Shelf Awareness for Monday, November 7, 2005

Del Rey Books: Black Shield Maiden by Willow Smith and Jess Hendel

St. Martin's Press: Lenny Marks Gets Away with Murder by Kerryn Mayne

Hell's Hundred: Blood Like Mine by Stuart Neville

Spiegel & Grau: Tiananmen Square by Lai Wen

Tor Books: The Daughters' War (Blacktongue) by Christopher Buehlman

Tommy Nelson: Just in Case You Ever Feel Alone (Just in Case) by Max Lucado, Illustrated by Eve Tharlet

Bramble: The Spellshop by Sarah Beth Durst

Quotation of the Day

Loving New Orleans

"I am hopeful, but I can't point to concrete things that make me hopeful. Where could I go to not miss New Orleans? Where could I go that would not pull me back here? This is what my eyes want to see, this flat, oak-treed, bayoued, moss-covered place."--Rhoda Faust, owner of the Maple Street Bookstore in New Orleans, La., which has reopened, quoted in a Knight Ridder story.

Harper: Sandwich by Catherine Newman


Digital Directions

The Google Print Library battle, Microsoft's deal to scan much of the British Library collection and new Amazon programs to allow consumers to view parts of books online and access an e-version of traditional books they buy emphasize that the digital future that seemed just around the corner a decade ago may finally be occurring--but via the Internet, POD, pdas, smartphones and other devices rather than CD-ROMs and e-book readers. Not that electronic initiatives bypassed the book world--they have had great effect in EDI, warehousing, inventory control, editorial work, printing and basic communication. But the headlines of last week and other recent events add to the sense that major change is coming to what might be the last bastion of book tradition--how texts reach readers:

  • MBS Textbook Exchange's expansion next semester of the pilot program by which it sold e-versions of about 300 textbooks from four publishers at 10 college bookstores to as many as 800 e-texts from more publishers at about 100 college bookstores (Shelf Awareness, November 1).
  • PublicAffairs founder and editor-at-large Peter Osnos's project to explore models for getting texts to readers, including the traditional book, POD books, audio and digital delivery.
  • Audible's 75% jump in customers in the quarter ended September 30 and revenue gain of 81%. The spoken-word content company has added podcasting and downloading-to-smartphone services as well as expanded in the U.K. and Germany.

Google, Microsoft and Amazon will likely have more news soon. It's not hard to imagine an announcement in the near future from Amazon that involves BookSurge, the print on demand company it bought earlier this year. With its network of warehouses, BookSurge expertise and technology and tens of thousands of scanned titles, Amazon could become one of the largest printers in the country overnight. And in contrast to wholesaler POD operations, all of its POD books would be sold when demanded.

Ironically all the digital moves make Random House's announcement last week of the founding of Random House Films, a partnership with Focus Features, owned by NBC Universal, seem less of a blockbuster than it might have even just a few months ago.

Spiegel & Grau: Tiananmen Square by Lai Wen

Notes: Decaneas Dies; Big Stores

Nancy Decaneas, co-founder and co-owner of Dragon Books, Weston, Mass., died last Tuesday at home of bone cancer. She was 61.

In 1991, she and her friend Patience Sandroff founded the store. Her son William told the Boston Globe that his mother "was always wise enough to tell us that there was a lot going on [in the world], and if you could point your compass in any direction and follow it to wherever, it would take you somewhere worthwhile."


The news from the Iqra'a Bookstore in Baghdad is not good, according to the latest AP update as reported in New York Newsday. Between the continuing violence, lack of basic services, the fear on the part of many customers to travel far from home and a security barricade that has made their street a deadend, owners Mohammed Hanash Abbas and Attallah Zeidan say business is worse than expected. Still, the store is "a sanctuary of sorts," and features more books than in the past--many slowly having made their way from U.S. bases, whether discarded or given to Iraqis. Students too poor to buy books may rent them for twenty cents apiece.


