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Gustavo's Staff Picks

Photograph of Gustavo Belotta, General Manager for This House of Books, a community-owned, independent bookstore and tea shop in downtown Billings, Montana

Gustavo Belotta, our General Manager, has worked in the book retail market for over 18 years and has read a few here and there in that time. He will occasionally do some writing, some acting, some painting, or anything else creative that takes his fancy. He can be found playing board games or trying to convince people to play board games the rest of the time.

If you have some time on your hands, ask him about his puppy.

The Monster at the End of This Book (Sesame Street) (Little Golden Book) Cover Image
By Jon Stone, Michael Smollin (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780307010858
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Golden Books - December 31st, 1999

The Monster at the End of This Book is a real-time adventure with ominous implications. Furry, lovable Grover is completely aware of these implications and implores the reader to consider them before turning the page, as with each page turn, we come closer to the monster at the end of the book. As the reader, we plow on despite his protests and his best efforts to slow or stop our progress. He binds the pages, we carry on. He builds a wall, we muscle our way through, getting ever nearer to our fate at the end of the book. This is easily one of the best books to read out loud in character, alone or with company. What will we find at the end? Is there a monster, or is the monster within us? The answer may shock you!

The Ocean at the End of the Lane: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062255662
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks - June 3rd, 2014

The Ocean at the End of the Lane makes use of fantasy elements in an elegant and understated way, as though magic has always been and will always be lingering at the edge of our consciousness and our modern constructs. It's the story of a boy who doesn't fit in, whose father can't identify with him, whose mother is fighting for greater causes elsewhere, and whose sister thinks nothing of him. When a stranger comes into his life, an opal miner, bringing death and destruction in his wake, nothing will ever be the same. Perhaps the saddest lesson from this wonderful fantasy is how we forget the magic that surrounds us when it's not manifesting directly, how it fades until we can dismiss it as simple fantasy.