Archive for April, 2009

Shirley Jackson Award Nominees

Friday, April 24th, 2009

The nominees for the Shirley Jackson Awards “for outstanding achievement in the literature of psychological suspense, horror, and the dark fantastic” were announced today. Below are the finalists for the Novel and Novella categories.

The full list, including the other categories of Novelette, Short Story, Collection and Anthology can be found at:

Nominees Announced for the 2008 Shirley Jackson Awards

The winners will be announced on July 12th.


Alive in Necropolis
Doug Dorst
Price: $25.95
Hardcover: 448 pages
Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover – (2008-07-17)


The Man on the Ceiling (Discoveries)
Steve Rasnic Tem, Melanie Tem
Price: $14.95
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast Discoveries – (2008-03-04)
ISBN-10: 0786948582
ISBN-13: 9780786948581


Daryl Gregory
Price: $13.00
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Del Rey – (2008-08-26)
ISBN-10: 0345501160
ISBN-13: 9780345501165


The Resurrectionist
Jack O’Connell
Price: $24.95
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Algonquin Books – (2008-04-08)
ISBN-10: 1565125762
ISBN-13: 9781565125766


The Shadow Year
Jeffrey Ford
Price: $14.99
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Harper Perennial – (2009-03-01)
ISBN-10: 0061231533
ISBN-13: 9780061231537


Tender Morsels
Margo Lanagan
Price: $16.99
Hardcover: 448 pages
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers – (2008-10-14)
ISBN-10: 0375848118
ISBN-13: 9780375848117



Disquiet (Penguin Original)
Julia Leigh
Price: $13.00
Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: Penguin (Non-Classics) – (2008-11-25)
ISBN-10: 014311350X
ISBN-13: 9780143113508

“Dormitory,” in The Diving Pool

The Diving Pool: Three Novellas
Yoko Ogawa
Price: $13.00
Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: Picador – (2008-01-22)
ISBN-10: 0312426836
ISBN-13: 9780312426835

Living With the Dead, Darrell Schweitzer (PS Publishing)– UK  only


The Long Trial of Nolan Dugatti
Stephen Graham Jones
Price: $14.95
Paperback: 196 pages
Publisher: Chiasmus – (2008-06-09)
ISBN-10: 0981502741
ISBN-13: 9780981502748

“N” Stephen King in Just After Sunset

Just After Sunset: Stories
Stephen King
Price: $28.00
Hardcover: 367 pages
Publisher: Scribner – (2008-11-11)
ISBN-10: 1416584080
ISBN-13: 9781416584087

What Librarians Wish Publishers Knew

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Those clever guys at Unshelved may have just topped themselves. For BEA, they’ve put together “Publisher Confidential,” an ebooklet of pet peeves from librarians, booksellers and readers.

Such as:




For more on the project, check the Unshelved blog.

Reminder: if you don’t suffer from the above problem and are actually looking for catalogs, you can get PDF’s of publishers catalogs from our links to the right (under “Download Publishers Catalogs”).

NYT Childrens and YA Bestsellers, 5/3

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Congrats to Tamora Pierce. The second in her Tortall trilogy, Bloodhound, debuts at #1 on the NYT Chapter Books list (it also hit the general USA Today list at #49 this week). 

Terrier, Book 1 in the series, went on the list at #2 in 2006 and stayed on for six weeks. 

Bloodhound (The Legend of Beka Cooper, Book 2)
Tamora Pierce
Price: $18.99
Hardcover: 560 pages
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers – (2009-04-14)
ISBN-10: 0375814698
ISBN-13: 9780375814693


As of this week, two more people can now add the words “NYT bestselling author” to their credentials:

 If I Stay, for which our own Early Word Kid, Lisa Von Drasek, issued a Heads Up last month, arrives at #7 on the Chapter Book List.

If I Stay
Gayle Forman
Price: $16.99
Hardcover: 208 pages
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile – (2009-04-02)
ISBN-10: 0525421033
ISBN-13: 9780525421030


Librarian favorite Peter Brown (Chowder, The Fabulous Bouncing Chowder) arrives at #7 on the Picture Books list with The Curious Garden.

The Curious Garden
Peter Brown
Price: $16.99
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers – (2009-04-01)
ISBN-10: 0316015474
ISBN-13: 9780316015479

Next-Gen eReaders

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Three new dedicated eReaders are scheduled to hit the U.S. market at the end of this year or the beginning of next. The blog Fiction Matters compared them yesterday.

Below are live demos of the devices and links to their product pages:

Readius — billed as the “first pocket eReader,” it uses a flexible display that rolls into a trifold wallet-sized container. Wired reported this week that it is ready to launch but is stalled because of “funding difficulties.”


