Read your way across the USA!

by Rachel on January 23, 2014


I’ve been sharing a few photos of our new display, Read your way across the USA, on Facebook and Instagram, and there has been such an outpouring of interest, I thought I would expand upon the idea and include some more detailed photos and a list of books that are currently featured.  The display was created by our Visual Merchandising Manager, Anne, after a lot of meticulous research.   Each book on display is set in a specific state, so while there have obviously been a lot of books that take place in a lot of states, Anne had to find the ones that were still in print so we could carry them in our store and she could use them on display.  This display is up indefinitely, and we hope that it will create conversation that helps it to evolve over time.  If you know of any more books that take place in Delaware, North Dakota, or any other state, comment on this post and let us know.  There’s room to expand the display, so maybe this can become a team effort!

For those of you who plan on stopping by the store, you can find the display in the event space on the 2nd floor of our main store.

For all inquiring minds, here is the complete list of books currently on display:

Alabama
To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
Boy’s Life – Robert McCammon

Alaska
Into the Wild – Jon Krakauer
The Yiddish Policeman’s Union – Michael Chabon

Arizona   
The Andromeda Strain – Michael Crichton
The Blessing Way – Tony Hillerman

Arkansas
A Painted House – John Grisham
True Grit – Charles Portis

California
The Big Sleep- Raymond Chandler
Cannery Row- John Steinbeck
East of Eden – John Steinbeck
Daughter of Fortune- Isabelle Allende
Get Shorty- Elmore Leonard
House of Leaves- Mark Danielewski
If He Hollers Let Him Go- Chester Himes
The Joy Luck Club- Amy Tan
A Visit from the Goon Squad- Jennifer Egan

Colorado
The Shining – Stephen King
Angle of Repose – Wallace Stegner

Connecticut
Revolutionary Road – Richard Yates
Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House – Eric Hodgins

Delaware
Hawkes Harbor – S.E. Hinton
Patient Zero – Maberry

Florida
To Have & Have Not – Ernest Hemingway
Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston

Georgia
Gone With the Wind – Margaret Mitchell
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter – Carson McCullers

Hawaii
Hawaii – James A. Michener
Molokai – Brennert

Idaho
Housekeeping – Robinson
Lullaby – Palahniuk

Illinois
The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
The Jungle – Upton Sinclair
Something Wicked This Way Comes – Ray Bradbury

Indiana
The Magnificent Ambersons – Booth Tarkington
The Stone Diaries – Shields

Iowa
A Thousand Acres – Jane Smiley
The Life & Times of the Thunderbolt Kid – Bill Bryson

Kansas
The Wizard of Oz – Baum
In Cold Blood – Truman Capote

Kentucky
Uncle Tom’s Cabin – Harriet Beecher Stowe
Icy Sparks – Gwyn Hyman Rubio

Louisiana
Interview with the Vampire – Anne Rice
Love in the Ruins –Walker Percy

Maine
Carrie – Stephen King
The Cider House Rules – JohnIrving

Maryland
Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant – Anne Tyler
Kindred – Octavia Butler

Massachusetts
Walden – Henry David Thoreau
The Wapshot Chronicle – John Cheever

Michigan
The Virgin Suicides – JeffreyEugenides

Minnesota
Main Street – Sinclair Lewis
In the Lake of the Woods – Tim O’Brien

Mississippi
The Sound & the Fury – William Faulkner
The Robber Bridegroom – Eudora Welty

Missouri
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer –  Mark Twain
Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

Montana
A River Runs Through It – Norman Maclean
Fools Crow – James Welch

Nebraska
My Antonia – Willa Cather
Worth Dying For – Child

Nevada
Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas – Thompson
Trunk Music – Connelly

New Hampshire
The Hotel New Hampshire – John Irving
The Last Policeman – Ben H. Winters

New Jersey
Drown – Junot Diaz
The Sportswriter – Richard Ford

New Mexico
Red Sky at Morning – Richard Bradford
Bless Me, Ultima – Rudolfo Anaya

New York
The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
Motherless Brooklyn – Jonathan Lethem

North Carolina
The Lacuna – Barbara Kingsolver
A Walk to Remember –  Nicolas Sparks

North Dakota
The Round House – Lousie Erdrich
Love Medicine – Louise Erdrich

Ohio
Walk Two Moons – Sharon Creech
Middle C – William H. Gass

Oklahoma
Paradise – Toni Morrison
The Outsiders – Hinton

Oregon
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Ken Kesey
Wildwood – Colin Meloy

Pennsylvania
The Lovely Bones – Sebold
Rabbit, Run – Updike

Rhode Island
My Sister’s Keeper – Jodi Picoult
The Lowland – Jhumpa Lahiri

South Carolina
The Secret Life of Bees – Sue Monk Kidd
Bastard Out of Carolina – Dorothy Allison

