EarlyWord

News for Collection Development and Readers Advisory Librarians

Woodson On Racist Comments
at the NBA

9780399252518_ab369Jacqueline Woodson, in an interview with the Guardian, says she is “trying to figure out how to think about” Daniel Handler’s comments at the National Book Awards last week.

Finding a good moderator for an awards event seems to be challenging. Many were hopeful that Handler would bring the right mix of humor and respect to the National Book Awards this year. Unfortunately, he kicked off the event with tired comments about the lack of glamour in bookish events, saying the National Book Awards are “like the Oscars if nobody gave a shit about the Oscars.”

Most of the rest of  his “humorous” comments were weak, but the lowest point occurred when, after Woodson gave a moving acceptance speech for the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature for her memoir, Brown Girl Dreaming, (Penguin/Nancy Paulsen), Handler made a strange racist comment that Woodson is “allergic to watermelon.” Earlier, he mentioned that one day he hopes to win a Coretta Scott King Book Award.

Handler quickly apologized for his “ill-conceived attempts at humor” and followed up with a pledge of $10,000 as well as matching donations up to $100,000, to the We Need Diverse Books (WNDB) Indiegogo campaign.

GalleyChatter:
TRUE CONFESSIONS

Editor’s Note: Our intrepid GalleyChatter (some call her the “Galley Whisperer”) Robin Beerbower, wrangled the many titles librarians were enthusiastic about during the most recent session of GalleyChat, to give you titles to add to your own TBR pile (remember to nominate your favorites for LibraryReads). Many of these are available for free download via Edelweiss and NetGalley.

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This month’s GalleyChat became hot and heavy when the discussion turned to romance novels. The resulting list of forthcoming titles, along with the authors’ backlists, will help collection development librarians keep romance loving patrons satisfied.

From romance, we then turned to a more sinister subjects, learning about some compelling stories of murder and conspiracies.

If you missed the chat or couldn’t keep up with the 300 plus tweets, check here for the complete list of books discussed.

Romance, Mostly Regency

Deb Margeson (Douglas County Librariers, CO) a Regency romance fan, was enthusiastic about her latest find, also a November LibraryReads pick,  Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover by Sarah MacLean (HarperCollins/Avon, November), saying it was “great escapist fun.” MacLean is clearly an author to know. Her earlier book, No Good Duke Goes Unpunished was the #1 Dec. 2013 LibraryReads pick.

Another Regency fan, Jane Jorgenson of Madison (WI) Public Library chimed in with her new favorite,  It Started With a Scandal, by Julie Anne Long (HarperCollins/Avon, March), the tenth in The Pennyroyal Green series, set during the long-running fictional feud of two wealthy families in Sussex.

Vicki Nesting (St. Charles Parish Library, LA) is now hooked on the sub-genre and her latest find is the sequel Tessa Dare’s Say Yes to the Marquess, (HarperCollins/Avon, December), the sequel to Romancing the Duke. That discovery is seconded by many librarians from around the country, showing massive love on Edelweiss for this title. Vicki also enjoyed Earls Just Want to Have Fun by Shana Galen (Sourcebooks/Casablanca, February). And to round out our round-up of regency romances, Stephanie Chase (Hillsboro Public Library, Oregon) recommended books by two big names in the field, Julia Quinn’s The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy, and Eloisa James’ Four Nights with the Duke (HarperCollins/Avon, March). A side note of interest, James, an English lit professor, is the daughter of poet Robert Bly and short-story author Carol Bly and is married to an Italian knight.

For a modern vibe, Grace Burrowes, who usually writes historical romances, has three titles in the Sweetest Kisses series coming out in early 2015. New Rochelle (NY) Public Library’s Beth Mills said she enjoyed the first, A Single Kiss (Sourcebooks/Casablanca, January) so much that she immediately downloaded the next two, First Kiss and Kiss Me Hello.

The Darker Side

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But then the conversation turned to the darker side of love. Jill Alexander Essbaum’s Hausfrau (RH, March) is centered around a wife and mother who is falling apart despite having the perfect life. Last August Elliott Bay Bookstore staff member Kenny Coble teased us saying, “It is brave and vulnerable and a little inappropriate (don’t tell mom),” and Jenne Bergstrom from San Diego County Library said “it grabbed onto me HARD.” Another book about desire and obsession receiving attention is Jan Ellison’s A Small Indiscretion (RH, January).  Adrienne Cruz, librarian from Azusa (CA) Library says, “Annie is a complex character. The narration is written as if she were talking to her comatose son — a confessional almost. The treatment coupled with bold and richly-layered characters result in a satisfying debut.”

