Silksoundbooks and Bill Nighy

Bill_n If you click here, you will be at Silksoundbooks, and be listening to the dulcet tones of none other than Bill Nighy, of whom this blog is a meta-admirer (you know who I mean) as well as an admirer (me). Silksoundbooks is an audiobook venture specialising in the classics, backed by Mr Nighy, who not only provides a message on the site’s home page, but reads Edgar Allen Poe’s Dupin mysteries for your delectation. Users of the service can download "unforgettable performances" for £7.95 in mp3 format, mainly unabridged classics read by West End and Hollywood actors: Timothy West for Treasure Island, for example; Toby Stephens (a recently admired TV Mr Rochester) for Heart of Darkness; and Samantha Bond for Lady Chatterley’s Lover. See here for the complete library so far (but if you skip the home page you will miss the lovely voice of Bill), and see here for the impressive list of performers.

Source: a three-week old Bookseller that I read on the train home from work this evening announced the service, but because the story is three weeks old, I can bring you this news when the Silksounds site is actually live.

It’s a local crime

Following on from the "Cash for books display scandal", I read the following poignant letter in the Times this morning:

Sir, The Waterstone’s perks-for-publicity affects more than the Christmas bestsellers (report, June 18). It hits the everyday mid-list author every bit as painfully. Seeing in my nearby Waterstone’s a space dedicated to “local author”, I suggested to my publisher staking a claim for my recent crime novel, only to be told that the modest noticeboard cost more than my everyday publicity budget could bear.

H. R. F. KEATING, London, W2