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How We Assembled Indiespensable #23

When presented with what looked like a mountain of a novel, we were admittedly a little apprehensive. Not for long.

Mere pages in, Jill was lavishing praise on Adam Levin’s debut. Once through it, she didn’t stop, going on to say:

The Instructions is awe-inspiring. Addictively quotable, violently funny, insanely intelligent, and utterly compelling, it’s unlike anything I’ve ever read, in the best possible way. Read this book. You’ll savor every word on its thousand-plus pages.

We did. And so did the New York Observer:

This is a life-consuming novel, one that demands to be read feverishly. When it is over, other fiction feels insufficient, the newspaper seems irrelevant...

We were thrilled when McSweeney’s suggested printing an edition just for our subscribers — the cover design is unique, and they also created a special Indiespensable copyright page. Adam Levin was happy to sign these exclusive editions and to talk to Jill about his first novel. You’ll find her interview (during which Levin was charming, self-deprecating, and funny, even while his parrot squawked vociferously throughout) on the enclosed cards. (And here, on the Powells.com blog.)

Michal and Heidi met with local business owner Sabrina, from {a little bit of sweet}, and conducted the compulsory quality control inspection of her fluffy confections. After a lengthy tasting session (for business purposes only, of course), we were sold. Quality = exceptional. But, we apologize, once you’ve had a hand-crafted marshmallow from this Portland sweet shop, the store-bought brands will no longer measure up.

Finally, we couldn’t help but get into the spirit of the season and include one of our limited edition holiday tote bags. Even the grinchiest in our ranks can’t fight the warm feelings achieved from tossing this natural cotton bag over a shoulder and hitting the town with a few favorite books in tow. It’s adorned with a festive (but not too festive) version of our logo, perfect for creative gift-wrapping or keeping for oneself. And, we promise the handles are secure enough to even carry around your new copy of The Instructions.

Happy reading!

The Indiespensable Team

÷ ÷ ÷

A collective of high muckamucks, the Panjandrums largely spend their time in competitive Bananagram duels and negotiations regarding Pie Friday — not to mention painstakingly designing each installment of Powell's subscription club, Indiespensable, with the help of independent publishers and local merchants. From time to time, they find it entertaining to give you a look at the hows and whys behind the what. But, if you're yearning for more, send questions, suggestions, and random anecdotes to indiespensable@powells.com. (They especially like stories about pets, babies, and pie fillings.)

Books mentioned in this post

  1. The Instructions
    Used Hardcover $7.95

3 Responses to "How We Assembled Indiespensable #23"

    K Slip December 21st, 2010 at 1:31 pm

    I saw this one in the Cedar Hills store. The physical bulk of it seems unwieldy. Maybe a portable book stand would have made a good addition to this shipment?

    GreatNorthernTroll December 22nd, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    I was thinking maybe a saw should have been included so you could CUT that baby down to 2-3 manageable volumes.. Oh, Holy Crap... Just imagine the size of the LARGE PRINT edition !!!!!!

    Laundry Lady January 30th, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    Flying from SFO to Boston and back with "The Instructions" last week because I just can't put it down. More than a few stares and questions about what kind of huge book is worth schlepping cross-country when you can't even check luggage anymore?
    I want to call in sick from work so I can finish it. And I want it to never end.

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