Byte-Size Blair | March 7

We’re back with Byte-Size Blair, our weekly wrap-up of all things social media. If you’re not already following us on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram, give us a look.

You’ve made it through Monday! Treat yourself with these fun links.

  1. We were blown away by this art exhibit called “The Impact of a Book”
  2. The invitations are in and you’re invited! If you live near Wilmington, join us for The Dark of the Island Launch Party on March 19th.
  3. Relax with these scrumptious tea and biscuit combinations.
  4. So many books and so little time. We know the feeling.
  5. March 2nd was Dr. Seuss’s birthday but we believe in celebrating this artist all year round.

Tomorrow is the publication date for The Dark of the Island by Philip Gerard. Congratulations Philip!

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Byte-Size Blair | December 22

It’s an end of the year wrap-up! We had a wonderful year here at Blair, our 60th! Not only did we get to celebrate six decades of independent book publishing, we also put out some great new books.

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Our 2014 releases garnered a bevy of great reviews from all over the country. Plus, we were still receiving great reviews (and awards!) for our 2013 books. Below is our wrap up of all the love our authors received this year. To read more about these and all our books, visit our website at blairpub.com.

REVIEWS

JANUARY
Voices of Cherokee Women (Fall 2013)
Kirkus Reviews

FEBRUARY
Met Her on the Mountain (Fall 2013)
The Atlanta Journal Constitution

B.O.Q.
Publishers Weekly

The ACC Basketball Book of Fame (Fall 2013)
NCL Online

Met Her on the Mountain
NCL Online

Voices of Cherokee Women
NCL Online

MARCH
B.O.Q.
Library Journal
BookPeople’s Blog

APRIL
B.O.Q.
North Carolina Libraries

So You Think You Know Gettysburg? Volume 2
North Carolina Libraries

Bearwallow
North Carolina Libraries

MAY
B.O.Q.
Wilmington Star News
Chapter 16

JUNE
B.O.Q.
Reading Reality
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine
Boom! Magazine
Wilmington Star News

Bearwallow
Citizen-Times
Shelf Awareness

So You Think You Know Gettysburg? Volume 2
York County’s Cannonball Blog
Midwest Book Review

JULY
Bearwallow
The Times-News Online

Voices of Cherokee Women
NC Historical Review

AUGUST
Bearwallow
The Iowa Review

So You Think You Know Gettysburg? Volume 2
Civil War Librarian

SEPTEMBER
B.O.Q.
UNC University Library Blog

Bearwallow
WNC Magazine

OCTOBER
Chained to the Land
The News Star

Foods That Make You Say Mmm-mmm
Midwest Book Review
The Herald-Sun

NOVEMBER
Voices of Cherokee Women
Appalachian Journal

Bearwallow: A Personal History of a Mountain Homeland
The Southeastern Librarian

The Ghost Will See You Now
Myrtle Beach Online

Badass Civil War Beards
Midwest Book Review

DECEMBER
The Ghost Will See You Now
The Advocate

AWARDS

Met Her on the Mountain
Finalist – Thomas Wolfe Award
Gold – Independent Publisher Book Award (IPPY), True Crime
Winner – North Carolina Society of Historians Willie Parker Peace History Book Award

Porch Dogs
Gold – IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award, Animals/Pets
Bronze – Independent Publisher Book Award (IPPY), Animals/Pets

Long Gone Daddies
Gold – Independent Publisher Book Award (IPPY), Regional Fiction (Southeast)
Finalist – Foreword Reviews’ Book of the Year Award

Byte-Size Blair | July 7

We’re back with Byte-Size Blair, our weekly wrap-up of all things social media. If you’re not already following us on FacebookTwitterTumblr, or Pinterest, give us a look.

1. We hope everyone had a great Fourth of July. And if you’re still in the mood to celebrate the early days of the United States, check out these “revolutionary” titles from Blair (and one hilarious gif, courtesy of Funny or Die.)

2. Bearwallow author Jeremy B. Jones has been busy touring the South with his amazing memoir about the influences of place and ancestry on identity. Here’s one of our favorite photos from a recent signing, proving you’re never too young to start loving books!

3. The October release of beloved UNC-TV foodie Bob Garner’s new book, Foods That Make You Say Mmm-mmm, may still be a few months away, but we’re already excited. Why? Because even just proofing the book made our mouths water (and tickled our funny bones.) We think this pin pretty much sums it up.

4. One of Blair’s favorite volunteer activities these past few years has been World Book Night, butunfortunately, last week, WBN announced they would be suspending operations in the United States. We’ll miss them dearly and shared a few photos on our Tumblr from our time as givers.

5. Just a friendly reminder that our July newsletter will be out this Thursday.

Our social media maven will be out of the office next week, so for now, enjoy this double-dose of Office Manager Artie’s adorable old pal, Snuffy.

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Steve’s Literary Resolution

This week in our Literary Resolutions blog series, we hear from Steve Kirk, Blair’s editor, about his delayed success in completing a reading resolution.

