March 11, 2020
Notes from the Advisory Council

My Dowry to Myself
I think a lot about book collecting — I imagine a lot of booksellers do. As I look around my house and its stacks and stacks and shelves upon shelves of books, many of which I have not yet read or have read but will never read again, I can’t help but think, am I a hoarder? Is it incredibly selfish to keep all of these books? Am I a terrible person for not lending out every good book I read to some worthy reader? (As an aside I maintain that I am not — I will never get back my pristine hardcover first edition of The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, a book I adored, because I gave it to the mother of my brother’s now long ago ex-girlfriend. A MISTAKE. Sometimes you don’t get them back!)

Are these stacks of books the adult equivalent of a security blanket?

Did you know some people give away their books as soon as they have read them? (I KNOW.) A customer the other day asked if we have a buyback program for books (alas we do not), because, she said, once she finished reading a book, what was she supposed to do with it? This is a predicament I have never found myself in. Once I have finished a book, I put it in a pile I am very proud of entitled “Books I Have Finished Recently.” It teetered into two piles the other day and now I can’t open my closet door the whole way but BUT I have a visual stack of my reading journey, the places I’ve been taken by books! I can glance at it and remember — ah yes! The Actress by Anne Enright! Ireland! A wonderfully terrible mother! The stage!! My Friend Anna by Rachel Deloache Williams — ahh yes! A fake heiress! Money wires that never come through! Morocco! Oh look! The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett! Holy crap, she’s such a good writer! Everyone better read this book or else! It’s nice to remember. 

And those shelves and shelves of books I haven’t read yet? (I’m not going to make a joke about having enough books to last a self-quarantine because I’m classier than that but let it be known I clearly do have enough books to self-quarantine.) They are the promise! My dowry to myself! I’ll always surround myself with books — places I’ve been and places I could go if only I had more time to read and there wasn’t so much good TV on right now. It’s a privilege and maybe it’s hoarding and maybe it is selfish, but you know what? The furniture in my house are all yard sale “antiques” and my clothes are from Target and I wear brassy costume jewelry so why the hell not? Let them collect books. 
Items of Importance

March 13: Deadline to reserve hotel rooms for the NEIBA Spring Forum (code: "NIB")

March 27: Deadline to register for Spring Forum (including April All About the Books)

Register for April's All About the Books
Now part of NEIBA's expanded Spring Forum!
NEIBA's traditional April All About the Books is the kickoff event for our new Spring Forum ! Join 10 authors from across New England for presentations, a boxed lunch, and an ABA Town Hall on Tuesday, April 7 from 10:30 AM - 3:30 PM in Portland, ME.

10:30 AM – 12:30 PM Author Presentations
Jessica Anthony, author of  Enter the Aardvark  (Little, Brown & Co.)
James Bird, author of  The Brave  (Feiweil & Friends)
Bill Clegg, author of  The End of the Day  (Gallery/Scout Press)
Charlotte Dennett, author of  The Crash of Flight 3804  (Chelsea Green Publishing)
Jane Eklund, author of  The Story So Far  (Bauhan)
Ellen Meerpol, author of  Her Sister’s Tattoo  (Red Hen Press)
Robert J. Mrazek, author of  The Indomitable Florence Finch  (Hachette Books)
Sarah Prager, author of  Rainbow Revolutionaries  (HarperCollins)
Kate Russo, author of  Super Host  (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)
Phuc Tran, author of  Sigh, Gone  (St. Martin’s Press)

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM  Boxed Lunch with Authors

2:00 – 3:30 PM   ABA Town Hall
You're Invited to Scholastic's Spring Forum Prom!
Break out the cummerbunds and corsages: the theme for NEIBA's Spring Forum reception is prom! This event comes courtesy of Scholastic and will celebrate their upcoming title  You Should See Me in a Crown Author Leah Johnson will be in attendance to meet and mingle with booksellers. Attendees are encouraged to bring a book as their date for a swap table. Snacks and beverages will be provided, as will a dance floor and photo booth. Prom attire appreciated, but not required. This event is FREE to Spring Forum attendees, but   RSVPs are appreciated .

To sign up for other Spring Forum events,  click here.

