is intricate and fast-paced, yet still feels legitimate and real. I really liked this book and expect it will be a runaway best seller!

The Night Agent by Matthew Quirk ($26.99*, William Morrow), recommended by Fiction Addiction, Greenville, SC.

 



Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus 
Two Can Keep a Secret proves that there are still twisty, devious mystery stories to be told. No matter how many times I thought 'they're the killer!', the ending still shocked and wowed me. It'll appeal to the My Favorite Murder fan in us all- I couldn't put it down. Just don't read it at home, alone, at night. Speaking from personal experience, that would be a mistake. The final line still has me shivering.

Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. Manchus  ($19.99*, Correlated Press), recommended by One More Page Books, Arlington, VA.

 

 



You Know You Want This:
"Cat Person" was not a fluke. This is a collection full of interesting, dark stories about the power structures within all kinds of relationships. Some are playful and some will knock your socks off.

You Know You Want This: "Cat Person" and Other Stories by Kristen Romanian ($24.99*, Gallery/Scout Press), recommended by Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA.

 
More bookseller recommendations

Gossip

 

News of a literary nature

The Elephat in the RoomWhite People"The Southern values stuck, but unlike his parents, Tomlinson mostly worked desk jobs during his long career in journalism. That made it harder to burn off the calories from the fried chicken, biscuits and pecan pie that stayed on the table, he said, as "a tremendous symbol of love and wealth.""

keep reading: He was 460 pounds

 

"Tomlinson grew up in Georgia. He’s an ardent scholar of the glories of the South’s vernacular cuisine: fried chicken, biscuits, barbecue, catfish browned in flour and bacon grease, and “tea so sweet it could hold its shape without a cup.”"

keep reading: A memoir about loving -- and resisting -- Krispy Kreme, Chili Dogs...

 

Magnetic Girl"I have long considered Hub City Press to be one of the very finest independent publishers in the country and am excited to help foster their already excellent offerings of literary fiction"

keep reading: Charles Frazier, Hub City Launch Cold Mountain Fund Series

 

 

 

The Best Cooks in the World"His most lasting contributions, however, are likely his family stories. Initially, Bragg believed his family stories would be important only to himself and his immediate family, but they have garnered wide appeal among people who see themselves and their own families reflected in the characters and settings. "

keep reading: Rosewell Reads Rick Bragg

top | share this   fb   tw
 
 
 
 
 
The Okra Picks: The winter season

 

Make a New Year’s Resolution to read more Okra! Southern Independent booksellers have chosen the 2019 Winter Okra Picks – a collection of the best forthcoming Southern books of the season. Add a bit of tasty reading to your literary diet. Serve yourself a helping of Okra Picks.

 

"Parkland Speaks is a powerful compilation of essays, poems, photographs and artwork from the survivors of the Parkland High School shooting. I read this book over the course of a week, wanting to spend time with each piece trying to absorb the emotion and experience behind each piece. As a reader, I experience such a wide range of feelings - sadness for the victims, anger that our country hasn't enacted the change to prevent shootings like this, but also a lasting sense of hope at these amazing teenagers who are dedicated to sharing their stories and creating true change for the future. Parkland Speaks is difficult but powerful read that should be required reading for everyone."
--Beth, Bookmarks, Winston-Salem, NC


Parkland Speaks by Sarah LernerFeaturing art and writing from the students of the Parkland tragedy, this is a raw look at the events of February 14, and a poignant representation of grief, healing, and hope.

The students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School share their emotional journeys that began on February 14, 2018, and continue today. This revealing and unfiltered look at teens living in the wake of tragedy is a poignant representation of grief, anger, determination, healing, and hope.

The intimate collection includes poetry, eyewitness accounts, letters, speeches, journal entries, drawings, and photographs from the events of February 14 and its aftermath. Full of heartbreaking loss, a rally cry for change, and hope for a safe future, these artistic pieces will inspire readers to reflect on their own lives and the importance of valuing and protecting the ones you love.

Parkland Speaks: Survivors from Marjory Stoneman Douglas Share Their Stories by Sarah Lerner
January 22, 2019 | (PRH) Crown Books FYR | 9781984849991 | Buy

 

 

 

 

top | share this   fb   tw
 
 
Southern Indie Bestsellers
 

For the week ending January 14. Books on the Southern Indie Bestseller List that are southern in nature or have been recently recommended by southern indie booksellers.

