Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Houghton Mifflin: Antoni: Let's Do Dinner by Antoni Porowski

Tor Books: Light from Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki

Blackstone Publishing: Everyman by M Shelly Conner

American Library Association: Get $10 off when you register for the ALA Annual Library Marketplace Only!

St. Martin's Press: O Beautiful by Jung Yun

William Morrow & Company: Booksellers, join us at the William Morrow & Custom House Fall 2021 Showcase

Blackstone Publishing: No Gods, No Monsters (Convergence Saga #1) by Cadwell Turnbull

Tor Books: Mordew by Alex Pheby

News

Book Biz Buzz: PWxyz Buys PW


Publishers Weekly
is being bought by PWxyz, a new company headed by George Slowik, who was publisher of the industry trade magazine from 1990 to 1993. The deal includes publishersweekly.com and PW's Show Daily, put out during BEA.

The new company will "retain all of PW's editorial, art, and advertising employees and the magazine will remain headquartered in New York City," current owner Reed Business Information said in a statement.

Cevin Bryerman will continue as publisher, and Jim Milliot and Michael Coffey will serve as co-editors.

Reed Elsevier has been selling many of its magazines in the past year after putting them up for sale several times. PW had been owned by Reed (through its old Cahners subsidiary) since 1985. Earlier, it was owned by Xerox Corp. and originally was a key part of the old R.R. Bowker Company.

Slowik was most recently president and publisher of the American Prospect, the magazine of liberal politics.

Slowik told the New York Times that, among other projects, he would digitize the magazine's archives, which include reviews dating back to the 1940s; use Google's translation tool to create international editions, "with humans finessing the machine-translated text"; and combine the print and Internet subscription databases, which aren't connected.

 


Pantheon Books: Chronicles from the Land of the Happiest People on Earth by Wole Soyinka


Notes: Regionals Join Forces; In Search of NYC Bookstores

Regional bookseller organizations NEIBA, NAIBA and GLiBA will combine resources to produce their 2010 holiday catalogues, using a common sales executive, designer and printer to create a "one-stop shopping" option for advertisers. Suzanne G. Shoger (suzanneshoger@gmail.com) will coordinate the project, with ProMotion, Inc.--publisher of BookPage--handling design and printing.

"Our collaboration creates a terrific market for publishers," said Steve Fischer, executive director of NEIBA. "They'll have access to our bookstores and their customers in the whole northeast quarter of the country, from the Mississippi River to the Atlantic Ocean."

"We've made the process easier, faster, cheaper," said Eileen Dengler, head of NAIBA. "Our innovative plan allows publishers to use the same contract for each of the catalogs and determine which regional or regionals they want each ad to go in. Publishers will realize discounts by placing ads in multiple catalogues, and they'll save lots of time by dealing with only one sales executive as they place their ads and supply artwork, etc."

Jim Dana, executive director of GLiBA, added, "An important feature of our agreement is that our members will still have a catalog that caters to our region, just as it always has. Over 60% of the titles advertised last year appeared in just one regional catalog. We've combined much of the process, but we still offer publishers the same opportunity for very focused marketing."

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If you're looking for a good book in Queens, N.Y., you may have to leave the borough, according to the Daily News, which reported that "Queens may offer some of the best shopping in the city--and is home to the most profitable mall in the nation--but it could be the worst borough to find a good read."

In addition to five chain bookstores in Queens, Seaburn Books is one of the few indies and bookseller Ariadne Reza "said some customers lament having to go to Manhattan due to a lack of local choices."

"It's pretty extreme how few [bookstores] there are in Queens," she added.

David Deason, v-p of development for Barnes and Noble, cited rising rents and dwindling profits as factors: "Queens isn't the only place we have a limited presence. It's throughout the boroughs. It's an affordability issue."

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In an interview with the Fort Myers News-Press, Donald Poole, co-owner of One for the Books, Cape Coral, Fla., said, "We're an old-fashioned store selling music and books together. We're smaller of course, but you can smell the books when you come in."

