1,000 Books to Read Before You Die: A Life-Changing List

A celebration of the reading life by the co-founder of the acclaimed A Common Reader presents a cross-genre, historically representative compendium of 1,000 forefront works of literature, complemented by essays on each book’s particular relevance.

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1000 Books to Read Before You Die- with wine!

Join us for a festive evening of wine and apps with author James Mustich as we celebrate the release of his book, 1000 Books to Read Before You Die. Book presentation and discussion, casual conversation  with trivia and a book signing. This is the PERFECT holiday or birthday gift for someone else….or just for yourself!

There is no charge, but registration is suggested- to save a spot or reserve a book click HERE. (Yes, we will serve non- alcoholic beverages).

About the book:

The ultimate book for book lovers: the 1,000 must-read books across genres and eras, each accompanied by a thought-provoking short essay on why the book is so essential. Encompassing fiction, poetry, science and science fiction, memoir, travel writing, biography, children’s books, history, and more, 1,000 Books to Read Before You Die moves across cultures and through time to present an eclectic collection of titles, each described with the special enthusiasm readers summon when recommending a book to a friend.

“As the owner of a 90-year-old bookselling institution, I am not easily fazed by 1,000 books, but Mustich’s literary bucket list stopped me in my tracks. His expansive scope is coupled with a delightful wit and a perfect eye for the surprise detail. Never again will you have to wonder what to read next. A book you’ll cherish for a lifetime!” 
–Nancy Bass Wyden, Proprietor, Strand Book Store

“If you’ve ever doubted that books were the greatest invention of all time, and that they carry within them our collective memories and dreams, as well as any semblance of intelligence we have as a species, pick up James Mustich’s 1,000 Books to Read Before You Die and start reading.” 
–Ken Burns 

About the author: 

James Mustich began his career in bookselling at an independent book store in Briarcliff Manor, New York, in the early 1980s. In 1986, he co-founded the acclaimed book catalog, A Common Reader, and was for two decades its guiding force. He subsequently has worked as an editorial and product development executive in the publishing industry. He lives with his wife, Margot, in Connecticut.

Byrd’s Books welcomes Bethel’s First Poet Laureate

Please join us for a celebration on Saturday November 10th at 6:30pm honoring Bethel’s first Poet Laureate, Corney Davis. We will hear from the finalists in an informal evening of poetry.
The evening is early enough to go out to dinner in Bethel, should you choose to do so.
Light refreshments will be served and Cortney’s books will be available for sale.

The Kiss of the Sweet Scottish Rain on Wednesday October 24th at 7pm

Join us for a very special author event with Robert McWilliams as he discusses his new book, The Kiss of the Sweet Scottish Rain: A Walk from Cape Wrath to the Solway Firth.

To save a spot, or buy the book, click HERE.

About the book;

From Cape Wrath in the lonely northwest to a muddy estuary overlooking England, The Kiss of Sweet Scottish Rain takes the reader on a walk across Scotland. For Rob McWilliams-Scots-born but exiled since childhood-the walk is an obstinate ambition, and the start of a new direction in life.

McWilliams crosses wild and beautiful landscapes, meets an ever-changing cast of companions, and passes through communities from remote hamlets to the smiling, but rough-edged, city of Glasgow. Around every corner, he explores Scotland’s turbulent history and unique cultural and natural heritage, from the Gaelic language, to the fearsome Highland midge, and how the Stone of Destiny-an ancient coronation symbol – could now reside in an unassuming Glasgow pub.

Struggling with terrain, injury, atrocious weather, and above all his own fragile confidence, McWilliams weaves into his narrative the threads of his life that led to the journey, and discovers that the rewards of adventure are rarely those that were anticipated.

The Kiss of Sweet Scottish Rain informs and entertains. As well as a ben or a castle, there is usually a joke just around the next turn in the trail.

About the author: 

Robert McWilliams was born in Glasgow, Scotland, but moved with his journalist father’s job to the south of England at the age of three. Rob graduated from Wadham College, Oxford, with a BA Hons. in Modern History. After university, he worked as a tour guide and English teacher in France and Spain, before joining Reuters news agency in London. Rob spent 16 years at Reuters as a business manager in Hong Kong, Japan, the US, Venezuela and Brazil.

For nearly 20 years, Rob has lived in Connecticut with his wife and daughters, and is now a US citizen. Tired of corporate life, he quit his job to fulfill a stubborn ambition to walk the length of Scotland. He has contributed the Taking a Hike column to local newspapers every month for five years. Taking a Hike placed second in the general column category of the 2017 Connecticut Press Club awards. Rob has also written for A.T. Journeys, the official magazine of the Appalachian Trail, and Ctvisit.com. The Kiss of Sweet Scottish Rain is his first book.

Rob enjoys hiking, and travel off the beaten track. He does consulting work on information privacy, and volunteers with the Nature Conservancy, Appalachian Trail and other outdoor causes.

Eric Lehman brings us “Connecticut Vanguards” on July 17th at 7:00pm

On the 163rd Anniversary of Bethel’s founding, Eric Lehman will bring us an author talk and signing of his latest book, Connecticut Vanguards: Historic Trailblazers & Their Legacies”. Join us Tuesday July 17th at 7:00. To save a spot, click HERE.

About the book:
Noah Webster, Charles Goodyear, P.T. Barnum and Katharine Hepburn all have Connecticut in common. Like so many other residents, they had an inventive spirit and drive that changed the course of history for the rest of the state. Some of the state’s natives, like Eli Whitney and Henry C. Lee, pioneered new methods. Prudence Crandall and Helen Keller championed the rights of the underprivileged. Some, like Frederick Law Olmsted and Sol LeWitt, changed our perception of the world. Author Eric D. Lehman chronicles the lives of two dozen men and women who left their marks on Connecticut and the world as a whole.

