Archive for the ‘2014 — Summer’ Category

Get Your LibraryReads Picks!

Monday, July 14th, 2014

LibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads Favorite9781476749785_a7da7    LibraryReads Favorite

Today’s release of the LibraryReads list of the ten books librarians love the most for the month of August, is a reminder to get your nominations in for the upcoming months (you can nominate titles to be published from September on. Nominations close on the first of each month for titles published in that month —more how-to specifics here).

The new list offers many titles that provide an answer to the eternal question, “What’s coming out that’s good?” Many of these titles will be available as eGalleys on Edelweiss and/or NetGalley until their pub dates, so grab them now.

The number one pick is Chelsea Cain’s thriller, One Kick (S&S;
S&S Audio; Wheeler Large Print; eGalley available), the beginning of a new series for Cain (she still plans to continue the popular and scary Gretchen Lowell series, alternating between the two). NBC announced in October that it is developing a series based on the new titles about a woman who, having been abducted herself as a child, works to rescue other kidnapped kids.


Most of the titles come from well-known names, but this list also includes a debut, the historical novel The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton (HarperCollins/Ecco; HarperLuxe; eGalley available) which was featured at the BEA Editor’s buzz Panel. Set in 17th C Amsterdam, it is compared to the best of Sarah Waters and Emma Donoghue.

9781400067244_c6788Also resonating from BEA, Lucky Us by Amy Bloom (Random House; RH Audio, eGalley available on request), who won over the crowd at the  Random House Librarians Breakfast with her tales of growing up in a library (with a very understanding librarian) and her description of the sources for the female friendship at the center of her new book.

The full list offers suggestions for a wide range of tastes, from historical to romance, science fiction, and literary titles.

Also, check our compilation of all the lists since LibraryReads began last September, LibraryReads-All-Lists-Through-Aug-2014, Sort it by category and you’ll have an instant list to use when you’re stuck trying to recommend a recent book in a particular category, or for creating displays.

Four Titles To Know, Week of July 14 to 18

Friday, July 11th, 2014

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Leading in holds of the books that arrive next week is the return of Daniel Silva’s art restorer and occasional spy for Israel, Gabriel Allon in The Heist, (Harper; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe) in which he searches for a stolen Caravaggio. Close behind is Stone Barrington’s newest outing, Cut and Thrust by Stuart Woods, (Penguin/Putnam; Recorded Books; Thorndike). Publishers Weekly gives it a fitting summary, “This installment goes down as smoothly as a glass of Knob Creek.”

Holds are also heavy for relative newcomer, Deborah Harkness’s The Book of Life, (Penguin/Viking; Recorded Books; Penguin Audio; Thorndike), the final book in her All Souls trilogy,  which began in 2011 with A Discovery of Witches, (a book we predicted would be a hit, but then, what librarian could resist a novel set in the Bodleian?)

All the books mentioned here, as well as several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, with ordering information and alternate formats – New Title Radar, Week of July 14, 2014

Reorder Candidates

9781594205194_b1fc3The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee, Marja Mills, (Penguin Press; Thorndike)

Holds are growing on modest orders for this memoir/literary biography about the author’s relationship with Harper Lee. The Washington Post gave it a gotta-read review yesterday and notes a library connection, “As a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, Mills was assigned to write about Monroeville [the town where Harper Lee lived] when To Kill a Mockingbird was chosen to launch Chicago’s One Book, One Chicago program on the 41st anniversary of its publication.”

It is also a LibraryReads July pick:

“A warm and engaging telling of the life story of Harper Lee. Like no other biography, this book offers insights directly from Lee’s point of view as shared with the journalist she and her sister embraced in friendship late in their lives. Informative and delightful!” — Jan Fisher, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT

9780316231435_f1fc7-2Factory Man:  How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local – and Helped Save an American Town, Beth Macy, (Hachette/Little, Brown)

Since the NYT’s Janet Maslin declared earlier this week that this book is, “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,” holds have grown on light ordering.

Readers Advisory

9781400068562_122e7Life Drawing, Robin Black, (Random House)

EarlyWord’s GalleyChatter Robin Beerbower has been urging librarians to read this debut novel ever since the first of the year, calling it “a gorgeously written suspenseful study of marriage and betrayal. Not exactly a Gone Girl readalike but just as compelling.” It was also singled out as one of a dozen Great Summer Reads by People magazine.

The PW review has so many quotable lines, it’s difficult to excerpt, “ A middle-aged married couple, their new friend, and her daughter interact, sometimes stormily, in this emotionally complex novel …Beginning with the information that one of these characters is now dead, the book draws the reader in from the first page and builds narrative tension almost ceaselessly to the bitter end …An astute inquiry into relationships and betrayal, this novel is nerve-wracking yet irresistibly readable.”

The author’s first book was the well-received short story collection, If I Loved You, I Would Tell You This, (Random House, 2010).

