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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Chat with Authors Marissa Meyer and Christopher Healy on Twitter! #TalesRetold

Twitter Chat Alert! 

Where: Monday, June 3rd at 9pm ET 

What: THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM series author, Christopher Healy, and New York Times Bestselling author of CINDER and SCARLET Marissa Meyer talk  fractured fairy tales for middle grade and young adult readers using hashtag: #TalesRetold.

The chat will be hosted by Novel Novice founder and blogger extraordinaire, Sara Gundell!

If you participate in the chat (post a question, comment, etc.) you will be entered to win copies of Marissa and Chris's books (pictured here)!

But it isn't a chat unless you join us! We'd love to hear your thoughts, questions, and opinions about fractured fairy tales in middle grade and young adult literature today! Meet us, this coming Monday at 9pm EST on (or Twitter, whichever you prefer).


Marissa Meyer (@marissa_meyer): Marissa Meyer's first book in The Lunar Chronicles, CINDER, debuted on The New York Times Bestseller list. She lives in Tacoma, Washington with her husband and their three cats. Visit her at 

Christopher Healy (@christophrhealy): Christopher Healy is the author of THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM and THE HERO'S GUIDE TO STORMING THE CASTLE. The third part of the trilogy will be out in 2014. He lives in New Jersey with his wife, two children, and a dog named Duncan. You can find him online at and learn more about his books at

Sara Gundell (@NovelNovice): After helping run Novel Novice Twilight for a number of years, Sara launched Novel Novice in January 2010. She also writes the Hunger Games Examiner and Beautiful Creatures Examiner columns for, and served as the Children’s & Young Adult Author Coordinator for Wordstock Festival from 2010-2012. Sara is also the author of FAME: Suzanne Collins, a biographical comic book about the author of The Hunger Games, released in 2012 by Bluewater Productions. She lives in Portland with her soon-to-be-husband Derek, who proposed in the YA section of their local bookstore.

We hope to see you there!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Children's Book Week Giveaway Hop!

It's Children's Book Week! And we're celebrating with a very special giveaway hop hosted by 
I am a Reader Not a Writer, Kid Lit Frenzy, and Mymcbooks. 

In celebration of this national event, we are giving away a complete set of Walden Pond Press books (*Note - Based upon what we have in stock; Only includes books published to date, not upcoming titles). Get a quick look at a bunch of our titles here:
What is Children’s Book Week? 

Established in 1919, Children’s Book Week is the longest-running literacy initiative in the country. Each year, books for young people and the joy of reading are feted for a full week with author and illustrator appearances, storytelling, parties, and other book-related events at schools, libraries, bookstores, museums, and homes from coast to coast!For more information please visit:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Indie Thursday Feature: Mockingbird Books!

Everyone knows Seattle is a literate city - lots of readers, bookstores, and great spots to dig into your favorite book. That's why a blog series celebrating independent booksellers wouldn't be complete without a post about a Seattle bookstore. Today we highlight Mockingbird Books, a fantastic Seattle indie children's store. The staff at Mockingbird is made up of many ex-librarians and educators, and we loved this trick to finding out how to find the right book for any child, ask "What is your favorite movie and what are your two favorite books? From there, you can see what genre and sense of humor appeals to a reader." Please welcome Wendy Ostenson, one of Mockingbird's booksellers.
Welcome, Wendy! Thanks for taking the time to chat with us about your store. Can you start by telling us what makes Mockingbird Books so unique? 
The store is small and cozy and we really want people to feel at home here. Alyson, the store owner, is a huge proponent of our local community. 
As far as the store goes, if you ask the little ones, they’ll tell you we are all about the train table. If you ask caregivers, they’ll tell you we are all about Story Time. If you ask school kids, they’ll say we are all about the graphic novel section and book clubs. We try to make people feel like they belong here. 
Give us a virtual tour—what do we see when we first walk in? Is there a certain section that jumps out at us? Where do we find the children’s section? 
Our store mascot, Geraldine the Giraffe, will greet you as you walk in. She’s an oversized stuffed animal, but she seems to get more hugs than anyone I know. Next you’ll see our LOCAL AUTHOR wall. Here is Seattle, we are blessed with an amazingly rich group of illustrators and authors. We love to give them center billing.
The store is pretty much dedicated to children’s books, but we do offer a small, thoughtfully chosen selection of adult books. Most of these adult titles have either a local tie or is loved by a staff member. 
How do you match a child or a parent with a book? What questions do you ask? 

