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Fridays & Saturdays In February: Roll The Dice Discount!

Fridays and Saturdays (only) in February: Fran and Amber will be allowing you to Roll the Dice Discount to get a discount on your entire cost of books. Possible discounts range from 1% to 20% (these are special dice you see). The discount does not apply to sales tax or to shipping. In Shop Only.

Our Sculpture Is Included In The Sale

New Author Signings

Tuesday March 17th at Noon - Valentina Giambanco stops by to sign The Gift of the Darkness

A family of four is found murdered in their Seattle home, the words “thirteen days” scratched in the doorframe. That day, a partner in the dead man’s law firm receives a note in the mail that says just those two words. The two cops assigned to the case discover that the dead lawyer, the brother of the lawyer who received the card in the mail and the murderer suspected of the crimes, grew up together and were all abducted and held hostage on the Olympic Peninsula. Only the two boys who grew up to be lawyers were rescued. The third vanished without a trace. Is he back for vengeance? Debut that was a bestseller in Europe – Ms. Giambanco lives in England and makes her visit to the US to sign copies- now released in the US. Adele highly recommends.

Saturday April 11th at Noon - Mary Daheim signs The Alpine Zen

In the final installment of the Emma Lord series, the town of Alpine is beset by odd occurrences. A young woman named Ren comes to look for the mother who abandoned her and promptly collapses. There’s someone stalking various residents. Other strange things begin to happen and this young woman seems to be at the center of them all. In paper, Clam Wake.

Wednesday May 27th at 12:30 - Ace Atkins signs Kickback

Spenser is hired to look into a judge’s harsh sentencing of teens. He and Hawk follow the trail that appears to lead into corruption within the for-profit prison system. 4th in the continued series.

Signed Copies Coming Soon!

Erik Larson - Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania

On May 1, 1915, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were anxious. Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone, and for months, its U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era’s great transatlantic “Greyhounds” and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. He knew, moreover, that his ship—the fastest then in service—could outrun any threat.

Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger’s U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small—hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more—all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history.

Donna Leon - Falling in Love

Years ago, Brunetti proved opera great Flavia Petrelli was innocent of murder. She’s back in Venice but with a new problem that she explains to Brunetti; someone is showering her with flowers and she’s afraid she has a stalker, a maniacal fan. When another singer is attacked, Brunetti accepts the diva’s fears.

What We've Been Reading

Glen Erik Hamilton - Past Crimes

Signing - Tuesday March 3rd at Noon

JB Recommends:

The publicity material says “Glen Erik Hamilton is a Seattle native, who lived aboard a sailboat as a boy, and grew up finding trouble around the marinas and commercial docks and islands of the Pacific Northwest.”

Hamilton puts his youthful experiences to good use in his debut thriller, Past Crimes. He’s created a main character who had a similar youth, Van Shaw, who grew up under the rough and criminal tutelage of his grandfather, the respected but feared Dono Shaw. Van knew the tricks of heists, scams and crimes large and small but at the end of high school, he broke with Dono and ran away to join the army. Now an Army Ranger, Van has added a new raft of talents to his arsenal but believes he’s left his past in Seattle well behind him.

Then he receives a cryptic message from Dono, the first communication between them in years and sent in a way that lets Van know he is needed back in Seattle. So home he goes.

That’s all I can say about the plot. Once he arrvies at Dono’s Capitol Hill house, everything changes and the story shoots off, rarely slowing down. Van has to use his various skills to try to stay ahead of the curve and to find out what has happened to drive Dono to call him home. While he does not want to fall back on his larcenous abilities, sometimes they’re what gets the job done, and Van’s desire to stay on one side of the law is continually tested.

Seattle is a character in the story – the streets and bars and one hair-raising section on the shore of an island in the Sound. Hamilton uses it all extremely well, the sounds and views and salty characters of the Shaw’s friends. No one is all black or white, no one is a stock character or made of thin cardboard. This is a solid, well constructed debut.

Like the best stories, you’re not given all the details of what went on or is going on. You don’t know exactly what drove Van and Dono apart, you don’t know what was strong enough to split them and to cause Van to abandon his entire life and to not look back – but you sense, as the story unfolds, that it had to have been something massive. Nothing in the lives of the Shaws was sedate or ordinary, and, in that, you know you’re in for some revelations.

