Archive for the ‘New Title Radar’ Category

Titles to Know and Recommend, Week of Oct. 12

Friday, October 9th, 2015

9780385353779_2660fCalled the “Fall’s Buzziest Book”  in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, the title dominating the literary world’s attention is Garth Risk Hallberg’s big (900 plus pages) novel, City on Fire (RH/Knopf). One of the rare books to spark a bidding war, it ended up selling to Knopf for an estimated $2 million.

The country’s major literary critics are now weighing in. It’s on the cover of this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review, David Ulin reviews it in the LA Times as does Ron Charles in the Washington Post  (we’re still waiting for the daily NYT‘s Michiko Kakutani to post her verdict). While not venturing to guess whether the money is well spent, they agree that it’s worth the time it takes to read it.

We’re more impressed that it was made a number one pick for the month by a tougher audience, one that is closer to readers –librarians. They made it the #1 LibraryReads pick for the month. Booksellers also picked it for Indie Next.

Hallberg spoke at the Random House Librarians Breakfast held at Book Expo America in June.

Holds are light in most libraries so far, but enthusiasm from librarians and booksellers indicates that once it reaches readers, it will be propelled by word of mouth.

9781455530069_3587bThe holds leader of the week, is Nicholas Sparks’s next, See Me (HachetteGrand Central) about one of his favorite topics, second chances at love. It seems he’s had his own experiences in that arena, Sparks made news this week when it was announced that he is planning an ABC comedy series titled The Next Chapter, about, says the Hollywood Reporter, ” a top-selling romance novelist Ben Diamond, who goes through a divorce and not only begins to question his belief in love, but must also learn to date again and live on his own — all while dealing with the pressures of his public persona as the world’s most foremost ‘expert’ on love.” Yes, it is loosely based on the author’s own life.

9780399174674_a25a6  9780316387729_0e4ef  9780062319197_8e734-2

Fans will welcome a new Stone Barrington novel by Stuart Woods, Foreign Affairs (Penguin/Putnam) and a new title by Elin Hilderbrand, who steps away from the beach for a Winter Stroll (Hachette/Little, Brown) in the sequel to last year’s Winter Street, her first Christmas novel.

Adriana Trigiani also makes a departure, setting her latest novel in a bygone glamor era of Hollywood. Titled All the Stars in the Heavens (Harper), it is based on the real life romance between Loretta Young and Clark Gable. it is People magazine’s pick of the week,  “Reading Trigiani’s latest is like settling in with a bag of popcorn and watching an old black-and-white movie.”

Trigiani has made her own foray into movies, directing a film based on her first novel, Big Stone Gap, which opens in theaters this week.

The titles covered here, and several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet ,EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Oct. 12, 2015

Peer Picks

9780062325891_504dbCarrying Albert Home: The Somewhat True Story of A Man, His Wife, and Her Alligator by Homer Hickam (HarperCollins/William Morrow; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “This thoroughly delightful story chronicles Hickam’s parents’ road trip from their coal-mining town in West Virginia to Orlando, Florida, to return Elsie Hickam’s pet alligator, Albert, to a home in a more suitable climate. Along the way, the travelers — Homer Sr., Elsie, Albert, and an elusive rooster — encounter famous American authors, movie stars, and minor league baseball teams and become embroiled in union strikes and bank robberies. It’s hard to say what is true and what isn’t, but either way, Carrying Albert Home is a very enjoyable journey!” — Lori-Jo Scott, Island Bookstore, Kitty Hawk, NC

9781616205232_2c384And West Is West by Ron Childress (Workman/Algonquin)

Indie Next pick: “Ethan is a young Wall Street quant who writes an algorithm that allows his company to profit from the financial upheaval caused by antiterrorist strikes. Jessica is a young Air Force drone pilot who is discharged because she has discussed a questionable UAV strike in a letter to her father. This book is a powerful wake-up call to understand how fear, greed, and war inform our technological advances. Childress has truly earned his PEN/Bellweather Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction.” — Karen Tallant, Booksellers at Laurelwood, Memphis, TN

9781476758961_78183Twain’s End by Lynn Cullen (S&S/Gallery Books; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “Isabel Lyon, who was born to gentility, supported herself as a nanny and a secretary and is best known as secretary/companion to the family of Samuel Clemens. Her late marriage to Clemens’ business manager left her life in shambles, as afterwards both were fired and slandered. What led to those dramatic shifts is the premise behind Twain’s End. Mark Twain may be beloved beyond all American writers, but Cullen has crafted a well-researched tale supporting the view that a very manipulative, selfish, and distant Samuel Clemens and his family hid behind that façade. It is up to you to decide. A marvelous read!” —Becky Milner, Vintage Books, Vancouver, WA


(for our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins).

Hitting a select number of theaters today and expanding “everywhere” (a broad statement, but that’s but that is what the studio claims) on Oct 23, is the movie Steve Jobs based on the book by Walter Isaacson (S&S, 2012). For children, it’s the live-action Pan, which, we can’t help saying, is getting panned by NPR, the NYT and by Entertainment Weekly. Set before J.M. barrie’s book, there are not tie-ins.

Also opening is Adriana Trigiani’s directorial debut, Big Stone Gap, based on her own book.

On TV, BBC America begins The Last Kingdom, based on the first book in Bernard Cornwell’s series The Saxon Tales,  The L.A. Times says it “brings complexity and personality to the Middle Ages..”  On Sunday, the Hallmark Channel debuts the third in a series of movies based on Beverly Lewis’ Amish romances, this one titled Beverly Lewis’ The Reckoning.

New York Comic Con opens today featuring The Shannara Chronicles. In addition to a panel presentation, executive Producer Terry Brooks will sign copies of an exclusive edition of The Elfstones of Shannara. The series is set to begin on Jan. 16.

Tie-ins scheduled for publication this week are:

OutcastVol1_Cover_362_556_s_c1 Outcast_vol2-1

Following up on his success with the Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman has started on a new venture, Outcast. This time, however, the comics and the screen adaptations are being created simultaneously. The first collected edition of the comics was published in the spring. Volume 2 arrives this week.(Image Comics).

9780062420114_ca096Beasts of No Nation Movie Tie-in by Uzodinma Iweala (HarperCollins/Harper Perennial; OverDrive Sample)

Movie opens October 16.

Netflix made a splash by buying the rights to  Beasts of No Nation, a major new movie, directed by Cary Fugunaka and starring Idris Elba and based on the 2005 novel by Uzodinma Iweala about child soldiers in West Africa. There’s one catch. In order for it to be eligible for Oscar consideration, the movie has to open in theaters. Entertainment Weekly, which give the movie a solid A in the new issue, notes that the four largest theater chains have refused to show it, as “a sort of kamikaze stand against the encroachment of VOD.” It will, however appear in the smaller Landmark Theatres chain.

9781250098450_57d18Truth: The Press, the President, and the Privilege of Power, Mary Mapes (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin; OverDrive Sample)

Movie opens October 16.

Based on the memoir by 60 Minutes producer Mary Mapes, the movie Truth tells the story of the scandal that caused  CBS News anchor Dan Rather to step down. Robert Redford stars as Rather.


9781250088949_070c2The 33: Deep Down Dark: The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine, and the Miracle That Set Them Free, Héctor Tobar (
Macmillan/Picador; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample)

Movie opens November 13.

A best seller after it was picked as the first title in NPR’s Morning Edition Book Club, the film adaptation stars Antonio Banderas.


Also arriving is a raft of tie-ins  for the big Pixar childres animated movie, The Good Dinosaur,. Opening Nov. 25 it’s being hailed by the SF site i09 as a “stunning  nasterpiece“.

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Ready for Next Week: Titles to Know and Recommend

Friday, October 2nd, 2015

9781250049551_e7254 M Train Patti Smith9780399176951_10718 9780553391695_bdc60

Diverse groups of fans will be thrilled by books coming out next week. Fan girls will flock to Rainbow Rowell’s next novel, her first pure fantasy, Carry On (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin). Rock and memoir devotees will be excited for Patti Smith’s  M Train, the follow-up to her National Book Award winner Just Kids, called “achingly beautiful” by Michiko Kakutani in today’s NYT. Science fiction fans will be intrigued that physicist and photographer Ctein has collaborated with John Sanford for a science-fiction thriller set in 2066, Saturn Run. (Penguin/Putnam). It gets a thumbs up from the Washington Post.

We’ll be reminded of something that is just around the corner as one of the doyenne’s of the Christmas novel genre, Debbie Macomber returns with Dashing Through the Snow (RH/Ballantine), which, following many of her other books, is set to be a Hallmark movie.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Oct. 5. 2015

Media Picks

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The Clasp, Sloane Crosley, (Macmillan/FSG)

People Pick — “With mordant wit and an ear for millennial patois, Crosley dissects the pretension of Los Angeles an New York, then send her characters to France on a madcap adventure. It’s fun to tag along.” Julia Pierpont author of Among the Ten Thousand Things agrees with that assessment in this week’s New York Times Sunday Book Review calling it, a ” highly comic, highly affecting novel.

Early One Morning, Virginia Baily, (Hachette/Little, Brown)

This WW II novel, published to strong reception in th U.K., is also a People pick, “an emotional page-turner that skillfully evoked the terror of war and the enduring power of love.”

Media Magnets

3313_2015_09_14  9780547250250_58e43  9780399173325_4c617-2

Two generations of Kennedys are scrutinized next week.

Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter, Kate Clifford Larson, (HMH)

An excerpt of this book about JFK’s sister, who suffered a lobotomy at her father’s insistence, and ended up being institutionalized as a result, was featured last month in People magazine. Also excerpted is The Missing Kennedy: A Memoir of Family, Silence, and Transformation, Elizabeth Koehler-Pentacoff, (Bancroft Press).

A Common Struggle: A Personal Journey Through the Past and Future of Mental Illness and Addiction, Patrick J. Kennedy, Stephen Fried, (Penguin/Blue Rider), EMBARGOED

By the former Rhode Island Congressman and the youngest son of Edward Kennedy. It’s embargoed, indicating that media attention is expected.


Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) in Song. Sara Bareilles, (S&S)
The singer/ songwriter will make appearances on several high-profile shows in the coming week:

• NBC Today Show, October 7
• NBC Late Night with Seth Meyers, October 7
• ABC-TV Live with Kelly and Michael , October 9

9780804141352_ada39The Gap of Time, Jeanette Winterson, (RH/Hogarth)

The first title in the new Hogarth Shakespeare series which asks contemporary writers to retell the plays. Winterson’a take on The Winter’s Tale is set for media coverage:

NPR – Weekend Edition Sunday – interview with Rachel Martin – 10/4
New York Times – Alexandra Alter-Hogarth Shakespeare feature – 10/6

Peer Picks

9780393248456_0aa62Mothers, Tell Your Daughters: Stories by Bonnie Jo Campbell (W.W. Norton; HighBridge Audio; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “This collection is Campbell at her best and most audaciously appealing. At the center of each of these stories is a fierce, floundering, and unmistakably familiar woman. Mother of a daughter in some instances but always a caretaker, aware of and struggling with a hellish truth, or at justified peace with her right to impose her flawed self on a tragic other. These women’s violations — both endured and perpetrated — are most certainly recognizable, and their stories are stunning. Booksellers, tell your customers. Friends, tell your people. Mothers, tell your daughters. Read this book!” —Joanna Parzakonis, Bookbug, Kalamazoo, MI

9780393248678_ecb9bThen Comes Marriage: United States v. Windsor and the Defeat of DOMA by Roberta Kaplan with Lisa Dickey (W.W. Norton; OverDrive Sample)

LibraryReads, Oct: “The attorney who argued before the Supreme Court for the plaintiff in this landmark case gives the story behind the headlines. Kaplan integrates personal narrative with legal strategy throughout, combining her own struggles with a fascinating look at the brave and unconventional life led by her client. This is a heartwarming and inspiring account of one widow’s pursuit of justice and dignity.” Darren Nelson, Sno-Isle Libraries, Marysville, WA Shout ‘n’ Share, Kristi Chadwick, Massachusetts Library System

9780385539838_a0647Bats of the Republic: An Illuminated Novel by Zachary Thomas Dodson (Random/Doubleday)

