Archive for the ‘Nonfiction’ Category

In the Footsteps

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

9781455582297_3f737  American Sniper

Following the success of Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper, Hollywood is mad for military movies based on books. Underscoring that, a film based on 13 Hours: The Inside Account Of What Really Happened In Benghazi by Mitchell Zuckoff (Hachette/Twelve,2014) opens on January 15, 2016, the same weekend that its predecessor opened last year.

Retitled 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, it is directed by Michael Bay and stars John Krasinski and James Badge Dale,

The release of the trailer was enough to send the book moving up Amazon’s sales rankings (currently at #88).

Tie-ins:

13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened In Benghazi
MItchell Zuckoff
Hachette/Twelve: November 24, 2015
Trade Paperback
Mass market

THE END OF THE TOUR Arrives Tomorrow

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

9780307592439_19091  9780316920049

The movie adaptation of David Lipsky’s Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip With David Foster Wallace, (RH/Broadway Books, 2010), titled The End of the Tour,  opens tomorrow.

The book and the movie are based on interviews with the normallly press-averse David Foster Wallace (Jason Segal in the movie) by Rolling Stone journalist Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg) conducted when Wallace toured for his novel Infinite Jest. (Hachette/Little, Brown, 1996).

As a result, Wallace’s book, not Lipsky’s, is rising on Amazon sales rankings.

Hummingbird Love

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

9780544416031_43983Reviewers are falling in love with Fastest Things On Wings: Rescuing Hummingbirds in Hollywood,  Terry Masear, (HMH).

There’s probably not much more you need than the title and cover to also become unchanged, but here’s a sampling of the reviews:

Fastest Things on Wings: inside the rehabilitation of injured hummingbirds — he Washington Post

Fastest Things on Wings is the soaring tale of a hummingbird rehabber — Los Angeles Times

Hollywood’s Hummingbird Rehabber Tells All —  National Geographic (take a look at this one, if only for the photos)

Even the New York Post calls it a “must-read

It was also featured on WBUR’s “Here & Now

The book is rising on Amazon sales rankings. Library orders are light.

Ann Rule Dies at 83

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-07-28 at 10.01.30 AMAnn Rule, known for her true crime titles beginning with The Stranger Beside Me, died on Sunday at age 83.

She got to know serial killer Ted Bundy on a counseling hot line. That relationship inspired her fist true crime book The Stranger Beside Me, which became a best seller in 1980.

She went on to write over 30 more books including And Never Let Her Go, Everything She Ever Wanted, Bitter Harvest, and Green River, Running Red.

CNN’s obituary includes an excerpt from their 1999 interview with the author. Discussing the dangers of becoming jaded while immersed in stories of crime and criminals, she concluded, “I am not a cynic because I find at least three dozen heroes for every bad guy or gal I have to write about … The good in humanity always comes out wayyyyy ahead!”

The remembrance in USA Today includes a statement by Carolyn Reidy, president and chief executive officer of Simon & Schuster, Rule’s longtime publisher: “By deciding to focus her books on the victim, Ann Rule reinvented the true-crime genre, and earned the trust of millions of readers who wanted a new and empathetic perspective on the tragic stories at the heart of her works … She will be remembered not only for her many books, but also for her ongoing and tireless work on behalf of victims’ rights.”

Screen Shot 2015-07-28 at 9.57.14 AMReaders’ Advisory: The Stranger Beside Me remains Rule’s best known book and is the place for new readers to begin. Her most recent book, about a 2003 mureder,  is Practice to Deceive. (S&S/Gallery Books, 2013).

Congressman As Superhero

Monday, July 27th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 9.21.24 AM  Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 9.21.39 AM

Highlighting Congressman John Lewis’s leadership in the Civil Rights movement, CBS Sunday Morning profiled the Representative and his award-winning graphic memoirs March: Book One and March: Book Two (both from Top Shelf).

Fittingly, the profile includes clips of Rep. Lewis at ComicCon, wearing, as tradition dictates, his own superhero outfit: a coat and backpack similar to those he wore as he crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge during the Selma March in 1965.

A third March volume is expected early next year.

Coates on THE DAILY SHOW

Friday, July 24th, 2015

On  The Daily Show last night Jon Stewart interviewed Ta-Nehisi Coates, author of Between the World and Me (RH/Spiegel & Grau; RH Audio; OverDrive Sample), echoing what many others have already said, the book “really is essential reading.” It is currently at #4 on Amazon’s sales rankings.

Carly Simon’s Memoir Coming November 24th

Tuesday, July 21st, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-07-21 at 9.24.09 AMCarly Simon, perhaps most famous for the song You’re So Vain, is the daughter of one of the founders of Simon & Schuster.

She finally makes a foray into the family business (although not with the family company), with her first book, a memoir entitled Boys in the Trees (Macmillan/Flatiron; 9781250095893; Nov. 24). UPDATE: as one of our astute commenters notes, this is not Simon’s first time publishing. She has written children’s book.

