Aaron Reynolds Events

Injecting some slightly rude humour into our event roster, we’re looking forward to welcoming Aaron Reynolds and his hilarious (and often profane) bird book, Effin’ Birds, to the store for a book launch on Wednesday, October 23 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. Full of detailed ornithological drawings and based on the popular Twitter account of the same name (@EffinBirds), this book is perfect for fans of birding and tongue-in-cheek humour.

About the book:

A compact, comprehensive, and very silly field guide featuring more than 200 of the rudest birds on earth.
Effin’ Birds is the most eagerly anticipated new volume in the grand and noble profession of nature writing and bird identification. Sitting proudly alongside Sibley, Kaufman, and Peterson, this book contains more than 150 pages crammed full of classic, monochrome plumage art paired with the delightful but dirty aphorisms (think “I’m going to need more booze to deal with this week”) that made the Effin’ Birds Twitter feed a household name. Also included in its full, Technicolor glory is John James Audubon’s most beautiful work matched with modern life advice. Including never-before-seen birds, insults, and field notes, this guide is a must-have for any effin’ fan or birder.”

October 2019 Newsletter


September Bestsellers

1. The Testaments by Margaret Atwood
2. A Better Man by Louise Penny
3. The Innocents by Michael Crummey
4. Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell
5. The Long Call by Ann Cleeves
6. Our Homesick Songs by Emma Hooper
7. Women Talking by Miriam Toews
8. Albatross by Terry Fallis
9. No One is Too Small to Make a Difference by Greta Thunberg
10. Transcription by Kate Atkinson

Greetings Book Lovers!

If ever there was a time to sing the Time Warp song, it would be now! Not just because of its association with Halloween, but because we can’t figure out where September went (or the first half of October for that matter)! One moment it was here and the next it was gone! Well, there is a reason the saying “time flies when you’re having fun” exists, we suppose. And it’s not all bad; October is, after all, one of our favourite months! We’re happily situated far enough away from summer that we’re not missing it anymore, but we’re not so late in the year that snow could arrive at any moment. We’re in that happy, russet gold middle space where we can enjoy the beauty of the changing leaves without thinking of what they’re changing leads into, and relish the opportunity to sport our first cozy scarves of the season without having to think about which fibres will more readily block the icy wind of winter. Of course, it should go without saying that our very favourite part of this time of year (or any time of year, really) is all the wonderful new books!

As many of you know, just over week ago we announced yet another Titles@Table40 event – an evening with former Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin – to round out our fall dinner series. While both her event on October 20 and our evening with Joe Thottungal on October 27 are now sold out, there are still tickets available for our November 17 event with beloved novelist Terry Fallis. We have started waiting lists for the two sold-out events, so if you didn’t manage to get tickets before they were gone, it very well may be worth it to put your name on our waiting list – you never know, you might just luck out! For anyone who’s unfamiliar with our Titles@Table40 dinner series or if you just need a little refresher, here’s how our Titles@Table40 events work: the evening starts at 5:30pm with dinner, followed by the author presentation and book signing. Tickets must be purchased in advance at the bookstore. The non-refundable cost is $70.00 which includes the cost of the meal (a set menu of three courses with a vegetarian option), tax, and tip. All beverages are extra and will be charged at the end of the evening. The Fraser Cafe can accommodate all special dietary needs if the bookstore is informed in advance.

In addition to our Titles@Table40 series, we have a number of in-store signings and launches to tell you about this month. On Thursday, October 17 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm, Newfoundland-born Ottawa author, Mike Martin will be in the store to launch his new Sgt. Windflower mystery, Fire, Fog and Water. With three new cases that he’s convinced are connected somehow, Sgt. Windflower and his fellow officers must battle more than crime in this thrilling new Newfoundland mystery from a master of the genre. As a special treat for event attendees, if you buy any one of the Sgt. Windflower mysteries during the launch, you’ll receive a free gift in the form of Martin‘s seasonal mystery, Christmas in Newfoundland. With refreshments and snacks also on hand, be sure not to miss the closest thing to a Newfoundland kitchen party Books on Beechwood will ever have! Swinging over to the other half of the country now, Susan Taylor Meehan, a native of Edmonton and current Ottawa resident, will be paying us a visit on Saturday, October 19 from 11:00am to 2:00pm to sign copies of Halcyon Days, her new historical novel. Set on the prairies during the Great Depression, this novel follows a school teacher’s adventures navigating the sometimes fraught waters of a new town as controversy erupts surrounding a terrifying discovery. Also on Saturday, October 19, be sure to come by the store between 2:00pm and 4:00pm to meet local author Rick Houle. He’ll be here signing his new mystery, Vicky Veston Inc., the third book in his Affable Scavengers Trilogy, and his brand new Y2K-related novel We Really Made It Happen.

