Posts Tagged ‘Mark Twain’

Welcome to the Jumping Frogs of Washtenaw County at the10th Annual Kerrytown BookFest

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

The Kerrytown BookFest is quite different from most book festivals, it’s probably the only book festival in the country where you can find jumping frogs next to rare books. The free BookFest not only features authors (more than 35 this year) but also focuses on the book arts with more than 15 book artists demonstrating and discussing their crafts. But wait there’s more: the BookFest also includes 76 vendors and exhibitors, both selling their wares, promoting their services and highlighting their missions as several non-profit organizations are doing.

Once again this year there is an interesting contingent of booksellers including Motte & Bailey Bookseller, Westside Books, Kaleidoscope Books, Castbooks and Garrett Scott Bookseller all from Ann Arbor. This year there is one new book dealer, Bay Leaf Used and Rare Books from Sand Lake Michigan. Returning booksellers are Curious Books, Magina Books, Sheldon Fine Books, Plain Tales Books, and Out-of-the-Way Books. There will also be a variety of publishers, authors and book artists selling and promoting their products. Every vendor offers something unique so plan to stop by vendors such as Barbara Brown and Friends which will be selling artists’ one-of-a-kind books.

Now, about those  “Jumping Frogs of Washtenaw County”, which will be sold by the youngest exhibitor we have ever had at the sale, Izzy Yates, the daughter of Lynn and Bill Yates, longtime exhibitors at the BookFest. Izzy makes frogs and sells them for a quarter for the small ones and 50 cents for the large frogs (even Mark Twain would be pleased.) Did I mention the frogs are origami frogs? Each frog is tested for jumping ability in terms of height, distance and 360 degree axial spins.

Izzy’s mom says all the proceeds go toward the purchase of the fifth installment of her favorite comic series, “Amulet”. Izzy will also be offering a free demonstration at the BookFest on how to fold a frog. Come learn origami from an enthusiastic vendor.

Izzy has been coming to the BookFest for seven years (she’s 10 now) and in 2006 she earned an Honorable Mention as the first child entrant in the Edible Book Contest. Her book entitled “What I Did Last Summer” was made of kale, watermelon and zuchinni bread, all pressed in her mother’s book press.

Check out the complete list of 76 vendors here. Libraries exhibiting at the BookFest this year are the Bentley Historical Library and Clements Library from the University of Michigan, the Library of Michigan and the Ann Arbor District Library. Then there’s papermakers and fine binders and book artists and publishers. Once again, this year, there will be a tour of an old-time printing facility and a look at a linotype machine. Remember Alice’s Restaurant where you could get anything you wanted? It’s the same deal for the Kerrytown BookFest as long as what you want has something to do with books or writing.



Thompson-Shore printers gets kudos from author Dave Eggers

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

In today’s New York Times Book Review the TBR column highlights how Dave Eggers in his new book “A Hologram for a King” acknowledges Thompson-Shore printers of Dexter Michigan which printed the book.

The article relayed how Egger’s in a recent article in the New Yorker writes how he had a “come-to-Jesus” moment” when he visited the printer in Dexter. He wrote how they had done some pro-bono work for 826 Michigan and how on a visit there he realized that not only does the company do beautiful books but that it was an extended family.

He told the New Yorker that the prices are close enough to China’s especially when you take into account delays. Interestingly enough, “A Hologram for the King” follows an American businessman who hopes to land a deal in Saudi Arabia. A clear theme in the book is about how U.S. manufacturing has declined. Eggers in not only a great writer but it appears he is also a savvy businessman. Read his comments in the New Yorker here. And follow 826Michigan on their website.

This isn’t the first time that such praise has been sent Thompson-Shore’s way. Their recent almost ’round the clock printing of the

Dave Eggers

Autobiography of Mark Twain was a monumental accomplishment and the publisher University of California Press was impressed by the quality and the timeliness of the printer.

Not only does Thompson-Shore support the literacy group 826 it is in it second year of sponsorship of the Kerrytown BookFest which is celebrating its 10th anniversary. Representatives from Thompson-Shore will participate in a workshop at the BookFest and follow the BookFest here. Who says corporate sponsorship isn’t worth it? Without Thompson-Shore’s work with 826 Michigan Eggers would have never known about this great Michigan company. He had visited the plant to thank them for doing such great work for his organization. Read more about the Twain printing accomplishment in a previous post on and checkout Thompson-Shore here.

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