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Two Reasons for Random Cheering
-- 5/11/98
Random House lands two eagerly awaited books on the hardcover charts this week; both were well-received critically, beginning with starred reviews in PW. In fiction, it's John Irving's A Widow for One Year, published almost exactly 20 years after The World According to Garp. Our review noted similar qualities between the two books, including "Irving's special gift for farcical incident, his piercing sense of the wonderful and terrible vulnerability of children, his p tic evocation of the ravages of time." The publisher's 210,000-copy first printing was just augmented by a 30,000 second printing. Garp was also published this month in a special Modern Library anniversary edition, with a new introduction by the author.In nonfiction, Still Me by Christopher Reeve lands on the national charts. "Outspoken, wise and tremendously moving" was just the beginning of the accolades for this memoir in PW's starred review. In the three years since the accident that injured Reeve's spinal cord and left him quadriplegic, the heroic author has established a charitable foundation for spinal-cord research and has also directed the HBO film In the Gloaming, which received 11 Emmy nominations, including one for Reeve for best director. First printing for the book was 360,000 copies; Random House has already gone back to press for a second printing of 40,000.

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