From the Front Porch

It's our last episode of 2017, so it's time for a SUPER-SIZED reading recap. Chris and Annie walk you through their favorite books of 2017, and here they are! Thanks so much for sticking with us, even when our sound quality is far below what we typically aim for.

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry
The Wanderers by Meg Howrey
This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel
The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
The End We Start From by Megan Hunter
Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak
We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter
Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Option B by Sheryl Sandberg
Calling a Wolf a Wolf by Kaveh Akbar
Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Learn and listen more here.

Listen to a full back catalogue of our show here, and, if you're interested in some exclusive content like our side-podcast Unpopular Opinions, consider supporting us on Patreon here


See you in 2018!

Direct download: Episode_151____Best_Books_of_2017.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Thank you for getting us to 150 episodes! This week, Annie and Chris answer YOUR questions.

One popular question was, "Where does Annie get her own book recommendations?" Well, here's a big shout out to:
@avidbookshop
@tylergoodson
@_marcidarling
@bookshelf.tees
@annebogel
@bookofthemonth
@jaclyncrupi
@riverheadbooks
@booksaremagicbk
@laura.tremaine
@notetosarah
@erindotsmith
@etst
@leighkramer
@karibaumann
@jamiebgolden
@knoxmccoy

If you want to hear Chris and Annie talk about Great Books curriculum at a time when they didn't know one another very well, listen to Episode 35 here.

This episode is sponsored in part by Fontaine Maury, a branding and design firm with offices in Thomasville and Tallahassee. Check them out at their website

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Learn and listen more here.

Listen to a full back catalogue of our show here, and, if you're interested in some exclusive content like our side-podcast Unpopular Opinions, consider supporting us on Patreon here

Direct download: Episode_150____Mailbag_Vol._3.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's the latest installment of our show within a show, Love It or Loathe It, in which Annie, Emily, and Hunter discuss a contentious book in a book club-style roundtable. This week: Fierce Kingdom by Gin Phillips.

Also mentioned this week:
+ Room by Emma Donoghue
Get Out

SPOILER DISCUSSION OCCURS BETWEEN 19:00 AND 21:12.

This episode is brought to you in part by the city of Thomasville. Come join us for Victorian Christmas, our annual celebration of the holiday in the manner of a Victorian street fair! Mark December 14 and 15 on your calendars and learn more here

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Learn and listen more here.

Listen to a full back catalogue of our show here, and, if you're interested in some exclusive content like our side-podcast Unpopular Opinions, consider supporting us on Patreon here

Direct download: Episode_149____Love_It_or_Loathe_It_Vol._10.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

The holiday season is upon us, which means it's time for us to recap what we read in the month of November. Give thanks! Also, Universal, please consider changing how your lockers work. 

Annie read:
Bachelor Nation by Amy Kaufman (on sale February 27)
The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule
Loving Frank by Nancy Horan
Rosie Colored Glasses by Brianna Wolfson (on sale February 20)

Chris read:
Future Home of the Living God by Louise Erdrich

Also mentioned:
Mindhunter
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett

This episode is brought to you in part by the city of Thomasville. Come join us for Victorian Christmas, our annual celebration of the holiday in the manner of a Victorian street fair! Mark December 14 and 15 on your calendars and learn more here

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Learn and listen more here.

Listen to a full back catalogue of our show here, and, if you're interested in some exclusive content like our side-podcast Unpopular Opinions, consider supporting us on Patreon here

Direct download: Episode_148____November_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 8:46am EDT

'Tis the season to start thinking about children's books! What will you buy this year for the young reader in your life? Chris and Annie have some suggestions for you this week, hopefully beyond the old standards--not that there's anything wrong with the old standards! Also, weird moles.

Mentioned this week:
Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children's Literature as an Adult by Bruce Handy
Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin
Dragons Love Tacos Too by Adam Rubin
Dough Knights and Dragons by Dee Leone
Franklin's Flying Bookshop by Jen Campbell and Kathie Harnett
The Book with No Pictures by B. J. Novak
Elephant and Piggie by Mo Willems
There's a Monster at the End of this Book by Jon Stone
This is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen
Vegetables in Underwear by Jared Chapman
Little Red by Bethan Woollvin
The Ugly Pumpkin by Dave Horowitz
Hooray for Hat by Dave Won
Boss Baby by Marla Frazee
Bossier Baby by Marla Frazee
King Baby by Kate Beaton
Giraffes Can't Dance by Giles Andreae
God's Very Good Idea by Trillia Newbell
Big and Small, God Made Them All by Ben Wilder
The Story Cure by Ella Berthoud and Susan Elderkin

This episode is brought to you in part by the city of Thomasville. Come join us for Victorian Christmas, our annual celebration of the holiday in the manner of a Victorian street fair! Mark December 14 and 15 on your calendars and learn more here

This week's episode is also sponsored by the Paxton House, a historic bed and breakfast in downtown Thomasville. Make a reservation at their website above and follow them on Instagram here!

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Learn and listen more here.

Listen to a full back catalogue of our show here, and, if you're interested in some exclusive content like our side-podcast Unpopular Opinions, consider supporting us on Patreon here

Direct download: Episode_147____The_New_Childrens_Classics.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Because of the Thanksgiving holiday, we're coming to you a couple days early! Spend time with us, and then spend time with your loved ones. Best of both worlds. This week, Annie and Chris talk about food books, cookbooks, and how feasting structures our lives. Also, bedbugs.

Featured this week:
The Comfort Food Diaries by Emily Nunn
Cooked by Michael Pollan
Sex, Economy, Freedom and Community by Wendell Berry
Voracious by Cara Nicoletti
A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg
Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal
The City Baker's Guide to Country Living by Louise Miller
Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin
Dough Knights and Dragons by Dee Leone
Supper of the Lamb by Robert Farrar Capon
Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist
Of Mess and Moxie by Jen Hatmaker

Follow Joy the Baker here. (Or Drake on Cake here.)

