Pre-selling: Alice Hoffman

Here’s an easy way to practice your pre-selling. Alice Hoffman. She has published eight books for children and young adults. Her recent work of non-fiction, Survival Lessons, is a source of inspiration and comfort for anyone facing a life challenge. And she has published twenty-four novels + several books of short fiction.

You have Alice Hoffman fans in your customer base.

Her new novel, The Museum of Extraordinary Things, will be released  on February 18. (That gives you one month to build excitement.) Meet the players:

  • Coney Island
  • Corilie, the daughter of the impresario behind a boardwalk freak show.
  • Eddie, a Russian immigrant who has run away from his father’s Lower East Side Orthodox community and his job as an apprentice tailor.
  • The infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire.

Her own grandfather inspired Alice Hoffman’s new novel. You see, The Museum of Extraordinary Things is set in the early 1900s, a time when child labor was both legal and socially acceptable. One of the opening scenes of the novel takes place in a factory where a young boy is working. He sneaks away from his work  when he overhears other children–the boss’s children–playing. What follows is an incident that will change the fate of all involved. This is the scene that was inspired by her grandfather. Alice’s grandfather died when he was very young and after he did, his friends published a book of his essays and writing. Alice knew about the book but could not find it. She rediscovered it after Hampshire College embarked on an ambitious project to put every Yiddish book online, her grandfather’s among them. Alice had the first part of the book translated and discovered that her grandfather had a political conversion at age 8 when he was working in a factory and overheard the boss’s children playing and swimming in a nearby lake while he was working. This real-life incident becomes inspiration for one of the most important moments in The Museum of Extraordinary Things.

Take a look at and share the trailer (below). It’s quite beautiful.

The Museum of Extraordinary Things is being compared to The Night Circus, Water for Elephants, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, and Geek Love.

Beth Golay

Beth is a reader, writer, marketer and Books & Whatnot founder. Even though she knows better, she's a sucker for a good book cover and will positively swoon if a book is set in appropriate type. @BethGolay