As we all know, it’s pretty tough for new books—especially new books from debut writers—to get attention. And that’s in the best of times. As we also know, these are not the best of times. And attention is going to be scarce this week in the UK publishing world, because today, at least 579 books (and more than 600, depending on who you ask) are being published—a 24% increase from the same week last year. Like everything outsize and annoying lately, it’s largely because of the pandemic, which prompted publishers to push many of their summer books—particularly their big summer books—to fall. When everyone in town kicks the can down the road all summer, well, when you finally get to the end of the road, you’re going to have a lot of cans.
And not all those cans can fit on bookstore shelves. “We are big and I doubt we’ll stock them all. No one has enough space for this,” one Waterstones Piccadilly employee wrote on Twitter, according to The Guardian. “We’ll do what we always do. Choose the books we think our Piccadilly customers will love most and those that we can honestly recommend.”
The Bookseller is calling this Super Thursday, and it’s only the first of the fall—there are plenty more to come between now and November. So on this one, consider buying a new debut novel that might not get quite as much online oxygen as say, Nick Hornby!