Indie Next: “Bats of the Republic is a book connoisseur’s dream. It is a propulsive novel — often a novel within a novel — that shatters the restraints of genre with brilliance matched only by its complexity and originality. Dodson weaves a story from a past filled with hope and regret with a future rife with promise and dire consequences to keep the reader engaged throughout. Complete with maps and ephemera that make this a singular reading experience, Bats of the Republic is gorgeous, unputdownable, and above all in this day and age, necessary.” —Javier Ramirez, The Book Table, Oak Park, IL

9780670025770_79867The Secret Chord by Geraldine Brooks (Penguin/Viking; Penguin Audio; OverDrive Sample)

LibraryReads, Oct: “Brooks does it again, in this fascinating and richly detailed fictionalized account of the life and times of King David. We see David as he might actually have been: a charismatic leader of men, both brutal and conflicted. This is perfect for historical fiction readers who enjoy lots of detail and believable characters. It transports you to the times and places inhabited by David.” Marilee Cogswell, King County Library System, Issaquah, WA

Indie Next: “The Old Testament includes tantalizing references to a prophet called Natan. Brooks brings this mysterious figure to life as the confidante to and narrator of King David’s life. From David’s beginning as an unknown, fearless rebel fighter through his rise to ruling the Kingdom of Israel, the people, places, and politics of ancient times are brought to life. David is a complex and compelling character who jumps off the page, and Natan is his conscience and conduit to their God. Brooks once again proves herself a master of meticulously researched and vividly imagined historical fiction.” —Cindy Pauldine, the river’s end bookstore, Oswego, NY

9780770436438_e8979The Tsar of Love and Techno: Stories by Anthony Marra (PRH/Hogarth; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “A Constellation of Vital Phenomena is one of my favorite novels of the last several years, and now Marra follows that up with a dazzling set of linked stories set in Russia, Chechnya, and Siberia over a period of time spanning from the Russian Revolution to the modern day and beyond. As with his debut novel, what I love are the characters that he makes readers care so deeply about, as well as the fact that I constantly found myself wanting to know more about their lives and the history of their countries. Get on the Marra train now because one thing is certain: He is one of our brightest young talents writing today.” —Cody Morrison, Square Books, Oxford, MS

Washington Post review, 9/29

NPR First Read

9781250069481_867fbGod’s Kingdom by Howard Frank Mosher (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “If the past is a foreign country, we certainly have an expert native guide in Mosher who recreates perfectly, right down to the smoky fire smoldering in the town dump, the small town of Kingdom Common, Vermont, in the 1950s. Here fans of previous books are reintroduced to Jim Kinneson, now entering high school. For first-time readers, the ubiquitous, multi-generational Kinneson clan of the Northern Kingdom will be immediately accessible through the talent of master storyteller Mosher in this latest variation on the themes of tradition, the burden of family history, small-town secrets, and the stark beauty of the wilds of Northern Vermont.” —Darwin Ellis, Books on the Common, Ridgefield, CT

9781571311115_6e7f9Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse by Faith Sullivan (Milkweed Editions; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “Whether you are familiar with the work of P.G. Wodehouse or not, you will want to read his books by the time you have finished this wonderful novel. Returning to Harvester, Minnesota, the location of her best-selling novel, The Cape Ann, Sullivan has provided a tale that will resonate with anyone who has been faced with the loss of a loved one, a challenge of faith, the gossip of a community, or the search for one’s independence. What better place to find grace than in the heart of a good book!” —Betsy Schram, The Bookshelf, Cincinnati, OH


Hitting theaters today is the heavily-promoted movie The Martian, starring Matt Damon, based on the novel by Andy Weir, as well as the documentary, He Named Me Malala about author and activist Malala Yousafzai.

On TV, the second season of HBO’s The Leftovers, begins on Sunday. The new season goes beyond the book by Tom Perrotta, as this excerpt from the Blu-ray disc of the first season explains:

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins.

Titles to Know and Recommend, Week of Sept 28

Friday, September 25th, 2015

If the rest of the reading public is anything like librarians, they will be delighted to see Jojo Moyes follow-up to her hit Me Before You, titled, of course, After You (Penguin/Pamela Dorman), arrive on shelves next week. It is a Library Reads pick (see below) as is Karin Slaughters’ Pretty Girls (also below).

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Sept. 28, 2015

Media Magnets

9780812994568_0bfc8Unfinished Business : Women Men Work Family, Anne-Marie Slaughter (Random House)

Slaughter’s 2012 Atlantic magazine article, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All” was viewed as a corrective to Sheryl Sandberg’s exhortation to women to Lean In and climb the corporate ladder. It is now expanded to book length and is featured on the cover of this week’s NYT Sunday Review.

Adding more fuel to likely media interest, Slaughter’s husband just published an article about ‘lead parenting’ in the Atlantic. ‘Why I Put My Wife’s Career First.

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.44.35 PMMy Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life by Ruth Reichl (Random House)

The former editor of Gourmet writes about her painful year that followed the closing of her beloved magazine.

9780553392982_17065Better: How I Let Go of Control, Held On to Hope, and Found Joy in My Darkest Hour, Amy Robach, (RH/Ballantine)

The News Anchor for Good Morning America reluctantly agreed to have a mammogram on air in 2013. The results revealed she had breast cancer. In this book, she chronicles her year after that diagnosis.

9781476765075_d5c60I’ll Never Write My Memoirs, Grace Jones, Paul Morley, (S&S/Gallery)

The title is, of course, ironic. The singer, model, and actress will be featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, September 29, followed by CBS This Morning,October 9 and ABC’s Entertainment Tonight,’October 9.

Peer Picks

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.28.30 PMPretty Girls, Karin Slaughter (HarperCollins/Morrow)

Slaughter was a hit at the AAP/LibraryReads Dinner at BEA. as she talked hilariously and forthrightly about her rivalry with her sister, which clearly influences this novel. It is an Indie Next pick:

“I was grabbed from the first page of Slaughter’s latest and roped in on the second. Boldly written and at times very raw, this psychological thriller is as suspenseful as it is scary. Dangerous secrets reunite two sisters who have been estranged since their older sister went missing 20 years earlier. As they search to discover what happened, they uncover evidence of her brutal murder and true evil. It is a gifted writer who can make you adore a character at the beginning of a book and loathe the same character at the end. Slaughter, author of both the Grant County and Will Trent series, has done just that in her newest stand-alone thriller.” —Nancy McFarlane, Fiction Addiction, Greenville, SC

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.31.40 PMThe Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood (RH/Nan A. Talese) 

Starred by PW and Booklist this is reviwed in this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review

LibraryReads, Oct: “The premise of Atwood’s latest is interesting, grounded strongly in current social and economic issues. The writing is as elegant and beautiful, as always with Atwood. I recommend this book because it is a wonderful and thought-provoking novel. People who have enjoyed other Atwood works should definitely take a look at this one.” Lauren Mitchell, Pima County Public Library, Tucson, AZ

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.35.12 PMAfter You by Jojo Moyes (PRH/Pamela Dorman Books; Penguin Audio).

LibraryReads, Oct: “I loved Me Before You and thought it ended in the perfect place, but any doubts I had about continuing the story were quickly erased when I started this sequel. Jojo Moyes is a master at tugging on your heartstrings. I laughed, I cried, and I nearly threw my Kindle against the wall at one point. Give this to anyone in your life who has experienced a tragic loss. With a box of tissues.” Joseph Jones, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Cleveland, OH

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.43.13 PMIn Bitter Chill by Sarah Ward (Macmillan/Minotaur; OverDrive Sample).

LibraryReads, Oct: “Great new mystery set in the atmospheric Peak District of England. When a woman’s suicide is found to be related to an unsolved case of a missing girl, the police must reinvestigate a long cold case. I hope this book will be the first in a new series!” Pamela Wiggins, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

Also a BEA Librarians’ Shout ‘n’ Share pick — ‘Your next hand sell for fans of Sharon Bolton. About a cold case, the puzzle of the story keeps you hooked until the end. Perfect for fans of Louise Penny, Sharon Bolton, and Elizabeth George.”– Robin Nesbitt, Columbus Metropolitan Library

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.55.44 PMA Slanting of the Sun: Stories by Donal Ryan (Steerforth; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “Exquisite and elegant, Ryan’s collection of short stories highlights his talents as a writer of note. Each piece evokes the Irish people — the spirit, the voice, the culture — as the characters confront the pain of life. The beauty of the stories comes from the almost musical quality of Ryan’s writing. His sentences flow with an ebullient tone that appreciates the good and bad in equal measure, and readers are caught by the lyrical rhythms and inner harmonies, which bring them to a deeper understanding of other people. These stories will make you cry, shake your head in shock, and ponder the great gulfs between men, which are rooted in our own humanity in all its beauty and roughness.” —Raul Chapa, BookPeople, Austin, TX

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.49.47 PMGold Fame Citrus by Claire Vaye Watkins (PRH/Riverhead)

Starred by PW, Kirkus, LJ, and Booklist

Indie Next: “Watkins’ depiction of a sun-scorched, drought-plagued West is a hypnotic and terrifying vision of an otherworldly and, perhaps most frightening of all, not-too-distant future. Part J.G. Ballard, part Joan Didion, Gold Fame Citrus explores the complexities of human relationships in the face of environmental catastrophe. Loneliness, jealousy, heartbreak, love, loyalty — even in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, people are still people, though just what sort of people is another thing altogether. Haunting and hallucinatory, the world crafted by Watkins is a dream of the future that will not soon be forgotten.” —Emily Ballaine, Green Apple Books on the Park, San Francisco, CA

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 9.59.20 PMDon’t Suck, Don’t Die: Giving Up Vic Chesnutt by Kristin Hersh (University of Texas Press; OverDrive Sample)

Indie Next: “You don’t need to be familiar with Chesnutt’s or Hersh’s work to appreciate this phenomenal book, but you will undoubtedly want to be once you’ve finished it. Hersh is a writer of intense and subtle beauty, and she will make you cry and feel a hundred other things with the power of her style alone. Through the tragic story of her close friend and tourmate, Chesnutt, Hersh evokes the torture of all that artistic genius encapsulates and makes that pain sing in a voice both opaque and elegant, grimy and pristine. Ultimately, this is a deeply affecting meditation on one’s thrust toward ‘important art’ and on how music is a necessary expression of sadness and loneliness but also one of intense and inimitable beauty.” —Donovan Swift, Inkwood Books, Tampa, FL

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 10.10.21 PMA Line of Blood by Ben McPherson (Harper/William Morrow)

Indie Next: “Surely an unspoken fear of parents is that they will discover that their child has some dark secret, that their normal, well-adjusted, happy child is hiding something. McPherson introduces us to just such a family in a whodunit with many layers of psychological intrigue, secrets, and unspoken emotion. Alex and Millicent and their son, Max, find themselves in the middle of a murder investigation and what was once taken for granted begins to unravel around them. This is a must-read for anyone who loves being in the clutches of a brilliant thriller with anything but a straight line to the conclusion.” —Linda Schaefer, The Learned Owl Book Shop, Hudson, OH

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 10.12.32 PMMe, My Hair, and I: Twenty-seven Women Untangle an Obsession by Elizabeth Benedict (Workman/Algonquin Books)

A BEA Librarians “Shout ‘n’ Share pick by Charlene Rue. NYPL Book Ops.

Indie Next: “Twenty-seven authors share stories about hair and all its meanings in this revelatory collection. Hair can represent class, race, a period in history, health, neuroses, and more. What a wonderful way to ponder our life histories and traumas and still keep a sense of humor as we are invited to remember what hairstyles we were wearing at key times in our lives. Through the focus on hair, this book leads us to consider our stories in both a fun and oddly serious way.” —Rona Brinlee, The BookMark, Neptune Beach, FL


This is one of the few weeks when there are no book adaptations debuting on either the large or the small screens. However, tie-ins announce two upcoming TV adaptations:

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 9.05.26 AMThe Run of His Life: The People v. O. J. Simpson by Jeffrey Toobin (Random House)

Set to premiere some time in February, 2016 the FX series, American Crime Story, starring Cuba Gooding Jr. as  Simpson). The just-released trailer is less than revealing:

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 9.06.51 AMPlum Pudding Murder (Movie Tie-in) by Joanne Fluke (Kensington; mass market)

The next in Hallmark’s Murder, She Baked series starring Alison Sweeney based on the novels by Joanne Fluke. To be released some time in 2016,
the date has not yet been announced.

For a full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV spreadsheet and link to our listing of tie-ins.

