Thursday, March 28, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"He understood it to be another nudge from forces unseen, almost surely connected with the letter that had come along with his latest mental disability check, reminding him that unless he did something publicly crazy before a date less than a week away, he would no longer qualify for benefits . . ."
--Thomas Pynchon
1) INHERENT VICE . . . Owen Laukkanen, the Vancouver Canuck's #1 fan, which until recently I thought was my brother Jason, has stopped in today to sign copies of his latest novel Criminal Enterprise (9780399157905) 26.95. FBI Special Agent Carla Windermere and Minnesota state investigator Kirk Stevens from his last book The Professionals (9780425250495) 9.99 have joined forces once again and they are trying to sort out another byzantine series of crimes. And exactly what is up with Minnesota and detectives, eh? From John Sandford's Lucas Davenport, whose latest novel Silken Prey (9780399159312) 27.95 releases on May 7, to William Kent Krueger's Cork O'Conner, whose latest title is Ordinary Grace (9781451645828) 24.99, which is a stand alone novel without Cork O'Conner, it appears to me that there are an inordinate number of crime books set in the Land of a 1000 LakesTM. Could it be the long winters? Hmmm, Owen is from Vancouver, and their winters, from what I hear, are quite mild compared to those in Minnesota, but it looks like he still had the time to concoct the perfect crime. Go figure. At any rate, Owen is good people and you need to buy his book. Our signed stock is on the usual first come, first served basis . . .

 2) GRAVITY'S RAINBOW . . . Opening Day is just days away and I am eagerly anticipating the upcoming Detroit Tigers' World Series Championship, but I shouldn't get ahead of myself. There is a grueling season to survive first. However, we do have a couple of new Detroit Tiger books in stock. Doug Wilson has written the definitive biography of Mark 'The Bird' Fidrych, who was one of my childhood heroes, and it's called The Bird (9781250004925) 26.99. It has sent me on a nostalgic walk down memory lane. I remember seeing 'The Bird' pitch during that magical '76 season at the old Tiger Stadium. The Tigers won against the Cleveland Indians. We also had John Rosengren's Hank Greenberg: Hero of Heroes (9780451235763) 26.95. And if you want to complete your Detroit Tigers' theme for your display, we have Summer of '68 (9780306821837) 14.99 by Tim Wendel still selling at a good clip. Go Get 'Em Tigers!

3) AGAINST THE DAY . . . Kevin Power's award-winning The Yellow Birds (9780316219341) 14.99 will be released in tradepaper on May 7. In the meantime, this title has been named the City of East Lansing and Michigan State University's 2013 One Book, One Community book selection so if you want his title immediately, it is only available in the hardcover edition (9780316219365) 24.99. My wife Aubrey said, "This book will make a grown man cry." With my apologies to Mick Jagger . . .

Odds & Sods

Apparently, this is the year of the diet book, and not the Year of the Depends Adult Undergarment (Y.D.A.U.) as put forth in DFW's Infinite Jest (9780316066525) 17.95. If you're keeping score at home, we have Mike Mosley's The FastDiet (9781476734941) 24.00 back in stock. This week's addition to the diet wars is Harley Pasternak's The Body Reset Diet (9781609615505) 25.99. We should have more stock in early next week. The same is true for J.J. Virgin's The Virgin Diet (9780373892716) 25.95 which was hot about four months ago, but it is inexplicably resurging. Man, it's a workout just trying to keep up with these diet titles . . .


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"I have gone to this [bookshop] for years, always finding the one book I wanted -- and then three more I hadn't known I wanted . . ."
--Mary Ann Shaffer
(Camera pans Double D's library and settles on Stoner Bill and Double D sitting in comfortable chairs.)

Stoner Bill: (squinting) Hey Dudes and Dudettes! Welcome to Bravo Channel's latest addition to their faux reality show juggernaut, The Real Booksellers of Ingham County. Apparently, The Bravo Channel already has every surgically enhanced, bottle blond in a low cut cocktail dress under contract, so they've purchased Book Talkers and our eternal souls to launch us as their newest reality TV show. In future episodes, we will intersperse our book reviews and author interviews with contrived situations that we will present as real life problems . . .

