Happy 4th of July: 13 Books for 13 Colonies!

Celebrate Independence Day by reading about the great thirteen colonies that became the United States of America. Here are our picks. We hope you’ll tell us yours.

  • ConnecticutChicken Man (New South Books), which won the National Jewish Book Award, was written and illustrated by Bridgeport native Michelle Edwards.chicken_man
  • Delaware – Philip Gerard grew up in Newark and got his B.A. from the University of Delaware but he spent many summers of his youth camping on Hatteras Island in NC where he would later set his books Hatteras Light and The Dark of the Island9780895876607
  • Georgia – Named one of the “Books All Georgians Should Read” in 2015 by the Georgia Center for the Book, The Cherokee Rose by Tiya Miles covers a little-known aspect of America’s past—slaveholding by Southern Creeks and Cherokees. CherokeeRose
  • MarylandA Taste of Maryland History: A Guide to Historic Eateries and Their Recipes by Debbie Nunley and Karen Jane Elliott, because there’s no better way to know a place than through their cuisine. TasteofMD
  • Massachusetts – Sybil Haydel Morial, author of Witness to Change: From Jim Crow to Political Empowerment, was the first African American to teach in the Newton, MA public school system, one of many firsts Morial would later write about in her memoir. Witness_to_Change
  • New Hampshire – In So You Think You Know Gettysburg? Volume 2 by James and Suzanne Gindlesperger you can read about the monument to New Hampshire’s Berdan Sharpshooters, “arguably the best known regiment in the army. Standards were so high for acceptance into Colonel Hiram Berdan’s group that most states could raise only a few companies. Those who became part of the elite unit had to demonstrate extreme shooting proficiency by scoring ten consecutive hits within a circle ten inches in diameter. This had to be done from a distance of two hundred yards from a kneeling or standing position. Many of Berdan’s men could hit the center of the target with all ten shots.” so_you_think_Gettysburg_VOL2
  • New JerseyFall Line (NewSouth Books) is a novel set in 1955 about a forgotten crossroads that is about to be covered by a man-made lake. This heartbreaking tale was written by New Jersey resident Joe Samuel Starnes. FallLine
  • New YorkChasing Moonlight: The True Story of Field of Dreams‘ Doc Graham by Brett Friedlander and Robert Reising tells the story of the real-life Moonlight Graham who became famous for playing a half-inning with the New York Giants. Chasing_Moonlight_pbk
  • North Carolina – In honor of Independence Day we have to talk about Touring North Carolina’s Revolutionary War Sites by Daniel W. Barefoot. (We also highly recommend North Carolina Waterfalls by Kevin Adams and North Carolina Craft Beer & Breweries by Erik Lars Myers and Sarah H. Ficke which you can read about on Buzzfeed.) TouringNC_RevWar
  • Pennsylvania – Sixteen years after The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break, Steven Sherrill is bringing us a sequel. In The Minotaur Takes His Own Sweet Time, the Minotaur works at a living history village in the rustbelt of central Pennsylvania. The publication date is September 6th but you can read the book that started it allsilhouette
  • Rhode IslandBlackbeard and Other Pirates of the Atlantic Coast by Nancy Roberts tells the story of Rhode Island’s Thomas Tew and the tale of how the rakish “Calico Jack” Rackham’s chance meeting with a spirited redheaded girl in Providence, RI would give the world the legendary and beautiful pirate Anne Bonny. BlackbeardandOther
  • South CarolinaLiterary Dogs & Their South Carolina Writers (Hub City Press) edited by John Lane and Betsy Wakefield Teter is our pick for SC because all dog people should read this collection about the joy and lessens a dog can give to a writer.LiteraryDogs
  • Virginia – Last but not least, Blue Ridge Roadways: A Virginia Field Guide to Cultural Sites by M. Anna Fariello is the perfect resource for your long weekend travel plans. BlueRidgeRoadways

You can find more information on all of these titles at our website, www.blairpub.com.


And the winner is…

The winner of the ‪#‎DogPeople‬ Photo Contest is Andy Norwood of Tennessee, whose wife Shannon is shown here with their son’s dog Pal!

