Clark


Clark
is the Chief Financial Officer and Controller for Vroman's Bookstore. 
He spends most of his work hours dealing with insurance, accounting, banking and computer stuff so you won’t see him on the sales floor that often.  He first started at Vroman’s as a bookseller in the Arcadia store in the Santa Anita mall over 20 years ago.  He likes most anything on Star Wars and enjoys books related to history.  He also loves playing games, including many that we have at Vroman’s.

Flat Water Tuesday (Hardcover)

$24.99
ISBN-13: 9781250030030
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Thomas Dunne Books, 6/2013
The tragic and compelling story of a post-high school rower who gets the chance to attend an elite prep school and row on their varsity team. Rob Carrey arrives at Fenton scarred by his past and a reluctant crewmember, always preferring to be a solitary rower, but he finds that the path to being part of a team is a tough river to traverse. Ron Irwin’s writing intertwines Carrey’s past at the prep school and present as a documentary filmmaker. The story left me feeling a bit somber, but I enjoyed every moment.

Recommended by Clark


$14.95
ISBN-13: 9781452118697
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Chronicle Books, 5/2013
Jeffrey Brown’s second Star Wars themed book is an amazing little book full of great illustrations depicting Darth Vader parenting a young Princess Leia. Every page brought a smile to my face. From illustrations of Leia critiquing the Death Star trash compactor to Leia introducing Vader to Han for the first time. This would be a great gift for any Star Wars fan and particularly good for dads of all ages. I was overjoyed to get my copy and tell as many people as possible about the book.

Recommended by Clark


Beautiful Assassin (Paperback)

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9780061691225
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Harper Perennial, 4/2011
Tat’yana Levchenko is not just any sniper in the Soviet army during World War II she is the best sniper. Her story is one of a mother’s love and the struggle to find someone to love. She champions women’s equality and shows the world the strength of Russian women. Tat’yana befriends Eleanor Roosevelt, but becomes embroiled in a Soviet plot to blackmail the first lady. Michael White paints a picture of a woman recovering from loss, finding love and escaping the forces around her that are out of control; her story is heart wrenching at times, but inspiring for what one woman can do.

Recommended by Clark

The Night Circus (Hardcover)

$28.95
ISBN-13: 9780385534635
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Doubleday, 9/2011
One word—Magical. I really enjoyed this first novel. The time period, characters, and setting enveloped me. This is a story of two young illusionists who are pitted against one another by their respective teachers. The venue for this contest of endurance and skill is a circus, which is both unusual and amazing as the two illusionists make it something remarkable. Falling in love was not part of the contest, but they do fall in love while being mesmerized by each other’s creations. I enjoyed every moment of it.

Recommended by Clark
Also available on audio

Jedi Path (Hardcover)

$19.95
ISBN-13: 9781452102276
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Chronicle Books, 9/2011
This is an amazing book. Actually it’s more than a book, it is an heirloom that has been passed down over the years from one Jedi to another. It is a manual for students of the Force. Every Star Wars fan from young to old should have this. It is a nicely bound book with great illustrations and contains notations from Yoda, Anakin, Obi-Wan and Luke, just to name a few. This makes the perfect gift for the Jedi in your life. I absolutely love it.

Recommended by Clark

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780694006243
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: HarperFestival, 12/1994
My family was given this classic board book as a gift from a friend who reminisced about reading the book to her young children. We fell in love with it immediately and it continues to be a favorite at bedtime, well beyond the board book years. The singsong of the words is like a lullaby. I personally liked how the illustrator created the marvelous image of a sailboat next to the reflection of the moon which pairs so well with the author’s words. It is so subtle, but yet fits perfectly with the story.

Recommended by Clark

$49.99
ISBN-13: 9781442344181
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Simon & Schuster Audio, 5/2011
McCullough’s 17-hour audio book took me on a journey to Paris. I love American history, but this was something a bit different covering Americans in Paris from 1830 to 1900. It transformed my thinking about what it must have been like to travel or live in France as an American in this volatile period in French history. I learned so much about a broad cross section of artists, doctors, writers, politicians and architects and their profound impact on America from their experiences. I really enjoyed this book.

Recommended by Clark

Hug (Paperback)

$3.99
ISBN-13: 9780763645106
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Candlewick, 8/2009
What a wonderful little book. With few words other than “hug” in the book, the illustrations tell the story. When reading this to my son, I find myself using different inflections that correspond to how Bobo, the star of the book, appears to feel. My son seems to enjoy it and responds to each inflection with a sigh. Bobo’s emotional cries for a hug remind me how important it is to give that little hug even when you are not even being asked for one. This is a great little book for a two to four year old.

