Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Atria Books: The Silence in Her Eyes by Armando Lucas Correa

Labyrinth Road: Plan A by Deb Caletti

Harper Muse: Unsinkable by Jenni L. Walsh

Mariner Books: Everyone on This Train Is a Suspect by Benjamin Stevenson

S&s/ Marysue Rucci Books: The Storm We Made by Vanessa Chan

W by Wattpad Books: Night Shift by Annie Crown

Shadow Mountain: Under the Java Moon: A Novel of World War II by Heather B. Moore


AAP Sales: Up 0.6% in April

In April, total net book sales in the U.S. rose 0.6%, to $776.4 million, compared to the same period in 2016, representing sales of 1,205 publishers and distributed clients as reported to the Association of American Publishers.

In the first third of the year, total net sales rose 4.2%, to $3.1 billion, led by higher ed, up 28.5%, religious presses, up 4.5%, and professional books, up 4.2%. Relative laggards in the period were children's/YA, down 3.6%, and K-12, down 1.3%.

In April, strong sales in higher ed, physical and downloaded audio, adult hardcovers and children's/YA hardcovers and board books just made up for drops in sales in mass market, adult paperbacks and adult and children's/YA e-books.

Flatiron Books: Anita de Monte Laughs Last by Xochitl Gonzalez

Hurricanes Update: Several Florida Bookstores Open; Big Binc Donation

Much of Florida has no power and will likely continue that way for days and maybe weeks, and many people are coping with flood and wind damage as well. As a result, reports about how bookstores are faring are sparse, but we have learned of several stores that are open today.

Patrick Paperbacks, Indian Harbour Beach, was undamaged by water but has no power. Still, owner Elva Rella said on Facebook that the store will be open today and "be old school--no computer, everything by hand! Luckily I AM old school!"

Inkwood Books in Tampa has power and will be open today, the store reported on Facebook. "Thinking about how it was so much worse elsewhere and grateful that this little house is strong in high winds."

Inkwood owner Stefani Beddingfield also made a plea that residents shop local: "Small businesses need your business to get through these next few months. Beer, books, pasta, booze, coffee, pizza, pastries, wine, music, flowers, cards, gifts, yoga pants, bourbon, and more can all be found at local shops that make Tampa such a great place to live. I'm no climate scientist but I'm pretty sure not getting any of the above items delivered to your doorstep in bubble wrap and boxes may also be better for this paradise we're lucky to call home."

In other hurricane news, in a striking move, following Hurricane Harvey comics publisher Lion Forge donated $25,000 to the Book Industry Charitable Foundation (Binc) "to provide help directly to comic book retailers affected by this storm and beyond." (Sadly, with Hurricane Irma, "beyond" has already arrived.) Lion Forge advises comic book shop staffers in need of emergency help to contact it at 866-733-9064 or contact Binc.

Britannica Books: Britannica's Encyclopedia Infographica: 1,000s of Facts & Figures--About Earth, Space, Animals, the Body, Technology & More--Revealed in Pictures by Valentina D'Efilippo, Andrew Pettie, and Conrad Quilty-Harper

Books Are My Bag Hooks Up with eHarmony

For this year's Books Are My Bag campaign, the Booksellers Association of the U.K. and Ireland is partnering with online dating service eHarmony to promote independent bookstores "as the perfect destination for a romantic date," the Bookseller reported. Though the exact terms of the partnership haven't been nailed down, eHarmony will recommend bookstores with cafes and bars as "stimulating rendezvous spots" to its 1.3 million users in the U.K. The goal of the partnership is to "highlight the variety and vibrancy of bookshops as destinations."

The Books Are My Bag campaign is in its fifth year and slated to print its millionth tote bag, with this year's collectors' edition tote going on sale on October 7, the same day as the Booksellers Association's annual Bookshop Day celebration. The organization's indie-focused, Black Friday alternative, meanwhile, has been renamed from "Civilized Saturday" to "Saturday Sanctuary," and will be held November 25. And on November 21, the BA will hold the second annual Books Are My Bag Readers Awards, which features shortlists selected by booksellers and decided by readers.

GLOW: Carolrhoda Books: Pangu's Shadow by Karen Bao

Tyndale House Opening HQ Bookstore

Tydnale House is opening a bookstore in its headquarters in Carol Stream, Ill., where it will offer "our new products and bestsellers," Doug Walton, v-p of administrative services, said. The store will be open 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. on weekdays. All books will be discounted 20%.

