Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Bloomsbury YA: Dreamland (YA Edition): The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones

Balzer & Bray: The Best At It by Maulik Pancholy

Rick Riordan Presents: Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky (Tristan Strong #1) by Kwame Mbalia

Magination Press: Trans+: Love, Sex, Romance, and Being You by Kathryn Gonzales and Karen Rayne

Sourcebooks Explore: Survivors of the Holocaust: True Stories of Six Extraordinary Children by Kath Shackleton, illustrated by Zane Wittingham

Central Avenue Publishing: Into Captivity They Will Go by Noah Milligan

Carolrhoda Books: A Time Traveler's Theory of Relativity by Nicole Valentine

News

Notes: 'Nervous' Holidays; Vroman's Cancels Expansion Plans

Anticipation used to be one of the pleasures of the holiday shopping season, but this year has seen more headlines like this one in the New York Times: "Booksellers and Publishers Nervous as Holiday Season Approaches." It heralded a report that "most everyone in publishing is bracing for a difficult holiday season while trying to remain optimistic about the enduring allure of books."

In noting that "booksellers are trying new tactics to help ring up sales," the Times reported Elaine Petrocelli, owner of Book Passage bookstores in San Francisco and Corte Madera, Calif., "recently instituted a policy giving priority seating at book readings to those who purchase the book. Last month she sold 160 copies at a reading by Katherine Neville, author of The Fire . . . Still, Ms. Petrocelli said she had noticed an overall decline in foot traffic at her two stores compared with this time last year. As a result, she said, she has decided not to hire holiday-season help. Usually she hires three or four people part time."

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Heidi Allwood and Holly Baracchini, co-owners of Little Bookworms Children's Bookstore & Boutique, Bradenton, Fla., recently opened "a glistening new [bookshop] aimed at older customers," the Bradenton Herald reported. The new store, Lakewood Ranch Booksellers, is located in the same block.

"It's always been a long-time dream of ours," Allwood said. "So far, the responses are wonderful. So far, people have been really enthusiastic."

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Vroman's bookstore, Pasadena, Calif., has canceled plans to open a store in Old Town Monrovia due to the slumping economy. The Pasadena Star-News reported that "city officials and Vroman's representatives had been having discussions about the bookstore's possible expansion into Monrovia for months and had been close to an agreement."

Vroman's president Joel Sheldon said that even though the company was "very close to reaching an agreement to purchase the newly renovated building at 601 S. Myrtle Avenue, the more recent economic conditions and variances have caused our Board of Directors to adopt a more conservative approach regarding expansion at this time." The possibility of a future expansion to Monrovia was not ruled out, however.

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The Desert Sun showcased two Palm Springs, Calif., bookstores, Just Fabulous and Latino Books y Mas, as examples of "small, neighborhood niche bookstores" that  "offer book lovers a place to find unique offerings, including some titles you might not find in the big-box stores."

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"A lot of women in this neighborhood don't allow themselves to dream of what is possible," Laurie Kendall, one of the co-founders of the Spiral Dance Womyn's Center & Bookstore, Baltimore, Md., told the Sun. "Nobody really understood us when we said we're starting a women's bookstore and women's center. They said, 'In this neighborhood?' I would say, 'Can you think of one that needs it more?' . . . Intellectually, I see all the problems here. But I also have a vision of a beautiful, multicultural community owned by the people who live here."

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Local bookstores in Aiken, S.C., reported "mixed results on sales of President-elect Barack Obama's books," according to the Aiken Standard. which contacted Books-A-Million in Aiken Mall, Booklovers Bookstore and the Book Stall. Books-A-Million general manager Aleks Kragh said, "I can't comment ultimately on the final numbers, but we've definitely seen a positive response. We're getting plenty of phone calls and plenty of interest, and we just got a shipment of Time magazines, so we'll have those."

On the other hand, Booklovers Bookstore "hasn't seen any demand, but that was exactly what the staff expected, according to co-owner Angela Poe. Booklovers does not normally carry political books."

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HarperCollins and the Wall Street Journal have formed a three-year publishing partnership to develop books written by the Journal’s editors and reporters on a variety of topics for a wide range of readers. The program will be overseen by Steve Ross, group president of the Collins Group, and Alan Murray, deputy managing editor at the Journal, in conjunction with the publishers and editorial teams from the Collins, Collins Business, Collins Living and Collins Design imprints. Both HarperCollins and Dow Jones & Company, which publishes the Wall Street Journal, are owned by News Corp.
 
The debut guidebook under the agreement will be The Wall Street Journal Guide to the End of Wall Street As We Know It: What You Need to Know About the Greatest Financial Crisis of Our Time--And How to Survive It by Dave Kansas, which will be published by Collins Business in January 2009. In a statement, the book was described as "a definitive guide for Main Street readers who want to make sense of what's happening on Wall Street." Collins Business also plans to publish The Wall Street Journal Guide to Management in early 2010.
 