Injecting some slightly rude humour into our event roster, we’re looking forward to welcoming Aaron Reynolds and his hilarious (and often profane) bird book, Effin’ Birds, to the store for a book launch on Wednesday, October 23 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. Full of detailed ornithological drawings and based on the popular Twitter account of the same name (@EffinBirds), this book is perfect for fans of birding and tongue-in-cheek humour. Sean Michaels, Scotiabank award-winning author of Us, Conductors, will be here in the store on Thursday, October 24 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm to read from his new novel, The Wagers. From the very real open mic stages of the comedy club scene to the beautifully imagined streets of Montreal, Michaels takes readers on an intense, magical journey full of probability, luck, and fortune. I Wanted Fries With That is a book about speaking up for ourselves and asking for what we want. Its author, Amy Fish, will be with us on Saturday, October 26 from 11:00am to 1:00pm to talk about why we spend so much time short-changing ourselves and to encourage us to change that behaviour. Also, there will be bagels, so be sure to stop by for a visit and a chat! That same Saturday, from 2:00pm to 4:00pm, Scott Bury will be on hand to sign copies of The Eastern Front Trilogy (Army of Worn SolesUnder the Nazi HeelWalking Out of War), a series of three historical novels inspired by true stories of one man’s experience in the Red Army of the 1940s and his determination to escape home to Canada. Taking a brief peek into November, local children’s author Angela Misri will be celebrating the release of her middle-grade novel with us on Saturday, November 2 from 11:00am to 1:00pmPickles vs. The Zombies is the zombie apocalypse book we’ve all been waiting for! Pickles the calico cat isn’t sure what’s happened to her human, Connor, but she’s determined to find out. With the help of her feline friends and a street-wise racoon, zombies might be the least of Pickles’ worries as she sets out to recover her beloved human. On Sunday, November 3 at 2:00pm, local science-fiction author Alex Binkley will be in the store to launch his brand new science-fiction novel, The Circle of the Chosen. Complete with snacks and refreshments, this event is not one to be missed!

As the trees outside begin to change from leafy green, shade-providing canopies into ethereal domes of gold that crackle and rustle in the cool autumn breezes, we can’t help but feel a certain anticipatory energy in the air. Though it’s not the same feeling that comes with the twinkle lights and sparkling snow of Christmas time, fall has its own strange kind of magic – a magic that gives us an almost unquenchable desire to read as many books about witches, magic, and improbable occurrences as we can get our hands on! Joining out list of favourite fall reads (The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman, The Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan, and The Witches of New York by Ami McKay), The Familiars by Stacey Halls is as intriguing as it is mystical. Set in 17th century England, during the height of the witch hunts, this riveting novel tells the story of Fleetwood Shuttleworth, a young pregnant noblewoman who seeks the aid of a local midwife as she tries to carry her baby to term – a child whose birth she has been warned will mean her own death. When her midwife, Alice, is accused of witchcraft, Fleetwood finds herself facing down more than her fear of miscarriage and possible death, but also the strict hand of the law that would condemn an innocent woman. Inspired by true events, this novel is the perfect read for a cool, fall day!

If we can’t get our hands on a good witchy novel, a story about magical books can just as easily check all our book-love boxes! Enter Alix E. Harrow‘s debut novel The Ten Thousand Doors of January! Set in an artifact-filled mansion (check!), this fantastical novel introduces readers to January Scaller, a young woman who’s never really fit in (check!) until the day she stumbles across an unusual book filled with magical doors leading to great loves, unpredictable adventures, and unknown dangers (check! check! check!)! With a package just as beautiful as the words it encases, this novel is a true gift for anyone who loves books and prefers to take their literary adventures with a healthy side of fantasy! We have long been fans of Jenn Bennett and her contemporary teen fiction, but we love her even more now with the release of her new magical adventure novel, The Lady Rogue. Theodora’s greatest wish is to join her father on his travels around the world as he hunts for sought-after relics and treasures. Unfortunately, that honour is denied her and instead falls on his protege, Huck Gallagher. But when Huck returns from an expedition without her father, Theodora must leap into a world she’s only ever read about in order to save her father and fulfill her own destiny. It’s a race against time and treasure-hunting rivals, as Huck and Theodora lead readers through Gothic villages, dark castles, and misty mountains – an especially perfect read for the dark nights leading up Halloween!

Despite the energy in the air this month prompting us to read magical books, there are some days when we just need a few more veins of truth in our reads to truly satisfy us. As we’ve now entered the pre-Christmas selling season, our non-fiction section is burgeoning with great new titles that you’ll be hard-pressed to pass up in the coming weeks. From memoirs to political rallying cries, odes to nature and fascinating local histories, there’s definitely a little something for everyone on offer this fall. Though we perhaps know her best as the acclaimed author of The Birth House and The Witches of New York, Ami McKay is a woman of many talents – the proof of which can be found in the pages of her new memoir, Daughter of Family G. Intimate and heartfelt, this genetic memoir travels over seventy years into the past to trace a specific gene through the women in McKay’s family; a gene that predisposes them to certain types of cancer and often leads to early death. In her usual lyrical style, Ami has given us a beautiful book on a solemn subject that still manages to find hope and life in dark places, even as she herself comes to terms with the reality that this deadly gene is part of her makeup as well. Last year, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, Beverley McLachlin, delighted and thrilled us with her legal mystery, Full Disclosure. This year, she’s back with her highly anticipated memoir, Truth Be Told. Covering her life from her childhood in the Alberta foothills to her time on the Supreme Court where she helped influence and shape the fabric of our country, this detailed and revealing memoir is a must-read for all Canadian politicos!

