Archive for the ‘Mystery & Detective’ Category

Robert Galbraith AKA J.K. Rowling

Monday, July 15th, 2013

The Cuckoo's CallingThe Sunday Times of London revealed this weekend that the true author of the supposed “debut” detective novel by “Robert Galbraith,” The Cuckoo’s Calling is actually J. K Rowling.

The Telegraph followed up by quoting a brave U.K. editor who admitted to rejecting the book, “I thought it was perfectly good – it was certainly well written – but it didn’t stand out. Strange as it might seem, that’s not quite enough. Editors have to fall in love with debuts. It’s very hard to launch new authors and crime is a very crowded market.”

Proving that comment, the Telegraph reports that before the true author’s name was revealed, the book may have sold fewer than 500 copies through British retailers.

Released in the U.S. on April 30 by Hachette’s mystery imprint, Mulholland Books, it received strong reviews from prepub sources; Publishers Weekly said, “In a rare feat, the pseudonymous Galbraith combines a complex and compelling sleuth and an equally well-formed and unlikely assistant with a baffling crime in his stellar debut.”

Holds are now skyrocketing in libraries; one large system now shows 450 holds on 6 copies. Another has already increased their order of 12 copies by 90 more. Those copies are likely to carry J.K. Rowling’s name; the NYT reports that the publisher has a reprint in the works with a revised author bio, “Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J. K. Rowling” and that a second book is coming next summer.



Monday, July 8th, 2013

Visitation StreetCalling Ivy Pochoda’s  mystery, Visitation Street, (HarperCollins/Ecco, releasing tomorrow), “utterly transporting,” the new issue of People designates it a “People Pick.”

Set in Brooklyn’s Red Hook neighborhood, described by  reviewer Ellen Shapiro, as “a onetime longshoremen’s enclave that’s now a mishmash of abandoned warehouses, hipster renovations and housing projects … [that] emerges as a captivating small town,” it is about the disappearance of a 15-year-old girl, who, with a friend, launched a raft into the New York harbor to try to beat the Brooklyn heat.

On the Saturday of BEA, a dozen GalleyChatters, who had been talking the book up since March, got to soak in the Red Hook atmosphere (not to mention the heat and humidity), during a tour arranged by EarlyWord and the HarperCollins Library Marketing team (Virginia Stanley, Annie Mazes and Kayleigh George who recently left to join the RH/Hogarth imprint). We experienced the starkly contrasting neighborhood elements; within blocks of a large housing project are an upscale chocolate factory, fancy bakeries and even a winery. They all come together in a bar that features prominently in the book. We went there, of course (research demands sacrifice). Once we told the bar owner that we were fans of the book, he said, “Oh, right! Ivy lived across the street. I have a copy of the book I’m giving people on two-week loans. I’ll let you know if anyone come in who appears in the book.”

UPDATE: One of the participants, Robin Beerbower, posted her photos of the trip , complete with quotes from the book.

True enough, we witnessed a woman bring in the precious copy to hand it off to the next reader and, yes, the model for one of the book’s characters dropped by for an afternoon beer.

Visitation Street is the second under the “Dennis Lehane Books” imprint and no wonder. As Kaite Stover, Kansas City P.L, said when she highlighted it during the “Librarian’s Shout ‘n’ Share,” at BEA, “Ivy Pochoda does for Brooklyn’s Red Hook what Dennis Lehane does for South Boston.”


Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

Death Comes to PemberleyThe BBC is about to begin filming a three-part adaptation of P.D. James’s Death Comes to Pemberley  (RH/Knopf), a murder mystery featuring some of Jane Austen’s most beloved characters, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy, who began married life in a house named Pemberley.

When the book was released in 2011, USA Today praised it saying, “Countless authors writing in a plethora of genres have tried to re-create Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, but James’ new novel is incomparably perfect.”  NPR’s Fresh Air called it “a glorious plum pudding of a whodunit.”

