Saturday, February 19, 2011

A rainy Saturday

On Tuesday, amid news that other bookstores were closing, we began a new era at Green Apple with the installation of an entirely new (to us) point of sales system. While there are sure to be some frazzled nerves and confusion, we're certain you'll be pleased with all of the features we've added to help you find whatever it is you're looking for.

Now I'm off to shelve some books. In the spirit of Roman's post from long ago, here are some songs about books.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Power of The Handsell

Probably the best thing about being a bookseller is the chance the be an evangelist for a book one loves. This is known as The Handsell. (I'm sure car dealers and pet shop owners do handselling too, but sharing a favorite book somehow seems more.....lofty).

Limitless - The Dark Fields

The most recent issue of Filmmaker Magazine (the magazine of independent film) has a profile of "A-list hollywood scribe" Leslie Dixon (Mrs. Doubtfire, Outrageous Fortune, etc.) and her forthcoming film Limitless. Here's the part of the story that caught our eye:

"That Dixon...would have a problem scoring gigs writing darker, yet still mainstream, movies seems a bit crazy, but that’s today’s Hollywood, where writers are ruthlessly compartmentalized based on gender, age and past credits. Of the edgier material Dixon delights in as a viewer, “I don’t think people will offer me [these films],” she says. “But needing work is not where I am in my life right now. What turns me on is more important.”

"Looking for something that turned her on was how Limitless got started. “Every so often I get depressed by the things people are developing,” she says, “and I go to the Green Apple bookstore in San Francisco. I ask them what’s good just so I can cleanse my palette.” The store recommended Alan Glynn’s The Dark Fields. “I wasn’t looking for a novel to adapt,” she says. “But halfway through I got a weird tingling feeling that ‘this is mine.’”

“The premise of the novel was good,” Dixon says. “What if a loser slacker guy gets a smart drug? I knew an actor would want to play that part. It would be fun to watch out-of-shape, crappy-clothes Bradley Cooper have his girlfriend dump him because he’s a loser and then three weeks later he’s in a fancy suit bamboozling Robert De Niro.”

Read the whole article here.

The above handsell must have taken place a few years ago (unless it was a used copy), because the last time we sold a new copy of that book was in 2006. Before that, we'd sold some 500+ copies off of the staff favorites display. It has been out of print for a while, but it will be reprinted in March with the movie cover, all because a bookseller here at Green Apple Books read a book and loved it enough to handsell it. Watch the trailer here.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Indie Booksellers Meet President Obama

Lo that Green Applers were not among the lucky few to meet the president, but the glow has warmed our cheeks somehow. Here's the story, courtesy of Bookselling this Week, a publication of the American Booksellers Association.

On Thursday, January 20, the ABA Board of Directors met with President Obama in the Oval Office for the presentation of the ABA White House Library, a selection of current titles given to each presidential administration since 1929, for the reading pleasure of the First Family. The White House visit occurred in conjunction with Winter Institute 6 and the Board’s winter meeting.

The Board was accompanied to the White House by ABA CEO Oren Teicher and Barbara Meade, co-owner, with the late Carla Cohen, of Washington, D.C.’s iconic Politics and Prose.

Sarah Bagby, ABA President Michael Tucker, Ken White, ABA Vice President Becky Anderson, Barbara Meade, Beth Puffer, President Obama, Tom Campbell, Betsy Burton, Dan Chartrand, and ABA CEO Oren Teicher at the presentation of the White House Library.

Books presented to the President, including YA titles for his daughters, were:

  • Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms, and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories, by Simon Winchester (Harper); presented by ABA President Michael Tucker, Books Inc., San Francisco, California
  • A Nest for Celeste: A Story About Art, Inspiration, and the Meaning of Home, by Henry Cole (Katherine Tegen Books); The Candymakers, by Wendy Mass (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers); and Out of My Mind, by Sharon Draper (Atheneum); presented by ABA Vice President Becky Anderson, Anderson’s Bookshops, Naperville, Illinois
  • Colonel Roosevelt, by Edmund Morris (Random House): presented by Barbara Meade, Politics and Prose, Washington, D.C.
  • Cutting for Stone, by Abraham Verghese (Knopf); the winner of the 2010 Indies Choice Book Award for Fiction, presented on behalf of the entire group
  • Doctor Zhivago, by Boris Pasternak: A new translation by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky (Pantheon); presented by Sarah Bagby, Watermark Books and Cafe, Wichita, Kansas
  • Foreign Bodies, by Cynthia Ozick (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt); presented by Betsy Burton, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America, by Matt Taibbi (Spiegel & Grau); presented by Tom Campbell, The Regulator Bookshop, Durham, North Carolina
  • Song of Myself: And Other Poems by Walt Whitman, selected and introduced by Robert Hass (Counterpoint); presented by Ken White, San Francisco State University Bookstore, San Francisco, California
  • Storyteller, by Patricia Reilly Giff (Wendy Lamb Books) and The Danger Box, by Blue Balliett (Scholastic Press); presented by Beth Puffer, Bank Street Bookstore, New York, New York
  • Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, by Laura Hillenbrand (Random House); presented by Dan Chartrand, Water Street Bookstore, Exeter, New Hampshire
  • Washington: A Life, by Ron Chernow (Penguin Press); presented by ABA CEO Oren Teicher, Tarrytown, New York