Showing posts from 2009

Holiday Hours - On The Other Side of Xmas

We'll be open this week:

Mon-Wed - 11am-7pm
New Year's Eve - 11am-6pm
New Year's Day - CLOSED

See you at the Ball Drop on 34th Street! There are plenty of parties all up and down the Ave after midnight as well, so you don't have to drive far.

Xmas Traditions

NorwegianXmas, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Some of our favorite things about this time of year are the rituals people have. The traditions. The sort of things that the holidays just wouldn't be the same without.

For example, each Christmas (this is the 5th consecutive one) Atomic's newest family member Dina complies her annual Baltimas mix as a free download over at Wham City.

And Jan Bruun sends us his annual EI HEIMEBRENT JUL Christmas CD all the way from Norway. This is volume 8! That's right, volume 8!!!

We look forward to these things and more (like all the snacks people drop by for us to help keep us going through the grueling holiday hours) every year.

Thank you all for doing what you do! It just wouldn't be Christmas without it!

Happy holidays!


Hello Boy Hellkitty 3, originally uploaded by tenguhime. After this crazy disaster of a weekend, spotting this online made me smile.

Art saves!

Santa Is Here

santa, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Santa is here today and tomorrow walking around the Avenue!


Yes, we are here and we are open! Not sure for how long but at least until early afternoon or so.

The Golden West Cafe, In Watermelon Sugar, Falkenhan's Hardware, Kiss & Make Up and other stores are open or opening as well.

But if you'd rather not be out and about, we understand. You can always peruse online and just write in the comments that you'd like your books to be held for pick up and we'll waive the shipping fee or you can even just choose Money Order as the payment option and pay for items at pick up.

If there's anything you don't see online you can always IM or email us to check on stock and availability.

ETA: We'll be closing at 4pm! We'll be open tomorrow!


barart, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Supposedly, there may be some snow tomorrow. Or maybe not. Weather forecasting is still a primitive science, it seems.

But no matter what, we'll be open! Because that's the great thing about living and working in your own neighborhood. Most of us can just walk and go on with our lives and get this Xmas thing done right. And if you're not from this hood, getting stranded in Hampden is sure to be a good time.

Kiss & Make Up, up the street, may have drinks if it snows.

(The photo above was during a snow storm where a bunch of us were hunkered down in the Golden West Cafe, just drawing on coasters.)

Holiday Hours

booksmakegreatpresents, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. This Friday and Saturday we'll be open from 10am-9pm!

Sunday - 10am-6pm
Mon-Wed - 10am-8pm
Christmas Eve - 10am-6pm
Christmas Day - CLOSED

Remember, books make great presents! Unlike techie presents that become obsolete in a year (or less), books are timeless.

Also, this weekend, Santa will be roaming around Hampden. So bring the kids and your camera. I also hear there may be snow, so that's extra Xmasy!

8 Days Until Xmas!

xmasdomo, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. We still keep getting new stuff in every day! Not to freak you out but stuff is selling out every day and not coming back until after the holidays.

Sorry, but looks like the new McSweeney's won't be in until Jan now! The on the street demand in San Francisco was pretty high and they sold out of it before they could ship any to stores.

Nothing like one month old news for 2010! At least the comics section won't be stale.

Holiday Picks

texturedseasonsgreetings, originally uploaded by sugarfreak.

It's that gift-giving season and we've got tons of things in the store and some items still coming in this following week that would make perfect presents for everyone you know.

The Recently Deflowered Girl: The Right Thing to Say on Every Dubious Occasion -
Back in print and still full of the best advice.

Around the World with Mouk -
A travel/adventure-themed kid's book with a cushion-y cover. This is exactly the sort of book I could stare at for hours. The illustrations are gorgeous. Plus, STICKERS!

Bicycle Diaries -
David Byrne likes to ride around the cities of the world on a bicycle. Here he compiles his travels into a book. Perfect for Talking Heads fans, bicycle fans and travelers. Being behind the handlebars can lead you to very interesting places, both geographically and intellectually.

Snow Yak Postcard Microportfolio -
This postcard microportfolio contains 17 images from Mark Ryden's acclaimed Japanese Snow…

Dream Holiday Guide

I had a dream last night that I was making our Holiday Picks List and I was going around the store and jotting stuff down and thinking, "This is an awesome list!"

