General blog posts

Joy Interviews Kim Tomsic for her new book: GUITAR GENIUS!

One of the things that always fascinates me is when authors I’ve loved in one genre or type of book try their hands at another. I’ve known Kim Tomsic as a middle grade novel author (her 11:11 Wish is absolutely adorable!) but now she’s written a truly fascinating nonfiction picture book called Guitar Genius: How Les Paul Engineered the Solid Body Electric Guitar and Rocked the World! It’s Illustrated by Brett Helquist and out now from Chronicle books.

Guitar Genius: How Les Paul Engineered the Solid-Body Electric Guitar and Rocked the World (Children’s Music Books, Picture Books, Guitar Books, Music Books for Kids) By Kim Tomsic, Brett Helquist (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Kim Tomsic, Brett Helquist (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781452159195
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Chronicle Books - April 9th, 2019

Tex-Mex Mythos: Traci Interviews Fernando A. Flores

This Sunday afternoon I nestled in with a cup of coffee, my own mechanical typewriter resting quietly nearby, and hopped on a call with Fernando A. Flores, author of Tears of the Trufflepig, a novel birthed from the keys of an Olivetti Underwood Lettera 32 in Austin, Tx. Hammered out in a four month fever dream, Flores wrote Trufflepig in late 2014, but his mythical depiction of the Texas-Mexican border is filled with details and insight that read like prophecy.

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Tears of the Trufflepig: A Novel By Fernando A. Flores Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374538330
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: MCD x FSG Originals - May 14th, 2019

A Tapestry of Linked Concerns: A Q&A with Max Porter

Talking crows. Troublesome earth spirits. The worlds Max Porter weaves in his fiction are fantastical ones, where myth bleeds constantly into reality. Yet the concerns of his prose--even as he reinvents the concept with his poetic and formal experimentation--are always completely human. Dead parents. Missing children. The need for an explanation. The need to place blame. With Lanny (out 5/14 from Graywolf Press), these concerns come to a head when an odd child meets an implacable and timeless force.

Lanny: A Novel By Max Porter Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555978402
Availability: BACKORDERED
Published: Graywolf Press - May 14th, 2019

Conservation Ecology and Finding Your Pack: Joy Interviews Author Rosanne Parry

I have been a huge fan of Rosanne Parry’s work since her first middle-grade novel, HEART OF A SHEPHERD, arrived back in 2009, when she and I were both debut children’s authors and occasionally appearing together at book events. Rosanne’s books are frequently set in her home state of Oregon and are heart-warming, lovely, and honest. Rosanne beautifully evokes both character journeys and the landscape in which they take place. They’re perfect middle grade novels! A WOLF CALLED WANDER is just out and it’s based on the real story of the journey of wolf named OR7.

A Wolf Called Wander By Rosanne Parry, Mónica Armiño (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Rosanne Parry, Mónica Armiño (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780062895936
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Greenwillow Books - May 7th, 2019

Pre-Order Mark Haber's REINHARDT'S GARDEN Today!

Are you excited for Mark Haber’s new book, Reinhardt's Garden? Pre-order today and reserve a copy that will be ready for you on release day!

Simply place the book below into your shopping cart and check out with a credit card. Pre-orders must be paid in advance. 

Brazos Bookstore Presents Summer of Walt Whitman!

May 31, 2019 marks the 200th anniverary of Walt Whitman's birth. We're celebrating with a summer of poetic fun! 


Join us for events May through August, including:

A birthday party 

Literary salons

All-day poetry readings

Scavenger Hunts

Film screenings

More details to come!

Lyric Reviews G by Emmalea Russo

Emmalea Russo’s G is doing several things at once.

By employing a hemispheric division, creating borders reminiscent of a hem, the poems’ form resembles, on one side, a raised garden bed. On the facing side, the prose-poem rests on the bottom of the page, creating a ground. As in a painting, the ground creates, not a negative space of whiteness, but a full sky. The poem becomes a landscape.

G By Emmalea Russo Cover Image
ISBN: 9780996002592
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: Futurepoem - December 15th, 2018

Forbidden Love, Blood Magic, & Brooding Boys: Joy Interviews Emily Duncan about WICKED SAINTS

We’re big fans of Emily Duncan’s debut YA Slavic folklore-inspired fantasy, WICKED SAINTS here. Laura G has a blurb for it featured in the current kids’ issue of INDIE NEXT. And I found it such a fun page-turner that I begged Emily’s publicists for an interview and was delighted when they said yes! WICKED SAINTS is the story of warring kingdoms, blood magic, unlikely heroes, and a girl who hears the voices of any number of gods, all of whom provide her with guidance and magic. And oh yes, a healthy dose of forbidden love, because really what is a YA fantasy novel without a bit of that?

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Wicked Saints: A Novel (Something Dark and Holy #1) By Emily A. Duncan Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250195661
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Wednesday Books - April 2nd, 2019

Spring Has Spring: Books That Celebrate Springtime, Revival, and Nature

Spring has sprung and we’re excited to share a list of our favorite reads representing springtime, revival, and nature!