Matthew Rhys plays Darcy, Anna Maxwell Martin is Elizabeth and Matthew Goode is Wickham [Sorry for the earlier mistake -- we said the actors are Americans, but they are all British. Thanks for the corrections!].

Deadline reports that filming starts next month in Yorkshire, with the series expected to begin at the end of the year in the UK (no word yet on when it may appear here).

Maggie Hope A Best Seller

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

Mr. Churchill's Secretary   Princess Elizabeth's Spy   His Majesty's Hope

The strategy of introducing a new author in less-expensive trade paperback, rather than hardcover, has paid off  for the Maggie Hope series about a British code breaker in WW II. The third novel, His Majesty’s Hope, (RH/Bantam; BOT Audio) hits the NYT best seller list at #18 (tied with #17) this week.

The author, Susan Elia MacNeal was nominated for an Edgar for Best First Novel by an American, with the first in the series, Mr. Churchill’s Secretary. The second,  Princess Elizabeth’s Spy was selected by as one of  seven “Compulsively Readable Mysteries (for the Crazy-Smart Reader).”

AGATHA Award Winners

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

The Beautiful Mystery   Lowcountry Boil  The Code Busters Club

The Agatha Awards were announced on Saturday, just two days after the Edgars. Among the many well-known authors and publishers picking up awards, including Louise Penny who won Best Novel for The Beautiful Mystery (Macmillan/Minotaur), was small independent Dallas publisher Henery Press, winning Best First Novel with Lowcountry Boil by Susan M. Boyer. The Childrens/Young Adult award went to the second in the Code Busters Club series, The Haunted Lighthouse by Penney Warner (Egmont).

All the winners and nominees are listed after the jump. Download our spreadsheet with ordering information and other available formats, Agatha 2012, Winners and Nominees.



Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Every Contact Leaves A Trace“Full of sex, intrigue and clues based on Victorian poetry, Elanor Dymott’s Every Contact Leaves a Trace [Norton; Brilliance Audio] is a literary mystery about a murder at Oxford University,” writes Maureen Corrigan on NPR’s Web site in reviewing this debut novel.

Arriving here this week from the UK, where it garnered strong reviews and was voted on to the long list for the Author’s Club’s Best First Novel Award, it did not do so well with prepub reviewers here. As a result, libraries ordered it very lightly. All four reviews complained that it is overlong (Booklist, “this novel would have been twice as good at half the length”), with chilly protagonists (Kirkus, “Readers will have difficulty embracing Alex and Rachel, since neither exhibits any warmth or even a quirkiness that might make them interesting”), while sprinkling in a few bland kudos (LJ, “should satisfy readers who hang in until the end;” Booklist, “the author’s deft evocation of mood and place marks her as a writer to watch;” PW, “patient and forgiving readers of Gone Girl and The Secret History will be drawn in by its contemplation”).

Donna Tartt’s best selling first novel The Secret History, (RH/Knopf, 1992) has become reviewers’ shorthand for books that feature a murder among a close-knit group of students in a rarefied university setting. The UK’s Guardian also made the comparison, but to Dymott’s advantage, “Outwardly, her novel bears all the hallmarks of the Tartt school of academic intrigue. Yet past the atmospheric cover and the cordon of epigraphs lies a quite exceptional novel… [showing] a thoroughgoing confidence and ease with the rules of its genre, an appealing way of wearing its learning lightly, and a melancholy perceptiveness.”

Such strong opposing reactions make this a book to watch.

Lehane Wins Edgar, Thanks Librarians

Friday, May 3rd, 2013

Live by NightDennis Lehane won the Mystery Writers of America Award for Best Novel last night for Live by Night. In his acceptance speech, he thanked librarians for offering “a light in the darkness for the kids from the wrong side of the tracks,” reports Shelf Awareness.

Lehane won over six other nominees in that category, including Gillian Flynn for Gone Girl.

