QLBs for Christmas

In a post last summer – https://rjthesman.net/2012/06/22/the-qlb-in-taos/ – I talked about the quaint little bookstore in Taos, “Moby Dickens.” Don’t you just love that name? This wonderful bookstore with a Southwest flair sports hundreds of shelves filled with all types of books.

Here in the heartland, we have several QLBs that I would like to promote for Christmas.

Herald and Banner Books at 74th and Metcalf, Overland Park, KS. As you drive up to this building, it seems nondescript with its brown and red brick exterior. But once you enter the doors, it is apparent that this bookstore contains the latest in Christian literature as well as many types of faith-promoting items.

It’s the atmosphere that strikes you first. I could actually feel the spirit of God in that place, and even after an hour browsing through the aisles – I hated to leave. If you’re in the area, reserve an hour or so for Herald and Banner Books.

Faith and Life Books in Newton, KS, also carries the spirit of peace and joy. This is a lovely bookstore with decorations that took my breath away and made me want to run home and redecorate.

I saw this bookstore at the brink of the Christmas season and was so enthralled with their creative use of natural items to decorate the trees. Because I was on a limited time schedule, I didn’t have enough time to really experience everything in Faith and Life. It’s on my bucket list to return.

Signs of Life Gallery in Lawrence, KS contains a unique shelving of Christian books along with a grand piano on the main floor. Whenever I visit Signs of Life, I have to force myself not to sit down and play Für Elise. Upstairs is an art gallery, hence the name, “Signs of Life Gallery.”

Other rooms contain tables and chairs, spaces for Bible studies and meetings of any kind. Plus, this bookstore has a coffee bar, so one of the main draws is the soothing smell of mocha and chai.

Hastings in Enid, OK. Although Hastings is a chain bookstore, this one has the feel of a QLB. Also graced with a coffee bar, many of my Okie friends frequent this store and plug into the wifi while sipping from a large assortment of comforting lattes. Hastings also sports a large electronics section, DVDs, CDs and tapes from the latest musicians.

The Gift Shop at Olathe Medical Center. A hospital gift shop has one purpose – to provide a place filled with beautiful things that somehow encourage patients and/or their families.

The staff of OMC work hard to include lots of gifts that celebrate the Christmas season, share joy and instill hope in customers. This shop is so beautiful, it’s worth a trip out to the southwest side of Olathe, KS, just to see it.

What do all these QLBs have in common and why do I want to promote them during this Christmas season?

Because all of them employ managers who gave my book a chance.

"The Unraveling of Reverend G"

“The Unraveling of Reverend G”

All of these QLBs currently hold copies of “The Unraveling of Reverend G,” so I’m hoping that my readers will encourage the staff and buy a book for Christmas.

After all, for those of us who love QLBs, this is the perfect opportunity to support them as they continue in business.

God bless the managers of these QLBs, not only for taking a chance on me, but also for spreading the beauty of Christian fiction.

© 2012 RJ Thesman

The QLB in Taos

As a writer, I am always on the lookout for the QLB (Quaint Little Bookstore). Sure, the big box stores with lots of books and mocha lattes are fun, but I really like the cozy atmosphere of the QLB as I look for that special book or discover another incredible writer.

Many of the most unique QLB’s have a store cat who roams around searching for Lillian Jackson Braun books – mysteries where cats solve the Who Done It. In Lawrence, Kansas, I often sit on the floor of a QLB and read with the cat who owns The Dusty Bookshelf. Anyone who has a cat knows that they really own wherever they live.

But the most surprising QLB of my travels happened this summer in Taos. Right in the middle of a shopping excursion when we planned to stop for a refreshing glass of iced tea, we noticed this QLB. It looked like a small cottage, so I was certain it would have the cozy atmosphere of the usual QLB and stacks of books from floor to ceiling. What a surprise!

Unique nonfiction books such as the origin of Native American flutes or regional books about New Mexico filled the front room. Then around the corner, a table of bargain books sat against the wall.

Bargains – one of my basic food groups.

The bargain table merged into another long room filled with fiction, biographies and mysteries. Then up the stairs for more nonfiction, more bargains and more incredible words by authors I have never met and some authors whom I consider good friends.

Throughout this QLB, I found books I have read and re-read, authors I have spent lazy afternoons with and pictures from photo shoots advertising the latest edition of a classic.

Like a kid with her mouth full of S’mores, I strolled among the shelves and chatted with the friendly staff. The texture and smell of a “real” book is so much more fulfilling to me than an electronic version with a fake page turn. My soul was literally in literature heaven, and I wondered what could top this experience.

Then I knew. As soon as my book, “The Unraveling of Reverend G” comes out, I plan to contact the staff of this wonderful QLB and ask about a book signing. Maybe they will schedule me soon or wait until the entire series launches when I can do a reading and a triple book signing. Any excuse to visit this QLB will be welcomed.

But the best part of this particular Taos QLB was its name. Are you ready for it? Are you sure? You’re gonna’ love it!

This unique and wonderful QLB is called, “Moby Dickens.”

Doesn’t that just make you smile?