Murder and Mayhem

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On to murder and mayhem. Inspired by a true event in a Utah Mormon community, The Bishop’s Wife, by Mette Ivie Harrison (Soho Crime, December) has seen much love over the past few GalleyChats. Vicki Nesting said,While not strictly a mystery, this book will appeal to readers who enjoyed the introspective investigation at the heart of Reconstructing Amelia.

Robin Nesbitt, readers’ advisor at Metropolis Columbia (OH) Library loved A Murder of Magpies, Judith Flanders (Macmillan/Minotaur, February), saying “What’s not to love – mystery, publishing, London!  Judith Flanders nails it with a funny protagonist who happens to be a book editor in London.  Bibliophiles will love this.” J.A. Jance is well known for her two series featuring J. P. Beaumont and Johanna Brady, but the lesser known Ali Reynolds series is starting to gain ground. Beth Mills was pleased that Jance is in her usual great form with Cold Betrayal (S&S/Touchstone, March), the tenth entry in the Reynolds series.

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Two exceptional espionage titles were mentioned, All the Old Knives, Olen Steinhauer (Macmillan/Minotaur, March), and The Fifth Gospel, Ian Caldwell (S&S, March).  “A fun and twisty read” is Janet Lockhart’s  (Wake County Public Libraries, NC) description of the Steinhauer story about former lovers who reunite to reminisce about old times as spies. Caldwell’s Vatican-based thriller was compared to those by Dan Brown, Daniel Silva and Iain Pears.

For more raves about forthcoming titles, join our next chat on December 2, 4:00-5:00 (EST). To keep up with what I’m anticipating on Edelweiss, please “friend me.”

Seven Titles to Make You An R.A. Guru, Week of Nov. 24

With Black Friday arriving earlier than ever this year, the push to get books into stores by the traditional day now seems like an anachronism. Nevertheless,  two titles from brand name authors (one of them the biggest of brand names) arrive and there’s several others to keep an eye on.

All the titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed, with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of 11/24/14

To get you in the mood for next week, below is Lewis Black’s rant on his non-namesake day:

Holds Leaders

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Hope to Die, James Patterson, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print;  eBook), OverDrive Sample

One of the holds leaders for the entire season,  close behind John Grisham’s Grey Mountain, John Sandford’s Deadline, and Lee Child’s Personal, this is the next in the series featuring  Alex Cross (played by Tyler Perry in the 2012 movie, Alex Cross), following up on the cliff-hanger from last year’s Cross My Heart.

Betrayed: A Rosato & DiNunzio Novel, Lisa Scottoline, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio), OverDrive Sample

After several standalones, Scottoline returned to her Rosato & DiNunzio series last year, in Accused, bringing in new partners to the all-female law firm, now called Rosato & Associates. Expressing some reservations about the novel’s plot points, Kirkus wound up judging this, “the most successful melding to date of Rosato & DiNunzio’s cases and Scottoline’s family-centered stand-alones.”

LibraryReads Pick

9780062068514_744dbNever Judge a Lady by Her Cover: The Fourth Rule of Scoundrels, Sarah MacLean, (HarperCollins/Avon),  OverDrive Sample

November pick — “Having lost her innocence in a teenage love affair, Lady Georgiana is a social pariah. Trying to save the tatters of her reputation, she must marry and marry well. By night, she is Anna, the most powerful madame in London, and a powerful seductress in her own right. Will Georgiana succeed in re-entering society, or will her past catch up with her once and for all?” — Emily Peros, Denver Public Library, Denver, CO

Best Book Pick 

9781455519347_76ae0-2Twice Tempted, Eileen Dreyer,  (Hachette/Grand Central mass mkt pbk and eBook), OverDrive Sample

Picked, along with the previous title,  as one of the ten best books in the romance genre by Library Journal‘s romance reviewer.