Click to download a spreadsheet of all the Edgar-Nominees-and-Winners in the book categories, with ordering information, including audio, large print and paperback formats.

Winners in the book categories are listed after the jump: (more…)


Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

Every Secret ThingThe first adaptation of a novel by Laura Lippman, Every Secret Thing is filming this month in New York City and on Long Island, which is a bit surprising, since, like Lippman’s other novels, this one is set in Baltimore (in reviewing it, the Baltimore Sun said that “Baltimoreans will relish insiderish elements of the story”).

The novel is Lippman’s first standalone, after having already achieved success with seven mysteries featuring private investigator and former Baltimore reporter, Tess Monaghan. Turning from mysteries to much darker psychological suspense, she writes about two young women who return to their Baltimore neighborhood after seven years in juvenile detention, sentenced for kidnapping a baby who died in their care. Perhaps coincidentally, other children begin to disappear. Lippman builds suspense as the reader tries to figure out who is responsible.

Lippman has continued writing both Tess Monaghan mysteries and standalones. In a review of her most recent title, And When She Was Good, (HarperCollins/Morrow, 2012), the NYT‘s Janet Maslin pronounced that “Ms. Lippman’s stand-alone novels have been much more nuanced and interesting than her Monaghan books.”

Directed by Amy Berg, the film stars Dakota Fanning and Danielle Macdonald as the two young women. Also in the cast are Elizabeth Banks and Diane Lane.

James Bond Goes SOLO

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

William Boyd, selected by Ian Fleming’s estate to write the next James Bond novel, announced on the opening day of the London Book Fair yesterday that the title will be simply Solo, explaining, ”In my novel, events conspire to make Bond go off on a self-appointed mission of his own, unannounced and without any authorization – and he’s fully prepared to take the consequences of his audacity.” It will be released in the U.S. by HarperCollins on October 8.

Carte Blanche
Devil May CareBoyd, who has written several prize-winning novels, including A Good Man in Africa, follows in the footsteps of several others who have donned the Fleming mantle. Jeffery Deaver published Carte Blanche in 2011 (S&S). It was a NYT hardcover best seller for 4 weeks. Sebastian Faulks’ Devil May Care (S&S, 2008) also spent a few weeks on the hardcover list. Raymond Benson published 6 titles from 1997 to 2002; John Gardner, 14 (the same number as Fleming wrote himself), from 1981 to 1996. Kingsley Amis, under the name of Robert Markham, was the first, with Colonel Sun in 1968.

A “Romantic Thriller” On The TODAY SHOW

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

Six YearHarlan Coben has honed his ability to hook readers. He begins his Today Show interview with the opening line of  his new book, the “romantic thriller” Six Years (Penguin/Dutton; Thorndike Large Print), released this week,

“I sat in the back pew and watched the only woman I would ever love marry another man.”

Separately, The Hollywood Reporter writes that Hugh Jackman is set to star in a movie of the novel. There’s no news yet on when filming will begin. This may be the first English-language film of a Coben novel; Tell No One was adapted as a French-language film in 2006. Ben Affleck has been attached to direct an English-language remake.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The Bones of Richard III

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

A Daughter of TimeIf your first thought after hearing that Richard III’s bones were found beneath a parking lot in England, was “Josephine Tey,” you’re in good company. Her 1951 mystery, The Daughter of Time, which investigates whether the Shakespearean portrayal of Richard as an evil hunchback was accurate, is rising on Amazon’s sales rankings and is currently at #374 (from #20,117).

The book is also available in audio, narrated by Derek Jacobi, from AudioGo.

The bones reveal that Richard suffered from severe scoliosis.


Kate Morton’s Best Week Ever

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

All four of Kate Morton’s books have appeared on the USA Today best seller list, but the latest one, The Secret Keeper, (S&S/Atria; Brilliance Audio; Center Point Large Print), hits a new high for the author, debuting at #18 this week.

Given 3.5 of 4 stars in last week’s People, it was praised as an ”intriguing mystery, shifting between past and present and among fully realized characters harboring deep secrets.” Booklist said it “will appeal to fans of Daphne du Maurier, Susanna Kearsley, and Audrey Niffenegger with its immensely relatable characters, passion, mystery, and twist ending.”

New Title Radar: October 22 – 28

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Tom Wolfe and John Grisham go head to head with new novels next week – and so far, Wolfe is getting the lion’s share of media attention, but the Grisham title is showing the most holds. Meanwhile, watch out for Jami Attenberg‘s potential breakout, The Middlesteins. Usual suspects include Debbie Macomber and Karen Kingsbury, while YA authors P.C. Cast and Gena Showalter team up on a paperback original, and A.S. King and Becca Fitzpatrick deliver new hardcovers. In nonfiction, Jerry Sandusky’s accuser, “Victim One,” unmasks himself upon the publication of his book, while former Goldman Sachs honcho Greg Smith reveals why he left the company. The Onion and Thomas Bouchon provide humorous and culinary relief.

Watch List

The Middlesteins by Jami Attenberg (Hachette/Grand Central) may be the surprise hit of the season, according to our Crystal Ball. Comparisons to The Corrections are underscored by a blurb from Jonathan Franzen himself (who rarely gives blurbs), “The Middlesteins had me from its very first pages, but it wasn’t until is final pages that I fully appreciated the range of Attenberg’s sympathy and the artistry of her storytelling.” The tale of a Jewish husband and wife in suburban Chicago whose marriage unravels after 40 years, as the attorney wife nears 350 pounds, it’s on People‘s list of ten Hot Fall Titles and described as “The sleeper hit of the fall” on CBS This Morning‘s fall book roundup (9/17). Entertainment Weekly throws some rain on this parade, giving it just a “B” and saying, “Attenberg’s slender fourth novel is an intriguing dysfunctional-family story told from multiple, fast-shifting points of view, but it never sits still long enough to truly explore the complicated minds of its characters. It’s a deeply sympathetic novel that could use a little more insight.”

The Art Forger by Barbara A. Shapiro (Workman/Algonquin; HighBridge Audio; Thorndike Large Print, Jan.) was a librarians Shout ‘n’ Share pick at BEA and is the #1 Indie Next Pick for November. It’s about an art world pariah who gets drawn into a forgery scheme, and has to dig into an unsolved art heist to clear her name. It gets a “B+” in the current Entertainment Weekly: “Shapiro’s plot seems rushed at times. Still, she’s done meticulous research and has such interesting things to say about authenticity — in both art and love — that her novel becomes not just emotionally involving but addictive.”

Returning Favorites

Back to Blood by Tom Wolfe (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio, read by Lou Diamond Phillips; Hachette Large Print) has been dubbed by one critic as “Bonfire of the Miamians” and comes with a full PBS documentary, Tom Wolfe Gets Back to Blood, airing on Friday. As we’ve noted, major reviewers have weighed in extensively this week, ahead of the novel’s release next Tuesday, October 23, with most saying it’s got Wolfe’s usual manic prose, obsession with class and status, and wide range of characters – which is fine if you liked his other books.

The Racketeer by John Grisham (Random House; RH Audio and Large PrintBOT Audio) is the other major title going on sale on Tuesday, and somewhat overshadowed in the media by Tom Wolfe. Still, as we wrote earlier, the New York Times‘s Janet Maslin says it shows Grisham’s “rekindled vigor,” perhaps because he has “gone back to what he does best, storytelling rather than crusading.”

Usual Suspects

Angels at the Table: A Shirley, Goodness, and Mercy Christmas Story by Debbie Macomber (RH/Ballantine; Random House Audio; BOT Audio; Thorndike Large Print) finds three seasoned angels shadowing an apprentice angel in Times Square at Christmas. This is Macomber’s first book with her new publisher, Ballantine.

