Shelf Awareness for Monday, April 28, 2008

Tor Nightfire: Echo by Thomas Olde Heuvelt

Big Picture Press: Art of Protest: Creating, Discovering, and Activating Art for Your Revolution by De Nichols

Callaway Arts & Entertainment: The Beatles: Get Back by The Beatles, photographed by Linda McCartney

St. Martin's Press: The Christie Affair by Nina De Gramont

Soho Crime: My Annihilation by Fuminori Nakamura, translated by Sam Bett

Candlewick Press: Hello, Little Fish!: A Mirror Book by Lucy Cousins

Merriam-Webster Kids: Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day: 366 Elevating Utterances to Stretch Your Cranium and Tickle Your Humerus by Merriam-Webster


Notes: McMurtry as Bookseller; Authors to Work in U.K. Stores

"I think about being a bookseller. I don't think about being a writer," said Larry McMurtry in an interview with Downtown LA Scene. McMurtry was in L.A. to receive the Los Angeles Public Library Literary Award. Calling him a "bibliophile par excellence," City Librarian Fontayne Holmes added, "He really is such a book person in every single meaning of the word, as a bookstore owner, as a book collector, as a writer and as an incredible reader of literature."


Domy Books, Houston, Tex., has opened a second store in Austin, according to the American-Statesman, which described Domy as "something of a hybrid: a bookstore of select stock (non-Marvel and -DC graphic novels, limited-edition signed monographs) shelved amid clothing, vinyl toys and a small gallery's worth of art."


Take an author to work day in Britain. reported that several authors "will be put to work in independent bookshops as part of this summer's Independent Booksellers Week. . . . The nationwide week of events will take place from 1st–8th July with 231 shops signed up to take part so far."


"I am here because it has been a dream of mine to meet Laura Bush," Shannon Chanbley told Local6-TV, Orlando, Fla. Chanbley was one of an estimated 800 people lining up to meet the First Lady and her daughter Jenna for a book signing at the Borders bookstore in Winter Park. 


Literary terror at 35,000 feet! Trapped on a 16-hour flight without a book, John Flinn shared his desperate search for alternative entertainment with readers of the San Francisco Chronicle.  

The meager alternatives? "Pray this never happens to you," wrote Flinn, "but if it does, you might want to pass some of those eternities the way I eventually did on this flight . . . Commit your passport number to memory . . . Try to figure out what all the fuss is about Sudoku. . . . Concoct an elaborate revenge fantasy about the guy two rows ahead of you . . . the Skymall catalog, of course. . . . Turn to the route map in the back of the in-flight magazine and memorize the locations of all the "stan" countries of Central Asia. . . ." Etc.


The Books for a Better Life Awards, which are sponsored by the New York City Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and honor the best self-improvement books of the year, are adding an audiobook category: "self-improvement audiobook." The organization will begin accepting nominations for 2008 awards on June 2. Winners in the 10 categories will be announced February 23, 2009.

For more information, go to or call Jenny Powers at 212-453-3208.


Bookseller-publisher becomes a publisher-publisher:

Effective May 19, Nathaniel Marunas is joining Black Dog & Leventhal as associate publisher. He has been editorial director of Barnes & Noble's in-house publishing program and earlier was an editor at Michael Friedman Publishing.

Also at Black Dog & Leventhal:

  • Elizabeth Van Doren has become editor in chief, effective immediately. She was formerly editorial director of Harcourt children's books and publishing director of its Red Wagon imprint and had worked at Harcourt for 18 years.
  • Becky Koh has been promoted to senior editor from editor. Before joining the company in 2001, she worked at Lyons Press and St. Martin's.
  • Lisa Tenaglia has been promoted to editor from editorial assistant. She earlier worked at Rizzoli Bookstore and Spring Science & Business Media.
  • Editorial director Laura Ross has left the company after more than seven years but will continue to work on some projects on a freelance basis.


Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing has made the following appointments:

  • Lucille Rettino has been promoted to senior director of Pulse/Aladdin marketing, overseeing the newly formed Pulse/Aladdin publishing group.
  • Chrissy Noh has been promoted to marketing associate, advertising and promotion.
  • Grayson Walker has joined the marketing department as marketing assistant.
  • Michael Hetrick has been named production coordinator, catalog and design. He formerly worked at Unique Homes magazine.


Berkley Books: Sadie on a Plate by Amanda Elliot

SCIBA Bookstore Tours: Chinese Influence and Wine Country

The Southern California Independent Booksellers Association, which has regularly held bookstore tourism bus tours the past several years, has hit new highs in devising themes:

On September 20, the association will offer a "Chinese influence" tour, beginning at the Chinese American Museum in Los Angeles. Later the group will be joined in Pasadena by Lisa See (whose latest book is Peony in Love) at her family's store on Colorado Boulevard. The tour will include a Chinese lunch, a visit to the new Chinese Gardens at the Huntington and stops at several independent bookstores.

