Friday, December 10, 2010

Little Shop has its own soap!

Looking for an awesome stocking stuffer for the Little Shop fan in your life? We now carry our very own signature soap! It's all-natural and handmade, and smells amazing- the fragrance is a yummy blend of lemon, orange, vanilla and almond cookie. And the color is unmistakably Little Shop of Stories: swirled blue and yellow. Come in and get yours today before we run out!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

December Events

Here is what is happening at Little Shop this month.

Twelve Days of Christmas Storytime
Thursday, December 9 | 7 pmJoin us for our Twelve Days of Christmas in Georgia Storytime!  Susan Rosson Spain and Elizabeth Dulemba, author and illustrator of this new book, will be our incredibly special guests.  They're great! We'll sing and read and have cookies!

Mary Mac's Cookbook Event
Friday, December 10th | 7 pmThe perfect gift for the foodie on your holiday list!  Mary Mac's Tea Room is an Atlanta landmark.  Join us this evening as we welcome John Ferrell, owner of Mary Mac's, and the author of Mary Mac's Tea Room: 65 Years of Recipes from Atlanta's Favorite Dining Room.  John will talk food and history as well as sign a limited number of cookbooks so please call early to reserve your copy.
Gingerbread Party (Please note that this event is full.)
Saturday, December 11 | 3 pmRun, run, as fast as you can and come to our annual Gingerbread Party, where we read our favorite gingerbread stories and then decorate our own gingerbread men and women! You must RSVP (starting on December 1st) for this event so we'll know how much gingerbread to bake!
Tina Cocolina Cupcake Decorating Extravaganza Storytime (Please note that this event is full.)
Sunday, December 12 | 3 pmMartin Howard, one of the top ten patissiers in the country and co-author of the recently published and very cute Tina Cocolina: Queen of the Cupcakes, will be here for a very special storytime and cupcake decorating experience extraordinaire! You must RSVP (starting on December 1st) for this event.
Richelle Mead author visit 
Monday, December 13 | 6 pm at the Decatur LibraryLittle Shop of Stories, along with the Georgia Center for the Book, will be hosting Richelle Mead at the Decatur Library. Richelle's newest book, Last Sacrifice, is the sixth book in the Vampire Academy series and will be available for sale at our store starting on December 7th. We will also be selling books at the event. The first 100 people who pre-order Last Sacrifice from Little Shop will get one special bracelet that gets you a spot near the front of the signing line. "If you don't pre-order, no worries--you'll still get your books signed. It's totally cool."
Closing Early for our Little Shop Holiday Party
Tuesday, December 14 | Closing at 5 pm
Opening at the Usual Time the Morning After our Little Shop Holiday Party
Wednesday, December 15 | Opening at 10 am
Please be kind.
Special Storytime with Local Author Melissa Walker
Thursday, December 16 | 7 pm
Imagine this:  you are asked to care for a young endangered polar bear cub.  Would you do it?   In A Place for Delta, a young boy does just that, and his commitment leads him on an environmental journey that takes him as close as the North Georgia Mountains and as far as the Artic.  Author Melissa Walker joins us tonight to share her story with us!
Polar Express Party (Please note that this event is full.)
Saturday, December 18 | 2 pmJoin us for our annual Polar Express Party with Santa. We read the classic and beloved Polar Express, drink hot chocolate, and then meet Santa! You must RSVP (starting on December 1st) for this event so we'll be sure that everyone has enough time to visit Santa! And yes, here at Little Shop, we can still hear the bells ring!
Winter Storytime
Sunday, December 19 | 3 pmBaby it's cold outside! It is almost the Winter Solstice and time to read books about Jack Frost and snowy days, and warm fires, and sleigh rides and quilts, and ice skating! Brrr!
The Night Before the Night Before Christmas Storytime
Thursday, December 23 | 7 pmWe will have a special storyteller read The Night Before Christmas! (Hint: he wears a lot of red and white.) Adults like this one as much as the kids do.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony Photos!

Dennis over at NextStopDecatur sent over a couple of great shots from last Thursdays Christmas Tree Lighting event, including an excellent one of Santa doing the countdown.

Thanks, Dennis!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

2nd Annual Decatur Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony!!!

