Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*

"Sometimes, immersed in his books, there would come to him an awareness of all he did not know,of all that he had not read; and the serenity for which he had labored was shattered as he realized the little time in life he had to read so much, to learn what he needed to know . . ."
                     --John Williams, Stoner (9781590171998) 14.95


I could almost hear the exasperated sighs and see your rolling eyes when I stated in last week's Partners Page, and I quote, "It looks like Jon Stewart is the new Oprah."  However, I am not one for hyperbole, and I sincerely believed that this was true.  Case in point, Mr. Krauthammer was on the Daily Show last Wednesday to promote Things That Matter (9780385349178) 28.00 and we promptly sold out.  We had another batch of his book land yesterday, and we were sold out in about five minutes.  It appears Random House had more stock on-hand, so we should have fresh copies in a few days.  I realize that Jon is no John Oliver, but he's still pretty good . . .

I was excited about the new Bobby Orr book, which was oddly entitled Orr (9780399161759) 27.95 (not to be confused with the brilliant Skip Spence album Oar), but realistically, as a long-time hockey fan, I never thought we would sell out of it.  Much to my surprise, it has hit the bestseller lists, and our copies are gone.  Maybe there's hope that the NHL will catch on in America after all.  Ha ha ha *gasps* ha ha ha . . .

But seriously folks, there is one place in these United States that is known as HockeytownTM and the Detroit Red Wings are much beloved.  There's usually a nice new Red Wings' picture title every holiday season that sells well, and this year it will be Bob Duff's Original Six Dynasties: Detroit Red Wings (9781927428276) 29.95.  There aren't many pro franchises with fans that are avid readers who also buy books . . .

However, the Green Bay Packers would probably have the biggest athletic supporters of all.  Their waterboy could write a book and we would probably sell out.  Donald Driver, their all-time leader in passing receptions (and that's saying something), has chosen to share his life story in Driven: From Homeless to Hero (9780385349147) 25.00.  And even as a long-time Detroit Lion's fan, I have nothing but respect for Donald Driver.  He is a class act . . .

And while we're on the topic of the Detroit Lions, my good friend Barry Schumer has delivered his new tome, 7 Years Later and I Still Don't Believe It!: Same Old Lions? (9780979886690) 14.95.  It's the perfect gift for that masochistic Lions fan on your Christmas list . . .   

 Odds & Sods

Our good friend Barbara Siepker, owner of The Cottage Book Shop and director of non-profit Leelanau Press has released her second title The Art of Sleeping Bear Dunes (9780974206844) 40.00.  This coffee table book has full-colour illustrations; it is a  veritable who's who of northwest Michigan artists and their most popular works.  This gorgeous gift book will be a northern Michigan staple for many more years to come . . .

 By the way, Signifying Rappers (9780316225830) 16.00 by my literary idol David Foster Wallace and Mark Costello has been re-released in a snappy new trade edition.  Word!  

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*
"Being rich is not about how much money you have or how many homes you own;
it's the freedom to buy any book you want without looking at the price
and wondering if you can afford it . . ."
                                                                                     --John Waters


Vernoica Roth's Allegiant (9780062024060) 19.99 is going to be huge.  With Divergent (9780062024039) 9.99 releasing as a movie on March 21, we could see sales similar to Suzanne Collins' Catching Fire (9780545603683) 12.99 on the high side of the spectrum or Kami Garcia's Beautiful Creatures (9780316231657) 7.99 on the low end.  Going into the holidays, I'm leaning towards Catching Fire type numbers . . .



There are only a few young adult authors who sell right out of the box, and Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck (9781419711329) 13.95 is one of them.  (Rick Riordan's House of Hades (9781423146728) 19.99, which is back in stock, would be one and the other is the aforementioned Veronica Roth.)  It goes on-sale November 5 . . .


 Speaking of young adult series, we have already sold out of the Divergent Series Box Set (9780062234926) 34.99.  However, HarperCollins is shipping out a new batch today, so we should have them back in stock next week.  And while we're talking about box sets, the Duck Commander Collection (9781476763392) 69.99 is here . . .


I've been scanning the horizons for the quirky holiday title that will be this year's Francesco Marciuliano's I Could Pee on This (9781452110585) 12.95, and I think it could be Diane Muldrow's Everything I Need to Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book (9780307977618) 9.99.  We've already sold out of this one twice, and the publisher is out of stock until November 11.  We have a batch arriving in a few days, so you might want to backorder.  Also, this holiday season's Underwater Dogs (9780316227704) 19.99 by Seth Casteel could be Carli Davidson's Shake (9780062242648) 17.99.  Dogs never go out of style . . .



Also, I'm beginning to believe Ms. Yousafzai's I am Malala (9780316322409) 26.00 will have the legs to sell straight through Christmas.  It looks like Jon Stewart is the new Oprah.  And while we're on the topic of television icons, Henry Bushkin's bio on the former King of Late Night, Johnny Carson (9780544217621) 28.00 has been quietly selling at a great clip.  It may be the perfect gift for any of the old codgers on your holiday list . . .    


