Thursday, June 21, 2012

Jeopardy, Iowa State Bookstore Closing, Kindles

From Shelf Awareness comes this query, to which my answer is a resounding YES!
Want to spend the night in a British bookshop? The Sanctuary Bookshop
in central Lyme Regis (the "Pearl of Dorset") features "ten rooms of
books on four floors... a reading room with comfortable armchairs, a
cozy fire, a floor of books mostly $1 or less, and, if desired,
some overnight accommodation for book lovers." It is located in the
region where adaptations of John Fowles The French Lieutenant's Woman
and Austen's Persuasion were filmed.

I watched this local gal win a pile of cash on Jeopardy, and was right proud of her prowess:
Last Thursday, after back-to-back winning nights--for a grand total of
$59,198--on Jeopardy, Kathy Wright of the University Bookstore, Seattle,
Wash., lost. Incidentally, one of her choices was in the category
"websites from A to Z." For $200, the question was "It started as an
online bookstore run from Jeff Bezos' garage."

Wright noted that her correct answer, "," was "muttered
through clenched teeth, grudgingly." She added, in a reference to
longtime Jeopardy winner Ken Jennings's comment after losing to IBM's
Watson last year, "I want to let people know that what I meant to add,
but didn't, was 'I, for one, do NOT welcome our new computer overlords.'"

On a sad note, I have been to this bookstore when I was growing up in Iowa, and I think it is terrible that it's closing down.
 The Campus Book Store, Ames, Iowa, is closing
after 39 years in business, the Iowa State Daily reported. All
merchandise is discounted 50% and fixtures, displays and shelving are
for sale.
Floyd and Sandra Ballein, the founders and owners of the store, which
serves Iowa State University, had no comment on its closing.

This sounds like an awesome initiative to get kids in other countries reading
and learning from an e-reader. In a side note, my husband Jim just bought Amazon's Kindle Fire,
and has been loving its many applications.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and founder and CEO Jeff
Bezos are holding a press conference on Wednesday in Washington, D.C.,
to announce the launch of the Kindle Mobile Learning Initiative, reported.

According to the State Department, the "public-private partnership with
Amazon and the U.S. government" is intended to create "a global e-reader
program that introduces aspects of U.S. society and culture directly to
young people, students, and international audiences in new ways and
expands English language learning opportunities worldwide."

Under a no-bid contract that is still in a "pilot program" phase, the
State Department will pay $2.29 million to Amazon in the first year of
the program for 2,500 Kindles, content, support and more. Over five
years, the full cost of the program could be $16.5 million for 7,000
Kindles a year.

This is a funny video of a woman trying to explain her novel to several famed
Seattle booksellers, which is no easy task for even the most prominent authors.

Where'd You Go, Bernadette: A Novel
by Maria Semple (Little, Brown), via Entertainment Weekly, in which
Semple, an Arrested Development writer, tries pitching her upcoming book
to Seattle booksellers and others. Includes appearances by actor Tom
Skerritt and cameos by Elliott Bay's Rick Simonson and Karen Maeda
Allman, University Bookstore's Stesha Brandon and Matthew Simmons and
Hugo House's Brian McGuigan. Hilarious.

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