9781594746857_2ad78World of Trouble: The Last Policeman Book III, Ben H. Winters, (Quirk Books, original pbk; Brilliance Audio; )

LibraryReads July pick:

“Still the last policeman, Detective Hank Palace tirelessly pulls together clues from crime scenes and interrogates witnesses to find his missing sister. Winters paints a believable picture of a world awaiting its end thanks to an asteroid on a collision course. A great series for mystery and science fiction lovers, as well as anyone looking for a pre-apocalyptic tale without a single zombie.” — Jenna Persick, Chester County Library, Exton, PA

Greenwald Continues to Make News

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

No Place to HideWhen interviewed on the Colbert Report, about his new book  No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State(Macmillan/Holt/Metropolitan Books; Macmillan Audio; May 13), Glenn Greenwald said he was working on a story he believed would have even more impact than his previous reporting as it would reveal who the NSA has been spying on.

That story was published this morning on Greenwald’s news site, The Intercept, and, as expected, is being picked up widely (see ABC news story below).

ABC News | ABC Sports News

Greenwald’s book moved to #23 on last week’s  NYT Hardcover Nonfiction list, after being in the top ten for 4 weeks (with a high of #5). It’s still on hold in many libraries.


Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

9780316231435_f1fc7Already having declared her love for Beth Macy’s nonfiction debut, Factory Man, (Hachette/Little, Brown, 7/15), in her summer previewNYT‘s daily reviewer, Janet Maslin, gave it a full review just before the holiday.

Her opinion is not dimmed. Saying this book, subtitled, How One Furniture Maker Battled Offshoring, Stayed Local — And Helped Save An American Town, is “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.”

She also notes that, since the book is published by Hachette, it is another victim of  the Amazon/Hachette battle and will not be available for purchase on Amazon until pub date or on Kindle,  but ” it’s worth the trouble to read what will be one of the best, and surely most talked about, books of 2014.”

Six Titles to Recommend (And More to Know), The Week of July 7

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

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Bestselling veteran Catherine Coulter is number one in total holds for book arriving next week, with the 18th title in her FBI series, Power Play, (Penguin/Putnam; Brilliance Audio; Thorndike). A distant second is Brad Thor with the 13th in his Scot Harvath series,  Act of War: A Thriller, (S&S/Atria/Emily Bestler;  S&S Audio; Thorndike).

YA author Veronica Roth feeds the interest in her Divergent series with a companion title, Four: A Divergent Collection (HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen; HarperAudio). These stories were originally released as ebooks beginning in 2012, and are now collected in a hardback volume. Since the success of the Divergent movie, the 25-year-old author is interviewed by The Hollywood Reporter about the new title. The original Divergent trilogy is told from Tris’s perspective (played by Shailene Woodley). These stories are from the point of view of the male lead, Four (played by Theo James). THR reports, it “includes three pre-Divergent stories, one story that runs parallel with the events in Divergent, and three additional scenes from Divergent.” Holds are outstripping orders in most libraries.

9780385534833_1058eLibrarians are fans of Chris Bohjalian, and he returns the favor, helping library fund raisers, such as the one for Howard County [MD] P.L earlier this year. His new book, Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands, (RH/Doubleday; RH Large Print; RH Audio) arrives next week and is a LibraryReads pick. As the recommendation makes clear, Bohjalian again takes on many issues:

“Thousands of lives are irrevocably changed by a nuclear disaster in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. When her parents are blamed, Emily becomes homeless and her situation, desperate. Told retrospectively, Emily’s story is devastating to read, but her passionate interest in Emily Dickinson comes with flashes of brilliance and a growing acceptance of her past.” — Kim Storbeck, Timberland Regional Library, Tumwater, WA

All the titles mentioned here and several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, with full ordering information and alternate formats — New Title Radar, Week of 7/7/14

Readers Advisory

Copies of the above titles will all be going out to holds. Below are a few that you may actually be able to put in readers hands:

9780385351966_42792The Girls from Corona del Mar, Rufi Thorpe, (RH/Knopf; RH Audio)

Here’s a great R.A. handle. None other than Kareem Abdul-Jabbar recommended this book in Esquire as a way to understand women. The story of two women whose childhood friendship endures through the very different paths they take in adulthood, Abdul-Jabbar says he “was blown away by the poetic prose and depth of characterization. The blunt honesty of the women’s perspective will be a revelation for many men.”

9780399167492_1fa6cTomorrow and Tomorrow, Thomas Sweterlitsch, (Penguin/Putnam)

One of our Pegnuin First Flighs authors (read our online chat with the author here), Sweterlitsch’s novel is  about an archivist who investigates insurance claims for people killed in a massive explosion in Pittsburgh via a virtual reality recreation of the city.  It was picked by LJ as a SF/Fantasy Debut of the Month and as one of Summer’s Best Debuts

More Library Reads Picks

In addition to Chris Bohjalian’s Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands, here are more LibraryReads picks arriving next week, with recommendations you can crib from fellow librarians.

