C.W. Gortner at Village House of Books! And Other February News!

Village House of Books is wishing you and your loved ones a Happy Valentine’s Day. We’re having several totally exciting events to end the month and to start March.


Thank you everyone who came for supporting Disney Reads Day! We appreciate your support at Village House of Books.
Our guest, Queen Elsa, is available for your parties, please check out Razzberry Lips to see how you can bring some royal flair to your own event!


Don’t forget Valentine’s Day!

Please make your orders by Wednesday, February 10th to make sure your favorite Valentine’s Day book will be here in the store. We still have copies of our favorite Valentine’s Day books here in the store, but don’t wait until it’s too late to order something for your special someone!

Thursday, February 18th
6:30 PM

Vatican Princess

Village House of Books is so proud to announce that C.W. Gortner will be coming to Village House of Books on the 18th. We’re so excited to invite this incredible spinner of historical fiction tales to our store.

His latest book, The Vatican Princess, bring the infamous Lucrezia Borgia to life in a story that is willing to put the woman in the context of the dark, brutal Borgia family. He ignore the easy image of her as a villainess to focus on Lucrezia’s incredible, indeed, perhaps heroic will to survive. Come meet him for an evening of conversation and stories right here in Los Gatos.

February 23rd
The TARDIS Returns

Dr. Who fans, get out your colored pencils! The Doctor Who Adult Coloring Book is materializing on February 23rd and it’s only set to land if you grab the phone and call for the Doctor at Village House of Books. 

Tuesday, March 1st
6:30 PM


We’re ecstatic to announce that Los Gatos Library is holding a virtual chat via Google Chat with Marissa Meyer at Los Gatos Libary at 6:30 on March the 1st. Bring your questions about how she writes and how to keep classic stories fresh with a virtual conversation with Marissa Meyer. Be sure to order any part of the series you are missing here at Village House of Books. We guarantee that library copies will be swiftly checked out as we get closer to March, so make sure you get yours from Village first!


A Special Holiday Message from Village House of Books

insideoutgrouphugThanksgiving is a time for all of us to celebrate being with family.  

Thank you so much for making Village House of Books part of your Los Gatos family! Thanksgiving blessings from all of us!

Village House of Books is very thankful for our two guests joining us in December! 


Vanessa Diffenbaugh, New York Times Best-Selling Author of We Never Asked For Wings and The Language of Flowers is coming to Village House of Books for an evening of conversation, wine and hors d’oeuvres on December 2nd at 7 PM.

$30 Basic Ticket to join us
$46 Entry plus a copy of paperback Language of Flowers to be signed
$57 Entry plus a copy of hardcover We Never Asked For Wings to be signed

For more details, check the event’s facebook page.

There’s just one more event to talk about, and it is…

ery very exciting…Here it is!”

Right on Cue, Joy! Inside Out Box of Mixed Emotions Illustrator Jerrod Maruyama is coming to Village House of Books on December 12th at 2 PM

Come and join the Book Fairy and Jerrod Maruyama as Jerrod talks about his art and drawing his versions of the famous emotions!


Premium Event: An Evening With Vanessa Diffenbaugh December 2nd at 7

Vanessa Diffenbaugh

An Evening With Vanessa Diffenbaugh

December 2nd at 7 PM

Vanessa Diffenbaugh will be coming to the Village House of Books store in downtown Los Gatos on December 2nd and we’d like you to join us! Mrs. Diffenbaugh is the New York Time Bestselling author of the Language of Flowers and We Never Asked for Wings. She will be with us to enjoy a night of wine, hors d’oeuvres, and conversation.

This is a premium event, which means we will not be accepting entry at the door without the tickets. Please step in the store and sign up or call the store to be put on the list. The event will be very limited so hurry in and sign up before it gets completely sold out!

We are offering two packages for guests coming to the event. If you are part of a book club who read one or both of her books (they’re really fabulous) together, please contact the store for information about group rates!

$46 Entry plus a copy of paperback Language of Flowers to be signed
$57 Entry plus a copy of hardcover We Never Asked For Wings to be signed


Tomorrow: Los Gatos Literary Fair!

AUGUST 22ND, 2015, 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM

More than 30 Bay Area authors will be gathering on the Civic Center lawn in Los Gatos onSaturday, August 22nd, from 12PM-3PM to showcase their literary work. This free, annual event is a collaboration between the Los Gatos Library, Friends of the Los Gatos Library, and Village House of Books.

Cheryl and Steve Hare, owners of Village House of Books, have lined up three exciting keynote speakers. Kicking off the event at 12PM will be the New York Times best-selling author Cara Black. Her renowned Aimée Léduc mystery novels feature a female Paris-based private investigator.

Closing the event will be two award-winning authors, C. W. Gortner and Jan Ellison. Gortner is the author of historical Renaissance fiction, including the novels The Last Queen and The Confessions of Catherine de Medici. His newest release is Mademoiselle Chanel. Ellison’s first published short story won a 2007 O. Henry Prize, and her work has also been short-listed for the Best American Short Stories and the Pushcart Prize. Her newest publication, A Small Indiscretion, was listed as a 2015 Book Club Pick by the San Francisco Chronicle.

