Archive for the ‘Fiction’ Category

Jane Green on TODAY

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Tempting FateGetting a strong boost for the launch of her new novel from Kathie Lee & Hoda on The Today Show, author Jane Green says Tempting Fate (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio; Wheeler Large Print) is based on observing women in her Connecticut neighborhood (in this case, her actual town of Westport), “suddenly getting gorgeous and glamorous,” a signal that they are unhappy in their marriages and like the main character, are seeking attention elsewhere.

Video below, or link here.

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MARS Ascending

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

The Kickstarter-funded movie, Veronica Mars, may not have done well at the box office (or with the NYT critic, or with some of the funders), but the related book (which picks up the story after the movie) The Thousand Dollar Tan Line, released yesterday (RH/Vintage) is currently at #8 on Amazon’s sales rankings.

In addition, the audio book (BOT download), read by Veronica Mars herself (that is, Kirsten Bell as Veronica) is getting attention. New York magazine’s “Vulture” says Bell’s “mellifluous yet extremely sardonic delivery will really cure what ails you, if what ails you is a disease brought on by a Veronica Mars deficiency” and The Week magazine adds, “Bell voices all the characters in the audiobook version, giving fans the chance to hear her version of characters like Weevil Navarro and Cliff McCormack.”

The Thousand Dollar Tan Line is the first of two planned Veronica Mars novels.

Beyond FLOWERS, An Entire Bouquet

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

petalsonthewindcover doll_thorns_1 200px-SeedsofYesterday MySweetAudrina

The Lifetime cable channel is going “V.C. Andrews crazy,” according to BuzzFeed, as a result of the ratings success of their adaptation of what BuzzFeed characterizes as “the incest classic,” Flowers in the Attic.

Flowers in the Attic

In the midst of filming the sequel, Petals on the Wind, the network, according to an unnamed source, has signed the other two books in the original Dollanganger series, If There Be Thorns and Seeds of Yesterday, (but not the prequel, Garden of Shadows), as well as the standalone, My Sweet Audrina.

Heather Graham and Ellen Burstyn will return in the sequel to Flowers, but, since Petals picks up the story ten years later, the Dollanganger kids have been recast with older actors.

No release date has been set for the sequel, but new editions of the books have been announced (no covers yet)

Petals on the Wind
V.C. Andrews
S&S/Gallery June 17, 2014
Trade paperback, $14.00
9781476789552, 147678955X

S&S/Pocket Books
Mass market, $7.99
9781476789569, 1476789568

GAME OF THRONES Has A “Massive Problem”

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

Vanity Fair Games of Thrones HBO’s Game of Thrones cast and crew get the Annie Liebovitz treatment in the April issue of Vanity Fair.

The cover story has been setting the internet afire by declaring that, with season four  beginning on April 6, the show has a “massive problem on the horizon,” in that it is catching up to the books.

This is not a new concern, however. It was anticipated, even before the HBO series began. As Time magazine’s TV critic says, the “answer generally was, Martin will hurry up with the last two books, or HBO will take a while with the series or–look, a raven!”  That appears to still be the answer.

The executive producers tell Vanity Fair that they’d like to wrap up the show after “seven or eight seasons.” To that end, they have met with Martin (who is also a producer on the show), to find out how the various plot lines will end, so they have a road map (for more details on the books, a longer version of VF‘s conversation with Martin is available online. Sorry, he doesn’t reveal what he told the executive producers).

The pressure from the show is nothing compared to what Martin, who is five volumes in to the planned seven-book series, has already endured from fans to get on with it (as the New Yorker wrote  on the eve of the 2011 publication of Book 5, A Dance with Dragons, they can be pretty unforgiving).

HBO’s Season 4 covers roughly the second half of A Storm of Swords, the third in the book series. To add a little confusion for casual observers, Book Four, A Feast for Crows, will be released as a tie-in edition.

As Time‘s critic advises, it’s best just to relax and enjoy each series for their unique pleasures.

