Thursday, October 11, 2007

Battle of the Bookseller Dot Coms

Perhaps the recent revamp of B& was spurred by Borders Books and Music getting ready to reclaim in early 2008. Until recenlty, they've been directing traffic to, where anyone with a brain basically goes to shop online. The discounts are better, the selection wider, and you can get more than books, music and dvd's.

In a side-by-side comparison, the B&N site is more homogeneous in design, color palate and flow between sections. (beta) features harsh breaks and static images. While I do like the scrollable "magic shelf" front and center on (which sadly you can only scroll up and down on), B& has a lovely animation of their featured titles running right to left with mini windows that show you the price and discount when you mouse over the cover of any title.

Best addition to the new Borders site is their "guest shortlist" featuring 5 picks to read, watch and listen to.

Newest edition to B&N is their reviews section (which I don't see anything comparible to on the Borders site). While the author interviews will be a great addition, I doubt we're going to get critical debate or bad reviews coming out of B&

In the final analysis, both are too busy promoting ALL their products, instead of focusing on their main mission: Books. Sadly, we're left with sites that are "full of sound and fury, signifying... nothing."

do tell,
the editor
ps: Borders, you might want to put a temporary "coming soon" page up for people who type in Also, talk to google, because the 2nd listing for on a google search is your partnership with

We Heart Stephen Colbert

Only Stephen Colbert would have the gravitas to interview himself on The Colbert Report to promote his book, AND create a petition offering himself as a guest on Oprah in order to save her book club. As stated in the petition: "your book club has a troubling record. So far, you've given your implicit endorsement to liars, hermaphrodites, the apocalypse, and, in honoring Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Fidel Castro. All of which are actively plotting to destroy America. Isn't it about time you chose a book that cared about this nation?"
Best of luck, Stephen. Best of luck.
do tell,
the editor

Blind Item: WTF is up with the WaPo book blog?

Saw in today's GalleyCat that the Washington Post has a new blog, Short Stack. Book World editor Marie Arana writes "If Your Marriage Is on the Rocks: We kick off our blog with a short list of five books that might be tonics to marital troubles." Is this a subtle sign that things aren't so rosy between Arana & hubby Jonathan Yardley? Their relationship (adulterous, a little birdy at the Post told me) began over books at the office; maybe it'll end there. Could "Short Stack" be a not-so-loving nickname? The list reads more like a tonic for insomnia than marital woes.
Keep those blind items coming!
do tell,
the editor

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Bad News, Good News

Bad News: The Canadian Dollar is at an all time high against the dollar, basically 1 for 1. So much for a cheap vacation in the world next door, eh?

Good News: Looks like we can finally get rid of those pesky dual prices on jacket flaps.

Maybe its time to publish more books in Spanish, or God forbid, French Canadian.


Monday, October 8, 2007

The Colbert Effect

Stephen's got game, not only plugging his very own book tonight, but that of his guest, The Braindead Megaphone by George Saunders. I've seen Colbert in the past push books to #2 on Amazon, and right now at publication hour of his own book, I Am America only ranks #6. In a "tip of the hat" to Harry Potter, stores like Powells are having a midnight release party right now. But, as a "wag of a finger," I didn't see a damn thing about it on their homepage. I know they're an indie, but at least they could afford a webcam that linked to
How irate this man will be tomorrow if it doesn't at least hit #1 on amazon. However, I'm sure it will be on the NYT list, but, as we all know, Colbert doesn't read. As for Mr. Saunders, he's at #1,535 on Amazon.
Regardless, tomorrow's ep will be one not to miss.
do tell,
the editor