October 24th, 2014 By: Nora Rawlinson
Next week brings not just one, but two books by Danielle Steel … the return to form of two iconic authors … plus 3 books about famous women that have already received media attention.
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 10/27/14
It’s a Danielle Steel twofer as she publishes a novel for adults and picture book for kids on the same day. Oddly, both feature white animals. The adult title, Pegasus, (RH/Delacorte; RH Large Print, Brilliance Audio, OverDrive Sample) is described by the publisher as “a rich historical novel of family and World War II” that involves a titled German aristocrat is forced to flee to the U.S., bringing with him some prize horses, including a Lipizzaner named Pegasus. Pretty Minnie in Paris, (RH/Doubleday Young Readers) is a picture book about a Parisian Chihuahua, who gets lost at a fashion show. In the holds race, Pegasus is far outpacing Minnie.
Prince Lestat: The Vampire Chronicles, Anne Rice, (RH/Knopf; RH Large Print; RH Audio)
Rice has not returned to the vampires that made her famous since 2003’s Blood Canticle. PW says, compared to that book, the “newest Vampire Chronicles installment is triumphant.” The other prepub sources agree, with Kirkus saying, “it’s trademark Rice: talky, inconsequential, but good old-fashioned fanged fun.” It seems fans are cautious, however. Holds are currently light. Rice is profiled in the L.A. Times. In the NYT Book Review, Terrence Rafferty has a good time with it, “Although this is a dreadful novel, it has to be said that the earnestness with which Rice continues to toil at her brand of pop sorcery has an odd, retro sort of charm, an aura redolent of the desperate, decadent silliness of the disco era.”
Science fiction fans are hailing Gibson for going “back to the future” in this new novel. Famous for envisioning the Web, creating the terms “cyberspace” and “the matrix” way back in 1984 in his debut novel Neuromancer, Gibson switched to a nearer future in his most recent novels. The Chicago Tribune says this new book marks the “return to Gibson’s pre-millennial style, predictive, hip, tech-savvy.” In their review, the science fiction site i09 comments that the return comes with differences, “The Peripheral is very different from the hyperactive cyberpunk citiscapes of Neuromancer. His canvas is much bigger — and his prophesies are far more melancholy.” Note to those in libraries that have maker spaces: the main character works in a 3-D print shop.
Us, David Nicholls, (Harper; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe)
Those who only know Nicholls from the terrible film adaptation of his previous book, One Day, may have been surprised that his latest, Us was on the Man Booker longlist. The judges describe it as “a comedy about the demands of living together, about parenthood, about the relationship between reason and emotion, art and science, parents and children, middle-age and youth.” People magazine puts it more succinctly, “Few authors do messed-up relationships better than Nicholls.”
It is also the LibraryReads #1 pick for November, with this recommendation,
“Every once in a while you stumble upon a book that makes you wish you could meet the characters in real life. This is the case with Us, the poignant story of a middle-of-the-road British family spiraling out of control, and one man’s attempt to win back their love. Quirky, delightful and unpredictable, the novel delves into what makes a marriage, and what tears it apart.” — Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX
The Secret History of Wonder Woman, Jill Lepore, (RH/Knopf; BOT)
Reviewers are falling all over themselves to write about Lepore’s latest. Atlantic Magazine reviews it with a headline that gives that “secret history” more background, “The Free Love Experiment That Created Wonder Woman: The polyamorous ‘sex cult’ conceived by the comics’ founder wasn’t exactly feminist, but it was built on women-empowering, pro-queer ideals.” It gets the lead review in the 10/24 issue of Entertainment Weekly, which grants it a a solid A and a strongly positive reaction from Dwight Garner in yesterday’s NYT,
Yes Please, Amy Poehler, (HarperCollins/Dey Street Books; HarperAudio)
The L.A. Times book review compares Poehler’s book favorably to other recent memoirs by funny women, “If [Tina] Fey’s Bossypants or [Mindy] Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? feel like a chatty beach weekend with a friend, Yes Please has the more manic air of a snowbound situation. Truths will be told, yes, and anecdotes recounted, but the attic and the cellar will also be raided, for funny hats and canned goods.” If that doesn’t make sense, Entertainment Weekly, which ranks it at #3 of things to do this week, says, ” Of course the Parks and Rec star’s first book is LOL funny — there is an acrostic poem dedicated to Tina Fey and recollections of rapping while pregnant on SNL — but there are also frank, relatable stories about her slow climb to fame and life as a working mom, as well as earnest bites of wisdom.”
Leaming applies a contemporary analysis to Jacqueline Kennedy’s life after JFK’s assassination, presenting evidence that she suffered from PTSD. The book was featured on the Today Show this week: