Costumes! Puppets! Books! Bunnies! Scattered Books in Chappaqua, NY

Sunday afternoon I joined fellow Penguin Random House author David Neilsen  at one of my favorite local bookstores here in Sleepy Hollow Country, Scattered Books.

Repeat “family favorite” in Westchester Magazine, Scattered is a family business and a welcoming, spontaneous celebration of creativity. Down to earth book lovers of all ages are welcome. Yes, kids are welcome. Coffee is welcome. Even pets are welcome. (Four bunnies, Instagram famous, rule the floor and romp, each at his or her own speed and personality.)

The selection of books and gifts is both deep and tasty — and if you can’t find it, Laura Schaefer and company will find it for you. In conversation with Laura, Diane and Olivia and I felt graced to be talking to someone who lives and breathes the pleasure of stories, learning and curiosity.

I think this skill and passion have powered her to become one of the best independent business owners we know. Laura impressed me so much, I asked her to partner as my bookseller for my non-store meet and greets, like the event we plan for December at The Harvey School.

Laura Schaefer, holding bookstore bunny, flanked by zanies who tell stories.

So, Sunday after a browse around that yielded a huge stack of must read books to buy — including David Neilsen’s latest — my family and I settled into our roles.

Despite the sad cancellation of the day’s Ragamuffin Halloween Costume Parade, we still had a steady stream of kids of all ages, many in costume. Diane helped them assemble “Little Creep” popsicle stick puppets, crafted from photocopies of Ashley Spires’ lovable designs from our book. A face painting artist decorated hands and faces. Olivia photographed them. Bunnies bunnied them.

And the two authors read to them and signed their books.





And read we did. My colleague with the older kids, including Olivia, and me with the tiny terrors, really getting them booing with Ghost Baby, blooping with Gill Mama and Gill Baby and howling when Wolfgirl lets loose to sing down the Moon at dawn.




All this makes me want to hang out with Laura and her people and the bunnies again soon, pure and simple. Words like “home,” “haven,” and “sanctuary” come to mind. And if that’s overkill, try “community.”

But don’t take my word for it. Check it out for yourself.




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