Weeks after closing down its Collins imprint, HarperCollins is launching another imprint called It Books, which will publish hardcover and paperback original titles on pop culture, sports, style and material from the Internet, the New York Times reported. Initial titles include Twitter Wit, a collection of Twitter posts; The Style Strategy by Nina Garcia, a Project Runway judge; and Chocolate, Please, a memoir by comedian Lisa Lampanelli.
It Books will be led by Carrie Kania, publisher of Harper Perennial who recently added responsibility for Collins Design. Staff includes Mauro DiPreta, editorial director at HarperEntertainment, "whose pending titles will be merged into the new imprint," and Cal Morgan, editorial director at Harper Perennial who earlier worked at defunct ReganBooks. The company plans no new hires for It Books.
Kania, who some might now consider the It Girl, told the Times that the imprint is "a response to the economic times in many ways. It's escapism and fun. We want to publish books that people want to buy and read. As people turn to movies and television, we want them to turn to books as well, and this seems like a perfect fit for them."
Kania and Michael Morrison, president and publisher of the general books division, had discussed the idea for some six months.
The imprint will have its own subimprint, Igniter, led by Neil Straus, a former Times reporter and author of The Game, and Anthony Bozza, who has helped several rock stars write autobiographies. Igniter's first title is The World According to Bozo the Clown, an autobiography by the late Larry Harmon.
Sadly we hear that Byblos Livrarias, the Lisbon, Portugal, bookstore that opened in December 2007 and used RFID tags on all its books and other products, has filed for bankruptcy.
Last October, manager Fernando Fontes spoke about the store at the Supply Chain Specialists meeting at the Frankfurt Book Fair (Shelf Awareness, October 19, 2008). He said that the store had 35,000 square feet of space and sold 150,000 titles and 350,000 items overall, including music and games, was developed by a former publishing company and called itself "the first intelligent bookshop."
Unfortunately our knowledge of Portuguese bankruptcy law is too rusty to know exactly what the filing means for Byblos.
At a party held February 23, "dozens of bookstore
owners, booksellers, and authors from as far away as Bellingham
gathered at the wood-lined, slightly claustrophobic pub in the basement
of Ravenna Third Place Books to raise a glass with former HarperCollins
sales rep Seira Wilson, according to the Stranger,
which observed that, "even as people downstairs were fearing for the
future of Seattle's bookstore industry, Ravenna Third Place Books was
Literary Life Bookstore and More,
Grand Rapids, Mich., "conjures memories of small town living, or
perhaps Grand Rapids bookstores of yesteryear," according to Rapid Growth. "Years of passionate, absorbed reading are Devlin’s guide when stocking the shelves."
a bookstore open is a hard thing to do; it demands every ounce of
effort," said Devlin. "But there is a lot of value in having one of
these on the corner. . . . Small, independent bookstores like LitLife
offer books, of course, and we hope that we can impart some of our
knowledge about great reads to our customers. But we also offer so much
more that might not be readily apparent."
Leonardo Padura, author of The Havana Quartet (translated by Peter Bush), selected his top 10 Cuban novels for the Guardian,
which observed that Padura "looks beyond the Cuba we think we know to
introduce some of the island's more hidden literary treasures."
is a country of poets," wrote Padura. "It would almost be too easy to
select 10 poets or books of poetry that play a key role in the short
history of Cuban literature. But there are excellent--and
diverse--Cuban novelists, too few of whom are available in English
translation. The 10 I've picked here will hopefully give some idea of
both the country's literary tradition, and its imaginative life."
Here's another take on The Kindly Ones by Jonathan Littell, published here this week. In her new column for the Wall Street Journal, former Publishers Weekly editor-in-chief Sara Nelson wrote that part of the attraction of the book for the industry is "because it offered what publishers are increasingly searching for these days: controversy, splashiness, something for readers to get worked up about, pro or con--characteristics that might or might not have anything to do with the quality of the prose or story therein."
To help Lawrence Ferlinghetti, co-founder and co-owner of City Lights Booksellers and Publishers, San Francisco, Calif., celebrate his 90th birthday on March 24, the store is asking customers and fans to share birthday greetings and wishes. Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org; the store will pass them on to the birthday boy and share some of them. No public event is planned.
Bookazine is hosting its third annual Kids Spring Arrivals Event on Friday, March 27, 12 noon-3 p.m., in Princeton, N.J. The program includes lunch; a presentation by Bookazine children's buyer Heather Doss about lead children's and YA titles for the spring/summer season; and a discussion about stocking the right mix of graphic novels and manga for children led by John Davis, Bookazine's director, pop culture markets.
Among authors who will speak and sign books: Gayle Forman (If I Stay); Peter Brown (Curious Garden), Erik Craddock (Stone Rabbit #1: BC Mambo) and Alexa Kitchen (Grown-ups Are Dumb (No Offense)).
Space is limited. For more information and to make reservations (via e-mail please), contact Bookazine's Ron Rice at email@example.com.
Effective immediately, Katherine Szadziewicz has been promoted to promotion director of Pelican Publishing. She was formerly promotion associate.