Top Picks for Interplanetary Adventure

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

By Jodie Brandt, Interstellar Navigator


Space: the final frontier--and one that's frequently explored in science fiction literature.  Sometimes, though, navigating the cosmos of sci-fi can be quite intimidating, especially if you have never laid in such a course before.  There are plenty of black holes and nebulae to avoid, and a few star systems you'll definitely want to check out.


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Thank You, Woodland School Students!

Wednesday, May 31st

A few weeks ago, we had the pleasure of hosting a group of young readers from Woodland School, a local elementary, as they visited Downtown Traverse City on a field trip.  They explored the store and enjoyed story time with our children's specialist, Toni.  We were sad they couldn't stay long, but they had lots of other places to explore on their tour of the downtown district.  We did make sure they had some bookish goodies to take home with them, though!

This week, we were thrilled to hear from our young friends at Woodland School once again, when...

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Brilliant Book Club Ideas

Monday, May 29th, 2017

Book clubs are a great way to discover new books and share your love of literature with friends, but choosing the next book to read can be a bit of a hassle.  You want something unique and intriguing, something that raises as many questions as it answers, so you'll have lots to discuss at your next meeting.  We put our Brilliant booksellers to the task and got some recommendations for their top book club picks, ranging from nonfiction to kids' books and everything in between.

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Denis Johnson (1949-2017)

Saturday, May 27th, 2017

Author Denis Johnson, best known for his story collection Jesus' Son and National Book Award winning novel Tree of Smoke, has passed away at the age of 67. 

Johnson's father was a U.S. State Department employee, so though Johnson himself was born in what was then West Germany, he grew up in such varied locales as Japan, the Phillipines, and the suburbs of Washington D.C.  He earned a bachelor's and then a master's degree from the University of Iowa, where he studied with Raymond Carver.  Johnson's career as a writer got off to an early and auspicious start when he published his first book, a poetry collection entitled The Man Among the Seals, at only 19 years old, but...

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Your Brilliant Guide to Exploration

Friday, May 26th, 2017

One of the great things about being an independent bookstore is helping readers explore new territory--both literally and metaphorically!  Our expert booksellers blaze trails through the wilderness of books and help you find the hidden gems you might have missed.  When you find them here, buy them here.  We know there are other places you could buy books, but if you value our experts' guidance, show your appreciation by making us your Long Distance Local Bookstore.  If Downtown Traverse City is a little out of reach, you can always find us online, but Memorial Day Weekend is a great chance to get out and explore all that Michigan has to offer. 

And yes, we've got guide books that can help with that as well.

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The Allure of Myth

Thursday, May 25th, 2017
By Jodie Brandt, Brilliant Books' Mythmaster General

What is it about myths and legends that speaks so deeply to our human hearts? For millennia, we've seen mankind crafting tales of epic deeds, otherworldly adventure, heroic perfection, and the epitome of beauty.  Written on clay tablets and stone walls, told around campfires and hearthfires, we see the same archetypes appearing in ancient tales across all lands and...

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The Magic of Listening

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

They're here!  Through an exclusive arrangement with our partners at and J.K. Rowling's Pottermore, we're now able to offer downloadable audiobook versions of the Harry Potter series!  This is the first time independent bookstores have been granted the rights to offer these digital audiobooks, and we're thrilled to bring our supporters more of the books you love.  The new collection features all seven Harry Potter books, plus an updated edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them with an introduction by Newt Scamander and six new beasts. 

Oh, and did we mention that it's read by Oscar-Winning actor Eddie Redmayne, who played Scamander in the Fantastic Beasts film? 

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Happy Birthday, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle!

Monday, May 22nd, 2017

Today is the 158th anniversary of the birth of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of one of the most recognized characters of all time: the incomparable detective, Sherlock Holmes.

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1859, Conan Doyle inherited his love of literature from his mother, who shielded her son from the harsh realities of living with his alcoholic father by reading and telling dramatic stories.  Conan Doyle in turn used stories to win himself friends after a wealthy relative paid for him to be sent to boarding school.  When it came time to choose a career, however, Conan Doyle opted instead to pursue...

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