The Parnassus Young Adult First Editions Club

Our June 2015 selection is:

Conviction, by Kelly Loy Gilbert

I think baseball is a sport that rewards patience. Last summer, I went to a Chicago Cubs game at Wrigley Field in Chicago, and there was something almost spiritual about the experience. We gathered together, we broke bread and wine—well, hot dogs and beer—and we all focused on the rhythm of the game, the pitch, the swing, the pitch, the swing, first batter, second batter, third batter, out. Yet when things happen in baseball, like a pop fly, or a stolen base, they happen fast. If you’re not paying attention, you’ll miss them, and you’ll have to ask the guy next to you, “What happened?”

Kelly Loy Gilbert’s incredible debut novel, Conviction, unfolds a bit like a baseball game. Conviction has a deliberate, measured pace that belies the turmoil at the heart of Braden Raynor, Gilbert’s protagonist. Gilbert introduces Braden in the aftermath of an event that upended his life, the arrest of his father, a well-regarded evangelical radio host, for the murder of a police officer. As the only other witness to the alleged crime, Braden, a star pitcher for his high school’s baseball team, will have to testify to his father’s innocence or guilt. Although Braden’s struggle to come to terms with what, exactly, he witnessed on the night in question keeps Gilbert’s narrative driving steadily forward, Braden’s deeper conflicts of family and faith are what make Conviction such an extraordinary read. 

Bart Giamatti (father of actor Paul Giamatti) was the seventh commissioner of Major League Baseball, from 1986 to 1989, but he was also a professor of English Literaure at Yale. He often turned his attention to writing about the sport he loved. Of baseball, he once mused, “It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart.” The same is true of Conviction, but, like baseball, the heartbreak seems worth it in the end. -- Stephanie Appell, Manager of Books for Young Readers

Membership Information

Here's how it works:

We will select a new young adult book each month, have the author sign first editions of the book, and send it to our club members. That's all there is to it! You can count on the following:

  • A signed, first edition book twelve times a year

  • Hand-picked titles recommended by Parnassus booksellers

  • We hope you love the books we choose, but if you don't, you can return a selection within two weeks of receiving it.

  • You will be charged the list price of the book, plus a $6.00 shipping charge if applicable.  

Note: If you choose in-store pickup, we will hold your signed first edition for up to two weeks, after which time we will charge your account $6.00 and ship your book to you.


After you click submit, the form will appear to vanish. Please scroll to the top of the page to view your confirmation. You will also receive a confirmation email within a few days of signing up.

Previous Selections

If you'd like to see whether we have extra signed copies of any of these titles available for purchase, you may do so here.


2015 Selections

January February March April
May June July August
September October November December


2014 Selections

January/February March/April May/June
July/August September/October November/December


2013 Selections

February/March February/March April/May
June/July September/October November/December