Reading Frenzy ~ An Independent Press Emporium

Your Hidden Skeleton

October 2014

Dear Readers,

This month brought the realization of a longtime daydream of mine: sharing one of my treasured collections with you in the form of an art exhibit! A few years ago, I purchased a 100-year-old autograph book from a rare book dealer called Your Hidden Skeleton. A convergence of the 19th century parlor game, Blotto, and the popular pastime of collecting autographs, these books pre-date the Rorschach Test by several years and involve the very unique element of an individual's own handwriting which lends a layer of meaning and infinite variation to the activity.

The directions were simple -- "Sign your name with full pen of ink, on folded line... Fold paper while ink is still wet... Be careful to dot the i, and to place the period at the end of the name." -- but the results were otherworldly, revealing images that look like alien x-rays replete with wings, faces, antennae, and other appendages. I've acquired a few more since that time. I recently selected 18 of the most compelling examples from their yellowing pages and had high quality archival pigment prints made from them that will last another hundred years! The prints, which are framed editions of one, will be in on display in our gallery through the month of October and are available for purchase. We'll also be exploring inkblot and other accidental art forms, pareidolia, handwriting, and divination in the shop this month.

We've got a busy month ahead of us with several events scheduled for October -- see "Upcoming Events" on the right for more details -- we hope you can join us for one or all of them!

Thank you to everyone who helped us celebrate our 20th anniversary last month! 

Your Faithful Proprietress,


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The Ledger

10 Ways to Celebrate our 20th Anniversary!

September 14, 2014:

Well, we didn't get a key to the city or an official commendation but we've always been a little anti-establishment anyway. All we really want for our platinum anniversary is for our patrons to celebrate this milestone with us! To that end, here's a handy list of 10 ways to celebrate with us and launch us into our 3rd decade!!!

  1. Swing by the shop this month and spend $20!
  2. Become a member of 1000 Friends of Reading Frenzy! Friends receive 10% off all general merchandise, and 25% Reading Frenzy brand items (t-shirts, totes, etc.) for a year.* Now only $20 ($25 value)! *Some restrictions apply (but not many).
  3. Spend $100 or more during the month of September and receive a FREE 1000 Friends of Reading Frenzy membership (see description above)!
  4. Purchase our lovely 4-color silkscreen Not Tonight I'm Reading print designed by Mary Kate McDevitt and printed by Seizure Palace for $20 ($30 value)!
  5. Purchase a 1000 Friends of Reading Frenzy membership and Not Tonight I'm Reading combo and get your discount on the spot -- only $35 for both ($55 value)!
  6. Pre-order a Not Tonight I'm Reading t-shirt or tote for $20 ($22-$24 value). Shipping in late September/early October.
  7. Purchase any issue of Crap Hound or from our selection of Reading Frenzy exclusive items
  8. Purchase one of these limited edition, signed and numbered, 2-color silkscreen prints from our Reading Frenzy print series for $20 ($25 value): Aaron Renier, Nikki McClure, or Kate Bingaman-Burt
  9. Purchase one of these limited edition archival pigment prints by Carson Ellis for $30 ($40 value)!
  10. Purchase an I Want to Kiss This Person print by Miranda July for $20 ($30 value)!
Special offers and discounts all expire 9/30/14, so don't dilly dally!

Rolling in the Ink: New & Notable Titles!


True Portland
  • Annual 2014 True Portland: The Unofficial Guide for Creative People edited by Bridge Lab
  • John Day Fossil Beds by Matt Sundstrom -- LOCAL!
  • The Monkey Puzzle Trees of Portland by Tom Meyers -- LOCAL!
  • PDX 100 by Matt Sundstrom -- LOCAL!
  • Popeye #807: The Magazine for City Boys -- The Portland City Guide
  • The Water Storage Tanks of Portland by Tom Meyers -- -- LOCAL!
  • Wizard Island by Matt Sundstrom -- LOCAL!