 

Southern Indie Bestsellers

 
See the full list here.
The Southern Book Prize | A SIBA Okra Pick
Special to the Southern List | Read This Next!
Printable versions (PDF): Hardcover | Paperback | Children's
 
 
 
HARDCOVER FICTION
 

1. Where the Crawdads Sing
Delia Owens, Putnam, $26, 9780735219090
6. Sugar Run

Mesha Maren, Algonquin Books, $26.95, 9781616206215
10. Long Road to Mercy
David Baldacci, Grand Central, $29, 9781538761571
11. The Overstory
Richard Powers, Norton, $27.95, 9780393635522
14. Little Fires Everywhere
Celeste Ng, Penguin Press, $27, 9780735224292
15. The Dakota Winters
Tom Barbash, Ecco, $26.99, 9780062258199

 
HARDCOVER NONFICTION
 
6. Homo Deus
Yuval Noah Harari, Harper Perennial, $22.99, 9780062464347
9. The Power of Habit

Charles Duhigg, Random House, $16, 9780812981605
12. Hillbilly Elegy

J.D. Vance, Harper, $16.99, 9780062300553
13. Just Mercy
Bryan Stevenson, Spiegel & Grau, $16, 9780812984965
14. Thinking, Fast and Slow
Daniel Kahneman, FSG, $17, 9780374533557
15. In the Garden of Beasts
Erik Larson, Broadway, $17, 9780307408853
 
Special to the Southern List
 

Sugar Run Mesha Maren, Algonquin Books, $26.95,  The Dakota Winters Tom Barbash, Ecco, $26.99, Homo Deus Yuval Noah Harari, Harper Perennial, $22.99, Animalphabet Julia Donaldson, Sharon King-Chai (Illus.), Dial Books, $20.99, 

 
 
 
FICTION of note
 

1. Where the Crawdads Sing
Delia Owens, Putnam, $26, 9780735219090
4. Sugar Run

Mesha Maren, Algonquin Books, $26.95, 9781616206215
13. Every Breath

Nicholas Sparks, Grand Central, $28, 9781538728529
14. Becoming Mrs. Lewis
Patti Callahan, Thomas Nelson, $25.99, 9780785224501
13. White Houses

Amy Bloom, Random House, $17, 9780812985696

 
NONFICTION of note
 
8. The Soul of America
Jon Meacham, Random House, $30, 9780399589812
6. Hillbilly Elegy

J.D. Vance, Harper, $16.99, 9780062300553
7. The Color of Law
Richard Rothstein, Liveright, $17.95, 9781631494536
8. The Last Castle
Denise Kiernan, Touchstone, $17, 9781476794051
10. Thinking, Fast and Slow
Daniel Kahneman, FSG, $17, 9780374533557
12. Destiny and Power

Jon Meacham, Random House, $20, 9780812979473
13. Instantly Southern
Sheri Castle, Clarkson Potter, $16.99, 9781984822475
14. The Untethered Soul
Singer A. Michael, New Harbinger, $17.95, 9781572245372
 
         
 
 
top | share this   fb   tw  
 
 
Events
 
What's happening at Southern Indies across the South?
 
See the full calendar | Find a Southern Indie Bookstore near you.
 

Book Reading and Signing with Vikki Grodner  (author appearance)
Vikki Grodner | 01/26/2019, 10:30 am | Ernest & Hadley Booksellers | Tuscaloosa, AL

Debra H. Goldstein Booksigning  (author appearance)
Debra H. Goldstein | 01/26/2019, 06:00 pm | Murder on the Beach Mystery Bookstore | Delray Beach, FL

Jennifer Skiff, Rescuing Ladybugs  (author appearance)
Jennifer Skiff | 01/26/2019, 02:00 pm | FoxTale Book Shoppe | Woodstock, GA

Pat Nichols  (author appearance)
Pat Nichols | 01/26/2019, 02:00 pm | Tall Tales Atlanta | Atlanta, GA

Lincoln Peirce with MAX & THE MIDKNIGHTS   (author appearance)
Lincoln Peirce | 01/26/2019, 04:00 pm | Square Books | Oxford, MS

Revolutionary Pedagogy  (author appearance)
Mark Bray | 01/26/2019, 03:00 pm | Firestorm Books & Coffee | Asheville, NC

Stella Vinitchi Radulescu presents A Cry in the Snow and Other Poems with translator Luke Hankins  (author appearance)
Stella Vinitchi Radulescu | 01/26/2019, 06:00 pm | Malaprop's Bookstore & Cafe | Asheville, NC

Barbara J. Risman, Where the Millennials Will Take Us: A New Generation Wrestles with the Gender Structure   (author appearance)
Barbara J. Risman | 01/26/2019, 11:00 am | McIntyre's Books | Pittsboro, NC

Author Event: Kathryn Taylor - Two Minus One  (author appearance)
Kathryn Taylor | 01/26/2019, 02:00 pm | Park Road Books | Charlotte, NC

Linda Carnes-McNaughton: Blackbeard's Sunken Prize  (author appearance)
Linda Carnes-McNaughton | 01/26/2019, 04:00 pm | The Country Bookshop | Southern Pines, NC