The txtr reader — the “next generation eInk Reader” is a German product (as will be evident if you watch the demo). It features a simpler interface and platform than those for the Kindle 2 or the Sony Reader. Release date: 3rd Q 2009.


Plastic Logic reader (no product name at this time) — “The largest and most minimal reader” uses touch screen technology, so there are no buttons. Release: Jan., 2010.

For a comparative roundup of seven devices, including the Kindle, Sony Reader and several devices only available in other countries (Fujitsu is releasing one with a color screen in Japan), go to Wired‘s E-Book Reader Roundup, 3/25/09.

‘Little Bee’ Gets Film Buzz

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

Nicole Kidman is one of the bidders for the film rights to Little Bee by Chris Cleave, according to the Times of London. Originally published in the UK as The Other Hand, it sold just 3,000 copies in hardcover there, but has sold over 100,000 in paperback, largely on word of mouth.

The book was published here in hardcover in February. Cleave is scheduled to appear on the CBS Early Show on May 5th.

Little Bee
Chris Cleave
Price: $24.00
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster – (2009-02-10)
ISBN-10: 1416589635
ISBN-13: 9781416589631


Also available in Audio:
Publisher: Tantor
8 Audio CDs; EAN: 9781400141715
List Price: $69.99


Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

The author was profiled in USA Today last week and his book was the subject of one of the most emailed NYT pieces this week. The new issue of People (5/4) gives Jeffrey Zaslow’s The Girls from Ames 3.5 (of a possible 4).

Zaslow, a columnist for the Wall Street Journal, wrote the story that made Randy Pausch famous and co-authored Pausch’s book, which is still on bestseller lists, The Last Lecture.

The Girls from Ames also began with a column, on women’s friendships. Among the many emails Zaslow received in response was one about a group of friends from Ames, Iowa who, now in their 40’s, have remained close since high school.

Says People

The ordinariness of these women’s lives is both a strength and weakness: Readers will easily identify with them, but the most exceptional aspect of their frienship is the staying power.

The book has been on the rise on Amazon. Since publication on Tuesday, it has risen from #940 to #112 today. Library reserves have also been on the rise.

The Girls from Ames:  
A Story of Women and Friendship
Jeffrey Zaslow
Price: $26.00
Hardcover: 297 pages
Publisher: Gotham – (2009-04-21)
ISBN-10: 1592404456
ISBN-13: 9781592404452

Skinny Guy?

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

We know that milions of women aspire to Skinny Bitchdom, but will guys want to be Skinny Bastards?

Running Press is betting they will, with a 100,000 copy print run of the vegan manifesto, rewritten for men.

Will men buy? Perhaps that’s not a problem. According to a piece in today’s NYT, “both the publisher and the authors assume that mostly women will buy Skinny Bastard.” 

The book releases on Monday. It apears that only a few libraries have ordered it.

Skinny Bastard
Rory Freedman, Kim Barnouin
Price: $14.95
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Running Press – (2009-04-27)
ISBN-10: 0762435402
ISBN-13: 9780762435401

Near Silence on ‘Wetlands’

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

When Wetlands, already a German bestseller, became an Amazon global best-seller last year, the NYT did a story on the phenomenon, saying, “It is difficult to overstate the raunchiness of the novel, and hard to describe in a family newspaper.”

This may be the reason that, other than the NYTBR, no print consumer review sources have covered it. 

Some online sources have been less squeamish (as has the British press, which reviewed it widely). New York magazine’s Vulture blog introduced the “Reading Room” this week, an online book discussion group, with five critics taking on a single work, in this case, Wetlands. Unfortunately, the book didn’t lead to much of a discussion; the group universally hated it.

One of the critics, Adam Sternbergh put it this way,  

…if any hardy soul out there is still wondering, “Yeah, okay — but should I read it?”  I’ll offer this capsule review: Imagine a book that includes the sentence “I really like to smell and eat my smegma.” Now imagine if that sentence were 229 pages long.

Libraries that own it show heavy holds on light ordering (42 on 8 copies in one system).

Charlotte Roche
Price: $17.95
Hardcover: 208 pages
Publisher: Grove Press – (2009-04-08)
ISBN-10: 0802118925
ISBN-13: 9780802118929

‘Girls From Ames’

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

The currently most-emailed story from the NY Times is “What Are Friends for? A Longer Life” in the Health section. Focusing on research that shows people with close friends are more likely to survive life-threatening diseases, it mentions a new book, The Girls From Ames: A Story of Women and a 40-Year Friendship, which chronicles the lives of 11 childhood friends from Iowa.

It was reviewed by the Christian Science Monitor on Saturday. The book’s author wrote a piece about women’s friendships in the Wall Street Journal which brought an outpouring of emails. When he read one from a “Girl From Ames,” he knew the story had the makings of a book. The Monitor says the result is,

…a moving testament to the power and importance of female relationships. Now in their mid-40s, these women exemplify universal truths about friendship, portrayed in the context of a Midwestern coming-of-age story set in simpler times.

