At last year’s Boston Marathon two bombs at the finish line transformed a celebratory event into a tragic one. For the one year anniversary, runners of the 118th marathon (April 21) are seeking redemption. Publishers and authors with ties to the community are seeking it, too, with a handful of books about what happened to the runners and the city—many coupled with donations to The One Fund Boston, which has distributed over $60 million to victims and families affected by the attacks.
The first book out of the gate is Runner’s World contributing editor Hal Higdon’s 4:09:43: Boston 2013 Through the Eyes of the Runners (Human Kinetics, $14.95 paperback original), which he initially self-published. The book, which takes its name from the numbers on the finish line clock when the first bomb exploded, weaves together 75 stories left on his Facebook page in the days immediately afterwards. Higdon collected them and organized them into a single-voiced narrative, which he initially self-published as a Kindle book in August. It was subsequently picked up by Human Kinetics, which is planning a book signing at the 2014 Boston Marathon Expo, along with other publicity, including cross-promote it with Higdon’s marathon training course through Training Peaks.
“What appealed to us is that 4:09:43 is about the runners—who they are, why they run, who they run for. It is a story that could only be told by someone who loves the sport and understands what the Boston Marathon means to so many. Hal Higdon ran in the race 18 times and trained countless others to do the same,” says Jason Muzinic, v-p and consumer division director.
Runner Jeff Bauman chronicles the story what happened to him at the marathon and afterwards in Stronger (Grand Central, April, $26 hardcover), written with Bret Witter. Bauman was 27 years old when both his legs were destroyed and was the only runner to see the bomber. When she acquired the book last fall, GCP president and publisher Jamie Raab said, “Jeff Bauman gives new meaning to the term ‘Boston Strong.’ His story is deeply moving. But more than that, it is incredibly inspirational.”
Bauman’s publicity schedule is still being finalized. Parade is running an excerpt as a cover story at the end of March, and an interview with Bauman will appear in the May issue of Reader’s Digest. According to senior publicist Caitlin Mulrooney-Lyski, he will appear on the Today Show, NBC Nightly News, The O’Reilly Factor, Fox & Friends, and NPR’s Here & Now at publication. First printing is 250,000 copies.
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SOURCE: Publishers Weekly