Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, May 31, 2016

G.P. Putnam's Sons: Talk to Me by John Kenney

Arcturus Publishing: Allen Carr's Easyway - Click to request your ARC via Netgalley

Candlewick Press: Good Rosie! by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Harry Bliss

Other Press: Hurry Down Sunshine: A Father's Story of Love and Madness by Michael Greenberg

Andrews McMeel Publishing: How to Be Successful Without Hurting Men's Feelings: Non-Threatening Leadership Strategies for Women by Sarah Cooper


Stories Opens in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Congratulations to Stories Bookshop + Storytelling Lab, in Brooklyn, N.Y., which opened on Sunday and sells books and art and writing supplies for children and teens (with a section for parents) and offers creative writing workshops for kids. "We had a lovely day," said Maggie Pouncey, who owns Stories with her husband, Matt Miller. "It was so exciting to have the anticipation at last behind us and the doors finally open."

The store, which has about 600 square feet of space, 200 of which is reserved for the Storytelling Lab, raised more than its goal of $25,000 in a Kickstarter campaign earlier this year.

Next weekend, Stories starts its weekly Stories Storytime, Sundays at 10:30 a.m., with Lucy Ruth Cummins, who will read from her new book, A Hungry Lion: Or a Dwindling Assortment of Animals (Atheneum); followed the next week by Christopher Silas Neal, author of Everyone (Candlewick); then on June 19 by Thyra Heder, author of The Bear Report (Abrams) and illustrator of Penny & Jelly: Slumber Under the Stars (HMH); and, on June 26, Rowboat Watkins, author of Rude Cakes (Chronicle).

Among other upcoming events: a June 19 Father's Day sing-along; a June 15 master class for kids as part of the Storytelling Lab taught by Jenni Desmond, author of The Blue Whale (Enchanted Lion Books); and, on June 18, John Patrick Green reading from Hippopotamister (First Second) and leading a special workshop for kids.

Stories' website will launch in the next couple weeks, but for now, information is available on its Facebook page or Instagram (@storiesbk). Stories is located at 458 Bergen St., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11217; 718-369-1167.

Disney-Hyperion: Love Like Sky by Leslie C. Youngblood

July Debut for Ogden's Booked on 25th Bookstore

Booked on 25th, a new and used bookstore, will open in July at 147 25th St. in Ogden, Utah, the Standard-Examiner reported, adding that owner Taylor Rizzi "said while she loves books, people are her passion--they'll be the focus of her store and the reason her business thrives."

"I think people want to feel a sense of community, and bookstores offer that. They bring about all sorts of different people in one location," she observed. "What I'm offering is different. It's not just a used bookstore, it's going to be a new and used bookstore. But more than that, it's a gathering spot.... I want all of Ogden's literary community, intellectual community and people who just love books to have a place to go."

Taylor Rizzi "has done her market research," the Standard-Examiner wrote. "She started with reaching out to Weber State University's Small Business Development Center and working with them to write a business plan. From there, she's paged indie bookstore owners throughout the nation for ideas. She also found a mentor in Anne Holman, partner at the King's English Bookshop in Salt Lake City."

Holman said Ogden is ready for a shop like Booked on 25th: "I think it's going to be fabulous. It's going to add a whole new level of interest of what's going on there. People are figuring out it's a lovely place to be, in an independent bookstore where you run into people you know, or maybe you run into people you don't know, but find you have a lot in common with them."

"You can't let fear stop you, you just can't," Taylor Rizzi said of the future for books. "Everybody was writing off (bookstores) as something that would die out. I don't see it ever happening. There's something about the physical touch, touching something and reading it, that people are thirsty for again."

AuthorBuzz for the Week of 08.13.18

McGill University Bookstore Changing Name, Location

The McGill University Bookstore in Montreal, Que., is being renamed Bookstore/Librairie Le James, in honor of founder James McGill, and is moving to two locations in time for the beginning of the fall semester, according to the McGill Reporter.

One of the new locations will be "an academic-oriented store" across the street from the university's New Residence Hall, and the other is "a lifestyle-oriented shop" on Sherbrooke St.

Manager Jason Kack commented: "Located in the heart of the Milton-Parc community, the academic store will offer course materials and lab supplies, general books, stationery and other goods. The lifestyle store on Sherbrooke St. will carry all the McGill-branded merchandise, Continuing Education textbooks, computers and accessories, as well as stationery and convenience goods that you've come to expect."