Now more than ever, it’s proving virtually impossible to stay on top of all the wonderful new books that are rolling into the store every day. Here are some more recent and forthcoming releases that we’re getting excited about: To Speak for the Trees by Diana Beresford-Kroeger, CBC Massey Lectures: Power Shift by Sally ArmstrongDear Juliet by The Juliet ClubThe Grace Year by Kim LiggettVincent and Theo by Deborah HeiligmanThe World That We Knew by Alice HoffmanA Single Thread by Tracy ChevalierImaginary Friend by Stephen ChboskyThe Man That Got Away by Lynne TrussThe Book of Dust Volume Two: The Secret Commonwealth by Philip PullmanFrankissstein by Jeanette WintersonThe Dutch House by Ann Patchett, Me by Elton JohnAgent Running in the Field by John Le Carre (October 22), Peculiar Questions and Practical Answers by The New York Public Library (October 22), Many Rivers to Cross by Peter Robinson (October 22), The Second Sleep by Robert Harris (October 29), Notre-Dame by Ken Follett (October 29), The Noble Path by Peter May (October 29), London’s Great Theatres by Simon Callow (October 29), Fluevog by John Fluevog (November 4), Diary of a Wimpy Kid Book 14: Wrecking Ball by Jeff Kinney (November 5), I am C-3PO: The Inside Story by Anthony Daniels (November 5), The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern (November 5), North Korea Journal by Michael Palin (November 5), Bowie’s Bookshelf by John O’Connell (November 12).

October seems to find us all on something of a precipice – the tipping point between warm breezes and icy winds, if you will. And, although it leads into the frozen expanse of winter, we wouldn’t trade it for the world! It’s a season of rustling carpets and canopies laid out by Mother Nature; a season of gold and caramel tones that glow like halos around our homes and neighbourhoods; a season of warm spices and cozy blankets, hot cocoa and endless adventure-filled books to enjoy! So, why not glory in the golden glow of October with us and we, in turn, will help you set sail on unexplored seas of ink and paper!

Happy Reading!

–The Staff of Books on Beechwood

Hilary’s Bookshelf

What I’m Reading: Hollow Places: An Unusual History of Land and Legend by Christopher Hadley

“As my friends would tell you, the Medieval history and legends of Britain have always fascinated me, so I couldn’t pass up this book when it came to my attention. Covering 1000 years of history, Hadley eases us into his exploration of legend with the story of Piers Shonks, a Hertfordshire dragon-slayer. From there we’re taken around the country from hollow trees to Georgian churches, exploring how legends grow and change, and why they’re just as important today as ever.”

John Delacourt Signing

Local writer and political commentator, John Delacourt will be in the store on Sunday, September 15 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm to sign copies of his new novel, Butterfly.

This fast-paced thriller ticks all the right fiction boxes and is sure to capture your imagination from page one!

About the book:
“Lucien and Nataša might have slipped toward love, if her past in Sarajevo hadn’t caught up with her. Nataša finds work modeling for a painter in Toronto, but he is murdered. Nataša disappears that night, running for her life. Her vanishing is connected to the discovery of a video, secretly filmed in a small town in Bosnia and Herzegovina during the war. ‘Butterfly’ is a novel that charts a controlled descent through the dark legacy of war and the underbelly of the global art scene…into a world ruled by a desperate hope for impossible redemption.”

Ken Newport Book Launch

Be sure to join us on Friday, September 13 between 5:30pm and 7:30pm for the launch of local author Ken Newport‘s brand new novel No Dress Rehearsal.

About the book:
“Change, and how we deal with it, is the central theme to ‘No Dress Rehearsal’, the poignant retelling of a tumultuous year in the lives of three people who have no connection other than a neighbourhood coffee shop. Telling their stories in first-person narrative, Terry, Lee, and Grant struggle in their relationships, careers, family and health in this fast-paced story stitched together by a music-board in the coffee shop. With short “song tracks” for chapters, ‘No Dress Rehearsal’ is perfect for today’s busy reader, telling a complex story in short, stand-alone, diary-like entries.
No Dress Rehearsal is wonderfully rich in dialogue, with surprising twists in plot, and readers will be pulled along by what turns out to be a most extraordinary year for all three protagonists, a year in which they each realize there is no second chance at life – there truly is no dress rehearsal.”

Books will be available for sale during the launch.
We look forward to seeing you!

