Friday, January 09, 2009

Will the Mike Gonzo Books Still be Available?

I was reading the Publisher's Weekly article on the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act and thinking about the ramifications. Just how likely is it that all children's books have been banned as a side affect of a well-meaning product safety law? My own titles have been targeted to "Ages 12 and up" so I might be affected as well. Will all the books I have sitting on bookstore shelves be trashed come February to protect the store owner from ruinous law suits? Probably I should start the process of changing that little marketing blurb to "Ages 13 and up" just to be sure.

But what about real children's books? How many lawyers out there are advising their clients to play it safe and get rid of all those un-certified books?

This could be a bigger impact on book selling than the Thor ruling, unless something happens soon.

4 comments:

Bill Crider said...

The editor had some serious issues with the first book. They're all out of print now, so I guess it doesn't matter.

Benjie said...

Regardless of the print status, I just started reading Mike Gonzo and the UFO Terror to my five-year-old for his bedtime story (he'd grown tired of the "Wishbone" book--not btw Muttketeer--we had been reading), and he's thoroughly enjoying it.

Chris Meadows said...

Apparently the book industry may be over-reacting.

http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/pending/cpsia.asp

http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml09/09086.html

Henry Melton said...

Chris, with all due respect for Snopes and the good work that they do, this was a serious issue that could have put many booksellers out of business. The CPSC was swamped with demands for clarification from practically every book industry organization and many booksellers were already feeling the push to get rid of books in the gray areas. When the government dabbles in the waters, it draws lots of sharks. And some issues, like a blanket exemption for books, recognizing that they don't use lead and phthalates anyway, ( and hundreds of lab tests verifying that) has not yet materialized.

Congress did not think this through, and it will take more action to undo the side-effect damages.