Titles to Know and Recommend,
the Week of Sept 21

Friday, September 18th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 8.53.39 PM  9780062404084_37537  9780399167454_3db2f  9781594747588_d10f6

Next week is a big one for YA and Middle Grade titles. In a strange coincidence, four of the ten titles on the longlist for the National Book Award Young People’s Literature will be published on the same day (our look at the full list here).

Familiar names appearing next week include Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert with a nonfiction title, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear (an Indie Next pick), former GMA host Joan Lunden with a memoir about surviving breast cancer, Had I Known (Harper), Jan Karon’s next Mitford novel, Come Rain or Come Shine (Penguin/Putnam) and Ransom Riggs’ third Miss Peregrine book, Library of Souls (Quirk Books . NOTE: Tim Burton’s movie of the first book is scheduled for release on March 4 next year) and Bill O’Reilly’s Killing Reagan (Macmillan/Holt).

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Sept 21, 2015

National Book Award YP Longlist Titles, Arriving Next Week

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 8.47.59 PM 9781596439528_531f6 9780763668181_21791 9780316380836_11204

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson (Harper/Greenwillow Books; HarperCollins Publishers and Blackstone Audio)

Steve Sheinkin, Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War (Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press)

M.T. Anderson, Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad (Candlewick Press)

Ali Benjamin, The Thing About Jellyfish (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Media Attention

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 8.56.28 PMMycroft Holmes Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Anna Waterhouse  (Titan Books; OverDrive Sample)

As Esquire writes, Abdul-Jabbar has had a 45-year obsession with Sherlock Holmes. In this, his first novel for adults, he focuses on Sherlock’s older brother in a prequel to Arthur Conan Doyle’s series.

He is scheduled for several TV appearances:

MSNBC-TV – Morning Joe – 9/21
NBC-TV – Today Show – 9/21
Comedy Central  – The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore – 9/24

Peer Picks

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 8.49.59 PMFuriously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson  (Macmillan/Flatiron Books; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample) – LibraryReads (sept)

Popular with the BEA Librarian’s Shout ‘n’ Share panel, this memoir is both an Indie Next and a LibraryReads pick:

“Lawson’s hilarious memoir is a romp between absurdity and despondency. Passages alternate from ridiculously funny stories of her life to episodes of her sometimes debilitating depression. Lawson embraces living life, rather than merely surviving it. Why be just happy when you can be furiously so? Recommended to fans of David Sedaris and Sloane Crosley.” PJ Gardiner, Wake County Public Libraries, Raleigh, NC

9780778317531_0f096-2The Gilded Life of Matilda Duplaine, Alex Brunkhorst, (Harlequin/MIRA)

Indie Next:

“As Thomas walked into Lily Goldman’s antiques shop, he had no idea that his life was about to change completely. Assigned to write about Lily’s deceased father, a famous film industry mogul, Thomas meets a host of fabulously wealthy and eccentric people and quickly becomes a part of their privileged lives. Things get complicated when he meets Matilda, daughter of the most powerful man in Los Angeles, who has kept her confined to their estate her whole life. Thomas’ journalistic instincts kick in as he is enchanted by Matilda and he soon uncovers the many secrets these powerful people would rather not have revealed. This book is the definition of a page-turner: filled with romance, mystery, and great writing.” —Lori-Jo Scott, Island Bookstore, Kitty Hawk, NC

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 8.55.11 PMThe Shift: One Nurse, Twelve Hours, Four Patients’ Lives, Theresa Brown, (Workman/Algonquin)

One of the titles brought up at BEA’s Librarian Shout ‘n’ Share, this is the perfect response to the Miss Colorado “Just a Nurse” controversy.

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The Killing Lessons by Saul Black (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press; Macmillan Audio)
Saul Black is a pseudonym for bestselling author Glen Duncan, The Last Werewolf (2014). All four trade reviews give it a star.

Screen Adaptations


Hitting theaters today are the movie adaptations of:

Dashner, James, The Maze Runner: Scorch Trials (RH/Delaccorte),  expected to land at #1 at the box office, recouping he losses from the first in the series.

Lehr, Dick and Gerland O’Neil, Black Mass: The True Story of an Unholy Alliance Between the FBI and the Irish Mob  — movie starring Johnny Depp is being reviewed widely, including NPR’s Morning Edition, saying Depp’s performance is  “some of the best, most chilling work he’s done in awhile.”

Krakauer, Jon, Into Thin Air, (RH/Villard, 1997) — Movie Everest tells the story of terrifying ascent that Krakauer chronicled in his book (he is also portrayed in the movie). Reviewed in Rolling Stone.

Smith, Ashley, Unlikely Angel: The Untold Story Of The Atlanta Hostage Hero, (HarperCollins/Zondervan, 2005) — movie is titled Hostage, reviewed in today’s NYT.

Brower, Sam and Jon Krakauer, Prophet’s Prey: My Seven-Year Investigation into Warren Jeffs and the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints, (Bloomsbury, 2012) — reviewed in today’s NYT

Coming next week:

Petit, Philippe, To Reach The Clouds — Movie titled The Walk opens in iMAX theaters on Sept. 20 and expands more widely on Oct. 1

Dick, Philip K., short story “Minority Report” (1956)  — FOX TV series of the same title begins 9/21, a sequel to 2002 movie by Steven Spielberg which is based on the short story

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins).

The following tie-ins arrive next week:

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 10.55.20 AM  9781484709139_29238

Tie-ins to the Peanuts movie, coming Nov. 11 arrive.

Many books are being published to tie in to the Star Wars movie which hits theaters in December. Tom Angleberger, the man who introduced Star Wars to origami, is one of the authors of three tie-ins for kids arriving next week.

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 10.43.02 AM  Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 10.39.21 AM

Premiering on BBC America on Oct. 10 is The Last Kingdom, an 8-part series based on the first two books in the series Bernard Cornwell’s novels. The first two are being released as tie-ins:

The Pale Horseman, Bernard Cornwell (Harper Paperbacks; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample)

The Last Kingdom, Bernard Cornwell (Harper Paperbacks; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample)

Titles to Know and Recommend,
the Week of Sept. 14

Friday, September 11th, 2015

9780545448680_a1e5c-2One of the most anticipated children’s books of the fall arrives next week, Brian Selznick’s The Marvels (Scholastic). The book’s trailer was created by Selznick himself. A former professional puppeteer, he created the scenes and acted out the story in a month-long process that was featured in the Wall Street Journal.

Selznick isn’t the only one to translate one of his books to the screen. His first, The Invention of Hugo Cabret was adapted by Martin Scorsese for the big screen and Todd Haynes is set to direct the second, Wonderstruck. No news yet on whether The Marvels will follow that path.

On the adult side, marquee authors with books arriving next week are J. D. Robb, Janet Evanovich and Catherine Coulter.

9780062223067_f46b9 9780399174339_e4ab5 9780804138147_2de12

Memoir fans will have a range of titles from well-known names to choose from. One of the inventors of the modern memoir, Mary Karr, is publishing a book about the genre, The Art of Memoir (Harper), Song writer Jewel writes about her troubled past in Never Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story (Penguin/Blue Rider). On a lighter note, Mindy Kaling takes a humorous look at herself in her second book, Why Not Me? (RH/Crown).

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Young adults will receive inspiration from Chelsea Clinton’s It’s Your World : Get Informed, Get Inspired & Get Going! (Penguin/Philomel Listening Library).

For adults, WM. Paul Young, who took an unconventional approach to religion in The Shack, follows up with a novel that is a new take on a Biblical story Eve (S&S/Howard). He is scheduled for The Today Show on September 22.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Sept. 14, 2015

Media Attention

9781451651607_4b5c8How’s Your Faith?: An Unlikely Spiritual Journey. David Gregory, (S&S)

Former Meet the Press moderator David Gregory writes about his faith in a book which will be getting a to of media attention, on a wide range of shows, from Bravo’s Watch What Happens Live  with Andy Cohen, an odd venue since the show is generally a Real Housewives celebfest, and CBS Late Show with Stephen Colbert. The media, of course, will be less interested in his faith than finding out more about his ouster from Meet the Press, as evidenced by his interview this week on CBS This Morning.

Peer Picks

Screen Shot 2015-09-06 at 1.00.33 PMFates and Furies, Lauren Groff, (Penguin/Riverhead)

It seems everyone is on board with this book. People names it their “Book of the Week” in the new issue (“a playful and riveting read that questions whether love can be true when it’s wrapped in falsehoods.”) it is also featured on the upcoming NYT Sunday Book Review cover, (“Lauren Groff is a writer of rare gifts, and Fates and Furies is an unabashedly ambitious novel that delivers — with comedy, tragedy, well-deployed erudition and unmistakable glimmers of brilliance throughout.”)

Starred by all four prepub sources — PW, Kirkus, Booklist, LJ — it is a#1 Indie Next pick and a LibraryReads pick:

Fates and Furies is a modern portrait of marriage. Lotto Satterwhite is the center, the hub around which all the characters revolve in the first half of the book. In the second half of the book, the lens turns to Lotto’s wife Mathilde, and her side of the lopsided partnership gives us a totally different view. Groff is a master of language. It’s not a gentle read. But it’s magnificent.” — Kelly Currie, Delphi Public Library, Delphi, IN

9781492617891_b51f0House of Thieves  Charles Belfoure (Sourcebooks Landmark)

Starred by PW and Booklist, this is both an Indie Next and LibraryReads pick:
“Belfoure’s intriguing novel is set in Gilded Age New York City. John Cross, head of the family, finds an unexpected talent for planning robberies, while his wife and children also discover their inner criminals. The historical details and setting evoke old New York. I enjoyed every minute of their escapades.” — Barbara Clark-Greene, Groton Public Library, Groton, CT

9780393239294_6c145The Scribe, Matthew Guinn (Norton)


“A shunned detective is pulled back to Atlanta to solve some brutal murders that seem to be the work of a serial killer. Political intrigue, a fascinating time in this country’s history, and a good old-fashioned murder mystery make this one fascinating read. This book asks the question: when a man has had everything taken away, will he still fight for what is right?” — Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX

9781632863324_9a524Sweet Caress: The Many Lives of Amory Clay, William Boyd, (Macmillan/Bloomsbury USA)

Indie Next:

“Boyd’s new novel is the story of Amory Clay, whose father, a troubled World War I veteran, is absent. Amory’s Uncle Greer gives her a camera and teaches her about photography, and it is this gift that allows her to make her own way in the world. As a young woman, she goes to Berlin in the ‘20s, New York in the ‘30s, and then to France during World War II, where she makes her mark as one of the first female war correspondents. Later in life, Amory continues to pursue her passions and dreams as she experiences love, marriage, children, and yet another war. Boyd employs actual photos to accentuate this sweeping tale of a life lived to the fullest, and demonstrates yet again why he is one of our greatest chroniclers of the human heart.” —Cody Morrison, Square Books, Oxford, MS


9780800726805_82516  9780143109310_9a46c-2

Hitting theaters today is the movie adaptation of 90 Minutes In Heaven (Revell, 2004) promoted yesterday by Hoda and KLG on the Today Show, and based on the book by Don Piper.

Also debuting is Wolf Totem by French director Jean-Jacques Annaud. Based on the controversial Chinese novel by Rong Jiang, Wolf Totem, (Penguin Press, 2008), it is reviewed in the NYT today. The NYT also reviewed the book when it was published.

Returning to the small screen next week is the Longmire series, picked up by Netflix after it was dropped by A&E. Based on the character in Criag Johnson’s Longmire Mystery Series, beginning with The Cold Dish (Penguin), the Netflix incarnation is reviewed in the NYT.

9781501127625_62c10This week a new paperback edition of Walter Isaacson’s lengthy bio, Steve Jobs is being released. It is called the “inspiration” for the movie that releases October 16, starring Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen, Jeff Daniels and directed by Danny Boyle with a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin. Apple’s co-founder Steve Wozniak told the BBC this week that he is satisfied with the result (although earlier he objected to his portrayal by Seth Rogen in the movie’s trailer).

For a full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV spreadsheet and link to our listing of tie-ins.

Six Titles to Know & Recommend, the Week of Sept 7

Friday, September 4th, 2015

The holds leader for next week is the next in Lee Child’s series.


Make Me, Lee Child, (RH/Delacorte Press; BOT)

On the eve of the release of the 20th book in the series, news broke that the second Jack Reacher movie starring Tom Cruise is moving ahead and is now scheduled to premiere in Oct. 2016.