A Feast For Crows, Tie-inA Feast for Crows (HBO Tie-in Edition): A Song of Ice and Fire: Book Four
George R.R. Martin
RH/Bantam, 4/1/14
Trade paperback; 9780553390575, 0553390570
$18.00 USD / $21.00 CAD
Mass market paperback; 9780553390568, 0553390562
$9.99 USD / $11.99 CAD

Harlan Coben Movie Deals

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Missing You   Six Years   Tell No One

So far, only one film has been made of  Harlan Coben’s best selling novels, the 2006 French film, Ne le dis à personne, and it was not released to U.S. theaters (several libraries own the DVD). [UPDATE: We stand corrected. As one of the comments points out, the film was shown in 112 U.S. theaters].That seems odd, since, as the Washington Post characterizes  the writer, he is the “master” of a film-worthy type of story, “a life suddenly unraveling, the past summoned back into a swiftly shifting present, secrets peeling back to reveal more secrets.”

Hollywood seems to have caught on. Three of Coban’s books now in various stages of development.

His latest thriller, one of his many standalones, Missing You, (RH/Dutton; Brilliance Audio; Thorndike) releasing today, was just picked up for adaptation by Warner Bros., according to Deadline.

The plot involves an internet dating site. Booklist says, “Coben never met a technological device he couldn’t turn into a riveting plot element … Coben’s meticulous plotting and his incorporation of the technology are first-rate. His characterization and dialogue? Not so much.”

In the pipeline are two other standalones. One is an English-language version of Tell No One, currently being scripted at Universal. The second, Six Years, published last year, is being produced at Paramount, with Hugh Jackman set to star.

Lestat Returns for Halloween

Monday, March 17th, 2014

BK_InterviewAnne Rice announced on Facebook last week that her next book will revive The Vampire Chronicles series, which began in 1976 with Interview With The Vampire. The new book, titled Prince Lestat, will be published on Oct. 28 by Knopf. News sources from Variety to the New York Times and The Guardian covered the story. As a result, when the preorder links went up on Amazon yesterday, it landed at #48 on the site’s sales rankings.

BK_QueenDamnedIn a podcast interview on The Dinner Party with Christopher Rice and Eric Shaw Quinn, co-hosted by her son, Rice said Prince Lestat will be a sequel to The Queen of the Damned because, “after that The Vampire Chronicles are kind of memoir books and backstory and other experiments.” She gives more details (including how Lestat deals with the iPhone) during the full interview — listen to it on iTunes, Episode #64, beginning at time stamp 7:00.

It’s been over a decade since the 11th volume, Blood Canticle, was published. In a 2009 statement currently still featured on the official site for the series, Rice claimed this would be the final volume; “the eleven novels of the Vampire Chronicles are best enjoyed as a complete and finished work.” On The Dinner Party she says she really didn’t think she could write a new one, but going back and reading all the books again made her feel she had more to say, so much so that she “feels this is novel one of a new incarnation” and in fact, has signed the contract for a second book. She even has casting ideas for a new film version of Lestat.

9780307962522_a85caPrince Lestat: The Vampire Chronicles
Anne Rice
October 28, 2014
9780307962522, 0307962520
Hardback $27.95 USD / $33.00 CAD

Get Ready: 5 Titles to Know Next Week

Friday, March 14th, 2014

In addition to new titles from best selling authors Harlan Coben, Terry Pratchett, and series regular Loren Estelman, below are several titles to pay special attention to next week.

Ordering information for these titles and more is on our downloadable spreadsheet.


You Should Have Known  The Cairo Affair

You Should Have Known, Jean Hanff Korelitz, (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio)

This book been called a “significantly superior addition” to the “chick noir” genre. Entertainment Weekly featured it in their spring preview, calling it, “The thriller we’re already obsessed with.”  Korelitz is the author of the well-received Admission. It’s the lead review in the new issue of  People magazine, with 3.5 of 4 stars; “a consuming, expertly plotted thriller [that] moves along at a slow burn, building up to shocking revelations…”‘ Oddly, the new issue of the magazine that first hearalded the book, Entertainment Weekly, is not so high on it, complaining that “the plot moves slowly, weighed down by superfluous detail”

A weird fact — if the author’s middle name reminds you of a favorite memoir about books, you have a great memory. Korelitz’a cousin was Helen Hanff, the author of 84 Charing Cross Road (made in to a movie starring Anne Bancroft), as she writes in an essay  in The Telegraph .