Sue from the store taught me this trick: What is your favorite movie and what are your two favorite books? From there, you can see what genre and sense of humor appeals to a reader.
Our staff is filled with ex-librarians and early childhood educators so we do a pretty good job of matching books to reading levels. 
What are your favorite titles to hand sell right now? 

For really little ones, I love all Leslie Patricelli’s board books, especially Yummy, Yucky. Her illustrations are silly yet instructional, like “Spaghetti is yummy. Worms are yucky.” Leslie grew up nearby and is a great friend to the bookstore.
Mo Willems seems to get my heart every time he puts out a book. How he manages to cram emotion, laugh-out-loud humor and a real social lesson in to all his books is amazing. He also readers to participate in the books. There is a Bird on Your Head (An Elephant and Piggie Book) and Goldie Locks and the Three Dinosaurs are currently some of my favorite Story Time reads because the kids really get into them.

Middle grade readers have a lot of great authors to choose from right now. There seems to be a trend in creating characters who are super smart and funny. I love Max Earnest from Pseudonymous Bosch’s This is Secret series, along with Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance from Trenton Lee Stewart’s Mysterious Benedict Society books. I think kids have different kinds of intelligence, whether its social smarts or abilities to deal with crisis, that aren’t easily measurable but readers recognize and respond to. Local author Kevin Emerson’s most recent book, The Fellowship for Alien Detection, also shows two quirky and smart-in-different ways characters. I loved that both Hayley and Dodger have very different approaches and skills, but that they can bond over pancakes. 

Does your bookstore coordinate school visits with authors? Or do you work with local teachers and librarians in some other way? 

We sometimes work to set up author visits where Mockingbird pre-sells books. We also offer our store out as a space where school librarians can come together and collaborate. We have a great community approach.

Why are children’s books an integral part of your store? 
Children’s book sales are 90% of our revenue. Our whole platform is dedicated to creating a community of young readers. We have a daily Story Time at 11:00 (all days except Sunday.) We love to read and sell children’s books, which is lucky for us. It’s definitely a golden time in children’s literature. 

Do you sell books on your website? 

We do, but would rather sell to you in person or over the phone. The website sale goes straight through our distributor and we don’t see as much of the money, and more importantly, we can’t recommend a title to you that you might not have heard of before. 

Why are independent bookstores so important to the future of reading? 

Readers want to be transported to another world when they read. Indie Bookstores make sure that those other worlds are worthy and credible places to be transported to. We don’t have a corporate agenda. We just love books.
Find Mockingbird Books: 
Phone: 206.518.5886
Address: 7220 Woodlawn Ave NE, Seattle


Monday, May 6, 2013

Celebrate the Debut of Platypus Police Squad with a Twitter Sweepstakes!

Happy book birthday to PLATYPUS POLICE SQUAD by Jarrett J. Krosoczka

To celebrate, we are giving away a $200 gift card to one winner's local bookstore! PLUS, five second place winners will receive signed, finished copies of PLATYPUS POLICE SQUAD and posters. First, check out the awesome book trailer, then follow the entry rules below..

How to Enter:
This is a Twitter giveaway. To enter tweet the following message including "RT" and our Twitter handle. It should fit the 140 character limit: 

RT @WaldenPondPress Celebrate #PlatypusPoliceSquad's debut & enter to win a $200 bookstore gift card! RT to enter 
To follow our Twitter feed:
One winner will be chosen at random from all entrants on Wednesday, May 8th at noon ET and contacted via direct message or @reply on Twitter. The winner will then pick his or her local bricks and mortar bookstore from which a $200 gift card will issued (provided store meets requirements included in the official rules below). Please note, following @WaldenPondPress is strongly recommended as it will make it much easier for us to contact you in the event you win!
Good luck to all who enter! This giveaway is only open to US residents, 18 years of age and older. Official rules follow. By entering the Tweetstakes you are agreeing to the official rules
Giveaway commences at noon ET on Monday, May 6th and ends at noon ET on Wednesday, May 8th.