We're cold.  We're tired.  We're excited.
The tree is on the roof!
(From the Decatur Metro blog as sent in by Heather)

Come join the entire Decatur community for the
Second Annual Decatur
Christmas Tree Lighting Extravaganza
East Court Square
(in front of Little Shop)
Thursday, November 2nd
7 p.m.

There will be hot chocolate
and other goodies.
The Glennwood Chorus will sing.
(The Big Man will even be there! Shhhhhhhh!)

We would really like to thank the following for their contributions toward making this wonderful and new Decatur tradition possible: Café Alsace, Cakes and Ale, Cookie Studio, Cooks Warehouse and Sherlocks Wine Merchant, Decatur Downtown Development Authority, Greene's Fine Foods, Homegrown Decatur, King Tree Experts, Mingei, Squash Blossom, Starbucks, Veritas Planning Group, and Zucca.

A very special thanks to the folks at
King Tree Experts 
who donated their services during today's installation.
Professional.  Patient.  Superb. 

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Take Your Child To A Bookstore Day!!

We love kids and we love books! So as you can imagine, we are super excited about this national movement to get parents and children together this Saturday to promote reading and the role bookstores can play in helping children become life long lovers of books and reading.

We are celebrating all day! Grab your favorite kid or two or six and join us! Local author Laurel Snyder will be with us at 11am to celebrate Hanukkah and her new book, Baxter, The Pig Who Wanted to be Kosher. We will have cookies all day too!!

Grab a copy of our new Holiday Gift Guide and stay awhile to talk with us about our favorite books of the year!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Help us light up the Square for Christmas!

Join us on Thursday, December 2, at 7 p.m. for the 2010 Decatur Christmas Tree Lighting. We are partnering with other local businesses to sponsor the city's very own Christmas tree above the shops on East Court Square in downtown Decatur. The tree will be up all holiday season, but be sure not to miss this special tree lighting event. There will be carols, treats and joyous holiday merrymaking.  Special music will be provided by the Glennwood Academy Chorus.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Bark If You Love Storytime!!

Does your dog like stories? Or maybe just to chew on a good novel? Join us this Sunday afternoon, Nov. 21 at 3 pm for our canine-themed storytime. Bring your dog if you like, or just come if you love to hear a good dog tale, Treats for our dog attendees will be provided by Taj Ma Hound in Oakhurst.

Trends Continue!!!

Kathy Reich's first YA novel, Virals, has debuted at #6 among chapter books on the New York Times Best Sellers list!  Congratulations to Kathy.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Harry Pot(ter) Luck has been Canceled

Please note that the Harry Pot(ter) Luck and a Movie that was scheduled for November 13th has been canceled.  We thought it was a pretty good idea, but there just wasn't enough interest.  Maybe before the 8th and final Harry Potter movie.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Kathy Reichs is Coming!

Kathy Reichs is visiting Little Shop of Stories on Saturday, November 6th at 4 p.m. to talk about her new YA novel, Virals.

Ms. Reichs, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Bones novels and producer of the successful Fox TV series of the same name, delivers a thrilling debut series for young adults. VIRALS is a wildly adventurous spin-off that follows the grand-niece of lead character Temperance Brennan and her gang of teenage “sci-philes” as they try to uncover a murder mystery that’s been buried deep for more than forty years.
Fourteen-year-old Tory Brennan and her friends live on the secluded Morris Island near Charleston, South Carolina. Their shared passion for understanding the natural world brings them to a research facility on nearby Loggerhead Island where they find themselves embroiled in a forty-year old murder mystery. While there and in a spontaneous moment of activism—freeing a caged dog for medical testing—the gang is exposed to an experimental strain of canine parvovirus. As they discover their virally-heightened senses and animal quick reflexes, the five friends race to combine their natural scientific curiosity with their new found physical gifts to solve a cold-case murder that has suddenly become very, very hot.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Trend Continues!

I recently blogged about the success that authors and illustrators who have recently visited Little Shop have had on the New York Times Best Sellers list.

Anna Dewdney was here for the 2010 Decatur Book Festival. We we given permission to sell Llama Llama Holiday Drama prior to its official release date. So now it has debuted at #1 on the New York Times list.

Lincoln Peirce was just here on Friday. Then, about as fast as you can say "Lincoln Peirce was just here on Friday," his Big Nate books showed up on the New York Times list for the first time, debuting at #4 for series books.

