Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Bloom Books: Queen of Myth and Monsters (Adrian X Isolde #2) by Scarlett St. Clair

Bloom Books: Queen of Myth and Monsters (Adrian X Isolde #2) by Scarlett St. Clair

Blue Box Press: A Light in the Flame: A Flesh and Fire Novel by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Irh Press: The Unknown Stigma Trilogy by Ryuho Okawa

Other Press (NY): The Rebel and the Thief by Jan-Philipp Sendker, translated by Imogen Taylor

Holiday House: Welcome to Feral (Frights from Feral) by Mark Fearing

Charlesbridge Publishing: Too-Small Tyson (Storytelling Math) by Janay Brown-Wood, illustrated by Anastasia Williams

Berkley Books: Stone Cold Fox by Rachel Koller Croft


Amazon, NACS Settle Suit; EDC Drops Amazon and the National Association of College Stores have settled the lawsuit filed last year by Amazon against NACS after the association had lodged a complaint with the Better Business Bureau's National Advertising Division about Amazon advertising. At issue were Amazon ads stating that through Amazon, college students could save "up to 60%" on new textbooks, save "up to 90%" on used textbooks and receive "up to 60%" on buy-back sales. (The NAD complaint was superseded by the lawsuit.)

Under the settlement, Amazon shared with NACS attorneys the methodology for its savings claims. NACS noted, "While not endorsing the substantiation methodology or the results obtained, NACS agreed that it was sufficient to determine that there is no current dispute about the advertising that NACS had questioned in its NAD complaint." No money is being exchanged, and NACS and Amazon agreed not to challenge each other about substantially similar claims for at least one year.

NACS said the settlement "avoids the need for protracted and expensive litigation about price comparisons used by Amazon in 2011." The association added that the case was important because it "brought to the forefront once again the need for all retailers, whether physical stores or on-line sellers, the need to substantiate the claims that they make in their advertising."


In other Amazon news, Educational Development Corporation, which publishes Usborne and Kane Miller books in the U.S., is no longer selling any books on Amazon or to any entities that resell to Amazon. Three years ago, the company had stopped selling Kane Miller titles on Amazon. EDC has some 1,500 titles altogether.

Citing in part Amazon's decision to drop e-books published by Independent Publishers Group publishers, EDC president Randall White said the move is a response to Amazon efforts to "gain control of publishing and other industries by making it impossible for other retailers to compete effectively."

White called the change "a way to demonstrate our support of the local booksellers, museum shops, gift stores, and others who sell our books to consumers. We also have an incredibly devoted direct sales force of independent sales consultants who make their living selling our books at home parties, to schools and libraries and via the Internet."

Minotaur Books: A World of Curiosities (Chief Inspector Gamache Novel #18) by Louise Penny

AAP December Sales: Overall Decline, E-Book Pace Slows

In December, net book sales fell 3.5%, to $1.52 billion, as reported by 77 publishers to the Association of American Publishers. E-books, which rose 72.1% over December 2010, gained the most of any category, but continued to grow at a slower rate than the category's triple-digit gains earlier in the year. Adult mass market had the biggest drop, falling 40.9% to the same period a year earlier.

For the full year, net book sales fell 3.2%, to $11.276 billion. As in December, e-books were the strongest category, rising 117.3% while mass markets fell the most, down 35.9%.





% Change


$85 million


Downloaded audiobooks

$10.2 million


Children's YA/hardcover

$67.1 million


Religious books

$52.4 million



$12 million





Higher ed

$863.3 million


Univ. press hardcover

$4.8 million


Adult hardcover

$130.3 million


Adult paperback

$112.4 million


Children's YA/paperback

$42 million


Univ. press paperback

$5.4 million


Adult mass market

$33.8 million








% change


$969.9 million


Downloaded audiobooks

$98.8 million


Religious books

$645.1 million





Higher ed

$4.542 billion


Children's YA/hardcover

$661.9 million


Univ. press hardcover

 $46.5 million


Univ. press paperback

$50.5 million



$118.7 million


Children's YA/paperback

$475 million


Adult paperback

$1.165 billion


Adult hardcover

$1.293 billion


Adult mass market

 $431.5 million



GLOW: Sourcebooks Landmark: Clytemnestra by Costanza Casati

Harry Potter E-Books Are Library Bound

Library-loving muggles will have access to J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series, thanks to an exclusive worldwide e-book and digital audiobook distribution agreement between Pottermore and OverDrive. Under the deal, OverDrive will manage hosting and digital fulfillment for the Harry Potter collection in English and more than 20 other languages to the company's network of public and school libraries worldwide.  

