David Enyeart, the man behind the many and varied and successful author events at Magers & Quinn, Booksellers in recent years, is leaving the store, but not the field. Wednesday will be his last day in Minneapolis' Uptown, and on Thursday, he'll cross the Mississippi River and join the staff at Common Good Books in St. Paul, where he will be in charge of events and also be assistant manager.
Rejoice, do not despair! He'll leave M&Q in capable hands--his job will be filled by Ethan Rutherford, a writer (his first book pubs next year) and former marketing and publicity manager at Milkweed Editions.
"We'll have two strong venues for events now," Enyeart said today. "I think the more the merrier."
Magers & Quinn has long been known as the bookstore that hosts the most events and brings in some of the biggest names. Mostly the authors come to read and give authographs, but if they only have time to sign stock, Enyeart has made the most of it. A couple of years ago, Enyeart lured Jonathan Franzen, Per Petterson and Gary Shteyngart to sign books at the same time, which made for a very fun photograph.
John Irving, Stewart O'Nan, David Sedaris, Tea Obreht, Michele Norris, Russell Banks, Katherine Boo.... the list goes on and on. You can see many of the readings on the store's very own YouTube channel.
"I love doing events," Enyeart said today. "And to get to do them on top of being assistant manager...well!" He moves to Common Good Books just as the store (owned by Garrison Keillor) gets ready to move from its garden-level shop on Cathedral Hill to a much more spacious spot on the corner of Snelling and Grand in St. Paul, where it will enter into a new partnership with nearby Macalester College.
The new Common Good Books will have a soft opening in early April--perhaps April 9, said manager Martin Schmutterer. "As soon as we have books on the shelves--well, as soon as we have shelves, and books on them." And the grand opening is planned for May 1.