9781250049377_c5135 Landline, Rainbow Rowell (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio; Thorndike)

The #1 LibraryReads Pick for July is the second for Rowell. Her YA title, Fangirl, was #1 on the inaugural September list:

“Landline explores the delicate balance women make between work and family, considering the tradeoffs and pain. Rowell has a special gift for offering incredible insights into ordinary life. Never heavy-handed, Rowell’s writing is delivered with humor and grace. I finish all of her books wanting to laugh and cry at the same time–they are that moving. Landline captured my heart.” — Andrea Larson, Cook Memorial Public Library, Libertyville, IL It was also picked by People as one of a dozen Great Summer Reads

9780316250818_1a106-2California, Edan Lepucki, (Hachette/Little, Brown)

Stephen Colbert made this book the poster child for his campaign against Amazon’s strong-arming of publisher Hachette. Curiously, although you still can not order this debut on Amazon, it is on their Editor’s Picks List for July. The LibraryReads recommendation:

“Driven away from the violence of cities and a crumbling society, Cal and Frida live an isolated existence, struggling to survive on what they grow and forage. When an unplanned pregnancy pushes the couple to search for other people, they discover an unexpected community. This well-written debut is great for apocalyptic fiction fans and fans of realistic, character-driven fiction.” — Sara Kennedy, Delaware County District Library, Delaware, OH

9780062290366_c4355-2The Queen of the Tearling, Erika Johansen, (Harper; HarperLuxe)

A movie of this fantasy is the works starring Emma Watson, so, of course, some have called it “The next Harry Potter.” It’s also been called “a female Game of Thrones.” Watson herself has talked about her love for this debut novel, but we’ll go with the LibraryReads recommendation:

“The first of a trilogy, this book is so much more than just another fantasy. Yes, there is magic, a princess and a really bad queen, but there is also an apocalyptic twist that makes readers hungry for the next installment. This book caught me from the first page and kept me guessing till the last. A great read!” — Cindy Stevens, Pioneer Library System, Norman, OK

9780393243024_16759Dry Bones in the Valley, Tom Bouman, (W.W. Norton)

LibraryReads recommendation:

“A body has been found in an elderly recluse’s field, neighbors are fighting over fracking, and meth labs and heroin dealers have settled deep in the woods of Officer Henry Farrell’s Wild Thyme Township. Bouman’s prose reveals not only the beauty of northeastern Pennsylvania, but also abject poverty and despair. A startling debut rich in setting and character with an intricate plot that will stay with readers after the last page.” — Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ

Media Magnets

9780553418637_cabceThe Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose from Defeat to Create the New Majority, Patrick Buchanan, (RH/Crown; RH Audio)

Conservative Buchanan advised Nixon on how to rally the Republican party behind Nixon to win the 1968 election. You can bet his new book will be featured Fox News and The McLaughlin Group, shows where he is a regular.


Movie Tie-Ins

9780147514530_dd0fd-3If I Stay Movie Tie-In, Gayle Forman, (Penguin/Speak)

The 2010 trade paperback reprint has been rising on the NYT  YA best seller list ever since the August 22 release date was announced, and it is at #2 as of the 6/6/14 list. The movie stars Chole Moretz as Mia, a 17 year-old who, while in a coma after a car accident, must choose whether to live or die; Jamie Blackley (Snow White And The Huntsman, The Fifth Estate) as her boyfriend Adam; Mirella Enos and Denny Hall, as her parents and Stacy Keach as Gramps. Director R. J Cutler is known for his documentaries, including the Emmy-award-winning American High. In addition to the first trailer, Warner Bros. recently released the “Prologue”:


Monday, June 30th, 2014

Everything I NeverOne of our Penguin First Flights authors was featured on NPR’s All Things Considered on Saturday, Celeste Ng, author of Everything I Never Told You, (Penguin Press). Host Arun Rath says the reader is hooked from the book’s opening line, “Lydia is dead, but they don’t know it yet.”

Learn more about how the Ng structured the novel in  our online chat with the author.

Become a member of Penguin’s First Flights program here.

Ten Titles to Know, Week of 6/26

Friday, June 27th, 2014

One Plus One  Last Letter -- hardcover  Last Letter Reprint.

The lead title next week, in terms of holds and library orders is One Plus One by Jojo Moyes, (Viking/Pamela Dorman; Recorded Books; Thorndike). British author Moyes published 12 novels in the same number of years, recently breaking onto best seller lists in 2012 with Me Before You, a novel about the relationship between a quadriplegic and his caregiver that also looked at the issue of assisted suicide. It was such a departure for the author that she worried it would be a tough sell, but it was quite the opposite.

To signal that this book was not a traditional romance,  it was given a distinctive all-type cover. The book turned out to be so successful that the format is now being applied to all of Moyes’s novels (see above; a before and after of one of her earlier romances and its just-released paperback reincarnation). Me Before You was followed the next year by The Girl You Left Behind (Penguin/Pamela Dorman; Thorndike), a historical romance, which was more familiar territory for Moyes.