"We thought a Tyndale bookstore would be a great way to serve our community and further our mission," Walton added. "It will feature more than 400 Tyndale books and Bibles, as well as a card section. We hope it becomes a destination for individuals and churches to see our new products, as well as a place that will minister to their spiritual needs."

Tyndale House is also holding, for the first time in its 55-year history, a warehouse sale, which takes place September 28-30.

Soho Crime: My Favorite Scar by Nicolás Ferraro, translated by Mallory Craig-Kuhn

Obituary Note: Jan Andrews

British-born storyteller and children's author Jan Andrews, who immigrated to Canada in her 20s and "wrote books for children of all ages, often inspired by the people and landscape of her adopted home," died September 2, Quillblog reported. She was 75. Last December, she was appointed to the Order of Canada "for her contributions to Canadian culture as a children’s book author and as a pioneer of Canada’s storytelling movement."

Andrews published her first book, Very Last First Time, in 1985 with Groundwood Books. Sheila Barry, Groundwood's president and publisher, said, "Jan's experience as a storyteller gave her a particularly strong voice as a writer, and she used her strong and passionate voice to write honestly and without condescension for child readers. My favorite book of hers is probably The Auction, which is a sad and wise book about a boy helping his grandfather get ready to sell the family farm. Really, though, like all the best stories, it's about more than one farm or one boy--it's about the inevitability of change and the importance of memory."

Andrews other books include Keri (1996) as well as the story collections Stories at the Door (2007) and Rude Stories (2010). British illustrator Francis Blake, who collaborated with her on both collections, observed: "She was always very careful to maintain the integrity of a story. If it came from a cultural background that held certain traditions, then she would be sensitive to those traditions. There were some First Nation stories that she knew belonged to certain individuals within the community, rather than the community as a whole, and she would always get permission from those people before telling the story herself."


Image of the Day: My Absolute Darling

Gabriel Tallent, author of My Absolute Darling (Riverhead Books), with head buyer Melinda Powers (left) and events coordinator Chorel Centers at Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, Calif., after an event on Thursday.

Powell's Hosts 'The Chalkies' Award Poll

Over the weekend, Powell's Books, Portland, Ore., ran an informal poll named "The Chalkies" on social media, asking readers to vote for their favorite chalkboard art appearing in the bookshop. The results of this "highly prestigious, highly fictional award show" are in, and the winner is the Oregon Trail chalkboard.


Cool Idea of the Day: 'Barnett 50 Books of Love'

Posted on Facebook Sunday by Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston, Tex.: "One of the wonderful folks in our community is turning 50 this month, and she has decided to celebrate by launching a campaign called 'Barnett 50 Books of Love.' Her goal is to donate 50 books to help rebuild classroom and school libraries. Want to help her reach that goal? Read her full story below, then visit our website."

Personnel Changes at IglooBooks/Bonnier

Lisa Corrado has joined IglooBooks, an imprint of Bonnier Publishing USA, as national account manager. She was formerly publishing sales manager at Guinness World Records.

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Katy Tur on Fresh Air

Fresh Air: Katy Tur, author of Unbelievable: My Front-Row Seat to the Craziest Campaign in American History (Dey Street Books, $26.99, 9780062684929).

CBS This Morning: Sally Quinn, author of Finding Magic: A Spiritual Memoir (HarperOne, $28.99, 9780062315502).

Live with Kelly and Ryan: Alan Cumming, author of The Adventures of Honey & Leon (Random House, $17.99, 9780399557972).

The View: Hillary Clinton, author of What Happened (Simon & Schuster, $30, 9781501175565).

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Action Bronson, co-author of F*ck, That's Delicious: An Annotated Guide to Eating Well (Abrams, $27.50, 9781419726552).

Movies: Mudbound

The first trailer has been released for Mudbound, based on Hillary Jordan's novel. Indiewire reported that director Dee Rees "is best known for her indie breakout Pariah, but she's about to earn a massive new following thanks to Mudbound. The movie premiered to major acclaim at Sundance earlier this year, where it sold to Netflix in a $12.5 million deal."

The cast includes Carey Mulligan, Jason Clarke, Jason Mitchell, Mary J. Blige, Jonathan Banks and Garrett Hedlund. Netflix, which is planning an Oscar campaign, will debut the film on its streaming platform and in select theaters November 17.