We have autographed copies of all of these books (except for Julie Andrews).

Friday, October 29, 2010


(or view it on YouTube)

Pete dolls and books are also available at Little Shop of Stories.

Halloween Storytime

We had an awesome time last night at our annual Halloween Storytime! Thanks to everyone for coming out and for putting together such incredible costumes- we were super-impressed.IMG_4025

And Little Shop of Stories would like to extend an extra-big thank-you to Chef CouCou for volunteering her services and painting faces all evening. She did a fabulous job, and if anyone is looking for birthday party entertainment, contact her sous-Chef, Marilyn Ricci, at, for information.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Big Nate is Coming on Friday!

Actually, the author of the Big Nate books is coming.  Lincoln Peirce will be here to talk about his art and his writing and to sign some books, including the just released Big Nate Strikes Again.

For fans of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, Big Nate is great!  The style is similar (with more text), and the humor is fun and a bit irreverent.

Coming back to Little Shop to make the introductions is our own comics camp leader Justin!

This should be a very fun event.

Friday.  October 29th.  4 p.m.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Picture Book Authors and Illustrators Come To Little Shop - Score Big

Author Julie Andrews was scheduled to come to Little Shop on May 21st following the release of The Very Fairy Princess, but postponed her tour due to a family emergency.  The book, written by Ms. Andrews and her daughter, debuted at #5 on the New York Times Best Sellers List, and stayed around there for seven weeks until she came to Little Shop on July 9th.  Then Princess soared to #1!

Author Jamie Lee Curtis came to Little Shop on September 18th to read from her new book, My Mommy Hung the MoonThen it debuted at #1 on the New York Times Best Sellers List!

Author and illustrator Mo Willems came to Little Shop on October 7th to read from his new book, Knuffle Bunny FreeThen it debuted at #1 on the New York Times Best Sellers List!

Robin Preiss Glasser, illustrator of Fancy Nancy and the Fabulous Fashion Boutique, came to Little Shop to do a read from her book on October 20th.  Then it debuted at #2 on the New York Times Best Sellers List!  (Knuffle Bunny was still at #1.)

I'm starting to notice a trend here.

Actually, each of these books are great and certainly would have found their way onto best sellers list without us.  But we're glad to help!

More than that, we're grateful to each of these authors and illustrators for visiting us.  It is always special.

Friday, October 22, 2010


Robin signs a reader's cast....
All of us at Little Shop are recovering from back-to-back events this week. Both were held in-shop, but the similarities pretty much end there. On Wednesday evening, we welcomed the glamorous Robin Preiss Glassser, illustrator of the delightful Fancy Nancy books. Joining us were a hoard of little fans, dressed in glitter and feather boas (along with two Iron Men). The atmosphere was giddy and everyone was thrilled to meet Robin, who definitely dressed for the occasion.  Robin signed books, posed for pictures, and even added her signature to one admirer's hot pink arm cast.

A reader draws on Scott's arm.
In contrast, a more-serious, but equally entertaining crowd came out to meet Scott Westerfeld, author of Behemoth, the sequel to his steam-punked YA novel Leviathan. He talked with his devoted readers about the books, his other works (including the Uglies series) and some of the method behind his madness. The questions he fielded were pretty impressive. Along for the ride was Scott's wife Justine Larbalestier, also an author and recent editor of Zombies vs. Unicorns, an anthology to which Scott contributed along with some other excellent authors. Scott stuck around to sign a bunch of books, and although he didn't sign a cast, he allowed a reader to draw unicorn on his arm.

Thanks to everyone for coming out. Pictures from these events can be seen on our Flickr page. Make sure to come to our special Olivia reading this Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m., which will be attended by a special guest. (Hint - she wears a lot of red). We have more events lined up, so check back here often, or become our friend on Facebook.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Sign of the Times

This is now an official book category sign at a mega-chain that shall not be named. Ahh, I remember my first paranormal romance in high school....

