Blue Bicycle Books, Charleston, SC

Events and Signings

Wed., Apr. 10 Steve Oney, A Man’s World

Wed., Apr. 17 Emily Pease, Let Me Out Here

Tues., Apr. 23 David Sedaris, Calypso

Thurs., Apr. 25 Carol Bass and friends, Ripple Effect

Fri., May 3 John Crowe and Dale McCullers, FSU’s Sons of the Sixties

Tues., May 7 Matt and Ted Lee, Hotbox book launch at the Charleston Library Society

Tues., May 14 Jennifer Palmieri, Dear Madam President

Fri., May 17 — Richard Gergel, Unexampled Courage

Mon., May 20 — Elizabeth Cobbs, The Tubman Command 

Thurs., May 30 — Mary Laura Philpott, I Miss You When I Blink

Sat., June 1 — Piccolo Fiction

Mon., June 3 — Dorothea Benton Frank, Queen Bee

Tues., June 4 — Jennifer Berry Hawes, Grace Will Lead Us Home

Thurs., June 6 — Frye Gaillard, A Hard Rain

Mon., June 10 — Mary Alice Monroe, The Summer Guests 

Wed., June 12 — Jennifer Pastiloff, On Being Human

Thurs., June 13 — Deb Spera, Call Your Daughter Home

Tues., June 25 — Daniel Brook, The Accident of Color

Wed., July 17 — Deborah Burns, Saturday’s Child

Fri., July 27 — Harrison Scott Key, Congratulations, Who Are You Again?

FSU’s Sons of the Sixties with John Crowe and Dale McCullers, Fri., May 3, 5 pm

Join us Fri., May 3, 5 pm as John Crowe and Dale McCullers will be here to discuss their new book FSU’s Sons of the Sixties (Atlantic Publishing, pb., 214 pp., $20).

Set in the volatile decade of the 1960s, FSU’s Sons of the Sixties provides a peek into the work, sweat, tears, challenges, and joy of being a college athlete at Florida State University. This book is not just a nostalgic trip down college football’s memory lane; it is a compilation of gridiron stories about a group of stellar defensive athletes and coaches who helped define a decade of success for the Seminoles of Florida State.

While making their case for the defense, co-authors John Crowe and Dale McCullers, two former Seminole teammates, highlight the experiences of 12 FSU Hall of Fame defensive players and Sons of the Sixties. Their individual rise as star athletes and their relationships with their college coaches is woven into a tapestry of intriguing insights while the critical–and often overlooked–role that defensive football plays in building an elite college football program is explored through the perspective of those who experienced it firsthand.


Jennifer Palmieri, author of Dear Madam President, Tues., May 14, 5:30 pm, presented by Monoc Roberts Attorneys at Law

Monoc Roberts Attorneys at Law and Blue Bicycle Books are proud to welcome Jennifer Palmieri, former Communications Director for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, Tues., May 14, 5:30 pm. She’ll be in our courtyard to discuss her best-selling book Dear Madam President: An Open Letter to the Women Who Will Run the World (Grand Central, hb., 192 pp., $20).

Free and open to the public. 420 King St., downtown Charleston.  Wine and refreshments provided. Please call 843-722-2666 for more information.


Framed as an empowering letter to the first woman president, and by extension, to all women working to succeed in any field, Dear Madam President is filled with forward-thinking, practical advice for all women who are determined to seize control of their lives–from boardroom to living room.

As a country, we haven’t wrapped our heads around what it should look like for a woman to be in the job of President. Our only models are men. While wildly disappointed by the outcome of the 2016 election, Palmieri argues that our feelings–confusion, love, hate, acceptance–can now open the country up to reimagining women in leadership roles. And that is what Palmieri takes on in this book–redefining expectations for women looking to lead and creating a blueprint for women candidates and leaders to follow. Dear Madam President will turn the results of the 2016 election into something incredibly empowering for graduates, future female leaders, and independent thinkers everywhere.

Jennifer Palmieri was the Director of Communications for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. Prior to that position, she served as the White House Communications Director for President Barack Obama. She has also been the National Press Secretary for the 2004 John Edwards presidential campaign and for the Democratic Party in 2002. She is currently President of the Center for American Progress Action Fund, and she frequently appears on television and radio outlets.

