Also published on this date: Wednesday, June 8, 2016: Maximum Shelf: Hell Divers

Shelf Awareness for Wednesday, June 8, 2016


Penguin Books: The Dying Game by Asa Avdic

Sourcebooks Fire: Before I Let Go by Marieke Nijkamp

Tarcherperigee: Men & Dogs by Alice Chaygneaud-Dupuy and Marie-Eva Chopin / Rescued by Peter Zheutlin

Random House: An American Family: A Memoir of Hope and Sacrifice by Khizr Khan

Chicago Review Press: The Sunken Gold: A Story of World War I Espionage and the Greatest Treasure Salvage in History by Joseph A. Williams

Park Row Books: Hanna Who Fell from the Sky by Christopher Meades

News

Ian Hudson Named CEO of Dorling Kindersley

Ian Hudson

Effective July 1, Ian Hudson will become CEO of Dorling Kindersley, reporting to Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle. He succeeds John Duhigg, who is leaving the business after 25 years with Penguin and DK in a variety of executive positions.

Hudson is relinquishing his current dual positions as CEO, international (English language), PRH; and deputy CEO, PRH U.K. Previously, he was managing director at Random House Children's (1996-1999), before becoming group managing director and then deputy chief executive for Random House U.K. He continues as chair of the Bertelsmann Management Representative Committee, and in that capacity, as a member of the Bertelsmann Supervisory Board.

"Ian made an invaluable contribution to the creation and implementation of Penguin Random House," said Dohle, adding: "I believe Ian's international publishing experience, institutional knowledge, and operational expertise make him the ideal person to lead DK and its global operations into the future."


G.P. Putnam's Sons: The Salt Line by Holly Goddard Jones


Sweet Reads Opens in Austin, Minn.

Austin, Minn., "is a little sweeter," the Daily Herald noted in reporting that Sweet Reads, a new book and candy store, opened last week at 407 N. Main St., offering "a variety of books, sweet treats and local items.... On one wall, a large wooden train car filled with historical books and magazines invites patrons to walk through and explore a bit of history. Right next to it sits a giant ice cream sundae shaped freezer stocked with frozen treats. Other sections of the store are dedicated to different genres of books: a platinum and futuristic looking case houses science-fiction novels, a colorful children's section contains stories any youngster would long to read, and scattered throughout on tables and chairs are top-sellers in demand."

"We want it to be an experience," said John Deyo, co-owner of the shop with his wife, Lisa. He used his set-building skills as a veteran of several Summerset Theatre productions to construct the train car and bookcases in the store.

"It's so exciting," Lisa Deyo added, noting that although the idea came together in January, she and her sister had discussed opening a book store for many years. "I raised my kids in bookstores.... Our motto is 'Making the world a little sweeter and smarter.' "


KidsBuzz for the Week of 06.26.17


Bookstores' International Tours Take Flight

In recent years, organized travel trips have become increasingly important parts of business for many independent bookstores around the country. While some stores have been offering tours for years, others are just beginning to experiment with taking their customers around the world, and itineraries include everything from writing retreats in Italy, literary sightseeing in the United Kingdom, and now even wildlife tours in Africa.

In just over two weeks, Rainy Day Books in Fairway, Kan., will embark on the third trip in an annual series of summer Literary Tours. Accompanied by store co-owners Roger Doeren and Vivien Jennings, 14 book lovers will visit Scotland from June 19 through July 2. Included on the trip's itinerary are tours of Eilean Donan Castle and Balmoral Castle, stays in Glasgow, Edinburgh and the "palatial" Glenapp Castle Hotel, along with excursions to literary destinations such as the home of poet Robert Burns and a four-night stay at Edinburgh's Balmoral Hotel, where J.K. Rowling finished writing the Harry Potter series.

Doeren and Jennings began planning their literary tours in 2013, after a lunch with longtime friend and travel consultant Lisa Ball. Rainy Day Books' past tours have gone to England and Italy, and all were put together with the help of Lisa Ball Travel Design. Said Doeren: "We want our faithful, loyal customers from across America and around the world to enjoy discovering and experiencing the wonderful world of literacy--here, there and everywhere!"

