Shelf Awareness for Thursday, April 7, 2022

Inkyard Press: Ring of Solomon by Aden Polydoros

Chronicle Prism: Men in Blazers Present Gods of Soccer: The Pantheon of the 100 Greatest Soccer Players (According to Us) by Roger Bennett, Michael Davies, and Miranda Davis; illustrated by Nate Kitch

Neal Porter Books: I Don't Care by Julie Fogliano, illustrated by Molly Idle and Juana Martinez-Neal

Tor Nightfire: The Spite House by Johnny Compton

Candlewick Press (MA): Build a House by Rhiannon Giddens, illustrated by Monica Mikai

Popular Book Company (Usa): Complete Curriculum Success Series, Math Success Series, English Success Series, 365 Fun Days

Yen on: Fox Tales by Tomihiko Morimi, translated by Winifred Bird

Quotation of the Day

'I Love Visiting Bookstores When I'm Traveling'

"Independent bookstores are among my favorite places in any given city and I love visiting bookstores when I'm traveling. It's just such a pleasure to spend time in those spaces. My first three novels were published by a very small press, and I'll never forget how independent booksellers championed those books and am forever grateful for the support that has continued throughout my career."

--Emily St. John Mandel, whose new novel, Sea of Tranquility (Knopf), is the #1 April Indie Next List pick, in a q&a with Bookselling This Week

Tiny Reparations Books: Gone Like Yesterday by Janelle M. Williams


2023 Winter Institute to Be Held in Seattle, Wash.

The American Booksellers Association will hold the 18th Winter Institute in Seattle, Wash., February 20-23, 2023. The event, which begins on Presidents Day, will be held at the Sheraton Hotel and Washington State Convention Center.

If the stars align, this will be the first in-person Winter Institute since the one in Baltimore, Md., in January 2020.

GLOW: Disney-Hyperion: Simon Sort of Says by Erin Bow

An Early Look at IBD Plans

With just over three weeks to go until Independent Bookstore Day 2022, bookstores around the country are finalizing their plans for the annual celebration of bookselling. Earlier this week, author Angie Thomas was named IBD Ambassador.

After a two-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Brooklyn Bookstore Crawl is returning. From Saturday, April 23, through Saturday, April 30, customers can pick up a Bookstore Crawl passport at any of the 21 participating independent bookstores and collect signatures and stamps throughout the week.

Customers who collect at least five stores will receive a coupon good for 25% off a single purchase at any participating store, and at 7 p.m. on IBD, the Center for Fiction will host the Bookstore Crawl Afterparty, with additional prizes for book lovers who have collected the most stamps and signatures. 

On IBD, the Center for Fiction will also host an open house in the afternoon and family day on the plaza at 300 Ashland, featuring a mobile book fair for young people, along with musical performances.

More information and the full list of participating stores can be found here.

Five independent bookstores--Left Bank Books in St. Louis, Mo., Raven Book Store in Lawrence, Kan., Prairie Lights in Iowa City, Iowa, A Room of One's Own in Madison, Wis., and Moon Palace Books in Minneapolis, Minn.--are partnering with Europa Editions for a virtual event on IBD to celebrate the release of Mieko Kawakami's new novel, All the Lovers in the Night. The event, scheduled for 7 p.m. Central on April 30, will feature Kawakami in conversation with Nadja Spiegelman, editor-in-chief of Astra Magazine.

At Titcomb's Bookshop in East Sandwich, Mass., IBD festivities will begin at 9 a.m. with a children's book scavenger hunt. Children will be given scavenger hunt sheets with prompts to find books throughout the store, such as "find a book with your favorite animal on the cover," and there will be separate sheets for children under six and children over six. Once they complete the scavenger hunt, children will receive a free book and doughnut and will be entered into a raffle.

The party will continue at 6:30 p.m., with book lovers invited to return for a raffle, bookstore bingo, literary mocktails, snacks and live music performed by singer-songwriter Gabriella Simpkins. While the children's event is free, the evening event will cost $8 per ticket.