Ripple Effect Book Party with Carol Bass, Thurs., Apr. 25, 5:30 pm

Join us Thurs., Apr. 25, 5:30 pm as Carol Bass, Marjory Wentworth, and others will be here to read from the new anthology Ripple Effect (Maine Authors Publishing, pb., 262 pp., $33).

Born from her childhood connection to the Edisto, Carol’s passion for rivers and all things water are mirrored in Ripple Effect. This book, filled with writing and art from across the country, began as a plea to the state of South Carolina to protect its many rivers, not to squander the waters to out–of–state industrial farms and sell its rivers to Wall Street entities, but to respect its citizens rights and its God-given resources.

This confluence of prose and art brings together paintings, poetry, photographs, and essays to stir imagination and inspire action. Rivers connect us. They provide a sense of place. No matter where we are, be it a blackwater floodplain, headwater trickle, or powerful cataract, flowing water provides a sense of place, of belonging. Ripple Effect beckons us to honor our connections to these national treasures, to take actions that ensure they will remain vibrant today and in the future.

Carol paints large abstracts and constructs giant wall pieces of vivid color. Her activism for environmental injustice was the reason for this book. She lives in South Carolina and Maine.

Let Me Out Here with Emily Pease, Wed., Apr. 17, 6 pm

Join us Wed., Apr. 17, 6 pm as Emily W. Pease will be here to sign her new short-story collection Let Me Out Here (Hub City, pb., 232 pp., $16).

Let Me Out Here is the 2018 winner of the C. Michael Curtis Short Story Book Prize. Spread over varied landscapes of the South and offering surprising moments of raw revelation, the characters here find themselves at crossroads or alone on an empty street at night. With Let Me Out Here, Pease joins the ranks of Mary Gaitskill, Ottessa Moshfegh, and Kelly Link, and adds to their tradition a deft, singular style and a voice as darkly funny as it is exacting.

Emily W. Pease’s stories have appeared in Witness, the Missouri Review (Editors Prize in Fiction), the Georgia ReviewShenandoah (including the Bevel Summers Prize), Crazyhorse (Crazyshorts! Prize), the Alaska Quarterly Review, and Narrative. After teaching for many years at the College of William & Mary, she now teaches writing to veterans through the Armed Services Arts Partnership, where she also serves as a member of their arts council. She is currently beginning a novel about logging the last forests of West Virginia. She lives in Williamsburg, Virginia.

20th Annual Bridge Run Reading, Thurs., April 4, 6 pm

Cautiously venturing out from the safe confines of their book-selling counter, it’s the annual Blue Bicycle Books staff reading!
Thurs., Apr. 4, 6 pm, the 20th Annual Bridge Run Reading features original works by Charleston writers/BBB staffers Ben Adams, Sara Peck and Jonathan Sanchez.
Beer and wine will flow, readings are short and fun, and there is no running involved, of any distance.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information please call 843-722-2666.
The Bridge Run Reading is one of Charleston’s longest-running literary events. The series started in 1999 in a Broad Street living room, moved to the old Cafe Lana on Cumberland, and bounced around various venues before finding a home at Blue Bicycle Books for the last decade.

A Man’s World Book Discussion with Steve Oney, Wed., Apr. 10, 6 pm


Join us Wed., Apr. 10, 6 pm as Steve Oney will be here to discuss his provocatively titled book A Man’s World (UGA Press, pb., 340 pp., $23).

A Man’s World is a collection of twenty profiles of fascinating men. Written over a 40-year period for publications including Esquire, Premiere, GQ, Time, Los Angeles, and The Atlanta Journal & Constitution Magazine, the stories bring to life the famous (Harrison Ford), the brilliant (Robert Penn Warren), the tortured (Gregg Allman), and the unknown (Chris Leon, a 20-year-old Marine Corps corporal killed in the Iraq war).

Although Oney has written about many other subjects during his career (his first book, And the Dead Shall Rise, is an epic exploration of an infamous criminal case), he realized early that he was interested in how men face challenges and cope with success and failure. He was drawn to fighters, creators, actors, and desperadoes, seeing in their struggles something of his own. His agent, an ardent feminist, urged him to collect the best of his articles in a book. A Man’s World is the result.

Steve Oney is the author of And the Dead Shall Rise, winner of the American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Award, the Southern Book Critics Circle Prize, and the National Jewish Book Award. He was educated at the University of Georgia and at Harvard, where he was a Nieman Fellow. He now lives in Los Angeles.