Book Signing with Steph Post, Arin Greenwood and Jeff Hess  (author appearance)
Steph Post | 01/27/2019, 04:00 pm | Inkwood Books | Tampa, FL

Warming Winter Soups with Sheri Castle  (author appearance)
Sheri Castle | 01/27/2019, 03:00 pm | McIntyre's Books | Pittsboro, NC

Mary Davila - Grandpa's Tent  (author appearance)
Mary Davila | 01/27/2019, 02:00 pm | Quail Ridge Books | Raleigh, NC

Frank Harmon, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See  (author appearance)
Frank Harmon | 01/27/2019, 03:00 pm | Scuppernong Books | Greensboro, NC

Wild Dunes Author Series with Mary Alice Monroe, Patti Callahan, and Lisa Wingate  (author appearance)
Patti Callahan | 01/27/2019, 02:00 pm | Buxton Books | Charleston, SC

Author event with Tiffany Breeding, PhD, author of The Metabolic Makeover  (author appearance)
Tiffany Breeding | 01/27/2019, 02:00 pm | Parnassus Books | Nashville, TN

National Speaker Series- Catherine Kerrison  (author appearance)
Catherine Kerrison | 01/27/2019, 04:00 pm | Prince Books | Norfolk, VA

Paula McLain Presents Love And Ruin A Novel  (author appearance)
Paula McLain | 01/28/2019, 06:00 pm | Vero Beach Book Center | Vero Beach, FL

Chris Cander  (author appearance)
Chris Cander | 01/29/2019, 06:00 pm | Page & Palette | Fairhope, AL

Books and Bites: Wayne Wiegand at Robert Saunders Library  (author appearance)
Wayne Wiegand | 01/29/2019, 12:00 pm | Inkwood Books | Tampa, FL

Tim Dorsey Booksigning  (author appearance)
Tim Dorsey | 01/29/2019, 07:00 pm | Murder on the Beach Mystery Bookstore | Delray Beach, FL

Tim Dorsey Booksigning  (author appearance)
Tim Dorsey | 01/29/2019, 07:00 pm | Murder on the Beach Mystery Bookstore | Delray Beach, FL

Dr. W. Thomas Boyce, M.D.  (author appearance)
W. Thomas Boyce | 01/29/2019, 06:30 pm | Oxford Exchange | Tampa, FL

Alyssa Maxwell presenting A Murderous Marriage - A Novel  (author appearance)
Alyssa Maxwell | 01/29/2019, 06:00 pm | Vero Beach Book Center | Vero Beach, FL

Author Paula McLain  (author appearance)
Paula McLain | 01/29/2019, 06:00 pm | Copperfish Books | Punta Gorda, FL

NONE OF THE ABOVE: The Untold Story of the Atlanta Public Schools Cheating Scandal, Corporate Greed, and the Criminalization of Educators  (author appearance)
Shani Robinson | 01/29/2019, 07:30 pm | Charis Books & More | Atlanta, GA

Marian D. Moore - LOUISIANA MIDRASH  (author appearance)
Marian D. Moore | 01/29/2019, 06:00 pm | Octavia Books | New Orleans, LA

Dani Shapiro with INHERITANCE  (author appearance)
Dani Shapiro | 01/29/2019, 05:00 pm | Square Books | Oxford, MS

At the Edge of Your Seat: Megan Miranda in Conversation with Karen McManus  (author appearance)
Megan Miranda | 01/29/2019, 07:00 pm | Main Street Books | Davidson, NC

Author Salon with Jeff Jackson discussing Destroy All Monsters  (author appearance)
Jeff Jackson | 01/29/2019, 07:00 pm | Malaprop's Bookstore & Cafe | Asheville, NC

YA author event with April Henry, author of The Lonely Dead  (author appearance)
April Henry | 01/29/2019, 06:30 pm | Park Road Books | Charlotte, NC

Barbara Bennett - Smoke Signals from Samarcand: The 1931 Reform School Fire and Its Aftermath  (author appearance)
Barbara Bennett | 01/29/2019, 07:00 pm | Quail Ridge Books | Raleigh, NC

Rebecca Davis, Amidst this Fading Light  (author appearance)
Rebecca Davis | 01/29/2019, 07:00 pm | Scuppernong Books | Greensboro, NC

YA author event with April Henry, author of The Lonely Dead  (author appearance)
April Henry | 01/29/2019, 06:30 pm | Parnassus Books | Nashville, TN

Domestic Thriller Writer Kristyn Kusek Lewis Presents Half of What You Hear   (author appearance)
Kristyn Kusek Lewis | 01/29/2019, 06:30 pm | Fountain Bookstore | Richmond, VA