Eye On 

THE-LOOK-OF-LOVE-LR-webThe Look of Love, Sarah Jio, (Penguin/Plume, original trade pbk; Blackstone Audio), OverDrive Sample

With this striking cover and the author’s growing reputation for light-hearted trade paperback romances (aka, “chick lit” titles), we predict Sarah Jio will soon break in to hardcover (in fact, she has switched publishers, which signals a relaunch). Her previous title, Good Night June, won over many by incorporating the story of the origins of the children’s book Good Night, Moon. via a woman who inherits a bookstore and discovers her aunt knew Margaret Wise Brown, which brought comparisons to Nora Ephron’s movie, You’ve Got Mail. The New York Daily News gives it a great send off, calling it, “a fun, quirky exploration of romance and friendship.”

Media Coverage 

9781476792491_37f12After We Collided, Anna Todd, (S&S/Gallery, S&S Audio), OverDrive Sample

The second in the series that began with After, this grew out of fan fiction dedicated to the boy band One Direction, and captured media attention for the claimed one billion downloads. Published online by WattPad, the New York Times wrote about it in March, Cosmopolitan magazine picked the author for their first-ever #CosmoBookClub, and interviewed the author Anna Todd  in the magazine. the series was signed for a movie and caused even NPR’s Morning Edition to wonder earlier this month, “After Fifty Shades, Could This Be The Next Big Online Hit?

The transition to print did not follow the Fifty Shades path to bestsellerdom, however. After made single appearance at #107 on the USA Today best seller list. The site Jezebel, took a dim view of it back in April, declaring, “If you complained about the prose of 50 Shades, After is going to send you into a conniptions.”

Holds are minimal on light ordering in libraries.

9781250065995_36e99Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys: A Memoir, Viv Albertine,  (Macmillan/St. Martin’s) OverDrive Sample

Punk rockers are now middle aged, so it’s memoir time. This one is by the guitarist for the all-girl band, The Slits (thanks for the correction in the comments). It gets an approving, if somewhat backhanded, review from the New York Times;” [Albertine’s] book has an honest, lo-fi grace. If it were better written, it would be worse. To borrow a line from David Byrne, which Ms. Albertine quotes, ‘The better a singer’s voice, the harder it is to believe what they’re saying.’ ‘

National Book Award Winners, 2014

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Marine and debut author Phil Klay won this year’s National Book Award in fiction at a ceremony in New York last night for his short story collection, Redeployment, (Penguin Press; Penguin Audio; Thorndike, OverDrive Sample).

Covering the event, NPR noted that it was “packed as much with jabs at Amazon as with jazzy entrance music.” The video of the full event, hosted by Daniel Handler is below (be patient, it takes a while to load, then it requires you to register and the actual event doesn’t begin until 20 minutes in to the video).

Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream

In nonfiction, the winner is a familiar name in publishing, Evan Osnos son of Peter Osnos, former Washington Post reporter and founder of Public Affairs (now an imprint of Perseus), for Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth and Faith in the New China, (Macmillan/FSG, Brilliance Audio; OverDrive Sample), based on his reporting on China for the New Yorker.

Jacqueline Woodson’s memoir, Brown Girl Dreaming(Penguin/Nancy Paulsen; Listening Library;  OverDrive Sample) won the award for Young People’s Literature. Woodson has won many ALA awards for her work, including 3 Newbery Honors, a Caldecott Honor and a Coretta Scott King Medal and 4 Honors.

Audio Sample:

The winner ins poetry is former Nobel laureate and 1993 Pulitzinr Prize winner Louise Glück for  Faithful and Virtuous Night, (Macmillan/Farrar, Straus and Giroux,  OverDrive Sample).

LIVE CHAT with Kimberly Brubaker Bradley and Lisa Von Drasek

Below is our live chat the author of The War That Saved My Life, also archived on the Penguin Young Readers page. To join the program, sign up here.

Live Blog Live Chat with Kimberly Brubaker Bradley, THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE
Live Blog Live Chat with Kimberly Brubaker Bradley, THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE
 

DARK WILD Wins Guardian Prize

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Saying, “It feels amazing to be one of the prize’s least-known winners,” author Piers Torday won the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize this week for his middle grade novel, The Dark Wild, (Penguin/Viking Juvenile), to be published here on January 22.

Begun in 1967, The Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize is awarded by a jury of children’s authors. The longlist for this year’s Prize included Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo as well as We Were Liars by E. Lockhart,

The book is the second in a trilogy, following The Last Wild, (Penguin/Viking Juvenile), a title  featured in our Penguin Young Readers program, which gives librarians the opportunity to read galleys and chat with rising star children’s authors. View the chat with Torday here.

