We coulda, shoulda thought of this. After all we were involved with getting aid to tsunami victims, we help run a lit group that plans to publish soon, and we know lots of people in the lit world. Well okay, we know lotsa people who know people.
Anyway, here's an anthology that should be on your "must buy" list, folks. And not just because of the list of authors (Margaret Atwood, Maeve Binchy, Tracy Chevalier, Harlan Coban, Paulo Coelho, J M Coetzee, Nicholas Evans, Helen Fielding, Mark Haddon, Nick Hornby, Marian Keyes, Stephen King, Ian McEwan, Alexander McCall Smith, Vikram Seth, Joanna Trollope, Scott Turow).
New Beginnings, says the Beeb, is "an anthology of new work, published to raise money for tsunami victims." The Independent calls it "a literary version of Live Aid for victims of the tsunami," and also carries a small quiz, which presents the first few lines from each donated chapter and asks you to match the style to the author. And the Guardian pitches in, offering a chance to win a free copy of the book to anyone who answers this question: On which day of the week was Ian McEwan's latest novel set?
(The part we don't get, though, is that it features just the first chapters of these authors' new, yet unpublished books. A book of first chapters? Of books that will soon hit the market? What is this? Some agent's idea? Would you buy a book of first chapters, even by a list of authors as high-wattage as that? Ah well. Never mind us. Most of the cover price is pledged to tsunami charities. And that we endorse.)