This week's episode is sponsored by the Paxton House, a historic bed and breakfast in downtown Thomasville. Make a reservation at their website above and follow them on Instagram here!

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Learn and listen more here.

Listen to a full back catalogue of our show here, and, if you're interested in some exclusive content like our side-podcast Unpopular Opinions, consider supporting us on Patreon here

Direct download: Episode_146____Food_for_Thought.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Sometimes we talk about old books like they're sacred and have nothing to do with what we're reading day to day, but new books and old books both speak to us, don't they? And sometimes they speak to each other. This week, Chris and Annie discuss some of their favorite classics and their favorite new books as if they are cousins. Of the kissing variety?

For instance, if you like To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, check out Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett.

If you like One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, you may enjoy Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo.

If you like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, you may enjoy The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie.

If you like Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, you may enjoy My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante.

If you like The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger, you may enjoy The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky.

If you like The Giver by Lois Lowry, you may enjoy Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn. 

If you like In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, you may enjoy American Fire by Monica Hesse.

If you like The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, you may enjoy Blankets by Craig Thompson.

If you like The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer, you may enjoy Delancey by Molly Wizenberg.

If you like A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith, you may enjoy The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant.

November 25 is Small Business Saturday! Come visit us at the Bookshelf and see all of our small business friends. If you can't come to Thomasville that weekend, support your local businesses!

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for our theme music. Listen to more here

If you'd like to gain access to our exclusive content, consider supporting us on Patreon here

Full episodes of our show are available here.

Direct download: Episode_145____New_Books_for_Old_Souls.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's a week later than usual, but it's a brand new month, which means it's time for a reading recap, our monthly feature in which Annie and Chris briefly review what they read this month. October was long, but we read some great books!

Annie read:
Thanks, Obama by David Litt
Sunburn by Laura Lippman
Unbelievable by Katy Tur
Turtles All the Way Down by John Green
Fire Sermon by Jamie Quatro
Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Chris read:
Pregnant Butch by A. K. Summers
Are You My Mother? by Alison Bechdel
The First Bad Man by Miranda July

Also mentioned:
+ Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? by Alyssa Mastromonaco
Looking for Alaska by John Green
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for the use of our theme music. Check out their website here

Find a full back catalogue of our show here. If you're interested in our exclusive bonus content like Unpopular Opinions or our weekly newsletter, you can learn more on our Patreon site

Direct download: Episode_144____October_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Why do so many readers seem to be afraid of short stories? Annie and Chris chat with author and professor CJ Hauser about how short stories are different from novels, how to approach a collection, and why book clubs should embrace shorts.

Stop worrying and love the short story! 

Mentioned this episode:
+ The Collected Stories of Grace Paley
Selected Stories: Andre Dubus
+ Flannery O'Connor: The Complete Stories
+ We're in Trouble by Christopher Coake
Fortune Smiles by Adam Johnson
Emporiuby Adam Johnson
Later, at the Bar by Rebecca Barry
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned by Wells Tower
CivilWarLand in Bad Decline by George Saunders
One More Thing by B. J. Novak
Music for Wartime by Rebecca Makkai
Difficult Women by Roxane Gay
Awayland by Ramona Ausubel
Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado

CJ's favorite collections:
Nine Stories by J. D. Salinger
Bear Down, Bear North by Melinda Moustakis
St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell

Annie's favorite collections:
+ St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell
Fortune Smiles by Adam Johnson
A Good Man is Hard to Find by Flannery O'Connor

Chris's favorite collections:
No One Belongs Here More Than You by Miranda July
Sorry Please Thank You by Charles Yu
CivilWarLand in Bad Decline by George Saunders

Learn more about CJ and find links to her writing on her website

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers for our intro music. You can check them out at their website

This episode is sponsored in part by Fontaine Maury, a branding and design firm with offices in Thomasville and Tallahassee. Check them out at their website

You can find full episodes of our show on our website. You can support us on Patreon here

Direct download: Episode_143____Short_Form.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

'Tis the season for ~spooky scary~ reads, so Chris and Annie are back to talk about suspense, horror, and why we sometimes need a good scare. Also, WHAT is the title of this book? There's a dog and a creepy neighbor. That's all we've got. 

Mentioned this week:
The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney
Goosebumps by R. L. Stine
Are You Afraid of the Dark?
+ Edgar Allan Poe
Boo to You Too by Elizabeth Rogers
The Littlest Witch by Jeanne Massey
The Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman
The Ugly Pumpkin by Dave Horowitz
Velocity by Dean Koontz
The Taking by Dean Koontz
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Final Girls by Riley Sager
There's Somebody Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins
Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero
The Likeness by Tana French
The Secret Place by Tana French
The Fever by Megan Abbott
Dare Me by Megan Abbott
You Will Know Me by Megan Abbott
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
The Lost Girls by Robert Kolker
Who Killed These Girls? by Beverly Lowry
The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule
IT by Stephen King
My Friend Dahmer by John Backderf
Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
It Devours! by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor

Thank you , as always, to Forlorn Strangers. Listen to more of their music at their website.

Thank you SO MUCH to our supporters on Patreon. If you'd like access to exclusive bonus content and behind-the-scenes features, you can learn learn how here.

For a full back catalogue of our show, check out our website here.

Direct download: Episode_142____A_Good_Scare.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Let's face it: when you read a lot, it can be a strain on the eyes. And you can't multitask with a book in your hands. And reading while driving will get you pulled over. Thankfully, the slow march of progress has given us an answer. This week is all about the audiobook. Annie and Chris talk about their experience with and admiration of the audiobook along with some of their favorites. Find them at your leisure on Libro.fm and list The Bookshelf as your partner store!