Titles@Table40 with Charlotte Gray

As an auspicious beginning to the month of October, we will be hosting local author and historian (and Titles@Table40 favourite) Charlotte Gray on Sunday, October 6. Her forthcoming book, Murdered Midas: A Millionaire, His Gold Mine, and a Strange Death on an Island Paradise, takes readers on a Canadian true crime journey full of intrigue, greed, and bumbling investigators as it shines new light on the unsolved murder of the infamous Sir Harry Oakes. With deeply-set roots in the Niagara region, Oakes’ story is at once fascinating, unbelievable, and extraordinary, and we can’t wait to find out more when Charlotte pays us a visit in October!

Date: Sunday, October 6, 2019
Time: 5:30pm
Place: Table 40, 7 Springfield Road

How it works:
The evening starts at 5:30pm with dinner, followed by the author presentation and book signing. Tickets must be purchased in advance at the bookstore. The non-refundable cost is $70.00 which includes the cost of the meal (a set menu of three courses with a vegetarian option), tax, and tip. All beverages are extra and will be charged at the end of the evening.

The Fraser Cafe can accommodate all special dietary needs if we are informed at the bookstore in advance.

Call or visit us to purchase your tickets today!
Books on Beechwood
35 Beechwood Avenue

Titles@Table40 with John Ivison

It’s almost September which means that our books and dinner series, Titles@Table40, is back for another season!

Kicking things off next month, local political columnist, John Ivison will be joining us on Sunday, September 22 to talk about his brand new political memoir, Trudeau: The Education of a Prime Minister. Having watched Trudeau evolve as a politician and a leader over the last number of years, Ivison provides readers with an in-depth, no-holds-barred account of how our current Prime Minister has in some cases lived up to, and in others fallen short of, the high expectations that came out of the Liberal Party’s 2015 election win. With another federal election just around the corner, this book (and event) couldn’t come at a better time!

Date: Sunday, September 22, 2019
Time: 5:30pm
Place: Table 40, 7 Springfield Road

How it works:
The evening starts at 5:30pm with dinner, followed by the author presentation and book signing. Tickets must be purchased in advance at the bookstore. The non-refundable cost is $70.00 which includes the cost of the meal (a set menu of three courses with a vegetarian option), tax, and tip. All beverages are extra and will be charged at the end of the evening.

The Fraser Cafe can accommodate all special dietary needs if we are informed at the bookstore in advance.

Call or visit us to purchase your tickets today!
Books on Beechwood
35 Beechwood Avenue

August 2019 Newsletter

July Bestsellers

1. Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
2. A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles
3. The Sentence is Death by Anthony Horowitz
4. Life’s Great Questions by Jean Vanier
5. Bush Runner by Mark Bourrie
6. The Bookshop on the Shore by Jenny Colgan
7. The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker
8. Our Homesick Songs by Emma Hooper
9. Machines Like Me by Ian McEwan
10. This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Greetings Book Lovers!

We know it’s a bit sad to think about, but whether we like it or not, the last month of summer is upon us. In the face of that little rain cloud, we’ve decided to focus on the positive, so instead of thinking about summer coming to an end, we prefer to think of August as an ideal time to relax in the sun and get in one last blast of summer reading! No matter what your literary cup of tea in the forthcoming weeks, there are so many great new books to choose from that we’re sure, with some good old bookstore browsing, you’ll find the perfect read (or reads) to carry you right through to Labour Day!

As the Wheel of Time carries us ever closer to September, one thing we’ll start hearing a lot more about are this fall’s nominations for the many literary prizes due to be awarded between now and Christmas. One such prize, the Booker Prize (formerly the Man Booker Prize), announced its long-list recently and there was one book on it that we’re particularly excited about. My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite is dark, funny, and one of the quirkiest books we’ve come across recently. There’s no doubt that sibling relationships can sometimes be complicated, especially when your attractive, sociopathic sister has a habit of killing off her boyfriends. Korede loves her sister, Ayoola, and spends a fair amount of time following her around, cleaning up her messes, and making sure that bodies and blood are all taken care of the way they should be. Though she knows that what her sister is doing is wrong, it’s only when the kind, handsome doctor that Korede works with (and is also in love with) asks for her sister’s number that things are brought into sharp relief. Full of dry wit, this debut novel is a truly unique read!

Another debut author that we can’t say enough about is Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott. Beautifully packaged, wonderfully written, and based on true events, her novel, Swan Song, takes readers on a journey straight into the heart of the 1970s New York social scene, riding on the coattails of Truman Capote. Having gained celebrity status and entry into the world of the social elite, Capote became a friend and confidante to a number of high profile socialites, a group of women he referred to as his Swans. From sharing juicy gossip on personal yachts, spilling secrets at exclusive parties, and revealing their greatest fears on private jets, these beautiful, wealthy, often vulnerable women trusted Capote with things they probably never told another soul. The problem with trust though, is that it can always be broken. Shocking, gossipy, slanderous, and rife with intrigue, this novel is an incredible ride from start to finish!