Odds & Sods

The heart is a lonely hunter.  Former Vice-President Dick Cheney has been hawking his new one Heart (9781476725390) 28.00 on most of the news shows. In the book, he recounts how he almost died after he left office.  Right.  I don't know about you, but I suspect Mr. Cheney will still be around long after the rest of us are dead and buried . . .

Speaking of legendary Conservatives, Rush Limbaugh's new children's title, Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims: Time-Travel Adventures with Exceptional Americans (9781476755861) 19.99 releases on October 29.  I guess Rush must have swiped Obama's magical time machine to write this one . . .

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*
"A lot of people won't get no supper tonight
A lot of people won't get no justice tonight
The battle is getting hotter in this iration, Armagideon time . . ."
                                                                                     --Willi Williams, Armagideon Time


  "Hello, I'm B. Traven Jr. and when I'm in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest in search of Bigfoot, the only book I take is Dr. Jeff Meldrum's Sasquatch Field Guide (9781937196950) 7.95.  It has a handy ruler along the edge of this foldout, so when I've stumbled upon a giant footprint and I've been encircled by a pack of hungry wolves, instead of messing around with a tape measure, I just whip out this field guide.  Take it from me, B. Traven Jr., it may just save your life."

  The director on the set snaps, "Cut!  Print!  We're outa here.  And great work, B."
  "Thanks," I wipe my brow.  Now, I can go home and sink my teeth into Lewis & Fisk's The Michigan Road Guide to Haunted Locations (9780979882234) 15.95.  I've been waiting a lifetime for this title to be released, and I've finally got my hands on a copy.  This is the Holy Grail for paranormal investigators . . ."

  A man in a black suit blocks my path and asks, "Are you B. Traven Jr.?"
  "Crap.  Yeah."
  He adjusts his black sunglasses and says in a staccato monotone, "Homeland Security.  There's been an incident.  You need to come with me."
  I'm flown to a medical facility in an undisclosed location.  My keeper escorts me past a battery of metal detectors and security checkpoints; I'm ushered into an office and introduced to a doctor of obvious Indian descent, "This is Dr. Jones."
  "Excuse me for being so blunt, but what in the heck am I doing here?"
  Dr. Jones gestures towards the door, "Mr. Traven, there has been an incident in Rosemont.  Possibly apocalyptic in nature.  No one can remember anything.  And every recording instrument, be it tape or digital, has been inexplicably wiped clean.  Let me show you a few of the victims."
  The first room has a young boy rocking back and forth on the edge of the cot.  He repeats over and over again, "Ezirp lebon sniw ornum elica.  Efil raed . . ."
  "Isn't it obvious?  He's saying backwards, 'Dear Life (9780307743725) 25.95.  Alice Munro wins Nobel Prize.'  You've seen The Shining (97803459806789) 15.95 by Stephen King, right?  'Redrum! Redrum!'  Ha, ha!"


 He leads me to an adjoining room where a young lady has her eyes closed.  She recites over and over," Seiranimul eht rof drawa rekoob swins nottac ronaele . . ."
  I say, "Oh that's easy.  She's saying, 'Eleanor Catton wins Booker Award for The Luminaries (9780316074315) 27.00.'  Ha, ha!"

  Dr. Jones leads me to the next room and says, "Well, how do you explain these two guys then?  They claim their names are Stoner Bill and Doctor Delay.  And get this -- they also claim they've been to Hell and back."   
Odds & Sods

I picked up a few cute kid's books at the Heartland Fall Forum.  Isabelle & Isabella's Little Book of Rules (9781442499805) 12.99 is a notebook written by two young girls that highlights practical do's and don'ts for children.  The other one is a great children's picture book called Locomotive  (9781416994152) 17.99 by Brian Flocka.  Incredible illustrations . . .


I want to apologize to my wife in advance.  I have just picked up a copy of All the Songs: The Story Behind Every Beatles Release (9781579129521) 50.00, so over the course of the next two to three months I will most likely subject her to several obscure Beatles' facts on a daily basis.  I am so sorry . . . 

Friday, October 11, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*
"Our Gods are dead.  Ancient Klingon warriors slew them a millenia ago.
They were . . . more trouble than they were worth . . ."
                                                                                     --Lt. Worf, Deep Space Nine

Stoner Bill:  Hey dudes and dudettes!  I'd like to welcome you to the 3rd Annual Heartland Fall Forum Red Carpet Awards Show live on Book-TV from beautiful downtown Rosemont, Illinois.  Tonight the stars come out.  I am getting a bit jostled here, but I can see that the first limo has pulled in . . .  Oh and look who it is!  It's rising star Daniel Alarcon, one of the New York Times 20 fiction authors under 40, and it looks like he has his Penguin publishing entourage in tow.

Double D:  Daniel's new book At Night We Walk in Circles (9781594631719) 27.95 hasn't even been released yet, but it's generating a lot of great book buzz.

 Stoner Bill:  By the way, my good doctor, are we doing some kind of 'Bennifer' thing with the Random House and Penguin Books merger.  Like Ranguin?  Or Penguin House?  Or . . .  Oh my Lord!

