Meet Mikayla

Brilliant Books has a brand new bookseller: Mikayla!  We're so glad to have her on the team, and get her perspectives on classics, poetry, and contemporary literature.  Stop by to say hello — or get to know her here.


Tell us about yourself:

I’m a recent graduate from the University of Michigan, where I was so indecisive about what I wanted to do with my life that I ended up having 3 majors: International Studies, Spanish, and Art History.  None of these have proven to be particularly lucrative, and I will soon be pursuing a law degree for another one of my passions: immigration and asylum advocacy.  When not reading, I can be found playing the piano or guitar, ignoring my Duolingo notifications (learning French is probably a lost cause) and going on outdoor adventures via hiking, biking, or kayaking.  I love meeting new people and giving (or receiving) book recommendations, so stop in and say hello!


If you could host a dinner party for five people, real or fictional, living or dead, who would you invite?

Jeannette Winterson, Virginia Woolf, Regina Spektor, Tracy Chapman, and Kierkegaard (which sounds pretentious, but really I just have questions).


What’s the first thing you notice about a book?

The cover. And font. I won’t purchase a book if I think it’s ugly, which is a problematic take, but true nonetheless. We should have left faceless digital art as an Instagram moment.


What’s on your dream bookshelf?

Not just books, actually. I like to have plants on my bookshelf, and maybe some pretty/meaningful trinkets. My bookshelves are basically an extension of myself, so I take it as an opportunity to display all of my favorite things alongside my favorite books.


A book that changed your life

Probably Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. I read it at a time in my life where I didn’t think I would ever become a voracious reader again, like I had been as a child, but this book pulled me in completely and left me a different person. I finished it in a few hours, and I haven’t stopped reading books since!


What makes for a good bookstore, in your opinion?

Having something for everyone. It’s actually why I started working for Brilliant Books - there was a collection of Patricia Highsmith diaries that was I was so surprised and excited to see that I decided to apply. I love when people are able to come in with obscure interests and leave with something they’re happy with!


The Shadow of the Wind By Carlos Ruiz Zafon, Lucia Graves (Translated by) Cover Image
By Carlos Ruiz Zafon, Lucia Graves (Translated by)
ISBN: 9780143034902
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - January 25th, 2005

Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit By Jeanette Winterson Cover Image
ISBN: 9780802135162
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - August 20th, 1997

The Beauty of the Husband: A Fictional Essay in 29 Tangos (Vintage Contemporaries) By Anne Carson Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375707575
Availability: Ships in 2-3 days; Not Currently In-Store
Published: Vintage - February 19th, 2002