First of all, what a great celebration of the book the 2012 Oscars were, eh? Six of the nine most nominated films were adapted from books we love to recommend. We like to say “never judge a book by its movie” but this year’s films were quite true to the page and fantastically filmed. Kudos to last October’s biggie author in Telluride Brian Selznick for “The Invention of Hugo Cabret,” the book behind the magical “Hugo.” It’s a wonder if Martin Scorsese might want a hand at turning his second book “Wonderstruck” into another visual feast … signed copies still available (plus one signed hardcover edition of “The Help”).

 Onward into the future … We’ve got two author events on the horizon before off-season rears her tranquil head. First up, New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Evison will visit BTC on Tuesday, March 7, at 6:30 pm, for a casual reading of his time-sweeping epic “West of Here.” On a coast-to-coast tour for the paperback release, Telluride is one of only four Colorado stops, which includes that awesome mothership, The Tattered Cover, in Denver.

From the “West of Here” website ( “Set in the fictional town of Port Bonita, on Washington State’s rugged Pacific coast, West of Here is propelled by a story that both re-creates and celebrates the American experience—it is storytelling on the grandest scale. With one segment of the narrative focused on the town’s founders circa 1890, and another showing the lives of their descendants in 2006, the novel develops as a kind of conversation between two epochs, one rushing blindly toward the future and the other struggling to undo the damage of the past. An exposition on the effects of time, on how something said or done in one generation keeps echoing through all the years that follow, and how mistakes keep happening, and people keep on trying to be strong and brave and, most important, just and right, West of Here harks back to the work of such masters of Americana as Bret Harte, Edna Ferber, and Larry McMurtry, writers whose fiction turned history into myth and myth into a nation’s shared experience.”

Besides that, there are dams and National Parks and Bigfoot. No wonder it won the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award, on top of a few others, like the Hudson Booksellers Best Book of 2011 nod. (Yup, the airport shops, 66 of them in the US currently.)

We first saw Jonathan in action in Denver at the Mountains and Plains Independent Booksellers Association trade show a few years ago. He had the podium during one of the lunches and did not disappoint. As an author that sports Bookseller on his resume, he enthusiastically recounted a rant of sorts about bookselling, using a stream of book titles, from classics to contemporary. It was so clever, I printed out a version of it I found somewhere and taped it above the toilet paper dispenser in the store’s bathroom until it was too ripped to keep up. I hope he has a copy of it for next Tuesday. I have a feeling he can recite it upon request and I’ll be sure to ask for it.

Aside from writing, music has played a part of his life as well. When he a was teenager in Seattle, he was the founding member and frontman of the punk band March of Crimes, which included future members of Pearl Jam and Soundgarden. When not touring the indie book scene, he lives on Bainbridge Island, Washington. Apparently he likes beer. His Goodreads Author Profile states his influences as “Charles Dickens and beer.” So, grab a date and share something cerebral. We’ll have beer.

The second event shines the spotlight on Norwood-based poet Ellen Metrick, the current San Miguel County Poet Laureate, on March 23rd, time TBA, with her newest collection titled “Teasing Out the Divine.” From Ellen: “Some poems are meant to be heard, and some to be soaked up by the eye. Teasing out the Divine carries both, to be shared in voice with community or passed quietly from one hand to another around a small campfire along a desert river, or between lovers on a summer night when it’s too hot to sleep. These poems delve into dreams, mountains, ravens and rattlesnake medicine, relationship and the mythic life of the human spirit, and remind us that what we seek is in our hearts all along.” It’s so nice to be reminded of that, especially with sunset campfires in the not too distant. When not compiling poem collections, she works for the “usually 8-page Norwood Post” and is stagehand and director of children’s theater in Norwood at The Livery. As Laureate, she asks residents to invite a poet to dinner, and open their homes to the magic of poetry and community. Not set up to pull off a dinner, we’re offering a social salon that will fill the store with spoken word. Check our website for the exact time of this event as we get closer:

Hope you can make one or both of these events. A little literary interaction does a body good. In two weeks, I’ll be highlighting off-season travel reads, travel trends noticed by our staff, and the much-anticipated Town Reads List for Mountainfilm 2012. In the meantime, remember that your leisure time, which has so many forces competing for a minute of it here and a minute of it there, is YOURS. Choose to learn, to escape, or to fall asleep with a classic splayed downside upon your belly whenever you can. There are worse habits …




1 Comment
  • Daiva Chesonis
    Posted at 14:23h, 29 February

    Ummmm, duh. Jonathan will be at BTC on WEDNESDAY, March 7th, not Tuesday. Sorry!