The Wonderful Egg
  • Alison and Her Robot by Fred Chao -- LOCAL!
  • The Arrival by Shaun Tan
  • Beware the Haunted Legs by Brian Cook -- LOCAL!
  • Gardening Lab for Kids by Renata Fossen Brown
  • Go: A Kidd's Guide to Graphic Design by Chip Kidd
  • Level Up by Gene Luen and Thien Pham Yang
  • Rookie Yearbook Two edited by Tavi Gevinson
  • Shackleton's Journey by William Grill
  • Stay Solid: A Radical Handbook for Youth edited by Matt Hern
  • The Wonderful Egg by Dahlov Ipcar


Pretty In Ink
  • 100 Crushes by Elisha Lim
  • The Amateurs by Conor Stechschulte
  • Beautiful Darkness by Kerascoet and Fabien Vehlmann
  • The Big Feminist But edited by Shannon O'Leary and Joan Reilly 
  • Diary of a Teenage Girl by Phoebe Gloeckner 
  • Embroideries by Marjane Satrapi
  • Fight the Power: A Visual History of Protest Among the English-Speaking Peoples by various
  • Lovf by Jesse Reklaw
  • Malcolm Gladwell Foldy by Josh Shalek -- LOCAL!
  • Malcolm X: A Graphic Biography by Andrew Helfer and Randy DuBurke
  • Nick Offerman Foldy by Josh Shalek -- LOCAL!
  • Palestine by Joe Sacco
  • Pregnant Butch by A.K. Summers 
  • Pretty in Ink: Women Cartoonists edited by Trina Robbins
  • The System by Peter Kuper
  • World War 3 Illustrated 1979-2004 edited by Peter Kuper and Seth Tobocman


Citizen Keane
  • 20 Ways to Draw a Cat by Julia Kuo
  • 20 Ways to Draw a Tree by Eloise Renouf
  • 20 Ways to Draw a Tulip by Trina Dalziel
  • Citizen Keane: Big Lies Behind the Big Eyes by Adam Parfrey and Cletus Nelson
  • Collect Raindrops by Nikki McClure
  • Drawn In: Inspiring Sketchbooks edited by Julia Rothman
  • From Here to There: Hand Drawn Maps edited by Kris Harzinski
  • Green Guide for Artists by Karen Michel and Kristin Hampshire
  • Illustration School: Let's Draw Cute Animals by Sachiko Umoto
  • Illustration School: Let's Draw Happy People by Sachiko Umoto
  • Illustration School: Let's Draw Magical Color by Sachiko Umoto
  • Illustration School: Let's Draw Plants & Small Creatures by Sachiko Umoto
  • Map Art Lab by Jill K. Berry and Linden McNeilly
  • Toilets of the World by Morna E. Gregory and Sian James


Dwelling Portably
  • Alive With Vigor: Surviving Your Adventurous Lifestyle by Robert Earle Sutter III
  • Annual 2014 True Portland: The Unofficial Guide for Creative People edited by Bridge Lab
  • The Atheist's Bible edited by Joan Konner
  • The Civil Disobedience edited by James Tracy
  • D.I.Y. Constitutional Amendment Kit by Nathaniel Whitten
  • Dwelling Portably 1980-2012 Box Set: Tips from the People Who Sparked the Tiny House Movement by Bert and Holly Davis
  • Hillbilly Nationalists by Amy Sonnie and James Tracy
  • Mostly True: The Story of Bozo Texino by Bill Daniel
  • Outwitting Squirrels: 101 Cunning Stratagems... by Bill Adler Jr.
  • Poison: Sinister Species with Deadly Consequences by Mark Siddall


Sorrow Arrow
  • Loba by Diane Di Prima
  • Sorrow Arrow by Emily Kendal Frey -- LOCAL!
  • This Planet is Doomed: The Science Fiction Poetry of Sun Ra by Sun Ra
  • Year of No Mistakes by Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz


Uppercase #22
  • Found Magazine #9
  • Hi-Fructose #32
  • Incandescent #4: A Color Film Zine -- LOCAL!
  • Incandescent #5: A Color Film Zine -- LOCAL!
  • The Lou Reeder/You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory -- LOCAL!
  • My Day #30 by Nate Orton -- LOCAL!
  • Pitchfork #1 (#2 also in stock!) -- LOCAL!
  • Popeye #807: The Magazine for City Boys -- The Portland City Guide
  • Sugar Needle #38 -- LOCAL!
  • Uppercase: For the Creative and Curious #22
  • Women of Color #4: Home -- LOCAL!
  • Women of Color #5: Interviews -- LOCAL!
  • Women of Color #6: Women Off-Color -- LOCAL!
  • Women of Color #7: Around Portland -- LOCAL!
  • Wrap #10: Into the Wild


Summer Reading

P.I.E. Books: Pretty. Impressive. Entertaining. and More This Week!


