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Wed, 26 July | 6:30PM

Green Card Youth Voices Saint Paul People GatheringJoin us for a reading with some of the young authors featured in Green Card Youth Voices: Stories from a Saint Paul High School.  This collection contains first-hand stories from 30 immigrant students at LEAP High School in St. Paul and is published by Green Card Voices, the featured organization of this month's Book Gathering.  We'll hear students share their stories,...

Mon, 31 July | 6:30PM

Waldo’s been hiding all over Grand Avenue, but he’ll be back at Red Balloon for the annual Where’s Waldo Celebration!  To celebrate the conclusion of 2017’s Find Waldo Local challenge, we’ll have Waldo-themed games and activities, photo ops with the “real” Waldo, and delicious snacks provided by participating businesses. Find Waldo...

Sun, 6 August | 12:00PM to 5:00PM

Paws on GrandThe dog days of summer are here, and that means it's time for Grand Avenue’s annual Paws on Grand celebration! Bring your leashed canine companion into Red Balloon to find a book they'll like and get a free dog biscuit. Reading to your dog is a great way to practice reading out loud, bond with your buddy, and de-stress together....

Tue, 8 August | 6:30PM


Celebrate the release of acclaimed Minneapolis poet Bao Phi's debut picture book, A Different Pond, at Red Balloon Bookshop in St. Paul. This beautiful book draws on the author’s own experience, and tells the story of a father and son’s early morning trip to a Minneapolis lake to catch fish for their family’s dinner. Enjoy a reading and talk from Bao, and celebratory refreshments...

Take a look at a few new books we love
Click on "Staff Favorites" above to see a longer list

Picture Books

Highlights thirteen women who refused to back down, whether it was in pursuit of their dreams or justice or knowledge. Each one is featured on a two-page spread, beautifully illustrated by Alexandra Boiger. The phrase "she persisted" appears in every essay, along with a quote from that particular woman. Chelsea Clinton has included some unusual heroines along with others more widely known. Great way to inspire young girls to stand up and be counted! -- Susan (RBB Staff)

Middle Grade

Don't feel sorry for orphan-on-the-run Alli Rosco--she has what it takes to survive on the streets. Or so she thinks, until she runs afoul of the deadly magic-wielding authorities. Her only chance: join the Thieves Guild and gain some magic of her own. Alli's story grabbed me from the start and didn't let go--we're talking non-stop action & adventure here! This is what I call a perfect summer read--love it!  -- Barb (RBB Staff)

Young Adult

Nattie McCullough-Schwartz: junior, allergic to strawberries, excellent at Latin, almost-kissed twice, actually-kissed never. When one of her almost-kisses writes a song about her that starts playing on every radio station, her usually-normal life turns topsy-turvy. And on top of everything, her good friend Zach (the other almost-kiss) starts acting really weird. Told in a fantastically-readable voice, this book is full of hilariously awkward conversations, rock concerts, and baked goods. Great for fans of The Only Thing Worse Than Me Is Youand Saving Hamlet.  -- Lily (RBB Staff)


I've spent my mornings with Sherman. That's how reading this book feels-I listen as he tells me his stories and poems, as he traces his growing up and works to understand his relationship to his mother, who had recently, and unexpectedly, died. He doesn't shy away from his own short-comings and complicities; his words are honest and heart-breaking and funny. When I finished the book, I wanted to hug him and thank him for being unflinching in his attempt to face himself, and for his willingness to be so open with us, his readers.  -- Joan (RBB Staff)

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