Kelsie Pates (she/her)
Bookseller, Marketing, Donations, Newsletter, and Special Order Coordinator
Kelsie has been with Red Balloon since 2015, and is a lifelong bookseller. These days, she is most often found behind the scenes working in a corner of the store dungeon (aka the basement), emailing customers, prepping donations, and editing silly posts and pictures for the store socials. When she's not selling books, Kelsie can be found snuggling her cat, Pickle, listening to horror podcasts,
or learning how to crochet (and sometimes she does all 3 at once).
A Few Favorites:
This longer picture book has 4 stories- one for each season. You follow Hazel, a teeny tiny witch, who spends her days helping her forest friends. The illustrations are beautiful and filled with forest fauna, while the stories themselves are sweet and focus on kindness and friendship. This is a great year-round storybook.
This series will always hold a special place in my heart! It has magic, adventure, hilarious twists on classic fairy tales, and beautiful covers!
Author Colin Meloy (of The Decemberists) and his wife, and illustrator, Carson Ellis, are co-creators of this quirky, dark and magical middle grade trilogy. Set in Portland, Oregon, these books follow a young girl who must venture into the magical forest near her home in order to bring her little brother home. Lush illustrations and a whimsical storytelling make this a long-time favorite.
This book from 2014 is still at the top of my list of favorite young adult novels. It perfectly captures the intensity of being young, and how big everything feels when you're going through things for the first time. Told in alternating chapters, two siblings tell their story and the events leading up to the loss of their mother, and how that single event causes a ripple effect that affects their lives in countless ways. I would highlight the entire book if I could- the writing is that stunning.