Bruce McCallum Signing

P.E.I. author Bruce McCallum will be in the store on Thursday, May 18 from 5:00-7:00pm to sign copies of his new mystery novel Death in the Doach Woods.

About the book:

“What happens when ordinary people get swept up in a murder case?

Death in the Doach Woods is a murder-mystery set in south west Scotland, in the wild heart of Dumfries and Galloway. Derek and Kirstie Finlayson, a couple from Prince Edward Island, have recently retired from busy jobs in Canada. They’re spending six months in the region—reconnecting with Kirstie’s family who still live nearby.

They enjoy hiking and biking in the Scottish Forestry Commission’s extensive forests. But one afternoon in January, they make a startling discovery at the lookout, high up on a mountain in the Doach Woods. From that moment on, they find themselves caught up in a whirlwind that takes over their lives, especially for Derek, the nosy Canadian. He can’t stop thinking about the case and looking for clues that might solve it. Why would someone kill a 75 year-old man? Who could benefit from such a crime? The story climaxes when a surprise player draws attention to a possible culprit. In a strange twist, the hunters then become the hunted.

Many of the story’s colourful characters speak in the rich dialect of south west Scotland—a language made famous by the poet, Rabbie Burns, as he is known to the Scots.”

May 2017 Newsletter

April Bestsellers
2. The Marriage Bureau by Penrose Halson
3. An ABC of Ottawa by Miriam Bloom
4. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
5. Fifteen Dogs by Andre Alexis
6. Goodnight From London by Jennifer Robson
7. Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler
8. My Italian Bulldozer by Alexander McCall Smith
9. Earthly Remains by Donna Leon
10. Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Greetings Book Lovers!
May has arrived – though it may not feel like it – and that means that summer is just around the corner! So, dust off your suitcases and take out your beach bags! It’s time to fill in that summer reading list!
One great way to discover new books to read is to get them right from the hands of the author. Luckily, we’ve got a number of signings coming up over the next month at which you can do just that! On Saturday, May 13, we’ll be having what we call a Super Signing Saturday with two great local authors paying us a visit back to back. First up, Margaret Kell Virany will be here from 11:00am to 1:00pm to sign copies of her two memoirs, A Book of Kells and Kathleen’s Cariole Ride. Rounding out the day, local poet Marilyn Sargeant will be signing copies of her book of poetry, Carbon is Yellow, from 1:00pm to 2:00pm. P.E.I. author Bruce McCallum will be on site on Thursday, May 18 from 5:00pm to 7:00pm to sign and read from his new Scottish-set mystery Death in the Doach Woods. In anticipation of the celebration of Canada’s sesquicentennial, Zanaib Muse will be in the store from 12:00pm to 2:00pm on Saturday, May 20 to sign copies of her new (and very timely) travel book An Insider’s Guide to Canada’s Capital. Taking a quick peek into June, John Kalbfleisch, a columnist for the Montreal Gazette, will be joining us on Saturday, June 10 from 12:00pm to 2:00pm to sign copies of his brand new historical novel A Stain Upon the Land.
If just spending an afternoon browsing the shelves is still your favourite way to choose a new book, you won’t be disappointed with some of our most recent arrivals. Perennial favourite and Harry Hole creator Jo Nesbo, has just gifted us with a brand new mystery that’s sure to please old and new fans alike. The Thirst finds his newly retired detective drawn back into the Police fold to hunt a monster from his past, despite the promises he made after his last case put those closest to him in danger. With thrills and chills galore, Girl on the Train fans are in for a treat with Paula Hawkins new thriller Into the Water. While we love our lakes, rivers, and oceans for their inherent beauty and powers of relaxation, it’s thrillers like this one that make us think twice about what mysteries might lie beneath the crystalline surface. Sealskin by Su Bristow keeps us on the water theme with a beautiful and mystical story set on the Scottish coast and based on the legend of the selkies – humans who can turn into seals. The 3,500 mile journey across the ocean has never felt so magical! When time traveling, no matter when or where you’re going, there are always some inherent mind-bending and conscience-testing questions involved. In Kathleen A. Flynn‘s debut novel The Jane Austen Project, Liam and Rachel find themselves sent back to 1815 in order to meet, befriend, and steal an unfinished manuscript from literary treasure Jane Austen – a truly unthinkable act, if they were to succeed. If you read and loved A Man Called Ove and My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologizes by Swedish author Fredrik Backman, Beartown should definitely earn a place on your nightstand. Set in a small town and featuring a favourite Canadian pastime, this novel is full of big dreams, bright hopes, and startling secrets.
