We’re light on brand names next week, but heavy on titles that arrive with high hopes (see our Watch List, below). In the former category, C.J. Box abandons his series character, Joe Pickett, for a moment, for a standalone titled The Highway, (Macmillan/Minotaur). Most of the prepub reviewers love it (Kirkus, PW, LJ, which gives it a star), with one holdout (Booklist; “the usually sure-handed author never quite gets our hearts racing”). Also pre-ordained as a best seller is the 15th in Linda Fairstein’s series, Death Angel.
All the titles highlighted here and several more, are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of July 29
If you are interested in reading any of these titles, many of them are available as digital ARC’s on Edelweiss and NetGalley, but hurry, they are generally removed on publication date.
The Telling Room: A Tale of Love, Betrayal, Revenge, and the World’s Greatest Piece of Cheese, Michael Paterniti, (RH/Dial; Brilliance Audio; Thorndike)
Chosen as a hot book of the summer by USA Today back in May and by librarians on the BEA Shout ‘n’ Share panel, (Doug Lord, LJ‘s “Books for Dudes” columnist went so far as to call it a “Gorgeously sexy story about a guy tracking down a magical cheese”), this is set to enjoy some major publicity; on NPR’s upcoming Weekend Edition Saturday and a major feature in the New York Times Magazine. Entertainment Weekly gives it an unequivocal A.
The Wicked Girls, Alex Marwood, (Penguin Books, Original Trade Pbk)
On the list of the Millions Most Anticipated titles,this novel is about two eleven-year-old girls who are involved in the death of a younger child and meet again as adults. The annotation notes, ”Alex Marwood is the pseudonym of British journalist Serena Mackesy, and The Wicked Girls is her dark and beautifully executed first novel.” It’s also a hit among librarians on GalleyChat; “very intriguing. Reminded me a little of the Anne Perry story.”
The Husband’s Secret, Liane Moriarty, (Penguin/Putnam/Amy Einhorn; Thorndike)
The new title by author of book-club favorite What Alice Forgot, gets an A- from Entertainment Weekly, which says ”Despite its awkwardly soapy title and pink-petaled cover, The Husband’s Secret is a sharp, thoughtful read — a sneaky sort of wolf in chick-lit clothing. It’s also darker and less whimsical than the twinkly, rom-comish Alice,” but adds, “Moriarty ultimately can’t resist wrapping up her story lines with a bow that will probably feel too shiny and pink-petal neat for some. But you don’t need a husband or a secret to feel for her characters’ very real moral quandaries, and to want that shiny bow for them a little bit, too.”
The Skull And The Nightingale, Michael Irwin, (HarperCollins/Morrow)
Entertainment Weekly is big with the accolades this week, handing out another A- for this one and saying this “raunchy novel of sex and manipulation — set in 18th-century England — evokes Tom Jones, The Crimson Petal and the White, and Les Liaisons Dangereuses.”
Sea Creatures, Susanna Daniel, (Harper)
Daniel impressed GalleyChatters with her debut, Stiltsville, a quiet story about a marriage that managed to seem very real. The book also won the PEN/Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction and was a Barnes and Noble Discover pick. The author’s new book, set in the same area of South Florida, where the home are on stilts, is again drawing raves from GalleyChatters for its “really complex and interesting” characters.
The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic, Emily Croy Barker, (Penguin/Pamela Dorman)
An August IndieNext pick,which calls it “a beautifully written first novel [that] reverberates with echoes of fairy tales and fantasy literature from Narnia to Harry Potter,” this was one of our Penguin First Flights titles (see our online chat with the author here).
A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life, James Bowen, (Macmillan/Thomas Dunne; Thorndike).
A best seller in the UK, this is a memoir by a London street musician, recovering from a heroin addiction, who rescues an ailing cat, which in turn, rescues him. If you want your heart warmed, check the photos from the story in London’s Daily Mail and the following book trailer (a movie deal has been discussed).
Going Deep: How Wide Receivers Became the Most Compelling Figures in Pro Sports, Cris Carter, (Hyperion)
Believe it or not, football season is around the corner. Carter is ESPN’s NFL analyst, so you can expect coverage on the network, beginning with Carter’s preview on the ESPN site.
The Butler: A Witness to History, Wil Haygood, (S&S/37 Ink)
The movie, which opens August 16, is based on Haygood’s Washington Post story, now released as a book. The movie, which stars Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker (plus Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan!) will be getting plenty of media attention, beginning with this week’s Washington Post Magazine cover story, written by Haygood.
Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, the Couple Who Taught America How to Love, Thomas Maier, (Basic Books)
A Showtime series, beginning Sept. 29, is based on Maier’s book, which received praise when it was released, particularly for bringing deserved attention to Virginia Johnson’s role in the groundbreaking research into human sexuality.
Paranoia, Joseph Finder, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Trade pbk; Mass Mkt pbk; Macmillan/Audio)
Opening August 16, the movie ada[tatopm of Finder’s thriller stars Harrison Ford, Liam Hemsworth, and Amber Heard.