[DWJ] branding books (was What are you reading?)

Gili Bar-Hillel gbhillel at netvision.net.il
Fri Nov 6 14:25:31 EST 2009

Catching up so late, this has probably been said already, but Noel
Streatfeild's  "The Painted Garden" was published in the USA as "Movie

And for some technical reason I received Minnow's response without Devra's
original posts. I suspect there are other posts I've missed as well, because
I've read several responses to comments I haven't read...

-----Original Message-----
From: dwj-bounces at suberic.net [mailto:dwj-bounces at suberic.net]On Behalf Of
Sent: Wednesday, November 04, 2009 3:20 PM
To: Diana Wynne Jones discussion
Subject: Re: [DWJ] branding books (was What are you reading?)

Devra wrote
>I never even heard of "The Painted Garden". It's not one of the Shoes
>books....  Someone in the US just reprinted Skating Shoes in a hardcover

Does anyone really have ambitions to skate professionally in shoes rather
than boots?  Do you skate in shoes rather than boots at all, in fact?
I'd've thought it was asking for sprained ankles to do that.

I think only one of Streatfeild's books was a "shoes" book in the first
place, or have I got that wrong?  In England the only one with "sheos" in
the title used to be "Ballet Shoes", and I suppose "White Boots" if you
stretch a point slightly (I assume that's the one called "Skating Shoes" in
the American editions).  I ask in a slightly despairing manner whether "The
Vicarage Family" is called "Vicarage Shoes", hoping desperately for the
answer "no".

Very annoying it must be for someone who is a fan of Streatfeild's work and
has read all the American "Shoes" books, when she finds to her delight that
Streatfeild wrote a whole bunch more that she has never heard of, only for
each to be a book she already has but under its original title.  Not to
mention the disappointment the Yoof must suffer if they find that just
having "shoes" in the title doesn't mean that this is a series of books all
about the same heroes and heroines.

You'd think that the author's name ought to be enough to make potential
readers aware that these books are all by the same author!  Why, I wonder,
did anyone think that Streatfeild needed to be "branded" in this way?

Not to mention "whatever next"?  "Swallows and Amazons"; "Swallows and
Amazons Ashore"; "Swallows and Amazons in Winter"; "Swallows and Amazons on
the Secret Water"; "Swallows and Amazons go to China"; "Swallows and
Amazons and the Great-Aunt of Doom"....



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