Also published on this date: Wednesday, June 3, 2015: Maximum Shelf: The Marriage of Opposites

Shelf Awareness for Wednesday, June 3, 2015


Severn House Publishers: Night Watch (First World Publication) (Michael Cassidy Thriller #3) by David C. Taylor

St. Martin's Press: A Week at the Shore by Barbara Delinsky

Workman Publishing: Who Got Game?: Baseball: Amazing But True Stories! by Derrick Barnes, illustrated by John John Bajet

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers: Sunnyside Plaza by Scott Simon

Other Press: Machiavelli: The Art of Teaching People What to Fear by Patrick Boucheron, translated by Willard Wood

News

Melville House Opens in Rough Trade NYC

Publisher Melville House is opening a dedicated space in Rough Trade NYC's flagship store in Willliamsburg, in Brooklyn, N.Y., and will host events at the store, including author appearances and talks and book-of-the-month promotions.

The Melville House section will be at the entrance to the store's book section and feature new and backlist titles as well as exclusive Melville House merchandise. The store is also hosting a monthly book club, which on July 13 will discuss Melville House's The Dark Net: Inside the Digital Underworld by Jamie Bartlett. Rough Trade primarily sells music and has a bar and live performances.

"Rough Trade have been devotees of Melville House for many years," said Stephen Godfroy, co-owner of Rough Trade. "Amplifying their voice across Williamsburg and beyond is precisely the kind of initiative we opened Rough Trade NYC for--a place that celebrates creative self-expression, whatever the format."

Melville House co-founder Dennis Johnson said, "Since the height of the punk era, Rough Trade has been a shining model of how to outwit conglomerate culture--which is, to stay true to your mission to support independent art-making, no matter where it takes you. We're thrilled to join forces with such a visionary band of renegades."


GLOW: ECW Press: Moments of Glad Grace: A Memoir by Alison Wearing


ABFE's Online Book Art Auction Underway

Yesterday, the American Booksellers for Free Expression launched an online eBay auction of more than 50 pieces of art created for children's books. The ABFE Children's Book Art Auction, which continues until June 8, supports the free speech rights of kids and features many original works and high-quality prints by some of the leading artists working in the book industry today, including Rosemary Wells, Eric Carle, Robin Preiss Glasser, Bruce Degen, LeUyen Pham and Vincent X. Kirsch. Use this link to participate.

This ABFE effort is an online version of the auction held last week at BookExpo America. Both support the Kids' Right to Read Project and Banned Books Week.


Plough Publishing House: Poems to See by: A Comic Artist Interprets Great Poetry by Julian Peters


Hawthorne Books Now a Dzanc Imprint

Rhonda Hughes

Effective June 1, Hawthorne Books became an imprint of Dzanc Books, allowing both companies "to maintain their own individual editorial vision... while also working together on select projects," according to a statement from the publishers. Hawthorne's Portland, Ore., headquarters is now a publicity center for both presses as a result of the merger, joining Dzanc's offices in Ann Arbor and New York. Hawthorne publisher/editor Rhonda Hughes will serve as Dzanc's director of marketing and publicity. Dzanc and Hawthorne are distributed by PGW.

"I could not be more pleased about the deal," said Steven Gillis, Dzanc's publisher and co-founder. "Having worked with Rhonda and her staff prior for my own writing, I know what a level of excellence and professionalism she brings to the table. Providing Hawthorne with what Dzanc can offer, and in turn allowing Dzanc authors to avail themselves to Rhonda's magic as a marketer and publisher, is a perfect partnership that enables both houses to expand and become a real force for our authors in the industry."


Grove Press: Writers & Lovers by Lily King


SLJ Day of Dialog

At the School Library Journal Day of Dialog on Wednesday, May 27, held at New York City's Fashion Institute of Technology, Caldecott Medalist Brian Selznick delivered the opening keynote.

