Karen Kingsbury loves bookstores. She loves the smell of ink on the page, the feel of the books, the experience of stepping into a place that feels like home. But the prolific author of myriad bestselling novels also knows that bookstores are struggling in an evolving marketplace.
"As I watched bookstores close, I began to wonder how that felt for the owners. Owning a bookstore was their dream and now they're struggling and seeing those dreams fall apart," says Kingsbury.
The Bridge (Simon & Schuster/Howard Books, Oct.) is Kingsbury's tribute to bookstores and their owners, who still dream of bringing books to eager readers. While she created a fictional store in Franklin, Tenn., it was modeled on a bookstore she visited in that town while on a book tour.
Kingsbury adds her signature touch of romance to the tale of Charlie and Donna Barton's bookstore, The Bridge. The store becomes a second home to Molly Allen and Ryan Kelly, college students whose paths diverge after two years at school, but whose futures don't look promising until they meet once again at The Bridge, which is perilously close to closing forever.
Simon & Schuster, parent of Howard Books, is taking The Bridge deep into the general market, a plan that thrills Kingsbury. Her books have appeared repeatedly on the Publishers Weekly bestseller lists, but her primary market has been Christian readers.
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SOURCE: Publishers Weekly