One Plus One is a contemporary romance and a LibraryReads pick:

“A single mom, her math genius daughter, her eye-shadow-wearing stepson, a wealthy computer geek and a smelly dog all get into a car…it sounds like the start of a bad joke, but it’s actually another charming novel from Jojo Moyes. It’s more of a traditional romance than Me Before You, but will also appeal to fans of quirky, hard-working characters. A quick read and perfect for summer.” — Emily Wichman, Clermont County Public Library, Milford, OH

Naqntucket Brides  9781250042965_0e8e0

Also showing heavy holds are two very different romances, as indicated by their covers, the second book in Jude Deveraux Nantucket Brides trilogy, For all Time (RH/Ballantine; Thorndike) and Sherrilyn Kenyon, Born of Fury (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press; Macmillan Audio)

Readers Advisory

DollbabyDollbaby. Laura Lane McNeal, (Penguin/Pamela Dorman)

One of the titles in our Penguin Debut Authors program (see our online chat from last week), this is also a LibraryReads pick:

“In this coming-of-age story set in the Civil Rights era, Ibby is dropped off at the home of her eccentric grandmother in New Orleans after the death of her beloved father. Filled with colorful characters, family secrets and lots of New Orleans tidbits, this book will appeal to fans of Saving Ceecee Honeycutt.” — Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA

Last Night at the Blue AngelLast Night at the Blue Angel, Rebecca Rotert, HarperCollins/Morrow

The HarperCollins Library Marketing team are big fans of this debut and  buzzed it at ALA Midwinter (listen to the Book Buzz here). About a jazz singer and  her young daughter in 1960’s Chicago, it has inspired raptures among the prepub reviewerss. LJ — “Rotert’s musical background informs Naomi’s passion for performance, but it is her heartbreaking portrait of Sophie [her daughter], so wise yet so vulnerable, that readers will remember long after the final page.” It was starred by Booklist and  Kirkus left behind the snark to call it a “tale that’s poignant, poetic and heart-wrenching throughout.”

Liberty's TorchLiberty’s Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty, Elizabeth Mitchell, Atlantic Monthly Press

This patriotic holiday, recommend a book that debunks many of our notions about our most famous monumental sculpture. Originally planned for a spot overlooking the newly constructed Suez Canal, by a French sculptor trying to make a name for himself, it was finally, and reluctantly, accepted by the U.S. There’s even a weird  Real Housewives of New York connection. One of the “housewives,” Countess LuAnn de Lesseps gets her title from her marriage to one of the descendants of the builder of the Suez Canal, Ferdinand de Lesseps.

In the Media

FriendshipFriendship, Emily Gould, (Macmillan/FSG)

Featured in the New York Times “Fashion & Style” section last week, former Gawker editor Gould has made a living by talking about herself. Her 8,000 word confessional was featured on the cover of the NYT Magazine in 2008. The NYT says, “a case could be made that Ms. Gould’s warts-and-all brand of self-exposure anticipated a wave of confessional writing that paved the way for Girls, Lena Dunham’s quasi-autobiographical hit on HBO.”

Her novel is about young women in New York who are very much like herself (of course). Booklist calls it “a savvy first novel that, in piercing prose, zeroes in on modern ennui and the catalysts that force even the most apathetic out of their complacency.”

Diary of a Mad DivaDiary of a Mad Diva, Joan Rivers, (Penguin/Berkley)

Speakng of oversharing — as the publisher’s promo says about this author, “You know what she says out loud. Can you imagine what she writes in her diary?” and goes on to say:

Anais Nin, Anne Frank and Sylvia Plath wrote the world’s most famous diaries. And where are they today? Dead. But the world’s OTHER great diarist, Joan Rivers, is alive and kicking. And complaining.

In the extraordinary tradition of The Habit of Being: Letters of Flannery O’Connor and George Orwell’s Diaries, comes an intimate and enriching glimpse into the mind of the most illuminating woman-of-letters of her generation—the provocative exploration of an age in which she has lived on and on and on and on.


OutlanderOutlander (Starz Tie-in Edition), Diana Gabaldon (RH/Bantam trade pbk; RH/Dell, Mass Mkt Pbk)

Series begins on STARZ, 8/9/2014.

Most WantedA Most Wanted Man, John le Carre, (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio)

This is one of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s final movies (God’s Pocket, based on the book by Pete Dexter, was released on May 9; he will also appear in the two upcoming Mockingjay movies). The movie opens in a limited run on July 25.

Guardians  Guardians Prose

Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy

Several tie-ins are being released for what is expected to be Marvel’s huge summer blockbuster, which opens Aug. 1, including Marvel’s “first prose novel,” Rocket Raccoon & Groot: Steal the Galaxy!   See our full list of tie-ins on our downloadable spreadsheet — Guardians of the Galaxy Tie-ins

Rocket, a gun-totting raccoon and Groot, his companion/body guard, a tree (shown in the latest trailer, below) are expected to be a particular hit with kids.


Tuesday, June 24th, 2014

The VacationersThe Entertainment Weekly blog just added another voice to the chorus of excitement over The Vacationers by Emma Straub, (Penguin/Riverhead) — see our holds alert from two weeks ago (and our prediction that this would be a breakout).

Entertainment Weekly gives a pitch for it being THE 2014 Summer Must-Read:

It’s kind of like a Jonathan Tropper novel in that it’s super-readable and funny and a total page-turner, but it also has a lot of smart things to say about relationships and love and big messy families. It’s light but not just empty calories — ideal for the beach!

Several libraries have ordered more copies, but holds continue to outstrip ordering.

Eight Tip-of-the-Tongue Titles for the Week of 6/23/14

Friday, June 20th, 2014

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The watchword for next week is “stand-alones” as many brand-name authors publish books that are not part of their well-known series.

Leading in terms of holds is James Patterson’s Invisible, (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Large Print; Hachette Audio), a standalone and his third collaboration with David Ellis, following Guilty Wives and Mistress.