Some children's booksellers have been annoyed that the photograph of illustrator Clement Hurd that graces Goodnight Moon has been changed on the latest edition of the classic and perennial bestseller: a cigarette Hurd has held for 58 years has been extinguished. One of the offended, the Reading Reptile: Books and Toys for Young Mammals, Kansas City, Mo. (and this year's winner of the Lucile Micheels Pannell Award for Excellence in Children's Bookselling), has created a Web site showing the pictures side by side, allowing a vote and suggesting protest e-mails to HarperCollins. So far, the smokers are winning.


Apparently there's no fear of Google and Amazon in the People's Republic. What may be the largest bookstore in the world is being built in Shenzhen in Guangdong Province in south China, according to China Radio International, which quotes a China Daily story. The bookstore will cost more than US$49 million and has 40,000 square meters (about 430,000 square feet) of space.


Speaking of big bookstores, the travel section of yesterday's New York Times had a feature on Portland, Ore., that included the following rather poetic description of the U.S.'s biggest bookstore:

"All that blather about the death of reading is laughable on Saturday afternoons, when half of Portland seems to be inside Powell's Books. . . . Sure, you can buy a book today over the Internet or at a chain store, but on an autumn evening in Portland, when it's dark by 5 p.m. and it's raining again and the neon is bleeding into the gutters, Powell's is a warm, bright heaven for the word-hungry."


And on the smaller side, Hyde Brothers Booksellers, Fort Wayne, Ind., has opened an 800-sq.-ft. addition that took five years to build and contain some 40,000 books, according to the Journal Gazette. The 13-year-old store had been crammed with 125,000 volumes.

GLOW: Tundra Books: We Are Definitely Human by X. Fang

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Man on the Moon on TV

Yesterday 60 Minutes had a rare interview with the somewhat elusive first man on the Moon, Neil Armstrong, who is the subject of a new authorized biography, First Man: The Life of Neil Armstrong by James R. Hansen (S&S, $30, 074325631X).


Is this title necessary? Today Imus in the Morning talks with New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, author of Are Men Necessary? When Sexes Collide (Putnam, $25.95, 0399153322).


This morning on the Today Show:
  • 50 Cent, the rapper whose memoir is From Pieces to Weight: Once Upon a Time in Southside Queens (MTV, $23, 0743486447). (Half Dollar will also be on the Late Show with David Letterman tonight.)
  • Teri Garr, the actress who writes about her life and dealing with MS in her new book, Speedbumps: Flooring It Through Hollywood (Penguin, $23.95, 1594630070).
  • Michael Chiarello, Food Network star and author of At Home with Michael Chiarello (Chronicle, $40, 0811840484).


Today on WAMU's Diane Rehm Show:
  • Bill Richardson, Governor of New Mexico and author of the memoir Between Worlds: The Making of an American Life (Putnam, $25.95, 0399153241).
  • Nell Bernstein, author of All Alone in the World: Children of the Incarcerated (New Press, $25.95, 1565849523).


Today on WNYC's Leonard Lopate Show:
  • Lynne Truss, author of Eats, Shoots and Leaves whose new book is Talk to the Hand: The Utter Bloody Rudeness of the World Today, or Six Good Reasons to Stay Home and Bolt the Door (Gotham, $20, 1592401716).
  • Hazel Rowley, author of Tête á Tête: Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre (HarperCollins, $26.95, 0060520590).
  • Musician Rafi Zabor with his unusual memoir, I, Wabenzi: A Souvenir (FSG, $26, 0865475830).
  • A.N. Wilson, whose new book is After the Victorians: The Decline of Britain in the World (FSG, $32.50, 0374101981).


Today the View hears from Gloria Estefan, whose new children's book is The Magically Mysterious Adventures of Noelle the Bulldog (Rayo, $17.99, 0060826231; Spanish-language edition: Rayo, $17.99, 0060826266).


Tonight Charlie Rose talks with Jimmy Carter, whose new book is Our Endangered Values: America's Moral Crisis (S&S, $25, 0743284577).

