January 12, 2009

Chekhov? Over next to cereal in aisle three ….


More excitement for HarperCollins this week as the publishing giant starts an “exclusive” book club with Sainsbury’s, one of the “big four” supermarkets in the UK. As Catherine Neilan reports for the Bookseller, it’s the third deal of its type: Tesco already has an agreement with Random House and Asda with Hachette UK. Every month, one of the publisher’s books will be promoted in store and online, along with reading notes and author interviews. Reader competitions will also feature heavily. The first book on customers’ lists is The Queen’s Sorrow, by Susannah Dunn, an established historical novelist.

Both sides are gushing with pleasure: as Wendy Neale at HarperCollins said, “Sainsbury’s, as such a trusted brand, is the ideal home for a book club to both reach new readers and encourage existing readers to try something new.” Not to be outdone, a spokesperson for the supermarket expressed strong excitement. “We already have a thriving community on our website swapping recipes and good ideas, so we think this is a really good follow-on.” How inspiring.