Archive for the ‘Our Favorite Things’ Category


All June Crime Prize Draw Winners

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

Last month, in honor of June Thriller Month, we had 3 prize draws. Thanks to everyone who took the time to mail in and answer our questions. Congratulations to all the winners, and we hope everyone’s answers (see below) will help you pick out your next favorite book.  :-)

Win a FREE copy of Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King: Paula Imans

Q: In the original version of Misery, what material was to be used for the cover of the book Paul Sheldon has to write?.

A: Paul Sheldon’s skin.  Annie originally wanted to sacrifice her pig Misery, and use the pig’s skin for the book, but by the end of the store the pig is still alive… and Paul Sheldon is nowhere to be seen!

This was the ending of the short story that was never published, but that became the Misery we all know and love (or fear).  A really tricky question for the true King adept.  :-)

Win a Pile of Thrillers:  Alex Hoogendoorn, Saskia de Korte, Saartje Kuijs & Mandy Fischer

Q: What is your favorite thriller (or thriller series) and why?

“What is my favorite thriller (series)? That will be all the thrillers by Nicci French, but especially the Frieda Klein thriller series. Why? Those beautifully written stories with the well-known three or so plot-twists at the end who literally, every effin time, make my jaw drop, looking like a complete fool, those stories made me wanna be a psychologist in the future. I’ve always wanted to be a writer and I’m definitely going to be one, but every writer needs stuff to write about. They ought to be intelligent, wise, philosophical. That’s what I wanna be, WHO I wanna be.”

“I’ve never read a thriller in my life! I’d like to win these books, because it’s healthy to leave your comfort zone now and then.”

“I don’t know if you would classify the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon as a thriller series, but I experienced them as thrillers. I read them one after the other up through the seventh book and only stopped because I had lots of books on my shelves that I hadn’t read, yet. Maybe I’m waiting until there are a few in a row to read one after another – the way I like them!”

“I read my favourite thriller series while I was studying abroad in Rome. My dad had sent me a package of books and included the Millenium trilogy by Stieg Larsson. Funnily, they didn’t grab my attention at first and it took me quite a while to get through the first few chapters. My father’s encouraging words: “It will pick up speed”, “It’s just a bit of essential information you need for the rest of the book” and “Believe me, you’ll love it” helped me to not lay it down and never pick it up again.
And he was so very right. I loved it! I spent days in class not being able to concentrate, trying to figure out what had happened to Harriet and asking my Swedish friends (I went to an international school) to help me pronounce the names of people and places. Within the span of two weeks I read all three books. Sitting in front of the Pantheon, on benches in little squares shadowed by trees and on the edges of fountains that not many tourists visited.
When I finished the books I called my dad and asked him if this amazing writer had written any more books and was saddened to find that Stieg Larsson had died in 2004. Now all that is left is to read those three books many more times and to watch the extended Swedish filmversion of Män som hatar kvinnor, Flickan som lekte med elden and Luftslottet som sprängdes.”

“My favourite crime thriller series are the Lily Pascale books by Scarlett Thomas. There are three of them: Dead Clever; In Your Face; Seaside.
I love them because they combine the British tweeness and comfort of Midsomer Murders and Agatha Christie with genuine scares and gore, a cracking good mystery, a reluctant and obsessive heroine, exceptional writing, and unexpected twists and turns.”

“My favorite thriller book series are the Pendergast novels by Preston & Child. I really like the personalities (especially Pendergast and secretly his insane brother too), the interesting subjects and the ghoulish setting. I can’t put these books down when I start them!”

Ebooks available for Frieda Klein 1, Outlander 1, and Millennium Trilogy 1 (and further parts in all these series, too, but generally people start at the beginning!).

Win a SIGNED copy of After the Silence by Jake Woodhouse: Em Angevaare, Mandy Fisher and Enny Muin

Q: What crime fiction book are you reading right now?

“I’m currently reading Dying Fall by Elly Griffiths (for the second time), although I must say I prefer the earlier books in the series.”

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.”

Buffalo West Wing by Julie Hyzy.  Cozy crime FTW!”

“At the moment I am reading Stephen King’s Mr Mercedes.”

“The crime fiction book I’m reading right now is Undone by Karin Slaughter. I’ve been re-reading all of her books before I’ll start the new ones.”

The Anonymous Venetian by Donna Leon.  Took me 20 years to get around to the Guido Brunetti series; glad I finally did.”

Ebooks available for Dying Fall, Gone Girl, and Mr. Mercedes.

Win a SIGNED COPY of After the Silence by Jake Woodhouse!

