Pictured is Knotanew Bookstore, by Jenny Fisher.
Pictured is Knotanew Bookstore, by Jenny Fisher.

Mark Jokinen’s Bookstore (George St. between King and Sherbrooke):

A number of great Valentine’s Day books are sitting in the window including Italo Calvino’s Difficult Loves, erotica from the great French writer Anais Nin with her novel Delta Of Venus, and an interesting looking book on Canadian Culture called Desiring Canada by Patricia Cormack and James F. Cosgrave.

Knotanew Bookstore (George St. at Sherbrooke):

A collection of essays and articles edited by Daniel Nugen, Rural Revolt In Mexico ($14.95) makes an excellent Valentine’s gift for that special IDS student in your life while Make Love!* *The Bruce Campbell Way ($6.95), authored by The Evil Dead star, makes an excellent Valentine’s Day gift for everyone else. Also keep an eye-out in the biography section for the Journals of pop-art sensation Kieth Harring.

Books ‘n’ Things (Water St. between Simcoe and Hunter):

Lying down in the window is a hardcover coffee table style book, The Spirituality Of Wine by Tom Harpur, which seems like it could be a very useful book to have around at this time of year. In the Literature section Isabel Allende’s Aphrodite: A Memoir Of The Senses recounts legends, histories and folk stories of lovers and legendary appetites of all kinds. The popular (and film-adapted) Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert is also in the fiction section for only ($6)

Thea’s Books and Violins (Water St. between Simcoe and Hunter):

French Lovers, in the window, recounts the histories of the love affairs between French men and women of letters.

In the Literature in Translation section look for Love Pagoda, the “The forbidden Chinese erotic novel” as it is sometimes known. It is the anonymously written account of the adventures of Lord Hsi and his six wives. Its considered a classic of world erotic fiction and is only ($7).

In the same section, Elcihi Amadi’s The Concubine, an excellent love story set in Nigeria, is only ($10) and was the novel that introduced this author to the world during the 1960s.

Scholar’s Bookstore (Water St. between Simcoe and Hunter):

Erica Jong’s How To Save Your Own Life and the author’s unflinching depictions of female sexuality made her a prominent novelist of second wave feminism and you can find out why for only ($6). In the health and medicine section, look for Sex: A Man’s Guide for ($12), because I’m sure he needs it. Sara Gruen’s recent hit Water For Elephants makes a great gift for only ($8.95).

Dixon’s Book Store (Water St. between Simcoe and Hunter):

Pauline E. Hopkins’ Contending Forces, one of the pre-eminent works of pre-World War One African-American women’s writing, is a great love story set against the North-South divide (it’s laying out on a table near the Literature section).

Finally, since its Self-Love week, check out Dixon’s selection of Paranormal Romance section, sitting right beside the horror section for titles ($4.50) or less, or wander further down to find a seemingly endless supply of Harlequins and pulpy bodice-rippers of all kinds.