The Invention of Hugo Cabret combined Selznick's love of cinema and books, and he said he "rethought it again" with his forthcoming book The Marvels (Sept., Scholastic). For Selznick, the plot usually begins with a specific image. With Hugo, it was automatons. For Wonderstruck, it was the invention of sound film in 1927, "hailed as a triumph, but a tragedy to the deaf community," Selznick said. In The Marvels, the central image is the Dennis Seaver House in London, which Selznick visited a number of times. The story took Selznick three years to write. In the book, a visual narrative unfolds over the first 400 pages, in the year 1756; the next 200 pages take place 90 years later, entirely in text.

Brian Selznick (r.) with editor Tracy Mack at the kickoff for The Marvels (Scholastic).

Selznick noted that Maurice Sendak had described his books Where the Wild Things Are, In the Night Kitchen and Outside Over There as a trilogy Selznick similarly thinks of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, Wonderstruck and The Marvels as his trilogy.

Next, five authors engaged in a discussion moderated by Cambridge (Mass.) Public Library's Julie Roach about describing the natural world and raising awareness about how to protect it. For Louis Sachar (Fuzzy Mud, Random House), "a sense of optimism" attracts him to a project, and for April Pulley Sayre (Raindrops Roll, Beach Lane/S&S) "a sense of wonder" pulls her in. Wendell Minor (Trapped!: A Whale's Rescue by Robert Burleigh, Charlesbridge) believes that "children are inherently positive about the world they've inherited." As Jean Craighead George, his frequent collaborator, did for Minor, he hopes to "open [their] eyes to the complexity of the environment."

Anita Silvey (Untamed: The Wild Life of Jane Goodall, National Geographic) described what it's like to embark on a nonfiction project: "You believe you know something--that leads you to delve into a subject. Then you realize you know nothing. Then you do research and know too much to put it in a book for children." Paul Fleischman (Eyes Wide Open, Candlewick) said he began as a writer of picture books, which was "excellent training." He added, "I write novels the same way. Every word counts. With nonfiction, it didn't work. I had to unpack the information." Fleishman evoked Eudora Welty in this context: "Each book teaches you how to write it, but not the next one."

"Middle School Confidential" panelists (l-r.): Rebecca Stead, Rita Williams-Garcia, Luke Reynolds, Tim Federle and Lisa Graff.

Little Red School House's Stacy Dillon moderated a panel called "Middle School Confidential" with Tim Federle (Five, Six, Seven, Nate!, S&S), Lisa Graff (Lost in the Sun, Penguin), Luke Reynolds (The Looney Experiment, Blink), Rebecca Stead (Goodbye Stranger, Wendy Lamb/Random House), and Rita Williams-Garcia (Gone Crazy in Alabama, HarperCollins). Asked by Roach to confess a middle-school secret, Reynolds said he shoplifted as a kid, and confided this to his students. "Can you teach us?" they asked. Reynolds told the story of his older brother discovering his secret and saying, "You're meant for so much more than this." Federle, an actor and choreographer in addition to being an author, also pointed out the redeeming experiences post–middle school when he said, "Everything that got me picked on in middle school is what gets me paid now."

Stead described the middle school years this way: "When you cross a line into a new kind of awareness, there's no going back. We change and leave versions of ourselves behind us. It's like a series of deaths." Williams-Garcia told Stead she was glad she'd brought up death. "The death of girlhood is a plague in the black community," the author said. She cited an example of watching a four-year-old feed her baby sibling mashed potatoes in a KFC. "They know no silliness, no giddiness," said Williams-Garcia. "I'm always in some way talking about the death of childhood."

In her luncheon keynote speech, A.S. King (I Crawl Through It, Little, Brown) claimed, "Woman is Mother Theresa and Kim Kardashian." She showed her portfolio from her senior year in college, which calls to mind Cindy Sherman's work. "All of these women live inside me," King said. She had an awakening when she read in George Orwell's Animal Farm: "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." King spoke of feminism as inclusion, and that includes men. "We've moved from Archie Bunker as racist dolt to Raymond Barone as doofus," she said. How does that further feminism? King closed, "All eyes are on us to be the change we want to see in the world."