Coming in second, averaging half as many holds, is Karin Slaughter’s stand-alone, Cop Town, (RH/Delacorte).

The prolific Dean Koontz makes his latest appearance in the standalone The City (RH/Bantam; Recorded Books; Thorndike), hard on the heels of Innocence, which came out in December. He has yet another coming this December, the next in his Odd Thomas series, Saint Odd, (RH/Bantam). If you’re wondering what happened to the Odd Thomas movie, after some legal struggles, it was released on demand and DVD in February.

Readers Advisory Tips

9780062220509_0271eJacqueline Winspear is known for her Maisie Dobbs series, mysteries featuring WWI nurse turned private investigator in London between the wars. The books have arrived in quick succession since the first was published in 2003, and have grown in popularity, hitting best seller lists. Her new book is her first stand-alone, with an intriguing title, The Care and Management of Lies: A Novel of the Great War  (Harper; HarperLuxe; Blackstone Audio). The “lies” are the half-truths people tell each other to help them through difficult times. In this case, a woman tries to keep her husband’s spirits up at the front during WWI, through letters that recount sumptuous meals she imagines preparing for him.

This is a stand-alone that may prove to bring new readers to the author, enticing those who came late to the party and may not have been willing to tackle the entire Maisie series. Fans of Maisie need not worry, however, the author is under contract for two more, with the next one, The White Lady, scheduled for some time in 2015

Everything I NeverEverything I Never Told You, Celeste Ng, (Penguin Press)

Debuts don’t often get featured on Entertainment Weekly’s “Must List,” so it’s significant that reading this one is on their list of ten necessary things to do in the upcoming week. The book is described as “a propulsive mystery … an explosive debut.”

Many librarians were introduced to the author through our Penguin Debut Authors program; read our online chat with the author here. It’s about a young girl who goes missing, but don’t let readers be put off by the subject; it’s much more than a “ripped from the headlines” novel, using that event as a way to reveal the family dynamics.

The peer reviews on Edelweiss give clues on how to recommend it; “the reader uncovers the truth one person at a time … as each person moves through the tragedy that has befallen them,” and “The first line draws you in, and the multiple perspectives make it compelling reading, which is well worth the journey.”  The author is scheduled to appear on NPR/Weekend All Things Considered on 6/28.

9780399162138_2980bIdentity, Ingrid Thoft, (Penguin/Putnam)

The Cleveland Plain Dealer review clearly made believers, causing holds to rise in local libraries on this second book in a series, after Loyalty, “a craftily plotted page-turner. Identity …  is even better …  sexy modern noir – and readers [will be] cheering on a new-generation, kick-ass heroine. Grade: A”


In The Media

9781476761787_69760Unfriending My Ex: And Other Things I’ll Never Do, Kim Stolz, (S&S/Scribner)

A book by a youg media-savvy author (an MTV VJ and contestant on America’s Next Top Model) about how her generation needs to follow her lead and quit social media, which she says has become an “addiction.” Sounds like catnip for the media and in fact, she is scheduled for an appearance on CBS This Morning, June 24 and for coverage in People magazine, among others.


9780062344618_2f013   9780062344625_46d4d   9780062344632_1efa9
After all those creepy teasers and trailers, the FX series, The Strain, will finally debut on July 17. Harper is releasing Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s entire vampire trilogy  as tie-ins:

The Strain TV Tie-in Edition

The Fall TV Tie-in Edition

The Night Eternal TV Tie-in Edition

Holds Alert: I AM PILGRIM

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

I Am PilgrimThe opening line is not promising, “Neither its plot nor its provenance do much to recommend Terry Hayes’s I Am Pilgrim,” (S&S/Atria/ Emily Bestler; S&S Audio; Thorndike), but Janet Maslin’s review in today’s New York Times quickly becomes a rave, describing the book as “the most exciting desert island read of the season … a big, breathless tale of nonstop suspense,”

The Cleveland Plain Dealer spotted it two weeks ago, and called it “one of the strongest thrillers in years, and certainly the best so far of this year.”  Published in the U.K. last year (although set in New York City), it also won over British reviewers. The Guardian went so far as to agree with the publisher’s hype that it is “the only thriller you need to read this year.”

The book is expected to be the first in a series (in fact, Maslin’s only grumble is that “This book doesn’t exactly end; it just stops … At the price of credibility, [Hayes] paves the way for a sequel. It’s not a fair trade.”)

Libraries show growing holds.

Comedy Central’s Book Bumps

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

Stephen Colbert continued his public fight against Amazon on Friday, saying the company’s “scorched-earth tactics” against publisher Hachette, have resulted in “more people getting screwed than in Fifty Shades of Grey.”

California BumpCalifornia Bump

In an earlier show, he noted that Amazon’s disabling of the pre-order functions for Hachette titles is particularly hard on first-time authors, so he enlisted viewers to buy Edan Lepucki’s debut novel California (Hachette/Little,Brown), which is also a LibraryReads pick, via Powells. As of Friday, over 6,400 copies had been pre-ordered. Now he is urging viewers to make it a New York Times best-seller by continuing to pre-order copies through Powell’s and other independent booksellers.

