Archive for the ‘Mystery & Detective’ Category

Movie Updates: DARK PLACES And GONE GIRL

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

Dark PlacesFilming began in Shreveport, Louisiana, this week for the adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s second novel, Dark Places (RH/Crown). Photos of Charlize Theron on set were published in the U.K.’s Mail Online. Theron plays the lead role, Libby Day, a character that, says the publication, “shares a chilling similarity [with] her own childhood,” since both witnessed the murders of family members when they were children.

Gone Girl

Christina Hendricks recently joined the cast and will play a stripper [UPDATE: Hendricks has been given a larger role, as the murdered mother of the main character, played by Charlize Theron]. The film is currently scheduled for release on Sept. 1 of next year.

Work is also beginning on Gillian Flynn’s more famous third novel, Gone Girl (RH/Crown). Rumors that sites are being scouted in the southeast Missouri town of Cape Girardeau created local excitement this week. David Fincher directs the movie which stars Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike.

Demand Rising for BONE SEASON

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

9781620401392 Today marks the arrival of two major launches. In addition to Night Film (see previous post), Samantha Shannon’s  The Bone Season, (Macmillan/Bloomsbury) also arrives. The first title in the Today Show’s  reincarnated Book Club,  announced today, is this debut by a  21-year-old novelist, the first in a planned seven-part series (yes there is talk of a movie).

The launch of the Club received a remarkable amount of press, including a feature in  the New York Times, “Today Is Starting Oprah-like Book Club.” The author was also profiled in today’s USA Today, and, over the weekend, NPR asked an often-repeated question, “Could This Be The Next Harry Pottter?

Libraries report that demand is rising.

The Today Show announcement is below:

The official book trailer:

HUSBAND and WIFE

Monday, August 19th, 2013

The Husband's Secret   Silent Wife   9780143122548

With titles that make them sound like the odd couple of fiction, the word-of-mouth hits of the summer are steadily climbing the best seller lists. The Husband’s Secret, by Liane Moriarty, (Penguin/Putnam/Amy Einhorn; Thorndike) is now at #10 on USA Today‘s list, up from #32 last week, after 2 weeks. The Silent Wife by A. S. A. Harrison (Penguin; Blackstone Audio), a trade paperback original, is a few spots behind, at #17, up from #26, after 5 weeks (no doubt helped  along by the fact that it is now stocked at Walmart).

Both have been compared to Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, (RH/Crown), now at #24 after an amazing 62 weeks.

The new attention to the “domestic suspense” genre is perfect timing for mystery critic Sarah Weinman’s new book, Troubled Daughters. Twisted Wives: Stories from the Trailblazers of Domestic Suspense, (Penguin) coming next week. The NYT Book Review‘s “Inside the List” notes that readers looking for more in the genre should explore the authors in Weinman’s book, who, as she says in her introduction, use the genre to “take a scalpel to contemporary society and slice away until its dark essence reveals itself.” Salon‘s Laura Miller also features Weinman’s book in “The Grandmothers of Gone Girl.”

Watch for an opportunity to win Troubled Daughters. Twisted Wives in Penguin’s giveaway on EarlyWord tomorrow.

Spotting THE CUCKOO’S CALLING

Monday, August 5th, 2013

One of the first people to single out Robert Galbraith’s The Cuckoo’s Calling (Hachette/Mulholland; Hachette Audio) for special attention was one of LJ‘s mystery reviewers, Terry Jacobsen, formerly of Solano County (CA) Public Library, who made it LJ‘s Mystery Debut of the Month for April. Shortly after the author’s true name was revealed, Jacobsen was interviewed on CNN.

So, what is Jacobsen’s most recent pick? It’s…

Jump-the-Gun-Med-Res-Front-Cover-178x276Jump the Gun: An Annabelle Starkey Mystery #1, by Zoe Burke, (Poisoned Pen, simultaneous hdbk, trade pbk and large print; Blackstone audio)

Releasing tomorrow, Jacobsen describes it as, “Quickly paced and so clever, Burke’s debut is a winning semi-cozy caper, perfect for movie fans. She never misses a beat with her light rom-com banter, multigenerational ensemble, and sense of fun.”

See all of Jabobsen’s picks here.

Holds Alert: VISITATION STREET

Monday, August 5th, 2013

Visitation StreetAfter several stellar reviews, holds are rising on Ivy Pochoda’s second book, Visitation Street, (HarperCollins/Ecco/Dennis Lehane Books; Thorndike Large Print), released last month. The New York Times Book Review‘s mystery columnist Marilyn Stasio calls it a “powerfully beautiful novel” that brings to life the neighborhood it is set in, Red Hook, Brooklyn, through the eyes of “people from the neighborhood — diverse characters who are vibrantly, insistently alive.”

It happens that Red Hook is very close to EarlyWord’s “World Headquarters,” so it may seem natural that we are fans. But as specific as the setting is, it has a wider resonance. As the Miami Herald writes, “…what’s most haunting is [Pochoda's] searing, all-too-familiar portrait of a community bitterly divided by the usual suspects of American unrest — race, poverty, culture, drugs. Her Red Hook is alive and not well, a place ruled by real and artificial boundaries, a city of flesh and blood and failed dreams.”

Ivy recently recorded an interview with HarperCollins Library Marketer, Annie Mazes (watch out Susan Stamberg; Annie’s giggle is even more infectious than yours). It opens with photos from the EarlyWord/GalleyChat tour held during BEA, and sponsored by HarperCollins. From the description of the neighborhood in the reviews, you might not think that Red Hook would be a good place for tourists, but its position on the NY Harbor makes for spectacular views. Also, Pochoda’s book portrays a community just beginning to gentrify. That is now in full swing, with an upscale chocolate factory and even a winery. (Thanks to Robin Beerbower, Salem [OR] Public Library, for the photos – more here, with quotes from the book).

The next GalleyChat is tomorrow, Tuesday, Aug. 6, 4 to 5 p.m. ET (details on how to join are here).

SILENT WIFE an Official Sleeper Hit

Monday, August 5th, 2013

Silent WifeThe NYT‘s publishing reporter, Julie Bosman, has pronounced The Silent Wife by A. S. A. Harrison (Penguin, 6/25), the next Gone Girl, now that it has hit best seller lists (debuting on the NYT‘s own combined print and ebook list at #11).

The NYT is a bit late to the party (their reviewer, Janet Maslin, predicted a different novel, Lauren Beukes’s The Shining Girls, Hachette/Mulholland, would be the heir. The NYT has yet to review The Silent Wife). In libraries, holds have been growing steadily (we issued our first holds alert for it on July 2).

The article details the book’s publishing history and points out that Walmart has only just ordered it. Once copies begin selling there, it is likely to reach new heights on best seller lists.

One of our favorite mystery reviewers, Sarah Weinman writes in the New Republic about the appeal of the unlikeable heroine, as exemplified by The Silent Wife. Watch for Weinman’s forthcoming book, Troubled Duaghers. Twisted Wives, (Penguin) an anthology of stories by women crime writers. Her introduction should be required reading for all readers advisors.

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.

 

VISITATION STREET A People Pick

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.”

PEMBERLEY Comes to BBC

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 Oprah.com 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.

(more…)

Eye On: EVERY CONTACT LEAVES A TRACE

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…)

EVERY SECRET THING Filming In New York

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.