When these books showed up in the store my co-workers and I praised and scoffed alike. The reactions from the customers were priceless as well. One day I watched two young ladies argue over these titles, one who was horrified at these titles and at the nerve of the publisher’s marketing genius. She ranted for a solid two minutes about the people who would be sucked in my a gimmick while her friend ogled the titles and, in the end, picked up one of them… to the immediate chastisement of her hipster friend. “I’ve been trying to get you to read those for years. I read these books before they were cool! How could you?!” Kid. You. Not.
However, not as good as the girl who approached me one day with Pride and Prejudice telling me that she just finished the book and was wondering when the sequel was coming out…
… and, yes, I did tell her in the nicest possible way that Jane Austen died nearly two hundred years ago and there was no sequel and I wasn’t even that big of a bitch. Restraint works well on me some times.
Of course these titles have been successful, and as a result HarperTeen launched these next two titles:
I’m not sure how they fit in with Twilight, but…they look pretty, and they seem to be selling soooo… We release more of them!
– Releasing August 2011 –
– Releasing September 2011 –
– Releases October 2011 –
– Releases November 2011 –
…and at this point I think HarperCollins has given up the ghost of having them tie into Twilight but I don’t think it matters. They tie into the initial three releases, so that’s good. And, frankly, two years later my inner scoffing has been replaced with smiles every time I see one of these in a teen’s hand. For years I have been telling teens when they have to buy a classic not to let the fact that they are reading it for class ruin them on the book, particularly Nathaniel Hawthorne (I loved The Scarlet Letter). The fact that people are picking them up on their own, regardless of an eye rollingly daft marketing ploy, is awesome. Plain and simple. Bravo, HarperTeen. You have gotten kids to read Austen. And Shakespeare. And, soon, Hawthorne!!
So, given the fact that they have printed four of the six Austen books do you think there’s a snowball’s chance in hell that they will print the other two? Mansfield Park or Northanger Abbey… Twilighted? What about other classics? What do you think would look good, or thematically would work, in this line?
My thoughts – House of Seven Gables by Hawthorne, Tess of the d’Ubervilles by Hardy, oooh… what about anything by Edith Wharton? Sweet. *gasp* Rebecca!!!
– Follow the Reader –