Here’s hoping Hamilton has other Northwest thrillers in him, whether with Van Shaw or not. But if it is to be a series, this is a great start. Can’t wait to see what he comes up with next.

Rob Reid - Year Zero

Fran Recommends:

This review is for people who loved Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and Douglas Adams’ “Hitchhiker’s Guide” series. If those sorts of books aren’t your thing, this one won’t be either.

Okay, just us? Year Zero by Rob Reid. It’s a hoot! You’ll have music you think you’ve forgotten rumbling through your head for days!

Nick Carter is a music copyright attorney in New York, on the verge of being promoted (if he can do something brilliant and unexpected to impress his boss, Judy) or canned (substantially more likely), when a couple of aliens come to his office hoping to recruit him into helping them save our planet. You see, on October 13, 1977, all the various beings in the Refined League (as it’s known by all the civilized members, of whom we’re nowhere close to being one) discovered that our planet has the one thing that can be found only here on Earth: Music.

And from that point on, they’ve been downloading all our music and spreading it around the Universe. The catch is that our laws say that royalties must be paid, and no one in the Refined League has paid anything, which means they owe us for back royalties. They owe us a lot. More than the Universe has available to pay us.

So there are some who figure that they’ll encourage us to blow ourselves up (they’d never kill us, that would be uncivilized !), and that’ll wipe out the back debt AND they can keep the music they’ve already got.

From that point on, things take off. Year Zero is a non-stop, rollicking roller coaster. It’s a quick read, and it’s tons of fun, and it even comes with playlists for the aliens! I’ve spent a lot of time listening to artists I’ve never heard of, and lots that I have, if only to wipe out the fact that the first song the aliens ever heard was the theme from “Welcome Back, Kotter”, which is still stuck in my head.

This just rocketed onto my Top Ten list, it’s that good!

Urban Fantasy Mystery

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Collectible Corner

Raymond Chandler - The Little Sister

Book Condition - Very Good / DJ Condition - Very Good

New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1949. First American edition. Hardcover.
Ends of spine rolled and slight lean to spine, reddish cloth clean and bright with image of woman-handled dagger on front cover/dj shows wear to edges, a few small chips and closed tears, spine faded, price clipped) cover illustration by Artzybasheff clean and bright in mylar dj protector. 5th Marlowe novel.

Raymond Chandler - The Long Goodbye

Book Condition - Very Good / DJ Condition - Very Good

New York: Houghton Mifflin, new. First American edition. Hardcover.
Light stamp from former library and small spot of glue on FFE, light traces of tape from past dj protectors on paste downs but, otherwise, it does not look like an ex-library copy. Shelf wear to edges, ends of spine rolled, previous owner’s name written on FFE, small ochre stains to half-title and title page/jacket shows creasing in places, ends of spine rolled and small chipping to bottom edge, spine has faded) cover illustration by Lorraine. Final Marlowe novel, an American classic and winner of the Edgar Award for Best Novel, in mylar dj protector.

YA Mysteries!

Michelle Knudsen - Evil Librarian

Amber Recommends:

Summary: Annie has fallen for the new school librarian. The head over heels kind of love, the problem is the librarian seems to be encouraging these feelings. Which obviously is completely inappropriate no matter how hot he is! Cynthia Rothschild (Annie’s best friend and nicknamed Cyn) finds the entire situation creepy, she tries to tell Annie it is a really bad idea to pursue a teacher but Annie is beyond listening. She is completely under his spell.

Literally.

Review: In many ways this book reminds me of the early episodes of Buffy The Vampire Slayer (TV show with Sarah Michelle Gellar not the movie with Luke Perry). Similar to Buffy, Cyn has to figure out pretty quick how to juggle friendship, school (both homework & the musical), home life and demon slaying activities without letting a ball hit the ground. In addition Cyn has a best friend who isn’t as happy with her life and her role as a “good girl” as she seems to be. Who subsequently allows herself to be blinded by the promises and glamours of the demon librarian. Then there Cyn’s crush who may or may not know of her existence and who may or may not want Cyn to fight the demon in their midsts. The pièce de résistance which suggests Buffy to me is the central location of our baddie - the library. Which provided the major research and rally point for Buffy & the gang all through their high school career (man how I loathed that phrase while in high school, it makes sense now…..does that mean I am growing up? Things to ponder…) In the Evil Librarian the location flips allegiances and as the title indicates is the nexus of the evil propagating its way through the student body.

