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Whether you love it, hate it, or just casually leave it on the background while getting some work done, true crime content is hard to avoid. There are multitudes of podcasts, YouTube channels, documentary films and series to choose from; and it is no different when it comes to the print medium. True crime books have lined bookshelves and bestseller lists for decades, some of which have even been adapted into or inspired widely acclaimed films and shows. These books often offer details or additional insight to cases - such as court documents, transcripts, and first-hand accounts of individuals close to the case - that are not accessible to casual viewers or listeners. Therefore, if you are anything like me, have watched too much reruns of Forensic Files, and have decided to take your morbid curiosity to the next level, picking up some books is the next logical step.


In Cold BloodWhich book do you start with though? I suppose it depends on what exactly you're looking for. Are you looking for more details on a specific case, or more of a case study on certain criminal behaviour and psychologies? Whichever it may be, one book that belongs in every true crime aficionado's book list should be Truman Capote's In Cold Blood. First published in 1966, this non-fiction novel recounts the 1959 quadruple murder of the Clutter family, and the subsequent investigation, trial, and execution of Perry Smith and Dick Hickcock. Considered to have revolutionized the non-fiction genre, Capote's novelization achieves skillful journalism and masterful storytelling, providing an impartial look at the lives of everyone involved without forgetting the immorality of the crime that took place. There has since been some dispute regarding possible exaggerations or fabrications in Capote's account of the case, but the book remains seminal to the true crime genre.


Helter SkelterAnother requisite addition to a true crime fan's reading list would be Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry's Helter Skelter: the True Story of the Manson Murders. Recounting one of the most publicized and horrifying cases of the twentieth century, Helter Skelter provides a unique insight and detail to the case as Bugliosi served as the prosecuting attorney to the 1970 trial of Charles Manson. This close connection gave the authors access to integral court documents, case photographs, and first-hand interview accounts they share with the reader. The amount of detail and research in this book proves why it remains the number one bestselling true crime book to this day. While its intensity will definitely turn casual readers away (it does not hold back on any of the terrible details and photographs), it is definitely worth a read by anyone especially interested in doing a deep dive into the 1969 murders and the notorious Manson family.


HomicideIf you are less interested in the nitty gritty details of a specific case, or just want a bit of a change of pace (just a little bit, since we are still on the true crime kick here), David Simon's account of his yearlong experience with the Baltimore police department's homicide unit is a great read. First published in 1991, Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets has since been adapted to a critically acclaimed 90s television show and movie of the same name, while also inspiring another critically acclaimed series - HBO's the Wire (also created by Simon). With its well-known television adaptations, some may feel that reading the book is not as necessary once you have watched the shows, but you can say that about any book with a film or TV adaptation. Unlike the shows, the book follows real detectives and cases that took place during Simon's year with the Baltimore homicide unit, giving readers a more genuine look at what takes place during police investigations, how it affects the people involved, and serves as a bit of a time capsule of a specific side of 1988 Baltimore. Personally, I was convinced to check this book out after my favourite true crime podcast referenced it for what seems like the hundredth time; this should be a no-brainer for any true crime or police procedural fan.


Confident WomenIt might be a bit hard to believe especially with the three books above, but true crime does not always need to be intense or about murder cases. Netflix's recent successes with The Tinder Swindler and Inventing Anna alone shows that con artists are just as fascinating to true crime fans. If you checked out these documentaries, or would just like to read about more charismatic scammers and nefarious criminal schemes, check out 2021's Confident Women: Swindlers, Grifters, and Shapeshifters of the Feminine Persuasion. Light, entertaining, and informative, Tori Telfer goes over some of history's most notable female con artists while seeing if there is any correlation between the confidence game and the female persuasion. Besides looking at a different type of crime and criminal, this book differs from the three previous on this post as it offers a quick read and should be more accessible to both casual and hardcore true crime fans.


Savage AppetitesIf you have noticed the seemingly newfound popularity of true crime, you may have also noticed that a big portion of their audience is women. I certainly have, especially as my partner sends me multiple “women love true crime” memes throughout the week. Like my partner, author Rachel Monroe questioned this seemingly odd feminine fascination towards crime in her book, Savage Appetites: Four True Stories of Women, Crime and Obsession. Equal parts personal narrative, true crime reporting, and sociological examination, this book provides an explanation for women's notable interest in true crime content. Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with the four archetypes she claims women identify with, this investigation is worth a read if you are interested in something a bit different from the usual crime reconstruction, as it moves the focus towards the genre and its audience. At the very least, you can recommend it to anyone wondering why girls love true crime so much.




