BOOKMARKED is the name we gave to our journal, but since not everyone is on Twitter and not everyone on Twitter likes, we also run an adhoc compilation of links on the blog to highlight items that might be of interest.

Julia Quinn — Australian tour

Julia Quinn has announced that she’ll be coming to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Fremantle in August. No details yet, but I can tell you that I’ve heard rumours. This is really happening!

Penguin Random House merger completed

It’s official! Books+Publishing has details of key appointments and the new company will be called Random Penguin House. Okay, I made that up. It’s Penguin Random House, but I still think my version is better.

Romance shoes

You read that right! Rudi, who reviews at Orchid and Peach Cocktails, was featured at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. Or rather, her shoes—dubbed The Most Awesome Shoes in the Universe—were, created as part of a visual art project at uni. Check out the pictures at SBTB and tell me you wouldn’t commit a crime to own those babies.

Galaxy paranormal romance book club

The next paranormal romance book club is on Thursday, July 4 at 6.30pm. This month’s topic is ‘Power, Sex and Violence’. Contact Galaxy Bookshop for more details.

May & July Romance Buzz

In case you missed it, the May and July issues of the Booktopia Romance Buzz are up. Yes, June is missing, and that’s because the Romance Buzz moved from being sent at the beginning of the month to being sent mid-month and covering the next month’s pre-orders. Too complicated, I know. Just go to straight to the book features. :D July, in particular, is packed with excellent historical romances. The featured authors are Fiona Lowe (May) and Nalini Singh (July)—such lovely, generous and extremely humble authors.

Aussie romance ebooks for 99c

Apple’s iBookstore is running a Home Grown Romance promo, with a selection of titles by Australian and NZ authors. Here’s the list of titles:

I believe the Destiny titles are also available for 99c anywhere they’re available. They include Untamed by Anna Cowanwhich I reviewed last week, and Uncovered by Love by Madeline Ashwhich I reviewed earlier this year and is a finalist for the R*BY awards. You can find titles, blurbs and Kobo links at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.

Teresa Medeiros digital backlist now available

Bestselling romance author Teresa Medeiros is publishing her backlist titles for the first time ever as ebooks available to readers in Australia and New Zealand (under her own publishing company, Amber Books). Click here for a list of titles and buy links (there are currently 21 listed so far). It looks like the books will be available via Kindle, Kobo and the iBookstore.

Half Moon Bay — Get Reading! book of the month

Helene Young’s romantic suspense Half Moon Bay was the Get Reading! book of the month for June. The book scored a review in the SMH! She also has a guest post at the Booktopia blog that includes a brief quote from me on some of the characteristics of Australian romantic suspense (compared with romantic suspense typically found in the genre).

Jennifer Kloester book launch

Georgette Heyer expert Jennifer Kloester is launching her debut novel, The Cinderella Moment, at Dymocks Melbourne on July 25 at 6.30pm. The event is free but you need to book. Click here for details.

George R. R. Martin And Peter Dinklage in Australia

Gizmodo reports that Game of Thrones author George R. R. Martin and actor Peter Dinklage be in Australia as part of Supanova Expo. They will be appearing at the Sydney Opera House on November 11, and pre-sale tickets will be available for as little (or as much, YMMV) as $69. You’ll need to register here. (Source: @infogenium)

New IASPR president

Sarah Frantz has stepped down as president of the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance, after four years in the role. Pam Regis takes over the role.

Fifty Shades of Grey film

HollywoodLife reports that the film adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey is well underway, with release set for August 1, 2014 and Sam Taylor-Johnson announced as the director, at least for the first instalment. No word on the main cast, but you can periodically check the site for any news. (Source: Beattie’s Book Blog)

Why postage is cheaper from overseas

Jon Page at Bite The Book posted a long but comprehensive explanation, in layman’s terms, of why local bookshops are finding it almost impossible to compete with The Book Depository (‘rhymes with Suppository’—heh). Local booksellers and publishers have devised a system that minimises postage costs (offered free to the customer but essentially taken out of the bookseller’s profit), but the ‘free’ shipping from overseas is really a vicious cycle. In essence, we’re getting ripped off because the cost of actually delivering those parcels is less than what the overseas company paid for it…which means eventually Australia Post has to increase its prices to cover its losses on those deliveries.  Anyone who has ever whinged about high book prices should really read the article.

Some analyses of teen fiction

Teen and young adult fiction readers might be interested in a couple of very interesting and intelligent pieces. First is a response by Michelle Pauli to the claim that illness, depression and sexuality are turning these books into ‘sick-lit’. Second is a piece by Kelly Jensen at Stacked Books, which explores female sexual experiences in young adult fiction. This is a beautifully articulated argument, and one that echoes some of my feelings about why I find new adult and late teen fiction problematic:

I think it’s inappropriate when the sexual experiences explored in YA are about the way the story makes the adult reader feel when they read it. In other words, it’s uncomfortable to have sex in YA be there for the audience’s enjoyment. It should be authentic to the story and to the character. That’s part of where my problems with what’s being published as “new adult” come about — many of these stories feel like a means of adult enjoyment of very young sexual experiences. This isn’t to say there shouldn’t be takeaways or reflections upon those sexual scenes in YA for readers. There should be. It just shouldn’t be for the enjoyment of the reader.

(Source: @VaVeros)

NZ publishers

Things aren’t looking good for New Zealand publishers. Books+Publishing reports that Pearson NZ is closing their educational editorial, and that HarperCollins NZ is moving distribution and support services to Australia. Hardie Grant has closed its Auckland office. Note that NZ has an open book market (unlike Australia, which has parallel import restrictions). I’m not sure that’s going so well for them.

What do you think?

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