Archive for the ‘Nonfiction’ Category

From Royalties to Forfeitures

Monday, August 22nd, 2016

9780525953722It may not pay to avoid the rules. On the other hand, if books sales are the measure, maybe it does.

According to the NYT, Mark Owen, a pen name for the former Navy SEAL who wrote No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden (Penguin/Dutton, 2012), has agreed to forfeit close to 7 million dollars for failing to clear his book with the Pentagon as well as several other infractions that raised questions surrounding the possible disclosure of classified information.

The NYT reports that this outcome is a result of a Justice Department investigation and that the department decided not to press charges but settle instead for the cash returns.

In a statement Owen said, “I acknowledge my mistake and have paid a stiff price, both personally and financially, for that error … I accept responsibility for failing to submit the book for review and apologize sincerely for my oversight.”

The renewed attention is helping book sales, the title rose on Amazon, jumping up from #466 to #160.

Owen has already faced stiff criticism from some of his fellow SEALS and others in the special operations community for what was seen as cashing in on his duty. 60 Minutes reported on the story at the time and interviewed Owen.

The Invisible Zoo

Friday, August 19th, 2016

9780062368591_892eaI Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong (HC/Ecco; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample) is rising on Amazon after getting the Fresh Air bump, moving from #570 to now sitting firmly within the top 50 at #41.

Host Terry Gross talked with the author, Ed Yong, a writer at the The Atlantic and for National Geographic‘s “science salon,” Phenomena. The early part of the interview is a not-for-dinner-table conversation about fecal transplants and “fake poop.” It then moves to a more wide ranging and fascinating exploration of what the microbiome and its nearly countless numbers do.

One intriguing outtake is the fact that humans have evolved so that the sugars in breast milk feed the microbes in a baby’s stomach, sugars specifically meant for the microbe as the baby cannot digest them. Yong says “So breast milk isn’t just a way of nourishing an infant. It’s a way of nourishing babies’ first microbes. It’s really a way of engineering an entire world inside a baby’s body. You know, breastfeeding mother is a sculptor of ecosystems.”

There is also a microbe called Wolbachia that “allows some caterpillars that eat leaves to stop the leaves from turning yellow. It actually holds back the progress of fall so that … its hosts can have more to eat.”

To close the interview Gross asks Yong what he thinks about now that he knows about the microbiome multitudes and he says,

“all this biology which I thought I knew, all these creatures, these elephants and hawks and fish that I was fascinated by, these things I could see with my eyes, are actually deeply and profoundly influenced by things that I cannot see. And I know that if I go to a zoo now that every animal and every visitor in that zoo is in fact a zoo in its own right.”

A Frontier Memoir Resurfaces

Tuesday, August 16th, 2016

9780316341394_cdcc0A circuitous publishing path has brought new attention to a frontier memoir, recounting the hardscrabble life in Arkansas and on the Mississippi Delta during the late 1800s and early 1900s, Trials of the Earth: The True Story of a Pioneer Woman, Mary Mann Hamilton (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample).

Featured on NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday, the book is rising on Amazon, leapfrogging over a thousand other books to move from #1,170 to #76.

Hamilton’s life story first saw the light of day when a neighbor urged her to enter her journal into a writing competition sponsored by publisher Little, Brown in 1933. It did not win and languished in a box kept under a bed, until the University Press of Mississippi published it to little fanfare in 1992 (although it was reviewed by the New York Times). Coming full circle, Little, Brown, has just  published a new edition.

NPR reviewer Maureen Corrigan calls it a “standout,” with a “blunt voice” that makes vivid the world Hamilton occupied. Highlighting a racist passage, she warns some of the “sections are ugly and tough to read” but that ultimately the book is rewarding, revealing the wildness of that world and “just how easy it was to vanish in an earlier America.”

USA Today gave it three out of four stars, writing it “underscores the huge power of unvarnished storytelling.”

The Chicago Tribune writes vividly about the “backbreaking labor” and wilderness Hamilton existed within, offering a picture of a woman tough as nails. In an especially intense example: soon after Hamilton gave birth, her home was cut off by flood waters, she “shelters with her daughter and three-month-old baby on a tree stump while bears swim past in the flood, not knowing whether her husband is dead or alive.”