Poole noted that 2009 was successful for the bookshop, despite the economic downturn: "Last year was the best year we ever had. We started advertising heavier last year so I think that helped. The paranormal trend I'm sure helped. We're just trying to do a better job. Books are the cheapest form of entertainment. A lot of people like the escapism that reading provides."

Asked what the number one thing he has learned about the business is, Poole said, "I've guessed wrong on a lot of things. Any time I go astray, it usually costs me. Stick with what you know and learn when you can. If you listen to your customers they will teach you what they know and the books they love."

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That Bookstore at Mountebanq Place, Conway, Ark., closed last week, "leaving the town’s more than 55,000 residents without a traditional bookstore," the Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported.

"It’s not that we can’t pay our bills, but we don’t have the freedom to do anything else," said owner Maryalice Hurst. "We’re not having fun anymore."

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The author lineup for this year's Guardian Hay Festival, which Bill Clinton once called a "Woodstock of the mind," includes Nobel laureate Nadine Gordimer, Pervez Musharraf, Martin Amis and Zadie Smith. The Guardian reported that "more than 100,000 visitors are expected at Hay-on-Wye this summer, where some of the biggest themes are explored over 11 days by some of the biggest names." The Hay Festival will be held May 27–June 6.

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Boing Boing reported that "bowdlerization is afoot in the iPad's bookstore's selection of classic literature!" Among the noted victims of "iPad's naughty words filter" was "sperm"--as in sperm whale--in the e-book edition of Melville's Moby Dick.

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A three-volume first edition of Jane Austen’s Emma, signed by the author, sold for almost $500,000, the New York Times reported. The book was one of 12 presentation copies that publisher John Murray allotted to Austen for friends and family.

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Company video of the day: the Penguin State of Mind. A hilarious rapping annual report with many cameo appearances.

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Book trailer of the day: The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen (Bantam).

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Author and marketing maverick Seth Godin will be the keynote speaker at the 26th annual IBPA Publishing University, which will be held on Monday and Tuesday, May 24–25, in the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City just as BookExpo America begins. In addition, Dominique Raccah of Sourcebooks will present the opening session, and a general session called "Emagination: What's Now and What's Next in Ebooks" will feature a roundtable of "digital pioneers and industry prophets." The annual IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards Gala for excellence in publishing will take place Monday evening.

IBPA president Florrie Binford Kickler commented: "IBPA's Publishing University is the granddaddy of all publishing education conferences but this is definitely not your grandfather's--or your father's--Publishing University."

For more information, go to thepublishinguniversity.com.

 


Soho Press: Morte (War with No Name #1) by Robert Repino


The Quotable iPad: What's the Word on E-Street?

As of midnight Saturday, Apple had sold more than 300,000 iPads in the U.S. This figure reflected deliveries of pre-ordered iPads to customers, deliveries to channel partners and sales at Apple Retail Stores. Apple also reported that new iPad owners downloaded more than one million apps from the App Store and 250,000 e-books from its iBookstore on the iPad's first day.

"It feels great to have the iPad launched into the world--it’s going to be a game-changer," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs. "iPad users, on average, downloaded more than three apps and close to one book within hours of unpacking their new iPad."

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CNNMoney.com reported that published sales "estimates--from those who dared make them--ranged from 250,000 to 700,000." One analyst, Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster, had doubled an earlier estimate of 200,000–300,000 iPads to 600,000–700,000 Saturday night, but "issued a mea culpa Monday morning after Apple sent out a press release with its official iPad sales figures."

"We originally estimated online-sales to be about 75% of all iPad sales; however, it appears that online pre-orders made up about 50% of the sales, resulting in a significant unit difference," he explained.

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Public acceptance for a device combining elements of a laptop and smartphone may take time, Michael Abramsky, an analyst with RBC Capital, told the New York Times. "This device is the leading edge in a market that is still being created, so lots of folks are still trying to figure out the relevance of the iPad to them. But given that not everyone understands what it does yet, it’s a pretty good launch at the end of the day."

