Archive for the ‘Seasons’ Category

8 Titles To Make You An R.A. Guru, Week of 9/22/14

Friday, September 19th, 2014

Get ready for the following books, arriving next week.

All the titles listed here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed, with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet,New Title Radar, Week of 9/22/14.

Leading the Holds Lists

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Bones Never Lie, Kathy Reichs, (RH/Bantam; RH Audio; RH Large Print); OverDrive Sample

Reichs, a forensic anthropologist, made the general public aware that there is such a thing through her Bones series featuring, Temperance Brennan. She appears in two forms next week, in the 17th title in the book series, as well as in the tenth season of Bones, which begins on Fox this coming Thursday.

Killing Patton: The Strange Death of World War II’s Most Audacious General, Bill O’Reilly, Martin Dugard,  (Macmillan/Holt; Macmillan Audio; Wheeler L.P.) OverDrive Sample

This is that rare exception, a book of history that gets coverage in Page Six of the New York Post.

National Book Award Nominee

9780375870514_6d9d7Skink–No Surrender, Carl Hiaasen, (RH/Knopf Books for Young Readers; RH/Listening Library) OverDrive Sample

Hiassen transitions well. An investigative reporter, he began writing novels for adults with a humorous twist that went on to become best sellers. His first novel for kids, Hoot, 2002, won the Newbery Medal. This, his first novel for teens, is on the longlist for the National Book Award for Young People’s literature. Many adult readers are familiar with Skink, who appeared in six books, beginning with Double Whammy. In the one, he helps a teen find his missing cousin.

LibraryReads Picks

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Rooms, Lauren Oliver, (HarperCollins/Ecco; HarperLuxe; Blackstone Audio)

LibraryReads recommendation:

“A family comes to terms with their estranged father’s death in Oliver’s first novel for adults. Told from the perspective of two ghosts living in the old house, this unique story weaves characters and explores their various past connections. Great book!” — Rachel Fewell, Denver Public Library, Denver, CO

Horrorstor, Grady Hendrix, (Quirk Books; Blackstone Audio)

LibraryReads recommendation:

“You know how some horror movies would work better as novels? Horrorstor is that book, perfectly capturing everything that is terrific about the horror genre. In its catalog-style pages, you’ll find a hefty dose of satire, as a Scandinavian furniture store is transformed overnight into a prison. With characters that you’re rooting for and terror that creeps up on you, Horrorstor will keep you up all night in the best possible way.” — Donna Matturri, Pickerington Public Library, Pickerington, OH

If you have a hard time imaging a novel in the form of a catalog, it may be even harder to imagine that novel as an audiobook, but the Blackstone sample indicates that they’ve pulled it off.

Horrorstor was one of EarlyWord Kids Correspondent Lisa Von Drasek’s discoveries at Book Expo this year, It also became a GalleyChat favorite and was recently featured in the blog Boing Boing.

In the Media

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A Deadly Wandering: A Tale of Tragedy and Redemption in the Age of Attention, Matt Richtel, (HarperCollins/Morrow; HarperAudio), OverDrive Sample

If you heard Richtel speak at this year’s BEA/AAP Librarians Lunch, you won’t forget his quiet passion about the dangers of texting and driving, as illustrated by one young man’s life that was ruined by a moment’s inattention. The basis for the book is Richtel’s New York Times articles about “distracted driving,” which won him a Pulitzer Prize in 2010. This week, his article, “Trying to Hit the Brake on Texting While Driving” appeared in the business section, as did a second one, “A Texting Driver’s Education,” excerpted from the book.

How to Build a Girl, Caitlin Moran, (Harper; HarperAudio), OverDrive Sample

“A British version of Almost Famous, delivered from a female perspective and set two decades later … dirtier and funnier … it’s a sexual coming-of-age story as much as anything else — and one that, crucially, has a hard, glowing kernel of class awareness,” says Dwight Garner in a review in the NYT this week.  Lena Dunham, to whom Moran has also been compared, contributes a blurb, featured in a bright pink spot on the cover,  “I have so much love for Caitlin Moran.” Dunham’s own book, Not That Kind of Girl, (Random House; RH Audio), arrives in a couple of weeks.

