Shelf Awareness for Thursday, May 10, 2012

William Morrow & Company: The Midnight Feast by Lucy Foley

Shadow Mountain: The Witch in the Woods: Volume 1 (Grimmworld) by Michaelbrent Collings

Hell's Hundred: Blood Like Mine by Stuart Neville

Delacorte Press: Last One to Die by Cynthia Murphy

Margaret Ferguson Books: Not a Smiley Guy by Polly Horvath, Illustrated by Boris Kulikov

Indiana University Press: The Grim Reader: A Pharmacist's Guide to Putting Your Characters in Peril by Miffie Seideman

St. Martin's Press: Lenny Marks Gets Away with Murder by Kerryn Mayne


Tattered Cover Landing at DIA

A Denver city council committee unanimously approved the deal by which the Tattered Cover is teaming up with Hudson News to open four Tattered Cover stores at Denver International Airport, the Denver Post reported. The deal should be voted on soon by the full council and mayor. The stores, along with four Hudson News newsstands and a combination Hudson News/Tattered Cover store, will open in February 2014.

The Post said that first-year sales are projected at $17.9 million, annual rent is $2.7 million and 78 people will be employed.

John Ackerman, the airport's chief commercial officer, commented: "The Tattered Cover has been a Denver institution for over 40 years and we're proud to bring them to DIA. This unique concession agreement will combine a successful, existing operator with an iconic, local brand."

Hudson has similar joint ventures with Barbara's Bookstore at O'Hare Airport in Chicago and Vroman's Bookstore at Los Angeles International Airport.

Harper: Our Kind of Game by Johanna Copeland

BookPeople of Moscow's Grand Reopening

BookPeople of Moscow, Moscow, Idaho, is celebrating its grand reopening next Thursday, May 17. The festivities will include discounts, door prizes, a raffle, author signings, live music and hors d'oeuvres.

As part of its reopening, BookPeople is launching a frequent buyers club, offering a 20% discount to k-12 teachers and establishing the BookPeople Community Fund, a charitable fund to support literacy projects, arts education and literacy events that will be funded by used book sales at the store.

The store was bought late last year by Carol Spurling and Steffen Werner. Spurling had been a bookseller at Old Harbor Books, Sitka, Alaska, and managed Brused Books, Pullman, Wash.


Chronicle Books: Life Wants You Dead: A Calm, Rational, and Totally Legit Guide to Scaring Yourself Safe by Evan Waite, Illustrated by Paula Searing

Obituary Note: Daniel Rapoport

Daniel Rapoport, a journalist, author and publisher "who in 1983 founded Farragut Publishing to produce non-blockbuster and out-of-the-ordinary books ranging from pasta salad and cold soup cookbooks to a history of U.S. presidents' connections with baseball," died April 11, the Washington Post reported. He was 79.

GLOW: Tundra Books: We Are Definitely Human by X. Fang

Congratulations to Len Vlahos, Author

Congratulations to Len Vlahos, executive director of the Book Industry Study Group and former chief operations officer at the American Booksellers Association. His first novel, The Scar Boys, has been bought by Egmont USA and will be published on its spring 2014 list. Vlahos's literary agent, Sandra Bond of the Bond Literary Agency, called the book "an emotionally raw, often humorous coming-of-age story about a severely burned and disfigured high school boy who finds refuge playing guitar in a mid-'80s punk band."

We imagine the story will be great, and we know the metadata will be impeccable.


Harper: Sandwich by Catherine Newman


Image of the Day: The Chalk Circle at Books Inc.

Last Friday, the Books Inc. store in Opera Plaza, San Francisco, Calif., hosted an SRO event featuring readings by seven contributors to The Chalk Circle: Intercultural Prizewinning Essays (Wyatt-MacKenzie). From l.: Katrina Toshiko Grigg-Saito, Lyzette Wanzer, editor Tara Masih, Samuel Anthony Autman, Tilia Klebenov Jacobs, Gretchen Brown Wright, Li Miao Lovett and Toshi Washizu.


World's Coolest Bookstore Staircase

In a slide show featuring the "world's coolest staircases," Travel & Leisure magazine showcased the "glossy red staircase with carved wooden banisters that leads up to a glass atrium" in the Lello Bookshop, Porto, Portugal.

Pennie Picks The Art of Fielding Clark Ianniciello, Costco's book buyer, has chosen The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach (HarperCollins, $14.99, 9780316126670), as her pick of the month for May. In Costco Connection, which goes to many of the warehouse club's members, she wrote:

"This debut novel, which melds baseball, Herman Melville and five very different people, is exactly the kind of book that makes me glad to be part of the bookselling industry.

"With every sentence and each fleshed-out character he creates, Harbach makes the right move. The result is, quite simply, great literature and easily among the best books of 2011."

NEIBA Makes a Move

The New England Independent Booksellers Association is moving on May 16, to "sunny offices at 1955 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge--in the heart of Porter Square," executive director Steve Fisher wrote. "We're just two blocks from the T, we can walk to the post office (it's right downstairs!), the bank, shops and cafes. Porter Square Books and Henry Bear's Park are around the corner. Best of all, Nan and I can both walk to work. And we're paying less rent."

NEIBA's new address is: 1955 Massachusetts Avenue, #2, Cambridge, Mass. 02140.


Staff Additions at Melville House

Melville House Publishing has added several new staff members:  

Sal Robinson has joined the company as an editor. Previously, she was an associate editor at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Kevin Murphy, founder and publisher of Seattle's Dark Sky Press, is the new digital marketing manager and managing editor for MobyLives, the publisher's book blog.

Nick Davies is now a publicist at Melville House after several years with Basic Books. He also worked on publicity for titles from fellow Perseus imprint Nation Books.

Ariel Bogle joins the publicity department as well, having previously worked for the Sydney Morning Herald and HarperCollins Australia.

Media and Movies

Media Heat: E.L. James on the View

This morning on Imus in the Morning: John Stossel, author of No, They Can't: Why Government Fails-But Individuals Succeed (Threshold Editions, $27, 9781451640946).


Today on NPR's Diane Rehm Show: James Fallows, author of China Airborne (Pantheon, $25.95, 9780375422119).


Tomorrow on Imus in the Morning: Laurie Puhn, author of Fight Less, Love More: 5-Minute Conversations to Change Your Relationship without Blowing Up or Giving In (Rodale, $24.99, 9781605295985).


Tomorrow on VH1's Big Morning Buzz: Steve Guttenberg, author of The Guttenberg Bible (Thomas Dunne, $25.99, 9780312383459).


Tomorrow on the View: E.L. James, author of Fifty Shades of Grey (Vintage, $15.95, 9780345803481).

Also on the View: Robin and Lucimarian Roberts, authors of My Story, My Song - Mother-Daughter Reflections on Life and Faith (Upper Room, $18, 9780835811071).


Tomorrow on the Tavis Smiley Show: Ryan O'Neal, co-author of Both of Us: My Life with Farrah (Crown Archetype, $26, 9780307954824).


Tomorrow night on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon: Stephen Colbert, author of I Am A Pole (And So Can You!) (Grand Central, $15.99, 9781455523429).

Movies: Hick

Hick, starring Chloë Grace Moretz, Blake Lively and Rory Culkin, opens Friday in theaters nationwide as well as on VOD. The film is adapted from the 2007 novel by Andrea Portes (Unbridled, 9781932961324), who also wrote the screenplay. You can see the trailer here.

In an interview with the Huffington Post this week, Portes said Luli, her 13-year-old narrator, "sees this big wide world, through movies and magazines, with impossibly beautiful women having the time of their lives, and yet she's stuck in this horrible place. So understandably, she wants to go out there and take a big bite out of this glitzy, glamorous world she thinks exists. And, of course, it doesn't exist.... I was more interested in telling a story that was like life... at times weird, at times funny, at times horrible, at times absurd, at times violent, at times moving, at times beautiful. That makes sense to me, maybe because that's the way I've experienced the world."

This Weekend on Book TV: Rachel Maddow

Book TV airs on C-Span 2 this week from 8 a.m. Saturday to 8 a.m. Monday and focuses on political and historical books as well as the book industry. The following are highlights for this coming weekend. For more information, go to Book TV's website.

Saturday, May 12

8 a.m. Susan Hertog talks about her dual biography Dangerous Ambition, Rebecca West and Dorothy Thompson: New Women in Search of Love and Power (Ballantine, $30, 9780345459862). (Re-airs Monday at 2 a.m.)

12 p.m. The American Spectator founder and editor-in-chief R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr. discusses his book The Death of Liberalism (Thomas Nelson, $19.99, 9781595554888). (Sunday at 11 p.m.)

