The holiday season always means gift cards, and what else would I spend those on but books! I received $75 in gift cards this Christmas, plus I had $20 left from my last shopping trip. So I had a grand total of $95 for this trip to the Barnes & Noble near my parents’ house. This is the store I grew up going to, so I’ve spent a lot of time here and am quite fond of it.
So imagine my surprise when I walked in to find they had entirely rearranged! At least they had the new releases in the same place, but I didn’t find anything I wanted there. I do have Monogamy by Sue Miller on my TBR, but that’s something I’d rather get out of the library or on audiobook or maybe even in paperback when it comes out. I’ve also always been curious about Ali Smith, but again, I’m not going to buy it in hardcover when I’m unfamiliar with the author.
I did a quick walk through the fiction section while trying to find the nonfiction I wanted. Again, it was entirely rearranged and I had no clue where to look for anything. My goal was to find the one book I needed to buy: Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle by Emily Nagoski and Amelia Nagoski. My doctor “assigned” it to me for over the break. So after wandering around everywhere they used to have nonfiction, I still couldn’t find the section where this would be. I ended up asking the woman at the desk. They didn’t have a copy in stock, but she ordered it for me. It shipped on Thursday and should be here soon.
After sorting that out, I popped over to the fantasy section to pick up my next purchase: A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik. It’s so pretty! This is one of the books on my Christmas list that my mom didn’t buy, so I figured I’d pick it up with my gift cards. I loved Uprooted and Spinning Silver, so I’m excited for it. Nothing else in the fantasy section caught my eye. I looked for The Fate of the Tearling by Erika Johansen because I want to finish that series, but they didn’t have it. Honestly, the whole section was mainly taken up by male authors. To which I say: booooo!
And then it was back to the general fiction section! Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas is also on my TBR, but again, I’m wary of spending money on a hardcover book by an author I’m unfamiliar with. It’s a really pretty cover though! I wandered around in fiction for a while and found that they’ve separated the horror and thriller books into their own section. But then I still saw some of them in the general fiction area, so I’m not sure what’s going on.
I admired these pretty editions of Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre for a bit. But there is no earthly reason I need another copy of either of them, especially Wuthering Heights since I have four. But I do love the pink and purple!
I spent a really long time on the R shelf because there were so many covers that intrigued me. I’d never heard of Look How Happy I’m Making You by Polly Rosenwaike, but the cover and title pulled me in. It’s a book of short stories about motherhood. I didn’t get it since I’m not really in the mood for that right now, but it’s one I may pick up later.
And then there was House of Trelawney by Hannah Rothschild. Look at this cover! I’m obsessed with it. The color, the font, the animals, the fact that it’s a crest; it’s great. Anyway, the summary sounded interesting but not what I was in the mood for. And again, hardcover book and unknown author. But I’ll keep it in mind.
I debated getting My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell for a bit. Even though it’s a hardcover and an author I don’t know, I’ve heard amazing things about this book. Some of my favorite bloggers and Booktubers have talked about it, and it’s been on my TBR since it came out. But I ultimately didn’t get it because there were several other paperbacks that I wanted.
I went to the YA section specifically looking for volume 1 of Fangirl: The Manga adapted by Sam Maggs and illustrated Gabi Nam. Fangirl is my favorite Rainbow Rowell book, and I was excited to see there was a graphic novel adaptation. I’m a little annoyed that it’s in multiple volumes; I think it could have easily been in one. But that certainly didn’t stop me from buying it! I looked around a bit more to see if there was anything else I wanted, but there wasn’t.
Next I went over to the graphic novel and manga section. I didn’t take any photos because there were a lot of people browsing and it felt awkward. And I was shocked to see that there’s a Fruits Basket sequel! When did this happen?! How did I not know?! It’s called Fruits Basket Another. Sadly, they only had volume 2. If they had the first one I would have bought it. But I’ll be keeping my eye out for it.
Next I went over to the one shelf of poetry, essays, mythology, and literary criticism. I was thinking maybe I could find a good fairy tale collection. And instead I found Dæmon Voices: On Stories and Storytelling by Philip Pullman. It’s a book of essays about writing and stories. I loved His Dark Materials, so naturally I had to have this. I haven’t read anything by Pullman in a while, so I’m excited for it.
Next I went over to the children’s section. I don’t usually go over there unless I’m shopping for one of the kids in my life, but I was looking for a specific book I want to read. And I saw this gorgeous copy of Tuck Everlasting by Natalie . Look at this cover! It’s so beautiful. I thought about buying it since I don’t have my own copy, but I decided not to.
And then I came across Snow & Rose by Emily Winfield Martin, which has been on my TBR for ages! It’s a retelling of “Snow White and Rose Red,” and I’ve never seen a copy in person before (probably because I never go into the children’s section). Obviously I had to buy it. There will be a Fairy Tale Friday about it at some point.
And then I finally got to the book I went to the section for: The Okay Witch by Emma Steinkellner. I read an excerpt of this on my Kindle and thought it was great, but I wanted a physical copy since I find it difficult to read graphic novels digitally. And lucky for me they had a copy! Then I went to check out and renewed my Barnes & Noble membership.
So it was an incredibly successful trip, and I had lots of fun. And yes, I did spend every cent I had. The cashier and I had a laugh about it because he apparently did the exact same thing with his Christmas gift cards. I think I now have enough books to tide me over until at least the summer!