Robin's Picks

Robin Allen is the owner of Forever Books.  A former history teacher turned entrepreneur, she opened Forever Books on April Fools Day in 1999 after the closing of a local children's bookstore.  When not at the store or working for the store (rare), she enjoys reading non-fiction history, memoirs, political works, and fiction.  She also loves spending time with her two nieces.  Robin has served on the board and as Board President of the Great Lakes Independent Booksellers Association.  

Staff Pick Logo
Circe Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780316556347
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little Brown and Company - April 10th, 2018

You dont need a background knowledge in Greek (I have little) to enjoy this stunning novel about Circe, daughter of Helios, god of the sun. Ignored by her family as homely, banished by her father to a remote island for turning a human into a sea monster, Circe eventually meets Odysseus, turning his crew into swine. Loved this!


Staff Pick Logo
Mr. Flood's Last Resort Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781501180637
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - May 1st, 2018

Mr. Flood is an eccentric, cranky, old man whose estate home has turned into a hoarders nightmare since his wife (mysteriously?) died. His Irish caregiver begins to uncover secrets, but she has some of her own. Is anyone who they seem to be? Kirkus reviews hit it spot on when they wrote: “It won't be like any other novel you've read this year--or maybe ever--but it's worth it.”


Staff Pick Logo
Warlight Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9780525521198
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - May 8th, 2018

Set in Britain in the decades following WWII, by the author of The English Patient. Two young people are left with two men theyve never met before when their parents spend a year in Singapore.  Both mysterious and humorous, one reviewer wrote, “. . . this novel about secrets and loss may be Ondaatje's best work yet.” I couldnt agree more!


Staff Pick Logo
Tin Man Cover Image
$23.00
ISBN: 9780735218727
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - May 15th, 2018

Ellis is an Oxford working class 45-yr-old widower, who gave up his dream as an artist to work in a metal shop.  We follow his life as a young man, his close relationship to Michael and subsequent romance with his future wife, leading to a life-changing decision.  Like the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz, this tin man doesnt think he has a heart, but he does. A sweet read.


Staff Pick Logo
The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780451495327
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Crown Publishing Group (NY) - April 24th, 2018

At age six, Clemantine fled the Rwanda massacres with her 15-yr-old sister. Separated from their family, the two of them wandered for six years through seven countries, only to end up in America on television, where Oprah reunites them with their family.  A graduate of Yale, her remarkable story is stunning.


Staff Pick Logo
The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781101981610
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Viking - April 24th, 2018

At the turn of the 19th century, feathers were the fashion, leading to the massacre of birds on a massive scale. Unfortunately, in 1999, the hunt began again; people clamored for rare feathers for the new fad: tying flies for salmon fishing. In 2009, an American studying in London took off with hundreds of birds from the Tring Museum. An enthralling account of a truly bizarre crime and Johnsons hunt for the truth.


Staff Pick Logo
Barracoon: The Story of the Last
By Zora Neale Hurston, Alice Walker (Foreword by), Deborah G. Plant (Introduction by)
$24.99
ISBN: 9780062748201
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Amistad - May 8th, 2018

Brought on the last slave ship to America in 1860 (illegally), Kossola is the last survivor of the cargo and is interviewed by Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God) in 1927.  Rife with controversy, the manuscript was never published until now. Fascinating.


Staff Pick Logo
Varina: A Novel Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9780062405982
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ecco - April 3rd, 2018

The author of Cold Mountain has written a novel about the life of Varina Howell, the second wife of Confederate president Jefferson Davis. The story bounces back and forth from the past to the year she dies.  Varina was not enthusiastic about the Civil War, and at the end of the war, Davis give her a pistol to kill herself if she is captured as she flees to Florida with her children. Much I didnt know!


Staff Pick Logo
Fly Girls: How Five Daring Women Defied All Odds and Made Aviation History Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781328876645
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Eamon Dolan/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - August 7th, 2018

Fly Girls focuses on the women pioneers of aviation and their struggles to share the sky with men.  In the decades of the 1920s and 30s, aviation was dangerous with horrific crashes, unsafe planes, and runways in disrepair. The race was on to fly the highest, fastest, and furthest, and record crowds scrambled to watch the thrilling competitors. While Keith O’Brien’s spotlight is on these five women pilots, he gives an overview of the state of aviation during those perilous times in aviation history. A riveting read.