If you prefer your literary intrigue wrapped up in fast-paced writing and emotional twists and turns, then perhaps Robyn Harding‘s new thriller should be your next summer read. From the author who brought us the riveting novel, The Party, comes a brand new story of love, betrayal, murder, and mystery that is sure to keep you up all night! The Arrangement takes readers into the shadowy world of sugar daddies as Natalie, a young art student in New York struggling to make ends meet, agrees to become a paid companion to Gabe, a powerful lawyer more than thirty years her senior. With relationship rules agreed upon by both parties from the start and a healthy monthly allowance now headed her way, it seems like all of Nat’s problems have been solved. But when lines start getting crossed and the rules begin to blur, it’s only a matter of time before things spiral completely out of control. With non-stop action and more hairpin turns than the French Alps, you won’t know which way is up by the time you reach the end of this great read!

Summertime, and August especially, seem to be synonymous with the idea of cross-country road trips. Arthur Louis Pullman the Third checks all the essential road trip boxes – coming-of-age, following someone else’s footsteps, and digging up secrets from your family’s past – in the debut teen novel A Lite Too Bright by Samuel Miller. After being stripped of his college scholarship, Arthur is on the verge of a breakdown when he’s sent away to live with his aunt and uncle. It’s during his stay with them that he stumbles across a journal penned by his great grandfather (the original Arthur Louis Pullman) which could shine some light on an old family mystery: where did his grandfather disappear to in the last week of his life and how did he get so far from home? As he pours over the journal, Arthur has a hard time differentiating between Alzheimer-fueled ramblings and lucid passages, but there are enough clues there to send him off on a cross-country train trip to discover the truth about his eponym’s last days and, perhaps, a little something about his own present. Sweet, funny, and heartwarming, this novel would be a lovely way to cap off your summer reading.

If you’re already trying to get geared up for fall and all the great non-fiction books that traditionally hit our shelves in the lead up to Christmas, why not get yourself pointed in the right direction with two neat, new books that look at the history through the lens of specific days and events, and how they helped shape our world? Peter Furtado‘s History Day by Day is a fascinating look at over two thousand years of human history through 366 quotations, each linked to a significant event or anniversary. From Caesar’s death on March 15, 44 BCE to the signing of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919, this book’s unique format will entertain readers even as it teaches them. With a slightly narrower focus but a similar bent, Twelve Days That Made Modern Britain by Andrew Hindmoor is a detailed look at how Britain has gotten to where it is today. Highlighting twelve days and events spanning the last fifty years, Hindmoor’s exploration of modern Britain is at once intriguing, provocative, and incredibly timely. This book is an absolute must for anyone who likes keeping a close eye on British politics!

Though we never seem to have as much reading time as we’d like, that never stops us from trying to enjoy as many books as possible! Here are some more recent and forthcoming releases that we think you should take a peek at: Someone We Know by Shari Lapena, Love Lives Here by Amanda Jette Knox, Chances Are… by Richard Russo, The Book Charmer by Karen Hawkins,  You’ve Been Volunteered by Laurie Gelman, Trudeau by John Ivison, Ellie and the Harpmaker by Hazel Prior, Browse by Henry Hitchings, Send More Tourists…the Last Ones Were Delicious by Tracey Waddleton, Lincoln’s Spies by Douglas Waller, From the Corner of the Oval by Beck Dorey-Stein, Albatross by Terry Fallis (August 13), The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal (August 13), A Better Man by Louise Penny (August 27), The Wake by Linden MacIntyre (August 27), Akin by Emma Donoghue(September 3), Quichotte by Salman Rushdie (September 3), The Long Callby Ann Cleeves (September 3), The Testaments by Margaret Atwood(September 10), Saltwater Classics by Christine LeGrow and Shirley A. Scott (September 15).

We know it’s hard not to get excited about the upcoming fall publishing season, but August has only just begun and the last thing we want to do is wish our time away. So, no matter what this summer has served up for you so far, be sure to enjoy these next few weeks by soaking up some sun, relaxing in the garden, and falling into a great book!

Happy Reading!

— The Staff of Books on Beechwood

Holiday Hours

We will be CLOSED on Monday, September 2 for Labour Day.
Regular store hours will resume on Tuesday, September 3.

Hilary’s Bookshelf

What I’m Reading: This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

“Part science-fiction epic, part romance, and part fast-paced adventure, this book came as a complete surprise to me. I wasn’t sure when I first started reading it, but it wasn’t long before I was completely invested in Red and Blue’s war-filled world, their time-travelling ways, and the intricate ballet they perform around each other. I can’t wait to see where the story takes me next!”


