David Walliams’s best-selling childrens book Gangsta Granny is to be brought to life as a Christmas family drama for the BBC. The tale follows last year’s seasonal special when another of his novels, Mr Stink, was adapted starring Hugh Bonneville as a kindly tramp. Walliams will work on the script along with Kevin Cecil and Andy Riley who have previously worked on Gnomeo and Juliet and Robbie The Reindeer. The hour-long BBC1 film, which has yet to be cast, revolves around schoolboy Ben who is bored at his grandmother’s house until he learns she was formerly an international jewel thief and has been plotting to steal the crown jewels.The story was first published in 2011…
The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books drew thousands of attendees this past weekend, and as usual there was plenty of authors, panels, and activities for book-loving children and teens.
There really ARE lods of photos here. Keep on scrolling!
from Publishers Weekly, news of a deal struck in the UK by Hot Key Books, and in the US by Amazon Children’s Publiching:
Following the London Book Fair, the sale of U.S. and U.K. rights for Finnish YA author Salla Simukka’s Snow White Trilogy has just been announced. Larry Kirshbaum at Amazon Children’s Publishing/Skyscape acquired U.S. rights; U.K. and Commonwealth rights were sold to Hot Key Books. Elina Ahlbäck of Elina Ahlbäck Literary Agency in Finland brokered the deals…
In Finland, book one in the trilogy, As Red as Blood, was published by Tammi Publishers in February 2013. Book two, As White as Snow, will publish in Finland in October 2013, and book three, As Black as Ebony, will be released in spring 2014.
Simukka is a translator and editor as well as an author of juvenile fiction. She has published several novels and one collection of short prose for young readers, and has translated adult fiction, children’s books, and plays. In January 2013 she was awarded Finland’s oldest prize for children’s fiction, the Topelius Prize, for her novels Without a Trace and Elsewhere.
Today is official publication day of The Silver Dream, sequel to Interworld by Neil Gaiman and Michael Reaves
I expect my ebook income to drop this year. Why? Because as I’ve noted before there has been a downward trend in my sales since my last report. Here’s an amazing graphic to show that…
Hey, that number in the bottom keeps going down each month. 249 copies seven months ago. 53 copies sold last month. I do think there is much more competition out there now and that there was a big blitz on sales while everyone and their pet got an eReader then filled it up. And the drop in sales is also because of the algorithmic changes Amazon made to how they weight the price of books on the sales chart (if you sell a 9.99 book, it’ll jump higher up the sales chart than a .99 cent book). It became harder for my books to climb the charts and get noticed by buyers.
Yet, I’m happy with the sales. It’s still passive income for me that will go on as long as there are eReaders in the world. I really don’t do much extra work to earn that income. And I’m very much a less work for more money kind of guy!
Ben Fountain’s satire "Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk" was named the winner of the L.A. Times 2012 book prize for fiction on Friday night at a ceremony in Los Angeles. Katherine Boo’s "Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity" took the prize in the current interest category.
The complete list of winners:
–Biography: Robert Caro, "The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson" (Knopf)
–Current Interest: Katherine Boo, "Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity" (Random House)
–Fiction: Ben Fountain, "Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk" (HarperCollins Publishers / Ecco)
–The Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction: Maggie Shipstead, "Seating Arrangements" (Knopf)
–Graphic Novel/Comics: Sammy Harkham, "Everything Together: Collected Stories" (PictureBox)
–History: Fergus M. Bordewich, "America’s Great Debate: Henry Clay, Stephen A. Douglas, and the Compromise That Preserved the Union" (Simon & Schuster)
–Mystery/Thriller: Tana French, "Broken Harbor" (Viking)
–Poetry: Louise Glück, "Poems 1962-2012" (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
–Science & Technology: Florence Williams, "Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History" (W.W. Norton & Company)
–Young Adult Literature: A.S. King, "Ask the Passengers" (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)
–Innovator’s Award: Margaret Atwood
–Robert Kirsch Award: Kevin Starr
Tim Waterstone thinks serialisation could be a “big win”:
Three months ago [Tim Waterstone] was approached by Neill Denny, the former editor of trade magazine The Bookseller, who was developing a new business venture called Read Petite – a subscription streaming service for short stories and serialised books for e-readers such as Amazon’s Kindle.
‘I find the idea of a return to serialisation riveting,’ he says. ‘It could be a real big win. Get the first chapter out and get readers interested. Look what it was like in the 19th Century – Dickens was selling 100,000 copies through serial releases of his books.
‘There is also an opportunity for the release of non-fiction. It’s difficult for journalists to get works over 5,000 words published these days – something I could read if I’m on a plane journey to Barcelona, something I could read in one sitting, to wildly misquote Edgar Allan Poe.’
Due to launch in the autumn, Waterstone says the company will accept only published authors on to its electronic service. He believes this will stop the system becoming ‘cluttered with slush’.
E.L. Konigsburg, an author who twice won one of the top honors for children’s literature, has died. She was 83.
Her son Paul Konigsburg says the longtime Florida resident died Friday at a hospital in Falls Church, Va., where she’d been living for the past few years with another son. She had suffered a stroke a week before she died.
She won the John Newbery Medal in 1997 for her book "The View from Saturday" and in 1968 for "From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler."
The Shortlist for the 2013 Walter Scott Prize
- TOBY’S ROOM by Pat Barker
- THE DAUGHTERS OF MARS by Thomas Keneally
- BRING UP THE BODIES by Hilary Mantel
- THE STREETS by Anthony Quinn
- THE GARDEN OF EVENING MISTS by Tan Twan Eng
- MERIVEL by Rose Tremain
The Walter Scott Prize, founded in 2009 by the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch and awarded at the Brewin Dolphin Borders Book Festival in June, is the largest annual UK prize to be judged outside London, and honours the legacy and achievements of Sir Walter Scott, founder of the historical novel. Scott’s influence has been further revived this year, with several new books and documentaries on his life, a new radio adaptation of his work read by David Tennant, and the re-opening of his Borders home Abbotsford after substantial restoration.
The judging panel for the Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction comprises Kirsty Wark, Louise Richardson, Jonathan Tweedie, Elizabeth Laird and Elizabeth Buccleuch, and chair Alistair Moffat. The judges’ criteria include originality and innovation, quality of writing, a strong narrative, and the ability of a book to shed light on the present as well as the past. Books can be by writers living in the UK, Ireland or the Commonwealth as long as they are writing in English and the book is first published in these countries.
Shortlisted authors are invited to attend the award ceremony and announcement on Friday 14th June, which is a public event as part of the Brewin Dolphin Borders Book Festival in Melrose, near Scott’s home Abbotsford. As well as enjoying the hospitality of the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch at their home Bowhill, shortlisted authors this year will also exclusively be offered a private preview tour of Abbotsford following its restoration.
The Hit by Melvin Burgess, reviewed by Anthony McGowan
McGowan reckons Melvin Burgess’s latest novel is a “humdinger” and “might have been a masterpiece”. Read the whole review to discover where McGowan considers the novel strikes one false note.
At his best, Burgess gives us, in the place of jolly japes and sweet imaginings, something very like the truth – at times bitter, often tragic, always gripping – of teenage existence. It’s something that even authors as great as Alan Garner and Aidan Chambers, caught up in a more literary tradition, never quite pulled off.
The Hit has many of the elements that make Burgess such a compelling writer. The sex, drugs and rock’n’roll are there, and that distinctive Burgess prose – swaggering, intense and exciting – thrums through it all.