Book store

Looking back on 35 years of serving Lawrence and looking forward to events throughout the month – The Lawrence Times

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Over three and a half decades, The Raven has overcome insurmountable odds for many other bookstores.

And in September, he will celebrate 35 years of service to the Lawrence community.

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The Raven Book Store began as a small store specializing in mysteries in 1987. It has grown in both physical size and its footprint in the bookstore world, and it has taken root as a cultural center in downtown Lawrence.

The Raven recently shared images chronicling some key moments in the store’s history – from its beginnings in the summer of 1987 to memorable author visits over the years and awards won by the store.

Here is an interactive timeline of some of the many events in his journey from then to now.

Click here to open the timeline in a new window.

35th Anniversary Events

The Raven has planned a wide variety of events this month to celebrate its anniversary. It also marks one year since moving from Seventh Street to Massachusetts Street in the heart of downtown Lawrence.

“Raven employees want to commemorate these milestones with the community they have been part of for so long. As a result, they are celebrating by hosting a series of anniversary events, taking place throughout September,” according to the press release. “There are a wide variety of events that are sure to appeal to readers of all ages and interests, including regional events with Monarch Watch and the Jayhawk Audubon Society.”

All of these events are free and open to the public. Masks and proof of COVID-19 vaccination are required to attend events taking place on-site at the Raven.

Here is the schedule:

All information courtesy of Raven.

An evening with Mia Mercado, author of “She’s Nice Thought”

7 p.m. Thursday, September 1 at the Raven

For those craving their next Samantha Irby hit or Jia Tolentino-style comedic cultural comedy, Kansas City author Mia Mercado’s book will hit the mark. Mercado brings She’s Nice Though: Essays on Being Bad to Be Good au Corbeau for a reading and a dedication that will make you laugh out loud.

Learn more on this link.

A fun run with adventure sports writer Christopher McDougall

6 p.m. Monday, September 12, from Ad Astra Running, 734 Massachusetts St.

The Raven teams up with Ad Astra Running and Pinole Blue for a fun run and chat with bestselling adventure sports writer Christopher McDougall ahead of its December title release Born to Run 2: The Ultimate Training Guide. Participants are invited to join the race, talk to McDougall about his new books, enjoy drinks from Pinole Blue and purchase a selection of themed titles provided by the Raven at the end of the course.

Learn more on this link.

A virtual family event with Jordannah Elizabeth, author of “Astrology for Black Girls

7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 13 on Crowdcast (online only)

With color illustrations and a comprehensive look at the sun, moon and rising signs, astrology for black girls is poised to be the perfect book for young black girls to start learning astrology. Young astrology enthusiasts are encouraged to join the Raven for a virtual event with author, Jordannah Elizabeth, as she discusses her creative practice. She will be in conversation with Nikita Imafidon, co-owner of Raven Book Store. This is a child-friendly event

Learn more on this link. Register on this link.

Book signing with William Kent Krueger

Noon Wednesday, September 14 at the Raven

Shoppers will be able to meet award-winning mystery and mystery novelist William Kent Krueger at the store. He will sign copies of the latest version of his famous mystery series Cork O’Connor, Fox Creek– in addition to one of his many other titles.

Learn more on this link.

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Discussion with Sarah Dykman, researcher and author of “Bicycling with Butterflies” in partnership with Monarch Watch

7 p.m. Saturday, September 17 at the Raven

The Raven isn’t the only Lawrence organization with a September anniversary — Monarch Watch is coming on 30 years at KU, and the bookstore is hosting an author conference as part of Monarch Watch’s own 30th Anniversary Event Series. The guest author will be Sara Dykman (Cycling with Butterflies: My 10,201 Mile Journey After the Monarch Migration) who will discuss monarch butterflies and its historic two-wheeled journey to track their migration patterns.

Learn more on this link.

Launch of the book “The Unbalancing” by RB Lemberg

7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 20 at the Raven

Attendees are invited to celebrate the title launch of Kansas-based author RB Lemberg The imbalanceg, the first full novel set in their fantasy world Birdverse. The evening will include a reading and Q&A, with the possibility of obtaining copies of The imbalance signed by Lemberg.

Learn more on this link.

Sarah Kendzior, author of “They Knew”, in conversation with Sarah Smarsh

7 p.m. Wednesday, September 21 at the Raven

Missouri-based journalist and anthropologist Sarah Kendzior is visiting the Raven to discuss They knew– an exploration of the dangers of conspiracy theory culture – in conversation with famed Kansas journalist Sarah Smarsh. They will host an evening of incisive political criticism while discussing their approach to writing non-fiction critical analysis of America today.

Learn more on this link.

Release Party for the 2nd edition of “How to Resist Amazon and Why” by Danny Caine

7 p.m. Thursday, September 22 at the Raven

How to Resist Amazon and Why remained one of the Raven weekly best sellers for several consecutive years. Written by Raven majority owner Danny Caine, it was hailed as the start of a David vs. Goliath showdown in the fight against Amazon. Now, three years later, as this ancient ‘zine reaches a largely expanded and up-to-date third iteration of printing, the Raven couldn’t be happier to celebrate this book launch. Participants are invited to an evening of reading and discussion with Danny Caine, which will conclude with a question-and-answer session with the public.

Learn more on this link.

A Discussion with Lucas Bessire and the Jayhawk Audubon Society

7 p.m. Monday, September 26 at the Raven

Attendees are invited to spend an evening with author and anthropologist Lucas Bessire and the Jayhawk Audubon Society. Bessire will be in conversation with members of JAS about his book Short: Searching for water on the high plains. Running out of is a National Book Award finalist and Kansas Notable Book Award winner that explores the depletion of the Ogallala Aquifer while offering pathways to a more sustainable future.

Learn more on this link.

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Mackenzie Clark (her), journalist/founder of the Lawrence Times, can be reached at mclark (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com. Read more about his work for The Times here. Check out his staff biography here.

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