American Books About Berlin Now Available in Germany
Amazon.com has opened up the European market to independent American publishers. On 17 May, books that were previously only available on Amazon.com became available on Amazon.de. This means that the Berlin books by award-winning author T.H.E. Hill are now available to readers in Germany and Berlin for the first time since they were published.
Hill's books were on display at the American Consulate's booth at the annual Leipzig Book Fair 15-18 March 2012, but at the time they were unavailable for sale to the general public. Now through Amazon's new program, readers in Germany can order Hill's books in-country.
The books are on Americans in Germany. Two of the three books are award-winning novels. Most recently "The Day Before the Berlin Wall" was one of the recipients of the 2011 "Branson Stars & Flags Book Award" in the "Historical Fiction" category. "Voices Under Berlin" has received six awards. "Berlin in Early Cold-War Army Booklets" is the non-fiction companion piece to "Voices Under Berlin". The success of reading from Mark Twain's essays on Germany at the Leipzig Book Fair in 2011 is what made these books an obvious choice for the 2012 Fair.
The Consulate's booth is the only place at the Leipzig Book Fair where books from American publishers are on display to the public. After the fair, the books are donated to public and university libraries in the "Neue Länder," as the former German Democratic Republic (GDR) is usually referred to in the reunited Germany. Each book is clearly labeled as a donation from the American publisher.
One result of German reunification has been a surge in the number of readers of English-language books. English is by far the most widely studied foreign language in the old East Germany. Students begin studying English in the fourth grade, and by the time they get to high school, many already have a high degree of reading proficiency. Since reunification, English has become an indispensable language for scholars, researchers, and those with international political or business connections. The demand for high quality English-language books on a variety of topics is, therefore, growing yearly.
In 2011, the Leipzig Book Fair attracted 163,000 visitors not only from Germany, but also from Eastern and Central Europe. The Consulate's goal is to display a cross section of American books that the public would be unlikely to see anywhere else in the country. In the past, visitors to the Consulate's booth were pleased and impressed by both the variety of subject matter, and the wide range of opinions presented in the American books on display.
Amazon's new distribution initiative greatly facilitates German readers' access to a wide range of titles, and will help to satisfy the growing demand for English-language books in Germany.
To learn more about Voices Under Berlin: The Tale of a Monterey Mary, follow the links below.