Janet Maslin, who has reviewed many of Child’s books in the daily NYT, considers this one of his best. It is also a LibraryReads pick:

Jack Reacher is back. Jack gets off a train at an isolated town. Soon, he is learning much more about the town, and its residents are learning not to mess around with Jack Reacher. Readers new to this series will find this book a good starting point, and fans will be pleased to see Jack again. — Jenna Persick, Chester County Library, Exton, PA

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Sept. 7, 2015

Advance Attention

9780802124043_f0ffbBream Gives Me Hiccups, Jesse Eisenberg, (Grove Press)

This debut short story collection features a 9-year-old restaurant critic and is getting attention largely as a result of the author’s other career as an actor. A profile of the author/actor in the NYT Sunday Book Review reveals that he is reader.

This book may cross over to the small screen. In January, it was announced that Eisenberg had made a deal with Amazon Studios to adapt the stories into a half-hour comedy.

Eisenberg narrates the audio. Below, he reads one of the stories.

9780812998917_e6a94Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights, Salman Rushdie, (Random House)

From The Tonight Show to a profile in the New York Times, Rushdie is getting attention for his latest, reviewed in the L.A. Times.

 Peer Picks

LibraryReads Favoritecrash-landing

The Art of Crash Landing, Melissa DeCarlo, (Harper Paperbacks)

This original trade paperback is the #1 LibraryReads pick for the month,

“At once tragic and hilarious, this book is a roller coaster of a read. You’ll find yourself rooting for the snarky and impulsive but ultimately lovable Mattie. At the heart of this tale is a beautifully unraveled mystery that has led Mattie to her current circumstances, ultimately bringing her to her first real home.” — Patricia Kline-Millard, Bedford Public Library, Bedford, NH

Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 1.35.39 PMThis Is Your Life, Harriet Chance!, Jonathan Evison, (Workman/Algonquin)

Librarians have been fans of Evison ever since his first book and they made this his fourth a LibraryReads pick for the month:

“Harriet Chance receives word that her recently deceased husband, Bernard, has won an Alaskan cruise. Deciding to go on the trip, she is given a letter from her close friend Mildred, with instructions not to open it until she is on the cruise. The contents of this letter shatter Harriet and she begins to reevaluate her life and her relationships.” — Arleen Talley, Anne Arundel County Public Library Foundation, Annapolis, MD

It is also an Indie Next pick.

9781250044631_3ee54Black Man in a White Coat : A Doctor’s Reflections on Race and Medicine, Damon Tweedy, M.D, (Macmillan/Picador)

A BEA Editors’ Buzz title, this is on Entertainment Weekly “Must List” in the current issue, “This riveting memoir chronicles Tweedy’s rise from wide-eyed med student to practicing physician, as he’s forced to consider the ways race and health intersect in his patients’ lives — and his own.”

it is also an Indie Next pick:

Black Man in a White Coat would be an important book no matter when it was published, but in this season of Ferguson and Charleston, when we must assert more loudly and clearly than ever that black lives matter, the book is essential reading. Dr. Tweedy reflects on the issues faced by black professionals as they confront racism in their careers and black patients as they face the inequities of our health care system. This book is introspective and inspiring in a way that a less personal narrative could not be. We owe the author our gratitude for shining a spotlight on these important issues.” —Carole Horne, Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, MA

9780062369543_26e63The Hummingbird, Stephen P. Kiernan, (HarperCollins/Morrow)

Indie Next:

The Hummingbird is a powerful story about the critical role of human empathy in dealing with two important contemporary issues: hospice care and post-traumatic stress disorder. Kiernan’s characters are well-drawn and give unique perspectives on death, trauma, and providing care in difficult times. The Hummingbird is a must-read for all who want to help loved ones die with dignity as well as for those helping veterans achieve normalcy after serving our country. —Phyllis K. Spinale, Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA – See more at:


Getting a jump on the holiday weekend, the movie adaptation of A Walk in the Woods starring Robert Redford, Nick Nolte and Emma Thompson opened on Wednesday. New York magazine’s review will disappoint those hoping for a movie that was as funny as Bryson’s 1008 book.

As we head to the fall movie season, several tie-ins are scheduled for publication next week. Movie inks are to our coverage, with trailers.

9780008150280_8ea44  9780316391344_1779d

The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray TwinsJohn Pearson, (HarperCollins/William Collins); Movie opens 10/2/15

Room, Emma Donoghue (Hachette, trade pbk, mass mkt., audio);  Movie opens 10/16/15

9781455564972_0a43d  9781501106477_9f92d

Trumbo (Movie Tie-In Edition), Bruce Cook, (Hachette/Grand Central);  Movie opens 11/6/15

Brooklyn, Colm Toibin,  (S&S/Scribner); Movie opens 11/6/15

For a full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins.

Eight Titles to Know and Recommend, the Week of Aug. 31

Friday, August 28th, 2015

spiders-web  purity

It’s a game of “Is this one better than that one” for critics this week, as they look forward to two big launches on Tuesday. We’ve already looked at the earliest reviews of The Girl in the Spider’s Web (RH/Knopf; RH and BOT Audio; RH Large Print).  People magazine adds theirs online today (the review is not in the new print issue; usually it is the other way around), judging it a worthy successor. That makes the Washington Post the only holdout so far

The other title is Jonathan’s third book, Purity. (Macmillan/FSG; Macmillan Audio). It’s also had several early reviews, which we summarized. Many more have been added since.

Going beyond the cliched adjective “highly anticipated,” Entertainment Weekly ‘s Leah Greenblatt writes, “A new Jonathan Franzen novel arrives only every five or 10 years, and when it does, it feels like a banquet. His books are almost always centered on familial entanglements and identity, but they’re never just that: There are brilliant stand-alone chapters to devour, detours to savor, bitter little scraps to nibble and spit out.”  This one is no exception, says Greenblatt, Objecting to Franzen’s “often shockingly ugly take on women” (although she says he is an equal opportunity insulter, since his “male characters hardly come out unscathed”) and to the novel’s abrupt ending which seems to indicate Franzen tired of his characters, she gives it a B.

The daily NYT‘s Michiko Kakutani, whom Franzen referred to in 2008 as “the stupidest person in New York City,” calls this a “dynamic new novel,” which, “After its somewhat stilted start …kicks into gear, with Mr. Franzen writing with gathering assurance and verve.” Addressing Franzen famous misanthropy, she says he “has added a new octave to his voice … [the] ability here to not just satirize the darkest and pettiest of human impulses but to also capture his characters’ yearnings for connection and fresh starts — and to acknowledge the possibility of those hopes.”

LA Times chief critic David L. Ulin’s is more qualified, saying “The novel is a bit of a mixed bag, largely because of all the plotting, which has never been the author’s strong suit; both The Corrections and Freedom succeed despite, not because of, their narrative contrivances. All the same, it remains compelling to read Franzen confront his demons, which are not just his but everyone’s.”

People magazine makes it their “Pick of the Week,” [not online yet] calling it “Wickedly smart and funny about power and desire, sometimes flabby and contrived yet still irresistible: pure Franzen.”

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet,EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Aug. 31, 2015

Consumer Media Picks

9781609452865_4717cThe Story of the Lost Child, Elena Ferrante, (Europa Editions)

The cult Italian author‘s final book in her Neapolitan Novels series is featured on the cover of this week’a NYT Book Review.

The writer explains in a Vanity Fair interview that “You Don’t Need to Know Her Name.”


Peer Picks

9781476798172_61985Did You Ever Have A Family, Bill Clegg, (S&S/Gallery/Scout Press)

There’s a pile-up of excitement for this book, featured at BEA, with stars from all four pre-pub journals, plus picks by Indie Next as well as LibraryReads:

“Clegg’s devastatingly beautiful fiction debut is the portrait of a community in the aftermath of a tragedy. June Reid, the broken woman at the epicenter of the novel, is struggling with a loss so profound that she is unable to see beyond her grief, unaware that it has touched many people. Clegg tells their stories with heartbreaking sensitivity and insight.” — Mary Coe, Fairfield Woods Branch Library, Fairfield, CT

9780544409910_db716-2Girl Waits with Gun, Amy Stewart, (HMH)

Also arriving with four prepub stars and picks by Indie Next and LibraryReads:

“When the Kopp sisters and their buggy are injured by Henry Kaufman’s car, Constance Kopp at first just wants him to pay the damages. As she pursues justice, she meets another of Kaufman’s victims, the young woman Lucy. Stewart creates fully developed characters, including the heroine, Constance, who is fiercely independent as she faces down her fears. The time period and setting are important parts of the story as well, providing a glimpse of 1914 New Jersey.” — Maggie Holmes, Richards Memorial Library, North Attleboro, MA

It is also reviewed in the week’s New York Times Sunday Book Review and author Stewart answers the burning question from the L.A Times, “What made Amy Stewart leave garden bestsellers behind for the novel Girl Waits with Gun?” She reveals she has and answer to reviewers’ hopes and is working on anther novel featuring Constance Kopp.

9780399174001_ee04bThe Gates of Evangeline, Hester Young, (Penguin/Putnam)

Indie Next and LibraryReads

“Journalist Charlie Cates goes to gloomy, swampy Louisiana to write a book about the disappearance of a young child. Her research uncovers family secrets, lies, and clandestine affairs. This first book in a new series is incredibly suspenseful, with a vivid setting, a supernatural tinge, and an intricate plot that keeps you guessing until the end.” — Anbolyn Potter, Chandler Public Library, Chandler, AZ

9781250072320_3d213Jade Dragon Mountain, Elsa Hart, (Macmillan/Minotaur)

Indie Next:

“Hart has written an excellent historical whodunit set in a remote province of Imperial China in 1708. Li Du, a librarian in exile, investigates the murder of an old Jesuit priest a few days before the arrival of the emperor. Full of mythological, cultural, and historical details, Jade Dragon Mountain also offers a fascinating analysis of the period when foreign businessmen began coveting China’s riches, in particular its tea. The plot is tight, the characters and suspects are fully developed, and the story keeps readers guessing with a few extra surprises at the end. I highly recommend this book and I am looking forward to reading more adventures featuring Li Du.” —Pierre Camy, Schuler Books & Music, Grand Rapids, MI

At BEA Shout ‘n’ Share, Kristi Chadwick, Massachusetts Library System said, “The language, the prose is so beautiful it takes you into the story and keeps you going page after page.”


Hitting theaters today is the movie adaptation of Robert C. O’Brien, Z For Zachariah (S&S/Atheneum, 1975; tie-in edition, Simon Pulse, 8/18/15), reviewed in the NYT today. Concluding on HBO this Sunday is the series Show Me A Hero, based on the book by Lisa Belkin.

9781481455923_8feea  9781481456029_20445

Scheduled for publication this week are new trade paperback editions of the six titles in Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series and the three in the prequel, The Infernal Devices. ABC Family is adapting the series. It is expected to being in early 2016. To fuel fan interest, the official site was launched recently.

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV. For tie-ins, link to our catalog on Edelweiss.

Seven Titles to Know and Recommend, the Week of Aug 23

Friday, August 21st, 2015

9781451692228_12ac2Next week the media will continue placing attention on the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and on journalist Gary Rivlin’s book, Katrina: After the Flood (S&S). Having already appeared on the cover of the 8/9/15 New York Times Book review, an excerpt is featured in this week’s New York Times Magazine. The author is set to appear today on MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, this coming Thursday on NPR’s Diane Rehm Show and on CBS Sunday Morning next week.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet ,EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Aug 23, 2015

Holds Leader

9780399163845_8c77d  A_is_for_Alibi

X, Sue Grafton, (Penguin/Putnam)

Sue Grafton not only gets marquee billing on the cover of her new book, she appears to not even need a title, just the image of a letter (what a contrast to the cover of her first book from 1982, where the title gets top billing and her name gets near;y equal billing with her main character’s). The twenty-fourth in her series, it gets stars from Booklist, Kirkus, and PW. Booklist says “Grafton has never been better.” Kirkus adds “Grafton’s endless resourcefulness in varying her pitches in this landmark series … graced by her trademark self-deprecating humor, is one of the seven wonders of the genre” and PW says this is a “superior outing.”

