Archive for the ‘Thriller’ Category

Girl On The Train: A Nonstop Ride

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-02-03 at 8.16.56 AMAttention to Paula Hawkins and her #1 bestseller The Girl on the Train (Penguin/Riverhead; OverDrive Sample) continues, indicating the novel’s popularity won’t peak soon. The New York Times devoted some of its Friday book coverage to the title again, publishing a profile of Hawkins and likening her to “a new generation of female suspense novelists — writers like Megan Abbott, Tana French, Harriet Lane and Gillian Flynn — who are redefining contemporary crime fiction with character-driven narratives that defy genre conventions. Their novels dig into social issues, feature complex women who aren’t purely victims or vixens, and create suspense with subtle psychological developments and shifts in relationships instead of procedural plot points and car chases.”

Screen Shot 2015-02-03 at 8.26.55 AMThe Washington Post agrees, pairing GOTT with Harriet Lane’s Her (Hachette/Little, Brown; OverDrive Sample, Jan. 6) and pointing out that both feature “a troubled Englishwoman who takes an almost morbid interest in another person or persons. At first merely voyeurs, the two women soon become meddlers.” The Post reviewer, Dennis Drabelle, finds Her the better novel, deeming it “brilliant” while saying GOTT makes “the reader feel a bit manipulated.”

Screen Shot 2015-02-03 at 8.27.51 AMAnother book published nearly at the same time as GOTT, Tim Johnston’s Descent, (Workman/Algonquin; OverDrive Sample, 12/10/14), is getting similar review attention as part of the newest Gone Girl crowd. As we reported earlier, both The Washington Post and NPR give it high praise. NPR went so far as to say that it makes Gone Girl “seem gimmicky and forced.”

Readers’ advisors looking for even more books to pair with GOTT might think back to the 2011 debut literary thriller, Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson (HarperCollins; OverDrive Sample) – another twisty and riveting novel about a woman with memory issues (the author’s next book, Second Life is coming in May from Harper). GalleyChatter Robin Beerbower predicts the next GOTT is the just-released The Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson, (HarperCollins/Morrow), one of our Nine Titles to Know for the week.

Meanwhile, GOTT continues to gather steam on its own. The Los Angeles Review of Books, known for its literary bent, jumps on board combining an essay on artistic theory with a deep appreciation of the novel. Reviewer Kim Kankiewicz compares the book to Hitchcock, as many reviewers do, saying “nothing replicated my response to Rear Window until I read Paula Hawkins’ debut novel, The Girl on the Train … Hawkins writes as an astute reader of her own genre. She anticipates us as we anticipate her. She confirms our suspicions gradually, and our pleasure in the ending is heightened by what we saw coming.”

Fans of Hawkins can look forward to her next outing. The New York Times profile reports that Hawkins “has another book under contract, a Gothic-tinged psychological thriller about sisters that she says is now a month overdue. Like The Girl on the Train, it’s not a conventional crime story.”

Lisbeth Returns

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

13014080_O_1   Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

The fourth book in The Millennial series, which began with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, (Swedish cover on the left, above, next to the familiar American cover) will be published in August, as originally announced at the end of 2013, confirms the Swedish publisher Norstedts. Titled That Which Does Not Kill, it is written by the Swedish journalist and author David Lagercrantz.

There’s not much information available on the content of the book. As The Guardian comments, “the author remained tight-lipped about the meaning of the title or what direction the action-packed political thriller – 500 pages long in Swedish – will take,” telling the Dagens Nyheter newspaper, simply “What I wanted to make use of in the book was the vast mythology that Stieg Larsson left behind, the world he created.” When the project was first announced, the publisher said 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 a legal dispute over ownership of the rights to the unfinished manuscript).

There’s no news yet on which company will publish the book in the U.S. and the possible contenders represent a tale of modern publishing consolidation. The previous titles in The Millennial series were published in the U.K. by Quercus and in the U.S. by RH/Knopf. Since then, Quercus opened offices in the U.S., launching in 2013 with a collection of Larsson’s articles, The Expo Files. After financial struggles, the entire company was acquired by Hachette last September and, according to  PW,  a new publisher of the U.S. division was named just a couple of weeks ago, reporting to the Little, Brown imprint. So, the Swedish publisher may have followed tradition and sold the rights to the Quercus division Hachette in the U.K., followed by RH/Knopf in the U.S., or they may have sold both the U.S. and U.K. rights to Hachette.

