The “Davis” of Davis-Kidd Gets Back into the Bookstore

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Karen Davis does her best Amy Poehler and says YES PLEASE to spending her holidays as a bookseller.

You could say Parnassus has books in its blood, and not just because it’s owned by a novelist and a publishing veteran. Many of the people connected to this store have been working in the book business for years. Case in point: For the past four holiday seasons, we’ve been joined in December by expert bookseller Karen Davis. That’s Davis as in Davis-Kidd Booksellers, the independent retailer known to Tennessee book lovers for decades. Davis created a piece of Nashville history, and having her with us at this time of year reminds us that we are part of a long bookselling heritage.

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Writers to the Rescue: Your Favorite Authors Share Their Gift Lists

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Catherine, Lauren, and Tristan with Emily St. John Mandel (in nametag), author of Station Eleven and your personal gift-helper
Catherine, Lauren, and Tristan with Emily St. John Mandel (in nametag), author of Station Eleven and your personal gift-helper

Wait — Christmas is next week? What?! If you, like us, are in a bit of denial about how fast this holiday season is going, don’t panic. Some of our featured authors from this year have agreed to share their shopping lists, and you may feel free to copy them shamelessly in your gift-giving. Read the rest of this entry »

Joy the Baker: What to Make for Holiday Guests (And How to Save a Cake Fail)

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Here at the store we have several amateur chefs, among them Niki Coffman, our marketing director, who has recently discovered a passion for baking (much to everyone’s delight). She turned us on to Homemade Decadence, a cookbook with a cover so appealing it makes you wonder why all cakes don’t wear pretzels. Read the rest of this entry »

Scenes from a Saturday

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Ask anyone who works in retail, and they’ll tell you, the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas is crazy. It’s the last month of the last quarter of the year, and all of humanity is out turbo-shopping. It requires extra staff, extra inventory, and an extra bit of good humor. And you know what? We love it. Read the rest of this entry »

What Book People Give When They Give Books: Our Ultimate Holiday Guide

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The best thing about Parnassus Books staff: They’re real people. They love to read and talk about books, and they also have a wide range of other interests. They have cool hobbies, nerdy obsessions, favorite bands, beloved pets (see: Sparky, above, getting into the holiday spirit), friends and families. Many of them have fascinating past careers and world travels. Some of them are writers or have worked in publishing. And all of them have holiday parties to go to and gifts to give, which means that just like everyone else, they’ve been making shopping lists. So when a group of professional book-people with diverse interests give presents, what do they pick? We asked our booksellers to share their lists. Read the rest of this entry »

Your Thanksgiving Week Checklist (#1: Get Your Bird)

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No, not your turkey — your Goldfinch. As you may recall, Donna Tartt chose to launch her Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Goldfinch right here in Nashville. Now, as a holiday bonus for friends and supporters of Parnassus Books, Tartt has graciously offered to sign a stack of books for our customers. No fighting the shopping mall crowds, no waking at dawn to get a “while supplies last” deal. Just let us know you want one, and we’ll take care of the rest.

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Notes from Ann: The Great American Novel

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Scott Turow, Ann Patchett, Tari Hughes, Dianne and Kent Oliver at The Nashville Public Library Literary Award Gala on November 8, 2014. Turow was honored for his contributions to the world of books and reading.  (photo by Richard Rogers for The Tennessean)
Novelists everywhere! Authors Scott Turow and Ann Patchett; Nashville Public Library Foundation president Tari Hughes; Dianne Oliver and Nashville Public Library director Kent Oliver at The Nashville Public Library Literary Award Gala on November 8, 2014. Turow was honored for his contributions to the world of books and reading. (photo by Richard Rogers for The Tennessean)

I met Maureen Corrigan at the Southern Festival of Books in October. I knew I shouldn’t have introduced myself but I couldn’t help it. I’m crazy about Maureen’s book reviews on Fresh Air. I trust her judgment and her straightforward voice. She had come by the Parnassus tent looking for me, but I’d missed her. I went to hear her presentation on her new book And So We Read On: How the Great Gatsby Came to Be and Why It Endures and found it fascinating. If I’d had any sense I would have applauded politely and then slipped out the back, but instead I asked Maureen if she wanted me to drive her over to see the bookstore. Read the rest of this entry »