The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace: A Brilliant Young Man Who Left Newark for the Ivy League, Jeff Hobbs, (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio), OverDrive Sample

One of the titles that New York magazine dubbed, “the hottest of Book Expo 2014,” (all but one of which has gone on to receive major attention), this is the true story of the author’s former Yale roommate, who seemed to be on the path to success after a rocky start. It gets a gotta-read-it cover review in the 9/21 New York Times Book Review and the author is slated for an interview on NPR’s Morning Edition on Tuesday.

Nat’l Book Award Nominee on FRESH AIR

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

9780374292089_d4ec8The founder of the indie rock band The Mountain Goats, John Darnielle, was interviewed on NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday. He is also the author of Wolf in White Van, (Macmillan/FSG), released on Monday and just announced as one of the titles on the National Book Awards longlist. The interview begins with Darnielle reading from the opening of the book. Listen here.

The book is also reviewed on NPR’s web site.

The author is also interviewed in the new issue of  New York Magazine.

OverDrive Sample

Note: Some sources say this is Darnielle’s first novel, but it’s actually his second, after Black Sabbath’s Master of Reality, (2008), which is still available from Bloomsbury/Continiuum and is on several library catalogs.

NPR Loves BROKEN MONSTERS

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

9780316216821_1f1ebWe had to invent a new category, “Hard to Call,”  for Lauren Beukes’s new title, Broken Monsters, (Hachette/Mulholland Books) in our look-ahead to books arriving this week. Its graphic murder scenes and “grotesque and perpetual sense of doom,” as Entertainment Weekly says, may put off readers.

NPR’s reviewer has no such problem saying, “You could say that she’s as edgy as James Ellroy, as creepy as Stephen King and as darkly funny as Kurt Vonnegut, but Beukes is an author whose work is resistant to easy comparisons. Broken Monsters is one of the most remarkable books of the year, and one of the best suspense novels you’ll read in quite some time.” Stephen King himself tweeted that it’s “Scary as hell and hypnotic. I couldn’t put it down.”

Buekes’s 2013 title, The Shining Girls, (Hachette/Mulholland), was dubbed  “a strong contender for the role of this summer’s universal beach read,”  by the NYT‘s Janet Maslin. While it didn’t achieve that status, it received some strong reviews and hit #13 on the L.A. Times best seller list.

If you want to judge this one for yourself, you can read the grisly first chapter in the OverDrive Sample. Tell us what you think in the comments.

FACTORY MAN Headed to HBO

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

9780316231435_f1fc7Beth Macy’s nonfiction debut, Factory Man, (Hachette/Little, Brown, 7/15), which received media attention when it was published this summer, is being developed by Tom Hanks’s production company, Playtone, for an HBO mini-series, reports Deadline.

The book’s subtitle outlines the story, How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local–And Helped Save An American Town. It received strong support from the NYT‘s Janet Maslin, who called it “in a class with other runaway debuts like Laura Hillenbrand’s Seabiscuit and Katherine Boo’s Behind the Beautiful Forevers … Ms. Macy writes so vigorously that she hooks you instantly. You won’t be putting this book down.”  The author was interviewed on NPR’s Fresh Air in July (read the first three chapters via OverDrive).

The book debuted at #10 on the New York Times Hardcover Non-fiction Best Sellers list during its first week on sale, remained on the main list for 3 weeks, and continued on the extended list for 4 more weeks.

Playtone is also producing the upcoming Olive Kitteridge miniseries for HBO, to debut Nov. 2, and is set to begin production on another mini series adaptation, based on Stephen E. Ambrose’s book about Lewis and Clark, Undaunted Courage, (S&S, 1997), with Casey Affleck in the role of  Meriwether Lewis.

BONE CLOCKS Best Seller

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

9781400065677_611e9-2Many were surprised that David Mitchell’s The Bone Clocks, (Random House, 9/2/14; Recorded Books) didn’t make the transition from the Booker longlist to the shortlist, but Mitchell can take solace in the fact that it debuts at #3 on the 9/21 NYT Hardcover Fiction best Seller list, the highest spot so far for any of the published longlist titles.

Wendy Bartlett, head of collection development at Cuyahoga P.L, Ohio, is a fan. She alerted branch staff last week,

I love it when the customers are ahead of me! David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas) has come roaring back with yet another spendidly written, mind-bending read. I thought The Thousand Autumns of Jacob DeZoet was brilliant, but this book is astounding, and the customers have snatched every last copy.

The heroine — if you can call her that — is Holly Sykes (Holly, as in GoLightly? Sykes as in Bill Sykes from Oliver Twist?) David Mitchell loves nothing more than to keep you wondering, and wonder you will. He’s also one of the most evocative writers I’ve ever read, literally painting pictures with words — it’s no wonder Hollywood is tempted to make films of his books. To say he enjoys playing with the timeline, and your reality, is an understatement, and of course, that’s his plan. It’s your job to relax and enjoy the ride.

You don’t really read Mitchell, so much as experience him. If you haven’t read Mitchell, this is the perfect novel with which to start.

Happy Experiencing!

You can read the first chapter via OverDrive.

Ten Titles to Know and Recommend, The Week of 9/15/14

Friday, September 12th, 2014

[NOTE: If you landed here from our 9/19 newsletter -- sorry for the incorrect link -- the correct one is 8 Titles To Make You An R.A. Guru, Week of 9/22/14]

Get ready next week for a title expected to be the first blockbuster of the fall (B&N’s CEO has his fingers crossed for it) … Two LibraryReads picks are ripe for recommending … Stephen King plays readers advisor for Lauren Beukes’s followup to her much discussed 2013 title, The Shining Girls.

All the titles listed here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed, with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of 9:15:14

Heavy Holds

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Edge of Eternity: Book Three of The Century Trilogy, Ken Follett, (Penguin/Dutton; Penguin Audio; Vintage Espanol), OverDrive Sample

Here’s an odd, but probably welcome bit of advance publicity. In a conference call with stock market analysts last week, Barnes and Noble’s CEO cited The Edge of Eternity as one of the books that makes him ”excited about the title lineup that will lead us in to the holiday season” (i.e., he’s expecting it will make cash registers ring) along with George W. Bush’s 41 : A Portrait of My Father, Bill O’Reilly’s Killing Patton and John Grisham’s Gray Mountain.

Another indicator of big expectations for this, the final (and longest; the audio is 36 hours long) book in the author’s twentieth-century trilogy; Janet Maslin reviewed it a full two weeks prior to publication and Follett was profiled in the 9/4 NYT Book Review (his take on Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch? “Reading a novel about people taking drugs is like being at a party where everyone else is stoned.”).

The Golem of Hollywood, Jonathan Kellerman, Jesse Kellerman, (Penguin/Putnam; coming from BOT Audio), OverDrive Sample

Kellerman has written two books with his wife Faye. This is his first collaboration with his son, Jesse, who has published several books of his own. Prepub reviews go from dismal (PW, a “muddled supernatural thriller:) to strong (Booklist, “Combining the procedural structure of Jonathan Kellerman’s Alex Delaware novels with the character-driven plotting of son Jesse’s fiction, the novel is a solidly plotted thriller”).  A sequel is in the works.

The Infinite Sea: The Second Book of the 5th Wave, Rick Yancey, (Penguin/Putnam Juvenile; Dreamscape Audio; Thorndike), OverDrive Sample

Holds are heavy for this sequel to a best selling Y.A. title. Adding more interest, production has begun in Atlanta for the movie adaptation of the first book in the series, starring Chloe Grace Moretz, who also stars in a film currently in theaters, the adaptation of Gayle Forman’s YA title,  If I Stay.

Library Reads

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Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory, Caitlin Doughty, (Norton; Recorded Books audio coming in March)

The number one LibraryReads title for September:

“Part memoir, part exposé of the death industry, and part instruction manual for aspiring morticians. First-time author Doughty has written an attention-grabbing book that is sure to start some provocative discussions. Fans of Mary Roach’s Stiff and anyone who enjoys an honest, well-written autobiography will appreciate this quirky story.” — Patty Falconer, Hampstead Public Library, Hampstead, NH

The author is scheduled for an interview on NPR’s Fresh Air on Oct. 1.