We're building an epic playlist and slideshow for this event. Please submit your song requests and prom photos (on your left is former board president Laura Cummings) to Ali Schmelzle ( ).
Independent Bookstore Day  (IBD), the national celebration of independent bookstores, will take place on April 25, 2020. Here are some important updates:

  • Tote bags shipped from California this week. Booksellers are allowed to sell them as soon as they receive them.
  • All exclusive IBD items will ship from Ingram’s Tennessee warehouse the week of April 13. Items may be displayed and publicized when received, but they cannot be sold before April 25.
  • After April 10, stores can contact their Ingram sales rep to inquire about extra stock of special IBD merch.
  • IBD bookmarks are included in ABA’s March Box mailing; bookmarks can be distributed at any time.
  • All stores will receive free chapbooks from Elena Ferrante’s new novel, The Lying Life of Adults, as part of a preorder campaign with Europa Editions; point-of-sale signage will be available for download in April.
  • Free Dog Man standees are available for bookstore day; requests must be emailed by March 12.
  • The searchable map of stores participating in this year’s Independent Bookstore Day will be updated soon.
  • Booksellers will also soon have access to an updated downloadable, customizable press release on the For the Trade page.
  • IBD is partnering with to give away free audiobooks, including Wanderlust by Flula Borg and On Cats by Charles Bukowski.
  • Help the IBD press team promote your store by listing your IBD plans here. (Please also e-mail your IBD plans to so we can cross-promote.)

Visit the  Independent Bookstore Day website  to learn more about the annual event; the “ For the Trade ” section includes a handy month-by-month planning guide, bookseller info and FAQs, and more. Watch Bookselling This Week in the coming weeks for more information about Independent Bookstore Day, or  sign up for the IBD newsletter .
All Welcome for a Rep Night at An Unlikely Story
On Monday, March 30 from 6 - 8 PM, six publisher reps from various publishing houses (Macmillan, Penguin Random House, Chronicle, and Workman) will gather at An Unlikely Story to share the upcoming season's most exciting titles, paying particular attention to suggestions for Moms, Dads, Grads, and Summer Reading.

Get free galleys and other bookish swag to win friends and influence people! Pizza and salad will be provided. Get there early to greet friends and grab a slice (or two), as reps will start promptly at 6 PM.

After-Hours Events at the Spring Forum
Attend either event starting at 7 PM on April 7!
Hospitality Suite & Game Room
at the DoubleTree in Portland, ME
hosted by Workman Publishing
for their upcoming book   Total Olympics

Visit Doubletree's Room 718 after dinner/the evening reception to blow off steam, have a drink with colleagues and check out a few games! Pizza and beer will be provided (limited, while supplies last). Check out a few historic Olympic games like club swinging and pigeon shooting, or try out a potential future Olympic event: lightsaber duels!
Release Party for Wesley McNair’s  
(from David R. Godine)
at Longfellow Books in Portland, ME

 Attend an author event at  Longfellow Books  (1 Monument Square in Portland, ME) for the release of Wesley McNair's  Dwellers in the House of the Lord ! NEIBA members are invited to stay after the event for wine, snacks, and conversation with the author. 
Submit for Binc's Indies with Impact Award
Last week, Binc and Penguin Random House announced that applications are now open for Indies with Impact , an award that will fund a community outreach project for an independent bookstore working with a community nonprofit or organization of their choice. One bookstore will be awarded $1,500 to create and implement a program that strengthens their local community and encourages a passion for reading.

Bookstores can work with local schools, libraries, or nonprofits. Projects and partnerships should focus strongly on community needs and the bookstore’s values and mission. 

To apply, bookstores must meet eligibility in one of these categories: A U.S. retail brick and mortar store (with a substantial portion of its revenue derived from the sale of books), OR a mobile or pop-up bookstore which is open to the general public and maintains an annual average of 30 hours per week with a bookseller present. The community nonprofit or organization must be a different organization than the bookstore.

Additional eligibility guidelines and the application can be accessed here. Applications will be accepted through May 2. A winner will be announced at the end of May.
Join Jennifer Weiner for Lunch at the Spring Forum
Looking forward to Spring Forum education on Wednesday, April 8? We are! As a special treat, booksellers who purchase tickets to the Bookseller Bootcamp   or Owner/Manager HR Intensive   will also be invited to an author luncheon with Jennifer Weiner to celebrate her new book, Big Summer (out from Atria in May). Afterwards, we'll break into roundtables. To sign up for education and other Spring Forum events, click here.
MIT Press Bookstore seeks Part-Time Bookseller
The MIT Press Bookstore is looking for a book-loving, customer- and community-oriented bookseller, who is adaptable and prepared to be involved in many aspects of running a bookstore, to join a small, dynamic team.