The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury (S&S/Howard Books; S&S Audio; Thorndike Large Print) is a Christmas story about a Tennessee bookstore named The Bridge that struggles to survive declining book sales and the rise of e-books. It’s been rising on Amazon sales rankings – at #99 as of October 18.

Young Adult

After Moonrise by P.C. Cast and Gena Showalter (Harlequin) is a paperback original in which two bestselling YA authors team up to deliver two paranormal love stories.

Ask the Passengers by A. S. King (Hachette/LBYR; BOT Audio) is about a character who sends messages to people in planes flying overhead, who feel “bursts of unexplainable love that prompts them to do certain things.” The author is a Printz Honor Prize Winner. It has found fans on both our August and September YA GalleyChats. One called it “phenomenal” and “by far, one of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read. And inspiring.” Another reader commented, “Can’t wait for my teens to read it.”

Finale (Hush, Hush Saga) by Becca Fitzpatrick (S&S BYR, S&S Audio) began rising on Amazon on October 17. Previous titles in this series have hit the NYT list; Hush, Hush , Crescendo and Silence.

Movie Tie-In

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy,  translated by Louise Maude and Alymer Maude (RH/Vintage) is the official tie-in to the movie, starring Keira Knightly and Jude Law, to be released November 9. Other translations are also available (see our rundown, here). Vintage will also release the screenplay, by Tom Stoppard, on November 13.


Silent No MoreVictim 1′s Fight for Justice Against Jerry Sandusky by Victim One (RH/Ballantine) is written by the young man who testified dramatically at the child molestation trial of Former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky. Victim One’s identity was kept a secret until late  yesterday when it was revealed in promos for an interview by ABC’s Chris Cuomo, to air on ABC’s 20/20 tonight and for a People magazine interview, to appear, with excerpts from the book, in the issue on stands next Friday.


Why I Left Goldman Sachs: Or How the World’s Most Powerful Bank Made a Killing but Lost its Soul by Greg Smith (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio and Large Print) grew out of the author’s eponymous op-ed in the New York Times, which went viral. The book details what the author sees as the decline of the storied investment bank, after he started at Goldman Sachs at age 21 in 2001 and left in 2011 as the head of the United States equity derivatives business in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife, Eben Alexander, M.D. (Simon & Schuster; S&S Audio) joins the growing shelf of books about near-death experiences. It has been in the top 100 on Amazon sales rankings for the last 11 days (currently at #10). Several libraries are showing heavy holds. The author is scheduled for several TV appearances this week, including ABC’s Nightline and Good Morning America as well as FOX-TV’s Fox & Friends.

The Onion Book of Known Knowledge: A Definitive Encyclopedia of Existing Informationby The Onion (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio) is the 8th book by the award-winning humor website. With typical bravado, the authors proclaim that this comprehensive reference source is “the last book ever published.”

Bouchon Bakery by Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel (Workman/Artisan) collects recipes for the French classics this famous chef loved while apprenticing in Paris.

New Title Radar: October 15 – 21

Friday, October 12th, 2012

As media attention on the election heats up, publishers are playing it safe with no-brainers, like the Rolling Stones 50, a tribute to the decades-old British rock band, and a home design book by talk show host Nate Berkus, or review-driven titles like historian Henry Wiencek’s new look at Thomas Jefferson and his slaves.  In fiction, Justin Cronin‘s followup to his blockbuster post-apocalyptic vampire novel is eagerly awaited, but is already disappointing a few reviewers. A title to watch is a cozy English novel about the Queen playing hooky. Usual suspects include Nelson DeMille, Iris Johansen, Patricia Cornwell and YA author P.C. Cast. Plus movie tie-ins to Twilight, Silver Linings and Spielberg’s Lincoln.