Recommended by Clark

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780316004121
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Back Bay Books, 5/2011
This is an insightful account of the people and conditions that lead to the Spanish American War of 1898. Thomas does an amazing job of connecting the five protagonists in his story. Although much of the book centers around Teddy Roosevelt and his eventual ascension to the Presidency, the other four main historical figures are prominently portrayed for their stance on imperialism in the 1890’s. I really enjoyed Evan’s account of this critical time in American history.

Recommended by Clark

$13.95
ISBN-13: 9780762440726
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Running Press Kids, 3/2011
My family loves the Peanuts, but my most favorite character in the series is Linus and his blanket. This fun colorful storybook was a welcome addition to our family library. Linus fends off his sister, Snoopy and his grandmother to save his blue blanket. What could be better? Have you even envisioned Linus’ blanket as a kite, well you’ll find that in this adorable book and be rewarded with a happy smile after reading it.

Recommended by Clark

$18.00
ISBN-13: 9780143119609
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Penguin Books, 4/2011
Philbrick’s faithfully researched book on The Battle of the Little Bighorn, George Custer and Sitting Bull was a rewarding read for the history buff in me. I enjoyed it immensely and highly recommend this to those interested in history especially those who don’t know much about the period of the late 1800’s in the American old west. The author’s account is through a very wide lens, but that made it a wonderful account of the battle at what lead to it.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.

DogFish (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9781416971276
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 11/2008
I highly recommend this beautifully illustrated and fun to read picture book, which was published in November 2008. I love reading this story to my almost three-year old son. The illustrations of the boy remind me of him and they are fun for both of us. The story is about a boy who wants a dog, but can’t have one and learns to love what he has, a fish. The illustrator is Dan Taylor and this is his first book.

Recommended by Clark

Outcast: Star Wars (Fate of the Jedi) (Mass Market Paperback)

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780345509079
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: LucasBooks, 4/2010
This brilliant nine book series is set two years after the events of the Legacy of the Force series (which is set 40+ years after Star Wars A New Hope). The books are wonderfully true to the Star Wars universe and although there are lots of new characters, Luke, Leia and Han are still dramatically present. The series follows multiple plot lines that intertwine but all revolve around the Jedi Order struggling against the government, the fallout from Jedi Jacen Solo's fall to the dark side, and a new Sith order that has come to light. This series is a must read for Star Wars fans.

The series in order:
#1 Outcast by Aaron Allston
#2 Omen by Christie Golden
#3 Abyss by Troy Denning
#4 Backlash by Aaron Allston
#5 Allies by Christie Golden
#6 Vortex by Troy Denning
#7 Conviction by Aaron Allston
#8 Ascension by Christine Golden
#9 Apocalypse by Troy Denning

Recommended by Clark

$13.99
ISBN-13: 9780738210278
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Da Capo Press, 6/2005
This is a very funny book, giving fatherhood advice without actually giving a lot of advice. The author writes about his experience as a first time father. Although I read it after my second son was born, instead of while my wife was pregnant or after my first son was born, I still found it fun to read and it made me laugh throughout. Although I didn’t agree with everything Crider said about fatherhood, I thought it was a great way to bond with another recent father over the tough things about becoming a parent.

Recommended by Clark

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9780812980189
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks, 1/2012
Clara Driscoll comes to life in this historical novel set in New York City between the 1890’s and 1908. The story, which is based on letters written by the real Clara to her family in Ohio, wrapped me in the world of leaded glass during the heyday of Tiffany lamp creation. Clara is a woman of creativity who plants herself in the realm of working men, when women were not seen as equals. I found the author’s work a rare glimpse into the striking contrast of life at the turn of the last century.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780345477477
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: LucasBooks, 12/2008
This series of 9 books has re-energized my love of George Lucas’ world.  The series starts about 40 “standard” years after Star Wars: A New Hope.  Although some wonderful characters from Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi have passed on during the 40 years, the main focus of the series is Luke, Leia, Han and their families.  I listened to the audio books and I loved every moment that I spent with the series.  The books are not as light as the first three movies were.  They are darker and similar to the prequel movies (Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith), but it is a wonderful series and can’t be missed by any Star Wars enthusiast.  You definitely need to have read or watched the six movies to have a good base for this series, but who hasn’t seen the six Star Wars movies?  Anyway, I strongly recommend these books on either audio or in print; they are listed below in order:

#1 Betrayal
#2 Bloodlines
#3 Tempest
#4 Exile
#5 Sacrifice
#6 Inferno
#7 Fury
#8 Revelation
#9 Invincible

Recommended by Clark

Invincible is also available as an audio book.

The Force Unleashed: Star Wars (Mass Market Paperback)

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780345502858
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: LucasBooks, 8/2009
Set two years before Star Wars:  A New Hope, this book should be read by every Star Wars fan.  The book tells a brilliant tale of one of Darth Vader's apprentices and how the Rebel Alliance was started.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.


