New Publications

Poetry at the Edge: Five Contemporary California Poets

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2014. BCC publication number 233.

Featuring poems by Joseph Stroud, Kay Ryan, Gary Young, Martha Ronk, and Michael Hannon

Designed by Carolee Campbell of Ninja Press

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Click here to watch a video of the books being bound by Klaus Rotzscher of Pettingell Bookbindery.

 

Price: $200.00

The Woods Were Never Quiet: Stories by Monique Wentzel

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2014. BCC publication number 232.

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Monique Wentzel is a compelling new voice in contemporary fiction and the recipient of a 2012–14 Wallace Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University. She takes as her subject the people and places of California, revealing a tender, sometimes dark vision of the relationships between them. Set in mostly rural areas in Northern California, along the California-Arizona border, and in the suburbs around the San Francisco Bay, Wentzel’s narratives describe the beauty of this vast landscape as well as the singular, vivid ordinariness of the many lives unfolding within it.

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Price: $110.00

The Sierra Nevada Suite: Thirty-One Wood Engravings by Richard Wagener

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2013. BCC Publication number 231. The Companion Volume to California in Relief: Thirty Wood Engravings by Richard Wagener, The Book Club of California, 2009.

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Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.
—John Muir

John Muir reminds us that a life lived without great rocky outcrops and ageless trees as part of one’s native landscape would be a life deprived of one of the greatest resources of the sublime. Richard Wagener’s engravings capture an essential quality of that friendship.

The thirty-one prints in this special edition were hand-engraved on end-grain boxwood and relief-printed by Richard Wagener. The majority have been produced between 2010 and 2013. The present work is a companion volume to California in Relief, published by the Book Club in 2009, and continues a legacy of wide acclaim, ingenuity, and beauty.

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Price: $450.00

Paul Frenzeny’s Chinatown Sketches: An Artist’s Fascination with San Francisco’s Chinese Quarter, 1874-1882

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By Claudine Chalmers. With a Preface by Philip P. Choy.

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Artist Paul Frenzeny, a Frenchman of noble descent, strict military training, and encyclopedic knowledge, became one of the leading “special correspondents” in the United States and Europe in the days when woodcuts, rather than photographs, were used to illustrate newspapers. In 1873, Frenzeny undertook a year-long sketching tour of the frontier for Harper’s Weekly, with fellow artist Jules Tavernier. This 100-sketch assignment proved to be an irresistible subject for author Claudine Chalmers, who then followed the Frenchmen’s careers after their journey’s end on the Pacific Coast. As she patiently gathered Frenzeny’s subsequent illustrations in the Weekly, Dr. Chalmers discovered that he had depicted San Francisco’s Chinese culture in all its pageantry and intensity, at a time when most of the white population, within California and across the country, reviled the pioneering Chinese laborers and repressed them in every way possible. 

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Price: $125.00

William Reagh: A Long Walk Downtown, Photographs of Los Angeles & Southern California, 1936-1991

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This special collection of photographs by the Los Angeles documentary photographer William Reagh examines and showcases his work from the mid-to late twentieth century. The 130 photographs, selected by Patrick Reagh and Michael Dawson, reflect William Reagh’s perspective on urban renewal and change in Los Angeles during the years in which he worked. There are images of Angels Flight, Bunker Hill, Pershing Square, Broadway, Grand Avenue, Hill Street, Wrigley Field, Chavez Ravine, and people, lots and lots of people. Many of the photographs from earlier decades are juxtaposed with photographs from later decades, taken from the same location and vantage point. In these, it becomes clear how dramatically the city changed over the years, and Reagh’s documentation of that change becomes all the more profound. The Book Club of California is proud to offer this chronicle of a city over time, a gift from a photographer with an endlessly fascinated sensibility, for all who should wish to revisit Los Angeles in the future.

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Price: $225.00