Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, December 20, 2016


Random House: Shadow Man by Alan Drew

Workman: Summer Brain Quest - Get a Free Event Kit

W. W. Norton & Company: T2 Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh

Mira Books: The Orphan's Tale by Pam Jenoff

Little Brown and Company: The Forever Summer by Jamie Brenner

Algonquin Young Readers: The Wingsnatchers (Carmer and Grit #1) by Sarah Jean Horwitz

News

Rutgers-Newark Bookstore to Be Part of Major Redevelopment Project

In February, Rutgers University-Newark is opening a 10,000-square-foot bookstore in a mixed-use development in downtown Newark, N.J., that will include a Whole Foods Market and a restaurant owned by celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson, the Wall Street Journal reported. The Rutgers-Newark store, managed by Barnes & Noble College, is relocating from its current location "tucked away in an academic building."

The project involves the redevelopment of a historic Hahne & Co. department store and is intended to contribute to downtown Newark's ongoing revitalization. The 400,000-square-foot redevelopment will also have 160 apartments, with 40% set aside for affordable housing.

Designed to cater to the general public as well as Rutgers students, the new bookstore plans to have author signings, open-mic poetry nights and Saturday story hours for children. "It would be a gathering place for the community," said Patrick Maloney, president of B&N College. "Hopefully, they would get a cup of Starbucks, come across the street and spend a few hours with us."

"How many campuses are there that are gated and separated from town?" said Jonathan Cortell, v-p of development at L+M Development Partners, one of the companies managing the redevelopment. "Here, Rutgers is making a concerted statement that this is a rich city with a soul."


G.P. Putnam's Sons: The Light We Lost by Jill Santopolo


'Think Binc' Campaign Nearing Goal

The Book Industry Charitable (Binc) Foundation's 20th anniversary "Think Binc" fundraising campaign, launched on November 29, is within reach of its year-end goal of raising $100,000 but still is seeking gifts, according to executive director Pam French.

"We are grateful for all the support we've received," she said. "It is essential we reach our fundraising goal this year in order to create the momentum needed to become an industry sustained organization. Just this past month, we experienced a record number of new grant requests, so we know there is a real need for our work."

Binc has received support from across the industry, the organization said, including Sourcebooks matching employees' gifts to Binc for the second year, and Ingram Content Group's gift of $10,000 on behalf of its publishing clients. Ambassadors Ann Patchett and James Patterson have also helped greatly to elevate the awareness of Binc. The funds raised will provide financial assistance to booksellers facing unanticipated hardships. Binc also provides scholarships.

The foundation has also announced a "Pay It Forward" matching gift challenge created by a past grant recipient as a way to give back to the organization that changed her life. Through December 31, donations will be matched up to $3,700.


Soho Press: The Boy in the Earth by Fuminori Nakamura


IBPA Unveils New Web Portal, Membership Levels

The Independent Book Publishers Association has unveiled Social Link, its updated Web portal designed to offer IBPA members the ability to build detailed member profiles and connect with one other across an online networking platform. Increased community collaboration links members with relevant discussion forums, experts and membership benefits.

"Several months ago, we took a detailed look at our current web platform and considered its front-end structure and back-end functionality in terms of how we know people interact on the web today," said IBPA CEO Angela Bole. "Following the review, we knew we needed to make some changes to our online presence with the goal of providing our members a modern means of positively impacting their businesses through increased networking and education."

IBPA also revamped its membership levels "to minimize a one-size-fits-all approach," according to the organization. Rather than offering only two broad categories of membership--one for "publishers" and one for "non-publishers"--IBPA now offers various levels for future publishers, author publishers, independent publishers and publisher partners.


