FW: Sept. 1, 2002 Advertiser column [from Capitol Books]
- fyi..aj wright // ajwright@...
From: Capitol Book [mailto:capitolbook@...]
Sent: Tuesday, September 03, 2002 1:15 PM
To: Advertiser Column List
Subject: Sept. 1, 2002 Advertiser column
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER COLUMN September 1, 2002
This month marks our 24th anniversary as owners of the bookstore. We can't
believe it. The legendary Victor Levine, for whom Cheryl worked for three
years, and from whom we bought the store in September of 1978, founded the
store and owned it for what seemed like forever, but was really "only" 28
years. How bittersweet September now is for us, partly for the reason all
Americans share, but also because it marks not only the anniversary of our
stewardship of this old institution, but also the anniversary of Mr.
Levine's death last year at age 88. He was a great man, a great bookseller,
a great teacher, a great friend, and we loved him, and we miss him, and like
everybody else who ever knew him, we'll never forget him.
And now we're going to do something Mr. Levine might frown on. We're going
to recommend that you buy and read a book that neither of us has read yet.
Not only that, but even if we had read it, and didn't like it, we'd still
recommend that you read it, because some things you just ought to do, and
reading this book is one of those things. The book is Big Fish, by Daniel
Wallace, and if you don't know by now, they're fixing to make a movie based
on the book, and they're going to film that movie, or part of it, right here
in Montgomery. And not only that, but they're going to be headquartered for
the better part of the next year in the old Cloverdale Junior High School
building on Fairview Avenue, right across the street from us, which means
there are going to be lots of movie people spending lots of time and money
in this old town for a long time, and the least we can all do is read the
book, right? Mainly just so you'll know what it is they're doing here, but
also so you won't get left out of a lot of dinner party conversation.
And here's another suggestion. We believe that every book club in the
Montgomery area should read "Big Fish" this fall, and to further encourage
that we're prepared to do two things. One, through a special arrangement
with friends in the publishing world we've ordered hundreds of copies of the
book at a pretty good discount, so that book club members (and everybody
else, too) can buy the $10.95 paperback for $6.99. And two, we've been in
touch with the author, Daniel Wallace, and are trying to arrange a mass book
club meeting, so that all the book clubs in town (and everybody else, too),
could meet with him to discuss the book right during the time they're doing
the actual filming!
It'll all be very cool, if we can pull it off, but none of it will happen
unless lots of folks read the book, and that will include us, we promise.
The reason we haven't already read it is that we sold all of the two copies
we had in the store when they announced the movie, and at the time of this
writing we just haven't received our new batch yet. We'll have them here by
the time you read this.
So come on. Sign up! And send us your own ideas on how we can get everybody
in Montgomery to read the book that might just make our town famous. We just
had another idea while writing that last sentence: every high school and
college English teacher in town ought to assign "Big Fish" this fall,
instead of another one of the minor classics that so bore your students.
By the way, we do know this much about the book. A young man comes home to
Alabama to be with his father while the father is dying, and the young man
creates a whole mythology about his father, based on the very few actual
facts he knows about him. People we know and trust say it's great, and
unlike anything you're likely to have read before.
Remember all the hoopla a couple of years ago when Chicago "assigned" every
citizen in town to read "To Kill a Mockingbird?" People here said you'd
never be able to get contentious Montgomerians to agree on one book for
everybody to read, but we think they're wrong, and we think "Big Fish" just
might be the book!
Think about it. In the meantime we'll read the book, and give you a full
report in our next column.
Capitol Book & News Company
1140 E. Fairview Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36106