This promotion (the "Sweepstakes") is sponsored by Walden Media, LLC ("Walden Media"),
1888 Century Park East 14th Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90067.



To enter, using your Twitter account
1) Tweet or retweet the approved message. The entire message, including exact link, hashtags, and @reply, must be included to qualify. LIMIT ONE ENTRY PER PERSON. Multiple entries from one Twitter account and single entries from multiple Twitter accounts held by the entrant are automatically disqualified.  Automated means of entry and entries by any means which subvert the entry process are prohibited and all such entries will be void.

The Sweepstakes is open to all legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia eighteen (18) years of age and older, excluding employees and immediate family members of HarperCollins or Walden Media, LLC, and its parent, subsidiaries, affiliates, assigns, advertising, promotional and fulfillment agents, attorneys, and other representatives and the persons with whom each of the above are domiciled. Offer void wherever prohibited or restricted by law.

Each entrant in the Sweepstakes must be the rightful holder the Twitter account. In the event of a
dispute concerning the identity of the holder of the Twitter account, the holder will be deemed to
be the person who owns the email address that was used to register the Twitter account. The
Twitter account must be opened prior to the commencement of the Sweepstakes. 

The Sweepstakes will commence on Monday, May 6th at 12:00 noon (ET). The last entry will be accepted Wednesday, May 8th at 12:00 noon (ET).

One potential winner will be selected by a random drawing from among the eligible entries. Winner will be chosen by no later than four (4) days following the end date above. The potential winner will be notified by Direct Message or @ Reply via Twitter. If the potential winner does not respond to the notification within three (3) days of delivery, an alternate winner will be chosen. With the potential winner’s response to the notification, the winner must provide Walden Media with the name of a Qualifying Bookstore (as defined in “Prizes” section below).  If the potential winner fails to do so an alternate winner will be chosen.  The potential winner will be required to complete, sign, return and have notarized an Affidavit of Eligibility, a Liability Release, and where imposing such condition is legal, a Publicity Release (the “Prize Claim Documents”).  If a selected potential winner fails to return the signed Prize Claim Documents within five (5) days of the receipt of the Prize Claim Documents, the prize may be forfeited and an alternate winner may be selected.

There will be one grand prize winner who will receive: a $200 gift card to a Qualifying Bookstore of the grand prize winner’s choice. The estimated retail value (“ERV”) is $200. Walden Media reserves the right to substitute a substitute prize or cash payment of equal or greater value for the prize (or a portion of the prize) in its sole discretion.  [A “Qualifying Bookstore” is a local “bricks and mortar” bookstore physically located within 100 miles of the grand prize winner’s hometown, which offers gift certificates of at least up to a $200 value and accepts American Express credit cards. If the chosen bookstore does not meet these qualifications, the grand prize winner will be notified by Walden Media, and given a maximum of three (3) days to select an alternative Qualifying Bookstore.  If the grand prize winner does not respond, or does not provide an acceptable alternative, Walden Media reserves the right to select a bookstore in its sole discretion.]

The prize is non-transferable and cannot be sold or redeemed for cash. 

By participating, entrants affirm that they have read these Official Rules, agree to be bound by
them and the selection of the winners, which shall be final, and waive any right to claim ambiguity
in the Sweepstakes and/or these Official Rules. All federal, state and local tax liabilities arising
from this Sweepstakes will be the sole responsibility of the winner. Acceptance of the prize
constitutes permission to use the winner's name, tweet, likeness, biography, and prize won for
purposes of advertising, promotion and publicity without additional compensation, except where
prohibited or restricted by law.

