Chatter's blog

Store Update as of May 21st


Dear Reader,

Hope you are well!

We are exceptional at recommending; offer a wondrous selection of books; have both print and digital gift certificates; wrap, ship, and special order.  Please make use of this community resource so that we can help you for years to come.

Humor, music, and entertainment have helped to sustain us through all of this, as they have humans since time immemorial!  Art too, let's please not forget art – in all of its forms. 

We are here to help you find books that entertain, engage, and inform.  You can communicate with us by phone and at the store, for recommendations and pickup only (Monday to Saturday 10-3),  or online and via email – all day every day. 

Please share news of our stores with your friends and family and encourage them to support local independent bookstores, wherever they live.  We think we are an important part of the community and culture, and want to be here a year from now, when you are needing books to read and to give.

Thanks for all of your support, and all of your orders these last two months.  It is helping us to weather this storm!

Stay strong, stay healthy & read a book!
Alison, John & all DIESELfolk

P.S. Yes we are promoting our social media and virtual events at this time: please join us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

Store Update as of May 10th


Dear Reader,

Hope you are well!

Now that we are in the initial part of Stage 2 of the state’s Covid Response, we wanted to update you on how things are doing at our store.  We are open 10-3 from Monday through Saturday for recommendations, orders, and purchases.  We are not open for browsing, however. 

It is best to order, and pay for, books in advance of picking them up.  We still have limited staffing at the store and are doing our best to provide the professional bookselling to which you’ve become accustomed. 

Shipping times to and from our store are still inconsistent due to the challenges on distribution systems.  It is a long road ahead, and we are struggling to keep the store going, our booksellers employed, and books coming into your homes.

We are again receiving shipments from publishers, with new titles coming in, and our inventory is being replenished daily.  We are glad to help with recommendations, as many of you benefitted from for Mother’s Day!  With graduations, Father’s Day, and the inevitable birthdays and weddings, we are expert at, and love, helping you to find the right books as gifts – and what is a better gift than a book?!

So, online ordering continues for books, digital gift certificates, audiobooks, ebooks, and even donations to help keep DIESEL going through these times.  We are as excited as ever to amplify your reading pleasure, engagement, and curiosity.  We look forward to seeing your faces at our door, and hopefully in the store, soon.

Thanks for all of your support through this time, and in the months to come!

Alison, John & all DIESELfolk

Books are the best way to social distance
and connect to the whole world.

Happy 90th Birthday Gary Snyder!


Today -- May 8, 2020 -- is poet, essayist, and climate justice advocate Gary Snyder's birthday! Please enjoy this special video of our very own, John Evans, reading a small excerpt of Gary's work and join us in wishing Gary Snyder a wonderful 90th birthday by posting your own videos on social media reading a favorite work by Snyder - whether that's a poem, a stanza, or even a brief passage of prose! Be sure to use #GarySnyder90 and tag us (@dieselbookstore/@dieseldelmar) and Counterpoint Press (@counterpointpress). Again, on behalf of DIESEL, a very happy birthday to Gary Snyder!




And be sure to check out this incredible interview from the Brockport Writers Forum archive! It's a favorite clip of ours and a strange, interesting, and timely, time capsule of a video from 1972!! On the day after Nixon's re-election, Snyder talks about poetry, politics, ecology, and eating deer. This clip is an edited version of a 45-minute interview recorded on November 8, 1972. For more visit













Announcing new Features, Archives, and more!


Please check out our virtual browsing feature (missing the serendipity of discovering a book in physical space?) by clicking either of the store buttons above! We'll be building this out in sections as we photograph the store. We also have video staff recommendations compiled here, on facebook, and featured on instagram story highlights. And while you're at it, celebrate National Poetry Month with us by checking out readings from years past! 