True crime is definitely not for everyone. By definition, it will always involve upsetting, disturbing, and terrible things happening to very real human beings. The genre however also undeniably satisfies a fascination and intrigue that many of us have. So, if you have been hit by true crime bug, and have decided to add some books to your reading list, definitely check these titles out!


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The other night, the stars aligned—or at least the schedules of seven adults in four different timezones—and my friends and I were able to play Jackbox together.  For those who don’t know, Jackbox is a series of party games designed to be played online, requiring only one person to have the packs and stream the game.  The rest of the players watch the stream and play the game on their own device via  For our group, we play using Discord so we can also voicechat, for strategy and for making dumb inside jokes.


For people who don’t live near each other—our group is scattered across Canada, the US, and the UK—games like Jackbox are a great way to socialize, especially during a pandemic.  In early 2020, during the worldwide Covid-19 lockdowns, publisher Jackbox Games struggled to keep up with a sudden influx of new players; jumping from 100 million players to 110 million in two months, according to this Washington Post article.  This meant completely overhauling their sites, ad copy, and even the way they’d envisioned playing the game.


Fortunately Jackbox is easy to start and stop, so different players can join in and leave as needed.  Rounds are generally short and there’s no minimum amount of players, though generally only 7-8 maximum and some games just aren’t as fun with only a few people.  For us Jackbox tends to be a commitment—we say we’ll just play for a few hours, or a few rounds, and suddenly it’s 2 am in my timezone and our UK friend has stayed up the entire night.  It’s fun and addictive and best of all, I can play it in my pyjamas.


Libraries have been offering games and spaces to play them in for years now.  Kitchener Public Library, for instance, has a collection of thirty different games, focused on helping children learn and grow, available to borrow with just a library card.  Other libraries offering games to their patrons include North Perth Public Library, Newfoundland & Labrador Public Libraries, and Spruce Grove Public Library.


Board games aren’t the only types of games libraries help support.  There’s video games and associated consoles, of course, but many libraries also have a focus on tabletop games like Dungeons & Dragons, which generally have an older audience.  Though I’ve personally never really gotten into that kind of roleplaying game, at least three of my friends have regularly scheduled sessions and we’ve discussed having our own little one-off game.  If we do manage to arrange that, I’d probably benefit from reading a game guide like Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse or Dragons & Treasures by Jim Zub.


According to market research company Euromonitor International, Games & Puzzles became the fastest-growing toy market globally back in 2016—long before the current pandemic.  But that doesn’t mean the pandemic hasn’t affected sales, especially among those aged 20 and older.  Lockdowns meant lots of free time, not to mention digital fatigue; with everything moving online, sitting down to a physical game is often a welcome break for the mind.


Board games as a whole have improved through the years as their popularity grows.  While there are still the classics like Monopoly—also known as Monotony in my family—and Battleship, there are also plenty of newer games to occupy an evening.  These range from easy and quick—like Bananagrams—to updates of classics—like Catan Junior, geared more towards kids and new players—to more involved games like Gloomhaven, which contains almost 100 scenarios to play through and specialized mechanics to make each game completely unique.  Many games—Cards Against Humanity comes to mind—are also being geared more towards adults, especially those of us who still have the sense of humour of a 12-year-old. No matter your skill level or interest, there’s sure to be a board or tabletop game out there for you.


There’s a new patch coming out on April 12th for the MMORPG that my friends and I all met on, Final Fantasy XIV.  This means the servers will be down for most of the night while the game updates—and we have another opportunity to play Jackbox.  As the current reigning champion (no matter what my friends may claim) I have a duty to defend my crown—or at least make as many dinosaur references and dirty jokes as possible.


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.

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When the world locked down in early 2020, people suddenly found themselves with a lot more time on their hands, and many chose to spend that time reading. According to an article posted on CBC's Sunday Magazine, an Angus Reid Survey conducted in April 2020 found that 40% of Canadian adults said they were reading more.


While this in theory sounds like a win for the book industry, publishing, and more specifically authors were greatly impacted by the COVID measures, and the statistics paint an interesting picture. With bookstores and libraries closed for browsing, people flocked to blockbuster authors and celebrities, while lesser known and debut authors fell by the wayside.


