Big Blue Marble Bookstore
a neighborhood bookstore for Mt. Airy and beyond

Events

We host more than 150 events a year - click through our calendar to find readings, author visits, book clubs, and book parties!

Discussion of Roxane Gay's "Hunger" part 2: for fat women
Aug
17
7:00pm 7:00pm

Discussion of Roxane Gay's "Hunger" part 2: for fat women

Roxane Gay's Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body is personal, intimate, searing. Using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health, Gay confronts the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she casts an insightful and critical eye on her childhood, teens, and twenties—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers into the present and the realities, pains, and joys of her daily life.

We'll be hosting two nights of discussion about the book. The first night, Wednesday August 16th, is open to anyone. The second night, Thursday August 17th at 7pm, is a special evening for fat women only (roughly defined as women who wear a size 20 and up).

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Writer's Foundry Reading
Aug
19
5:30pm 5:30pm

Writer's Foundry Reading

Join us to celebrate an esteemed group of writers from the Writer's Foundry graduate program in Brooklyn.

Featuring readings by:

Charlie Walters
Francisco Franklin
Hanan Mahbouba
Hannah Wood
Juliany Taveras
Kofi Antwi
Kourtney Fullard
Lorraine Rice
Maleka Fruean
Sally White
Tariq Shah

There will be a reception with light fare and drinks, and a break in the middle between readers.

There will be more readings and events throughout the year with the Writer's Foundry.

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Poetry Is Not a Luxury: Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno, "Slamming Open the Door"
Aug
23
7:00pm 7:00pm

Poetry Is Not a Luxury: Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno, "Slamming Open the Door"

The August selection for Poetry Is Not a Luxury is Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno's Slamming Open the Door. This award-winning 2009 collection captures a mother's forced journey into grief after her daughter was murdered. The poems evoke the loss and fury keenly, seeking justice but transcending judgment as they grieve loss, celebrate love, and find healing.

"I really love the poems we're about to hear. They're beautifully written. But some of them really hurt. They're about the worst thing that can happen to a mother, the murder of her child."—Terry Gross, Host of Fresh Air

Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno was an editor at American Poetry Review and the founder of Musehouse in Chestnut Hill. A tireless supporter of writing, and of families of murdered children, she died this spring after a five year battle with cancer.

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Author Donna Jo Napoli
Aug
27
11:00am11:00am

Author Donna Jo Napoli

We're topping off the Creatures of the Deep Weekend with a visit from author Donna Jo Napoli, who will be sharing and signing her newest book, Fish Girl.

Fish Girl is a fairy tale, a coming of age story, and Donna Jo's first graphic work, created with author and illustrator David Wiesner. Set along a fantastical imagining of a Jersey shore boardwalk, a young mermaid called Fish Girl has been caught and is held and forced to perform in an aquarium. A chance encounter with an ordinary girl leads to a friendship thatinspires Fish Girl's longing for freedom, independence, and a life beyond the aquarium tank.

Donna Jo Napoli (born February 28, 1948) is an American writer of children's and young adult fiction, as well as a prominent linguist.

She has worked in syntax, phonetics, phonology, morphology, historical and comparative linguistics, Romance studies, structure of Japanese, structure of American Sign Language, poetics, writing for ESL students, and mathematical and linguistic analysis of folk dance. She has taught linguistics at Smith College, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Georgetown University, the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, the University of Pennsylvania, and is currently a professor of linguistics at Swarthmore College.

Born the youngest of four children in Miami, February 28, 1948, Napoli received both her B.A. (mathematics, 1970) and PhD (Romance Languages – the Linguistics Plan A, 1973) from Harvard, before a postdoctoral fellowship in linguistics at M.I.T. Napoli has dual citizenship in the U.S. and Italy

 

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Jaz - "Serenading Flowers: A Book of Dedications"
Sep
8
7:00pm 7:00pm

Jaz - "Serenading Flowers: A Book of Dedications"

Big Blue Marble welcomes local poet Jaz and celebrates her first full-length poetry collection, Serenading Flowers: A Book of Dedications.

Jaz says, "Throughout my life and career as a writer, I've always used my poetry to encourage and uplift humanity. This book of poetry does just that for the reader. I write for friends, family, strangers and all living things including plants, animals and Mother Earth."

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Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild
Sep
9
1:00pm 1:00pm

Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild


Join members of the Patchwork Storytelling Guild for a monthly Story Swap - come to share a story, to learn story telling, or just to listen and enjoy! The members of Patchwork: A Storytelling Guild are dedicated to promoting awareness of storytelling as a vibrant contemporary art form, a folk tradition, a way of celebrating life, a tool for personal and social transformation, and as a path for spiritual exploration.