South Africa in January

Politics & Prose in Washington, D.C., which has operated day trips and some informal trips for decades, began to build a formal travel program about five years ago.  At the moment, their travel offerings include three larger group trips, with two heading to Italy's Tuscan region in the fall and the third heading to South Africa in January, and a program intended for smaller groups to visit Paris with more flexible itineraries. (Closer to home is a writer's cottage in Ashland, Va., that is available for individual writers or small groups of writers to rent.) Past trips have gone to Paris, Provence, the Loire Valley, Tuscany and Cuba. All trips include a reading list, and set aside time for group members to chat about books.

As the P&P travel program has grown over the last few years, explained events and program director Susan Coll, the store has been looking to branch out to other locations around the world. "We get a lot of repeat visitors on our tips, and they keep asking us for more travel opportunities," she said. "It also helps that it will be summer in South Africa while we're having, probably, another cold winter here."

The trip to South Africa will last January 8-15 and includes cultural and historical sightseeing in Cape Town, a day at South African wineries, a cable car ride up Table Mountain, and visits to botanical gardens and nature reserves. Group members also have the option of staying on an extra three days for a stay at a private game reserve in the countryside. Reservations for the trip opened in early May, and Coll reports that the trip is already half booked.

Castello di Spannocchia in Tuscany

in Moscow, Idaho, is planning to run its first ever BookPeople Abroad trip this September. From September 22 to 26, BookPeople looks to host a writing workshop with author Kim Barnes (In the Kingdom of Men; A Country Called Home) and poet Robert Wrigley (Beautiful Country; Lives of the Animals) at Spannocchia, a working, sustainable farm and historic estate in Tuscany. Barnes and Wrigley, who are husband and wife, will teach workshops in creative nonfiction and poetry. There is a maximum of 12 spaces available, and BookPeople must have a minimum of 8 participants for the trip to go ahead.

Carol Spurling, co-owner of BookPeople of Moscow, has dreamed of taking customers abroad since she bought the store in 2011. She has been a member of the Spannocchia Foundation, the nonprofit group that cares for and oversees the estate and game preserve, since 2006, and stayed in a farmhouse on the estate for two weeks last summer.

"It was even better than I hoped," recalled Spurling. "The food was delicious, the people who work there and run its programs are wonderfully hospitable and their mission is so important." --Alex Mutter


Geek & Sundry: The Punch Escrow by Tal M. Klein


Olympic Spirit Nixed for Rio Bookseller

Rodrigo Ferrari, co-owner of Livraria e Edições Folha Seca in Rio de Janeiro's historic center, had to remove a sign from his display window that included the word "Olympics," Paste reported.

Ferrari told ESPN's Brazil affiliate he received an e-mail from the organizing committee of the 2016 Summer Olympics informing him that he was "committing an infraction" for displaying a banner that read "Adhemar Ferreira Silva--2016, the Olympics year of Folha Seca." Ferreira Silva was a two-time Olympic gold medalist from São Paulo who died in 2001. (O Globo ran a photo of the banner)

"I was worried, so I took it down, despite finding it absurd," Ferrari said.


Counterpoint: Gangster Nation by Tod Goldberg


Obituary Note: Robyn Sisman

Publisher and novelist Robyn Sisman, who "began her career in publishing at Oxford University Press, where she worked first as a secretary 'but was so bad that they made me an editor,' " died May 20, the Bookseller reported. She was 61. Sisman later became an editorial director at J.M. Dent, "then joined Hutchinson, part of the Random House group, via a stint at the newly established U.K. arm of Simon & Schuster," the Bookseller wrote, adding that she "nurtured a young political journalist, Robert Harris, who had come up with an 'intriguing idea for a wartime novel with a twist.' Harris' Fatherland was published in May 1992."