Mentioned this week:
+ David Sedaris
A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
Angels and Demons by Dan Brown
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling
Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson
This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
All the Lives I Want by Alana Massey
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult
Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

This episode is brought to you in part by Fontaine Maury, a branding and design firm with offices in Thomasville and Tallahassee. View a portfolio of their work and contact them regarding your branding needs at their website

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers. Learn more and listen to their music at their website

HUGE thanks to our Patreon supporters, who allow us time to create fun bonus content. If you'd like to give us a few dollars a month and get exclusive access to our secret projects, check us out here

Direct download: Episode_141____What_Should_I_Listen_to_Next_.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

We get lots of emails about what it is we actually do all day. Who are we, exactly, and what does a day in the life of our independent bookstore look like? Annie and Chris are here to walk you through a typical Tuesday at The Bookshelf. 

Today's episode is brought to you in part by Fuzzy Goat yarn shop right here in downtown Thomasville, GA. Fuzzy Goat offers a variety of yarns from independent, Southern, and US sources and a wide selection of classes for advanced knitters and novices alike. Check them out on Instagram here.

Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers. Listen to more of their music on their website

And thank you SO MUCH to our Patreon supporters. If you would like to support us for a few dollars a month and get rewarded with regular bonus content, check out our site here

Direct download: Episode_140____A_Day_in_the_Life.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

September was a decidedly not-great month for our intrepid hosts, but at least they got to read some phenomenal books! Join us for our monthly wrap-up and check out our favorite books of the month!

Annie read:
I'll Have What She's Having by Erin Carlson
People Like Us by Dana Mele (on sale February 2018)
Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo
Reading People by Anne Bogel
The Road Back to You by Ian Morgan Cron and Susan Stabile
To Dance with the White Dog by Terry Kay
+ Down and Across by Arvin Ahmadi
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
Tell Me More by Kelly Corrigan
Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward

Chris read:
The Afterlives by Thomas Pierce (on sale January 2018)
The Mothers by Brit Bennett

Also mentioned:
Bossypants by Tina Fey
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Grit by Angela Duckworth
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Thank you, as always, to Forlorn Strangers. Learn more at their website
For an almost-full catalogue of our old episodes, learn more, or contact us, visit our website
Thank you SO MUCH to our Patreon supporters. If you'd like to become a patron and access our monthly bonus content, check us out here

Direct download: Episode_139____September_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie's back from SIBA, and we're here to let you in on a long-distance version of the Fall Literary Luncheon we hosted in the Bookshelf last week. Here's what we're recommending for the fall!

Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
Artemis by Andy Weir
The Senator's Children by Nicholas Montemarano
The Glass Eye by Jeannie Vanasco
Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks
Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie
My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent
Five-Carat Soul by James McBride
The Floating World by C. Morgan Babst
Grant by Ron Chernow
An Odyssey by Daniel Mendelsohn
The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers
Blood at the Root by Patrick Phillips
What Unites Us by Dan Rather

Also mentioned:
Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
The Martian by Andy Weir

Support us on Patreon here
Listen to previous episodes here
Learn more about Shelf Subscriptions here.
Thanks, as always, to Forlorn Strangers. Learn more here.

Direct download: Episode_138____Fall_Literary_Lineup.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie, Hunter, and Emily are back with another volume of Love It or Loathe It, our show within a show in which we have a book club-style discussion about a divisive book. This week: When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon.

Also mentioned this week:
The Blondes by Emily Schultz
Looking for Alaska by John Green
The Big Sick
Master of None
+ The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Windfall by Jennifer E. Smith
Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

Special mid-credits guest appearance by Margery K. Bear. 

Thank you, as always, to Forlorn Strangers. Learn more at their website.

Direct download: Episode_137____Love_It_or_Loathe_It_Vol._9.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

We've survived the hurricane and the new Bachelor announcement, and we're back with another conversation on books, TV, and life in the South. The 2017 Emmy Awards air on September 17, and so many of the honorees this year are adapted from books! We've got thoughts and opinions. Also, Seth Meyers is blond.

Mentioned this week:
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
The Handmaid's Tale on Hulu
Hagseed by Margaret Atwood
The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta
The Leftovers on HBO
Big Little Lies by Lianne Moriarty
Big Little Lies on HBO
Before the Fall by Noah Hawley
Fargo on FX
Fargo by the Coen Brothers
Legion on FX

If you liked The Crown on Netflix, you might enjoy:
The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan
Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan

If you liked The Handmaid's Tale on Hulu, you might enjoy:
Children of Men by P. D. James
Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler

If you liked This is Us on NBC, you might enjoy:
The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
Modern Lovers by Emma Straub
Adopted by Kelley Nikondeha
Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

If you liked Westworld on HBO, you might enjoy:
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

If you liked Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix, you might enjoy:
The Girls by Emma Cline
The Assistants by Camille Perri

If you liked Stranger Things on Netflix, you might enjoy:
Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero

If you liked Master of None on Netflix, you might enjoy:
Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari
Read Bottom Up by Neel Shah and Skye Chatham

Learn more about Forlorn Strangers on their website
Support us on Patreon here.

Direct download: Episode_136____Reading_in_the_Age_of_Prestige_Television.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 2:37pm EDT

Welcome to the brand new month of September! School is back in session, Fall is (kinda-sorta) in the air, and change is afoot. Check out our new podcast website and see all the new, special content we've been making just for you! Also, Nick and Vanessa? Donezo. 

Mentioned this week:
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Liberal Arts 
Shadow of the Lions by Christopher Swann
A Separate Peace by John Knowles
Looking for Alaska by John Green
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach
Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld
Commencement by J. Courtney Sullivan
Friends from College 
Tribal by Diane Roberts
Tribe by Sebastian Junger
Against Football by Steve Almond
The One and Only by Emily Giffin

Learn more about Forlorn Strangers at their website.
Support us on Patreon here.
Find your favorite books in our online store

Direct download: Episode_135____Campus_Tour__Nothing_Stays_the_Same.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

August is over, and we're ready to celebrate. Annie and Chris are back to talk about the books they read in August, despite--or maybe in spite of--how terrible the month of August is. Also, can the old Taylor please come to the phone?

