Among the titles eagerly awaited next week, as evidenced by holds, is Liane Moriarity’s Big Little Lies (Penguin/Putnam/Einhorn; Penguin Audio; Recorded Books; Thorndike), the author’s next tile after last year’s The Husband’s Secret, which is still on best seller lists and still on hold in many libraries.
The NYT’s Janet Maslin included it in her summer reading roundup and reviewed it yesterday, saying it may have “even more staying power than The Husband’s Secret.” and adds “‘a low-level bitchiness thrums throughout the narrative, becoming one of its indispensable pleasures.”
Hollywood has also discovered Moriarity. Both The Husband’s Secret and her 2011 title, What Alice Forgot are in development (The Devil Wears Prada’ director. David Frankel, is attached to the latter). This is not to be confused with another adaptation of a book about an Alice with memory issues. Still Alice, adapted from the book by Lisa Genova, starring Kristen Stewart, Julianne Moore and Kate Bosworth is completed and set to premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival.
For readers who can’t get their hands on Big Little Lies, you can recommend the debut domestic thriller, Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little, (Penguin; Recorded Books). About a former celebrity, accused of killing her mother, a crime she does not remember committing, LJ says “Fans of Tana French and Gillian Flynn are going to enjoy the smart narrator and the twists and turns in the case” and PW approves of the “entertainingly caustic first-person narrative.”
“Is a family the people you are born to, or the people who you find along the way? That’s what Bloom explores in this novel set in pre- and post-WWII Ohio, Los Angeles, New York and Germany. The story follows resourceful Eva, who was abandoned by her mother at an early age, and her sister Iris, an aspiring actress who tries to find love at a time when her kind of love must be secretive. Every character is beautifully drawn, warm, and believable.” — Kathryn Hassert, Henrietta Hankin Branch Library, Chester Springs, PA
President Richard Nixon is in the media again, 40 years after he resigned over the Watergate scandal. Two new books timed for the anniversary will receive media attention. John Dean, his White House Counsel and mastermind of the Watergate coverup, later became a key witness for the prosecution, He is publishing The Nixon Defense, in which he reflects on what he learned from the tapes of Watergate conversations that Nixon secretly recorded. Time magazine begins their interview with Dean with the provocative question, “You recruited G. Gordon Liddy to run President Nixon’s dirty-tricks campaign and were intimately involved in the cover-up. Why should a reader pay for your judgment on Watergate?” His convincing response is that he may be the one person most qualified to shed light on what motivated that perplexing person. Dean is scheduled for appearances on CBS Sunday Morning, MSNBC Morning Joe and the NPR Diane Rehm show.
For readers who want to experience the tapes first hand, historians Douglas Brinkley and Luke Nichter have transcribed them for The Nixon Tapes: 1971-1972.
The flow of big titles slows down a bit next week. Two of the author’s names may make you feel like you’ve been listening to the 70′s soundtrack for Guardians of the Galaxy. Danielle Steel’s A Perfect Life (RH/Doubeday; RH large print; Brilliance Audio) leads in holds, although many fewer than one would have expected earlier in her career. Even Tom Clancy returns posthumously, in the third in the Campus series with co-author mark Greany, Tom Clancy Support and Defend, (Penguin/Putnam; RH Auido; Thorndike). Also drawing holds is Elizabeth Adler’s suspense novel, Last to Know (Macmillan/Minotaur).
As a result, reviewers have some breathing space to cover earlier releases.The New York Times gave Michael Kortya’s Those Who Wish Me Dead, (Hachette/Little, Brown), published early last month, a stellar review on Thursday (unlike sister publication, the NYT Book Review, the daily NYT generally covers new or forthcoming books).
Below are four other titles to be aware of next week.
NOTE: We’re experiencing technical difficulties in creating our usual downloadable spreadsheet of notable titles arriving next week. We’ll post it as soon as we can work them out.
In the Media
Clinton, Inc: The Audacious Rebuilding of a Political Machine, Daniel Halper, (HarperCollins/Broadside Books)
By the online editor of The Weekly Standard, this is, unsurprisingly, deeply critical of the Clintons. Also unsurprisingly, the book was embargoed and was mysteriously leaked last weekend, which is only adding to the media attention.
Librarians had an early peek at this first title in the two-part series, including a chat with the author, in our Penguin Debut Authors program, It came out in February, setting the stage for fans to eagerly anticipate the quick conclusion. A mashup of recently poplar genres, dystopian science fiction and domestic thriller, it’s received large amount of “much love” on Edelweiss, plus several peer reviews that indicate a passion these books (much stronger than the lackluster pre-pub reviews would indicate).
Who can resist a dog memoir? Not theL.A. Times, which runs down a brief history of them in their revies this book about the author’s unusual attempt to bond with his dog by taking a road trip across the country with him (it seems his is an unusual dog. The book’s opening line is. “I don’t think my dog likes me very much.”)
Tomlinson Hill: The Remarkable Story of Two Families who Share the Tomlinson Name – One White, One Black, Chris Tomlinson, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s)
Tomlinson, an AP foreign correspondent, went back to his home town in Texas and discovered the truth about his slave-owning ancestors. Some PBS stations ran a filmed version of the story earlier this year and others are doing so now. Below is the book trailer.
Leading in holds of the books that arrive next week is the return of Daniel Silva’s art restorer and occasional spy for Israel, Gabriel Allon in The Heist, (Harper; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe) in which he searches for a stolen Caravaggio. Close behind is Stone Barrington’s newest outing, Cut and Thrustby Stuart Woods, (Penguin/Putnam; Recorded Books; Thorndike). Publishers Weekly gives it a fitting summary, “This installment goes down as smoothly as a glass of Knob Creek.”
Holds are also heavy for relative newcomer, Deborah Harkness’s The Book of Life, (Penguin/Viking; Recorded Books; Penguin Audio; Thorndike), the final book in her All Souls trilogy, which began in 2011 with A Discovery of Witches, (a book we predicted would be a hit, but then, what librarian could resist a novel set in the Bodleian?)
