14 Picture Books for Raising Kind Young Citizens

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Today’s post is from Parnassus manager of books for young readers, Stephanie Appell.

This time last year, my friend Jane and I were warming our hands around some mugs of Fido’s life-giving Firepot Chai. Jane is both a librarian and a mom of two young girls. She and I gather about once a month with other friends whose passions or professions involve young readers and their books to unleash our inner nerds and geek out about books even more than we do in our admittedly already very nerdy daily lives. This time, however, Jane had me — and everyone at our table — stumped. Read the rest of this entry »

Great Books About the Great Beyond: The Immortalists and The Afterlives

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Thanks to a slew of recent books, thinking about death can actually be quite pleasant — at least as the reading experience goes. In the past couple of years, some of our most popular nonfiction titles have dealt beautifully with end-of-life realities (When Breath Becomes Air, Being Mortal, The Bright Hour, Dying: A Memoir). Now 2018 greets us with imaginative, haunting — even funny — fiction writing that explores mortality and how we humans accept (or don’t) the certainty of it. First up, these two excellent novels: The Afterlives by Thomas Pierce and The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin. Read the rest of this entry »

Notes from Ann: Start Barking

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January is a month for diet books, exercise manuals and a host of self-improvement programs. The holiday cookies have been eaten, the Champagne bottles drained, and here we are, lumpy and disappointed in ourselves, filled with the desire to do better in the coming year. But what if we upped our game, worried less about our bodies and more about our souls? Given the season, not to mention the current political climate, I thought this would be a good moment to recommend some books that could help quiet the mind, address priorities, and lead us to be better, kinder, more helpful people. Read the rest of this entry »

Reasonable Resolutions for Shop Dogs (Plus 3 Books for People)

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New year, new you, the saying goes. But we, the shop dogs of Parnassus Books, wonder — what if you like the old you just fine? As we gallop into 2018, we feel quite content to keep working on the same goals we’ve always had: enjoying daily naps, making new friends every day, and taking a deep inhale from a fresh book as often as possible. Read the rest of this entry »

Who Needs Elves When You Have Shop Dogs?

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(Frankie isn’t really worried about elves — she always has that expression of concern on her face.)

Happy holidays! We, the shop dogs of Parnassus Books, have been hearing lots of talk about elves lately, and we’d like to set everyone straight about something. Those little guys from the North Pole may show up once a year to help with Christmas — which, nice try, elves, thanks for jumping in — but the critters who really make the book-joy happen all year long are right here on the floor of your neighborhood bookstore. So forget the elves on your shelves — you’ve got the dogs from this blog! Read the rest of this entry »

Notes from Ann: The First Editions Club, Where We Just Keep on Winning

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Like the rest of you, I’m sorting through an onslaught of holiday catalogs these days, and what seems especially popular now is any gift that can keep on giving. Sure, you can order up 12 months of boxed fruit, but you can also get the pastry of the month, or pajamas of the month, or licorice, or floral arrangements. Pretty much anything you wanted to give to someone once you can now give to that person 12 times. Read the rest of this entry »

The BIG 2017 Gift List (Part II: Tots, Big Kids, and Teens!)

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Nieces and nephews coming to visit for the holidays? New baby joining the family just in time for all the festivity? Voracious book-eating teenager in the house? Keep everyone happy with a book to unwrap! Our booksellers name their go-to gift suggestions for all ages, from classic favorites to new releases: Read the rest of this entry »