March 3rd, 2007

Booksense mystery picks

I heart Booksense, and not just because the independent booksellers have named my books to their list twice. No, it's because their picks really make a difference for authors. Like Water for Elephants wouldn't have been nearly as successful if Booksense hadn't gotten behind it.

And there's even someone I know who's an April pick. Here's what they say, "KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED: A Walt Longmire Mystery, by Craig Johnson. "Sheriff Longmire and sidekick Henry Standing Bear leave Wyoming for a photo exhibit in Philadelphia, where the sheriff's daughter is attacked, men are murdered, and art is appreciated. In his third Longmire mystery, Johnson weaves together city and country, Anglo and Indian, art snob and proud philistine and creates a laugh-out-loud, hard-to-put-down mystery." --Catherine G. Weller, Sam Weller's Books, Salt Lake City, UT"

Here are the April mystery/suspense notables:
- Damage Control by Robert Dugoni [Full disclosure: we spoke on the same panel a couple of years ago and I learned he is both nice and drop-dead gorgeous]
Fever Moon by Carolyn Haines. [Full disclosure: she busted out of paperback originals a while back. She is sweet and generous.]
The Fifth Vial by Michael Palmer
Priest by Ken Bruen [Full disclosure: I know he was as broken up over Barbara Seranella's death as I was]
Scavenger by David Morrell [Full disclosure: he's the guy who created Rambo and has a pretty good book about writing]
Water Like a Stone by Deobrah Crombie



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Pizza Hut is Satan

While I haven't willing eaten a Pizza Hut pizza in years (the last time was when I was stuck at an airport), it seems fairly sad that a group is picking on Pizza Hut's Book It program, which reaches 22 million kids a year and rewards readers with free pizzas

Critics say it promotes junk food consumption. Well, pizza isn't that bad, certainly far less bad than MickeyD's. Plus Pizza Hut has lower calorie and vegetarian options. The complainers also say it "undermines parents by positioning family visits to Pizza Hut as an integral component of raising literate children" which I find a streeeetch.

If they do away with this, will anything fill its place? I doubt it.

Do prizes motivate kids? For sure. My kid, who is a good reader, just read six different kinds of books to take part in a class party. The six including genres, like non-fiction historical, that kid normally wouldn't read. "The more kids see books as a way to get pizza or some other prize, the less interest they'll have in reading itself," Kohn, a former teacher, said in a telephone interview. "They tend to choose easier books to get through faster." Not for my kid. And at least kids are reading.

Read more here.

What do you think?



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