Of course, when I woke up, I realized that none of these books actually exist:

Holidays On Rice: The Curry Christmas Cookbook
Howard Zinn For The Holidays - Howard Zinn shares his favorite Christmas memories
The Illuminati Cookbook: Recipes They Don't Want You To Know
Dave Eggers and Spike Jonze Present: Banjos & Books
The Anarchists Guide To Knitting - more than just molotov cocktail cozies
Structurally Unsound: The Guide To Safe and Clean Hoarding
Bloody Drunk: Cocktail Recipes for Vampires
The Erotic Claus: Steamy Tales from The North Pole

Stay tuned for our REAL Holiday list.

First Friday - WYPR's The Signal

At Noon today, on WYPR's The Signal, Benn will be talking about local authors and artists and their latest publications:

Post Typography's Lettering & Type (and their 2010 calendar)
An updated edition of Dance of Days
Sab Grey's Hated and Proud
Kevin Sherry's Acorns Everywhere
Shaun Flynn and Dan Higgs from the Artist Music Journal Series

And tonight on the Ave, it's First Friday! Tons of events and sales going on up and down the street and we'll be open late, so come out and get started on your holiday shopping.

Mayor's Christmas Parade

underdog, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. This Sunday is the annual Christmas Parade that comes down Falls Rd and onto the Avenue. It's the only Holiday parade still going on in the city this year because it's funded by the community and merchants (not the city). It's one of the craziest parades ever.

Starts at 2pm!

Thanksgiving Day

We will be closing at 6pm, Wednesday, November 25th.

We will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.

Black Friday

krunkaclaus, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. This Friday we'll be open 11-8pm, along with our neighbors, doubledutch boutique, having sales and champagne!

We have tons of new stuff and new stuff coming in every day. We'll be having a major sale (40-80% off) on a bunch of art books, comics and toys.

So come on down and get started on your holiday shopping in a relaxed setting. And then check out the lighting kick off of Miracle on 34th Street on Saturday!


totoroplush, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. He's back. Wait, is Totoro a he?

Anyway, restocked.

Last Night In Hampden

photo by Patty Boh

We have a new pink flamingo on the Ave, and soon a new sign for Hampden on 83!

People also came out for poster artist Jay Ryan and comic artist Paul Hornschemeier.

We still have a few signed copies of their new books in the store!

Jay Ryan & Paul Hornschemeier

Wednesday, at Atomic Books, 7pm!

Ryan and Hornschemeier will be doing presentations for Animals & Objects In and Out of Water and All and Sundry.

io9 Book Week


lookatthisdog, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. From our friend, Geoff Brown, who is looking for leads on a story he's doing about this flyer that I took a photo of, lo, these many years (ok, it's been 2 years. But in internet time that's like decades.). Hook a reporter up!

"If the words 'dog' and 'awesome' and 'expensive' and 'Xerxes' apply to a certain thing you made back in 2007, I'd like the chance to interview you for a local public radio piece. Will need to prove/convince me of authorship. Any leads appreciated. Respond to: Geoff Brown at Thanks."

Atomic Fiction Series - November

This Thursday is our next installment of our Fiction Series featuring James Magruder, Sugarless and Geoffrey Becker, Black Elvis.

Starts at 7pm! Hosted by Kathy Flann, who recently talked about the series on WYPR's The Signal.

First Friday - November

It's First Friday here in Hampden, which means a lot of shops are having special events tonight.

We're having a reading for Hos, Hookers, Call Girls and Rent Boys, 7pm!

Walk around the Avenue, attend art openings, get some drinks and check out the sales!

16th Night of 100 Elvises

Tickets are now on sale here at Atomic Books for Night of 100 Elvises for Friday and Saturday nights, December 4th and 5th!

Cash or check only, please!

I Am Martin Eisenstadt

Eisenstadtposter, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. This Saturday!

Hos, Hookers, Call Girls and Rent Boys

HosHookersflier, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. This First Friday!

Post Halloween Slideshow

I had a complete costume fail last night...but everyone else was stunning.

Thanks to everyone who came out to the Windup Space last night and here's a slideshow from last night (including everyone else I saw at other parties and on the street). There were so many more amazing costumes that I just didn't get a photo of or the photo didn't work out.