The MIT Press Bookstore sells books from the MIT Press and from a wide range of mostly scholarly and academic publishers, but has started including more general interest titles as well. The bookseller role entails sales, merchandising, and clerical duties and there is an expectation that the successful candidate will build their knowledge of MIT Press books and publishing disciplines; using a POS system; ordering, shipping, and receiving inventory; stocking and merchandising shelves, providing general clerical support; and representing the bookstore at off-site events.

The ideal bookseller is one who wants to learn about all the aspects of a bookstore, and opportunities for learning are frequent. Weekend availability is a must. This position comes with benefits provided by MIT, and pay is competitive.

Questions? Contact Store Manger Clarissa Murphy (

Apply online via MIT  here   (search “MIT Press Bookstore” to narrow selection).
Northshire seeks Children's Department Staff
Northshire Bookstore is seeking someone to work in our Children's Department. The ideal applicant would have a love for kids books and an ability to share their enthusiasm with our customers. Qualifications include children's book knowledge, experience in retail, familiarity with computers, flexibility and reliability. Come join the Northshire family! Please submit an application online at
To add a listing to the newsletter 
and website , e-mail
Submit to the 2020 New England Book Awards
NEIBA is pleased to share that the 2020 New England Book Awards will include three new categories: Picture Books, Middle Grade (both formerly included in the Children's award), and Poetry.

Titles submitted for the New England Book Awards must be either about New England, set in New England, or by an author residing in New England. Titles can be a hardcover, a paperback original, or reissue published between September 1, 2019 and August 31, 2020. 

Submissions for the New England Book Awards are now open.  To submit titles, please complete this Google Form. The deadline for submissions is Friday, June 5.

NEIBA members are free to submit as many titles as they'd like. Non-NEIBA members will be charged a fee of $25 per title. Galleys or physical copies of titles are not required to submit.
We Want YOU for NEIBA Organizational Roles
Now accepting submissions for the Board,
the Advisory Council, and NECBA!
Have you served on NEIBA's Advisory Council and are interested in a spot on the Board? Are you looking to lend your voice to NEIBA's Advisory Council or the Children's Bookselling Advisory Council (NECBA) for the first time? If so, we would like you to submit yourself and your colleagues for these positions. To do so, please complete this Google Form. All submissions are anonymous unless you choose to share your contact information.
Food for Thought
A round-up of pieces across publications

" In Five Days, Grand Central Announces, then Cancels Woody Allen Autobiography"
(Shelf Awareness)

"Oprah, Macmillan Promise 'To Do Better' to Amplify
Latinx Voices"
(Publishers Weekly)
Social Media Spotlight
R.J. Julia (Madison, CT)
@ rjjulia : Recommend your favorite board book or early reader series!
Best Sellers   
for the week ended
Sunday, March 8, 2020

Based on reporting from the independent booksellers of
NEIBA and IndieBound 

1. The Night Watchman New!
Louise Erdrich, Harper, $28.99, 9780062671189
2. Apeirogon
Colum McCann, Random House, $28, 9781400069606
3. A Long Petal of the Sea
Isabel Allende, Ballantine, $28, 9781984820150
4. Weather
Jenny Offill, Knopf, $23.95, 9780385351102
5. American Dirt
Jeanine Cummins, Flatiron Books, $27.99, 9781250209764
6. Writers & Lovers New!
Lily King, Grove Press, $27, 9780802148537
7. Where the Crawdads Sing
Delia Owens, Putnam, $26, 9780735219090
8. Trace Elements New!
Donna Leon, Atlantic Monthly Press, $27, 9780802148674
9. The Dutch House
Ann Patchett, Harper, $27.99, 9780062963673
10. On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous
Ocean Vuong, Penguin Press, $26, 9780525562023
11. House of Earth and Blood New!
Sarah J. Maas, Bloomsbury, $28, 9781635574043
12. Such a Fun Age
Kiley Reid, Putnam, $26, 9780525541905
13. Deacon King Kong New!
James McBride, Riverhead Books, $28, 9780735216723
14. The Giver of Stars
Jojo Moyes, Pamela Dorman Books, $28, 9780399562488
15. The Water Dancer New!
Ta-Nehisi Coates, One World, $28, 9780399590597

