2014-07-24 / Local News

Ice caves, the book, still hot in Leelanau

SCOTT SCOTT Outdoor photographer Ken Scott’s new book, “Ice Caves of Leelanau,” has struck a vein with consumers.

The first run of the book, published by the non-profit group Leelanau Press, sold out within hours of hitting bookstores over Memorial Day weekend. With 1,000 quickly gone, Leelanau Press publisher Barbara Siepker placed a second order for 3,000 books — and those apparently won’t be enough to go around.

The second run will be in county bookstores this weekend, although many have already been reserved. Siepker said she may have to cut back the number of books available for bookstores in response to high demand.

She’s hoping that a plea for extra books was heard by the printer in time to increase the second run. “If they don’t give us extra, we’re going to have to cut everybody down, by 10 percent of so,” said Siepker, the former owner of Cottage Books in Glen Arbor.

Siepker has been amazed at the response to Scott’s book. By contrast, most locally published books are lucky to sell 1,000 copies. Siepker wrote and published a book in 2008 called Historic Cottages of Glen Lake with a first run of 1,500 copies that was considered quite successful.

“I guess because the phenomena (ice caves) was so unusual and the winter was so unusual, it has a wide appeal,” Siepker said.

Thousands of visitors packed into Leelanau County in late winter to observe large ice blocks that were created in unusual shapes by fastfreezing wave action. Lake Michigan was more than 90 percent frozen for several weeks during the most severe winter encountered in Leelanau County since at least 1959, according to records kept since that time by the National Weather Service.

Siepker has already placed an order for a third printing of 2,000 books, which should arrive before Labor Day weekend.

The book, which includes an essay by Jerry Dennis, includes 48 pages and was published in a 10-inch by 8-inch format. It retails for $25.

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