Recommendations and Reviews

Highlights of what we've been reading and loving.

Book Bites: New Year, New Girlboss Picks

Friends, it’s time to turn the page on a new year of reading. Books have been such a comfort to us all over the last twelve months—they have educated us, allowed us some needed escapes, made us laugh, made us cry, and made us gasp out loud over an unforeseen twist or a perfect sentence. And let us tell you: There are some truly wonderful reads awaiting you in 2021, too. To start the new year, we’ve collected a roundup that’s heavy on fiction, including a handful of Valerie’s recent favorites. Whether you’re in the mood for a sweet picture book, a family saga, or a thriller, you’ll find something to tickle your fancy below. Read on!

Book Bites: Ask Alice

By popular demand! This week, we're eschewing our usual roundup of recent staff favorites in favor of something a little more specific. If you've shopped our store for a while, you probably know Alice. And if you know Alice, you understand implicitly that she'll never steer you towards a bad read. So we've collected a few of Alice's recent favorites—some you can buy now, some you'll have to wait to read until next year—and offer them here as a starter-pack for your 2021 TBR list. Trust us: You're going to love these. Read on!

Blue Willow Kids' Holiday Favorites

The holidays are squarely upon us! Even though your celebrations may look a little different this year, there's nothing like a well-timed festive read to capture the magic of the season and time spent with loved ones. Our list of holiday picks is full of great choices to share with the excited kiddos in your life—even if you'll be reading together by Zoom this year. Bookseller pro tip: Reading these sweet books is a great way to get yourself into the holiday spirit, too. Who says children's books can't be enjoyed by adults? Here's to happy, cozy, and safe reading, friends.

New in YA: December Picks from Our Teen Advisory Board

Our wonderful and hardworking Teen Advisory Board is back with their last monthly YA recommendations of 2020. We are extremely grateful for their many hours of reading and reviewing. Take a look below to find your next read! There's a little of everything: Rom-com, drama, fantasy, suspense. One of the picks below, The Good Girls, has been selected as the official December pick in Blue Willow's YA First Editions Club subscription program. (A little reminder for you all: The holidays are right around the corner and the subscription makes a great gift.) Looking for some more? Scroll back through the other amazing recommendations on our blog. Happy reading! 

Book Bites: Four-Pack

We don’t know about you, but we still haven’t adjusted back to standard time. Fortunately, it’s a proven fact that you don’t miss the sunshine if you have a good enough book to keep you company, like the ones in our highly varied mini-list below. In the mood for a little fantasy? No problem. What about some secrets and rock and roll? Look below to find that read! Wondering what life would be like without modern technology? Scroll on down. Looking for a little love? We got you. Whatever your style, find your next read to snuggle up with—you won’t even notice when it gets dark at 5:00 PM. 

Book Bites: Fall Medley

This week, we've rounded up a bit of everything for our fellow book lovers. We have old-school mystery and contemporary romance; we include a great new book about a cook (by Houston's own literary superstar Bryan Washington!) as well as a great new cookbook. Throw in a fun new picture book that dabbles in math and music, and you've got a classic book soup. Serving suggestion: Curled up in your favorite chair, next to a fire, with a furry friend by your side. Happy reading, friends! 

New in YA: November Picks from Our Teen Advisory Board

We are extremely grateful for our dedicated and talented Teen Advisory Board this month and every month. After reading many books, the board has put together an excellent list of YA November releases sure to please any reader. Look for thrilling mysteries, captivating romances, and new twists on well-known tales below. One of their picks, These Violent Delights, has been selected by the board as the official November pick in Blue Willow's YA First Editions Club subscription program.  (A little hint for you all: subscriptions make great birthday and holiday gifts.wink ) Enjoy, friends! 

Book Bites: From Sweet to Spooky

Was that a bit of autumn air we felt last week? It came just in time—we've taken a close look at our favorite new releases and pulled a few seasonally spooky reads for those of you who are looking for some extra thrill, mystery, and magic for your October. You can find them below, alongside a variety of other fantastic year-round options for those uneager for the unnerving. So no matter what you're looking for, you'll easily... fall... for a title or two below. Happy (haunting?) reading, friends! 

The Best Books of 2020

2020 has been a unique year, to say the least. Through all the uncertainty, we've been so grateful for you, our friends and neighbors, and your wonderful support of our local bookstore. With the holidays just around the corner, we can't wait to help you discover the perfect gifts for everyone on your list. To that end, our merry band of booksellers is very proud to present our annual "Best Books" list—a selection of titles we especially loved this year, and think you will, too. 

Happy reading, friends. And from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for your continued love and support.

New in YA: October Picks from Our Teen Advisory Board

Our amazing (and busy) Teen Advisory Board reads and reviews a lot of books every month. This works out well for us, because they have truly great taste—from thrillers to rom-coms and everything in between, this group of voracious readers is helping to make our YA section one of the most exciting places in the shop. Here, take a look at some of the October releases they're most excited to share with you. One of the books, Foreshadow, has even been selected by the board as the second book in our YA First Editions Club subscription program. Subscribers reecive a new book every month, with a bookplate signed by the author, exclusive bookmark, invitation to a Zoom hangout with the author(s), and a note explaining why the Teen Advisory Board loved the book. Did we mention that subscriptions make a great birthday or holiday gift? wink Happy reading! 

Pages