All the books mentioned here, as well as several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, with ordering information and alternate formats – New Title Radar, Week of July 14, 2014
Holds are growing on modest orders for this memoir/literary biography about the author’s relationship with Harper Lee. The Washington Post gave it a gotta-read review yesterday and notes a library connection, “As a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, Mills was assigned to write about Monroeville [the town where Harper Lee lived] when To Kill a Mockingbird was chosen to launch Chicago’s One Book, One Chicago program on the 41st anniversary of its publication.”
“A warm and engaging telling of the life story of Harper Lee. Like no other biography, this book offers insights directly from Lee’s point of view as shared with the journalist she and her sister embraced in friendship late in their lives. Informative and delightful!” — Jan Fisher, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT
Factory Man: How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local – and Helped Save an American Town, Beth Macy, (Hachette/Little, Brown)
Since the NYT’s Janet Maslin declared earlier this week that this book is, “in a class with other runaway debuts like Laura Hillenbrand’s Seabiscuit and Katherine Boo’s Behind the Beautiful Forevers … Ms. Macy writes so vigorously that she hooks you instantly. You won’t be putting this book down,” holds have grown on light ordering.
EarlyWord’s GalleyChatter Robin Beerbower has been urging librarians to read this debut novel ever since the first of the year, calling it “a gorgeously written suspenseful study of marriage and betrayal. Not exactly a Gone Girl readalike but just as compelling.” It was also singled out as one of a dozen Great Summer Reads by People magazine.
The PW review has so many quotable lines, it’s difficult to excerpt, “ A middle-aged married couple, their new friend, and her daughter interact, sometimes stormily, in this emotionally complex novel …Beginning with the information that one of these characters is now dead, the book draws the reader in from the first page and builds narrative tension almost ceaselessly to the bitter end …An astute inquiry into relationships and betrayal, this novel is nerve-wracking yet irresistibly readable.”
“Still the last policeman, Detective Hank Palace tirelessly pulls together clues from crime scenes and interrogates witnesses to find his missing sister. Winters paints a believable picture of a world awaiting its end thanks to an asteroid on a collision course. A great series for mystery and science fiction lovers, as well as anyone looking for a pre-apocalyptic tale without a single zombie.” — Jenna Persick, Chester County Library, Exton, PA
Bestselling veteran Catherine Coulter is number one in total holds for book arriving next week, with the 18th title in her FBI series, Power Play, (Penguin/Putnam; Brilliance Audio; Thorndike). A distant second is Brad Thor with the 13th in his Scot Harvath series, Act of War: A Thriller, (S&S/Atria/Emily Bestler; S&S Audio; Thorndike).
YA author Veronica Roth feeds the interest in her Divergent series with a companion title, Four: A Divergent Collection (HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen; HarperAudio). These stories were originally released as ebooks beginning in 2012, and are now collected in a hardback volume. Since the success of the Divergent movie, the 25-year-old author is interviewed by The Hollywood Reporterabout the new title. The original Divergent trilogy is told from Tris’s perspective (played by Shailene Woodley). These stories are from the point of view of the male lead, Four (played by Theo James). THR reports, it “includes three pre-Divergent stories, one story that runs parallel with the events in Divergent, and three additional scenes from Divergent.” Holds are outstripping orders in most libraries.
Librarians are fans of Chris Bohjalian, and he returns the favor, helping library fund raisers, such as the one for Howard County [MD] P.L earlier this year. His new book, Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands, (RH/Doubleday; RH Large Print; RH Audio) arrives next week and is a LibraryReads pick. As the recommendation makes clear, Bohjalian again takes on many issues:
“Thousands of lives are irrevocably changed by a nuclear disaster in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. When her parents are blamed, Emily becomes homeless and her situation, desperate. Told retrospectively, Emily’s story is devastating to read, but her passionate interest in Emily Dickinson comes with flashes of brilliance and a growing acceptance of her past.” — Kim Storbeck, Timberland Regional Library, Tumwater, WA
All the titles mentioned here and several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, with full ordering information and alternate formats – New Title Radar, Week of 7/7/14
Copies of the above titles will all be going out to holds. Below are a few that you may actually be able to put in readers hands:
Here’s a great R.A. handle. None other than Kareem Abdul-Jabbar recommended this book in Esquire as a way to understand women. The story of two women whose childhood friendship endures through the very different paths they take in adulthood, Abdul-Jabbar says he “was blown away by the poetic prose and depth of characterization. The blunt honesty of the women’s perspective will be a revelation for many men.”
One of our Pegnuin First Flighs authors (read our online chat with the author here), Sweterlitsch’s novel is about an archivist who investigates insurance claims for people killed in a massive explosion in Pittsburgh via a virtual reality recreation of the city. It was picked by LJ as a SF/Fantasy Debut of the Month and as one of Summer’s Best Debuts
More Library Reads Picks
In addition to Chris Bohjalian’s Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands, here are more LibraryReads picks arriving next week, with recommendations you can crib from fellow librarians.
“Landline explores the delicate balance women make between work and family, considering the tradeoffs and pain. Rowell has a special gift for offering incredible insights into ordinary life. Never heavy-handed, Rowell’s writing is delivered with humor and grace. I finish all of her books wanting to laugh and cry at the same time–they are that moving. Landline captured my heart.” — Andrea Larson, Cook Memorial Public Library, Libertyville, IL It was also picked by People as one of a dozen Great Summer Reads
“Driven away from the violence of cities and a crumbling society, Cal and Frida live an isolated existence, struggling to survive on what they grow and forage. When an unplanned pregnancy pushes the couple to search for other people, they discover an unexpected community. This well-written debut is great for apocalyptic fiction fans and fans of realistic, character-driven fiction.” — Sara Kennedy, Delaware County District Library, Delaware, OH
A movie of this fantasy is the works starring Emma Watson, so, of course, some have called it “The next Harry Potter.” It’s also been called “a female Game of Thrones.” Watson herself has talked about her love for this debut novel, but we’ll go with the LibraryReads recommendation:
“The first of a trilogy, this book is so much more than just another fantasy. Yes, there is magic, a princess and a really bad queen, but there is also an apocalyptic twist that makes readers hungry for the next installment. This book caught me from the first page and kept me guessing till the last. A great read!” — Cindy Stevens, Pioneer Library System, Norman, OK
“A body has been found in an elderly recluse’s field, neighbors are fighting over fracking, and meth labs and heroin dealers have settled deep in the woods of Officer Henry Farrell’s Wild Thyme Township. Bouman’s prose reveals not only the beauty of northeastern Pennsylvania, but also abject poverty and despair. A startling debut rich in setting and character with an intricate plot that will stay with readers after the last page.” — Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ
The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose from Defeat to Create the New Majority, Patrick Buchanan, (RH/Crown; RH Audio)
Conservative Buchanan advised Nixon on how to rally the Republican party behind Nixon to win the 1968 election. You can bet his new book will be featured Fox News and The McLaughlin Group, shows where he is a regular.
