Shelf Awareness for Friday, November 3, 2006

Scholastic Press: Beastly Beauty by Jennifer Donnelly

St. Martin's Essentials: Build Like a Woman: The Blueprint for Creating a Business and Life You Love by Kathleen Griffith

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

Bramble: Pen Pal Special Edition by J.T. Geissinger

Sourcebooks Landmark: Long After We Are Gone by Terah Shelton Harris

Soho Crime: Broiler by Eli Cranor

Berkley Books: We Love the Nightlife by Rachel Koller Croft


General Retail in October: Discounters Disappoint

Continuing a recent new trend, department stores had strong comparable-store sales in October while discounters lagged. The conclusion of many observers is, as the New York Times put it, "lower- and middle-class Americans are holding on tightly to their wallets even as energy prices fall and wages rise."

Among the striking numbers: sales at Wal-Mart stores open at least a year rose 0.5% in the month. In an effort to drive sales, the retailing giant will probably extend price cuts on 100 popular toys to electronics, too. Costco and Target comp-store sales rose 4% and 3.9%, respectively. Both gains were below analysts' expectations.

By contrast, Nordstrom comp-store sales rose 10.7%, Saks was up 9.2%, Penney rose 8.1%.

Speaking with the Times, Lynn Franco of the Conference Board described a kind of consumer limbo. "Consumers aren't expecting the economy to take off nor are they expecting it to head into recession." She added that consumer spending during the holiday season will likely stay "basically more or less the same."

University of California Press: May Contain Lies: How Stories, Statistics, and Studies Exploit Our Biases--And What We Can Do about It by Alex Edmans

Notes: New Stores, Closed Store, New Owners

Later next week, Under the Sycamore Tree Bookstore, a 2,800-sq.-ft. children's store, will open in the Prairie Crossing "conservation community" of Grayslake, Ill., an hour from Chicago, Bookselling This Week reported.

The store's opening is behind schedule because of construction delays on the new building, where it will occupy the ground level. But the grand opening celebration for the building sounds worth the wait: one author who will sign on Saturday, November 11, is Prairie Crossing resident Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants.

A former teacher, owner Jackie Harris told BTW that "the store is reminiscent of an old farm house, and we're going to put up a porch swing on our porch for story times."


Bookselling This Week also profiles Bobbie Bicket, who bought the 52-year-old Country Bookshop in Southern Pines, N.C., earlier this year after the daughter of the late Joan Scott put it up for sale.

Bicket had worked at Sears and helped a friend with a clothing shop but had no bookselling experience. Between the staff who "provide customer service beyond compare" and a week at Paz & Associates' bookselling school, she has learned a lot and loves "the constant change."


An item from the Appleton Post-Crescent in Appleton, Wis., in its entirety:

"The independent bookstore called The Bookworm closed Wednesday at N474 Eisenhower Drive, Buchanan, after two years in business.

" 'Sales were steady until gas prices went up, and it was as if somebody closed my door,' said owner Jane Sprangers.

" 'When the economy gets tough, people cut back on luxuries and books are one of them. It's tough out there for the little guy. But I wouldn't change a thing. I loved what I did.' "


Diane Krol, her husband, Frank, and son Michael are the owners of the new Paperback Exchange in Billerica, Mass., according to the Billerica Minuteman. Krol had bought a used bookstore in Burlington earlier this year. When it had to leave the space, she moved to a 14,000-sq.-ft. space in Stromboli's Plaza.

GLOW: becker&mayer! kids: The Juneteenth Cookbook: Recipes and Activities for Kids and Families to Celebrate by Alliah L. Agostini and Taffy Elrod, illus. by Sawyer Cloud

Second Quarter: Indigo Misses Magic of Harry Potter

Hurt by comparisons to "the biggest book release of 2005, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," Indigo Books & Music sales dropped 2.4% to C$182.2 million (about US$160.75 million) in the second quarter ended September 30. Sales in the Canadian retailer's superstores dropped 1.2%; sales in small-format stores were down 3%. Online revenues dropped 9.8% to C$17.5 million ($15.4 million).

The company had a net loss of C$1 million ($882,000) compared to net earnings of C$1.1 million ($970,000) in the same period a year earlier.

In a statement, CEO Heather Reisman commented: "The challenge of the Harry Potter anniversary in this quarter was compounded by a weaker line-up of new releases this summer."

