The Book Matchmaker

This is my first blog ever which appeared on Borders True Romance…so long ago!

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Matchmaker, Matchmaker,
Make me a match,
Find me a find,
catch me a catch
Matchmaker, Matchmaker
Look through your book,
And make me a perfect match

I’ve been a bookseller, a marketing guru, a publicist, an editor, a writer and more importantly always a reader. No matter what kind of hat I’ve worn in the publishing industry there has been a constant common thread. Putting the right book into the right hands – I found it a challenge to get the match just right. My reward always came in the form of the reader returning and saying – What’s next?? What else should I read? Or while I was working marketing books on a larger scale, it became finding the right medium in which to reach the reader.

Recently I read an article in which Katie Freeman, a senior publicist for Pantheon and Schocken Books, said “the book must be the right fit to create a love affair . . . there’s little I adore more than playing book matchmaker.” I couldn’t agree more! A title I’ll gladly don!

A matchmaker to create love affairs, love of books and love of authors – and get those matches just right! When I was a bookseller, my goal was, yes to sell more books. However, what would be the point of suggesting a title or an author that didn’t fit the reader? The reader would never trust me to recommend anything else for them.

And while “If you like . . . try” works for some, I did those calculations mentally and then would present the reader with a different explanation. The music industry came up with a word for what I was doing – mashup. I would take other authors, TV or movies to help give the reader a better picture of what or who the book/author would be like.   This also worked really well for those non-readers who were trying to find the perfect gift for their special reader – only didn’t know what they read!! Ah, she liked 27 Dresses? Try Kristan Higgins or Susan Mallery.

Here are some of my favorite mashups:

Lara Adrian – Take equal parts Christine Feehan and JR Ward

Stephanie Sloane – Julia Quinn with a little Sabrina Jeffries like a cherry on top!

Thea Harrison – The romanticism of a Shana Abe with the flair of Anne McCaffery storytelling.

Catherine Mann is a mix of Suzanne Brockmann and Cindy Gerard with just a touch of Debbie Macomber.

Kate Pearce – Think old school Robin Schone or Lora Leigh if she wrote an historical.

And just for, fun my favorite mystery author Donald Harstad – Dragnet meets Fargo, you can’t go wrong!

So what about you? How do you see Maya Banks or Virginia Kantra? How would you mashup your favorite author? Or do you see things differently in the mashups I created? Feel free to suggest your own mashup! Can’t find another author or title like your favorite? I’ll try my best to match you up with a perfect for you book!

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This type of post is so much fun for me to write. I love going beyond the ‘if you like…try…’ For me, there’s a little more to book matchmaking than an algorithm. There’s the emotion, there’s the style and words of an author, just because an author writes contemporary doesn’t mean that every contemporary fan out there will love it. Book Matchmaking at it’s best finds just the right book for the right reader, because then they will come back to you for more.

So tell me, what are your favorite matches?

xo

 

 

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