On June 10, we announced the great big Book of the Day contest: Our 10,000th subscriber would receive a box of 10 books + a $10 Books-A-Million gift card, and 10 current subscribers who shared a Book of the Day newsletter via e-mail or social media would also receive a box of 10 books.
One month later, here's an update: Not only has our Book of the Day audience hit 10k subscribers, but we are currently up to nearly 10,400 members. I hope all you subscribers are enjoying your daily book reviews and finding good reads for your TBR (like today's Book of the Day, The Girl in the Blue Beret by Bobbi Ann Mason).
Notifications have been sent to our winners:
Richelle from Oskaloosa, IA, was our 10,000th subscriber, and our 10 (randomly-selected) sharers are:
David — who shared on LinkedIn
Jenn, Maria and Lora — who shared on Facebook
Kathleen, Michele and Stacy— who shared on Twitter
Gerri, Kathy and Kim — who shared via e-mail
Congratulations, winners! Also: sign up here if you'd like to receive Book of the Day.
I posted about this contest three weeks ago, but here's a little reminder since you're running out of time to enter.
For a chance at winning, all you have to do is enter here and you could get—well—free books for a year! (That breaks down to four books per month for 12 months.) We'll be sending the best new books every month to the winner—and we can even tailor our selections to your taste (i.e. only send out nonfiction, YA, etc.).
Sound like a prize you would like? Enter away because the contest ends tomorrow night at 11:59 p.m. Good luck!
Welcome read-a-thon participants! It's almost 12 hours in now, so we at the Book Case hope this mini-challenge will be a welcome break from reading—and a fun contest.
Since our prize is copies of the new Penguin Classics editions of Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice, designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith, we're asking you to answer one of two questions in the comments.
1.) Which classic are you reading or re-reading for the read-a-thon, and why?
2.) What is your favorite classic, and why?
The challenge will be open until 10 pm, so think about it and come back if you need more time. One winner will be chosen at random to receive the two books. More pictures of these gorgeous classics can be found here. Trust me, you want these for your bookshelf. Good luck and happy reading!
Scholastic is boasting—and justifiably so—about the news that Suzanne Collins' teen novel Catching Fire is now the best-selling book in the country for any age group, according to bestseller lists just released by USA Today and the Wall Street Journal. This sequel to The Hunger Games is obviously drawing many adult readers, including several in our office who rave about this fast-paced read and its appealing young heroine, Katniss Everdeen. Though she won the Hunger Games, Katniss must face new problems in book two as she begins the Capitol's cruel Victory Tour.
Collins is working on the third and final book in the Hunger Games trilogy and has done very few interviews for Catching Fire. We're happy to report that BookPage was one of the lucky few—you can read our Q&A with the author in the September issue.
And speaking of lucky: we have a copy of Catching Fire for one lucky reader. Leave a comment below no later than Monday, Sept. 14, mentioning your favorite heroine in a book, and you'll be entered in the drawing to win!
When we blogged about South of Broad, Pat Conroy's new novel, back in April, we were thrilled with the huge reader response we got.
Our readers commented to tell us how much they love Conroy and how excited they are for his new book. (To check out my original blog post, click here).
Today South of Broad goes on sale—and to celebrate, we are offering free copies to two lucky Book Case readers. All you have to do is comment on this posting by Friday, August 14. Tell us what your favorite Conroy novel is, or why you're looking forward to reading South of Broad. We'll select the winners at random. And don't forget to check out our August cover story on Conroy and South of Broad here.
Good luck! And happy reading!
Author Joyce Maynard heard about my earlier post on the striking cover design of her new novel, Labor Day, and was nice enough to email over the weekend with some reflections of her own about the cover. "First off," Joyce writes, "I WAS consulted and came up with a number of very bad ideas. This is why I'm a writer, not a designer, I guess." She says she was immediately taken with designer Mary Schuck's vision for the cover, which includes an image in matte gloss of a heart shape traced on a window pane. The idea appealed to her "because I am one of those people who draw on misted-up windows (also one of those people whose own car gets so dirty that I've been known to find the message 'Wash Me' written on the back windshield. But that's another story)."
Here's an interesting coincidence about the cover: "Mary did not know this at the time she came up with this design," Joyce tells us, "but three of my novels, before this one (Baby Love, Where Love Goes, and To Die For) all feature some form of heart-shaped image on the jacket. I'm sure this has something to say about my obsessions, and I freely admit to this: I am interested in love, and all the things it makes us do, and in broken hearts, and their occasional mending."This revelation prompted a flurry of emails about other heart-shaped objects, including the heart-shaped rock collection of a favorite blogger of mine. Another coincidence! "It's so interesting that you mention heart-shaped rocks," Joyce replied. "Until you said this I had totally forgotten this, but here is a surprising story:
"Labor Day was written in a little cabin at The MacDowell Colony, deep in the woods in New Hampshire, last September. This cabin was a full mile away from the main lodge where I would walk in every evening for dinner. Evidently the previous resident of my cabin had taken to collecting stones on her walk to the lodge every day—but only heart-shaped stones. So when I moved in, there was a row of heart-shaped stones around the front porch.