The Paying Guests, Sarah Waters, (Penguin/Riverhead; BOT), OverDrive Sample

LibraryReads recommendation:

You can almost bet that a situation with long-term guests–paying or not–is not going to turn out well. This novel by Waters, who many know from her earlier books Tipping the Velvet and The Little Stranger, will keep you turning the page to see just how tense things can get, and how far fear and passion can push someone. — Elizabeth Angelastro, Manlius Library, Manlius, NY

Also #3 on Entertainment Weekly‘s “Must List” of “The Top 10 Thing W Love This Week” which calls it, “One of the year’s most engrossing and suspenseful novels.” In the review section, the magazine gives it an A. Also, the NYT profiles the author. Waters’ name recognition is growing in Hollywood as well, Oldboy director Park Chan-wook plans to adapt Waters’ 2002 novel, Fingersmith, as a feature film.

Hard to Call

9780316216821_1f1ebBroken Monsters, Lauren Beukes, (Hachette/Mulholland Books), OverDrive Sample

Stephen King tweeted:

BROKEN MONSTERS, by Lauren Beukes: Scary as hell and hypnotic. I couldn’t put it down. Next month. I’d grab it, if I were you

Entertainment Weekly blogs that it is “What We’re Reading Now,” but gives it a left-handed compliment, “If, however, the grotesque and a perpetual sense of doom sound oddly appealing — you have most likely just found the perfect book for you!” In the magazine’s review section, it gets a B+.

In the Media

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This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate, Naomi Klein, (S&S; S&S Audio), OverDrive Sample

Social activist Klein, author of the anti-globalization manifesto, No Logo, has been a favorite with the media. Her new book takes on climate change and will get the Colbert bump on 9/23. She is also scheduled to appear on HBO’s RealTime with Bill Maher, September 26.

Thirteen Days in September: Carter, Begin, and Sadat at Camp David, Lawrence Wright, (RH/Knopf; BOT), OverDrive Sample

One of three titles on the cover of this week’s New York Times Book Review, Joel Klein says this “is a magnificent book with an unusual provenance. It began as a play called Camp David.” It’s also reviewed by Entertainment Weekly, which gives it an solid A.

The Underground Girls of Kabul: In Search of a Hidden Resistance in Afghanistan, Jenny Nordberg, (RH/Crown; RH Audio), OverDrive Sample

Will be featured on next week’s NPR Weekend Edition Saturday.

Tie-In

9781401324810_04081Raging Heat, Richard Castle, (Hachette/Disney; Hachette Audio)

Is it a tie-in, or a spin-off? On TV, Richard Castle, co-star of the ABC series, Castle, is a mystery writer. In the show, which begins its seventh season on Sept. 29th, he writes about a female NYC cop, Nikki Heat. In print, a team of writers is behind the pseudonym, “Richard Castle” whose books feature a female NYC cop, Nikki Heat. All five of the previous titles in the series have hit best seller lists, some at #1. This one has multiple holds in most libraries.

Garth Stein Is #1

Friday, September 12th, 2014

9781439187036_61f0dThe number one LibraryReads pick for next month is Garth Stein’s novel, A Sudden Light (S&S; S&S Audio; 9/30). The author has a lot to live up to. His earlier title, The Art of Racing in the Rain (Harper, 2008) was a word-of-mouth hit that became a long-running best seller.

Librarian Whiney Gayle makes you want to start reading it right now (and you can, it’s available from Edelweiss and NetGalley until the end of the month):

“Garth Stein has given us a masterpiece. This beautiful story takes readers on a thrilling exploration of a family estate brimming with generations of riveting Riddell family ghosts and secrets. This is a true exploratory novel, taking readers through secret passageways, hidden rooms, and darkened corridors that engage all of the senses.” — Whitney Gayle, James Blackstone Memorial Library, Branford, CT

Media Hit: LibraryRead’s September Pick

Friday, September 12th, 2014

9780385353304_db2df-2Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, (RH/Knopf; RH Audio; Thorndike, Dec. 10), a LibraryReads pick for September, is getting enviable media attention. It is People magazine’s “Book of the Week” in the new issue; “Though it centers on civilization’s collapse in the aftermath of a devastating flu, this mesmerizing novel isn’t just apocalyptic fantasy — it’s also an intricately layered character study of human life itselff,” gets an A from Entertainment Weekly and the author was profiled by the  New York Times last week.

