Three Free Hounds

Thu 24 Sep 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

We did a member giveaway on LibraryThing and these three lucky readers will be receiving a free copy of Hound for reading and reviewing:

Betty in Smithers, BC (readerbynight)
Yesenia in Elmhurst NY (jesi813)
Belinda in Grand Bay, AL (sadi2forever)

Vincent McCaffrey by you.Kelly and I went to Vincent’s first reading the other night at the Brookline Booksmith in Boston and it was great fun—Vincent turns out to be a great reader and good with a Q&A (lucky for us).

He has a few more readings lined up—and there are some nice reviews coming, so yay for the Hound!

Anyone going to Booksmith readings (for, say, Lorrie Moore!) should note that for afterwards there’s a J.P. Licks just down the street, mmm!

Hound – Reviews

Tue 8 Sep 2009 - Filed under: Authors, , , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Reviews of Hound
by Vincent McCaffrey

“If you favor a leisurely but still intriguing mystery with amiable characters and a devotion to the printed word, Hound will provide a pleasant diversion. As much about books — and love and knowledge and family — as about murder, Hound is the first in McCaffrey’s projected trilogy, and book lovers will eagerly await Henry’s next outing.”
Richmond Times-Dispatch

“One of the strengths of this book is McCaffrey’s droll description throughout…. As quick as McCaffrey’s wit is, so is his un-saccharine sentimentality…. In the end, that careful attention is what makes Hound evoke such a Jimmy Stewart-movie atmosphere. It wraps up completely like a, yes, package—but an honest one, skillfully wrapped and artfully offered.”
Rain Taxi

“For the true bibliophile, this is a book you’ll love. McCaffrey peppers his prose with all kinds of allusions and references to books and literature, new and old, classic and arcane, as well as multiple passages of verse. Clearly, as a career bookseller, McCaffrey knows his books.
The Hippo, NH

“Henry Sullivan is just squeaking by as a “book hound,” a wholesale rare book dealer. He scrounges yard and estate sales picking up the odd bibliographic treasure here and there. He thinks he might be onto a second shot at happiness when an ex-girlfriend asks him to appraise a collection of first editions left by her late husband. But when this former love is murdered, Sullivan turns from reading Raymond Chandler to trying to solve the crime himself. With a faster pace tempered by real emotional resonance, Hound is different from John Dunning’s “Bookman” series, yet there is enough behind the scenes information about the rare book trade to appeal to Cliff Janeway fans. (McCaffrey ran an independent bookstore for 30 years, so he knows what he’s talking about.) The tale is packed with references not only to mystery writers like Erle Stanley Gardner, but a variety of others from Charles Dickens to Nevil Shute. McCaffrey even name checks Harlan Ellison as an example of “The good ones are all difficult.” Set in a beautifully-evoked contemporary Boston, the old town soon provides a wealth of other mysteries for Sullivan, like a hidden stash of letters belonging to a flapper adventuress of the 1920s. As with all good books about books (even novels), this one will send you out looking for the other writers discussed.”
Author Magazine

Read some Hound

Thu 3 Sep 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | 2 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

Just added the first two chapters of Hound to the site — the book has a great first line:

Death was, after all, the way Henry made his living.

And the rest is pretty good, too.

Publication day is 9/29 and events are being added: Sunday October 25th at the Mysterious Bookshop in NYC (which will be a big event, more info TK on that) and also that month at RiverRun up in New Hampshire.

You can check out all we have to read on the site in a couple of different categories: everything, novel excerptsshort stories, and, er, the thus far empty container, reviews (those still have to be portaged over from the old site). And we’ll be adding more as time goes by. But in the meantime, Hound!

Hound, Chapter 1 & Chapter 2

Thu 3 Sep 2009 - Filed under: Free Stuff to Read, Novel Excerpts, , | 2 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

From Hound, by Vincent McCaffrey.

Chapter One

Death was, after all, the way Henry made his living.
The books he sold were most often the recent property of people who had died. Book lovers never gave up the good ones without cause. But then, the books which people sold willingly were not the ones Henry really wanted. The monthly public library sales were stacked high with those—the usual titles for a dollar apiece, yesterday’s best sellers, last year’s hot topics.
But not always. Occasionally, some relative—often the child who never cared much for Dad’s preoccupation with medieval history or Mom’s obsession with old cookbooks—would drop the burden their parents had so selfishly placed upon them by dying, and there they would be, in great careless mounds on the folding tables in the library basement or conference room. Always dumped too quickly by a “volunteer” from the “friends” committee, with the old dust jackets tearing one against the other.
Like encounters with sin, Henry had occasions of luck at yard sales, though not often enough to waste a weekend which might better be spent at home reading. His favorite haunts were the estate auctions, and the best of these were the ones held at the very house where the old geezer had kicked the bucket. And there was always that thin network of friends who knew Henry was a bookman—who heard of book lots being sold and passed the word on. Albert, of course, had been a regular source for this, simply because his trash-removal business so often involved houses being sold where the books had accumulated over the years and the dead were recently departed.
Read more

Hounding around

Mon 24 Aug 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Having trouble posting the final cover of Vincent McCaffrey’s debut novel, Hound, which is at the printer now. Dur. Will do it later. In the meantime, Vince will be getting out from Avenue Victor Hugo Books for a couple of readings soon. A few more may yet be lined up as this bookselling mystery gets more and more love from the bookselling brethren. Stop in and say hi here:

* Also at the NEIBA author reception:

This bingo enables us to bring even more excitement and fun activities to the mix that will keep customers entertained and talking about how much fun they had.

