There were 11% fewer exhibitors compared to last year at the spring Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association show in Coeur D’Alene, Idaho. But business was reportedly brisk on the floor, with a sense of community in full flower this year. The festive mood in the air no doubt sprung from the presentation of the PNBA Awards, and from the fêting of PW’s book-rep-of-the-year, David Glenn of Random House.
Attendees were seen sporting black canvas briefcases provided by show sponsor David Matheson, the author of Red Thunder. That book is based on an oral history about the life of legendary chief “Circling Raven” of the Coeur d’Alene Indians (Matheson is a tribal member), and the signing at his publisher’s booth, Media Weavers, was packed, as were many other show signings. The educational workshops and panels were also fully subscribed, with Carl Lennertz’s Book Sense talk and the SPAN presentation from Marilyn Ross particular hits with the crowd.
The PNBA Awards were presented at the Sunday night banquet hosted by Chapter One’s Russ Lawrence. The winners were: Virginia Euwer Wolff for True Believer (Atheneum/S&S), Chris Crutcher for Whale Talk (Greenwillow/Harper Collins); Jennifer Blomgren and Andrea Gabriel for Where Do I Sleep? (Sasquatch Books); first-time novelist Craig Joseph Danner for Himalayan Dhaba (Crispin/Hammer); and University of Idaho education department staff member Louise Freeman-Toole for Standing Up to the Rock (U. of Nebraska Press). The authors regaled the audience with many a tale, and the banquet food was — yes — award-worthy, too.
We thank Jennifer McCord for her contribution to this report.