Monday, January 02, 2006

I will never understand the publishing industry, I'm afraid.

Today I'm not in Smalltown. I'm in Los Angeles! A major metropolitan area.

I set off in search of books I can not find in Smalltown. Number one on my list was Henning Mankell's A Bridge to the Stars. Turns out, it hasn't been published in the U.S. yet. Only in the U.K.

Swedish author, huge American and British readership, simultaneous publication, no?

No. Mankell for the youth in L.A. bookstores, but what do I find instead? Anna Dale's Dawn Undercover, a book I was afraid would never be published in the States.

I'm happy, ecstatic, even grateful to find Dawn Undercover, that's for sure, but I never thought it would be published here so soon. Reviews pinned Dawn Undercover as decidedly British. Nicolette Jones, for example, wrote for the Times : "It is set in a knowingly nostalgic present: Dawn wears mushroom-coloured knee-socks with plimsolls, the village show holds a contest for odd-shaped vegetables, and the (female) vicar pedals around on an ancient bicycle 'with the air of someone who longed to be in the Famous Five.'"

Ah well...I'm off to read (happily) Dawn Undercover.