China Expert Dr. Charles Steilen in Conversation with Elsie Souza A Bookstore1 Community Conversation  (author appearance)
Charles Steilen | 01/30/2019, 02:00 pm | Bookstore 1 Sarasota | Sarasota, FL

R.J. Lee with GRAND SLAM MURDERS  (author appearance)
R.J. Lee | 01/30/2019, 05:00 pm | Square Books | Oxford, MS

Kristyn Kusek Lewis discusses her book Half of What You Hear  (author appearance)
Kristyn Kusek Lewis | 01/30/2019, 07:00 pm | Flyleaf Books | Chapel Hill, NC

Karen McManus presents Two Can Keep a Secret and Megan Miranda presents Come Find Me  (author appearance)
Karen McManus | 01/30/2019, 06:00 pm | Malaprop's Bookstore & Cafe | Asheville, NC

David Menconi - 2019 Piedmont Laureate  (author appearance)
David Menconi | 01/30/2019, 07:00 pm | Quail Ridge Books | Raleigh, NC

Marguerite Prager-Thomson, Marguerite de Bourgogne  (author appearance)
Marguerite Prager-Thomson | 01/30/2019, 07:00 pm | Scuppernong Books | Greensboro, NC

Dani Shapiro  (author appearance)
Dani Shapiro | 01/30/2019, 06:30 pm | Parnassus Books | Nashville, TN

Julie Williams  (author appearance)
Julie Williams | 01/31/2019, 06:00 pm | Page & Palette | Fairhope, AL

Elizabeth Miller Hayes -- Ever Light and Dark  (author appearance)
Elizabeth Miller Hayes | 01/31/2019, 06:00 pm | Midtown Reader | Tallahassee, FL

Chris Cander on Thacker Mountain Radio with THE WEIGHT OF A PIANO  (author appearance)
Chris Cander | 01/31/2019, 06:00 pm | Square Books | Oxford, MS

Race, Gender & Politics in Modern America  (author appearance)
Erin Kempker | 01/31/2019, 05:30 pm | Turnrow Books | Greenwood, MS

Doug Bock Clark discusses his acclaimed debut The Last Whalers  (author appearance)
Doug Bock Clark | 01/31/2019, 07:00 pm | Flyleaf Books | Chapel Hill, NC

Reading + Signing: Tommy Tomlinson  (author appearance)
Tommy Tomlinson | 01/31/2019, 07:00 pm | Main Street Books | Davidson, NC

Rachael Sparks presents Resistant  (author appearance)
Rachael Sparks | 01/31/2019, 06:00 pm | Malaprop's Bookstore & Cafe | Asheville, NC

Author Event: Mesha Maren - Sugar Run  (author appearance)
Mesha Maren | 01/31/2019, 07:00 pm | Park Road Books | Charlotte, NC

Robert W. Turner II - Not for Long: The Life and Career of the NFL Athlete  (author appearance)
Robert W. Turner II | 01/31/2019, 07:00 pm | Quail Ridge Books | Raleigh, NC

Kristyn Kusek Lewis: Half of What You Hear  (author appearance)
Kristyn Kusek Lewis | 01/31/2019, 05:00 pm | The Country Bookshop | Southern Pines, NC

Author event with Frye Gaillard, author of A Hard Rain  (author appearance)
Frye Gaillard | 01/31/2019, 06:30 pm | Parnassus Books | Nashville, TN

Jeffrey W. Massey  (author appearance)
Jeffrey W. | 02/01/2019, 06:00 pm | Page & Palette | Fairhope, AL

Zeteri M. Hodges  (author appearance)
Zeteri M. Hodges | 02/01/2019, 06:00 pm | Page & Palette | Fairhope, AL

Lou Vickery  (author appearance)
Lou Vickery | 02/01/2019, 06:00 pm | Page & Palette | Fairhope, AL

Leigh Bardugo with KING OF SCARS   (author appearance)
Leigh Bardugo | 02/01/2019, 05:00 pm | Square Books | Oxford, MS

Terry Gamble Author of The Eulogist  (author appearance)
Terry Gamble | 02/01/2019, 11:00 am | Litchfield Books | Pawleys Island, SC

Author Elizabeth Miller Hayes with Ever Light and Dark: Telling Secrets, Telling the Truth  (author appearance)
Elizabeth Miller Hayes | 1/31/2019, 6:00 PM | Midtown Reader | Tallahassee, FL

 
Authors Round the South | www.authorsroundthesouth.com
 
 
top | share this   fb   tw  
 
Lady Banks is sponsored by the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance, in support of independent bookstores in the South | SIBA | 51 Pleasant Ridge Dr.| Asheville, NC 28805
 
You are receiving this email at @@email@@. If you wish to stop receiving email from us, you can simply remove yourself by replying with "unsubscribe" in the subject or by visiting: @@unsubscribe_url@@