Saturday, June 02, 2007

Books Are Alive and Well

Hi all,

I am just joining my illustrious fellow GCP authors at this blog, so I'll take a moment to introduce myself. I'm Andrea Pickens and I write historical romance set in England during the Regency era. My first book for Grand Central Publishing, "The Spy Wore Silk", hit the shelves yesterday, so I am celebrating that debut as well!

As I live in New York City, I took the opportunity to visit the Book Expo of America yesterday, which runs through the weekend at the Javits Center. For those of you unfamiliar with the event, it is the annual get-together of the publishing world, a time for editors, agents, media and salespeople to schmooze with each other and showcase their new lists to the crowds of booksellers who come to see the new lines.

It's a huge event, with acres of fancy booths featuring all the big names in books, along with a host of esoteric imprints. For a reader, it's absolute heaven! I spent hours prowling the aisles, perusing the latest blockbusters, gorgeous coffee table picture tomes and a myriad of fascinatingly obscure titles. (Not to speak of getting serious back strain collecting all the ARCs they offer! One of the wonderful perks of the show is all the fabulous free stuff that the publishers lavish on the attendees. I collecting a bagload of interesting books that will come in handy for research, including a history of the condom. See, I told you there were esoteric titles!)

But I came away with something far more important than an armload of reading material. I came away with the heartening impression that reading is alive and well, despite the internet and video games. The wealth of choices from the smaller houses was mind boggling. There was an imprint devoted to cooking with heirloom herbs, regional publishers preserving vanishing crafts, and lots of foreign publishers offering works on different cultures. Literary fiction, history, politics, sports, cooking, religion—you name it and there were people showing quality works on the subject. As someone who just loves books—all books—I was overwhelmed. Delightfully so!

And it also got me thinking about all the possibilities for titles . . . so I thought I'd ask everyone here: what books or subject do you wish you could find at your local bookstore?

Best, Andrea

1 comment:

Lois said...

Well, the stores I go to are still pretty good in the romance area, but it's the Borders ones that I might find more older books on the shelves than B&N, were it's really more the newer ones. But I still find plenty.

But I have a really big problem with the stores and the shrinking science sections. Guess they aren't all that popular in the area. But still, we need nonfiction to go with the fiction. :)