  • 100 Illustrated Papers for Writing & Crafting
  • Cats in Yukio-e
  • Hisui Sugiura: A Pioneer of Japanese Graphic Design
  • Makiba: Cute Farm Animals
  • Mushroom Botanical Art
  • Sou Sou Paper Book
  • Sweet & Nostalgic Designs in Japan: Handicrafts, Graphics, Architecture and More
  • Wicked Bugs: The Louse that Conquered Napoleon's Army and Other Diabolical Insects
  • Yurio Seki's Design & Patterns


Drawing Type
  • Drawing Type: An Introduction to Illustrating Letterforms


  • Maps
  • Welcome to Mamoko


  • Superzelda: The Graphic Life of Zelda Fitzgerald


Bitch #63
  • Bitch #63: The Tough Issue
  • The Lou Reeder/You Can't Put Your Arms Around A Memory
  • The Mystery & Adventure Series Review #48
  • Poppycock #1: 100% Portland, 100% Nonsense
  • She Shreds #5: The Magazine Dedicated to Women Guitarists
  • Sugar Needle #38
  • Vandals Make Me Puke
  • Women of Color #4-#7: How to Live in the City of Roses and Avoid the Pricks


Yurio Seki's Notebook: Forest
  • Yurio Seki's Notebook: Circle
  • Yurio Seki's Notebook: Forest
  • Yurio Seki's Notebook: Dalarna

Just In: A BUNCH of New Books!

Hot Weather, Hot New Titles!

This Week's Fresh Titles

New Arrivals!

Current Event Image



More Recent Additions:


Currently Showing


Coloring Is Fun!

Painting Exhibit and Kickstarter Launch by Alicia Justus

For the past few years, Alicia Justus and musician/DJ Jacob Balcom having holding record & coloring nights at a couple local bars. Each week Alicia creates an exquisite black and white drawing of an early Hollywood (and often forgotten) star, and Jacob selects appropriate musical accompaniment spanning the last century, while dozens of friends and fans happily drink and scribble the night away. 

Coloring is Fun! presents 20 fantastical paintings of Hollywood legends, as well as a wall full completed coloring pages.

Illuminating the Stars: Volume 1 will be a 32-page coloring book compilation of images from record & coloring nights past. Currently funding through Kickstarter and available in spring 2015. Check out the project here!

Refreshments provided! Coloring encouraged! 

Show runs through November.


Upcoming Events


Indies First Day on Small Business Saturday!

Celebrate Indie Bookshops! Meet Local Authors!

Come celebrate the 2nd annual Indies First Day spearheaded by Sherman Alexie with us! Indies First is a call to action to authors to support their local independent bookshops by becoming booksellers for a day! We've got an exciting line up in the works, and we're pleased to announce our first few authors:

More info coming soon!


Print Frenzy!

A New December Tradition at Reading Frenzy!

After nearly two decades of our Cheap Art Bazaar (AKA Cheap Art Show & Homespun) we've decided to hone in on prints (and some original works on paper) for a new Reading Frenzy tradition: Print Frenzy!

As usual, this exhibit will feature dozens of artists, with work selling for $50 and under (we will also be offering framed prints for slightly more), that you can take with you upon purchase. 

This years confirmed artists so far include:

  • Alisa Bobzien
  • Laura Berger
  • Garret Izumi
  • Bouyon Kim
  • Sonya and Nina Montenegro
  • Project Grow Artists
  • Meredith Stern
  • Sean Tejaratchi
More info coming soon...
2015 Year of The Ram Calendar Print by Garret Izumi


Sub Pop USA: The Subterranean Pop Music Anthology, 1980-1988

With Bruce Pavitt & Selector Dub Narcotic ~ A Joint Event with Beacon Sound!

Join us for a reading and signing with Bruce Pavitt and an after-party two doors down at Beacon Sound (3636 N. Mississippi Ave.) with Selector Dub Narcotic! 

Many people don't realize that years before there was Sub Pop, the legendary indie record label, co-founder Bruce Pavitt ran a radio show and produced a zine called Subterranean Pop. Sub Pop USA is a complete collection of Pavitt's zine and Sub Pop USA columns for The Rocket

Bruce Pavitt currently lives in Seattle, Washington. He keeps engaged in music by periodically speaking at conferences and festivals, consulting with artists and music labels, and as a DJ. A true music fan, Bruce continues to study music history in every genre.

Selector Dub Narcotic hails from Olympia, Washington and is the pseudonym of choice for Calvin Johnson when he is engaged in spinning records. Drawing largely from a stack of 45s, he is known to mix the genres dancehall, soul, punk, garage, R&B, rock steady, bubblegum and rockabilly with assorted curiosities of the current underground music scene. 



Reading Frenzy will be closing at 5pm on Xmas Eve

Merry Xmas and Happy Holidays!



Reading Frenzy will be closed Xmas Day

Merry Xmas! We hope you got everything you wished for!



Happy New Year!



Happy New Year!

Events in November 2014

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