Join us for our next author chat, this Wednesday, with Kim Bradley, author of The War That Saved My Life, (Penguin/Dial), this Wednesday, Nov. 19, from 5 to 6 p.m., EST.

Anthony Award Winners

After already winning an Edgar Best Novel award for his standalone title, Ordinary Grace, (S&S/Atria;  released in trade paperback in March; Thorndike), William Kent Krueger added an Anthony Best Novel award last night for the same title.

This is Krueger’s fourth Anthony, including Best First Novel in 1999 for Iron Lake and back-to-back Best Novel Awards for Blood Hollow (2005) and Mercy Falls (2006). in 2005 and 2006, all of which are in his Cork O’Connor series,

The other Anthony award winners  the in book categories are:

Best First Novel:

Matt Coyle, Yesterday’s Echo, Oceanview Publishing; Brilliance Audio)

Best Children’s or Young Adult Novel:

Joelle Charbonneau, The Testing,( HMH Books for Young Readers,  trade paperback coming 1/6/15),

Best Critical or Non-Fiction Work:

Daniel Stashower, The Hour of Peril: The Secret Plot to Murder Lincoln Before the Civil War  (Macmillan/Minotaur)

Best Audio Book:

Robert Galbraith, The Cuckoo’s Calling, read by Robert Glenister, (Hachette Audio)

Best Paperback Original Novel:

Catriona McPherson, As She Left It, (Midnight Ink)

Tie-In Sans Tie

Fifty Shades of Grey  Fifty-Shades_990x1527

Released today (and noted on Entertainment Weekly‘s “Shelf Life” blog), the  movie tie-in jacket that’s missing its iconic tie.

The movie, as you probably remember, arrives on Feb. 13.

The tie-in, book and audio, on Jan. 6.

Four Titles to Recommend,
Week of Nov. 17

Based on advance attention from librarians and booksellers, readers advisors have a range of titles to recommend next week, from a Norwegian mystery, written in a “perversely delicate style” to a literary novel that is “both heartbreaking and hysterical.”

All the titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed, with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of 11/17/14

Library Picks

9780544273399_5ea85The Murder of Harriet Krohn, Karin Fossum, (HMH), OverDrive Sample

The New York Times Book Review‘s mystery columnist, Marilyn Stasio, recently wrote a guide to the varied styles of Scandinavian crime novelists. Fossum is at the top of the list, described as writing “grim suspense novels on abnormal-psychology themes, but in a perversely delicate style that brings Ruth Rendell to mind.” It’s starred by PW and Cuyahoga P.L’s head of collection development, Wendy Bartlett has ordered in quantity, so copies will be available for browsing.

IndieNext Picks

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The Paris Winter, Imogen Robertson, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio), OverDrive Sample

“In 1909 Paris, a Russian princess, a French model, and a young Englishwoman meet at Academie Lafond, a school for aspiring female artists. It was a time when it was a woman’s duty to marry and support her husband in his career and become the work of art, not the artist. These fictional characters are inspired by real women such as Suzanne Valadon, a friend and muse to Toulouse Lautrec; Ada Leigh, who ran a house for penniless English and American women in Paris; and Gertrude Stein, whose salon paintings noted in The Paris Winter were Picasso’s. The reader, drawn into the underbelly of Paris with its backdrop of opium addiction, murder, and revenge, will be haunted by this tale long after the last page is turned.” — Karen Briggs, Great Northern Books & Hobbies, Oscoda, MI

Penelope Fitzgerald: A Life, Hermione Lee, (RH/Knopf), OverDrive Sample

“As always with Lee’s work, her latest biography offers a detailed and fascinating view of her subject’s life. Penelope Fitzgerald was a teacher, a scholar, a world-class novelist, a two-time winner of Britain’s Man Booker Prize, and a devoted mother and wife. Fitzgerald came late to fame, and this meticulously researched and beautifully written biography reveals every facet of her life in the most intimate way. I loved it!” — Kathy Ashton, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT 

All My Puny Sorrows, Miriam Toews, (McSweeney’s), OverDrive Sample

“How does one craft a novel that tackles such difficult and controversial subjects as depression, euthanasia, and suicide without coming across as morbid and morose? Just read Miriam Toews All My Puny Sorrows. With great style and wit, Toews has created a tale that is at once heartbreaking and hysterical. Following the story of two sisters, Elf and Yoli, All My Puny Sorrows deals with the hardships of Elf’s depression and desire to end her life. Beautifully written, rich with tenderness and compassion, this novel keeps you alternating between laughter and tears, captivated from start to finish.” —Claire Roser, Maria’s Bookshop, Durango, CO

Adds Book Riot “Don’t let the serious subject matter dissuade you – this beautiful book will give you all the feels.” (We’re guessing that “feels” is a good thing).