Similar to the unexpected success of another frontier memoir, Pioneer Girl, holds are growing and inventory is low. In libraries we checked some systems are showing hold figures as high as 6:1.

HIDDEN FIGURES, Hot Trailer

Monday, August 15th, 2016

9780062363596_b2357The publication of Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race (HarperCollins/Morrow; HarperLuxe, Sept. 6) by Margot Lee Sheerly is heralded by not just a book trailer, but a full-fledged movie trailer for a major release, coming in January. As a result, the book jumped up Amazon’s sales rankings.

One of our GalleyChat titles for July, it was signed up back in 2015. Director Theodore Melfi (St. Vincent) was so taken with the script that he dropped out of the running to direct a Spiderman movie in favor of this one.

It stars Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe as a group of African American women who worked at NASA in Langley, Virginia on the mission that sent John Glenn into space in 1962. Also in the cast are Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Parsons, Mahershala Ali, Aldis Hodge and Glen Powell.

The book will be released in paperback in December. Two young readers editions, for ages 8 to 12,  are also scheduled, in hardcover and paperback.

9780316338929_25c22Earlier this year, another book on a different group of women in the space program was released, Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars, Nathalia Holt (Hachette/Little, Brown; OverDrive Sample). Also called ‘human computers” like the women in Langley, they worked in the NASA Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, California in the 1960’s. One of them, Janez Lawson, was African American.

Born To Be Read

Thursday, August 11th, 2016

Bruce Springsteen’s memoir, Born to Run (S&S; S&S Audio; Sept. 27), is rising on Amazon, jumping to #178, up from #525. The leap coincides with the release of a music filled book trailer:

The 500+ page book is expected to be a candid memoir covering the span of the musician’s career. As the NY Daily News reported when the book deal went public, Springsteen said “Writing about yourself is a funny business … But in a project like this, the writer has made one promise, to show the reader his mind. In these pages, I’ve tried to do this.”

RollingStone, quoting from publisher statements, reports “the book will chronicle Springsteen’s life from growing up in Freehold, New Jersey amid ‘poetry, danger and darkness’ and how it inspired him to become a musician.”

BrucechapterandverseThe book is timed to a new companion album release, Chapter & Verse. It will include five previously unreleased tracks. Springsteen’s website says the musician picked the songs on the album “to reflect the themes and sections” of his memoir: “The compilation begins with two tracks from The Castiles, featuring a teenaged Springsteen on guitar and vocals, and ends with the title track from 2012’s ‘Wrecking Ball.’”

The album will be released four days before the memoir.

Mysteries of the Brain

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

Patient H.M.

One of the most-reviled medical practices of the last century is the lobotomy. In a book published this week,  Patient H.M.: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets, (PRH/Random House; RH Audio/BOT), Luke Dittrich examines one of the practitioners, a neurosurgeon who lobotomized Patient H.M. in an effort to solve his epilepsy. As a result, the patient emerged from the operation unable to create new memories and, in a time when “the lines between medical practice and medical research were blurry”  became the “most important research subject in the history of brain science.” Dittrich says he finds the story personally shocking, particularly because the neurosurgeon was his grandfather.

He was interviewed on the PBS NewsHour last night.

An excerpt titled, “The Brain That Couldn’t Remember: The untold story of the fight over the legacy of ‘H.M.’ — the patient who revolutionized the science of memory” is the cover of this week’s New York Times Magazine.

UPDATE: A letter of protest sent to the NYT (but, oddly, not to the book’s publisher), signed by 200 members of the scientific community, most of them from MIT, protests parts of the story that are critical of MIT professor Suzanne Corkin.

Voices of the Other Percenters

Sunday, August 7th, 2016

9780307339379  Hillbilly Elegy  9780670785971_39370

Poor white Americans tend to vote against their own interests, a phenomenon that has long perplexed political observers. For the 2008 election, a touchstone book was  Deer Hunting with Jesus: Dispatches from America’s Class War by Joe Bageant (PRH/Crown).

This year, journalists are turning to two new books to try to understand the issue.

Debuting on the NYT Hardcover Nonfiction best seller list this week at #9 is Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis by J. D. Vance (Harper; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample), which we first wrote about last week, as holds began to soar, based on media coverage.

Immediately behind it is White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg (PRH/Viking; Tantor Audio; OverDrive Sample), at #10 after six weeks. The author was interviewed a few days ago on the Bill Moyer’s website, noting:

“Since voters who feel unrepresented don’t expect anything new from practiced politicians, they have become convinced that Trump is talking to and not about them … They’re hearing his anger, an anger they recognize.”

When we checked in June, library holds were minimal, but that has changed. It is now topping a 4:1 ratio in most libraries.

Pennie Picks A Memoir

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

9781501151255_c2d1eInfluential book buyer, Costco’s  Pennie Clark Ianniciello, selects the memoir Please Enjoy Your Happiness, Paul Brinkley-Rogers (S&S/Touchstone; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample) as her August pick.

Written decades after the events in his book took place, Brinkley-Rogers, now 77, takes readers back to the summer of 1959 when he was stationed as a young sailor in Japan. There he met an older woman and the two fell into a significant friendship centered on “poetry, literature and music, a postwar cultural exchange heightened by a dramatic subplot involving yakuza gangsters,” according to The Costco Connection.

In a sidebar Ianniciello says she was “completely knocked off my feet” while reading, finding the book a “beautifully moving testament to the power of love.”

The book is thus far flying largely under the radar and several of the libraries we checked have yet to place orders. However, Bustle did pick it as one of their 17 featured nonfiction books of August, saying it:

“is the moving account of how writer Paul Brinkley-Rogers fell in love with a Japanese woman in 1959 while stationed overseas and never managed to get over her. Through both his depiction of their relationship and the touching letters they wrote one another, the book shares pieces of her fascinating life and her country’s history and how she left her mark. The memoir is a beautiful love letter in itself.”

Keep your eye on it. While Pennie’s Picks are eclectic, ranging from already established hits such as Ron Chernow’s  Alexander Hamilton to lesser-known titles, her picks of the latter often result in their showing up on best seller list.

AMERICAN HEIRESS On The Rise

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

9780385536714_ed035Jeffrey Toobin wrote the definitive book about one of the highest profile crime of the 1990’s, The Run of His Life, about O. J. Simpson. The popularity of two recent TV series on the case, one of which is based on that book, demonstrate there is a strong interest in revisiting such stories.

Going back even further in his latest book, Toobin takes a new look at the story of the 1974 kidnapping and arrest of Patty Hearst: American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst, (PRH/Doubleday; OverDrive Sample).

Following in the footsteps of Toobin’s O.J. title, Deadline Hollywood reports film rights were acquired prior to publication.

Libraries ordered the book modestly and holds are growing as a result of media attention. In an almost hour long conversation on NPR’s Fresh Air, Toobin talks to an enthralled Terry Gross about the case.

Hearst was the 19-year-old granddaughter of the famous newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst and while her case was a sensation at the time, Toobin found that nothing new had been written about the case in decades and decided to investigate it again.

Placing the story in its time, Toobin calls the period a “toxic, dangerous, scary time in America. … During the early and mid ’70s, there were 1,000 — 1,000!— bombings a year in the United States … [due to] a violent political culture.”

In this environment “the Symbionese Liberation Army, a small, armed revolutionary group with an incoherent ideology and unclear goals” kidnapped Hearst – at a point in her life where she was at “a particularly vulnerable and restless moment in her life … uniquely receptive to new influences.”

Against the standard story line that Hearst was brainwashed or suffering from Stockholm syndrome, Toobin argues that she “responded rationally to the circumstances she was confronted with at each stage of the process” and joined her kidnappers in their crimes.

Under her own power, says Toobin, she committed real harm, “She robbed three banks. She shot up a street in Los Angeles. She helped plant bombs in several places in northern California.”

Toobin says she “had multiple opportunities to escape over a year and a half. She went to the hospital for poison oak and she could’ve told the doctor, ‘Oh by the way, I’m Patty Hearst.’ She was caught in an inaccessible place while hiking and the forest rangers helped her out, and she could’ve said, ‘Oh by the way, I’m Patty Hearst.’ She didn’t escape because she didn’t want to escape.”

She was eventually captured and sent to prison for 7 years, but only served 22 months before President Jimmy Carter commuted her sentence. President Bill Clinton pardoned her years later. Toobin calls both actions “the purest example of privilege on display that frankly I have ever seen in the criminal justice system.”

In her advanced NYT review, Janet Maslin writes, “As Mr. Toobin sees it, Patty — now Patricia again — was always an adroit opportunist, never a deep thinker, and remained an artful pragmatist under any circumstances.”

The Washington Post calls it “terrific” and “riveting” book, a “lurid crime story with its own toxic mix of race, class, celebrity and sex.”

CBS This Morning featured Toobin yesterday.

IDIOT BRAIN

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

9780393253788_d0e37Why do some people get car sick? Why do humans exaggerate? Why are some people great at Jeopardy and awful balancing a checkbook?

Terry Gross explores those questions and much more during a Fresh Air interview with Dean Burnett, neuroscientist and author of Idiot Brain: What Your Head Is Really Up To (Norton; OverDrive Sample).

The two talk about how the brain is highly illogical – if it were a computer it would alter the information stored within it to “suit your purposes, to suit your preferences … [its] egotistical … the brain tweaks and adjusts the information it stores to make you look better.”

Burnett also explains what happens with short-term memory: why you can walk into a room and forget why you went there in the first place. He calls it as fleeting as the “foam on your coffee.”

The  fascinating and oddly practical information clearly engages Gross, who applies what Burnett says to her own life.

He offers more tidbits in a Smithsonian interview, where he explains what causes us to feel like we are falling in our sleep only to jerk awake (“It could have something to do with our ancestors sleeping in trees”) and how Tylenol can soothe a broken heart – because the brain actually feels the loss of a romantic partner and acetaminophen effects that part of the brain.

Burnett writes the “Brain Flapping” column for The Guardian. One of its competitors, the Independent, calls his book “a wonderful introduction to neuroscience [that] deserves to be widely read.”

Libraries have bought fairly low but are seeing growing holds.

Jesmyn Ward Gets NPR Bump

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

9781501126345_ad734Rising on Amazon is The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race, edited by Jesmyn Ward (S&S/Scribner). The jump coincides with a featured interview on NPR’s All Things Considered yesterday.

National Book Award–winner Ward talks with host Audie Cornish about her new essay collection and how she and her fellow essayists included in the book respond to the current state of race in America. The collection brings James Baldwin’s 1963 seminal book, The Fire Next Time to the present day. Contributors include Edwidge Danticat, Claudia Rankine, Natasha Trethewey, Isabel Wilkerson, and Kevin Young.

Ward says that few of the essays address the future “because this moment can feel so overwhelming” and discusses what it means, “as Claudia Rankine says, to be in a perpetual state of mourning.”

She also talks about the importance of the Presidency of Barack Obama and his statements “that he could be a victim of the kind of senseless, random, state-sanctioned violence that many black Americans have been victim to in the past couple of years … those statements were a revelation … I think it’s really important for us to hear someone in position of power, like the position of power, to say that.”

Reviews and listings are piling up. Bustle includes it on their list of “17 Nonfiction Books Coming in August 2016,” writing “the book explores the progress we’ve made and the work left to be done.”

USA Today is also featuring the collection, giving it 4.5 stars out of 5 and saying, “The perils of walking, driving — indeed living — while black have become tragically apparent in recent months … At a time of such tension, The Fire This Time … might seem too much to bear. But ultimately, the prose and poetry contained in this concise volume … is illuminating and even cathartic.”

Vogue says the book affirms “the power of literature and its capacity for reflection and imagination, to collectively acknowledge the need for a much larger conversation, to understand these split-second actions in present, past, and future tense, the way that stories impel us to do. This is a book that seeks to place the shock of our own times into historical context and, most importantly, to move these times forward.”

BOYS OF 36 on PBS
American Experience

Monday, August 1st, 2016

Boys in the BoatPremiering tomorrow night, August 2,  on PBS American Experience is a documentary titled The Boys of ’36, based on the bestseller The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel James Brown (Penguin/Viking; Penguin Audio; Thorndike).

A feature film based on the book’s proposal was announced in 2011, with Kenneth Branagh attached to direct. In 2014, a new director was announced, Peter Berg (Lone Survivor), but there’s been no further news since.

Holds Alert: HILLBILLY ELEGY

Monday, August 1st, 2016

9780062300546_801dfRequests are soaring for a memoir that details a key touchstone in the race for President, the feelings of alienation and loss among the white working class, Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, J. D. Vance (Harper; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample).

Demand is being generated by strong media coverage. The Wall Street Journal writes about it in a feature, The Washington Post printed an excerpt, and David Brooks recommends the book in his NYT‘s column “Revolt of the Masses,” writing “Vance’s family is from Kentucky and Ohio, and his description of the culture he grew up in is essential reading for this moment in history.”

In the WSJ Vance says his memoir seeks to address why he felt “culturally foreign” at Yale Law School and “started out as a quest to answer questions about his own upbringing but developed into a broader conversation about social divisions in the U.S. and feelings of disenfranchisement among the white working class.”

In the excerpted passage in the WP he writes, “economic cynicism brought with it a feeling that the country we believed in could no longer be trusted.”

His solution to a problem that spans multiple states is decidedly local, telling WSJ: “Concretely, I want pastors and church leaders to think about how to build community churches, to keep people engaged, and to worry less about politics and more about how the people in their communities are doing … I want parents to fight and scream less, and to recognize how destructive chaos is to their children’s future.”

His memoir is currently the 4th bestselling book on Amazon and holds have reached 8:1 ratios. A fact that one library patron shares with other readers of WSJ, writing in the comments section: “I tried to obtain Hillbilly Elegy from the library…I’m 95th in line for 12 copies.”

Interest in the subject has already proven high, as White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America, Nancy Isenberg (PRH/Viking; Tantor Audio; OverDrive Sample) attests.

Comic-Con: SNOWDEN

Monday, July 25th, 2016

There were plenty of famous characters at Comic-Con this weekend, from Gal Gadot the latest actress to play Wonder Woman, to various cosplay incarnations. But a handful of people got to pose questions, via satellite, to the real Edward Snowden, at the end of a private screening of Oliver Stone’s upcoming movie, Snowden. In the movie, he is played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. According to reports, the actor bears an uncanny resemblance in voice and mannerisms to the real person he portrays.

Stone, who has never appeared at Comic-Con before, injected a rare note of seriousness into the weekend, speaking during a separate Snowden panel about privacy. He also addressed the hot new game Pokemon Go, warning that it represents a “new level if invasion” into privacy, and that it is part of “survellience capitalism” that will lead totalitarianism (that discussion comes at the end of the panel, beginning at time stamp 41:03 in the video below).

A new trailer for the movie was also released.

9781101972250_8a27aStone’s movie is partially based on Luke Harding’s The Snowden Files: The Inside Story of the World’s Most Wanted Man, to be released as a movie tie-in next month (PRH/Vintage).

Another film about Snowden, titled Citizenfour, won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature in 2015.

GalleyChat Wrap-Up For July

Monday, July 25th, 2016

Editors Note: GalleyChatter Robin Beerbower is off this month and we’re grateful to one of our go-to readers advisors, Jennifer Dayton of Darien (CT) Public Library for rounding up the titles from the most recent GalleyChat.

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It may be summertime and the living may be easy, but GalleyChatters are relentless in their quest for the next great thing. During the most recent chat, women’s history was a strong theme on the non-fiction side, balanced by serious escape reading on the fiction side.

We hope you will be inspired to download and read the eGalleys of the titles highlighted here.  If you love them as much as we do, be sure to consider nominating them for LibraryReads. We’ve noted in red the deadlines for those titles still eligible for nomination.

For a list of all 138 titles mentioned during the chat, check here.

Non-Fiction

parisiennesLes Parisiennes: How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved, and Died Under Nazi Occupation (Macmillan/St. Martin’s, Oct.; LibraryReads deadline: Aug. 20) by Anne Sebba takes a long hard look at a piece of history that is often looked at through the rosy haze of time. Anbolyn Potter of Chandler (Ariz.) Public Library, says, “ In Les Parisiennes, Anne Sebba examines what life was like for Parisian women under Nazi occupation during WWII. Using stories gleaned from interviews and primary sources, she documents the everyday hardships and life-changing tragedies suffered by these resilient women. Women from all walks of life were forced to adapt to food shortages, the disappearance of family members, and potential capture or unwanted attention from German soldiers. How they chose to respond to these challenges often determined the fate of generations. Sebba’s lavish use of detail and her graceful, sympathetic writing add to this book’s powerful depiction of an era that still fascinates us today.”

9780062363596_b2357Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race (HarperCollins/Morrow, Sept. 6)  by Margot Lee Shetterly is the compelling story of the African-American women who were the secret backbone of NASA in its infancy.  Vicki Nesting of St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, La., says, that it’s  “a fascinating book about black female mathematicians (or ‘computers’) who worked for the space program back in the 50s and 60s. A movie based on the book is scheduled for release in January, starring Octavia Spenser, Janelle Monae and Taraji P. Henson.”

9781400069880_cde2eI am an evangelist for Victoria:  The Queen: An Intimate Biography of the Woman Who Ruled an Empire  (PRH/Random House, Nov. 29; LibraryReads deadline: Sept. 20)  by Julia Baird. This is a totally engrossing look at a woman who we all think we know: staid, button-upped, humor-less. With newly found scholarship  (yeah Librarians!), we learn that this woman who was a mere 18 years old when she ascended the throne was in fact a passionate leader who loved as fiercely as she ruled. I think that this wonderfully readable book may just become the new standard in Victoria bios.

Fiction

golden-ageThere was lots of excitement for The Golden Age (Europa, Aug. 16) by Joan London.  Janet Lockhart, Collection Development Librarian, Wake County, N.C.,  sums it up, “Young Frank Gold and his family escaped from WWII Europe to Australia, only for him to fall victim to polio. He is sent to recover at The Golden Age, a children’s hospital in 1950s Australia, where he meets and falls in love with Elsa, to the consternation of the adults.  A moving story of displacement and recovery with wonderfully drawn characters and setting.”

Robin Beerbower, Galley9780062467256_ade66Chat Wrangler Extraordinaire, was not alone in her love for The Bookshop on the Corner (HarperCollins/Morrow, Sept. 20)  by Jenny Colgan and while she does have some reservations, her enthusiasm shines through. “I loved this book about a librarian getting laid off from her readers’ advisory job and opening a ‘bookshop-on-wheels’ in Scotland. A tad predictable but so what?  It was a fun journey.”

9780385349741_d756dPerennial GalleyChat favorite Carl Hiassen’s forthcoming book is Razor Girl (PRH/Knopf, Sept. 6).  While he needs no “help” from us, it is clear that there is a reason he is a favorite go-to pick for readers advisors.  Abbey Stroop, of Herrick District Library, Holland, Mich., says, “All of the best things about Carl Hiaasen are on full display in his new book Razor Girl: crazy plot twists mixed with quirky characters ranging from the mob to a Duck Dynasty-esque reality TV star. Andrew Yancy, from Sick Puppy, is back, still working Roach Patrol and trying to get his detective badge back when he gets involved with Merry Mansfield, a woman hired by the New York mob to create convenient traffic crashes. Sexy hilarity ensues alongside clumsy extortion plots the way only Hiaasen can manage.”

9781501122521_9c9e2Small Admissions  (S&S/Atria, Dec. 27; LibraryReads deadline: Nov. 20) by Amy Poeppel is a debut novel for which Beth Mills of New Rochelle (N.Y.) Public Library, gave a serious shout-out. “When twenty-something Kate, devastated at being dumped by her Parisian boyfriend, finally starts getting her life together she finds herself launched into the high-pressure world of a NYC private school admissions office. Hyper parents, over-privileged kids, eccentric relatives and well-meaning friends–some of whom are harboring explosive secrets–keep the story moving briskly and provide more than a few laughs along the way.”

Please join us on Aug. 2 at 4:00 ET with virtual happy hour at 3:30 for our next Chat!  See you all then!