LibraryReads recommendation:

An actor playing King Lear dies onstage just before a cataclysmic event changes the future of everyone on Earth. What will be valued and what will be discarded? Will art have a place in a world that has lost so much? What will make life worth living? These are just some of the issues explored in this beautifully written dystopian novel. Recommended for fans of David Mitchell, John Scalzi and Kate Atkinson. — Janet Lockhart, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

OverDrive Sample

Keith Richards, Grandpa, Children’s Book Author

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Yes, it’s true. He was interviewed about both roles on the Today Show:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

His new book, the children’s title, Gus & Me: The Story of My Granddad and My First Guitar which came out yesterday, is now at #8 on Amazon’s sales rankings.

9780316320658_431a7Gus & Me: The Story of My Granddad and My First Guitar

Theodora Richards, Keith Richards

Hachette/ Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Holds Alert: WHAT IF?

Monday, September 8th, 2014

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There is a little geek in all of us.  I was a liberal arts major who did the happy dance when that last required physics class was over, but Randall  Munroe’s What if? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions (HMH; Blackstone Audio; 9/2/14) is so laugh aloud funny, I almost did a spit take with my coffee while reading it this morning.

The book is a collection of the most popular answers to crazy science questions posed by readers of Munroe’s XKCD webcomic, with additional new “out of the box” questions.

For example “What would happen if the Earth and all terrestrial objects suddenly stopped spinning, but the atmosphere retained its velocity?”

9780544272996_0ceaaMunroe’s answer begins, “Nearly everyone would die. Then things would get interesting,” and leads us through the science of the situation in cartoon format, interrupted occasionally by a wise-cracking stick figure.

Published as an adult book What if? is the very definition of the crossover. I can imagine an 8th grade teacher posing one of these questions a day, using them to lead humorously engaging discussions that help to develop critical thinking.

Check your holds; you will probably find you need more copies.

Note: Cory Doctorow is also a fan and notes on BoingBoing that What If? is available as an audiobook, “which is a weird idea, given how much the explanations rely on Munroe’s charming diagrams. But the book is read by Wil Wheaton, who is, for my money, the best audiobook narrator working today, and it was produced by Blackstone audio and recorded at Skyboat in Los Angeles, who do outstanding work, and they all labored mightily with Munroe to turn the diagrams into spoken word (and there’s an accompanying PDF, which also helps).”

Get Ready — Titles You Need to Know, The Week of Sept. 8

Friday, September 5th, 2014

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Among the usual suspects next week, J.D. Robb’s Festive in Death (Penguin/Putnam; Brilliance; Wheeler), a Christmas-themed story featuring  detective Eve Dallas, leads in number of holds and copies ordered by libraries.  OverDrive Sample

A distant second is Robert B. Parker’s Blind Spot by Reed Farrel Coleman, (Penguin/Putnam; RH Audio; Thorndike) the first in a four-book deal by the Edgar nominee with Parker’s estate. The books feature Parker’s other detective (not the more popular Spenser), Jesse Stone. Coleman is the second author to write Stone novels, Michael Brandman wrote three previous titles. The publisher claims that the Coleman ” takes Jesse Stone back to his introspective roots—restoring some of the contemplative melancholy that first made the Jesse Stone series a hit” but Booklist says this book is more Coleman than Parker and that’s a good thing. OverDrive Sample

Close on Parker’s heels is The King’s Curse by Philippa Gregory, which concludes the Cousins’ War series, the basis for the Starz miniseries The White Queen. The producer hinted in January that it might be followed by a sequel, based on The White PrincessOverDrive Sample

The books mentioned here, plus several other notable titles arriving next week, with ordering information and alternative formats, are listed on our donwloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of Sept 8, 2014

Literary Hits

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The Children Act, Ian McEwan, (RH/Doubleday/Nan A. Talese; Recorded Books: Wheeler), OverDrive Sample

There’s already a great deal of critical attention for the latest by the author of Atonement. It’s a People “Best Book of the Week” and  #3 on Entertainment Weekly “Must List,” reviewed by Mona Simpson in the L.A. Times and by Ron Charles in the Washington Post. The author also has a full round of publicity coming, including interviews on the upcoming NPR Weekend Edition Saturday.