(Suddenly the ground in front of us cracks open and erupts with an enormous geyser of lava and magma.  There's a teeth-clenching roar as if a million poorly tuned Harley-Davidson motorcycles all start as one machine.  The moon disappears and star after star quickly twinkles out.  From this crack in the earth, a 50 foot high demon slowly rises through the heat and smoke until he stands before us.  People are running and screaming and falling into the gaping maw of the pit.)

Stoner Bill:  Duuude, I knew Hyperion was planning on a big publicity push for Rick Riordan's House of Hades (9781423146728) 19.99, but this is really getting out of hand . . .

Double D:  Really?  C'mon Bill, this is obviously a publicity stunt for Chuck Palahnuik's Doomed (9780385533034) 24.95 . . .


Stoner Bill:  Whoa!  Hold on there cowboy!  I've been reading Mark Russell's God is Disappointed in You (9781603090988) 19.95, which paraphrases The Bible in an irreverent but faithful way.  It removes the who begat who stuff, but it doesn't cut out the illogical parts like Summer Glau did to the preacher's bible in Firefly.  (Thumbing through his copy.)  So first of all, exactly how many seals have been broken?  It looks like you don't make an appearance until after the fifth one.

(To be continued)        

                                                                                   Odds & Sods

Law enforcement trainer, Lt. Dan Marcou is back!  His new novel Destiny of Heroes (9781933272429) 16.95 has an international flavour.  John Savage teams up with the FBI to find an Al Quaeda operative in the US.  Good clean fun.

As you probably suspected, I am a bit of a Star Trek geek.  So imagine my elation when I discovered David Goodman's Star Trek Federation: The First 150 Years (9781781169155) 29.95, I would liken it to a nerdgasm.  As soon as I saw that Victor Bergman was name-checked as the chief astronomer at the Anderson Space Command, (who is the science officer on Space: 1999), I knew this would be good . . .

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Ye Olde Partners Page

*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*
"Libraries are full of ghosts, books being the most haunted things of all . . ."
                                                                                     --Maya Panika

by Cub Reporter Ranay Saltz

  Today I am preparing to ambush B. Traven Jr. on the set of his latest beer commercial.  He cut short our last interview when I started asking the tough questions:

"Hello, I'm B. Traven Jr. and when I'm not savoring a bottle of ice cold Schlitz malt liquor, I like to crack open a copy of Paul Bialas' Schlitz Brewing Art (9780985672539) 47.99 and reminisce about my days at the old Milwaukee brewery.  It's Schliiiiitzilicious . . ."

  The director announces, "Cut!  Print!  Aaaaaand that's a wrap!  Great job, B."
  I sidle up to him and say,  "Mr. Traven, I'm sorry we got off on the wrong foot last time.  It was all my fault.  Can we give it another go?"
  B. Traven narrows his eyes, "Really?  Last time we met for an interview, you accused me of cavorting with dinosaurs and rayguns and such."  He pauses and adds,  "And you do know that's my gig, Ranay.  Ha, ha!"

Ranay:  Welcome, Mr. Traven.  I'm Ranay Saltz for Conspiracy Nutz.  Halloween is rapidly approaching and I have to imagine that you enjoy this time of year.

B. Traven Jr:  Ranay, you know I like chasing after alien spaceships and the Loch Ness sea monster as much as the next guy, but Halloween is different.  I'd cut my teeth on paranormal investigations and this time of year I switch back to my one true love: Ghosts.  There is nothing like a great haunting.  I'll grab a copy of Gerald Hunter's Haunted Michigan 3 (9781933272375) 15.95 or Tedsen & Rydel's Haunted Travels of Michigan III: Spirits Rising (9781933272412) 14.95 and start booking my travels for the season.  Both are brand new this year.


Ranay:  Just ghosts? There's a lot of seasonal creepiness.  Witches? Werewolves?

B. Traven Jr:  Zombies!  I love zombies.  Ha, ha!  In fact, I just stumbled upon Zombie Cribbage (9781452122113) 19.95 and it's adorable.  It has a graveyard cribbage board, zombie pegs, and zombie playing cards.  What's not to love?

Ranay:  I didn't realize you were such a cribbage enthusiast . . .   

B. Traven:  I'm sure there are a few things that you don't know about me.  (His phone rings and there's a short conversation.)  I'm going to have to cut this short.  I've just learned that my good friend Tom Clancy has passed away.    
                                                                                    Odds & Sods

Sometimes a title is just too good and the jokes are just too easy.  Heart: An American Medical Odyssey (9781476725390) 28.00 by Dick Cheney would be a perfect example.  It releases on October 22 and he will be appearing all over the media.  (60 Minutes, Today Show, Hannity, etc.)  As for the jokes, I could go the scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz (9780375869945) 4.99 route or the Grinch from How the Grinch Stole Christmas (9780394800790) 15.00.  Or if I wanted to be topical, I'm sure there's one or two Obamacare jokes in there somewhere, but it makes me feel dirty.  And it would be an Anthony Weiner in an on-line chat room kind of dirty.  So no, I'm taking the high road . . .