Welcome to AGoodBook.com!|
is the fusion of Internet technology with the greatest artistic challenge
of the Twentieth Century.
This fusion permits us to sell a selection
of unusual and rewarding writing without charging silly prices to cover
enormous marketing expenses.
must contribute to this process.
You must think for yourself and
not wait for razzle-dazzle cliche-marketing to tell you what you like.
In return, we do our best to provide a selection of original writing that
will inform, amuse and satisfy you.
out our booklist. You'll find romance, comedy, adventure,
literature and self-help. Click and read an excerpt from each book. We
hope you will order and enjoy our selections. Many of these books are newly
written and are unavailable in bookstores.
objective is to provide for your reading pleasure.
AGoodBook was established in 1997 out of my personal frustration with what used to be the pleasure of reading.This is a feeble attempt to eliminate risk; in fact, what is eliminated is art.
Since 1980, a significant portion of the book
publishing industry has been bought out by the same holding companies that control the film companies and the music companies.
Once books were a forum where diverse people novel ideas and experiences. We have been isolated
by corporate marketeers, who have created diverse publishing products for what they perceive to be diverse market segments.
This has several implications:
- We, as readers, no longer share common cultural experiences through new authors and books.
Authors don't get published unless a publisher can understand what "market segment" (race/sex/age/income) will respond to the manuscript.
- Another aspect of this is what Stephen King (in an essay in the New York Times Book Review, protesting just this phenomenon)
called "the Son of Lassie Syndrome." The "suits" attempt to isolate what made a successful book successful. . . and then find other books with the same elements.
This is why music and films and books all seem so similar and unexciting, like wet cardboard or used chewing gum. We all have favorite music, films and books that
would probably not be distributed today because no "suit" can imagine who would buy it.
This is also why the price of books has doubled in the past ten years - the costs of the corporate mentality and the power of oligopoly to push the price up.
AGoodBook is my attempt to restore the importance of books -
as art, as culture and as communication.
The Face Behind...
My name is Steven Bassion.
I grew up in the country. I was an Eagle Scout. I graduated with honors
from the University of Pennsylvania. Once upon a time I taught trigonometry
and calculus at Birch-Wathen, a second-rate New York City prep school.
I did systems and computer design, when computers filled special air-conditioned
rooms larger than a basketball court, for Abraham & Straus Department
Stores before they disappeared in a feeding frenzy of Wall Street junk-bond
traders. I have worked for the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
From the 45th floor in
Manhattan, I was Director of Financial Analysis for an out-of-control consumer-goods
conglomerate, until one morning I "forgot" how (i.e. my subconscious refused)
to tie my tie. I took myself to Texas, where I built one of the largest
magazine publishing companies in the U.S. (over two million circulation).
I've been other things - the chief pilot of a small flight service called
"Barnstorm America," a professional actor in a small Texas theatre haunted
by the ghost of John Wilkes Boothe and a professional writer.
This project is close to my heart because I miss the joy of reading. People can't
find good books anymore because of all the noise - the advertising, the glut of
merchandise and the perceived irrelevance of artistic standards. The prices of
books have doubled in the past ten years to pay the costs and salaries of this
superfluous marketing. Good writers are being destroyed by the narrowness of
the opportunities available.
When anything is art, then
nothing is art. There must be criteria for what is good and what is important in
art, and in life.