Archive for the ‘Mystery & Detective’ Category

LIFE OF CRIME To Be Released Aug 29

Monday, April 7th, 2014

9780062206138The movie Life of Crime, based on the late Elmore Leonard’s novel The Switch, (HarperCollins/Morrow)has been set for release on August 29.

In The Rolling Stone last year, director Daniel Schechter described his efforts to buy the rights to the novel and expressed hopes that Leonard would have appreciated the outcome.  With the exceptions of Jackie Brown, Get Shorty, and the FX series, Justified, Leonard wasn’t a fan of the majority of the many adaptations of his work.

The film, featured at the Toronto Film Festival was called by Variety‘s critic, a “fitting memorial” to the author.

Starring Jennifer Aniston, it was renamed Life of Crime, presumably to separate it from a very different movie starring Aniston, The Switch, based on a Jeffrey Eugenides’ short story The Baster.

Life of Crime also stars John Hawkes, Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def), Isla Fisher and Tim Robbins.

The novel is one of a series of trade paperback rereleases of Leonard’s classic backlist published by HarperCollins/Morrow. It is  also in the Library of America collection, Elmore Leonard: Four Novels of the 1970s, coming in September (Penguin/Library of America).

Early Attention for FROG MUSIC

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Frog MusicAfter the huge success of Room, it’s no surprise that critics are vying to be the first to review author Emma Donoghue’s next book, Frog Music, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio and Large Print), which arrives this coming Tuesday (although some libraries are showing that it is in process).

The Washington Post‘s is among the first of the consumer reviews, with Ron Charles noting, “The millions of readers who know Donoghue only from the harrowing tale of that little boy [in Room] will discover in Frog Music just how expansive and boisterous this Irish Canadian author can be … Donoghue has created a full-throated murder mystery, spiced with song and forbidden love.”

The Wall Street Journal profiles the author’s background research, in which she came up with a solution to a real-life murder that took place in San Francisco in 1876.

The film rights for Room were acquired in 2013. It is still in development as of January, according to a story in Deadline.


Monday, March 3rd, 2014

Veronica MarsThe cult favorite, Veronica Mars TV series, starring Kristen Bell as a teenage sleuth, was canceled after its third season in 2007. Since then, creator Rob Thomas has not allowed the property to die. Through a Kickstarter campaign, (the most successful one to date), he raised the funds for a movie version. He also signed with RH/Vintage for two books based on the character (he has written several novels, including the 1996 YA title Rats Saw God).

The movie debuts on March 14 (see trailer below) and the first book, Veronica Mars: The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line, which features the 28-year-old Mars after the events of the movie, arrives on March 25. It is currently at #29 and rising on Amazon sales rankings.

To catch up on the story, link here.

Also on the horizon is a collection of essays in the Wiley-Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series, coming in May, Veronica Mars and Philosophy: Investigating the Mysteries of Life (Which is a Bitch Until You Die), edited by George A. Dunn.

J.K. Rowling Series: Maybe Yes, Maybe No

Monday, February 24th, 2014

Yesterday, Feb. 23:  “JK ROWLING has mapped out a series of up to seven crime novels featuring her private investigator Cormoran Strike — in a repeat of the approach she took with her Harry Potter books,” The Sunday Times of London, by Richard Brooks.

Today, Feb. 24:  Little, Brown denies Rowling novel plans — “A spokesman for Little, Brown said: ‘Richard Brooks has written this without foundation and there aren’t seven books planned in the series.'” — The Bookseller

The Cuckoo's Calling   The Silkworm
Well, at least we know there will be two books in the series. The Silkworm (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio) will be released on June 24th.

Lippman On Women and Ambition

Friday, February 21st, 2014

Laura Lippman’s latest novel, After I'm Gone After I’m Gone (HarperCollins/ Morrow; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe), gets a strong nod from Janet Maslin in the NYT this week, “The characters … are so well drawn that it’s easy to forget why they happen to be connected. Almost all of them are strong, willful women.”

“Willful” is an odd adjective. It seems to only be used to describe women and children, never men, since it is an expected, even applauded, male characteristic.

Speaking to librarians at the United for Libraries Gala Tea at Midwinter in January, Lippman talked about the “willful women” who have inspired her (including her mother, a librarian) and about another gender-shifting adjective, “ambitious,” encouraging us all to embrace it.

Thanks to Laura for allowing us reprint her talk, below, and to Virginia Stanley, HarperCollins Library Marketing, for helping us get that permission.

Laura Lippman, Photo by Jan Cobb

Laura Lippman, Photo by Jan Cobb

It’s a happy accident that my next book [After I’m Gone] comes out on Feb. 11 because it is very much a Valentine’s Day to the generations of women, including my mother, who gave birth to the women of the so-called Baby Boom. This was not conscious when I began writing the book, but it was clear to me by the time it was finished. Bernadette “Bambi” Brewer – left, with three days, to fend for herself when her husband Felix decides he cannot serve even a portion of his 15-year sentence for mail fraud – emerges as the closest thing that my book has to a heroine. Bright and beautiful, she has never wanted to be anything but a wife and mother, and I think the book ultimately validates her choice.