About the author: 
Eric D. Lehman is the author of twelve books of history, travel, and fiction, including The History of Connecticut Food, Literary Connecticut, Homegrown Terror: Benedict Arnold and the Burning of New London, and Becoming Tom Thumb: Charles Stratton, P.T. Barnum, and the Dawn of American Celebrity, which won the Henry Russell Hitchcock Award from the Victorian Society of America and was chosen as one of the American Library Association’s outstanding university press books of the year. His 2016 book Shadows of Paris was chosen as novella of the year from the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, earned a silver medal in Romance from the Foreword Review Indie Book Awards, and was a finalist for the Connecticut Book Award. He teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Bridgeport and lives in Hamden with his wife, poet Amy Nawrocki, and their two cats.

The Long Way Home

Henry Whiskers and his cousin, Jeremy, must find their way back home—Queen Mary’s dollhouse—and to Windsor Castle with the help of a mysterious treasure map in this fun, fast-paced follow up to The Adventures of Henry Whiskers.

Little Henry Whiskers is thrilled when he discovers an old, crinkly map, complete with a giant X marking a spot, full of treasure—at least, that’s what Henry thinks. All he knows is that this map is something BIG—he can feel it right down to the tip of his tail.

But before he can share his exciting find with his cousin and best friend, Jeremy, they find themselves in the danger zone: The Windsor Castle Kitchen. And after being unceremoniously caught and thrown out of the castle, with nothing but the map, the two little mice realize they have bigger problems than being caught in the kitchen! How will they get back to the dollhouse?

With the help of his cousin, Jeremy and a fellow field mouse named Wisely, the cousins battle a hungry falcon, an endless and stormy lake, and the maze of landmarks on the Windsor Castle Grounds as they try to find his way back home—and discover the mysterious map is more connected to the Whiskers family than either of them could have ever imagined

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Healing Without Hurting with Jenn Kozek on March 1st at 7:00pm

Byrd’s Books welcomed Jenn Kozek on Tuesday March 1st at 7:00pm as she discussed her new book, “Healing Without Hurting:  Treating ADHD, Apraxia and Autism Spectrum Disorders Naturally and Effectively Without Harmful Medications”.

About the book:

CoverUsing her candid parenting experiences with her son as a backdrop, Giustra-Kozek provides others with a practical reference guide for naturally treating ADD/ADHD, autism spectrum disorders and their co-morbid conditions such as sleep issues, depression, impulsivity, and anxiety. As both a parent and mental health professional, Giustra-Kozek examines the mistakes some conventional physicians make when it comes to treating these disorders. “Healing Without Hurting” provides a methodical approach to understanding the underlying causes and offers non-pharmaceutical solutions that work.

About the author:

Jenn KozekJennifer Kozek has a Master’s Degree in Community Counseling, and a Bachelor’s Degree in English/Criminal Justice from Western Connecticut State University. She is an accomplished licensed psychotherapist in private practice. She has over 15 years of clinical experience treating clients with an array of health disorders including Asperger’s, depression, anxiety, OCD and ADHD.

Marilyn Nelson has a new book, “My Seneca Village”

My Seneca VillageWe had the pleasure of hearing Marilyn Nelson as she read from her latest book, “My Seneca Village”. The book takes us back to a place we now call Central Park in New York City. It was once a village.

From the publisher:
“Poetry illustrated in the poet’s own words–with brief prose descriptions of what she sees inside her work–this … collection takes readers back in time and deep into the mind’s eye of Marilyn Nelson … [who] draws upon history, and her … imagination, to revive the long lost community of Seneca Village”
About the author:Marilyn_Nelson
Marilyn Nelson is the author of “Carver: A Life in Poems” and “Fields of Praise”. She has won the Boston Globe Horn Book Award, the Flora Stieglitz Straus Award, a Newbery Honor, and a Coretta Scott King Honor. Marilyn lives in Storrs, Connecticut, where she is a professor of English at the University of Connecticut.

Byrd’s Books turns 4 years old on December 11th!

Book cakeHappy Birthday Byrd’s Books!  We have hit the 4-year mark and have you to thank for it!

We will be open from 10-6 with in-store specials throughout the day…..and birthday cake, of course. Where you purchase your books is a choice, so we thank you for choosing us as your local independent bookstore.

Maple Sugaring: Keeping It Real in New England by David K. Leff

Maple SugaringWe celebrate David Leff’s new book, “Maple Sugaring: Keeping It Real in New England”.

About the book:

Maple Sugaring gives readers an intimate look at the art and science of America’s favorite sweet. These stories, told by real-life sugarmakers, reveal how this ancient industry has continued into the twenty-first century. Thanks to the newest technology, and patience, New England sugarmakers are still keeping it real. A former maple sugarmaker and board member of the Maple Syrup Producers’ Association of Connecticut, David Leff takes us on a journey into the very heart of New England’s character. Along the way he talks with the sugar gurus, who share their expertise, insights, and anecdotes about their experiences in the business. What makes maple sugaring such a beloved tradition? Is it marketing savvy, family tradition, or something deeper–and harder to tap? This book is for anyone with a sweet tooth who is curious about the science, or who simply enjoys a good story. Maple Sugaring is full of wisdom, quirky characters, and recipes.

About the author: David K. Leff

Leff, author of numerous essays and stories for the Hartford Courant and other periodicals, is former Deputy Commissioner, Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection. He has served as chairman of the Collinsville Historic District Commission, and as a volunteer firefighter, among other civic activities.

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