Shelf Awareness for Wednesday, January 31, 2007

All Eyes Here - Pixel + Ink Books are coming!

Scholastic Press: The Light in Hidden Places by Sharon Cameron

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers: Black Brother, Black Brother by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Ballantine Books: Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Minotaur Books:  The City of Tears by Kate Mosse

Workman Publishing: How to Be a Conscious Eater: Making Food Choices That Are Good for You, Others, and the Planet by Sophie Egan

Grand Central Publishing: The Boy from the Woods by Harlan Coben

Sourcebooks Fire: The Burning by Laura Bates

Tin House Highlights at ABA Winter Institute: Various Ttiles


Notes: Reclaiming a Bookstore; New Rosetta Stone Owner

Victoria Tappy has expanded Copperfield's Coffee Café in Lebanon, Ohio, taking over space in her building that once housed the former Dickens' Book Shop, and created Copperfield's Coffee Café & Bookstore, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

In the bookstore, Tappy plans to focus on art, antiques, gardening, cooking, children's literature and books of local interest or by local authors.

Copperfield's Coffee Café & Bookstore is located at 3 S. Broadway, Lebanon, Ohio 45036; 513-933-0392.


Books-A-Million plans to build a two-story store in Towne Center at Cedar Lodge, an open-air shopping center at Jefferson Highway and Corporate Boulevard in Baton Rouge, La., the Greater Baton Rouge Business Report reported. The 40,000-sq.-ft. store will cost an estimated $4.5 million and is BAM's third store in Baton Rouge.


Jessica Bradshaw has bought Rosetta Stone Bookstore, Carbondale, Ill., a 12-year-old store that sells new and used books, according to the Southern. Bradshaw, 25, bought the store from Jessica Becker, who had bought the store four years ago from a collective that included Bradshaw's parents, Paula Bradshaw and Rich Whitney.

In the next year, Bradshaw, who told the paper she is busy reading Bookselling for Dummies, said she wants "to focus on getting more global titles out on the shelf, adding more inventory, continuing to host art shows, and have more group meetings, especially for writing groups."

Rosetta Stone Bookstore is located at 214 W. Freeman St., Carbondale, Ill. 62901; 618-457-5410.


The latest AMS shenanigans:

  • "Because less than a majority of the company's shares outstanding and entitled to vote were represented at the meeting," AMS's annual meeting was postponed to February 23 from January 24, the company announced.
  • Marc E. Ravitz, executive v-p of Grace & White, an investment advisory company that controls about 12% of AMS stock, has been appointed to the board of directors. (He apparently replaces Robert E. Robotti, the director who resigned earlier this month in protest over the timing of the annual meeting--not knowing of the impending bankruptcy filing, last year Robotti, who represented 7% of AMS stock, had joined the board and withdrawn his proxy battle concerning adding new board members.)


Rick Riordan Presents: Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes (a Pandava Novel Book 3) by Roshani Chokshi

Last Calls for Random House's Weisberg

Effective February 28, Don Weisberg is resigning as Random House's executive v-p, COO of North America, head of the Sales Group and head of Random House Canada. He will do some consulting for the company.

Chairman and CEO Peter Olson indicated that he had tried to retain Weisberg, who wants "to consider and to pursue new professional challenges."

Olson added: "As a sales rep and later as a sales head for more than a quarter-century at Random House, Inc., Bantam Doubleday Dell, and Bantam, he was responsible for the sales of many millions of our books, thousands of them bestsellers, and billions of dollars in sales revenues. A pragmatic and customer-oriented leader and thinker, Don ran the Sales Group with an open mind and a great heart.

"His most enduring legacy may well be the culture of cooperation he fostered between the Sales and the Distribution and Fulfillment divisions that is the bedrock of our excellent customer relationships and our thriving Random House Publishers Services business. Equally important, Don also developed a lot of terrific people over the years."

Effective immediately, Edward Volini, deputy chairman for the past four years, has also become the new COO and will oversee the Random House Sales Group and Random House of Canada as well as finance, legal, administrative and human resources.

Ingram: Booklove, an Exclusive Risk-Free Rewards Program!

BEA Bolsters International Offerings

BookExpo America, which is being held this year June 1-3 in New York City, is focusing in part on "the growing influence and spread of English language books in the global market." Some of the educational sessions geared to those interested in international publishing and bookselling will address digital issues and opportunities, the changing role of publishers and industry channel behavior, global export and sales trends of English-language titles.

BEA is also launching a Global Market Forum that will offer panels, data and more. One panel will survey "international key markets for English books in Europe and Asia, with comments and insights from major international players in this field. Another panel will highlight case studies and analyze challenges and opportunities both for big conglomerates and independent publishers alike."

BEA is also creating the China Business Round Table, an invitation-only forum of "top Chinese importers and exporters meeting in a rotating format with international sales representatives from select U.S. publishers."