On November 15, SCIBA is partnering with some independent wine stores and wineries for its "Santa Barbara County wine country" tour. The bus or two or three will visit several vineyards as well as Chaucer's, Book Loft and Tecolate. As SCIBA put it, "This should be quite the social bookstore bus tour!"

The tours are for booksellers and booklovers of all kinds.


Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association: We're throwing a bookselling party and you're invited!

New Brew at Starbucks Entertainment

On the same day that he was quoted in connection with the company's pick of The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein as its next book selection (Shelf Awareness, April 24, 2008), Ken Lombard, senior v-p and president of Starbucks Entertainment, left the company, the Wall Street Journal reported.

As part of the shakeup of Starbucks Entertainment, Chris Bruzzo, chief technology officer, was made the unit's new head, and Starbucks is handing over management of its Hear Music record label to Concord Music Group. The company will, however, continue its relationship with the William Morris Agency to find books to sell in its stores.

Starbucks, whose sales and stock prices are down, is seeking to refocus on basics. Films backed by Starbucks did not do well at the box office, but music and book sales have been more successful.


Berkley Books: 30 Things I Love about Myself by Radhika Sanghani

AAP Sales in February: Short Month, Small Rise

Net book sales in February rose 4.8% to $491.2 million and for the year have risen 6.2% to $1.2 billion, as reported by 79 member publishers to the Association of American Publishers.

Strikingly in the current dismal economic climate, in February, adult paperback was one of the strongest categories while adult hardcover was the weakest. Also, higher education had a phenomenal month, but for the year is up just 4.5%.

Among results by category in February:

Higher education jumped 133.7% to $24 million.
Adult paperback climbed 30.8% to $128.8 million.
Professional and scholarly rose 17.1% to $43.5 million.
Children's/YA hardcover rose 8.1% to $40.7 million.
Children's/YA paperback rose 7.2% to $37.2 million.
E-books were up 6.7% to $2.6 million.
Adult mass market rose 0.4% to $59.5 million.
El-hi rose 0.1% to $81.5 million.

University press paperbacks fell 3.2% to $4.5 million.
University press hardcovers dropped 6.5% to $5.1 million.
Audiobooks fell 5.7% to $10.8 million.
Religious books fell 6.8% to $49.2 million.
Adult hardcovers fell 26.4% to $83.5 million.


G.L.O.W. - Galley Love of the Week
Be the first to have an advance copy!
Four Treasures of the Sky
by Jenny Tinghui Zhang

GLOW: Flatiron Books: Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui ZhangDaiyu, named after a tragic heroine, is the young protagonist of Jenny Tinghui Zhang's stunning debut novel, Four Treasures of the Sky, a work of historical fiction set in the 1880s. Daiyu happily follows a stranger when he promises her a full belly, but instead of feeding her noodles, he smuggles her from China to California, where she begins a dizzying journey that fuses folklore and history with a masterful eloquence. "There's still a strong bias toward thinking of the lone cowboy as the quintessential symbol of the West," says Flatiron senior editor Caroline Bleeke, who quickly fought to preempt the book after reading an early manuscript. "But that elides the experiences of everyone else, particularly women and POC." A book to sit alongside Yaa Gyasi's Homecoming and Anna North's Outlawed, this is a powerful tale of reclamation, spun with soul by a remarkable new talent. --Lauren Puckett

(Flatiron Books, $27.99 hardcover, 9781250811783, April 5, 2022)


Shelf vetted, publisher supported


Media and Movies

Media Heat: Jimmy Carter on Miz Lillian

This morning on Good Morning America:
  • John Javna, author of 50 Simple Things You Can Do to Save the Earth: Completely New and Updated for the 21st Century (Hyperion, $12.95, 9781401322991/1401322999).
  • Joan Anderson, author of Second Journey (Hyperion, $23.95, 9781401303396/1401303390).

This morning on the Early Show: Jennifer Sey, author of Chalked Up: Inside Elite Gymnastics' Merciless Coaching, Overzealous Parents, Eating Disorders, and Elusive Olympic Dreams (Morrow, $24.95, 9780061351464/0061351466).


This morning on the Today Show:
  • Ronald M. Silver, author of Bubby's Homemade Pies (Wiley, $29.95, 9780764576348/0764576348).
  • Arthur Agatston, author of The South Beach Diet Supercharged: Faster Weight Loss and Better Health for Life (Rodale, $25.95, 9781594864575/1594864578).

Today on Fox and Friends: Sarah Burningham, author of How to Raise Your Parents: A Teen Girl's Survival Guide (Chronicle, $12.99, 9780811856966/0811856968).


Today on Oprah: Padma Lakshmi, author of Tangy Tart Hot and Sweet: A World of Recipes for Every Day (Weinstein Books, $34.95, 9781602860063/1602860068).


