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THE FREE LIBRARY, APR. 30TH 2PM
We are excited to be the bookseller for this special Free Library event! Get your free tickets here & join me in welcoming a direct descendant of Charles Dickens. She will discuss her latest books: Queen Victoria’s Mysterious Daughter & Charles Dickens and his Circle.
Ms. Hawksley will be traveling from London, and due to her rare US appearance, we are selling a selection of signed books here. Pre-orders are suggested due to limited quantities. We are happy to ship anywhere in the US. Pick up SIGNED COPIES of her latest books, or get gorgeous special editions of a few Charles Dickens novels signed by his great-great-great-granddaughter.
Bio: Lucinda Hawksley is an author, art historian and public speaker, with a special interest in literature and art from the 19th and early 20th centuries and in the history of London. She is also an award-winning travel writer with a love of the environment and a volunteer speaker for the Whales & Dolphins Conservation Society.
As a great great great granddaughter of Charles and Catherine Dickens, Lucinda has grown up with an interest in her own family history. For the last decade she has been a Patron of the Charles Dickens Museum in London – and also recently been made Patron of the Norwegian Pickwick Club!
CLICK ON LINKS TO ORDER
The secrets of Queen Victoria’s sixth child, Princess Louise, may be destined to remain hidden forever. What was so dangerous about this artistic, tempestuous royal that her life has been documented more by rumor and gossip than hard facts? When Lucinda Hawksley started to investigate, often thwarted by inexplicable secrecy, she discovered a fascinating woman, modern before her time, whose story has been shielded for years from public view.
In this new volume, historian and award-winning author Lucinda Hawksley explores the life of her great-great-great-grandfather, Charles Dickens (1812–70)?one of the first people to whom the term “celebrity” in its modern sense was applied, and whose extensive circle of friends and associates included many of the most eminent and influential figures of the Victorian age.
If you love to read, it can be overwhelming to keep up with all of the new book releases. You have your ever-growing stack of classics you should have read, plus a pile of books your friends and family let you borrow, and maybe another pile of books that inspired your favorite binge watches (mine are Game of Thrones, Wolf Hall, Daredevil, The 100….).
Lucky for you, here at The Spiral Bookcase we can tell you what you should put at the top of those To Be Read piles. Here are my favorite books released in 2015! You can special order them here at the shop (just give us a ring at 215-482-0704 or stop in / we are happy to ship too!), and don’t forget: new hardcovers from the last twelve months are 20% off here, so many of these titles would be discounted for you!
You may know him from his roles in Parks & Recreation or Master of None, but Aziz Ansari also released his much-anticipated nonfiction book Modern Romance last year! Ansari teamed up with sociologist Eric Klinenberg to analyze (mostly millenial) dating patterns and the influence of technology and tradition. The research was conducted through international focus groups, Reddit, and audience participation at live comedy shows.
This stunning National Book Award winner should be required reading for parents, teens, politicians, teachers…well, this book should be required reading for all US citizens. Between the World and Me is a breathtaking 152 page letter from Coates to his adolescent son about growing up as a black man in America. It is unforgiving, beautiful, and it will be legendary.
Plum Kettle is saving up for weight-loss surgery when she meets a mysterious young woman who questions her isolation and obsession with being thin. Then, the sudden disappearance of her new friend leads Plum to a network of women who challenge her to to protest gender inequality and beauty standards, and to ask herself, “What if I didn’t need to lose weight to be happy? What if I started living my life now?”
Fans of American classics were shocked when this rumored sequel released more than 50 years after the publication To Kill a Mockingbird. Despite the upset that beloved character Atticus Finch is racist in this sequel, the book presents an important lesson to a new generation of readers: sometimes our heroes fail us, and it is up to us to make the world a better place.