The entrants release, discharge, and hold harmless Walden Media and its parent, affiliates,
subsidiaries, assigns, attorneys, representatives and agents, including advertising, promotion and
fulfillment agencies, from any and all liability or damages arising from the administration of the
Sweepstakes and the acceptance, possession, use or misuse of any prize received in this Sweepstakes, including, without limitation, the following: (i) late, lost, incomplete, delayed, misdirected or unintelligible entries, (ii) any printing, typographical, administrative or technological errors in any materials associated with the Sweepstakes, and (iii) any damage to the entrant's computer, related equipment, data files,
and software resulting from entrant's downloading of information regarding the Sweepstakes or
participation in the Sweepstakes.

Walden Media reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to modify, cancel or suspend this
Sweepstakes should a virus, bug, computer problem or other causes beyond Walden Media's control corrupt the administration, security or proper operation of the Sweepstakes. Walden Media may prohibit you from participating in the Sweepstakes or winning a prize if, in its sole discretion, it determines that you are attempting to undermine the legitimate operation of the Sweepstakes by cheating, hacking or employing other unfair practices or by abusing other entrants or the representatives of Walden Media.


Any dispute arising from the Sweepstakes will be determined according to the laws of the State of
California, without reference to its conflict of laws principles, and the entrants consent to the
personal jurisdiction of the State and Federal Courts located in the State of California
over them and agree that such courts have exclusive jurisdiction over all such disputes.


For the names of the prize winners, e-mail your request to no
earlier than Monday, May 13th, but no later than Thursday, May 30th. You may also send a self-addressed stamped envelope (postage not required from Vermont residents) to Walden Media, 17 New England Executive Park, Suite 305, Burlington, MA 01803 during the time period above.

This Sweepstakes is conducted solely by Walden Media, LLC and is not sponsored or otherwise
affiliated with Twitter, Inc.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Celebrate The Girl from Felony Bay with a Giveaway!

The Girl from Felony Bay, by debut author J.E. Thompson, tells the story of a girl, a crime, and a great unsolved mystery set deep in the heart of South Carolina.

The book is a 2013 Junior Library Guild Selection, and a Southern Independent Bookseller's Association Summer 2013 Okra Pick.

Kirkus calls The Girl from Felony Bay, "A tale bursting with intrigue and adventure...a successful turn by a promising new author." 

To celebrate this much anticipated debut, we are running a very special giveaway. Not only do the first 50 entrants automatically receive a copy of the book, but EACH PERSON who enters is eligible to win a $100 gift card to the bookstore of his or her choice.

Click here to enter the giveaway and spread the word!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Welcome to Green Bean Books!

This week for #IndieThursday, we celebrate one of our favorite Northwest stores: Green Bean Books in Portland, OR. Not only does the store only sell children's books, but they offer a 20% discount to teachers and host an annual wine & cheese educator night! Earl Dizon, one of the store's booksellers, kindly agreed to answer some questions for us.

Tell us about your store, what makes Green Bean Books unique?
One of the things that make Green Bean Books unique is that we have lots of things (besides books) to find and discover! You may not have thought you needed a finger puppet or a fake mustache or pom-pom pets until you see them. Also, when we finish a book we love, we can’t wait to share it. Our fingers practically twitch thinking about the shelf talkers we’ll be making for the books!

Give us a virtual tour – what do we see when we first walk in? Is there a certain section that jumps out at us? Where do we find the children’s section?

The first thing you see is the display of themed and new books. (Unless, of course, it’s the yeti in the window that caught your attention walking by; our monthly window displays have definitely stopped people in their tracks!) Your eyes look up and see the shelves of picture books- all the colorful spines, the occasional face out. To your right, you notice there are some shelves dedicated to young adult and grown up fiction and non-fiction. But, again, it’s the picture books that are drawing you in so you walk there- unless got distracted by the books in the irreverent parenting section. You see a wooden box that says “Look Inside” and like Alice in Wonderland you do what you’re told and see a miniature diorama that depicts a scene from a recent favorite book of ours. You marvel at it and again like Alice you find yourself in a wonderland of words. Titles you remember from childhood jump out at you and you can spend hours just rereading these classics. But if you can tear yourself away and turn the corner, you see more books categorized by subject- Science, Animals and Pets, Biographies, Foreign Language, Pirates, Superheroes, and Fairies and Princesses, just to name a few. There are shelves of miniature food toys and tiny colored pencils, wooden animals, and paper things to construct. Another wooden box awaits you in this room.