We're Back!

aceofcakessigning, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Whew, the blog is live again, but not quite updated. You'll notice that some of the archives aren't working right now, but we should be correcting that very soon.

It's been a crazy few weeks for us here - after launching our new site our email was down for several days and then we had this little event for the Ace of Cakes book (you may have heard of this cable network show? Did you see Duff on Oprah yesterday??).

The line went down the block and around the the rain.

Here was Charm City Cakes' take on that day.

The event may be on the next season of Ace of Cakes!

So we're slowly but surely getting back in the groove around here. Feel free to email/IM/call us if you experience anything odd with online ordering or with any questions at all!

Halloween 2009


Atomic/Windup Halloween

Atomic-Windup-Halloween, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. The annual Halloween trick or treating for the kids is October 31st on the Avenue, from 5-6pm, followed by the costume contest at 6:30 in front of Ma Petite Shoe!

And later that night, we're sponsoring the Heroes & Villains Costume Ball at the Windup Space.

Are you a Hero or a Villain?

Raise Your Hand If You've Been To A Reading In a Bookstore

SPX Review By Emily Flake

Emily Flake reports her thoughts of SPX for Print Magazine.

Brian Ralph Comic In Today's B Paper

To celebrate this weekend's Baltimore ComiCon, Brian Ralph created an all new 8-page comic of aliens visiting Baltimore in today's B Paper.

They start out downtown, enjoy Natty Boh, visit Hampden and Atomic Books and end up at a Ravens' game.

B: The Paper is distributed for free in orange boxes around the city.

Or you can read it here:
Page 1 / Page 2 / Page 3 / Page 4 / Page 5 / Page 6 / Page 7 / Page 8

Baltimore, You Weirdo

Baltimore Magazine's Baltimore, Why the Edge? asks various Baltimoreans about Baltimore.

From John Waters:
"It's the extremes of Baltimore, the parts that aren't like anywhere else. It's the fact that people don't want to leave Baltimore, and they look at you peculiarly if you say you're moving to New York. They say, "Why?"

Atomic Fiction Series - Tao Lin & Rupert Wondolowski


Post SPX Highlights

herpesisfunny, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Thanks to everyone who came out Friday night! It was a good time.

SPX highlights:

Benn has a new best friend.

I was mistaken for Laura Park several times (and people love her!).

Ignatz Award Winners

The Nerdlinger Awards will be up soon.

Julia and Emily like cake.

And of course, we got a crapload of comics!

Bar Bacon Comics

barbaconcomic, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. After our pre-SPX party tonight, try hitting up Baltimore's Best Comedy Night, Bar Bacon Comedy. Starts at 11pm at the Golden West Cafe.

Festival Weekend

Events galore this weekend!

Not only our own huge pre-SPX party Friday night (starts at 7pm), but these festivals are all taking place:

Small Press Expo
Horrorfind Weekend
Baltimore Book Festival

From China Martens, author of The Future Generation, this word of events at the Book Festival:

"This year we are excited to have a whole day for Zine Festivities! The Zine Bazaar will take place Friday the 25th beginning at Noon and going all day until 6pm. The Zine Bazaar will be located in the events tent of the Radical Bookfair Pavilion. The Bazaar will be a whole day to swap, sell, trade and read zines. Confirmed Speaker/Tablers include: China Martens (The future Generation), Strangers in a Tangled Wilderness, After the Fall distro, Jenna Brager (Sassyfrass Circus)and Pitch Black Rage."

Friday: 2 PM - "How to Make Zine" @ The Zine Bazaar with China Martens
Saturday: 3 PM - Kids Read Out Loud Story Hour w/ Baltimore Childcare Collective

Atomic Fiction Series

atomicfictionseries, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. We're starting a new Reading Series concentrating on fiction.

More info to come but the first event will be October 8th with Tao Lin's new book Shoplifting From American Apparel and Rupert Wondolowski's recent releaseThe Origin Of Paranoia As A Heated Mole Suit.

Best of Baltimore

The CityPaper's Best of Baltimore issue is out and Hampden is well represented!

Best Independent Bookstore - us!