This young adult debut tells the story of Violet and Finch, teens divided by socioeconomic background and friend groups, but brought together by grief and mental illness. Hilarious, romantic, and ultimately tragic, I love any book that reminds me I have more in common with strangers than I know.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on these books – read them, comment, stop in the shop and chat with any of us! We are happy to ship out-of-town, so just call 215-482-0704 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if something catches your eye.
the spiral bookcase, main street music, & johnny’s destructo’s hero complex present:
geek love | #geeklovemnyk
enter to win: february 1st – february 13th
It’s our time! THAT’S RIGHT GEEKS, IT’S OUR TIME! We are celebrating the passion of the geek this Valentine’s Day and have paired up with Main Street Music and Johnny’s Destructo’s Hero Complex to bring you a very sweet, very geek Valentine. All you have to do is SHOP & WIN! (Bonus - impress any sweetheart with your wealth of knowledge about books, music, & comics as you browse our delightful selections.)
Check this out: Make a $25+ purchase at any of our shops between February 1st and February 13th. Every time you make a qualifying purchase you will be entered to win a deliriously wonderful Geek Basket or Geek Certificate at one of our shops. EVERY TIME! We will pick the winners on 2/14.
DON’T STOP THERE! Share your love of everything geek on Main Street, by using our signature #geeklovemnyk on social media. Follow this hashtag for more GEEK LOVE heading your way.
REQUESTING DONATIONS FOR PHILADELPHIA HIGH SCHOOL!
Do you happen to have your old copy of THE GREAT GATSBY? Do you want to support a local high school by sharing the gift of literature?
Copies of THE GREAT GATSBY are needed (see details below). Deadline Monday, Jan. 25th. Drop off location – The Spiral Bookcase, 112 Cotton St., Philadelphia, PA 19127. Mailed copies are also welcome as long as they are here before the deadline.
We are an accelerated high school for over-aged and under-credited students in Philadelphia; essentially a second chance school for students who have dropped out or have been unsuccessful in the traditional school setting. Because we are an alternative school, we don’t have a great deal of funding or resources, and because most of our students are from low income families, we do not require that they purchase any books or textbooks of their own. This often makes it difficult for teachers to provide students with the materials they want and need.
The English Department has been on a hunt for used copies of The Great Gatsby, but has been struggling to find enough copies (looking for around 30) at an affordable price. If anyone is willing to part ways with their copy of Gatsby, it would be going to a great school of students who, despite their obstacles, have made the mature decision to reenter the school system and get their high school diploma!
The Spiral Bookcase, 112 Cotton St. Philadelphia, PA 19127
So much has happened this fall! We not only started bringing in more new books – and ordering more new books for our customers – but we have acquired a delightful selection of gifts and stationery too! Just in time for the Holidays. Take a peak at what is in store – and the new things we adore that you can now find at the shop.
Bookseller Brittany shares 6 of her favorites – right here:
1) Spiced Pomegranate by Zoet Bathlatier – I love how unique and fragrant these candles are! They’re all so good, but I love the warmth and coziness of Spiced Pomegranate- perfect to burn while decorating your tree or baking cookies for the holidays. Added bonus, they’re made locally!
2) The Year of Cozy by Adrianna Adarme – This book is gorgeous (and would make an incredible gift for the creatively-inclined)! The photographs are beautiful and the recipes and crafts are fun and easy-to-do. Also – If you are not following Adrianna’s blog, A Cozy Kitchen, you should do so immediately.
3) Formulary 55 – Formulary 55 makes some of the loveliest smelling things. These are a few of my favorites right now:
- Sea Salt & Lavender Bath Bomb – So fresh! I am addicted to this scent. Plus, if you are gifting and unsure about what someone may like, this one is very versatile and pleasant.
- Madame Mysterio Soap – Sensual and delicate. These soaps make great stocking stuffers!
- Balsam & Fir Candle – This candle makes you feel like you are walking through a forest. Calm and relaxing, this candle goes perfectly with a book and a warm blanket.
4) Modern Bronze Crescent Necklace – One-of-a-kind hand-shaped and hammered pieces made in Tennessee. I adore this entire collection but this necklace in particular resonates with me. Simple and elegant with a dash of witchiness, you need to see these in person!