"We are keen to support public and school libraries, and OverDrive, as one of the leading suppliers in this market, provides us with a global network that helps us achieve this, as well as encouraging the discovery of these amazing books across the world," said Pottermore CEO Charlie Redmayne.   

Steve Potash, OverDrive CEO and president, praised Rowling's series as "a once-a-lifetime phenomenon and has been an extremely significant catalyst for reading and literacy for current and future generations. We are honored to bring this beloved storytelling experience digitally to public and school libraries  worldwide."

PaidContent noted that the announcement "comes at a time when most big publishers have restricted library access to their e-books" and "does not contain any more details about when the delayed Pottermore will officially launch."

Barefoot Books: Save 10%

Obituary Note: Jan Berenstain

Jan Berenstain, who with her husband, Stan Berenstain, wrote and illustrated the Berenstain Bears books for 50 years, has died. She was 88. She suffered a severe stroke on Thursday and died Friday without regaining consciousness, her son Mike Berenstain told the Associated Press. Stan Berenstain passed away in 2005.

Stan and Jan Berenstain, both Philadelphia natives, met as 18-year-olds on their first day of art school in 1941 and married in 1946. The first Berenstain Bears book, The Big Honey Hunt, was published in 1962, and they added more than 300 titles in 23 languages. After her husband's death in 2005, Jan Berenstain continued working with their younger son, Michael, to create additional Berenstain Bears books.

In a heartfelt note to colleagues, Kate Klimo, v-p and publisher of Random House/Golden Books Young Readers Group, said that whenever the husband-and-wife team were asked who was responsible for what in the creation of their books, "Stan said that he blocked out the stories, Jan designed the new characters, and everything else they shared. They were collaborators in the purest sense of the word." Klimo expressed the sentiments of legion Berenstain Bears fans when she said, "It's hard to imagine a world without Mama Bear, who solves all problems and makes everything better."


Ginger Fox: Free Freight and a Free Book Lovers Mug

Vote for Shipley!

Last week Mary Gay Shipley announced it was "time for a change" and she would be seeking a new owner for That Bookstore in Blytheville, Blytheville, Ark. Yesterday, she revealed what one of those changes may be as she was heading to Little Rock, where she planned to file election papers to run for the District 55 seat in the Arkansas House as a Democrat.

Shipley told that supporters had urged her to run after learning about the upcoming changes for the bookstore.

From E to P: Ingram to Distribute Some Open Road Titles

Beginning in March, Open Road Integrated Media, the digital publisher and multimedia content company co-founded by Jane Friedman, will have Ingram Publisher Service and Lightning Source distribute printed versions of its E-riginal books and some of its other titles.

Open Road has offered POD versions of the e-riginals and a few e-books of out-of-print titles. "We find it is now time to broaden our reach into the retail space," Open Road COO Christopher Davis said.

The first E-riginal titles that Ingram will distribute include Home in the Morning and One More River by Mary Glickman; The Replacement Wife by Eileen Goudge; Madboy by Richard Kirschenbaum; Listen to Bob Marley: The Man, the Music the Revolution, written by Bob Marley and selected by Cedella Marley; The Habit by Susan Morse; and The Man in the Empty Boat by Mark Salzman.
E-books based on out-of-print books that will also be available in print form include Good Times, Bad Times by Sir Harold Evans, Raquela by Ruth Gruber, Damage by Josephine Hart, Texas Tomboy by Lois Lenski, Armageddon by Leon Uris and Shadow Magic by Patricia Wrede.


Image of the Day: Doggone Road Trip

Author and journalist Benoit Denizet-Lewis just began a cross-country trip with his dog, Casey, a journey that will be the subject of his next book, Travels with Casey (not Charley), which will appear next year. The trip started with visits to the Westminster Dog Show and PETA offices and will include dog yoga on the beach, meetings with pet psychics, visits with the homeless who live on the streets with pets, and more. The book will be about the author's relationship with Casey, dog culture in the U.S. and why so many of us have a special connection to man's best friend. Here Casey in the Simon & Schuster offices, during a sendoff visit.


Post-Oscar Update: Inside the Greenroom Library

Fine Books magazine offered a sneak peek inside the Academy Awards greenroom library, noting that Thatcher Wine of Juniper Books, Boulder, Colo., "was called on by this year's Architectural Digest Greenroom designer, Waldo Fernandez, to fill the room's empty bookshelves. Fernandez's overall design evokes the Hollywood of the 1930s and 40s, with references to the glamorous parties of director George Cukor. Wine ran with that idea, imagining shelves of books that look like vintage film reels."