Holds Leaders,
Week of Nov. 17

Collaborations are the name of the game next week, as two best selling authors team up with co writers. But the holds leader, David Baldacci continues to go it on his own.

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Baldacci, David, The Escape, (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print)

In an interview yesterday, Baldacci says he envies Sue Grafton for keeping her Kinsey Malone books in the 1980’s. His series tries to keep up with new technology, which is both “a blessing and a curse.” He launches his latest book at the Ferguson Library in Stamford, CT., next Wednesday.

The Job: A Fox and O’Hare Novel, Janet Evanovich, Lee Goldberg

The author of the Stephanie Plum novels, in her third collaboration with Lee Goldberg, a writer for the Monk TV series, (previous titles in the series are The Heist, June, 2013 and The ChaseFeb., 2014). It seems it’s working for both authors, the fourth in the series, as yet untitled, is set for August of next year.

The Cinderella Murder, Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke, (S&S; S&S Audio; Thorndike

Celebrating 40 years of best sellers, Mary Higgins Clark told the Wall Street Journal this week that she hopes to still be writing at 95. She may have discovered the secret of reaching her goal, in this her first collaboration with another author, Alafair Burke (All Day and All Night released in May, is her tenth novel). It features characters from Clark’s solo title,  I’ve Got You Under My Skin, (released in April), producers of a TV show, Under Suspicion that tries to solve cold cases by re-enacting them.  Says Kirkus, “This serendipitous series launch, or continuation, will satisfy Clark’s legion of fans and may well win her some new ones.” Two more titles in this series are under contract.

Media Attention, Week of 11/17: Celebrity Authors

There will be some blasts from the past in the media about books next week, as Tony Robbins appears in a new guise and Brooke Shields is on the cover of People magazine. A more recent celebrity, Russell Brand also promotes his latest book, but this time, it’s not a memoir.

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Money: Master The Game, Tony Robbina, (Simon & Schuster,  eBook, eAudio)

While we were busy with more mundane things, it seems Tony Robbins went from infomercialist  to “the CEO Whisperer” as he is called on the cover of Fortune Magazine. That infomercial background should help as he promotes his new book on his old medium.  He is set to appear on several upcoming shows, including:

• MSNBC Morning Joe, November 18
• NBC  Today Show, November 18
• Fox News Fox & Friends, November 19
• Bravo-TV Watch What Happens Live, November 23

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There Was a Little Girl : The Real Story of My Mother and Me, Brooke Shields, (Penguin/Dutton; Penguin Audio)

Shields is making headlines because of revelations in her memoir about her “hard-drinking mother” (the New York Post),  how she lost her virginity (E! Online), Liam Neeson’s proposal (Irish Central, of course) and how she found out that Andre Agassi was a meth addict (People magazine cover story).

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The Pied Piper of Hamelin : Russell Brand’s Trickster Tales, Russell Brand, Chris Riddell, (S&S/ Atria Books, S&S Audio)

Not a celebrity memoir, but a celebrity retelling a favorite fairy tale. Scheduled appearances include:

• NBC Today Show November 18
• NBC Tonight Show sNovember 18
• NBC Access Hollywood  November 18
• ABC Live with Kelly & Michael, November 19
• Bravo-TV Watch What Happens Live, November 20

You Can’t Make This Up: Miracles, Memories, and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television, Al Michaels, L. Jon Wertheim, )Harper/Morrow; Harper)

We don’t have specifics on appearances, but after more than 30 years on television, the author has what is called media access.

LibraryReads Top Ten Favorites

The top ten titles that public library staff most enjoyed recommending in 2014 have been announced. As part of LibraryReads first-year celebration, over a thousand people voted on their favorite LibraryReads’s picks from the monthly lists beginning with the first, September, 2013.