Chris read:
+ nothing
+ life gets in the way
+ part of How to Stop Time by Matt Haig

Annie read:
Final Girls by Riley Sager
The Glass Eye by Jeannie Vanasco (on sale October 3)
There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins
Girl in Snow by Danya Kukafka
The Misfortune of Marion Palm by Emily Culliton
Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong
Of Mess and Moxie by Jen Hatmaker
The Party by Robyn Harding

Also mentioned:
Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood
Brain on Fire by Susannah Calahan
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Everybody Rise by Stephanie Clifford
Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple
Seven by Jen Hatmaker
For the Love by Jen Hatmaker
The Dinner by Herman Koch

There are changes on the horizon! Stay tuned! 

There's one day left to sign up for September's Shelf Subscription pick, so check out our store website for more details!

Direct download: Episode_134____August_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

We're hungry, so let's plan out a menu. This week, Chris and Annie have prepared a few "book flights" for you, and these are the tasting notes. We're also calling them "mini-syllabi" because books talk to each other, and it's the coolest thing. Also, a dyed-in-the-wool Slytherin.

Annie's "Fear and Trembling" syllabus:
Final Girls by Riley Sager
+ Girl in Snow by Danya Kukafka
+ Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
Scream 

Chris's "A Space Odyssey" syllabus:
+ The Martian by Andy Weir
The Wanderers by Meg Howrey
The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber
Gravity

Annie's "Not Another Teen Movie" syllabus:
+ Dumplin' by Julie Murphy
+ You'll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein
Dare Me by Megan Abbott
+ The DUFF

Chris's "Kubelko Bondy" syllabus:
The End We Start From by Megan Hunter
The First Bad Man by Miranda July
Spider-Woman by Dennis Hopeless 
The Babadook

Annie's "Slightly Romantic" syllabus:
+ Extraordinary Adventures by Daniel Wallace
This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance by Jonathan Evison
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simison
Dan in Real Life

Chris's [bonus] "Cruise Ship" syllabus:
+ "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again" by David Foster Wallace
+ "My Honeymoon, or A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again Either" by Tina Fey
+ "Our Perfect Summer" by David Sedaris

Chris's "The Earth is Alive" syllabus:
Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard
Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry
The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
An Inconvenient Truth OR Mad Max: Fury Road OR Waterworld

Annie's "Campus Tour" syllabus:
+ Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld
+ Shadow of the Lions
by Christopher Swann
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Dead Poets Society OR Liberal Arts

Chris's "Apollo and Dionysus" syllabus:
The Birth of Tragedy by Friedrich Nietszche
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Black Swan

Annie's "Family Dysfunction" syllabus:
The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
+ Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
+ Standard Deviation by Katherine Heiny
+ The Family Stone 

Learn more about Bookshelf Bucks on our store website

Direct download: Episode_133____Three_Books_and_a_Movie.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's that time of year again, and we can't believe it. Annie and Chris talk about some of their favorite books for emerging readers and sit down for an interview with one such reader. Also, the importance of haircuts and a pregnant pause (or three). 

Mentioned this week:
Miles Morales, Spider-Man by Jason Reynolds
The Adventures of Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
Dog Man by Dav Pilkey
Theodore Boone series by John Grisha
Treasure Hunters series by James Patterson
Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales by Nathan Hale
Emily Windsnap series by Liz Kessler
Land of Stories series by Chris Colfer
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
+ The Incredible Worlds of Wally McDoogle by Bill Myers
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
The Austin Family Chronicles by Madeleine L'Engle
The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis
Bloomability by Sharon Creech
The Wanderer by Sharon Creech
+ The View from Saturday by E. L. Konigsburg
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg
Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
An Old-Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery
A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
The Missing Piece by Shel Silverstein
The Sea of Trolls by Nancy Farmer
All-of-a-Kind Family series by Sydney Taylor
Bobbsey Twins series by Laura Lee Hope
Betsy-Tacy and Tib by Maud Hart Lovelace
Encyclopedia Brown series by Donald J. Sobol
Nimona by Noelle Stevenson
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur by Amy Reeder and Brandon Montclare
Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson
Hamster Princess series by Ursula Vernon
I Survived series by Lauren Tarshis
Time Warp Trio series by John Scieszka
The Magic Treehouse series by Mary Pope Osborne

Direct download: Episode_132____Back_to_School.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Don’t get scared of the word “change.” Annie and Chris are joined this week by the rest of the Bookshelf staff. Ashley, Maddie, and Kate are here to talk about Shelf Subscriptions and what you can expect when you choose one of us to pick out a brand new book for you. Also, let’s take bets on which Office alum is Mindy Kaling’s baby daddy.

Annie’s picks are for fans of:
+ The Mothers by Brit Bennett
+ Forty Rooms by Olga Grushin
+ Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal

Chris’s picks are for fans of:
+ Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
+ Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
+ A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

Maddie’s picks are for fans of:
+ Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
+ The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman
+ The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemison

Kate’s picks are for fans of:
+ The Queen of the Night by Alexander Chee
+ The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell
+ Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

Ashley’s picks are for fans of:
+ Paper Towns by John Green
+ What We Lose by Zinzi Clemmons
+ This Is How It Always Is by Lauren Frankel

Magali’s picks are for fans of:
+ The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
+ The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien
Tlll We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis

Learn more about Shelf Subscriptions at our store website. If you would like to advertise your business on From the Front Porch, email Annie at annie [at] bookshelfthomasville [dot] com.

Direct download: Episode_131____Shelf_Subscriptions_Sneak_Peek.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name. And even though that might not be exactly how podcasts work, Chris and Annie are here to tell you about what they read in July. Also, Bookshelf Bucks are here! Check out the store website to learn more and start your tab!