With so many books arriving everyday, it’s often hard to keep ahead of them, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for these other great novels as our shelves continue to fill up: The Arrangement by Sarah Dunn (a witty, tender read about what happens when a couple move to the country and decide to embark on an experiment to spice up their marriage), Mad Richard by Lesley Krueger (a historical novel about artist Richard Dadd and novelist Charlotte Bronte, and the unlikely friendship they form), House of Names by Colm Toibin (an electrifying retelling of a classic Greek tragedy, rediscover the fraught world of Agamemnon, Clytemnestra, Orestes, and Elektra), and The Scribe of Siena by Melodie Winawer (a beautiful novel full of history, art, mystery, and heart).
After almost four years of waiting, heavy-hiting historian Lynne Olson has given us a new book to enjoy! This celebrated author of the bestselling Troublesome Young Men, Citizens of London, and Those Angry Days has come out with Last Hope Island, the story of how Britain became the wartime base of operations for exiled European leaders as Hitler marched his way across the continent. For a bit of a lighter walk through history, Bad Days in History by Michael Farquhar is the perfect thing to dip into whenever the mood strikes you. Telling one true tale of misery and woe for each of the 365 days in the year, these stories cover everything from lost love to fallen empires, fiendish thefts to devilish murders, and will no doubt help you face even the most intimidating of days. Leo Grasset will educate and entertain you with his new book How the Zebra Got Its Stripes. Not only will you get a fully scientific answer to questions such as “why are zebras striped?” and “why do giraffes have such long necks?”, but you’ll most likely also walk away armed with fascinating and handy facts to dazzle your friends with.
Here are a few more recent non-fiction releases that are worth more than a passing glance: The Otter’s Tale by Simon Cooper (a beautifully written account of one man’s relationship with an otter family in southern England), Footsteps by The New York Times (a lovely literary travel guide to the geographic muses that inspired some of our favourite writers), From Trudeau to Trudeau by Terry Mosher (a hefty anthology celebrating 50 years of cartooning by Asilin), Gutenberg’s Fingerprint by Merilyn Simonds (a fascinating exploration of the value of the physical book in a digital world), and Faithful by Glenn J. Lockwood and Janet Uren (a stunning and thorough history of 150 years of one of our local churches, St. Bartholomew).
Never one to be left out, our children’s section is full to the brim with great new reads that would make the perfect fodder for any holiday or trip to camp. Perfectly timed for the return of Anne of Green Gables to television, Melanie J. Fishbane‘s young adult novel Maud is a charming ode to a Canadian treasure. Inspired by the life of Lucy Maud Montgomery, this story introduces us to a teenage Maud as she tries to adjust to moving from her grandparents’ house in Prince Edward Island to her father’s house out west while trying to hold onto her dreams of going to college and becoming a writer like her idol, Louisa May Alcott. From Julie Murphy, the author who brought us the wonderful book Dumplin’ (now available in paperback), comes Ramona Blue, the story of a strong teenage girl determined to stay true to herself despite all the odds. It’s the perfect read for fans of Morgan Matson, Rainbow Rowell, and Jennifer Niven. We have a very exciting new arrival for those of you who devoured Percy Jackson and the Olympians. Rick Riordan has just released The Dark Prophecy, the second book in his series The Trials of Apollo. In this new book, readers return to Camp Half-Blood where they meet the god Apollo, who has been stripped of his powers and banished to earth as a gawky, acne-prone sixteen-year-old mortal named Lester. With his trademark style, Riordan is bound to keep duvet-covered flashlights burning bright well into the night! Two of our favourites picture books right now are Olivia the Spy by Ian Falconer and Hey, Boy by Benjamin Strouse. It’s been a while since we’ve had a new Olivia the Pig book and this one is a real winner. Charming as ever, Olivia will surely steal your heart…spy-style! A newcomer to the picture book scene, Benjamin Strouse‘s story about a boy and his dog takes a classic theme and turns it into an unforgettable, touching story that children will love and adults won’t mind reading over and over again.
We’re only a couple of weeks into the month so there are still lots of book goodies to come. Here are a few that we’re looking forward to getting our hands on: New Boy by Tracy Chevalier (May 16), Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare (May 23), Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton (May 23), Churchill & Orwell by Thomas E. Ricks (May 23), and One Brother Shy by Terry Fallis (May 30).
The air outside may be cool, but the sunshine is toasty warm and there’s nothing a book loves more than a nice walk in the sun. So, be sure to pay us a visit to see what hidden gems we have in store. You never know, you might go home with a new friend!
Happy Reading!
–The Staff of Books on Beechwood

Margaret Kell Virany Signing

Margaret Kell Virany of Aylmer, Quebec looks forward to a visit to Books on Beechwood on Saturday, May 13 from 11:00am to 1:00pm to sign copies of the WWI-era story of her parents, Kathleen’s Cariole Ride.

