Signed Edition Sweepstakes

Find Books

Read the City

Win Free Books!

Original Essays | September 30, 2014

Benjamin Parzybok: IMG A Brief History of Video Games Played by Mayors, Presidents, and Emperors

Brandon Bartlett, the fictional mayor of Portland in my novel Sherwood Nation, is addicted to playing video games. In a city he's all but lost... Continue »
  1. $11.20 Sale Trade Paper add to wish list

    Sherwood Nation

    Benjamin Parzybok 9781618730862


Customer Comments

Randall Nichols has commented on (7) products.

Missing Person by Patrick Modiano
Missing Person

Randall Nichols, October 22, 2014

I picked this up after Modiano won the Nobel Prize, and, even in translation, I understand why. Modiano spins noir into something wholly new - city streets, memory, and identity in the wake of tragedy form the strands of the mystery he sets up. To say it is a quick read detracts from the meditative feel of his prose. Well worth a look!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

The Summer Book (New York Review Books Classics) by Tove Jansson
The Summer Book (New York Review Books Classics)

Randall Nichols, July 8, 2014

I picked this up with a couple other books as part of a Powell's sale of Women Authors in Translation, in anticipation of a trip I was taking to the author's native Finland. I haven't been disappointed in any of the books I picked up.

Written by Tove Jannson, who is no doubt more famous for her Moomins series (I'd not heard of either until this book), this book feels much less fantastic yet still magical. This book is both a sweet - and sometimes bittersweet - look at a young girl's relationship with her grandmother, spent on their small island in the Finnish summer. The stories, short vignettes, manage to deal with the struggle of aging both from young Sophia and her grandmother's perspective without ever losing the sense of playfulness. Honestly, it was such a good book, I had to dole it out to myself like a treat.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Loteria by Mario Alberto Zambrano

Randall Nichols, October 14, 2013

Zambrano's "Loteria" was an impulse buy that yielded a touching story of family tragedy. Using the images of loteria cards as a jumping off point for a personal history of tragedy, the book was a quick and worthwhile read. Highly recommended.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Beautiful Ruins (P.S.) by Jess Walter
Beautiful Ruins (P.S.)

Randall Nichols, October 14, 2013

Somewhere between the film "Cinema Paradiso" and the book "The Time Traveler's Wife" sits Jess Walter's "The Beautiful Ruins." The story switches between narratives to tell a tale mixed up in the good and the bad of Hollywood's golden age, a quiet corner on the coast of Italy, and other locales. In the end, "The Beautiful Ruins" is more than a romance - it's also got tragedy and long-delayed coming of age stories mixed into a tremendously satisfying mix.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Hark! A Vagrant by Kate Beaton
Hark! A Vagrant

Randall Nichols, January 1, 2012

A great read. I've enjoyed the online strip for awhile now, but with the brief commentary added to the strips in the book, this is even better. I've taken to reading one a day as reward. Check it out.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

1-5 of 7next
  • back to top
Follow us on...

Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at