Then again, they maybe going with another publisher entirely. There also remains the question of whether a Stieg Larsson book without Stieg Larsson will attract readers.

Trailer: CHILD 44

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

Before it was published in 2008, Ridley Scott bought the film rights to the heavily promoted, and well-received debut Cold War era thriller, Child 44, (Hachette/Grand Central), by Tom Rob Smith. A trailer was just released for the resulting film that will land in theaters on April 17

Directed by Daniel Espinosa (Safe House), it stars Tom Hardy as a demoted Russian secret police agent battling both his superiors and his unhappy wife, played by Noomi Rapace, as he tries to track down a serial killer who targets children.

The book was the first in a trilogy, followed by The Secret Speech (2009) and  Agent 6, (2012).

Tie-in (for other movie tie-ins, check our Edelweiss collection; for other upcoming book adaptations, check our listing):

Child 44
Tom Rob Smith
Hachette/Grand Central: March 31, 2015
Trade Paperback

THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN is #1

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Girl on the TrainWe’re hearing rumors that the debut rapidly racking up holds in libraries, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, (Penguin/Riverhead; Thorndike; BOT Audio ClipOverDrive Sample), will hit the tomorrow’s NYT best seller list at #1.

UPDATE: EarlyWord just received confirmation from the publisher that it is indeed an instant best seller, debuting on the Feb. 1st list, to be released online tomorrow.

This makes it only the second debut in recent history to arrive at #1 in its first week on sale (the record was set in 2005 by Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian).

The book it is often compared to, Gone Girl, Gillian Flynn’s third novel, also made its debut on the list at #1 in June, 2012.

Author Paul Hawkins is one of the speakers at the upcoming ALA Midwinter Meeting, on the LibraryReads/AAP panel (sorry, that event is now completely booked). She will also sign in Penguin Booth #4823 on Jan. 31, from 3:00 to 4:00 pm.

FINDERS KEEPERS Follows
MR. MERCEDES

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

Mr. MercedesIn June, Stephen King announced a followup to Mr. Mercedes, the second in a planned trilogy, titled Finders Keepers, (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio; 6/2/15).

Yesterday, it was announced that the first book is being developed as a limited series for the small screen, to be directed by Jack Bender who did the adaptation of King’s Under the Dome, that aired on CBS last year.

Got GOTT?

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

Girl on the TrainThe major debut of the season, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, (Penguin/Riverhead; Thorndike; BOT Audio Clip; OverDrive Sample), arrives today. Library holds continue to skyrocket, so check to make sure you’ve received your copies.

USA Today just added their review to the mix (as we’ve been tracking, Janet Maslin’s rave in the NYT piqued interest, cemented by attention from People and Entertainment Weekly).  Although USA Today gives it just 3 stars of 4, the final line is a clincher, “Train takes a while to get rolling, but once it does, hang on tight. You’ll be surprised by what horrors lurk around the bend.”

Local papers are beginning to cover it; many feature a review by the Associated Press, “British journalist Paula Hawkins deftly imbues her debut psychological thriller with inventive twists and a shocking denouement.”

The book is currently at #15 on Amazon sales rankings, making it the #2 hardcover fiction title, after Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See, (S&S/Scribner). It’s a shoe-in for the NYT list.

NIGHT MANAGER Coming To AMC

Monday, January 12th, 2015

ibg.common.titledetail.imageloader-2AMC has landed the rights to a TV mini-series adaptation of The Night Manager, based on the 1993 novel by by John le Carré. Starring Tom Hiddleston (The Avengers) and Hugh Laurie (House), it will be directed by Academy Award winner Susanne Bier (In a Better World) and is set to begin shooting this spring.

