Weekly book agenda: Martel's 'Beatrice and Virgil,' Meyer's 'The Host'

Beginning April 12, readers from around the world are invited to vote for the book that will be read as part of One Book, One Twitter, a potentially worldwide Twitter-based book club. Other events of the week: Yann Martel publishes his Life of Pi follow-up, Stephenie Meyer shares a bonus chapter of The Host, and the winner of the Pulitzer Prize is announced.

One Book, One Twitter voting begins
April 12

In March, Twitter users were invited to submit book nominations for One Book, One Twitter, a potentially "massive, international book club," according to founder Jeff Howe, a contributing editor for Wired magazine and author of Crowdsourcing. Howe's goal: "to get a zillion people all reading and talking about a single book." Six crowd winners were announced April 5: American Gods, Fahrenheit 451, 1984, Brave New World, Slaughterhouse Five, and Catch-22. The "One Book, One Twitter advisory board" will add four more titles, and on April 12 and for two weeks after, voting will be open to select a winner. The Twitter hashtag for One Book, One Twitter is #1b1t.
Jeff Howe on Twitter: http://twitter.com/crowdsourcing
Crowdsourcing blog: http://crowdsourcing.typepad.com/cs

Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

April 12
New York City, NY

The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, one of the most prestigious literary prizes in the US, has been awarded since 1918 (then called the Pulitzer Prize for the Novel). The prize honors distinguished fiction by an American author. To be eligible, a work must be entered with a $50 entry fee. Recent winners include The Road by Cormac McCarthy (2007), The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (2008), and Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout (2009).

Yann Martel's 'Beatrice and Virgil'

April 13

Yann Martel's first novel since the Booker Prize-winning Life of Pi, Beatrice and Virgil is a Holocaust tale told through taxidermied animals Beatrice (a donkey) and Virgil (a howler monkey). The Spanish-born Canadian author's Life of Pi has been published in more than 40 countries and 30 languages and has sold seven million copies worldwide. Beatrice and Virgil is due to be published in the UK on June 3.

Stephenie Meyer's 'The Host' in expanded paperback

April 13

The paperback edition of Twilight author Stephenie Meyer's 2008 sci-fi novel The Host will reportedly include a never-before-seen "bonus chapter" as well as a reading group guide and annotated playlist. In The Host, Meyer's first novel for adults, Earth has been invaded by a species that take over the minds of human hosts. Back Bay Books will release the paperback edition.

International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award shortlist
April 14
Dublin, Ireland

The largest prize worldwide for a single work of fiction published in English, the IMPAC award is open to all novels published in English or English translation two years prior to the prize year. The annual award is €100,000. One hundred fifty-six titles nominated by 163 libraries in 123 cities worldwide made the 2010 longlist, including Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger, José Saramago's Death with Interruption, Wolf Totem by Joang Rong, Phillip Roth's Indignation, A Mercy by Toni Morrison, and Marilynne Robinson's Home. The winner will be revealed in June.

International Antiquarian Book Fair (Salon International du Livre Ancien)

April 16-18
Paris, France

The Paris International Antiquarian Book Fair, begun in 1984, is one of the largest events of its kind worldwide. The 2010 fair will host nearly 200 rare book and print dealers from around the world, showcasing rare manuscripts including a letter written by King François I of France (1494-1547), drafts of works by Marcel Proust, and a 13th century psalm book. The 2010 guest of honor is the Bibliothèque Interuniversitaire de Médicine, whose medical collection is said to be among the richest in the world alongside the National Library of Medicine and the Wellcome Institute in London. The fair will be open to visitors each day from 11:00am to 8:00pm with an €8 entry fee.

London International Book Fair
April 19- 21
London, UK

The 2010 London Book Fair is set to take place at London's Earls Court from April 19 to 21. The leading spring book event in Europe, the fair spotlights the UK publishing industry - the second-largest in the world for English-language books - and also attracts up to 23,000 industry professionals from more than 100 countries around the world. South Africa is the 2010 guest of honor. While the fair is not open to the public, it directly affects what new titles readers will find on shelves in the months and years to come.

Stephen King's 'Blockade Billy'

April 20

Independent horror publisher Cemetery Dance is set to publish an original baseball-themed novella by Stephen King. The novella tells the story of William 'Blockade Billy' Blakely, "the first - and only - player to have his existence completely removed from the record books. ... Every effort was made to erase any evidence that William Blakely played professional baseball, and with good reason. Blockade Billy had a secret darker than any pill or injection that might cause a scandal in sports today. His secret was much, much worse... ." A limited number of first-edition copies can be pre-ordered through the publisher's website.

World Book and Copyright Day

April 23

UNESCO's World Book and Copyright Day has taken place each April 23 since 1995. (In the UK and Ireland, readers enjoy a head start: The event is celebrated on March 4.) The event is celebrated in Spain, where the idea originated, and around the world with all nature of book-related events. Among 2010 highlights: the Night of the Books in Madrid, with workshops and performances by more than 400 artists and a midnight closing time for more than 200 area bookstores.

PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature

April 26-May 2
New York City, NY, USA

The Sixth Annual PEN World Voices Festival will feature 150 writers from 40 countries in more than 50 events all around New York City. Organized by PEN, which campaigns around the world on behalf of persecuted writers, the festival is chaired this year by Salman Rushdie. Other participating authors include Sherman Alexie, Philippe Djian, Toni Morrison, Patti Smith, and Jean-Philippe Toussaint. Events include readings, a cabaret, and a panel on film adaptations.

'The Carrie Diaries'

April 27/29
Candace Bushnell's Sex and the City prequel, written for young adults, is a coming-of-age story set during Carrie Bradshaw's high school years. It tells of Carrie's small town beginnings and early friendships, and how she finds both her first love and her voice as a writer. In addition to Sex and the City, which was adapted into both a widely successful TV series and two films, Bushnell is the author of Lipstick Jungle, One Fifth Avenue, 4 Blondes, and Trading Up. The Carrie Diaries is the first of two young adult books Bushnell is set to write.

James Patterson's 'Witch & Wizard: Battle for Shadowland'

The international best-selling author of the Alex Cross detective series is set to release Witch & Wizard: Battle for Shadowland, the first comic book in a five-part series based on his young adult novel Witch & Wizard. Dara Naraghi wrote the book with direction from Patterson, Victor Santos provides illustrations and cover art, and J.K. Woodward contributed a painted cover. In June, Patterson's non-fiction book The Murder of King Tut will be released in a graphic adaptation, the first in a series of four. Both titles are available for pre-order:

'Dark Life' by Kat Falls

May 1

Kat Falls's young adult novel Dark Life has the rare distinction of having been slated for a film adaptation before the book - the author's debut novel - was published. Due out in the UK on August 5, Dark Life is set in an apocalyptic future where global warming has caused the seas to rise, leading survivors to form an underwater community on the ocean floor. The story revolves around a boy named Ty, whose has relocated underwater with his family, and Gemma, a girl he meets from "Topside." The book movie adaptation will reportedly be directed by Robert Zemeckis for Disney.