When asked about the circulation stats at their individual libraries, many of our library customers confirmed this data, stating that without the ability to browse in person, patrons were sticking to the familiar. It’s also interesting to note that many book discovery sites such as online bookstores or Goodreads rely on algorithms, thus directing people to those already popular titles and limiting what they see or is suggested to them. According to the New York Times, nine out of ten of the top fiction bestsellers in 2020 were by established authors.


There was some good news for publishers in 2021. According to statistics from the Association of American Publishers, the industry as a whole started to rebound with revenues rising nearly 12% for the calendar year. Independent bookstores were not factored into this data, so it could actually be higher than reported. The increase is a direct result of the reopening of brick and mortar bookstores and libraries, with both sectors increasing their purchasing and seeing an increase in foot traffic.


Despite the common belief that digital books would eliminate print, data also shows that print is still the preferred format for reading. Physical books continue to account for the majority of book sales revenue in the United States and Canada, and publishers continue to focus their marketing efforts into print rather than digital. Also interesting is overall cost comparison between digital and print, which finds that the two formats are much closer than you’d think.


According to a survey conducted in the U.S. in March/April 2020, 70% of the respondents said they preferred print books. The same was true in Canada, where Booknet Canada reported print making up approximately 75% of purchases in 2020. In 2021, booksellers in the US saw a rise in all regular print formats ranging from board books to hard covers, trade paperbacks and mass markets.


On the digital side, e-books took a dip of just under 5% in 2021 after seeing a rise in 2020 during the lockdowns. While there has always been a belief that younger generations prefer digital books over print, this turns out not to quite be the case.


A Pew Research study  conducted in early 2021 showed that 74% of the coveted 18-29 demographic preferred print to digital, as did 62% of the 16-24 year-old age group. Interestingly, juvenile and young adult books made up 41.2% of book sales in 2020 but less than 5% of children’s books were published in digital format. At the same time, the newer digital audiobook format rose while physical audio dropped, reflecting the changing listening habits of readers.


So what do all of these statistics mean? Overall, it’s good news for the book industry and for libraries in particular.  While print book sales haven’t quite rebounded to the pre-pandemic levels of 2019, 2021 definitely looked better than 2020. It also bodes well that for all of the online options available to book consumers, approximately half still discover new reads through in person browsing, and nearly half of all readers who purchased books did so because someone suggested the title.


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.


Happy Reading!




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When the Shonda Rhimes adaptation of Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series debuted on Netflix it became an instant success, introducing a whole new audience to these regency period romances. Now, with the second season arriving on Netflix on March 25, curiosity about the Regency period and other Regency set books is sure to peak.


So what exactly is the Regency Period? Technically, it is the period between 1811-1820 in the UK when King George III went bonkers and the government made his son George, Prince of Whales, regent (ruling in his stead). The way the monarchy worked, death was pretty much the only way to remove a king from his throne, so giving Prince George ruling powers was the next best thing. Some experts extend the period into 1837 while George IV and George V ruled, but while it’s not Victorian, it’s not considered true Regency.


Initially, Prince George was a hit, and he was a very romantic figure. By all accounts, he was charming and handsome in his youth, and people took to calling him the first gentleman (Never mind that by the time he became king he was neither of those things anymore and he was highly unpopular and slightly crazy). 


While poor people obviously still existed in Regency England and were no better off than the poor from any other era, the upper classes, who are the focus of Bridgerton, were really rich. These were the Knights, Dukes, Earls, Barons, Lawyers, Bankers, and dudes who had tons of money and didn’t have to work known as Gentleman. As far as status goes, there were different groups and ranks among the upper classes, but no matter which group you belonged to, if you had money, land, and a title, you were set, and it gave you (or bought you) a ticket into the ton (le bon ton) which was Britain’s high society.


The other aspect of Regency England as portrayed in Bridgerton is something called The Season. The Season officially began with the opening of London Parliament in late January, and extended into early July when the weather got hot, and the wealthy fled the city for their country estates or travelled the continent. The Season was essentially the social season for the elite, and was comprised of parties, balls, trips to the theatre, etc… It was also the time when mothers with daughters of marriageable age presented them to society in hopes of finding them a wealthy husband.


You might be wondering what’s so fascinating about the Regency period’s equivalent to today’s 1% that readers and viewers flock to it?


