All posts filed under: Other Book Stuff

A Booklover’s Gift Guide

After years of book gifting, we have a long list of ideas saved up. And since book lovers like us seem to own most books, it’s good to have a stock of book-related ideas on hand. So, welcome to our complete book lover’s gift guide! Whether you love books and want to share the wealth, or you need the perfect gift for a book lover, we’ve probably got something for you and yours on this list… B O O K R E L A T E D Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany A beautifully illustrated love letter to all things books by Jane Mount. From bookstores and their resident pets to gorgeous curated stacks we immediately added to our TBR (to-be-read) list, this book’s the perfect gift for any bibliophile. Also, Mount just released a 2019 Planner that’s equally as swoon-worthy! Ideal Bookshelf Jane Mount’s shop of book spine illustrations (and more). There are themed prints to choose from, or you can customize one with your favorites. Out of Print They have endless clothes, accessories and …

{A Reaper at the Gates} Cover Redesign

First things first. Have you read Sabaa Tahir’s An Ember in the Ashes series yet? I’m not a consistent fan of dystopian novels, but I’ll read them every once in awhile. Out of all the others like it that I’ve read (The Hunger Games, Divergent, A Darker Shade of Magic) this one is by far my favorite. The kickass female protagonist isn’t beholden to a love triangle or under the thumb of more powerful male characters. She’s independent and calls the shots all her own. The writing is that awesome, keeps you on the edge of your seat type. And the story has layers of mystery and magic with interesting twists at every turn. But alas… let’s just say, without going into too much critique, the cover’s not a style that I think represents what’s inside. So, it’s been awhile, but every so often I like to design a concept cover. Just for fun, what do I think the cover should look like? Some of the various covers to date . . .   After reading the …

Amazon in Brick and Mortar

Since its beginning in July of 1994 people have said Amazon would put booksellers (and eventually printers) out of business. Well, against all odds, it hasn’t happened. And with people like us out there, we don’t expect it to happen anytime soon, or ever. In fact, did you know print book sales have been outpacing e-book sales over the past few years? And the next generation of readers is driving this trend. So there’s plenty of room for hope. But Katherine C. predicted a new trend that’s now here (check out her masters thesis from 2012 about how digital brands would do well to present their brands in physical space). Since 2015 Amazon has been experimenting in brick and mortar retail by opening physical stores. There are seven open locations (NYC, Seattle, San Diego, Portland, Chicago, and in Lynnfield and Dedham, Massachusetts) with six more opening in 2017. And last week Katherine C. visited the Chicago location. There are more than a few things that make this store very different from other bookstores… All books are rated …

The Year in Review

Another year on the books! This month marks two years since we first started The Bookly Club. Thank you to all of you who have joined us here. This year we enjoyed reading a diverse group of books, which we mostly liked. Here’s our year (2016) in review: March: Betrayal: The Crisis in the Catholic Church In 2001 a group of reporters for The Boston Globe started a series of reports on the Catholic Church’s management of sexual abuse. This group of journalists methodically and publicly uncovered the church’s decades-long neglect, denial and deliberate coverup of sexual abuse committed by numerous Boston area priests. Our thoughts … “The crimes committed by the abusers are only equalled (if not surpassed) by the Church’s complete and abject failure to protect its children from repeated, horrific, sexual abuse. As grotesque as its subject matter may be, this book is important to read.” April: One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories Novak’s book is a series of fictional short stories born from his creative imagination. Just a few of the short stories include: a boy …

Books Heal

This election, elections of any kind for that matter, should (should have) spark people’s interest in their civic duties and obligations to each other as American citizens and, more importantly, as global citizens. So, no matter your politics, what can we do to work better together, move forward, and improve this country for all its citizens? Well, there are a number of options, but here we’re all about books. Clearly. So read. Read as much as you can, as often as you can. Learn. Learn more and more. Never stop broadening your knowledge of people, history, politics, the world, the universe, our health, our future. So let’s keep striving to be better, and read. Here are some of our suggestions of where to start: Welcome to the Universe by Neil deGrasse Tyson, Michael A Strauss, J Richard Gott III Mom & Me & Mom by Maya Angelou Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari The Fire Next Time by …

{The Perks of Being a Wallflower} Cover Redesign

            The Perks of Being a Wallflower has a variety of covers to choose from. All of which I like. Even the “Major Motion Picture” cover is inviting (unlike most of its kind). But I liked the book so much I thought I’d do a redesign just for fun. Most of my inspiration came from an artist I recently found on Instagram. His artwork is simple, powerful and beautiful. It can tell one million different stories in just one image. And I found one that I thought captured Charlie’s (The Perks protagonist) story pretty well, so it seemed a perfect selection for this redesign… a young boy flying from a childhood swing set.   Image Source: Fajar P. Domingo Lettering: Katherine C.‘s handwriting Typeface: Helvetica    

{Betrayal} Cover Redesign

I‘m sure most of you have heard about this year’s Oscar winner for Best Picture: SPOTLIGHT. It’s an intense story about The Boston Globe’s special “Spotlight” team of journalists who, in the early 2000’s, investigated a decades-long conspiracy in the Catholic Church. And the book, Betrayal, is what the Spotlight team wrote after their years of award-winning investigative reporting. It’s a serious read that deserves a better cover than either of what’s currently out there. So, as I do on occasion (when having two kids under two-years-old will allow), I’ve re-designed an alternative cover for our March read. I tried to keep a subtle religious theme with the text and image column creating the shape of a cross, and then tying in the newspaper influence with the subhead copy being arranged in a way that’s similar to a newspaper column. I think if Betrayal actually hit the shelves with this cover, the book could reach a whole new audience! But, for now we’ll just keep it between us until my little ones grow up and I have …

Our First Year of Bookly!

Hooray! We’ve officially completed one year of Bookly. If you’ve been following along since the beginning (thank you!) you might remember we read our very first book last March. The book was Still Alice. And we’ve read a lot of other great ones over this past year (the short and smart We Should All be Feminists, a good tug at the heart strings from Tell The Wolves I’m Home, and the bizarre but fascinating The Handmaid’s Tale, to name a few). This year we’ve also shared some great cover redesigns, newsworthy bulletins, and helpful recommendations! And we hope you’ve enjoyed it all, and maybe learned a little something new. We’ve definitely enjoyed sharing these past 12 months (and 9 books) with you all! With February coming to a close, that means we’re starting a whole new year of Bookly picks and posts. And if you’re new here we hope you’ll join the Bookly club! Here’s a little refresher on how our book club works, AND a few hints at what we’ll be reading this year 🙂 The Bookly Club was started as an …

The Best of 2015

Image © The New York Times It’s that time of year when all the ‘best of’ lists make their appearances. So we thought we’d share a few of the best books of 2015 as decided by a few trusted sources: NPR has the most comprehensive list of all. They’ve shared 260 titles that both critics and NPR staffers have loved from this past year. And their website offers visitors a great way to sort through their long list… you can select from nearly 30 filters to find just the right type of book (including book club ideas, poetry and kids books). Looking for your next great read? This is a great list to visit. Last week The New York Times debuted their list of the 10 Best Books of 2015 (selected by the editors of The New York Times Book Review). Their list is diverse, short and sweet. It’s definitely worth a look for 10 great book recommendations. Goodreads shares a best of list that’s unique in that it’s decided by the readers. The awards are broken up …