1. The Splendid and the Vile
Erik Larson, Crown, $32, 9780385348713
2. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse
Charlie Mackesy, HarperOne, $22.99, 9780062976581
3. Talking to Strangers
Malcolm Gladwell, Little Brown, $30, 9780316478526
4. John Adams Under Fire: The Founding Father's Fight for Justice in the Boston
Massacre Murder Trial New!
Dan Abrams, David Fisher, Hanover Square Press, $28.99, 9781335015921
5. The Body
Bill Bryson, Doubleday, $30, 9780385539302
6. Educated
Tara Westover, Random House, $28, 9780399590504
7. Dark Towers
David Enrich, Custom House, $29.99, 9780062878816
8. A Very Stable Genius
Philip Rucker, Carol Leonnig, Penguin Press, $30, 9781984877499
9. The Man in the Red Coat
Julian Barnes, Knopf, $26.95, 9780525658771
10. Brother & Sister: A Memoir
Diane Keaton, Knopf, $25.95, 9780451494504
11. The Hope of Glory
Jon Meacham, Convergent Books, $22, 9780593236666
12. Becoming New!
Michelle Obama, Crown, $32.50, 9781524763138
13. Maybe You Should Talk to Someone New!
Lori Gottlieb, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $28, 9781328662057
14. Successful Aging New!
Daniel J. Levitin, Dutton, $30, 9781524744182
15. Strange Planet New!
Nathan W. Pyle, Morrow Gift, $14.99, 9780062970701

1. The Overstory
Richard Powers, Norton, $18.95, 9780393356687
2. Normal People
Sally Rooney, Hogarth, $17, 9781984822185
3. Little Fires Everywhere
Celeste Ng, Penguin, $17, 9780735224315
4. The Tattooist of Auschwitz
Heather Morris, Harper, $16.99, 9780062797155
5. Daisy Jones & The Six
Taylor Jenkins Reid, Ballantine, $17, 9781524798642
6. Before We Were Yours
Lisa Wingate, Ballantine, $17, 9780425284704
7. A Gentleman in Moscow
Amor Towles, Penguin, $17, 9780143110439
8. Unsheltered
Barbara Kingsolver, Harper Perennial, $17.99, 9780062684738
9. Summer of '69
Elin Hilderbrand, Back Bay, $16.99, 9780316420006
10. There There New!
Tommy Orange, Vintage, $16, 9780525436140
11. The Hunting Party New!
Lucy Foley, Morrow, $16.99, 9780062868916
12. Girl, Woman, Other
Bernardine Evaristo, Grove Press/Black Cat, $17, 9780802156983
13. Lost Roses New!
Martha Hall Kelly, Ballantine, $17, 9781524796396
14. Resistance Women New!
Jennifer Chiaverini, Morrow, $17.99, 9780062841124
15. The New Girl
Daniel Silva, Harper, $17.99, 9780062834959

1. Say Nothing
Patrick Radden Keefe, Anchor, $16.95, 9780307279286
2. No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference
Greta Thunberg, Penguin, $10, 9780143133568
3. Braiding Sweetgrass
Robin Wall Kimmerer, Milkweed Editions, $18, 9781571313560
4. Just Mercy
Bryan Stevenson, Spiegel & Grau, $17, 9780593133934
5. Sapiens
Yuval Noah Harari, Harper Perennial, $24.99, 9780062316110
6. On Tyranny New!
Timothy Snyder, Tim Duggan Books, $8.99, 9780804190114
7. Madame Fourcade's Secret War New!
Lynne Olson, Random House, $20, 9780812985030
8. Inheritance
Dani Shapiro, Anchor, $16.95, 9780525434030
9. The Body Keeps the Score
Bessel van der Kolk, Penguin, $19, 9780143127741
10. The Soul of an Octopus New!
Sy Montgomery, Atria, $16.99, 9781451697728
11. The Story of More: How We Got to Climate Change and Where to Go from Here New!
Hope Jahren, Vintage, $15, 9780525563389
12. Born a Crime
Trevor Noah, Spiegel & Grau, $18, 9780399588198
13. Women Rowing North: Navigating Life's Currents and Flourishing As We Age New!
Mary Pipher, Bloomsbury, $17, 9781632869616
14. These Truths: A History of the United States New!
Jill Lepore, Norton, $19.95, 9780393357424
15. Bad Blood
John Carreyrou, Vintage, $16.95, 9780525431992

