Archive for the ‘Seasons’ Category

DARK WILD Wins Guardian Prize

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

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Saying, “It feels amazing to be one of the prize’s least-known winners,” author Piers Torday won the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize this week for his middle grade novel, The Dark Wild, (Penguin/Viking Juvenile), to be published here on January 22.

Begun in 1967, The Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize is awarded by a jury of children’s authors. The longlist for this year’s Prize included Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo as well as We Were Liars by E. Lockhart,

The book is the second in a trilogy, following The Last Wild, (Penguin/Viking Juvenile), a title  featured in our Penguin Young Readers program, which gives librarians the opportunity to read galleys and chat with rising star children’s authors. View the chat with Torday here.

Join us for our next author chat, this Wednesday, with Kim Bradley, author of The War That Saved My Life, (Penguin/Dial), this Wednesday, Nov. 19, from 5 to 6 p.m., EST.

Four Titles to Recommend,
Week of Nov. 17

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Based on advance attention from librarians and booksellers, readers advisors have a range of titles to recommend next week, from a Norwegian mystery, written in a “perversely delicate style” to a literary novel that is “both heartbreaking and hysterical.”

All the titles covered 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 11/17/14

Library Picks

9780544273399_5ea85The Murder of Harriet Krohn, Karin Fossum, (HMH), OverDrive Sample

The New York Times Book Review‘s mystery columnist, Marilyn Stasio, recently wrote a guide to the varied styles of Scandinavian crime novelists. Fossum is at the top of the list, described as writing “grim suspense novels on abnormal-psychology themes, but in a perversely delicate style that brings Ruth Rendell to mind.” It’s starred by PW and Cuyahoga P.L’s head of collection development, Wendy Bartlett has ordered in quantity, so copies will be available for browsing.

IndieNext Picks

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The Paris Winter, Imogen Robertson, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio), OverDrive Sample

“In 1909 Paris, a Russian princess, a French model, and a young Englishwoman meet at Academie Lafond, a school for aspiring female artists. It was a time when it was a woman’s duty to marry and support her husband in his career and become the work of art, not the artist. These fictional characters are inspired by real women such as Suzanne Valadon, a friend and muse to Toulouse Lautrec; Ada Leigh, who ran a house for penniless English and American women in Paris; and Gertrude Stein, whose salon paintings noted in The Paris Winter were Picasso’s. The reader, drawn into the underbelly of Paris with its backdrop of opium addiction, murder, and revenge, will be haunted by this tale long after the last page is turned.” — Karen Briggs, Great Northern Books & Hobbies, Oscoda, MI

Penelope Fitzgerald: A Life, Hermione Lee, (RH/Knopf), OverDrive Sample

“As always with Lee’s work, her latest biography offers a detailed and fascinating view of her subject’s life. Penelope Fitzgerald was a teacher, a scholar, a world-class novelist, a two-time winner of Britain’s Man Booker Prize, and a devoted mother and wife. Fitzgerald came late to fame, and this meticulously researched and beautifully written biography reveals every facet of her life in the most intimate way. I loved it!” — Kathy Ashton, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT 

All My Puny Sorrows, Miriam Toews, (McSweeney’s), OverDrive Sample

“How does one craft a novel that tackles such difficult and controversial subjects as depression, euthanasia, and suicide without coming across as morbid and morose? Just read Miriam Toews All My Puny Sorrows. With great style and wit, Toews has created a tale that is at once heartbreaking and hysterical. Following the story of two sisters, Elf and Yoli, All My Puny Sorrows deals with the hardships of Elf’s depression and desire to end her life. Beautifully written, rich with tenderness and compassion, this novel keeps you alternating between laughter and tears, captivated from start to finish.” —Claire Roser, Maria’s Bookshop, Durango, CO

Adds Book Riot “Don’t let the serious subject matter dissuade you – this beautiful book will give you all the feels.” (We’re guessing that “feels” is a good thing).

Holds Leaders,
Week of Nov. 17

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Collaborations are the name of the game next week, as two best selling authors team up with co writers. But the holds leader, David Baldacci continues to go it on his own.

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Baldacci, David, The Escape, (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print)

In an interview yesterday, Baldacci says he envies Sue Grafton for keeping her Kinsey Malone books in the 1980’s. His series tries to keep up with new technology, which is both “a blessing and a curse.” He launches his latest book at the Ferguson Library in Stamford, CT., next Wednesday.

