Notes: Store Changes; Comic-Con; Marvel's King Video
Although this is Dark Knight time, we have another white knight tale: the children's bookstore Crocodile Pie, Libertyville, Ill., which had planned to close at the end of the month (Shelf Awareness, May 7, 2008), has been bought by Kim Zizic and Amy Moran, who take over on Friday, August 1, according to the Chicago Daily Herald.
Owner Kim White, who founded the store 19 years ago, had planned to retire.
The new owners' first act will be to close the store for nearly two weeks to paint it and install new carpeting.
Zizic, a dentist who practices in the same shopping center as the store, told the paper: "I've always loved the store. I just knew I wanted to do it. I didn't want it to close."
For her part, Moran said, "My husband and I have had dreams about owning our own little shop. But you dream about it, like people dream about winning the lottery."
"Bookstores are a fragile business, but we have a loyal following," said Judy Normandin, owner of Annie's Book Stop, North Andover, Mass., which will close July 31.
"It's time for a change," Normandin told the Eagle-Tribune, which reported that "she plans to reopen the store, possibly in a bigger location and hopefully in North Andover, but she doesn't know when that will be." Until that time, Normandin "will continue to do special orders for schools and work at book fairs to 'keep her hand in' the book world. She said she will also spend time visiting other bookstores and exploring ideas for her next location."
This coming Friday, Books-A-Million will open a 15,500-sq.-ft. store at 9630 Dynasty Drive in Ft. Myers, Fla. A grand opening celebration is planned for July 26 and 27. The store is BAM's 38th in Florida.
Variety featured extensive coverage of this week's Comic-Con in San Diego, Calif., noting that "Hollywood has been relatively slow to realize Comic-Con's potential as a launching pad for other forms of mainstream entertainment. Expect a major shift this year."
"The same audience that likes genre movies likes comedy," said producer Peter Safran. "It's the right audience. There are few places you can go that have a targeted demographic."
"Be Understood at Comic-Con," Wired magazine advised, then offered some helpful translations, including four for the always useful, "You call this near-mint condition? It has a peanut butter stain!" They are:
Elvish: Estatyes alahasta? Vahtana ná apsanen!
1337: nm!? roflmao, stainzzors!!1! wtf?
Klingon: pupbe' Dochvam. lam.
Pirate: Arrrh, this pamphlet's woefully besmirched, ye scurvy knave.
Marvel Comics has made a story by Steven King into an animated video whose 25 episodes will be distributed online and via mobile channels beginning on Monday during the next five weeks, the Wall Street Journal reported. The story, called "N.," is in a collection entitled Just After Sunset that Scribner will publish November 11.
The series will be available on iTunes and Amazon at $3.99. Scribner will sell the book for $28 and offer a book-and-DVD package for $37.50.
The Journal said that the deal "underscores how eager publishers are to come up with new marketing techniques at a time when book sales are flat or slumping. Five years ago, Mr. King's publisher might have taken the creepy short story and offered it to a literary publication like the New Yorker in expectation that a first serial sale would create interest in Just After Sunset. . . . Scribner and Mr. King are betting that a digital adaptation designed for those with short attentions spans will be more productive."
In anticipation of the Olympic Games, the Guardian's book blog showcased "Catherine Sampson's top 10 books on Beijing:"
- Beijing Coma by Ma Jian
- Please Don't Call Me Human by Wang Shuo
- A Thousand Years of Good Prayers by Yiyun Li
- The Uninvited by Yan Geling
- The Crazed by Ha Jin
- The Last Empress by Anchee Min
- Serve the People by Yan Lianke
- I Love Dollars by Zhu Wen
- The Dragon's Tail by Adam Williams
- Beijing Doll by Chun Sue
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, which was published in hardcover in May 2007, will appear as a trade paperback on November 25. Riverhead Books has shipped more than 2.3 million copies of the hardcover.
Among changes at Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing:
- Renee Huff has joined the marketing department as associate marketing manager, mass market. She was formerly an account executive for Campbell-Ewald Advertising Agency and has worked on a variety of campaigns including one for last summer's blockbuster movie, Transformers. She recently received an MBA from the Iona College Hagan School of Business.
- Holly Nagel has joined the marketing department as advertising and promotions assistant. She is a recent graduate of Boston University's College of Communication, where she received a Bachelor of Science in film and television.
- Angela Zurlo has been promoted to associate, production. She joined the company as an assistant 10 months ago.
- Jocelyn Titus has joined the production department as assistant. She is a recent graduate from Ramapo College with a B.A. in communications.