1. 1984 New!
George Orwell, Signet, $9.99, 9780451524935
2. Dune
Frank Herbert, Ace, $10.99, 9780441172719
3. The Flight Attendant New!
Chris Bohjalian, Vintage, $9.99, 9780593081631
4. The Autobiography of Malcolm X
Malcom X, Ballantine, $7.99, 9780345350688
5. The Last Wish
Andrzej Sapkowski, Orbit, $8.99, 9780316029186
6. Animal Farm New!
George Orwell, Signet, $9.99, 9780451526342
7. The Stranger New!
Harlan Coben, Dutton, $9.99, 9780593182895
8. The Name of the Wind
Patrick Rothfuss, DAW, $9.99, 9780756404741
9. The Tourist New!
Olen Steinhauer, Minotaur, $9.99, 9781250622099
10. Slaughterhouse-Five New!
Kurt Vonnegut, Laurel Leaf, $7.99, 9780440180296

1. Goodnight Moon
Margaret Wise Brown, Clement Hurd (Illus.), Harper, $8.99, 9780694003617
2. The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Eric Carle, Putnam, $10.99, 9780399226908
3. Make Way for Ducklings
Robert McCloskey, Puffin, $7.99, 9780140564341
4. Be You! New!
Peter H. Reynolds, Orchard Books, $17.99, 9781338572315
5. Pat the Bunny
Dorothy Kunhardt, Golden Books, $9.99, 9780307120007
6. Blueberries for Sal
Robert McCloskey, Puffin, $7.99, 9780140501698
7. Dinosnores New!
Sandra Boynton, Workman, $6.95, 9781523508136
8. Where the Wild Things Are New!
Maurice Sendak, Harper, $19.95, 9780060254926
9. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? New!
Bill Martin, Eric Carle (Illus.), Henry Holt and Co. (BYR), $8.99, 9780805047905
10. Three Ways to Trap a Leprechaun New!
Tara Lazar, Vivienne To (Illus.), Harper, $10.99, 9780062841285

1. Guts
Raina Telgemeier, Graphix, $12.99, 9780545852500
2. Chain of Gold New!
Cassandra Clare, Margaret K. McElderry Books, $24.99, 9781481431873
3. New Kid
Jerry Craft, Harper, $12.99, 9780062691194
4. InvestiGators
John Patrick Green, First Second, $9.99, 9781250219954
5. One of Us Is Next New!
Karen M. McManus, Delacorte Press, $19.99, 9780525707967
6. The Call of the Wild New!
Jack London, Puffin, $6.99, 9780141321059
7. Here in the Real World New!
Sara Pennypacker, Balzer + Bray, $17.99, 9780062698957
8. Karen's Witch
Ann M. Martin, Katy Farina (Illus.), Graphix, $10.99, 9781338315196
9. Best Friends
Shannon Hale, LeUyen Pham (Illus.), First Second, $12.99, 9781250317469
10. The Hate U Give New!
Angie Thomas, Balzer + Bray, $18.99, 9780062871350

1. Dog Man: Fetch-22
Dav Pilkey, Graphix, $12.99, 9781338323214
2. Dragonslayer (Wings of Fire: Legends) New!
Tui T. Sutherland, Scholastic, $17.99, 9781338214604
3. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Wrecking Ball
Jeff Kinney, Abrams, $14.99, 9781419739033
4. Dog Man: For Whom the Ball Rolls
Dav Pilkey, Graphix, $12.99, 9781338236590
5. Big Nate: Blow the Roof Off! New!
Lincoln Peirce, Andrews McMeel, $11.99, 9781524855062
6. Dog Man: Lord of the Fleas New!
Dav Pilkey, Graphix, $9.99, 9780545935173
7. Rise of the Earth Dragon (Dragon Masters) New!
Tracey West, Graham Howells (Illus.), Scholastic, $4.99, 9780545646239
8. Sofia Valdez, Future Prez (The Questioneers)
Andrea Beaty, David Roberts (Illus.), Abrams, $18.99, 9781419737046
9. I Survived The Sinking of the Titanic, 1912 (I Survived Graphic Novel, #1) New!
Lauren Tarshis, Graphix, $10.99, 9781338120912
10. Keeper of the Lost Cities New!
Shannon Messenger, Aladdin, $9.99, 9781442445949