Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Living up to the hype

The Wall Street Journal has posted an article about the marketing hoopla surrounding never-before-published author Erin Morgenstern's upcoming novel The Night Circus. Once again, everyone involved is really, really, really hoping this book will be the "next Harry Potter".

I seriously doubt Ms. Morgenstern's novel will achieve anything close to the near-universal popularity of J.K. Rowling's series, but it has a gorgeous cover and it's getting a boatload of press, which might be enough to offset the fact that it's a standalone, not a series, and will be shelved in the general fiction section, rather than with the YA or children's books. The combination of great press and an eye-catching cover certainly generated plenty of sales for Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (another title surrounded by "next Harry Potter" hype), but I've always suspected that way more people bought that book than actually finished it.

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