Annie read:
The Story of a New Name by Elena Ferrante
Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy
The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry
Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood
What We Lose by Zinzi Clemmons
The People We Hate at the Wedding by Grant Ginder

Chris read:
The End We Start From by Megan Hunter (on sale November 7)
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett

Also mentioned:
Dumplin' by Julie Murphy
It Devours by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor
Frances and Bernard by Carlene Bauer
The Mothers by Brit Bennett
Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Direct download: Episode_130____July_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Do you really know a book from reading it just once? Annie and Chris weigh in on re-reading and why they do it--or don't. Is there a value in re-reading or is it a waste of time? Are there some books that deserve to be read more than once and others that don't? Also, move over, Schrödinger. We've got our own theoretical cat experiment.

"Finding out what happens is the least part of reading."

Mentioned this week:

Historia Regum Britanniae by Geoffrey of Monmouth
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
+ An Old-Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott
Rose in Bloom by Louisa May Alcott
Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott
+ the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling
+ the Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis
The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
Paradise Lost by John Milton
The Human Condition by Hannah Arendt
The Supper of the Lamb by Robert Farrar Capon
The Sorrows of Young Werther by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Check out Shelf Subscriptions, a new monthly book delivery service from The Bookshelf, on our website and sign up for fresh picks from Annie, Chris, and the rest of The Bookshelf staff!

Direct download: Episode_129____Read_It_Again_Sam.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's a book club-style discussion about Patricia Lockwood's new memoir, Priestdaddy. Annie and regular podcast contributors Emily McKenna (of You're Maker) and Hunter McLendon discuss what they loved and loathed about Lockwood's poetic style, her relationship with her parents, and her complicated upbringing in the Catholic faith.

You can purchase Priestdaddy here

Other books mentioned include:

Liars Club

Prozac Nation

BossyPants

Yes Please

Is Everyone Hanging out without Me

The Essex Serpent 

Direct download: From_the_Front_Porch_Ep._128.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:30am EDT

You've got a whole stack of what you're going to read next, but what kind of record do you keep of what you've already read? Chris and Annie chat about what they've read recently and how they keep track. Spoilers: It's not G**dr**ds. Also, is Tobey Maguire the worst actor of his generation?

Keep those iTunes and Stitcher reviews coming! We're well on our way to our goal, and we want to give you a special prize if you get us to 150 on iTunes.

Direct download: Episode_127____What_Did_I_Read_Last_.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Happy Fourth from the Front Porch! Annie and Chris are here to talk about their favorite fake news--which is to say political fiction. Also, fireworks, hot dogs, and the day summer just goes downhill. 

New and upcoming:
The Golden House by Salman Rushdie (on sale in October)
+ The Senator's Children by Nicholas Montemorano (on sale in November)
Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin (on sale in August)
The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close

Backlist:
Before the Fall by Noah Hawley

Non-fiction:
This Town by Mark Leibovich
Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? by Alyssa Mastromonaco
Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow
Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman

Direct download: Episode_126____Politics_and_Prose_.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's hot as something down here in the South, and Chris and Annie are back to talk about what they read in June. It was a light month of the highest quality. Also, Chris Pine: hot or not? And happy anniversary, Harry Potter

Annie read:
The End We Start From by Megan Hunter (on sale November 7)
Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson (on sale July 11)
Heating and Cooling by Beth Ann Fennelly (on sale October 10)
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (on sale (on sale September 12)
Theft by Finding by David Sedaris
The Story of a New Name by Elena Ferrante

Chris read:
Marriage of a Thousand Lies by SJ Sindu

Hey, did you know that we read and recap books in literally every episode of this podcast, not just the ones labeled "Reading Recap"? I just want to make sure that you do because we have so many recommendations for you all the time always and want you to enjoy!

Direct download: Episode_125____June_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Summer has officially begun, so Annie and Chris are here to tell you what you should be reading--whether you're inside to escape the rain or outside with the sand and sun. Also, what happens when children become club promoters? 

Beach Books
The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close
The Shark Club by Ann Kidd Taylor
Hello, Sunshine by Laura Dave
Windfall by Jennifer Smith
The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak

Page-Turners 
+ Dark Matter by Blake Crouch
+ Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld
+ Do Not Become Alarmed by Maile Meloy
+ American Fire by Monica Hesse (on sale July 11)

Stories with a Twist 
+ Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
+ Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane

Family Dramas 
+ Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood
+ Last Things by Marissa Moss
+ Standard Deviation by Katherine Heiny
+ Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett

Heavy Thinking
+ Option B by Sheryl Sandberg
+ Borne by Jeff VanderMeer
+ The Leavers by Lisa Ko
+ Theft by Finding by David Sedaris
+ Marriage of a Thousand Lies by SJ Sindu 

You can read Maile Meloy's interview with Ann Patchett here.

Hey, we're new to Stitcher and would love to build our review base. Can you help us get to 25 reviews? There's a prize in it for you...

Direct download: Episode_124____Summer_Reading_Recs.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

We judge books by their covers so you don't have to. First impressions are important, but are they always right or fair? Annie and Chris talk through the 50-Page Rule, trusting your gut, changing your impression, and the importance of not reading in a vacuum. Also, recommend us to a friend!

Discussion includes:
The Leavers by Lisa Ko
Borne by Jeff VanderMeer
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
The Wanderers by Meg Howrey
The First Bad Man by Miranda July
The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
Exit West by Mohsin Hamid
The Mothers by Brit Bennett
Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal
Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Tag us (@bookshelftville) in a tweet or Instagram post telling us what we're doing right. We want to give you more!

Direct download: Episode_123____First_Impressions.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Do you buy all of your books or do you borrow some? Annie and Chris answer a listener question and discuss their personal libraries, where they get their books, and what to do with the whole idea of a library when they spend their lives in the Bookshelf. This episode is also kind of a follow-up to Episode 83 || Books in Houses.

"A home without books is like a body without a soul."
- Pseudo-Cicero

Direct download: Episode_122____Buy_or_Borrow_.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

This week, Chris is back to discuss the books he and Annie read in May, one of which doesn't actually come out until next calendar year. Whoops. Also, May is a very, very long month.