National Poetry Month Archive

30 Videos in 30 Days: Diesel Celebrates National Poetry Month, 2016

30 Videos in 30 Days: Diesel Celebrates National Poetry Month, 2015

30 Videos in 30 Days: Diesel Celebrates National Poetry Month, 2014

30 Videos in 30 Days: Diesel Celebrates National Poetry Month, 2013


Click Below to view our page of video staff recs, also featured on our instagram

March 29th Update


Dear Reader,

We hope that you are all home, healthy and balancing the need to know the news with the need to tend your hearts and souls and those around you.

As you know, we are providing daily recommendations of books over the phone and via email.  We are also mailing your online orders from our warehouse.  The warehouse was overwhelmed this past week and so you may have had a delay in receiving your orders.  By all reports, they are all caught up and hopefully things will proceed more smoothly on that front.

We are continuing to be available for pickup only at the door for books that are in our store, from 10-3 Monday through Saturday.  And we are currently closed on Sunday, for a day of rest.

Thanks so much for your support through this treacherous time.  Many of you have asked how you can help.  Staying healthy is number one!  Check out our website for all kinds of ways to get books – .

We are hoping this week to make it even easier to browse books on our website.  We know it is hard not being able to see and touch the books!   We’ll let you know when that is up and running!

Take Care,
Alison, John & all DIESELfolk

March 23rd Update


We hope that all are keeping well and starting to settle in to this new way of living. We continue to work under the assumption that we are an essential business and on what is best for all of us. So things are changing day to day.

At the moment, books can be ordered on-line at:

Our warehouse will ship them to your home in a matter of days. We encourage this.

There will be a couple of folks in the shop, to answer questions and recommend books between 10-3. If there is no answer on the phone, email us and we will respond by e-mail. Our email is: .

Our door will be slightly ajar for contactless pick up from 10-3 while we are staffed. For this you can call us to see if someone is there, pay for the book over the phone and pick it up from a table at the door. We are practicing social distancing at work and at the door.

As you may be able to tell from this, we will do our best but please bear with us if it gets jinky.

Stay well and stay in touch,

Alison, John and all DIESELfolk

Books are the best way to self-isolate
and be connected to the whole world.



Updated Store Hours March 16th - 22nd (10 am - 6 pm)


Dear Reader,

We share your concerns about the Covid-19 pandemic and how to respond to these concerns in our day-to-day lives.  At the store, we are doing all the recommended actions to keep the store and ourselves clean and healthy.  

We are leaving it up to our authors whether to continue with their events over the next weeks and months.  Some who are travelling a distance or have other concerns, have already cancelled or postponed events (you can see those on our website).    

We are continuing to provide books and book recommendations every day and there is no change to the quality of services we provide.  In that spirit, we are now offering curbside pickup and free local delivery, so that you can more easily get your books.  You can call us when you arrive curbside and we can bring your books out to you, or we can deliver to your home with free local delivery.  As you know, you can always also order either online or over the phone and we can ship to you, wherever you live.  Ebooks and streaming audio are available through our website as well.  

Through reading we can continue to feed our imaginations, our hearts, and our minds.  Whatever we can do to facilitate this for you, let us know.  We appreciate your support.    

Healthy Reading!
John, Alison & all DIESELfolk

Staff Recommendations are back in Brentwood!


Now that the holidays are over, we've pulled our Top 50 bestselling titles of 2019 from the shelves to make space for some great new books we've been reading this winter. Here is just a small sample of a bevy of new books we can't stop thinking about. (Click through to read more)

Image result for weather jenny offillImage result for preservation jock serongImage result for inheritance dani shapiroImage result for going all city stefano blochImage result for for the relief of unbearable urgesImage result for uncanny valley book

Alex recommends Weather, by Jenny Offill: 

"Climate change encroaches upon daily life -- Offill explores optimism in the face of impermanence, social dissolution, class conflict, and the incredulity response, but the real beauty of this work is the energetic & profound prose. 

Diane recommends Preservation, by Jock Serong:

What characters! What adventures! Based on a real event in 1797, this novel explores parts of Australia we'd never know. The villain is villainous but there's a heroine too!" 

Marc recommends Uncanny Valley by Anna Wiener: