Shelf Awareness for Monday, May 8, 2006

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


To the Editor: A Summer Reading Suggestion

Valerie Ryan, owner of Cannon Beach Book Co. in Cannon Beach, Ore., writes concerning Sarah Pishko's piece on Friday about summer reading programs and suggests one of her handselling favorites--an adult title that could work as a YA:

I read with interest Sarah Pishko's ideas about good books for young readers, books that would engage the reader and also encourage him/her to believe that reading is a great pastime. I would like to add one more, out of about a million possibilities: The Highest Tide by Jim Lynch. A recent Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Book Award winner, Lynch's debut novel is part coming-of-age, part novel of relationship and environment and all a perfect delight. It has never been marketed as a young adult book, but now that it is in paper (Bloomsbury USA, $13.95, 1582346291) it would be a great choice for summer reading--or winter, fall or spring--or for classroom adoption. It is eminently discussable because Lynch writes about Rachel Carson's philosophy, friendship, parental difficulties and marine life, to mention a few themes. It is funny, poignant and unputdownable, no matter your age.  I heartily recommend this book. I sell it with a moneyback guarantee and have never had to make it good.

Harper: Our Kind of Game by Johanna Copeland


Notes: Pannell Winners; Sofman's Moves; Entrepreneurs

Congratulations! Northshire Bookstore in Manchester Center, Vt., does it again: the store has won the Lucile Micheels Pannell Award for a general bookstore. (It is also winner this year of Publishers Weekly's Bookseller of the Year.) A Likely Story Children's Bookstore in Alexandria, Va., has won the Pannell award in the children's category. In addition, the jury gave Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe, Ariz., an honorable mention in the general store category.

The awards, sponsored by the Women's National Book Association, will be presented at the Children's Book & Author Breakfast at BEA on Friday, May 19.


The last A Clean-Well Lighted Place for Books, on Van Ness in Opera Plaza in San Francisco, Calif., is for sale, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Citing, in part, low foot traffic and expensive parking on Van Ness, owner Neal Sofman told the paper that sales have been declining for years. "My long-term partners want out, and I don't have the capital to buy them out."

Sofman founded the original store in 1975 and opened the Opera Plaza location in 1982. The company's stores in Cupertino and Larkspur closed in the 1990s. Last month, Sofman sold the store's domain name, the very attractive

Sofman is far from leaving bookselling, however: the paper said he will open a new "small neighborhood store" called Bookstore West Portal at 80 West Portal in the . . . West Portal section of San Francisco. The new venture has different financial backing from A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books.


Borders has signed a lease for a two-level, 24,000-sq.-ft. store in the Eastside development in the East Liberty district of Pittsburgh, Pa., the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported. The new store will join Whole Foods Market and Walgreens and should open this fall


Charlene Tollett, who began selling books in Shreveport, La., from a mobile bookstore, then opened Nubian Express Books in a storefront in 2001, is profiled in the Shreveport Times in a story about the growth of black-owned businesses. (The Census Bureau said the number of black-owned businesses grew by 45% between 1997 and 2002, more than four times the rate for all businesses nationwide.)

Tollet told the paper the absence of any bookstores specializing in African-American interests was her motivation for starting the store. "There was a need for culture and information about black history--correct information," she said. "I love history."


The Green Bay Press-Gazette has a short profile of Virginia Kress, owner of the Reader's Loft, which late last year moved from De Pere, Wis., into Green Bay's London Alley shopping center, which Kress owns.

A graduate of the University of Wisconsin at Madison Business School, Kress spent seven years in corporate finance. "I then decided to turn my love of books from an avocation to a vocation," Kress told the paper. "So I created a bookstore with 'old world charm' that is comfortable and cozy where I can sell books and promote the arts."

Besides books, the store sells cards, gifts and art work by local artists. Kress aims, she said, to make the Reader's Loft a "thinking person's bookstore."


Rep. Barney Frank (D.-Mass.) will receive a Bridge Builder Award from the Lambda Literary Foundation at the Lambda Literary Awards Gala at BEA on Thursday, May 18, in Washington, D.C. The award honors "individuals who have furthered the dialogue and created understanding between the LGBT community and the world." Previous recipients include Judy Shepard, Betty DeGeneres, Eve Ensler and E. Lynn Harris. For more information about the Awards evening, go to Lambda's Web site.


