806 Western Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

Sadie Hoagland THIS SATURDAY at 7:00 pm

Sadie HoaglandPlease join us on Saturday, February 8th at 7:00 pm when we welcome Sadie Hoagland to City Books. Refreshments will be served. Hoagland’s new collection of short stories, American Grief in Four Stages explores the possibility of elegy and the inability of our culture to communicate grief or sympathy outside of cliche. Hoagland is based in Louisiana. She has a PhD in fiction from the University of Utah and an MA in Creative Writing/Fiction from UC Davis. She is a former editor of Quarterly West, and currently teaches fiction at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. For a more complete bio, click here.

New Art this Weekend at City Books

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Please join City Books this Saturday night, August 31st from 7:00-9:00 pm for the opening of KISMET, a new exhibit curated by Jennifer Quinio. (Refreshments will be served.)

KISMET exemplifies the delight and surprise that happens when people encounter someone or something by chance that seems like it was meant to be. Inspired by the Arabic word for “destiny,” KISMET demonstrates how, when people take the time to ask questions of and listen to the world around them, they learn that, regardless of circumstance, everyone and everything has a story to tell—and a unique perspective from which to tell it. It is only with curiosity and empathy that we can create the perfect alignment for something passionate and positive to happen–something that we label “kismet,” but what might really be within our reach all the time.

Featured artists included Rick Claraval, Susan Constance, Dafna Hanauer, Patrick Schmidt, Carolyn Wenning, Sam Whitney.

The exhibition will continue through October 26, 2019 and be on view during City Books’s regular business hours, Tuesday-Friday 11:00 am-6:00 pm, Saturday & Sunday 12:00-5:00 pm. However, the bookstore will be closed October 15-18 for a brief fall escape, but will remain open on all October weekends.
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City Books: January Update

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Join Us for a Reading

Please join City Books on Saturday, January 26th at 7:00 pm as we welcome J.D. Barker back to the store. The event is FREE and requires no prior registration. J.D. is an international bestselling American author who writes suspense thrillers, often incorporating elements of horror, crime, mystery, science fiction and the supernatural. He is the author of Forsaken, The Fourth Monkey, and The Fifth to Die. His latest novel is Dracul, an authorized prequel to Bram Stoker’s Dracula he wrote with Dacre Stoker.

Federal Employee Pay-What-You-Can

Federal Employee Pricing
In support of furloughed Federal workers, City Books is now offering pay-what-you-can pricing up to $30 for those with official ID. This offer is valid on books & gift certificates until the time when regular pay cycles resume. Please share this offer with your family & friends.

Tree of Life Memorial Reading @ City Books

Tree of Life Memorial

Please join City Books on Saturday, November 10th from 7:00-9:00 pm as we honor the victims and families of the anti-Semitic attack Tree of Life with a memorial reading to benefit HIAS (Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society) and JFCS Pittsburgh. Suggested donation is $5.

We expect an overflow audience on Saturday, so we ask for cooperation and consideration as we manage the crowd.

Scheduled Readers

Jennifer Bannan
Tuhin Das
Barbara Edelman
Michelle Gil-Montero
Kevin Haworth
Tereneh Idia
Joy Katz
Marc Nieson
Adriana Ramirez
Shannon Reed
Phil Terman
Jesse Welch

and Mimi Jong, ehru soloist


Cameron Barnett at City Books, July 21

Cameron Barnett

Please join City Books on Saturday, July 21st at 7:00 pm as we welcome Cameron Barnett reading from his poetry collection, The Drowning Boy’s Guide to Water, winner of the Autumn House Press 2017 Rising Writer Contest, and finalist for the 49th NAACP Image Awards for Outstanding Literary Work in Poetry. The event is FREE but seating is limited.

If you haven’t yet watched the Shelf Life interview with Cameron, you can find it here.

Independent Book Store Day at City Books

City Books Indie Day 2018

Independent Bookstore Day is April 28th, 11:00 am-5:00 pm

City Books will be open extended hours from 11:00 am – 5:00 pm with authors, pop-up vendors and special sale items. We will then reopen at 7:00 pm for an evening event in celebration of community bookselling.