1 p.m. Eric Liu, former policy advisor and speechwriter for President Clinton, presents his book The Gardens of Democracy: A New American Story of Citizenship, the Economy, and the Role of Government (Sasquatch Books, $12.95, 9781570618239).

2:15 p.m. Kevin Gutzman talks about his book James Madison and the Making of America (St. Martin's, $27.99, 9780312625009). (Re-airs Monday at 5:15 a.m.)

4 p.m. Rachel Maddow, author of Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power (Crown, $25, 9780307460981), addresses the U.S.'s embrace of perpetual war as a way of life. (Re-airs Sunday at 10 p.m.)

5 p.m. Josh Meyer discusses his book The Hunt for KSM: Inside the Pursuit and Takedown of the Real 9/11 Mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (Little, Brown, $27.99, 9780316186599). (Re-airs Sunday at 10 a.m.)

7 p.m. Mark Updegrove talks about his book Indomitable Will: LBJ in the Presidency (Crown, $27, 9780307887719). (Re-airs Sunday at 7 a.m.)

8:30 p.m. Former administrator of the Transportation Security Agency Kip Hawley presents his book Permanent Emergency: Inside the TSA and the Fight for the Future of American Security (Palgrave Macmillan, $27, 9780230120952). (Re-airs Monday at 4 a.m.)

10 p.m. After Words. USA Today's Jackie Kucinich interviews Van Jones, former green jobs adviser to President Obama and author of Rebuild the Dream (Nation Books, $25.99, 9781568587141). (Re-airs Sunday at 9 p.m., Monday at 12 a.m. and 3 a.m.)

11 p.m. A tribute to the late Christopher Hitchens. Speakers include Ian McEwan, Salman Rushdie, Victor Navasky, Sean Penn, Peter Hitchens, Carol Blue (Hitchens's widow), Graydon Carter and Martin Amis. (Re-airs Sunday at 2 p.m.)

Sunday, May 13

1:30 a.m. E.O. Wilson, author of The Social Conquest of Earth (Liveright, $27.95, 9780871404138), talks about the rise and domination of Homo sapiens. (Re-airs Sunday at 7 p.m.)

4 p.m. Richard Zacks discusses his book Island of Vice: Theodore Roosevelt's Doomed Quest to Clean Up Sin-Loving New York (Doubleday, $27.95, 9780385519724).

8 p.m. At an event hosted by the Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, Mass., Jack Goldsmith presents his book Power and Constraint: The Accountable Presidency after 9/11 (Norton, $26.95, 9780393081336).

Books & Authors

Awards: Benjamin Franklin Finalists

Finalists for the Benjamin Franklin Awards, honoring "excellence in publishing" and sponsored by the Independent Book Publishers Association, have been announced, with three finalists in each of 54 categories. Winners will be celebrated at the Benjamin Franklin Awards dinner on Monday, June 4, at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City. See the finalists here.


Book Review

Review: Emmaus

Emmaus by Alessandro Baricco, trans. by Ann Goldstein (McSweeney's, $22 hardcover, 9781936365593, May 2012)

Emmaus is a short, haunting philosophical novel by Alessandro Barrico (Silk) about the friendship of four good Catholic boys, untested believers negotiating their way through the tricky waters of adolescence. Together, they make up a popular church band and volunteer at a poor people's hospital emptying bags of urine. Red-haired, sexually aware Bobby isn't afraid to experiment with drugs. Reserved Luca, the narrator's best friend, has a mortally ill father and a family that eats in silence. The Saint has a faint beard, says grace before meals and doesn't exclude the priesthood as a vocation. The fourth boy is the nameless narrator.

Each in his own way is fascinated by Andre, a free-spirited, sexually liberated girl their own age who likes older boys and whom they see in a compromising position with another boy in his car. They find out that Andre was born at the same moment her sister drowned in the backyard pool, and that 14 years later Andre jumped off a bridge and survived. Barrico begins the story with the death of Andre's father, then loops back to the beginning and takes 90 pages to return to the scene in the prologue and repeat it, this time with the reader knowing all the characters involved.

The title derives from an episode in the New Testament after the crucifixion, where two disciples on the road to Emmaus are joined by a mysterious third, not realizing the risen Christ is walking with them. Baricco's sentences are elegant and stately, a profound meditation on how little we know each other and how we normalize the tragic. The four boys, believing in the strength of their friendship, play the reckless, flirtatious games of youth until the price of their games slaps them in the face, and the wheel of tragedy begins to turn.