If I Stay Movie Tie-In, Gayle Forman, (Penguin/Speak)
The 2010 trade paperback reprint has been rising on the NYT YA best seller list ever since the August 22 release date was announced, and it is at #2 as of the 6/6/14 list. The movie stars Chole Moretz as Mia, a 17 year-old who, while in a coma after a car accident, must choose whether to live or die; Jamie Blackley (Snow White And The Huntsman, The Fifth Estate) as her boyfriend Adam; Mirella Enos and Denny Hall, as her parents and Stacy Keach as Gramps. Director R. J Cutler is known for his documentaries, including the Emmy-award-winning American High. In addition to the first trailer, Warner Bros. recently released the “Prologue”:
The lead title next week, in terms of holds and library orders is One Plus Oneby Jojo Moyes, (Viking/Pamela Dorman; Recorded Books; Thorndike). British author Moyes published 12 novels in the same number of years, recently breaking onto best seller lists in 2012 with Me Before You, a novel about the relationship between a quadriplegic and his caregiver that also looked at the issue of assisted suicide. It was such a departure for the author that she worried it would be a tough sell, but it was quite the opposite.
To signal that this book was not a traditional romance, it was given a distinctive all-type cover. The book turned out to be so successful that the format is now being applied to all of Moyes’s novels (see above; a before and after of one of her earlier romances and its just-released paperback reincarnation). Me Before You was followed the next year by The Girl You Left Behind (Penguin/Pamela Dorman; Thorndike), a historical romance, which was more familiar territory for Moyes.
One Plus One is a contemporary romance and a LibraryReads pick:
“A single mom, her math genius daughter, her eye-shadow-wearing stepson, a wealthy computer geek and a smelly dog all get into a car…it sounds like the start of a bad joke, but it’s actually another charming novel from Jojo Moyes. It’s more of a traditional romance than Me Before You, but will also appeal to fans of quirky, hard-working characters. A quick read and perfect for summer.” — Emily Wichman, Clermont County Public Library, Milford, OH
Also showing heavy holds are two very different romances, as indicated by their covers, the second book in Jude Deveraux Nantucket Brides trilogy, For all Time (RH/Ballantine; Thorndike) and Sherrilyn Kenyon, Born of Fury (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press; Macmillan Audio)
Dollbaby. Laura Lane McNeal, (Penguin/Pamela Dorman)
“In this coming-of-age story set in the Civil Rights era, Ibby is dropped off at the home of her eccentric grandmother in New Orleans after the death of her beloved father. Filled with colorful characters, family secrets and lots of New Orleans tidbits, this book will appeal to fans of Saving Ceecee Honeycutt.” — Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA
The HarperCollins Library Marketing team are big fans of this debut and buzzed it at ALA Midwinter (listen to the Book Buzz here). About a jazz singer and her young daughter in 1960′s Chicago, it has inspired raptures among the prepub reviewerss. LJ — “Rotert’s musical background informs Naomi’s passion for performance, but it is her heartbreaking portrait of Sophie [her daughter], so wise yet so vulnerable, that readers will remember long after the final page.” It was starred by Booklist and Kirkus left behind the snark to call it a “tale that’s poignant, poetic and heart-wrenching throughout.”
Liberty’s Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty, Elizabeth Mitchell, Atlantic Monthly Press
This patriotic holiday, recommend a book that debunks many of our notions about our most famous monumental sculpture. Originally planned for a spot overlooking the newly constructed Suez Canal, by a French sculptor trying to make a name for himself, it was finally, and reluctantly, accepted by the U.S. There’s even a weird Real Housewives of New York connection. One of the “housewives,” Countess LuAnn de Lesseps gets her title from her marriage to one of the descendants of the builder of the Suez Canal, Ferdinand de Lesseps.
Featured in the New York Times “Fashion & Style” section last week, former Gawker editor Gould has made a living by talking about herself. Her 8,000 word confessional was featured on the cover of the NYT Magazinein 2008. The NYT says, “a case could be made that Ms. Gould’s warts-and-all brand of self-exposure anticipated a wave of confessional writing that paved the way for Girls, Lena Dunham’s quasi-autobiographical hit on HBO.”
Her novel is about young women in New York who are very much like herself (of course). Booklist calls it “a savvy first novel that, in piercing prose, zeroes in on modern ennui and the catalysts that force even the most apathetic out of their complacency.”
Speakng of oversharing — as the publisher’s promo says about this author, “You know what she says out loud. Can you imagine what she writes in her diary?” and goes on to say:
Anais Nin, Anne Frank and Sylvia Plath wrote the world’s most famous diaries. And where are they today? Dead. But the world’s OTHER great diarist, Joan Rivers, is alive and kicking. And complaining.
In the extraordinary tradition of The Habit of Being: Letters of Flannery O’Connor and George Orwell’s Diaries, comes an intimate and enriching glimpse into the mind of the most illuminating woman-of-letters of her generation—the provocative exploration of an age in which she has lived on and on and on and on.
The watchword for next week is “stand-alones” as many brand-name authors publish books that are not part of their well-known series.