Angela Carstensen from the Convent of the Sacred Heart School in Manhattan moderated a panel with A.S. King, as well as Moïra Fowley-Doyle (The Accident Season, Penguin), Patrick Ness (The Rest of Us Just Live Here, HarperCollins), Daniel José Older (Shadowshaper, Scholastic) and Allan Stratton (The Dogs, Sourcebooks) on "Magical Thinking in the Real World."

Ness believes that because every book is a world made of words, "There's no such thing as a realistic book. All books are magic. All you have to do is establish a world where these things could actually happen." Older said he wanted to explore the reformation of the ghost story: "We're one of the only cultures that does not have a positive view of the dead." Fowley-Doyle wanted to delve into "family secrets and complicated first love." As an actor, Stratton said, "I imagine myself as the character." King noted that the need to escape is a theme in all of her books.

Jesse Karp of the Little Red School House in New York City moderated a panel of graphic novelists who focus on nonfiction: Don Brown (Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina & New Orleans, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), Claudia Dávila (Child Soldier: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War, Kids Can Press), Nathan Hale (The Underground Abductor, Abrams), Maggie Thrash (Honor Girl, Candlewick) and Maris Wicks (Human Body Theater, First Second).

Karp kicked off the discussion by positing that there are four towering works in the field of nonfiction graphic novels: Maus, Persepolis, Fun Home and Understanding Comics. Brown agreed, and added, "Maus settled forever whether graphic novels could handle historical truth." Hale asked the audience to imagine that all sports were dying out, and all that was left was pro wrestling--"guys with huge muscles in tights." Said Hale: "I read newspaper strips every day, Alley Oop, political comics. Newspaper comics aren't there anymore. I don't know how kids will pick up on that visual language." --Jennifer M. Brown


G.P. Putnam's Sons: Providence by Max Barry


Burgess Lea Press: Good Food, Good Books, Good Works

Buz Teacher and Janet Bukovinsky Teacher have founded Burgess Lea Press, a publisher that focuses on cookbooks and food-related books and donates all of its after-tax publishing profits to "hunger relief, farmland preservation, culinary education and other food-related issues." Authors have the choice to donate, too, or retain their profits.

Named after an 18th-century Quaker farm in Bucks County, Pa., Burgess Lea has a joint venture relationship with Running Press, the imprint of the Perseus Books Group co-founded by Buz Teacher in 1972. As a Running Press affiliate, Burgess Lea titles will appear in the Running Press catalogue and website, and Burgess Lea Press will be represented by the Perseus sales organization.

Titles for spring 2015 are Agricola Cookbook by Josh Thomsen with Kate Winslow and Steven Tomlinson, photographs by Guy Ambrosino; Mi Comida Latina, written, hand-lettered and illustrated by Marcella Kriebel; and Front of the House: Restaurant Manners, Misbehaviors & Secrets by Jeff Benjamin with Greg Jones, illustrated by Robert Neubecker.
 
Spring 2016 titles are Field & Feast: Sublime Food from a Brave New Farm by Dean Carlson with Ian Knauer and Andrew Wood and Heartland: Farm-Forward Food from the Great Midwest by Lenny Russo, photographs by Tom Thulen, fine art by George Morrison.

President Buz Teacher said, "We have a blended objective: to publish fine books while contributing to good works." Publisher Janet Bukovinsky Teacher added, "We offer our authors a socially responsible way to share in the creation of a fine cookbook while donating to beneficiaries that we all find meaningful."

Burgess Lea Press has begun its philanthropic work with a $10,000 contribution to Edible Schoolyard Project. Other beneficiaries will include Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture, the Vetri Foundation for Children, Drexel University Culinary Arts and Food Science, Urban Roots in St. Paul, Minn., and Adelante Mujeres in Oregon. The press is also a member of Newman's Own philanthropic enterprise program.


Amazon's 'Most Well-Read' Cities in U.S.

Seattle, where Amazon's corporate headquarters is located, led the online retailer's fifth annual list of the "most well-read cities in the U.S." The ranking was determined by compiling sales data for all book, magazine and newspaper sales in both print and Kindle format from April 2014 to April 2015, on a per capita basis in cities with more than 500,000 residents. This year's top 20:


Notes

Image of the Day: Jacksonland in Asheville

Malaprop's Bookstore/Cafe in Asheville, N.C., hosted a sold-out event with NPR's Morning Edition co-host Steve Inskeep, whose new book is Jacksonland: President Andrew Jackson, Cherokee Chief John Ross, and a Great American Land Grab (Penguin Press). The event was extra special--it was also the store's 33rd anniversary.

