Title Page, Version 1.3

The third episode of the online book show, Title Page, appeared on Sunday. Both it and the earlier shows are available on the site.

While it’s clear the producers have responded to viewer criticisms, some feel it still has a way to go. Unfortunately, the number of views has drifted from nearly 40,000 for the first show, to 18,000 for the second one and a disappointing 5,640 for Sunday’s episode.

But for librarians, the show is a convenient way to get a handle on some current titles. The producers and host, Dan Maneker, former editor-in-chief of Random House, have a good eye for books that will be getting critical attention (and, don’t you think every review editor in the country watches the show?)

One of titles from Episode 3 has already been reviewed widely in the consumer media. It is owned by all the libraries I checked:

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The Ten-Cent Plague:
The Great Comic-Book Scare and How It Changed America
David Hajdu (FSG, March 18)

Reviewed in:

New York Times Book Review,
Washington Post Book World
USA Today

and several other newspapers

The other three titles are recent, or forthcoming releases and have not yet received much consumer review coverage. These titles are on order in most libraries:

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Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex
Mary Roach (Norton, April 7)

Reviewed in:

New York Times Book Review

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The Soiling of Old Glory:The Story of a Photograph That Shocked America
Louis P. Masur, (Bloomsbury Press, April 1)

No consumer reviews yet

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The Film Club: A Memoir
David Gilmour, (May 6)

No consumer reviews yet

Giving a nice shout-out to libraries, at the end of the show, host Dan Menaker presented each guest with a copy of Quiet, Please: Dispatches from a Public Librarian, by Scott Douglas, calling it a “funny, anecdotal book.” This elicited the somewhat odd comment from guest Dave Gilmour that “libraries are mysteriously erotic places.” Unsurprisingly, it is owned in all libraries I checked.

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Quiet Please: Dispatches from a Public Librarian

Scott Douglas (DaCapo Press, March 24)

What is with Southern Cal. libraries? This book, about working in the Anaheim Public Library, comes on the heels of a book about life in the Torrance Public Library, Free For All: Oddballs, Geeks, and Gangstas in the Public Library (Virgin Books, Nov. 13, 07).

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