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Bad times forcing your customers to postpone travel plans this year? How about a staycation display? The San Jose Mercury News featured travel books "that make you feel better about staying home."

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The Sunday Times reported that bestseller status for Mary Ann Shaffer's The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society has produced a not-so-surprising geographical side effect. "I suspect few Americans had heard of Guernsey before my aunt's book," said Annie Barrows, who edited her late aunt's manuscript, "but now I've got postcards from Americans who read it and flew straight off to explore the real Channel Islands. They have suddenly become a bit obsessed."

Added Diana Vaughn, a librarian who runs a South Carolina book club: "Now my friends and I feel like we have lived there. It has joined Hogwarts and Austenland as familiar features in the British landscape."

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In Pakistan, the "business of books survives uncertainties," according to the Daily Times, which quoted Islamabad bookseller Ajmal Khan observing that the "recent law and order situation, power cuts and inflation hardy affected our business. Our clients keep on buying books come what may."

And Hafeez Alam "said he took to book reading after spoiling his many years on net surfing. 'Internet, chatting and games on computer are a waste of time that consumed three years of my life. Now I have been pleased to start reading books,' he said."

 


Mango: The Restaurant Diet: How to Eat Out Every Night and Still Lose Weight by Fred Bollaci


Media and Movies

Media Heat: Annie Leibovitz at Work

Tomorrow morning on the Today Show: Annie Leibovitz, author of Annie Leibovitz at Work (Random House, $40, 9780375505102/0375505105).

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Tomorrow on the Diane Rehm Show: Jon Meacham, author of America Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House (Random House, $30, 9781400063253/1400063256).

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Tomorrow on CNN Newsroom with Kyra Phillips: Liza Mundy, author of Michelle: A Biography (S&S, $25, 9781416599432/1416599436).

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Tomorrow on Talk of the Nation: Vernon E. Jordan, author of Make It Plain: Standing Up and Speaking Out (PublicAffairs, $24.95, 9781586482985/158648298X).

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Tomorrow on Oprah: Peter Walsh, author of It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff (Free Press, $13, 9780743292658/0743292650).

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Tomorrow on the Charlie Rose Show: Jeffrey Toobin, author of The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court (Anchor, $15.95, 9781400096794/1400096790).

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Tomorrow on the Colbert Report: Bob Woodward, author of The War Within: A Secret White House History 2006-2008 (Simon & Schuster, $32, 9781416558972/1416558977).

 


Charlesbridge Publishing: Baby Loves the Five Senses by Ruth Spiro, illustrated by Irene Chan


Movies: 'Unfilmable' Midnight's Children to be Adapted

Deepa Mehta will direct a film adaptation of Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children. The Guardian reported that Mehta and Rushdie, who will co-write the screenplay, hatched the project "when Rushdie dined at Mehta's home recently and she asked him if he would consider a collaboration." They plan to begin writing the screen adaptation in mid-March, and the film is expected to start production in 2010. Rushdie and David Hamilton, Mehta's partner, are acting as co-producers.

"With its bravura mix of historical events and inventive flights of fancy, the 650-page novel has long been seen as unfilmable," the Guardian noted. But Mehta disagrees: "If I was doing it myself it would be rather daunting. The fact that we like and respect each other is a good foundation for collaboration."

 


imon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books: Max & Ruby and Twin Trouble (Max and Ruby Adventure) BY Rosemary Wells


Books & Authors

Awards: Dylan Thomas Prize

Nam Le won the £60,000 (US$93,198) Dylan Thomas prize, which honors writers under the age of 30, for his debut collection of stories, The Boat. The Guardian noted that Le, who was born in Vietnam, raised in Australia and lives in New York, "ranges across the globe with stories set in locations from the streets of Tehran to a tiny Australian fishing village."

"Nam tackles his own background and circumstances as well as that of others with a clear eye, focused intelligence and wonderful use of words," said Peter Florence, chairman of the judges. "He is, in this panel's opinion, a phenomenal literary talent, and I look forward to following his career as it progresses."

 


Charlesbridge Publishing: Sumokitty by David Biedrzycki


Attainment: New Books Out Next Week

Selected new titles appearing next Monday and Tuesday, November 17 and 18:

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell (Little, Brown, $27.99, 9780316017923/0316017922) examines unusual advantages or circumstances that allow people to succeed.

Cross Country by James Patterson (Little, Brown, $27.99, 9780316018722/0316018724) follows Alex Cross, a retired FBI psychiatrist whose oldest friend is murdered.

The Private Patient by P.D. James (Knopf, $25.95, 9780307270771/0307270777) is the 14th mystery featuring police commander Adam Dalgliesh.

Dashing Through the Snow
by Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark (Simon & Schuster, $23, 9781439129173/1439129177) takes place in a seemingly tranquil village where residents begin to disappear after local employees win the lottery.

The Leader in Me: How Schools and Parents Around the World Are Inspiring Greatness, One Child at a Time by Stephen R. Covey (Free Press, $24.99, 9781439103265/1439103267) describes teaching methods that foster leadership skills and self-confidence.