The Job: A Fox and O’Hare Novel, Janet Evanovich, Lee Goldberg

The author of the Stephanie Plum novels, in her third collaboration with Lee Goldberg, a writer for the Monk TV series, (previous titles in the series are The Heist, June, 2013 and The ChaseFeb., 2014). It seems it’s working for both authors, the fourth in the series, as yet untitled, is set for August of next year.

The Cinderella Murder, Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke, (S&S; S&S Audio; Thorndike

Celebrating 40 years of best sellers, Mary Higgins Clark told the Wall Street Journal this week that she hopes to still be writing at 95. She may have discovered the secret of reaching her goal, in this her first collaboration with another author, Alafair Burke (All Day and All Night released in May, is her tenth novel). It features characters from Clark’s solo title,  I’ve Got You Under My Skin, (released in April), producers of a TV show, Under Suspicion that tries to solve cold cases by re-enacting them.  Says Kirkus, “This serendipitous series launch, or continuation, will satisfy Clark’s legion of fans and may well win her some new ones.” Two more titles in this series are under contract.

Media Attention, Week of 11/17: Celebrity Authors

Friday, November 14th, 2014

There will be some blasts from the past in the media about books next week, as Tony Robbins appears in a new guise and Brooke Shields is on the cover of People magazine. A more recent celebrity, Russell Brand also promotes his latest book, but this time, it’s not a memoir.

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Money: Master The Game, Tony Robbina, (Simon & Schuster,  eBook, eAudio)

While we were busy with more mundane things, it seems Tony Robbins went from infomercialist  to “the CEO Whisperer” as he is called on the cover of Fortune Magazine. That infomercial background should help as he promotes his new book on his old medium.  He is set to appear on several upcoming shows, including:

• MSNBC Morning Joe, November 18
• NBC  Today Show, November 18
• Fox News Fox & Friends, November 19
• Bravo-TV Watch What Happens Live, November 23

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There Was a Little Girl : The Real Story of My Mother and Me, Brooke Shields, (Penguin/Dutton; Penguin Audio)

Shields is making headlines because of revelations in her memoir about her “hard-drinking mother” (the New York Post),  how she lost her virginity (E! Online), Liam Neeson’s proposal (Irish Central, of course) and how she found out that Andre Agassi was a meth addict (People magazine cover story).

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The Pied Piper of Hamelin : Russell Brand’s Trickster Tales, Russell Brand, Chris Riddell, (S&S/ Atria Books, S&S Audio)

Not a celebrity memoir, but a celebrity retelling a favorite fairy tale. Scheduled appearances include:

• NBC Today Show November 18
• NBC Tonight Show sNovember 18
• NBC Access Hollywood  November 18
• ABC Live with Kelly & Michael, November 19
• Bravo-TV Watch What Happens Live, November 20

You Can’t Make This Up: Miracles, Memories, and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television, Al Michaels, L. Jon Wertheim, )Harper/Morrow; Harper)

We don’t have specifics on appearances, but after more than 30 years on television, the author has what is called media access.

Holds Alert: THE WILD TRUTH

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

9780062325143_d2988Several libraries show growing holds on modest quantities of The Wild Truth, by Carine McCandless, (HarperCollins; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe).

The author is the sister of Chris McCandless, a man who seemingly had everything, but ended as an emaciated corpse discovered in a bus in the Alaskan wilderness after giving away most of his money and breaking with his family.

The story was featured in Jon Krakauer’s 1996 best seller, Into the Wild, which was adapted into a 2007 movie adaptation, starring Emile Hirsch and directed by Sean Penn. In her book, Carine McCandles, who was 21 years old at the time, gives more insight into her brother’s seemingly erratic behavior. A new documentary about him, Return to the Wild, will air on PBS on Nov. 25.

Reviewed this week on the NPR web site, it was also featured on ABC’s 20/20 and on the People magazine web site.

Small Press Book, Big Press Attention

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

9780988518339_d5dccIn today’s New York Times, Dwight Garner opens his review of Preparation for the Next Life by Atticus Lish (Tyrant Books, original trade pbk., Nov. 11) with this attention-getting phrase, “Unlike any American fiction I’ve read recently in its intricate comprehension of, and deep feeling for, life at the margins” and goes on to describe it in increasingly glowing terms, winding up with, “The final chapters of this indelible book pulled my heart up under my ears.”

