Anyone who knows me even just a little bit, knows that I love books. What they may not know is that I love bookstores almost as much as I love the books themselves. Portland is a fabulous place to be a lover of bookstores. After all, we have Powell’s City of Books which really is the end-all of all bookstores. Where else do you have an entire city block taken up by a bookstore that contains everything from the current bestsellers to battered paperbacks to rare first editions?! It’s the kind of bookstore that you take out-of-town visitors to just because it is so impressive and such a landmark. However, Powell’s overwhelms me. My little synapses simply overload when surrounded by so many books. How do you just pick one or two (or three or four) to take home with you?
My antidote is to go to Annie Bloom’s in Multnomah Village. This is a one-room bookstore where they only have room for the “best” books. Nearly every book on the shelves has a small review attached that has been written by one of Annie Bloom’s staff. They tend to stick to best-sellers and classic reads, which suits me just fine. And, if you go in there and say, “I just heard about this book on NPR” they know exactly which book you’re talking about and probably heard the NPR story too.
Today I only had half an hour to spend at Annie’s so I had to make some quick selections. Here’s what I walked out the door with:
Midwives by Chris Bohjalian–recommended to me by my smart and fiesty friend, Nathalie
Three Junes by Julia Glass–the nicely-bound hardcover edition was on clearance and the blurb sounded interesting, so why not?
Ahab’s Wife by Sena Jeter Naslund–I just read her book Four Spirits which I really enjoyed so I thought I’d give this one a try
Hoot by Carl Hiaasen–I’m on the search for more j-fic books to nab the imaginations of my reluctant readers
oh, and they have a few staff-recommended c.d.s by the cash register so I picked up Twin Cinema by the New Pornographers (no, mom, it’s not really porn) because Nate and I really like Neko Case’s music and she’s plays with this band.
So, I’m a happy girl with a new book and music fix. I was having a hard time getting to sleep at night because I’d run out of good going-to-bed reading material. Tonight I should sleep like a baby 🙂