Frankie Stein Starts School by Lola M Schaefer
I bought this for my granddaughter on a recent bookstore trip. I was picking her up for her weekend, and decided I didn't want to cook dinner, she hadn't ate yet, I hadn't ate yet...So we treated ourselves to McDonald's Happy Meals (I know, this isn't very healthy, but we rarely do this) - bought myself a happy meal, also - for the toy, of course. The hamburger is also just the right size to make me feel content (not overfull) and I love to get the toys. So we made a side trip to Borders and browsed the children's section. I really have to keep her focused on teh books, she wants to look at the toys (WHY do they sell toys in a bookstore? the toys are overpriced, and I want to buy BOOKS at a bookstore) After a few reminders about being there for books, not toys, she helped to pick a book for her cousin (my grandson) and picked Frankie Stein Starts School for herself. After we got home, I read her the book at least three times. That weekend she had her Uncle Willy, his girlfriend, our visiting friend "Uncle"Donny, another friend, and ANOTHER person who just happened to stop by all read her this book. She manages to get many people to read to her, and for some reason, they'll all take a few minutes to read her a book, even if they're just there to pick someone up. It's amazing and kind of cool that all these different aged people will take time out to read a little girl a story.
Magic Lost, Trouble Found - Lisa Shearin
Young Miles - A Warriors Apprentice - Louise McMaster Bujold
My favorite bookstore is going out of business. Borders. They closed their overseas business by Jan of 2010, and now they are closing all their stores in the United States. This is sad for me. In my smallish city, 10 years ago there were two indie bookstores (Copperfield's and Treehorn Books - people either love it or hate it, lol) and two big franchises - Crown Discount Books and Barnes & Nobles. Crown's was THE ONLY bookstore in my side of town. Apparently businesses didn't think that people on the southside of my town (used to known as the "bad side of town") needed to buy books conveniently. We had to go all the way across town to browse for books. I was sooooo happy when Crown books opened. I was there every single weekend. My middle son and youngest son used to go shopping with me. My middle son used to browse the books and my youngest would park himself in the sports section reading about stats and sport figures. I remember spending many happy hours looking for books...then they closed. Once again, I had to wait for busses and time to shop for books. This was pre-car for me, back when we were traveling everywhere by bus. Not the most convenient way to get around - and our bus system is nothing like San Francisco, where there is a bus coming every 10 minutes or so. Especially on the weekends...the busses run every half hour on the week days, and every hour on the weekends. So if you miss the bus....oh boy. And the busses only ran until 8 pm on the weekdays, and 6 pm on the weekends...so if you rely on the busses, you really were limited.
When Borders opened I was ecstatic - finally a bookstore within walking distance (when I was desperate). It would take a halfhour to walk there, but when I needed a book, I NEEDED a book. Other book fiends will know what I mean. Sometimes you just NEED to go shop for books.
Which is how I felt Friday night. I really don't have money to spare, it being the summer and I'm trying to save for a new bed....but even though I had recently received some books from a friend, I felt this driving NEED to go to Borders. At this time their books are running at 30% t0 50% off. I really have been craving the latest Tanya Huff Valor novel.... The Truth of Valor. So I cruised on over to Borders....where the staff is making a valiant effort to keep books in order - in the sections they belong in. I sauntered on over to the SciFi/Fantasy section over to the H shelf..NOPE - no Truth of Valor. There were other Tanya Huff books, the ones I already had, but no Truth of Valor. So I sadly started browsing, and looking for the next two Elizabeth Moon novels in the Vatta's War series....round the corner down the next aisle....AND THERE - IN THE T's WAS THE TRUTH OF VALOR. Just one, so I snagged it up. So I paid $16ish for it. I probably should have waited for a couple more weeks until the prices went down more, but by then someone else might have snagged it up. I bought it. I'm reading it now. While it is still about Torin, ex-military now it also feels a bit like a new series - a new series with a favorite known character. While I was at Borders, I found the last two ppb Elizabeth Moon SciFi novels, which just happened to be the next two in the series that I've been reading and needed to get. So that worked out well for me - I bought Command Decision and Victory Conditions. I read the first three in the Vatta's War series. I think that there is improvement from the first to the third novel. The first was good, but not amazing - however, there was something about it that made me want to keep reading. The second was better, and by the time I read the third book, I really wanted to see what's going to happen next. I think the characters were more interesting and the overall tone to the novels made it a better read. I'm looking forward to reading these next two novels and finding out what's going to happen with Kylara and her "crazy" old aunt, along with the rest of the surviving members of the Vatta family (the whole family was attacked, most of them killed) in an intricate plot.
This is one of those books that I read about on a blog, thought it sounded interested and wanted to buy - yet forgot about it within weeks. If I don't see it on the bookshelves at the store (unless it's by an author that I follow) then I frequently just forget about the novels. Later, if I happen to come across this, then I'm all happy and excited....So after being out since January of this year, 8 months, I can say that I never saw it on the shelves at Borders.* Well, I should be happy I finally got a copy - which I am. In fact, there were quite a few books by Cherie Priest on the shelf, but this is the first of a series, my first read by Cherie Priest, and since I had a limited amount of money to work with here, I picked Bloodshot. Someday, I would like to give the other novels a try, especially the steampunk.
*And now that Borders is going out of business, suddenly there are all these Cherie Priest books on the shelf. Where were they months ago? just sitting moldering in the back? There were so many times that I was looking for books that should have been out, but couldn't find them at Borders. Now I'm sad that they're going out of business, but why weren't many of the books they should have been carrying out on the shelves where they could be purchased? BEFORE they went out of business.
I spent a little time on Wikipedia reading just a bit of what was going on with Borders. I don't pretend to understand high finance and the business world, but it seems they've been doomed since being bought by K-Mart. K-mart almost went out of business, and it seems (I'm probably wrong) that their bad business karma was spread to Borders...Now there will be no more Borders. Besides all the employees losing their jobs (which is pretty bad) it leaves me with having to shop before 6p.m. at the local indie stores (impossible with my schedule) or going over to Barnes and Nobles and being harrassed to buy their card everytime I want to just buy a book. I know the supervisors press their employees to push their cards, and other services that a shopper has to pay extra for, but as a shopper, I just want to be able to go in, shop for a book and just pay for the book, not be harrassed everytime I shop to buy some rewards card. It's irritating, and I've actually avoided shopping as B&N many times just for that reason.
While I'm on the subject of bookstores closing; how ironic would it be, to have all the big bookstores end up focusing only on e-books -as that's the wave of the future - and having to find print books only in indie bookstores, or mom-n-pop bookstores? Hopefully, if it does come to that, we'll still be able to buy print books. I understand that eventually all books will be online, or on data chips, data cubes, etc. But I really can't imagine a data cube really taking the place of holding a book in my hands...and think of the pop-up books? Whoe doesn't love a pop-up book?