Watch List

Mrs. Queen Takes the Train by William Kuhn (HarperCollins; Dreamscape Audio) finds the bored Queen of England leaving the palace on a walkabout, in search of fun. It has been popular among librarians on our GalleyChat on Twitter, one of whom said, ”It’s jam packed full with great Palace insider gossip and details. In the year of the Diamond Jubilee, royal watchers will eat this up! It’s fun and light.”

The Twelve by Justin Cronin (RH/Ballantine; BOT Audio;  Wheeler Large Print) is the second installment in the trilogy that began with the hit The Passage, a post-apocalyptic vampire novel by an author previously known for his quiet literary novels. This one is getting early press attention, including a profile in last week’s NYT Magazine. The L.A. Times warns, however, “even the most devoted fans may notice a bit of a sophomore slump.” The Washington Post‘s Ron Charles, says the previous title was “the scariest, most entertaining novel I’d read in a long time…Now, finally, comes the long-awaited second volume, and as much as it pains me to say it, The Twelve bites.” Entertainment Weekly is more generous, giving it a B+, even though it “doesn’t always match The Passage‘s dexterous storytelling and almost-plausible world creation…it’s still an unnerving and mostly satisfying tale of existential-threat disaster and its harrowing aftermath.”

Usual Suspects

The Panther by Nelson DeMille (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print) finds Former NYPD detective John Corey and his FBI agent wife, Kate Mayfield, hunting a mastermind of the Al Qaeda attack on the USS Cole in 2000. Kirkus calls it, “quintessential DeMille: action-adventure flavored with double-dealing and covert conspiracy.”

Sleep No More by Iris Johansen (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Thorndike Large Print) is the 14th Eve Duncan novel. This time the forensic sculptor, who has spent many novels investigating the disappearance of her daughter, discovers that she has a half-sister. PW says, “Series fans will be pleased to discover that Beth, like Eve, is a strong woman who has endured many trials in her past.”

The Bone Bed by Patricia Cornwell (Penguin/Putnam; Penguin Audio; Thorndike Large Print) finds forensic expert Kay Scarpetta digging into a case involving a missing paleontologist. LJ says, “Cornwell has been struggling lately; see what happens, and buy for her fans.”

Angel’s Ink: The Asylum Tales (Harper Voyager trade pbk original) marks the launch of The Asylum Tales, a new series by the New York Times bestselling author of the Dark Days novels. This one features a magical tattoo artist. An ebook-only short story (available on OverDrive), The Asylum Interviews: Trixie came out in September to whet appetites.

The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton (S&S/Atria) has been big on GalleyChat. Some think it’s her best; “Family secrets, suspense. Another winner.” This week’s People magazine concurs, giving it 4 of 4 stars and saying,”Morton weaves an intriguing mystery, shifting between past and present and among fully realized characters harboring deep secrets.”

Young Adult

Hidden by P.C. Cast, Kristin Cast (St. Martin’s Griffin; Macmillan Audio; Thorndike Large Print) is the 10th installment in the House of Night series by this mother-daughter writing team.



The Rolling Stones 50 by The Rolling Stones with Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood (Hyperion) commemorates the band’s long history and survival in photos. Kirkus says it’s a “soulless corporate birthday party that sheds no new light on its well-traveled subjects.”

Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and His Slaves by Henry Wiencek (Macmillan/FSG ; HighBridge Audio) is the latest from the 1999 National Book Critics Circle Award winner for The Hairstons: An American Family in Black and White. Here, Wiencek “deftly explores the economic calculus behind Jefferson’s gradual cooling toward emancipation and eventual acceptance of human capital as a great ‘investment opportunity,” according to LJ.

The Things That Matter by Nate Berkus (Speigel & Grau) is an illustrated guide to creating a home full of meaningful things, by the designer who got a push from Oprah and now has his own talk show.