Other Titles Getting The Bump

Sons of Wichita  Redeeming the Dream  The Confidence Code

Fellow Comedy Central host, Jon Stewart, who is also published by Hachette/Grand Central, has not formally joined the fight, but he will give a bump to another Hachette title tonight on The Daily Show, by interviewing Daniel Schulman, author of Sons of Wichita: How the Koch Brothers Became America’s Most Powerful and Private Dynasty (Hachette/Grand Central).

Also tonight, Colbert will feature a title from Penguin Redeeming the Dream: The Case for Marriage Equality David Boies, Theodore B. Olson, (Penguin/Viking).

And on Wednesday, Colbert will interview Katty Kay and Claire Shipman co-authors of The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance—What Women Should Know, (HarperBusiness).

Titles to Know, Next Week, 6/16 to 6/20/14

Friday, June 13th, 2014

The Silkworm  All Fall Down  Top Secret Twenty One

Amazon’s resolve to discourage customers from buying Hachette titles will be put to the test next week with the arrival of The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (Hachette/Mulholland Books; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print). Libraries have ordered plenty of copies to fill heavy holds on this sequel to The Cuckoo’s Calling, (both actually written by J.K. Rowling, of course). Rivaling The Silkworm in number of holds is Jennifer Weiner’s All Fall Down (S&S/Atria; S&S Audio) a novel about the serious subject of addiction. Watch for Weiner on the Today Show on release day, June 17.

Topping both is Janet Evanovich’s latest in her long running Stephanie Plum series, Top Secret Twenty-One, (RH/Bantam; RH Audio; RH Large Print).

All the titles mentioned here, plus a few more, are listed with ordering information and alternative formats on our downloadable New Title Radar, Week of 6/16/14

To Recommend

Amazon is promoting Summer House with Swimming Pool to people who want The Silkworm. In libraries, it already has fairly strong holds queues, so you may not want to follow suit. The following titles show fewer holds despite great advance excitement, offering good alternatives (and one is from Hachette).

The QuickThe Quick, Lauren Owen, (Random House; BOT)

A debut that has inspired a great deal of passion among librarians on GalleyChat and is a LibraryReads pick for June:

“This book starts out slowly, with an unconventional Victorian-era romance and builds to an unexpected development by the end of part one. Owen continues the slow boil of suspense with a curiously-enticing plot, centering on members of an exclusive London gentleman’s club who are testing the boundaries of their own organization. For those who enjoy historical fiction with a twist.” — Lucy Lockley, St. Charles City-County Library, St. Peters, MO

9780316231053_8f192The Fever, Megan Abbott, (Hachette/Little, Brown)

The seventh novel by an novelist with a growing reputation has inspired comments like this in Slate — “Megan Abbott is the kind of author whose books, once you’ve discovered them, present an immediate dilemma: You want to read them all, one right after the other, in hopes of prolonging the spell, yet you also become consumed with the need to hold one or two titles on her backlist in reserve, so you can be assured there will always be one yet to come.” People magazine described the story in their “Great Summer Reads,” roundup, “In Abbott’s affecting seventh novel, a mysterious affliction suddenly spreading among teenage girls shakes a community to its core.”

That NightThat Night, Chevy Stevens, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s. Macmillan Audio; Thorndike)

GalleyChatter Robin Beerbower calls Stevens her “go-to” author for readers looking for thrillers and adds that her latest is a ” top-notch psychological thriller that was so relentless I had to stop reading a few times to catch my breath.”


Media Attention

The Last MagazineThe Last Magazine, Michael Hastings, (Penguin/Blue Rider)

Journalist Michael Hastings was known for his fearlessness. His 2010 Rolling Stone article “The Runaway General” brought down Afghanistan armed forces commander, General Stanley McChrystal. In 2012, he wrote a profile of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for Rolling Stone, newly relevant now that the former POW has been released. Last year, at just 33 years old, Hastings was killed in a single-car crash in Los Angeles, leaving behind a draft of his first novel. New York magazine characterizes it as “a provocative piece of thinly fictionalized nonfiction … a posthumous mission accomplished … [which] tells the story of the run-up to the Iraq War from a perspective that many of his colleagues would like to forget.”

Your Fathers, Where Are They? And The Prophets, Do They Live Forever?, Dave Eggers, (Knopf, RH Audio)

An advance review from the formidable Michiko Kakutani in yesterday’s New York Times, indicates the regard Eggers commands from critics. She is, however, underwhelmed saying this novel, “reads like a skeletal play, written by a journeyman who seems intent on mashing up Samuel Beckett with a straight-to-video thriller about a serial kidnapper.”


All Together Dead  The Two Faces of January

All Together Dead (TV Tie-In), Charlaine Harris, (Penguin/Ace)

The final 10-episode season of HBO’s True Blood starts a week from Sunday. Some think that’s a good thing (Entertainment Weekly gives the new season a middling B-, even though they see it as an improvement over the previous one). Harris herself has finished with the series, having launched a new one with Midnight Crossroad, (Penguin/Ace). The HBO series has wandered away from the books, so the new series may have little in common with the tie-in.