A month ago, Indigo opened a Toys Store online that features more than 2,000 items for children up to 12 years old from suppliers including Lego, Playmobil and Cranium. The company is also selling the products in stores via online kiosks. Some "key" superstores are selling a few of the actual items. Indigo said early sales results "show the new Toys Store has been enthusiastically adopted by consumers."

G.P. Putnam's Sons: Assassins Anonymous by Rob Hart

Media and Movies

Movies: A Good Year, Stranger Than Fiction

Directed by Ridley Scott, A Good Year, based on the Peter Mayle novel set in Provence, opens a week from today, November 10. Russell Crowe stars. Other cast members include Albert Finney, Marion Cotillard, Didier Bourdon and Abbie Cornish. The tie-in edition (Vintage, $13.95, 0307277755) is out. The tie-in abridged CD (Random House Audio, $27.95, 0739339915) is read by Ben Chaplin.

Of course, A Good Year is a reworking of some of the material in Mayle's vintage work, his memoir A Year in Provence (Knopf, $13, 0679731148).

Newmarket is offering A Good Year: Portrait of the Film ($19.95, 1557047480), an illustrated book that, as the publisher put it, captures "the filmmakers' passion for Provence, its vineyards, and way of life, featuring a lengthy introduction by Ridley Scott and Peter Mayle on their unique collaboration. Includes behind-the-scenes notes and passages from the screenplay."


Speaking of flicks, Newmarket also is publishing Stranger Than Fiction: The Shooting Script ($19.95, 1557047502), the screenplay tie-in for the movie that also opens next Friday. Directed by Marc Forster, Stranger Than Fiction stars Will Ferrell, Emma Thompson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Dustin Hoffman and Queen Latifah.  


G.P. Putnam's Sons: Summer Romance by Annabel Monaghan

Media Heat: Oval Office Scribbles

Today on the Early Show: Mireille Guiliano, author of French Women for All Seasons: A Year of Secrets, Recipes, and Pleasure (Knopf, $24.95, 0307265234).


Today on Live with Regis and Kelly: Anderson Cooper, host of CNN's Anderson Cooper 360 and author of Dispatches from the Edge: A Memoir of War, Disasters, and Survival (HarperCollins, $24.94, 0061132381).


Today on NPR's On Point: Robert Greenfield, author of Exile on Main St.: A Season in Hell with the Rolling Stones (Da Capo, $24, 0306814331).


Today for a 20/20 look at privilege in the U.S., the show features:

  • Madeline Levine, author of The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids (HarperCollins, $24.95, 0060595841)
  • Tim Wise, author of White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son (Soft Skull, $13.95, 1932360689)


Tonight on Larry King Live: 60 Minutes' Andy Rooney, author of Out of My Mind (PublicAffairs, $26, 1586484168).


This weekend CBS Sunday Morning will feature Presidential Doodles: Two Centuries of Scribbles, Scratches, Squiggles & Scrawls from the Oval Office (Basic Books, $24.95, 0465032664) from the creators of Cabinet Magazine.


The Spoken Word, which will be aired on many public radio stations on Sunday evening at 8 p.m. (as well as some other times next week), features interviews with:

  • Jane Hamilton, author of A Map of the World and The Book of Ruth
  • Hampton Sides, author of Ghost Soldiers, who talks about his new book Blood and Thunder (Doubleday, $26.95, 0385507771)
  • Michael Perry, author of Truck, A Romance (HarperCollins, $24.95, 0060571179)
Also on the show: Tom Bell, who discusses this week's Book Sense picks; Robin Fischer, who talks about handselling; and Carla Jimenez, co-owner of Inkwood Books, Tampa, Fla., who recommends three titles.

For a listing of the radio stations playing the Spoken Word, click here.

Book Review

Mandahla: The Turkey Reviewed

Turkey: An American Story by Andrew Smith (University of Illinois Press, $29.95 Hardcover, 9780252031632, November 2006)