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RSVP on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/685211284946102/
We look forward to seeing you on the Civic Center lawn!


Guest Post: Fayette Fox, Author of “The Deception Artist”

How to Write from a Kid’s POV
By Fayette Fox

There’s a wonderful tradition of novels for adults written from kids’ points of view. Think “Catcher in the Rye,” “The Poisonwood Bible,” and “Room”. For these books to work, they need compelling stories and child narrators whose voices ring true.The Deception Artist Front Cover-US-small.v2 (2)

My novel, “The Deception Artist” is told from the perspective of Ivy, an eight-year-old with a vivid imagination, who lies so people will like her. Literary fiction for adults, it’s set in the Bay Area during the recession of the 1980s. Basically, I lifted the time and place from my own childhood and used it as a backdrop for my fictional characters and crafted plot.

During the five years I spent writing my novel, I worked hard to get Ivy’s voice right. Reviewers and readers seem to universally love Ivy, so I must be on to something.

Here are my best tips to help you write convincingly from a kid’s point of view.

Remember to Play and Play to Remember – Our first permanent memories form around age three, but as adults we seem to remember wildly different amounts of our childhoods. Personally, I remember a lot from being a kid and I believe that’s helped me create authentic child characters. You can try and trigger memories by looking at old photos. Talk with people about their childhoods. Do things you used to do as a kid. Blow bubbles in your milk, make chalk drawings on the sidewalk, sculpt with Play-Doh, build a pillow fort. Be silly and see what happens. Also spend time around kids. When I was writing my novel, I arranged to spend a day observing a third grade class at a local elementary school.

Vocab Test – In my novel I used simple language for Ivy’s thoughts, and went even simpler for her spoken words. Inevitably, some big words are going to sneak into your writing. As you revise, weed out words your character wouldn’t know. Obviously this has to do with their age and who they are a character. A five-year-old who lives in an 11’x11’ shed will have a different vocabulary from a 14-year-old American on a missionary trip in the Belgian Congo.

Treat Your Character with Respect – Your child narrator will probably have worries that look very different from your own, but they are real for them. Treating your character with respect means meeting them where they are, and acknowledging their emotions. If you think they’re being silly, your readers will too. And worse, they might not want to read about them.

Remember the Emotion – Part of childhood is a sense of powerlessness and not understanding a lot of what’s going on around you. In my novel, Ivy feels upset hearing her parents fighting and worries they might divorce. Additionally, kids are often obsessed with fairness. This can light a fire in their belly, making them to fight for their beliefs. Ivy’s brother, Brice, a budding animal rights activist, risks getting grounded by refusing to eat veal.

Kid Logic – When Brice is sick in the hospital, Ivy wants to move into his room because he’s not using it and it’s a waste of a good room. When their dad loses his job, Ivy cuts holes in all her new clothes so her mom won’t be able to return them. In my novel there’s a lot of humor and bittersweet moments around kid logic. As you get to know your child protagonist, imagine how they make sense of their world. These “discoveries” will help your character come to life.

Kids are Observant – Their worlds are smaller and they notice things we might not even see. I remember taking great pleasure poking around logs for bugs and lizards. Kids also absorb obscure facts at school, we might have forgotten. These details will help your character feel real.

Read Your Work Out Loud – Okay, this is actually important for all writing, but I think it’s especially key when you’re writing from a kid’s point of view. Listen to the sounds and the rhythm of your words. If you’re not sure it’s right, spend time around a friend’s kids. Take notes on how they talk and behave.

Good luck and let me know how that pillow fort turns out!

Fayette wood wall-small

Fayette Fox will appear at Village House of Books on July 25th from 1:00pm-3:00pm. Join us for a meet ‘n’ greet and a chance to chat with Fayette about her novel and writing!

Photo of Fayette taken by Dusty Olson.

Fayette is a professional freelance writer. Her novel, “The Deception Artist” was published in North America in March by Roaring Forties Press, after initially being published in the UK in 2013 by Myriad Editions. The book was shortlisted for Amazon Rising Stars and the First Book Award ebooks by Sainsbury’s.

Fayette is the Co-Founder of My Love Ninja, a boutique OkCupid profile makeover service. She is a former commissioning editor for Lonely Planet Publications. She holds an MA in Publishing from the London College of Communication and a BA in Creative Writing from Hampshire College. Fayette has trekked the Nepalese Himalayas, taught sex-ed to teenage girls in India, harvested pumpkins on an organic farm in the Netherlands, radio-tracked echidnas in Australia, and been attacked by a giant, Japanese centipede. (She survived.) You can learn more on her website here.


Upcoming Event: Cara Black Meet ‘n’ Greet

Cara Black Meet ‘n’ Greet
July 11th, 2015 at 1:00 pmblack

Critically acclaimed author Cara Black returns to Village House of Books to share her latest mystery: Murder on the Champ de Mars. Join us in welcoming her back and enjoy the latest adventure of Aimée Leduc!  Black will be signing copies of her book and chatting with fans; whether you’re new to her stories or you’ve read every title she’s published, don’t miss this opportunity to meet one of the best mystery writers working today!