Best Women's Clothing Store - doubledutch boutique

Best Sex Shop - Sugar

Best Place to Watch Couples Melt Down - (Outside) of Sugar

Best Place to Buy New Furniture - Red Tree

Best Cuff Links - Dreamland

Best Wine Store - The Wine Source

Best Photo Source - Service Photo

Best Comic Book Store - Amazing Spiral

Best Place to Buy Vinyl - True Vine

Best Comedy Night - Bar Bacon Comedy

Best Bartendar - Tiffany Houchins

Lulu Eightball V2

lulueightballv2, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Lulu Eightball Volume 2 just came in the door!

Comic Day

aperiodic comic, originally uploaded by dinakelberman. Normally, Wednesdays are Comic Book Day. The day new comics (those floppies) are delivered to comic book stores & bookstores around the country.

But because of the holiday, today is Comic Book Day.

Benn's new strip of overheards, Said What?, started on bthesite today, too.

And here are the results of the CityPaper's Comic Contest.

Dunny 2009 - Tonight!

devildunny, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Bob just got that Devil Dunny tattoo yesterday up the street at Have Fun Be Lucky and sent me the photo!

The new Dunnys are here and on sale!

Trading party is tonight!

Sale & Celebrated Summer

Hampdenfest is this Saturday! Come out to the Avenue and hang out with us!

We'll be having a HUGE sale in our back room - 30-80% off on books, toys, comics and more.

For every purchase over $20 we'll give you a free blind boxed toy (it's become a Hampdenfest tradition for us). One per customer!

And as an added treat, Celebrated Summer will be joining us. They'll be set out front with crates of their awesome record selection - new and used. Tony Pence will be there to buy your used records as well.

Awesome bands, Brewer's Art beer, rain or know how we do.

Ace of Cakes Book Party

aceofcakesbooklaunch, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Ace of Cakes, the Baltimore-based Food Network show, is coming out with their first cookbook. So we're having a party!

The staff of Charm City Cakes will be here to sign your copy of the book, which is available for pre-order now.

More info to come!

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep - September Reading Club Pick

This month for Reading Club, we're reading Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick.

Discussion will be the last Wednesday of the month, here at Atomic, 7-9pm!

Dr. Sketchy's Tonight @ The Wind-Up

Dr Sketchy's in Baltimore hits the Windup Space tonight.

Featuring model Deviana Fox.


$7 cover.

Win prizes!

Sponsored by Atomic Books.

Disney Buys Marvel

Talk Like Warren Ellis

Small Press Expo 2009

Poster for SPX, originally uploaded by featherbed. Sept 26th and 27th!


SPXPLOSION09, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Sept 5th, starting at 7pm, is another pre SPX blow out party!

We've got a great line up of artists who'll all be doing a little song and dance number (or you know, Power Point presentations) and it's an Atomic Book Company book release party for the new Lulu Eightball V2 and Fart Party V2!

Hey look, here's an interview with Emily Flake on today's Antiheroines.

Artist Journal 3 - Daniel Higgs

artistjournalv3, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Just in!

The Artist Journals is an ongoing, limited edition small book series, focusing on the inseparable connection between music and art.

Hamdpenfest 2009 Entertainment Line Up

Chock full of goodness!

But alas, no Hampden Idol this year. Let us take a moment to remember Spidey doing "Spill the Wine":

Hampdenfest 2009 Band Schedule

Aural States has a preview of the band line up for Hampdenfest 2009 posted!

Smorkin' Labbit Fans

photo by Cole & Cris

We love Smorkin' Labbits and we love fans of Smorkin' Labbits.

A couple of fans had a weekend adventure (and we were on their map) taking their labbits on the road here in Baltimore/DC.

Dunny 2009 Trading Party

dunny2009, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Hey! New Dunny series!

We'll be having our usual trading party with raffles for prizes and refreshments! Come on down, bring toys of any kind to trade or show off!

This new series looks like it's chock full of the artists' most iconic imagery. Here's the checklist!

Book Haters

In the debates about the Kindle and the future of books and the drama involved in publishing and the book biz...we get so worked up that we forget that most of the world is pretty indifferent or even hostile towards books.

Futurama Toy Series

bender, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. KidRobot's new Futurama Mini Series are available now!

Mad Men Fever

weirddejavu, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. I've got it! Can't wait for Season Three of Mad Men, which airs this Sunday! In the mean time I'm findingbooks to keep me in the Mad Men Mood.


domoqee, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Domo Qees are finally here! Collect them all!