And in Edwardsville, Ill., the IBD celebrations at Afterwords Books will include an annual sidewalk sale as well as visits from a dozen local authors. Customers who visit between noon and 5 p.m., take a photo in front of the store's sign and post it on social media will be entered to win a tote bag filled with 2022 IBD merch and other treats. There will also be $15 "Blind Date with a Book & Tea" bundles. Store owner LuAnn Locke told the Edwardsville Intelligencer that there will be 20 winners for the tote bag raffle.

Harper: Stone Blind by Natalie Haynes

Story & Song Bookstore Bistro Creates Arts & Culture Nonprofit

Mark and Donna Paz Kaufman, owners of Story & Song Bookstore Bistro in Amelia Island, Fla., have established a not-for-profit arts organization called the Story & Song Center for Arts & Culture. 

According to the Fernandina Observer, the support Story & Song received during the pandemic inspired the bookstore's owners to create the nonprofit, which allows the couple to "leave all we've worked hard for to the private operating foundation to ensure that Story & Song remains as our gift to the community long after we're gone."

Community events and arts programming have been a major part of Story & Song since its founding in 2018, and book clubs, author talks, TED talks, film nights, children's storytime sessions and more have been free for community members. During the pandemic many of those programs went virtual, and Story & Song did fundraisers in partnership with the Nassau County Boys & Girls Club and started hosting music lessons with Arts Alive Nassau.

"Each day people would ask how Story & Song was faring during the tremendous challenge of surviving the pandemic, and we listened to people tell us how much Story & Song had come to mean to them personally," Donna Paz Kaufman said.

BINC: Carla Gray Memorial Scholarship

International Update: 'Excitement & International Buzz' at LBF; Dymocks Opening New Flagship Store

Publishers are "overwhelmingly glad to be back in person" at London Book Fair, which is being held this week as the first physical fair in three years. The Bookseller reported that a "spirit of international collaboration was in the air, though absences from America have been noted, with reports of last-minute cancellations due to Covid disrupting meetings for some European publishers."

LBF director Andy Ventris said: "There's no denying that it has been a trying few years for everyone in the publishing industry but feeling the excitement building in Olympia as exhibitors and attendees arrive it as though no time at all has passed. The London Book Fair is a unique moment in the publishing calendar and to come together in person again for the first time since 2019 is genuinely moving, reminding us of the unbeatable experience of meeting face-to-face. We hope that attendees have a wonderful fair, learning from our expert speakers, doing business, meeting old friends and making new connections. May the return of LBF mark an exciting new chapter for publishing as we look ahead to what is next for readers and publishers alike."

The Bookseller also noted that "for some the buzz was bittersweet. Olha Mukha, culture ambassador of Lviv and program director of the Ukrainian Association of Cultural Studies, said she had a "marked increase" in meetings and general interest from publishers because of the Russian invasion. 

"It is pretty bitter feeling--that we've been discovered because of this, the war in Russia, and not just because of our culture and literature which is very rich and long-term," she said. "The interest is growing. Our main challenge is growing awareness of Ukrainian publishing. I have many more meetings this year but it's funny, publishers are still a bit lost with us--they don't know where to start. Previously, they [regarded] us as a bit exotic, now it's like, oh, this is very traumatic. Commercial publishing houses know what they want--biographies of Zelensky--but some of the bigger publishers, they don't know and they don't know what we have to offer. Ukrainian culture is so rich. They're all going to be surprised."

Frankfurter Buchmesse posted on Facebook: "#Read, understand, #publish #Ukraine-- impressions from the Ukrainian stand at @londonbookfair #LBF22."


Australian bookstore chain Dymocks is opening a new flagship store in Adelaide "inside Rundle Mall's mothballed Regent Theatre after an expensive refit," InDaily reported. The company had been searching for a new home in the Adelaide Central Business District since its flagship store on the eastern end of the mall closed in April last year, and has been operating a much smaller pop-up shop on level one of the Myer Centre in the interim.

Dymocks said the new store, scheduled to open April 20, will be South Australia's largest bookshop, occupying the entire first floor of the arcade. "Dymocks is honoring the theatre's cultural prominence by maintaining the intricate wall and ceiling arabesque decorations and restoring 10 pieces of former theatre furniture found in the basement, including tub chairs, a club lounge and sofa," the retailer noted.