Henry Holt & Company: Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong


Obituary Notes: Ondřej Pohanka; Barry Holmes

Barry Holmes, former senior commissioning editor at Cassell who was responsible for the Poems on the Underground series, died December 5, the Bookseller reported. Nigel Wilcockson, publishing director at Random House Books and former senior commissioning editor at Cassell during the mid-1990s, paid tribute to Holmes for his "kindness, wit, wisdom and humanity," noting that he "joined the company as a salesman in the days when Cassell's main claim to fame was that it was Churchill's publisher. Such was his versatility, however, that he later shifted effortlessly to commissioning. And such was his flair that he proceeded to make a success even of books with which he had no apparent affinity...

"To my mind his finest achievement was the Poems on the Underground series of books. Success always seems inevitable after the event, but rarely so at the time, and there must have been many who intoned the time-honored mantra 'Poetry books don't sell.' Barry pushed ahead regardless, lavished attention on design and printing, and oversaw one of the great publishing triumphs of the nineties."

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Czech publisher Ondřej Pohanka, who "was a familiar face to many from his book fair visits as the rights manager for the Czech publishing house Svojtka," has died, the Bookseller reported. He was 41. Roly Allen, publisher at Octopus, said Pohanka was always "making many friends in the process with his warmth, unfailing good nature, and irreverent style of doing business."


HarperOne: Driving Miss Norma by Tim Bauerschmidt and Ramie Liddle


Notes

Cool Idea of the Day: Books & Laundry

Turning the Tide in Saskatoon

Peter Garden, who has been running Turning the Tide bookstore in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan's Broadway shopping district for 13 years, recently opened a satellite location at the Come Clean Laundromat in Regina, CBC News reported. Garden said the new venture "was a trial to test the waters before opening a more permanent shop in Regina."

"Maybe some people are coming to buy books and they have a basket of dirty laundry that they can bring down with them too," said Garden. "Two birds with one stone.... I don't expect Regina readers to want exactly the same thing as Saskatoon and I think we're going to find out as we get feedback as to what people are looking for."


Hawthorne Books: Narrow River, Wide Sky by Jenny Forrester



Media and Movies

Media Heat: Dolly Parton on the Talk

Tomorrow:
Today: Brad Thor, author of Foreign Agent: A Thriller (Atria/Emily Bestler, $27.99, 9781476789354).

The Talk repeat: Dolly Parton, author of Coat of Many Colors (Grosset & Dunlap, $17.99, 9780451532374).

The View repeat: Martha Stewart discusses Martha Stewart's Vegetables: Inspired Recipes and Tips for Choosing, Cooking, and Enjoying the Freshest Seasonal Flavors (Clarkson Potter, $29.50, 9780307954442).

Conan: Bryan Cranston, author of A Life in Parts (Scribner, $27, 9781476793856).

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Mario Batali, author of Big American Cookbook: 250 Favorite Recipes from Across the USA (Grand Central, $40, 9781455584710).

Late Show with Stephen Colbert repeat: Amy Schumer, author of The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo (Gallery, $28, 9781501139888).


Movies: Sophie and the Rising Sun

A trailer has been released for Sophie and the Rising Sun, based on the 2001 novel by Augusta Trobaugh, Indiewire reported. Written and directed by Maggie Greenwald, the project "is largely produced by women. On the topic of having women in key roles of production, Greenwald says that the gender unity on the film 'just happened.' "

"The book was brought to me by our producers, Nancy Dickenson and Lorraine Gallard," she added. "Brenda Goodman was a natural choice when it was time to hire a producer because she'd recommended me to them.... But I have to say, it was like coming home. I've worked with many terrific men throughout my career. But throughout the process of making this film, there was an understanding of our characters that never needed explaining. There was never a moment when I had to say, 'Well she wouldn't do that because….' We all got it."

Starring Julianne Nicholson, Takashi Yamaguchi, Margo Martindale, Lorraine Toussaint, Diane Ladd and Joel Murray, Sophie and the Rising Sun will open in select theaters nationwide January 27.