One reason of course is that it’s glamourous. Who doesn’t like to imagine a lifestyle where all you do is  party for 6 months of the year? There is also something very appealing about the manners and elegance of the period.


The Regency period also fell smack dab in the middle of the Romantic Movement (a term used to define art, literature, poetry, music and architecture in Europe in the late 18th and early 19th centuries), and produced famous authors such as Jane Austen, poets such Byron, and composers such as Beethoven to name a few.  Prince George was also famous for his investment in the arts, so culturally it’s a very rich period, and a really unique time.


It was also a time of high stakes, and functioning in society was something like a game of chess. Aristocrats were expected to marry for money, status, or politics, and there was a strict code of behaviour. You couldn’t even kiss a guy without causing a scandal, and there were appropriate times to make social calls, eat a meal, wear certain clothes, etc..  In Bridgerton and other Regency romances, part of the fun is seeing what happens when the charactrs try to step outside of those boundaries and defy social norms.


When selecting a Regency romance, it is also important to distinguish between novels written during the Regency period, traditional Regency romance, and the modern form of historical romance set in the Regency period but a lot sexier.


If reading books authored in the time period interest you, Jane Austen is obviously the most famous and most popular. Her commentary on social conventions and society is still relevant, and most importantly there’s Darcy (the hero of Pride and Prejudice) who is still considered to be the model of a romantic hero 200+ years later.


If you’ve already read and re-read Austen’s cannon until your copies are falling apart but are still interested in a traditional type of Regency novel, check out Georgette Heyer. Heyer was born 80 years after the end of the Regency period. She published her first novel in 1921, and her first regency novel The Convenient Marriage was published in 1934. Her novels are meticulously researched and have everything the romance reader could want- authentic characters, romance, humour, and rich dialogue. 


Amazingly, I never encountered her in any of my English Literature courses in University (maybe because most of my professors were men), but she's considered to be the mother of Regency romance and is noted for putting a more feminist slant on historical romance. 


If modern Regency is what you’re looking for, Bridgerton is an obvious choice. There are eight books in the series (one for each of the children of the late Viscount Bridgerton), and four Bridgerton Prequels featuring the Rokesbys-- the family who lived next door.


Once you’ve finished those, if you’re still looking for parallel authors, here are a few suggestions:


Lisa Kleypas is a highly prolific romance author, and her Wallflowers series focuses on four young ladies in Regency times who enter society with the goal of finding a husband.


Elosia James’ new Would Be Wallflowers series features a Regency period heroine who is about to be launched into society but has no desire to marry, and does everything she can to put off suitors.


Welsh-Canadian author Mary Balogh’s 10 book Westcott series is another popular choice, as is her brand-new Ravenswood series publishing in July 2022.  Similarly to Bridgerton, the Westcott books feature different members of the Westcott family, and they contain all the romance, balls, and scandals readers love about the period.


These are just a few of the most popular choices, but feel free to contact your selector for additional choices in print or on screen.


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.


Due to the on-going conflict in the Ukraine, there is a shortage and delay in our supply of Ukrainian language materials. We are continuing to work with our vendors to minimize the disruption in the next couple of months.

There is currently no change in our shipment of Russian language material.

We appreciate your understanding during this difficult time.

Please feel free to reach out and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.


Happy Reading!




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Our newly updated LSC website is now live. There are visual changes to almost every page to make the site cleaner and more usable, and a number of functional improvements and new features.


If you want to find the latest Nintendo Switch games or French nonfiction hardcovers, you can now do that from the advanced search page. Select whatever filters you want and search, no keywords required. To keep the number of results under control, you must include a date range if you don't use a keyword.

There are also some new features on the search results page. The Select to filter dropdown lets you limit the search to a single material type. For example, if you've searched for a book by author and title, you can limit that search to only paperback editions.

Any item with a Canadian author, illustrator, or subject will be identified with a flag.


Selection Lists
The Selection Lists page has been completely revamped. There are three display modes.
Display New shows all lists created within the last three months. This is the default view
Display All shows all current lists
The Filter By dropdown shows all lists of a specific type
All of these views support sorting by name, type, and date.

You can use the new Create Cart page to create a new cart from a list, or add all items from a list into an existing cart.