B.J. Leiderman, the composer of the Morning Edition theme song, was on hand, playing the familiar NPR music as the author came onto the stage. He spoke and presented a slideshow, then took questions from the audience. Afterward, he signed books, sketched pictures of Andrew Jackson, posed with the store's life-sized cutout of Nick Offerman, and was "all around a complete delight," said store manager Alsace Walentine.

Pictured: Before the event, the store held a VIP reception; Inskeep is on the far right.


Bookstore Video: Granada Books Says Goodbye

In a video posted on Facebook yesterday, Granada Books, Santa Barbara, Calif., offered a final tour of its now empty space after the bookstore's recent closure: "Well, after all this, we vacate the bookstore with wonderful memories and knowing we shared a brief moment in time with the people of Santa Barbara and our far-flung visitors. Many thanks from all of us." Granada Books launched an unsuccessful crowdfunding campaign in March to stay in business, but announced in April that it would have to close.


Personnel Changes at Picador, Bibliomotion

Declan Taintor has joined Picador as senior publicist. He was previously at powerHouse Books.                                                                              

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At Bibliomotion:

Alicia Simons has joined the company as senior director of marketing. She was formerly a senior consultant with Monaco Associates and earlier was a consultant and a brand manager at Campbell Soup.

Erin Leddy has been hired as marketing and social media assistant.


Media and Movies

Media Heat: Jamie Bartlett on Fresh Air

Today on Fresh Air: Jamie Bartlett, author of The Dark Net: Inside the Digital Underworld (Melville House, $27.95, 9781612194899).

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Tomorrow on Diane Rehm: Clark Elliott, author of The Ghost in My Brain: How a Concussion Stole My Life and How the New Science of Brain Plasticity Helped Me Get It Back (Viking, $27.95, 9780525426561).

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Tomorrow night on Conan: Nick Offerman, author of Gumption: Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America's Gutsiest Troublemakers (Dutton, $26.95, 9780525954675).


TV: Dickensian

Describing the project as "a sort of super-literary-hero mash-up," Deadline.com reported that filming has begun on filming Dickensian, "an ambitious 20-part BBC One period drama that brings together some of Charles Dickens's most iconic characters." The cast includes Stephen Rea as Inspector Bucket from Bleak House, Pauline Collins (Shirley Valentine) is Mrs. Gamp from Martin Chuzzlewit and Caroline Quentin (Dancing on the Edge) as Oliver Twist's Mrs. Bumble, as well as Peter Firth (Spooks) and Tuppence Middleton (The Imitation Game).

In a West London studio, the production team "has crafted an elaborate set replete with cobblestone High Street that includes a fully functioning pub, the eponymous Old Curiosity Shop and Fagin's Den. It also features a church and law courts amid 27 two-story buildings and seven back alley ways," Deadline.com noted.

Rea called Dickensian "the most beautiful re-working of the world of Dickens that you could ever imagine. The characters take on a fresh life, and any actor would be mad not to accept the challenge these great scripts offer."



Books & Authors

Awards: Danuta Gleed Literary

Rivka Galchen won the $10,000 (about $7,980) Danuta Gleed Literary Award--given annually by the Writers' Union of Canada for a "best first English-language collection of short fiction by a Canadian author"--for American Innovations. The jury said Galchen's stories "are studded with kernels of simple brilliance about our roundabout ways of thinking and acting. They begin rather dryly, as if you, the reader, in a contemporary Hemingway-like strategy, had always been a partner in their telling. Suddenly, we are swept along by the writer's delightful breadth of knowledge and intellect. Cracks in our everyday logic, the slipperiness of our regular life, are revealed. These innovative stories are, ultimately, meditations on the ordinariness, and the bizarreness, of life."