The publisher is the indie press Tyrant Books, which was profiled in The Los Angeles Review of Books last year.

Preparation for the Next Life was one of 35 titles on Publishers Weekly‘s list of “The Big Indie Books of Fall 2014,” also receiving a stellar review in that publication, as a “stunning debut novel that plumbs the underbelly of New York City … Lish’s prose is at once raw and disciplined, and every word feels necessary. “

Titles to Know and Recommend, The Week of Nov 10

Friday, November 7th, 2014

Dominating the media next week will be two quite different books about the current and former residents of the White House … librarians recommend three titles for fellow readers advisors … Stephen King returns to the horror genre while James Patterson explores India.

All the titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, with ordering information and alternate formats, are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of 11/1014

Holds Leaders

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Revival, Stephen King, (S&S/Scribner; S&S audio; Thorndike);  OverDrive Sample; Rolling Stone book and audio excerpts

This is King’s second novel of the year, following Mr. Mercedes, which was called his first hard-boiled detective novel.  The Guardian  hails the new one with the headline, “Stephen King returns to the horror genre.” Interviewed in The Rolling Stone last week, King took a major swipe at the NYT critic, Michiko Kakutani. Any bets on whether she’ll review this one?

Private India: City on Fire, James Patterson, Ashwin Sanghi, (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print); OverDrive Sample

In spinoffs from his Private series, Patterson’s character Jack Morgan has opened new offices in Europe (PrIvate London and Private Berlin) and Autstralia (Private Down Under). Now he adds another continent in a title written in collaboration with Ashwin Sanghi, known in his own country as “the Dan Brown of India.” In a Times of India interview Sanghi said Patterson’s publisher contacted him, because Patterson wanted to write a book set in India, but didn’t want to write it on his own, fearing “he would lose its flavour.” Like the others in the international Private series, Private India was published originally in the U.K, Random House, followed by a U.S. release by Hachette/Grand Central in trade paperback. In just a couple of weeks, Patterson’s next Alex Cross novel arrives, Hope to Die (Hachette/Little, Brown).

Readers Advisory

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Lives in Ruins: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble, Marilyn Johnson, (Harper), OverDrive Sample

Johnson endeared herself to librarians with her 2010 title, This Books is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All. She shines a light on another profession in this LibraryReads pick for November,

“Johnson takes a fascinating look at the field of archeology, profiling a number of archaeologists at work. She visits sites as diverse as an army base, Rhode Island, the Caribbean, the Mediterranean and Peru, but the best part of this book is learning about the archaeologists and their passions. A fun, interesting read that may cause an uptick in field school applications.” — Jenna Persick, Chester County Library, Exton, PA

The Wild Truth,Carine McCandless, (HarperCollins; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe), OverDrive Sample

GalleyChatters have been enthusiastic about this book for months. Giving further insight into the story that John Krakauer told in the bestselling Into the Wild, about Christopher McCandless’s mysterious disappearance into the Alaskan wilderness, it is written by his sister.

The Heart Has Its Reasons, Maria Duenas, (S&S/Atria; S&S Audio), OverDrive Sample

Also popular on GalleyChat, this was selected by independent booksellers as a top pick for December:

“Blanca Perea is a college professor in Madrid. Her life seems perfect — she is successful and happy, with a husband and two grown sons. When her husband announces that he is in love with another woman and is leaving her, Blanca’s perfect world is shattered. Desperate, she flees Madrid and takes a position at a university near San Francisco. It is her job to probe into the history of a long-deceased writer and former professor, Andres Fontana. As Blanca immerses herself in Fontana’s life, she becomes captivated by the things that drove him — his ambitions, his relationships, and his ill-fated lost love. As she untangles hidden agendas and lies, Blanca finds a strength that enables her to pursue a new life with new possibilities.” — Nancy Nelson, Sunriver Books, Sunriver, OR 

Media Attention

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41: A Portrait of My Father, George W. Bush, (RH/Crown; RH Audio, read by George W. Bush; RH Large Print)

George W. Bush turns from painting to writing portraits. This one, undoubtedly in rosy tones, is titled simply 41: A Portrait of My Father (RH/Crown). Publicity includes a three-generational sit down on the Today Show as both author and subject are interviewed by correspondent Jenna Bush Hager.

