Shelf Awareness for Monday, January 22, 2007

Aladdin Paperbacks: The Islanders by Mary Alice Monroe and Angela May

Tordotcom: The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers: Just Pretend by Tori Sharp

Mandala Publishing: Big Panda and Tiny Dragon by James Norbury and Insight Editions

Simon & Schuster Fall Preview: Join us for a virtual panel featuring your favorite authors and their editors!

Tor Books: When the Sparrow Falls by Neil Sharpson

Liveright Publishing Corporation: Mrs. March by Virginia Feito

Zest Books: When Dogs Heal: Powerful Stories of People Living with HIV and the Dogs That Saved Them by Jesse Freidin, Robert Garofalo, Zach Stafford, and Christina Garofalo


Notes: Oprah Picks; AMS/PGW Shifts; Graphic Arts 'Emerges'

Oprah Winfrey has picked another book club title, which she'll unveil this Friday, January 26, according to the AP. This is her first pick in more than a year; she may have been gun shy after the James Frey disaster, which occurred just a year ago.

Despite the million little Frey problems, Oprah has not lost her touch. Her last pick, Elie Wiesel's Night, reportedly has sold 1.5 million copies because of the O endorsement.


Perseus Books and AMS have confirmed that Perseus is offering PGW publishers 70 cents for every dollar of their claims against bankrupt AMS if the publishers drop claims against AMS and sign distribution agreements with Perseus, according to today's Wall Street Journal. The deal must also be approved by the bankruptcy court.

PGW's largest publisher, Avalon, has been acquired by Perseus--and is more than in on this deal. Grove/Atlantic, PGW's second-largest publisher, has also agreed to go along. Perseus president and CEO David Steinberger estimated that the deal will cost his company about $20 million.

The article also looked at the economics of the AMS bankruptcy for one typical PGW publisher, Soft Skull Press, Brooklyn, N.Y. Publisher Richard Nash estimated that he is owed $110,000 by PGW and has $250,000 in debt, including $40,000 from family members that he considers a personal loan. He called the Perseus offer fair but said he will likely need to find new investors. "The landscape is changing, and the kind of informal cash-flow assistance that independents got from distributors is over," he told the paper.


In a related item, the most striking news heard on the floor at the ALA Midwinter meeting (and confirmed by several people) is that Levy Home Entertainment, whose main business is supplying mass market outlets with books, has opened an office in San Diego, where bankrupt Advanced Marketing Services is located, and hired several former AMS staffers.


A happier bankruptcy story concerns Graphic Arts Center Publishing, Portland, Ore., whose reorganization plan has been accepted by the court and creditors, allowing the company to emerge from Chapter 11 on February 1. The publisher and distributor had filed for bankruptcy last spring (Shelf Awareness, April 7, 2006). Graphic Arts Center inked a deal with Ingram last fall to be distributed by Ingram Publisher Services (Shelf Awareness, October 22, 2006). Ingram has a minority stake in the company.


The Mystery Writers Association has made nominations for this year's Edgar Awards; winners will be honored Thursday, April 26, in New York City. To unravel the best mysteries of the past year, go to the association's Web site


The National Book Critics Circle has also announced finalists for its 2006 awards; winners will be chosen and honored March 8.


Borders Group is looking to rent out a space in Minneapolis, Minn., where it opened less than four years ago, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported. The Borders is in Block E, a downtown mall that is "battling the perception that it is unsafe," as the paper put it. Borders will not close the store until it finds a new tenant. The Downtown Journal reported that a local real estate broker is advertising the 24,121-sq.-ft. space and indicated that the lease runs until 2023.

Only last year Borders closed its Uptown store in Calhoun Square in Minneapolis, because, it said, it had trouble renewing the lease. That store was one of two unionized Borders in the country.


The Port Jefferson Free Library, Port Jefferson, N.Y., has taken over the space across the street that used to house the Good Times Bookshop, the used bookstore that closed last July after 34 years of good times, the Daily News reported. In June, the library is opening a "library-run, library funded bookstore and young adult information station" in Good Times's old space. The store will sell used books, offer "a cozy reading room" and house the library's entire YA collection.


The Mystery Company, Carmel, Ind., has finished the move to a location more than three times larger than its previous site, the Indianapolis Star reported. The 6,000-sq.-ft. store will use some of the extra space for new programs, workshops and parties for children. Co-owner Jim Huang, who is also publisher of Crum Creek Press, called the new neighborhood "a mix of industrial and arts. People refer to this as Carmel's SoHo."


Effective today, Mary Beth Thomas joins HarperCollins as v-p, director of client services, reporting to Josh Marwell, president of sales. In the newly created position, she will oversee the day-to-day sales relationship with the company's distribution clients.