Leading in terms of holds is James Patterson’s Invisible, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Large Print; Hachette Audio), a standalone and his third collaboration with David Ellis, following Guilty Wives and Mistress.
Coming in second, averaging half as many holds, is Karin Slaughter’s stand-alone, Cop Town, (RH/Delacorte).
The prolific Dean Koontz makes his latest appearance in the standalone The City (RH/Bantam; Recorded Books; Thorndike), hard on the heels of Innocence, which came out in December. He has yet another coming this December, the next in his Odd Thomas series, Saint Odd, (RH/Bantam). If you’re wondering what happened to the Odd Thomas movie, after some legal struggles, it was released on demand and DVD in February.
Readers Advisory Tips
Jacqueline Winspear is known for her Maisie Dobbs series, mysteries featuring WWI nurse turned private investigator in London between the wars. The books have arrived in quick succession since the first was published in 2003, and have grown in popularity, hitting best seller lists. Her new book is her first stand-alone, with an intriguing title, The Care and Management of Lies: A Novel of the Great War (Harper; HarperLuxe; Blackstone Audio). The “lies” are the half-truths people tell each other to help them through difficult times. In this case, a woman tries to keep her husband’s spirits up at the front during WWI, through letters that recount sumptuous meals she imagines preparing for him.
This is a stand-alone that may prove to bring new readers to the author, enticing those who came late to the party and may not have been willing to tackle the entire Maisie series. Fans of Maisie need not worry, however, the author is under contract for two more, with the next one, The White Lady, scheduled for some time in 2015
Debuts don’t often get featured on Entertainment Weekly’s “Must List,” so it’s significant that reading this one is on their list of ten necessary things to do in the upcoming week. The book is described as “a propulsive mystery … an explosive debut.”
Many librarians were introduced to the author through our Penguin Debut Authors program; read our online chat with the author here. It’s about a young girl who goes missing, but don’t let readers be put off by the subject; it’s much more than a “ripped from the headlines” novel, using that event as a way to reveal the family dynamics.
The peer reviews on Edelweiss give clues on how to recommend it; “the reader uncovers the truth one person at a time … as each person moves through the tragedy that has befallen them,” and “The first line draws you in, and the multiple perspectives make it compelling reading, which is well worth the journey.” The author is scheduled to appear on NPR/Weekend All Things Considered on 6/28.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer review clearly made believers, causing holds to rise in local libraries on this second book in a series, after Loyalty, “a craftily plotted page-turner. Identity … is even better … sexy modern noir – and readers [will be] cheering on a new-generation, kick-ass heroine. Grade: A”
A book by a youg media-savvy author (an MTV VJ and contestant on America’s Next Top Model) about how her generation needs to follow her lead and quit social media, which she says has become an “addiction.” Sounds like catnip for the media and in fact, she is scheduled for an appearance on CBS This Morning, June 24 and for coverage in People magazine, among others.
After all those creepy teasers and trailers, the FX series, The Strain, will finally debut on July 17. Harper is releasing Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s entire vampire trilogy as tie-ins:
You know summer is arriving when a new novel set in Nantucket, with an appropriately beachy cover, appears from Elin Hilderbrand. Next week, her 13th title, The Matchmaker, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print), heralds the new season in expected style.
Fans of Diana Gabaldon have had a longer wait. The most recent volume in her Outlander series came out in 2009. Arriving next week is the 8th in the series, Written in My Own Heart’s Blood (RH/Delacorte; Recorded Books). The books will get even more attention when the 16-episode STARZ Outlander series begins on Aug. 9.
Speaking of series, Daniel Wilson has spawned a sequel to his popular Robopocalypse, a novel, if you couldn’t guess from the title, about humanity’s battle to save the species from a robot uprising. It read like a standalone, but along comes the sequel (perhaps a sign that Spielberg will move ahead with plans for the movie?), Robogenesis, (RH/Doubleday; RH Audio). Booklist says the first book was good but this one is “superior in every way.” Kirkus rains on that parade, “A satisfying but perfunctory installment that suffers from a bit of second-act similarity.”
Dominating the media next week will be Hillary Clinton’s embargoed memoir, Hard Choices. Just a preview of her cover photo for this week’s People magazine caused Twitter to light up with questions on what she is leaning on (no, it’s NOT a walker). You’ll see her in all the expected places, including an ABC-TV/Primetime Special with Diane Sawyer. And, yes, the embargo has been broken (by CBS News).
Attention will also shine on scientist Laurel Braitman who argues that we are not wrong to anthropomorphize animals and that we can learn a lot from their emotional lives in Animal Madness; How Anxious Dogs, Compulsive Parrots, and Elephants in Recovery Help Us Understand Ourselves. People magazine included it in their roundup of a dozen Great Summer Reads. The Wall Street Journal will run an excerpt this weekend and the author, who as a TED fellow, has media cred, is scheduled to appear on Good Morning America, World News Tonight and Nightline.
“Maude sinks into a confusing world in this gripping psychological mystery written in the voice of an aging woman with Alzheimer’s. She can’t remember what she’s doing or where she is, but she is obsessed with one thought–her good friend Elizabeth is missing. Book groups will enjoy this satisfying and entertaining read!” — Mary Campanelli, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH
This is the first novel by a memoirist whose acerbic humor is telegraphed by her titles, Hypocrite In A Pouffy White Dress and Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven,. Given her previous books, it’s surprising to find her writing a historical family saga, set in NYC’s tenements. It’s already found two important audiences, having been picked by both librarians and indy booksellers as a favorite of the month.
“In the tenements of old New York, a young Russian Jewish immigrant woman is taken in by an Italian family who sells ice. Through sheer persistence and strong will, she manages to build an ice cream empire. Lillian Dunkle is a complex character who will both make you cheer even as you are dismayed. Have ice cream on hand when you read this book!”~~Marika Zemke, Commerce Township Public Library, Commerce Twp, MI
“Set mainly in Paris, this love story for grown-ups tells the story of a decent man who almost ruins his life and then goes to great lengths to restore his marriage. If your path to a happy marriage has been straight-forward, you may not appreciate this book – but it’s perfect for the rest of us!” — Laurel Best, Huntsville-Madison County Public Library, Huntsville, AL
TV Series Tie-in
The Leftovers (TV tie-in edition), Tom Perrotta, Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin
Welcome to summer! Next week offers not only books from a multitude of Big Names, but two major debuts, a second novel that is set to outshine the author’s well-received debut, as well as an intriguing LibraryRead pick.