The Stranger: Barack Obama in the White House, Chuck Todd, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Machete Audio)

There’s no rosy glow in Chuck Todd’s sharply critical look at the current resident of the White House, as evidenced by Michiko Kakutani’s embargo-breaking review in yesterday’s New York Times

No Hero: The Evolution of a Navy SEAL, Mark Owen, Kevin Maurer, (Penguin/Dutton; Penguin Audio; Thorndike)

In his first book, the long-running 2012 best seller, No Easy Day, Mark Owen wrote about the killing of Osama bin Laden. He is still under investigation for allegations that the book disclosed classified information. Owen made sure that his second book, No Hero, was vetted by the Pentagon. He appeared on 60 Minutes last week. According to the story, a sections was cut, “but the reader can infer this is about [the rescue of] Captain Phillips – also the subject of a movie. And then there’s ‘SEAL team blank.’ Owen is not allowed to use the number ‘six.'” Holds in libraries are light, despite advance publicity.Alan Turing: The Enigma: The Book That Inspired the Film “The Imitation Game,” Andrew Hodges, (Princeton University Press)

The 1983 book, rereleased as a tie-in with a new preface by Douglas Hofstadter. The movie, which opens on 11/28, stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley, has Oscar buzz.

Stewart Makes Cleese Laugh

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

During his interview with John Cleese, author of the new memoir, So, Anyway … (RH/Crown), Jon Stewart achieved a career high by making him laugh.

There was’t much talk about the book, but Stewart did say, “So, Anyway … is on the bookshelves now.” Nevertheless, the book roses to #152 (from #411) on Amazon’s sales rankings.

Ten Titles to Make You
An R.A. Guru, Week of Nov. 3

Friday, October 31st, 2014

The big fall book season is winding down, but there’s several LibraryReads picks to recommend … It’s been a busy season for offbeat celebrity memoirs … next week two older-school variety make their debuts.

All 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 11/3/14

Holds Leaders

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The Burning Room, Michael Connelly, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Large Print; Hachette Audio), OverDrive Sample

The latest thriller to feature Connelly’s favorite character, Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch, is one of the last adult titles of the fall season to be drawing heavy prepublication holds (still to come Stephen King’s Revival, next week and James Patterson’s Alex Cross novel, Hope to Die, Nov. 24). Bosch is about to get his screen debut in Amazon’s 10-part series, Bosch coming mid-February (the pilot is available free online now). Connelly talks about the show in an interview with the Tampa Bay Times. Readers advisory: the 11/7 issue of Entertainment Weekly revisits all of Connelly’s books in a “Binge” (not online yet) which includes a list of the essential titles for newcomers. A bit of “Connelly Trivia,” his book The Overlook is dedicated to “the librarian who gave me To Kill a Mockingbird.”

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul, Jeff Kinney, (Abrams/Amulet; Recorded Books)

The publisher says the latest in this mega-selling series will have a 5.5 million–copy first printing (remember when the 100,000 copy printing of the first Harry Potter title was considered a big gamble?)

LibraryReads Picks

In addition to The Burning Roomthe following LibraryReads picks for November: are coming out next week:

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Mermaids in Paradise, (Norton; Dreamscape Audio)

“This delightful book starts out as almost chick-lit, turns into a fantasy adventure, then leads into an underdog heist. The tone reminds me of Libba Bray’s Beauty Queens, with just enough absurdity in a tropical location to keep you on your toes. Protagonist Deb’s husband, Chip, is a total babe (in a nerdy way) and her BFF, Gina, is the best kind of snarky. A highly entertaining read!” — Amanda Monson, Bartow County Library System, Cartersville, GA — Also on the 11/9 Entertainment Weekly “Must List”

Mortal Heart, Robin LaFevers, (HMH Books for Young Readers; Recorded Books), OverDrive Sample

“Annith has been forbidden from leaving the convent of St. Mortain, so she breaks the rules to find out why. On her journey, she meets someone unexpected: the leader of the Hellequin, a group of dead souls repenting for their past wrongs and trying to track down those who are left wandering the earth in order to help them cross over. This is the best of all three books!”00 Hannah Berry, Aurora Public Library, Aurora, IL

The Forgers, Bradford Morrow, (Mysterious Press: Highbridge Audio)

“Narrator Will and Adam Diehl have something in common: they are both forgers, able to produce and sell authentic-looking inscriptions of Arthur Conan Doyle and Henry James’ books. When Adam is found bludgeoned and missing his hands, Will is inevitably drawn into the murder investigation. The clues and horror mount until realization bursts upon the reader at the end.” — Nancy Russell, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH

Eye On

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Science…For Her!, Megan Amram, (S&S/Scribner), OverDrive Sample

“If you love feminism, hate ’50s gender norms, and find the tone of women’s magazines maddening, then you will love Megan Amram’s upcoming satirical book,” says Salon. One of the writers for NBC’s Parks and Recreation and a Twitter star, she is featured in New York Magazine and the book is one of three People picks for the week (of course, she posted the page on Twitter)

Sure to Get Review Attention

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Let Me Be Frank With You: A Frank Bascombe Book, Richard Ford, (Harper/Ecco; HarperLuxe; HarperAudio), OverDrive Sample

Since we’re being frank, Richard Ford is one of the inspirations for EarlyWord. When I was a fledgling collection development librarian, his first Frank Bascome book, The Sportswriter, was published. The prepub reviews just didn’t sound that good, so I skipped it. One day, my boss came in brandishing a glowing Time magazine review and asked how many copies we had bought.  A great lesson about staying on top of what influences your readers (not to mention your bosses). The author is profiled in the Wall Street Journal and much more will be coming.

A Map of Betrayal, Ha Jin, (RH/Pantheon; Recorded Books), OverDrive Sample
The winner of the 1999 National Book Award for Waiting, the author’s new book is scheduled for coverage by NPR Weekend All Things Considered on 11/8 and he New York Times Book Review, 11/9.

Celeb Memoirs

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True Love, Jennifer Lopez, (Amor Verdadero, Penguin/Celebra)

Making headlines because, Lopez reveals she has been the victim of abuse (People magazine and the New York Daily News).

Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow: My Life, Sophia Loren, (S&S/Atria), OverDrive Sample

Photos from the book are featured in Entertainment Weekly, 11/7/14. Upcoming coverage:

USA Today feature, November 4

ABC-TV/’Good Morning America,’ November 12

ABC News-TV/’Nightline, November 14

New York Times Book Review, December 7

Tie-ins

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Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, Laura Hillenbrand, (Random House Trade Paperbacks; the RH Audio is also being released with tie-in cover)

It may seem that the whole world has read Unbroken, but copies are still circulation from libraries. The movie, directed by Angelina Jolie, arrives this Christmas.

The Red Tent, Anita Diamant, (Macmillan/Picador)

The book club favorite gets a stunning new cover for the tie-in to the Lifetime two-parter, scheduled for 12/7 and 12/8/14,

Holds Alert: YES PLEASE

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

9780062268341_76d86Fresh Air host Terry Gross makes comedian Amy Poehler laugh while interviewing her about her new memoir, Yes Please, (HarperCollins/Dey Street Books; HarperAudio).

The book rose to #2 on Amazon’s sales rankings as a result (it was already at #10). Holds have risen dramatically in libraries.

UPDATE: Thanks to librarian Jackie Davis for pointing out in the comments section that holds in her library are heavier on the audio than the book, which is a first for them. She also notes that they’re not that heavy on either format, but keep your eye on it. If other libraries are an indicator, that may change quickly.

Variety is the Spice of Reading:
11 Highlights from GalleyChatters

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

Editor’s Note:  Robin Beerbower is EarlyWord‘s regular “GalleyChatter” columnist. She was recently profiled by Rebecca Vnuk in Booklist Online’s Corner Shelf.

Below are her picks of the titles brought up during our most recent GalleyChat. Join us for the next one, Tuesday, Nov. 4th, 4 to 5 p.m., EDT — #ewgc.

————-

GalleyChat participants never fail to present a glorious mish-mash of titles with hardly any repeats from the previous months.  Here is a small sampling of the top titles mentioned during the last chat. As usual, a complete list of all 65 titles mentioned during the chat is available here.

9781492602026_fd794-2Need a good “readalike” author for Diana Gabaldon? I’ve had great success in suggesting Susanna Kearsley to my library patrons and her next book A Desperate Fortune  (Sourcebooks Landmark, April) is a timeslip contemporary romance blended with a little history.  New Rochelle Public Library’s Beth Mills thoroughly enjoyed it, saying she loved Kearsley’s two main characters, and the cover is especially enticing. [Note: Sourcebooks has republished several of Kearsley’s backlist titles]

9781476749433_56448Bookmobiles hold a special place in the hearts of librarians so it’s not surprising that a fable about a group of misfits escaping abuse and injustice by fleeing in a gigantic bookmobile has already received high praise. Nancy Russell (Columbus Metropolitan Library) said David Whitehouse’s Mobile Library (Scribner/S&S, January)  is “witty and whimsical, this adventure story is sure to warm your heart.“

 

The Return of Two Favorite Book Group Authors! 