Food historian Andrew F. Smith, editor-in-chief of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America, knows his turkey and struts his stuff in this fact-laden book. But it's not all scholarly palaver and footnotes; he has a dry, academic wit that spices up the data. With chapters like "The English Turkey; or, How the Turkey Cooked the Christmas Goose," the author serves up many delights: the first scientific description of a turkey was in Italy (1533, Gallo peregrino); Americans consume turkey at the rate of 240 million birds each year; Aztecs deified the turkey as Chalchiuhtotolin, the Jeweled Bird; incubators were used to hatch poultry in ancient Egypt. Who knew there was so much more to the turkey world than the Broad-breasted White? We almost lost the wild bird early in the 20th century, but Congress passed a law in 1905 to protect the sale of frozen wild turkeys between states. And next time you pull apart the wishbone, you can casually mention that the bone was originally called the bird's merrythought. Reading this book is like opening up a dictionary--you start with one word and pretty soon you're caught up in the etymology of another.
Inveterate cookbook readers will find the historical recipes interesting, although not, perhaps, compelling--turkey stuffed with a pound of beef mixed with three quarters of a pound of suet? Balloons crafted from turkeys' crops? (Why?) Once you get past the usual dire warnings about maximum fowl safety, you'll find gems such as "If it be in the Raspis season, you shall put a handful of them over, if not, some Pomegranate," or instructions for the mysteriously-named "Turkey, &C. in Jelley," with the suggestion that "a few nastertium flowers stuck here and there look pretty." There's a 1909 recipe for Mock Turkey that carefully explains how to shape the vegetarian entrée, including "put a piece of dry macaroni into the leg for the bone," and except for the faux bones, it looks pretty tasty. One 1911 cookbook referred to, Good Things to Eat as Suggested by Rufus, should be snapped up by a publisher for the title alone.
For those who love turkey and all the trimmings, or who have always wondered about the origin of "talking turkey," or pondered the beginning and eventual demise of turkey racing (you know who you are), The Turkey is just the thing. For booksellers bored with Thanksgiving displays of picture books or serious histories, here is a great display centerpiece whose cover has not just a turkey, but also a pumpkin. Easy as pie.--Marilyn Dahl

The Bestsellers

The Book Sense/MPIBA List

The following were the bestselling titles during the week ended Sunday, October 29, at member stores of the Mountains and Plains Independent Booksellers Association, as reported to Book Sense:

Hardcover Fiction

1. For One More Day by Mitch Albom (Hyperion, $21.95, 1401303277)
2. Thirteen Moons by Charles Frazier (Random House, $26.95, 0375509321)
3. Lisey's Story by Stephen King (Scribner, $28, 0743289412)
4. The Road by Cormac McCarthy (Knopf, $24, 0307265439)
5. What Came Before He Shot Her by Elizabeth George (HarperCollins, $26.95, 0060545623)
6. The Lay of the Land by Richard Ford (Knopf, $26.95, 0679454683)
7. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen (Algonquin, $23.95, 1565124995)
8. Under Orders by Dick Francis (Putnam, $25.95, 0399154000)
9. The Collectors by David Baldacci (Warner, $26.99, 044653109X)
10. Echo Park by Michael Connelly (Little, Brown, $26.99, 0316734950)
11. One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson (Little, Brown, $24.99, 0316154849)
12. Abundance by Sena Jeter Naslund (Morrow, $26.95, 0060825391)
13. Hundred Dollar Baby by Robert B. Parker (Putnam, $24.95, 0399153764)
14. The Mission Song by John le Carre (Little, Brown, $26.99, 0316016748)
15. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield (Atria, $26, 0743298020)

Hardcover Nonfiction

1. The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama (Crown, $25, 0307237699)
2. State of Denial by Bob Woodward (S&S, $30, 0743272234)
3. The Innocent Man by John Grisham (Doubleday, $28.95, 0385517238)
4. Blood and Thunder by Hampton Sides (Doubleday, $26.95, 0385507771)
5. I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron (Knopf, $19.95, 0307264556)
6. The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid by Bill Bryson (Broadway, $25, 076791936X)
7. Culture Warrior by Bill O'Reilly (Broadway, $26, 0767920929)
8. Marley & Me by John Grogan (Morrow, $21.95, 0060817089)
9. Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris (Knopf, $16.95, 0307265773)
10. Life After Death by Deepak Chopra (Harmony, $24, 0307345785)
11. Cesar's Way by Cesar Millan and Melissa Jo Peltier (Harmony, $24.95, 0307337332)
12. The World Is Flat by Thomas L. Friedman (FSG, $30, 0374292795)
13. Thunderstruck by Erik Larson (Crown, $25.95, 1400080665)
14. The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan (Penguin Press, $26.95, 1594200823)
15. I Like You by Amy Sedaris (Warner, $27.99, 0446578843)

