June 22nd, 2011

Taxis in Cairo support reading (plus a memory of a crazy taxi ride)

Two hundred cabs in Cairo, Egypt have joined the “Taxi of Knowledge” initiative launched by Alef Bookstores, as reported by almasryalyoum.com. The bookstore lends taxi drivers five books to place in their cabs. “They can exchange them with others from Alef’s collection at any time. The books are donated by friends, authors and volunteers of Alef. So far over 10,000 books have been collected for the project. The idea is to encourage both the taxi drivers as well as passengers to read. “So far it’s been a fantastic idea,” says Mohamed Saber, a taxi driver in the Dokki neighborhood. “It has allowed me to engage in discussions with my passengers that aren’t necessarily personal but carry meaning. At night I am also able to read the books myself and share them with my family.””

Read more here.

The second time I went to New York, I was naive and inexperienced (although not terribly young). The taxi I took to my hotel was one of the first I had ever taken. For some reason, I ended up getting in front with the driver. He asked me to run away with him that night and get married in Virginia.

It was long, strange trip.

I stole that experience from myself and put it in Circles of Confusion: A Claire Montrose Mystery.

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Ooh, shiny! Not one but TWO covers

While these might totally change, I wanted to share some new covers with you guys (after I got permission from my editor).

This one's for my next book. It's what the cover of the ARE (Advanced Readers Edition, which seems to be the in-term now, instead of ARC, or Advanced Readers Copy). (Does anyone know why ARE is now in vogue?) The cover may change for the real book, which won't come out until March 2012. What do you think?

And here's what they are thinking of using for the cover of the paperback of Girl, Stolen, which also comes out in March 2012. While I love the hands over the face cover, Marketing had some concerns the book looked like a problem novel for girls (you know, Ami has an eating disorder or Amanda's dad is touching her at night). They wanted to project it was a thriller that would appeal to both sexes. Again, what do you think?

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