As an author, Sisman's books include Special Relationship, Just Friends, Perfect Strangers, Weekend in Paris, A Hollywood Ending and The Perfect Couple?.

Imogen Taylor, publishing director at Tinder Press & Headline, remembered Sisman as a "fiercely private, true to herself and others, independent yet tremendously loyal and loving. She was courageous and fearless to the end, revealing her serious ill heath to only a handful of close friends. She was extremely sharp and funny, brilliant at many things (and also hopeless at others, including map reading and giving directions). She inspired much joy and laughter in the lives of her family and her many friends, and she will be desperately missed."


Notes

Image of the Day: Seth's Mural at the Bookshelf

The Bookshelf, Guelph, Ontario, a bookstore that also has a movie theater, bar and restaurant, now is also the site of a mural by cartoonist Seth, whose work has appeared on the cover of the New Yorker. Titled The Junkyard of Memory, the image is a collage of the artist's own memories spreading 70 feet long by 10 feet high over the store's parking lot. It was commissioned by the Downtown Guelph Business Association. The Bookshelf's new website, which now includes a cultural magazine called The Village, uses part of Seth's mural in its header. Signed 17"×3" replicas (see below) are available in the store.


Seth unveiled his public art at a ceremony on May 29, where unseasonably warm temperatures kept the speeches short before attendees moved inside for air-conditioned autographing, sketching and mingling. Seth, a Toronto transplant, has been a resident of Guelph for 17 years. In addition to his work for the New Yorker, Seth is the creator of the Palookaville comics series and the illustrator of Lemony Snicket's All the Wrong Questions series.


Happy 5th Birthday, Novel Books!

Congratulations to Novel Books, Clarksburg, Md., which celebrated its fifth anniversary last Saturday with a cookout for customers, with hamburgers, brats, salad and fruit from Bennigan's, and chili made by staff member John Simpson.

Novel Books owner Patrick Darby said the event was well attended, and included a few first-time customers. The Clarksburg Newcomers Group, which welcomes new residents to the community, gathered on the front porch for a mixer with new residents and local businesses. He added, "We were concerned about the severe weather predictions over the weekend. But the rain held off, and the sun came out in the afternoon."


Route One Reads Summer Reading List

Route One Reads, a collaboration among 16 state Centers for the Book along the Eastern United States, creates an annual summer reading list. This year's theme is mystery. Here are the books chosen by each state's Center for the Book (minus New Jersey). For more information on the titles, visit the program's website.

New Hampshire: Blood on Hampton Beach by Jed Power
Connecticut: Sacred Cows by Karen E. Olson
Delaware: Test of Wills by Charles Todd
Washington, D.C.: The Ways of the Dead by Neely Tucker
New York: The Doorbell Rang by Rex Stout
Florida: The Deep Blue Good-By by John D. McDonald
Georgia: Out of the Blues by Trudy Nan Boyce
Maine: Once Burned: A Jack McMorrow Mystery by Gerry Boyle
Maryland: Wilde Lake by Laura Lippman
Massachusetts: Truth Be Told: A Jane Ryland Novel by Hank Phillippi Ryan
North Carolina: Bootlegger's Daughter by Margaret Maron
Pennsylvania: Most Wanted by Lisa Scottoline
Rhode Island: Cliff Walk by Bruce DeSilva
South Carolina: Murder on Edisto by C. Hope Clark
Virginia: The Merlot Murders by Ellen Crosby


Personnel Changes at Basic Books

Betsy DeJesu has been promoted to publicity director at Basic Books. She joined Basic in 2013 as assistant director of publicity and was promoted to associate director of publicity in 2014.


Media and Movies

Media Heat: D.L. Hughley on the View

Tomorrow:
The View: D.L. Hughley, author of Black Man, White House: An Oral History of the Obama Years (Morrow, $27.99, 9780062399793).

Tavis: Maria Toorpakai, co-author of A Different Kind of Daughter: The Girl Who Hid from the Taliban in Plain Sight (Twelve, $27, 9781455591411).


