Blue Willow Digital Marketing Team's blog

Book Bites: Six of One, Half a Dozen of the Other

The staff has been reading faster than ever here at the shop. Thank goodness, too — there have been so many great books hitting our shelves that it's been hard to keep up! This week, we've selected a whopping twelve of our favorite new releases — six for kids, and six for adults. No matter what you're looking for, we know you're going to fall for one of the staff picks below. Funny picture book? Twisty teen mystery? Historical fiction? Historical fact? You'll find all that and more... read on!

Book Bites: Buy the Dozen

Books are a bit like donuts, don't you think? Sure, you could stop in for one or two. But it's way more fun to just go for a dozen and share them with friends. (Or just keep them all for yourself! No judgments here.) So this week, we're bringing you a longer-than-usual roundup of a twelve of our favorite new releases, featuring titles for readers of all ages and interests. Only one thing to do: Dig in!

What We’re Gifting This Holiday Season

Everyone knows that books make the best gifts, so it follows that booksellers make the best gift-givers. This year, we've asked a few of our staffers which books (or games or fun bookish merch!) they're gifting this holiday season. Browse through their picks for some festive inspiration. Need help with a personalized recommendation for someone on your list? Give us a call or stop by the store — we'd be happy to help you find (and wrap!) the perfect present.

The Best Books of 2022

Can it really be that time already? The days are growing shorter, the calendar is running out of pages, and it's once again time to share our favorite titles from another banner year in books. We're very excited to welcome you to our annual "Best Books" list — 30 books we loved in 2022, for readers of all ages and interests.

You can scroll through the whole list below, from Picture Books down to Cookbooks, or use the links in the post to jump straight to the area of your interest.

Finally, a friendly holiday shopping reminder: Once again this year, many popular titles will be scarce due to ongoing supply chain disruptions. If you'd like to give one of these books as a gift, we encourage you to buy it now. And if you can't find the one you're looking for, ask us for personalized recommendations! We have plenty of wonderful books on the shelf that we're eager to share.

Happy reading, friends.

Book Bites: Tome After Tome

We’re capping off an extraordinary month in publishing with another round of new staff picks for readers of all ages and persuasions. We’ve shared more than forty great titles with you since the calendar flipped to September, and while we’re a little sorry for the strain we’ve probably added to your bookshelves, we’re mostly just excited to have someone to talk to about some of these great new releases. Stuck in a reading rut? Just check out the list below or stop in and see us — as the old saying goes, “If you're lost, you can look, and you will find books... tome after tome.”

Book Bites: Fresh Books Daily

The September rush of great new books continues! Here, we’ve collected some of the very best of this week’s releases. We’ve got a hilarious picture book, fantastic middle grade, historical fiction, thrillers, prize-winning authors… and even the first hint of holiday cheer. Dust off your bookshelf and make some room on your nightstand — you’re going to want one or two of these. Read on!

Jacky Dawson's Two Paws Up

The Dog Days of Summer may *technically* be over, but we Texans know it's still plenty hot out there. Here, our part-time shop dog Jacky Dawson shares her thoughts on this summertime phenomenon—plus some of her top reading picks for you (about dogs, of course)!

Varsha Bajaj on Writing a Mystery, Water Inequity, and THIRST

Our dear friend (and neighbor to some of our staffers!) Varsha Bajaj returns this month with a brand new middle grade novel, Thirst. Friends, the book is incredible. It's a poignant, page-turning mystery that addresses the class divide and access to resources head-on, and its Mumbai setting provides an incredible window into life on the other side of the world. The book is also full of jumping-off points for important discussions, and has already been named a Global Read Aloud selection for 2022. We can't wait for you to read it.

We are honored and excited to welcome Varsha to the shop for an in-person event celebrating the book's release on July 16. If you pre-order the book through us before then, you can get a signed, personalized copy — and we'll make a donation to (If you're an educator, the deal is even sweeter — you can upload your proof of purchase and receive a free educator's kit for the classroom, courtesy of the book's publisher.) In the meantime, check out our Q&A with Varsha below!

Hats Off to Grads and Dads!

Have you heard that books make the best gifts? It's true... and we know that many of you have called or stopped in recently looking for gifts for a couple of specific late-spring occasions: High school and college graduations, and Father's Day. Here, we’ve compiled a few of our favorite in-stock recommendations for each occasion. So if you’re seeking words of wisdom, inspiration, or helpful college cooking tips, check out our grad section below. Scroll past those picks, and you’ll find an assortment of dad-approved titles from picture books to nonfiction. Stop in or give us a call, and we'll even take care of the gift-wrapping — leaving you more time to celebrate the dads and grads in your life. Hooray!