***

I made my literary resolution early (mid-December) and broke it early (January 2). The previous two years, I’d read the opening and middle volumes of Stieg Larsson’s “Millennium trilogy” over the holidays and happened to finish them on New Year’s Day. So I resolved to end 2013 and begin 2014 with the final book, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest. But owing to company in the house, I didn’t finish until well past my target date.Hornets

No matter. Larsson’s novels are my kind of blockbusters—brisk, complex, and transportive. Though he goes on too long about Swedish politics and over-introduces minor characters, those flaws are overwhelmed by what he does well—namely, create memorable protagonists (Mikael Blomkvist and Lizbeth Salander), intricate plots, and an exotic setting. In Hornet’s Nest, he sustains a lively 563 pages with his title character mostly confined to a hospital bed and his two heroes together only on the last couple of pages.

I admit to being flummoxed by all the Jonassons, Carlssons, Erikssons, and Goranssons. And when I began the series, I pulled up a Stockholm map on my computer and made a futile effort to follow the action as I read. But I soon learned to plunge right in and let myself be transported. By the end, whenever Mikael Blomkvist might leave Café Copacabana next to the Kvarter cinema in Hornstull, then turn on to Bergsundsstrand on his way to the tunnelbana, I was right there with him, wherever it was we happened to be going.

Stieg Larsson wrote mostly for his own entertainment. He died in 2004 at age 50 from a heart attack after climbing seven flights of stairs on a day the elevator broke down. He never saw his novels hit print; they’ve since sold well over 70 million copies. Larsson had a fourth volume in process, a fifth and sixth at least in synopsis form, and a seventh through a tenth planned. My coming holiday seasons will be the less for his passing.

***

Join us next week for another post in our Literary Resolutions blog series. Happy reading!

Win a Free Copy of B.O.Q.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

B.O.Q. by N.P. Simpson

B.O.Q.

by N.P. Simpson

Giveaway ends January 31, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Enter now to win one of 25 free advance reader’s copies of B.O.Q.: An NCIS Special Agent Fran Setliff Novel by N.P. Simpson.

In B.O.Q., Simpson conveys the special energy and purpose of a military base. When Ann Buckhalter, the wife of a retired Marine lieutenant colonel, is found dead in the river just downstream from Camp Lejeune’s Bachelor Officers’ Quarters (B.O.Q.), NCIS Special Agent Fran Setliff is called in to investigate her murder

But things heat up when Fran discovers that more than one person’s life has been simplified by the victim’s death. Uncovering the truth about Ann Buckhalter’s death also means uncovering all the unsavory things going on behind the camouflage curtain-racial and gender discrimination, unethical medical practices, sexual indiscretions. Solving the crime means Fran must navigate the murky waters of the military base and the colorful individuals who fill the ranks.

Enter now and find out what really happened at the B.O.Q.!

A little music for your Monday

For those of you who were introduced to Memphis Mayor Pete Pigg, our favorite politician from Blake Fontenay’s novel, The Politics of Barbecue, last week (either at Southern Festival of Books or through Jim Shahin’s column at the Washington Post),  we’ve got something special for you: a playlist of Mayor Pigg’s favorite tunes, which usually appear in the book as ringtones on his mobile phone.

Enjoy!

Joseph Bathanti, Blair-distributed author, named N.C. Poet Laureate

Congrats, Joseph Bathanti! The award-winning poet, professor, and advocate for literacy has been named North Carolina’s Poet Laureate by Governor Bev Perdue.

“Joseph Bathanti is an award-winning poet and novelist with a robust commitment to social causes. He first came to North Carolina to work in the VISTA program and has taught writing workshops in prisons for 35 years,” Perdue said. “As North Carolina’s new Poet Laureate he plans to work with veterans to share their stories through poetry — a valuable and generous project.”

North Carolina’s seventh poet laureate, Bathanti will be installed during a public celebration scheduled Thursday, Sept. 20 at 4:30 p.m. at the State Capitol. The event is free.

Bathanti’s books of poetry include This Metal (St. Andrews College Press, 1996 and Press 53, 2012), Restoring Sacred Art (Star Cloud Press, 2010), Land of Amnesia (Press 53, 2009), Anson County (Williams & Simpson, 1989 and Parkway Publishers, 2005, distributed by John F. Blair), The Feast of All Saints (Nightshade press, 1994) and Communion Partners (Briarpatch Press, 1986). He has published two novels, Coventry (Novello Festival Press, 2006, distributed by John F. Blair) and East Liberty (Banks Channel Books, 2001, distributed by John F. Blair) along with a book of short stories, The High Heart (Eastern Washington University Press, 2007).

A native of Pittsburgh, Penn., Bathanti arrived in North Carolina in 1976 as a member of Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA), a national service program designed to fight poverty, and he never left the state. Assigned to work in Huntersville Prison in Mecklenburg County, he met fellow volunteer and future wife, Joan Carey on his first day of training. They have been married for 35 years.