5) Zulli Designs- Liz Zulli is an incredible local artist and jewelry maker that uses crystals, semi-precious stones, recycled, found and natural objects to create one-of-a-kind pieces. From torched copper bracelets to pouches featuring her own photography, you are bound to find the perfect gift (or two or three!) from her collection at the shop. My pick: Amethyst Earrings.
6) House of Good Juju – Everything. Just everything. I love all of it. However, I am partial to the Spiral Bookcase customized scents. They are so fresh and inviting, I want to bathe in this stuff! Plus, they are pretty to look at.
So many beautiful things to choose from. Don’t forget that a stack of beautiful secondhand books is always a great gift! We are happy to ship out-of-town, so just call 215-482-0704 or email email@example.com if you see anything that strikes your fancy.
With the new Avengers movie hitting screens, I was thinking -
What would Spiral recommend to this spectacular cast of superheroes?
Well, I can’t resist a bit of character analysis and and jab of whimsy, so I decided to give it a shot. Here’s what I recommend – now pick up a book and get to it!
A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING AUTHOR’S COURT
BY MARK TWAIN
Hey there Captain – We all know you are a bit sensitive and certainly a powerhouse out of time. I’ll think you’ll appreciate this story of a fish out of water and how, inevitably, you can’t re-write history.
BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS BY KURT VONNEGUT, JR.
Let me just explain one thing to you Stark – You have free will. Everyone else is a robot. Wait, wait, wait, I mean -You are a robot, and everyone else has free will. Okay, maybe not – but I think you’ll appreciate this biting satire, even if you’re a robot with free will.
MATILDA BY ROALD DAHL
Hey Thor, this little girl has some Power < yep, with a capital “P”. Her family is mean, her teacher is the worst, but she finds support in a comely teacher and learns to take control. I think you’ll clench your teeth at the mean-spirited humans she has to deal with – but remember, we’re not all bad.
THE YELLOW WALLPAPER
BY CHARLOTTE PERKINS GILMAN
Bruce – I think you’ll like this one. It is creepy, I won’t lie. But I think you’ll be taken by the narrator’s descent into psychosis and come to find a deep understanding within these pages. Perhaps a bit of insight into your own malady?
THE BLACK WIDOW
WHY THE CHILD IS COOKING IN THE POLENTA
BY AGLAJA VETERANYI (TRANS. VINCENT KLING)
This is a dark book, Natasha, but I just need to recommend it to you. It’s tragic, it’s stunning, it’s everything that you escaped. The story will make you cry, but sometimes it’s good to remember our demons.
GEEK LOVE BY KATHERINE DUNN
Okay, this one might hit a little bit close to home, Clint, but like Natasha, I think you’ll appreciate it. Circus freaks, familial strain, unfettered emotions - have I got you yet? Draw a bubble bath and jump in.
ULYSSES BY JAMES JOYCE
Loki – I think you’ll be lost forever trying to figure this one out – Have at it.
These books can be found or ordered by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or stopping by the shop!
A delirious selection of books for those seeking something a bit off-kilter.
Call 215-482-0704 to order any of these titles, mention MARCH MADNESS, and get 15% off your order or free shipping. (We ship anywhere in the US and our flat-rate shipping fee is $2.50.)
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland illus. by Camille Rose Garcia
A stunning edition of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. You will feel wonderfully mad as you navigate through Camille Rose Garcia’s trippy & creepy illustrations.
The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson
Have you wondered if you or your boss/co-worker/friend/mother-in-law is a psychopath? This is the book for you. Jon Ronson explores the concept of psychopathy through discussions with mental health specialists, descriptions of odd and unsettling treatments, and the lens of mass media. Ultimately, an engaging look at how psychopathy is viewed and treated in our world.
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
There is a reason everyone is reading this. For those of you with voyeuristic tendencies (I know you’re out there), read this book. Three perspectives – three versions of the truth. The perfect thriller.
The Devil and Sherlock Holmes by David Grann
A motley collection of heroes and rogues from around the world. Strange non-fiction, the best kind perhaps? Tumble along these tales and leave wanting more.