In a statement, BEA event director Lance Fensterman said that the China Business Round Table represents "a dynamic way to connect the largest publishing market in the world with one of the fastest growing publishing markets in the world in a concentrated and meaningful way. This forum should not only foster new business opportunities but will also lead to a deeper understanding of how our two countries do business within the realm of publishing."

Batch for Books: Click Here to Meet at Winter Institute

Happy 200th Birthday to John Wiley & Sons

Congratulations to John Wiley & Sons, which officially launched its bicentennial celebration yesterday!

The company is distributing a video about its history, available to view or for downloading at Wiley executives will begin the new fiscal year on May 1 by ringing the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange, where its shares are traded. The company is also publishing an illustrated history, Knowledge for Generations: Wiley and the Global Publishing Industry, 1807-2007 by Timothy C. Jacobson, George David Smith and Robert E. Wright, which tells "Wiley's compelling story of sustained success, engaging personalities, and dramatic changes in the context of world events. The book also documents the long-term commitment of the Wiley family and its influence on the Company's business and culture."

Wiley began when Charles Wiley opened a print shop in lower Manhattan during the presidency of Thomas Jefferson. He and his son John published works by James Fenimore Cooper, Washington Irving, Herman Melville and Edgar Allan Poe, among many others.

In a statement, William J. Pesce, Wiley president and CEO, commented that usually "countries celebrate bicentennials, not companies." He is the 10th president of the company.

Chairman Peter Booth Wiley, one of the sixth generation of the Wiley family involved with the company, said, "Since our founding, Wiley has championed early American literature, produced textbooks that helped define fields of study, and published bestsellers and the works of Nobel Laureates. We have been an integral part of every generation's journey, a valued source of information to help them meet their needs and fulfill their aspirations."

For more information about Wiley and its bicentennial, go to

AuthorBuzz for the Week of 01.20.20

G.L.O.W. - Galley Love of the Week
Be the first to have an advance copy!
The Eighth Life
by Nino Haratischvili
trans. by Charlotte Collins
and Ruth Martin

Nino Haratischvili's The Eighth Life is a multigenerational saga that follows a Georgian chocolatier's family through the bloody, turbulent 20th century, beginning with the Russian Revolution. It's a historical epic on a scale rarely attempted and even more rarely executed this well. When Philip Gwyn Jones, editor and publisher-at-large with Scribe UK, encountered the book in Frankfurt in 2014, he wrote to his team: "The world of readers didn't know it wanted The Great Georgian Novel, but I'll wager that they will fall for its charms." Despite its near-1,000-page length, Gwyn Jones believes Haratischvili's "gargantuan history made real and personal and lived" will prove to be a bestseller in English, as it already is in German, Polish, and Dutch. --Hank Stephenson

(Scribe Publications, $28 trade paper, 9781950354146, April 14, 2020)


Shelf vetted, publisher supported


Media and Movies

Media Heat: Today Show's Alarms

This morning on the Today Show, Barry Glassner spreads the word about his new book, The Gospel of Food: Everything You Think You Know About Food Is Wrong (Ecco, $25.95, 9780060501211/0060501219).

Also, the Today Show learns a few facts from Dr. Marc Siegel, author of False Alarm: The Truth about the Epidemic of Fear (Wiley, $14.95, 9780470053843/0470053844).


The Book Report, the weekly AM radio book-related show organized by Windows a bookshop, Monroe, La., has the theme "Louisiana ghosts" and will feature two interviews:
  • Deborah LeBlanc, president of the Horror Writers Association and author of A Divided House (Leisure, $6.99, 9780843957303/0843957301).
  • Will Clarke, author of The Worthy: A Ghost's Story (S&S, $23, 9780743273152/074327315X).
The show airs at 8 a.m. Central Time and can be heard live at; the archived edition will be posted this afternoon.


Today the Martha Stewart Show cooks with Tom Colicchio, star of Bravo's Top Chef and author of Think Like a Chef (Clarkson Potter, $37.50, 9780609604854/0609604856) and Craft of Cooking: Notes and Recipes from a Restaurant Kitchen (Clarkson Potter, $37.50, 9780609610503/0609610503).


Today on the Diane Rehm Show: Sharon Begley, author of Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain: How a New Science Reveals Our Extraordinary Potential to Transform Ourselves (Ballantine, $24.95, 9781400063901/1400063906).


Today the Tavis Smiley Show talks with Stephanie Capparell about The Real Pepsi Challenge: The Inspirational Story of Breaking the Color Barrier in American Business (Free Press, $25, 9780743265713/0743265718).