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

A murdered policeman, a dead businessman hanging from a hook, a building burnt to the ground in an arson attack and a missing girl – identity unknown.
It’s up to damaged, world-weary Inspector Jaap Rykel of Amsterdam’s finest to piece it all together. Alongside him he’s got an inexperienced female detective wrestling with the ghosts of her past, and a Sergeant with a drugs habit. And then there’s the internal affairs investigation . . .
A rich cast of characters, a sinewy, complex plot and a starring role for Amsterdam are the highlights of this brilliant debut police procedural.

Introducing After the Silence by Jake Woodhouse, a new thriller series by a promising debut author set in Amsterdam.  We can’t think of a better way to end June Thriller Month than by highlighting this book with its orange connection.  Wait, actually, we can!

Thanks to the lovely folks at Penguin we have 3 SIGNED copies of After the Silence to give away!

All you have to do is answer this question:

What crime fiction book are you reading right now?

Mail your answer to win@abc.nl by Monday, June 30th.  Please put After the Silence in the subject.  Please note that you must live in The Netherlands to enter.  :-)

The winners, along with the winners of the other June prize draws, will be posted at the beginning of July in one big round-up post – including ALL received answers (not just those the winners sent in).

An ebook of After the Silence is available here.

Spotlight on… Whitechapel: Documents of Contemporary Art

Friday, June 20th, 2014

Whitechapel: Documents of Contemporary Art is a series of anthologies.  Each volume focuses on a specific theme or subject that has been a major influence in contemporary art. Each subject is edited by a different critic, curator, scholar or artist who provides texts by voices from different fields, defining the specific theme of the volume.

MIT Press, in combination with Whitechapel Gallery, has already published over 30 volumes with subjects such as Colour, The Archive, Chance, Documentary, Nature, Sound, and Appropriation.  Any reader interested in art will get a lot out of these books, not only students and professionals in the field.  Later this year the series will expand with Sexuality and Exhibition.

Personally, I think this is an excellent series of theory books that deserves a wide audience.

- Jesse, Art buyer at ABC Amsterdam

ABC’s 42nd Birthday Recap

Saturday, June 14th, 2014

ABC Amsterdam

Thank you for all the congratulations!  What a gorgeous sunny day we had.  :-)  The mini muffins, balloons and the free books were very much appreciated by you.  A lot of people handed in the €5 Birthday voucher (sent to everyone who subscribes to the News Mailing).  This mail voucher was a test of sorts for us, as well, so we were happy to see that many of you took the trouble to print it out and use it.

ABC The Hague

We had a fun, festive day.  The cupcakes provided by the American Baking Company didn’t last long!  Everyone appreciated the free titles given away and we loved the atmosphere you all brought.

Book Statue on the Spui in Amsterdam

“At 11.30 Rietveld students started making several book sculptures with 3 pallets of books supplied by us. They were supossed to go on building until about 15.30 but at around 14.30 its started to rain (luckily only for about ten minutes) so we decided to start the breakdown/give-away early as we didn’t want good books ruined. It was crazy!  Locals, tourists, people just passing by could not believe we were just giving away books like this and many people walked away with one or a small stack (and of course there were also some people who got real greedy and did not want to share and took lots of books). ABC’s owner Lynn, the Rietveld students and I walked around explaning to people why they could take these books for free and handed out ABC book marks. Within an hour and a half 3 pallets of books were gone! Three small boxes of lonely titles remained and will be donated to a good cause.  You can see lots more pictures on our Flickr page.
Lynn also had to go in to the store to get a new pink John Waters bookmark for a 70 year-old lady, who was upset she lost hers. She said his quote was a great standard to live by! ;-) ” – Karin, ABC’s Marketing Director

“Beste mensen van The American Book Center!

Bedankt voor het prachtige fotoboek van Ansel Adams, een 2-tal romans en een kookboek. Fantastisch leuke geste van The American Book Center gisteren op het Spui in Amsterdam aan alle Amsterdammers en toeristen, waaronder ik.  Zomaar duizenden boeken neerleggen om door iedereen gratis te worden meegenomen. Zodra ik weer in Amsterdam ben kom ik in de winkel gewoon wat kopen.

Groeten, Ria van Bree-Boersma, Rotterdam”

And many thanks to Peter Eijking for making the video below! It gives a great impression of this unique event.

Support wheelchair relay Rolling on Wheels!

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

This year we are supporting our colleague Sara, who will be biking from Den Helder through Amsterdam and The Hague to the Westland as part of wheelchair relay Rolling on Wheels 4.

Sara and her husband will be cheering on their daughter Esther and at the same time raising awareness for Stichting on Wheels, a non-profit organisation that helps people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients and their families with fully-adapted RVs or homes for holidays. All donations will be used toward the replacement of an RV.

You can find donation boxes for Stichting on Wheels in both stores, but you are also welcome to donate money directly (reference “Esther”) through their site (in Dutch).