Thomas formerly worked at Simon & Schuster for 10 years, most recently as director of distribution client services.


Follett's Intellectual Property store, which opened last fall in Austin, Tex., is using a $75,000 subsidy from the University of Texas to promote books by university professors, the Daily Texan reported. Already the store has held a range of events centered on UT professors' books. The subsidy was part of a University package intended to lure an academic bookstore to town to complement the University Co-op.


Women Who Wine and Book Club Mamas are several of the clever names of book groups registered at Kepler's, Menlo Park, Calif., and A Great Good Place for Books, Oakland, mentioned in a long article about book groups on the Inside Bay Area site.

Speaking of book groups, Little Shop of Stories, the children's bookstore in Decatur, Ga., that opened in July 2005, has five book groups--Kids and Companions (children 8-11 with a parent or adult friend), Glamour Girls (preteen girls), Boys Adventure Club (boys 6-9), Mommies Who Read and Guys Who Read. For the last, it's "paper bag optional," as co-owner Diane Capriola put it. Next month the store is starting another book group that might resonate: it's the Remedial Harry Potter Book Group "for those of us who have read all of the books but have forgotten nearly all we've read."

Capriola said that the groups have been strong draws and have given the store "the chance to show parents what we are all about at Little Shop--getting great children's lit into the hands of our youngest customers and instilling in them an enthusiasm and interest in reading that will become life long."

Harper: The Taking of Jemima Boone: The True Story of the Kidnap and Rescue That Shaped America by Matthew Pearl

Image of the Day: Overlook's 35th

Last Thursday at its SoHo office, Overlook Press founder and publisher Peter Mayer (left) and his staff celebrated 35 years of "eclectic, independent" publishing, an event that drew 300 people and featured Overlook authors Ray Davies of the Kinks, Eva Zeisel (who was celebrating her 101st birthday in addition to Overlook's mere 35th), poet David Shapiro, Peter Quinn and Allen Kahn. The party was co-hosted by Mayer, Tracy Cairns of the Rookery Press and Nick Webb of Duckworth U.K.

Bronzeville Books: Rising and Other Stories by Gale Massey

Gray to Head Ingram Digital

James R. Gray, CEO of Coutts Information Services and MyiLibrary, which were acquired by Ingram last month, has been named president and CEO of Ingram Digital Ventures, which includes MyiLibrary and Vital Source Technologies. Gray replaces Michael F. Lovett, who becomes COO for Ingram Digital.

Ingram Digital services include digital content hosting for publishers and others; custom book publishing in digital and print versions (with the help of Lightning Source); distribution of e-books, digital audiobooks and other digital content; as well as digital content management services and distribution into the library and education markets.

In a prepared statement, Gray commented: "Our digital businesses have been carefully organized to complement and reinforce each other in order to provide our industry with a full array of digital asset management and distribution services."

KidsBuzz for the Week of 04.19.21

Elky Shatzkin Dies at 87

Eleanor Oshry Shatzkin, better known as Elky, a physicist, management consultant, political activist, COO of Two Continents Publishing and wife of the late Leonard Shatzkin and mother of Mike, Karen and Nance--a veritable publishing family--died last Friday of pancreatic cancer. She was 87.

Shatzkin, the first woman to graduate from the engineering school of Carnegie Tech, now Carnegie-Mellon, was a physicist, then a management consultant. In 1973, when her husband founded Two Continents, she became COO, where, as Mike Shatzkin wrote, "she continued her lifelong practice of training young people for a career in business. Her meticulous organizational discipline, her perfectionism, and her tireless work ethic combined with her relentless enforcement of the highest standards for every piece of work, were instilled into many young minds, many of whom remained among her friends for the rest of her life."

She and her husband retired after selling Two Continents in 1979.

Elky Shatzkin asked that in lieu of flowers, contributions be made to John Hall, the new Democratic U.S. representative from her district in Westchester County in New York, for whom she worked assiduously last year.

G.P. Putnam's Sons: The Turnout by Megan Abbott

G.L.O.W. - Galley Love of the Week
Be the first to have an advance copy!
The Starless Crown
by James Rollins

GLOW: Tor Books: The Starless Crown by James RollinsJames Rollins, known for his international thrillers, returns to fantasy in The Starless Crown, the lush and captivating first book in a planned series that is already garnering early-reader comparisons to J.R.R. Tolkien. In a realm of secret societies, mystic arts, epic beasts and nations on the verge of war, a young woman's apocalyptic premonition sends her and an unlikely band of companions on a dangerous journey to save the world. "[It has] action and suspense, inventive and deeply informed use of science and history, all driven by masterful plotting and a rich cast of characters drawn together in the face of doom," says Will Hinton, executive editor at Tor Books. "It feels original and classic at the same time, a thriller merged with an epic fantasy." Rollins has created an enthralling and complex new world that readers will delight in exploring. --Jennifer Oleinik, freelance writer and editor

(Tor Books, $27.99 hardcover, 9781250816771, January 4, 2022)


Shelf vetted, publisher supported


Media and Movies

Media Heat: Finding Oprah's Roots

Today the Martha Stewart Show is joined by Michael Lomonaco, chef and author of Nightly Specials: 125 Recipes for Spontaneous, Creative Cooking at Home (Morrow Cookbooks, $34.95, 9780060555627/0060555629).


