“When Karl Kilian opened Brazos Bookstore in the spring of 1974, he raced to beat the annual summer exodus as those who could abandoned Houston’s sweltering heat,” writes Jeremy Ellis, General Manager of Brazos Bookstore in Houston, TX. “He opened the store just in time for everyone to say, ‘Hello!’ and flee the city in search of more temperate climes. Left on his own, he had plenty of time to lay on the sofa and read Proust.”
To continue their 40th anniversary celebration, the folks at Brazos Bookstore installed a Proust sofa as a remembrance of things past and a commemoration of the bookstore’s first year. They’re calling it their “Summer of Proust.”
The bookstore has invited customers to lounge on the Proust sofa and read from the books. They’ve even made arrangements with a dessert delivery service to provide madeleines and lime blossom tea throughout the summer.
And to make Proust less intimidating for those who want to tackle it, the Brazos Book Club is reading the new Lydia Davis translation of Swann’s Way over the course of three months.
I’m a big fan of seasonal bookclubs. And I especially love the way Brazos is telling their story through this “Summer of Proust.”