Amir Aczel, Uranium Wars, Palgrave Macmillan
Michael Buckley, Nerds, Abrams
Crispina ffrench, Sweater Chop Shop, Storey
Ethan Gilsdorf, Fantasy Freaks And Gaming Geeks, The Lyons Press
Joe Hill, Horns, Harper
Katherine Howe, Physick Book of Deliverance Dane, Hyperion
Maryalice Huggins, Aesop’s Mirror, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
E. Lockhart, The Treasure Map Of Boys, Delacorte
Loren Long, Otis, Philomel
C. Marina Marchese, Honeybee, Black Dog and Leventhal
Peter McCarty, Jeremy Draws a Monster, Macmillan
Jill McCorkle, Going Away Shoes, Algonquin Books
Louise Penny, The Brutal Telling, St. Martins

First Hound review

Wed 15 Jul 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Publishers Weekly gives Vincent McCaffrey’s debut novel a good review. We’re having fun getting this out to readers and we have a lovely pulpy cover in the offing:

Hound Vincent McCaffrey. Small Beer (Consortium, dist.), $24 (280p) ISBN 978-1-931520-59-1
McCaffrey, the owner of Boston’s legendary Avenue Victor Hugo Bookshop, succeeds in conveying his love of books in his intriguing debut. Boston bibliophile Henry Sullivan, who leads a lonely life in pursuit of rare books, attracts police attention after the strangulation murder of Morgan Johnson, the widow of a renowned literary agent—and Sullivan’s former lover. Not long before, Morgan retained Sullivan to appraise her late husband’s book collection that she was planning to donate to Boston University. Johnson’s husband’s relatives, each with a financial motive to have done her in, make up the small circle of logical suspects. Meanwhile, the reappearance of an old girlfriend forces Sullivan to consider another missed opportunity at happiness. Indeed, the crime-solving remains secondary to the author’s sensitive portrayal of his middle-aged protagonist’s search for meaning, suggesting this novel could’ve worked as well as straight fiction without the whodunit plot. (Sept.)

What we’ll have in NYC

Wed 27 May 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , , , , | 2 Comments| Posted by: Gavin

Hound by Vincent McCaffreyA good time? Knishes?* A trip back in time to the 1890s?

Or, maybe, books to show off — and even some to give away — at BookExpo. Which books? Lots to show off since last year, including The Baum Plan, The Ant King, The King’s Last Song, The Serial Garden, and now Cloud & Ashes.

Wait, wait, wait, though. Did we ever mention the books we’re going to be publishing this autumn and winter? The books we have been reading and playing with and designing and sometimes talking to the authors and thinking about covers but never actually doing anything about them? No?

Hot dang and Whoops!

Ok then, here are our next four titles (plus we have more more more TK after these, ha!) of which we will have early early not-at-all-real copies at BookExpo this week (as they are in various stages of discomportment and have just arrived in from a couple of different local printers):

  • September: Hound by Vincent McCaffrey. A debut novel about a Boston bookhound, books, death, and maybe the death of books. This is the first in a series and it will come out in hardcover.
  • Second Line by Poppy Z. BriteOctober: Second Line: Two Short Novels of Love and Cooking in New Orleans by Poppy Z. Brite. This paperback collects two of Poppy Z. Brite‘s chaotic and fun short novels (The Value of X and D*U*C*K) featuring two New Orleans chefs, Rickey and G-man, who grow up together, fall in love, open a restaurant, Liquor, and have some fun along the way. Poppy is writing a new afterword to go with the novels. Love this series, love that we get to be a part of publishing it. Huge thanks to Bill Schafer of Subterranean Press for helping put this together.
  • Interfictions 2: edited by Delia Sherman and Christopher BarzakNovember: Interfictions 2: An Anthology of Interstitial Writing edited by Delia Sherman and Christopher Barzak. The editors went out into the fields and found 21 pieces of excellently border-crossing material. They’re also putting together an online launch party and auction which will be filled with wonderful art, music, and stories. The book will be the icing and the cake, though.
  • January: Suprise! We are still eating Christmas cake and not thinking about books. Not all true, though, as Feb. is going to be a big mouth month:
  • February 2010: The Poison Eaters and Other Stories by Holly Black. Our second Big Mouth House title is a debut collection of young adult stories from New York Times bestseller (and one of our neighbors), Holly Black. Holly’s stories have just gone from strength to strength over the past few years — as evidenced by her appearances in various Best of the Year anthologies and lists. The Poison Eaters includes a new Modern Faerie Tale as well as some of our favorite stories of recent times.

So, if you’re going to the big show in NYC, drop by the Consortium (our distro) area and say hi. Jed will be there all the time (except for knish breaks), Gavin should be there on Friday & Saturday, and, with luck, Kelly will be there on Saturday. Books, baby, all about the books!

* Order! Order!

On memory

Fri 20 Feb 2009 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

When we asked Vincent McCaffrey for a bio (since we’re publishing his book in September, it seemed the polite thing to do), this is one of the variations he sent:

“I have conveniently forgotten everything I did before I started my bookshop. This allows me to make things up as need be. A writer’s prerogative, according to Mark Twain, who should know. My first professional memory is selling a book on the morning of October 15th, 1975. It felt good so I kept doing it, just like any baby-boomer would.”

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