Psst! You With The Zine. Get It Reviewed

Xerography Debt - the review zine written by zinesters, is looking for zines to review for future issues.

Got a zine? Why not get it reviewed? See what your peers think. Become a part of the larger zine community.

Send copies to:
Davida Gypsy Breier
PO Box 11064
Baltimore, MD 21212 USA

Xerography Debt #25 is now in stock at Atomic.

The Book Vs The Kindle

Round 5 is my favorite so far (from Green Apple Books). Fuel for the Kindlenfreude.

Inherent Vice's Inherent Virtue?

Despite the cover, despite the premise, despite the trailer, I still really want to read Pynchon's new Inherent Vice. Despite the title too. And it's been years since I've felt that way about Pynchon. Hm. Maybe it's not despite these things at all, maybe it's BECAUSE of these things.

Oh, I get it. Typical Pynchon. Nice!

Awesome Illustrated Characters From The Wire


Dr. Sketchy's at the Wind Up Space

Dr Sketchy's in Baltimore has moved to the Windup Space and it's still as awesome as ever.

John Waters Excerpts On The HuffPo #1

John Waters' new book, Role Models, is due out from Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 2010.

In the meantime, The Huffington Post is running 5 excerpts.

#1 - Leslie Van Houten: A Friendship, Part 1 of 5
"The Manson Family" were the hippies all our parents were scared we'd turn into if we didn't stop taking drugs. The "slippies", as Manson later called his followers, the insane ones who didn't understand the humor in Yippie Abbie Hoffman's fiery speeches on his college lecture tours when he told the stoned, revolutionary-for-the-hell-of-it students to "kill their parents". Yes, Charlie's posse were the real anarchists who went beyond the radical SDS group's call to "Bring the War Home". Beyond blowing up their parents' townhouses, draft boards, even the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. Sure, my friends went to riots every weekend in different cities in the '60s to get laid or get high, just like kids went to "r…

Kitchen - August Reading Club Pick

This month for Reading Club, we're reading Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto.

Discussion will be the last Wednesday of the month, here at Atomic, 7-9pm!

Hampdenfest 2009

Hampdenfest09, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Hampdenfest is September 12th!

There's still space for vendors and the entertainment info will be updated shortly.

Knowing The Price of Everything And The Value Of Nothing

Mobylives gives a smack upside the head to our Sun Paper.

The paper offers up some meager alternatives, but they neglect to look at the real economics of the situation. By not eating out, buying books, or taking your car to the car wash, in the long run you're hurting the local economy, of which you are a part. What if your livelihood is as a bookseller? What happens when the local independent bookstore shuts down? The economy will turn around, but right now it is important to both save and spend.

The article instead speaks volumes about the state of the particular newspaper: instead of running an informative, intelligent article on smart ways to be savvy with your money during a recession, the paper throws together a mishmash of "suggestions" in as many pictures as words. The Sun, a local business in dire financial straits itself, should be more self-conscious.

Best of Baltimore Magazine

bestofbaltimoremagazine, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. Thanks, Baltimore Magazine!

Thanks For The Heads Up, Bourdain!



Kindlenfreude - the unexpected joy when hearing bad news about the Kindle (thanks, Geoff!)

I admit it. It's been fun.

The New Yorker

The New York Times

Information Week

The LA Times

The Guardian

Baltimore TV

I'd been waiting for last night's episode of No Reservations ever since I heard that Bourdain was in town a few months ago. I have to say that I was a little disappointed by it but here's Bourdain's take on the episode, which he posted on his blog, which I completely agree with:

"I think that troubled cities often tragically misinterpret what's coolest about themselves. They scramble for cure-alls, something that will 'attract business', always one convention center, one pedestrian mall or restaurant district away from revival. They miss their biggest, best and probably most marketable asset: their unique and slightly off-center character. Few people go to New Orleans because it's a 'normal' city -- or a 'perfect' or 'safe' one. They go because it's crazy, borderline dysfunctional, permissive, shabby, alcoholic and bat shit crazy -- and because it looks like nowhere else. Cleveland is one of my favorite cities. I don'…

New Heidi Kenney Plush

donuthead, originally uploaded by sugarfreak. KidRobot has made Heidi Kenney's iconic donut plushes in a bigger size! And then a super giant size!