TV: The Virago Story; Sacred Games

The BBC is filming The Virago Story, an hour-long documentary about the founding of the British publisher, for BBC Four, the Bookseller reported. The project was commissioned by Mark Bell, head of arts commissioning for the network. It will air in the autumn, as part of the BBC's Love to Read campaign.

The Virago Story "will trace 40 years of the women-only press' history, from its 1973 roots, building on the seismic shifts caused by the Women's Liberation Movement, to present day," the Bookseller wrote. "In so doing, it documents the reception the press initially received, both 'patronized and welcomed, criticized and praised,' and the sacrifices made by the women themselves in personal investment and bank loans, necessary to 'change lives through books.' " Virago is now part of Little, Brown at Hachette.

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Netflix is partnering with Indian production company Phantom Films for an English- and Hindi-language series based on Vikram Chandra's novel Sacred Games. Deadline reported that the project "will be shot on location in Mumbai, with local and international cast, and will be available globally on the streaming service."

Erik Barmack, v-p of international original series at Netflix, told Variety that Sacred Games "reinforces our commitment to bring the authenticity of local stories to Netflix members across 190 countries worldwide."

Chandra added: "I'm confident that all the color and vitality and music of the fictional world I've lived with for so long will come fully alive on the large-scale canvas provided by Netflix."


Books & Authors

Awards: Lambda Literary; Pinckley Crime Fiction

The winners of the 28th annual Lambda Literary Awards, which celebrate achievement in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender writing for books published in 2015, were announced this week. See the winners in 26 categories on Lambda Literary's website.

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Sara Paretsky and Christine Carbo have won the Pinckley Prizes for Crime Fiction, sponsored by the Women's National Book Association of New Orleans and honoring Diana Pinckley, longtime crime fiction columnist for the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Paretsky won the Pinckley Prize for Distinguished Body of Work. The committee wrote: "Sara Paretsky's singular creation of V.I. Warshawski has stood the test of time and reader loyalty through 19 books since she first debuted in 1982 with Indemnity Only. The Chicago private investigator is fierce and funny and an advocate for all the right causes, just like her creator. Sara Paretsky has used her considerable personal literary gifts to further equal rights for women, racial justice, as well as shining a light on the need for increased literacy and help for troubled teens and the mentally ill. She is a former president of the Mystery Writers of America, and a great advocate for the rights of authors. In 1986, she founded Sisters in Crime, and we all know what an incredible difference that has made for women who write crime fiction. It seems especially appropriate to recognize her on the 20th anniversary of that group, as well as for an impressive body of work that has illuminated the lives of women in all their bravery and complexity."

Carbo has won the Pinckley Prize for Debut Novel for her book, The Wild Inside, published by Atria. The judges said, "This absorbing crime novel weaves intriguing psychological themes around the presence of a truly frightening grizzly bear, a reminder of all that is wild out there."


Book Brahmin: Gina Wohlsdorf

photo: Rachel Sundheim

Gina Wohlsdorf was born and raised in Bismarck, N.Dak. She triple majored at Tulane University. Following graduation, she lived in northern Florida, southern France and Minnesota. She held a variety of jobs that gave her time to write, including bookseller and massage therapist. Wohlsdorf earned an MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Virginia. She now lives in Colorado. Her debut novel, Security, was just published by Algonquin (June 7, 2016).

On your nightstand now:

Sophie's Choice by William Styron--I keep hearing about the narrative voice he uses, so I'm excited to finally read it. The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro. The Plague by Albert Camus. Hegel in 90 Minutes and Derrida in 90 Minutes by Paul Strathern--he's hilarious, really!

Favorite book when you were a child:

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. My dad brought it home for me when I was 11. He taught high school English. I went to him when I'd finished and said, "Dad, I wish the book would keep going." He laughed and handed me A Separate Peace by John Knowles.

