The neighborhood bookstore for Phinney Ridge and Greenwood
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If you heard a scream of joy coming from the vicinity of 74th and Greenwood around midday yesterday, that was our Liz, howling with delight when Kwame Anthony Appiah, the chair of the Booker Prize jury, announced Anna Burns's novel Milkman as this year's winner, as Liz had predicted and hoped for. (We should have asked friends visiting the UK to put down a wager—Milkman was well down in the pack in the bookies' pre-prize odds.) As we mentioned earlier, Milkman's US publisher, the wonderful Graywolf Press, was likely to move its stateside publication up if it won, and indeed they have: it will be available here on December 11, and of course we would be delighted to take pre-orders for Milkman now. Don't be scared off by reports that it's "experimental": it's funny and disturbing, set in a Northern Ireland that's just abstracted enough to feel like a general dystopia of violence and surveillance. I'm antsy to give it a read myself!

And meanwhile, among the many new releases this month, we've been enjoying one both as a book itself and as inspiration. When I first heard about James Mustich's 1,000 Books to Read Before You Die, I reserved some skepticism (a gimmick? you're going to tell me what books to read?). But as soon as I saw it, I was won over: it's a beautifully made book, and his choices are both excellent (in other words, he likes many of the books I do) and surprising, with entertaining and convincing explanations why. So we've been inspired to make our own lists: just top 10s, not a full thousand each. It turns out it's not easy to narrow a life's reading down to a top 10, but we'll start posting our lists in the store (and perhaps here too), and we hope you'll come in and fill out yours as well. We'd love to cover the store in recommended reading lists from our customers as well as our staff!

Thanks—Tom, Laura, Kim, Liz, Haley, Anika, Doree, and Nancy
Store Reading: Craig Holt, Hard Dog to Kill
Our friend and neighbor Craig Holt has been a standup comedian, an outdoor adventurer, and, for most of this millennium, the owner of Atlas Coffee, supplier for, among many others, our beloved Herkimer Coffee. (He even makes a cameo appearance in Dave Eggers’s recent The Monk of Mokha.) But for all that time he’s been writing too, and on Wednesday, October 24, at 7 pm he’ll be here to talk about his first novel, Hard Dog to Kill, a darkly comic adventure story about two mercenaries in one of the many places Craig has gotten to know in his coffee-related travels, the Congo.
Man with a Seagull on His Head
New Book of the Week
Man with a Seagull on His Head
by Harriet Paige
Ray Eccles is leading a modest, unassuming existence when he's abruptly struck on the head by a falling bird and finds his whole life changing course. Read Harriet Paige's new novel and you may find yourself similarly affected. The opening of Man with a Seagull on His Head tempts you with its brisk prose and summery seaside setting to pick it up as a momentary diversion, but it quickly establishes powerful links among its many characters, connecting hearts and minds across distance, time, and cultural barriers. By the end it takes them, and you, much further than you'd have ever expected. —James
New Book of the Week
by Olivia Laing
The reputation that Olivia Laing gathered from her books on writers and nature (To the River), writers and drinking (The Trip to Echo Spring), and writers and loneliness (The Lonely City) caused quite a bit of anticipation for this, her first novel. It's a slim one, and immersed in the moment, in the summer of 2017 in particular, a time, as she writes, of increasing cruelty, and of people warming to it. She's writing in the style of the new "autofiction"—some parts of the story seem taken from her life—but with a twist: rather than a mere "I" her main character is "Kathy," filled with the spirit of the late writer Kathy Acker. That turn brings a nicely unsettling shift in identity, and also a melancholy sort of hope, as we watch Kathy (the real Acker died in 1997) surviving into this terrible time, and also into a late discovery of love. —Tom
The Lost Words
Kids' Book of the Week
The Lost Words: A Spell Book
by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris
We had heard about this book for a while—it was wildly popular and a "book of the year" in the UK, and Macfarlane, Britain's leading nature writer, is becoming beloved in the States too. But seeing it in person is something else entirely. Macfarlane and Morris have set about reclaiming basic words of nature ("acorn," "heron") that, they noticed, have been taken out of children's dictionaries in favor of tech terms like "broadband." But the book they made is not a dictionary—it's a thing of exquisite beauty, celebrating both these simple, evocative words (with poems of Macfarlane's) and the animals and plants they represent (with Morris's glorious paintings). It's a giant book, and one that both kids and grown-ups are likely to cherish. (Age 3 and up) —Tom
Slow Loris Resist
Non-Book of the Week
Resist T-Shirts
For our third featured t-shirt from the wonderful Slow Loris, we chose an appropriate one for this election season (to match our new "VOTE" display window). Available in a selection of sizes while supplies last! (20% of Resist t-shirt purchases, like the books on our Resist List, will go to the ACLU.)
Link of the Week
Anniversaries Cover Story
When I featured NYRB Classics' box set of Uwe Johnson's Anniversaries in our fall preview, I hadn't realized that the designer of the set's gorgeous cover (with a color scheme that matches the Phinney Books logo, I might add!) was none other than Joanna Neborsky, whose wonderful illustrations grace my book, A Reader's Book of Days, and all 16 of our Phinney Books author bookmarks. I know how meticulous Joanna is in her work, so I wasn't surprised to see the video she posted on Instagram of the many iterations her designs went through.
Cover Quiz 117
Cover Crop Quiz #117
The first US edition, from 1950, of a massive international bestseller.
Last Week's Answer
Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose, which many of you let me know you had read all the way through, some multiple times!

Phinney Books
7405 Greenwood Ave. N
Seattle, WA 98103
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New on Our Resist List
(See this week's full list.
20% of sales go to the ACLU.)

Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom by David W. Blight
A History of America in Ten Strikes by Erik Loomis
plus the Slow Loris Resist t-shirt
New in the Store

Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver
Melmoth by Sarah Perry
The Collector's Apprentice by B.A. Shapiro
Riddance: Or: The Sybil Joines Vocational School for Ghost Speakers & Hearing-Mouth Children by Shelley Jackson
A Well-Behaved Woman by Therese Anne Fowler

Ruth Bader Ginsburg: A Life by Jane Sherron De Hart
The Library Book by Susan Orlean
Ottolenghi Simple by Yotam Ottolenghi
Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents by Pete Souza
Almost Everything: Notes on Hope by Anne Lamott
Gmorning, Gnight!: Little Pep Talks for Me & You by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jonny Sun
In the Hurricane's Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at Yorktown by Nathaniel Philbrick

Kids and Teens:
Lafayette! (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #8) by Nathan Hale
Carmela Full of Wishes by Matt De La Pena and Christian Robinson
What If It's Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera
Odd One Out by Nic Stone
Twice Magic (Wizard of Once #2) by Cressida Cowell

The Gourmands' Way by Justin Spring
Smile by Roddy Doyle
Wild Horse Country by David Philipps
Waiting for the Punch by Marc Maron
This Week in The Notebooks of Henry James

October 23, 1891
(age 48)
"To live in the world of creation—to get into it and stay in it—to frequent it and haunt it—to think intently and fruitfully—to woo combinations and inspirations into being by a depth and continuity of attention and meditation—this is the only thing—and I neglect it, far and away too much; from indolence, from vagueness, from inattention, and from a strange nervous fear of letting myself go. If I vanquish that nervousness, the world is mine."
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