Staff Pick Logo
Love and Ruin Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781101967386
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ballantine Books - May 1st, 2018

McLain focused on Hemingways first wife in A Paris Wife; in Love and Ruin, the focus is on wife number three, Martha Gelhorn.  Gelhorn, a writer herself, became a well-respected war correspondent, following wars from the Spanish Civil War through Vietnam, into her 80s. Gelhorn was also the only woman on the beaches of Normandy on D-Day, and the only wife to leave Hemingway.


Staff Pick Logo
The Great Alone Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780312577230
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: St. Martin's Press - February 6th, 2018

Another wonderful novel by the author of The Nightingale!  After returning from Vietnam as a POW and suffering from PTSD, Ernt is convinces his wife and daughter (13-yr-old Leni) to leave Seattle and start anew on a remote Alaska island. They are totally unprepared and barely survive. Leni’s voice is riveting in this story, but it is the characters that inhabit the island that drive the story. Both harrowing and joyful.


Staff Pick Logo
The Great Halifax Explosion: A World War I Story of Treachery, Tragedy, and Extraordinary Heroism Cover Image
$29.99
ISBN: 9780062666536
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow - November 7th, 2017

This little known event from WWI resulted in the largest manmade explosion in the world until Hiroshima.  A ship packed with tons of explosives and on its way to France, collides with another in the port of Halifax, Nova Scotia, killing and injuring thousands and flattening the city. Spellbinding, with shocking photos of the devastation. By a Michigan author.


Staff Pick Logo
Rosie Colored Glasses Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780778330691
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mira Books - February 20th, 2018

An unlikely pair fall in love: free-spirited Rosie and uptight Rex.  Their 10-year-old daughter, Willow, struggles to fit in at school (she’s her eccentric mother’s daughter) and with how to relate to her father.  Alternating chapters unfold the story of how her parents meet and fall in love with chapters from Willow’s perspective.  Moving fictionalization of the author’s childhood.   


Staff Pick Logo
The Music Shop Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780812996685
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House - January 2nd, 2018

Frank is the owner of a music shop on a London side street full of shops that are all past their prime by 1988. Frank refuses to give up on vinyl and sell cassettes, but he stays in business because he has the gift of selecting the exact record each customer needs to listen to help them with their specific problems.  One day, a woman faints outside of his store, setting in motion changes for Frank and everyone on his street.  Charming!


Staff Pick Logo
The Immortalists Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735213180
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - January 9th, 2018

In 1969, the four Gold children visit a fortune teller who tells each of them (in private) the date of their death. What follows is the story of each of them and how they really die. Original premise, excellent writing, and begs the question, “Would you want to know the date?”


Staff Pick Logo
The Line Becomes a River: Dispatches from the Border Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780735217713
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - February 6th, 2018

Cantu writes of his experience as a border patrol agent in Texas, who quits after five years, unable to cope with the cruelty on both sides of the border. When he tries to help a Mexican illegal he’s befriended, Cantu gets the chance to see what happens to illegals after the border patrol hands them off to the system. Cantu never preaches, but gives the reader serious food for thought.


Staff Pick Logo
Summer Hours at the Robbers Library: A Novel Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062678966
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - February 27th, 2018

When 15-year-old, home-schooled Sunny gets arrested for shoplifting a dictionary, the judge assigns her to work at the library for the summer. She’s assigned to Kit, the reference librarian who’s recently moved to town to escape her past. Throw in Rusty, a Wall Street investor gone bust, and a parade of delightful characters, all with a fascinating story, and you have a charming summer read.


Staff Pick Logo
We Were the Lucky Ones Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780399563096
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - January 2nd, 2018

For this novel, Hunter has researched her Jewish grandfather’s family experiences during WWII with stunning results. All have harrowing experiences and end up scattered around the globe during the war: Siberia, Poland, Israel, and South America. Yet they and all of their children survive.  While you read these unbelievable accounts, you will agree they “were the lucky ones.


Staff Pick Logo
The Marsh King's Daughter Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780735213012
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - April 17th, 2018

(PB releases April17) Helena and her mother are trapped in the swampy wilderness of Michigan's Upper Peninsula, held captive by Helena's father, who kidnapped her mother when the mother was a teenager; Helena was born a year later. You find out at the beginning they escaped fourteen years later, and now her father has escaped from prison. Captivating (pun intended); I could not stop reading it, finishing the book in the wee hours of the morning!


Staff Pick Logo
Magpie Murders: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062645234
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - March 27th, 2018

(PB releases March 27) Popular crime novelist Alan Conway has just completed this novel, Magpie Murders, about detective Atticus Pund, who is investigating the murders at the English estate of Sir Magnus Pye. When the novelist commits suicide and the last ten pages of the novel are missing, it’s up to the author’s editor to determine just what happened.  A “book within a book” format that is clever, intelligent, and thoroughly enjoyable.