The top favorte is The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, by Gabrielle Zevin (the trade paperback cover is on the right, below. The first person to spot the sly reference in the shop window, by noting it in the comments section, wins a copy of the book).

9781616203214_2a337  life-firky

“A wide range of library staff has signed on with LibraryReads, from all over the country, and from public libraries of all sizes,” says Stephanie Anderson, Head of Reader Services at Darien Library in CT, on behalf of the LibraryReads Steering Committee. “Library staff are tastemakers in their communities, and this list showcases the broad and brio-filled scope of their reading enthusiasm.”

The full list, in order of most votes received, is:

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, by Gabrielle Zevin, (Workman/Algonquin, April; Highbridge Audio; Thorndike;  Trade pbk, 12/2/14).

The Rosie Project, by Graeme Simsion (Simon & Schuster, Oct., 2013; S&S Audio; Trade pbk, 6/3/14) — sequel, The Rosie Effect, coming 12/30.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (S&S/Scribner, May 2014; Audio exclusive from Midwest Tape),

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin, July; Listening Library)

The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt (Hachette/Little, Brown, Oct, 2013; Hachette AudioBlackstone Audio; Thorndike)

We Were Liars, by E. Lockhart, Penguin YR/Delacorte Press, May; Listening Library)

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, (RH/Knopf, Sept., 2014; RH Audio; Thorndike, Dec. 10)

One Plus One by Jojo Moyes, (Viking/Pamela Dorman, June; Recorded Books; Thorndike)

Landline, by Rainbow Rowell (Macmillan/St. Martin’s, July; Macmillan Audio; Thorndike)

Longbourn, by Jo Baker (RH/Knopf, Oct, 2013; RH Audio; RH Large Print; trade pbk, 6/17/14)

The fully annotated list will be posted at www.libraryreads.org on December 1st.

Remember to nominate your favorite upcoming titles for LibraryReads. You can nominate titles at any time, but the deadline for the January list (which includes December as well as January titles) is Nov. 20.

Holds Alert: THE WILD TRUTH

9780062325143_d2988Several libraries show growing holds on modest quantities of The Wild Truth, by Carine McCandless, (HarperCollins; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe).

The author is the sister of Chris McCandless, a man who seemingly had everything, but ended as an emaciated corpse discovered in a bus in the Alaskan wilderness after giving away most of his money and breaking with his family.

The story was featured in Jon Krakauer’s 1996 best seller, Into the Wild, which was adapted into a 2007 movie adaptation, starring Emile Hirsch and directed by Sean Penn. In her book, Carine McCandles, who was 21 years old at the time, gives more insight into her brother’s seemingly erratic behavior. A new documentary about him, Return to the Wild, will air on PBS on Nov. 25.

Reviewed this week on the NPR web site, it was also featured on ABC’s 20/20 and on the People magazine web site.

Small Press Book, Big Press Attention

9780988518339_d5dccIn today’s New York Times, Dwight Garner opens his review of Preparation for the Next Life by Atticus Lish (Tyrant Books, original trade pbk., Nov. 11) with this attention-getting phrase, “Unlike any American fiction I’ve read recently in its intricate comprehension of, and deep feeling for, life at the margins” and goes on to describe it in increasingly glowing terms, winding up with, “The final chapters of this indelible book pulled my heart up under my ears.”

The publisher is the indie press Tyrant Books, which was profiled in The Los Angeles Review of Books last year.

Preparation for the Next Life was one of 35 titles on Publishers Weekly‘s list of “The Big Indie Books of Fall 2014,” also receiving a stellar review in that publication, as a “stunning debut novel that plumbs the underbelly of New York City … Lish’s prose is at once raw and disciplined, and every word feels necessary. “

Staffing Up: ROOM, The Movie

RoomNew cast members have been announced for the film adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s award-winning best seller, Room  (Hachette/Little,Brown, 2010).

Brie Larson was cast earlier this year in the role of a woman only known as Ma in the book. Kidnapped as a teenager, she lives in a tiny room with her 5-year-old son, Jack and the story  is told through his eyes. Jacob Tremblay (Surfs 2 – shown here at the premiere of that movie) has been hired for that key role.

Also joining are William H. Macy, presumably as Ma’s captor, Old Nick and Joan Allen in an unspecified role. It is being directed by Lenny Abrahamson from a script written by Donoghue. and is expected to be released in 2015.