"The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences gave me access to their archives," Wine said. "I picked out classic film scenes, then printed them on book jackets.... There is no one else in the world who does what I do with the book jackets, so this was the perfect project for me to come up with a never-before-seen idea."

He added that idea-behind-the-idea was that "books are relaxing and help calm the presenters before going on stage. My library calms and also inspires with a dose of film history and nostalgia."

Bookseller/Caricaturist: 'Capturing the Attitude'

Bradley Craft, senior used-book buyer at University Book Store, Seattle, Wash., is also an accomplished caricaturist who "occasionally sketches for store publicity" and creates a literary calendar "mostly for friends, but the limited number for sale sold out," PopMatters reported, praising Craft's work as "one more ingredient in this city's rich stew of literary culture."

Craft observed that in caricature, "exaggeration doesn't entirely have to do with physicality. Caricature has to do with capturing the attitude of the person portrayed." While most of his subjects are flattered, some have been shocked and others declined to view the results, but Craft said his work is meant to be a tribute: "I don’t draw people unless I have some level of affection for them... as affectionate as my somewhat twisted eye can make them."

Princeton U. Press: Wild New Imprint

Princeton University Press has created a new imprint, Princeton WILDGuides, after acquiring rights to the WILDGuides, Ltd. backlist. PUP also reserves the right to publish new WILDGuides acquisitions as part of the deal. In recent years, Princeton has co-published several titles with the U.K. publisher, including Nigel Cleere's Nightjars of the World and James Lowen's Antarctic Wildlife.
Andy Swash, managing director of WILDGuides, said the two companies "share the same aspirations to produce the highest quality natural history guides available."

Robert Kirk, Princeton University Press's group publisher for science and reference noted that the partnership "will allow us to both expand our footprint in the U.K. and continental Europe and to embark on ambitious co-development of projects on a global basis. It will also introduce readers around the world to a wide range of practical, up-to-the-minute field guides and manuals, reference works and the best in broad natural history titles."

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Suvir Saran on the Martha Stewart Show

This morning on Imus in the Morning: Mark Hyman, M.D., author of The Blood Sugar Solution: The UltraHealthy Program for Losing Weight, Preventing Disease, and Feeling Great Now! (Little, Brown, $27.99, 9780316127370).


Tomorrow morning on Fox & Friends: Noam Scheiber, author of The Escape Artists: How Obama's Team Fumbled the Recovery (Simon & Schuster, $28, 9781439172407). He will also appear on MSNBC's Dylan Ratigan Show.


Tomorrow on the Jim Bohannon Show: Bethenny Frankel, author of A Place of Yes: 10 Rules for Getting Everything You Want Out of Life (Touchstone, $16, 9781439186916).


Tomorrow on the Martha Stewart Show: Suvir Saran, co-author of Masala Farm: Stories and Recipes from an Uncommon Life in the Country (Chronicle Books, $29.95, 9780811872331).


Tomorrow on NPR's On Point: Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler, co-authors of Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think (Free Press, $26.99, 9781451614213).


Tomorrow on MSNBC's Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell: Michael Ian Black, author of You're Not Doing It Right: Tales of Marriage, Sex, Death, and Other Humiliations (Gallery Books, $23.99, 9781439167854).

Movies: The Lorax and Being Flynn

The Lorax, an animated film based on Dr. Seuss' classic children's book (Random House Books for Young Readers, $14.95, 9780394823379), opens this Friday, March 2. Danny DeVito stars as the voice of the Lorax, a mustachioed orange guardian of the natural world.


Being Flynn, based on Another Bullshit Night in Suck City by Nick Flynn, also opens March 2. Robert De Niro, Julianne Moore and Paul Dano star in this true story of a man who reconnects with his troubled father while working at a Boston homeless shelter. A movie tie-in is available from Norton ($15.95, 9780393341492).


Books & Authors

Awards: Lionel Gelber Prize

Ezra F. Vogel won the $15,000 Lionel Gelber Prize, which honors a nonfiction book in English on foreign affairs "that seeks to deepen public debate on significant international issues," for Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China (Belknap/Harvard University Press). The author will deliver a lecture and receive his award in Toronto March 15.

Jury chair George Russell praised Vogel's "sympathetic and balanced chronicle of the Long March of Deng Xiaoping as he led China toward a central place on the modern world stage makes impressive use of the author's unparalleled contacts in China's inner circles. It is going to be required reading for many years to come."