What distinguishes this book from Buffy is Cyn’s love of musical theater and her management of her high school’s production of Sweeney Todd. I cannot tell you exactly how the author has woven this musical into the narrative - spoilers you know. What I can say is this musical provides the perfect accent for this story allowing the book to become something special. A piece of advice…you do need to be at least passingly familiar with Sweeney Todd in order to get the absolute most out of this book - my suggestion rent the Johnny Depp version from a few years back (seeing a live performance would be the best, but in a pinch the movie will do!).

The fact that this book reminded me of Buffy is a good thing! While the elements of the slayer were present (for me at least), the author did a great job of making this story her own. Which is why I enjoyed reading it and look forward to the sequel. My one critique is I think it was a hair heavy handed when dealing with Cyn’s school crush (or perhaps reading the angst over said crush hit to close to home in my memories from high school), but this is a seriously minor item which clears itself up by the end of the book. Other than the one small flaw this book was fun to read and would be perfect for any girl who loves musicals, kicking butt and/or demon hunting!

I would place this book at around the 12 - 15 reader age range.

Can You Believe It? Holiday Mysteries Coming Soon!

Shelley Freydont - Trick Or Deceit

It's Halloween in Weatherford, Texas--which means Phyllis Newsom is baking up a storm of yummy seasonal treats...but she's about to get even busier unmasking a killer...

While Phyllis and her friend Carolyn are preparing for a baking contest, her housemate Sam adopts Buck, an adorable Dalmatian who was hit by a car. To thank local veterinarian Hank Baxter for helping the dog, Phyllis and Carolyn bake a batch of doggie treats for his other four-legged patients.

But when they arrive at the clinic, the vet is in the process of being arrested--for the murder of his wife Convinced that the police are barking up the wrong tree and that someone's been burying evidence, Sam begs Phyllis to help find the real killer. Joined by Buck, the friends engage in a dogged pursuit of the murderer, who will stop at nothing to muzzle them...permanently.

Rhys Bowen - Away In A Manger

It's Christmastime in 1905 New York City, and for once, Molly Murphy Sullivan is looking forward to the approaching holidays. She has a family of her own now. She and Daniel have a baby son and 12-year-old Bridie is living with them as their ward. As Molly and the children listen to carolers in the street, they hear a lovely little voice and see a beggar girl, huddled in a doorway singing Away in a Manger. Bridie is touched by the girl's ragged clothes and wants to help her out if they can. They give her a quarter, only to watch a bigger boy take it from her. But it turns out he is the girl's brother, and they've come from England and are living with an aunt who mistreats them terribly. When the young boy is accused of stealing a purse, Molly intervenes on his behalf.

These children are clearly not the usual city waifs. They are well-spoken and used to better things. So who are they? And what has happened to their mother? As Molly looks for the answers to these questions, she gets drawn into an investigation that will take her up to the highest levels of New York society.

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More Holiday Mysteries!

We Can Order All Most Anything! For Example:

Neil Gaiman - Trigger Warning

"We each have our little triggers . . . things that wait for us in the dark corridors of our lives." So says Neil Gaiman in his introduction to Trigger Warning, a remarkable compendium of twenty-five stories and poems that explore the transformative power of imagination.

In "Adventure Story"--a thematic companion to the #1 New York Times bestselling novel The Ocean at the End of the Lane--Gaiman ponders death and the ways in which people take their stories with them when they die. "A Calendar of Tales" is comprised of short pieces about the months of the year--stories of pirates and March winds, an igloo made of books, and a Mother's Day card that portends disturbances in the universe. Gaiman offers his own ingenious spin on Sherlock Holmes in his award-nominated mystery tale "The Case of Death and Honey." Also included is "Nothing O'Clock," a very special Doctor Who story that was written for the beloved series in 2013, as well as the never-before-published "Black Dog," a haunting new tale that revisits the world of American Gods as Shadow Moon stops in at a village pub on his way back to America.

Gaiman, a sophisticated writer whose creative genius is unparalleled, entrances with his literary alchemy and transports us deep into an undiscovered country where the fantastical becomes real and the everyday is incandescent. Replete with wonder and terror, surprises and amusements, Trigger Warning is a treasury of literary delights that engage the mind, stir the heart, and shake the soul.