July 2019 Newsletter


June Bestsellers

1. Death in Brittany by Jean-Luc Bannalec
2. A Thousand Small Sanities by Adam Gopnik
3. Transcription by Kate Atkinson
4. Machines Like Me by Ian McEwan
5. Starlight by Richard Wagamese
6. Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
7. The King’s Evil by Andrew Taylor
8. Kingdom of the Blind by Louise Penny
9. Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid by Jeff Kinney
10. The Sentence is Death by Anthony Horowitz

Greetings Book Lovers!

Welcome to summer!! With school over for the year, Canada Day behind us, and sunny days stretching as far as the eye can see, it’s time to find some exciting ways to fill your forthcoming days! With shelves full of crosswords, jigsaw puzzles, and countless books, we are your one-stop shop for all those quintessential summer must-haves!

Much like in the fall, this time of year is ripe with book lists with names like Top Ten Picks, Best Beach Reads, and Books for Backpackers. Since we hate being left out of these types of things, we’re excited to have a number of recommendation lists featured in-store right now curated by some of our favourite publishers. From heart-stopping thrillers to sweeping historical sagas, children’s fantasy stories to great Canadian novels, there’s definitely something for everyone! Each of these summer reading lists has its own window display for easy browsing, but you can also visit our online store to see all the lists in their entirety. Huge thanks need to go out to Simon & Schuster Canada for their list of Books That Shine This Summer, Penguin Random House for their Camp Penguin and BYOB (Bring Your Own Book) Summer Essentials selections, and HarperCollins Canada for their collection of Canadian must-reads, The Summer of Canadian Reading.

Although we often associate summer with more frivolous reads that don’t require too much extra brain power, sometimes the only thing that will really satisfy you as you listen to the ocean waves or the twittering of songbirds, is a really spine-chilling mystery or suspense novel. Maybe it’s the fact that the days are longer and the sun shines brighter during these fleeting months, but, to paraphrase a great poet, ours is not to reason why, just to read (sincere apologies to Alfred Lord Tennyson for that). Though her last few books have had nothing whatsoever to do with a certain gritty detective we all know and love, we’re delighted that the supremely talented Kate Atkinson has finally returned to the world of mystery in Big Sky, her brand new novel featuring the dogged detective Jackson Brodie. Having relocated to a quiet seaside village along with his aging Labrador Retriever and his sometimes-present teenage son, Brodie expects life to move at a slightly slower pace as he searches for proof of a husband’s infidelity for his newest client. Little does he know, his seemingly routine digging will tumble him straight into a much bigger and more sinister case in which the past comes back to haunt the present and old wounds become new again. With the same wit and complexity that first won us over in Case Histories, this new Brodie novel will delight as many diehard fans as it will create new ones!

Set in Bad Axe County, Wisconsin, John Galligan‘s new novel, Bad Axe County, contains as many dark moments and shades of grey as its dust jacket design! Heidi Kick is the first female sheriff that her home county has ever seen, and though she’s only taken on the position on an interim basis, there are just as many citizens who want to see her keep the job as there are those who would do anything to have her ousted. Opposition aside though, Heidi still has to try to do her job for as long as she has it, and her top priority right now is tracking down a missing teenage girl. As a fierce winter storm brews, her case gets more complicated when strange clues connected to a decades-old murder begin to surface and the teenage body she does recover isn’t the one she’s looking for. Full of twists, turns, and shocking truths that will shake Heidi’s community to its core, this murder mystery will give you goosebumps and send shivers down your spine no matter how high our summer temperatures get!

Discovering that you’re the inspiration behind a great work of fiction would no doubt be a nice stroke to the ego, especially if said work is kind and complimentary. How would it feel though, to stumble across your likeness on the pages of one of your student’s novels? This is exactly the situation a young writer finds herself in in The Body Lies, a dark and twisted thriller by acclaimed British author Jo Baker. Taking a job at a university in the English countryside is supposed to be a fresh start for our young protagonist, a chance to get away from the hustle and bustle of London and the memory of a violent assault. But when one of her more troubling students makes her the main character in his book – a book in which she does not meet a happy end – the lines between fiction and reality begin to blur and the question becomes not whether or not life imitates art, but rather, if it does, is it possible to escape a horrible fate that’s already been put to the page? Masterfully told and full of tension that ratchets up, notch by notch as the pages flit by, this book will reel you in and stay with you long after you’ve closed the cover for the final time. Be sure to read this one out in the bright sunshine! Nighttime reading is just a bit too atmospheric for comfort!

There are just as many great books coming out for kids this time of year as there are for adults, so why not let them get in on the summer reading action too? Whether they’re heading off to camp or are planning on staying a bit closer to home this summer, we’re sure they’d be tickled to have a brand new book to read during their break from school. Nary a month goes by here when we don’t receive some new kids books whose stories are either inspired by or centred on myths from around the world, and this past month has been no different. After the great success of her earlier series, Valkyrie and Pegasus, Kate O’Hearn has returned with new characters and exciting adventures in Titans. Set fifteen years after Olympus has been destroyed and the Olympians themselves have been resettled on Titus, Astraea, a young Titan, and her best friend Zephyr discover something that could bring this tenuous new truce crashing to the ground: a young human named Jake has somehow made his way onto Titus. Determined to get him home before anyone else sees him and ekes out punishment, Astraea, Zephyr, and Jake set out on a journey full of fun, adventure, and the might of the gods! This great book is perfect for fans of Rick Riordan, Soman Chainani, and Chris Colfer!

