10 Important People in the History of the Book

close-up view of a weathered leather book

Modern readers treasure the physical object known as “the book,” a steadfast constant in a rapidly changing world. But a long view of literary history reveals a dynamic creature: From tablet to scroll to ancient codex, from leather-bound luxury item to mass-produced paperback to digital tablet, the book has evolved over millennia. But how did this epic transformation occur? And who can we thank for it? Today in the Bluestocking Salon, Bas Bleu’s editors are tipping our hats to 10 (of many!) important people in the history of the book. Continue reading

Winter Reading List 2020

After the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, January feels like a letdown. But don’t despair: Those cold winter days stretching before you are the perfect excuse to hibernate with the books on our winter reading list. Lucky for you, Bas Bleu’s Winter 2020 edition arrived with the new year, and it’s filled to the brim with terrific new books and gifts. You loved last year’s Winter Reading Collection, so this year we curated three packagesNovels, Mysteries, and Nonfiction. Purchase all six books in a package and receive 20% off the package price; each title is also available for individual purchase at its regular cover price. (Remember, Bas Bleu Society members, you receive 15% off the regular cover price of all books + free standard shipping, so feel free to create your own set.) Continue reading

Books Recommending Books, Vol. 4

From time to time, fellow bluestockings ask us, “I really liked this book. Do you carry something similar?” As we head into the holiday season, shopping for gifts and looking forward to wintry days spent curling up with a good book, we compiled a list of “books recommending books.” The titles in these pairings aren’t exactly alike: Yes, some have similar plots or subject matter, but others are kindred spirits in terms of character, theme, or mood. We hope you’ll find something new you’ll enjoy…or perfect picks for avid readers on your gift list! (All of the suggested “try this” titles are available for purchase on the Bas Bleu website. Just click on the book cover.) Continue reading

Bas Bleu is on Instagram!

cell phone displaying Instagram screen

Our editors will be the first to tell you: We’re book people, not tech people. But one of our favorite things about the digital world (besides the Bas Bleu website and this blog, of course) is the enormous community of readers we’ve found online. Over the past five years, we’ve been fortunate to share bookish stories, literary recommendations, and more with avid readers we’ve “met” on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and right here in the Bluestocking Salon. This summer, we finally took the plunge…and joined Instagram! Continue reading

15 Things to Do Instead of Wasting Time on Your Phone

brick wall with "no cellphones" sign on it
When was the last time you looked up from your smartphone and realized a half-hour had passed—and yet you’d accomplished nothing? If you’re anything like Bas Bleu’s editors, that time was yesterday! We love these handy pocket-sized computers, which allow us to send emails, look up driving directions, buy a new dress, book dinner reservations, check football scores, share photographs with friends, watch an episode of our favorite TV show…and, yes, make telephone calls. But we’re the first to admit we waste far too much time scrolling mindlessly on our phones, time we could be spending doing so many other things. With a little help from our Autumn 2019 edition, we came up with this list of 15 things to do instead of wasting time on your phone. (For the record, reading this blog post counts as a Very Important Use of your smartphone.) Continue reading

An American Bluestocking in London

Buckingham Palace and Victoria Memorial, London

The Bluestocking Salon has been quiet for the past few weeks because yours truly was traveling in France and England to source new products for Bas Bleu’s 2020 catalog season. Three trade shows in three cities over the course of six days made for a breathlessly busy “grand tour”…but it wasn’t all work and no play! This American bluestocking discovered a bevy of literary landmarks in London, popping in for a visit after the day’s work was done. Continue reading

Autumn Reading List 2019

open book on autumn leaves

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” Like George Eliot, we love “delicious autumn”…and after this hot, steamy summer, the new season can’t come soon enough! Fortunately, your favorite harbinger of fall—Bas Bleu’s Autumn 2019 edition—is here, filled with wonderful books and literary treats! (Feeling proactive? Take a gander at our Advent calendars and other holiday gifts, too.) Continue reading

National Book Lovers Day Sale

stack of book against blue background with SALE! repeated four times

National Book Lovers Day is right around the corner! (It’s on August 9, for those of you who want to put in a last-minute vacation/reading request.) Plus, Bas Bleu’s Autumn 2019 edition heads to the post office next week, which means truckloads of new books and gifts are arriving into our warehouse every day. How can we help our readers celebrate National Book Lovers Day and clear space for our new merchandise? Offer great prices on books and bookish gifts! Continue reading

Can You Decipher These Book Titles “Written” in Emojis?

The Metamorphosis written in emojis

We’re true-bleu word lovers here at Bas Bleu, but we aren’t above slipping the occasional emoji into a text message or tweet. These digital pictographs first popped up on Japanese mobile phones in the late 1990s—the word “emoji” is derived from the Japanese words for “picture” and “character”—and have gained global popularity over the past decade. In honor of World Emoji Day today, we concocted a little quiz for our readers. Can you identify these twenty book titles “written” in emojis? (Hint: Some are literal interpretations of the titles while others include plot details.) Continue reading