Congratulations to the Norwood family! They will receive a signed copy of Rheta Grimsley Johnson’s new memoir The Dogs Buried Over the Bridge, a $50 gift certificate to Parnassus Books, and Blair will donate $50 in their name to Barkie’s Legacy in Ocoee, FL where their son Patrick volunteers.

Thank you to all of the animal lovers who voted in the photo contest. Your votes made a difference to the dogs at Barkie’s Legacy.


#DogPeople Photo Contest

In honor of Rheta Grimsley Johnson’s new memoir The Dogs Buried Over the Bridge, the #DogPeople Photo Contest winner will receive a $50 gift card to their favorite indie bookstore, a copy of The Dogs Buried Over the Bridge, and a $50 donation made in their name to the shelter or dog rescue of their choosing.

You can vote at here. Tell your friends!

Byte-Size Blair | March 28

We’re back with Byte-Size Blair, our weekly wrap-up of all things social media. If you’re not already following us on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram, give us a look.

Easter weekend is over but as you finish your chocolate bunnies we hope you’ll take a look at these delightful links.

  1. National Puppy Day was last week and Publishers Weekly was just in time with this great review of The Dogs Buried Over the Bridge by Rheta Grimsley Johnson.
  2. We love this picture of the off-Broadway cast of Fly with a copy of The Tuskegee Airmen (NewSouth Books).
  3. Congratulations to Matthew Neill Null, author of Honey from the Lion (Lookout Books) for winning an award that Ralph Ellison, Cormac McCarthy, Anne Sexton, Junot Díaz, and Anthony Doerr, among others, have won in the past.
  4. Have you ever wondered how much a librarian is worth? This infographic sheds some light on that for you.
  5. Sadly, over the weekend a great NC literary advocate and bookseller passed away. Here is our small tribute to Nancy Olson of Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, NC.

Take some time to enjoy the spring weather this week!

Byte-Size Blair | March 21

We’re back with Byte-Size Blair, our weekly wrap-up of all things social media. If you’re not already following us on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram, give us a look.

If you’re in NC like we are, in the past week you made it through primary voting, St. Patrick’s Day weekend, and the first (chilly) day of spring. Congratulations, now unwind with some social media highlights from the week.

  1. Puppy video? Yes please! Slow motion puppy video? Even better!
  2. Whether voting day made you excited or exhausted, this look at the rise of North Carolina Republicans is sure to be of interest to voters statewide.
  3. Not quite ready for St. Patrick’s Day to be over? We can recommend some green books for you.
  4. Asheville loves this banjo-playing author of Bearwallow.
  5. Spring has sprung! If you’re gearing up for a scenic road trip perhaps this vintage poster for the Blue Ridge Parkway will help you pick a destination.

Today is World Poetry Day so curl up with some nice verse tonight.


Byte-Size Blair | March 14

We’re back with Byte-Size Blair, our weekly wrap-up of all things social media. If you’re not already following us on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram, give us a look. In the meantime, enjoy this collection of posts.

  1. Today is Pi Day! Celebrate by making this delicious buttermilk pie from chef Stephanie L. Tyson at Sweet Potatoes restaurant.
  2. Award season has begun in the book industry. Check out these talented Blair finalists.
  3. For Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day we’re proud to share this Essence interview with author and activist Sybil Haydel Morial, author of Witness to Change.
  4. Fun and educational, here’s an infographic about book cover design.
  5. Seeking creative indie booksellers who explain the industry with puppets? We’ve got you covered.

Now go enjoy some pie like this little guy!

Photo courtesy of Michael McGurk/Rex

Byte-Size Blair | March 7

We’re back with Byte-Size Blair, our weekly wrap-up of all things social media. If you’re not already following us on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram, give us a look.

You’ve made it through Monday! Treat yourself with these fun links.

  1. We were blown away by this art exhibit called “The Impact of a Book”
  2. The invitations are in and you’re invited! If you live near Wilmington, join us for The Dark of the Island Launch Party on March 19th.
  3. Relax with these scrumptious tea and biscuit combinations.
  4. So many books and so little time. We know the feeling.
  5. March 2nd was Dr. Seuss’s birthday but we believe in celebrating this artist all year round.

Tomorrow is the publication date for The Dark of the Island by Philip Gerard. Congratulations Philip!