The Book Hog Storytime with Greg Pizzoli, Wed., Mar. 27, 3 pm

Join us Wed., Mar. 27, 3 pm as author and illustrator Greg Pizzoli will give a reading from his new children’s book The Book Hog (Disney, hb., 48 pp., $17).

The Book Hog loves books–the way they look, the way they feel, the way they smell–and he’ll grab whatever he can find. There’s only one problem: he can’t read! But when a kind librarian invites him to join for storytime, this literature-loving pig discovers the treasure that books really are.

Geisel Medalist Greg Pizzoli presents a new character who is sure to steal your heart in this picturebook full of humorous charm and vivid illustrations.
Greg is an author, illustrator, and screen printer. He is the author of This Story Is for YouThe 12 Days of ChristmasGood Night Owl, a Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor book, Templeton Gets His WishNumber One Sam, and The Watermelon Seed, which received the Theodor Seuss Geisel Award.

Author Luncheon with Michael Mewshaw, The Lost Prince, Mon. Mar 11, 12 pm


Join us Mon., Mar. 11, 12 pm for lunch at Halls Signature Events (5 Faber St.), as Michael Mewshaw discusses his new book The Lost Prince: A Search for Pat Conroy (Counterpoint, hb., 288 pp., $32).

Tickets are $32 for the three-course luncheon, or $60 to add a signed copy of the book.

Get tickets here.

The Lost Prince is an intimate memoir of the friendship between Michael Mewshaw and Pat Conroy, one that involves their families and those days in Rome when they were both young―when Conroy went from being a popular regional writer to an international bestseller. Family snapshots beautifully illustrate that time. Shortly before his forty-ninth birthday, Conroy telephoned Mewshaw to ask a terrible favor. With great reluctance, Mewshaw did as he was asked―and never saw Pat Conroy again.

Although they never managed to reconcile their differences completely, Conroy later urged Mewshaw to write about “me and you and what happened . . . I know it would cause much pain to both of us, but here is what that story has that none of your others have.” The Lost Prince is Mewshaw’s fulfillment of a promise.

Michael Mewshaw’s five-decade career includes award-winning fiction, nonfiction, literary criticism and investigative journalism. He is the author of the nonfiction works Sympathy for the Devil: Four Decades of Friendship with Gore Vidal and Between Terror and Tourism; the novel Year of the Gun; and the memoir Do I Owe You Something? He has published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and numerous international outlets. He spends much of his time in Key West, Florida.

Sojourns in Charleston with Jennie Holton Fant, Thurs., Mar. 21, 5:30 pm

Join us Thurs., Mar. 21, 5:30 pm as Jennie Holton Fant will be here to discuss Sojourns in Charleston: South Carolina 1865-1947 (University of South Carolina Press, hb., 384 pp., $35).

Charleston is one of the most intriguing of American cities, a unique combination of quaint streets, historic architecture, picturesque gardens, and age-old tradition, embroidered with a vivid cultural, literary, and social history. It is a city of contrasts and controversy as well. To trace a documentary history of Charleston from the postbellum era into the twentieth century is to encounter an ever-shifting but consistently alluring landscape. In this collection, ranging from 1865 to 1947, correspondents, travelers, tourists, and other visitors describe all aspects of the city as they encounter it.

Sojourns in Charleston begins after the Civil War, when northern journalists flocked south to report on the “city of desolation” and ruin, continues through Reconstruction, and then moves into the era when national magazine writers began to promote the region as a paradise. From there twentieth-century accounts document a wide range of topics, from the living conditions of African Americans to the creation of cultural institutions that supported preservation and tourism. The most recognizable of the writers include author Owen Wister, novelist William Dean Howells, artist Norman Rockwell, Boston poet Amy Lowell, novelist and Zionist leader Ludwig Lewisohn, poet May Sarton, novelist Glenway Wescott on British author Somerset Maugham in the lowcountry, and French philosopher and writer Simone de Beauvoir. Their varied viewpoints help weave a beautiful tapestry of narratives that reveal the fascinating and evocative history that make Charleston the captivating city it is today.

Jennie Holton Fant is a writer, editor, and librarian who lived in Charleston before working for a decade at Duke University Libraries. She is the editor of The Travelers’ Charleston: Accounts of Charleston and the Lowcountry, South Carolina, 1666-1861.