"You see, bookshops are dreams built of wood and paper. They are time travel and escape and knowledge and power. They are, simply put, the best of places."
July 1st marked my third year as the owner of Island Books. When my kids were little, age three was one of my favorite times. They had no filter and said the funniest things. They drew hilarious pictures at preschool and told me how beautiful I was, despite the lack of a shower, make up, or a good hair brushing. They made life brighter and more fun. I fully expect Island Books will be working the same magic on me as we pass by our third year together. But don't worry, I'll try to brush my hair this time around.
And what a third year it's been. We won KING5’s Best of Western Washington Bookstore, which couldn't have been a bigger surprise. There were all the memorable author events, including visits from Jonathan Evison, Joyce Maynard, Taylor Jenkins Reid, Nancy Pearl, and more. Our story times and book club thrived, as did the annual book fair extravaganza. We celebrated another exuberant Independent Bookstore day and bought some colorful chairs to sit in outside as the weather turned.
Coming up this month, the Where's Waldo? scavenger hunt starts this Friday, July 6th, so stop in and pick up your passport to find Waldo at local business. You can also check out our summer sidewalk sale happening the same day. Voting for our bookmark contest continues until Saturday, July 7th at midnight, so get in your entries soon. Thursday the 26th is another busy day, with a poetry reading from the Crest Learning writing class led by Michael Harper followed by a throwback book club: The Dead Zone by Stephen King. There are even rumblings in my own house that Victor might read and join. And, to top it all off I'm especially looking forward to July 29th, when we're throwing a cook out with the Seattle7Writers. Garth Stein will be roasting hot dogs!
On a more personal note, recently Victor and I were honored with the 2017 Mercer Island Citizens of the Year award. Thank you to the city council for this great compliment. Victor and I love it here, and we know that any honor we receive is given to our entire staff and community for making Island Books what it is. We are nothing without the support of this island, all of the loyal customers and friends, the new faces we meet along the way, and those that still call in to place orders from their favorite childhood bookstore.
In a year when we lost some irreplaceable friends in our bookstore family, it's comforting to know that all the good news and happy memories would have made them smile.
Happy 4th of July!