Wednesday, July 29, 2009

August Events at Old Firehouse Books!!

Hear ye, hear ye!! Faithful followers, amass before the indomitable sound of my voice! Err...sight of my words? No matter. I beseech you to take a gander at this wondrous news of late!

Event: Shannon Loftin signs Just a Touch

Date: August 8

Time: 11:30 am to 1:00 pm

Place: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St.

Price: FREE!!

Too often in life we become so focused on material things that we lose sight of the true gifts that are given to us. Just a Touch, by Shannon Loftin is a collection of the 'gifts' she received from her grandmother, representing stories, family traditions, and memories her family have shared for years. Shannon will bring samples of some of her grandmother’s scrumptious recipes. Come meet her and enjoy just a touch of goodness! This event will be held in conjunction with the store’s display celebrating the Julie and Julia movie.

Event: Strange Worlds Book Club

Date: August 13

Time: 6:00 pm

Place: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St.

Price: FREE!!

Strange Worlds book club is the new science fiction/fantasy book club sponsored by Old Firehouse Books. This month will be our first meeting! We will be discussing Singularity Sky by Charles Stross, one of the preeminent science fiction writers of the twenty-first century. Ask for the Strange Worlds discount at the store to receive 20% off on Singularity Sky or any of our other book club selections. More information at under Book Clubs.

Event: Open Book Club meeting

Date: August 20

Time: 6:00 pm

Place: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St.

Price: FREE!!

Our Open Book club is open to anyone who would like to meet and chat with others who like good books. For August, our selection is One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Whether you’ve been meaning to reread the book or have had it on your shelf waiting for you, now’s the perfect time to delve into this classic. Get 20% off on One Hundred Years of Solitude during the month of August.

Event: Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander book review group

Dates: Tuesdays starting August 18

Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm

Place: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St.

Price: FREE!!

Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series has been loved by legions of fans for decades. Now her much-anticipated Echo in the Bone continues the saga on September 22. To help readers recall all that has happened in the series, Joann Thomas will lead a review group as a refresher on the previous six books. We’ll cover one book per week. Join us starting August 18 to immerse yourself again in the world of Outlander and get ready for a new adventure!

Event: Brown Bag Lunch author reading and signing: 147 Practical Tips for Teaching Sustainability

Date: August 25

Time: 12:00 pm

Place: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St.

Price: FREE!!

Many people believe that we are currently at a point of new technology and innovation and can begin to imagine and construct new ways to live on our planet. Join local authors William Timpson and Gailmarie Kimmel to explore new ideas about sustainability.

Event: Book Club Happy Hour

Date: August 27

Time: 6:00 pm

Place: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St.

Is your book club wondering what to pick next? Come to our book club happy hour and we’ll present a selection of the best picks to come out this year, plus a couple of classics that you might not have tried yet. We’ll have light refreshments and a few local authors who visit book clubs. The event is free, but you’ll need a reservation to attend. Go to for more information.

Don't Be Afraid!

One of Julia Child's catchphrases was "Don't be afraid!". She'd say this before deboning a duck or hacking apart a live lobster on camera. We at the store are all looking forward to the new Julie and Julia movie. I've read the book and must say that I really enjoyed reading about how Julie Powell gained self-confidence (and a whole new career!) through cooking her way through Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I've read Julia Child's My Life in France as well. Julia is truly an inspiration when you consider the sexism and lack of experience that she overcame to become the woman who made French cooking seem doable to the home cook. I expect that the film will give me warm fuzzies too. Here's a link to the trailer:
So, we're running an essay contest that closes on August 5. Write a one page essay that answers these questions: Was there ever a time in your life where you decided to challenge yourself to do something despite your fear? Was there something that inspired you to go for what you want?

Send your essay to

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Brown Bag Lunch and Author Signing Today!!

So today our Brown Bag lunch author is Fort Collins' own Laura Pritchett! She'll be here at noon, so bring a lunch and stop by. We'll have some fresh cornbread for you if you've forgotten your food.
Laura will be reading from and signing Going Green: True Tales from Gleaners, Scavengers, and Dumpster Divers. Laura has written the introduction and one of the pieces in the book, but many other authors have contributed. Laura was dumpster diving when dumpster diving wasn't cool; conservation has been a way of life for her. However, with the rising awareness of sustainability and green living, many people are realizing that scrounging can be fun, fulfilling, and challenging.
We'll have some of Laura's other books available at the store as well. See you at noon!

Friday, July 17, 2009

There’s a new book club in town!

Old Firehouse Books is starting a new book club. An official name is in the works, but it may be something like the, ‘Literates of Today’ or the ‘Yes We Can…Read' book club.

We’re going to try to get some of our younger customers to join this time. Does anyone know why there is a lack of youth in books clubs? Great now I sound like my parents (kids today…). We’re having the first meeting in September, so students can have a chance to join.

The first book on the list is The Road by Cormac McCarthy. The book club will meet in September on a Monday evening (time & date TBD). If you want to keep up on details shoot us an e-mail to sign-up to be on our e-mail list or keep checking the blog.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

But wait, there's more!!

