"Books … they’re kind of a compulsion for me. To find a great bookstore is a great thing. "
—Philip Seymour Hoffman
On Sundays I often walk to the bookstore with one of my daughters, but this past week I walked alone (with George Michael blasting in my earphones). As I walked past the Congregational Church their marquee read, “Share what lights you up." I sent a telepathic thank you to Reverend Roberta for the inspiration.
The Mercer Island and Island Books community took my breath away this week. The outpouring of love, support, flowers, and food you shared with us after the armed robbery at the store has been overwhelming. To say thank you from all of us feels like a paltry repayment. Please know that you–the community that loves and supports our bookstore–light me up.
Speaking of community, in just a few weeks my son Erik moves on to a new community when he leaves for college at WSU. Watching another one fly the coop is always a bittersweet time, and in preparation we’ve shared The Naked Roommate by Harlan Cohen and others to help him begin this transition into adulthood. He has also been reading Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, the required read for incoming students. I will miss observing his reading pile, which is always a window into what someone we love has on their mind.
I may not have as close a look into Erik's reading mind soon, but at the store we've spent the summer opening that window into the minds of our beloved booksellers. Each has taken a turn filling two display shelves with their favorite summer reads from all corners of the store, including everything from books they read in high school or as recently as last week. Cindy, James, Lori and Lillian have all had their time owning the shelf and Marni, Miriam, Nancy and I will take our turns soon. Check it out next time you’re in the store. You might be surprised by some oldies but goodies.
We also want to congratulate our Pacific Northwest writers grab-bag winner, Dori Jones Yang, for mentioning her favorite blog post (Pay It Forward) on social media in response to last week's missive. Dori, come on in and pick up your prize.
Thanks for continuing to walk in the door every day and make us your community bookstore, your third place, somewhere we know your name. Our hope is that Island Books “lights you up."
Onward to August,