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George Lakey, Viking Economics
Sep
10
7:00pm 7:00pm

George Lakey, Viking Economics

In the 1930s Sweden and Norway were even more polarized than the U.S. is now. By the 1950s they’d reached consensus and were in the top tier of international ratings for freedom and shared abundance. Author George Lakey tells secrets of their success, from his book Viking Economics.

“Brilliant, fun to read, and most timely—just what Americans need right now! Lakey busts key myths that keep us believing we can’t have the society we want. Bravo for this great source of evidence-grounded hope!” -- Frances Moore Lappé, author of Diet for a Small Planet.

George Lakey is an activist, author, and retired professor with both an arrest record and affinity for Broadway tunes. His first time arrested was in the civil rights movement; recently he went to jail in the successful campaign to stop the nation's seventh largest bank from financing mountaintop removal coal mining. He has led over 1500 social change workshops on five continents and taught at several universities, most recently Swarthmore College. "Viking Economics" is his ninth book, all of which are about how to support change.

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Discovering Philadelphia - a new book from architect David Traub
Sep
16
4:00pm 4:00pm

Discovering Philadelphia - a new book from architect David Traub

Discovering Philadelphia: Places Little Known is a collection of unfamiliar photographs taken and assembled with descriptive captions by local architect David S. Traub.

The book covers seven geographic areas: Philadelphia's historical district in the central city; South Philadelphia; North Philadelphia; West and Southwest Philadelphia; Northwest Philadelphia; the River Wards of Fishtown, Port Richmond and Bridesburg; and the largely suburban-like district of Northeast Philadelphia

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Copy of Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild
Oct
7
1:00pm 1:00pm

Copy of Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild


Join members of the Patchwork Storytelling Guild for a monthly Story Swap - come to share a story, to learn story telling, or just to listen and enjoy! The members of Patchwork: A Storytelling Guild are dedicated to promoting awareness of storytelling as a vibrant contemporary art form, a folk tradition, a way of celebrating life, a tool for personal and social transformation, and as a path for spiritual exploration.

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Herb Levine, "Words for Blessing the World"
Oct
7
7:00pm 7:00pm

Herb Levine, "Words for Blessing the World"

How does one express reverence and gratitude in a world without God? That question is at the core of Herb Levine's bilingual collection of prayers and poems, Words for Blessing the World.  The book resonates with traditional Jewish liturgy even as it observes the world through a distinctly modern lens. The poems deal with the theological, the political, and the personal and is presented in both Hebrew and English, anchoring the collection deep within the Jewish tradition.

“A learned and sincere engagement with Jewish tradition. the author suggests that we can pray ‘in a world without a master.’ The poems express a faith that is committed to human evolution toward more compassion, love, unity and justice. The poems are resonant with Biblical poetry and story. The Hebrew is elegant and prayerful. A gracious and powerful spiritual tool for our time.” — Rabbi Sheila Peltz Weinberg, author, God Loves the Stranger: Stories, Poems and Prayers

HERBERT LEVINE is the author of several works on the intersection of spirituality, religion and poetry: Sing Unto God A New Song: A Contemporary Reading of the Psalms (Indiana U Press), Yeats’s Daimonic Renewal (UMI Press) and seminal essays on Whitman’s “Song of Myself ” in Whitman’s Song of Myself (Chelsea House). His first poem was published in 1992; this is his first volume of poetry.

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Copy of Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild
Nov
4
1:00pm 1:00pm

Copy of Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild


Join members of the Patchwork Storytelling Guild for a monthly Story Swap - come to share a story, to learn story telling, or just to listen and enjoy! The members of Patchwork: A Storytelling Guild are dedicated to promoting awareness of storytelling as a vibrant contemporary art form, a folk tradition, a way of celebrating life, a tool for personal and social transformation, and as a path for spiritual exploration.

View Event →
Copy of Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild
Dec
2
1:00pm 1:00pm

Copy of Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild


Join members of the Patchwork Storytelling Guild for a monthly Story Swap - come to share a story, to learn story telling, or just to listen and enjoy! The members of Patchwork: A Storytelling Guild are dedicated to promoting awareness of storytelling as a vibrant contemporary art form, a folk tradition, a way of celebrating life, a tool for personal and social transformation, and as a path for spiritual exploration.