The Cairo Affair, Olen Steinhauer, (Macmillan/Minotaur; Macmillan Audio)

If, like the NYT’s Janet Maslin, some of your readers have found that Olen Steinhauer’s Milo Weaver series has become overly complex, you can encourage them to try this stand-alone by the author. Like his previous books, it is an “elaborate, sophisticated spy tale, a long, twisty road full of cleverly placed potholes and unexpected turns,” says Maslin that will reward readers  who “stay on your toes and enjoy the guessing game.”

LibraryReads Picks

Divorce Papers   Kill Fee
The Divorce Papers, Susan Rieger, (RH/ Crown)

“When Sophie, a loveable 29-year-old lawyer, gets roped into working on a divorce case, her life takes an unexpected turn. Though this gives her a new perspective on life, it also forces her to confront some unresolved childhood issues. Except for a few tearful, poignant moments, I had a smile on my face for the entire book. Engaging and humorous, this debut epistolary novel has become a favorite read.” – Jennifer Asimakopoulos, Indian Prairie Public Library, Darien, IL

Kill Fee, Owen Laukkanen, (Penguin/Putnam; Recorded Books)

“In the third book in this series, Carla Windermere and Kirk Stevens find themselves reunited when people around the country seem to be dying from contract hits. Young war veterans, under the influence of a mysterious man, are turning into emotionless killers. Stevens and Windermere try piecing together who’s behind the crimes, but keep falling one step behind. Reminiscent of Thomas Perry’s novels, and fast-paced.” – Lora Bruggeman, Indian Prairie Public Library, Darien, IL


Promise of a PencilThe Promise of a Pencil, Adam Braum

PW calls this an “exuberant testimony to the power of idealism.” The author, who founded Pencils of Promise, a nonprofit that has built over 250 schools around the world, is scheduled for CBS This Morning and Morning Joe next week.

The book will be a Parade ”Pick” this Sunday.


Thursday, March 13th, 2014

Annihilation   Authority   Acceptance

Here’s your chance to read the SECOND book in a trilogy, just as excitement begins to build for the first.

The books in Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy are arriving in such quick succession that the galley for the second book, Authority, (Macmillan/FSG, May 6), is available now (if you’re at PLA, Talia Sherer from Macmillan says they have it at their booth; it’s also available as an e-galley on Edelweiss). The publishing schedule is so accelerated, that it was the springboard for a NYT publishing story.

The first in the trilogy, Annihilation, (Macmillan/FSG, Feb 4), gets a remarkable review in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly. While the reviewer only gives it a B+, he is clearly captivated beyond that rating, saying it’s “one of the weirdest books” he’s ever read and that, “Like all the great weird books, Annihilation will scare you and move you, and you might never know why.” The Washington Post reviewer echoes that sentiment, “Annihilation is successfully creepy, an old-style gothic horror novel set in a not-too-distant future. The best bits turn your mind inside out.” For more on what inspired the author, read his interview in Wired.

It’s also received buzz from librarians on GalleyChat, as Robin Beerbower reported earlier this week.

The third in the series, Acceptance, is set to arrive in Sept. Happily, the series are in trade paperback, lowering the risk to try them. Several libraries we checked are showing holds.

Backlist Best Seller: GEEK LOVE

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Geek LoveA former Paris Reviw editor pays tribute in Wired this week to the “dazzling oddball masterpiece,” Geek Love, by Katherine Dunn (Knopf, 1989), on the 25th anniversary of its release, citing its many well-known fans. Author Karen Russell recalls discovering it at 15, “I felt electrocuted when I read that first page with Crystal Lil and her freak brood. I stood there in the bookstore and my jaw came unhinged. No book I’ve read, before or since, has given me that specific jolt.”