Double D: (snoring) Dude, you're boring all two of our fans to death. Give it a rest. These are readers. They're smart. They know this stuff is made up. Sheesh. Our first segment on tonight's show is about what's hot in the wide world of books. Lean In (9780385349949) 24.95 by Sheryl Sandberg, the CEO of Facebook is the #1 title in our universe and, heck, probably in a few parallel universes too. Second on our bestseller list, Pat Summitt, the winningest coach in women's college basketball history, shares the story of her fight against early-onset Alzheimer's disease in Sum It Up (9780385346870) 28.00. Rounding out the top three in non-fiction at Partners, we have The FastDiet (9781476734941) 24.00 by Michael Mosley, which is better than the slow diet . . . or something.

Stoner Bill: Wasn't Mosley the Washington Redskins' placekicker for like forever? (Double D shakes his head 'no'). Oh well, last night I'm watching this thing about the nuclear plant in Fukushima, Japan that nearly blew up a couple of years ago on Frontline. It reminded me of Ruth Ozeki's new one, A Tale for the Time Being (9780670026630) 28.95 'cuz the main character finds a Hello Kitty lunchbox washed ashore that she thinks is debris from the tsunami that took out the power station. She's a pretty awesome writer and she deserves a bigger audience.

Double D: I'm sorry Bill. We were looking for: Mark Mosley. Mark. Mosley. By the way, I'm reading an outstanding new post-apocalyptic novel called Wool (9781476733951) 15.00 by Hugh Howey right now. The author is a former bookseller who wrote it on his lunch breaks, self-published it as a serial e-book, and it was so successful that Simon & Schuster has reprinted it in one volume . . .

Henry: (running and out of breath) Oh, no! Bill, come quick. There's a woman news anchor from Fox News trapped in a well. She said if you save her, she will be your butler for life and she will be a welcome addition to our show.

Odds & Sods

Awooga! Awooga! Attention All Old Sea Captains! The new edition of Roger Lelievre's Know Your Ships 2013 (9781891849169) 18.95 is here! If you are anywhere remotely close to the Great Lakes, and you have customers who are old men, who walk hunched over, wear pea jackets, and sport blue brimmed hats with an anchor logo on the front, you should have this title on-hand . . .

Jill wanted me to clarify that it's the UK Women's Prize for Fiction and not as I stated in last week's Partner's Page, the UK Prize for Women's Fiction. I think Mark Twain once said something witty about the difference between lightning and a lightning bug. This would fall in that category . . .

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"Floating down the stream of time, from life to life with me
All the world is birthday cake, so take a piece but not too much . . ."
--George Harrison, It's All Too Much

With the back of his hand, he wiped an entire estuary of sweat from his forehead. Rivulets of perspiration followed the craggy creases of his face until they merged above his eyebrows, cascaded like a waterfall before his eyes, and then finally splashed across his dirty yellow shirt. With a long iron rod he poked the fires of the furnace through a large metal grate. He was hot and bored.

He heard screaming, and as usual, it was his friend Salvestro. Taking the steps two at a time, his rat-like friend ran down the basement stairs and yelled, "Bernardo, you big dumb brute! Stopa stokein' da fire! Whasa matta wit you!" White smoke is a comin' outa da stack! They gonna thinka you elected da Pope!"

"I'm a sorry. There's a nuthin' ta do here. Can you reada book to me?"

Salvestro cuffed him on the back of the head, "We supposa be a workin', not a reading. I likea working in the Vatican. It'sa good money."

He rubbed his head, "Pleeeease Salvestro . . . "

"Okay, since nobody is around. I make exception. I reada you a book likea Stephan Pastis' Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made (9780763660505) 14.99, eh?"

"I likea dat one. But don'cha havea something new."

He smacked Bernardo on the back of the head again, and asks, "Why you maka my life so difficult, eh? Whadabout Pound Foolish (9781591844891) 27.95 by Helaine Olen? Is a real good book about investing."

