Saturday, April 10, 2010

Local Author Honored

Congratulations to Richmond District resident and young adult author (and regular patron of Green Apple) S. Terrell French, who is in Washington D.C. at this very moment accepting the Green Earth Book Award for her novel Operation Redwood, which came out in May of last year. One of our bestselling young adult novels of the year, Operation Redwood mixes fast-paced adventure with an environmental message, as a group of San Francisco youngsters set out to save a redwood grove from the clutches of a large corporation intent on clearcutting. Here is a recent profile of the author from The Examiner.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Sarah Palin and Green Apple team up to save the wolves!

When Sarah Palin's memoir, Going Rogue, came out back in November, we at Green Apple thought it would be nice to put the proceeds to good use. So we decided to donate 100% of the profits of the book to The Alaska Wildlife Alliance, an organization that works to prevent aerial hunting of Alaska's wolves, among other good causes. It also worked out to be a pretty good publicity stunt (see here and here and here and here). In the end, we sold 12 copies. Several people who bought the book from us told us that they were buying it as a gift, but that they were glad to be able to buy it from a place where the money would do some good. One customer even wanted to buy the book and not take it with them- we just told her to make a donation directly!

So a big thank you to Green Apple customers who bought the book from us. Today we cut a check to The Alaska Wildlife Alliance for $139.15, and maybe there will be one more wolf roaming Alaska than there otherwise would have been.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Alpha-bet : the Best Bet

It's time, internet and fellow booksellers, for me to confess something: I have the alphabet stuck in my head most of the time. Anyone else? No, really? I didn't think so. But after a day of shelving books, maintaining a section in detail, or scanning the shelves in a frantic attempt to find an author with an ambiguously hyphenated last name, it just seeps in there, a constant stream of relating one letter to what must come before or after it.

This may effect me more than most, due to a condition remarked upon by all who know me called an Uncannily Precise Recollection of Every Sesame Street Routine Aired Between 1985 and 1991. I don't know why I developed this, but as evidence I recently identified a co-worker's old favorite short based only on her vague description of a particular rain boot. I think that those fragile sponge-y years during which public broadcasting was my only televised input used up my entire memorization capacity, and while my relationship with subsequent learning suffered for it, it has the lovely benefit of providing many different tunes for remembering where letters go while I'm shelving books at Green Apple.

Long story short, this post is dedicated to the alphabet, and this month is dedicated to poetry, and so I give you this:

Ron Silliman's The Alphabet is a wonderful example of how the simplest units of our strange and baffling language can be stranger and baffling-er than you ever thought possible. At a whopping 1,054 pages of poetry and narrative verse, it's a gorgeous beast of a thing, a compilation of twenty six smaller volumes published over the years in various journals and magazines, each dedicated to a letter of the alphabet. It's no simple read, best suited to live on your bedside table for a while be chiseled at gradually, but there are lines in there that will stop you cold and make you want to go back, understand how you got there and figure out where the heck you're going. So if you're looking to draw out National Poetry Month into several months, or if you really have absolutely nothing to do until May, then this book is the perfect celebration of all that poetry can do and undo.

But if you need a simpler alphabet story, or perhaps you need help navigating Green Apple's (ahem) flawlessly alphabetized shelves, allow me to share my favorite for making the process a little more wonderful, albeit with questionable depictions of traditional African garb. A, Amazing.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Book spine poems

A new floor is being installed on our mezzanine today

We usually try to create original content here, more or less, instead of just pointing you elsewhere on the web. But with our kid's section torn up for two days for new flooring, and in celebration of National Poetry Month, we gleefully steer you here and here to see "book spine poems," like the ones below.


Ms. Kelley and Ian's

Stone Arch Books Blog

Good stuff, eh?

Monday, April 5, 2010

Poem of the Week by Duncan McNaughton

Welcome to a new week, the first week of National Poetry Month. This week's poem is by Duncan McNaughton

Dizzy birks Jack's head at the bar

according the theory of light of Exodus of Cyzicus, if
along the corniche at Smyrna
among the gently rocking vessels moored nearby
is one in which a woman sleeps
in a torment of neglect
the afternoon away
against the evening's festivities, then
amidst the promenade of strolling Levantines
must be collapsed on a bench a man
collapsed in mourning
as if twisted around an invisible pole
don't disturb him

Exodus constructed a huge ship at Gades
which he filled with party girls and physicians
for the westward voyage in the shape of a horse

when he is ready he will take coffee like a sacrament
tobacco cigaret in any cosmopolitan area there are masters
locally permanent at odds with themselves
on the subject of this world
and the worms boring through its hull

--Duncan McNaughton, from Capricci (Blue Millenium Press, 2003)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Say Hey? Say Baseball!

Well after a long winter's wait...Happy opening day! (Even if it is only the Yanks and Red Sox opening day). To celebrate a new season here are some baseball books you should check out...

Spiros says of Willie's Boys: "When I was growing up , Willie Mays was The Man. His 1972 trade to the hated New York Mets was my first childhood intimation that not all was right with the cosmos. This book is valuable in giving the 'Marvell Origins' account of my idol (I knew Willie's nickname is buck; I hadn't realized it had been bestowed upon him by his Birmingham Black Barons teammates: it was short for 'runs like a buck, walks like a duck'). More crucially, it serves as an account of the riveting Negro National League Pennant Race of 1948, and an examination of the causes of the death of the Negro Leagues. All in all, an excellent read."

Next is the authorized biography of Willie by James Hirsch, Willie Mays: The Life, The Legend. There is so much depth to this book, so many great stories, that I couldn't put it down. Willie is the man.

Lastly...looking for a good coffee table book? For only $29.98 there is the Big League Ballparks: The Complete Illustrated History. This is a beautiful and informative look at the history of the ballpark. It takes us from 1845 to the present, with 500 pages of history. The perfect opening day present for any baseball fan.