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Newsletter #73 March - May, 2006

32nd Anniversary Sale

        Uncle Hugo's is the oldest surviving science fiction bookstore in the United States. We opened for business on March 2, 1974. To encourage you to help us celebrate Uncle Hugo's 32nd anniversary, we're having a big sale. Come into either Uncle Hugo's or Uncle Edgar's and get an extra 10% off everything except gift certificates. A discount card will save you even more-you'll get both the 10% savings from the sale and the 10% savings from the discount card. (Sale prices apply to in-store purchases, but not to mail orders.)
        The 32nd Anniversary Sale lasts Thursday, March 2 through Sunday, March 12-giving you two weekends to take advantage of the sale.

Award News

        The Preliminary Nebula Award Ballot for Novels consists of The Hallowed Hunt by Lois McMaster Bujold ($24.95 signed hc), Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clark ($27.95 hc or $15.95 trade pb), Survival by Julie E. Czerneda ($6.99), The Rebel: An Imagined Life of James Dean by Jack Dann ($13.95), Camouflage by Joe Haldeman ($7.99), Mortal Love by Elizabeth Hand ($13.95), The Child Goddess by Louise Marley ($6.99), Polaris by Jack McDevitt ($7.99), Cusp by Robert A. Metzger ($7.99 pb due early March), Iron Council by China Mieville ($15.95), Going Postal by Terry Pratchett ($24.95 signed hc or $7.99 pb), Forty Signs of Rain by Kim Stanley Robinson ($7.99), Air by Geoff Ryman ($14.95), Trash, Sex, Magic by Jennifer Stevenson, and Dread Empire's Fall: The Sundering by Walter Jon Williams ($7.99).

        The nominees for the Philip K. Dick Award (for best paperback original science fiction) are Cowl by Neal Asher ($14.95), War Surf by M. M. Buckner ($7.99), Cagebird by Karin Lowachee ($6.99), To Crush the Moon by Wil McCarthy ($6.99), Natural History by Justina Robson ($13.00) and Silver Screen by Justina Robson ($15.00).

        The International Horror Guild gave it's award for best novel of 2005 to The Overnight by Ramsey Campbell ($24.95, $7.99 pb due early April).

        The World Fantasy Award for Best Novel went to Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke ($27.95 hc or $15.95 trade pb).

        The Mystery Writers of America have announced the nominees for the 2006 Edgar Allan Poe Awards. The nominees for Best Novel are The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly ($26.95), Red Leaves by Thomas H. Cook ($23.00), Vanish by Tess Gerritsen ($24.95), Drama City by George Pelecanos ($24.95) and Citizen Vince by Jess Walter ($24.95).
        The nominees for Best First Novel by an American Author are Die a Little by Megan Abbott ($23.00), Immoral by Brian Freeman ($22.95 signed hc), Run the Risk by Scott Frost ($7.99), Hide Your Eyes by Allison Gaylin ($5.99), and Officer Down by Theresa Schwegel ($23.95).
        The nominees for Best Paperback Original are Homicide My Own by Anne Argula, The James Deans by Reed Farrel Coleman ($13.00), Girl in the Glass by Jeffrey Ford ($13.95), Kiss Her Goodbye by Allan Guthrie ($6.99), and Six Bad Things by Charlie Huston ($12.95).

        The Ellis Peters Historical Dagger went to Dark Fire by C. J. Sansom ($14.00), with a special mention to The Portrait by Iain Pears ($19.95).

        The nominees for the Dilys Award are Thirty-Three Teeth by Colin Cotterill ($24.00), Half Broken Things by Morag Joss ($22.00), In a Teapot by Terence Faherty, The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson ($23.95), The Tenor Wore Tapshoes by Mark Schweizer, and The Power of the Dog by Don Winslow ($25.95).

Neighborhood Update
by Don Blyly

        The Sheraton Midtown Minneapolis, right across the street from the Uncles, opened in December, and was renting 30-35 rooms from the first night. They now say that they are practically sold out most Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights, mainly because of hospital-related business. I went on a tour about a month after they opened, and the place is very nice. Every room has a large, flat-panel TV, and the beds are very comfortable. They have a small swimming pool, a whirlpool, and a large exercise room (one member of the tour said the exercise room was better equipped than the Y that he belongs to) in the historic train shed where rail cars used to be unloaded for the Sears complex. The hotel is filled with large historical photos of south Minneapolis. My impression is that the room rates are probably cheaper than downtown and competitive with the better hotels along I-494. The entire hotel is smoke-free.
        Allina started moving people into their new headquarters in the former Sears building in December, and will eventually have about 1800 people moved in by the end of May. People started moving into the new apartments and condos in the former Sears building in January. We've heard various stories about when the Global Marketplace will open, ranging from April to June, and we are eager to have more lunch options available within walking distance. (Allina agreed to make the company cafeteria smaller than they needed, so that many of their employees would be forced to help support the Global Marketplace at the south end of the building. They are very eager to have the Global Marketplace open before all 1800 employees get moved in.)
        The new transit hub was originally supposed to be ready before Allina started moving in, but the most recently claimed completion date is the end of February.
        For those businesses who have been around for years, things are still kind of slow. As the representative of another business said at last month's Chicago-Lake Business Association meeting, "Business is almost back to the disappointing level it was at before road construction began." But we've seen lots of new faces in the last few weeks, many of whom were eager to tell friends about the "great new bookstore" they had discovered.
        A couple of months after the bridge was finished, they got around to turning on 3 of the 4 lights on it. A month later, after many phone calls, they turned on the 4th light. Every once in a while we see electricians doing a little work on getting the other new street lights ready to turn on. Once spring gets here, they should finish the work on the new sidewalks and paint stripes on the streets so that you can tell where the lanes are supposed to be.
        And they'll be planting trees. Somebody came around from the city to see what kind of new "streetscaping" features each business wanted. I said that places to lock up bicycles were very important because so many of our customers come by bike, but I didn't want a tree in front of the store because I wanted to put up a new awning-style sign with new lighting underneath the awning, and a tree would interfere with that. She said that I was scheduled to get one bike-lock stand and one tree, but she would try to change things to give me 2 bike stands and no tree. I got no bike stand and 2 trees that would interfere with my plans for the front of the store. The new street, sidewalk, and streetscape features will add a special assessment of about $250 per month to my property tax for the next 15 years.
        Major road construction in the immediate area should be over, but Lake Street will be torn up this summer to our east, with one project between Bloomington and Hiawatha and another project between Minnehaha and the Mississippi River.

Miscellaneous News

        Lots of the books that were supposed to come out over the last 3 months did not arrive when expected. By going to Books-in-Print, we were able to find that many of them (primarily from major publishers) are now listed with new release dates ranging from March through June; many others (primarily from small publishers) do not have updated information in Books-in-Print.
        Nicholas Cage will be producing a pilot for the Sci-Fi Channel based on Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series about a wizard working as a private eye in Chicago, which could lead to a TV series.
        Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire series has also been optioned, with an HBO commitment for a pilot.



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