Book Bizzo #3 Library lovers, ABC Books in the clutches of the enemy, and a hell of a lot of events and freebies

First, the navel-gazing: Book Bizzo will now be coming out weekly. The posts will be shorter, but I think that probably works out better for everyone. Also, if you prefer monthly updates on what’s new at Book Thingo, I’ll be posting monthly summaries on our Facebook page.

Book launches, events, and authors

The ARRC has launched a guest blog for authors attending the convention.

I was sent a link to Second Chance for Romance, an online secondhand bookseller. Check out their catalogue on the website, and you can also e-mail them your wishlist. Secondhand stores for lazy people. I love the Internet.

Nalini Singh confirms the release date for Angel’s Pawn: February 24.

February 14 is Libary Lovers Day. Contact your local library to check for local events.

Library Lovers Speed Read (Sydney)
One word frees us
Of all the weight and pain in life,
That word is Love

– Socrates

Why not spend Valentine’s Day somewhere memorable this year? Books, cuisine and good company in a stunning sandstone venue on the harbour … if you are a lover of all things literary and have yet to find your protagonist, join us at Customs House Library for an exciting event for singles on 12 February.

Or perhaps you’ll find a friend, pal, buddy, mate, soul sister, companion, acquaintance or comrade? Simply nominate your favourite book when you ring the Library and get ready to share the three minute version with 10 other people (speed-dating for booklovers). You’ll have a chance to mingle with other book lovers, male and female, or to quietly contemplate your free book over a drink, courtesy of the Library.

Thursday 12 February
6.00pm for 6.30pm start
Customs House Library
Telephone: 02 9242 8555
Bookings essential

I seem to recall Melbourne doing something similar. Ah, thank you, Google: Left on the shelf by Marieke Hardy (The Age). I have a girl crush on her.


ABC Books is partnering with HarperCollins, who will effectively take over running the business from May. The ABC Books imprint won’t be publishing fiction. The SMH reports that HarperCollins

plans to expand its annual list to 50 nonfiction and 50 children’s books with appeal to audiences “from the Triple J end to the Radio National end, as well as television”.

Crikey raises some uncomfortable but important issues around the ABC partnering with a Rupert Murdoch company.

The Tor blog looks at the quality of a book printed using the Espresso book machine. I can’t wait to try it out when we’re in Melbourne for the ARRC.

Dear Author has more ideas on how the epublishing industry can be improved. Many of the suggestions have already been tried with success by probloggers. I think book publishing can learn a lot from the problogging industry.

One experiment I’m very interested in is HarperCollins’s Authonomy community. It’s basically an online slushpile where members (free registration) can read and recommend other each other’s work. Each month, the top 5 books are sent to an editorial board. I love the idea of democratising the slush pile, and the Authonomy blog reports that publishing contracts have been offered to 3 Authonomy authors.

Free books

And other random stuff…

How’s this for an awesome quote:

it’s my pet theory that a girl who has nothing but classics on her bookshelves keeps nothing but mills & boon under the bed.

By Hagelrat at Unbound! (via Weekly Geeks)

Save the date

2/2 — Alexander McCall Smith literary lunch at Star City, 12.30pm | Bookings: 02 9449 4366 ($70/85)
2/2 — Dinner with Alexander McCall Smith literary lunch at Miramare Gardens, 7pm | Bookings: 02 9416 4201, 02 9913 1515 or 02 9489 3128 ($80)
3/2 — Alexander McCall Smith book signing at Dymocks Sydney Store, 1pm
3/2 — Alexander McCall Smith at the Orpheum, 7pm | Bookings: 02 9969 9736 or online
4/2 — Alexander McCall Smith literary evening at Brisbane Town Hall, 6.30pm | Bookings: 07 38865704 ($20)
5/2 — An evening with Alexander McCall Smith at the Collins Street Baptist Church, 6.30pm (Sold out)
6/2 — Lunch with Alexander McCall Smith at Plaza Ballroom, 12pm | Bookings: 03 9660 8500 or ($74/82)
6/2 — Alexander McCall Smith book signing at Readings Hawthorne, 5pm
9/2 — Alexander McCall Smith literary lunch at Holiday Inn, Wellington, 12.30pm
9/2 — Afternoon tea with Alexander McCall Smith, 3.30pm
10/2 — Alexander McCall Smith literary lunch at Dymocks, Auckland, 12.30pm
10/2 — Panel discussion on romance writing featuring Amy Andrews, Rachel Bailey and Robyn Grady | Caloundra Library
11/2 — High Tea with Anna Campbell, Lynn’s Place, 66 Jessica Place, Minyama | Bookings: 07 5475 8900 ($25)
11/2 — Alexander McCall Smith event at Capri Theatre, 6pm | Bookings: 08 8271 0988,, 08 8361 9866,, 08 8372 5100 ($8)
12/2 — Romance Writers Workshop with Anna Campbell at Maroochydore Library (Sold out)
12/2 — Alexander McCall Smith event at Perth Concert Hall, 7.30pm | Bookings: 1800 193 300 ($20)
13/2 — Tea Time with Alexander McCall Smith at Howard Park Wines, 6pm | Bookings: 08 9757 2747
14/2 — Workshop/talk with Amarinda Jones at Beerwah Library, 10.00am
14/2 — Workshop/talk with Amarinda Jones at Coolum Beach Library, 1.30pm
20-22/2 — Australian Romance Readers Convention
24/2 — Sherrilyn Kenyon book signing at Galaxy Bookshop, 5:30pm | Register: or (02) 9267 7222

Book Bizzo is a weekly omnibus of news items, events, and other interesting tidbits related to books, and especially the Australian romance book industry. You can find past Book Bizzo posts here.


  1. Marg says:

    I really need to read the author newsletters that get sent. I had no idea that Alexander McCall Smith was touring even though I get his newsletters sent to me every month! Whoops!

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