Life Drawn: In Vitro by William Roy

Books & Authors

Pennie Picks Mistress of the Art of Death

Costco book buyer Pennie Clark Ianniciello has chosen Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin (Putnam, $25.95, 9780399154140/0399154140) as February's book pick. (Ariana Franklin is the pen name of Diana Norman.) She has highlighted the title in the current issue of Costco Connection, which goes to many of the warehouse club's members.

Ianniciello wrote: "Along with discovering first-time authors, another love of mine is reading stories that feature strong female protagonists. Diana Norman's Mistress of the Art of Death, this month's book buyer's pick, created such a character in Vesuvia Adelia Rachel Ortese Aguilar of Salerno.

"This short and short-tempered doctor is summoned to Cambridge to investigate the murder of four children. While her specialty is the study of corpses, Adelia must keep her identity hidden lest she be accused of witchcraft."

Beaufort Books:  The School Choice Roadmap: 7 Steps to Finding the Right School for Your Child by Andrew Campanella

Deeper Understanding

Robert Gray: Bringing Your Best Game Online

While I realize that last week's column could easily generate a book's--even a Borgesian library's--worth of "red cover" anecdotes, I'll restrain myself to just a few more observations, culled from recent bookseller emails about "the game."

Valerie Kohler, owner of Blue Willow Bookshop in Houston, Tex., says that in recent months, she has been giving a lot of thought to online searching as it relates to the game: "One of the downsides to the search engine offered through is that it is not particularly forgiving. But maybe we could have a place on the front page to click if a customer has a book mystery. It would take you to our e-mail with instructions (i.e. Did you see it on TV? Possible title?). We are definitely putting this idea on the talk-about sheet at our next weekly marketing meeting."

Finding a way to merge technology with bookseller instinct is the challenge. Koehler has always trained her staff to field title requests from customers with a healthy dose of well-masked skepticism. "When searching, use unique keywords," she advises. "Ask leading questions."

Assume they are a little confused. She cited a recent example. The customer was reading a great book and wanted copies for two friends. She described it as "a memoir with 'I Remember' in the title, in which a retired man is dying and telling his life story and he was a historian and he studied war and he lived on an island." Using these clues, Koehler "gently" enlightened the customer that she was actually reading Rules for Old Men Waiting, a novel. Result: pleased customer and two books sold.

I could go on. I shouldn't. How can I resist?

Susan Fox and her husband, Naftali Rottenstreich, opened Red Fox Books in Glens Falls, N.Y., last October. According to Susan, "People showed up on our first day with lists in their hands. They'd been waiting for us to open, so we really hit the ground running . . . lots of 'I read about this book, about a man . . . ' "

Some of her early favorites were a request for a Christmas book that "has Santa in it" and the person who was searching for "that book by the man who's going to be our next president."

Fox says her greatest success as a book detective thus far has been locating "a short story in a travel collection from a very cryptic description of 'I heard this guy on NPR.' But then again, I was stumped when someone else came in looking for 'the light blue book.' "

Marilyn Dahl, my colleague here at Shelf Awareness, recalls playing the game "usually with gusto" for many years. She contributes a variation on the theme, called "I know it's in paperback." This is a frequent customer demand for books that are at least 10 months shy of paperback status. Initial requests are delivered courteously enough, but when faced with--well, let's just call it what it is--reality, the customers' absolute certainty is quickly backed by evidence like "my mother has a copy" or "I saw it at Barnes & Noble" or "I saw it at Heathrow on my way back from Paris."

Dahl remembers the New Yorker cartoon in which a bookseller is shown tearing boards from a hardcover while saying to his customer, "You're right. It does come in paperback."

So, how can these labyrinthian debates, conversations, explorations, contradictions and ultimate solutions possibly occur online?

Valerie Kohler directed my attention to a recent article in Internet Retailer, which showcased a study of Web searches by online shoppers. According to the article, Inter-Engine researchers discovered that the "retail Web sites of major retail chains showed up in only 5% of holiday season 2006 Internet searches across 10 product categories, including digital cameras, iPods, plasma TVs and baby strollers . . . The study analyzed more than 2,000 results from searches conducted on the three leading search engines, Google, Yahoo and MSN. It found that the results directed online shoppers to online-only or independent multi-channel retailers six times more often than to major retail chains."

It sounds a lot like chaos, but could that also be opportunity I hear knocking?

I'll pose a question, even at the risk of sounding like Richard Dreyfuss in Close Encounters of the Third Kind, staring at a mound of mashed potatoes and muttering, "This means something."

If search engines don't play the game as well as booksellers do, can booksellers find a way to bring their best game online?--Robert Gray (column archives available at Fresh Eyes Now)


G.P. Putnam's Sons: The House of Deep Water by Jeni McFarland

AuthorBuzz: Berkley Books: Lavender Blue Murder (Tea Shop Mystery #21) by Laura Childs
AuthorBuzz: Atria Books: Cartier's Hope by M.J. Rose
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