Your top five authors:

Stephen King--he was my writing white knight all through high school, and I still reread my favorites almost annually. Kazuo Ishiguro--I'd buy the phone book if he wrote it. Ian McEwan breaks my heart. Shirley Jackson, the high priestess of everyday horror. William Faulkner, the high priest of same.

Book you've faked reading:

Joyce. All of it. I read Dubliners to give me a dram of cred.

Book you're an evangelist for:

Black Water by Joyce Carol Oates. I feel bad for people when I start talking about it, because I inevitably start talking about Chappaquiddick, which I researched obsessively after finishing the novel. Utterly enraging, engaging, amazing.

Book you've bought for the cover:

A Prayer for the Dying by Stewart O'Nan. I almost don't want to know where they got the photo--it's this immensely creepy dude in a dried-out husk of a town, his arms spread wide, his face ghastly. It fits the story like a dead man's glove.

Book you hid from your parents:

My parents didn't care what I read. I might've blushed if they'd cracked One on One by Tabitha King, the book that got me interested in the craft of writing sex. I think I tripped over it when I was maybe 16 or 17. I still reread that one, too. Steamy.

Book that changed your life:

Bitch by Elizabeth Wurtzel. I was 18. I'd never read a book where a woman basically tells you, over and over, Look, if you're a girl, and you're super-nice, that's great, but it's not going to make your life easy. Neither will being a bitch. So figure out who you are and be that. Plenty of people are going to think you're awful, because plenty of people are terrified of females who aren't constantly apologizing. But when stuff gets hard, at least you won't be simpering "Who am I?" for too long because you'll have worked that out already. I owe her a debt.

Favorite line from a book:

"Therefore she will construct funhouses for others and be their secret operator--though she would rather be among the lovers for whom funhouses are designed." --Lost in the Funhouse by John Barth. [I changed the pronouns, Mr. Barth, but it's a compliment.]

Five books you'll never part with:

My dad's Complete Shakespeare, a very wrecked copy of The Sound and the Fury by Faulkner, my Doré-illustrated Divine Comedy, Les Sept Solitudes de Lorsa Lopez by Sony Labou Tansi (en français) and Bitch.

Book you most want to read again for the first time:

Battle Royale by Koushun Takami. I was up until one or two a.m.--something ridiculous--and I could not put it down. I had to work the next morning. I need my sleep, so everybody kept asking me what's wrong, why're you pounding coffee? Fortunately, I worked at a bookstore. Everyone understood. And I handsold the bejeebers out of it for the next several years.

Book that made you want to become a writer:

Beloved by Toni Morrison. I read it when I was 16. I remember thinking, as I finished the last lines, "The power of great writing is infinite."

Fictional characters you most relate to:

Ambrose in Lost in the Funhouse. Briony Tallis in Atonement. Rebecca in Rebecca.


Children's Books: Odes to Dads

June 19 is Father's Day, and a fine excuse for Shelf Awareness to round up some children's books about fathers, none of whom, curiously, is obsessed with golf, beer, fishing or sports.

A Brave Bear by Sean Taylor, illus. by Emily Hughes (Candlewick, $16.99, hardcover, 9780763682248, 32p., ages 2-5, April 12, 2016)
One hot summer day, a father bear says to his cub, "I think a pair of hot bears is probably the hottest thing in the world." They amble to the river to cool off, but not without the cub being the "jumpiest," "bravest" and then, finally, "wettest" thing in the world. British author Sean Taylor (Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise, illustrated by Jean Jullien) tells a winning story of the trials and triumphs of a day with dad, and Emily Hughes (Wild) captures the tender father-cub bond in her irresistible pencil drawings.

My Dad at the Zoo by Coralie Saudo, illus. by Kris Di Giacomo (Enchanted Lion, $17.95 hardcover, 9781592701902, 32p., ages 3-7, May 7, 2016)
In this wacky, whimsically illustrated sequel to My Dad Is Big & Strong, BUT..., Dad wants to go to the zoo with his son on Sunday morning. But Dad behaves badly, as usual: "He's grimacing at the gorillas, flirting with the flamingos, pattering like the penguins, terrorizing the turtles." Can his son survive the exhausting day with his tantrum-prone, piranha-poking parent?

