Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Grove Atlantic: The Yellow House: A Memoir by Sarah M. Broom

Feiwel & Friends: A Delayed Life: The True Story of the Librarian of Auschwitz by Dita Kraus

New Directions: Baron Wenckheim's Homecoming by László Krasznahorkai, translated by Ottilie Mulzet

Workman Publishing: Real Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A 28-Day Program to Realize the Power of Meditation (Second Edition, Revised) by Sharon Salzberg

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers: The Plain Janes by Cecil Castellucci, illustrated by Jim Rugg

Clarion Books: The Thief Knot: A Greenglass House Story by Kate Milford


Notes: Alice Becomes Maggie; Riggios in the News

Alice, the bookstore in Snow Hill, Md., that was owned by Alice Virginia Kesterson, the longtime Random House sales director who died in 2006 (Shelf Awareness, November 20, 2006), has been bought by Judy Menavich and renamed Maggie's in honor of Menavich's late sister, the Salisbury Daily Times reported.

"Her sister loved the store so she bought it as a labor of love," store manager Michelle Fulton told the paper.

The new owner is making few changes at the Eastern Shore store. "We're keeping the same type things here," Fulton said. "But we've uncluttered a little and we're opening a coffee shop in the back.

"It's comfortable," she continued. "People don't necessarily love books that come in here but there's an array of different things for everyone. It's a good down-home bookstore."


Last week Barnes & Noble chairman Leonard Riggio bought another 300,000 shares of company stock, according to SEC filings reported by the AP. He bought the shares for between $32 and $33.97 each, meaning he spent a minimum of $9.6 million on the purchases.

The week before, Riggio bought 350,000 B&N shares (Shelf Awareness, January 30, 2008) and now owns about 13.7 million shares of B&N.


Steve Riggio, CEO of Barnes & Noble, and Steve Kessel, senior v-p, worldwide digital media,, are among the industry people who will be interviewed during the AAP's annual meeting, Wednesday, March 5, in New York City. David Young, head of Hachette Book Group will put questions to Riggio while Kessel will be interviewed by Richard Sarnoff of Random House and AAP chairman.

For a full schedule and more information, go to


In May, Borders will open a 23,195-sq.-ft. store at the Hamilton Town Center in Noblesville, Ind., near Indianapolis. The store will be located at the intersection of Interstate 69 and 146th Street.


Nick DiMartino of University Bookstore, Seattle, Wash., and a Shelf Awareness reviewer, offers his entertaining, informative outlook on books as a contributor to the blog Book Group Buzz. Check it out at


Ever wonder what it might be like to be a KFYR-TV reporter in Bismarck, N.D, working at a Barnes & Noble store for a segment called "Try My Job: Bookstore Employee"?


Bob Benham, co-owner of Book World, Aurora, Colo., plans to "embrace the tiger" by closing his bricks-and-mortar store in July and selling his antiquarian book inventory exclusively online, according to the Rocky Mountain News.


Anthony Frost, a new English-language bookshop in Bucharest, Romania, "has become popular among students, academics and expats, especially for its fair pricing system--which sees English-language books on sale for the same cost as in the West," the Diplomat Bucharest reported.

Why "Anthony Frost?" Co-owner Vlad Niculescu said it's the name of a friend who helped foster the three owners' collective passion for English. "He doesn't know we've named the bookshop after him yet. It may be a surprise."

The Diplomat added that "one of the store's unique selling points is helpful staff who know what they are talking about. For browsers, this makes the experience of speaking to shop assistants a pleasure rather than an act of public humiliation."


"Money can't be equated with a bookstore," 86-year-old bookseller Ram Advani told the Times of India. "I have been here for 60 years. I hope my sons can make a century. I don't want to accept defeat. Just by seeing the way a person reads or smells the book, I can say whether he'll be buying it or not."


Ingram: Congratulations 2019 National Book Award Winners - Learn More>

S&S Taps Hirschhorn for New Digital Post

Elinor Hirschhorn has been named to the newly created position of executive v-p, chief digital officer, of Simon & Schuster. Under her management, S&S will integrate, into one business unit, strategy and new business development, consumer-focused digital marketing, including cross title platforms, the company website, electronic publishing and the digital infrastructure and distribution system that the company is currently building.

Hirschhorn was formerly executive v-p, corporate development and strategy, College Sports Television Networks and earlier was COO of MusicNet and worked at Viacom and MTV Networks.

"Digital initiatives are a top priority for Simon & Schuster, and we are determined to avail ourselves to the maximum extent of the digital era opportunities to find, interact, and deliver content instantaneously and around the clock to our readers worldwide," Carolyn Reidy, president and CEO of S&S, said in a statement, "Ellie's wide-ranging experience in digital media, strategy and business development will help us to find new models that will support and enhance our publishing efforts."

Recent digital initiatives at Simon & Schuster include the launch of, a site for viewing online videos of authors; the Electronic Author Visit program developed in conjunction with Ball State University; and the construction of the company's digital archive and distribution system.