While speculation is circling whether Simon will reveal the subject of her iconic song, neither the publisher nor the singer is saying right now.

Simon does share the scope of her book, however, in a widely quoted statement picked up by Entertainment Weekly, People, and the LA Times: “This book is my way of going back through my childhood, my music, my romances, my marriage … and trying to make sense of it all…I’ve been working on it for so long that it feels like my third child … but now it’s time to send that child out in the world.  It’s one of the most frightening — and exciting — things I’ve ever done.”

Boys in the Trees is due November 24th and joins other popular musician memoirs like Patti Smith’s Just Kids and Keith Richard’s Life. Smith’s new memoir, M Train (RH/Knopf; RH Audio) hits shelves on Oct 6th.

Authors on This Week’s
DAILY SHOW

Monday, July 20th, 2015

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart returns from hiatus this week, with two authors deeply concerned with the issues of race in America.

Tomorrow night’s guest is an author who has appeared on the show seven times, but hasn’t published a book since 2007 (Dreams from My Father), Barack Obama, His last appearance on the show was just before his 2012 re-election when he had to endure a ribbing by Stewart about a poor showing in one of the debates.

Ta-Nehisi CoatesOn Thursday, Stewart will interview Ta-Nehisi Coates, the author of Between the World and Me (RH/Spiegel & Grau).

On Friday, the Washington Post explained why so many columnists are calling his book a “must-read.”

Holds are building quickly in many libraries.

Climate Change Encyclical
Coming in Book Form

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

Encyclical on Climate ChangeOn June 18th Pope Francis entered the climate change debate with his 184-page papal letter calling the issue a “principal challenge” of our age, placing the cause firmly at the door of human activity, and saying “The earth, our home, is beginning to look more and more like an immense pile of filth.”

His comments and call for action centered within a moral and religious context triggered headlines and OpEds.

The letter has been available free online, but on August 4th Melville House will release it in print under the title Encyclical on Climate Change and InequalityOn Care for Our Common Home.

The independent publisher has a history of making special reports such as this more widely accessible in book form. Last December they published The Senate Intelligence Committee Report on Torture, which sold out its initial 50,000 print run in a single day.

The publication will arrive just before the  Pope come to the US at the end of September for a three-stop whirlwind tour.

Holds Alert: BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

9780812993547_8923cBreaking through the chatter of Watchman, Ta-Nehisi Coates’s history of America and racism is moving up the Amazon charts and collecting long holds queues.

As we reported last week, Between the World and Me (RH/Spiegel & Grau; OverDrive Sample) is getting media attention. Holds are well over 3:1 in many locations and at least one library has ordered extra copies to support book discussion groups.

Expect demand to continue, building on Coates’s appearance on NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday and an upcoming appearance on the Daily Show next week.

Not only a touchstone book of the moment, it is a title that is likely to be a Screen Shot 2015-07-14 at 10.32.32 AMcore work in the subject for years to come. Blurbed by Toni Morrision as “required reading,” you will not lose out by adding copies.

Coates’s first book, a memoir entitled The Beautiful Struggle (RH/Spiegel & Grau; OverDrive Sample, 2009), is also rising on Amazon and holds are growing.

Hold Alert: Michael Oren’s ALLY

Monday, July 13th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-06-22 at 6.25.27 PMIsrael’s former ambassador to the United States and current Knesset member, Michael B. Oren’s memoir,  Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide (Random House; Random House Audio; OverDrive Sample) is on the cover of this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review and is moving up Amazon’s sales rankings.

Holds are increasing as well. Several libraries that bought it lightly adding copies.

The book, a behind-the-scenes account of serving as ambassador and the fraught relationship between President Obama and Israel’s Prime Minister, is getting widely divergent responses.

Writing for the New York Post, John Podhoretz, editor of the conservative magazine Commentary, says “I’m not sure that in the annals of diplomatic history there’s ever been anything quite like this astonishing account of Oren’s four years (2009-2013) as Israel’s ambassador in Washington.”

While calling it “remarkably frank,” Jacob Heilbrunn, reviewing for this week’s NYT Sunday Book Review says “it’s difficult to avoid the impression that Oren continues to carry a large chip on his shoulder … [he is] stuck in a time warp.”

Jon Stewart Book Binge, Day Two

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

As part of our tribute to Jon Stewart for his mpact on books and reading during his 16-year tenure on the Daily Show, today we look at an author who has appeared several times on the show, Walter Isaacson.

His first appearance was in 2003, when he was leaving his position as head of CNN. Stewart took the opportunity to knock the network, something that has become a recurring Stewart theme.

Isaacson also mentioned that he was at work on his third book, Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, which he come back to discuss the following October. In 2009, he was back for his next book, a biography of Albert Einstein.

Two years later, he revealed some behind-the-scenes moments from his interviews with Steve Jobs while writing Jobs’ biography (which is the basis for the movie coming in this October).

Holds Alert:
HOW TO RAISE AN ADULT

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-07-07 at 10.00.32 AMRacing up the Amazon rankings is a book on raising kids that tells parents to stop hovering and take a chill pill.