It is also a LibraryReads pick:

“Judge Fiona Maye is at a difficult point in her marriage. Taking refuge in addressing other people’s problems in family court, Fiona extends herself more than usual, meeting a boy whose future is in her hands. McEwan is a masterful observer of human distress. With a simple story and flawed, genuine characters, this novel is poignant and insightful.” — Jennifer Alexander, St. Louis County Library, St. Louis, MO

The Dog, Joseph O’Neill, (RH/Pantheon; RH Audio),  OverDrive Sample

After his 2008 literary breakthrough, Netherland. Like that book, this one is also on the Book long list (although the odds are not in its favor. It is currently 12:1). It us the cover of the upcoming New York Times Book Review, “With a consummate elegance, The Dog turns in on itself in imitation of the dreadful circling and futility of consciousness itself. Its subplots go nowhere, as in life. But, unlike life, its wit and brio keep us temporarily more alive than we usually allow ourselves to be.”

In the daily NYT, however, Michiko Kakutani has no patience for it, saying the novel “remains parked inside its sullen narrator’s head — which, we soon realize, is a suffocating place to be.”

Entertainment Weekly gives it an A-.

The author is scheduled to appear on the upcoming NPR Weekend Edition Saturday.

LibraryReads Picks

In addition to The Dog, three more September LibraryReads picks arrive next week.

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Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel, (RH/Knopf; RH Audio; Thorndike, Dec. 10), OverDrive Sample

“An actor playing King Lear dies onstage just before a cataclysmic event changes the future of everyone on Earth. What will be valued and what will be discarded? Will art have a place in a world that has lost so much? What will make life worth living? These are just some of the issues explored in this beautifully written dystopian novel. Recommended for fans of David Mitchell, John Scalzi and Kate Atkinson.” — Janet Lockhart, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

The New York Times plans to profile the author next week.

The Distance: A Thriller, Helen Giltrow, (RH/Doubleday; RH Audio),  OverDrive Sample

“Imagine a modern-day Robin Hood who deals not in money, but identity. Karla, the protagonist of The Distance, is a tech guru with a conscience, and the security of several nations dependent on her. This nuanced book kept me on the edge of my seat. I cannot wait until the next one comes out.” — Cathy Scheib, Indianapolis Public Library, Indianapolis, IN

The Witch with No Name, Kim Harrison, (Harper Voyager),  OverDrive Sample

“In this book, Harrison ends her long-running Hollows series, featuring witch Rachel Morgan, vampire Ivy, and pixy Jenks. Rachel’s come a long way; now, she and her friends attempt the impossible and face their toughest battle yet. Harrison skillfully wraps up many plot points, leaving readers sad that the series is over but satisfied by its ending. Fans will surely cheer Rachel on and shed a tear or two.” — Ilene Lefkowitz, Denville Public Library, Denville, NJ

Potential Sleeper Hit

9780316370134_320fbNeverhome, Laird Hunt, (Hachette/ Little Brown; Blackstone Audio), OverDrive Sample

A hit on GalleyChat, this is also one of three “Sleeper Hit” predictions in USA Today‘s roundup of bookseller’s predictions for the fall.  Wendy Bartlett, head of collection development at Cuyahoga P.L, Ohio, recently recommended it to staff, buying extra copies for browsing:

You simply must read this slim and brilliant novel–but read slowly and savor. It’s a subtle story, but a very powerful one that will linger long after you’ve read it. To describe the plot as one in which a woman disguises herself as a Civil War soldier and goes to war is to do it a great disservice. This book is so much more.

With a nod to Gilman’s Yellow Wallpaper, a touch of both Middlesex and Cold Mountain, Neverhome is a pitch perfect symphony—or maybe jazz rendition—about identity, war, and fate. And it’s gorgeously written. Book discussion and prize winner heaven right here.