Jimmy Carter, author of A Remarkable Mother (S&S, $22.95, 9781416562450/1416562451), a biography of his mother, Lillian Carter, appears today on the Today Show, Charlie Rose, Larry King Live and the Daily Show as well as on Diane Rehm tomorrow. Incidentally a 1978 book by the late Miz Lillian, Away From Home: Letters to My Family (S&S, $12, 9781416576600/1416576606), has been reissued.


Tomorrow morning on Good Morning America:
  • Rachael Ray, author of Yum-o! The Family Cookbook (Clarkson Potter, $22.50, 9780307407269/0307407268).
  • Newt Gingrich, co-author of Days of Infamy (Thomas Dunne Books, $27.95, 9780312363512/0312363516). He will also appear tomorrow night on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart.


Tomorrow morning on the Today Show: Barbara Corcoran, author of Nextville: Amazing Places to Live the Rest of Your Life (Springboard Press, $24.99, 9780446178273/0446178276).


Tomorrow on Live with Regis & Kelly: Mario Batali, author of Italian Grill (Ecco, $29.95, 9780061450976/0061450979). He will also appear tonight on the Late Show with David Letterman.


Tomorrow on KPFA's Morning Show: Wes "Scoop" Nisker, author of Crazy Wisdom Saves the World Again!: Handbook for a Spiritual Revolution (A Cody's Book, $14.95, 9781933330693/1933330694), the second title published by the new imprint that is a collaboration of Cody's Books and Stone Bridge Press. Nisker will promote a reading tomorrow night at City Lights.


Tomorrow on Oprah: Mehmet Oz, author of You: Staying Young: The Owner's Manual for Extending Your Warranty (Free Press, $26, 9780743292566/0743292561).


Books & Authors

Image of the Day: Chocolat's Delectable Sequel

Chocolate was the theme last Wednesday night at the Barnes & Noble at Lincoln Center in New York City, as Joanne Harris (r.) kicked off her U.S. book tour for The Girl with No Shadow. Harris' new novel is the follow-up to Chocolat, the basis for the Oscar-nominated film.

The Girl with No Shadow continues the story of Vianne Rocher, who served up confections and magic in Chocolat. Vianne is now living a quiet life under an assumed name in Paris with her two daughters--until the weathervane turns and blows into their midst a charming yet ruthless woman wearing lollipop-red shoes.

Real-life New York chocolatier Joëlle Mahoney presented the author with a pair of red "lollipop shoes"--edible footwear made entirely from chocolate. Mahoney's confectionary, Chocolaterie Maya, was inspired by Chocolat.

For sweet-toothed readers, it was a double delight. Along with a reading and signing by Harris, attendees were treated to chocolates made by Mahoney.--Shannon McKenna Schmidt


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:


After River by Donna Milner (HarperCollins, $24.95, 9780061462993/0061462993). "Canadian Natalie Ward lives a fairly idyllic life in rural Alberta until one fateful night everything changes, forcing the 15-year-old to leave home, not to return for 35 years. This wonderful debut novel is a fabulous family saga!"--Mary K. Cowen, Anderson's Bookshop, Naperville, Ill.

Pictures at a Revolution by Mark Harris (Penguin Press, $27.95, 9781594201523/1594201528). "Harris' fascinating book looks at the production histories of the five films nominated for the 1967 Academy Awards for Best Picture (Dr. Dolittle, In the Heat of the Night, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, The Graduate, and Bonnie and Clyde) and how each represented aspects of the Old Studio system and the New Wave in American cinema. Anyone interested in filmmaking will absolutely love it."--Dan Domike, Jackson Street Books, Seattle, Wash.


The Man Who Turned into Himself by David Ambrose (Picador, $13, 9780312427689/0312427689). "After a bizarre car accident, Rick discovers that he is living within the brain of another version of himself--Richard--an appalling individual who has made all the wrong decisions in life. Rick's quest to liberate himself from this psychological prison and establish his 'real' self challenges the reader to consider the multiple personas that exist within our own minds. Part science fiction, part psychological thriller, this novel shocks with twist after twist."--Kelly Wells, The King's English, Salt Lake City, Utah

Children's Illustrated

Mouse Noses on Toast by Daren King, illustrated by David Roberts (Putnam, $15.99, 9780399250378/0399250379). "Ever heard of a mouse being allergic to cheese? Paul Mouse is: His behind turns blue and his tail curves into a question mark. To make matters worse, while at a neighborhood restaurant he hears a human order mouse noses on toast (with whiskers)! This fun and captivating story tells how a Christmas tree ornament, a shaggy sheepdog, and a sort-of monster help Paul remedy a dreadful situation."--Judith Lafitte, Octavia Books, New Orleans, La.

[Many thanks to Book Sense and the ABA!]



Long Face Over LongPen

Contrary to our report on Friday (Shelf Awareness, April 25, 2008), the LongPen is not making its debut in New York City tonight. The device was used by Borders in February when it opened its first new concept store in Ann Arbor, Mich.--the company has a "receiver" in Ann Arbor and a "sender" at its Columbus Circle store in Manhattan, which it has demonstrated for publishers.

Our apologies!


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