A cozy sitting area calls you, inviting you to sit down in the comfortable cushions of our big green sofa. But you walk on and see another room. You mutter to yourself that the store is bigger than it looks from outside. There are more books (of course!) and a play area, and a secret bargain shelf in the back!

You notice the outdoor deck and, during the spring and summer, the beautiful weeping mulberry bush is in full bloom! You can crawl under the leaves for a little getaway with your book. It truly feels like a magical reading fort!

You pass by ancient repurposed vending machines where you can buy tokens and get a set of unlikely friends, adopt a tiny baby with a birth certificate, or buy a mini-journal and pencil set. By the register you see a big red machine that used to vend cigarettes but inside are muskrat finger puppets with names like Colonel Fuzz and Snoop and Princess Puff. Then there are more tiny things to marvel at- including miniature sets for our older customers! There’s a calendar of all the events we have in store. You think of who you can bring to the different story times or to the multiple craft activities or to the monthly puppet show. A tote bag to put all your purchases in catches your eye. And you think you’re done, you’ve walked full circle, but you see a sign “Where is Lowly Worm? He’s hiding somewhere around the store. Can you find him?” And, off you go to find him so you can tell your friends you had the complete Green Bean Books experience!

How do you match a child or a parent with a book? What questions do you ask?
We do our best to get to know our customers and the intended reader. Sometimes a person just needs to be introduced to the right book that would make them a lifelong reader. We ask what their recent favorites are, what interests they have, and what they don’t like.

What are your favorite titles to hand sell right now?
The picture book Perfectly Percy immediately caught my eye because of Paul Schmid’s illustrations. It’s just too cute. I love telling people that it’s about a porcupine who loves balloons and how that proves to be a problem. Another picture book that stands out is You Are Stardust by Elin Kelsey. It’s a great introduction to the concept of how everything is connected with one another. Soyeon Kim’s diorama artwork is beautiful. I am a huge fan of Christopher Healy’s League of Princes series. Familiar characters from fairy tales set out to prove to the world and to themselves what makes a hero in The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom. I was able to read an advanced copy of The Hero’s Guide to Storming the Castle and it was as funny and clever as the first one. I can’t wait to handsell this one too!

Does your bookstore coordinate school visits with authors? Or do you work with local teachers and librarians in some other way?
We offer teachers 20% off new books for their classrooms. We’re also more than happy to help them if they need book recommendations around a certain theme. Plus we have our annual Educator Night where we share our favorite picks for the school year, offer exciting giveaways, and pass out wine and treats. When you mix wine and books, you can’t go wrong!

Why are children’s books an integral part of your store?
Our mission is to share our love of reading with kids and their families!
We primarily sell children’s books. Some people don’t realize just how many different kinds of children’s books there are- not just board and picture books and more than just bedtime stories and fairy tales.  We have sections just for pirates, robots, dinosaurs, fairies and mermaids too!

Can interested parties buy books from your website?
There is a link on our website that directs them to buy books online. A customer told us she tells her mother who lives out of town to buy books there so they can still be supporting Green Bean Books from far away.

Why are independent bookstores so important to the future of reading?
Independent bookstores are important to the future of reading because they’re one of the few remaining places where people can get personalized recommendations. Again, it’s about finding the right book for the right reader. We also work hard to offer customers a unique experience through all our events and interactive displays and machines. We offer scads of events throughout the year.  Everything from biweekly story times and monthly puppet shows to our annual kids’ poetry reading, Super Hero and Fairy Day!

How to Find Green Bean Books:
Location: 1600 NE Alberta St., Portland, OR
Phone: (503) 954-2354

Facebook: Green Bean Books
Twitter: @GreenBeanBooks