July 9, 2024



Long Island Compromise by Taffy Brodesser-Akner. We follow the Fletchers, a wealthy Jewish family in 1980’s Long Island. Carl Fletcher, the patriarch, is kidnapped, and although he is returned after a hefty ransom is paid, the whole family is forever altered. At breakneck speed, we meet the rest of the Fletcher family in all their reckless, heart wrenching, hilarious glory, trials and tribulations.  The novel is very Jewish, very funny, very sharp, very mean, and a total page turner. Taffy Brodesser-Akner writes shrewd, cutting descriptions of inherited wealth and family traditions, and soul-searching passages on inherited trauma, and how it affects each of the Fletcher children, and each of us. I was amazed at how her story-telling exposes you to the very worst a person can be while still making you ache for them, and root for them! - Heida

Sunrise Nights by Jeff Zentner and Brittany Cavallaro. I love this swoony, smart and provocative young adult novel that gives "Before Sunrise" vibes! Florence and Jude meet at the end of summer arts camp just in time for "sunrise night", the annual tradition when participants are allowed to explore the nearby town overnight. A sparkling connection and slow-burn conversation begins as they wander, and the two promise to return to camp the following year but agree to no contact outside of their summer bubble. Three "sunrise nights" play out over the course of three years, written in alternating voices with some portions in verse (this totally adds to the romance of the book). The deepening connection between Florence and Jude as well as the reveals we learn over time are creative and original, and themes of grief and health challenges lend depth to the story. - Carolyn

All the Sinners Bleed by S.A. Cosby (now in paperback). Racial tensions in a small Southern town impede a Black sheriff's determined search for a serial killer in a compelling and tension-filled thriller from one of the hot new voices of crime fiction. Cosby's gritty storytelling and rich characters - especially lead protagonist Titus Crown - definitely put All the Sinners Bleed a cut above. One of my new faves. - Hut

The Connellys of County Down by Tracey Lange (now in paperback). I've been so excited for this author's second book, and it has been well worth the wait! The Connelly siblings are struggling: Tara has recently been released from prison, Eddie is coping with the long-term effects of a traumatic brain injury, and Geraldine is trying to maintain her role as the eldest who's in control; but that facade is cracking. They only have each other, and they're all harboring secrets that will continue to impact them unless resolved. A terrific novel about love, hope and healing (and a nice little easter egg is included from Tracey's wonderful first book, We Are The Brennans). - Carolyn

Tabula Rasa: Volume 1 by John McPhee (now in paperback). A nonfiction master offers a fascinating look back at his writing career in a series of 50 short essays (some less than a page) and recollections that focus on projects and inspirations that never came to fruition. And while you wish he would have pursued some subjects, his descriptions of why they intrigued him in the first place are delights on their own.  - Hut

The Librarianist by Patrick deWitt (now in paperback). I enjoyed getting to know Bob Comet and understanding why he is a quiet, lonely man in his older years. He’s kind and attentive – has been all his life. We are introduced to three distinct, formative times in Bob’s life where he is present yet not an active participant. He's such a quiet, observant character providing peace and solace to those with whom he comes in contact. I wish we got more of Bob’s innermost thoughts to see how decades of being a librarian influenced his outlook - this book should be called The Introvert rather than The Librarianist. All in all, a pleasant read! deWitt’s writing is subtle and all-encompassing at the same time; it leaves me wanting more of this world - Jessica

The Cliffs by J. Courtney Sullivan. A remote piece of land in Maine, its homes and its inhabitants over the centuries are at the heart of this fabulous new novel that explores history and generational trauma. Jane has returned to her small town to help sell her recently deceased mother's home. Her best friend asks her to research the history of another house that Jane has always loved, and she seizes upon the opportunity to be distracted from her grief and her own failing marriage. Secrets are soon revealed not just about Jane's family but also that of the first inhabitants of the land where Jane grew up. Beautiful writing, a few ghosts and the gorgeous Maine setting make this a winner. - Carolyn

The God of the Woods by Liz Moore. When a teen girl goes missing from her family's summer camp in upstate New York in the summer of 1975, echoes of her brother's disappearance from the family's property years before reverberate across the small community. The narrative is a puzzle of multiple perspectives, each character holds a secret, their own unique view, a piece of the story. Moore has penned an expertly-plotted and gripping literary mystery, full of family intrigue, class dynamics, and the uneasy relationship between human nature and the natural world. Perfect for fans of Rebecca Makkai and Chris Whitaker. - Hannah

What We Kept to Ourselves by Nancy Jooyoun Kim (now in paperback). When a stranger is found dead in the Kim family’s Los Angeles backyard holding a mysterious letter addressed to their missing mother, a wave of family secrets comes crashing down. Old wounds are reopened, feelings of desertion and betrayal revisited, and more questions are raised about their mother’s disappearance. The story spans several decades with tensions exacerbated by the backdrop of 1990s Los Angeles, the treatment of immigrants (especially Koreans) during the Rodney King riots, and the anxiety and fear of a Y2K armageddon as the end of the millennium approaches. A riveting mystery intertwined with intergenerational trauma, the destructive nature of secrets, and the human ability to build strong, healthy relationships through honesty and understanding. - Jessica



The 10th annual Find Waldo in the Elmwood scavenger hunt kicked off on Monday July 1st! Waldo is hidden in 30 businesses in our neighborhood, including the Claremont public library and Boichik Bagels. He's a small cardboard figure that may or may not be easy to spot right away, but that's part of the fun.

Here's how to play: pick up your game card and scavenger hunt instructions at Mrs. Dalloway's Bookstore. When you have found at least 20 Waldos hidden in the participating businesses, return your game card to Mrs. Dalloway's by July 31 and receive a sticker and a coupon for $1 off any Waldo book purchase. If you find at least 25 Waldos, you will also be entered in our prize-giveaway drawing, which will be held Sunday, August 4, 2:00pm at the bookstore. 

All ages are welcome! This is the perfect opportunity to re-discover shops in the expanded Elmwood community. And when you pick up your game card, make sure to check out our Waldo book display.


The Blackwing 746 Collection (set of 12) is a tribute to the Golden Gate Bridge. Each pencil features a firm graphite core and is finished with a special multi-layered technique to bring out the iconic International Orange color of San Francisco’s world-famous span. We're also selling a companion set of three pocket-sized lined notebooks - the perfect complement!













Mrs. Dalloway's has a job opening for a long-term, part-time bookseller. If interested, you can read the job description here.


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ELIZABETH STIX has written Things I Want Back From You, a poignant collection of 20 linked stories, set in the fictional California town of San Encanto. It's a place where suburban angst coexists with hopelessly flawed characters who flail against their own insecurities, seeking one true moment of connection, and if they're lucky, winning that rarest of gifts - a second chance. 


Help start a library for a young reader in your life with Mrs. Dalloway’s Little Library subscription service! Every month for the length of your subscription, we'll gift wrap and send your recipient a book that fits their age and interests. Our experienced staff selects titles from our ever-changing inventory of new titles and rediscovered hidden gems. To find out more and sign up, click here.
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