Books & Authors

Awards: Bodley Medal

Novelist and screenwriter William Boyd will receive the Bodley Medal, which is awarded by the Bodleian Libraries of the University of Oxford "to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the worlds of literature, culture, science, and communication," the Bookseller reported. Boyd will be presented with the award when he delivers the annual Bodley Lecture March 30 at the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival. He will appear in conversation with Richard Ovenden, Bodley's Librarian, to discuss his life and work.


Book Review

Review: The Animators

The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker (Random House, $27 hardcover, 384p., 9780812989281, January 31, 2017)

Like an updated version of Thelma & Louise, New York University MFA graduate Kayla Rae Whitaker's first novel, The Animators, is a girlfriends story of two young women who meet in an upstate New York preppy college visual arts program. They combine their contrasting personalities and drawing skills to create critically acclaimed full-length animated movies. A careful, self-aware product of a borderline white-trash Kentucky small town, narrator Sharon Kisses is the first of three siblings ("who had all the fish sticks and Nintendo we needed") to escape her hillbilly hollow and leverage her talent into the edgy Bushwick creative arts scene. Her collaborator, Mel Vaughn, is a funky, frequently alcohol-fueled lesbian party girl from a busted family in central Florida. As Sharon describes them, "Mel with her mouth open, hair bleached and cowlicked all to hell, me a sad-sacked, big-tittied Haggis McBaggis with unspeakable split ends." Ten years out of college, Mel and Sharon snag a prestigious grant for a cartoon film based on Mel's mother's life of petty crime, prostitution and prison. Hipster Brooklyn "creatives" help them celebrate at a warehouse blowout: "Mel is not the only one who knows how to dance with the monkey.... We're mostly artists here, animators and editors and ink-and-color guys." Theirs is an uneasy collaboration that surprisingly works. Sharon recognizes that "Mel is our fire-starter, the flint against stone... I am our finisher... designing the checklist needed to complete the day."

However, in Whitaker's sure hands, what begins as a story of young artists making it in New York City literally goes south when Mel's mother dies in a prison fight. Mel and Sharon go to Florida ("Nascar and poor dentistry and pythons swallowing Pomeranians... those pink grubby outdoor motel room entrances favored by serial killers and speed freaks") to identify the body. When Sharon suffers a serious stroke there and spends six weeks in a hospital rehabbing, Mel enters the unfamiliar role of sober caregiver and cheerleader. Once back on her feet, Sharon drags Mel along to Kentucky to visit her family and confront a past she thought she had left far behind--a troubling one that becomes the narrative for their next movie, and with it another round of praise, celebration and excess leading to another tragedy. The Animators is not just a buddy road trip story. It's a sensitive portrait of a close but ambivalent friendship, and the process and power of creating art. When Mel and Sharon are deep into a project, the work takes over: "We trim, weed, liposuction, force the thing onto a treadmill to run its belly off, knowing we'll have to do it all again." Whitaker takes us behind the onionskin drawings and slick celluloid, behind the Brooklyn booze and artsy raves, behind the Kentucky white trash and cheap cigarettes to the personal angst and longing that finds some relief in friendship, love and art. --Bruce Jacobs, founding partner, Watermark Books & Cafe, Wichita, Kan.

Shelf Talker: Whitaker's first novel blends hipster Brooklyn, rural east Kentucky and redneck central Florida into a beguiling story of friendship, artistic collaboration and the sources of creativity.


The Bestsellers

Top-Selling Self-Published Titles

The bestselling self-published books last week as compiled by IndieReader.com:

1. Womanizer by Katy Evans
2. The Elf on the Shelf by Carol V. Aebersold and Chanda B. Bell
3. Cozy Christmas Shorts by Various
4. Thriller Thirteen by Various
5. Wait for It by Mariana Zapata
6. The Atlantis Gene: A Thriller by A.G. Riddle
7. Hitched (The Complete Series) by Kendall Ryan
8. Yours to Bare by Jessica Hawkins
9. Beg Me by Cassandra Dee
10. And Then She Was Gone by Christopher Greyson

[Many thanks to IndieReader.com!]


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