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Our fall events schedule is shaping up to be fabulous! Read on for all the news you can use.
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Dear Reader,

One of the most anticipated novels of the year -- okay, maybe *the* most anticipated -- was released on Tuesday: THE TESTAMENTS, Margaret Atwood's follow-up to THE HANDMAID'S TALE. If you don't spend your days waist-deep in the bookselling world, you might have missed a bit of drama that swirled around the book's release. 

In order to be allowed to order THE TESTAMENTS for our customers (we ordered 48 copies, which is a lot for us, especially given that we know we'll be able to restock it in a few days should we run low), we had to sign an affidavit for the publisher, Penguin Random House, saying we wouldn't sell it to anyone, or even let anyone look at it, before the strict on-sale date of September 10th. The affidavit said that if we broke the agreement, we'd be liable for damages and wouldn't be allowed to sell the book. 

Meanwhile, THE TESTAMENTS was under consideration (and eventually shortlisted) for the prestigious Booker Prize, and tales of the lengths judges had to go to to read the heavily-embargoed text are quite impressive. The biggest news for booksellers, though, was the information that slowly trickled out on social media, that Amazon appeared to have shipped about 1000 copies of the book to customers who had preordered it, a whole week before the scheduled release. Indie booksellers, some already guarding their stock under lock and key, were understandably displeased

Independent bookstores are very, very far from being on a level playing field with Amazon, and on-sale dates are one of the few things that continue to make it possible for us to compete. Meanwhile, we all take those affidavits seriously -- not only because we believe there will be consequences if we break them, but also because we understand that part of our responsibility to publishers and authors is to respect and safeguard their intellectual property. We love books, and we want publishers to keep making great ones. 

We also understand that Penguin Random House doesn't have much leverage to enforce that affidavit with Amazon, because of the sheer force of Amazon's market share. When one retailer controls so much of the retail book market that the publisher has lost any power to enforce their rules about selling their books, it's a monopoly, and one that we think is dangerous to the literary art from which it profits. And when that monopoly treats books in its warehouses the same way it treats cases of paper towels, it's certainly not surprising if they miss the notice about the on-sale date.

Big thanks to everyone who's purchased THE TESTAMENTS at Content. We hope you're loving it as much as we are -- it was absolutely worth the wait. If you haven't picked yours up yet, we have plenty more on hand! And thank you for making conscious choices in how you buy books. You help us keep the world of bookselling diverse, which strengthens our local community and our global literary community. 

J. Ryan Stradal returns to Content with THE LAGER QUEEN OF MINNESOTA


Monday, September 16th @ 7 pm


We're delighted at the return of J. Ryan Stradal, author of New York Times bestseller (and Content bestseller!) Kitchens of the Great Midwest with his newest book, The Lager Queen of Minnesota. This book is already a huge staff favorite at Content, and we can't wait to talk with you and J. Ryan about it. 

“Stradal’s writing is sharp and funny while still managing to treat each character with warmth and respect. . .  this is an ultimately hopeful and heartwarming story. . . . Readers will love watching these truly original characters overcome their challenges and take care of each other. An absolutely delightful read, perfect for a summer day with a good beer and a piece of pie.” —Kirkus Review (starred)

Find more details on our website or on Facebook.

Pre-order Benjamin Percy's acclaimed new story collection, SUICIDE WOODS, and join us for the book launch!

Content is your exclusive source to pre-order signed copies of Benjamin Percy's new book from Graywolf Press, SUICIDE WOODS, and we're delighted to be hosting the book launch for Ben's latest, Tuesday, October 15th at 7 pm.

Pre-order from Content now, and Ben will sign (and if you wish, personalize) your copy of his acclaimed new book of short stories. 
 
"Like modern Grimm fairy tales, the stories in this volume are cautionary and haunting."--Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Percy's haunting, well-crafted prose frequently elevates the mundanity and isolation of being human into something otherworldly in his genre-bending collection [Suicide Woods]. . . . This gripping, often unnerving collection showcases Percy's talent as a skilled, versatile storyteller."--Publishers Weekly

Third Annual Northfield Poetry Festival kicks off at Content


Saturday, September 28th at 10:30 am

Join us at Content for poetry, coffee and doughnuts as we listen to poets from Northfield and the surrounding area, including:

Becky Boling
D. E. Green
Steve McKown
David Walters
Marie Gery
Brent Christianson

The NORTHFIELD POETRY FESTIVAL is presented by the Northfield Poet Laureate and Northfield Public Library.
ALL EVENTS ARE FREE OF CHARGE.
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The Northfield Poet Laureate is sponsored by the City of Northfield and funded by the Northfield Public Library and the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council (SEMAC), in partnership with the Northfield Arts and Culture Commission.

Find more details on our website or on Facebook.

William Kent Krueger presents THIS TENDER LAND


Thursday, October 10th @ 7 pm

Content is delighted to welcome beloved Minnesota novelist William Kent Krueger, who will read from THIS TENDER LAND. Conceived as a companion novel to the New York Times bestselling ORDINARY GRACE, Krueger's newest work is a magnificent novel about four orphans on a life-changing odyssey during the Great Depression.

"Krueger's elegy for innocence is a deeply memorable tale."
--Washington Post

1932, Minnesota-- the Lincoln School is a pitiless place where hundreds of Native American children, forcibly separated from their parents, are sent to be educated. It is also home to an orphan named Odie O'Banion, a lively boy whose exploits earn him the superintendent's wrath. Forced to flee, he and his brother Albert, their best friend Mose, and a brokenhearted little girl named Emmy steal away in a canoe, heading for the mighty Mississippi and a place to call their own.

Over the course of one unforgettable summer, these four orphans will journey into the unknown and cross paths with others who are adrift, from struggling farmers and traveling faith healers to displaced families and lost souls of all kinds. With the feel of a modern classic, This Tender Land is an enthralling, big-hearted epic that shows how the magnificent American landscape connects us all, haunts our dreams, and makes us whole.

Find more details on our website or on Facebook.

See you in the stacks!
- Jessica and all the staff at Content

More Upcoming Events


Content Graphic Novel Bookclub: MARVELS
Tuesday September 17 | 7:00PM - 8:00PM

3rd Annual Northfield Poetry Festival: Group Reading
Saturday September 28 | 10:30AM - 12:00PM

Authors Chris Fink & Bonnie Nadzam
Wednesday October 09 | 7:00PM - 8:30PM

William Kent Krueger presents THIS TENDER LAND
Thursday October 10 | 7:00PM - 8:30PM

Content Book Club: Fly Girls
Monday October 14 | 7:00PM - 8:00PM

Benjamin Percy Book Launch: SUICIDE WOODS
Tuesday October 15 | 7:00PM - 8:30PM

Feminism & Men: A Book Club with 2Fik on Roxane Gay’s BAD FEMINIST
Wednesday October 16 | 7:00PM - 8:30PM

Book Launch for Poet D. E. Green’s JUMPING THE MEDIAN
Thursday October 24 | 7:00PM - 8:30PM
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