Advance Attention

9781501105432_8a246A Window Opens, Elisabeth Egan, (S&S)

As a former magazine and book editor Elisabeth Egan has a leg up on other first-time novelists. Add to that the fact that she once worked for Amazon, an experience echoed by her character’s punishing job at a company called Scroll, and that Amazon’s working conditions have been in the news lately, and you have a formula for strong media coverage. Indeed, Eagan is profiled in the daily New York Times and her novel is reviewed in this Sunday’s NYT Book Review and is a People magazine pick.

It is also an Indie Next pick:

Alice Pearse has just accepted a job with Scroll, (a forward-thinking bookstore) but Susannah, her friend who owns the neighborhood bookstore, asks her, “Would you really work for an operation that will be the final nail in the coffin for Blue Owl Books?” On her first day, Alice must set up meetings with 30 agents and editors and assemble 425 top titles to sell in Scroll’s lounges. The job is in addition to having three children, a dog, a husband in the midst of a career change, parents, siblings, and friends. Alice soon realizes this career may not be exactly what she envisioned and must ask herself, what matters the most? — the very question that many of us ask ourselves every day. A delightful, inspiring, and moving tale that will be a top choice for any book group. —Karen Briggs, Great Northern Books & Hobbies, Oscoda, MI

9781250010025_487a7The Last Love Song: A Biography of Joan Didion, Tracy Daugherty, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s)

Interest in Didion grew with the publication of her memoir about her husband’s death, The Year of Magical Thinking, a National Book Award winner, best seller and the basis for a successful Broadway play, so this first biography of the writer has been eagerly awaited. Reviewing it last week, Entertainment Weekly gave it an A-. It is reviewed, or  more accurately, simply “described” by Michiko Kakutani this week in the New York Times, but the L.A. Times is not a fan, saying the book doesn’t tell us any more than we could learn simply by reading Didion’s own words.

Peer Picks

9781631490477_1c402Best Boy, Eli Gottlieb, (Norton/Liveright)

The Washington Post’s review calls it “An unforgettable novel.” It is an Indie Next pick and the #1 LibraryReads pick for August:

“What happens when someone on the autism spectrum grows up, and they aren’t a cute little boy anymore? Gottlieb’s novel follows the story of Todd Aaron, a man in his fifties who has spent most of his life a resident of the Payton Living Center. Todd begins to wonder what lies beyond the gates of his institution. A funny and deeply affecting work.” — Elizabeth Olesh, Baldwin Public Library, Baldwin, NY

9781250022080_12de6The Nature of the Beast: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel, Louise Penny, (Macmillan/Minotaur)

Supported by a two-page centerfold ad in the NYT Sunday Book review this week, Penny’s latest is an Indie Next pick.:

“Penny scores again with this story of the struggle between the forces of good and evil in the tiny Canadian village of Three Pines. Retired homicide chief Armand Gamache must use all of his detective skills and worldly wisdom to solve the murder of a young boy, an investigation that uncovers a threat to global security. The eccentric citizens of this remote outpost add their own color and knowledge to the unraveling of this complex mystery. This book is a pure delight!” —Sarah Pease, Buttonwood Books & Toys, Cohasset, MA

9781616204204_321a5The Fall of Princes, Robert Goolrick, (Workman/Algonquin)


“I loved this novel about the rise and fall of a man in NYC during the 80s, when money was easy to make and easy to spend. What happens when you can get anything you want, and what does it really end up costing you? The story of the people working in the financial industry during that time is interwoven with the reality of AIDS, cocaine and the changes going on in society. So many sentences were so well-written that I found myself stopping to take them in and relish them.” — Jennifer Cook, Cheshire Public Library, Cheshire, CT

Titles to Know and Recommend,
the Week of Aug 17

Friday, August 14th, 2015

Crayons Home  9781101915868_beb50

The titles arriving next week with the largest announced print runs, 1 million copies each, are both childrens books. The Day the Crayons Came Home by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers is, of course, the followup to the long-running best seller about the day they left.

Neck and neck with the crayons is  Percy Jackson’s Greek Heroes by Rick Riordan (Disney/Hyperion; Listening Library)

9780316122634_e68f6Among the well-known adult authors with books arriving next week, Michael Koryta gets props in this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review from “Crime’ columnist Marilyn Stasio for standing out from those authors who “write the same book over and over.” Koryta, “an inventive story teller and a superb stylist, he’s constantly experimenting,” and  his new book, Last Words is “a private eye novel doesn’t read like one.”

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Aug. 17, 2015

Consumer Media Picks


Eileen: A Novel, Ottessa Moshfegh, (Penguin Press)

Featured at BEA’s Editors Buzz Panel this year, this debut (after an award-winning novella McGlue and several short stories)  gets the cover of this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review, calling it “seductive” and a “literary thriller.”

It is also an Indie Next pick:
“Psychological thrillers don’t get any better than this. Moshfegh masterfully captures the inner despair of a young mind filled with vitriol. Through atmospheric and unsettling writing, the cold dreariness of small-town New England seeps into readers’ bones even as Eileen’s twisted view of the world — desperate, angry, and vulnerable — seeps into the reading experience. Creepy, but morbidly funny too, Eileen, both the girl and the book, will be with readers long after the last page is turned.” — Christopher Phipps, DIESEL: A Bookstore, Oakland, CA

It also leads off this week’s Entertainment Weekly Books section, called a “Chilling debut.”

UPDATE: the L.A. Times adds another stellar review to the above and the author appears on NPR’S Weekend Edition Saturday.


Woman With a Secret, Sophie Hannah, (HarperCollins/Morrow)

Since Janet Maslin stepped down as a one of the three book reviewers for the daily NYT as of July, we’ve missed her Friday reviews championing
titles she expected to breakout. We’re still waiting for news on a replacement, but meanwhile, Sarah Lyall steps into the breach today, although for a book that hit shelves last week.

About Sophie Hannah’s new boo, she enthuses, “It has, in common with her other books, a Gordian knot of a plot that untangles bit by bit, like a flower that does not blossom all at once; a strikingly executed and seemingly insoluble crime; a mess of loopy motivations and extreme behavior from guilty and innocent alike; a flawed, difficult heroine; and a great deal of amusing conversation between Waterhouse and his equally odd colleagues.


Born on the Bayou : A Memoir, Blaine Lourd, (S&S/Gallery)

People pick — “a corker of a tale about growing up in Cajun country.”

Entertainment Weekly, “Must List”, #7 — ‘This witty, evocative memoir puts a vivid Southern spin on the classic rags-to-riches tale.”

The author is scheduled to appear on ABC’s Good Morning America on Wednesday, August 19.


We Never Asked for Wings, Vanessa Diffenbaugh, (RH/Ballantine)

People ‘Book of the Week’ — “Single mom Letty Espinosa has always let her mother, Maria Elena, do the work of raising Letty’s two kids. But when Maria Elena suddenly moves back to Mexico, hard-drinking Letty must grow up fast. Diffenbaugh (The Language Of Flowers) deftly blends family conflict with reassurance: Wings is like Parenthood with class and immigrations issues added for gravitas. Take it to the beach.”


Fortune Smiles : Stories, Adam Johnson

This collection of short stories by the  author of the Pulitzer Prize winner, The Oprhan Master’s Son gets double coverage in theWashington Post, with a review which calls the stories “masterful”  as well as a story by Book World editor Ron Charles. It is also reviewed in the NYT Sunday Book Review (“gleefully bleak“).

UPDATE: The author is interviewed on NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday.


Thug Notes : A Street-Smart Guide to Classic Literature, Sparky Sweets, PhD, (RH/Vintage)

We’ve had Thug Kitchen, now comes Thug Notes, like Cliff’s Notes, but with an edge.

Entertainment Weekly says, “from the mad-successful YouTube channel that puts a streetwise spin on beloved books and plays — stars a fictional professor named Spark Sweets, PhD. … But the project which is the brainchild of a group of comedians and academics, has been so successful at interesting kinds in literature that some schools have taken notice.”

Try this one with your reading groups:


Last Bus to Wisdom, Ivan Doig, (Penguin/Riverhead)

In this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review, the reviewer acknowledges he was worried about having to assess this book by a beloved author who died in April fearing it might not live up to his favorite Doig novels. After all,  “spitting on a fresh-sodded grave is not my idea of a good time.” Happily, however, he reports, this one is “more than not bad. It’s one of Doig’s best novels, an enchanting 1950’s road-trip tale.”

Peer Picks


Everybody Rise, Stephanie Clifford. (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press)

Word has gotten out on this debut. Holds are five to one in some places. They may continue to grow with the full page ad in this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review, plus the review in the Washington Post, “a smart tragicomedy about a young woman attempting to infiltrate the Primates of Park Avenue crowd.”

It is both an Indie Next and a LibraryReads pick:

“Stephanie Clifford’s debut novel takes us into the world of NYC high society in 2006. Evelyn Beegan, who’s always been on the fringes of the smart set, meets It girl Camilla Rutherford, and her ambition and desire to belong get the best of her. Evelyn’s deceptive effort to keep pace with Camilla wreaks all kinds of havoc with her finances, her family, and her sense of self. With a sympathetic main character and a fascinating look into how the other half lives, this astute tale is irresistible.” —  Anbolyn Potter, Chandler Public Library, Chandler, AZ

9780062388384_9741b The Girl from the Garden, Parnaz Foroutan, (HarperCollins/Ecco)

With starred reviews from PW, Kirkus and Booklist, this is also an Indie Next pick:

“In her accomplished, arresting debut, Foroutan tells a story almost biblical in its basics. People in a mixed, but very religious, clan-determined society in Iran have their lives and roles set out in firmly dictated ways. Conflict ensues when what is prescribed doesn’t happen as it should and when basic human longings for autonomy and a sense of self start to emerge. Foroutan writes of a family’s unraveling in a powerful story that will vividly live on in the reader’s memory and imagination. Brilliant!” —Rick Simonson, The Elliott Bay Book Company, Seattle, WA


Hitting screens today is the movie Ten Thousand Saints, reviewed in the NYT. On Sunday, HBO debuts the new David Simon series, Show Me a Hero, based on the book by Lisa Belkin, also reviewed in the NYT today.

Five new  tie-ins hit shelves next week, listed below, with links to our latest coverage.

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Captive : The Untold Story of the Atlanta Hostage Hero, Ashley Smith, Stacy Mattingly, (HarperCollins/Morrow Paperbacks) — CAPTIVE, Trailer — Movie opens 9/18

The Martian (Movie Tie-In) : A Novel, Andy Weir, mass market — THE MARTIAN, New Viral Teaser — Movie opens 10/2

Big Stone Gap (Movie Tie-in Edition) : A Novel, Adriana Trigiani (RH/ Ballantine)– BIG STONE GAP, Trailer — — Movie opens 10/9

A Walk in the Woods (Movie Tie-in Edition) : Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail, Bill Bryson, (RH/Anchor) — Redford Takes A WALK IN THE WOODS — Movie opens 9/2

Z for Zachariah, Robert C. O’Brien, (S&S/Simon Pulse) — In Production: Z FOR ZACHARIAH – — Movie opens 8/28

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins.

Titles to Know and Recommend,
Week of Aug 10

Friday, August 7th, 2015

YouTube stars had their day at the recently wrapped VidCon. A surprising number of them have ventured in the the old media of books. Coming next week, internet star Felicia Day‘s memoir impresses booksellers, who made it one of their Indie Next picks.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of Aug. 10, 2015

Holds Leaders

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Silver Linings: A Rose Harbor Novel, Debbie Macomber, (RH/Ballantine)

Gaining advantage by being published in the midst of season three of the Hallmark series based on Macomber’s Cedar Cove novels starring Andie McDowell, this is the holds leader for the week.

Who Do You Love, Jennifer Weiner, (S&S/Atria)

Kirkus calls this one, “Weiner at her heartstring-tugging best.”

Devil’s Bridge, Linda Fairstein, (Penguin/Dutton)

Featured in a full-page ad in this week;s NYT Sunday Book ReviewPW calls it subpar while Booklist says it is “Another solid title … sure to follow its predecessors onto the best-seller lists.”

Media Attention

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The tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina is coming soon and this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review marks it with a roundup featured on the cover, including Katrina: After the Flood, by Gary Rivlin, (S&S). Closer to the actual anniversary,  the author is set to appear on MSNBC-TV/Hardball with Chris Matthews, August 21 and NPR’s Diane Rehm Show, August 27.

Rivlin presents five surprising facts about the storm in the following video.

