A prominent media and advertising campaign is backing Simon & Schuster's global publication of Hillary Clinton’s Hard Choices memoir today (Tuesday, 10th June).
In the UK, the Times newspaper is running serials of the book today and tomorrow (10th/11th June), with an interview with the former US Secretary of State to be published on Saturday (14th June), while The Observer will run an interview on Sunday (15th June).
The US politician, widely tipped to run for president for the Democratic party next term, will also be interviewed by Jeremy Paxman on BBC2’s "Newsnight" on Thursday (12th June).
Meanwhile all national newspapers will run adverts, and Two Towers West on the A13 in and out of London will carry images of the book (see picture). An advertising campaign also runs on the National Rail from today.
Hillary Clinton will be in the UK to promote the book in July.
The UK has printed 200,000 UK copies of the memoir, with 100,000 copies to be distributed in the UK, 60,000 in Australia, 10,000 in India and 15,000 across the rest of the world. The US has printed a million copies.
UK bookshops are gearing up to support the title with Simon & Schuster UK saying the book would be supported by “all channels”. It has an r.r.p of £20.
Three delegates from the UK trade met Hillary Clinton in New York during last week's Book Expo America conference – Waterstones director of books Kate Skipper, WHS Travel's Mike Roberts and Gardners' Simon Morley.
Michael Neil, books director for WH Smith, said the company was “going to town” with it. He said: “We have bought loads of copies and are going to be supporting it as much as we can. It will be half price and front of store in all stores. There is not a lot else which is new and we will support it because it is a big publishing event and it will be a really big book.”
Skipper said: “We're pretty excited about it, it's not every day there is such global media coverage for a new book. As with all big releases I'd expect it to be in our front of store and windows.”
However, Tim West of the Big Green independent bookshop in London’s Wood Green was less enthusiastic. “We did really well with Obama’s Dreams From my Father but no-one has asked about Hillary yet,” he said.
While UK journalists will be picking up the book tomorrow, some reviews of the title have started to appear in the US. The New York Times said: “The roll-out of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s new book, Hard Choices, as a prelude to a possible 2016 run for the White House, has had all the subtlety of a military operation ramping up to full speed…The book itself, however, turns out to be a subtle, finely calibrated work that provides a portrait of the former secretary of state and former first lady as a heavy-duty policy wonk. Compared with her 2003 memoir, Living History — which tended to lapse into glib, stump-speechlike pronouncements and reactive efforts to blame assorted enemies for her and her husband’s travails — Hard Choices is a statesmanlike document intended to attest to Mrs. Clinton’s wide-ranging experience on national security and on foreign policy.”
The Bookseller understands supermarkets ASDA and Tesco briefly broke the publication day embargo when some stores began selling copies over the weekend. However, they were quickly removed from sale once the matter was brought to their attention.
Clinton's previous memoir Living History (Headline) has sold 132,324 copies in the UK via Nielsen BookScan to date.