Laura G Recommends

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Pond By Claire-Louise Bennett Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399575907
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - July 11th, 2017

This is a complete and utter escape en par with a certain other Irish writer's stream-of-consciousness masterpiece. Contemplative, rich, and an absolute delight - pure natural aesthetic pleasure!

Nightlights By Lorena Alvarez Cover Image
ISBN: 9781910620571
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Nobrow - March 5th, 2019

Filled with rich, jewel-toned comic pages as well as luscious, dizzyingly detailed spreads, Alvarez brings the imagination to life in her latest graphic novel! Filled with nature-inspired imagery, this book is a gorgeous work of art for people of all ages!

Keaton Recommends

The Secret Wisdom of Nature: Trees, Animals, and the Extraordinary Balance of All Living Things --- Stories from Science and Observation By Peter Wohlleben, Jane Billinghurst (Translator) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781771643887
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Greystone Books - March 5th, 2019

Everyone's favorite German tree whisperer rounds out his groundbreaking nature trilogy with his latest insightful deep dive into the world around us.

Mama's Last Hug: Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves By Frans de Waal Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393635065
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - March 12th, 2019

This book by primatologist, atheist and philosopher De Waal will break your heart and fill it with wonder. Using the life of chimpanzee matriarch Mama as a case study, his ever empathetic and brilliant mind explores the complex emotional life of our animal cousins.

Laura M Recommends

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The Overstory: A Novel By Richard Powers Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393356687
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 2nd, 2019

Out in paperback 4/2! A masterpiece. This dizzying tale draws together several strangers and the natural world that is fading around them in an epic struggle for the future of American forests. Engaging and timely without being didactic, THE OVERSTORY is Powers at his best.

Richard Powers will be with Tayari Jones for an event with Inprint on 4/22!

Wild Ones: A Sometimes Dismaying, Weirdly Reassuring Story About Looking at People Looking at Animals in America By Jon Mooallem Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143125372
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: Penguin Books - May 27th, 2014

Mooallem dives deep into our conflicted relationship with animals, and the extreme lengths we will go to save endangered species. A beautiful, tender book that reveals much more about us than it does about the creatures we are trying to save.

The Oldest Living Things in the World By Rachel Sussman, Carl Zimmer (Memoir by), Hans Ulrich Obrist (Memoir by) Cover Image
By Rachel Sussman, Carl Zimmer (Memoir by), Hans Ulrich Obrist (Memoir by)
ISBN: 9780226057507
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: University of Chicago Press - April 14th, 2014

Artist and scientist Rachel Sussman set out to photograph the old living things in the world. This stunning coffee table book reminds us how fleeting and precious a single human life is against the backdrop of mosses, lichen, and tree systems that have lived for centuries.

Joy Recommends

Where the Crawdads Sing By Delia Owens Cover Image
ISBN: 9780735219090
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Penguin Publishing Group - August 14th, 2018

This latest pick for Reese Witherspoon's Book Club is part coming of age story and part murder mystery, set against the backdrop of the lonely North Carolina marsh lands, so vividly depicted they serve as their own sort of fully-realized and mesmerizing character.

Angel Thieves By Kathi Appelt Cover Image
ISBN: 9781442421097
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books - March 12th, 2019

Set in Houston both past and present, ANGEL THIEVES intertwines the stories of a father and son eeking out a living stealing cemetery angels, an escaped slave and her daughters, an ocelot, a marble carver, a teenage girl, and the ever-present, ever-moving Buffalo Bayou, which sees them all in Newbery Award winner and National Book Award nominee Appelt's lyrical, gorgeous new YA novel. We are hosting Kathi Appelt on 4/24! Join us!

Katie Recommends

The Deeper the Water the Uglier the Fish By Katya Apekina Cover Image
ISBN: 9781937512750
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Two Dollar Radio - September 18th, 2018

Each character in this novel are extremely flawed, facts become blurred as the Louisiana humidity and swamps take over a mother with mental illness and her two daughters are left to understand what has happened. A story of family and the dark cloud our past and the choices our family make that effect our past present and future.

A City Inside: Hardcover Edition By Tillie Walden Cover Image
ISBN: 9781910395417
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Avery Hill Publishing - October 15th, 2018

A story that shifts between the surreal and the everyday as a woman looks back on her childhood and growing up, ultimately about discovering who we are and want to be in life while not having just one coming-of-age, but multiple in a lifetime. A beautiful reminder that who we are in this moment does not define who we can become.

Aesthetica Botanica: A Life with Plants By Sandu Publications (Editor) Cover Image
By Sandu Publications (Editor)
ISBN: 9781584236863
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: Gingko Press - September 15th, 2018

Green thumb or not this book will inspire you to create a garden of your own no matter where you live. Full of gorgeous photos and inspiration for all types of spaces.