Jillian by Halle Butler
Two secretaries, Megan & Jillian, a malcontent and a short-sighted optimist. They will test your patience, yet you can’t help but feel for them. Somehow humorous, somehow distasteful, completely great. If you like staring at car crashes, this is your book. (Meet the author and get a signed copy : March 4th, 630-900)
The Year of No Mistakes by Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz
After all of these maddening reads, cleanse your palate. Poetry has a beautiful way to return you to yourself, and Aptowicz deftly and simply presents moments of personal struggle, joy, and insight. This isn’t sugar sweet, but life isn’t either.
I hope you enjoyed our foray into madness – and if you do like our recommendations, please remember to SHOP INDIE! We are happy to get these books into your hands (just call!), and I bet your local indie is ready to help too.
MEET Dave housley : SAT : FEBRUARY 28th : 630-900
This article was originally published by largeheartedboy.com on 2/24/14. Dave will be reading and signing copies of his latest short story collection: If I Knew The Way, I Would Take You Home. PURCHASE SIGNED COPY HERE.
In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book.
Matt Bell wrote of the book:
“With Commercial Fiction, Dave Housley once again stakes his claim as the poet laureate of pop culture. No one else could take the cynical manipulations of commercials and extract from them so much humor and empathy and heart.”
Stream a playlist of these songs at Spotify.
In his own words, here is Dave Housley’s Book Notes music playlist for his short story collection, Commercial Fiction:
As you’ll quickly notice when you read the titles of these stories, this is a book of short fiction based on television commercials. In assembling this playlist, I’m trying to do what I tried to do when I wrote the stories, which is not so much to make fun of the source material (which would be too easy, and not even very much fun) but to use these mostly ridiculous commercials as jumping off points, to take them at face value and try to see what might happen if these people were actual people, with actual complicated, messy lives concerned with more than fast food and cars and beer and erectile dysfunction (spoiler alert: a good deal of the book was written during football season).
Meet Tara Murtha : Sat : February 28th : 630-900
This article was originally published by largeheartedboy.com on January 28th.
Tara Murtha’s Bobbie Gentry’s Ode to Billie Joe : PURCHASE SIGNED COPIES HERE!
In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book.
Tara Murtha’s fascinating 33 1/3 book on Bobbie Gentry’s Ode to Billie Joe album explores the mysterious recording artist’s life through the lens of her work.
The Utne Reader wrote of the book:
“Murtha pulls free the threads of truth from a tangled knot of personal mythology and contradictions. Her book is likely to be a hit with casual listeners and pop-culture obsessives alike.”
Stream a playlist of these songs at Spotify.
In her own words, here is Tara Murtha’s Book Notes music playlist for her book Bobbie Gentry’s Ode to Billie Joe:
I still clearly recall the first time I heard Eddie Rabbitt’s “I Love a Rainy Night.” My cute mom stopped dusting the furniture long enough to start dancing in our living room while singing along. I love to hear the thunder, watch the lightning! Most people don’t have a flashbulb memory around hearing “I love a Rainy Night.” I only do because it gilds a fond scene.
Almost universally, though, people remember the first time they heard “Ode to Billie Joe,” especially when it first hit the charts in the summer of 1967. Bobbie Gentry said fans felt compelled to share with her where they were and what they were doing—usually driving—when they first heard her sing her signature spooky story-ballad about a teenage suicide in the South.
Featured Book – A Second Bite at the Apple by Dana Bate
Looking for a Valentine’s Day gift (for yourself, or someone else)? Why not give two gifts in one! Dana Bate and The Spiral Bookcase have teamed up for this sweet deal. With every purchase of this delightful foodie rom-com, we will be donating a gently used book to Inter-Faith Housing Alliance, an organization that provides housing and services to homeless families in the Philadelphia area.
Buy a book, give a book. It’s a win-win! We are happy to ship anywhere in the USA – all you have to do is order direct from the shop : 215-482-0704, or order here: A Second Bite at the Apple.
“Funny, sweet, & a perfect read to rid the winter doldrums” – Ann