Kack noted that Le James is also "revamping our web store, which will include more products and allow the option for online purchases to be picked up from multiple locations. In addition to the two new stores and the MacDonald Campus store, our community will have at least two other on-campus locations to choose from during busy times of the year, to pick up online purchases."

Late last year, the bookstore held a vote on two names that, it said, would better reflect that the store does "more than just sell books; we sell clothing, McGill-branded products, gifts, technology hardware and accessories, stationery, food, frames, etc. We also host events and facilitate event registration. Bottom-line: we provide many different things to our very diverse community."

Imagine: The Spiritual Mandela: Faith and Religion in the Life of Nelson Mandela by Dennis Cruywagen

Obituary Note: Rhett Jackson

Rhett Jackson

Very sad news. Former bookseller Rhett Jackson, who was deeply involved in bookseller organizations and was a leader in First Amendment issues, died last Thursday, according to the State. He was 91.

With his wife, Betty, who survives him, Jackson founded the Happy Bookseller in Columbia, S.C., in 1975. In 2003, the Jacksons sold the store to Andy and Carrie Graves, who had met at the Happy Bookseller while working there. The store closed in 2008.

Jackson was president of the American Booksellers Association, a founder of the American Booksellers for Foundation for Free Expression and helped establish the Southeast Booksellers Association, now known as the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance.

In 2006, the Jacksons won the ABA's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006. Also that year, Rhett won a Playboy Foundation Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Achievement Award.

Jackson was just as involved in local organizations, religion and politics as he was in the bookselling world. He served on the boards of South Carolina Parole and Community Corrections, the Alston Wilkes Society, Claflin College and the Greater Columbia Community Relations Council. In addition, he was a member of United 2000, a group opposed to the display of the Confederate flag on public property.

Jackson fought for racial equality both in the Methodist Church, helping to combine its separate black and white churches, and in society in general.

Lonnie Randolph, president of the South Carolina NAACP, told the State, "Martin Luther King had a quote about the ultimate measure of a man being 'not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience.' Rhett Jackson was that kind of man, he took courageous stands during a very difficult time in South Carolina's history."

One of his former customers, Alex Sanders, former chief judge of the S.C. Court of Appeals and former president of the College of Charleston, added: "Rhett was gregarious and also the most moral person I have ever known. He could make you do the right thing without embarrassing you."

We remember Rhett Jackson as articulate, thoughtful, amusing, gracious and a wonderful conversationalist. We will miss him.

Flame Tree Press: The Toy Thief (Fiction Without Frontiers) by D.W. Gillespie


Image of the Day: The Opposite of Woe

Last week, Tattered Cover, Denver, Colo., hosted a presentation and signing by Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper for his new memoir, The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer & Politics (Penguin Press). The event was at the Wynkoop Brewery, which Hickenlooper co-founded (he and Tattered Cover longtime owner Joyce Meskis were instrumental in turning around downtown Denver). From l.: Tom Benton of Penguin; Scott Moyers, Penguin Press editor; Meskis; Hickenlooper; Cathy Langer, director of buying at Tattered Cover; and Kristen Gilligan, co-owner of Tattered Cover.

Shelf Awareness Giveaway: Central Avenue Publishing: [Dis]connected: Poems & Stories of Connection and Otherwise edited by Michelle Halket

President Shops at an Indie Again--on Veep

Sunday's episode of HBO's Veep included an Obama-like holiday shopping visit by President Selina Meyer (played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus) to Kramerbooks & Afterwords Café in Washington, D.C. On Facebook, the store thanked "the wonderful production team and HBO."

Five 'Top' Children's Bookstores in Connecticut

CBS Connecticut highlighted "just five of the top children's bookstores in Connecticut":

Linda's Story Time, Monroe, "a full-service, independent bookstore with lots to attract readers of all ages, but it also specializes in books for children, including books for babies and toddlers right up through young adult titles."

Byrd's Books, Bethel, which has a quarter of the store dedicated to children, with "a huge selection of books for young readers and for those reading to the young. Byrd's stocks the classics and the best-sellers, the 'indies' and the big name authors."

Bank Street Book Nook, New Milford, which is continuing in business after a new owner of the store's building affirmed a commitment to the store. Owner Vanessa Gronbach is expanding "those parts of the store devoted to local writers and Connecticut, [and] is also inviting authors to read at the store."