South Dakota
A Long Way from Home – Tom Brokaw
Yonnondio – Tillie Olsen

Tennessee
The Firm – John Grisham
A Death in the Family – James Agee

Texas
No Country for Old Men – Cormac McCarthy
The Killer Inside Me – Jim Thompson

Utah
The 19th Wife – David Ebershoff
Riders of the Purple Sage – Zane Grey

Vermont
Pollyanna – Porter
Midwives – Chris Bohjalian

Virginia
Bridge to Terabithia – Katherine Paterson
Lie Down in Darkness – William Styron

Washington
Twilight – Stephanie Meyer
Snow Falling on Cedars – David Guterson

Washington, D.C.
The Lost Symbol – Dan Brown
Term Limits – Vince Flynn

West Virginia
Shiloh – Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Night of the Hunter – Davis Grubb

Wisconsin
Little House in the Big Woods – Laura Ingalls Wilder
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle – David Wroblewski

Wyoming
The Laramie Project – Moises Kaufman
Shane – Jack Schaefer

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Mary Kinney 02.07.14 at 10:40 am

I submit, for your consideration, Marjorie Kennan Rawlings’ “Cross Creek.”

I loved reading it out loud to my husband as he canoed us around Lake Maitland in central Florida where we lived many years ago. We now live in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but will be visiting “home” later this year. A must-stop on our itinerary will be a visit to Cross Creek and Rawlings’ home.

Michelle Ranney 02.07.14 at 3:22 pm

That’s amazing! As a Kansas girl though I would say that Dark Places by Gillian Flynn and The Confession by John Grisham are also some more current ones. Props to the merchandise manager!!

Rebecca Dowling 02.08.14 at 5:26 am

Delaware: Elissa Schappell’s “Use Me”. (She grew up in Hockessin, DE). Marisa De La Santos & Julianna Baggott are also from DE. Christopher Castellani’s book “All This Talk of Love” Set in Wilmington, De.

Hope that helps :)

Brian Butler 02.08.14 at 10:58 am

I’d like to suggest a couple of additions to the Florida shelf. My all time favorite Sunshine Noir writer Charles Willeford rarely gets his due, but there’s no better take on the seamy side of the Sunshine State. And for sheer wackiness, you have to love anything by Tim Dorsey. After reading Florida Roadkill you’ll never think about Florida in the same way again.

Marie 02.08.14 at 11:49 am

Here are some more titles and states:
Georgia – The Lost Hours by Karen White
Between, Georgia by Joshilyn Jackson

Louisiana – Deadly Night by Heather Graham

Maine – 11/22/63 by Stephen King (also part in Texas)
Delirium – Lauren Oliver

Massachussets – The Lace Reader – Brunonia Barry
Life’s a Beach – Claire Cook
Physick Book of Deliverance Dane – Katherine Howe

New Jersey – Tithe by Holly Black

New York -Sliver of Truth by Lisa Unger
Time and Again by Jack Finney
Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs

Texas – Windfall by James Magnuson

Washington – The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
Night Road by Kristin Hannah
Oxygen by Carol Cassella

Jane Tokunow 02.08.14 at 1:56 pm

You ask for more books on Delaware. What about “Notes from the Shore” by
Jennifer Ackerman? It’s a combination of observation of nature and personal reflections- a lovely read – which made me want to visit the Delaware shore.

Candace Crater 02.10.14 at 6:23 am

“West of Rehoboth” is set primarily in Rehoboth Beach, DE. It’s by Alexs D. Pate.

Rachel 02.10.14 at 6:39 pm

Perfect! Thank you, Candace!

Rachel 02.10.14 at 6:39 pm

Yes! More books on Delaware are greatly appreciated. Thank you for such a lovely book suggestion!

Rachel 02.10.14 at 6:41 pm

Wow! Thank you, Marie! We are hoping that this display will be long-term and we will need to swap books out and freshen up the selection, which is something we will definitely need help doing. Your list is great and so helpful!

Kerri 02.11.14 at 12:02 pm

May I ask why The Time Traveler’s wife is listed under Michigan? It was written by a Chicagoan and, if memory serves, most of the story was set there. This lifelong Illinoisan can’t stand to see it misplaced. Surely there are other books with a firmer connection to Michigan.

Rachel 02.11.14 at 12:16 pm

Thanks for pointing that out, Kerri! It’s possible that it was placed incorrectly when the original list was made (that was a lot of books to keep track of!), so I’ll pass along the correction and we’ll add “The Time Traveler’s Wife” to the Illinois book rotation and add a Michigan title in its place.

Megan 02.11.14 at 6:27 pm

A few other North Dakota books:
Peace Like a River by Leif Enger
Fargo Rock City by Chuck Klosterman
A Promise for Ellie by Lauraine Snelling
Giants in the Earth by Ole Rolvaag

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