Bernardo massaged the back of his head, "Salvestro, I don't wanna be foolish."

Salvestro shook his head, "It'sa not like that. But you're right. We have no money to invest anyway. How about Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead (9780385349949) by Sheryl Sandberg? It'sa all over da bestsellers! It'sa gonna be bigger than a spicy meataball!"

"Salvestro, what'sa it about?"

"Hmmm, lemme see. Ita say, 'But Sandberg's point -- which affects all of us -- is that women who have what it takes to succeed at the highest professional level face many obstacles, both internal and external . . .' I guess that'sa not gonna work, eh?"


"It figure. We only gotta two books left so you gotta picka one of deese. One isa Kate Atkinson's Life After Life (9780316176484) 25.99, where da main person keeps coming back to life until she gets it right. Da other one is Eric Kahn Gale's The Bully Book (9780062125118) 16.99."

"I likea you to read Kate's book to me, Salvestro. Cuz' I don't know no bullies."

Odds & Sods

News has reached us that R.J. Palacio's Wonder (9780375869020) 15.99 has won the Josette Frank children's award; she just barely beat out Hilary Mantel. Fortunately for Hilary, her Bring Up The Bodies (9780805090031) 28.00 is the favourite on the recently announced longlist to win the UK Prize for Women's Fiction . . .

Last week, Deb Leonard was kind enough to point out that I failed to mention the other Winter Great Lakes, Great Reads fiction title, The Aviator's Wife (9780345528674) 26.00 by Melanie Benjamin. As Matt Groening would say in the old Ackbar and Jeff comic, "Mistakes were made."

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"Had I been informed of the impending apocalypse. I'd've stocked up . . ."
--Dale, The Walking Dead TV series
#1 on The New York Times Post-Apocalyptic Bestselling YA List
by debut author Suzy O. N. Cue

A Featured Pick on the Indie Next List. Here's what booksellers are saying:

"If you took Veronica Roth, Suzanne Collins, Marie Lu, and Richard Matheson and combined them together, you'd have a pretty weird book . . ."
--Bill Cusumano, Nicola's Books
"I laughed, I cried, I kissed $17.99 good-bye . . ."
--Carol Schneck Varner, Schulers Books
Suzy's new book has also been chosen as a Winter Great Lakes, Great Reads title, along with these selections:

Fiction: Jim Harrison's The River Swimmer (9780802120731) 25.00

Nonfiction: Michael Hainey's After Visiting Friends (9781451676563) 26.00

YA Fiction: Blue 'Bayou' Balliett's Hold Fast (9780545299886) 17.99

Picture Book: Wendy Halperin's Peace (9780689825521) 16.99

Dennis and Judith Fradin's The Price of Freedom (9780802721662) 16.99

Author Tour w/ Chris Howard, author of Rootless (9780545387897) 17.99

Date - City - Venue

3/16 - Atlanta - former prison

3/18 - Hunger City - Manhattan Chase skyscaper

3/21 - Chicago - Candor headquarters

3/22 - Panem Capitol - The Amphitheatre

3/25 - Los Angeles - The Military College

3/28 - Jericho, Kansas - Town Hall

3/29 - Hemingford Home - Mother Abagail's farm

4/1 - New York City - Soylent Corporation building

4/3 - Domed City - The Cathedral

4/4 - Bartertown - Thunderdome

Odds & Sods

We had a couple of new Detroit-centric titles. From Wayne State University Press, we have received John Gallagher's new title, Revolution Detroit: Strategies for Urban Renewal (9780814338711) 24.95, which as the titles insinuates, can still be saved. It is a nice contrast to Charlie LeDuff's Detroit: An American Autopsy (9781594205347) 27.95. We have also received John Rosengren's Hank Greenberg: Hero of Heroes (9780451235763) 26.95. In one year, Hankus Spankus took a dismal 5th place Detroit Tigers team and catapulted them into the pennant race the next season. He was one of the greatest baseball players ever . . .