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Anticipation is high for two novels by favorite book club authors who haven’t published novels in several years. In Anita Diamant’s new historical novel, The Boston Girl (Scribner/S&S, December), a grandmother born to immigrant parents narrates the story of her early 20th century life. It has received much love from 11 peers on Edelweiss, and many reviewers on Good Reads are saying it’s a great “comfort read.” [Note that Diamant’s first book, The Red Tent, has been made into a two-part series, which will air on Lifetime, 12/7/2014 & 12/8/14; trailer here]

Years after they were first published, book groups continue to discover Stephanie Kallos’ Broken for You, (2005) and Sing Them Home (2008), so it’s good news that her next novel, Language Arts (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), is due to arrive next June.  Cynthia Baskin, a devoted GC participant, says that it’s a “a deeply moving story of ex-spouses and their young-adult autistic son, and how their pasts and presents inform their independent and cooperative futures. It maintains the top-notch standard set by Kallos’ earlier books, Broken for You and Sing Them Home.”

Memoirs, Travel, and Archeology

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Kate Mayfield’s The Undertaker’s Daughter(Gallery/S&S, January) earned a spot as one of Darien Library’s Jennifer Dayton’s favorite memoirs and according to her it has all of the elements needed for a good life story: death, alcoholism, mental illness, infidelity, and ultimately love and forgiveness. She adds “…think To Kill A Mockingbird but with dead bodies.”

Lives in RuinsArchaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human RubbleMarilyn Johnson (HarperCollins, November) was a LibrayReads choice, and Stephanie Chase (newly appointed director of Oregon’s Hillsboro Public Library) said “Marilyn’s skill at sharing her adventures and the adventures of her subjects is fantastic: engaging, readable, and leaving the reader hunting for more information.”

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Janet Lockhart (Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC) loved the memoir by Anna Lyndsey, Girl in the Dark, (Doubleday/RH, March), saying it is a, “Riveting memoir of woman suffering from rare condition that makes her super sensitive to light. Gave me insight into another person’s life while at the same time illuminating my own.” Another memoir of someone going through the impossible is The Kindness Diaries: One Man’s Epic Quest to Ignite Goodwill and Transform Lives Around the Word, Leon Logothetis (Readers Digest/S&S, December). Without a penny in his pocket, Leon travels the world depending on the altruism of strangers, and is the perfect book for readers who desire something inspiring and uplifting. There is no DRC so for a print copy email our marketing friends at Simon & Schuster (see Library Marketing — Adult]

Spicy Variety

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Earlier this year Collette McBeth’s Precious Thing (a great Gone Girl read alike and a LibraryRead pick) was well liked by Chatters, so were thrilled to find out the author’s new title, The Life I Left Behind (Minotaur/Macmillan) will be out in February. The narration by the ghost of a murdered victim may not sound like everyone’s cup of tea, but Jennifer Winberry says it’s worth reading as the “characters are so good, the way they relate to each other and get involved with each other is AMAZING!

Kristin Hannah is among the top women’s fiction writers and patrons will be anxious to read her next book, The Nightingale (St. Martin’s/Macmillan, February). Janet Lockhart said of this story of two sisters and their challenging relationship during WWII, “Good family fiction with a complex characters and dynamics; the characters got under my skin.”  Edelweiss is showing lots of love from peers and on  GoodReads, it has already received 4 and 5 stars.

Anyone who loved Gone with the Wind (and who doesn’t!), will be excited about Kate Alcott’s A Touch of Stardust (Doubleday/RH, February), the story of the passionate love affair between Clark Gable and Carole Lombard during the filming of the movie. And if that isn’t enough to get us interested, the publisher teases us further by saying Kate Alcott, who married into the Mankiewicz Family (of Citizen Kane, Cleopatra, & All About Eve fame), weaves into the novel delicious never-before-told stories from the period.

Now wasn’t that a nice variety? Join us next month on November 4 (4:00 p.m. EST) for even more great books you will be adding to your TBR lists. And, as usual, please “friend me” on Edelweiss to keep up with the titles I’m anticipating.