Friday, October 15, 2010

Lost, unpublished Dr. Seuss manuscript found

Booktryst, an excellent literature blog, has some scanned pages from an unpublished manuscript by Dr. Seuss. The book, titled "So Many Sports" was in the genesis stage some 40 years ago, and then apparently cast aside. Then in 1983, it was brought back to his attention by an employee. It consists of 19 pages of doodles and notes, some written solely by Seuss, others by his assistants with Seuss' corrections and notes. Seuss responded to the inquiry about the book:

Re your enclosed manuscript, I do indeed remember it. And my critique now is as same as then. What, in my opinion, is wrong with this story is that...despite the greatness of Pete as a stellar athlete hero...the negative image of him flubbing and unable to catch any ball at all will make him a schnook. And I think the reader's reaction will be, 'What's the matter with this dope?'

He goes on to suggest that he might be wrong about it, but suggests that the assistant  send it to Harper and Row, who "do very good brat books" and have "several times made best sellers out of properties I have rejected."

A pretty fascinating look into the creative process and the mind of Theodore Geisel. Go check it out.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Mo Willems Brings Knuffle Bunny to Decatur

Pete the Cat's James Dean
gets Mo's signature
A huge crowd welcomed author and illustrator Mo Willems to the Decatur Library last night. He solemnly read from a selection of books. (Those of you who were lucky enough to be there know that I jest). He actually read We Are In A Book, one of the great books in the Elephant and Piggie series, with all of the animation of a Looney Tunes character. After answering a few questions, he read Knuffle Bunny Free, the latest and last of the beloved series, drawing laughs from everyone (and a few sentimental tears from the parents). Then he sent a huge Knuffle Bunny into the lobby to be hugged and mugged with the kids, and sat to sign a whole bunch of books. Among the signees were Pete the Cat's James Dean and Eric Litwin.

Thanks to everyone who attended last night. You were a great crowd. And thanks especially to Mo Willems for making it such a wonderful evening for all.

Next up: Fancy Nancy illustrator Robin Preiss Glasser on October 20 at 7 p.m. Check back for more information. You can also visit to keep up to date on what's happening. Or if you are the tweeting type, follow our Twitter feed @lilshopostories

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

What's New!

When one is a talented and creative artist, interesting things can happen.

We have two new books in the store by Ian Falconer.  First is Olivia Goes to Venice featuring Ian's spunky pig, Olivia!  There is a wonderful sweetness in each of the Olivia books, along with a spontaneous nature that makes me look at Olivia's experiences through fresh eyes.  I LOVE Olivia.

On quite the other end of the spectrum, Ian has also provided illustrations for David Sedaris' new Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk.  This series of short fiction is something different for David; the protagonists are now chickens and storks and bears and rabbits (and squirrels and chipmunks).  I LOVE David Sedaris.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Mo Willems and the Final Knuffle Bunny Tour

Caldecott winning and New York Times bestselling author and illustrator Mo Willems will be back in town to celebrate the release of Knuffle Bunny Free, the final book in his critically-acclaimed Knuffle Bunny series. Little Shop of Stories and the Georgia Center for the Book are proud to be co-hosting him for a spectacular evening of reading, discussion, and activities. Mo and a special surprise traveling companion (just the right size for young ones to hug!) will visit, and Mo will read a selection of his books, including Knuffle Bunny Free. This event will take place on Thursday, October 7th at 7pm at the Decatur Library. at 215 Sycamore Street. Little Shop of Stories will have a limited supply of tickets available to our customers. Tickets are free with the purchase of Knuffle Bunny Free and each ticket admits one adult and one child. Activities and giveaways are included and other Mo Willems titles will be available for purchase the night of the event. Mo will be signing books after his reading. Children are encouraged to bring their own Knuffle Bunny or other beloved stuffed friend!

Tickets can be purchased at Little Shop of Stories beginning September 28th at 5pm. A paper ticket will be issued; all attendees will be required to show this ticket to gain admission to the event. Get your tickets now, they'll be gone very quickly! All ticket holders please visit prior to the event to download your very own passport and travel checklist. Don’t forget to bring them to the event! The passport and travel checklist are now available to download.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

They're Back!!!

A new litter of Pete the Cat dolls are back in the shop. Get 'em while you can.

Jamie Lee Curtis delights Decatur book fans

A couple of pictures from our Jamie Lee Curtis book signing this afternoon at the Decatur Library. Ms. Curtis was hilarious and genuinely kind to the parents and kids who came to see her. Thanks to all who attended and to the incredible staff at the Library for making it a great time for all. Autographed copies of her new book "My Mom Hung the Moon" and her other excellent picture books are available at the shop.

