Posts Tagged ‘Powell’s’

11th February
written by Steph

Indiespensible #24

After a short delay due to the last-minute decision to include a galley in this installment, Indiespensible #24 is now in my hands! The featured book this month is Hannah Pittard's debut novel, The Fates Will Find Their Way, which tells the story of a girl who goes missing on Halloween night. Given that its told from the perspective of a group of young boys, I am immediately reminded of The Virgin Suicides, so I'll be interested to see how Pittard uses this iconic form of a narrator and makes it her own.

Also included was a snazzy Powell's mug, those weird interview cards that Powell's so loves to include, and an advance reader's copy of Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson. According to Powell's, this is a highly anticipated novel, but I am not too proud to admit that I hadn't heard of it when it showed up along with my other goodies. The special edition box containing Pittard's book is extraordinarily lovely and definitely whets my appetite for the book itself. What are you waiting for? Isn't it about time that you treated yourself to an Indiespensible subscription?
19th December
written by Steph

Indiespensible #23

The holidays, they are a crazy time, and as such the blog has been suffering. My time has been taken up with planning Minnesotan road trips, bracing myself with all this cold weather, taking motorcycle classes (! But also true! Story to come another day!), and of course attending holly jolly festivities. I am tired, y'all, and as a result my reading has been at the pace of a snail. If we accept that snails can read. And maybe they do. At the rate I'm going, by the time I've finished my next read they probably will be able to read if they already can't. So clearly what I need is another book in my life, this time a 1000 page chunkster in the form of The Instructions by Adam Levin. Normally I'd be a tad p.o'd that it took 10 days to get here by mail, but 'tis the season for parcels being delayed in the mail and really it's not like I've just been sitting around waiting for it to arrive. If I can't even make it through a 250 page book, how am I going to make it through this, I ask you? And yet I am kind of excited for this book... if only I could finish The Wilding (Indiespensible #22)! Along with this lovely tome (which I can use to easily replace 5 lb free weights, right?) came a lovely Powell's tote (you know how I love little birds on things!), an interview with Levin on those notecards that make me feel like a tv news reporter, and a box of chocolate-covered marshmallows from A Little Bit of Sweet, a Portland bakery and sweet shop. Who knows when I will read the book, but I bet you those chocolates don't ever see 2011!
4th November
written by Steph

Indiespensible # 22

With October being as busy as it was, my reading slipped off quite a bit, and I have to admit I haven't yet regained my reading mojo. I've only got one book waiting to be reviewed in my queue, and in the past week I've picked up and started several books only to put them down because they just weren't doing it for me right now. But maybe this new installment of Powell's Indiespensible will be the panacea to my reading slump? Included in Volume 22:
  • Signed, first edition copy of Benjamin Percy's The Wilding
  • Powell's interview with Percy on commemorative collector cards (which make me feel like I'm a newscaster getting ready to read for broadcast)
  • A Powell's insulated metal canteen, which is perfectly Steph-sized!
I admit that prior to Powell's announcing this month's pick, I had never heard of The Wilding; anyone out there already read it? Normally I don't offer up official synopses or press material, but I figure this book is sufficiently "beneath the radar" that a bit of background might be helpful. From Publisher's Weekly:
Percy's excellent debut novel (after the collection Refresh, Refresh) digs into the ambiguous American attitude toward nature as it oscillates between Thoreau's romantic appreciation and sheer gothic horror. The plot concerns a hunting trip taken by Justin Caves and his sixth-grade son, Graham, with Justin's bullying father, Paul, a passionate outdoorsman in failing health who's determined to spend one last weekend in the Echo Canyon before real estate developer Bobby Fremont turns the sublime pocket of wilderness into a golfing resort. Justin, a high school English teacher, has hit an almost terminally rough patch in his marriage to Karen, who, while the boys camp, contemplates an affair with Bobby, though she may have bigger problems with wounded Iraq war vet Brian, a case study in creepy stalker. The men, meanwhile, are being tracked by a beast and must contend with a vengeful roughneck roaming the woods. A taut plot and cast of deeply flawed characters--Justin is a masterwork of pitiable wretchedness--will keep readers rapt as peril descends and split-second decisions come to have lifelong repercussions. It's as close as you can get to a contemporary Deliverance.
Intriguing, non? It certainly seems seasonally appropriate, so I'll probably be digging into it soon! I will let all of you know how it goes!
4th October
written by Steph