About the book:

“It is full of love and promise. They were an unlikely pair. She was a city councilor’s daughter from Portsmouth, England and he was a Canadian sailor from a farm 40 miles north of Toronto. They met in 1917 when her father invited some colonial servicemen home for Sunday tea. They did not start writing until nine years later, after war losses had taken their toll. They were lonely, reaching out for love. One reviewer writes, ‘More than just a northern adventure story, this is the hard journey of two souls seeking to create a better world after the trauma of the war.’ The courtship is conducted on onion skin stationery back and forth over 5,000 miles. She asks him to come over again before she decides and he does, twice. In a tremendous leap of faith she comes out to the snowy expanses and frozen lakes of the Oxford House Swampy Cree mission field in Manitoba to be his lifelong helpmeet although she’s seen him for only three weeks out of 27 years.”

About the author:

“Margaret is a graduate in English ‘Lang & Lit’ from the University of Toronto. She worked as a professional YMCA secretary, freelance journalist and was editor and co-owner of the Aylmer Bulletin. With honesty and intimacy, she combines the discipline and breadth of a classical education with the flare, brevity and compulsion of a newspaper.”

Margaret’s earlier book, A Book of Kells: Growing Up in an Ego Void –  her parents’ story followed by her own story of growing up as a minister’s daughter -will also be available.

Find out more about Margaret and her books at www.margaretvirany.com.

 

 

Elie Nasrallah Signing

Local author, Elie Nasrallah will be here on Saturday, May 6 from 12:00pm to 4:00pm to sign copies of his book Hostage to History.

Check out the following links to find out more about Elie Nasrallah and his work!

Elie’s essay from the Ottawa Citizen:

Nasrallah: Let's stop the myth-making around multiculturalism

This is a great article from Ottawa Life Magazine in which Elie Nasrallah is named one of the top 25 people in the Capital:

http://www.ottawalife.com/2016/09/meet-the-16th-annual-top-25-people-in-the-capital-2/

Amelia Curran Signing

Stop by the store on Friday, April 28 to meet Newfoundland singer/songwriter Amelia Curran. She will be here from 2:00-3:00pm to sign copies of her new book of songs, Relics and Tunes.

Full of songs from all five of Amelia’s albums, including her newest release, Watershed, this book of lyrics comes complete with keys and chords for each song. Whether you’re a musician, a poetry lover, or a fan of Amelia herself, this book is a real treat to read and explore.

Learn more about Amelia on her website: www.ameliacurran.com 

We look forward to seeing you on Friday!

Mary Walsh @ Clarkstown

Mary Walsh has written a novel called Crying for the Moon and she’s coming to Beechwood to talk to us about it! That’s right, we will be hosting a dinner event (like our Titles@Table40 series) at another bustling Beechwood restaurant, Clarkstown Kitchen & Bar. With the same set up as Titles@Table40 (see details below), we’re very excited to be teaming up with another one of our neighbours to put together a fun, book- and food-filled night for you all to enjoy.

When: Friday, May 19 @ 5:30pm
Where: Clarkstown Kitchen & Bar, 94 Beechwood Avenue (Second Floor, No Elevator)

How It Works:

The evening starts at 5:30pm with dinner, followed by the author presentation and book signing. Attendees must reserve their spot through the bookstore with a non-refundable deposit of $20.00 which will go towards the cost of a 3 course meal (3 choices including a vegetarian option). The total cost of the meal is $40.00 plus tax, 18% gratuity and refreshments.

Although tickets have just gone on sale, we suspect that they’ll go quickly, so call (613-742-5030) or visit us at the store to reserve your spot today!

Authors for Indies Day 2017

Come out on Saturday, April 29 to meet some great local authors and support your independent bookstore! Each of our authors will be in the store for an hour to meet and chat with you, and recommend some of their favourite books!

