Look for another "instant bestseller" to land on the national charts next week, as that noted bookseller of the airwaves has just announced her club's summer selection. It's Cane River, a debut novel by Lalita Tademy that was published by Warner in April. (This is Warner's second Oprah pick: Billie Letts's Where the Heart Is was chosen back in December 1998.) According to Winfrey, "It's a book that has love, gossip, pain and history, all rolled into one extraordinary read." It looks like PW was ahead of the curve on this one, as we selected Tademy as one of our January 2001 First Fiction interviewees. According to Warner publisher Jamie Raab, "It was a book that we all believed very strongly in—we went out with a large printing for a first novel, and now Oprah's selection really validates our belief." Pre-Oprah, copies in print were about 170,000, and Warner's gone back for an additional 450,000.
With reporting by Dick Donahue.