Is it mere coincidence that on the very same day that Ms. Curtis came to Little Shop of Stories, her new book debuted at #1 on the New York Times Best Sellers List?  We think not!  Congratulations to Jamie Lee Curtis!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Book Review: Freedom

Ah, just what you don't need.  Just remember: sometimes there's true substance behind the hype.

Like Jonathan Franzen's 2001 National Book Award winning novel The Corrections, Freedom dissects a Midwestern family with issues.  Yes, the Berglunds are younger than the retired Lamberts, have two children rather than three, and have more serious problems that undermine the family's continued viability.  Nonetheless, there are times in which readers might feel as though Franzen is documenting only a slightly altered universe -- that he's taking us to a familiar destination using an Alternative Route.

Yes (sort of), but what a trip!

Patty and Walter Berglund moved to a blighted section of St. Paul after marriage and, as urban pioneers, raised two children, Jessica and Joey.  Franzen weaves freely through time and characters to develop the background of his subjects (excepting Jessica; why does she get short shrift?).  An ingenious device -- Patty's third person autobiography -- takes up much of the first third of the novel, lays down the foundation for describing people around her on her own terms.

Even those with minor parts become fully formed individuals with multiple motivations, Walter's immigrant grandfather and Patty's Manhattan sister among perhaps a score of others.  The key character from outside the family is Richard Katz, Walter's polar opposite, randomly assigned college roommate and avant-garde singer/guitarist, who becomes his best friend.  (Upon reading, I immediately conjured up the image of author and Twin City area resident Neil Gaiman.)  While we read of the history of interactions amongst the three adults, precocious sixteen-year-old Joey has moved in with the family next door to share a bed with his slightly older girlfriend.

Freedom is a major theme throughout the novel.  Individuals are free to choose how to act; they must also live with the consequences.  Having and abiding by core values limits freedom, but reduces the probability of making mistakes.  Thus the paradox.  This is what makes the second chapter, "Mistakes Were Made: Autobiography of Patty Berglund by Patty Berglund. (Composed at Her Therapist's Suggestion.)" -- a book within a book -- so thrillingly alive.

The craftsmanship of the writing is at times so overwhelming (Did I just read that?!), the peering into the inner psyches of its characters so vast, and the intricacies of the relationships so ambitious that I remain in awe days after finishing with an admiration that may well grow over time.

Freedom is an amazing work.

- Dave

Friday, September 10, 2010

How to Open a New Book

Next time you come to the shop and buy a new book, you might want to follow the advice from this old instructional graphic. I am not sure how old this is, but I love the quote from William Matthews, who is "the most famous bookbinder America has produced". (I found a listing for his shop from a New York City directory published in 1859 - 107 Franklin, in Flatbush) Apparently he took his bindings pretty seriously. Here is his description of a harrowing experience with an uncivilized customer: "Taking the volume in his hand, and, holding the leaves tightly together (instead of allowing them full play), he violently opened it the center, exclaiming: 'How beautifully your bindings open!' I almost fainted." Simply shocking!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Chalkboard Update

Don't miss Jamie Lee Curtis signing her newest book "My Mommy Hung the Moon" at the Decatur Library on Sept. 18 at 2:00. Tickets are available at Little Shop now. 

Friday, September 3, 2010


If Liz Kessler gets the nod for coming the furthest distance to the Children's Stage, there are other authors of note who could possibly walk from home.

Here are authors with Atlanta connections on stages in which we are involved!