Reaching further back in history, the Today Show’s Al Roker is publishing The Storm of the Century: Tragedy, Heroism, Survival, and the Epic True Story of America’s Deadlest Natural Disaster: The Great Gulf Hurricane of 1900, (HarperCollins/Morrow).

Consumer Media Picks

9780307268129_d8454Days of Awe, Lauren Fox, (RH/Knopf)

People “Book of the Week”, Aug 17:

“You can do everything right, yet when tragedy hits, ‘you’re staring at the moonscape that used to be your life.’ Isabel Moore learns this when her best friend, ‘the glorious roller-coaster that was Josie,’ dies on an icy highway. Iz has a loving husband and a good job, but suddenly she’s fact-to-face with dark truths about Josie and herself. As Fox deconstructs the myths of perfect womanhood, her humor and humanity remind us that love’s the only lifeboat through grief.” It’s also reviewed in this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review.

Peer Picks

9780062240545_b93b7In the Dark Places: An Inspector Banks Novel, Peter Robinson, (HarperCollins/Morrow)

Indie Next Pick:

In the Dark Places, Robinson’s 22nd Inspector Banks novel, is still rich in the landscape and culture of Yorkshire. Still populated with characters moving through their lives, reacting to events, reaching for experiences, skills, relationships — and justice for victims. Still ingeniously plotted, challenging even the astute reader to keep up through the nerve-racking suspense. Still flush with the musicality of Robinson’s prose and with the love of music that is so much a part of Banks’ personality. And still shaping the story with local history and landmarks so that In the Dark Places, like each Banks novel before it, is unique, yet contributing to a remarkable portrait of modern Britain in all its insularity and diversity.” —Barbara Peters, The Poisoned Pen, Scottsdale, AZ

9780062354631_c06acThe Race for Paris, Meg Waite Clayton, (HarperCollins/Harper)

Indie Next Pick:

The Race for Paris is an action-packed tale of courage, friendship, and love during the grim, final days of World War II. Clayton’s triumphant new novel brings to life the intrepid female journalists who sought to break the limits of the times. While soldiers faced the brutal reality of war, women had to also overcome sexism and legal obstacles simply to do their jobs. Based on real characters and events, The Race for Paris brings a unique perspective to a little-known aspect of history. Gather your book club and prepare for an intense conversation as these characters will haunt you long after you turn the final page!” —Pamela Klinger-Horn, Excelsior Bay Books, Excelsior, MN

9781941411049_8990bMultiply/Divide: On the American Real and Surreal, Wendy S. Walters, (Sarabande Books)

Indie Next Pick:

“In Multiply/Divide, Walters sifts through the weird, quietly horrifying wreckage that structural racism has left behind in everyday American life and presents something like a mythology, but stranger because, of course, it is real, and we have never known life without it. Her prose is as clear as day, her stories are candid, and only a poet could have written a book of essays like this. City by city, over radio waves and under the street, Walters beautifully maps for us what should have been obvious: that nearly all of our heartbreak — and even our joy — is rooted in this mythology.” —Daniel Poppick, BookCourt, Brooklyn, NY

9781476785653_801c2You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost): A Memoir, Felicia Day, (S&S/Touchstone)

A YouTube star featured at this year’s VidCon, this memoir is also an Indie Next Pick:
“Day has penned what is sure to be an instant cult classic. By turns funny, insightful, inspiring, and all-too-familiar, she maps her rise from lonely homeschooled girl to internet darling, along the way revealing her struggles, her insecurities, her stubbornness, and, most transparently, her utterly relatable story of finding her way while not fitting in. For anyone who has woken up to realize they are not where they wanted to be, Day’s honest book is for you!” —Anna Eklund, University Book Store, Seattle, WA

For more on YouTube stars and their books, see our earlier story.


it’s a big week for adaptations in theaters. Finally debuting today is Gillian Flynn’s Dark Places (reviews are not strong, however) as well as The Diary Of A Teenage Girl and an animated version of Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet.

Oddly, both of the movie tie-ins coming out next week are for films that don’t yet have a release date.

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A Woman in Arabia : The Writings of the Queen of the Desert, Gertrude Bell, Georgina Howell, (Penguin Classics)

Called “the “female Lawrence of Arabia.” Gertrude Bell was a  Middle East expert who lived with Bedouin tribes and helped the British army find their way in the desert during the World War I. This is the latest of several collections of Bell’s writings is published to coincide with Werner Herzog movie Queen of the Desert, starring Nicole Kidman as Bell with James Franco, Robert Pattinson and Damian Lewis. The U.S. release date has not yet been announced.

The DressmakerRosalie Ham, (Penguin Books)

Called a “revenge comedy,” the movie stars Kate Winslet, Judy Davis and Liam Hemsworth. It is adapted from a best selling Australian novel which is getting its first U.S. release. The film’s U.S. release date has not yet been set, however.

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, see our Books to Movies and TV and our listing of tie-ins.

Titles to Know and Recommend, the Week of Aug 3

Friday, July 31st, 2015

9780316407175_177cbIt may be hard to believe, but next week we head into the fall publishing season. It will be a while before we begin to see multiple marquee name authors dominate . The only one this week is James Patterson with Alert, co-authored by Michael Ledwidge (Hachette/Little, Brown).

But we do have a cornucopia of peer recommendations, eleven titles from Indie Next alone. We’ve highlighted the ones getting the most buzz below and have included them all in this collection.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet EarlyWord New Title Radar Week of 8/3/15

Advance Attention

9780525954194_0f570The Man Who Wasn’t There: Investigations into the Strange New Science of the Self, Anil Ananthaswamy, (Penguin/Dutton)

isn’t the only way the brain can go wrong. In this book Ananthaswamy examines the many ways the brain can go wrong, including Alzheimer’s  and body integrity identity disorder, or BIID, a which can make a person turn on his own body. .On Fresh Air, 7/28, Ananthaswamy tells Terry Gross the story of a man who had his healthy leg amputates because he had become convinced it wasn’t his own. The book is reviewed in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, which calls it “a blazingly original excursion through the brain.”

Consumer Media Picks

9780316211369_bd062  Trust No One

Villa America, Liza Klaussmann, (Hachette/Little, Brown)

People “Pick of the Week,” 8/10/15 — “In the fictionalized look at 1920s socialites Sara and Gerald Murphy — real life inspirations for F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Tender Is The Night — party central is the Cote d’Azur and the players include novelists, painters and a stoic WW1 pilot Fitzgerald fans may go mad trying to separate truth from fantasy, but Klaussmann’s portrait of a marriage that endured many temptations (including Hemingway!) is intriguing and tender to the bone.”

Trust No One: A Thriller, Paul Cleave, (S&S/Atria)

People pick, 8/10/15 –“Jerry Grey, a thriller writer with early-onset Alzheimer’s, confesses a horrific murder to the police. Or is his jumbled mind just reciting the plot of his first bestseller? And why are cops convinced he really HAS killed someone — a crime he can’t remember? Cleave’s whirligig plot mesmerizes as Jerry fights his decline and tries to put together the pieces.?

Peer Picks

9781451693591_e4f7eThe Marriage of Opposites, Alice Hoffman

Indie Next:
“Hoffman’s newest novel is based on the life of Rachel Pomie Petit Pissarro and her favorite son, Camille, who would become the famed ‘Father of impressionism.’ Growing up in a Jewish refugee community on tropical St. Thomas in the 1800s, strong-willed Rachel dreams of the cool, rainy streets of Paris. Raised by a stern mother and a kind-hearted father, Rachel is forced to marry a widower to save her family’s business and later follows forbidden passions, creating a scandal that turns her community against her. Hoffman fills the pages with the island’s magic and color in this unforgettable tale of what it means to walk the tightrope between tradition and independence, love and logic.” —Julia Sinn, Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA

“Exquisite… Alice Hoffman’s finest work to date. The Marriage of Opposites is a beautiful love story of a man and woman and a mother and child intricately woven together to capture the author’s true message: Love more, not less.” — Marianne Colton, Lockport Public Library, Lockport, NY

Alice Hoffman talks about the inspiration for the book in the following video:


In a Dark, Dark Wood, Ruth Ware, (S&S/Gallery/Scout Press)

“Leonora Shaw is a crime writer who lives a solitary life in London until she receives an invitation to a hen party for a friend she hasn’t seen in nearly ten years. The party takes place in a remote location with spotty phone service. Are you nervous yet? We know from the opening pages that something horrible happens, but just what, and to whom, how, and why will keep readers guessing — and flipping the pages. Recommended for fans of The Girl on the Train.” Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA

Entertainment Weekly:
“… you’ll find it almost impossible to put this twisting, electrifying debut down … it’s foggy atmosphere and shilling revelations will leave you breathless.” A-

9781250049582_bf495Lord of the Wings: A Meg Langslow Mystery, Donna Andrewsm, (Macmillan/Minotaur)

“It’s Halloween in Caerphilly and the town has come up with another festival to bring in the tourists. Meg Langslow is heading up the “Goblin Patrol”, there’s trouble at the Haunted House, and body parts are being found at the zoo. Meg is once again called in to save the day and solve the crime. If you enjoy your mysteries packed with humor and fun, don’t miss this return to Caerphilly with Meg and her zany family and friends.” — Karen Emery, Johnson County Public Library, Franklin, IN

9781250057808_9918fFishbowl : A Novel, Bradley Somer, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s)

Indie Next:
“Somer uses the unusual device of a goldfish plunging off of a high-rise balcony to tie together the disparate stories of the building’s inhabitants. As our hero, Ian, plummets past floor after floor, he glimpses the lives of the residents — witnessing birth, heartbreak, new love, and all of the pathos and wonder that comprise human existence. Although Ian has only a goldfish’s seconds-long capacity for memory, readers will find themselves returning to the essential truths of Somer’s characters again and again.” —Jill Miner, Saturn Booksellers, Gaylord, MI

The U.K. book trailer is our pick of the week:


9781610395533_00710-2Black Mass: Whitey Bulger, the FBI, and a Devil’s Deal, Dick Lehr, Gerard O’Neill, (PublicAffairs)

Boston crime boss beginning in the early 1970s,, Whitey Bulger wasn’t found guilty of his multiple murders and other crimes until 2013, a verdict greeted by the Hollywood press as providing a convenient ending for the biopic.

Published last year, Whitey BulgerAmerica’s Most Wanted Gangster and the Manhunt That Brought Him to Justice by Kevin Cullen and Shelley Murphy (Norton, 2/11/13) was featured on NPR’s Fresh Air and described as not only a fascinating story, but “just a great read.”

He was called “Whitey” for his balding white blonde hair, which meant that Johnny Depp had to change his look for the role.

The movie opens 9/18/2015 (for our full list of upcoming adaptations, see our Books to Movies and TV and our listing of tie-ins).

A new trailer was released this week.

9780553538229_19f65-2The Scorch Trials Movie Tie-in Edition (Maze Runner, Book Two), James Dashner, (RH/Delacorte hardcover; Trade Paperback)

The second movie in the series opens 9/18/15. A third movie, The Death Cure, 2/17/17. For once, it looks like the finale of a series will not be split into two movies.

The second trailer was released last week:

Titles to Know and Recommend, Week of July 27

Friday, July 24th, 2015

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The holds leader among the titles arrive next week is Julie Garwood’s Wired (Penguin/Dutton), one of the author’s contemporary romance/thrillers. UPDATE: It appears that this title has been postponed.B&T’s Title Source now shows the publishing date as July 4, 2017.

Close behind is Badlands by C.J. Box (Macmillan/Minotaur), indicating, along with a print run double the size of his previous title, that Box is gaining a wider audience. Booklist, in a starred review says, ‘If Box isn’t a household name yet, he will be.”

The third holds leader is Paula McLain’s Circling The Sun (RH/Ballantine), a fictionalized bio of aviation pioneer Beryl Markham. It’s also a peer pick, receiving stars from all four trade reivews and selected as a LibraryReads title.

“I couldn’t stop reading this fascinating portrayal of Beryl Markham, a complex and strong-willed woman who fought to make her way in the world on her terms. McLain paints a captivating portrait of Africa in the 1920s and the life of expats making their home there. Highly, highly recommended.” — Halle Eisenman, Beaufort County Library, Hilton Head, SC

The new issue of People chooses it as the “Book of the Week,” describing the subject as a “novelists;s dream.” The Wall Street Journal features it with an excerpt and the author is schedule to appear on NPR’s Weekend All Things Considered on August 1.

