Today in the Fifteenth Century

“My colleague said that you have the best display here!” exclaimed UTP author, Lisi Oliver, as she approached our booth. I beamed proudly from my spot on top of a diminishing pile of The Viking Age: A Reader. By Saturday night, we had sold out of my reader along with Medieval Popular Religion and The History of Sexuality Sourcebook. People asked repeatedly for the last copies of our Rosenwein overview text and reader as well as Sacred Violence but we held onto all of them for display purposes. On the other side of the booth, Suzanne was busy selling off her new titles by Lisi Oliver and Leslie Lockett and meeting with old authors as well as prospective authors. Around lunchtime on Saturday, there were several slightly nervous medievalists trying to catch Suzanne’s ear. One looked at Natalie and said, “She really is the belle of the ball.” And indeed, she is.

Natalie had a little time with new Higher Ed author, Thomas F. Mayer, who will be writing a book for us on the trial of Galileo. That was followed by a meeting with series editor, Paul Edward Dutton, where new directions for our series of medieval readings were discussed (including plans to acquire a Byzantine reader as well as a reader on law and society in the Middle Ages).

Future Higher Ed author Steven Bednarski popped by around 5:00 pm, just in time for the daily wine hour, and said he was hard at work drafting his book on Margarite, a medieval woman accused of poisoning her husband. Following the close of the book exhibit hall, all of the editors had dinner at the local Indian restaurant with Michael Burger, author of The Shaping of Western Civilization and now the Dean of Liberal Arts at Auburn University at Montgomery.

This morning at breakfast, our last in Kalamazoo, Suzanne confirmed that we have done very well over the last few days. Anna noted that we had no Viking trading cards left and that the huge stack of “Odin’s Wisdom” magnets has been reduced to a mere pile. We are already looking forward to next year, when we will be able to promote some great new titles, including Pilgrimage in the Middle Ages: A Reader, The Civilization of the Italian Renaissance: A Sourcebook, and The Middle Ages in Texts and Texture. There is also hope that we will have a new edition of Kelly DeVries’s very popular Medieval Military Technology, which would be exactly 20 years after its original publication in 1992. With these titles already in the pipeline for next year, Natalie and Anna are expecting that Kzoo 2012 will be an even bigger success than 2011.

I must run now. The doors have just opened for the last day of the book exhibit and the bargain book buyers are rushing toward us. I hope to see you all next year!

-The Berserker


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