The author’s first post-Cold War novel, it was a best seller, but is no longer in print and is not on recent critics’s lists of the author’s best works:

John le Carré Starter Kit – Dwight Garner, NY Times

Which Is the Best John le Carré Novel?  David Denby, The New Yorker

6 Classic le Carré Novels to Read After A Most Wanted Man, New York magazine

Top 10 John le Carré novelsTelegraph

Shooting has wrapped on a movie adaptation of another le Carre novel, Our Kind of Traitor, (Penguin/Viking, 2010), starring Ewan McGregor, Naomie Harris and Damian Lewis, directed by Susanna White. A U.S. release date has not been announced.

Readers Advisory: DESCENT

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015

9781616203047_5fa81

In the Washington Post, Patrick Anderson gives high praise to Tim Johnston’s Descent, (Workman/Algonquin; OverDrive Sample; Jan 6), saying it is the most powerful thriller he’s read that uses the popular theme of a missing girl — more powerful than Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Dennis Lehane’s Mystic River, or Laura Lippman’s What the Dead Know. He adds, “The story unfolds brilliantly, always surprisingly, but the glory of Descent lies not in its plot but in the quality of the writing.”

On NPR’s web site, Alan Cheuse uses a different comparison, saying, “Tim Johnston has written a book that makes Gone Girl seem gimmicky and forced.”

Check your catalogs; several libraries have not yet ordered it. Those that have are showing holds, heavy in some areas.

Heavy Holds Alert: THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN

Monday, January 5th, 2015

9781594633669_dc9b1When the NYT‘s Janet Maslin reviews a debut ahead of publication, it signals that she sees a hit coming. In the case of The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, (Penguin/Riverhead, Jan. 13), which Maslin reviews today, her expectation is further backed up by heavy holds in libraries, averaging 10:1.

A January LibraryReads pick, this debut began drawing attention from librarians on GalleyChat back in August. It is one of three titles Entertainment Weekly considers a possible successor to Gone Girl, along with the “buzzy” The Kind Worth Killing, Peter Swanson, (HarperCollins/Morrow, Feb. 3) and “the most understated an plausible of the three,” The Daylight Marriage by Heidi Pitlor, (Workman/Algonquin, May 5).

Maslin credits The Girl on the Train with having “more fun with unreliable narration than any chiller since Gone Girl,” (which she also reviewed ahead of publication) and though she doesn’t find it as “clever or swift,” she expects it to also draw a “large, bedazzled readership.”

Fair warning to increase those orders.

The Jimmy Fallon Bump

Friday, December 5th, 2014

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The cover boy for Entertainment Weekly‘s year-end wrap up was asked to comment on his favorites of the year.

Waxing eloquent about 9781439177723_b60cfhis favorite book, I Am Pilgrim, by Terry Hayes (S&S/ Atria/Emily Bestler, 5/27; trade paperback just released), he said,

”Dude, freak out. That’s my new Gone Girl. Gone Girl was the last book that I couldn’t put down. Seriously, email me when you read it. You’ll be five chapters in, and you’ll look up and be like, ‘Dude!”’

The next title in the series is coming in June.

Watch for galleys, Dude!

9781439177754_aefefThe Year of the Locust

S&S/ Atria/Emily Bestler Books

June 2, 2015

9781439177754, 1439177759

GONE GIRL Unchanged

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

Gone GirlReviews of David Fincher’s film adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl are arriving, in advance of its premiere on Friday at the New York Film Festival. Word is strong, with Rolling Stone calling it “shockingly good” and ” the date-night movie of the decade,” some seeing Oscars on the horizon. There are, of course, a naysayer or two (“bait too slick,” Village Voice).

One thing the reviews agree upon; the ending has not been changed. Still, New York magazine says there are reasons to read the book first.

The movie opens in theaters on Oct. 3.

KICK Gets Boost From Maslin

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

9781476749785_a7da7Chelsea Cain’s latest, One Kick, (S&S; S&S Audio), releasing today, is the beginning of a new series, one that the NYT‘s Janet Maslin says “is capable of reaching a much broader audience because it is far less gruesome [than the author’s Gretchen Lowell series], at least by Ms. Cain’s standards.”