The author spoke to librarians at the Penguin Random House breakfast during BEA.

Audio Sample:

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of 7/27/15

Consumer Media Picks

9781501100147_8cca8Gonzo Girl: A Novel, Cheryl Della Pietra, (S&S/Touchstone)

Della Pietra worked for the original “gonzo journalist” Hunter S. Thompson and this barely fictionalized account of that experience naturally fascinates journalists, so it is getting wide attention. Trade reviews are mostly positive but object, as PW puts it that “it’s an occasional slog to read through pages of druggy non conversation.” LJ offers a very specific recommendation, “For readers curious about Thompson’s lifestyle and fans of eccentric characters and meandering journeys featuring copious amounts of illegal substances,” (try to spot that demographic in your community studies). It is #2 on Entertainment Weekly “Must List: Top 10 Things We love This Week,” high placement for a book, and the author is interviewed in the issue.

Pretty Baby, Mary Kubica, (Harlequin/MIRA)

People pick, ” …about a 16-year-old homeless girl, a baby and a Chicago mother who is trying to help them . The sense of danger intensifies as mysteries surrounding both the girl and her benefactor slowly emerge. It all builds to a stunning climax involving revelations you won’t see coming.”

Peer Picks


Kitchens of the Great Midwest, J. Ryan Stradal, (Penguin/Pamela Dorman)

We chatted with the author last week as part of our Penguin Debut Authors program.

It is the #1 LibraryReads pick for the month:

“This novel is quirky and colorful. The story revolves around chef Eva Thorvald and the people who influence her life and her cooking. With well-drawn characters and mouthwatering descriptions of meals, Kitchens of the Great Midwest will appeal to readers who like vivid storytelling. Foodies will also enjoy this delicious tale.” — Anbolyn Potter, Chandler Public Library, Chandler, AZ

One of our favorite comments on the book comes from Jen Dayton, Darien Public Library, who said at the BEA Librarians Shout ‘n’ Share program, this book “Will do for cooking what The Art Of Fielding did for baseball.”

The author spoke at the Penguin Random House breakfast during BEA.


Crooked Heart, Lissa Evans, (Harper)


Crooked Heart is a rewarding, addictive read. Orphaned ten-year-old bookworm Noel, sent away to rural St. Albans, finds himself under the reluctant guardianship of Vee, aka Mrs. Vera Sledge. Amidst a chaotic background of bombings and uncertain futures, Vee and Noel gradually form a powerful bond. I recommend this darkly humorous, honest, and complex story. It is book club heaven.” — Janet Schneider, Oceanside Library, Oceanside, NY

It  was on the longlist for the Baileys Women’s Prize.

A movie of Evans’s 2009 novel Their Finest Hour and a Half, is in the works, directed by Lone Scherfig (One Day, An Education).

Book Trailer of the Week


The Fifth House of the Heart. Ben Tripp, (S&S.Gallery)

You shouldn’t judge a book by its trailer, so we’ll add that, besides a great trailer, this book gets a starred review from  PW, “Tripp (The Accidental Highwayman)  melds the modern vampire myth with comic mystery and detective fiction in this intriguing and intelligent horror novel …Though sometimes a touch slow in between action scenes, this deep and terrifying vampire story is as nuanced as it is thrilling.”


(for our full list of upcoming adaptations, see our Books to Movies and TV  and our listing of tie-ins).

Ten Thousand Saints MTI, Eleanor Henderson

Adapted by the team behind American Splendor, the film stars Ethan Hawke, Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, Emile Hirsch, and Emily Mortimer and is set in the hardcore punk scene of Manhattan during the late 80s, on the eve of the Tompkins Square Park riots.

Movie debuts 8/14/2015


A Walk in the Woods (Movie Tie-In) : Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
Bill Bryson

Bryson is played by Robert Redford. Joining him in his attempt to hike the Appalachian Trail is his old pal Katz, a man even less prepared for the effort than Bryson, played by Nick Nolte (in a role originally intended for Redford’s late friend Paul Newman).

Movie opens 9/2/2015

Titles to Know and Recommend,
the Week of July 20

Friday, July 17th, 2015

The well-known names on books arriving next week include Ace Atkins, Alexander McCall Smith and David Rosenfelt. The only book with significant holds, however, is Kathy Reichs’ Speaking In Bones, the 18th in her Temperance Brennan series, which also is a LibraryReads pick for the month (see below).

The media is still focused on Go Set a Watchman — it leads the reviews in the new issues of both Entertainment Weekly (where it gets a D+, one of the lowest ratings we’ve seen. As a comparison, Fifty Shades of Grey got a B+) and People (“On its own, it is a deftly written tale about 1950s bigotry and a young woman coping with the revelation that his father is not the hero she thought he was.”) and is on the NYT  web site “Books” section under the Sunday Book Review, although it doesn’t indicate when it will appear in print.

Below are some of the other titles people will be talking about next week.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of 7/20/15

Consumer Media Picks


Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life, William Finnegan, (Penguin Press)

This combination should catch people’s attention, a surfing memoir by a New Yorker writer who has reported on some heavy duty topics like the civil war in Sudan and drug cartels in Mexico.

Back in 1992, towards the beginning of his 30-year career at the New Yorker, Finnegan wrote a 2-part essay about his experiences as a surfer in San Francisco. As the review in the upcoming NYT Sunday Book Review says, that essay “was instantly recognized as a masterpiece. A wise, ­richly atmospheric account of riding the gelid, powerful gray waves of San Francisco.” Since then, says the reviewer, there have been rumors of a book length memoir. Now that it’s here, it proves worth waiting for and a “cause for throwing your wet-suit hoods in the air.”

Entertainment Weekly also features it (not online yet), with a B+ review, somewhat less than enthusiastic than the NYT because, while the “vivid descriptions of waves caught and waves missed … [are] as elegant and pellucid as the breakers they immortalize …[they start] to blur together once you’ve reached the 50th or so description.”


Movie Star by Lizzie Pepper, Hilary Liftin, (Penguin/Viking)

Liftin, who has had experience as a ghost writer for celebrity memoirs (Tori Spelling, Tatum O’Neal, Miley Cyrus) now writes a novel in the form of a celebrity memoir. On New York Magazine’8 Books You Need to Read This July, which says it fictionalizes “the train wreck of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes … Liftin’s sly novel wears its lurid shallowness on its jacket sleeve, and yet her details are careful, funny, and right.” The New York Post‘s “Page Six” has picked up on the Cruise/Holmes connection.


When the Moon Is Low, Nadia Hashimi, (HarperCollins/Morrow)

On’s list of Dazzling New Beach Reads about a woman who is forced to flee Kabul to London with her children, called  “A must-read saga about borders, barriers and the resolve of one courageous mother fighting to cross over.” Listen to the book talk by HarperCollins Director of Library Marketing, Virginia Stanley.

9780770436087_c79afThe Other Son, Alexander Soderberg, (RH/Crown)

The sequel to 2013’s The Andalusian Friend is reviewed in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, which gives it a B+, “Sweden’s latest contribution to the pleasingly grim scandal-lit cannon … astute psych profiles and blood-soaked set pieces …hook readers for the third and final book.”

Peer Picks


Speaking in Bones, Kathy Reichs, (RH/Bantam)

LibraryReads pick:

“This book lives up to the expectations we have for Kathy Reichs. A compelling and dangerous mystery, lots of medical details, and good characterization make this a title that will be easy to recommend!” — Leslie Johnson, Jefferson County Public Library, Lakewood, CO


Love Lies Beneath, Ellen Hopkins, (S&S/Atria)


“An intriguing tale of sex, romance and deception. Tara is a brilliant, sexy forty-something. She’s enjoying being single until Cavin, a handsome doctor, enters her exam room. They have a hot and steamy romance but there is much, much more to this story. Ellen Hopkins commands each word on the page from her prose to verse.” — Laura Hartwig, Meriden Public Library, Meriden, CT

Well-known for her teen novels in verse, Hopkins talks about why she turned to prose for this title and how writing teen fiction differs from adult:



The Diary of a Teenage Girl, Revised Edition: An Account in Words and Pictures, Phoebe Gloeckner

The film adaptation of this graphic novel was a hit at the Sundance Film Festival and will arrive in theaters on August 7. The New York Times Magazine interviewed the author when she was working on the graphic novel in 2001, calling her “arguably the brightest light among a small cadre of semiautobiographical cartoonists  … who are creating some of the edgiest work about young women’s lives in any medium.”

Few libraries own the original edition, which is now re-released, with a new introduction by the author (for our full list of upcoming adaptations, see our Books to Movies and TV and our listing of tie-ins).

WATCHMAN and Beyond,
Titles to Know the Week of July 13

Friday, July 10th, 2015

The title on everyone’s mind is Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman, (Harper), but there are several other titles worth talking about that arrive next week, including Ta-Nehisi Coates’s look at race relations in the U.S. today,  Between the World and Me, (RH/Spiegel & Grau). If you want to get away humans, check out the People Pick of the week, Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel. For better or worse, however, it seems they are like us.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of July 13, 2015

Holds Leaders

Go Set a Watchman

No surprise, the title leading in pre-publication holds this week is Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman, (Harper; also note that a Spanish language edition is being released in the U.S.). The number is even higher than the holds that were waiting for John Grisham’s title from last fall, Gray Mountain.

9780399174667_1fd8b  9781250020543_ec9da

For the other two holds leaders, the word is naked and the color is purple.

Naked Greed, Stuart Woods, (Penguin/Putnam) — Prepub reviews are pretty bad. Booklist says “yet another sub-par entry in the long-running series” and Kirkus says “you can’t help wondering if Woods has set his word processor to auto-type.”

The Naked Eye, Iris Johansen, (Macmillan/ St. Martin’s) — on the other hand, this one gets a strong review from Booklist,”power-up the emotional stakes in this page-turning thriller that cements [main character, special agent Kendra] Michaels’ reputation as a force to be reckoned with”

Advance Attention


Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates, (RH/Spiegel & Grau)

In the form of a letter from Coates to his 15-year-old son, this book about racial violence in the U.S. was moved up from its original September publishing date, says the publisher, “in response to the Charleston shooting and a wave of interest in the book spurred by comments from David Remnick, John Legend and others.”

Coates was interviewed today on NPR’s  Morning Edition and the book is reviewed by Michiko Kakutani in today’s New York Times. The book is excerpted in The Atlantic.

More attention is on the way, including:

NBC – Meet the Press – 7/5
NPR / Fresh Air – 7/13
New York Magazine – profile piece – 7/13
CBS This Morning – Interview—7/13
Comedy Central – The Daily Show – 7/23
NBC – Late Night with Seth Meyers—TK

Media Picks

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Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel, Carl Safina, (Macmillan/Holt)

People “Book of the Week”, 7/27/15 — “In this awe-inspiring book, ecologist Safina explores the rich inner lives of elephants, killer whales, apes and more … Elephants grieve, cradling their dead. An alpha wolf pretends to lose a wrestling match with his cub. A tiger, after humans take his kill, destroys their traps.”

God and Jetfire: Confessions of a Birth Mother, Amy Seek,  (Macmillan/FSG)

People pick — ‘A balm for anyone who’s ever faced an excruciatingly tough decision.”

Bennington Girls Are Easy, Charlotte Silver, (RH/Doubleday)

Oprah Dazzling New Beach Reads — “Like some of the well-to-do gals in Mary McCarthy’s The Group, the heroines of this delightful satire move to New York expecting the city to enfold them like the arms of so many Amherst boys. But as they swiftly learn, reality is as unforgiving of youth as it is of missed rent, and eventually it’s time to grow up.”

Entertainment Weekly gives it just a B-, “Silver can be a clever and even lyrical writer, but her silly, self-absorbed Girls are too-easy targets,” but check your holds, they are growing in some areas.