It sounds like a Quaker institution, but the Friends Bookstore in Kalamazoo, Mich., is run by the Friends of the Kalamazoo Public Library and celebrated its 10th anniversary on Saturday, the Kalamazoo Gazette reported. As part of the festivities, the paper said, the Cabtown Checkers, a nine-piece band, played jazz; a clown performed a skit titled "Clowning Around With Books" for young children; and the Pen Dragons Calligraphy Guild signed bookmarks for customers.


As the Seattle Post-Intelligencer puts it, "Hip Mama Gore does it herrr way, even on a book tour." For her latest, The Traveling Death and Resurrection Show (HarperSanFrancisco, $13.95, 0060854286), Ariel Gore is visiting stores accompanied appropriately by a band, a puppeteer, and at the University Book Store in Seattle at least, several fire-eaters. (See "May We Recommend" below for an enthusiastic report on the book.)

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

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Shere Hite Reports Back

This morning the Today Show communes with Allison Dubois, the medium who inspired NBC's Medium whose new book is We Are Their Heaven: Why the Dead Never Leave Us (Fireside, $24, 0743291123).

Also on Today: Teddy Atlas, the delightfully named boxing trainer and author of Atlas: From the Streets to the Ring: A Son's Struggle to Become a Man (Ecco, $24.95, 0060542403).


This morning on the Early Show, Senator Ted Kennedy talks about his children's book, My Senator and Me: A Dog's Eye View of Washington, D.C. (Scholastic, $16.99, 0439650771).


Today on NPR's Fresh Air: Douglas Brinkley, author of The Great Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, and the Mississippi Gulf Coast (Morrow, $29.95, 0061124230).


Today on the View: musical guest Gloria Loring who is also co-author of Living with Type 2 Diabetes: Moving Past the Fear (M Press, $14.95, 1595820167).


Tonight on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart: David Remnick, editor of the the New Yorker and author of Reporting: Writing from the New Yorker (Knopf, $27.95, 0307263584).


Tonight on the Colbert Report: Shere Hite, whose new book is The Shere Hite Reader: New and Selected Writings on Sex, Globalization and Private Life (Seven Stories Press, $24.95, 1583225684).

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

Lifetime's Murder on Pleasant Drive

Tonight at 9 p.m., Lifetime airs for the first time Murder on Pleasant Drive, which stars Kelli Williams (of the Practice), Adam Arkin and Amy Madigan. The movie is based on the book My Sister Is Missing: Bringing a Killer to Justice by Sherrie Gladden-Davis and Brad Crawford (Emmis Books, $14.99, 1578602017).

Lifetime describe the movie as "the story of Deanna Wehling (Williams), a single working mother, whose vivacious mother, Fran, marries a charming man she barely knows named John Smith (Arkin). Shortly after the newlyweds move to New Jersey, Fran mysteriously disappears. Deanna, determined to find her mother, enlists the help of her Aunt Sherrie (Madigan) and the two women repeatedly question John about Fran's disappearance. Although John's contradictory explanations raise their suspicions, the police tell them that without a body, there is no hard evidence of a crime. Ultimately, Deanna and Sherrie join forces with the police and uncover some disturbing facts about John, including the grim revelation that his first wife also suspiciously disappeared 25 years earlier. With this new discovery, the two women become convinced that John murdered Fran and decide they will stop at nothing to find out what happened to her."

Gladden-Davis is a retired cost accounting executive who lives with her husband near Indianapolis, Ind., where she devotes much of her time to her grandchildren. She speaks to victims' families and others on the importance of family participation in missing-persons investigations. This is her first book.

Brad Crawford has worked as a magazine editor, book acquisitions editor, agency copywriter and copy editor. He is the author of Compass American Guides: Ohio (Fodor's), a freelance writer and editor for books and magazines and lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Harper: Sandwich by Catherine Newman

Books & Authors

Good News about Good Books in the Times

In a front-page story, today's New York Times samples Good Books's cookbooks, which shun "New American cooking for what might be called unfashionable American cooking."

The feast has been satisfying for the Lancaster, Pa., publisher: the Fix-It and Forget-It series of five books so far has sold about seven million copies and cookbooks account for 70%-90% of Good Books's approximately $10 million in annual sales. Among the qualities that readers find so tasty: the recipes' simplicity and utilitarianism; the lack of "foreign influence"; and the spiral binding, which makes the books easier to refer to when cooking.

