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Local Focus through Community Newspaper Book Reviews

Sanford Thatcher, the departing head of the Association of American University Presses (AAUP), advises his colleagues to go local by way of the review:

It seems to me that there is likely to be no better market for the general-interest titles that we all publish from time to time than the college towns in which many of our

presses are located, and if we all were to organize ourselves in such a fashion as to help our local newspapers run reviews of these books written by people in our own communities, we can thereby help offset at least some of the damage done by the disappearance of reviews from the major city dailies. Naturally, I have an interest in this idea’s catching on elsewhere because I feel a conflict of interest in having any of our Penn State Press books reviewed by the CDT [Centre Daily Times], at least while I’m serving as coordinator. So I hope some of you will piggyback on our effort and get in touch with your own local paper’s editor to see if there might be interest in creating such a “user-generated” book review operation in your community. Our CDT editor is really keen about this initiative, and I wouldn’t be surprised if editors elsewhere would echo that sentiment.

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