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Saturday Night at City Books: Doug Rice

Doug RicePlease join us on Saturday, March 17th at 7:00 pm when City Books welcomes Doug Rice back home to the Northside. A book signing will follow the reading. Limited seating.

Doug Rice is the author of Here Lies Memory, the first book of a Pittsburgh trilogy. Born in Pittsburgh, he currently lives and teaches at Sacramento State University. His fiction, memoirs and creative nonfiction has appeared in numerous anthologies and journals and he is the author of eight novels. Doug is currently working on Daughters of the Rivers, the second novel of the trilogy.

Christmas Story Hour at City Books

City Books Story Hour

Happy Holidays from City Books

Before the store closes for the Christmas Eve/Christmas Day break, join City Books for an hour of holiday literature, including local playwright and storyteller T. Scott Frank reading Clement Clarke Moore’s The Night Before Christmas. The event will be suitable for families & children of all ages.

Saturday, December 23rd, 4:00-5:00 pm. Refreshments available.

Funny Ladies: Shannon Reed & Friends

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Saturday, October 21
7:009:00 pm

Please join City Books as we welcome Rachel Mabe, Rachel Brickner, Jennifer Bannan, and Shannon Reed, four Pittsburgh-based writers with some serious writing credits in McSweeney’s, The New Yorker, The Los Angeles Review, The Paris Review, among others. The evening’s selections will range from mildly droll to wildly hilarious. Please see the City Books website for more elaborate bios of the writers. Don’t miss this unique night of humor.

Rachel Mabe is a writer, reporter, and teacher. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Atlantic, The Paris Review, The Washington Post, Medium, Creative Nonfiction, and others. Rachel is at work on a book about the existential agonies of growing up female in America. She currently holds a research assistantship at Pitt, but has spent most of her time here teaching writing–creative nonfiction, composition, and business writing. Learn more about Rachel at

Rachel Ann Brickner is a writer and multimedia storyteller from Pittsburgh. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Los Angeles Review, Joyland, PANK, Anastamos, among others. Currently, she is an MFA candidate in fiction at the University of Pittsburgh where she is at work on her first novel, a collection of short stories about love, women, and capitalism, and a memoir about debt. You can see more of her work at

Jennifer Bannan is the author of short story collection Inventing Victor. Her short stories have appeared in ACM, Passages North, Café Eighties,, Radio Transcript Newspaper, and others. She holds a senior position with Zer0 to 5ive, a technology marketing firm. A graduate of Carnegie Mellon University’s creative writing program, she finished her MFA at the University of Pittsburgh in 2014. Her novel-in-progress was an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award quarter-finalist. Some of Jen’s work can be found here.

Shannon Reed is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker’s “Shouts and Murmurs” and “Daily Shouts” columns, as well as to McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. For Buzzfeed, she wrote the (in)famous piece, “If Jane Austen Got Feedback From Some Guy in a Writing Workshop,” among other work. Her essays have been published in Guernica, Vela, Longreads, Ozy, The Guardian, LitHub, Vulture, and The Washington Post. Check out her work at, @SReed151 (Twitter), @knittingchick (Instagram).

Diana Nelson Jones @ City Books

Diana Nelson Jones
You are invited to join us on Saturday night (September 23rd) when City Books holds the local launch of The Love of Baseball, a new collection of essays edited by Post-Gazette writer (and Northsider!) Diana Nelson Jones. Written by and for baseball fans (or those trying to live with one), this collection of essays joins a perennial conversation all fans have— “Why do we love baseball?” Thirty contributors share personal narratives of how they found an abiding passion for the sport and how their relationship to it changed over the years. Tracing the thematic arc of a typical season, the essays begin with stories of spring training optimism, followed by the guts and grind of the regular season, and ending with the glory (or heartbreak) of the playoffs. Discussion and book signing to follow.