[DWJ] Best of 2017??

Emma Comerford comerford.emma at gmail.com
Sat Jan 21 18:17:56 EST 2017

yes please Gili!

> On 20 Jan 2017, at 5:42 pm, Gili Bar-Hillel <gbhillel at netvision.net.il> wrote:
> If anyone is interested, I've compiled an Excell sheet with all your
> recommendations. I can send it to people who ask for it. It contains author
> names and titles, no additional info, and without people's opinions about
> books that were mentioned, though mostly I assume books were only mentioned
> if they were enjoyed or
> important-or-interesting-despite-not-being-fully-enjoyed.
> As many of you know, I'm a publisher now, and I publish Hebrew translations
> of certain books, many of which I discovered directly and indirectly thanks
> to this list. So I take your recommendations very seriously. I've build a
> career off them! That's also why sometimes I recommend a book that's not
> actually out yet, like Garth Nix's "Frogkisser". I honestly can't keep
> track of the pub dates. I know I've read other books that people are
> waiting for - such as "The Pearl Thief", Elizabeth Wein's prequel to "Code
> Name Verity" - but I try not to be frustrating in my recommendations...
> As people have posted their syllabi here, I might as well post my
> publishing list, no? Needless to say, EVERY book on the list is a book I
> feel strongly about. Unfortunately there are many books I could not publish
> because they had already been claimed by other publishers! "Uprooted" was
> one of these.
> Currently I run a publishing house devoted to children's and YA books,
> which I founded myself about three years ago. It's called "Utz", which is
> Hebrew for "Oz" (as in the Land of) So far I've published:
> * 4 of the sequels to "The Wizard of Oz" by Frank Baum
> * "Poor Cecco" by Margery Williams Bianco. At this point I was still
> cutting my publishing teeth on public domain books, and this is a very
> sweet one from the 1920s. The author is better known for "The Velveteen
> Rabbit", but I knew several competing publishers were planning translations
> of that as soon as the rights expired, so I thought I'd take a lesser known
> book (but one I like much better). Another nice thing about Cecco is that
> there are (sadly too few) illustrations by Arthur Rackham.
> * "The True Meaning of Smekday" by Adam Rex. There's a sequel out now in
> English, but I found it dissappointing.
> * "Cakes in Space" by Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre. This has proven to
> be my best-selling book, absolutely loved by the readers. I feel it fills a
> big hole for 2nd-4th graders who still want a book that's not too long and
> has plenty of illustrations, but also want something to sink their teeth
> into, that doesn't talk down to them. Reeve and McIntyre have collaborated
> on 4 books that are now being marketed as "not so impossible tales", though
> they're not really a series: four standalones in the same format. I
> recently published "Oliver and the Seawigs" which was the first of these,
> and am planning to continue soon with "Pugs of the Frozen North" and "Jinx
> and O'Hare Funfair Repair". Delightful stuff, all of it.
> * "Gobbolino the Witch's Cat" by Ursula Moray Williams. One of those books
> that's quite well known in the UK, but all but unheard of in the USA. I
> consider it classic. And Kathleen drew illustrations for my edition! It was
> the first of my books to make it to the bestseller list, by virtue of
> word-of-mouth alone as there's no current "buzz" around it.
> * "Code Name Verity" by Elizabeth Wein. For older readers than others I've
> published, but I am planning on branching out into more YA.
> * "Mars Evacuees" by Sophia McDougall. Starts out a bit slow, but once it
> finds its pace is an unputdownable proper Science Fiction book for middle
> grade and up.
> Next in line to be published: "The Lie Tree" by Frances Hardinge. This is
> actually my least favorite of Hardinge's books, but as with DWJ, I feel
> she's SO GOOD that even my least favorite leaves other books in the dust.
> I'm starting with it because it will be the easiest to promote, having won
> the Costa prize last year. I think my favorite of all her books was "Cuckoo
> Song", but they're all so good. (tangent: Frances Hardinge is friends with
> Rhiannon Lassiter who also writes terrific books that have not gotten the
> attention they deserve)
> After that: "Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH" by Robert C. O'Brien, oldy
> but goldie.
> Also planning to publish "Bone Gap" by Laura Ruby, a book that somewhat
> defies definition. It's coming-of-age-in-rural-America interspersed with
> dreamlike sequences that don't seem to add up, until they do.
> And at some point I'm committed to publish, as a book with original
> illustrations by Ofra Amit, Christina Rosetti's "Goblin Market". It took
> years to translate and I have a grant to publish it, so I do need to get
> stepping with it.
> I also published many terrific books at my previous two positions, but this
> is getting long enough as it is!
> Gili
> On Fri, Jan 13, 2017 at 12:36 PM, Tina <liril at gmx.net> wrote:
>> Hello
>> and belated good wishes for the new year to everyone!
>> I was wondering if anyone made some best of list for 2016 - I remember
>> getting such good recommendations via these.
>> Since I am have a long train commute this year, I'd love some tips. And
>> since I'm afraid I am a bit out of the loop, they need not be "new books"
>> (first published in 2016).
>> Unfortunately I don't have a real list to offer.
>> My highlight were the Flora Segunda books by Ysabeau S. Wilce - I
>> especially loved the audio version of the first book, read by Danielle
>> Ferland. (I even bought another audiobook read by her because I wanted to
>> continue listening to her, but it wasn't the same. Maybe it was because to
>> me she was just such a perfect match for Flora...)
>> My favorite DWJ re-read was Deep Secret.
>> My favorite weird genre mix were the first two Laundry Files books by
>> Charles Stross. Lovecraft meets Dilbert meets James Bond...
>> Bettina
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