Famous Poems Read by Famous People

Audiobooks gain fans every day, helping readers while away long commutes, road trips, workouts, and more. Even bibliophiles who prefer the printed page value those bookish recordings as a way to squeeze extra reading into busy days. How do you think the Bas Bleu editors tackle so many books?) But sometimes what we need most is to stop what we’re doing—if only for a few minutes—and concentrate on nothing but the words. Poetry is ideal on those occasions: Its concise form demands that every word count. And because the only thing better than reading poetry is listening to people read poetry to us, we’re celebrating World Read Aloud Day with seven famous poems read by famous people. Continue reading

Puzzles and Books to Celebrate National Puzzle Day

Jigsaw puzzle pieces

Did you know? Today is National Puzzle Day! In our experience, avid readers also tend to be avid puzzlers, whether whiling away a quiet afternoon bent over a jigsaw puzzle—raise your hand if your family tackles one on summer vacation every year—or flexing those little gray cells with challenging word games and riddles. Puzzles and puzzle books are a staple of the Bas Bleu catalog, for kids as well as adults, so we’re highlighting a few of our favorites with this list of puzzles and books to celebrate National Puzzle Day. Continue reading

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

Christmas Reading Recommendations

open book with holly sprig and red Christmas ornament laid on top

On December 5, we hosted a Christmas book giveaway on the Bas Bleu Facebook page. To enter, readers shared their favorite Christmas read. The result? An impromptu, “crowd-sourced” holiday reading list from the Bas Bleu community! Several beloved classics made the list (Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol is an overwhelming favorite). Other books have been featured in past editions of the Bas Bleu catalog. And we were thrilled to see so many titles we weren’t familiar with…because our editors love recommendations, too! With December 25 just around the corner, we compiled a list of these Christmas reading recommendations for your holiday bookshelf. Feel free to tell us in the comments section about your own favorite seasonal reads! Continue reading

2019 Holiday Gift Guide

child's hands holding wrapped Christmas gift

We’d hardly made a dent in the Thanksgiving leftovers when we realized: December is here! But there’s no need to panic. We know you’d rather spend the holiday season enjoying yourself—decking the halls, baking delicious treats, visiting with friends and family, and (of course) reading—instead of rushing through chaotic big-box stores and sitting in mall traffic. That’s why we’ve made Bas Bleu your one-stop shop for everyone on your gift list. Just check out our 2019 Holiday Gift Guide! Continue reading

Counting Our Blessings

wooden heart on pile of leaves to illustrate Counting Our Blessings blog post

Just like Santa’s workshop, Bas Bleu begins working on Christmas long before the calendar turns to December. For weeks now, our call center and warehouse have hummed with hardworking “elves” taking phone orders, packing boxes, wrapping gifts, and shipping out your holiday purchases. When we’re so focused on the retail season, it’s easy for Thanksgiving to get lost amid the hustle and bustle. That’s why we make a point every year, here in the Bluestocking Salon, to focus on counting our blessings. 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

7 Unique Advent Calendars to Count Down to Christmas

Moonlight Silhouette Advent Calendar

Once upon a time, Bas Bleu’s founder spied a beautiful German Advent calendar and thought: “Our readers might like that.” Two decades later, Advent calendars are a staple of our Autumn and Holiday catalogs, flying off the shelves faster than Rudolph zooms out of the North Pole! But what are Advent calendars….and, for that matter, what is Advent? 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