“Black once again delivers what her readers crave: high-speed Parisian peregrinations, chic suspense, a touch of humor, and the indomitable Aimée, as unstoppable with a baby strapped to her hip as she was with one growing in her belly.”  —Booklist

“Sassy, openhearted Aimée Leduc is back for a 15th outing that takes readers to Paris’s elegant, old-gold seventh arrondissement. It’s not all luxe, though; even as Aimée balances work-life responsibilities as a new mom with a detective agency to run, she helps a poor Gypsy boy whose dangerously ill mother has a secret to share.”  —Library Journal

RSVP on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1606947819553598/

Or call or e-mail the store!


Guest Post: Cara Black, author of the Aimee Leduc mystery series

20 Mistakes to Avoid in Paris

by Cara Black, originally published December 17th, 2013


1. Missing the last Metro home
Full taxi’s pass you by, you face a long walk home


2. Heels on cobblestones – unless you’re Parisian + have grown up doing this.


3. Sacre Coeur pickpocket petition scams – avoid them and go up the back stairs

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4. Bicycling the rond-point Bastille – you value your life, right?


5. Sales clerks on the Rue St Honoré – only if you’re really buying that Vuitton should you face them

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6. Demonstrations + strikes – forewarned is knowledge – check before leaving the house or you might have no bus or Metro to catch

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7. Side stepping suspicious streams on the pavement/trottoir – you get the reason, non?

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8. Les soldes/ The Sales in January and June – only if you’re obsessed, determined + have your game plan in place should you enter the fray at Galleries Lafayette

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9. Touching the fruit at greengrocers – just don’t

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10. Fishing in the Canal St Martin – it’s very shallow and yet they find bodies once in awhile

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11. Paris Plages – your call if you want to slap on oil and sardine crunch with the Parisians who couldn’t get out of Paris in August

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12. Driving through Sunday manifestations/strikes – again, you value your life, right?

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13. Not greeting shop assistants when you enter and leave – an expected common courtesy

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14. Flashing an iPhone at Metro stations – that’s if you want to keep it


15. Puces St Ouen – instead go to Porte de Vanves fleamarket more locals and deals

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16. Pigeons – hard to avoid but keep extra cafe napkins in pocket to alleviate those white plops

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17. Late night kebab – eh, go for the frites

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18. Sunbaking on the Seine – see #11 Paris Plages + #16 Pigeons

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19. Lining up for the Louvre – find the back entrance and enter via the Pyramid

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20. Dog deficit – hop, skip + jump



Any questions?

Cara Black will be appearing at Village House of Books on July 11th from 1:00pm-3:00pm.  Join us for a meet ‘n’ greet and a chance to chat with Cara about her novels!


Happy Birthday Eric Carle!


Happy Birthday Eric Carle!

Beloved children’s author Eric Carle turns 86 today.  His beautiful illustrations and fun stories are some of the most recognizable in children’s picture books: The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Grouchy Ladybug, Brown Bear Brown Bear What Do You See? (written by Bill Martin), and countless others.

What’s your favorite Eric Carle story?

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artof redfox wsly  ducks  bluehorse


California Bookstore Day Author Schedule


Following the runaway success of last year’s California Bookstore Day, bookstores across the nation are now preparing for Independent Bookstore Day, a country-wide celebration of books and independent bookstores on May 2. From Bend to Brooklyn, book lovers should mark their calendars for this special day of literary parties.

Village House of Books will bring local authors from throughout the South Bay to the store to celebrate our rich literary heritage and local sports teams. 


11:00 AM – FICTION: Ann Gelder, Jennifer Ryan, and Mike Lynch

12:00 PM – CHILDREN’S BOOKS: Jenn Castro, Kim Yen Nguyen, Jan Pitcher

12:00 PM – The Book Fairy’s Storytime for Children of All Ages

1:00 PM – FICTION: Steve Sporleder

2:00 PM – YOUNG ADULT: A. R. Silverberry, C. Lee McKenzie, Robin Woods

3:00 PM – POETRY/MEMOIRS: Erica Goss, Kathleen Ann Gonzalez, Shelley Buck

7:00 PM – Brian Murphy and Brad Mangin present Championship Blood: The 2014 World Series Champion San Francisco Giants

Sixteen exclusive books and art pieces for California Bookstore Day 2015 will be available only on May 2. Items include a signed, original Chris Ware print; a signed chapbook of original essays by the bestselling author of Bad Feminist, Roxane Gay; a Margaret Atwood stencil, a literary map of the seas; a color broadside from Stephen King’s forthcoming novel Finders Keepers; an original signed, Captain Underpants print and much more. More than 65 authors have demonstrated their support for independent bookstores by donating work for this fantastic event.

Throughout the rest of the month of April, we’ll be giving you sneak peeks at the limited edition merchandise.  We’ll also be sharing blogs by our guest authors who will be appearing on California Bookstore Day.  This will be one of our biggest events in 2015 – don’t miss a moment of it!