A mystery novel, set in the U.S, written in French by a Swiss Law School grad, it was published in Europe in 2012 and sold 2 million copies. A hot property at the Frankfurt Book Fair, U.S. rights were won by Penguin. Adding extra sizzle, film rights were bought last month by Ron Howard (he may have noticed that, in France, it outsold another book he is adapting, Dan Brown’s Inferno).
It’s being promoted as the book of the summer, which is why it’s getting advance attention in the consumer media.The Washington Post was the first, last week with a middling review by novelist Dan Strachey (aka Richard Stevenson). He begins by calling it a “Big Gulp of a pop novel that’s kind of enjoyable in a corn-syrupy way,” goes on to enumerate all that is wrong with it, but ends by admitting,
As maladroit as this novel is in so many ways, it churns along at such a good clip and is rendered with such high emotion and apparent deep conviction that it’s easy to see why it was a bestseller in Europe. It’s likely to be one in this country, too, where in the land of bestsellerdom, earnest lardiness counts for a lot.”
More middling reviews have followed (the lead in Entertainment Weekly’s Books section, it gets a resounding C). Today’s Wall Street Journal looks at its chances for success here (arriving at no real conclusion) and notes that it also received tepid reviews in the U.K., where it was released on May 1 but is now #1 on the best seller lists of both the Times of London and the Telegraph.
Curiously for such a major launch, Penguin has decided to publish the book in trade paperback (with French flaps, of course), perhaps to overcome price resistance to such a long novel (656 pages). It’s a hit with EarlyWord’s GalleyChatter, Robin Beerbower, which is good enough for us. By the way, author Joel Dicker is speaking at the AAP Librarian Dinner next week during BEA.
Another big summer debut arriving this week, it is getting more positive critical response than Harry Quebert. The Wall Street Journal today quotes editor Lee Boudreaux, describing it as “writing by Richard Ford, characters by Richard Russo.” It gets a solid A in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly and was picked by booksellers for the June IndieNext list.
Following her 2012 debut, Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures, which Janet Maslin dismissed in her NYT Summer Reading preview as “a benign but mannered Hollywood period piece,“ but praises this second effort as a total departure. It’s the lead review in People Magazine, with 4 of 4 stars; a ‘delicious, deceptively traditional domestic drama…[that] offers all the delights of a fluffy, read-it-with-sunglasses-on-the-beach read, made substantial by the exceptional wit, insight, intelligence and talents of its author.” Entertainment Weekly has it at #9 on the week’s “Must List,” saying, it “has all the hallmarks of a typical family-vacation romp; marital strife, a sunny location, long-held secrets exposed… What set the novel apart are it’s careful observations and poignant humor. Completely guilt-free resort reading.”
LibraryReads June Pick: “This well-crafted story truly captures the beauty and brutality of living by the sea. The characters show what it’s like to have saltwater in your veins and commitment to family and community. Zentner depicts a way of life that is fast disappearing. Perfect for summer reading.” — Lisa Marie Joyce, Portland Public Library & South Portland Public Library, Portland, ME
Of the books arriving next week, the leader in number of copies headed for library shelves, is Emily Griffin’s The One & Only(RH/Ballantine; RH/Audio), followed by Steve Berry’s newest Cotton Malone thriller, The Lincoln Myth (RH/Ballantine; RH Audio; RH Large Print). The media will be busy with books, two by potential presidential candidates and readers advisors can recommend a new mystery that is a LibraryReads pick of the month.
Titles listed here, and highlights of others coming next week, with ordering information and alternate formats, are on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of May 19, 2014
“The continuing adventures of P.I. Charley Davidson and Grim Reaper (not as mutually exclusive as one would think) are just as delightful as in previous books, with new characters including a wonderfully snarky new demon. Jones expands on Charley’s existing relationships and supernatural powers. It’s the perfect paranormal-romance-mystery blend that you never knew you always wanted.” — Donna Matturri, Pickerington Public Library, Pickerington, OH
Berman was the creative director at George, the political magazine that JFK Jr. co-founded.
Vanity Fair excerpt (on newsstands now, with cover line, “How J.F.K. Jr. Tamed Barbara Streisand”);
NBC-TV/TODAY - May 20
EXTRA feature – May 20
MSNBC-TV/Morning Joe - May 21
USAToday.com video interview, week of May 22
MSNBC-TV/Hardball with Chris Matthews, May 23
Media — Fathers Day
Good Talk, Dad: The Birds and the Bees…and Other Conversations We Forgot to Have, Bill Geist and Willie Geist, (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio)
CBS Sunday Morning regular, Bill Geist, and his son, Willie, co-anchor of MSNBC’s Morning Joe and and the third hour of NBC’s Today show, collaborate on a book that is prime material media attention leading up to Father’s Day.
Manhood: How to Be a Better Man-or Just Live with One, Terry Crews, (RH/Zinc Ink)
It seems this book is also timed for Father’s Day (it will be in People Magazine’s Father’s Day Gift Guide). We worry recipients might not appreciate the implication that they need improvement. What gives Terry Crews, former NFL player and TV star, his expertise? Perhaps his experience doing Old Spice commercials.
This is one of the books in David Zinczenko’s (Eat This, Not That) new Random House imprint. Media: ABC Good Morning America – 5/19; NBC Tonight Show – 5/19; PBS Tavis Smiley – 6/2.