It’s pretty safe to say that most children, at one time or another, dream of great adventures on the wide open sea. Oona Britt in Matilda Woods‘ The Girl Who Sailed the Stars certainly has. Perhaps this shouldn’t be surprising since her father is a sea captain and all the houses in her magical hometown of Nordlor are made out of wrecked ships. For Oona though, this dream is more than a passing fancy. When her father refuses to take her aboard his ship for his annual winter whale hunt, Oona takes matters into her own hands and stows away on board. With plenty of magic and whimsy, this story of determination, bravery, and the search for acceptance is as beautiful as it is fun. Inspired by the stories of real animals who were caught in the crossfire during WWII, The Umbrella Mouse by Anna Fargher is a charming, inspiring story of a young mouse searching for a new home in the middle of a war zone. When her safe haven in James Smith & Sons umbrella shop is destroyed during the Blitz, Pip Hanway suddenly finds herself orphaned, alone, and homeless all at once. Enter Noah’s Ark, a secret animal organization devoted to fighting the enemy in France. When joining up seems to be Pip’s best option going forward, she sets off for the continent with renewed purpose. Sweet, heart-wrenching, and featuring lovely illustrations by Sam Usher, this story of one brave little mouse and the lengths she must go to to protect her friends and her home, is perfect for fans (or future fans) of Michael Morpugo, Redwall by Brian Jacques, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh, or the Warriors series by Erin Hunter.

Summer might mean taking a break from school work, but no time of year should ever be devoid of story time! There are so many new picture books arriving in the store everyday, it’s almost impossible to pick our favourites, but we managed to select a few very special ones here that we think deserve a moment in the spotlight. In the charmingly illustrated Dogs and Their People by Anne Lambelet, a young girl takes great joy in all the dogs she sees as she walks home from school. There are short people with tall dogs, large people with tiny dogs, some who share the same fashion sense, and others who even have matching moustaches! No matter how different or similar they are though, they’re all somehow the perfect match! Max Attacks by Kathi Appelt and Penelope Dullaghan is a fun, colourful book chronicling a day in the life of Max the naughty cat. Although he gets distracted by shoelaces, clean socks, and even his own food dish, Max is determined to attack the orange fish swimming around in their fishbowl. Will he succeed? You’ll have to read the book to find out! Oh, Bear by Melissa Nelson Greenberg and Ruth Hengeveld introduces readers to Bear and his bright yellow kite. After flying his kite in the meadow and by the sea, Bear tries to fly it home through the forest, but it soon gets stuck in a tree and tears. When a little bird comes along to help, Bear realizes that even though he no longer has a working kite, he now has a new friend instead. With simple text and beautiful illustrations, this book will be loved by children and adults alike.

With so many books to choose from, it’s hard to decide which ones are going to make it onto your to-read pile. Though we’re loathe to make the task more difficult for you, here are some other recent and forthcoming releases for you to consider: Rocket Says Look Up! by Nathan BryonSuperbuns by Diane KredensorBunny by Mona AwadThe Porpoise by Mark HaddonHow to Read a Book by Kwame AlexanderKnife by Jo NesboThe Boy and Girl Who Broke the World by Amy Reed, Dead At First Sight by Peter James, The Mountain Master of Sha Tin by Ian Hamilton, The Second-Worst Restaurant in France by Alexander McCall Smith (July 16), The Wedding Party by Jasmine Guillory (July 16), You’ve Been Volunteered by Laurie Gelman (July 23), The Book Charmer by Karen Hawkins (July 30), Trudeau by John Ivison (August 6), Travel Light, Move Fast by Alexandra Fuller (August 6), History Day By Day by Peter Furtado (August 6), Churchill’s Menagerie by Piers Brendon (August 6), A Keeper by Graham Norton (August 13).

Whether you’re heading to the beach, the backyard hammock, or far-flung shores this summer, let a new book be your passport to new perspectives, experiences, and adventures!

Happy Reading!

— The Staff at Books on Beechwood

New Features!

For those of you who special order books through us, you can now choose from three different modes of contact when it comes time for us to let you know that your book has arrived.

The traditional phone call is, of course, still an option, but we’re also able to e-mail or text you your pick-up notice. If you want to sign up for either of these new features, just let us know next time you come by and we’ll update the information on your store account.