Annie read:
When You Find Out the World is Against You by Kelly Oxford
Option B by Sheryl Sandberg
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett
The Assistants by Camille Perri
Ms. Marvel, vol. 1: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona
The Senator's Children by Nicholas Montemarano (out November 7)
The Leavers by Lisa Ko
Windfall by Jennifer Smith
Standard Deviation by Katherine Heiny
The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin (out January 2018)

Chris read:
The Inquisitor's Tale by Adam Gidwitz
It Devours! by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor (out October 17)
Borne by Jeff VanderMeer

See also Katie Couric's interview with Sheryl Sandberg here.

Direct download: Episode_121____May_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's time for a book club-style discussion of Katie Kitamura's A Separation. Podcast guests Emily (of You're Maker) and Hunter are back to chat all the things they loved and loathed about this literary novel, including Emily's thoughts on Greece and Hunter's profound revelation about the book's narration. 

Curious enough to buy the book? Support The Bookshelf by buying A Separation directly from the online store. 

Follow The Bookshelf on Twitter and Instagram

Direct download: From_the_Front_Porch_Ep._120.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:30am EDT

Chris is pursuing that ever-elusive PhD, so this week, Annie interviewed Sarah Holland from the Pantsuit Politics podcast. In addition to being the left-leaning cohost of Pantsuit Politics, Sarah is a city commissioner from Paducah, Kentucky, and she's a lifelong southerner.

Annie and Sarah chatted about what "life in the South" really entails, including the hard truth about where Southern maker culture really comes from and Sarah's obsession with Designing Women

Annie and Sarah mentioned:

+ the Southern Foodways Alliance

+ the Whitney Plantation

Designing Women, "Southerns Do NOT Eat Dirt"

+ Classics Sarah's never read but wish she has: Don Quixote and War and Peace

+ Podcasts Sarah listens to: Pod Save America; The Weeds; This American Life; On Being; Death, Sex, & Money; Freakonomics; Hidden Brain

+ Tara Brach's meditations

+ Indigo Girl's "Southland in the Springtime"

+ Sarah's currently reading: Tales of TitansEast of Eden, and Talent Code 

Direct download: From_the_Front_Porch_Ep._119.m4a
Category:politics -- posted at: 6:30am EDT

Annie and Chris talk about "alternative" visions of motherhood for Mother's Day this year, and it takes a weirdly dark turn. Sorry. Get a sneak peek at Chris's fall Women in Literature class and hear some of Annie's favorite mom-centric books.

Chris's class books:
Dear Ijeawele by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
The Mothers by Brit Bennett
The First Bad Man by Miranda July
Are You My Mother? by Alison Bechdel
Pregnant Butch by A. K. Summers
Marriage of a Thousand Lies by SJ Sindu
Beloved by Toni Morrison
The Babadook

*CORRECTION: The quote from Beloved is "You your own best thing, Sethe," not "You your best self," as previously reported.

Some of Annie's favorites:
Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple
The Mothers by Brit Bennett
+ The Color of Water by James McBride
+ Rabbit Cake by Annie Harnett
Glitter and Glue by Kelly Corrigan
A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty by Joshilyn Jackson
This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel
French Milk by Lucy Knisley

And please, are there good mother/son novels out there that don't have any sort of implied incest theme? Let me know. I need to know. 

Direct download: Episode_118____The_Other_Mother.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Happy May! It was raining while we recorded this. This week, Annie and Chris talk about the books they read in April. Also, Annie has some Hot Takes on book titles and we recount our odd encounters with celebrities from 10+ years ago. 

Annie read:
All Grown Up by Jami Attenberg (out May 7)
Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin (out August 22)
The Stars in Our Eyes by Julie Klam (out July 18)
Shadow of the Lions by Christopher Swann (out August 1)
The Wanderers by Meg Howrey
The Color of Water by James McBride
Hello, Sunshine by Laura Dave (out July 11)
A Separation by Kate Kitamura
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett

Chris read:
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel (again)
+The Inquisitor's Tale by Adam Gidwitz

Check out these books and more (including our brand new Bookshelf tote bag!) in our online store

Direct download: Episode_117____May_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Chris and Annie give you a peek into the Bookshelf's 2017 Independent Bookstore Day festivities. But if you don't live anywhere near Thomasville, fear not! We're also giving you a virtual tour of our favorite indie bookstores from around the country. 

Independent Bookstore Day is Saturday, April 29, 2017, and our schedule of events is here. We would love for you join us at the Bookshelf, but if you can't make it, find the closest independent bookstore to you at IndieBound, or check out one of our favorites below!

Sundog Books (Seaside, FL)
+ Page & Palette (Fairhope, AL)
+ E. Shaver Books (Savannah, GA)
+ Faulkner House Books (New Orleans, LA)
+ Maple Street Book Shop (New Orleans, LA)
+ Book Culture (New York, NY)
+ WORD (Jersey City, NJ)
+ Avid Bookshop (Athens, GA)
+ Women and Children First (Chicago, IL)
+ Books and Books (Coral Gables, FL)
+ Politics and Prose (Washington, D.C.)

Annie's favorite bookstore Instagram accounts:
+ @browsersbooks
+ @booksaremagicbk
+ @booksandmortar
+ @literatibookstore
+ @lemuriabooks

Direct download: Episode_116____Its_Indie_Bookstore_Day.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Won't you follow us down to the Rose Parade? Annie and Chris get ready for an upcoming jam-packed weekend in downtown Thomasville, including Independent Bookstore Day, National Superhero Day, and the Thomasville Rose Show and Festival. Joining us this week is Rose Show veteran Sunny Altman. Also, Chris presents Annie with a challenge. 

To learn more about how Thomasville will be participating in National Superhero Day on April 28 or to donate to Everfan's efforts, contact info@everfanheroes.com.