Dymocks managing director Mark Newman said the Regent Theatre store will be among the company's top three in Australia by size: "We were obviously looking for a space that was sufficiently large to house a flagship bookstore.... We were looking for something that's an iconic, interesting space that we could create a really interesting retail environment."


Indian bookseller Storyteller Bookstore in Kolkata shared a familiar, unpleasant observation in a Twitter thread: "At the #KolkataBookFair people pulling their phones out and checking Amaz*n prices and clicking pictures. Retailers now have to deal with a Pandemic AND predatory e-commerce. Come check out the book at our cost but buy online. This madness has to stop somewhere. #NoRespect.... 

"For those who ask how do bookshops survive? Because we go out of our way to educate the customer and make sales. Not by cold calculated shortcut monopolies. Where one buys is their choice. Least you can do is respect someone else's space." --Robert Gray

Obituary Note: Patricia MacLachlan

Patricia MacLachlan

Patricia MacLachlan, an award-winning author "known to millions of young readers as the author of Sarah, Plain and Tall, a novel about two motherless farm children and the gentle woman who comes to the prairie to make them whole," died March 31, the Washington Post reported. She was 84.

MacLachlan wrote more than 60 children's books during her career. She "deplored children's books of the moralizing kind, those sledgehammers of literature wielded by grown-ups determined to pound ideas into young minds," the Post noted.

"Among some writers there's this ghastly notion that one has to teach children lessons," she once told the Orange County Register. "That's condescending and incorrect. It's not what writing is about. You write to find out what you're thinking about, to find out how you feel."

Sarah, Plain and Tall received the Newbery Medal and has sold more than seven million copies since it first appeared in 1985. The book was adapted into a 1991 Hallmark Hall of Fame TV movie starring Glenn Close as Sarah and Christopher Walken as Jacob Witting, the father of Anna and Caleb. MacLachlan co-wrote the script.

She also wrote several sequels, including Skylark (1994), Caleb's Story (2001), More Perfect Than the Moon (2004) and Grandfather's Dance (2006). MacLachlan's other books include Journey (1991), Baby (1993) and Cassie Binegar (1982). She wrote several books with her daughter, Emily MacLachlan Charest, including Once I Ate a Pie (2006), Fiona Loves the Night (2007), I Didn't Do It (2010), Cat Talk (2013) and Little Robot Alone (2018).

"Children read with a certain belief and vision about finding themselves in literature," MacLachlan said when she received a 2002 National Humanities Medal. "Literature changes their lives. They have a sense of closeness with literature that speaks for them."

MacLachlan's connection to the Wyoming of her youth--and to the world of Sarah, Plain and Tall--was such that throughout her life, she kept a souvenir of the prairie, the Post noted. 

"I carry a small bag of prairie dirt to remind me of where I began--the prairie that I miss and still dream about," she said in an interview published on the website Two Writing Teachers. "It is sort of like a charm from my childhood. I had a wonderful childhood with wonderful parents who were storytellers and educators. They loved and respected children. So, my little bag of prairie reminds me of them, too."


#NationalPoetryMonth: The Bookstore's Window Display

The Bookstore, Lenox, Mass., posted a photo on Instagram of its latest front window display, noting: "Our National Poetry Month window is up now, featuring some of the amazing anthologies from our superlative poetry section. Stop in soon to browse, and check out our video Poetry Break every day!"

Costco Picks: Girls of Flight City

Alex Kanenwisher, book buyer at Costco, has selected Girls of Flight City by Lorraine Heath (‎Morrow, $16.99, 9780063078536) as the pick for April. In Costco Connection, which goes to many of the warehouse club's members, Kanenwisher writes:

"What do you get when you combine Texas, World War II, members of the Royal Air Force and the women who trained them? This month's book buyer's pick: Girls of Flight City.

"Inspired by true events, this work of historical fiction tells the story of Jessie, Rhonda and Kitty, who all have a role in teaching young cadets how to fly. Each of these women does her part to help bring the war to a victorious end. They all have personal battles as well."

Personnel Changes at Simon & Schuster; Holiday House/Peachtree/Pixel+Ink

At Simon & Schuster:

Heather Musika has been promoted to director of national accounts, managing national bookstore chain and jobber business for the company's adult and audio publishing programs.