Now, I’m a crime writer. I never describe myself as anything else. In fact, I was so appalled at what I saw as another writer’s recent attempt to disavow the genre that I wrote a somewhat, um, spirited defense of my genre roots. The piece that had so offended me included lines such as “my big literary novel” and an announcement that the writer, after writing three crime novels, was now girding himself to stride into “the great arena of art.”

But it also made me realize how uncomfortable our culture is with ambition. Particularly when it comes to women.


New Rowling/Galbraith Arrives 6/24

Monday, February 17th, 2014

The SilkwormThe followup to The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (a.k.a. J.K. Rowling) is set for release on June 24th. Titled The Silkworm, (Hachette/Little, Brown; ISBN-13: 9780316206877; $28.00 US/$31.00 CAN), it is not yet showing on wholesaler or retailer catalogs.

Below is the publisher’s description.

Private investigator Cormoran Strike returns in a new mystery from Robert Galbraith, author of the #1 international bestseller The Cuckoo’s Calling.

When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband has gone off by himself for a few days–as he has done before–and she wants Strike to find him and bring him home.

But as Strike investigates, it becomes clear that there is more to Quine’s disappearance than his wife realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows. If the novel were to be published, it would ruin lives–meaning that there are a lot of people who might want him silenced.

When Quine is found brutally murdered under bizarre circumstances, it becomes a race against time to understand the motivation of a ruthless killer, a killer unlike any Strike has encountered before…

A compulsively readable crime novel with twists at every turn, THE SILKWORM is the second in the highly acclaimed series featuring Cormoran Strike and his determined young assistant, Robin Ellacott.

A story on the release by the Associated Press has appeared in several news sources, including USA Today.

New Patricia Highsmith Adaptation

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

two-faces-of-january-poster-berlin  The Two Faces of January

A rave in The Telegraph for The Two Faces of January, starring Kirsten Dunst, Viggo Mortensen and Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis), which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival on Monday, will frustrate U.S. audiences. The movie is scheduled for release in the U.K. in May, but there is no U.S. release date yet. The reviewer calls it “the best Patricia Highsmith adaptation since The Talented Mr Ripley (1999) … an elegantly pleasurable period thriller, a film of tidy precision and class … a treat to look at and listen to, evoking a lot of old-fashioned movie virtues, and showing us a lush but suspenseful good time.”

The Hollywood Reporter tamps down that enthusiasm, “it’s unlikely that the directing debut of screenwriter Hossein Amini (Jude, Drive) is going to knock The Talented Mr. Ripley from its pedestal in the Highsmith pantheon, or even jar it slightly. Still the production … is truly lush and the actors … almost too subtle and nuanced for the roles they play. The result is easy viewing that should have a nice small screen life after Studio Canal releases theatrically in the UK, France, Australia and related territories.”

Grove Press will release a new trade paperback edition of the book in June (new cover above, right), part of a program to reissue all the Highsmith books in their catalog.

For an appreciation of Highsmith’s work, see Jonathan Lethem’s Washington Post review of the  2009 biography of the author.

Lisbeth Salander To Live On

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

13014080_O_1   Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

The Swedish publisher of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium series, Norstedts Förlag (covers of the original and U.S. editions of the first title in the series, above), has announced that they have hired Swedish journalist and author David Lagercrantz to write a fourth book, scheduled to be published in August, 2015.

The publisher added that it has nothing to do with the manuscript that Larsson left unfinished when he died in 2004 (the series was originally planned as ten books and there is still a legal dispute over ownership of the rights to the unfinished manuscript).

In a press release, Norstedts explains why they chose Lagercrantz for the task, “His ability to find the right tone and voice, his great experience and his manner of engaging readers of all ages – most recent in the form of the global success that is I am Zlatan [which he ghost wrote for the soccer player Zlatan Ibrahimovic]  – makes him the right choice. David Lagercrantz is not just a skilled novelist, he has also, through his work searched for different characters and complex geniuses. He is also used to working in editorial environments”

U.K. rights were acquired by British publisher, Quercus, which launched in the U.S. this fall (see their web site here) with a list that includes a book of articles by Larsson, translated into English, The Expo Files. Larsson, like his main character, was a crusading journalist. No news yet on whether Quercus, or the U.S. publisher of the previous titles in the Millennium series, Knopf, will publish the new title here.

A very early work by Larsson, a story he wrote when he was just 17, will make its first appearance in English in an anthology of works by several Swedish crime writers, A Darker Shade of Sweden, coming in February 2014 from Grove/Mysterious Press.


Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

Live by NightThe film adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s Live By Night, directed by Ben Affleck, will be released on Christmas Day, 2015. Affleck will star; no other stars have been announced.

Affleck’s first outing as a director was a film based on another Lehane novel, 2007’s Gone Baby Gone.

Live by Night (Harper/ Morrow) is a crime novel set in the Prohibition era about the rise of an Irish-American gangster. Prophetically, Entertainment Weekly, called it a “ripping, movie-ready yarn that jumps from a Boston prison to Tampa speakeasies to a Cuban tobacco farm.”

Affleck is currently at work as an actor, playing the lead in David Fincher’s adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, set for release on Oct 3, 2014.

Lehane is no stranger to the movies; in addition to Gone Baby Gone, films have been made of his novels Mystic River (2003) and Shutter Island (2010). He has also written for the TV series The Wire and Boardwalk Empire.


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:


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.


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.


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.