Blog Posts

Quirk's Holiday Flowchart: Find The Perfect Gift

No matter what holiday you celebrate, be it Christmas or Decemberween, we wanted to make sure you're ready, book-buyers.

We've put together a handy little flowchart to help you find the perfect Quirk book for that special reader in your life. 

Quirksgiving: Find the Quirkey, Win Some Books!

THE QUIRKEY RETURNS!

Thanksgiving is this Thursday, and here at Quirk, we've been talking the books we're thankful for.

Our authors sounded off, including Linda Rodriguez McRobbie (Princesses Behaving Badly) on various books over the course of her life, and Grady Hendrix (Horrorstor) with a post on The Famous Monsters of Filmland's Star Wars Spectacular. Never heard of it? Check out his post. Quirk staff even chimed in, discussing The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy and Quiet by Susan Cain.

But you know what we're also thankful for? You guys! Stopping by to read our blog, following us on the ol' Twitter, picking up our books... we heart you. 

So to celebrate, we've hidden Rick Chillot's Quirkey (get it, it's like Quirk + Turkey, it came to him in a dream) around the website. Find him, and you'll find special Quirk Rafflecopters, where you can enter to win books. Here are some useful, and maybe a little too obvious, hints. 

How-to Tuesday: How To Get Grandma Drunk—I Mean, How To Make Sweet Surrender Punch

Happy Quirksgiving! By now, you’re probably mentally preparing to reunite with all your extended relatives. Hang in there, we’re going through the same thing.

This year, when you’re sitting in the living room with your cousins (after the inevitable Get Out Of My Kitchen scenario), do yourself a favor: make some punch. Everyone will have a glass, relax, and remember that they actually DO like their siblings. And then Uncle Joe will tell you that story he loves about how he met Patrick Stewart in the grocery store and it’ll all go smoothly from there.

My suggestion for the perfect wintry beverage is Sweet Surrender Punch from Winter Cocktails. Since it has chamomile tea in it, serve it at teatime! Enjoy, have fun with your folks, and have a great holiday.

The Book I'm Thankful For: From Watership Down to Murder on the Orient Express

The right book says the thing you needed to hear, the thing you didn’t even know you needed to hear, but you did need it and when this book said it, it was like bell sounding. Or not. Because sometimes the right book is just some piece of fluff that you picked up in an airport and it doesn’t say anything at all, but reminds you of something, maybe who you were when you read it. I’m grateful for a lot of books (two kids on, What to Expect When You’re Expecting springs to mind), but for some more than others: the right books, the ones that found me at the right time and carried me through, held me up, kept me interested.

I remember sitting in the bath, five years old, and listening to my mother, perched on the closed toilet, read Trudy Phillips, New Girl. It was a book from the 1950s, all bobby socks and Sadie Hawkins’ dances and a girl called “Spooky” and scrubbed-up optimism. I have no idea where my mother got it – she doesn’t remember, either – but I loved it. (I’ve since found and bought a copy on eBay; I can’t say it’s held up.) My childhood self is also thankful for Watership Down, which ferried me through a two-week bout with scarlet fever, for anything that Tamora Pierce ever wrote, for the Stephen King novels my parents read and left around the house for me to read and not understand, and, my God yes, The Babysitters’ Club series. I binged on those like I binged on candy at Halloween, except without the guilt or the nausea.

These were the years when reading books was like falling in love, a breathless obsessive sort of devouring that kept me up all night. The books I’m thankful for from this time are the ones that I couldn’t put down, that I’d prop up at next to my bowl of soup at dinner and read between slurps. Books that, even after I had a car and places to drive it to, I’d stay home on a Saturday night to read. There was Wally Lamb’s She’s Come Undone, which was at once affecting and completely over my head emotionally. I went through a big Gabriel Garcia Marquez phase, and passages from One Hundred Years of Solitude remain with me now. I read Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind halfway through my semester abroad in India during college and whoa, how I needed that book. I read it selfishly, cocooning myself in the blind gentility of Mitchell’s bizarro Civil War South, trying not to see the real desperate poverty around me. I clung to it like a life raft.

Ten Books Inspired By Jane Austen

I know, I know. You’ve blown through all of Austen’s novels. You lament the death of handwritten letters. No proposal will ever measure up to Mr. Darcy’s. I’m right there with you. Here are ten books to nurse that Jane Austen hangover.

Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding: Loosely based on Pride and Prejudice, Fielding’s 1996 novel follows thirty-something Bridget Jones and the two men in her life: Daniel Cleaver (a Mr. Wickham stand in) and Mark – you guessed it – Darcy. Hooked on Fielding’s Austen parallels? The book’s sequel – Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason – is loosely based on Persuasion.

Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James: Elizabeth and Darcy have been married for six years and things seem to be going well at Pemberley. Jane and Mr. Bingley live nearby, Georgiana Darcy’s marriage prospects are looking great, and everything is on schedule in the planning of the annual autumn ball. But chaos descends on the estate when Lydia Wickham – Elizabeth’s shamed sister – arrives at Pemberley in hysterics. Wickham has been murdered.

Books We’re Thankful For: LGBTQ YA

Being a teenager is not easy. Balancing school and work, along with the expectations and demands of parents, teachers, friends, and potential love interests, can so often create a stressful and messy situation. And sadly, it’s even harder for LGBTQ teenagers. LGBTQ teens are more likely to attempt suicide than their straight peers, and the statistics become far worse when their families are not supportive of them. It’s reasons like this that make depictions of LGBTQ characters in YA literature so important.

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