Here’s our great author lineup:

10:30am: Joanne Proulx (author of Anthem of a Reluctant Prophet and the forthcoming novel We All Love the Beautiful Girls [August 22])

11:00am: R.J. Harlick (author of the Meg Harris mystery series; A Cold White Fear [Book #7] to be followed by Purple Palette for Murder [October 14])

11:45am: Charlotte Gray (beloved historian and the author of The Promise of Canada)

12:00pm: Frances Itani (Tell is the second novel in the trilogy that started with Deafening and will end with That’s My Baby [September 5])

1:00pm: Susan Delacourt (political commentator, columnist, and author of Shopping for Votes)

2:00pm: Michael Dennis (local poet, writer, and blogger who’s just released his first collection of poetry, Bad Engine)

3:00pm: Sonia Tilson (Welsh-born local author of the historical novel, The Monkey Puzzle Tree)

It will be a wonderful day full of books, authors, draws, promos, and so much more!
We hope to see you then!

A bit about Authors for Indies Day:

“Authors for Indies is a national campaign in support of independent bookstores. On Saturday April 29, hundreds of Canadian authors will be volunteering as guest booksellers at indie bookstores across the country. This is the day we authors give back to the bookstores who support us every day of the year.
 
Independent bookstores are more than just retailers. Indie bookstores are spaces where you can open a book at random, fall into another world, and take it home with you forever. Where you can enter and breathe in that new book smell. Where you can talk to people who are passionate about recommending exactly the right book. Where you are part of a reading community.
 
If that’s how you feel about bookstores, then come out on Saturday April 29.” (quoted from www.authorsforindies.com)

Linda Wiken Signing

Local mystery author Linda Wiken will be in our store on Saturday, April 22 from 12:00-2:00pm to sign copies of her newest mystery novel, Roux the Day. This new book is the sequel to Toasting Up Trouble, the first installment of her Dinner Club Mystery Series. Featuring event planner and amateur sleuth, Jennifer “J.J.” Tanner, this cozy mystery series is full of fun, food, and of course, murder!

Linda is also the author of the bestselling Ashton Corners Book Club Series written under the pseudonym Erika Chase. With bodies cropping up left, right, and centre, the Ashton Corners Mystery Book Club is the most authentic club you will ever encounter!

While we can’t promise you a real live mystery to solve on Saturday, we can guarantee you will get endless entertainment from both of these great mystery series.

We look forward to seeing you on the weekend!

April 2017 Newsletter

March Bestsellers

1. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
2. Vimy: the Battle and the Legend by Tim Cook
3. A Hero of France by Alan Furst
4. Birdie by Tracey Lindberg
5. Exit West by Mohsin Hamid
6. Maggie Smith: A Biography by Michael Coveney
7. Do Not Say We Have Nothing by Madeleine Thien
8. City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong
9. The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson
10. The Chilbury Ladies’ Choir by Jennifer Ryan

Greetings Book Lovers!

Welcome to April! Let the games begin…or, more appropriately, the rains. Although it’s hard to feel optimistic on cool, grey, rainy days when we still need to wear hats, mitts, and boots to keep warm, it helps to remember that old saying, “April Showers Bring May Flowers!” Books and water may not mix that well, but in this case, nothing can help you while away the rainy day hours like a great read. So, in the interests of speeding our way through this transition period between winter and spring, restock your shelves, head out on a new literary adventure, and dream of warm seasons to come. Flowers, and sunshine, and books, oh my!

Just as spring hearkens the return of the songbirds and the birth of baby animals, it also means that our in-store events have begun to flourish once again. One of our favourite local mystery authors, Linda Wiken will be here on Saturday, April 22 from 12:00-2:00pm to sign copies of her new book Roux the Day. This second book in the Dinner Club Mystery Series is the follow up to Toasting Up Trouble, the book in which readers were introduced to the smart and savvy event planner turned amateur sleuth, Jennifer “J.J.” Tanner. The following week, St. John’s singer/songwriter Amelia Curran will be taking a break from her Watershed tour to pay us a visit. She will be stopping by on Friday, April 28 from 2:00-3:00pm to sign copies of her book of songs Relics and Tunes. Rounding out the month in style, we will be celebrating the 2017 edition of Authors for Indies Day on Saturday, April 29! This full day of festivities will feature fun promotions, prize draws, and an exciting lineup of local authors you can come in to meet, chat with, and get book recommendations from. Over the course of the day, we will be hosting Joanne Proulx (Anthem of a Reluctant Prophet), R.J. Harlick (A Cold White Fear), Susan Delacourt (Shopping for Votes), Michael Dennis (Bad Engine), Frances Itani (Tell), and Sonia Tilson (The Monkey Puzzle Tree). Scroll down to the bottom of this newsletter for the full Authors for Indies Day schedule.

