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August 1, 2002

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Get a license plate frame and help support BookCrossing!
As you know, BookCrossing memberships are free and always will be. And we're keeping you and the site free of annoying banner ads and popup ads (yuck). In return, please help us financially, if you can, by making a small purchase from the BookCrossing store. The license plate frame shown here is only $14.99 plus shipping - we make a few dollars on each sale, and believe me, with the bandwidth charges on over 6 million page views per month, every little bit helps. Thank you so much!

site gets coveted yahoo! editor's choice award is a Yahoo! Picks

Woohoo for Yahoo! On July 29, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that was named a Yahoo! Editor's Choice website. As you can imagine, we've reaped the benefits of a whole lot of traffic to the site, adding almost 2,000 new members in the last 4 days. Call to Action! Help BookCrossing make it from #2 to #1 on their most popular picks list ( by going to the main BookCrossing description page ( and using the link titled "Email this pick" at the bottom to send it to a friend. The sites with the most referrals move higher on the popular picks list, which will get us even more traffic.

Since our last newsletter July 11th, BookCrossing has been featured on about 17 big media stories, including the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, the San Jose Mercury News, and front page on the Philadelphia Inquirer. You can read all the recent press on our BookCrossing Press page (

We're now growing at an average rate of over 147 new members per day, and we just crossed the 50,000 registered books mark. If you're into numbers, and want to see our membership counts broken down by day and month, you can take a look at our BookCrossing Growth Charts.


bookcrosser of distinction good with pics

Every newsletter a BookCrosser is awarded an item of their choice from the BookCrossing Store ( We try to select the member who did the most for the BookCrossing Movement since the previous newsletter. This newsletter's BookCrosser of Distinction award goes to:
Flashgirl, from Minneapolis, Minnesota
Flashgirl has really impressed me with her release notes pictures, like this one:

Picture of book release

which shows the actual release of The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Eleanor Atwood at a park in Minneapolis. You can read the entire journal entry here:

Flashgirl has released 56 books so far since joining BookCrossing only 1 month ago, and most of them have great photographs like this. Already she has had 6 successful releases! Spend some time on her bookshelf (link above) and see what I mean.

Please help me thank her for her efforts in supporting the movement by sending her a nice private message from her bookshelf page.


win $250 by releasing E-Wally

Don't Let that E Scare You!

E-Wally and the QuestOur newest BookCrossing Contest Book is E-Wally and the Quest by Judy Shasek and Wendy Anderson Schulz. And yes, that "E" is for "electronic", as in electronic-mail (e-mail), electronic-commerce (e-commerce), and so on.

Now if you've tuned-out in the least because of the high-tech title, then E-Wally is most likely the perfect book for you! Like his low-tech counterpart, Harry Potter, E-Wally is a hero that will appeal to both children and young-at-heart adults. And while you and your children are enjoying the well-developed adventures of this 11-year-old virtual boy who lives and works in the "Land of the Internet" delivering e-mail and fighting evil bugs and routers, you'll be learning about how the internet works.

E-Wally is only the first of three books in a series, so if you like it, and I know you will, there will be more to come. The authors have even launched an interactive website at where readers can go to learn and do more. The website has sections for kids, teachers, and parents; all groups will find it a rich and rewarding resource that complements the book nicely.

So okay, enough about the book - what about the contest? Here's the deal: everyone who reads and releases a copy of E-Wally at any community facility for children (a school, a YMCA, a library, etc.), and uploads a journal entry picture of the book at that release location, by October 1, 2002, will be entered in a random drawing for a $250 gift certificate from (our favorite online bookseller).

And to get this off to a fast start, I've got 10 copies of the book sitting right here on my desk that Judy Shasek has generously provided for me to give away FREE! I can only mail these free books to the continental U.S., so if you qualify, I'll take the FIRST 10 MEMBERS who send an email to "" with a subject line of "Please send me E-Wally and the Quest!" and a message body with your full name and mailing address.

Note that members from all over the world are encouraged to get a copy of E-Wally from one of these sources and join in the chance at winning the big book shopping spree:

Buy E-Wally from

Buy E-Wally from

Full contest details, and all the current entry pictures, can be found at

Our previous Contest Book - time is running out on the chance to win $500!

Flesh Tones by M.J. RoseFlesh Tones, a passionate and thrilling page-turner, combines an inside look at the New York art gallery scene, and a tense first-person-account courtroom drama that will keep you guessing to the end. A smooth, silky blend of love, obsession, mercy and murder, the book was thoroughly enjoyable to me, and should make a great companion for the beach or pool. Cosmopolitan magazine called it "[a] sexy summer read," and BookList added "Compelling... readers who enjoy psychological thrillers in the Ruth Rendell vein will find Rose's tale absorbing."

To enter the Flesh Tones contest, and have a chance at winning a $500 book shopping spree at (which M.J. is generously providing), just pick up a copy of Flesh Tones at or or your favorite local bookseller, read it, then release it at an art gallery near you, and upload a picture of you, the book, and the gallery with our new journal entry picture feature. The contest ends September 9, 2002, at which time M.J. will draw a winner at random from the qualified entries. Full contest details, and all the current entry pictures, can be found at


how you can help the movement

These tips will always be included at the bottom of our newsletter. If you have something to add to this list, please reply and I'll include it next issue.
  • Use the Tell-A-Friend feature at the website: to quickly tell one, or one hundred, friends about BookCrossing by email.

  • Help support BookCrossing financially by buying books from our bookseller associations - we make a small commission, and every dollar helps to keep memberships free, and keep the site banner-ad free, forever. Just start your book-buying sessions from our Buy page which has search forms for,, and

  • Forward this Newsletter to your friends, along with a personal request that they join.

  • Tell your local coffee shops and used bookstores about BookCrossing. The best way is to print out the new Crossing Zone signs/flyers at and leave several with them. Have them contact me for details on becoming a featured Crossing Zone, since we'll be listing those on the site in the near future.

  • If you know anyone in the media biz (radio, TV, newspaper, magazine, publishing, etc.), make sure to tell them about BookCrossing and encourage them to feature it. Stress to them the nobility of our cause, the grass-roots growth efforts, and the warm fuzzies it will give their audience.

  • If you've got a website, make sure to grab one of our eye-catching logos and link code from the My Bookshelf page: and put it on your site.

  • When you talk to your friends who love books, be sure to talk to them about BookCrossing. There is no influence more powerful than personal word-of-mouth.

  • Finally, the most obvious way to spread the word: release your books into the wild, or share them with friends! Each one is a little mobile billboard for BookCrossing, and will help convince others to share in kind.

Thanks for reading this far, and until next time, Happy Crossing!


Ron Hornbaker

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Books Released
In the Wild