Publishers Wrung Their Hands A Bit More Than Usual In 2007

"The year was punctuated by anxiety over the decline of many newspaper book review sections and worry that publishing, with its old-fashioned way of printing books on paper and shipping them to stores or to online services, can't keep up with a fragmented, increasingly distracted and digital world," according to the LA Times, which was one of many newspapers that cut back or altered its book review coverage in 2007. Another problem was that there just weren't that many exciting books this year, according to Times Book Review editor Dwight Garner: "There was a lot of excitement about books by major writers... But all of them were mild disappointments." But wait, there's hope!

According to Dwight, the one pure non-disappointment was Joshua Ferris's 'Then We Came to the End," which he said "would appeal to admirers of Nicholson Baker's novels as well as fans of the television show 'The Office.'"

God, if that book was a person, it would be the scrappy smart kid from some tiny one-horse town who gets a fancy job in the big city and is then on the cover of that small town's newspaper every day and has to ride on a float in the Homecoming parade and stuff. The pressure!