Book Signing with Sue Williams

Date: Saturday, July 27, 2019
Time: 11:00am to 2:00pm

About the Book:
“Three hundred nautical miles from shore, I‘m cold and sick and afraid. I pray for reprieve. I long for solid ground. And I can‘t help but ask myself, What the hell was I thinking? When Sue Williams set sail for the North Atlantic, it wasn’t a mid-life crisis. She had no affinity for the sea. And she didn’t have an adventure-seeking bone in her body. In the wake of a perfect storm of personal events, it suddenly became clear: her sons were adults now; they needed freedom to figure things out for themselves; she had to get out of their way. And it was now or never for her husband, David, to realize his dream to cross an ocean. So she’d go too.Ready to Come About is the story of a mother’s improbable adventure on the high seas and her profound journey within, through which she grew to believe that there is no gift more precious than the liberty to chart one’s own course, and that risk is a good thing…sometimes, at least.”

Book Launch for Amelinda Berube

Date: Sunday, August 18, 2019
Time: 4:00pmAbout the Book:
The Blair Witch Project meets Imaginary Girls in this story of sisterhood turned toxic, imaginary monsters brought to life, and secrets that won’t stay buried.Sixteen-year-old Skye is done playing the knight in shining armor for her insufferable younger sister, Deirdre. And moving across the country seems like the perfect chance to start over as someone different.In their isolated new neighborhood, Skye manages to fit in, but Deirdre withdraws from everyone, becoming fixated on the swampy woods behind their house and building monstrous sculptures out of sticks and bones.

Then Deirdre disappears.

And when something awful comes scratching at Skye’s window in the middle of the night, claiming Skye’s the only one who can save Deirdre, Skye knows she will stop at nothing to bring her sister home.”

Summer Reading
What’s Your Cup of Tea?
Above: Camp Penguin (Penguin Random House CanadaBelow (Top to Bottom): Books That Shine This Summer (Simon & Schuster Canada), The Summer of Canadian Reading (HarperCollins CanadaBYOB (Bring Your Own Book) Summer Essentials (Penguin Random House Canada)

Hilary’s Bookshelf Presents:
Books for the Beach

“I’ve been on a bit of a rom-com kick recently, speeding through book after book because sometimes you just need to read a happy story that you know will have a good ending. Although I don’t generally spend time on beaches, these fun, upbeat books struck me as the precise kind you’d want to read while listening to waves lapping up on the shore.”

Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi McFarlane
Georgie has never had great luck with men, so when she finds out that her new boss is actually her high school sweetheart, it seems like the stars have finally aligned. The one problem is, he doesn’t remember who she is. Full of hilarious incidents, heart-wrenching misunderstandings, and enough sparks to start a serious fire, this story is a must-read!

A Murder in Time by Julie McElwain
As a rising star in the FBI, Kendra has been prepared for almost all eventualities – except, perhaps, for suddenly finding herself in an English manor house circa 1815. As she sets about trying to find her way back to the 21st century, she’s thrown off-course by the death of a young girl and the mysterious, handsome Marquis who lands at the top of her suspect list.

Star-Crossed by Minnie Darke
When Justine randomly runs into her childhood sweetheart Nick years after they’d last crossed paths, it seems like a great love affair is inevitable. But when things don’t go exactly according to plan, Justine decides to give things a nudge. What follows is a charming story about fate, love, and lasting friendship.

The Cactus by Sarah Haywood
Susan has never been one for messy emotions. So when she’s suddenly faced with the death of her mother and the news that she’s pregnant, her perfectly ordered world begins to crumble. An unlikely ally appears in the form of her brother’s odd friend Rob. It’s with his help that Susan slowly begins to realize that perhaps messy emotions aren’t such a bad thing.

The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
Tiffy and Leon share a flat. The funny thing is though, they’ve never actually met. As they get to know each other through sticky note conversations, therapeutic baking, and meal-sharing, they soon graduate from being simple flatmates to friends. But when they accidentally meet in person, all bets are off as their relationship shifts and resettles into a new frame.

Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey
As a rom-com obsessed aspiring screen writer, Annie is sure that her ideal man is out there, just waiting to meet her in the most perfect meet-cute ever! But sometimes life – and love – have other plans. A hilarious ode to Nora Ephron, this novel is the perfect read for devotees of the Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks canon.

The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory
In Drew’s mind, there’s nothing worse than showing up at your ex-girlfriend’s wedding without a plus-one. So when he gets stuck in an elevator with the perfect fake date candidate, he can’t believe his luck. Once the night is over though, both Drew and his date, Alexa, realize that they had a lot more fun than they expected. But is one magical night enough to base a relationship on? Especially when they live miles apart?

Hilary’s Bookshelf

What I’m ReadingOur Homesick Songs by Emma Hooper

“Set in 1992 in small-town Newfoundland, this novel introduces readers to Finn, a boy whose life revolves around his family, his town, and the traditions of his home. So, when the cod fishery collapses and people start heading West for work (Finn’s parents included), Finn takes it upon himself to bring the fish back in the hopes of keeping his family together. Lyrical, poetic, and full of the magic of the sea, this beautiful story of hope, love, and tradition is a balm for the soul.”