Lexi Dumas has been promoted to director of national accounts, managing business with Readerlink and other distributors, mass merchandisers, warehouse clubs, airports, supermarkets and drugstores for the company's adult and audio publishing programs.


Melissa See has been hired as digital marketing coordinator at Holiday House, Peachtree, and Pixel+Ink. She recently was a marketing intern for Includas Publishing.

Media and Movies

Media Heat: Elizabeth Alexander on the Takeaway

NPR's Takeaway: Elizabeth Alexander, author of The Trayvon Generation (Grand Central, $22, 9781538737897).

This Weekend on Book TV: The New Orleans Book Festival

Book TV airs on C-Span 2 this weekend from 8 a.m. Saturday to 8 a.m. Monday and focuses on political and historical books as well as the book industry. The following are highlights for this coming weekend. For more information, go to Book TV's website.

Saturday, April 9
8:55 a.m. Eric Jay Dolin, author of Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America's Most Notorious Pirates (‎Liveright, $18.95, 9781631496226). (Re-airs Saturday at 8:55 p.m.)

10 a.m. Amy Zegart, author of Spies, Lies, and Algorithms: The History and Future of American Intelligence (Princeton University Press, $29.95, 9780691147130). (Re-airs Saturday at 10 p.m.)

2:45 p.m. Tomiko Brown-Nagin, author of Civil Rights Queen: Constance Baker Motley and the Struggle for Equality (Pantheon, $30, ‎ 9781524747183). (Re-airs Sunday at 2:45 a.m.)

3:45 p.m. Walter Stahr, author of Salmon P. Chase: Lincoln's Vital Rival (Simon & Schuster, $35, 9781501199233). (Re-airs Sunday at 3:45 a.m.)

5:30 p.m. Timothy Walker, author of Sailing to Freedom: Maritime Dimensions of the Underground Railroad (University of Massachusetts Press, $27.95, 9781625345929). (Re-airs Sunday at 5:30 a.m.)

6:30 p.m. Neal Thompson, author of The First Kennedys: The Humble Roots of an American Dynasty (Mariner Books, $28, 9780358437697). (Re-airs Sunday at 6:30 a.m.)

Sunday, April 10
8 a.m. Laura Shin, author of The Cryptopians: Idealism, Greed, Lies, and the Making of the First Big Cryptocurrency Craze (PublicAffairs, $32, 9781541763012). (Re-airs Sunday at 8 p.m.)

9:10 a.m. Albert Bourla, author of Moonshot: Inside Pfizer's Nine-Month Race to Make the Impossible Possible (Harper Business, $29.99, 9780063210790). (Re-airs Sunday at 9:10 p.m.)

10 a.m. Kevin Rudd, author of The Avoidable War: The Dangers of a Catastrophic Conflict between the U.S. and Xi Jinping's China (PublicAffairs, $32, 9781541701298).  (Re-airs Sunday at 10 p.m.)

2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Coverage of the inaugural New Orleans Book Festival, which took place in March at Tulane University. Highlights include:

  • 2 p.m. Walter Isaacson, Jon Meacham and John Barry discuss the history of social movements in America.
  • 2:49 p.m. Eddie Glaude and Jon Meacham discuss the legacies of James Baldwin and John Lewis.
  • 3:32 p.m. Jarvis DeBerry, Bakari Sellers and Clint Smith discuss the South and its future.
  • 5 p.m. Michael Lewis and Malcolm Gladwell discuss writing and their own work.
  • 5:44 p.m. Mary Matalin, Katherine Gehl and Tania Tetlow discuss issues facing women in politics and business.

6:30 p.m. Monica Guzman, author of I Never Thought of It That Way: How to Have Fearlessly Curious Conversations in Dangerously Divided Times (BenBella Books, $26.95, 9781637740323).

7:40 p.m. Jennifer Sciubba, author of 8 Billion and Counting: How Sex, Death, and Migration Shape Our World (Norton, $28.95, 9781324002703).