Media Hits

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Off the Sidelines: Raise Your Voice, Change the World, Kirsten Gillibrand, (RH/Ballantine; RH Audio), OverDrive Sample

Listening to the advice in her book’s title, the U.S senator from New York raised her voice this week about sexism in Washington (inspiring a great bit by Jon Stewart on The Daily Show). Gillibrand will appear on Stewart’s show on Tuesday, as well as on several other shows:

NBC Today Show – 9/9
NPR Diane Rehm – 9/10
MSNBC Morning Joe
PBS Charlie Rose –  9/10

The Roosevelts: An Intimate History, Geoffrey C. Ward, Ken Burns, (RH/Knopf)

The companion book to the PBS series which begins 9/14.

Burns is scheduled for appearances on:

NPR All Things Considered – 9/10
NPR Diane Rehm – 9/11
Comedy Central The Daily Show with Jon Stewart – 9/15

Who IS Elena Ferrante?

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

The new issue of Entertainment Weekly challenges readers with the question, “Do YOU Know Elena Ferrante?” (story not online yet).

If you don’t, you’re in good company. It turns out the author of this “rare interview” with Ferrante (Vogue also has one this month) hadn’t heard of her either until this summer, although “the Italian author’s urgent, blistering fiction has made her something of a cult sensation here in America.”

Attesting to that cult status, the New Yorker‘s redoubtable critic James Wood profiled Ferrante last year calling her “one of Italy’s best-known least-known contemporary writers … Compared with Ferrante, Thomas Pynchon is a publicity profligate.” Just last week, the New York Times Magazine asked three authors to address the question, “Who is Elena Ferrante?

Entertainment Weekly goes on to call her Neapolitan series of novels, the third of which, Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, was just released, “an intoxicatingly furious portrait of enmeshed friends Lila and Elena, Bright and passionate girls from a raucous neighborhood in world-class Naples. Ferrante writes with such aggression  and unnerving psychological insight about the messy complexity of female friendship that the real world can drop away when you’re reading her,”

In the U.S., Ferrante is published by  Europa Editions.

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The Neapolitan series:

#1  My Brilliant Friend, 2012  — OverDrive Sample

#2 The Story of a New Name, 2013 — OverDrive Sample

#3 Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, 9/2/14 — OverDrive Sample

Other titles available in the U.S, (all also from Europa Editions):

The Days of Abandonment, 2005 — OverDrive Sample

Troubling Love,  2008 — OverDrive Sample

The Lost Daughter, 2008 — OverDrive Sample

Five Titles to Know, The Week of 9/1

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

9780804178747_7bd60  9780670026326_1cbe1  9781400065677_611e9-2

Of the books arriving next week one title leads by far in terms of holds and library orders, Lee Child’s 19th Jack Reicher novel, Personal, (RH/Delacorte; RH Large Print; RH Audio; OverDrive Sample). Fans may have recovered from the shock of Tom Cruise as the imposing Reicher in last year’s movie. Although it didn’t do well domestically, it went on to do so well internationally, that a sequel based on last year’s Never Go Back is reportedly in the works. Child is scheduled for appearances on NPR’s Weekend Edition on Sunday and on CBS This Morning on Monday.

Reviewers are in a race to be the first to cover Tana French’s latest, The Secret Place,  (Penguin/Viking; Penguin Audio; Thorndike; OverDrive Sample). The NYT ‘s Janet Maslin reviewed it a full week before publication, and it is People‘s “Book of the Week” in  the 9/8 issue. Librarians got there first, however, making it a LibraryReads pick for September:

French has broken my heart yet again with her fifth novel, which examines the ways in which teenagers and adults can be wily, calculating, and backstabbing, even with their friends. The tension-filled flashback narratives, relating to a murder investigation in suburban Dublin, will keep you turning pages late into the night. — Alison McCarty, Nassau County Public Library System, Callahan, FL

Even more reviewers are piling on one of the big literary novels of the season, The Bone Clocks, by David Mitchell, (Random House). It’s already reviewed by Meg Wolitzer on NPR’s All Things Considered (“one of the most entertaining and thrilling novels I can remember”), by Michiko Kakutani in the New York Times (who is not as big a fan; “Mr. Mitchell’s writing has also become increasingly self-indulgent”), Ron Charles in the Washington Post (who clearly is a fan) and as the lead title in the New York Times Book Review. (‘Other writers may be more moving, and some may push deeper, but very few excite the reader about both the visceral world and the visionary one as Mitchell does.”) Despite all this attention, library holds are relatively low on modest orders. OverDrive Sample