Diane's Books, Greenwich, which "has four times as many family and children's books as the average book 'superstore,' and both [owner Diane Garrett] and her staff pride themselves on knowing what is not only appropriate for children, but what they will like."

Hickory Stick Bookshop, Washington Depot, "a fixture for six decades" that "offers books suitable for all ages, [and] also is one of those rare bookstores that invites children's authors to come in for a reading and a book signing."

Kate Whouley Remembers a Most Mysterious Customer

Kate Whouley

In a piece in Yankee magazine that recalls simpler times in bookselling, Kate Whouley, bookstore consultant, author of Cottage for Sale, Must Be Moved and Remembering the Music, Forgetting the Words and a former bookseller, writes about an unusual customer--someone from the same town in the early '80s who bought many books and with whom she spoke on the phone regularly but whom she never met in person.

Lerner Distributing Lorimer Children & Teens in U.S.

Lerner Publisher Services, part of the Lerner Publishing Group, will take over U.S. trade, school and library distribution for Lorimer Children & Teens effective August 2016. Lorimer Children & Teens, a Canadian publisher started in 1978, has over 500 children's books in print, with 14 new titles coming this fall.

"With the expertise of Lerner Publisher Services our books will now be available in more schools, libraries, and stores than ever before," said James Lorimer, publisher for Lorimer Children & Teens. "We're excited that this partnership will get our books into the hands of more young readers."

"With the addition of Lorimer Children & Teens, Lerner Publisher Services expands its offerings by adding books that deal with contemporary social issues and high interest topics at low reading levels that ensure reader success," said David Wexler, executive vice president of sales for Lerner Publishing Group. "These books will pair well with Lerner's award-winning books for reluctant readers from our Darby Creek imprint."

Customers can order Lorimer titles from Lerner as of July 1, with books available on August 1.

Book Trailer of the Day: Master of Mindfulness

Master of Mindfulness: How to Be Your Own Superhero in Times of Stress by Laurie Grossman, Angelina Alvarez and Mr. Musumeci's 5th Grade Class (New Harbinger), a book that students at Reach Academy in East Oakland, Calif., wrote to teach mindfulness to other kids.

Already others have become more mindful because of the book: inspired by Master of Mindfulness, three third graders at the Cooper Mountain Elementary School in Beaverton, Ore., made their own video about mindfulness.

A majority of the royalties from the book are being donated to a Bright Futures Fund for the 23 students who helped write the book to use for college, trade school or another endeavor to make their futures bright--on the condition they finish high school first. New Harbinger helped seed the fund.

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Mary Roach on Fresh Air

Fresh Air: Mary Roach, author of Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War (Norton, $26.95, 9780393245448).

Diane Rehm: Judy Blume, author of In the Unlikely Event: A Novel (Vintage, $15.95, 9781101873984).

The Talk: Judy Joo, author of Korean Food Made Simple (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $30, 9780544663305).

Late Show with Stephen Colbert repeat: Bill O'Reilly, author of The Last Days of Jesus: His Life and Times (Square Fish, $12.99, 9781250073402).

Late Late Show with James Corden repeat: Kunal Nayyar, author of Yes, My Accent Is Real: And Some Other Things I Haven't Told You (Atria, $26, 9781476761824).

Diane Rehm: readers review The Good Lord Bird by James McBride (Riverhead, $16, 9781594632785).

Live with Kelly: guest co-host Anderson Cooper, co-author of The Rainbow Comes and Goes: A Mother and Son On Life, Love, and Loss (Harper, $27.99, 9780062454942).

Daily Show repeat: Arianna Huffington, author of The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time (Harmony, $26, 9781101904008).

Movies: The Boxcar Children

Shout! Factory and Legacy Classics "have entered into a long-term production and distribution partnership for a slate of new family movies based on several classic and contemporary children's book series, which will begin with The Boxcar Children," Deadline reported, adding that the plan is to produce a minimum of four feature-length movies over the first two years, beginning with three new animated features adapted from several Boxcar titles.

The 75th anniversary of the publication of Gertrude Chandler Warner's first book in the series, The Boxcar Children, will be celebrated in 2017. Shout! Factory and Legacy Classics are working closely with publisher Albert Whitman & Company to have the initial film ready by then.