Books & Authors

Awards: Shaughnessy Cohen Political Writing Finalists

The Writers' Trust of Canada has named the five finalists for the C$25,000 (about US$20,025) Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing, which recognizes "a book of literary nonfiction that captures a political subject of relevance to Canadian readers and has the potential to shape or influence thinking on Canadian political life." Each finalist receives C$2,500 (about US$2,000). The winner will be announced May 17 at the Politics and the Pen ceremony. This year's shortlisted titles are:

The Two Michaels: Innocent Canadian Captives and High Stakes Espionage in the US-China Cyber War by Mike Blanchfield & Fen Osler Hampson 
China Unbound: A New World Disorder by Joanna Chiu 
Flora!: A Woman in a Man's World by Flora MacDonald & Geoffrey Stevens 
The Next Age of Uncertainty: How the World Can Adapt to a Riskier Future by Stephen Poloz 
"Indian" in the Cabinet: Speaking Truth to Power by Jody Wilson-Raybould

Attainment: New Titles Out Next Week

Selected new titles appearing next Tuesday, April 12:

Gathering Blossoms Under Fire: The Journals of Alice Walker, 1965–2000, edited by Valerie Boyd (Simon & Schuster, $32.50, 9781476773155) collects diaries from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Color Purple.

Breaking the Age Code: How Your Beliefs About Aging Determine How Long and Well You Live by Becca Levy (Morrow, $28.99, 9780063053199) explores the mind-body connection in relation to aging.

Paradise Falls: The True Story of an Environmental Catastrophe by Keith O'Brien (Pantheon, $30, 9780593318430) chronicles a chemical company's crimes uncovered in the 1970s.

A Tiny Upward Shove: A Novel by Melissa Chadburn (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $27, 9780374277758) follows a Filipino woman transformed into a folkloric spirit after her death.

Insomnia: A Novel by Sarah Pinborough (Morrow, $27.99, 9780062856845) is a thriller about a woman whose insomnia worsens as she nears her 40th birthday.

The Caretakers: A Novel by Amanda Bestor-Siegal (Morrow, $27.99, 9780063138186) follows six women living in a wealthy Parisian suburb.

Lies My Mother Told Me: Tall Tales from a Short Woman by Melissa Rivers (Post Hill Press, $28, 9781642937404) contains stories from the daughter of Joan Rivers.

This May End Badly by Samantha Markum (Wednesday Books, $18.99, 9781250799180) features a young woman fighting a prank war against her boarding school's male equivalent.

Year on Fire by Julie Buxbaum (Delacorte Press, $18.99, 9781984893666) follows the social and familiar turmoil of four juniors at a wealthy high school as fire season approaches.

A Swim in a Pond in the Rain: In Which Four Russians Give a Master Class on Writing, Reading, and Life by George Saunders (Random House, $18.99, 9781984856036).

An Unthinkable Thing by Nicole Lundrigan (Viking, $17.95, 9780735242678).

The No-Show by Beth O'Leary (Berkley, $16, 9780593438442).

The Sustainable Home: Easy Ways to Live with Nature in Mind by Ida Magntorn (Pavilion, $23.95, 9781911682110).

How to Write a Mystery: A Handbook from Mystery Writers of America by Mystery Writers of America, edited by Lee Child and Laurie R. King (Scribner, $17.99, 9781982149444).

IndieBound: Other Indie Favorites

From last week's Indie bestseller lists, available at, here are the recommended titles, which are also Indie Next Great Reads:

The Tobacco Wives: A Novel by Adele Myers (Morrow, $27.99, 9780063082939). "In 1940s North Carolina, tobacco is big business. If you saw that the crop your community's livelihood depends on also harms their health, what would you do? This is teenager Maddie Sykes' dilemma. Her story will really make you think." --Heather Obenberger, Bookends on Main, Menomonie, Wis.

Hardcover: An Indies Introduce Title
Red Paint: The Ancestral Autobiography of a Coast Salish Punk by Sasha taqʷšablu LaPointe (Counterpoint, $25, 9781640094147). "A beautiful autobiography of a sometimes-rocky journey to heal from trauma. Her female ancestral line's spiritual practices and wisdom help her embrace her Indigenous heritage. An emotional roller coaster well worth reading." --Ashley Baeckmann, Briars & Brambles Books, Windham, N.Y.