Media — Possible Presidential Candidates
One Nation: What We Can All Do to Save America’s Future, Ben Carson, Candy Carson, (Penguin/Sentinel)
New books from several big names arrive next week. Jeffery Deaver’s creepily-titled thriller, The Skin Collector, (the follow up to The Bone Collector, but somehow, “skin” is more creepy) leads with the most copies ordered by libraries. The winner for the most sinister cover is Jo Nesbo’s next, The Son, a standalone that is being positioned as a break out.
Readers advisors will want to have three LibraryReads titles on the tips of their tongues next week. Bittersweet is a hit with LibraryReads as well as both People and Entertainment Weekly. LibraryReads continues to bring YA titles with crossover appeal to adult readers’ attention, with the #1 pick for May, E. Lockhart’s We Were Liars. Also be sure to tell your horror readers about the debut novel, Bird Box.
These titles listed here, and highlights of others coming next week, with ordering information and alternate formats, are on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of May 12, 2014
here Douglas Preston, The Kraken Project (Macmillan/Forge Books; Macmillan Audio) — the author’s first solo outing
Jo Nesbo, The Son (RH/Knopf; RH Audio; RH/BOT; RH/Large Print)
One of the leaders of the Scandinavian crime wave, Nesbo has had strong sales but hasn’t reached Steig Larsson status (who could?). This standalone has the hallmarks of taking him to a new level. It is getting a wide range of advance attention, from a long profile of the author in the New Yorker to a Parade Magazine “Sneak Peek” excerpt. On Monday, he is scheduled to appear on Charlie Rose’s PBS show.
The author’s fame is also rising in Hollywood. Martin Scorsese is producing a movie based on the seventh in his Harry Hole series, The Snowman (called his “masterpiece” in the New Yorker profile), set to be directed by Tomas Alfredson, (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Let the Right One In). In addition, in March, Warner Bros acquired a forthcoming Nesbo book, Blood on Snow(no publication information yet), the first in a new series written under the pseudonym Tom Johansen, to star Leonardo.DiCaprio.
This LibraryReads pick for May is inspiring passion among reviewers as well. It gets the lead review in People, with 3.5 of 4 stars; “a mesmerizing gothic thriller … worth savoring — it unfolds like a long summer day, leisurely revealing the dark.” It is pick #3 on Entertainment Weekly‘s ‘Must List’ (a high position for this list, which is usually dominated by movies and TV); “In the stay-up-all-night page-turner, a scholarship student from an East Coast college spends the summer at her WASPy roommate’s family compound and uncovers some seriously nasty secrets. Occasionally over-the-top, but always riveting.” That is followed by strong review in the magazine’s book section. The LibraryReads annotation, below:
As unlikely a pair of roommates as you’re ever likely to meet: plain, working class Mabel Dagmar and beautiful, privileged Genevra Winslow. Mabel spends the summer in the Winslows’ idyllic lakefront property in Vermont, dreaming of being one of them–only to discover that being a Winslow is not all sunshine, yachts, and ease. Being a Winslow means keeping very disturbing family secrets.” – Nancy Russell, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH
Ferris’s debut was the darkly humorous novel about modern day office life, And Then We Came to the End,. His second book, The Unnamed, was quite different, prompting Jay McInerney to comment in his NYT BR review, “As a fan of Then We Came to the End I can admire Ferris’s earnest attempt to reinvent himself, but I can’t wait for him to return to the kind of thing at which he excels.” Other reviewers must feel the same, since this one was highly anticipated in season previews and is now getting advance attention:
“This brilliant and heartbreaking novel tells the story of a prestigious family living on a private island off the coast of Massachusetts. Full of love, lies, secrets, no shortage of family dysfunction, and a shocking twist that you won’t see coming. Though this book is written for teens, it shouldn’t be overlooked by anyone looking for a fantastic read.” – Susan Balla, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT
“Close your eyes! Don’t look! Something is out there that will drive you mad if you see it. Is it an alien invasion? An environmental toxin? Two sisters, Malorie and Shannon, embark on a journey seeking safety and other survivors. I was unable to put this book down. Horror at its best, not graphic, but truly creepy and scary. Highly recommended for fans of psychological suspense” — Mary Vernau, Tyler Public Library, Tyler, TX
Malerman wrote the book in what he calls a “26-day word flurry.” A musician in a Detroit rock band, he talks about that, reads from the book and explains why he finds horror “liberating’ in a “Beyond the Book” audio from HarperCollins which features author/musicians. Listen to it here.
Timothy F. Geithner, Stress Test (RH/Crown) — EMBARGOED
A slew of new titles arrive next week as publishing begins to ramp up for the summer season. Leading the charge, with the largest number of copies heading to stores and libraries, is James Patterson’s Unlucky 13(Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio). He reveals the not-so-secret secrets to his success to Fast Company’s “Co-Create” blog this week and remarks that he is just “an okay writer, but a very good storyteller.”
Also arriving in quantity is the next in John Sanford’s Prey series, Field of Prey.(Penguin/Putnam; Penguin Audio; Recorded Books; Thorndike).
Having left the character that brought her fame, Sookie Stackhouse, Charlaine Harris changes tack with the first in a new series, Midnight Crossroad, about the residents of Midnight, Texas, a small town with a practicing witch, a telephone psychic, and a vampire who works at the pawn shop (on the night shift, of course). Booklist says, “Although it’s much lighter on the paranormal elements than Harris’ usual fare, this should still make the lists of readers who miss Sookie and company.” The final 10-episode season of True Blood, based on the Stackhouse books, begins on June 22 (the tie-in is All Together Dead, arriving May 27).
Expect heavy review attention for Michael Cunningham’s latest, The Snow Queen, (Macmillan/FSG; Macmillan Audio). It’s already received a rare advance rave from Michiko Kakutani in the New York Times, calling it, “arguably Mr. Cunningham’s most original and emotionally piercing book to date.”