Shelia Moses - Children's Stage - Saturday - 1:00 - Ms. Moses, who lives in Atlanta, has written numerous books for tweens/YA.  Her newest is Joseph, a book about a young teen whose home life has fallen apart.
Deborah Wiles -  Children's Stage - Saturday - 1:00 - Joining Shelia Moses will be Deb Wiles, another Atlantan, whose great Aurora County trilogy is set in the small Alabama community of her youth.  Her newest, Countdown, has received multiple starred reviews.
Vicky Alvear Shecter - Children's Stage - Saturday - 2:00 - This Atlanta area author of the informative and entertaining Alexander the Great Rocks the World is back with the brand new Cleopatra Rules!  Hey, nonfiction rules!
Brian Jordan - Children's Stage - Sunday - 3:00 - He played for the Atlanta Falcons.  He played for the Atlanta Braves.  He runs the Atlanta-based Brian Jordan Foundation.  He is a sports analyst for Fox Sports South.  And he's an author!
Laurel Snyder - Children's Stage - Sunday - 4:30 - Laurel lives with her family here in Atlanta, and writes and writes and writes.  She has published something like five books in the last 2+ years, including a picture book (Baxter, the Pig Who Wanted to be Kosher) and a chapter book (Penny Dreadful) this year!
Terra Elan McVoy - The Escape at the Old Courthouse - Saturday - 1:00 - She worked for years at Little Shop of Stories.  Now she's a big-time author with two YA novels (Pure and After the Kiss) the past two years.  Gooooooooooo Terra!
Susan Rebecca White - The Escape at the Old Courthouse - Saturday - 5:00 - Born and raised in Atlanta, Ms. White currently teaches in the creative writing program at Emory University.  She is the author of this year's A Soft Place to Land.
Jackson Pearce - The Escape at the Old Courthouse - Sunday - 4:00 - Ms. Pearce is a UGA graduate and currently lives in Atlanta.  Sisters Red, her second novel, was published this year.
Thomas Mullen - Decatur Library Stage - Saturday - 10:00 - His last book, The Last Town on Earth, was named Best Debut Novel of 2006 by USA Today, a Chicago Tribune Best Book of the Year, a New York Times Editor's Choice, and received the James Fenimore Cooper Prize for excellence in historical fiction.  His new book is The Many Deaths of the Firefly Brothers.  Mr. Mullen lives in Atlanta.
Susanne Fincher - Decatur Library Stage - Saturday - 11:15 - Ms. Fincher is an Atlanta-based Jungian-oriented psychotherapist, Licensed Professional Counselor, and Board Certified Art Therapist who employs the techniques of art therapy, which is the subject of her books.
Todd Moye - Decatur Library Stage - Saturday - 12:30 - From 2000 to 2005, Mr. Moye directed the National Park Service’s Tuskegee Airmen Oral History Project, based in Atlanta. This author of Freedom Flyers: The Tuskegee Airmen of World War II teaches at the University of North Texas.
Josh Russell -  Decatur Library Stage - Saturday - 1:45 - Mr. Russell teaches creative writing at Georgia State University, and is the author of 2010's My Bright Midnight.
Dorothy Moye - Decatur Library Stage - Saturday - 5:30 - A Decatur art consultant, Ms. Moye is the curator of a documentary photography exhibition to open in August on Emory University’s online journal, Southern Spaces.
Kathleen Koch - Decatur Library Stage - Saturday - 5:30 - Ms. Koch is a former correspondent for Atlanta based CNN. Rising from Katrina: How My Mississippi Hometown Lost It All and Found What Mattered has just been published.
Allison Umminger - Decatur Library Stage - Sunday - 12:00 - Ms. Umminger is an Atlanta-based writer who has co-authored two novels, Flyover States and Eye to Eye, under the pseudonyms Grace Grant and Grace Carol, with Dana Johnson.
Norma Price - Decatur Library Stage - Sunday - 1:15 - Dr. Price practiced at Emory University Hospital and Clinic and currently lives in Tucson, where her interest in immigrant issues resulted in Crossing with the Virgin: Stories from the Migrant Trail, which she co-authored.  Her son, Justin, is a former Little Shop employee who lives in Decatur.
Joseph Skibell -  Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage - Sunday - 3:45 - Mr. Skibell's third novel, A Curable Romantic (featuring a great cover), was published this year.  He teaches at Emory University.

The Weather - (Hey, what could be more local?) Decatur's weather forecast just seemed to get more and more awesome as this weekend approached.  Daren had a dream that the temperature peaked at 82.  Dreams may come true!

Friday, September 3rd - high 93 degrees; low 64 degrees; 10% chance of rain
Saturday, September 4th - high 83 degrees; low 57 degrees; 0% chance of rain
Sunday, September 5th - high 85 degrees; low 61 degrees; 0% chance of rain

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Here are some highlights of the 5th Annual AJC Decatur Book Festival:

DBF is featuring a numerous tracks this year, grouping authors by topics and ideas.  Among the thirteen tracks are: 

Homegrown Goodness, sponsored by Decatur Metro
Two of the authors appearing on this track courtesy of one of our favorite blogs are: 
Carleen Madigan - Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage - Saturday - 11:15 - featuring her very interesting book on increasing individual sustainability, The Backyard Homestead.
Dr. Malcolm Stanford - Decatur Conference Center Stage - Saturday - 3:00 - co-author of Story's Guide to Keeping Honeybees.  He will be interviewed onstage by beekeeper, honey expert, and Little Shop of Stories' own Marcy Cornell.

