Mar 21, 2012
I guess we could call this BOTNS: The Booktopia Edition. We explain to our new listeners what Booktopia is, talk about how those of you aren't attending a physical event can take part, and then talk about 8 books we can't wait for you to read--those written by our Booktopia:Manchester, VT authors.
First, thanks to everyone who has entered the contest to win the Hogarth Press special bound galley package. We have been enjoying all of the entries telling us of your own publishing imprint ideas. Keep giving us your ideas -- the deadline for the contest is March 31st.
We've been getting a few emails from new listeners asking us to talk more about Booktopia, and what it is. So we try to explain a bit in this episode, without boring those of you who have been listeners for a long time. Booktopia is a Books on the Nightstand event that is both online and in person. Online, we hope to spread out the Booktopia theme of connecting BOTNS listeners and authors throughout the year. In person, it's a series of three weekend gatherings where authors and readers come together in person. All three of the weekends are currently sold out, but we do have waiting lists for Oxford, MS in June and Santa Cruz, CA. As the weekends come closer, life does sometimes get in the way, so it doesn't hurt to put your name on the waiting list. For more information and to get on the waiting list, visit http://booktopia.booksonthenightstand.com.
We will be recording author talks at the three Booktopia events and will figure out a way to make those available to you online. Also, even if you are not attending, you can order signed copies of the authors' books. For the Booktopia:Manchester,VT authors, our partner Northshire Bookstore has set up a special page for BOTNS featuring our 8 authors' most current books with 10% off, and free shipping on your entire order including backlist. Tell them in the comments that you want the books signed, and they will have our authors sign your books during our Booktopia weekend and then ship them to you. To order, visit http://www.northshire.com/nightstand2012.php, and use the coupon code noted on that page when you checkout.
Also, if you are attending the Vermont retreat, it would be helpful for you to order your books in advance as well. That way the store will know how many copies of the books to have on hand. Don't fear, they will have extra copies on hand, but there is always an author or two who sell out. So if you know for sure that you want a particular book, please do order ahead, and tell them in the comments that you will pick it up that weekend.
Lastly, as part of our Booktopia online event, we are doing something we call "One Podcast, One Book", reading and discussing Julian Barnes' THE SENSE OF AN ENDING. There is a discussion forum set up on our Goodreads group, and many Booktopians will be reading and talking about the book at the various retreats and online.
Today we want to tell you about all of the books featured at Booktopia:Manchester, VT. We've talked about some of these before, but others we have not yet told you about. Remember, you can order all of these to be signed during Booktopia, so for that reason, we are linking all of the books to the special page that Northshire Bookstore has built for us, offering a discount of 10% off and free shipping. Remember to put in the comments if you want the books autographed. The store staff will make sure your books are signed and ship them to you right after our weekend event. In addition, if you are attending the event, you can order now and ask for them to be held for you at the store.
Don't Know Much About® History by Kenneth C. Davis, a compendium of historical knowledge presented in a very fun and entertaining way, and has been updated to reflect current events.
Learning to Swim by Sara J. Henry, which I can only describe as "Nancy Drew for grownups." Troy Chance impulsively leaps off a ferry because she thinks she sees a young child fall from the ferry traveling the opposite direction. What happens from there is an intriguing novel of suspense and mystery.
Defending Jacob by William Landay: Michael recommended this book in episode #164 - it's a legal thriller that has many more layers of complexity, and you will want to talk about it with someone when you finish.
Crossing the Borders of Time by Leslie Maitland will be published on April 17th. Leslie is an award-winning New York Times investigative reporter who tells the story of her family's own history during World War II and their flight from Nazi Europe, and how Leslie worked to track down her mother's romantic interest from before the war and reunite them.
History of a Pleasure Seeker by Richard Mason was a book that I recommended in episode #166, at which time I called it "delicious." I stand by that term -- it's a lush, racy look behind the scenes of a grand manor house in Amsterdam during the Belle Epoque, seen through the eyes of the charming Piet Barol. Fans of Downton Abbey should not miss this.
Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller is the retelling of the story of Achilles and Petroclus, who was a minor character in the Iliad that Miller brings to life. Michael and I both loved this book, and you can hear Michael rave about it in episode #170.
The Great Northern Express by Howard Frank Mosher, who is an author that we've both loved for many years. His book A Stranger in the Kingdom is a classic of New England literature. This book is the autobiographical story of Howard's journey to travel to 100 independent bookstores across the country, by car, after being diagnosed with prostate cancer. We meet Howard and his wife, see their early life in Vermont, and laugh out loud at their adventures at the same time as we feel the pain of the low moments. It's part travelogue, part autobiography, and completely wonderful.