Below are five titles that have been getting advance word of mouth from librarians and booksellers. These titles, and highlights of others coming next week, with ordering information and alternate formats, are on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of May 5, 2014
“Set during World War II Europe, this novel is sobering without being sentimental. The tension builds as the alternating, parallel stories of Werner and Marie-Laure unfold, and their paths cross. I highly recommend this beautiful and compelling story.” — Kelly Currie, Delphi Public Library, Delphi, IN
We heard about this debut first on GalleyChat. It’s now both an IndieNext and a LibraryReads pick for May:
“This book is set entirely in a beehive, but the novel and its characters are so beautifully rendered that it could have been set anywhere. Societal codes and social mores combine with the ancient behavior rituals of bees, bringing forth a remarkable story that is sure to be a book club favorite.” – Ilene Lefkowitz, Denville Public Library, Denville, NJ
IndieNext, May –“This is a captivating thriller that combines page-turning suspense with a social conscience. In contemporary Zambia, an American lawyer who is seeking justice fights entrenched power as well as her own family demons when her father, an influential senator, becomes a candidate for president. Addison’s tale is a fantastic read for literary novel lovers and thriller readers alike, as it provides both suspense and the exploration of important global issues in a credible and convincing style.” — Ed Conklin, Chaucer’s Books, Santa Barbara, CA
LibraryReads, May — “Two women’s stories, separated by close to 100 years, connect through a patchwork quilt. Carolyn finds a quilt in her mother’s attic and is intrigued by its origin, and quiltmaker Maria’s story is told through transcripts. Trenow carefully stitches together a novel about family secrets, using many interesting details about fabrics, needlework, and textile conservation. A strong sense of place and well-told story make this book superior women’s fiction.”~~Leslie DeLooze, Richmond Memorial Library, Batavia, NY
Another May LibraryReads pick, which was seconded this week by People magazine,– ‘The popular food blogger serves up a crave-worthy memoir that is part love story, part restaurant industry tale. Scrumptious.’
A favorite with booksellers, Iles’s first book in 6 years is an IndieNext Pick for May. It’s also catching on with librarians. Wendy Bartlett at Cuyahoga Public Library (Ohio) bet on it with a hefty order and recently alerted the staff about it:
If James Lee Burke and John Grisham were merged in a transporter accident aboard the Enterprise, the result would be Greg Iles. And the real drama surrounding Natchez Burning, this 700-some-page novel is Iles’ own story. Iles was severely injured in a car accident several years ago. As a result, book has been delayed and delayed. It is a kind of miracle that Greg survived, and that the book did too. Whether it’s those pent-up years of frustrated storytelling, or just Iles’ natural maturation as a novelist, I can’t tell you, but I can tell you that Natchez Burning is a great page turner with excellently drawn characters. Iles’ fans will welcome back with open arms the series anchor, Penn Cage. Now the mayor of Natchez, a long-buried civil rights era hate crime may or may not have involved Cage’s own family. Old secrets, old hatreds, and old memories are germane to the investigation, and the sense of place is rendered flawlessly. You’ll feel like you lived it.
When customers say, “I just want something good to read,” hand ‘em this one. Oh, and check out www.gregiles.com. He’s a fun writer to follow, and a pretty cool guy to boot.
Looks like the staff is passing on the recommendation; holds are now nearly as high as the aggressive order.
Browsers may also be grabbed by this cover blurb from Stephen King, “Natchez Burning is extraordinarily entertaining and fiendishly suspenseful. I defy you to start it and find a way to put it down.”
Ordering information for this and our selection of other titles arriving next week, is available on our downloadable spreadsheet New Title Radar, Week of 4/28/14
Also arriving is a new thriller by Andrew Gross, Everything to Lose, (HarperCollins/Morrow; HarperLuxe; Blackstone Audio) which follows a struggling single mother faced with overwhelming temptation when she discovers a half million dollars at the scene of an accident and a posthumous book by Maeve Binchy, a collection of linked short stories about the residents of Dublin’s imaginary Chestnut Street, (RH/Knopf; RH Audio; Thorndike).
Below are several other titles to be ready for next week. Ordering information for these and other titles arriving next week is available on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of 4/21.
The news media has been all over this book, both for its skewering “of the White House Boys Club” (The Huffington Post) and speculation that its very publication indicates Warren will run for President in 2016. The embargo was broken yesterday by the Boston Globe, followed closely by the Washington Post(conveniently offering “Everything you need to know from Elizabeth Warren’s new book”) and Politico. Official publicity starts Friday with an interview on NPR’s Fresh Air, followed by one on CBS Sunday Morning.After that, expect to see Warren nearly everywhere, including stints on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, ABC’s The View, and NPR’s Morning Edition.
Some gay activists are already taking issue with this book, claiming that the author leaves out important figures in the marriage equality movement. Becker responds to the Huffington Post, “My book was not meant to be a beginning-to-end-history of the movement. It’s about a particular group of people at an extraordinary moment in time, and I hope that people will be moved by their stories.” An excerpt is the cover story of this Sunday’s NYT Magazine (the author is an NYT reporter), with the headline: ‘Mr. President, How Can We Help You Evolve More Quickly.’ Becker will appear on NPR’s Fresh Air. Expect it to be reviewed widely.
Roberts is on the cover of the upcoming issue of People magazine and the subject of a “By the Book” profile in the NYT Book Review. In this, the second memoir by the popular host of Good Morning America, Roberts writes about overcoming breast cancer only to discover five years later that she has rare blood disorder.
We don’t normally list paperback reprints, but this one is particularly timely. It comes just as a the first full trailer for the movie is released amid buzz about an altered ending, which will likely draw even more people to read the book first. The tie-in paperbacks won’t be released until Aug. 26. The movie is scheduled for Oct. 3.
Edmund White’s cover review of Prose’s new novel for Sunday’s NYT Book Review, should draw in readers, both for its headline, “Divine Decadence” and for its opening lines saying that evil characters are often the most fun and that the one created by the “subtle psychologist,” Prose is “a genuinely evil character … a cross-dressing French race car driver who collaborate with the Nazis.” After praising the book’s style and ability, “like all great novels,” to make the reader symphasize with even a repugnant character, White spends several paragraphs taking issue with aspects of the book, which he then annoyingly dismisses as a mere “quibble” and ends by calling this a “novel of great power and reach.” In the daily NYT, Janet Maslin begins her review with, “The breadth, nerve and intricacy of Francine Prose’s big new novel should surprise even her most regular readers. A bona fide page turner, Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 unfolds over 20 years, across an increasingly ominous Europe, among thugs and artists and poseurs who share only the danger that threatens to cramp their partying style.” She has her “quibble,” too wishing that the book had been “slightly tighter.” Ignore the quibbles, this one sounds fascinating.