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Matthew Miller reviewed the iPad's e-book buying options--the iBooks store, as well as Kindle and Kobo apps--for ZDNet.com and came away "quite impressed that we already have three extremely functional and capable clients on the device.... Each of these three has their strengths and I personally plan to keep all three on my iPad since I have a varied e-book collection. Honestly though, the Apple iBooks app has a great UI and I would love to use it for more content. When the Barnes & Noble eReader application is rolled out I will also take a look at that and post on my thoughts too. I have to spend many more hours reading e-books on the iPad before I can decide if any of my e-book readers are passed along."

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People power in a digital age. Talented, well-trained floor staffs may have caused a sales "ripple effect" at Best Buy stores--the only retailer besides Apple selling the iPad--during launch weekend. The Wall Street Journal's MarketBeat blog cited a research note by Credit Suisse analysts, which observed: "According to our Apple analyst, Bill Shope, some stores had 100-200 iPads to start and then received additional shipments during Saturday (which compares to some expectations of just 15 in total per store). More important.... is the reminder that Best Buy occupies a unique place in today's retail world, with the only nationwide well trained salesforce to sell value-added consumer electronics. If there was an app for that, we think the app would point to an undervalued stock and Best Buy remains our favorite name in our hardline retail universe."

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In the New York Times, author Marc Aronson examined the issue of copyrights for nonfiction writers with the launch of the iPad, which "many see this as a Gutenberg moment, with digital multimedia moving one step closer toward replacing old-fashioned books. Speaking as an author and editor of illustrated nonfiction, I agree that important change is afoot, but not in the way most people see it. In order for electronic books to live up to their billing, we have to fix a system that is broken: getting permission to use copyrighted material in new work. Either we change the way we deal with copyrights--or works of nonfiction in a multimedia world will become ever more dull and disappointing."

 


Candlewick Press: Zion Unmatched by Zion Clark and James S Hirsch


Cool Idea of the Day: Supporting Libraries

Library users in Denver don't have to worry about returning some tomes. During National Library Week (April 11–17), anyone who presents a library card at the Printed Page Bookshop in Denver, Colo., will receive a free book--to keep.

The initiative is intended "to honor and support libraries and their book-reading patrons," Printed Page co-owner Dan Danbom wrote. "Libraries are taking it from two sides during the recession. Tight budgets are reducing services and hours at a time when demands for free library services are up." Library card holders are being treated to an assortment of fiction, nonfiction and children's books donated by the 15 specialty dealers that share space at the Printed Page.


Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers: Aristotle and Dante Dive Into the Waters of the World by Benjamin Alire Sáenz


Pennie Picks The 19th Wife

Pennie Clark Ianniciello, Costco's book buyer, has chosen The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff (Random House, $15, 9780812974157/0812974158) as her pick of the month for March. In Costco Connection, which goes to many of the warehouse club's members, she wrote:

"When I was in high school, I had a teacher who was able to turn history class into a series of stories--not just a list of dates and names to memorize--that grabbed my attention. Ebershoff's novel The 19th Wife, this month's Book Pick, does the same thing for me. I know this is a work of fiction, but Ebershoff grounds the plot in well-researched historical facts.

"Beyond the story of Ann Eliza Young, one of Brigham Young's wives who leaves her husband, Ebershoff weaves a modern murder mystery. Jordan Scott returns to the sect that exiled him, hoping to learn the truth about his father's death. The result is a story that's part history and part inquiry into love and faith."

 


Media and Movies

Media Heat: Paula Deen's Savannah Style

This morning on the Early Show: Amy Wilson, author of When Did I Get Like This?: The Screamer, the Worrier, the Dinosaur-Chicken-Nug... and Other Mothers I Swore I'd Never Be (Morrow, $23.99, 9780061956959/0061956953).