You can now download invoices in PDF or Excel format directly from the invoices report


The biggest change here is the new editing system. You can now make changes to multiple items in a cart with a single click. Use the Edit Rows button to open the edit panel. There is a box for every editable field. Type in the changes you want, or leave a box blank to leave that field unchanged. You can apply the edit to every item, or just the ones you've selected. If you make a mistake, use the Undo Edit button.

Also in the Carts menu is the recent orders report. On the left side is a list of all the carts you've submitted recently. Click a cart's name and the right side will show the contents of that cart and indicate which items have shipped.


All reports now use a new visual theme, for better consistency and readability. The reports menu is grouped, and you can hover over the title of any report to show a description.

The cancellations report has a new column for order date, and the outstanding orders reports now show totals.


Account Switch
You can use this control, at the top right of every page, to switch between different account numbers without having to log out and back in.

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When I was a kid (ok, and maybe an adult too), I was absolutely obsessed with all things unicorn. I collected unicorns of all shapes and sizes (my prized possession was a giant unicorn from the CNE), had unicorn posters on my wall, and read anything I could find about unicorns. I even have a collector’s edition of Peter S. Beagle’s The Last Unicorn simply because it’s a unicorn book. Looking at the breadth of unicorn, Pegasus, mermaids, and even mermicorn (a mermaid/unicorn hybrid) chapter book series that are a growing trend for emerging readers, I wish I was 8-years-old again so I could read them all and appreciate the magic of these stories. 


For newly independent readers, the branches series Unicorn Diaries by Rebecca Elliott is a perfect choice. Each book features a magical unicorn attending the Sparklegrove school. Part of the Branches chapter book series, these fully-illustrated, easy-to-read, and fast-paced stories are a perfect transition from levelled readers.


When they’re ready for something more challenging, try Sparkleton by Calliope Glass, and aimed at 7 to 10-year-olds. Sparkleton is a shaggy purple unicorn who is desperate to get wish-granting powers and will do almost anything to get them. The books are just under 100 pages and full-colour, and with book 6 arriving in August, it’s a perfect series for your unicorn-loving readers.


Also popular with young readers is the Unicorn University series by Daisy Sunshine. Aimed at fans of My Little Pony, the soon-to-be nine books in the series follow the adventures of young unicorns attending Unicorn University, a boarding school for unicorns. At 112 pages, these are slightly longer than the Sparkleton books, but black-and-white illustrations are interspersed throughout the text and they still fit into that emerging reader category.


For a longer-running series, direct your readers to Unicorn Academy and the spin-off series Unicorn Academy: Nature Magic by Julie Sykes about a special school where every student is paired with their own unicorn. The original series has 12 books, and Nature Magic has 4 so far. This series would absolutely have been a favourite of 8-year-old me, and I would have fantasized about attending this magical school.


For Pegasus fans comes an adorable series called Pegasus Princesses by Emily Bliss, creator of Unicorn Princesses.The five books in the series follow the adventures of 8-year-old Clara, a pegasus-obsessed girl who finds a magical silver feather in the forest that transports her to the magical land of the Pegasus Princesses. Each of the eight pegasus princesses have a unique magical power, throne, and tiara, and it’s a fun, illustrated series full of magic and charm.


If you’re like me and you loved Disney’s The Little Mermaid, Mermaids Rock and Mermaid Tales are the perfect choice. Mermaids Rock, by Linda Chapman is a new fully illustrated chapter book series featuring the mermaids living in the coral reef Mermaids Rock who have all kinds of adventures including solving mysteries and helping sea animals in danger. 


Mermaid Tales by Debbie Dadey is a long-running illustrated series following four third-grade mermaid friends attending Trident Academy, a school for you guessed it-mermaids! The fourseome get tangled up in all kinds of adventures, and with 21 books in the series, there are plenty to keep mermaid fanatics reading for a long time.


Do your readers love mermaids and unicorns and wish they could read about both at the same time? Well now they can with two different series about Mermicorns. Mermicorn Island by Jason June. Half unicorn, half mermaid, young readers will love reading about the adventures of the magical half mermaid, half unicorn mermicorns living on the island.


Can’t get enough mermicorn magic? Then try the Mermicorns series by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen. When the mermicorn’s horn starts to sparkle it means she’s ready for magic school, and each story features a different magical mermicorn. The series contains black-and-white illustrations, and will appeal to fans of Unicorn Academy, Purrmaids, and other magical animal tales. 


