The New York Times asks whether links between books and video games are a good and effective thing, but comes to no strong conclusion. Among the exhibits: author P.J. Haarsma, who said, "You can't just make a book anymore. [Pairing a video game with a YA title] brings the book into their world, as opposed to going the other way around."
Rick Riordan, whose first book in the 39 Clues series has just appeared, commented: "I think gamers and readers are looking for the same thing. They are looking to be dropped into an intriguing story and to become a character in the story."
And Jay Parini said, "I wouldn't be surprised if, in 10 or 20 years, video games are creating fictional universes which are every bit as complex as the world of fiction of Dickens or Dostoevsky."
Tellingly an accompanying photo shows a group in a library during a video game tournament: boys are at screens, a girl is reading a book.
The Wall Street Journal's tasting menu of cookbooks being published tomorrow consists of Paula Deen's My First Cookbook by Paula Deen, Chef Jeff Cooks by Jeff Henderson and More Fast Food My Way by Jacques Pépin--"the opening salvo of what promises to be an intensely competitive holiday season."
For at least one publisher, the financial crisis may be a recipe for cookbook success. "Maybe everyone will stay a little closer to the hearth," Beth Wareham, director of cookbook publishing at Scribner, told the Journal.
Chapters at the Cottage, a general bookstore, has opened in Columbus, Neb., the Columbus Telegram reported. The store is a branch of Chapters Books & Gifts in Seward and is also owned by Carla Ketner.
Chapters at the Cottage is located at 3215 14th St., Columbus, Neb. 68601; 402-563-3369.
The Book Blues bookstore, Marine City, Mich., is closing its bricks-and-mortar location November 15 but will continue to sell online, according to the store's website. Owners Todd and Jackie Wilson cited "economic market forces [that] have not been kind to independent businesses."
Opened in June 2006--see our one-year anniversary story (Shelf Awareness, June 3, 2007)--the store will continue publishing its e-newsletter and may host author and book-related events at various locations. Book Blues sells gently used and new books and offered events and signings focusing on local authors, Great Lakes shipping, Michigan and area history.
To raise awareness and rally community support, La Casa Azul Bookstore is hosting an event at Camaradas El Barrio on Wednesday, October 15, from 7-9 p.m., at 2241 First Avenue (at 115th St.) in East Harlem in New York City.
Owner Aurora Anaya-Cerda has begun operating the store online and next plans to open a bricks-and-mortar location in East Harlem (Shelf Awareness, April 22, 2008). La Casa Azul offers "a wide range of books and music from the United States, México, Latin America and the Caribbean," reflecting "the international Latino communities shaping the United States and many parts of the world." Titles are in Spanish and English.
RSVP for the party to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations to the BookMark, Atlantic Beach, Fla., which is celebrating an August remodeling and its 18th birthday this coming Saturday, October 11, with appearances by Florida authors, prizes, giveaways, and a sidewalk sale. Among the attendees: children's author and illustrator Frances and Hugh Keiser, who have done a series of books about Pelican Pete (Sagaponack Books); journalist Mark Lane, author of Sandspurs: Notes from a Coastal Columnist (University Press of Florida); and novelist Ad Hudler, author of Man of the House (Ballantine). Some publishers have donated books, tote bags and other items that BookMark will give to customers on Saturday, and several restaurants and customers are helping with refreshments.
Owners Rona and Buford Brinlee, who purchased the BookMark in 1995, said the store needed a makeover after 13 years. "We tore down the interior walls (replacing a series of separate rooms with an open space), painted, added ceiling fans and installed new carpet," they continued. "We worked hard and accomplished all of this in just five days. The newly configured space allows customers to see all the wonderful books and enables the staff to help them better. We host author events on a regular basis and will now be able to fit more people in the store. Customers love it and keep asking if we got bigger."
In an interview with the Boston Globe Sunday Magazine,
Manny Cunard, director of the Brown University bookstore, was asked,
"Your bookstore is independent, and many area college bookstores are
not. What's the difference?"
"We have a certain connection with the local community that you can't
get with a big-box store," he said. "Our decisions aren't made at the corporate
level; they are driven by the community."
"Some do's and don'ts at the bookstore" were offered by the Midwest Book Examiner for readers on holiday gift-buying trips.
- Know the preferences of your giftee.
- Look around for a minute on your own.
- Consider introducing your giftee to something you like.
- Think of things that go with books.
- Ask--NICELY--for help if you're completely stymied.
- Remember to ask for a gift receipt.
- Be rude.
- Head directly to the bargain section.
- Expect the booksellers to mind-read.
for heaven's sake, say, "There was a book on the shelf over here last
year and it had a blue cover and it was by some guy from Minneapolis .
. . do you have that book?"
- Use the bookstore as a babysitter.
- Be a Grinch.
Write big books, earn big bucks. Forbes
magazine featured its annual "The World's Best Paid Authors" list of 10
bestselling writers who "pulled in a combined $563 million between June
1, 2007, and June 1, 2008, thanks to hefty advances, impressive sales
and silver screen adaptations."
This year's Forbes
- J.K. Rowling ($300 million)
- James Patterson ($50 million)
- Stephen King ($45 million)
- Tom Clancy ($35 million)
- Danielle Steel ($30 million)
- John Grisham (tied at $25 million)
- Dean Koontz (tied at $25 million)
- Ken Follett ($20 million)
- Janet Evanovich ($17 million)
- Nicholas Sparks ($16 million)
Speaking of money, Variety
noted, "Life's handed many Americans a pile of lemons lately. But the
book biz is looking to make lemonade." Exhibit A for this contention is
the recent popularity of business and financial titles like Alice
Schroeder's The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life.Variety
quoted a Bantam rep, who said the publisher has "already logged reorders for Snowball
which had an initial print run of 1 million copies on Sept. 29. The rep
admits that Bantam never could have anticipated such timing--which
could be seen as exquisite, or painful, depending on the point of view."
Effective today, Kathy Anderson has joined Black Oak Books, Berkeley, Calif., as manager. She was formerly trade books manager at the Stanford Bookstore and earlier worked at Ingram and several other college bookstores.
Black Oak was bought in June by Gary Cornell, a former math professor, founder of Apress and author of many computer books.
Sally Lindsay has joined Chesapeake & Hudson as director of telemarketing and special sales and is working at its home office in Brunswick, Md. A 35-year veteran of the publishing industry, Lindsay was v-p of merchandising for Koen Book Distributors from 1981 until it closed in 2005. She then formed Sallynoggin Consulting and Creative Projects, doing media and market development projects for several independent trade wholesalers and publishers as well as publishers in the higher education market.