Book Brahmin: Karen White

Karen White is the author of 19 "grit lit" (Southern fiction) novels, including a mystery series set in Charleston, S.C., that began with The House on Tradd Street. Her newest book is The Sound of Glass (New American Library). She lives near Atlanta, Ga., with her husband and two children, and a spoiled Havanese dog (who appears in several of her books), Quincy.

On your nightstand now:

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. Beautiful novel set in World War II France. The story, the characters, the writing--I'm in awe.

Favorite book when you were a child:

Time at the Top by Edward Ormondroyd. I read this book for the first time in fifth grade, and I still vividly remember parts of it.

Your top five authors:

Margaret Mitchell, Harper Lee, Pat Conroy, Diana Gabaldon, Anne Rivers Siddons.

Book you've faked reading:

Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. Other authors tell me she's brilliant. I'll have to take their word for it because every time I try to read it, I feel so inadequate.

Book you're an evangelist for:

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. Not that he needs me to shout about the virtues of this book, but I'm absolutely obsessed with it. Even bought the juvenile edition for all of my small nieces and nephews.

Book you've bought for the cover:

Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussman. Total cover envy when I saw it.

Book that changed your life:

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. I had such a book hangover when I finished it that I couldn't read another book for a long time. So I started to write one. That turned out to be my first published book.

Favorite line from a book:

"Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird." --To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I still get chills reading that.

Which character you most relate to:

Scarlet O'Hara. She's a much-maligned heroine! I like that she was strong and did what she had to do to save the family farm regardless of personal sacrifice.

Book you most want to read again for the first time:

Gone with the Wind. I read it so fast that first time, I'd like to go back and savor it with no knowledge of how it ends.

Book you hid from your mother:

Sweet Savage Love by Rosemary Rogers. Apparently my mother didn't believe it was appropriate reading material for a seventh grader.


Book Review

Children's Review: Mango, Abuela, and Me

Mango, Abuela, and Me by Meg Medina, illus. by Angela Dominguez (Candlewick, $15.99 hardcover, 32p., ages 5-8, 9780763669003, August 25, 2015)

Meg Medina's (Tía Isa Wants a Car) elegantly crafted picture book traces a child's desire to communicate with her Spanish-speaking grandmother, and her perseverance to surmount their language barrier.

Angela Dominguez's (Maria Had a Little Llama) artwork fills in the parts of the story that remain unsaid. Abuela's expression reflects her sorrow at leaving "her sunny house that rested between two snaking rivers," where parrots nested in mango trees, and where her husband died. The story unfolds through young Mia's eyes, as she and her mother make space in her dresser for Abuela's things and set up a cot in her room. At first, neither child nor grandmother knows enough of each other's language to converse. Abuela shows Mia a red parrot's feather and a photo of tu abuelo, reminders of the home she left behind.

But then Mia remembers how her teacher helped her best friend Kim to learn English by labeling the things she needed most to know. Mia begins by naming the ingredients that go into the empanadas she and Abuela are making ("Dough," says Mia; "Masa," says Abuela, rolling it flat). Soon Mia is placing word cards on the lamp, pillow, flowers--even Edmund the hamster. Abuela "still calls my pillow a 'palo' and she says Edmund is a 'gángster,' " says Mia. But soon each teaches the other enough words to carry on a conversation. And when Mia finds a parrot in the pet store while buying food for Edmund, the bird joins the family--and their words--in pleasing mimicry of their newfound vocabulary.

Medina honors the beauty of holding onto one's history while also making room for new traditions. She demonstrates the richness to be gained by bridging two generations through the language dear to each. Her deceptively simple story models a way to close the communication gap and respect two languages and ways of life. Dominguez foreshadows the inevitable union of grandmother and child with a palette of warm shades of gold, red and pink. When Mia sets the parrot down between her and Abuela, the three connect visually, picking up the tones of the bird's feathers.

This uplifting and affirming tale makes clear that connecting with someone sometimes takes work and ingenuity, but the payoff is priceless. --Jennifer M. Brown, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Shelf Talker: In this elegantly crafted picture book, a girl and her grandmother surmount a language barrier through perseverance and love.


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