Friday 20 July 2012

Compass Points 9

Compass Points 9
Your weekly round up of publishing news, publicity information and trivia!

Wow! It’s not often you get a backlist title, from a small publisher that suddenly becomes a bestselling sensation! And even less often is that book a translation – first published in 1957 by an author from Kyrgyzstan!! But Jamilla by Chingiz Aitmatov (published by Telegram Books) is that very book. It has been selected as the Waterstone’s Book of the Month for August but even before the promotion has started the sales have been phenomenal. The chain has ordered and re-ordered copies – now over 10,000! Waterstones in Doncaster sold 160 copies last weekend alone and Waterstones in Birmingham have said the title is outselling Fifty Shades of Grey!  Book Trust called it “ A simple and beautiful evocation of time, place and the power of love which deserves to be known as one of the world’s great and timeless love stories” while The Guardian praised its “ beautiful scenes of human kindness, wisdom, love and devotion, set against the background of stunning central Asian landscapes.” The cover is classy and striking – the writing is truthful and vivid – it’s the perfect holiday read – so don’t miss out on one of the biggest independent publishing success stories of the summer; find out more and order copies here!

Meanwhile the sales figures for another superb translated fiction title from a small publisher continue to soar! A big thank you from all at Hesperus Press and from us here at Compass to all you fantastic UK booksellers for making The Hundred Year Old Man who Climbed out of the Window and Disappeared such a stunning success!

Who needs a bit of sunshine? Maybe you still have some? Here in London today it’s rather rainy – but whatever the weather’s doing outside your bookshop, make sure you’ve plenty of copies of Sunshine on Scotland Street inside and on display! Alexander McCall Smith has been tirelessly promoting the book in the media, in bookshops and at book festivals up and down the country and it’s sure to be another big seller for this immensely popular author. This book is the eighth in the 44 Scotland Street series. McCall Smith’s books have been translated into 46 different languages and have sold over 25 million copies throughout the world. Join Alexander McCall Smith on a walk round Edinburgh as he talks about the series.

And don’t forget about Precious and the Mystery of Meerkat Hill – a new children’s title from the same author. This is the second in the series which goes back to the early life of the famous Precious Ramotswe, when as an eight-year-old girl she was already solving mysteries many years before she founded her Number One Ladies’ Detective Agency. If you haven’t come across these two children’s books by McCall Smith (the previous title is Precious and the Monkeys) I really recommend them to you – they are beautifully designed, with very vibrant and atmospheric illustrations throughout, and great fun to read aloud.

Hurrah! A book from one of the Compass publishers is on the 2012 Man Booker Prize longlist. The Garden of Evening Mists by Tan Twan Eng (published by Myrmidon Books) is the second novel from the acclaimed writer of The Gift of Rain which sold over 60,000 copies. The Garden of Evening Mists has the same sumptuous style and exotic imagery so beloved by readers and critics alike, and deals with Malaysia’s turbulent road to independence: a time of insurrection and uncertainty and terror. The full list of the twelve authors on the Booker longlist is: Nicola Barker, The Yips (Fourth Estate); Ned Beauman, The Teleportation Accident (Sceptre); André Brink, Philida (Harvill Secker); Tan Twan Eng, The Garden of Evening Mists (Myrmidon Books); Michael Frayn, Skios (Faber & Faber); Rachel Joyce, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry (Doubleday); Deborah Levy, Swimming Home (And Other Stories); Hilary Mantel, Bring up the Bodies (Fourth Estate); Alison Moore, The Lighthouse (Salt); Will Self, Umbrella (Bloomsbury); Jeet Thayil, Narcopolis (Faber & Faber) and Sam Thompson, Communion Town (Fourth Estate). The shortlist of six will be announced on 11 September; and the overall winner on 16 October.

The Oldie magazine celebrates its 20th anniversary this week with the publication of The Best of The Oldie: 1992 – 2012. With contributors including Auberon Waugh, Miles Kington, Beryl Bainbridge, William Trevor, Ruth Rendell and Sue Townsend as well as Richard Ingrams himself of course; the book is a 192-page, full-colour "antidote to youth culture”. If there’s one thing this magazine is terrific at, it is self-publicity – and there has been bucketloads of it this weekend for the book with big pieces in the Guardian, the Telegraph and the Independent – and there’s more to come throughout the summer.

And finally, we at Compass are bubbling over with Olympic excitement today – and were thrilled to be to be ringing and dinging our bells at 8:12am this morning! Did you join in? Were you already at work (!) or still snoozing in bed?! I was in my kitchen with my 9 yr old son – jangling the bells on various toys while outside we could hear church bells, door bells and car horns! 

This newsletter is sent weekly to over 400 booksellers. If you would like to order any of the titles mentioned, then please click here to go to the Compass New Titles Website.

That’s all for now folks, more next week!

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