Years in the making, a children’s book written by Tom McDonnell, executive director of Dog Ears Bookstore & Café, will be officially released during an event at the South Buffalo bookstore from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4.

“Monster in the Morning,” illustrated by Hamburg resident Robert A. Wright and published by RPSS Publishing, will be available for $16.95 (plus tax) in hardcover and just $10.95 for the softcover version.

“Monster in the Morning is about the hectic morning routine in every house in America,” said McDonnell, a West Seneca resident. “It is my childhood recollection of how mornings in our house worked before mom had her favorite drink (coffee). This wild tale is inspired by the most wonderful women in my life, and a green bathrobe where money grew and Kleenex just magically appeared. The illustrations genuinely make the story come to life!”

McDonnell will do readings of the book at 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. during the May 4 event.

For more information on the nonprofit community bookstore, located at 688 Abbott Road, please visit

A new six-week Puppy Tales series at Dog Ears Bookstore & Café, located at 688 Abbott Road in South Buffalo, will kick off at 10:15 a.m. Friday, May 3.

Open to children ages 2 to 4 accompanied by a parent or guardian, Puppy Tales runs on six consecutive Friday mornings and each session includes three stories, a craft and healthy snacks. Sessions are skill- and book-based and the cost is just $25 per child for the entire series.

Puppy Tales is a great way to prepare students for Pre-K. To register for the first Puppy Tales series of the new year, please visit the bookstore or call 823-2665. For more information on Dog Ears Bookstore, please visit

Author William Lorenz Jr., also know locally as Buffalo’s Best “Batman,” will appear in costume for a book-signing event from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 18, at Dog Ears Bookstore & Café, 688 Abbott Road, South Buffalo.

In 2014, Lorenz won the title of Buffalo’s Best “Batman” in a citywide contest. What happened next is a series of adventures that would feel right at home in the pages of a comic book! Learn how Lorenz used his lifelong passion for superheroes to inspire himself and others, culminating in bringing smiles to thousands of people young and old and raising thousands of dollars for charity, all while wearing a cape and a mask.  

Chronicling his experiences up to the summer of 2018, his book, The Ballad of Buffalo’s Best “Batman,” is a story about superheroes, martial arts, and a compelling look at the blood, sweat and tears that go into the unique and often ignored hobby of cosplay. For more information on his book, please visit

A practicing attorney in Buffalo who focuses primarily on civil litigation, Lorenz is also an adjunct professor at Canisius College. A lifelong martial artist with a Fifth Degree Black Belt in Isshin-Ryu Karate, he has performed exhibitions in the United States, Canada and Greece. Lorenz’s charitable efforts earned him a proclamation from the Mayor of the City of Buffalo naming a day in his honor on Sept. 26, 2015. Lorenz has also been featured in numerous television interviews and in print media both as an attorney and as Buffalo’s Best “Batman.” The Ballad of Buffalo’s Best “Batman” is his first book.

Published by NFB Publishing, a portion of the proceeds of every book sold will be donated by Lorenz to Mercy Flight Inc.

For more information on Dog Ears Bookstore, please visit, call 823-2665, or follow on Facebook for frequent updates.

Dog Ears Bookstore & Café, South Buffalo’s nonprofit community bookstore, will hold its 11th annual fundraising gala from 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday, April 27 at the Buffalo Irish Center, 245 Abbott Road.

This year’s gala will feature Jack Civiletto singing Sinatra with the Joe Baudo Group! Other highlights will include the popular Small Plate Debate with an incredible array of appetizers from several local restaurants, along with celebrity judges. Admission also includes beer, wine, pop and the opportunity to participate in numerous raffles, a basket auction and more during the event. There will also be a Rat Pack look-a-like costume contest and a drawing for a night on the town!

Tickets are $50 each and can be purchased at the bookstore, located at 688 Abbott Road, or on their website at For more information, please call 823-2665. You can also follow Dog Ears on Facebook for frequent updates.

Members of Boy Scout Troop 256 from Our Lady of Charity Parish in South Buffalo recently held a clothing drive and donated the collected items to Dog Ears Bookstore & Café at 688 Abbott Road. In turn, the bookstore then donated the clothing to Friend of Night People, a local organization that provides food and necessities to address the effects and impact of poverty in Buffalo. While visiting Dog Ears, the local Scouts also wrote Christmas cards for distribution to residents of local nursing homes during the holiday season.

Dog Ears Bookstore & Literary Arts Center is offering a free after school program for students in grades three through seven from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at the bookstore, located at 688 Abbott Road, Buffalo. The program is sponsored by Erie County Youth Services.

Each day will target a different set of skills. Services provided include:
• ELA homework assistance
• Reading comprehension passages
• Vocabulary enrichment
• Test-taking strategies
• Organizational skill building
• Study skills
• Peer tutoring with Bishop Timon – St. Jude High School and Mount Mercy Academy students

From 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., the focus will be on homework help and skill building, while ELA games, fun, group work and clubs will continue from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

The program starts on Tuesday, Oct. 16 and will be facilitated by New York State-certified teachers. For more information or to register, please call 823-2665.

The nonprofit Dog Ears Bookstore & Café in South Buffalo was a popular destination this summer for students intent on improving their reading and writing skills through various camps and activities.

The mini library

“We have a lot of people to thank starting with our summer camp sponsors, South District Council Member Chris Scanlon and the Erie County Department of Youth Services,” said Thomas McDonnell, executive director of the community bookstore located at 688 Abbott Road. “We would also like to thank Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz for his ongoing support of our bookstore and literacy programs.


Visiting Brick Oven Bistro

“Additionally, we would like to thank our guest speakers and local businesses that made our camp days much more interesting, including retired Buffalo Police Officer Dan Redmond who spoke to our campers about school safety procedures, author Tim Shannon who spoke about the writing process, and Chet and Marina Fery of Bread Time Stories who spoke on the importance of kindness. Businesses that invited us in to see their operations included KupKates, Queen City Cycling, Park Edge Sweet Shoppe, Abbott Ice Cream and Brick Oven Bistro & Deli.


At Queen City Cycling


“Our teen campers were also thrilled to build a mini library that will be housed in the Garden of St. Patrick on the grounds of nearby Mercy Hospital,” McDonnell continued. “This project was made possible thanks to Jeanne Mullen of The Gap and The Gap Foundation, as well as Mercy Hospital and the Mercy Hospital Foundation.”


With author Tim Shannon

Now that the summer activities are over, McDonnell hopes to give the bookstore a fresh look by purchasing new furniture for the second-floor Literary Arts Center, and he’s turning to the community for help completing this project.

“We are currently accepting donations to help us purchase new furniture for the second floor of our facility where most of our literacy programs take place, from our camps to writing workshops and poetry nights,” McDonnell added. “The furniture that we are currently using is showing its age and is in need of an upgrade. We are hoping the community — businesses, organizations and individuals alike — will help us achieve our goal by making a donation of any size to help offset the expense of the project.”

To make a donation to the furniture fund, please contact McDonnell at 823-2665 or

Erie County continues to be a huge supporter of programming at Dog Ears Bookstore.

We would like to thank Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz and Erie County for their ongoing support of the arts in WNY, including programs offered here at Dog Ears Bookstore. Please know that your support is greatly appreciated!