So I know all of our faithful followers are already aware that we are doing our Independents Week Grand Opening in conjunction with Independence Day. This is a great time to think about all independent, local businesses and what they mean to you. How do our local shops and restaurants enrich your life with their unique style, with things you just can't find anywhere else, with their friendly folk who know you by name? We love being here- I truly can't imagine a better job, and I've had enough of them to know. So let us know that you love us just as much as we love being here for you! Come by and see us. Let us know how it's going, what you'd like to see. Our sidewalk sale starts tomorrow, and we're ready to roll out some screamin' deals on some wonderful books. Now's the time to stock your bookshelf or get your summer reading lined up!

And while we're on the subject of coming by and chatting with us, we'd like to announce that Betsy Markey is going to be working a shift in our store this Saturday from 1pm to 3pm. As someone who has experience in local independent business, she'll be here to hear more about the current issues facing local business owners. We're very excited and proud to have her.

But wait, there's more! Today we've got the Debut Theater Company coming at noon, to entertain us all. Bring the kids or just bring yourself.

Also, on Friday, We've got Jennifer Olson, Denver chef and photographer, here to sign her book Colorado Organic. We've got copies in the store, and I have salivated over many of the recipes. She's gotten local restaurants like Potager, Z Cuisine, and Frasca to give some of their recipes. The photos are pure food porn, and I mean that as a good thing. See those burgers up there? YUM.

That's a pretty solid week of excitement here. We'd love to have you join us!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Something Uncanny

So, I'm presently reading House of Leaves, by Mark Z. Danielewski. All that "needs" to be said about this book is that you will never, ever, read anything else like it. It is its own genre. This book, interestingly enough, mirrors its own plot (certainly yet another extremely clever maneuver by the author). This is because House of Leaves is every ounce as much a cult classic as the film (The Navidson Record) which is the book's main plot. In a second sense, this book is just as bizarre and alone as both the house and its new inhabitants.

The plot consists primarily of a family (Will Navidson, Karen Green, their two kids Lily & Chad and a cat & dog) who has recently moved into a new house on Ash Tree Lane in Virginia. Navidson is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist who has set out to capture something like an idyllic, quintessential american experience...on film. In his own words he states, "Personally, I just want to create a cozy little outpost for me and my family. A place to drink lemonade on the porch and watch the sun set." However, they soon realize that something in that place is very wrong. What begins as a very slight spatial anomaly becomes a most unsettling dive into the very nature of darkness.

I don't exactly need to say that Danielewski's book is, at worst, a monumental achievement in literature, but I think it helps to point that out. I have decided that Mark Danielewski is a genius. I cannot begin to assess the amount of time it must have taken to write House of Leaves. It seems that every single sentence is composed with all the others in mind, yet each one is uniquely clever and beautiful. Even the way Johnny Truant writes & speaks is unique to Truant, and perfectly flawed.

I have some reflection on this book, which I will spare you here, but I might post it in my personal blog at:

In order to bring this thing to a close, I should certainly recommend Danielewski's book to everyone who reads contemporary literature, enjoys the edgy, has an inclination toward the brilliantly strange, etc. Yes, it is at times a tale disturbing, dark and difficult to follow. But, please do not be discouraged, as this is an utterly essential, brilliant work of fiction, which should be invested in as soon as possible.
One wish of mine is to meet Mark Danielewski and discuss House of Leaves with him; however, even if I was so lucky to meet such a brilliant man, it wouldn't surprise me if he refused to discuss his work with his own family, much less a fan.

If you think you've got the resolve for this book then I urge everyone to pick up a copy and keep the tidal wave alive!


Friday, July 3, 2009

Roald Dahl

I recently rediscovered Roald Dahl. He was my favorite growing up, all of his books and even the movies made from them help make up a large portion of my childhood memories. A copy of "Skin and Other Stories," one of his collections, found its way into the store and I felt compelled to pick it up. These stories are intended for adults, so it felt strange reading the words of an old friend in a new light. It was like walking into a place where you haven't been for years; it may be remodeled, redecorated, and feel foreign, but somewhere inside you can feel its familiarity. The stories didn't hold exactly the same magic that had captivated me years ago, but they were clever and well-written in that familiar way.

Roald Dahl was born in Cardiff, Wales to Norwegian parents. His spent his childhood getting in and out of trouble, which is where he got inspiration for most of the books he wrote at a later age. His first published work was the short story, "A Piece of Cake," purchased by The Saturday Evening Post for $900. He went on to write numerous other adult short stories, as well as over a dozen childrens novels, many of which have been made into films. This fall his story "Fantastic Mr. Fox" is expected to make the jump from print to screen as Wes Anderson's creation this Fall.

You can find Roald Dahl's childrens novels, as well as his short story collection at your local, friendly Old Firehouse Books. Also, look for his books at our sidewalk sale during our "Independents Week," tomorrow until the 11th of July!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Don't Forget!

Just a little visual reminder of the great events we have planned for next week!

Can't see the details? Check out our Events Calendar on our website!