As the seasons turn, so too do the types of books that make their way onto our shelves. So, while we start thinking ahead to planting bulbs, setting up our vegetable gardens, and wondering what herbs we should grow this year, it’s not surprising that our store is filling up with books full of hope, love, and new beginnings. From the author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid, comes a brand new novel that has burst onto the literary scene in true blockbuster fashion. Exit West is the story of two young people living in a country on the brink of war. Just as they find each other and begin a passionate love affair, Nadia and Saeed are forced to embark on a journey into the unknown in order to save themselves and their dreams of a future together. Genevieve Graham‘s new wartime novel Promises to Keep is a perfect read for fans of Susanna Kearsley, Lucinda Riley, and Kate Morton. This wonderful, heart-wrenching read set in Nova Scotia during the expulsion of the Acadians, features a reluctant British soldier and a young Acadian woman whose love for each other faces the ultimate test when they must decide whether to risk everything in order to be together or live with the pain of being separated forever. Irish author Sara Baume explores a different kind of love in Spill Simmer Falter Wither. As the two outcasts in a small village, a shunned man and a one-eyed dog form an unlikely bond and take to the road together when suspicion and false accusations turn their neighbours against them. A testament to the power of unconditional love, this novel is a touching and heartfelt read.

A new beginning can be invigorating and full of hope when entered into willingly, but it can also be frightening and unsettling when you find yourself with no other choice. Siobhan Vivian‘s newest book for young adults, The Last Boy and Girl in the World, is an emotional, goofy, and bittersweet read on par with The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson. When a small lumber town is sacrificed to flood waters in order to save a series of larger towns and expensive developments downriver, Keeley and her friends and family are forced to prepare for an irreversible change that they are all powerless to stop. Similar to the movie You’ve Got MailAlex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett is a wonderful story about a quirky classic movie buff named Bailey who moves across the country with her father in order to escape a traumatizing event in her past and her mother’s crumbling second marriage. Hilarious and sweet, it is the perfect teen read for springtime! Canadian great Emma Donoghue made her middle-grade debut this past week with the publication of The Lotterys Plus One. With the same talent and heart that she puts into her novels for adults, this story explores the changing dynamics within a large, blended family when a long estranged grandfather (a.k.a. Grumps) is added to the mix…and the house!

Taking a trip to a faraway land is a very tempting thing to do this time of year, even if it’s only on the pages of a book. This year, let Marc Morris be your guide on a tour of some of Medieval Britain’s most impressive buildings in Castles: Their History and Evolution in Medieval Britain. Though castles were first and foremost family homes, their overwhelming and imposing appearance is more often associated with grand cavalry campaigns, epic battles, and seemingly endless sieges. It’s this inherent dichotomy that Morris explores in this fascinating new release. Like castles, adventures on the high seas are a perfect escape from rainy day doldrums. With this in mind, why not pick up a copy of Laura Sook Duncombe‘s Pirate Women? While most people are familiar with the lives and escapades of famous pirates like Peter Easton, Blackbeard, and Captain Kidd, in this fascinating book, readers are introduced to a series of strong, determined women from every corner of the globe who could swashbuckle with the best of them, but whose stories have, for the most part, been lost beneath the waves.

Here are a few more new releases and upcoming titles that are worth keeping an eye out for: Strong in the New Pretty by Kate T. Parker, Botanical Shakespeare by Gerit Quealy, My Italian Bulldozer by Alexander McCall SmithIngenious by David Johnston, American War by Omar El AkkadGoodnight From London by Jennifer Robson (April 11), Missing by Kelley Armstrong (April 18), Beartown by Fredrik Backman (April 25), Maud by Melanie Fishbane (April 25), and New Boy by Tracy Chevalier (May 16).

As the last vestiges of winter slowly melt away, and we enter that wet, muddy purgatory before the spring heat and sunshine come to stay, it’s important to make sure that your bookshelves are well-stocked. After all, there’s no better way to pass the time between now and garden season than to travel through time and space in the world’s most reliable vehicle. Books may be made of paper and ink, but their safety features are top notch!

So, however hard the rain, rain, rain comes down, down, down outside, we offer this sound piece of advice: “It’s never too messy out to make a trip to the bookstore!”

Happy Reading!

— The Staff of Books on Beechwood

Easter Hours

We will be CLOSED on Friday, April 14 and Sunday, April 16 for Easter. We’ll be open for our regular hours on Saturday, April 15. Normal store hours will resume on Monday, April 17.

Happy Easter!