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Sat, 27 April | 10:00AM to 6:00PM

INDEPENDENT BOOKSTORE DAY!Everyone's favorite all-day, all-indie bookstore party returns on April 27, 2019: Independent Bookstore Day! We’re celebrating with exclusive merchandise, free audiobooks, storytime, treats, jazz, and more! Clear your schedules (and...

Thu, 2 May | 10:30AM


Red Balloon Bookshop is delighted to welcome special guest author/illustrator Cori Doerrfeld to Thursday storytime this week to celebrate Children's Book Week with us! Cori is the author/illustrator of the brand new book Wild Baby as well as...

Sat, 4 May | 10:30AM

Star Wars Storytime: May the Fourth Be With You

May the Fourth Be With You! Powers from the dark and the light sides of the Force are gathering at Red Balloon Bookshop in St. Paul this morning for Star Wars Stories & a Padawan Party.  Aspiring Jedi, Sith Lords (and Ladies), droids, pilots, princesses, and rogues from galaxies near and far, far...

Sat, 4 May | 3:00PM


Head to Red Balloon Bookshop in St. Paul for a celebration of The Line Tender, the debut novel by Minneapolis author Kate Allen. Heartbreaking but also filled with wit and hope, The Line Tender is the story of Lucy, the daughter of a marine biologist and a...

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

Picture Books

Staff Pick Badge
Because Cover Image
By Mo Willems, Amber Ren (Illustrator)

Creating something wonderful takes work and persistence. Creating something wonderful takes lots of people contributing in so many different ways.  Becauseis a delightful book that reminds us that when hard work and community are combined with a series of events and opportunities, magic happens. The Illustrations by debut illustrator Amber Ren beautifully capture the music and passion of this story. Inspiring for all ages!  — Holly (RBB Staff)

Middle Grade

Sharks have to keep moving to stay alive, and so does Lucy Everhart, whose mother (a prominent shark researcher) died when she was eight. Her grief is bearable, thanks to dinners with her father, discussions with her neighbor, and adventures with her best friend, Fred. When Lucy and Fred hear that a great white shark has appeared in the bay, it feels like the beginning of something—the beginning of a summer full of tragedy and grief, science and storytelling, and love of all kinds. Smart, heartbreaking, and beautifully-written, this is the kind of book that will be swimming in the back of your brain months after you read it. -Lily (RBB Staff)

Young Adult

Reminiscent of History is All You Left Me , The Meaning of Birds is about a teen girl navigating a world of grief after her girlfriend dies unexpectedly. Before Vivi died, Jess was happy. Vivi was a light in her life, someone who encouraged her, made her feel loved, and taught her about the world. But after Vivi dies, Jess struggles to find her way back out of the darkness. Unable to work on her art, remain connected to her friends, or stay out of trouble, Jess appears to be quite the mess. When Jess is transferred to a school for troubled students, she finds a new passion that might be able to help her heart sing for the first time since Vivi died. — Kelsie (RBB Staff)


Hernando Colón was the illegitimate son of Christopher Columbus—and that's probably the least interesting fact about him. He was also the master architect of his father's complicated legacy, an intellectual jack-of-all-trades, an inveterate collector of the printed word, and the mind behind one of the most ambitious early libraries in the world. Hernando dreamed of a library that would contain all printed material—not just books, but flyers, sheet music, pamphlets, artworks—and that would be meticulously catalogued and inventoried. As much about knowledge organization as it is about Hernando, this book reminds us that the way we sort information is not innate and that the choices we make as we classify affect the way we see and understand the world. An utterly fascinating read . — Lily (RBB Staff)

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