Indie Press Spotlight: Melville House


Every month here at BookPeople we like to spotlight a smaller, independent publishing house that we love. These Indie Presses are helping to push the literary world forward with unique and adventurous work and we’re proud to showcase their titles in our store. This month we’re focusing on the wonderful Melville House! Come by the store and check out our display of some of their books! 

Melville House’s origin stories dates back to the year of 2001 when sculptor Valerie Merians and writer Dennis Johnson (of the fantastic book blog MobyLives), joined forces to publish Poetry After 9/11, a collection expressing the spirit of New York City following the terrorist attacks, and perhaps in reaction against the pro-war fervor brewing in the nation at the time.

After the huge success of Poetry After 9/11 Merians and Johnson decided to go into publishing full-time. Meville House now offers a wide range of fiction, bestselling nonfiction, and a burgeoning crime fiction catalog.

Most importantly, they were part of what was arguably the greatest Twitter squabble of 2015 between two houses. (No really, check it out!)

So come browse our Meville House display and support your local, independent bookstore by supporting independent publishers!

Here’s a quick list of some Melville House new releases that BookPeople booksellers are excited about:

TheMakingOfDonaldTrumpThe Making Of Donald Trump – David Cay Johnston

Covering the long arc of Trump’s career, Johnston tells the full story of how a boy from a quiet section of Queens, NY would become an entirely new, and complex, breed of public figure. Trump is a man of great media savvy, entrepreneurial spirit, and political clout. Yet his career has been plagued by legal troubles and mounting controversy.

From the origins of his family’s real estate fortune, to his own too-big-to-fail business empire; from his education and early career, to his whirlwind presidential bid, The Making of Donald Trump provides the fullest picture yet of Trump’s extraordinary ascendancy. Love him or hate him, Trump’s massive influence is undeniable, and figures as diverse as Woody Guthrie (who wrote a scathing song about Trump’s father) and Red Scare prosecutor Roy Cohn, mob bosses and high rollers, as well as the average American voter, have all been pulled into his orbit.

Drawing on decades of interviews, financial records, court documents, and public statements, David Cay Johnston, who has covered Trump more closely than any other journalist working today, gives us the most in-depth look yet at the man who would be president.

The Subsidiary – Matías CeledónTheSubsidiary

In the subsidiary offices of a major Latin American corporation, the power suddenly goes out: the lights switch off; the doors lock; the phone lines are cut. The employees are trapped in total darkness with only cryptic, intermittent announcements dispatched over the loud speaker, instructing all personnel to remain at their work stations until further notice.

The Subsidiary is one worker’s testimony to what happens during the days he spends trapped within the building’s walls, told exclusively—and hauntingly—through the stamps he uses to mark corporate documents.

Hand-designed by the author with a stamp set he bought in a library in Santiago, Matías Celedón’s The Subsidiary is both an exquisite object and a chilling avant-garde tale from one of Chile’s rising literary stars.

TheAnatomyofInequalityThe Anatomy of Inequality – Per Molander

From a country with one of the world’s lowest rates of income and social inequality comes a clear-eyed and timeless account that recalls Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century. In The Anatomy of Inequality, Swedish analyst Per Molander examines the development of social and economic inequity throughout the modern world, its history, and what can be done about it.

By mining cultural history, Molander inventively addresses the obvious questions often avoided—including why the wealthiest countries, such as the United States, have the greatest incidences of inequality.

Mixing anthropology, statistics, references to music and literature, and political science, Molander looks at inequality across various political and ideological systems and presents a persuasive, entirely reasonable case that, as surely as societies can be made unequal, so too can they be made equal.

The Mirror Thief  – Martin Seay


The Mirror Thief is a dazzling combination of a genre-hopping adventure, a fast-paced mystery, and literary verve. Set in three cities in three eras, The Mirror Thief calls to mind David Mitchell and Umberto Eco in its serendipitous mix of entertainment and literary mastery.

The core story is set in Venice in the sixteenth century, when the famed makers of Venetian glass were perfecting one of the old world’s most wondrous inventions: the mirror. An object of glittering yet fearful fascination — was it reflecting simple reality, or something more spiritually revealing? — the Venetian mirrors were state of the art technology, and subject to industrial espionage by desirous sultans and royals world-wide. But for any of the development team to leave the island was a crime punishable by death. One man, however — a world-weary war hero with nothing to lose — has a scheme he thinks will allow him to outwit the city’s terrifying enforcers of the edict, the ominous Council of Ten …

Meanwhile, in two other iterations of Venice — Venice Beach, California, circa 1958, and the Venice casino in Las Vegas, circa today — two other schemers launch similarly dangerous plans to get away with a secret ….

All three stories will weave together into a spell-binding tour-de-force that is impossible to put down — an old-fashioned, stay-up-all-night novel that, in the end, returns the reader to a stunning conclusion in the original Venice … and the bedazzled sense of having read a truly original and thrilling work of literary art.

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