Articles

This is for any kind of written article like a blog post about a certain topic.

National Book Awards Longlists Announced

The literary awards season has begun! The National Book Foundation, presenter of the National Book Awards, has announced ten titles in four categories as the semi-finalists for the prestigious prize. The shortlist will be published on October 13, 2016 and the winners will be announced on November 16, 2016.

Women Are Humans: A Q&A with Laia Jufresa and Sophie Hughes

How to stump me as a bookseller: come into the store and ask me for a funny, happy book where nothing bad happens. Because the truth is, I will fail you, one hundred percent of the time. The flip side? People ask me about my favorite books and often, I can see their eyes glaze over as I mention rape, suicide, addiction—as if those books can’t also have moments that are funny and happy.

Umami Cover Image
By Laia Jufresa, Sophie Hughes (Translator)
$21.99
ISBN: 9781780748917
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: ONEWorld Publications - September 13th, 2016

Not Conjectures but Delusions: A Q&A with Mauro Javier Cardenas

There are certain novels that announce their significance in simple and subtle ways: the style, the language, the sense of entering a space you haven’t been before. When starting THE REVOLUTIONARIES TRY AGAIN, the debut novel by Mauro Javier Cardenas, I found myself returning to the first few pages over and over again, mostly to grasp what was taking place and to keep my footing. Important books demand this. Important books insist that you adjust your thinking, sometimes even your reading habits, because the space you’re entering is something wholly new. Think THE AUTUMN OF THE PATRIARCH.

The Revolutionaries Try Again Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781566894463
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - September 6th, 2016

THE REVOLUTIONARIES TRY AGAIN goes on sale September 6, 2016.


Gifts Spotlight : Introducing poppin and Elum

I love September. It’s my birthday month, and also the time that everyone goes back to school—which means NEW OFFICE SUPPLIES! As a buyer, there is nothing more exciting to me than when a box from a new vendor arrives at the store and the rest of the staff crowds around to see what's inside.

$14.00
SKU: 846680028220

$11.00
SKU: 846680056117


With Elum, I like that their products are quirky but still beautiful. The large square memo pad stands out because of its size and its abstract pansy background. On the top in copper foil, it says, “This is the bucket list, at least for today.” It's functional and fun, which is what I think desk items should be. Like the memo pad, the notebook is large and funky but it lays flat so it's not fussy.


$10.00
SKU: x3062

$10.00
SKU: x3063

Basically, there will always be things that need to get done. Why not make it less stressful by having office supplies that reward you for finishing things?


Prior to her position as the gift buyer at Brazos Bookstore, Ülrika Moats spent eight years working as a corporate visual merchandiser and district manager.


Rerouting the River: An Interview with Angela Palm

It’s hard to plan an escape when you’re young. When your only means is patience, a place like rural Indiana might seem like an immense snare. The nearby Kankakee River might begin to resemble a ribboning borderline between ‘stuck’ and ‘free,’ and its potential for portage—for carrying you away—might be constantly implied by the speed of its slopes, the bend of its banks, the flow of its floods. In RIVERINE, Angela Palm is an adult writing lyrically into her past, and with the merciful prescience that the girl whose story she narrates will one day flee.

Riverine: A Memoir from Anywhere But Here Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781555977467
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Graywolf Press - August 16th, 2016

RIVERINE is on sale now.


Lawrence Lenhart studied writing at the University of Pittsburgh and holds an MFA from The University of Arizona. His essay collection, THE WELL-STOCKED AND GILDED CAGE, was published in 2016 (Outpost19). His prose appears in Alaska Quarterly Review, Fourth Genre, Greensboro Review, Gulf Coast, Passages North, Prairie Schooner, Western Humanities Review, and elsewhere. He is a professor of fiction and nonfiction at Northern Arizona University and a reviews editor and assistant fiction editor of DIAGRAM.


Picture Books, Origin Stories, and Cake: Chatting with Varsha Bajaj

I’ve known Varsha Bajaj for about a decade now: first, in that “Hey didn’t I see you at a conference?” way all Houston kid lit authors know each other; next, as a fan of her work; and eventually, as a friend in the writerly trenches and beyond. When things get particularly trench-y, as things often do when you make art for part of your living, she’s part of a group of us that eats copious amounts of cake at Empire Café on Westheimer and solves the problems of the world. (They have grand cake at Empire, by the way. I’m partial to the carrot, but they’re all good.

This Is Our Baby, Born Today Cover Image
By Varsha Bajaj, Eliza Wheeler (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780399166846
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - August 2nd, 2016

THIS IS OUR BABY BORN TODAY is on the Brazos shelves right now.