Although it had success in its day (it was a National Book Award finalist), the novel brought in more royalties for Dunn last year than in any year before.

The piece also includes some lore for publishing geeks; it was legendary editor Sonny Mehta’s first acquisition for Knopf and was designed by the then little-known Chip Kidd’s.

All copies are out in circulation at the libraries we checked.


Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

The U.K. trailer for Half Of A Yellow Sun has just been released, starring Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave). As yet, it has not been scheduled for release in the U.S.

When it premiered at the Toronto International Film festival, Variety damned it with faint praise, calling it an “attractive adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s bestseller … a diverting but surface-level saga that, true to its title, feels less than whole.”

The novel it is based on, Half Of A Yellow Sun, (RH/Knopf, 2006), fared much better with the critics. It won the Women’s Prize for Fiction (then called the Orange Prize) and the author was selected as one of the best writers under 40 by The New Yorker.

In a live interview in the Huffington Post last week, Adichie says her most recent novel, Americanah, (Knopf, 2013), is quite different from her earlier works, calling it her “middle finger” book, the one in which she does not “follow the rules.” It was just released in paperback and in audio (Recorded Books). UPDATE, 3/13/14: The book has won the NBCC prize for fiction


Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

The GoldfinchThe producers behind The Hunger Games announced that they have acquired the option to adapt Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, possibly as a TV mini-series. According to The Wrap, the producers are currently looking for a director and no stars have been named.

The novel, Tartt’s third, was named as one of the best books of the year by multiple sources and is on the NYT Hardcover Fiction Best Seller at #3 after 19 weeks.

Says producer Nina Jacobson: “We’ve been thinking we are more likely to make a limited series for TV. There’s so much scope to the book. At the same time, a film-maker could come in with a perspective that changes our mind.”

GALLEYCHATTER: Eight Titles To Top Your TBR Pile

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Editor’s Note: We’re delighted to welcome Robin Beerbower as the regular “GalleyChatter” columnist for EarlyWord. Robin’s day job is as the  readers’ advisor and homebound services coordinator for the Salem [OR] Public Library. She has been a supporter of GalleyChat from its inception, calling those discussions “pure gold for selectors and readers advisors.” She’s enthusiastic about the importance (and fun) of reading books ahead of publication and tirelessly tracks down galleys, making her the local authority on new books. She is also very active on the Edelwiss Community Board, using it to spot titles and gauge developing buzz among librarians (you can join in; just register on Edelweiss and “friend” Robin). She plans to write regular roundups on the titles she discovers through the monthly GalleyChats, with regular updates on books to watch for.

From Robin:
Thanks to everyone on GalleyChat for their warm reception about my contributions to EarlyWord, and thanks to Nora for giving me this opportunity. The chats are  fast and furious with tweets flying everywhere. I’ll do my best to summarize each chat (for a full transcript, check our board on Storify).

GalleyChats are held on Twitter the first Tuesday of each month. The next one is on April 1. Please join us (details here).

Below are the titles that rose to the top of the TBR lists as we chatted last week. If you haven’t received print galleys of these titles, check for e-galleys on NetGalley and Edelweiss.

All The Light We Cannot See   9781616203214_95fa2

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Scribner, May 2014; Audio exclusive from MidWest Tape), a historical novel set in occupied France during WWII, received high praise from a couple of chatters including Susan Balla, who called it “A once-in-a-lifetime book.” The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin (Algonquin, April 2014), a moving novel set in a small island bookstore, also received an outpouring of love from multiple chatters. Vicki Nesting said she wanted to reread it as soon as she finished, and it has received “Much Love” from 47 peers on Edelweiss. Scroll through those reviews; you’ll be convinced (UPDATE: it’s the #1 title on the just released April LibraryReads list). Selectors, stock up on this one.