William Morrow & Company: Lula Dean's Little Library of Banned Books by Kirsten Miller

Books & Authors

The December Book Sense Picks

The following are the December Book Sense Picks:

  • Seasoned in the South: Recipes From Crook's Corner and From Home by Bill Smith, preface by Lee Smith (Algonquin, $19.95, 1565124790).
  • Goodnight Nobody: A Novel by Jennifer Weiner (Atria, $26, 0743470117).
  • A Private Hotel for Gentle Ladies: A Novel by Ellen Cooney (Pantheon, $23.95, 0375423400).
  • Christmas Jars: A Novel by Jason F. Wright (Shadow Mountain, $7.95 paper, 1590384814).
  • The Jungle Law: A Novel by Victoria Vinton (MacAdam/Cage, $25, 1596921498).
  • Beasts of No Nation: A Novel by Uzodinma Iweala (HarperCollins, $16.95, 006079867X).
  • A War Against Truth: An Intimate Account of the Invasion of Iraq by Paul William Roberts (Raincoast Books, $16.95 paper, 1551928191).
  • A Thousand Years of Good Prayers: Stories by Yiyun Li (Random House, $21.95, 1400063124).
  • Music Lust: Recommended Listening for Every Mood, Moment, and Reason by Nic Harcourt (Sasquatch, $16.95 paper, 1570614377).
  • Third Girl from the Left: A Novel by Martha Southgate (Houghton Mifflin, $24, 0618470239).
  • The Mayor of Lexington Avenue: A Novel by James Sheehan (Yorkville Press, $14.95 paper, 097674421X).
  • Burning Fence: A Western Memoir of Fatherhood by Craig Lesley (St. Martin's, $24.95, 0312318464).
  • Guided by Voices: A Brief History: Twenty-One Years of Hunting Accidents in the Forests of Rock and Roll by James Greer (Grove/Black Cat, $16 paper, 0802170137).
  • Trail of Feathers: Searching For Philip True by Robert Rivard (PublicAffairs, $27.50, 158648222X).
  • The Rosary by Garry Wills (Viking, $24.95, 0670034495).
  • Tab Hunter Confidential: The Making of a Movie Star by Tab Hunter, with Eddie Muller (Algonquin, $24.95, 1565124669).
  • New and Selected Poems: Volume Two by Mary Oliver (Beacon, $24.95, 0807068861).
  • A Century of November: A Novel by W.D. Wetherell (University of Michigan Press, $14 paper, 0472031228).
  • The Children's Blizzard by David Laskin (Perennial, $13.95 paper, 0060520760).
  • The Coldest Winter: A Stringer in Liberated Europe by Paula Fox (Holt, $18, 0805078061).

[Many thanks to the ABA and Book Sense!]

Harper Celebrate: Why Do We Stay?: How My Toxic Relationship Can Help You Find Freedom by Stephanie Quayle, with Keith W. Campbell

Attainment: New Books Out Next Week

Mary, Mary by James Patterson (Little, Brown, $27.95, 031615976X) goes on sale on Monday, November 14. This title continues the Alex Cross series.


Teacher Man: A Memoir by Frank McCourt (Scriber, $26, 0743243773) goes on sale Tuesday, November 15. 'Tis a continuation of McCourt's autobiographical work, focusing on his 30 years as a teacher in the New York City schools.


Why Do I Love These People?: Honest and Amazing Stories of Real Families by Po Bronson (Random House, $24.95, 1400062373) also goes on sale on Tuesday. From the author of What Should I Do With My Life?, this book looks at 20 families who, as the author sort of says, you gotta love.


The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2006
(World Almanac, $12.95, 0886879647) also goes on sale on Tuesday. This is an annual bestseller: you can look it up.


Be Careful Who You Love: Inside the Michael Jackson Case by Diane Dimond (Atria, $25, 0743270916) goes on sale Tuesday. The lawyer and former law professor covered the Jackson case for Court TV, which served her with eviction papers this summer.

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