The books mentioned here, plus several other notable titles arriving next week, with ordering information and alternative formats, are listed on our donwloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, Week of Sept. 1, 2014

Librarian Recommendation

9780399167447_ea313Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good, Jan Karon, (Penguin/Putnam; Penguin Audio); OverDrive Sample

Wendy Bartlett of Cuyahoga Public Library, highlights this as a “hot title” to branch staff, and is also buying more copies of the series’ backlist:

Welcome back to Mitford! After a long hiatus, Jan Karon is back with Father Tim, Cynthia, Barnabas, and all the characters that have populated the various Mitford novels. And it’s just as Mitford-y as ever, which is a nice way of saying Karon has recycled about three different plots from the old novels, BUT HEY it’s Mitford, and the customers are already lining up for it, including me. I thoroughly enjoyed visiting Mitford and all the old favorite characters again, and our customers will too. And there’s a bookstore involved this time, so you can’t beat that!

We’ve ordered what backlist we can of the Mitford series, as some customers may want to backtrack and/or discover Mitford for the first time.

In the Media

Gabriel: A Poem, Edward Hirsch, (RH/Knopf); OverDrive Sample

Entertainment Weekly reviews poet Hirsch’s elegy for his son who died at 22, giving it a solid A and saying “Hirsch’s short, limber three-line stanzas are well suited to the staggered unfolding of the tragedy, as if Charon were tweeting updates from the banks of the river Styx.” The author will be featured on NPR’s Morning Edition next week.

Washington Post reviewer Ron Charles talked to Hirsch about the book in April:

Movie Tie-ins

The Boxtrolls: A Novel, Elizabeth Cody Kimmel, (Hachette/Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

The Boxtrolls: Meet the Boxtrolls, Jennifer Fox, leveled reader, (LB Kids Paperback)

The stop-action animated movie, The Boxtrolls, is based on some of the creatures in Alan Snow’s nearly 550-page book, Here Be Monsters! (Atheneum, 2008, rereleased 8/5/14). Entertainment Weekly interviews the film’s co-directors Graham Annable and Anthony Stacchi, who also directed Coraline and ParaNorman, about adopting the book.

Meet the Boxtrolls below. The movie opens, 9/26/2014

The Drop, Dennis Lehane, (HarperCollins/Morrow;  Trade Paperback; HarperAudio)

When is a novelization not a novelization? When it’s by Dennis Lehane. The movie The Drop, which stars James Gandolfini in his last film performance, is based on Lehane’s short story, “Animal Rescue.” The book, The Drop, is based on his script for the movie.

Best Seller Debut:
WE ARE NOT OURSELVES

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

9781476756660_e9693Arriving at #32 on today’s USA Best-Selling Books list is a debut that has been a growing critical hit, We Are Not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas., (S&S; S&S Audio). 

The novel is also a hit in the U.K., where is on the long list for the Guardian First Book Award. The author was interviewed in that publication  yesterday.

As we noted in our earlier story, Big Books of the Fall, holds are growing in libraries.

Major Promo for
THE MINIATURIST

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

9780062306814_315ffA sure indicator that a new book season is upon us is a WSJ story on the marketing efforts behind a particular title.

This season, it’s The Miniaturist, by Jessie Burton, (HarperCollins/Ecco; HarperLuxe).

About a lonely young woman in 17th C Amsterdam who creates a magical dollhouse that begins to predict the future, it is also a LibraryReads pick and gets an A- in Entertainment Weekly. Read a sample vis OverDrive.

Based on a review in the locally influential Cleveland Plain Dealer, Wendy Bartlett of Cuyahoga Public Library, has already put in a hefty additional order that is quadruple the initial quantity.

article-2717879-2021DE2300000578-388_306x473Published earlier in the U.K., it’s been in the top ten there since July. The Wall Street Journal details the elaborate U.K.  marketing campaign, with intricate shop displays that include “doll’s houses and Delft pottery, in one case flying a motorized parakeet around the books (a green bird figures in the novel).”

The U.K. cover features an actual dollhouse, complete with its own “making of” video.