Ask Me by Bernard Waber, illus. by Suzy Lee (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $16.99 hardcover, 40p., ages 4-7, 9780547733944, July 14, 2015)
The late Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile author Bernard Waber's Ask Me is about a human father and daughter on a walk. Their conversation, fresh and real, reflects all the love and the history they've shared: "What else do I like? / What else do you like? / I like sand. I like digging in the sand. I really, really do like digging in the sand. Deep, deep, down, down in the sand. / And I like seashells. Remember when we collected seashells? / I remember. / And I like starfish." This lovely back-and-forth winds over hill and dale until, finally, teeth are brushed and pajamas are on: "Good night." A  disarming father-daughter story for Father's Day--or any day.

The Most Important Thing: Stories About Sons, Fathers, and Grandfathers by Avi (Candlewick, $16.99, hardcover, 9780763681111, 224p., ages 10-up, April 26, 2016) 
Avi, author of one Newbery winner (Crispin: The Cross of Lead) and two Newbery Honor books, explores the father-son relationship in seven short stories about seven boys, a sequel to What Do Fish Have to Do with Anything? The question Avi asks in all of these tales is "What is the most important thing a father can do for his son?" This strong collection doesn't shy away from hard truths, and is poignant and hopeful in equal measure.

Mother Bruce by Ryan T. Higgins (Disney/Hyperion, $17.99, hardcover, 9781484730881, 48p., ages 3-7, November 24, 2015)
Mother Goose--rather, Mother Bruce--is the laugh-out-loud funny story of a grouchy bear who reluctantly becomes the guardian of four goslings, when all he wanted to do was eat them. "Bruce was a bear who lived all by himself. He was a grump." The one thing he does like is eggs. After grabbing Mrs. Goose by the neck to inquire if her eggs are "free-range organic," he buys them and begins preparations to hard-boil them. When--surprise!--they hatch, the cute yellow goslings crawl and tumble all over him. As the geese grow up and show no signs of migrating, Mother Bruce resigns himself to his goose-guardian fate and they all bus to Miami for the winter.

Monster & Son by David LaRochelle, illus. by Joey Chou (Chronicle, $16.99, hardcover, 9781452129372, 32p., ages 4-8, April 12, 2016)
Even monsters have fathers, and in David LaRochelle's (It's a Tiger!; Moo!) rhyming picture book, a father's voice lovingly speaks to his son, whether father and son take the shape of a cyclops, skeleton or King Kong family: "You woke me with a monstrous roar,/ my brave and fearless son, and led the way that filled our day/ with rough and rowdy fun." Joey Chou's (Say What?) terrific, stylized illustrations capture Frankenstein father-and-son tickle fights, daddy dragon jokes, and mummy pre-bedtime chases with humor and affection: "Your fearsome yawns won't frighten me,/ I'll hug you strong and tight,/ then gently tuck you into bed/ while whispering... good night." (That last line is whispered upside down, by a Dracula dad.)

--Karin Snelson, children's & YA editor, Shelf Awareness

The Bestsellers

Top Book Club Picks in May

The following were the most popular book club books during May based on votes from more than 120,000 book club readers from more than 39,000 book clubs registered at Bookmovement.com:

1. A Man Called Ove: A Novel by Fredrik Backman
2. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
3. Me Before You: A Novel by Jojo Moyes
4. All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel by Anthony Doerr
5. The Girl on the Train: A Novel by Paula Hawkins
6. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
7. The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry: A Novel by Gabrielle Zevin
8. Everything I Never Told You: A Novel by Celeste Ng
9. The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel James Brown
10. The Life We Bury by Allen Eskens

Rising Stars:
The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
My Grandmother Told Me to Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman

[Many thanks to Bookmovement.com!]

Disney-Hyperion: Serafina and the Splintered Heart (Serafina # 3) by Robert Beatty
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