Tuesday, December 6, 2011

10 Cool Things: Lemuria Books

Lemuria Books is the outstanding bookstore in Jackson, Mississippi, owned by lifelong bookseller John Evans.  It's located on Interstate 55, so if you're driving through Mississippi you pretty much HAVE to pass it, and therefore you should stop.  We've featured Lemuria on our blog before, both in our profile of bookseller Nan Graves Goodman and our feature for Chuck Palahniuk's event in October.  We've never just talked about the store itself, though.  I'd never heard a bookseller talk about "working" on a book until I (Liz) started selling to Lemuria. I don't know if that's a common expression at other stores, but it's true for Lemuria--they WORK on making books big sellers.  Recent National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward even gave the store a shout-out in her acceptance speech.  That's pretty cool.
Now THAT's a
Halloween costume!

10 Cool Things about Lemuria Books

1. Truly outstanding booksellers who aren't opposed to bribery.  Keep them happy and they'll sell your books all damn day. (You feed the beast with a constant supply of good books.)

2. Lemuria has one of the most active, best bookstore blogs out there.  Updated daily, there's always something interesting to read there.

Chuck Palahniuk signing books
3. Book collector?  Lemuria has a terrific First Editions Club, as well as a great collection. If you belonged to their club this year, you'd have signed first editions of NYT Best Book Swamplandia, NYT bestseller The Night Circus, and National Book Award finalist The Tiger's Wife, among many other great picks.
John Evans,
Lemuria's owner

4. John plays some..."interesting" music in the store.  I think some of it is Mississippi Delta Blues.  I think some of it is fever dream-induced and may cause seizures.  (Admittedly, I--Liz--am not a music person.)

5. There's an amazing rare book room in the store....that Liz isn't allowed to peruse without constant supervision.

6. Gianna is June to Liz's Johnny, and this is our song: 
 (Gianna wrote this one.  Liz doesn't understand.)
Eudora's picture 

7. Four words: Eudora Welty was here.  It's hallowed ground.

8. Creative author events.  These people know how to host a shindig and aren't afraid of the booze.

Night Circus event, complete with circus tent.
9. Liz's boss used to work at Lemuria.  And in today's job market, sucking up is never a bad idea.

10. Cool things all over the store--from signed author pictures to original Barry Moser engravings to cool Rockwell Kent art.  The place is a treasure hunt adventure and book lover's paradise.

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