Vulnerable, unwary, believing in goodness, these four inexperienced boys with very deep secrets from each other are sideswiped by the girl who drives them all crazy, fracturing their friendship. Now she's pregnant, and the finger of fatherhood points at one of them. Is he the father? If not, who is? Out of that possible paternity will come drug addiction, a suicide, a homicide and the painful wisdom about life that hits so hard when you're 18. --Nick DiMartino

Shelf Talker: A friendship among four Italian Catholic boys is destroyed by the girl they all love.


Deeper Understanding

Fifty Shades of BEA

As BookExpo America looms, C.F. Popelarsky graciously has allowed us to run an excerpt from the author's novella-in-progress called Fifty Shades of BEA. As Popelarsky writes, "It's pretty hot."
The roads are clear as I set off from Vermont. Fortunately, Kate has lent me her sporty Mercedes CLK. I'm not sure Wanda, my old VW Beetle, would make the journey in time. Oh, the Merc is a fun drive, and the miles slip away as I hit the pedal to the metal. My destination is Jacob Javits Center in Manhattan. It's a huge building, all curved glass and steel, an architect's utilitarian fantasy, with James Patterson banners hanging above the glass front doors. It's a quarter to two when I arrive, greatly relieved that I'm not late as I walk into the enormous--and frankly intimidating--glass lobby occupied by C-Span's Motor Home. The line of booksellers at Starbucks is even more intimidating.

As I enter the trade show floor, I'm beginning to wish I'd borrowed one of Kate's formal blazers rather than worn my navy-blue jacket. I have made an effort and worn my one and only skirt, my sensible brown knee-length orthopedic boots, and a blue sweater with an oversized matching fanny pack. For me, this is smart. I tuck one of the escaped tendrils of my hair behind my ear and adjust my Ingram lanyard around my neck.

I arrive at the Ransom Press booth for my first appointment. I know nothing about the marketing director that I'm about to meet with. He could be 90 or he could be 30. The uncertainty is galling, and my nerves resurface, making me fidget. I've never been comfortable with one-on-one BEA appointments, preferring that our store's book club coordinator, events director, and sidelines manager accompanies me. To be honest, I prefer my own company, reading a Jonathan Evison novel, curled up in a chair at home. Not sitting twitching nervously in a colossal glass-and-stone edifice and discussing backlist specials and co-op.
I roll my eyes at myself. Get a grip, Steele. Judging from the booth, which is too slick and modern, I guess Grey is in his 40s: fit, tanned, and fair-haired to match the rest of the personnel.
He approaches: "Miss Steele." He extends a long-fingered hand to me once I'm upright. "I'm Christian Grey. Are you all right? Would you like to sit?"

So young--and attractive, very attractive. He's tall, dressed in a fine gray suit, white shirt, and black tie with unruly dark copper-colored hair and intense, bright gray eyes that regard me shrewdly. It takes a moment for me to find my voice.

As our fingers touch, I feel an odd exhilarating shiver run through me. I withdraw my hand hastily, embarrassed. Must be static. I blink rapidly, my eyelids matching my heart rate.
"I see," he says simply. I think I see the ghost of a smile in his expression, but I'm not sure.
"Would you like to sit and perhaps discuss floor displays or prepacks?" He waves me toward an L-shaped white leather couch with a coffee table piled with Fall 2012 catalogues. Displayed together, they are breathtaking.
He hands me a galley. "I think you'll enjoy getting between the covers of this novel. It's gem-like, luminous, poignant, and wise."
"It's lovely." I murmur, distracted both by him and his galleys. He cocks his head to one side and regards me intently.
"I couldn't agree more, Miss Steele," he replies, his voice soft, and for some inexplicable reason I find myself blushing.
Next, I pull my iPad from oversized fannypack and am all fingers and thumbs, dropping it twice on the coffee table in front of me. Mr. Grey says nothing, waiting patiently--I hope--as I become increasingly embarrassed and flustered. When I pluck up the courage to look at him, he's watching me, one hand relaxed in his lap and the other cupping his chin and trailing his long index finger across his lips. I think he's trying to suppress a smile.
"Will you be attending the PGW party on Wednesday evening?" he asks coyly.
"Yes," I coo.

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