For more information on the Rose Show and Festival (and to begin booking your trip), check out the City of Thomasville's website:
http://www.thomasvillega.com/

You can also contact Sunny directly with your rose questions at sunnyaltman@gmail.com

We hope you'll join us in Thomasville next weekend, but if you can't make it, find an indie bookstore near you for Indie Bookstore Day on April 29! Check out the bookstore finder at http://www.indiebound.com/

Direct download: Episode_115____A_Rose_by_Any_Other_Name.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

"They get frustrated when they can't figure out what's going on in the poem. And if they can't figure out what's going on, they have no entrance into the poem. If they have no entrance into the poem, they're going to stop reading."

Annie and Chris sit down with poets Ruth Baumann and Will Fargason to talk about poetry: where does one even begin to read it and how can it be less intimidating? Also, Jewel setting the bar with puns and an evolving mystery involving a bedazzled human skull.

+ Shel Silverstein
+ Puff Daddy
+ Bob Dylan
+ Conor Oberst
+ Kaveh Akbar
+ Jewel's A Night Without Armor
+ John Darnielle's Wolf in White Van
+ Anne Sexton
+ Sharon Olds
+ Anne Carson
+ Richard Siken's Crush
+ Robert Frost
+ Wendell Berry
+ Rupi Kaur's Milk and Honey
+ Mary Oliver
+ Langston Hughes's "Let America Be America Again"
+ Adrienne Rich's Diving into the Wreck
+ Ross Gay's "A Small Needful Fact"
+ Rainer Maria Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet
+ ANTHOLOGIES!

Find out more about Ruth and her work (and her cats) at http://www.ruthbaumann.com/

Find out more about Will and his work at http://www.williamfargason.com/ 

Big thanks to Will for the use of his microphone and to Chris's cat Marge for allowing us to use her space for an hour to record. 

Direct download: Episode_114____Poetry_for_Beginners.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Chris and Annie try to bring this weekend's Word of [South] festival to you! In miniature concept, anyway. How does one go about pairing books and music? Also, "Skeezy John Mayer," Annie feels self-conscious about her [good] taste, and Chris takes his philosophy outfits out of storage. 

> Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's We Should All Be Feminists + Solange's A Seat at the Table
> F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby + The Postal Service's Give Up
> Shauna Niequist's Bittersweet + Ellie Holcomb's Red Sea Road (BONUS--or Sufjan Stevens's Seven Swans OR Vampire Weekend's Modern Vampires of the City)
> Albert Camus's The Myth of Sisyphus + Bright Eyes's The People's Key or The Decemberists's The King is Dead
> J. D. ​​​​​​​Vance's Hillbilly Elegy + I'm With Her
> Arcade Fire's The Suburbs + literally any coming of age novel
> Aldous Huxley's Brave New World + Childish Gambino's Because the Internet
> Wiley Cash + Birdtalker's Just This
> Donna Tartt's The Secret History + Aronofsky's Black Swan
> James McBride + Leon Bridges's Coming Home
> David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas + Fleetwood Mac's Rumours
> Emma Straub's Modern Lovers + John Mayer

​​​​​​​Thank you so much for all of the reviews! Keep them coming. There might be something good in it for you... If you're interested in Bookshelf-branded shirts, hats, stickers, or coffee, check out our online store at http://www.bookshelfthomasville.com/shop/

Direct download: Episode_113____How_to_Make_an_Art_Sandwich.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie and Chris plan their new side business--Sweet and Savory Pizza Stones--but mostly discuss what they read this month and what they plan to finish before Friday rolls around. 

Annie read:
Shark Club by Ann Kidd Taylor (out June 6)
Do Not Become Alarmed by Maile Meloy (out June 6)
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
Wedding Toasts I'll Never Give by Ada Calhoun (out May 16)
+ Exit West by Mohsin Hamid
The Fall of Lisa Bellow by Susan Perabo
The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy
Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? by Alyssa Mastromonaco
+ We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

Chris read:
The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak
Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Spoonbenders by Daryl Gregory (out June 27)

Check out any of these titles in our online store at http://www.bookshelfthomasville.com/shop, where you can also learn how to register for an account with Libro.fm, an audiobook distribution service that partners with independent bookstores like The Bookshelf to deliver the same quality audiobooks you get elsewhere, but with the benefit of supporting a small business.

Direct download: Episode_112____March_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie and Chris flip the coin on last week's episode and talk about what happens in the between times. How do you cleanse the mental palate or set up a buffer after a heavy or difficult book that needs time to process?

NEW THIS WEEK:
Mississippi Blood by Greg Iles
Our Short History by Lauren Grodstein
The Mind Club by Daniel Wegner and Kurt Gray (new in paperback)

If you're interested in any of the books we've talked about lately, you can purchase them directly from us at http://www.bookshelfthomasville.com/shop

Direct download: Episode_111____Spring_Cleaning_of_the_Mind.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Lots of people asked us why we're always raving about sad books, and they weren't satisfied when we quoted Sally Sparrow and said, "It's happy for deep people." This week, Annie and Chris explain what they call "grief literature" and recommend a bunch of their favorite sad books with justifications for why you should feel sad sometimes.

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders (really, why aren't you reading this one yet?)
A Grief Observed by C. S. Lewis
The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
+ "The Faery Handbag" from The Faery Reel by Kelly Link
Last Things by Marissa Moss
Rosalie Lightning by Tom Hart
Fun Home by Alison Bechdel
When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
+ The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
The Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
+ Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice

NEW THIS WEEK:
The Hogwarts Library (expanded) by J. K. Rowling
The Wanderers by Meg Howry
Before the War by Fay Weldon
+ The Fall of Lisa Bellow by Susan Perabo
The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy
+ The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Teaches Us About Living Fullyby Frank Ostaseski

Direct download: Episode_110____The_Virtue_of_Occasional_Sadness.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie sits down with her husband Jordan for their annual March Madness discussion. This year's book bracket includes The Bookshelf's "sweet sixteen" -- the  16 bestselling books of the past 12 months. 

