Permit us to share some in-house joy: At the annual Southern California Independent Bookseller Awards Saturday night at the Biltmore, Susan Campoy’s cookbook, Celebrating with Julienne (which we distribute) won Best Nonfiction Book 2009. It was chosen by the booksellers themselves as their favorite nonfiction book published in the last year by an author with Southern California roots.
As many of you know, Sue Campoy finished writing the book in her hospital bed at City of Hope. After a 14-year battle with breast cancer, she passed away last spring, less than two months before the book was published. At her request, the book has not been offered to the chains (Borders, B&N) and has been available only at local independent retailers (and more recently on Amazon). It has been a skyrocketing success, selling out its first printing of 5,000 books in a mere ten weeks.
At the gala dinner to accept the award on Sue’s behalf were her oldest daughter, Cynthia Campoy Brophy, and her oldest grandchild, 16-year-old Maeve Brophy. In accepting the award for her mother, Cynthia said, “You cannot imagine what this would have meant to my mother. She worked so hard on this book for so many years, and to be recognized by the booksellers is just a dream come true.”
Joining the celebration after the awards dinner were more Campoys and some of the Celebrating with Julienne gang, including art director/producer Joseph Shuldiner, myself (who also helped Sue write the book), Sue’s daughter Jennifer Campoy, son-in-law Brian Brophy, and younger granddaughter Alena Brophy.