Peer Picks


Miss Emily, Nuala O’Connor, (Penguin trade pbk. original)

Indie Next:

“Conjure an image of Emily Dickinson: brilliant, but dour and odd? No! In O’Connor’s gem of a novel, Miss Emily is spirited and witty, even brave. Emily befriends Ada Concannon, who was hired as the Dickinsons’ kitchen girl almost immediately after she arrived from Ireland. Their unlikely friendship quickly provides each with solace and strength in a world where women are often marginalized. Later, an act of raw violence will ripple outward, resulting in consequences that neither Ada nor Emily could ever have imagined. O’Connor has written a small, hope-filled masterpiece!” —Christopher Rose, Andover Books, Andover, MA


Good and Cheap: Eat Well on $4/Day, Leanne Brown, (Workman)

This began as a free ebook that went viral. It became so popular that the author began a Kickstarter campaign to publish a print version which went on to be finalist in the IACP Cookbook Awards. Now published by Workman, it is a LibraryReads pick:

“Wow! This is a great looking book. Great for beginners with its details about ingredients and kitchen tools. Best of all, each recipe is made from ingredients that most everyone has; there were only two ingredients in the whole book that I don’t own. This book is just what my doctor ordered, literally. I am a basic cook and like simple and tasty. This book is OUTSTANDING!” — Nancy Chalk, Charlton Public Library, Charlton, MA

NOTE to New Yorkers: According to the NY Post, you need to double the food budget here, “but eating well for less than $10 a day in New York City is still a feat.”


Armada, Ernest Cline, (RH/Crown)

Prepub reviews for this second book after the popular Ready Player One are harsh. Kirkus calls it “A hackneyed sci-fi spectacle” while PW says, “the story becomes more conventional and less imaginative. The plot holes get harder to ignore as the conclusion approaches, but the book’s beginning offers glimpses of Cline’s significant potential.” Bookpage also knocks it, saying “It’s big fun, especially if your idea of fun is sitting around watching your friends play video games while discussing important theories like Sting vs. Mjolnir.”

There are fans, however. It is an Indie Next pick:

“This new work from Cline definitely will not disappoint the myriad fans of Ready Player One. On the contrary, it is another magical, nerdy romp through science fiction and fantasy pop culture where the thing that happens to the hero is exactly the thing every sci-fi lover secretly — or not so secretly — dreams will happen to them! A successful screenwriter, Cline fills this tale with super-cool action, relatable characters, and inventive plots. I loved it!” —Heather Duncan, Tattered Cover Book Store, Denver, CO


The Watchmaker of Filigree Street, Natasha Pulley, (Macmillan/ Bloomsbury)

On this week’s GalleyChat readers called this title a “well-constructed gem!” hoping that  “this wonderful historical fantasy catches on.” It may be doing just that, it is also an IndieNext pick:

“It takes a special talent to have a reader truly suspend disbelief, but Pulley succeeds spectacularly well in this debut. In 1880s London, Thaniel Steepleton is a telegraphist whose life is saved by a very timely pocket watch. When he meets its maker, Keita Mori, his entire life is upended and made more beautiful — and dangerous. The clock is ticking on this new friendship, and Thaniel must use his ingenuity and previously untapped bravery to save Keita’s life and his own future. Fans of David Mitchell and Erin Morgenstern will be intrigued, and I think it’s safe to say that we can expect great things from Pulley.” —Amanda Hurley, Inkwood Books, Tampa, FL

A LOT of Titles for RA Gurus, the Week of July 6

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

It’s a good thing it’s a long weekend, because we have a very long list of titles for you. We suspect that publishers are cramning books into the pipeline before Go Set a Watchman hits shelves the following week.

9781501115639_38cefNext week, the media will be focused on Jimmy Carter’s memoir, A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety, beginning with  NPR’s Weekend Edition tomorrow, followed by:

• MSNBC-TV/”Morning Joe,” July 7
• MSNBC-TV/”Hardball with Chris Matthews,” July 7
• CNN-TV/”The Lead with Jake Tapper,” July 8
• NPR-Radio/”Diane Rehm,” July 9
• PBS-TV/”Newshour,” July 9
• Radio Satellite Tour, July 10
• ABC-TV/”This Week,” July 11
• CBS-TV/”CBS This Morning,” week of July 13
AARP Magazine, June/July issue

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The leading titles in holds are Nemesis by Catherine Coulter, (Penguin/Putnam) and Code of Conduct: A Thriller by Brad Thor (S&S/Atria/Emily Bestler Books).

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of 7:6:15

Consumer Media Picks


The Swede, Robert Karjel (Harper)

The publisher clearly thinks this, the Swedish author’s first book in English, is a potential best seller, having spent handsomely for the rights and backing it with a full-page ad in last week’s NYT BR.

Entertainment Weekly featured it as the lede review last week, giving it a strong B+.

The Wall Street Journal interviewed the author in 2013 when Fox picked up the rights for a TV series, under the headline,”Homeland + The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo = ”

Libraries have ordered it cautiously, however, despite a very strong review in Publishers Weekly, “Filled with rich characterization and unforeseeable twists and revelations, this mesmerizing first in a planned series will leave readers gasping for breath”

9780812995220_dd7ff  9780802123916_66134  9781250058188_81fae

Among the Ten Thousand ThingsJulia Pierpont (Random House)

On Entertainment Weekly‘s “Must List” for this week at #19, it is also also reviewed in the issue, where it gets a straight A.

Forensics: What Bugs, Burns, Prints, DNA and More Tell Us About Crime, Val McDermid, (Grove Press)

On Entertainment Weekly‘s picks of “Brainy & Brilliant Beach Books“– link is to our Edelweiss collection

One Way or Another, Elizabeth Adler, (Macmillan/Minotaur)

On People magazine’s Summer’s Best Beach Books” from last week— link is to our collection on Edelweiss

Peer Picks


Crooked Heart, Lissa Evans (Harper)


Crooked Heart is a rewarding, addictive read. Orphaned ten-year-old bookworm Noel, sent away to rural St. Albans, finds himself under the reluctant guardianship of Vee, aka Mrs. Vera Sledge. Amidst a chaotic background of bombings and uncertain futures, Vee and Noel gradually form a powerful bond. I recommend this darkly humorous, honest, and complex story. It is book club heaven.” — Janet Schneider, Oceanside Library, Oceanside, NY

NOTE: this was also on the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction longlist. A movie of the author’s 2009 novel Their Finest Hour and a Half, is in the works with Lone Scherfig directing  (One Day, An Education)


Maybe in Another Life, Taylor Jenkins Reid (S&S/Washington Square Press, original trade pbk)

Reviewed in People magazine this week, it is also a LibraryReads pick:

“Hannah Martin has just moved back to LA after ending a relationship. Her best friend, Gabby, takes her out to a bar on her first night home. Enter Ethan, the One Who Got Away, and suddenly, Hannah has to decide if she’ll leave with Ethan or Gabby. We follow Hannah after choosing both options, alternating chapters to explore the consequences of each. A must for anyone who loves a hankie with their books!” — Tracy Babiasz, Chapel Hill Public Library, Chapel Hill, NC


Those Girls, Chevy Stevens, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s)


Those Girls follows the lives of the Campbell sisters. After running away from their alcoholic father, they find themselves caught in a worse situation when they are kidnapped. As events spiral out of control, they manage to escape and create new lives. This is a tale that will captivate readers and show just how strong the bond between family members can be.” — Annice Sevett, Willmar Public Library, Willmar, Minnesota


Speak, Louisa Hall, (HarperCollins/Ecco)

Indie Next:

“This is an amazingly complex novel that explores humanity, time, memory, communication, love, and the fear of losing what once was. Introducing five different narratives that at first seem unconnected, Hall creates a shimmering spiderweb of a story: delicately crafted, fragile, and infinitely beautiful, uncovering humanity’s most elusive and abstract thoughts. Hall impresses upon the reader the importance of speaking not just in order to move forward, but also in order to retain the past: ‘They are all in me, in the words that I speak, as long as I am still speaking.’” — Nancy Solberg, Odyssey Bookshop, South Hadley, MA


Vanishing Games, Roger Hobbs, (RH/Knopf)

GalleyChat, April:

” In 2013 Roger Hobbs had a hit with the first Jack White title, Ghostman, (even Michiko liked it!) and the second one is—if possible—even more intense. Set in the fascinating location of Macau, ‘Jack’ reunites with his mentor, Angela, to find a missing treasure while trying to stay one step ahead of multiple bad guys. Stephanie Chase, Hillsboro Public Library (OR), said this is “a fast-paced and thrilling high-stakes caper that is enjoyable from start to finish.”


The Last Pilot, Benjamin Johncock, (Macmillan/Picador)

Reviewed this week in People (“Ingeniously plotted, deftly written and engrossing”), this is also an Indie Next pick:

“Filled with dialogue that cuts like a knife, The Last Pilot is a riveting time capsule of a novel that tells the gripping story of Jim Harrison, an Air Force test pilot working at NASA during the glory years of the 1950s. The dangers and magnitude of space exploration pale in comparison to Harrison’s life-on-earth challenges — including the death of his young daughter — which haunt and threaten to destroy him. An emotionally raw, riveting read.” —Susan Hans O’Connor, Penguin Bookshop, Sewickley, PA


The Hand That Feeds You, A.J. Rich, (S&S/Scribner)

On both Entertainment Weekly‘s Summer Reading preview as well as and the Wall Street Journal‘s, it got slapped by an absolutely terrible review from PW, but booksellers went for it an named it an Indie Next pick:

“Morgan is living the good life until the day she returns home to find her fiance mauled to death and her dogs covered in blood. She had rescued her dogs from a shelter, wanting to do something good, and now a man is dead. As time moves forward, the ground under Morgan shifts. She doesn’t understand why her dogs, loving animals, would have done such a thing. And the victim is not all he seemed either — his job, his home, nothing is as he said, and then there is the discovery of other fiances. This edge-of-your-seat mystery has twists and turns that will keep you guessing. A.J. Rich is the pseudonym of award winners Jill Ciment and Amy Hempel, writing as a team.” —Deon Stonehouse, Sunriver Books and Music, Sunriver, OR


The Girl Who Wrote in Silk, Kelli Estes, (Sourcebooks Landmark)

Indie Next:

“In 1886, a young Chinese woman is forced out of the only home she has ever known in Seattle. Liu Mei Lin must overcome prejudices and terror while struggling to keep the traditional beliefs that are close to her heart. On contemporary Orcas Island, Inara deals with an overbearing father who will throw up every roadblock he can to get her to do what he wants. As Inara prepares to turn a family home into a hotel, she finds an embroidered silk sleeve hidden below a stair step. Wanting to learn more about the sleeve and the figures depicted on it, she begins a search to find out more about the woman who made it. This story is compelling, heart-wrenching, and an absolutely beautiful read.” —Debbie Buck, Vintage Books, Vancouver, WA


Down Among the Dead Men, Peter Lovesey, (Soho Crime)

Indie Next:

“Detective Superintendent Peter Diamond has been called off his current case load to join his boss, Assistant Chief Constable Georgina Dallymore, on an internal investigation. A detective is accused of failing to follow up on DNA evidence that could link her niece to a murder. It’s an ethical violation case, but the evidence came to light three years ago and only now is she being accused. Diamond expects that more is happening than meets the eye. Meanwhile, a teacher from a private girls’ school has gone missing and now the schoolgirl who was looking for her has disappeared as well. It’s going to take a bit of doing to unravel what is happening in Sussex. If you’ve never read an Inspector Diamond book, this one is a great place to start.” —Janice Hunsche, Kaleidosaurus Books, Metamora, IN – See more at:


Bell Weather, Dennis Mahoney, (Macmillan/Holt)

)Indie Next:

“Set in a fantastical 18th century world where rain falls up and color storms wash the land with bright hues, Bell Weather is, at its core, the story of a spirited young woman fighting for the freedom to choose her own path. Although Molly tells the townsfolk of Root almost nothing of her past, readers learn about her childhood with an overbearing governess, a cold father, and a brilliant, cunning brother who will stop at nothing to ensure that he and Molly are together and unbridled. Mahoney has created a marvelous world that readers will want to visit again and again.” —Amelia Stymacks, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, VT


Bull Mountain, Brian Panowich, (Penguin/Putnam)

An Indies Introduce title with as killer quote from Wiley Cash, “Brian Panowich stamps words on the page as if they’ve been blasted from the barrel of a shotgun, and as with a shotgun blast, no one is safe from the scattered fragments of history that impale the people of Bull Mountain.”

Wild Card




As If!: The Oral History of Clueless as told by Amy Heckerling and the Cast and Crew, Jen Chaney, (Touchstone, original trade pbk)

Even with all the titles above, we just had to mention this one. Few libraries have ordered it, but this celebration of the best take ever on Jane Austen is guaranteed to circulate like crazy from the new book shelves.