While all of these fall into the chapter book category, there are additional series available for middle-grade readers, so feel free to contact us if you’d like some suggestions of titles for your collection.


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.


Happy Reading!




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Becoming a famous bestselling author is no easy feat, but you know what’s just as or perhaps even more difficult? Being the child of a famous writer and trying to establish yourself separate from your famous parent. Some writer children have actually gone by different names, some started out co-writing or continuing their parent's work, and others took more unconventional routes to success.


Joe Hill, creator of the comic book series Locke & Key (now in its second season on Netflix), NOS4A2 (ran for 2 seasons on AMC), and numerous other novels is the son of master of horror Stephen King, and I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that King’s wife Tabitha and other son Owen are also writers. While Owen not as well-known as his famous father and sibling, he’s finding success in print and in television.


Hill (whose actual name is Joseph Hillstrom King), decided to change his name because he wanted to succeed on his own merits and not by riding his father’s fame. Although the cat is out of the bag now, by the time Variety reported his identity around 2006, he was already making it, and now he can boast being a Bram Stoker and Eisner Award-winner, a New York Times bestselling author, and several other credits. 


Having been a Stephen King fan since I was 11, I naturally questioned Hill’s talent, but I enjoyed the novel and TV adaptation of NOS4A2, and am excitedly binging my way through the second season of Locke & Key. IDW plans to publish a prequel collection of stories about the Locke family ancestors in March 2022, and I look forward to checking it out! 


Another author who clearly inherited the writing gene from her parent is Emma Straub. She's the daughter of horror/suspense novelist Peter Straub, and author of several novels including the 2020 bestseller All Adults Here which I really enjoyed. Unlike her father however, Straub does not write horror novels, but writes domestic fiction and she’s perfectly fine with that. Her stories are funny, true to life, and highly insightful, and they appeal to a different audience than her father’s books. Interestingly, in Straub’s case, growing up with a famous writer father definitely did not give her a leg up, and the first four novels that she wrote got rejected by virtually every publisher she tried. She gets the last laugh though, and her 8th novel This Time Tomorrow is scheduled for release in May 2022. 


Carol Higgins Clark, actress and author of the Regan Reilly series, inherited her mother Mary Higgins Clark’s talent for suspense writing, and even co-authored a number of Christmas suspense stories and novels with her mom. By the time Carol entered college, she was learning the craft by assisting her mother with her books, and event\ually progressed to writing mysteries of her own. While the elder Clark was known as the “Queen of Suspense”, the younger Clark is known for taking a lighter, and more humorous tone in her work. I’ve never read any of her solo work, but if you enjoyed her mom’s books she’s worth reading. Mary Higgins Clark passed away in 2020, but her final book Where are the Children Now (a sequel to Where are the Children) co-written with Alafair Burke is scheduled for a spring 2023 release.  


When you come from a family of writers, and your mom was the famous author of one of the most popular vampire book series of all time, it seems only natural that you either become a writer or run far away. In the case of Christopher Rice, son of bestselling author Anne Rice, he chose the former. He published his first novel Destiny of Souls at age 22, won a Lambda award for his second novel The Snow Garden, and collaborated with his mother on the second and forthcoming third books in the Ramses the Damned series. His novels range from supernatural to suspense, and his newest novel Decimate is scheduled for release in May 2022.


Roy Johansen, son of Iris Johansen can seemingly do it all. He won an Edgar award and a Spielberg writing competition in college for his first screenplay Murder 101 (which incidentally was produced as a cable film with Pierce Brosnan), he collaborated with Stan Lee to create the superhero The Accuser, co-writes the Kendra Michaels series with his mother, and has his own thriller Killer View releasing in February, 2022, featuring private eye Jessie Mercado, a character from the Kendra Michaels books.


In a Q&A with Mystery & Suspense Magazine, Johansen explained that while the character has already appeared in three Kendra books, it was time to give Jessie his own story. The book is listed as a standalone, don’t be surprised if more Jesse novels follow sometime in the future.


While a Google search and Twitter inquiry turned up numerous other results of famous writing spouses, siblings, and parent/child combos, I’ll end with a brief mention of two sons carrying on popular series started by their fathers. Dirk Cussler, son of the late Clive Cussler started co-writing the Dirk Pitt Adventure novels with his father back in 2004, and also happens to be the namesake for the series.