Katrina: 5th Anniversary
Some of the authors appearing on this track are: 
Kathleen Koch & Dorothy Moye - Decatur Library - Saturday - 5:30 - Koch, a Gulf Coast native, reported on Katrina for CNN.  She is the author of Rising from Katrina.  She will be joined by curator and former New Orleans resident Dorothy Moye.
Patricia Smith - Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage - Sunday - 12:00 p.m. - four-time National Poetry Slam champion and National Book Award finalist reads from Blood Dazzler, her collection of poems set just before, during, and in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. 
Renee Watson - Children's Stage - Sunday - 1:30 p.m. - Watson will present her picture book, A Place Where Hurricanes Happen.

Some of the other great authors appearing on the Children's Stage include:
Bob Shea, author and illustrator of many book including his latest, Dinosaur vs. The Potty;
Dr. Cuthbert Soup (the name is sufficient to intrigue);
the prolific Ridley Pearson;
Marie Rutkoski of the Kronos Chronicles;
Tom Angleberger, author of The Strange Case of Origami Yoda;
Brian Jordan (former Atlanta Brave and Atlanta Falcon);
Jeanne Birdsall, author of The Penderwicks and a new picture book, Flora's Very Windy Day.

See if you can match the author to the image!

Friday, September 3rd - high 94 degrees; low 65 degrees; 10% chance of rain
Saturday, September 4th - high 83 degrees; low 60 degrees; 10% chance of rain
Sunday, September 5th - high 86 degrees; low 63 degrees; 0% chance of rain

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


Great authors are coming to The Escape as well!

The Escape, which features young adult authors, has moved to the Old Courthouse this year and author appearances have expanded to both Saturday and Sunday.  Highlighted here is just one of many, many highlights!

David Levithan, the author of Boy Meets Boy, Are We There Yet?, Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, and Love is the Higher Law will be at The Escape on Saturday at 1 p.m.  He will be speaking about his newest book, Will Grayson, Will Grayson, which was co-authored with John Green.  He's a great writer.  He's pretty prolific, and we hear he's a very interesting guy.

Now, having Mr. Levithan all by his lonesome would be pretty darn impressive.  But to raise the ante, he'll be joined by Terra Elan McVoy, author of Pure and After the Kiss, the later of which came out earlier this year from Simon Pulse.  As Terra is the former manager of Little Shop of Stories, we can guarantee that she's great!

Cinda Williams Chima, Carrie Ryan, Nancy Werlin, Kirsten Miller, and Robin Benway are just a handful of other great authors appearing on The Escape this weekend.

And it's all FREE!

Friday, September 3rd - high 93 degrees; low 66 degrees; 0% chance of rain
Saturday, September 4th - high 83 degrees; low 60 degrees; 0% chance of rain
Sunday, September 5th - high 85 degrees; low 62 degrees; 0% chance of rain

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


It is always exciting to have an author we just love come to the AJC Decatur Book Festival who live far, far away.

This year, Liz Kessler is coming all the way from the coastal town of St. Ives, which is located in Cornwall, England!  That's the peninsula in the southwestern part, just below Wales.  It's not surprising that she lives near the ocean.

Liz is the author of two great series that we are always recommending: Emily Windsnap and Philippa Fisher.  Emily is a girl who discovers, at the age of 12, she has certain mermaid qualities and swims off on great adventures.  Philippa, at eleven, is given a fairy-godsister and learns to be VERY CAREFUL what she wishes for.

Friday, September 3rd - high 92 degrees; low 69 degrees; 10% chance of rain
Saturday, September 4th - high 85 degrees; low 64 degrees; 0% chance of rain
Sunday, September 5th - high 85 degrees; low 66 degrees; 0% chance of rain

Monday, August 30, 2010


Did you know that Little Shop of Stories is doing even MORE at this year's AJC Decatur Book Festival?

