around you at this festival. And all you people are here to pick up
these incredibly good books.... There is more high-quality--not quality
writing, but high-quality writing--being done now than ever before in
the history of the world. I just pulled that out of my head, but I
wouldn't be surprised if it were true," Ben Yagoda, author of When You Catch an Adjective, Kill It, told an audience at last weekend's Texas Book Festival.
The Dallas Morning News
reported that an "estimated 40,000 people, 10,000 more than last year,
turned out under sunny skies Saturday and Sunday to enjoy the 15th
annual festival. Venues large and small were at capacity, whether the
topic was race, science, fiction from small towns, Barack Obama or
grammar. About 80,000 books were sold. Each day."
"I wouldn't have a career without them," Jane Urquhart--author most recently of Sanctuary Line--told the Vancouver Observer regarding indie booksellers. "Away
was my so-called 'breakthrough' novel. Not a single chain bookstore
took that book. Because it was considered--well--it was a book of mine.
It was my third novel, and I hadn't sold any books. Why would they want
it? It was hand sold by independent booksellers, and it stayed on the
Canadian bestseller list for 138 weeks.... We really needed to support
the independents more than we did. It was tragic. It was absolutely
tragic what happened to them. And there would not have been a Canadian
literature without them. They kept Canadian literature alive at a time
when you just couldn't buy a Canadian book anywhere else."
New Zealand bookseller Peter Rigg, co-owner of Page & Blackmore Bookstore, cited the Harvard Book Store's
bicycle delivery service as inspiration for Dobbin, "a former butcher's
bike that would be used to deliver books in style to customers who
lived in flat areas around Nelson," the Nelson Mail reported.
a way we've gone backwards," said Blackmore, who likes "the
eco-friendly nature of the delivery service and the idea of using the
mix of new technology--the Internet--with the older technology of
showcased some unusual bookstore section headings, and noted that
"bookstore employees have a lot of time on their hands. Especially the
Brits. And the anarchists."
Square Books, Oxford, Miss., is offering members of its Signed Firsts clubs the opportunity to obtain broadsides based on the books selected for Signed Firsts. The broadsides will be signed and numbered by the author and printed in letterpress in 150-copy editions.
Signed Firsts subscribers who receive 18 books a year will be given two free broadsides a year and may buy others at a 25% discount off the $20 price. Signed Firsts subscribers who receive 18 books a year can buy any of the broadsides for 20% off.
The first broadside is from John Brandon's latest novel, Citrus County, and was printed by critique/strategy in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, N.Y. Click here to see a video of the making of the broadside.
Book trailer of the day: High Society: The Central Role of Mind-Altering Drugs in History, Science, and Culture by Mike Jay (Park Street Press).
Scott Henry has joined Borders Group as executive v-p and chief financial officer. He was formerly president of S.D. Henry Strategic Services, a consulting company. Before that, he was CFO and senior v-p, finance, at Las Vegas Sands, and held senior management positions at ABN Amro, Prudential Securities and Salomon Brothers.
Mike Edwards, president of Borders Group, commented: "We are confident that Scott Henry, with his strong corporate financial management and investment banking expertise, is the right choice for Borders. Scott has a strong track record of going beyond the pure accounting function to add strategic depth to finance to drive significant results. I look forward to his taking an important role in re-positioning Borders as a leader in retail."
Gene DeFelice has joined Barnes & Noble as v-p, general counsel and corporate secretary. He was formerly senior v-p, general counsel and secretary at Savvis, Inc., and earlier held a similar position at Spacelabs Medical.
Effective tomorrow, Leah Wasielewski is joining Harper as marketing director, with responsibility for all Harper imprints, including Harper, Harper Business and Broadside Books. She was formerly a senior publishing manager at Simon & Schuster and earlier worked in publicity at S&S and the HarperCollins Children's Group.