The Two Faces of January, Patricia Highsmith, (Grove Press)

The latest adaptation of one of Highsmith’s novels opens on August 8, starring Viggo Mortensen and Kirsten Dunst. Unfortunately, it will only be in a limited number of theaters, so this may not bring the attention to the author’s work that The Talented Mr. Ripley did, Fortunately, it brings a tie-in of the book that was originally published in 1964, and an opportunity to update your Highsmith collections.

June GalleyChat: Post Book Expo

Friday, June 13th, 2014

[Ed. Note: This post is by EarlyWord’s GalleyChatter, Robin Beerbower]

June 3 found us involved with another rousing GalleyChat session, with many participants abuzz about their Book Expo America encounters with gracious and fascinating authors. Attendees were especially enthused about their suitcases bulging with treasured galleys of forthcoming books. Here is a small sampling of some of the BEA offerings along with a few other recommended titles (those of you going to ALA may want to seek these out).

As usual, it’s impossible to summarize the huge amount of books mentioned, so check here for all of the titles — June 3 GalleyChat. You can also friend me for continual updates on what I’m anticipating.

Book of lifeRising to the top of the list is one of the most anticipated books of the summer, Deborah Harkness’s third (and final) title in the All Souls trilogy, The Book of Life (Penguin/Viking, July). A few GalleyChatters who attended BEA received a print galley and the responses have been very enthusiastic. Lucy Lockley of St. Charles City-County Library said, “Great conclusion to fascinatingly detailed series! Fans of the series will not be disappointed.” Good news; you can request it on NetGalley; approvals begin June 15.

The self-effacing David Mitchell charmed the BEA Random House breakfast audience and many are excited to bone clocksread his forthcoming book that weaves six narratives and covers over forty years, The Bone Clocks (Random House, September). It will clearly be heavily promoted; a huge banner for it hung over the Javits Center. During GalleyChat, Elliott Bay Bookstore staff member Kenny Coble said, “Brilliant. I love it as much as Cloud Atlas. I still think about it constantly.”

Readers were excited about two futuristic thrillers featuring deadly viruses, Jon Scalzi’s Lock In (Macmillan/Tor, August) and Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel (Knopf, September).

lock in   station eleven   

In Lock In, a widespread disease leaves some afflicted in a “locked in” state, unable to move or express emotions but aware of what is happening around them. Librarian Jane Jorgenson (Madison Public Library, Wisconsin) said, “A blending of SF and police procedural that hits every note just right.”  Station Eleven is set in a world where 99% of the population has been obliterated due to a flu and incorporates themes such as art, fame and ambition. It was selected as a BEA Buzz Book, and with four GalleyChat members recommending it (Fairfield, CT, Library’s Susan Balla said, “Yes, another dystopic novel but the characters, not the chaos surrounding them, are the focus of this story”), plus having received “much love” from 13 Edelweiss users, it is sure to be on many fall reading lists.

smoke gets in your eyesThe first of two memoirs mentioned was Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by a young mortician, Caitlin Doughty (W.W. Norton, September). Janet Lockhart, Wake County, N.C., Library collection development librarian and I loved it and agree that the author makes the repellent and scary topic of dealing with human death (with the focus on cremation) comfortable and even humorous. It is clearly perfect, of course, for fans of one of the few other books to take a comedic view of the subject, Mary Roach’s Stiff. 

The other memoir enjoyed was North of Normal: A Memoir of My Wilderness Childhood, My Unusual Family, and How I Survived Both by Cea Sunrise Person (Harper, June). Alison Kastner of Multnomah, County, OR, Library called it a “reverse Wild [by Cheryl Strayed].” I was also fascinated by the author’s story of her highly dysfunctional childhood, living completely off the grid in the wilds of Canada. This is a good recommendation for anyone who liked Jeanette Winters’ The Glass Castle, and for older teens who are looking for something similar to Dave Pelzer’s A Child Called It.

Interest was also high for new titles by favorite authors, including Dennis Lehane’s The Drop (HarperCollins/Morrow, September), with the movie to be released in September. In a twist, the movie is based on Lehane’s short story, Animal Rescue. The book, also by Lehane, is based on his script for the movie.

big little liesIf Liane Moriarty’s The Husband’s Secret continues just a few more weeks on the NYT best seller list, where it has been for 23 weeks, it may be joined by her next book, Big Little Lies (Penguin/Putnam, July). Note the cover art represents an exploding lollipop; a variation of the exploding rose on The Husband’s Secret.

Since Necessary Lies was released last fall, Diane Chamberlain’s emotionally charged novels of family dynamics have steadily increased in popularity and early reports indicate her next book Silent Sister (St. Martin’s Press, October) will also in demand for readers of women’s fiction.

sudden lightGarth Stein, who had an unexpected hit with The Art of Running in the Rain, switches gears with a multigenerational saga cum ghost story,  A Sudden Light (Simon & Schuster, September). This one is not narrated by a dog. 

Please join us for the next GalleyChat on July 8 at 4:00 (EDT) — note, we moved the date a week later than usual, to avoid conflict for those returning from ALA.

PEOPLE Magazine’s Book Picks

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

jimmy-fallon-300As we noted last week, People magazine’s redesign under new Editorial Director, Jess Cagle, subsumes book reviews into the new upfront “People Picks” section.