Julie Lythcott-Haims, who once worked as the Dean of Freshmen and Undergraduate Advising at Stanford University, enters the crowded and heated child-rearing fray with How To Raise An Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success (Macmillan/Henry Holt; OverDrive Sample).

Published last month, it was featured on the cover of the June 21 NYT Sunday Book Review where reviewer Heather Havrilesky said that its “bleak portrait may just be the Black Hawk Down of helicopter parenting” and went on to link the book to others such as David MuCullough, Jr.’s You Are Not Special and Jennifer Senior’s All Joy and No Fun.

The book, excerpted in Slate this week under the catchy headline “Kids of Helicopter Parents Are Sputtering Out,” is also seeing a rise in holds on very conservative ordering.

CIRCLING THE SUN is #1 for Indies in August

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015

The August Indie Next List is available to preview.

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 10.11.37 AMTopping the list at #1 is Paula McLain’s Circling the Sun (RH/Ballantine; BOT and RH Audio)

About the adventurer and aviation pioneer Beryl Markham, it is also a LibraryReads pick for July as well as a GalleyChat favorite. The summary, written by Rhianna Walton of Powell’s Books, offers useful sell lines for those still looking for a way to capture its content and feel:

Reading Circling the Sun reminded me of the deep pleasure of solid storytelling: the vast landscape of colonial Kenya, complicated and compelling historical characters, love, suffering, and adventure combine to create a captivating narrative. McLain imagines the African childhood and early adulthood of real-life horse trainer and pioneering female aviator Beryl Markham, as well as her social milieu, which included Denys Finch Hatton and Karen Blixen, who, as Isak Dinesen, wrote Out of Africa. Markham lived a fascinating and uncompromising life filled with danger, ill-fated romance, and stunning bravery, and McLain does justice to her memory with this sensitive and beautifully written portrayal.

Some library reading groups are planning to read it along with Markham’s own memoir, West With the Night (Macmillan/North Point Press). Her contemporary, Ernest Hemingway memorably said about it. “this girl, who is to my knowledge very unpleasant and we might even say a high-grade bitch, can write rings around all of us who consider ourselves as writers.”

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 10.14.56 AMKitchens of the Great Midwest (Penguin/Pamela Dorman; Penguin Audio) by J. Ryan Stradal

A debut novel about a savant chef and the power of cooking,  Jessica Stockton Bagnulo of the Greenlight Bookstore in Brooklyn, NY says it is a novel that “everyone is going to be talking about!” Librarians certainly are as it made our GalleyChat picks back in March and is the number one LibraryReads pick for July. ALSO NOTE: Please join our Penguin First Flights live online chat with the author is on July 15.

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 10.16.03 AMThe list includes a number of other debuts, including The Watchmaker of Filigree Street (Macmillan/Bloomsbury; OverDrive Sample) by Natasha Pulley. A literary blend of steampunk, fantasy, and historical fiction, it is a book readers’ advisors might want to particularly note, as Amanda Hurley of Inkwood Books (Tampa, FL) makes clear at the end of her annotation: “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.”

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 10.20.20 AMBig Names appear as well. The long anticipated Armada (Crown/RH; RH Audio) by Ernest Cline makes the list with the comment that it “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!” Note also that Steven Spielberg is directing and adaptation of Ready Player One expected to begin filming next year.

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 10.22.58 AMThe newest Alice Hoffman novel, The Marriage of Opposites (Simon & Schuster; S&S Audio) makes the cut as well. It is about the life of Rachel Pomie Petit Pissarro and her son, Camille, the great Impressionist painter.

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 10.27.20 AMIn nonfiction fans of Alex Kershaw have a new book to enjoy, Avenue of Spies: A True Story of Terror, Espionage, and One American Family’s Heroic Resistance in Nazi-Occupied Paris (RH/Crown; BOT and RH Audio), about the chief surgeon at the American Hospital in Paris who worked with the underground network to move people to safety during WWII.

STEVE JOBS, Official Trailer

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015

The “first look” trailer in May was only the beginning. Now we have the “Official First Trailer”  for the movie Steve Jobs based on the book by Walter Isaacson (S&S, 2012).

For a while it looked like the movie might not come together at all. Directors were changed, several potential leads dropped out (including Leonardo DiCaprio and Christian Bale). As Entertainment Weekly reports, once Michael Fassbinder was on board, the rest fell into place quickly.

Directed by  Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire 2008), the script is written by Aaron Sorkin (West Wing, The Newsroom, The Social Network). The screenplay reportedly is in three acts, each based on one of Jobs’s major launches. Kate Winslet, who plays one of the original Apple employees, said in a recent interview, “Each act is continuous 45 minutes backstage of real time at each launch that Steve Jobs made during those time periods — ‘84 was the launch of the Macintosh, ‘88 was the NeXT computer, ‘98 was the iMac. Each act takes place backstage and literally ends with him walking from the wings on to the stage to rapturous applause.”

The movie arrives Oct. 9.

A tie-in has not yet been announced.