Magnolia Story

Present Over Perfect

Seven Brief Lessons in Physics

When Breath Becomes Air

Killing the Rising Sun

Alexander Hamilton

Tribal

Hillbilly Elegy

The Underground Railroad

A Gentleman in Moscow

Fates and Furies

All the Light We Cannot See

A Man Called Ove

Me Before You

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

The After Party

Follow The Bookshelf on Instagram to cast votes for your favorite books during our March Madness celebration, or -- if you're a college basketball fan -- compete against friends in ESPN's bracket challenge.

Direct download: Fom_the_Front_Porch_Ep._109.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 8:30am EDT

Annie and Chris walk you through what they read in February while several intrepid Saturday afternoon customers climb over a literal barricade outside the door to use the [closed] bathroom. 

Annie read:
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
This is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel
Last Things by Marissa Moss
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
Difficult Women by Roxane Gay
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Annie is currently reading:
Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Chris read (but hasn't quite finished):
Difficult Women by Roxane Gay
Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly

Follow Annie's reading on Instagram at #anniereads2017.

Direct download: Episode_108____February_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie, Emily, and Hunter discuss Difficult Women by Roxane Gay and try very hard to decide what they think about it! 

Also mentioned this week:
Fortune Smiles by Adam Johnson
+ Lauren Groff's review of Fortune Smiles 
+
Anne Bogel's advice for sensitive readers

Direct download: Episode_107____Love_It_or_Loathe_It_Vol._6.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's Oscar Season, so Annie and Chris are rounding up their favorite books for this year's moviegoers. Also in this episode, a new feature (!!!) and Chris continues to swallow his words.

If you liked Arrival, you may like:
Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang
Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn
How to Life Safely in a Science Fictional Universe by Charles Yu
The Time Traveler's Almanac by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer

If you liked Hell or High Water, you may like:
True Grit by Charles Portis
American Fire by Monica Hesse
Ordinary Grace by Willian Kent Krueger
All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy

If you liked Hidden Figures, you may like:
The Glass Universe by Dava Sobel
The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan
The Radium Girls by Kate Moore
Something Must Be Done About Prince Edward County by Kristen Green

If you liked Moonlight, you may like:
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin
Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman
The Whale by Mark Beauregard

If you liked La La Land, you may like:
I'm Glad About You by Theresa Rebeck
The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer

NEW TITLES OUT THIS WEEK:
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
The Chilbury Ladies' Choir by Jennifer Ryan
We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter
We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
The Airbnb Story by Leigh Gallagher
Cannibalism: A Perfectly Natural History by Bill Schutt

Direct download: Episode_106_-_Oscar_Season_Reading_Recs.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

It's Galentine's Day, so Annie and Chris are answering the question on everyone's mind: What would Leslie Knope read? Also this episode, pipe bombs--the new cooking craze sweeping America?

Join us at The Bookshelf on Friday, February 10, from 6 to 8 for Galentine's Day festivities, and check out our downtown partners Mode, Smith Collective, Tallokas Road, Signature Clothing Lounge, and You're Maker.

+Notorious RBG by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik
+Sisters in Law by Linda Hirshman
+Daring Greatly by Brené Brown
+Happy Cityby Charles Montgomery
+The Localist by Carrie Rollwagen

Find Brené Brown's TED Talk here.

Shop with us online here.

Direct download: Episode_105_-_WWLKD_.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie and Chris chat about public transit, public urination, and all the books they read in January. 

Annie read:
+The Underwriting by Michelle Miller
+The Folded Clock by Heidi Julavits
+The Throwback Special by Chris Bachelder
+American Fire by Monica Hesse
+Himself by Jess Kidd
+The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers

Annie is currently reading:
+Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl

Chris read:
+The Wanderers by Meg Howrey
+Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Chris is currently reading:
+American War by Omar El Akkad

Direct download: Episode_104_-_January_Reading_Recap.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Annie and Chris get ready for the Bookshelf's upcoming Book Club Fair by discussing their favorite book club picks for 2017 (so far), including:

In Case You Missed It:
Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal
Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff
+ Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
This is Your Life, Harriet Chance by Jonathan Evison
The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving by Jonathan Evison

2016 Tastemakers:
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles
Among the Living by Jonathan Rabb
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
Hillbilly Elegy by J. D. Vance
Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

Coming in 2017:
+ The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers (out now)
The Wanderers by Meg Howrey (out March 14)
Himself by Jess Kidd (out March 14)
American Fire by Monica Hesse (out July 11)
The Book that Matters Most by Ann Hood (out now--in paper back August 1)
Hue and Cry at Our House by Benjamin Taylor (out May 23)

Direct download: Episode_103_-_Book_Club_Extravaganza.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Chris and Annie chat with the Bookshelf's new manager, Magali Kent, about missionary work, the proper execution of an eye roll, culture shock, and favorite children's books. 

+ Watership Down by Richard Adams

+ Reply All

+ Lore

+ Up and Vanished

+ Serial

Direct download: Episode_102_-_Meet_the_Manager.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

2016 is over, but of reading many books there is no end. In this episode, Annie and Chris talk about their resolutions for the new year and challenge one another to read outside of their usual habits--with hypothetically apocalyptic results.

+ Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow

+ Rita Dove

+ Claudia Rankine

Direct download: Episode_101____Reading_Resolutions.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

From the Front Porch celebrates episode 100! Annie and Chris answer listener questions about One Book, My Brilliant Friend, and reading translations. 

+ One Book Thomas County website

+ On the Same Page (Decatur, Ga., One Book program)

+ American Booksellers Association

+ Love It or Loathe It episode ft. My Brilliant Friend

+ Episode ft. Virginia Price

Direct download: From_the_Front_Porch_Ep._100.m4a
Category:books -- posted at: 6:30am EDT

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