Love, Nina, Nina Stibbe, (Hachette/Little, Brown)
“With a unique voice, Stibbe brings 1980s literary Camden back to life in this delightful epistolary memoir. The letters that Stibbe writes to her sister are a hoot, featuring unexpected cooking advice from the great Alan Bennett, and droll commentary on just about everything from Mary-Kay Wilmers.” – Jennifer Estepp, Queens Library, Jamaica, NY
“After her fiance dumps her on Facebook, Abby retreats to her apartment until her best friend invites her to spend the summer in Newport. This book is for every woman who’s been determined to put things back together after finding herself on the wrong side of social media, in the aftermath of a bad breakup, or elbow deep in Ben & Jerry’s when things fall apart.” – Sara Grochowski, Alpena County George N. Fletcher Public Library, Alpena, MI
Next week is light in terms of releases from big-name repeat authors, but Nora Roberts is guaranteed a #1 spot on best seller list with The Collector, (Penguin/Putnam; Penguin Large Print; Brilliance Audio), a standalone hardcover. Booklist stars it, saying, “Roberts is performing at the top of her literary game, and the novel’s opening nod toward Rear Window should clue readers in to the fact they are in for an addictive blend of sleek suspense and sophisticated romance that would make Hitchcock proud.”
Below are a few other titles to have on the tip of your tongue (download our spreadsheet for ordering information on these and more titles arriving next week):
The Axe Factor: A Jimm Juree Mystery, Colin Cotterill, (Macmillan/Minotaur Books; Highbridge Audio)
If the title alone doesn’t sell you, this LibraryReads annotation may do the trick:
“I love this sharply-written and quirky cozy mystery. Jimm Juree is a wonderful character, slyly funny and insightful, with an oddball cast of family and friends to back her up. Set in coastal Thailand, this is a laugh-out-loud funny mystery with plenty of great twists and turns that will keep readers guessing.” – Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA
Word of mouth is building for this thriller. It gets “much love” from ten readers on Edelweiss, plus this passionate review from a bookseller, “When it comes to mysteries, I really treasure the authors who keep me guessing every time: Sophie Hannah, Mo Hayder, Michael Robotham, Tana French, Gillian Flynn – and now Samantha Hayes. I thought I had the book all figured out, but kept reading anyway because the story sucked me in. I’m glad I did, because the ending blew me away: I honestly had no idea what was coming. ” All four prepub reviews were strong and Entertainment Weekly features it this week with a B+, saying “Hayes plants the seeds of suspense early, and they gestate until a truly spectacular ending bursts forth.”
The Kind Mama: A Simple Guide to Supercharged Fertility, a Radiant Pregnancy, a Sweeter Birth, and a Healthier, More Beautiful Beginning, Alicia Silverstone, Rodale Books
Back in 2010, the Oprah Show launched Alicia Silverstone’s book on the vegan lifestyle, The Kind Diet, into public consciousness and onto best seller lists. Expect Silverstone to make the talk show rounds for her new book on motherhood (she’s camera-ready, proving it with book trailer released back in November) which addressed the hot-button question, “When did making babies get to be so hard?”
Over ten years ago four-year-olds everywhere screamed, denied, and prevented a small blue pigeon from driving a bus. Pigeon has found a hotdog, wanted a puppy, longed for a cookie, stayed up late and I am pretty sure that we are not surprised that now he needs a bath.
Beekle is a doughy white roundish creature with a golden crown. He is an imaginary friend who lacks a child. Beekle impatiently waits in the land of imaginary creatures for his perfect match until he just can’t wait any longer and journeys off to find the child himself. Santat has created a fantasy world of helpful imagined companions. We meet a navy blue octopus who seems to have mehndi designs trailing up its tentacles, a cheerful wind cloud who helps fly a kite, and a playful salamander-like creature; all part of a community of children in a familiar yet strange landscape saturated with color.
Counting from 1 to 20 we wander the street of Manhattan as a the eponymous dragon hides in plain sight. Light’s retro crowded pen and ink drawings evoke the hustle and bustle of the big city with judicious spots of color to help young readers find the 2 red hotdogs in golden buns, 3 purple buses and so on and so on.
When I found out that Abrams Appleseed was bringing the Thingy Thing books back in print, I did cartwheels. When I found out that they were adding 4 new titles right away, I did hand springs. Okay not really, but my heart did. I have adored these simple stories that are just right for the emergent readers since the silly Moosey Moose who pined for long pants to wear on his antlers. Don’t worry, kids get the joke.
This one with its bold graphics and bouncy rhyme is a delightful romp.
A year a go I proclaimed my adoration of Andy Giffiths, author of The 13-Story Treehouse, illustrated by Terry Denton, (Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends). It bears repeating, especially now that there’s a sequel, The 26-Story Treehouse :
Are you a little sick of the refrain, “Boys don’t read … boys stop reading … boys can read but don’t”?
My not-so-secret weapon is Andy Griffiths. Got a third grader who isn’t in to reading yet? Give him Griffiths and Denton’s The Big Fat Cow That Goes Kapow! and The Cat on the Mat is Flat. It can mean the difference between a kid becoming a life-long non-reader or a fluent confident reader who knows there are books out there to be enjoyed.
This new title is a not-so-tongue-in-cheek memoir of Andy and Terry who live in a 13-story-treehouse, with all the fantasy rooms a kid could dream up; a see-through-pool, a basement laboratory, a marshmallow shooting cannon, a shrink ray AND the ability to transform a cat into flying catnary (click on the cover to see treehouse in its full glory). Let’s not be sexist about the appeal of this volume. All genders of third graders will be fighting over it.