Varsha Bajaj is also the award winning author of How Many Kisses Do You Want Tonight? Illustrated by Ivan Bates, T is for Taj Mahal: An India Alphabet book and a middle grade novel, Abby Spencer goes to Bollywood. You can find out more about Varsha at http://www.varshabajaj.com

Joy Preble is the author of several young adult novels including the DREAMING ANASTASIA series ; the SWEET DEAD LIFE series; FINDING PARIS, which SLJ called, “An intricate guessing game of sisterly devotion, romance, and quiet desperation,”and IT WASN’T ALWAYS LIKE THIS, which Kirkus Reviews called ‘a modern Tuck Everlasting with a thriller twist.’ In between writing and working at Brazos Bookstore as bookseller/Children’s Specialist, she teaches and lectures widely on writing and literacy and is currently on faculty at Writespace Houston.


The Buyers’ Corner

Welcome to the Buyers’ Corner! Each month, Keaton asks his fellow indie book buyers what upcoming titles they are most excited about. It’s like visiting a bunch of bookstores all at once, with suggestions from some of the brightest minds in bookselling. And the best part? You don’t have to go anywhere! This month, we visit with a couple of our West Coast colleagues to see what they are reading right now...and what you should be reading in the near future. Pre-order your copies!

The Brother Cover Image
By Rein Raud, Adam Cullen (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781940953441
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Open Letter Books - September 13th, 2016

PUB DATE: 9/13

“When was the last time you read a contemporary Estonian Spaghetti Western? Well, let Rein Raud’s first novel translated into English fill that void for you! Recounted in sparse yet evocative prose, this is the story of a mysterious stranger who arrives in a small town to take revenge on the corrupt local officials that cheated his sister out of her inheritance. Menacing, funny, dreamlike, and philosophical, this page-turning allegorical tale reads like the love-child of Cormac and Camus. THE BROTHER is a hidden gem you shouldn’t miss.”
—Keaton Patterson
Brazos Bookstore
Houston, TX


Bottom's Dream Cover Image
By Arno Schmidt, John E. Woods (Translator)
$70.00
ISBN: 9781628971590
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Dalkey Archive Press - September 23rd, 2016

PUB DATE: 9/23

“Arno Schmidt's monumental novel is a 1500 page cinder block of high modernism, typographical ingenuity, and playfulness. Long considered a classic of German literature, John E. Woods' translation has been thirty years in the making and is now, at long last, available to English-language readers. In certain circles, this is the publishing event of the fall.”
—Stephen Sparks
Green Apple Books
San Francisco, CA


Eve Out of Her Ruins Cover Image
By Ananda Devi, Jeffrey Zuckerman (Translator), J. M. G. Le Clezio (Introduction by)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781941920404
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Deep Vellum Publishing - September 13th, 2016

PUB DATE: 9/13

“In EVE OUT OF HER RUINS by Ananda Devi, translated from the French by Jeffrey Zuckerman, we meet four teens: Eve, Saad. Clelio and Savita each driven by a desire to escape their lives in Troumaron a ghetto neighborhood on the resort island of Mauritius. The book focuses on Eve who attends high school by day and at night works as a prostitute. Devi's powerful novel, masterfully translated by Zuckerman, will consume you.”
—Caitlin Luce Baker
University Bookstore
Seattle, WA


#BrazosBest: Lily Hoang Does Not Sleep

Say you get to do an interview for the first time in four months and it is with the woman that wrote your favorite book this year. What you don't know is that she is in Europe during the weeks you have to reach her. In fact, she's been in Europe for eleven weeks: fourteen countries, one book tour, one week-long writing workshop in Barcelona. The last time you used Skype, you were a junior in college, and it was to talk to your best friend while she was in Scotland, and your crappy ex-boyfriend during his year in Japan.

A Bestiary Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780996316743
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Cleveland State University Poetry Center - April 15th, 2016


Annalia Luna is currently the shipping & returns manager at Brazos Bookstore. She earned her B.A. in Music & Literature from Butler University. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming at The Rumpus, Ploughshares, and Heavy Feather Review. She lives & writes in Houston, TX.


So You Think You Know YA?

So yes, the Brazos children’s and Young Adult (YA) sections are in the back of the store. Kid lit consumers have a lovely little cave in which to sit around and peruse titles and rock on our orange rocking chair and read picture books. Or ooh and ahh over the awesome covers of the newest YA titles.

Bone Gap Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780062317629
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Balzer & Bray/Harperteen - April 26th, 2016

The Walls Around Us Cover Image
$9.95
ISBN: 9781616205904
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Algonquin Young Readers - March 22nd, 2016

Or THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater (who wrote the Raven Boys series, which you should also read. Then read the very fabulous ACCIDENT SEASON by Moira Fowley-Doyle. And I haven’t even mentioned the talking pagoda in PLEASE IGNORE VERA DIETZ by A. S. King, whose work you also need to be reading. While you’re at it, check out this blog post.