Soho Press: The Seep by Chana Porter

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Oprah Hosts Louise Hay Tomorrow

Tomorrow morning's Book Report, the weekly AM radio book-related show organized by Windows a bookshop, Monroe, La., features two interviews:

  • Tim Raglin, author of The Curse of Catunkhamun (TR Books, $22, 9780978896904/0978896904)
  • Susan Campbell Bartoletti, author of The Boy Who Dared (Scholastic Press, $16.99, 9780439680134/0439680131)

The show airs at 8 a.m. Central Time and can be heard live at; the archived edition will be posted tomorrow afternoon.


Tomorrow on Oprah: Louise Hay, author of You Can Heal Your Life (Hay House, $14.95, 9780937611012/0937611018).

Also on Oprah tomorrow: life coach Martha Beck explains The Secret by Rhonda Byrne (Atria/Beyond Words, $23.95, 9781582701707/1582701709).


G.P. Putnam's Sons: Providence by Max Barry

Books & Authors

Awards: Audies Finalists; Light the Way Winners

The Audio Publishers Association has announced the finalists in the 29 categories of the Audies awards for excellence in audiobooks. The list includes a new category, achievement in abridgment. Finalists for the Audiobook of the Year will be unveiled in March. Winners in all categories will be announced and honored at the Audies gala held during BEA on May 30 in Los Angeles.


The first winners of the Light the Way: Outreach to the Underserved grant, sponsored by Candlewick Press and the Association for Library Service to Children's Library Service to Special Population Children and their Caregivers Committee, have been announced. The grant honors Newbery Medalist and Geisel Honoree Kate DiCamillo and encourages innovative approaches to engaging traditionally underserved populations in libraries.


The Rogers Public Library in Rogers, Ark., for its project "Bilingual Teens as Teachers and Tutors," a collaboration of the public library, elementary and secondary schools, local community college and community services. Americorps volunteers will train bilingual teens to serve as tutors and role models to elementary school students who need help learning English. Most of the Spanish-speaking children are from families of migrant workers who rarely use the public library. The Rogers Public Library will receive a grant of $5,000 as well as a complete Kate DiCamillo library and a signed print from Great Joy.

Honor Award

Port Isabel Public Library in Port Isabel, Tex., for its project "Children's Book Club to the Rescue" that will enable preschool children of non-English speaking families to gain literacy skills. This program will involve the United Way, Success by Six and a local daycare. Port Isabel Public Library will receive a grant of $1,040 as well as a complete Kate DiCamillo library and a signed print from Great Joy.

Honor Award

Hancock County Library System in Bay St. Louis, Miss., for its project "Pearlington Summer Reading Program." In this community that was devastated by Hurricane Katrina and where many families are still living in FEMA trailers, the Pearlington Library, which is operating in a FEMA trailer, will use the $1,040 grant to re-establish a summer reading program. The Library will also receive a complete Kate DiCamillo library and a signed print from Great Joy.


NBCC Winter Recommended List

The National Book Critics Circle has announced its second Best Recommended list, consisting of titles that its 800 member critics and prize winners and finalists are reading and want to share. The list will be released quarterly. Beginning today, the NBCC is sponsoring events in 14 cities to discuss the list, the 2007 NBCC book prizes and books in general. For more information, including a list of recommended list voters, their comments and other recommendations, go to the NBCC blog, Critical Mass.
The top five titles in fiction, nonfiction and poetry are:


1. Tree of Smoke by Denis Johnson (FSG)
2. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (Riverhead)
3. Diary of a Bad Year by J.M. Coetzee (Viking)
4. People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks (Viking)
5. Zeroville by Steve Erickson (Europa)

1. The Rest Is Noise by Alex Ross (FSG)
2. Brother, I'm Dying by Edwidge Danticat (Knopf)
3. In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan (Penguin Press)
4. Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks (Knopf)
4. The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein (Metropolitan)

1. Elegy by Mary Jo Bang (Graywolf)
2. Time and Materials by Robert Hass (Ecco)
2. Gulf Music by Robert Pinsky (FSG)
4. The Collected Poems, 1956–1998 by Zbigniew Herbert (Ecco)
5. Sharp Teeth by Toby Barlow (Harper)

Attainment: New Books Out Next Week

Selected new titles appearing on Tuesday, February 12:

The Ghost War by Alex Berenson (Putnam, $24.95, 9780399154539/0399154531) follows a CIA agent who must figure out which major country is sponsoring a surge of Taliban activity in Afghanistan.

Dakota: A Novel by Martha Grimes (Viking, $25.95, 9780670018697/0670018694) chronicles an amnesiac girl's journey to escape figures from her forgotten life.

The Killing Ground by Jack Higgins (Putnam, $25.95, 9780399153808/0399153802) explores an intelligence operative's fateful decision to help a stranger with ties to a powerful terrorist group.

Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy, and the West by Benazir Bhutto (Harper, $27.95, 9780061567582/0061567582) provides insight into the late author's return to Pakistan and her thoughts on world peace.

Marching Toward Hell: America and Islam After Iraq
by Michael Scheuer (Free Press, $27, 9780743299695/0743299698) examines recent disastrous foreign policy decisions and how to undo the damage.

Next week in paperback:

Skylight Confessions by Alice Hoffman (Back Bay Books, $14.99, 9780316017879/0316017876).


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