Trade Paperback Fiction

1. The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (Penguin, $14, 0143037145)
2. Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See (Random House, $13.95, 0812968069)
3. The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (Norton, $13.95, 0393328627)
4. March by Geraldine Brooks (Penguin, $14, 0143036661)
5. The Sea by John Banville (Vintage, $12.95, 1400097029)
6. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (Riverhead, $14, 1594480001)
7. On Beauty by Zadie Smith (Penguin, $15, 0143037749)
8. The Lighthouse by P.D. James (Vintage, $13.95, 0307275736)
9. Saving Fish From Drowning by Amy Tan (Ballantine, $14.95, 034546401X)
10. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult (Washington Square, $14, 0743454537)
11. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (HarperSanFrancisco, $13.95, 0061122416)
12. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (Back Bay, $15.99, 0316154547)
13. The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd (Penguin, $14, 0143036696)
14. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (Penguin, $15, 0143034901)
15. The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai (Grove, $14, 0802142818)

Trade Paperback Nonfiction

1. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls (Scribner, $14, 074324754X)
2. Running With Scissors by Augusten Burroughs (Picador, $14, 0312425414)
3. The Tender Bar by J.R. Moehringer (Hyperion, $14.95, 0786888768)
4. The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson (Vintage, $14.95, 0375725601)
5. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz (Amber-Allen, $12.95, 1878424319)
6. The River of Doubt by Candice Millard (Broadway, $14.95, 0767913736)
7. 1491 by Charles C. Mann (Vintage, $14.95, 1400032059)
8. Bad President by R.D. Rosen, Harry Prichett and Rob Battles (Workman, $8.95, 0761146202)
9. Collapse by Jared Diamond (Penguin, $17, 0143036556)
10. Teacher Man by Frank McCourt (Scribner, $15, 0743243781)
11. An Inconvenient Truth by Al Gore (Rodale, $21.95, 1594865671)
12. The City of Falling Angels by John Berendt (Penguin, $15, 0143036939)
13. Dreams From My Father by Barack Obama (Three Rivers, $14.95, 1400082773)
14. A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle (Plume, $14, 0452287588)
15. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki (Warner, $16.95, 0446677450)

Mass Market

1. The Camel Club by David Baldacci (Warner, $7.99, 0446615625)
2. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman (HarperTorch, $7.99, 0060515198)
3. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card (Tor, $6.99, 0812550706)
4. Crusader's Cross by James Lee Burke (Pocket, $7.99, 0743277201)
5. Tyrannosaur Canyon by Douglas Preston (Forge, $7.99, 0765349655)
6. School Days by Robert B. Parker (Berkley, $7.99, 0425211347)
7. A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin (Bantam, $7.99, 055358202X)
8. Lord of the Flies by William Golding (Berkley, $7.95, 0399501487)
9. The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly (Warner, $7.99, 0446616451)
10. The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy (Warner, $7.50, 0446618128)

Children's Titles

1. The End (A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 13) by Lemony Snicket, illustrated by Brett Helquist (HarperCollins, $12.99, 0064410161)
2. Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd (HarperCollins, $7.99, 0694003611)
3. Eragon by Christopher Paolini (Knopf, $10.95, 0375826696)
4. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer (Megan Tingley, $8.99, 0316015849)
5. The Eternal Flame (The Great Tree of Avalon, Book 3) by T.A. Barron (Philomel, $19.99, 0399242139)
6. Pirateology by Captain William Lubber (Candlewick, $19.99, 0763631434)
7. The Lost Colony (Artemis Fowl, #5) by Eoin Colfer (Miramax Books, $16.95, 0786849568)
8. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak (HarperCollins, $16.95, 0060254920)
9. When Sheep Sleep by Laura Joffe Numeroff, illustrated by David M. McPhail (Abrams, $15.95, 0810954699)
10. Blizzard of the Blue Moon (Magic Tree House #36) by Mary Pope Osborne, illustrated by Sal Murdocca (Random House, $11.95, 0375830375)
11. Mommy? by Arthur Yorinks and Maurice Sendak (Michael Di Capua, $24.95, 0439880505)
12. Inkheart by Cornelia Funke (Chicken House, $7.99, 0439709105)
13. New Moon by Stephenie Meyer (Megan Tingley, $17.99, 0316160199)
14. Peter and the Shadow Thieves by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson (Disney, $18.99, 078683787X)
15. Is There Really a Human Race? by Jamie Lee Curtis, illustrated by Laura Cornell (Joanna Cotler, $16.99, 0060753463)

[Many thanks to Book Sense and MPIBA!]

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