View Event →

Roxanne Gay's "Hunger," Part 1
Aug
16
7:00pm 7:00pm

Roxanne Gay's "Hunger," Part 1

Roxanne Gay's Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body is personal, intimate, searing. Using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health, Gay confronts the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she casts an insightful and critical eye on her childhood, teens, and twenties—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers into the present and the realities, pains, and joys of her daily life.

We'll be hosting two nights of discussion about the book. Tonight, the first night, is open to anyone. The second night, Thursday August 17th at 7pm, is a special evening for fat women only (roughly defined as women who wear a size 20 and up).

See a review of "Hunger" by Philly author Beth Kephart: http://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/books/sc-hunger-roxane-gay-books-0705-20170706-story.html

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On a Hot Summer Night - A Pride & Prejudice Slumber Party
Aug
12
to Aug 13

On a Hot Summer Night - A Pride & Prejudice Slumber Party

Join Big Blue Marble and special guests for a classic slumber party (that is, one with no actual slumbering) as we let our love for Pride & Prejudice shine. We'll be reading aloud, playing trivia and other Austen games, doing needlework, and, at midnight, showing the 2005 movie. Click to find out more and sign up to read your favorite part!

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Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild
Aug
5
1:00pm 1:00pm

Story Swap with the Patchwork Storytelling Guild


Join members of the Patchwork Storytelling Guild for a monthly Story Swap - come to share a story, to learn story telling, or just to listen and enjoy! The members of Patchwork: A Storytelling Guild are dedicated to promoting awareness of storytelling as a vibrant contemporary art form, a folk tradition, a way of celebrating life, a tool for personal and social transformation, and as a path for spiritual exploration.

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Stephanie Bruneau,  "The Benevolent Bee"
Aug
5
11:00am11:00am

Stephanie Bruneau, "The Benevolent Bee"

Join Big Blue Marble as we welcome Mt. Airy's own apiarist Stephanie Bruneau and her new book, The Benevolent Bee: Capture the Bounty of the Hive through Science, History, Home Remedies and Craft ! Stephanie will be leading a Honey Bee Q&A and a simple beeswax craft, and of course she'll be signing her new book. (It's already on our shelf - check it out, it's beautiful).

Come at 10:30 for our regular Saturday morning story time, which will feature books about bees!

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Zinzi Clemmons, "What We Lose"
Aug
3
7:00pm 7:00pm

Zinzi Clemmons, "What We Lose"


We are honored to host Philly native Zinzi Clemmons and her debut novel What We Lose.

What We Lose is a powerful and innovative novel that questions the nature of identity, grief, and love through the eyes of a young woman who loses her mother to cancer. Told in visceral vignettes that draw from autofiction, online media, and encyclopedia, What We Lose is a thoughtful, poignant debut from a promising new voice.

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Free Video Workshop with People's Media Collection
Aug
1
5:30pm 5:30pm

Free Video Workshop with People's Media Collection

Big Blue Marble is happy to host a free workshop from the People's Media Collection on how to create short videos to support issues important to your community or group.

Learn to film, edit, and share short videos using your smartphone or tablet. This is a great skill to have for improving your social media presence, fundraising for a cause, or getting creative! During this workshop you will work with a group of 3-4 people to create a short video. You'll get the basics and will be able to make your own shorts all in one place. The People's Media Collection amplifies the voices of the communities near the West Oak Lane and Northeast Regional library branches about the issues that matter most to them.

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Race and Sexuality in the Potter Universe with Lorrie Kim
Jul
30
10:30am10:30am

Race and Sexuality in the Potter Universe with Lorrie Kim

1 in Tens of Thousands? Race and Sexuality in the Potter Universe Lecture/discussion with Potter expert Lorrie Kim, author of Snape: A Definitive Reading

With exactly one character out of hundreds who is identified as gay, J.K. Rowling’s world is way more heteronormative than the Muggle world. And issues of race and racism in the Wizarding World have grown even more troubled as Rowling writes wizard history onto Native American and African cultures. We love Potter, and we want our whole selves represented in the world of wizards. Join us for a heated discussion and debate! Bagels, tea, and juice will be provided.

Geared for older teens and adults

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Poetry Is Not a Luxury Bookclub
Jul
26
7:00pm 7:00pm

Poetry Is Not a Luxury Bookclub

Poetry Is Not a Luxury is a monthly book club led by Elliott batTzedek, MFA. Together we'll be reading the best contemporary poets, and exploring how they use their work to explore the most urgent social issues. Each month we'll focus on a different book, along with individual poems from other poets addressing similar issues. We will meet fourth Wednesdays of the month from 7:00-8:30pm.

July's book: Bright Dead Things by Ada Limon.

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