Staff Pick Logo
Camino Island Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781524797140
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Bantam - March 6th, 2018

A theft of original Faulkner manuscripts are stolen from a library, and a novelist is hired by the insurance company to discover if a book dealer who dabbles in the black market of stolen manuscripts has acquired them - - without arousing suspicion.  My first Grisham, and  I loved it! Perfect beach read!


Staff Pick Logo
The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781492650959
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Sourcebooks - March 6th, 2018

In the 1920’s, thousands of women were hired to paint radium on watch hands and instrument panels. Told it was harmless, these “ghost girls” lit up the streets on their way home, covered in the fine dust, even painting it on themselves for fun.  When they began getting sick, it stumped the health community and alienated the government and big companies. Shocking yet compelling, with photographs of these brave young women, Radium Girls will haunt and move you.


Staff Pick Logo
The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780812989908
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dial Press - January 30th, 2018

The 12 lives in the title refer to the 12 times Samuel has been shot during his sketchy and vagabond life.  Ready to settle down, widowed Samuel and his spirited teen daughter move to his wife’s hometown in Massachusetts. The story shifts back and forth from the 12 shooting escapades and the struggle to raise his daughter in a small town full of ghosts of the past.  Exceptional and enjoyable!


Staff Pick Logo
A Gentleman in Moscow Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780670026197
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Viking - September 6th, 2016

In 1922 the Bolsheviks sentence Count Alexander Rostov to house arrest in the luxurious Metropol Hotel in Moscow for political crimes; however, he is moved from his suite of rooms to a spare attic room.  How he copes with the span of 30 years in confinement makes for an inspiring, moving, and thoroughly enjoyable read.  I can’t rave enough about this spectacular novel!


Terror in the City of Champions: Murder, Baseball, and the Secret Society That Shocked Depression-Era Detroit Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9781493030583
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Lyons Press - August 1st, 2017

Staff Pick Logo
House of Names Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781501140228
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner Book Company - March 6th, 2018

The bestselling author of Brooklyn retells the ancient Greek tale of Clytemnestra, who kills her husband Agamemnon to avenge the death of their daughter Iphigenia, and her son Orestes, who kills her in turn to avenge his father's death. I knew little of the mythical story - - but no matter - - the result is a dramatic, intimate chronicle of a family implosion set in unsettling times as gods withdraw from human affairs. Both absorbing and moving.


Shop Locally, Here, 24/7!

Tuesday, June 19th, 7:00 PM

Book Talk and Signing with Wade Rouse (writing as Viola Shipman)

author of The Recipe Box 

Treats from recipes in the book will be served, so reservations are requested.

Please call (269) 982-1110 or email. For more info on this event, click here.

 

 

 

 

 

Storytime with Poppy

Thursday, June 21st at 10:45 AM

20% Entire Purchase for all Attendees!

 

Pete the Kitty and the Groovy Playdate

This groovy series from New York Times bestselling team James and Kimberly Dean introduces Pete the Cat before he was Pete the Cat...when he was little Pete the Kitty!

Pete the Kitty is super excited to visit his friend Grumpy Toad’s house for a playdate! Grumpy Toad has all the best toys: a truck, building blocks, and a superhero cape. Far out! It’s going to be cat-tastic! But when Grumpy Toad refuses to share any of his cool toys with Pete, neither of them are having any fun. Will Grumpy Toad ever share his toys with his friend Pete? In this easy-to-read and engaging picture book, little readers will learn all about sharing with their favorite blue kitten!

 

 THE GREAT AMERICAN READ is an eight-part series on PBS that explores and celebrates the power of reading, told through the prism of America’s 100 best-loved novels (as chosen in a national survey).  It investigates how and why writers create their fictional worlds, how we as readers are affected by these stories, and what these 100 different books have to say about our diverse nation and our shared human experience.  There will be a nationwide vote to choose America's most beloved book. Find the 100 book selections here and read and place your vote by clicking on image to the left!

 

Returning this July! "Where's Waldo in downtown St. Joseph?"

Where's Waldo? All around St. Joseph in the month of July! Pick up your passport from Forever Books on or after July 1st and find Waldo in local stores for a chance to win Where's Waldo prizes.  A Waldo party and prize drawing will be held at 6:30 PM on Tuesday, July 31st.