Posts Tagged ‘HarperCollinsUK’

Aleph now out in paperback!

March 30, 2012
Aleph and The Alchemist joint No 7 (in non fiction chart)

Aleph and The Alchemist joint No 7 (in non fiction chart)

Wonderful display of Paulo Coelho books in window of Libreria Palazzo Roberti

Wonderful display of Paulo Coelho books in window of Libreria Palazzo Roberti

HarperCollins have produced a rather tacky video to promote that Aleph is now available in paperback.

This appalling New-Age-light video from HarperCollins merely serves to reinforce the worse prejudices from critics that Paulo Coelho is a pedlar of psycho-babble and pseudo-crap.

In many ways it is much worse than the critics. At least with the vicious personal attacks by critics masquerading as book reviews, the intelligent reader can see there is something wrong, wrong that is with the critic not the books or author.

Had I never read Paulo Coelho, this awful video would have put me off Paulo Coelho for life, or at the very least it would have taken a lot of persuading for me to have picked up and read one of his books.

I learnt Aleph was out in paperback on passing through an airport and finding it on display on a book stand. It was joint No 7 with The Alchemist. Odd though, I thought, in the non-fiction chart.

The Alchemist has a new cover. This I discovered on meeting and chatting with a man who like me was in transit between terminal buildings and waiting for the shuttle. Strangers passing by in brief encounters.

Reading the signs

Was Aleph on display in Waterstone’s?

Friday of last week, I checked Waterstone’s in Guildford. No, Aleph was not on display. It was not on display in the window, not on display in-store. At least it was on display on the shelves after I passed through.

Same story, Waterstone’s in Lincoln, Tuesday of this week. No Aleph on display.

What is wrong with Waterstone’s?

Last year when Aleph came out in hardback, it was not on display in Waterstone’s

Paulo Coelho in Waterstone’s and the author the publisher forgot

If nothing else an opportunity for independent bookshops. But will they grasp the opportunity? On past track record, the sad reality is no, which is one reason they are all going out of business.

What’s gone wrong with our bookshops?

Last year Aleph was released across Europe. It shot straight to No 1 in all countries apart from UK.

Waterstone’s is a very depressing place to visit. A marked contrast to the four bookshops I found happily coexisting in Bassano del Grappa.

Bookshops in Bassano del Grappa

One, Libreria Palazzo Roberti, located in a former palace that was once owned by the Comte Roberti where Napoleon slept the night, was a delight to visit. As one wandered around one could see the love of books. Wonderful enticing book displays.

I mentioned Paulo Coelho was in Bassano del Grappa. When I passed by a couple of days later, Libreria Plazzo Roberti had a wonderful display of Paulo Coelho books in one of their windows. Somehow I cannot imagine that happening with Waterstone’s.

Guildford has an annual book festival which takes place mid-October. Pass by Waterstone’s and you would not know, as no mention of the Guildford Book Festival. Sour grapes because they are not the official festival bookseller.

But please do not let the tacky HarperCollins video put you off reading Aleph. It is excellent and highly recommended.

Aleph is available in paperback the UK now, in the US in June.

HarperCollinsUK you should be embarrassed!

September 20, 2011

Hope is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper. — Francis Bacon

Last week we forgot to mention Paulo Coelho’s brilliant new book Aleph. — HarperCollinsUK

HarperCollinsUK can you hear us? Aleph needs a better launch. — Paulo Coelho

Any publisher would have done a better job than HarperCollinsUK with the distribution and marketing of Aleph. — Priya Sher

Let’s wait and see if HarperCollinsUK is aware that they are the publishers of Aleph in England. — Paulo Coelho

How could HarperCollinsUK have forgot that Paulo Coelho had a new book Aleph out on the first of this month? But forget they did.

Paulo Coelho in Waterstone’s and the author the publisher forgot

Is Paulo Coelho the only person whose phone News Corp has not hacked?

How can a publisher forget that one of their most important writers has a new book out? A writer most publishers would be fighting tooth and nail to sign.

How could a publisher forget a book that has proved to be an international best-seller?

Go into most bookshops and you will be very lucky to find Aleph on display. I thought this problem was resticted to Waterstone’s that is was simply an illustration of their low pay staff on minimum wages. Yesterday I found not so.

I visted One Tree Books in Petersfield, selected as official bookseller to the Guildford Bookfestival 2011, Independent Bookshop of the Year 2010. It was depressing. They did not have a clue what was Aleph. I had to spell it for them twice. They had a copy they said, after looking it up on their computer system. It goes without saying no window display, no in store display. They told me yes, they know who Paul Colelho was, they had a selection of his books. Not true. They had a single copy of The Alchemist. As for the Aleph which their system told them they had a single copy, they did not know where it was.

In Istanbul I found Elif on display in every single bookshop. They knew what it was, who the author was. Probably explains why it was No One within days of publication.

This failure of bookshops not to know of the existence of an international best-seller is in part a reflection of the bookshops themselves, but it also has to be down to the publisher Harper Collins UK failing to ensure they know.

Aleph is No One in all countries of publication, bar one, UK. Could this be because the publisher HarperCollinsUK forgot to tell the bookshops?

Maybe News Corp has more important matters to deal with, like how to keep the Murdochs out of prison.

HarerCollinsUK is owned by News Corp.