Eggers Takes the Screen

Novelist and independent publisher Dave Eggers has been compared to P.T. Barnum more than once — and true to form, there’s a bit of a publishing circus springing around up his two recent forays into the world of film.

Eggers and wife Vendela Vida wrote the screenplay for Away We Go, a film about soon-to-be parents in search of a more meaningful life. Vintage Books has just released a paperback edition of the script for the movie, directed by Sam Mendes, which opens today. Early reviews have been mixed, with USA Today declaring that the screenplay is “sharply observed” and that the film “strikes an artful balance between satirical comedy and heart-wrenching drama,” while the Village Voice says that the social misfits visited by the couple add up to “a gallery of grotesque family portraits” that the movie encourages us to sneer at. None of the libraries we checked had copies.

Away We Go: A Screenplay 
Dave Eggers, Vendela Vida
Retail Price: $14.00
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Vintage – (2009-06-02)
ISBN / EAN: 0307475883 / 9780307475886

Also coming from Eggers is The Wild Things, a book for adults that the publisher says is “based loosely on the storybook by Maurice Sendak (coming October 1), which ties into the movie of Where the Wild Things Are (coming Oct. 16) which Eggers cowrote with director Spike Jonze. 

We’re trying to figure out how Eggers has expanded the original work for grown-up readers, but information is scant beyond the publisher’s description:

[The book] is about the confusions of a boy, Max, making his way in a world he can’t control. His father is gone, his mother is spending time with a younger boyfriend, his sister is becoming a teenager and no longer has interest in him. At the same time, Max finds himself capable of startling acts of wildness: he wears a wolf suit, bites his mom, and can’t always control his outbursts. During a fight at home, Max flees and runs away into the woods. He finds a boat there, jumps in, and ends up on the open sea, destination unknown. He lands on the island of the Wild Things, and soon he becomes their king. But things get complicated when Max realizes that the Wild Things want as much from him as he wants from them. Funny, dark, and alive, The Wild Things is a timeless and time-tested tale for all ages.

The Wild Things
Dave Eggers
Retail Price: $19.95
Hardcover: 300 pages
Publisher: McSweeney’s – (2009-10-01)
ISBN / EAN: 1934781614 / 9781934781616

Blackstone is publishing it in audio:

  • 7 Tape; 1-4332-9732-8; $59.95
  • 1 MP3CD; 1-4332-9736-6; $29.95
  • 8 CD; 1-4332-9733-5; $90.00

It will also be available on Playaway: 1-4332-9739-7; $59.99

Barnes and Noble lists a fur-covered edition of The Wild Things (we’re assuming it’s faux fur).  

In childrens tie-ins, HarperFestival is publishing a coloring book and a puzzle book as well as:

Where the Wild Things Are: The Movie Storybook 

Barb Bersche, Michelle Quint

  • Reading level: Ages 9-12
  • Hardcover: $12.99; 48 pages
  • Publisher: HarperFestival (September 8, 2009)
  • ISBN-10: 0061656860
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061656866

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