Books & Authors

Awards: German Book Prize; Baillie Gifford Nonfiction

The shortlist for the €25,000 (about $29,900) 2017 German Book Prize has been announced. The winner will be made known on October 9, just before the Frankfurt Book Fair. The shortlist consists of:

Romeo oder Julia by Gerhard Falkner
Das Floss der Medusa by Franzobel
Schlafende Sonne by Thomas Lehr
Die Hauptstadt by Robert Menasse
Die Kieferninseln by Marion Poschmann
Ausser Sich by Sasha Marianna Salzmann


A longlist has been released for the £30,000 (about $39,570) Baillie Gifford Prize, which "aims to reward the best of nonfiction and is open to authors of any nationality." The shortlist will be announced October 6, and a winner named November 16. This year's longlisted titles are:

Red Famine: Stalin's War on Ukraine by Anne Applebaum
The Islamic Enlightenment: The Modern Struggle Between Faith and Reason by Christopher de Bellaigue
Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
How to Survive a Plague by David France
Plot 29 by Allan Jenkins
Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe by Kapka Kassabova
I Was Told to Come Alone: My Journey Behind the Lines of Jihad by Soaud Mekhennet
An Odyssey: A Father, A Son and an Epic by Daniel Mendelsohn
A Bold and Dangerous Family: The Rossellis and the Fight Against Mussolini by Caroline Moorehead
To Be a Machine: Adventures Among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers and the Futurists Solving the Modest Problem of Death by Mark O'Connell
Belonging: the Story of the Jews, 1492-1900 by Simon Schama
Mr. Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense by Jenny Uglow 

Book Review

Review: Her Body and Other Parties

Her Body and Other Parties: Stories by Carmen Maria Machado (Graywolf Press, $16 paperback, 248p., 9781555977887, October 3, 2017)

Carmen Maria Machado subverts the known world and its expectations in her ingenious debut story collection, Her Body and Other Parties. Reading it is a heady and unnerving, sometimes horrifying, experience that opens up human identity as if it were a flower. From the dark corners of existence, from the cracks between pretensions, Machado conjures monsters and angels that, in the light of her deft yet sensuous prose, become painfully recognizable.

Eight stories make up the collection, and many contain elements of magical realism. Machado melds folklore and fabulist images with the raw realities of love, sex, queerness and alienation, forging a poetic sensibility that's full and alive with possibilities in a way that narrower realism could never match. There are also satirical elements in these stories, ironies embedded in the dreamy plots like shards of glass. Nowhere are these shards sharper than in "Especially Heinous," a novella-length send-up of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit that summarizes every episode of the long-running television show. Few writers can successfully blend trenchant wit aimed at machoism and misogyny with truly creepy gothic imagery, perhaps best exemplified by the ghosts of victimized girls who have "bells for eyes, tiny brass ones dangling from the top of each socket." Machado pulls everything together with bravura.

If morals are to be drawn from Machado's modern-day fables, they can be found in her fearless exploration of the human body, the mind and how both meet in one's sexuality. Though these stories shy away from preachiness, their moral power, wrought in metaphor, is undeniable. In "The Husband Stitch," a wife tries in vain to protect the unusual ribbon around her neck that is hers and hers alone. In "Eight Bites," a woman is haunted by the blob-like ghost of her former body, which she tried so hard to lose. And in "The Resident," the alienated protagonist finally understands that knowledge "was a dwarfing, obliterating, all-consuming thing, and to have it was to both be grateful and suffer greatly."

Her Body and Other Parties has so many beautiful lines and sophisticated passages that it would be hard to highlight them all. More importantly, though, it demonstrates that literature, when forthright and brave, can simultaneously dig deep within the self and reframe the greater world. --Scott Neuffer, writer, poet, editor of trampset

Shelf Talker: In her first story collection, fabulist Carmen Maria Machado brilliantly explores the bondage of the human body and the redeeming powers of love and sexuality.

The Bestsellers

Top-Selling Self-Published Titles

The bestselling self-published books last week as compiled by

1. The Time in Between (The Magdalene Series Book 3) by Kristen Ashley
2. What Do You Do With a Problem? by Kobi Yamada
3. Most Valuable Playboy by Lauren Blakely
4. Walker Island Romance Box Set by Lucy Kevin
5. Drunk Dial by Penelope Ward
6. Creed by Laurann Dohner
7. Fallen Heir (The Royals Book 4) by Erin Watt
8. With His Ring (The Brides of Bath Book 2) by Cheryl Bolen
9. Hate to Love You by Tijan
10. A Shade of Vampire 49: A Shield of Glass by Bella Forrest

[Many thanks to!]

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