We'll be at the Children's Stage as always.  We'll be at The Escape (the YA stage), this year located on the second floor of the Old Courthouse.  The Escape has expanded to Saturday and Sunday this year.  Little Shop will also be selling books for the Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage and the Decatur Library Stage.  Bookselling and author signings for those two stages will be in front of the Sycamore House, which is located just east of the corner of Church and Sycamore and right across from Decatur Presbyterian Church.

Here's a brief rundown of authors:

Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage
Saturday: Patti Digh, Carleen Madigan, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Diana Gabaldon.
Sunday: Patricia Smith, Casandra Clare, Mark Mustian, and Joseph Skibell.

Decatur Library Stage
Saturday: Batt Humphreys, Thomas Mullen, Susanne Fincher, Todd Moye, Michael Knight, Josh Russell, Elizabeth Nunez, Kathleen Koch, and Dorothy Moye.
Sunday: Dana Johnson, Alison Umminger, Norma Price, M.O. Walsh, and Alex Taylor.

You can find out about each of these author events by going to the AJC Decatur Book Festival website. However, I do want to highlight several of these authors today.

Check out the first two.  Here's the hard part - they're both presenting AT THE SAME TIME!  (Argggh!)

Cassandra Clare - Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage - Sunday at 1:15 p.m.

Casandra Clare is a great YA author, but The Escape just could not hold the expected audience.   Clare's The Mortal Instruments trilogy (City of Bones, City of Ashes, and City of Glass) were extremely successful.  The first of three books in the prequel, Clockwork Angel, is being released tomorrow.  (As it is a prequel, it is not necessary to have read any of her previous work.)  

"This first book in Clare's Infernal Device series, a prequel to her bestselling Mortal Instruments books, opens as Tessa's pleasant life in 1878 New York is coming to an end when her guardian aunt dies. Upon her arrival in London, where her brother lives, Tessa is kidnapped by the Dark Sisters, who force her to learn to use a rare power–shape-shifting–she didn’t know she had. Her rescue by a young man named Will leads her to the Shadowhunters....The events often read as bleakly as the Victorian London weather, punctuated by Clare's trademark humor, empathy, and authentic characters, who fight their own flaws and tragic pasts as often as they do evil. Mysteries, misdirection, and riddles abound, and while there are some gruesome moments, they never feel gratuitous. Fans of the Mortal Instruments series and newcomers alike won’t be disappointed."
– Publisher’s Weekly 

Norma Price - Decatur Library Stage - Sunday at 1:15 p.m.

Dr. Price is the co-author of Crossing with the Virgin: Stories from the Migrant Trail. This book documents stories of immigrants who cross over to the United States through the Arizona-Sonora Desert.

"Crossing With the Virgin raises important questions about underlying assumptions and basic operations of border enforcement, helping readers see past political positions to view migrants as human beings. It will touch your heart as surely as it reassures you that there are people who still care about their fellow man." - Antigone Books website

Norma Price is also the mother of Little Shop's own Justin Colussy-Estes!

The AJC highlights two more authors:

Patricia Smith - Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage - Sunday at 12:00 p.m.

"Like her former Boston Globe colleague Mike Barnicle, who has also risen above plagiarism charges, poet Patricia Smith has found her groove. Since she resigned from the Globe 12 years ago after admitting that she made up some characters in a handful of her columns, Smith has hunkered down and poured herself into her poetry. Her 2008 book, “Blood Dazzler,” a collection of poems about the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, was a finalist for a National Book Award. (The book is now the basis for new production by the renowned dance troupe Urban Bush Women, which will be performing at the Rialto Center for the Arts in January.)"

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie - Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage - Saturday at 1:45 p.m.

"If you’d come of age right after a coup of your government, what impact would that have on the way you relate to your family? On the way you view yourself? On how you define love? Nigerian author Adichie’s two novels, “Half of a Yellow Sun” and “Purple Hibiscus,” deal with those themes against the backdrop of her home country. A reader sees the brutality and the glory of the land through the eyes and heart of a young writer who knows it intimately and writes about it lyrically. In her latest collection of short stories, “The Thing Around Your Neck,” she looks ever more deeply at the very essence of relationships."

Friday, September 3rd - high 91 degrees; low 70 degrees; 10% chance of rain
Saturday, September 4th - high 89 degrees; low 67 degrees; 0% chance of rain
Sunday, September 5th - high 87 degrees; low 69 degrees; 0% chance of rain