 


Atheneum Books: Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks by Jason Reynolds, illustrated by Alexander Nabaum



Book Review

Mandahla: And More Cookbooks

Chanterelle by David Waltuck (Taunton Press, $50.00 Hardcover, 9781561589616, October 2008)

Chanterelle has been a fixture in New York City since 1979, and its eponymous cookbook----is another lavish collection. But does anyone actually cook with these books? They should come with a clear plastic page cover to protect them from spatters and drops. Chanterelle has such interesting recipes, however, that you will find a way (and hopefully a space--it measures 11" x 24" opened). The recipes are accompanied by useful and often witty introductions. For Cannelloni with Collard Greens, Waltuck says, "I don't know what kind of crazy mood I was in when I came up with this dish."); for a calf's liver sauté with onions, he admits, "Every chef is entitled to an indulgence . . . and one of mine is an occasional cameo by calf's liver . . . I know it will never be the most popular dish (In fact, I usually assume it will be the worst-selling one)." Chicken with Verjus and Garlic Cloves is Waltuck's take on the classic chicken with 40 cloves of garlic; here he uses verjus, which is an acidic juice made from unripe wine grapes. It's simple to make and will become a staple for chicken lovers. Waltuck is a chef who pairs pigs' feet with Manila clams, makes a "Crazy" Salad with lobster, papaya, greens and foie gras, serves squid spaghetti ("if you like a food that doubles as a discussion piece")--food that may look intimidating, but his instructions are clear, and the descriptions and photographs enable the hesitant cook to forge ahead.

Olives and oranges. Those two words conjure blue skies, warm days and aromatic breezes, which I could use lots of in November, and an easy way to transport myself to the Mediterranean is to read (and cook from) Sara Jenkins' cookbook, Olives and Oranges: Recipes and Flavor Secrets from Italy, Spain, Cyprus, and Beyond (Houghton Mifflin, $35, 9780618677641/061867764X, September 2008), written with Mindy Fox. She includes classic Mediterranean standards, like Pasta Carbonara, and newer dishes, like Jasmine Tea Panna Cotta with Shaved Dark Chocolate. She wants to show the cook how flavors work together and independently, but many will be too impatient for that and go straight to the recipes: Halibut with Brussels Sprout Leaves, Black Olives and Chili; Strawberry Risotto (yes, it works); Za'atar Chicken made with a Middle Eastern spice mixture; Pasta Shells with Many Cheeses (at least six); Spicy Lemon-Chocolate Ganache Tart with árbol chilies. But her emphasis on using the best and seasonal ingredients, her list of basic necessities, her labeling recipes quick-cook or slow-cook and her flavor tips will help cooks make the most of what they have, change recipes to suit their needs and be the kind of cook who can go to the market, get what's fresh and create a meal.

More than a decade ago, Vitaly and Kimberly Paley left New York City "knowing two things: we wanted our own restaurant, and we wanted it to be in Oregon," which reminded them of France, where "ingredients are stars." In The Paley's Place Cookbook: Recipes and Stories from the Pacific Northwest (Ten Speed Press, $35, 9781580088305/1580088309, October 2008), ingredients and food producers are indeed stars, along with heavenly recipes. In the chapter on soups, salads and sandwiches, there is a piece about George and Fran Weppler, who produce "mythic" vegetables on 16 acres a few hours from Portland. The chapter on fish and shellfish includes salmon fisherman Mark Newell and Paley's Chinook salmon revelation: "The first time I tasted hook-and-line caught [Oregon Chinook], everything changed." He now views having wild salmon on the menu as a precious gift to his customers. George Weppler, the vegetable grower, taught Paley how to cook the salmon, marinated with salt, orange zest and brown sugar, rubbed with garlic, planked on cedar and covered with Walla Walla sweet onions and basil, then grilled. It's divine (but you may want to cut the salt). Gene Thiel is a potato grower, who gets emphatic and emotional when he talks about potatoes--how bad commercial ones are, what makes a good potato. One of the most decadent potato recipes I've seen follows--Ken's Potato Galette, with sliced potatoes, onion, puff pastry and crème fraîche. If the recipe doesn't hook you, the photograph of hot, golden brown pastry oozing crème fraîche will. Meyer Lemon-Gin Sorbet, Stuffed Tomatoes Provençal, Chile-Braised Beef Brisket--this is a cookbook that will be used until it's in tatters.--Marilyn Dahl

 


The Bestsellers

Top 10 Sellers in October at AbeBooks.com

The following were the bestselling titles on AbeBooks.com during October:

1. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
2. The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life by Alice Schroeder
3. The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane
4. Wandering Star by Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clezio
5. The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge
6. Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson
7. Night by Elie Wiesel
8. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
9. Getting to Yes by Roger Fisher
10. Macbeth by William Shakespeare

[Many thanks to AbeBooks.com!]

 


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