Indiespensible Volume 21 haul

At the risk of being redundant, since Frances has already posted pictures of the recent Indiespensible loot, I thought I should let you all know that my copy of Freedom along with sundry other goodies has finally arrived! I had considered not posting since my parcel is no different from that of Frances, but then I remembered I promised all of you that I would share pictures of my book bounty when it finally arrived, and I'd hate to reneg on my promise! So, included in Volume 21:
  • A signed, first edition copy of Freedom by Jonathan Franzen (complete with beautiful collector's box)
  • The first volume of Skippy Dies by Paul Murray
  • A bag of fresh coffee from Stumptown Coffee Roasters (located in Portland, OR), plus a postcard
I'm very excited about the bookish elements of this package. Unfortunately, we're not a coffee drinking household, but I'm sure we'll manage to find a happy home for these beans soon enough. Also, since we weren't gifted with a full copy of Skippy Dies, I'll likely be purchasing it via Powell's where they're offering a 30% discount on it! Apart from the coffee, the only disappointment to me was the laggy shipping time, as it took well over a week after my parcel was shipped for it to get to me. Plus, my friend Trisha got hers a full day before me (despite also being a Nashvillian), which had me practically pulling out my hair in anticipation. I dislike that Powell's sends their packages without tracking information, because if you know anything about me, you know I love obsessively checking shipping info on parcels that are headed my way! 😉 All in all, though, I'm so excited with my first Indiespensible installment, and I can't wait to see what will be featured in the next! Now all that's left is for me to finally read Freedom!
25th August
written by Steph
Yesterday, I finally decided to treat myself to something nice, and signed up for an on-going subscription to Powell's Indiespensible club. The Indiespensible program is one I've been familiar with for a while, but hadn't joined, due to its rather sizable subscription fee of $39.95 per mailing. That's a lot for one book, even if it is a signed hardcover that comes with its own commemorative box. However, a few things tipped me over the edge: 1) Did you know that along with your book (and box) every six weeks, you also get sent other surprise gifts? I love a surprise (well, most of the time), and I love getting more than just a book for $40! Previous gifts have included baked goods (really!), paperback novels by other authors they feel complement the current mailer, totebags, notebooks, shot glasses, and so much more... I love it!

There's a bird on the box!

2) The real impetus: the next installment (#21) is Jonathan Franzen's Freedom. By now you're probably sick of hearing about a book that hasn't even been released (I know Jennifer Weiner is...), but I'm super excited for it, and the prospect of a signed first-edition was more than I could pass up. I was doing some internet browsing to see if I wanted to pre-order the book from an online retailer, but it seems only Amazon is currently offering it at $15. Now, $15 is a price I'd be more than happy to pay for a hardcover (whereas in-store prices of $30, are a bit much), however I really didn't want to order through Amazon if I didn't have to. On a whim, I checked out Powell's, and saw that Freedom was their next Indiespensible pick, and while $39.95 is far more than I thought I might pay, I realized that I would actually appreciate all the bells and whistles for this particular book. It's something I know I'll treasure, and I'm also looking forward to receiving the first part of Paul Murray's Skippy Dies (amongst other heretofore unrevealed surprises).  I definitely feel this is an instance where by spending more, I'm getting way more bang for my buck. So tell me, are there any other Indiespensible members out there? If so, what's been your favorite installment thus far? If not, are you at all tempted to join? What's held you back?