Staff Pick Logo
Grasshopper Jungle Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780142425008
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Speak - February 17th, 2015

Have you read absolutely everything by Andrew Smith, who really seems to be a genre unto himself? Start with the weird and wonderful GRASSHOPPER JUNGLE, (beware the preying mantis sex), then move on to THE MARBURY LENS and THE ALEX CROW and all the rest.


The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780786838196
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Disney-Hyperion - August 1st, 2009

E. Lockhart’s big YA book in the past few years was WE WERE LIARS. But I say you should start off with her funny as hell feminist-leaning titles like THE DISREPUTABLE HISTORY OF FRANKIE LANDAU BANKS. And then move on to the Ruby Oliver quartet, which you would probably skip if you weren’t reading this because the first one is called THE BOYFRIEND LIST. Don’t skip it. You are welcome.

Want a YA author who rivals Anne Tyler for her spot on depiction of Baltimore? Find a copy of HOW TO SAY GOODBYE IN ROBOT by Natalie Standiford. And if you are lucky, you can hear her play in the all YA author rock band called Tiger Beat along with Libba Bray, whose work, including the very satirical BEAUTY QUEENS and the very amazing Diviners series set in the 1920s you must read. Yes, Amy Tan is not the only author in a band.


Beauty Queens Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780439895989
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks - June 1st, 2012

Want sparse prose? Try anything by Lauren Strasnick.

Want hard-hitting contemporary? Read Houston’s own Jennifer Mathieu’s THE TRUTH ABOUT ALICE (and all her other work).

Want someone who nails boy voice? Try Geoff Herbach.

A retelling of Amityville Horror? AMITY by Micol Ostow, a master of horror.


Amity Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781606841563
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Egmontusa - August 26th, 2014

And that’s just the beginning.

Try these out and I’ll be recommending more in the future.


Joy Preble is the author of several young adult novels including the DREAMING ANASTASIA series (Sourcebooks), the first book of which was named an ABC Best Book in 2009; the quirky/humorous SWEET DEAD LIFE series (Soho Press); a contemporary road trip/family drama, FINDING PARIS (Balzer and Bray/Harper Collins), which SLJ called, “An intricate guessing game of sisterly devotion, romance, and quiet desperation,” and IT WASN'T ALWAYS LIKE THIS, which Kirkus Reviews called ‘a modern Tuck Everlasting with a thriller twist.’ (Soho Press) Joy lives in Texas with her family, including a sweet but slightly unhinged basset/boxer. In between writing and working at Brazos Bookstore as bookseller/Children's Specialist, she teaches and lectures widely on writing and literacy and is currently on faculty at Writespace Houston.


2667: The Post-Bolaño Boom

Hypothermia Cover Image
By Alvaro Enrigue, Brendan Riley (Translator)
$14.50
ISBN: 9781564788733
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Dalkey Archive Press - May 2nd, 2013

Staff Pick Logo
The Dark Cover Image
By Sergio Chejfec, Heather Cleary (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781934824436
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Open Letter Books - December 11th, 2013

Seeing Red Cover Image
By Lina Meruane, Megan McDowell (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781941920244
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Deep Vellum Publishing - February 23rd, 2016

Texas: The Great Theft Cover Image
By Carmen Boullosa, Samantha Schnee (Translator)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781941920008
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Deep Vellum Publishing - December 2nd, 2014

Before Cover Image
By Carmen Boullosa, Peter Bush (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781941920282
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Deep Vellum Publishing - August 2nd, 2016

The Things We Don't Do Cover Image
By Andres Neuman, Nick Caistor (Translator), Lorenza Garcia (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781940953182
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Open Letter Books - August 25th, 2015

Talking to Ourselves Cover Image
By Andres Neuman, Nick Caistor (Translator), Lorenza Garcia (Translator)
$13.00
ISBN: 9780374535131
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - April 7th, 2015

I'll Sell You a Dog Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781908276742
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: And Other Stories - August 9th, 2016

Signs Preceding the End of the World Cover Image
By Yuri Herrera, Lisa Dillman (Translator)
$13.95
ISBN: 9781908276421
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: And Other Stories - March 10th, 2015

Monastery Cover Image
By Eduardo Halfon, Lisa Dillman (Translator), Daniel Hahn (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781934137826
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Bellevue Literary Press - October 14th, 2014

The Polish Boxer Cover Image
By Eduardo Halfon, Thomas Bunstead (Translator), Lisa Dillman (Translator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781934137536
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bellevue Literary Press - October 2nd, 2012

Staff Pick Logo
Natural Histories: Stories Cover Image
$12.95
ISBN: 9781609806057
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Seven Stories Press - June 16th, 2015

Staff Pick Logo
The Story of My Teeth Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781566894098
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - September 15th, 2015

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