Brian Herbert, son of the late Frank Herbert co-wrote the final two books in the

 blockbuster Dune series (partially based on his father’s notes) with author Kevin J. Anderson, and has also collaborated with the author on several prequel novels. I should mention that Herbert has written a number of other stand-alone novels as well, but I’m sure he’ll be forever remembered for his contributions to Dune.


And last but not least, Alafair Burke, a law professor at Hofstra University, followed in the footseps of  her crime novelist father James Lee Burke ,and writes crime fiction loosely based on true crime stories. She's also notable for being the first person of colour (her mother was a refugee from China) to be elected as the president of Mystery Writers of America. Her latest novel Find Me released in January 2022. 


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.

Happy Reading!


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Print Run.


Those two words seem so innocuous, but in publishing, they tell you a lot about a book.


If you’re not familiar with what a print run is, it’s the set number of copies that a publisher chooses to print of any given book up front. That decision is made by the publisher in the early planning stages, and is entirely based on how many copies they think they can sell up front.


Setting a print run is no easy feat. When you purchase a book for your library system, you’re using your knowledge of the author or subject to determine how many copies you think you’ll need right away to satisfy demand from your patrons, while still working within your budget. 


Most libraries also don't want a collection entirely comprised of top 40 picks, and making room for sleeper hits , award-winners, and midlist may require buying fewer copies of the 8 Danielle Steel books published annually. It’s a tricky balance, and is often impossible to get just right. Too few and the holds get out of control, too many, and they sit on a shelf collecting dust. 


Now imagine making this decision not only for your library, but for thousands of bookstore/library customers across Canada and the U.S. Print too few and you risk not having enough to fill customer orders which is never a good thing. Print too many, and there can be financial consequences for a publisher. Every unsold copy represents dollars that could have gone into publishng or promoting another title, and  in this case, having a lot of leftovers doesn’t make anyone happy.


The author’s previous sales, and bookstore/wholesale pre-orders definitely factor into deciding whether to print 100 or a million, as do factors such as whether film rights have already been acquired, the interest there was at auction (yes, books go to auction too), enthusiasm by staff at the publishing house, and whether it’s a book by a celebrity.


You might be wondering what a print run actually means, and why anybody cares about it. To the average person, it means nothing directly. Publishers generally don’t share print run information with the public, and the average person buying a book from a book store or signing it out of the library will never know how many copies are printed. However, that data is important on several other levels, some of which do indirectly have an impact on the public.


Believe it or not, the print run can have a huge influence on how well a book sells. The million copy plus print runs afforded to authors such as James Patterson, Jeff Kinney, Nora Roberts, Nicholas Sparks, and a handful of others definitely tells you something about the publisher’s plans for the book.


A book doesn’t get that kind of initial print run unless the author is well-established and/or the publisher expects there to be a huge demand. These kinds of print runs are usually accompanied by a lot of pre-pub publicity online and in the media, and have a lot of marketing dollars thrown behind them.


For various reasons, some authors switch publishers at some point in their career, and a new publisher may drastically increase the print run, or drastically reduce it, which can signal the buyer to buy fewer or more copies. Bestselling author Ruth Ware, didn’t become a hit until she switched publishers, and her breakout was largely a result of her new publisher's enthusiasm for her work, and an active promotional effort. 


When you’re a bookseller/library purchaser, the print run information can assist you in making an educated guess about how many copies you’ll need, especially if the author isn’t as well known as the superstars I mentioned above. The larger the presence the book has, the more likely it is to become a bestseller, simply because psychologically, people are drawn to a large display and assume it’s an important book worth checking out. I’ve  discovered quite a a few authors by seeing their books in volume and prominently displayed so it works!


At the same time, while print runs can be helpful, they don’t tell the whole story and can be deceiving. While the extremes of a few hundred or a million definitely tell you something, there’s a huge range in between, and it varies from publisher to publisher. 100k might be at the top end of the scale for a bestseller for one publisher, and average for another. The print runs announced at the time the book is first annoucned is also merely an estimate, and depending on demand, it can go up and down.


Another thing to keep in mind is that print runs from Canadian publishers are substantially smaller than their American counterparts, and yet some of these authors are equally or more popular than the bestselling authors whose print runs might be 2 or three times larger. It’s a given that the demand for a new Margaret Atwood will be huge, but even she doesn’t receive a million copy print run from her publisher.