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Tomorrow morning on the Today Show: Paula Deen and Brandon Branch, authors of Paula Deen's Savannah Style (Simon & Schuster, $29.99, 9781416552246/1416552243). They will also appear tomorrow on Rachael Ray and Joy Behar.

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Tomorrow morning on Good Morning America: Jerry Weintraub, author of When I Stop Talking, You'll Know I'm Dead: Useful Stories from a Persuasive Man (Twelve, $25.99, 9780446548151/0446548154).

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Tomorrow morning on Fox and Friends: Lisa Oz, author of Us: Transforming Ourselves and the Relationships that Matter Most (Free Press, $26, 9781439123928/1439123926).

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Tomorrow on NPR's All Things Considered: Jo Nesbo, author of The Devil's Star (Harper, $25.99, 9780061133978/0061133973).

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Tomorrow on Charlie Rose: Carol Burnett, author of This Time Together: Laughter and Reflection (Harmony, $25, 9780307461186/0307461181).

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Tomorrow night on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson: Raquel Welch, author of Raquel: Beyond the Cleavage (Weinstein Books, $26.95, 9781602860971/1602860971).

 


New Look for Letters to Juliet

A P.S. to yesterday's item on Letters to Juliet: this is the cover of the Stewart, Tabori & Chang title, featuring Amanda Seyfried, who plays Juliet in the movie to be released May 14.

 

 

 


Movies: The Dark Fields; The Three Musketeers Rebooted

Anna Friel (ABC's Pushing Daisies) is in negotiations to star opposite Bradley Cooper in The Dark Fields, based on the novel by Alan Glyn, the Hollywood Reporter wrote. Neil Burger is directing the thriller. The cast also includes Robert De Niro and Abbie Cornish.

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Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity; Mr. and Mrs. Smith) is "in talks with Warner Bros. to direct its reboot of Alexandre Dumas' classic 17th-century adventure The Three Musketeers," Variety reported, adding that "Brit helmer Paul Anderson is also prepping a 3D version of the tale for Summit with the backing of Germany's Constantin."

 


Books & Authors

Attainment: New Next Week

Selected new titles appearing next Tuesday, April 13:

Beatrice and Virgil: A Novel
by Yann Martel (Spiegel & Grau, $24, 9781400069262/1400069262) follows a writer who gives up writing after his first successful book.

Oprah: A Biography by Kitty Kelley (Crown, $30, 9780307394866/0307394867) chronicles the life and career of the talk show host.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Future: Twists and Turns and Lessons Learned by Michael J. Fox (Hyperion, $17.99, 9781401323868/1401323863) recalls the actor's struggle to succeed in Hollywood.

The Shadow of Your Smile by Mary Higgins Clark (Simon & Schuster, $25.99, 9781439172261/1439172269) explores the repercussions of an heiress revealing family secrets.

Every Last One: A Novel by Anna Quindlen (Random House, $26, 9781400065745/1400065747) follows a doctor's wife dealing with her son's depression.

2010: Take Back America: A Battle Plan by Dick Morris and Eileen McGann (Harper, $26.99, 9780061988448/0061988448) advocates voting for Republicans in 2010.

Earth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet by Bill McKibben (Times Books, $24, 9780805090567/0805090568) gives a bleak but optimistic account of the current natural world.

 


Shelf Sample: The Apple Trees at Olema

To celebrate National Poetry Month, we are choosing poems from some recent collections. This one is from The Apple Trees at Olema: New and Selected Poems by Robert Haas (Ecco, $34.99, 9780061923821/0061923826, March 23, 2010).

Measure

Recurrences.
Coppery light hesitates
again in the small-leaved

Japanese plum. Summer
and sunset, the peace
of the writing desk

and the habitual peace
of writing, these things
form an order I only

belong to in the idleness
of attention. Last light
rims the blue mountain

and I almost glimpse
what I was born to,
not so much in the sunlight

or the plum tree
as in the pulse
that forms these lines.
     
--Selected by Marilyn Dahl




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