I loved seeing that row of stones every day, and added a few over the weeks I was writing there. When I left at the end of September (having finished Labor Day) I left them for the next person."
Our discussion of broken hearts, book covers, found objects and faded love began last week with a post and a chance to win a copy of Labor Day. There's only one day left to enter the contest by joining the discussion on book covers you love or loathe. Here are some of the jackets that have gotten the thumbs-up so far from Book Case readers:
And here are a couple that have gotten thumbs-down:
Which cover sets your heart a-flutter?
Joyce Maynard's just-released novel, Labor Day, is drawing kudos from all over. In her review for BookPage, Deborah Donovan calls it "a marvelous read" and she notes, as several other reviewers have, that the book is "perfect for one long sitting." In other words, something about the story is so mesmerizing, so deeply engaging, that you won't want to put it down.
Set in the 1980s, Maynard's novel is part coming-of-age, part love story, part page-turner. The story unfolds over one long weekend as a divorced mother and her 13-year-old son head out for what should be a routine trip to the store and meet a mysterious stranger who will transform both their lives. In an interview with Kirkus, Maynard says, "The story I tell in Labor Day is painful, but it’s hopeful too. And I’m a hopeful person."
The book's hopeful quality is beautifully captured in a stunning cover design that pictures a lush end-of-summer scene viewed through a damp window. Outlined on the surface of the glossy window is the shape of a heart, as if someone had traced it there with a fingertip. Trails of condensation drip down from the heart on the window pane, making the image seem at once both lovely and poignant.
The cover was designed by Mary Schuck, VP/Creative Art Director for HarperCollins, who tells us via email, "This was an important book for us, so we went through many ideas and covers to come up with this. Not to give anything away, but the heart drawn inside a steamy hot summer room seemed like a good way to get at least part of the storyline across." Visual relief was added by using a gloss finish on the window pane, and a matte finish on the heart. "I wanted the pane of glass and water to shine and the drawn heart to look removed by human hands, so that’s why we went with the spot matte on top of gloss," Schuck explains. When we received a copy of the finished book at our office a few days ago, I found the effect eye-catching, and as I suspect many others will, I was drawn to trace the shape of the heart with my own finger on the surface of the cover. As for the author herself, Schuck says, "Joyce loved it. She thought it was a nice surprise."
Enter to win a copy of Labor Day by leaving a comment about a book cover that you love (or loathe) by Tuesday, August 4. If you win, you'll not only be able see this very special book cover for yourself, you'll have the perfect novel to read when Labor Day weekend rolls around.
C'mon people, with Father's Day just four days away, we'd like to have more nominees for favorite fictional father.
Vote getters so far:
We're going with Atticus Finch*, but you might have a different idea. Check out the comments and dive in for a chance to win four new books on fatherhood.
*Atticus on courage: "I wanted you to see what REAL courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do." (To Kill a Mockingbird)
If you’re gift-challenged like me, holidays/birthdays/graduations and other gift-giving events have a way of sneaking up on you. We’re doing our part to help out by warning you a full week in advance that Sunday is FATHER’S DAY and if you don’t already have an idea for a present, you’d better get busy. Wait, there’s more. We’re also offering one lucky reader a chance to snag a Father’s Day gift collection without ever leaving the sofa. Our “Four for Father” collection includes these new releases:
As BookPage’s fiction editor, I get to read (or at least partially read) dozens and dozens of great novels every month. But the hardest part of the job (at least for me) is narrowing all of these great books down to a stack of 10 or 12 to review each month. As my mother would say, “That’s a nice problem to have!” And it really is. But in my time with BookPage, there has not been a month when I didn’t lament not including a certain book in our issue. Such is the case with The Fixer Upper, the latest novel from New York Times bestselling author Mary Kay Andrews (Deep Dish, Blue Christmas, Savannah Breeze, etc.).
On sale at the end of this month, The Fixer Upper is the story of Dempsey Jo Killebrew—an impressive young woman who thinks she has landed her dream job at a Washington, D.C. law firm. She’s living the high life until her boss is implicated in a very juicy political scandal—and she is shown the door right along with him. Dempsey is suddenly out of a job with bills piling up; and because her name has been splashed all over the news along with her boss’s, no potential employer will touch her. So what’s a girl to do? Well, in a Mary Kay Andrews novel, she has only one choice—return to her Southern roots. For Dempsey, that means taking her father up on his offer to restore the old family mansion in sleepy Guthrie, Georgia.
Like Andrews’ other novels, this is a light, sassy, easy read, perfect for the beach or lazy days on the porch. I loved what I read of the novel, and even though we didn’t pick this one for print coverage, the kind folks at Harper sent us three finished copies of the book. So in celebration of the start of summer, three lucky Book Case readers can enter to win a free copy—even before it officially hits the shelves. Just post a comment and tell us what your favorite beach read is before June 15th. We’ll select the winners at random. Good luck!