Titles to Know and Recommend, Week of Oct. 27

Friday, October 24th, 2014

Next week brings not just one, but two books by Danielle Steel … the return to form of two iconic authors … plus 3 books about famous women that have already received media attention.

All 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 10/27/14

Holds Leader

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There’s just one clear holds leader this week and it’s Danielle Steel’s, Pegasus, (RH/Delacorte; RH Large Print, Brilliance Audio, OverDrive Sample), described by the publisher as “a rich historical novel of family and World War II” that involves a titled German aristocrat is forced to flee to the U.S., bringing with him some prize horses, including a Lipizzaner named Pegasus. In a twofer Steel also publishes a picture book for kids on the same day. It also features a white animal, Pretty Minnie in Paris, (RH/Doubleday Young Readers) about a Parisian Chihuahua, who gets lost at a fashion show. In the holds race, Pegasus is far outpacing Minnie.

Back Again

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Prince Lestat: The Vampire Chronicles, Anne Rice, (RH/Knopf; RH Large Print; RH Audio)

Rice has not returned to the vampires that made her famous since 2003’s Blood Canticle. PW says, compared to that book, the “newest Vampire Chronicles installment is triumphant.” The other prepub sources agree, with Kirkus saying, “it’s trademark Rice: talky, inconsequential, but good old-fashioned fanged fun.” It seems fans are cautious, however. Holds are currently light. Rice is profiled in the L.A. Times. In the NYT Book Review, Terrence Rafferty has a good time with it, “Although this is a dreadful novel, it has to be said that the earnestness with which Rice continues to toil at her brand of pop sorcery has an odd, retro sort of charm, an aura redolent of the desperate, decadent silliness of the disco era.”

The Peripheral, William Gibson, (Penguin; Penguin Audio), OverDrive Sample

Science fiction fans are hailing Gibson for going “back to the future” in this new novel. Famous for envisioning the Web, creating the terms “cyberspace” and “the matrix” way back in 1984 in his debut novel Neuromancer, Gibson switched to a nearer future in his most recent novels. The Chicago Tribune says this new book marks the “return to Gibson’s pre-millennial style, predictive, hip, tech-savvy.” In their review, the science fiction site i09 comments that the return comes with differences,The Peripheral is very different from the hyperactive cyberpunk citiscapes of Neuromancer. His canvas is much bigger — and his prophesies are far more melancholy.” Note to those in libraries that have maker spaces: the main character works in a 3-D print shop.

Readers Advisory

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Us, David Nicholls, (Harper; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe)

Those who only know Nicholls from the terrible film adaptation of his previous book, One Day, may have been surprised that his latest, Us was on the Man Booker longlist. The judges describe it as “a comedy about the demands of living together, about parenthood, about the relationship between reason and emotion, art and science, parents and children, middle-age and youth.”  People magazine puts it more succinctly, “Few authors do messed-up relationships better than Nicholls.”

It is also the LibraryReads #1 pick for November, with this recommendation,

“Every once in a while you stumble upon a book that makes you wish you could meet the characters in real life. This is the case with Us, the poignant story of a middle-of-the-road British family spiraling out of control, and one man’s attempt to win back their love. Quirky, delightful and unpredictable, the novel delves into what makes a marriage, and what tears it apart.” — Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX

Empire of Sin: A Story of Sex, Jazz, Murder, and the Battle for Modern New Orleans, Gary Krist, (RH/Crown; Dreamscape Audio; Thorndike), OverDrive Sample

The early history of one of America’s most fascinating cities, Empire of Sin was just selected by Library Journal as one of the  Top Ten books of 2014. It is reviewed in the Chicago Tribune.

Advance Attention

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The Secret History of Wonder Woman, Jill Lepore, (RH/Knopf; BOT)

Reviewers are falling all over themselves to write about Lepore’s latest.  Atlantic Magazine reviews it with a headline that gives that “secret history” more background, “The Free Love Experiment That Created Wonder Woman: The polyamorous ‘sex cult’ conceived by the comics’ founder wasn’t exactly feminist, but it was built on women-empowering, pro-queer ideals.”  It gets the lead review in the 10/24 issue of Entertainment Weekly, which grants it a a solid A and a strongly positive reaction from Dwight Garner in yesterday’s NYT,

Yes Please, Amy Poehler, (HarperCollins/Dey Street Books; HarperAudio)