Books are a tricky business, no question, and lacking a crystal ball that can tell us 100% how popular a book is going to be, we use the tools such as print runs to make a judgement call about how many copies of a book we think we need. But as recent break out hits such as The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones (print run 50k) or Ridgerunner by Gil Adamson (around 7k initial print run) demonstrate, you can’t judge a book by its print run!


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.


Happy Reading!



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The month of January has traditionally always been about making resolutions. It’s the time where we turn the page on a brand-new year and promise ourselves all manner of things from losing weight and eating fewer sweets to being more active, sleeping more, etc… While our resolve to do all of these things tends to wane partway into the month, reading resolutions are far easier to keep.


In that spirit, we at LSC thought it would be fun to share some of our 2022 reading resolutions with all of you.


To start, Jamie resolves to read more practical non-fiction about recycling with a “make do and mend” notion – how to make and repair clothing, how to reuse fabric, sustainable choices, etc. She hopes that this will lead her into reading more about composting and gardening as well. Fiction wise, she hopes to find more graphic novels by disabled authors,  and hopes to venture into some science fiction. In the past it’s been a genre that she has generally avoided, but has recently caught her interest, and she plans to read Becky Chambers and Tochi Onyebuchi in 2022 while starting on Ursula K. Le Guin now.


Sara resolves to actually finish the many series she has started over the past few years. She has pile of books sitting beside my bed that are all book 3 or 4 in a series that forces conspire to prevent her from finishing. She notes that she often gets as far as book 2 or 3 and then stops due to delays in publishing and then forgetting the plot and never finishing. She recently purchased the last Diana Gabaldon, Go Tell the Bees that I am Gone but still needs to finish the previous volume and maybe even re-read the previous one to refresh her memory. She also wants to start the second "A Kingdom and Fresh and Fire" in the Jennifer Armentrout 'Blood and Ash' series as well as the 4th in Sabaa Tahir "An Ember in the Ashes" which came out a while ago, but hasn’t had the time to finish.


I echo Sara on this one, as I think we all do. I start a duology/trilogy/series with every intention of completing it, and if I like the first book, I’ll be ravenous for the next. Something always seems to happen between the second and third book that prevents me from ever getting back to it, and I have tons of unfinished series on my shelves. There’s only so many books I can read in a year, and with so many that I want to read, it’s hard to come back to a series.


Karrie likens her movie watching habits to reading, and comments that while she’s a big fan of all types of genres, it’s almost always fiction that she’s drawn to. In 2022, one of her Reading Resolutions is to read more non-fiction, particularly memoirs and biographies. Being a movie buff, she’s especially interested in reading the stories behind the actors on the big screen, and learning about them beyond the characters they play.


Stefanie resolves to make more time in her busy schedule for reading in general, but also to try and read outside of her comfort zone and broaden her reading horizons. She’s resolving to take a chance on reading genres she isn’t normally interested in, and seeing if she likes them rather than just reading who and what she knows she likes.


This is one of my resolutions as well. When an author you know you like and always read comes out with a new book, it’s a lot easier to make time to read it. I think I did a good job in 2021 of reading books by authors I’ve never read before, but in some ways it wasn’t really a stretch because they are still writing in genres that I already know I enjoy. Not to say that there’s anything wrong with reading thrillers or romance novels, but there are many other genres to explore.


Last but not least, I resolve to be more impulsive in my reading. I’m a compulsive planner. I like schedules and routines, and I get a bit too caught up in planning what I’m going to read next, and the book after that, and the book after that. We all have To Be Read piles that seem to grow rather than shrink, and in the digital age, I often joke that my Kindle is a black hole. I have so many titles on there that I lose track of what I have, and just adding something to a pile makes it easy to forget about it and never read something I was really interested in. The only person dictating what I read for pleasure is me, and I have to allow myself to deviate from my set schedule and read something on impulse right away just because I want to.


I’m sure that there are plenty more reading resolutions that we could/should make, but for now we’ll try to stay on top of these and see where the year takes us.


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram @LibraryServicesCentre, and on Twitter @LSC_since1967. We also encourage you to subscribe to the Weekly Update, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.


Happy Reading!



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LSC will be closed for the holidays from Dec 24th, and will reopen on Jan 3rd, 2022. Merrys and happys from everyone at LSC to all of you.

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