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February 11, 2009
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Notes from Idaho

Reading Through the Recession

We've been hearing how difficult things are out there; how interdependent we are in these difficult economic times. Sticking your head in the sand is not recommended in these times, but sticking your head in a book is quite acceptable.

If you find the time, read this great article from our friends at Perhaps it will help you to realize that this isn't the first downturn, nor will it be the last, for our civilized society to endure. What better way to weather the storm than to BookCross. Help books find the readers and help readers find the books. Go hunting for great literature while things stabilize. Release some of your own books. Participate. To help spread the word and communicate the high-value, low-cost proposition of BookCrossing, we have enlisted our very own "Twinklebelle" who voluntarily enlisted her services to give a bit of humor and fighting spirit to some heavy times. We hope you enjoy her passion for BookCrossing so much that you send her around the globe to show the world the joy of BookCrossing!

We continue to make great progress while we refine and prepare to launch new features and functionality, and Matt is to be commended on getting the new store up and running. We hope you like the new Reusable Mailers, store labels and multiple shipping options. As always, we are grateful for the continued support and love of this fantastic BookCrossing Community. You make us proud!

Bruce Pedersen
BookCrossing Co-founder/CEO


Announcing 28th Limited Edition Bookplates: Peace with Geese

Just in at the Supply Store is Peace with Geese, our 28th Limited Edition Bookplate, by Canadian artist Nicole Keshav. Nicole says, "The idea of travelling books is appealing to me; BookCrossing helps me to make it through the very long Canadian winters with a smile." Her Peace with Geese bookplate captures a quiet moment in time for a reader beneath a tree, with Canada Geese nearby. A must-have for readers and bird-lovers alike! Remember, every purchase you make at our Store directly supports the BookCrossing movement, helping to cover costs for the hardware, software, bandwidth, and of course humans to keep the site and database running smoothly. Help support BookCrossing by making a purchase today. Your wild releases will thank you for it.

Satisfy Your Shopping Demons at the Newly Redesigned Supply Store

The BookCrossing Supply Store has undergone an Extreme Makeover. You'll find the same great release supplies in a spiffy new setting. Plus, we're offering different options in mailing via U.S. Postal Service (USPS), based on your order weight, not the predetermined price rates of our previous shipping service. We're now able to offer three types of payment options for four different currencies. Plus, you'll find options for creating a wish list and commenting on products you've purchased. We're still tweaking and adding features to make shopping even better for you, and will be adding a separate apparel line, through an official offshoot of the Supply Store, any day now.

New to the store are our Reusable BookCrossing Envelopes, in two sizes for all your mailing needs. These sturdy mailing envelopes are the perfect answer to facilitate Bookrings and rays as they are strong (made of Tyvek®) and boldly branded with Ballycumber. The bags are secured with a 3/4" Velcro seal and post office approved, but if you feel the need to see if the seal has been broken in transit, simply add a Bally sticker to the top for an extra security measure. Now you can be Earth-friendly while sending your books around the world in style. Sold in the Supply Store in 2 sizes (or grab the "Mixed bag" which has a few of each). Be sure to get yours and be the first to send your tomes travelling first class.

Still Time to Join The Reader Release Challenge or Enter The Reader Contest or BOTH!

Last newsletter, we announced two BookCrossing happenings that center around The Weinstein Company's film The Reader, based on the award winning novel of the same title by Bernhard Schlink. One is a chance to win some really great prizes by seeing the movie, and then sending your ticket stub (postmarked no later than February 22), with your screen name on it, to BookCrossing. The second, separate event is a Release Challenge, going on in the Release Challenge forum right now. Over 50 BookCrossers from 14 countries are participating in the challenge and have found some remarkable themes, based on themes in or related to either the film or print version of The Reader. Over 1,300 books have been released in this challenge, but there's always room for a few more — yours! But you'll have to hurry, both the challenge and the ticket stub drawing end February 22, when The Reader hits the red carpet in Hollywood at the Academy Awards, where it is up for Best Picture of 2008. For more details on the the contest (including address to send ticket stub) and the challenge, click here.

2009 Anniversary Convention in New Zealand - Reserve Your Spot!

There's still time to register for the 2009 BookCrossing Convention, which will be in Christchurch, New Zealand, April 17-19. Experience the warmth and hospitality of our New Zealand members, visit an absolutely beautiful land, meet BookCrossers from all around the world and celebrate BookCrossing's 8th birthday in one great weekend. The Kiwis have a really super program prepared, with loads of different opportunities to do as much or as little as you wish. Visit the Convention website or the Conventions and Meetings forum for more information. And even if you can't make the trip, you can sport Kiwi bird wings (which as otakuu, one of the convention planners, points out, is probably an oxymoron, but only if you look too closely) or the New Zealand flag as wings. (Since the Anniversary Convention has taken to travelling, our tech team has taken to adding a set of wings to the options in honor of the hosts.)

How About Hosting the 2011 Anniversary Convention?

In April of 2011, BookCrossing will be 10 years old! The Anniversary Convention, celebrated in April every year, is seeking a home. As the 2008, 2009, and 2010 conventions locations were (or will be) in Europe or the Southern Hemisphere, perhaps a North American location would be a good spot (though if no North American BookCrossing group raises their hand to volunteer, obviously nominations from elsewhere are welcome). We' d like to gently encourage some sort of rotation of sites around the world, so that all BookCrossers have some reasonable opportunity to attend an Anniversary Convention, but not set a rigid rule about it all.) Bids will be presented at the New Zealand Anniversary Convention in April, though you needn't actually be there to speak. An on-site representative at the convention can speak for you (and your city) or you can send an electronic presentation, or maybe even a live webcast. Even if only one location submits a bid, it's still nice to have some sort of presentation. It's up to you (and your local group) how you send information about your town. JennyO and FutureCat have kindly volunteered to help answer your questions about what is involved in hosting a convention or how to submit your location for consideration. A great place to start getting information is this article by FutureCat on hosting a convention. There are also several threads in the Conventions and Meetings forum focused on how future selections should go and for people/groups possibly interested in hosting the 2011 Convention. So why not give it some thought? A decade of BookCrossing is a pretty special thing to celebrate.


