About a week and a half ago, my husband and I went up to North Conway, NH, for our anniversary. We did all sorts of neat non-book-related things that will eventually go up on the other blog. As Friday afternoon grew steadily more rainy and gloomy, we sought out White Birch Books. We'd been to North Conway once before, in mid-February a few years ago. Then, we'd walked all along one side of the street, poking our heads into the shops. Just as I thought my nose was about to freeze off and it was time to turn back, we stumbled across the bookstore.
Inside is gorgeous. I'm not sure if it was originally a house that was renovated to become a bookstore, or if it's always been a bookstore that looks like a house. I didn't think to ask while I was there. Check out the virtual tour and you'll see what I mean.
I hadn't brought a book with me for the trip. I'm sure I could have opened the trunk of my car and found any number of ARCs in there from previous trade shows, but I wanted something new. Starting at one end of the fiction section, I moseyed along, reading titles, peering at covers, sometimes picking a book off the shelf and looking at descriptions, but I had no idea what I was in the mood to read.
There was one book I happened across, paused to look at, and put back - its title had jogged my memory about another book I'd heard good things about, but - horror of horrors - the name escaped me. I continued poking along, and when nothing else really caught my fancy, I went back to the one I'd looked at for a while.
I took my copy of The City of Dreaming Books up to the register, and while they were ringing it up, I got to play a game of bookseller mnemonics.
"So, I'm looking for this book," said I. "I don't know if it was a bestseller, but I think it was a booksense pick a while back. I know it was about books, or about a bookseller, and it had the word 'glass' in the title."
They didn't remember it right off, but it sounded tip-of-the-tongue familiar, and came up with the title pretty quickly: The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters. It's coming in paperback soon. Another to add to the to-be-read pile.
The City of Dreaming Books, by the way, is very good so far. I'm not quite sure what I'd call it. Literary fantasy? Years ago, the main character's authorial godfather (yes, godparents whose duty it is to give you a good background in books. DO WANT) was sent a manuscript. It was the best piece of work he'd ever read. He sent the author to Bookholm - a city devoted to all things book-related, with 24-hour antiquarian bookstores and catacombs of lost classics hidden underground - to find a publisher. The author disappeared. On his deathbed, godfather sends godson to find the author. I'm not terribly far in, but I'm hooked.
Oh,and by the way, the protagonist is a dinosaur.