Friday, September 08, 2006

British Book News

Penguin have announced that they are reviving the novel in serial form to create a buzz online before the complete work is released next year. The book is Gordon Dahlquist's "fantastical gothic mystery" Glass Books of the Dream Eaters and it will be sent to buyers in the mail in 10 weekly paperback instalments, each with a cliff-hanger ending, before publication of the full hardcover in January.
Only 5,000 editions of the serial version will be sold for £25 ($47.08), each with free delivery, and they must be purchased online directly from Penguin. The hardcover will retail for 16.99 pounds.

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It's been reported that Bloomsbury will be celebrating its 21st year of publishing with some special edition paperbacks. Following the Penguin "Sixties" and "Seventies", Bloomsbury will be publishing titles that will feature a short question-and-answer with the author, an introduction by fellow writers, and a reading guide. Thus Alexander McCall Smith sings the praises of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Malorie Blackman will introduce Louis Sachar's Holes, Adele Geras will introduce Celia Rees' Witch Child, and Audrey Niffenegger will introduce Susanna Clark's Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. The full list is available by following the link.

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Waterstone's (which recently took over Ottakers) has announced a new standalone structure for children’s books. Wayne Winstone, the new Category Manager told Publisher's News: "This new structure shows how important children’s books are to Waterstone's. It's a sign of a great deal of commitment to growing the children's offering, and the scale we're now working across is fantastic, much bigger than at Ottakar's." Waterstone's has also taken on Ottakar's Children's Regional Support Managers, and will double the size of the team to mirror the new operations breakdown.

It will be interesting to see what difference this makes to Waterstone's stores.


Rhian said...

I'm really trying to use my willpower to not get that Penguin serial book, not sure if I'm going to succeed though! It does look very nice…

Michele said...

Good luck with that - let me know whether you succeed in restraining yourself !

Jen Robinson said...

I'm not sure what it will mean to Waterstones, but I love the idea of a nice big standalone children's bookstore. Thanks for the UK publishing updates.

Michele said...

I'm not sure that it will mean standalone children's stores, Jen, alas. I don't think the money men would allow them - even though children's books are selling far better than 5 years ago. Blackwells - the big book chain in Oxford - used to have a separate children's store, and they closed it about 2.5 years ago and moved the children's books back into a dept within the main store further down the street, apparently because they couldn't justify the cost of having the children's dept in a separate building. Mind you, the lack of knowledgeable staff didn't help them !