IndieBound: Other Indie Favorites

From last week's Indie bestseller lists, available at, here are the recommended titles, which are also Indie Next Great Reads:


History of a Pleasure Seeker: A Novel by Richard Mason (Knopf, $25.95, 9780307599476). "Set in Amsterdam during the Belle Epoque, History of a Pleasure Seeker follows Piet Bartol, the poor but cultured young tutor to a wealthy Dutch family. Piet is determined to drink life to the fullest, and this ambition alters not only his own life, but also the lives of those around him. Skillfully and evocatively rendered, this novel feels like its own guilty pleasure, redolent of lazy afternoons and late night liaisons." --Stesha Brandon, University Book Store, Seattle, Wash.

The Lost Saints of Tennessee: A Novel by Amy Franklin-Willis (Atlantic Monthly Press, $25, 9780802120052). "Ezekiel Cooper, a 42-year-old divorcee living in Tennessee and still grieving the death of his twin brother 10 years earlier, has decided to end his life and the life of Tucker, his brother's dog. Luckily for the reader he is unsuccessful, and we share his voyage from the 1940s to the 1980s as a son, brother, husband, and father. Ezekiel and his mother relate their tales of mistakes made, the need for forgiveness, and the real meaning of family in a story full of love and grace. You will not want to put this book down." --Karen Briggs, Great Northern Books and Hobbies, Oscoda, Mich.


West of Here: A Novel by Jonathan Evison (Algonquin Books, $15.95, 9781616200824). "I loved this big, gorgeous novel in which characters and story lines flow, merge, and diverge like the streams and channels of a river. The story spans more than 100 years in the fictional town of Port Bonita, Washington, and its surrounding wilderness. Evison pulls together such grand themes as our relationship to the land, what we make of our past, and what we owe the future. His writing style is unpretentious and delightful, a combination of big ideas and down-to-earth, friendly delivery that's perfectly suited to this quintessentially American novel." --Christie Olson Day, Gallery Bookshop and Bookwinkle's Children's Books, Mendocino, Calif.

For Ages 9 to 12

In Search of Sasquatch by Kelly Milner Halls (Houghton Mifflin, $16.99, 9780547257617). "The award-winning Halls adds to her repertoire of fascinating topics with this latest entry showcasing the legendary Sasquatch. This treasure trove is packed with the most up-to-date information and includes spine-tingling eyewitness accounts and revealing interviews with experts. Readers will be mesmerized but may choose to peruse this enlightening work about the mysterious ape-like creature only during the light of day!" --Tish Gayle, the Blue Marble, Fort Thomas, Ky.

[Many thanks to IndieBound and the ABA!]

Book Review

Review: The Girl Next Door

The Girl Next Door by Brad Parks (Minotaur Books, $24.99 hardcover, 9780312667689, March 13, 2012)

Need inspiration? Try the obituaries. In a business where what bleeds leads, reporter Carter Ross finds uplift in the memorial section--until one day he stumbles upon murder. When an Eagle-Examiner newspaper delivery woman meets an early death in a hit-and-run accident on her route one morning, Carter wants nothing more than to honor her memory as a likable, hardworking girl next door. But beneath the surface of Nancy Marino's seemingly simple life, he uncovers a mare's nest of family tensions, sexual harassment and hardball union politics--with all the evidence pointing toward his boss.

The Girl Next Door is the third installment of Brad Parks's Carter Ross series, which began with the Nero- and Shamus-winning Faces of the Gone. The popularity of the series is in no small part thanks to its self-effacing hero. In the spectrum of white boys, Carter, a self-described prep school WASP, while short of nerdy, is nowhere close to dirty. But he's got guts, and under the oxford/khakis combo, he's 100% Jersey.

With its Newark backdrop and broad humor, many reviewers have compared Parks's work to the over-the-top Stephanie Plum bestsellers. Like Janet Evanovich, Parks captures the New Jersey sense of place in careworn but cozy blue-collar neighborhoods with postage-stamp yards serenaded by the "white noise machine" of the parkway. While similarities between the side-parted Carter and the more bouffant Stephanie aren't readily apparent, they do share the common traits of courage verging on foolhardiness, language bordering on foul and, of course, a morbid appreciation for all thing funereal.

Ross's reporter-cum-private-investigator role also brings to mind Jan Burke's Irene Kelly, who likewise pursues stories with a tenacity that often has her dodging both danger and deadlines. Through his portrayal of newsroom culture and the ailing (if once-mighty) American independent paper, Parks ascends the more pulpy shallows of the genre. The Girl Next Door is perfect for the reader who loves an LOL moment but wants a mystery that's more than empty calories. --Tom Lavoie, former publisher

Shelf Talker: The third mystery from former newspaperman Brad Parks demonstrates how taking headlines from headstones makes more enemies than friends.


The Right Envelope, Please

Yesterday we inadvertently awarded an Oscar to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo for cinematography. That was actually given to Hugo, which won five Oscars overall. Our apologies.


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