October 2020 Newsletter

September Bestsellers

1. All the Devils are Here by Louise Penny
2. Rage by Bob Woodward
3. The Company We Keep by Frances Itani
4. Indians on Vacation by Thomas King
5. The Lying Life of Adults by Elena Ferrante
6. The Fight for History by Tim Cook
7. Agent Running in the Field by John Le Carre
8. Hamnet and Judith by Maggie O’Farrell
9. As I Walked About by Phil Jenkins
10. The Darkest Evening by Ann Cleeves

Greetings Book Lovers!

October, in our humble opinion, is the best month of the year! The air is crisper, the trees are dressed in their brightest fall finery, and there’s finally a reason to wear scarves and gloves again! Perhaps most importantly though, this tenth month of the year is a kind of last blast of autumn, culminating in the otherworldly celebration of Hallowe’en before we start the long progression down the ice-clad corridors of winter. We know that not everyone shares our opinion, so if you’re not moved by the gilded trees and the sweet caress of the cool autumnal breezes, there might be one other thing about this time of year that could win you over – all the wonderful new books!!

With offerings coming out heavy-hitters like Margaret Atwood, Peter Mansbridge, and Michael J. Fox, this fall was already set up to be a great one. Now, add to those some of the books that had their release dates delayed from this past spring to the fall, and it’s like being hit by a tsunami of new books! Although things in the store are pretty far from what they used to be, we’ll still do our best to connect you (and your loved ones) with the books you want, the stories you need, and the ones that are destined to take you by surprise. It looks like the days ahead might be long ones, so why not feather your nest with books this year? Not only are they excellent company, but we hear that the insulating properties of paper are truly astounding!

Fall, for us, not only means golden trees and warm tendrils of sunlight, but it also somehow makes us nostalgic – it awakens strange longings for ancient times, old ways, and traditions long-since forgotten. In our industry, this translates into an undeniable desire to read historical, magical, and witchy stories. We might be alone in this compulsion, but thankfully the universe seems to know just what we need as there are always some great new books this time of year that fit snugly into those veins. One of the books we were very much looking forward to reading this year was The Forgotten Kingdom by Signe Pike, the sequel to The Lost Queen. Set in 6th century Scotland, this second book in a planned trilogy launches readers right back to where things left off in book 1 – with Languoreth’s brother and cousins facing her husband and eldest son across a field of battle. As the Old Ways of Wisdom Keepers clash with the rise of Christianity as surely as two armies meeting with swords drawn, the world around Languoreth, her brother Lailoken (said to be the real man behind the legend of Merlin), and their loved ones is changing. Beautifully written, impeccably researched, and peopled with incredible characters, this series is a must-read for anyone who loves to immerse themselves in a good yarn!

Hallowe’en is, hands down, our favourite holiday and we always like to fill up the days and weeks leading up to it with spooky, magical books. One of those this year was A Witch in Time by Constance Sayers. Spanning almost a century and three reincarnations, this witchy novel is full to bursting with love, betrayal, curses, and heartbreak. Helen Lambert has lived many lives, and in each one, she is destined to relive the same doomed love affair – one rife with passion, treachery, and often early death. In each incarnation, Helen encounters a mysterious man who does his best to win her trust and save her from herself, to varying degrees of success. Will he ultimately teach Helen how to break out of her dangerous cycle of love and obsession, or will she forever be stuck in a loop, loving a man in whose hands her heart doesn’t stand a chance? You’ll have to read the book to find out! Though it doesn’t involve witches, Matt Haig‘s new novel, The Midnight Library is definitely magical enough to make it onto our October reading list. Bookstores and libraries are already magical places in and of themselves, but the one featured in Matt’s new novel is even more so. What would you do if there was a place you could go to change your past and undo all your regrets? When Nora finds out that the books in the Midnight Library could do just that, she quickly sets about creating her perfect life – changing each miserable, regrettable moment into something bright and happy. Things aren’t always what they seem though, and the idea of perfection is no different. Soon, Nora finds herself (and the library) in great danger, and if she doesn’t find out the best way to live before time runs out, there will be unthinkable consequences.

As per usual, there are so many great new books, and so little space to tell you about all of them. Here are some recent and forthcoming releases we think you might like: A Bite of the Apple by Lennie GoodingsA Song for the Dark Times by Ian RankinYou Will Be Able to Knit By the End of this Book by Rosie FletcherPiranesi by Susanna ClarkeArtist’s’ Path in 500 Walks by Kath StrathersModern Comfort Food: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina GartenJack by Marilynne Robinson, The Once and Future Witches by Alix Harrow (October 13), Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse (October 13), Oh She Glows for Dinner by Angela Liddon (October 13), Ottolenghi Flavor by Yotam Ottolenghi (October 13), 7 Ways: Easy Ideas for Every Day of the Week by Jamie Oliver (October 20), Leonard Cohen, Untold Stories: The Early Years by Michael Posner (October 20), Beauties: Hockey’s Greatest Untold Stories by James Duthie (October 20), Ex-Libris: 100+ Books to Read and Reread by Michiko Kakutani (October 20), The Bookstore Cat by Cylin Busby (October 20), Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Deep End by Jeff Kinney (October 27), The Tower of Fools by Andrzej Sapkowski (October 27), The Eyes of the Queen by Oliver Clements (October 27), The Couch Potato by John Jory (November 3).

For those of you who have been in the store in recent weeks, you may have noticed a new face behind the plexiglass. That’s right, we’ve added a new member to our team! Michelle is a resident of the ‘hood and has been a patron of the bookstore for a number of years now. She’s travelled the world and called a number of countries home before landing in our lovely part of our Nation’s Capital. An avid reader with a wide-range of interests, she’s fit right into our bookstore family and will be more than happy to help you find your next great read! We hope that you’ll give her a great big Books on Beechwood welcome to her next time you pay us a visit!

It’s at this time of year – when the trees look like they’re part of an enchanted forest – that we most let our minds wander and our imaginations take flight. We spend a good deal of time daydreaming and making up stories, but indulging in wonderful new books is right up there too! Whether our dreams and reading adventures take us across oceans on a majestic galleon, through the treetops of a mighty forest on the back of a fire-breathing dragon, or into an unknown land in search of a new beginning, we always try to enjoy the journey as much as the destination. Books can take us places that we can’t get to any other way. Our journeys can be short and quick, or long and winding, and they can be revisited as many times as we like. We know that many of your have found solace in reading over the last 8 months, and we hope that you’ll continue to do so. There’s no greater or more constant companion than a book, and we know that they’ll see you through the weeks and months to come.

Happy Reading!
Stay Safe!

— The Staff at Book on Beechwood

Hilary’s Bookshelf

What I’m Reading: Magic Lessons by Alice Hoffman

“For fans of Practical Magic, Maria Owens has always loomed large as the matriarch of a the most beloved Owens family. This new book will introduce you to her origins as an abandoned baby in a snow-covered field, carrying you along as she grows into her magical talent, learns to trust herself, knows heartbreak and loss, and inspires love, fear, and betrayal in the men and women around her. She is at once strong and flawed, determined and doubting, formidable and endearing. In short, you will love her!”