Some two million of the Fix-It and Forget-It cookbooks have been sold in warehouse clubs, sometimes next to slow cookers. The company also has taken out ads in regional publications, USA Today and People and paid for promotion in Barnes & Noble.

Co-owner and series editor Phyllis Pellman Good relies on volunteer cooks from around the country for recipes. She told the paper: "People take comfort in the fact that the recipes come from other people's homes, from the fact that they come from people who are working and feeding their families. Most of us still do want to cook for ourselves and eat at home. And yet all of the pressures of our lives militate against that."

Awards: The Nebulas

The 2005 Nebula Winners, voted on by members of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, were announced at the Nebula Awards Banquet in Tempe, Ariz., on Saturday:

Novel: Camouflage by Joe Haldeman (Analog, March-May 2004, also Ace book August 2004)

Novella: "Magic for Beginners" by Kelly Link (Magic for Beginners, Small Beer Press, July 2005; also in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Sept. 2005)

Novelette: "The Faery Handbag" by Kelly Link (The Faery Reel: Tales From the Twilight Realm edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, Viking, Aug. 2004)

Short Story: "I Live With You" by Carol Emshwiller (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, March 2005)

Script: Serenity by Joss Whedon (Universal Pictures, Sept. 2005) Serenity: The Official Visual Companion (Titan Books, including shooting script)

Among related honors:

Andre Norton Award: Valiant: A Modern Tale of Faerie by Holly Black (S&S, June 2005)

Damon Knight Grand Master Award (previously announced): Harlan Ellison

Author Emeritus (previously announced): William F. Nolan

Book Sense: May We Recommend

From last week's Book Sense bestseller lists, available at, here are the recommended titles, which are also Book Sense Picks:


The Traveling Death and Resurrection Show by Ariel Gore (HarperSanFrancisco, $13.95, 0060854286). "A stigmatic must reconcile her faith while traveling with a spiritual sideshow. Ariel Gore offers compelling characters, structured stream-of-consciousness writing, an interesting but simple plot, and a note of redemption at the end of a dark tunnel (with a few lanterns along the way). Incredibly satisfying!"--Stacie Williams, Harry W. Schwartz Bookshop, Milwaukee, Wis.


Everyman's Rules for Scientific Living by Carrie Tiffany (Scribner, $23, 0743286375). "Set in Australia in the 1930s, Tiffany's novel features an engaging heroine, a lecturer in domestic economy who marries a plant scientist and settles in the Mallee to bring scientific farming to the other settlers. The story can be wryly humorous, but also incredibly poignant, as it describes the lives of people trying to scrape a living out of a marginally viable agricultural economy. Highly recommended."--Marian Nielsen, Orinda Books, Orinda, Calif.

Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America's War with Militant Islam by Mark Bowden (Atlantic, $24, 0871139251). "A fascinating account of the Iran Hostage Crisis. Initially intended to be a short-lived student sit-in, the seizing of the American Embassy in Tehran quickly spiraled out of control and changed the course of history. The election of Ronald Reagan, the Iran-Iraq War, the rise of Muslim extremism, the war on terror, the war in Iraq, and many other events can be linked to these events in 1979. A must-read for any student of history or politics!"--Marci Blankenbaker, Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Lyndhurst, Ohio

For Children Up to Age 8

An Egg Is Quiet by Dianna Aston and Sylvia Long (Chronicle, $16.95, 0811844285). "This is a jewel of a picture book, combining simple yet informative text and awe-inspiring, exquisitely detailed illustrations, which celebrate the infinite varieties and wonders of the 'humble' egg. This has my vote for next year's Caldecott Medal."--Barb Bassett, The Red Balloon Bookshop, Saint Paul, Minn.

Bats at the Beach by Brian Lies (Houghton Mifflin, $16, 061855744X). "There is something just weird enough about this book that I find it immensely appealing. Brian Lies makes his bats cuter than they are creepy, and more fun than funky. This is definitely a fun family read for the beach or vacation cabin."--Lorna Ruby, Wellesley Booksmith, Wellesley, Mass.

[Many thanks to Book Sense and the ABA!]

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