Another Book Which Tells Our Story
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
1w ago
Although we call it the “Christian Publishing industry” the history of Christian Retailing is strongly linked to the Christian music industry. Most of our stores had or still have a music department and that department was responsible for significant traffic flow in the days before downloading and streaming ended our dominance as a supply channel. In God Gave Rock & Roll to You: A History of Contemporary Christian Music (Oxford University Press), author Leah Payne gives significant prominence to the role which Christian bookstores played in the establishment and perpetuation of what was fi ..read more
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Manitoba Author Redefines Biblical Fiction
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
2w ago
Although she’s probably not the first to do so, Betty Sawatzky‘s book I Am the Prodigal, I Am the Eldest, veers from the common path of re-configuring a classic Biblical narrative and instead uses the characters from a parable Jesus taught. And why not? This is a great story to begin with. Think of the number of Prodigal Son sermons you’ve heard in your lifetime and you get the idea. Publisher marketing: When Jesus shared the story, He was speaking to the Pharisees and Sadducees, leaders in the synagogues who lived strict lives in obedience to the laws of the Torah. They harshly judged others ..read more
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Hamilton Author Explores the Grieving Process
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
3w ago
As the Pastor for 18 years at Mount Hamilton Baptist Church, Leanne Friesen had interacted with many who were dealing with loss. But when it hits home, these things tend to become personal. Her book, Grieving Room: Making Space for All the Hard Things After Death (note: not The Grieving Room) released in February in hardcover from Broadleaf Books and is already into its second printing. Here is the publisher description: People long to reduce the enormity of our grief. “Time heals all wounds,” they tell us, or “At least she isn’t in pain anymore.” Yet no matter how hard others try to stuff ou ..read more
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SPCK is Bad News for North American Christian Readers
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
3M ago
For several months now I’ve been working on a project — you could call it an obsession — regarding the way one particular publisher snaps up the Canadian or North American rights to particular UK titles in ways that are completely counterproductive to Canadian and/or North American Christian book buyers. The first thing that got me aware of this was the third edition of N. T. Wright’s The Kingdom New Testament, now being sold as The New Testament for Everyone so as to better match the Bible commentary brand. The second edition was published through Zondervan, but there were no Canadian rights ..read more
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Online Retailer’s Comparative List Prices are Total Fiction
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
3M ago
I realize that in our present world, advertising is as much an art as a science, but I worry about an industry which has become more relaxed about misrepresenting the “regular” price of an item, based on its “relative” value. Consider boxed greeting cards. They’re generally sold in boxes of 12, and are a staple in many of our stores as they are purchased by churches who send out cards for birthdays and anniversaries, but also to acknowledge sickness or bereavement. Occasionally, a manufacturer will offer a “value” deal on a package of 24, or even a package of 48. The point of these boxes is th ..read more
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Letting my Customers Behind the Scenes
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
3M ago
This will be going out in our store newsletter this week. I’ve never done something like this before, but I thought I’d share it with all of you here as well. How It’s Decided What to Carry and What to Skip Why certain books end up in the store and others don’t Each month I basically have a sales meeting with myself (!) to review two important lists. One is a complete list of all Christianity-related books from publishers big and small. It runs 850 – 1,150 items and usually consumes about 90 minutes. The other is a list of featured books from core Christian publishers. Yesterday it ran 168 ite ..read more
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Multi-Faith Leaders Respond to Social Justice Issues
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
5M ago
It’s not every day that I get to spread the word about a Canadian author who also lives in our hometown, but that’s the case today. Author Karen Hamilton is the former General Secretary of the Canadian Council of Churches and is an award-winning author, particularly in the field of interfaith dialogue. That well equips her to write a book of this nature. Her book, Faith as Protest: Answering the Call to Mend the World (Novalis, 2023) includes representatives from ten faith groups who highlight different social justice issues each is facing, and how they respond as individuals, as a group, and ..read more
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New Heaven Title Offers a Less Dominant End Times Scenario
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
6M ago
Review: What if Jesus was Serious about Heaven by Skye Jethani This is a copy of my general review of a new book. Since this blog is intended for bookstore owners and managers, you’ll notice in the headline I’ve given this iteration of it that this book differs from the end times picture most frequently painted by Christian authors. However, it’s a perspective that is gaining traction among readers both young and old. With that introduction, keep reading… Since I have reviewed two previous books in this series here and here, I’m no stranger to the format, and perhaps that is why I found the u ..read more
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Is Ingram Complicit in Subtitle Scandal?
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
8M ago
How I wish I had taken a screenshot. On the weekend, there it was, in the listing for Max Lucado’s 2022 devotional hardcover for kids, You Can Count on God. The listing went on to read, “100 Devotions for Kids Going Back to School.” Problem is, the “back to school” part didn’t appear anywhere on the book’s cover. By definition, the information in publisher and supplier databases should match the jacket design, right? This got me thinking about a recent article — it might have been a Publisher’s Weekly article linked in the Monday ECPA news roundup — about marketing information being embedded i ..read more
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Castle Quay Inks Distribution with Anchor/Word Alive
Christian Book Shop Talk
by paulthinkingoutloud
10M ago
Two of the foremost imprints for Canadian Christian authors — Word Alive Press and Castle Quay Books — will soon be sharing warehousing and distribution. An announcement published Monday at Rush to Press (Evangelical Christian Publishing Association) shared the news: Toronto/Palm Beach (June 2023) – Castle Quay Books is pleased to announce their new partnership agreement with international book distributor Anchor/Word Alive Distribution who will now provide sales, marketing and distribution services for their entire book line in the United States and Canada. The full article q ..read more
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