The reviewer for sister publication, the NYT Book Review, however, sees it as an “unsettling new thriller, which delves into the bleak and disturbing subject of child abduction and pedophilia,” and compares the protagonist to Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander.

See how disturbing you find it, by reading the OverDrive Sample.

One Kick is also the #1 LibraryReads pick for August.

Holds are currently modest in most libraries, but if Maslin’s prediction proves true, they are likely to grow.

BIG LITTLE LIES To Movies

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

big little lies  What Alice Forgot  The Husband's Secret

Following in the footsteps of Gillian Flynn, author Liane Moriarty has been discovered by Hollywood. Three of her six novels are now in development.

Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon’s production companies just joined forces to option her latest, Big Little Lies, (Penguin/Putnam/Einhorn; Penguin Audio; Recorded Books; Thorndike). Released last week, it got a prepub rave from the NYT‘s Janet Maslin, followed by another stellar review in the Washington Post. Unsurprisingly, given that her previous title, The Husband’s Secret, (Penguin/Putnam/Einhorn, 2013), only recently began dropping on best seller lists, it arrives at #3 on today’s USA Today list,.

Both actress/producers seem to have developed a taste for domestic thrillers. Kidman stars in Before I Go to Sleep, opening Sept. 12, based on the novel by S.J. Watson (Harper, 2011). She’s also bought the rights to The Silent Wife, by A. S. A. Harrison (Penguin original trade pbk, 2013). Witherspoon is a producer for Gone Girl, based on the novel by Gillian Flynn (RH/Crown, 2012), which releases on Oct. 2

It may be a race to see which Moriarity title makes it to the screen first. What Alice Forgot(Penguin/Putnam/Einhorn, 2011) is in development, with David Frankel attached as director. Also in development, but with no director attached as yet, is The Husband’s Secret to be produced by CBS Films.

Moriarty talks about The Husband’s Secret below (the video was produced by the author’s U.K. publisher and therefore features the U.K. cover):

Koryta Gains Fans

Monday, July 21st, 2014

9780316279963_05770Reviwer love is growing for Michael Koryta’s. latest thriller, Those Who Wish Me Dead, (Hachette/Little, Brown, 6/3/14).

Featured yesterday as one of of NPR.org’s “You Must Read This” picks, it gets this strong recommendation, “If you want an elegantly written, taut thriller with an amazing sense of place, then look no further.” It’s on the Amazon’s editors’ list of the Best Books of the Year So Far (even though it is published by Hachette, the company Amazon is famously feuding with), and  Janet Maslin praised it last week in the New York Times.

The NPR reviewer ends by saying, “Koryta, I might add, is only 31 years old. I mention this not to be ageist — but to delight in the fact that he’s got a lot of time to keep on telling us stories. That, dear readers, is great news for us.”

We can add that Koryta already has a considerable body of work, having published ten novels.

Several of Koryta’s books, including Those Who Wish Me Dead, are in development for films or television.

Third Gillian Flynn Book Set for Adaptation

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

Sharp ObjectsThis time, it’s for a TV series.

Gillian Flynn’s debut Sharp Objects, (RH/ Shaye Areheart Books, 2006) is being developed as a one-hour serialized drama, according to many sources, including Entertainment Weekly.  Marti Noxon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) will handle day-to-day operations as the show runner, with Flynn as one of the executive producers. It has not yet been sold to a network.

The novel was an Edgar Award finalist for best first novel and Stephen King was a big supporter, 

To say this is a terrific debut novel is really too mild. I haven’t read such a relentlessly creepy family saga since John Farris’s All Heads Turn as the Hunt Goes By, and that was thirty years ago, give or take. Sharp Objects isn’t one of those scare-and-retreat books; its effect is cumulative. I found myself dreading the last thirty pages or so but was helpless to stop turning them. Then, after the lights were out, the story just stayed there in my head, coiled and hissing, like a snake in a cave. An admirably nasty piece of work, elevated by sharp writing and sharper insights.

Two movies based on the other books by Flynn arrive this fall. Dark Places, starring Charlize Theron, is listed for release on September 1 (although some sites list it as still TBD), and Gone Girl, starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike and Neil Patrick Harris, on October 3.