How To Behave In a Bookstore: A Shop Dog’s Guide

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Hi. I’m Sparky, Ann’s dog. I work at Parnassus Books, where I have a variety of important responsibilities. (You’ve probably seen me around. People say I look like Rocket in How Rocket Learned to Read. This is not true. Rocket looks like me.) I won’t lie to you — the lifestyle of a shop dog is pretty swanky, and the perks are sweet. Read the rest of this entry »

Notes From Ann: On a Low Limb — Heading Out on a Book Tour

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photo by Heidi Ross

Okay, friends, I’ll admit it, I’m on a low limb. (“On a low limb,” a fabulous colloquialism cribbed from my Mississippi mother-in-law, Jo VanDevender). Today is pub day for my new book This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage, and while you might think that publishing a new book would be cause for joyous celebration, the whole business makes me queasy. Read the rest of this entry »

Notes From Ann: Here Come the Big Fall Books

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After my last book report in which I recommended a ridiculous number of books, I had a great idea – I would post a book report in which I only recommended one book.  Wouldn’t that have been genius? Read the rest of this entry »

Notes From Ann: Cheating

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I often say that the one thing I’m most likely to do on any given day is answer five questions for a newspaper in Australia, by which I mean I spend a lot of my time filling out forms. None of them are hard, many of them are from other countries, and for the most part they’re all pretty much the same. A very clever writer friend keeps a computer file of answers and just pastes them into different questionnaires. I keep meaning to be that organized. Read the rest of this entry »

Notes From Ann: Re-reading

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Every now and then a book comes along that is held in such universally high regard — great reviews, staggering sales, ebullient word of mouth — that I don’t feel the need to read it. Somehow I missed it when it first came out, and then time went by and, for reasons I can’t explain, the moment passed. Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand, was just such a book. Read the rest of this entry »

Notes From Ann: Less Is More

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I recently read Quiet: the Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain.  This is a perfect book for Parnassus. After all, we are a business founded by two introverts (Karen Hayes and myself), staffed with introverts (probably everyone in the store except Niki and Lauren who run events and therefore really can’t be introverts). We feature a product mostly created at home by introverts (books), which we then sell primarily to introverts (readers). In short, it’s our kind of book.  Read the rest of this entry »

Notes From Ann: Father’s Day

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Photo by Simon PAPE, via Unsplash

Somewhere back there several book reports ago I made note of the fact I was writing too much, and that I would appreciate it if readers would remember this fact in February when I wasn’t writing at all and give me a pass. At the time I hadn’t actually intended to slack off, but I did. Let’s hear it for being able to know the future! Read the rest of this entry »