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fireworks photo July 2020 fireworks photo


Beagle and Wolf Books with Welcome Back! sign




Re-opening on Sundays!

Beginning Sunday, July 5, we will once again be open on Sundays! 10:00 to 4:00. We look forward to seeing you.

Having trouble remembering what day it is? In the summer, we tell time by events: book group meetings, Author Fest, signings, the Pie-Baking Contest. . . . all things that aren’t happening this year, or at least not in the usual ways. And yet, we have much to be grateful for. In a recent ZOOM book group meeting, women from around the country—Missouri, Florida, Arizona, and distant parts of Minnesota were able to join us. Hurray! We’re glad to see you in the store, and appreciate your understanding when we don’t always recognize you when you’re wearing a mask. Above all, we see the ways that books and reading continue to connect people, even in the midst of a pandemic. We’re grateful for that, and for you.

Although the store is open to the public, we continue to provide curbside service, we deliver within town, and we’re happy to ship books to you. Call or email to arrange any of these.

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One Book One Minnesota

The current state-wide read, sponsored by The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library, is Good Time for the Truth. The book is in stock in the store. Follow this link for more information about the program.

June Bestsellers

Book covers are linked to our online store,
where you’ll find a description of each book.


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The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls, Anissa Gray

Evidence of V
Sheila O’Connor


Virgil Wander
Leif Enger

  This Tender Land
William Kent Krueger

White Fragility: Why it’s so Hard for White People to Talk about Racism
Robin DiAngelo

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Good Time for the Truth
Sun Yung Shin
  One of Us Is Lying
Karen McManus
  How to be an Anti-Racist
Ibram X. Kendi
  Warriors Don’t Cry
Melba Pattillo Beals

The Island of Sea Women
Lisa See

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Strangers and Cousins
Leah Cohen
  The Great Alone
Kristin Hannah
  In West Mills
De’Shawn Charles Winslow
  Birds of Minnesota Field Guide
Stan Tekiela
  So You Want to Talk About Race
Olua Ijeoma

Newly released paperbacks

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The Nickel Boys
Colson Whitehead

This book was the winner of the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

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A Better Man
Louise Penny

See Sally's review of this book from last summer.

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Chances Are

Richard Russo

I was immediately hooked by this book. Three college friends, now sixty-six years old, arrive on Martha’s Vineyard in early September. They were last together at this place, the family cottage of one of them, Memorial Day week-end of 1971.

These men are my age and their college experience, like mine, was colored by the Viet Nam war. Like them, I sat through the first lottery, not waiting for my number to be called, but the numbers of men I cared about, and the results changed my life.

There are familiar elements in this book: once close friends who have gone their separate ways are together again for a brief time; wondering about another friend whom no one has heard from for years; the bittersweet nostalgia of looking back to one’s youthful dreams, while facing the reality of one’s life since college.

It’s a testament to Russo’s skill as a writer that his treatment of these familiar themes results in a novel which is fresh and relevant, celebrating the power of friendship and shared history across the years.


Note: the paperback will be released July 7

Interview with Shannon Gibney

In 2017, author Shannon Gibney was in our area in conjunction with the Park Rapids Reads program. We recently reached out to catch up with her.

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Have the events of 2020 affected your creativity? Either stifled or jumpstarted it?

Shannon: It's definitely been a weird year—for everyone.

In non-COVID-19 times, my kids would be at summer camps and childcare centers, and we would be doing dance and team sports and whatnot during the summer. I don't teach in the summer, so I typically use the time to work on my long-form writing projects (novels, etc.). But this year is different, with both kids home all the time. It's been much more of a challenge to get work done, for sure. But we decided to make a pod with my parents at their house in Ann Arbor this summer, so some time and space for my creative work is more possible now.

With the killing of George Floyd, Black artists have been working overtime to document this moment in our communities and beyond, to help folks process, and to hopefully present visions for a freer tomorrow. So, I have been working on some unexpected shorter pieces during this time, but it has been healing.

Jen: What’s been your favorite bookstore/author/reader response to the events of 2020?

Shannon: My neighborhood bookstore is Moon Palace Books in South Minneapolis, which my friends Angela and Jamie run. They are true community-minded, progressive folks, and were one of the first businesses in the hood to shut down due to COVID-19 concerns, before Governor Walz issued the Stay-At-Home Order. And during the protests against the police murder of George Floyd, I know they were in plenty of conversations with the police, whose precinct was right by their store, about not using their parking lot as a base of operations. Now they are donating, and encouraging community members to donate, food from the store's restaurant, the Geek Love Cafe, to folks staying at the encampment in Powderhorn Park. 

Shannon GibneyJen: What are you reading?

Shannon: I'm reading Ibram X. Kendi's How to Be an Anti-Racist, with the rest of the entire nation, it seems. I am moderating two community read sessions on it next month, so I thought I should probably know what I'm talking about.

And then, I'm also finally in the middle of Celeste Ng's Little Fires Everywhere. I recently watched the mini-series on Hulu, which I thought was really well done. As a scholar and transracial adoptee myself, I write a lot about adoption and race, and this story features both prominently. I'm planning on writing a piece on issues of adoption and representation in the two versions (TV and text) with a friend who also does Critical Adoption Studies, and is an adoptee, too.

Jen: What books are you recommending?

Shannon: I just finished Carrie Mesrobian's historical novel The Whitsun Daughters, which I enjoyed immensely. It's the story of three young white women in contemporary rural Minnesota dealing with issues of pregnancy, abortion, family legacy...and the ghost of a 19th century Irish woman who visits their dreams. Dutton brings it out in August.

Kao Kalia Yang's new children's book, The Shared Room, is not to be missed either. The book deals with a Hmong family moving through their immense grief from the loss of their youngest through drowning, and is a masterful way to introduce children to loss. The Shared Room was published by University of Minnesota Press in June.

Jen: Do you plan to write about 2020 in future books?
Shannon: Everything we write is always about the present and the past, so I don't see how the events and emotional landscape of 2020 isn't already seeping into my writing even now, and will in the future, too.

Jen: Do you have a pet? If so, we’d love a picture of the two of you!


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