Movie Tie-Ins

The Twilight Saga: The Complete Film Archive: Memories, Mementos, and Other Treasures from the Creative Team Behind the Beloved Motion Pictures ties into the November 16 release of (can you believe it?) the the last installment in the Twilight series, Breaking Dawn, Part 2.

The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick (Macmillan/FSG/Sarah Crichton Books) ties in to the movie to be released on November 21, starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert DeNiro. It won the top prize at the Toronto Interntional Film Festival.

Team of RivalsLincoln Film Tie-in Edition by Doris Kearns Goodwin (S&S trade paperback; S&S audio tie-in) ties in to Stephen Spielberg’s Lincolnstarring Daniel Day Lewis. It opens in a limited run on November 9, releasing nationwide on November 16, and is based on the later sections of  Team of Rivals.

New Title Radar: October 8 – 14

Friday, October 5th, 2012

The excitement in the upcoming week is in nonfiction, starting with a new collection of Beatle John Lennon‘s private letters, a new Barbra Streisand bio by William J. Mann, and a biography of photographer Edward Curtis by Timothy Egan, along with a YA adaptation of Navy Seal Eric Greitens‘s bestselling memoir. Usual suspects include James Patterson (with Marshall Karp), Robert K. Morgan and the man known as the “Stephen King of children’s literature,” R L Stein, delivers his first adult horror novel (thanks for the correction; this is actually his second book for adults, after his 1995 title, Superstitious).


The John Lennon Letters by John Lennon, edited by Hunter Davies (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio) collects the beloved Beatles private letters to family, friends, strangers, and lovers from every point in his life, with annotations by Hunter Davies, author of  the authorized biography The Beatles (1968).


Hello, Gorgeous: Becoming Barbra Streisand by William J. Mann (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Thorndike Large Print) focuses on the singer’s breakthrough years in the Sixties, when she starred in Funny Girl on Broadway and recorded three platinum albums. PW says, “Combining extensive interviews (some anonymous) and exhaustive archival research, Mann balances intimate personal details with audience reactions and critical acclaim to etch an indelible portrait of the artist as a young woman.”

Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis by Timothy Egan (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Dreamscape Audio) is the Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer’s account of 19th C portrait photographer Edward Curtis, who gave up a thriving career to chronicle more than 80 Native American tribes before their way of life disappeared. The result was Curtis’s classic 20-volume set, The North American Indian, which took 30 years to complete and left him divorced and destitute. Kirkus says, “Lucent prose illuminates a man obscured for years in history’s shadows.”

Jesus Today: Experience Hope Through His Prescence by Sarah Young (HarperCollins/Thomas Nelson) is the second book from the missionary and breakout author of Jesus Calling.

There Was a CountryA Personal History of Biafra by Chinua Achebe (Penguin Press; Penguin Audiobooks) blends political analysis, history, and personal reminiscences of the Nigerian civil war of 1967-70 in a coming of age memoir. The author best known for the novel Things Fall Apart, which has sold ten million copies worldwide since 1958. Kirkus says, “a powerful memoir/document of a terrible conflict and its toll on the people who endured it.”

Nonfiction – Young Adult

The Warrior’s Heart by Eric Greitens (HMH Young Readers) adapts the author’s bestseller The Heart and the Fist for teen readers, focusing on the youthful adventures that led him to become a humanitarian and a Navy SEAL. Kirkus says Greitens retraces his coming of age “with well-deserved pride but not self-aggrandizement,” and says it’s “as thought provoking as it is entertaining.”

Usual Suspects

NYPD Red by James Patterson and Marshall Karp (Hachette/Little, Brown; Little Brown Large Print; Hachette Audio) finds the NYPD on high alert when a deranged killer strikes a series of red carpet celebrity events.

Red Rain by R L Stein (S&S/Touchstone; Simon & Schuster Audio) is the first second adult horror novel by the bestselling author of the  Goosebumps and Fear Street series, involving a hurricane and psychopath. PW says it “fails to compel.”