Sara Recommends

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Reinhardt's Garden By Mark Haber Cover Image
ISBN: 9781566895620
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - October 1st, 2019

Our very own Habes has the jungle down pat in his exploratory, lucid adventure story. Life, death, renewal, past, present — all is represented in this obsessive and philosophically driven novella. Out this fall. Sorry, you'll have to wait for this one!

Spring Garden (Japanese Novellas #2) By TOMOKA SHIBASAKI, Polly Barton (Translated by) Cover Image
By TOMOKA SHIBASAKI, Polly Barton (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781782272700
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Pushkin Press - November 7th, 2017

Taro is one of the last residents in a 12-apartment complex slated for demolition, each home named after a zodiac symbol. He becomes friends with a woman in his complex who is obsessed with the beautiful and unusual house next door. This book beautifully encompasses themes of growth, rebirth, and nostalgia.

Binstead's Safari By Rachel Ingalls Cover Image
ISBN: 9780811228466
Availability: BACKORDERED
Published: New Directions - February 26th, 2019

This incredible feminist writer just passed away, and her works have been woefully under-worshipped. In BINSTEAD’S SAFARI, a woman finds agency during a trip to Africa with her husband. As they travel, she transforms from a rather bland woman to a fabulous social butterfly who is able to find satisfaction wholly separately from her self-indulgent husband. Tongue-in-cheek and utterly pleasing, this book engages the mystique of the local fauna (it is Rachel Ingalls, after all... hint, hint).

Alana Recommends

The Gulf: The Making of An American Sea By Jack E. Davis Cover Image
ISBN: 9780871408662
Availability: UNAVAILABLE
Published: Liveright - March 14th, 2017

Take a deep dive into the Gulf of Mexico with this Pulitzer Prize-winning work of ecological history. Davis weaves a rich narrative that looks closely at the people, industries, and wildlife that call this sea home.

Lyric Recommends

The Color Purple By Alice Walker Cover Image
ISBN: 9780156028356
Availability: Unlikely to Be Available
Published: Mariner Books - May 28th, 2003

Celie's story is like a blooming flower: out of traumas imposed by men, and the violence of the Jim Crow South, she comes into the love that can exist between people who care for one another. All of this pivots on her lover Shug's theology of nature, rooted in the sensuality of fields of flowers, rain, wind and the sky.

Women's History Month: What's the Staff Reading Right Now?

The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II By Svetlana Alexievich, Richard Pevear (Translated by), Larissa Volokhonsky (Translated by) Cover Image
By Svetlana Alexievich, Richard Pevear (Translated by), Larissa Volokhonsky (Translated by)
ISBN: 9780399588747
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - April 3rd, 2018

Winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature, Ukrainian author Svetlana Alexievich is an utterly original voice in modern writing. Her books are described as "oral histories" where Alexievich interviews people from every facet of society: farmers to government officials to soldiers. Her books look bravely into the abyss of the 20th and 21st century, seeing the brutal reality of events like the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, war and its aftermath. There's very little in modern writing as visceral and urgent as her books; they're as important as they are moving.

- Mark

Herstory: 50 Women and Girls Who Shook Up the World (Stories That Shook Up the World) By Katherine Halligan, Sarah Walsh (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Katherine Halligan, Sarah Walsh (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781534436640
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers - September 11th, 2018

Written and Illustrated by two women this picture book is not only beautiful but full of amazing powerful women from around the world. From artists to activists, this book guarantees to teach you about an important woman in history you maybe don't know.

- Katie

The Changeling By Joy Williams Cover Image
ISBN: 9781941040898
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tin House Books - April 10th, 2018

A drunken heroine meets a dark and mysterious stranger, who whisks her away to an isolated island estate overrun with near-feral children. What unfolds is a haunting and utterly odd take on the modern fairy tale from one of America's greatest living writers.

- Keaton

Madame Victoria By Catherine LeRoux, Lazer Lederhendler (Translator) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781771962070
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Biblioasis - November 13th, 2018

This translated book cuts to the heart of what it is to occupy a female body - the fear, the joy, and the rage. Twelve speculative stories demonstrate a vast range of emotion - at times they are uplifting and peaceful before diving back into the narrative's constantly present, violent underbelly. Haunting, visceral, and so important.

- Laura

Recitation By Suah Bae, Deborah Smith (Translator) Cover Image
By Suah Bae, Deborah Smith (Translator)
ISBN: 9781941920466
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Deep Vellum Publishing - January 24th, 2017

RECITATION charts the travels of a mysterious traveler and voice actress after she arrives at an empty train station in Europe. As the book’s pages creep by, the lone woman’s narrative becomes ever more tangled in her personal identity, family past, and the imagined collective past of city dwellers in general. Bae Suah weaves a lyrical exploration of self-discovery through the eyes of what could be any number of female identities. This is a remarkable book that manages both experimentation and nonlinearity and thoughtful, deliberate plot.