The first book we caught
by pandapal

That funny feeling that comes in the bottom of your stomach when you actually walk off with your first BookCrossing book -- can any of you hardened BookCrossers remember what that was like?...

[read it all at]

A BookCrosser's Lament on Unheard-from Wild Releases
by bookczuk

They're out there. I know it. Hundreds of thousands of books that have a BCID in them. Every once in a while, one will resurface, and all the devoted BookCrossers who learn of it cheer. It's one of the reasons I hang out in the Site Watch Forum sometimes -- to read about the long-ago releases of others that suddenly pop back up in the BookCrossing World. A recent favorite was The Lonely Guy, the one and only book (hey, he really was lonely!) registered and released by africanqueen. Lonely Guy resurfaced 5 years, 7 months, 2 days after he was released, and as wickedlazy, who posted this catch in the forum says, "He's been lonely a long time!" (Please note, this is not a record-setting time between release and journal entry/catch, but it is one of the granddaddy ones.)...

[read it all at]

How a release alert 4 years ago helps a complete stranger
by KathyS

Over 4 years ago I released a book at a holiday villa we stayed in on the outskirts of Alhaurin el Grande in Spain. Recently, I received an email from a complete stranger asking me what I thought about the villa as she's about to go and stay there....

[read it all at]

... and our love for them
by Paula Garcia (texaspaula)

Every time I come to the BookCrossing website, I am reminded again of what a pleasure reading is. I recently broke my hip and was incapacitated for several weeks. Instead of flowers, my daughter (the one who introduced me to BookCrossing) knew the perfect gift for me. She brought me books....

[read it all at]

Hitting 200 releases in a long-standing quest
by Linda R. Moore (WhiteRaven13)

Here are some things you might like to know: This is part 3 in a series. Part 1 is here and Part 2 is here. ...

[read it all at]

This one made my day!
by house-elfdobby

There's nothing more exciting than opening up your inbox on a gloomy winter morning when your body is crying out for some sunshine and finding a new Journal Entry for a long forgotten book. Especiall

[read it all at]


Want to write for BookCrossing? If your article is accepted, you could see it featured here in the next newsletter. What topics do we need? Anything about books, reading, or BookCrossing — tutorials, release and catch stories, well-traveled book stories, funny BookCrossing experience stories — you get the idea. Write it up, then submit it here:


Top 10 Countries All-Time
USA 302,426 (40%)
UNITED KINGDOM 80,752 (11%)
GERMANY 50,202 (7%)
CANADA 44,847 (6%)
SPAIN 36,639 (5%)
AUSTRALIA 32,504 (4%)
ITALY 22,668 (3%)
FRANCE 16,049 (2%)
NETHERLANDS 15,274 (2%)
PORTUGAL 10,667 (1%)

Top 10 Countries Last Week
USA 463 (26%)
GERMANY 130 (7%)
CANADA 73 (4%)
SPAIN 59 (3%)
BRAZIL 49 (3%)
ITALY 47 (3%)
INDIA 43 (2%)


Wild books released by our members are being caught all over the world, every day! Our site watch forum is where members post news of great wild book catches. Here are some of the best from the last few days...

A catch for ecoboy after 5 years, 7 months and change:

[A very respectable time to be in the wild- but it didn't quite make the top five longest-time-to-journals that I know of {wry grin}.]
by GoryDetails

6 years 4 months, Dreamcatcher finally wrote home...
Good one for Mistletoe:

ETA: As far as my own meager records go, I believe this is the longest between release and catch we've seen (unless perhaps Gory has record of something a bit longer)!
by Jare

USA to Australia, reappears after 2 years
by newk

Amazing how something as simple as a caught release can brighten your day...
I was having a really foul day at work today. Everything I touched turned to crap. Got home and went online to check my email and got notice of a wild release from back in August. To my surprise and delight, the book has traveled to Brazil. This is my first release that actually left the USA. Well, I've got to be a real simpleton because I'm sitting here with a grin that goes from ear to ear. I'm so glad to have found this site; it can really take the edge off an otherwise terrible day!
by GWF

another one checks in after almost 2 years in the same town...wonder if it's one of about 4 chinese restaurants that are around this grocery store...or somewhere a bit further away?
by tempestsans

"I thank the person who left it..."

This journal entry warmed my heart on a cold January day...
by geishabird

a rather serendipitous catch and JE

i'm so glad it made it's way to someone who needed a read! and how wild that they used to live where i live now!
by tempestsans

A nice find by someone new to Seattle

When I wild release a book, I always hope that the finder has the sense of delight and "meant to be" that this one has. She had just move here a few days earlier and found it while going for a walk. Having been in that situation before, I can just imagine how nice it would be to find a book left seemingly just for me in a still-strange city. I'm glad this book and this lady found each other.
by MaryWit

Wahoo! I hooked Google! (kinda):

Was delighted to see this book caught, and all the more so because it was clearly allowed to roam around the MIT Museum ever since I originally left it there. [Or was read and re-released, which is just as good.]

And I got to see my book in the "recently caught" sidebar, which I really, really love {grin}.
by GoryDetails

'I give thanks for this website!'
Old detective pocketbook nets an enthousiastic new member:
by Moem

I think this Southbank catch deserves a mention:
by ETMadrid

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bc supply store Order Peace with Geese, our 28th-edition Bookplate Label, today! Only $10.95 plus S&H.