Heart Rending Heart Mending: An Interview with Marylou Kelly Streznewski

heart monitor reading shaped like a heart

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States, responsible for 1 in 4 female deaths each year. The statistics are sobering…yet too rarely talked about among women. But when the book-loving mom of Bas Bleu reviewer CH raved about Marylou Kelly Streznewski’s memoir Heart Rending Heart Mending: Saved by Medical Science, Healed by Ancient Wisdom, Bas Bleu’s all-female editorial staff sat up and took notice. This week in the Bluestocking Salon, we’re talking with the author of this “life-and-death epitome of a must-read” about her experience as a survivor of heart disease and heart surgery, the importance of giving patients a voice, and the healing power of “illness as art.” Continue reading

Write a Bas Bleu Reader Review

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Bas Bleu’s customers are the absolute best, for a multitude of reasons. Among our favorites: Y’all recommend some wonderful books! So wonderful, in fact, that we created our Reader Review program inviting readers to submit your own Bas Bleu-style book reviews. Many of the reviews we’ve  received over the years are for books we’d never heard of; some are for books we were “on the fence” about and a Reader Review cast the deciding vote; others are for books we’ve already carried, but are thrilled to know you loved, too. Continue reading

All Things Cease to Appear: An Interview with Elizabeth Brundage

Some of the Bas Bleu editors’ favorite books are the ones we find the most difficult to write about, and that was certainly the case for our Mysteries Book a Month 2018 pick, All Things Cease to Appear by Elizabeth Brundage. Our reviewer praised the novel as “exquisitely written and genre-defying…as much a powerful character study as it as a thrilling mystery.” Today in the Bluestocking Salon, we caught up with Elizabeth Brundage to learn about how her early career as a screenwriter shaped her as a novelist, the parallels she sees between ghosts and faith, and the importance of being an adventurous reader. Continue reading

Odd Child Out: An Interview with Gilly Macmillan

As one of our Mysteries Book a Month 2018 selections, Odd Child Out by Gilly Macmillan transports readers to Bristol, England, where a prank gone wrong leaves one boy in the hospital and his best friend—a Somali refugee in a British community already simmering with tension—in the hot seat. As the suspenseful novel unfolds, both boys’ families are forced to take a hard look at long-suppressed secrets…and face hard truths. This week in the Bluestocking Salon, Gilly Macmillan took a break from her busy writing schedule to chat with us about narrative voice, the importance of fiction in placing readers in the minds of others, and being a visual writer. Continue reading

10 Treats for National Book Lovers Day 2018

August 9 is “officially” National Book Lovers Day! We say “officially” because—let’s get real—every day is National Book Lovers Day for avid readers. But just as Valentine’s Day serves as a special day once a year to go all in for the person you love most (even if that person is you!), why not take this occasion to celebrate your devotion to books and treat yourself? In honor of this special day, Bas Bleu’s editors put together a collection of ten items we think particularly capture that bookish love we all know so well. Continue reading

Literary Friendships: Celebrating Best Friends in Books

Jane Austen once wrote, “There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends.” Since Sunday, August 5, is National Friendship Day, we thought this week was the perfect occasion to celebrate some of our favorite literary friendships. In honor of this very special day, Bas Bleu’s editors have selected ten of our favorite pairs—and sometimes trios—of kindred spirits from classic literature. Check out our list (beware spoilers!) then tell us about your favorite literary friendships in the comments section below. Continue reading

Which Literary Destination Should You Visit?

Vacation season is here! And while European tours and coastal getaways are nice if you can swing them, avid readers don’t need to budge beyond the comfort of our reading chairs to embark upon extraordinary adventures. Inspired by a recent Bas Bleu Facebook poll (“What fictional place from literature would you like to visit on your summer vacation?”) and PBS’s fun “travel posters based on famous novels,” we crafted this handy quiz to help you decide which literary destination YOU should travel to this summer. (Results not based on science; with a book, you can travel anywhere!) Continue reading

One Shadow on the Wall: An Interview with Leah Henderson

 

Bas Bleu’s July Book a Month 2018 selections transport readers around the world, including to Africa in our Young Readers pick, One Shadow on the Wall by Leah Henderson. Set in modern-day Senegal, the novel follows a young boy named Mor as he struggles to support himself and his two sisters after the death of their parents, endeavoring to honor his promise to his father to keep their little family together. With an endearing protagonist and a touch of magical realism, One Shadow on the Wall is a heartfelt story about perseverance, loyalty, and family. This week in the Bluestocking Salon, we’re chatting with author Leah Henderson about her literary inspiration, her globetrotting adventures, and the children’s books that influenced her. Continue reading