Libertie: A Novel by Kaitlyn Greenidge (Algonquin, $16.95, 9781643752587). "Libertie is an immersive novel and profound meditation on freedom--born free or formerly enslaved, in America, Haiti, or Liberia--while up against grief, sexism, racism, colorism, or classism. A much-needed inspiration!" --Alyssa Raymond, Copper Dog Books, Beverly, Mass.

For Ages 3 to 6
Let's Do Everything and Nothing by Julia Kuo (Roaring Brook Press, $18.99, 9781250774347). "Let's Do Everything and Nothing is perfect for new families. It gorgeously encapsulates the love and joy in the infinitesimal moments of simply existing together. It's heartwarming, beautiful to look at, and carries a lovely message." --Cristina Russell, Books & Books, Coral Gables, Fla.

For Ages 8+
Anybody Here Seen Frenchie? by Leslie Connor (Katherine Tegen Books, $16.99, 9780062999368). "A heartwarming story that celebrates neurodiversity, family, friendship, and a community coming together to face adversity with love, patience, and hope. Leslie Connor uplifts and inspires us to be kinder to ourselves and our world." --Alyssa Raymond, Copper Dog Books, Beverly, Mass.

For Teen Readers: An Indies Introduce Title
What We Harvest by Ann Fraistat (Delacorte Press, $18.99, 9780593382165). "Filled with iridescent wheat, bioluminescent melons, and a mercury-esque blight, Hollow's End is perfect for impending doom. Fraistat's debut shows the comforts and horrors of small towns, old families, and the secrets they bury." --Laura Graveline, Brazos Bookstore, Houston, Tex.

[Many thanks to IndieBound and the ABA!]

Book Review

Review: The World as We Knew It: Dispatches from a Changing Climate

The World as We Knew It: Dispatches from a Changing Climate by Amy Brady and Tajja Isen, editors (Catapult, $16.95 paperback, 288p., 9781646220304, June 14, 2022)

In The World as We Knew It: Dispatches from a Changing Climate, edited by Amy Brady and Tajja Isen, 19 notable writers share intimate reflections on how accelerated climate change has led to corresponding transformations in their lives, homes, neighborhoods, jobs, relationships and mental health.

In presenting striking firsthand accounts of a global phenomenon, Brady and Isen hope to encourage "humble and humane dialogue" that will ignite climate action at the individual level. The Covid-19 pandemic added a layer of complexity to the stories in this collection, rendering it a living testament to the challenging realities of surviving and writing through a global health crisis.

The World as We Knew It opens with a gorgeously descriptive essay by Lydia Millet on the changing ecosystem of the magnificent Arizona desert. An appreciation of nature's majesty and raw power runs through stories about invasive fish species on the Caribbean island nation of Dominica; the altered rain patterns witnessed in California's Sierra Nevada mountains; and the spiritual and ecological fallout of a World Bank-sponsored dam in Uganda.

Set primarily on Cape Cod, Meera Subramanian's "Leap" explores the connection between our ailing planet and the rising prevalence of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. In "Signs and Wonders," Australian writer Delia Falconer points to the haunting grandeur of the Earth's distress signals. She challenges readers to summon the elevated levels of fear, awe and rage necessary to confront the spectacular environmental transformations we witness every day, in the hopes that a stronger emotional response might spur us into long-delayed action.

The essays in The World as We Knew It capture a specific moment in human history, a time when older generations experiencing the "new normal" of accelerated climate disruption can recall childhoods when our environment was more stable. To read Omar El Ekkad's essay "Faster than We Thought" is to understand the importance of preserving memories of landscapes and lifestyles that are disappearing before our very eyes. As he writes of Qatar: "Sometime within the next century, stories of life in this place--the stories that constitute almost the entirety of my childhood--will sound, to new generations, like fiction."

Each of the essays in this collection presents an opportunity to engage thoughtfully with climate change-driven experiences that will help readers feel less alone as they confront, within their own communities, this unprecedented time in the history of our world. --Shahina Piyarali, reviewer

Shelf Talker: A startling collection of 19 essays documenting the impact of climate change at the individual level, by a geographically diverse group of writers.

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