Ticket to Ride
$59.50
Model: 824968717912
This is a wonderful railway themed board game, which won the prestigious Spiel des Jahres (German for Game of the Year) award in 2004 for excellence in game design. The game is beautifully designed and easy to play. It plays 2-5 players in about 45-60 minutes, for ages 8 and up. Ticket to Ride is a personal favorite of mine for friends and family on game night and I highly recommend getting a copy. I love the added bonus of helping players remember geography.

Recommended by Clark

$17.00
ISBN-13: 9780143111979
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Penguin Books, 5/2007
This book is the fascinating story of the Mayflower voyage and the first 50 years of Plymouth Colony. The history of the Mayflower and Plymouth are often idealized, but Philbrick’s account based on extensive research, paints the early settlers and their descendents in more realistic light. Everything you ever needed to know about the Pilgrims and more.

Recommended by Clark
Also available as an audio book.

Bunny's Noisy Book (Board Books)

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780786807444
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Disney-Hyperion, 2/2002
I have been reading this wonderful board book to my son since he was one year old. The illustrations are fabulous with brilliant colors of spring including lilac, columbine and ladybugs. The story is fun because it can be interactive. For example, when the bunny yawns, my son and I yawn. When the bunny stretches, we stretch. Although the publisher recommends it for ages 4-8 years old, I found it to be great starting at 1 year old.

Recommended by Clark

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780060936389
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks, 11/2004
This is a wonderful account of the 16th century journey around the world led by Magellan. This is really worth reading for those interested in basic world history or specifically the Age of Discovery.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.

$14.00
ISBN-13: 9780140296280
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Penguin Books, 10/2000
This is a captivating novel.  It tells the tale of eight individuals touched by a lost and unknown Vermeer painting.  The story moves backward in time from present day to the 17th century, and each character has a remarkable tale.  The author did a wonderful job detailing each part of the story from a different point of view.  Vreeland’s book is absolutely captivating and wonderfully told.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.

$17.00
ISBN-13: 9780345479730
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Ballantine Books, 6/2010
At many times the story brought me to tears. John Irving’s storytelling is complex and many of his characters are richly developed, I now know some of them better than some of my friends. Like many Irving books, the story takes some wild turns and I am in awe at how he can create such a remarkable story. I was captivated through most of the book as he told the tale of three people who cope through the overwhelming accidents of life. A must for Irving fans.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.

Soul Catcher (Paperback)

$14.95
ISBN-13: 9780061340734
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: William Morrow Paperbacks, 9/2008
This pre-Civil War novel about the life of a slave catcher was riveting and thought-provoking. Although the subject is not for the faint of heart, the story left me with a profound feeling that some of the best stories are the ones that are hard to hear. I was touched by the emotion of the two main characters & how life would have been during a very dark time.

Recommended by Clark

Also available as an audio book.

Carcassone
$32.90
Model: 655132001700
I love this game and have for years. It was the winner of multiple awards including the 2001 Game of the Year in Germany. It is great for 2-5 players and for ages 8 and up. I especially like playing it as a 2-player game with my wife. It is a tile placement game where each player draws a tile and decides where to place it to build roads, cities or farmland. Then by using your own supplies of meeples you claim roads, cities or farmland to score points. I have personally played this game dozens of times and every time you play it is different and enjoyable.

Recommended by Clark


Darth Vader and Son (Hardcover)

$14.95
ISBN-13: 9781452106557
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Chronicle Books, 4/2012
This is best humor book I have seen in a really long time. Have you ever imagined how good of a father Darth Vader would have been to Luke? Jeffrey Brown has the answers all wrapped up in this little book. From Luke splashing in puddles on Dagobah to Darth Vader reading a Darth Maul storybook to Luke. I am a big Star Wars fan and the illustrations and humor won me over in a moment. This would make a great Father’s Day gift or a gift for any Star Wars fan of any age. I loved it.

Recommended by Clark


Jedi Academy (Hardcover)

$12.99
ISBN-13: 9780545505178
Availability: Probably In Stock -- Call to confirm
Published: Scholastic, 8/2013
My son and I had a blast with this book. Jeffrey Brown introduces us to Roan, a middle grade student who wanted to go to pilot academy, but instead is “stuck” with the Jedi academy instead. The book feels like a mix between Dairy of a Wimpy Kid and Harry Potter, set in the Star Wars universe. The story is part comic book and part journal and tells of Roan’s 1st year at the academy with all the ups and downs of a new kid at a new school. It is a very cool combination with fun illustrations and would be excellent for any 8-12 year old, especially any Star Wars fan.

Recommended by Clark