In the second week of the new design, “The Best New Books” rate a bit higher than last — they are now at #6, up from #9, and feature 3 titles that are slightly more below the radar than last week’s, plus three books by “celebrities” (including “Twitter phenom” Jenny Mollen’s book of essays, I Like You Just the Way I Am; former Days of Our Lives star Alison Sweeney’s’ novel, Scared Scriptless and Fox News anchor Bret Aailer’s memoir about dealing with his son’s congenital heart disease, Special Heart).

But you can’t keep books out of popular culture; they sneak into some of the other picks:

#2 MovieHow to Train Your Dragon 2. Book Connection: Based on the kids series by Cressida Cowell, the movie opens this week (see our roundup of tie-ins). Variety calls it, “DreamWorks Animation’s strongest sequel yet — one that breathes fresh fire into the franchise, instead of merely rehashing the original. Braver than Brave, more fun than Frozen and more emotionally satisfying than so many of its live-action counterparts, Dragon delivers.”

#3 TV Drama: PBS Masterpiece Mystery miniseries, The Escape Artist. Book Connection: Show creator David Wolstencroft wrote two spy novels, Good News, Bad News and Contact ZeroWorldCat shows copies are still in many library collections.

#5 Pop Single: Rita Ora I Will Never Let You Down.  Book Connection: This one is admittedly very tenuous. Ora plays Mia, Christian’s sister, in the Fifty Shades of Grey movie.

#8 TV Series: Episode 10 in the new season of Game of Thrones. Book Connection: Obvious.

The actual books, at #6 are:

I'm Having So Much Fun 9780374141042_36437  Euphoria

I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You, Courtney Maum, (S&S/Touchstone) — This debut is a LibraryReads pick for June and People’s “Book of the Week.”

Do Fathers Matter?: What Science Is Telling Us About the Parent We’ve Overlooked, Paul Raeburn, (Macmillan/Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux) — We’re guessing that the answer is “Yes.” This is one of the issue’s many nods (including the cover story) to Father’s Day.

EuphoriaLily King, (Grove/Atlantic, June) —  Librarians have buzzed this one on GalleyChat, recommending it for fans of Horan’s Loving Frank and McLain’s The Paris Wife. It’s loosely based on Margaret Mead’s journals (if a novel based on the anthropologist’s life doesn’t sound like a promising readalike, consider that it involves a love triangle). People calls it “transporting.” Early readers we trust say, “King’s language is as lush as the landscape.”

When GriefBooks also sneak into the features features, in the form of an interview with  Mary Rockefeller Morgan, the twin of Michael Rockefeller, who disappeared in New Guinea in the early sixties. She recently updated her book about the loss, an eBook from a devision of Open Road Media, When Grief Calls Forth the Healing.

Open Road ebooks are available for library lending.

Another book on the story (which Morgan say prompted her to update her book), Savage Harvest by Carl Hoffman, (HarperCollins/Morrow), was published in March.

July LibraryReads List

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

Landline   Dollbaby   9780316250818_1a106

The just-released LibraryReads list of the ten books arriving in July that librarian love, offers some great readers advisory titles (over half are debuts). It’s also a reminder to nominate titles for upcoming lists (how-to here).

At BEA, the LibraryReads panel gave some helpful tips on how to use these lists:

1) You no longer have to admit “I haven’t read anything great lately,” your colleagues have. Each LibraryReads annotation is a readers advisory handsell you can steal.

2) The lists began in September, so there are now over 100 titles you can recommend. Check out our downloadable list —  LibraryReads-All-Lists-Through-July-2014. sort it by category and you have an instant list for creating displays, or to use when you’re stuck trying to recommend a recent book in a particular category.

2) The lists are handy R.A. training tools which demonstrate how to quickly communicate why you love a title.

On the July list, librarian favorite Rainbow Rowell gets her second #1 LibraryReads pick with Landline, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio; Thorndike), after her YA novel, Fangirl, was the pick for the inaugural September list. Excitement has spread to booksellers, who also include it on their Indie Next July list.

Among the five debuts on the list, is Dollbaby by Laura Lane McNeal (Penguin/Pamela Dorman Books). You can join us for a live chat with the author next week, as part of our Penguin First Flights Debut Author program.. Below is the LibraryReads annotation:

“In this coming-of-age story set in the Civil Rights era, Ibby is dropped off at the home of her eccentric grandmother in New Orleans after the death of her beloved father. Filled with colorful characters, family secrets and lots of New Orleans tidbits, this book will appeal to fans of Saving Ceecee Honeycutt.” —  Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA

Also among the debuts is the book Stephen Colbert and fellow Amazon victim Sherman Alexie recently urged people to buy, via Powell’s, rather than Amazon, California by Edan Lepucki (Hachette/Little, Brown, July 8; audio from Dreamscape).

“Driven away from the violence of cities and a crumbling society, Cal and Frida live an isolated existence, struggling to survive on what they grow and forage. When an unplanned pregnancy pushes the couple to search for other people, they discover an unexpected community. This well-written debut is great for apocalyptic fiction fans and fans of realistic, character-driven fiction.” — Sara Kennedy, Delaware County District Library, Delaware, OH