Books & Authors

Awards: Maine Literary; Miles Franklin Shortlist; Theakston

The winners in 18 categories of the 2016 Maine Literary Awards, sponsored by the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance, can be seen here. The competition is open to Maine residents, including seasonal residents, and includes published books, drama, short works (published and non-published) and student writing.


The shortlist has been announced for the A$60,000 (about US$43,430) Miles Franklin Award, given annually "to a novel which is of the highest literary merit and presents Australian life in any of its phases." The winner will be named August 26 at the opening of the Melbourne Writers Festival. This year's shortlisted titles are:

Hope Farm by Peggy Frew
Leap by Myfanwy Jones
Black Rock White City by A.S. Patric
Salt Creek by Lucy Treloar
The Natural Way of Things by Charlotte Wood


The shortlist for the £3,000 (about $4,380) Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year, which celebrates the best in British and Irish crime writing, is:

Time of Death by Mark Billingham
Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith
Tell No Tales by Eva Dolan
Disclaimer by Renee Knight
I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh
Rain Dogs by Adrian McKinty

Book Review

Review: The Bones of Grace

The Bones of Grace by Tahmima Anam (Harper, $25.99 hardcover, 9780061478949, June 28, 2016)

Tahmima Anam (The Good Muslim) again takes readers into the heart of the Bengal region in this third outing with the Haque family, this time set in the modern day.

Bangladeshi to the core, Zubaida Haque never intended to stay in the U.S. after finishing her paleontology degree at Harvard. Her plan was always to return to the loving arms of her family in Dhaka and marry Rashid, her childhood sweetheart. Her lack of passion for Rashid posed no obstacle; Zubaida believed she lived in times too mundane for "the epic thing, the one that went down in legend and song and was anointed with passion that lasted beyond beauty and youth." Meeting Elijah Strong challenges those assumptions. A stranger sitting next to her at a Shostakovich concert in Boston, Elijah comforts Zubaida when she cries during the performance, moved less by the music than by the unbidden memory of her ninth birthday, when her parents revealed she was adopted. Suddenly her spontaneous emotional moment becomes the beginning of a soul-deep connection to this American, and they strike up a passionate friendship. Though both clearly long for a romantic connection, Zubaida knows her family and friends would never accept a decision to break off her engagement and marry a foreigner.

Even when Zubaida goes on an archeological dig in Pakistan, to find one of the modern whale's land-dwelling ancestors, she cannot let Elijah go, exchanging coded texts with him. After the dig falls apart, though, Zubaida's return to Dhaka catches her up in a sense of momentum that soon sees her marrying Rashid and trying to settle into the traditional life everyone expects of her. Bored, she takes a job translating for a documentary crew filming the shipbreaking of a cruise vessel called Grace, a choice that will lead her to Elijah, through the tangled fibers of her own past and into the conflict inside her own heart.

Beauty and pain thrive alongside one another in Anam's intricate tragedy of thwarted love and deep divides in social classes. Prostitution and backbreaking manual labor await the poor and illiterate while a wealthier, more privileged woman like Zubaida has the luxury of attending Harvard and marrying without the need to work. However, traditional gender roles and expectations still hinder her, and her family closely guards the secret of her origin for fear it will taint her in society's eyes. The poor and broken march past, their stories painfully laid bare to us, as Zubaida struggles to integrate her need for her family and her desire to cut her own path in the standalone last chapter of a compelling three-generation series. --Jaclyn Fulwood, blogger at Infinite Reads

Shelf Talker: The daughter of a Bangladeshi family falls for an American at Harvard and struggles to reintegrate when she returns home to marry her childhood sweetheart.

The Bestsellers

Top-Selling Self-Published Titles

The bestselling self-published books last week as compiled by

1. Thirty-Six and a Half Motives (Rose Gardner Mystery #9) by Denise Grover Swank
2. Mister O by Lauren Blakely
3. Smut: A Standalone Romantic Comedy by Karina Halle
4. Coming Home by Various
5. Shelter for Elizabeth by Susan Stoker
6. Played: A Gaming the System Box Set by Brenna Aubrey
7. Fire (The Elite Forces Series Volume 2) by Kathy Coopmans
8. Touched by Love by Melissa Foster
9. Dirty Girl by Meghan March
10. The Alexandria Affair (Captain Lacey Regency Mysteries Volume 11) by Ashley Gardner

[Many thanks to!]

AuthorBuzz: St. Martin's Press: Sit Down and Shut Up: How Discipline Can Set Students Free by Cinque Henderson
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