Today on WAMU's Diane Rehm Show: Roy Richard Grinker, author of Unstrange Minds: Remapping the World of Autism (Basic Books, $16.95, 9780465027637/0465027636).


Today the Rachael Ray Show will have a book segment featuring Dr. Timothy Brantley, author of The Cure: Heal Your Body, Save Your Life (Wiley, $24.95, 9780471768258/0471768251). He will make several more calls on the show in February.


Tonight on the Charlie Rose Show: Henry Louis Gates, Jr., whose new book is Finding Oprah's Roots: Finding Your Own (Crown, $19.95, 9780307382382/ 0307382389).

University of Minnesota Press: Yang Warriors by Kao Kalia Yang, illustrated by Billy Thao

Books & Authors

Brunch and Bullets: ITW's Menu of Authors

The International Thriller Writers is beginning a twice-a-year thriller luncheon program called Brunch and Bullets, which will feature ITW authors who move from table to table during the meals. A quarter of net proceeds from the events will be donated to local chapters of Reading Is Fundamental.

The lunch launch takes place on March 17 in Los Angeles at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel. Participating authors will include Sandra Brown, David Morrell, John Lescroart, Gayle Lyndes, Gregg Hurwitz, Christopher Reich and Heather Graham.

The second Brunch and Bullets luncheon will be held May 5 at the Hyatt Regency Greenwich in Greenwich, Conn. The author menu includes Michael Palmer, Doug Preston, Joe Finder, Stephen Coontz and Linda Fairstein. At both events, all ITW authors in attendance will sign books.

For more information and to register (at least for the L.A. brunch), click here. Cost is $150 in advance; $175 at the door.

G.P. Putnam's Sons: Blush by Jamie Brenner

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:


Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name by Vendela Vida (Ecco, $23.95, 9780060828370/0060828374). "Clarissa Iverton learns that her father, who has just died, is not her father. A birth certificate that was hidden for years reveals that her birth father is a priest living in Lapland. Like her mother who left her 14 years ago, Clarissa abandons her fiancé to confront her past in Lapland, and, while living in perpetual cold among the indigenous people of the area, her mother's dark past is illuminated."--Mary Warner, Square Books, Oxford, Miss.

Dark Cosmos: In Search of Our Universe's Missing Mass and Energy by Dan Hooper (Collins, $24.95, 9780061130328/006113032X). "I think this may be most readable science book I've ever read. From the clandestine communications of Russian and American scientists during the cold war to the epic debates between Einstein and the proponents of Quantum Theory, Hooper really makes it easy to understand what theoretical physicists are looking for, even if they don't understand what might be lurking in the universe's nether regions."--Bill Terrance, Changing Hands Bookstore, Tempe, Ariz.


The Colony: The Harrowing True Story of the Exiles of Molokai by John Tayman (Scribner, $16, 9780743233019/0743233018). "An adept and absorbing history of the most notorious island in the Hawaiian chain, Molokai, where lepers were forcibly exiled. The humanity and suffering of Molokai's lepers come across as clearly as a scream across the ages."--Jessica Friedlander, Bay Books, Monterey, Calif.

For Ages 4 to 8

Adele & Simon by Barbara McClintock (FSG, $16, 0374380449). "Intricate, painstaking, and charmingly old-fashioned watercolor illustrations invigorate this charming Parisian tale of a forgetful little boy and his older sister. For fans of Ludwig Bemelmans, especially!"--Myra Poe, Harry W. Schwartz Bookshop, Milwaukee, Wis.

[Many thanks to Book Sense and the ABA!]


Head Games Distribution Set Straight

Our Friday story about the publicity garnered by Chris Nowinski, author of Head Games: Football's Concussion Crisis from the NFL to Youth Leagues  (Drummond Publishing, $14.95, 9781597630139/1597630136), misstated the book's distributor. It is Biblio, not NBN. Biblio is a sister company of NBN that specializes in distributing small trade publishers. Our apologies.


KidsBuzz: FSG BYR: The Adventure Is Now by Jess Redman
Powered by: Xtenit