Bees Kristi Chadwick said the intriguing novel set in a beehive, The Bees by Laline Paull (HC/Ecco, May 2014), was amazing, and during the January chat, Wilda Williams from Library Journal called it “a Watership Down for insects.”

authorityTwo science fiction/fantasy books received several mentions. The e-galley of Jeff VanderMeer’s second book in the Southern Reach trilogy, Authority (Macmillan/FSG, May 2014), was well received by Megan McArdle, who loved the first book,  Annihilation. The Macmillan rep reported the good news that the third book, Acceptance, will be released next September. Katherine Addison’s The Goblin Emperor (Tor, April 2014) was mentioned by multiple members with Jane Jorgenson saying it was the best fantasy she’s read in years. Addison also writes the Doctrine of Labyrinth series as Sarah Monnette.

Suspense thrillers were popular during the exchange with the third in the Keye Street series, Don’t Talk to Strangers by Amanda Kyle Williams (RH/Bantam, July, 2014), at the top of the list. Jane Jorgenson said  ”It’s got good, claustrophobic, small-town feel – kind of reminds me of the mood of  True Detective (love).”  This has been a popular readalike series for Karin Slaughter and Lisa Gardner fans. Chevy Stevens’That Night and Chelsea Cain’s departure from the Sheridan/Lowell series, One Kick,(Simon & Schuster, August 2014) received nods from fans of their earlier books.

life drawing

My personal favorite of the past month was Robin Black’s Life Drawing (RH, July 2014), a gorgeously written suspenseful study of marriage and betrayal. Not exactly a Gone Girl readalike but just as compelling.

If you read any of these mentioned books, please let us know what you enjoyed by either entering your comments below or in Edelweiss.

Happy Reading!

STILL ALICE Begins Shooting

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

Still AliceThe film adaptation of Lisa Genova’s 2008 best seller, Still Alice, (S&S/Gallery) began filming in New York City today (in Harlem, to be more exact), as planned, even though the cast may have wished to be somewhere warmer.

The celebrity sites are all over the stars as they report for duty. The Daily Mail Online snapped Julianne Moore, who plays the lead, Alice, as well as Alec Baldwin who plays her husband, John.  E! Online photographs Kristen Stewart, who plays Alice’s younger daughter Lydia, while Gossip Center reveals Kate Bosworth’s new hair color for her role as Alice’s older daughter, Anna.

This Week on Comedy Central

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

This week, Jon Stewart gives rare attention to a novelist (who happens to be well-known as the creator of Family Guy and director of Ted). The rest of the week, he returns to his interest in politics and the future. Colbert should have fun on Tuesday with “the rockstar of the Internet,” Jaron Lanier.

A Million Ways to Dine in the West

Monday, March 3, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Seth MacFarlane, A Million Ways to Die in the West, (RH/Ballantine; RH Audio; BOT; March 4).

Billed as MacFarlane’s debut novel, this actually began life as a screenplay. A movie of the same title, starring Charlize Theron, Amanda Seyfried, Liam Neeson, as well as MacFarlane himself, premieres on May 30th.

The Wall Street Journal interviewed MacFarlane last week, saying, “In an inversion of the usual adaptation process, Mr. MacFarlane reverse-engineered A Million Ways to Die in the West from a script he co-wrote with his friends and frequent collaborators, Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild.” Guess they never heard of a novelization. Describing the book, the article adds, “The novel is likely to be polarizing—with some finding it bitingly funny and fresh and others dismissing it as juvenile—much like his animated shows and his blockbuster 2012 comedy Ted.”

The trailer for the movie, below (warning, NOT for the squeamish and also NSFW):

The rest of the week:

Falling in Love with America  Who Owns the Future  The Next America

Tuesday, March 4

Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Jim DeMint, former South Carolina senator, a leading tea partner, and now CEO of conservative think tank, The Heritage Foundation. His new book is Falling in Love with America Again, (Hachette/Center Street, March, 2014).

The Colbert Report

Jaron Lanier, Who Owns the Future?, (trade pbk reprint, March 4, S&S) — Originally published last year, The New York Times called this “brilliant” and “daringly original.”

Thursday, March 6

Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Paul Taylor, The Next America: Boomers, Millennials, and the Looming Generational Showdown, (Perseus/PublicAffairs, Feb. 11) — The Washington Post calls this a  ”masterful synthesis of polls.”


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.