The L.A. Times book review compares Poehler’s book favorably to other recent memoirs by funny women, “If [Tina] Fey’s Bossypants or [Mindy] Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? feel like a chatty beach weekend with a friend, Yes Please has the more manic air of a snowbound situation. Truths will be told, yes, and anecdotes recounted, but the attic and the cellar will also be raided, for funny hats and canned goods.” If that doesn’t make sense,  Entertainment Weekly, which ranks it at #3 of things to do this week, says,  ” Of course the Parks and Rec star’s first book is LOL funny — there is an acrostic poem dedicated to Tina Fey and recollections of rapping while pregnant on SNL — but there are also frank, relatable stories about her slow climb to fame and life as a working mom, as well as earnest bites of wisdom.”

Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis: The Untold Story, Barbara Leaming, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio), OverDrive Sample

Leaming applies a contemporary analysis to Jacqueline Kennedy’s life after JFK’s assassination, presenting evidence that she suffered from PTSD. The book was featured on the Today Show this week:

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The Science Behind INTERSTELLAR

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

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The space epic, Interstellar, arrives in theaters on Nov. 7th with huge expectations (as evidenced by the Entertainment Weekly cover, right.Variety predicts that the 3-hour film will bring an opening box office of at least $50 million).

The plot has been kept under wraps, but early reports say it’s about a group of scientists who use a wormhole to travel through space in an effort to find solutions to Earth’s dwindling food supply, or, failing that, a new home for its inhabitants. Directed by Christopher Nolan, it stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, and Michael Caine.ScienceofInterstellarMech.indd

The idea for the film was inspired by the work of theoretical physicist Kip Thorne, who is also an executive producer and a scientific consultant on the movie.

A short video was just released that features Thorne. He is also publishing a book, The Science of Interstellar(W.W. Norton), set to be released on the same day as the movie, Nov 7.

Quammen on Ebola

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

In her Library News email last week, Golda Rademacher, Norton’s Library Marketing Manager, alerted librarians to the following drop-in title:

9780393351552_5bc5bEbola: The Natural and Human History of a Deadly Virus
DAVID QUAMMEN
9780393351552, pbk, $13.95
NORTON, 10/20/14

With all the news about Ebola lately, we had a lot of requests for the Ebola chapter from David Quammen’s Spillover. We’ve pulled the chapter out and are publishing it as a paperback with some updates and a new introduction by the author.

In today’s New York Times, Michiko Kakutani reviews it, saying that Quammen warns readers not to take Richard Preston’s “lurid descriptions of Ebola’s consequences literally” in his best selling book, The Hot Zone. Nevertheless, Quammen ” shows in these pages that the reality of the virus is horrifying without any apocalyptic embellishment.”

Kakutani also mention journalist Laurie Garrett’s  “illuminating and encyclopedic book The Coming Plague” (Penguin Books).

Readers Advisory: Nancy Pearl, From Thriller to Cozy

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

9780385536998_1e4af-2Noting a growing tend of  fast-moving but very complex thrillers that challenge the readers and are well worth the attention they require, Nancy Pearl, during her regular Tuesday appearance on Seattle’s NPR station, KUOW, recommends one of  her recent favorites, The Distance by Helen Giltrow, (RH/Doubleday; RH Audio). It  features a wealthy, elegant socialite named Charlotte who lives another life as Karla, a woman who helps people in trouble disappear. Katla, Nancy emphasizes, is not a nice person, and in fact, the book is “filled with people who are not particularly good people, but whom you somehow care about. It takes skill for a writer to pull that off.” Listen here

It was a LibraryRead pick for September and a favorite on GalleyChat.

OverDrive Sample

Audio Clip:

Murder at the BrightwellThat book included scenes Nancy “had to read with my eyes closed,” but on last week’s show, she recommended a book in a quite different genre, one she doesn’t generally enjoy, a cozy mystery. Murder at the Brightwell, by Ashley Weaver, (Minotaur/Macmillan) won her over with its subtle humor and “witty repartee” between a “Nick and Nora” type of wealthy young couple in the 1930’s, making it “like armchair traveling into a rarefied world.” Listen here.

It was a LibraryReads pick, for October, as well as a GalleyChat favorite (New York librarian Janet Schneider described is as “a Dorothy L. Sayers/Downton Abbey combo”). A debut, the author is a public librarian in Louisiana.