About This Blog

Don't get me wrong. It's not that I'm not on board with the whole ebook thing. I enjoy books in all their formats. But there is nothing quite like a bookstore with its neatly arranged shelves of books and artfully created displays of new arrivals, best sellers, and suggested reading. I especially enjoy discovering small, independent bookstores and have made it my mission to visit and report back on as many of these gems as I can. That is my focus, but there is really nothing that is off limits as long as it is about books or reading. Hope you enjoy my blog and come back often.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

No Skates For This Penguin

Penguin Bookshop
420 Beaver Street
Sewickley, PA 15143
412-741-3838

I recently had the great pleasure of meeting one of the Pittsburgh Penguins, but this Penguin doesn't wear skates. No, hockey fans, I'm not referring to a hockey player. This Penguin is a bookstore, Penguin Bookshop, a wonderful bookstore located in the delightful Pittsburgh suburb of Sewickley.

Friends and long-time readers may recall that once a year my family attends the Pyrotechnics Guild International annual convention where we enjoy a week-long extravaganza of booms, blasts, and pyrotechnic artistry. This year's convention was held in Butler County, Pennsylvania, about an hour north of Pittsburgh. It goes without saying that I would seek an area bookstore to visit, and Penguin Bookshop fit the bill nicely. So on a sunny afternoon, I set out on rolling, winding Pennsylvania roads in search of Sewickley. Not accustomed to driving in rural Pennsylvania where street signs are at a premium and traversing the twists, turns, and hills feels somewhat akin to riding a roller coaster, I found myself lost before long. Undaunted even after losing about half an hour trying to find my way, I pulled over, searched the dark recesses of my vehicle, and luckily found my GPS. I have the utmost appreciation for the inventor of this remarkable device without which I likely would have given up. As I drove on through the beautiful Pennsylvania countryside, I grumbled to myself, "This better be worth it."

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

I scream. You scream.

Books and ice cream, I can't think of a better combination. In case you missed it, last month was National Ice Cream month. Now, I love ice cream nearly as much as I love books, so I found these book-inspired ice cream flavors particularly appealing. See what you think. What book-inspired flavors can you think of?

My ideas? How about the Dickens classic, Grape Expectations or the Dostoyevsky favorite, Cream and Peppermint.

Thanks to my son Culver for sharing this.

Click here for more Book Flavors.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Turning Over a New Bay Leaf

Bay Leaf Books
79 State Rd. (M-37)
Newaygo, MI 49337
(231) 652-BOOK (2665)

I have good news and bad news. The bad news is that a bookstore I featured a couple of years ago has closed its doors. Bay Leaf Books in Sand Lake, Michigan, is no more. The good news is that Bay Leaf has moved to the nearby town of Newaygo, with the same quality offerings, the same great customer service, and the same knowledgable owner, Gabe Konrad. So what's different about the new location? About 400 square feet. That's how much larger the new store is. Gabe is happy to finally have enough space to provide chairs for customers to sit and relax while browsing a title or two. There's a table as well, and of course, a lot more room for books. The new location is spacious, bright, and inviting.