Some libraries are showing heavy reserves on light ordering.

The Girls from Ames:  
A Story of Women and Friendship
Jeffrey Zaslow
Price: $26.00
Hardcover: 297 pages
Publisher: Gotham – (2009-04-21)
ISBN-10: 1592404456
ISBN-13: 9781592404452

Oprah Pulls Columbine Show

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

In a short note on her Web site yesterday, Oprah announced she was pulling her planned show on the 10th anniversary of Columbine, “After reviewing it, I thought it focused too much on the killers.” She suggested that readers “hold a thought for the families — hard day for them.”

According to the Denver Post, a news release  said the show would cover,  “the shocking revelations that we never knew, the clues the killers left behind and what we as a nation can all learn from this tragedy.”

Among the guests that were included in the unaired show was Dan Cullen, author of Columbine.

The book is currently on the NYT Nonfiction list at #7 and is climbing the Amazon sales rankings (currently at #13), indicating it will appear at a higher spot on the next NYT list.

Dave Cullen
Price: $26.99
Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Twelve – (2009-04-06)
ISBN-10: 0446546933
ISBN-13: 978044654693

Reviewers Love ‘Closing Time’

Monday, April 20th, 2009

You couldn’t miss Joe Queenan’s Closing Time this weekend; it was reviewed nearly everywhere. As a result, this memoir of  the caustic journalist’s painful years growing up in a Philadelphia housing project went to #49 on Amazon; it’s now at #113.

Libraries are showing heavy holds on light ordering.

The local public library was one of the reasons Queenan managed to survive his childhood. Queenan spoke this weekend at the “Free Library Festival” in Philadelphia.

Consumer coverage:

Prepub reviews were also strong:

  • Kirkus — “Close to home and heart, this portrait of the artist shows Queenan at the top of his form—his best yet”
  • Library Journal  —  “touching and funny memoir…What gave him hope when he was young was the Catholic Church, the affection of his relatives, and the local public library”
Closing Time: A Memoir
Joe Queenan
Price: $26.95
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Viking Adult – (2009-04-16)
ISBN-10: 067002063X
ISBN-13: 9780670020638

It is also available in audio from Tantor and in both downloable audio and eBook from OverDrive.

The Dan Brown Code

Monday, April 20th, 2009

We just got the ISBN for the new book from Dan Brown, the sequel to the The Da Vinci Code:

The Lost Symbol 


 Hardcover, $28.95

Pub Date: 9/15/09

Pulitzer Prize Winners

Monday, April 20th, 2009

The winners in Letters, Drama and Music are:

Fiction – Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout (Random House)

Drama – Ruined by Lynn Nottage

History – The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family by Annette Gordon-Reed (W.W. Norton & Company)

Biography – American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House by Jon Meacham (Random House)

Poetry – The Shadow of Sirius by W.S. Merwin (Copper Canyon Press)

General Nonfiction – Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II by Douglas A. Blackmon (Doubleday)

Music – Double Sextet by Steve Reich, premiered March 26, 2008 in Richmond, VA (Boosey & Hawkes)

New Dan Brown Novel in September

Monday, April 20th, 2009

Readers and booksellers have been waiting for the next Dan Brown novel. Publishers Weekly reports that the wait ends on September 15th when Doubleday publishes The Lost Symbol, the sequel to The DaVinci Code.

First printing? FIVE million.

The film of Brown’s earlier title, Angels and Demons, opens on May 15th.

Cover and ISBN are not yet available.

UPDATE: The ISBN is — 9780385504225, Hardcover, $28.95

Doubleday’s press release is available here.

‘Lovely Bones’ First Look

Monday, April 20th, 2009

Director Peter Jackson, who is currently wrapping up production of the movie of Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones in New Zealand, is interviewed in the current issue of USA Today. He admits the film was one of his most difficult to date, with the scenes of the afterlife causing particular trouble (it was rumored that was the cause of the film being delayed from its original March ’09 release date).

The movie stars Saoirse Ronan as Susie Salmon, the 14 year old who is raped and murdered by a neighbor. Mark Wahlberg and Rachel Weisz play her parents, Stanley Tucci is the murderer and Susan Sarandon plays Susie’s grandmother (!). It’s scheduled to appear in theaters on Dec. 11.

USA Today stories:

First look: Murderous ‘Lovely Bones’ is also ‘curiously optimistic’

Peter Jackson: ‘Lovely Bones’ was lovely to make

The British film magazine, Empire, features stills of the troublesome afterlife scenes and offers a couple of them on the magazine’s Web site:

World Exclusive: First Lovely Bones Pic — This is what heaven looks like